previous next

ὡς ἀληθῶς should be construed with περὶ ἑαυτόν. The soul is the true self, as Socrates continually maintained. It is better to regard περί before ἑαυτόν as coordinate with περί in περὶ τὴν ἐντός, than to translate “with internal actions which are in very truth concerned with himself” (J. and C.). ὡς ἀληθῶς περὶ ἑαυτόν etc. merely emphasizes and explains περὶ τὴν ἐντός.

ἕκαστον. Ast would read ἕκαστον τῶν; but the meaning is easily caught after τὰ ἑαυτοῦ just before.

τῷ ὄντι κτλ.: ‘having set his house in order in the truest sense.’ So Schneider, rightly. For οἰκεῖα cf. III 405 B note

ξυναρμόσαντα -- ἡρμοσμένον. Cf. 432 A, where a similar image is employed. The figure here is taken from the Octachord, the λογιστικόν being represented by the ὑπάτη or highest string (which gave out the lowest note), the ἐπιθυμητικόν by the νεάτη (an octave higher in pitch), and the θυμοειδές by the μέση or fourth. See Dict. Ant. II p. 195 or Gleditsch Die Musik d. Gr. p. 860. The single notes of a ἁρμονία could be called ὅροι because they were in reality terms in a proportion and depended on the relative length of the string: cf. Tim. 35 B, C. Hartman's correction of νεάτης, ὑπάτης, μέσης to νεάτην, ὑπάτην, μέσην is very attractive: for the genitives can only be explained as ὅρον νεάτης etc., and the effect is unpleasing, especially with ἁρμονίας coming between. Retaining the Greek nomenclature, we may translate: ‘having harmoniously joined together three different elements, just like three terms in a musical proportion or scale, lowest and highest and intermediate,’ etc. In ἄλλα ἄττα μεταξύ Plato indicates (as J. and C. observe) that his threefold division of soul may not be ‘strictly exhaustive’ (cf. VIII 548 D note). The missing faculties would thus correspond to the notes intervening between the ὑπάτη and μέση, and the μέση and νεάτη. It will be noted that the unity resulting is not that of unison, but that of a scale or mode. Nevertheless it is clear from the language used that the ἁρμονία which Plato describes is, as before, σωφροσύνη: cf. ἄρξαντα αὐτὸν αὑτοῦ with 431 A, B, φίλον γενόμενον with 442 C; κοσμήσαντα too suggests κοσμιότης, and the word σώφρονα itself is finally employed. Cf. 434 C note A different explanation is given by the Scholiast. Holding that Plato is referring to a system of two octaves (δὶς διὰ πασῶν) he explains νεάτη, μέση and ὑπάτη as e.g. A', A, and b (not a, which is the προσλαμβανόμενος). His note is as follows: νεάτη ἤγουν νήτη ὑπερβολαίων ἐσχάτη χορδὴ τοῦ δὶς διὰ πασῶν συστήματος, ὑπάτη δὲ μετὰ τὸν προλαμβανόμενον (leg. προσλαμβανόμενον) φθόγγον πρώτη χορδὴ τοῦ αὐτοῦ τοῦ δὶς διὰ πασῶν συστήματος. μέση δὲ καὶ αὐτὴ ἤτοι φθόγγος χορδὴ τελευταία μὲν τοῦ πρώτου διὰ πασῶν, ἀρχὴ δὲ τοῦ δευτέρου, ὡς εἶναι τούτων κοινήν, ὡς Πτολεμαῖός τέ φησι καὶ οἱ ἄλλοι μουσικοί. But in the δὶς διὰ πασῶν σύστημα, the ὑπάτη is not σύμφωνος with the νήτη ὑπερβολαίων, although the προσλαμβανόμενος of course is (see Gleditsch l.c. p. 861 and Euclid Sect. Can. 10 ed. von Jan): so that according to the Scholiast there is a serious breach of συμφωνία. It seems to me quite clear that in ὥσπερ ὅρους τρεῖςμέσης Plato is thinking of three ξύμφωνοι φθόγγοι, and in the single octave or διὰ πασῶν, the ὑπάτη, μέση or fourth, and νεάτη were σύμφωνα ἀλλήλοις: see Cleonid. Isag. Harm. 5 ed. von Jan. In 432 A also, Plato contemplates only a single octave: see note ad loc.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide References (1 total)
  • Commentary references from this page (1):
    • Plato, Timaeus, 35b
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: