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ὀφεῶδες. The serpentine element has not hitherto been mentioned, but (as Schleiermacher points out, Platons Staat p. 609) may well be included in τὰ περὶ τὸν λέοντα 588 E. It symbolizes some meaner forms of the θυμοειδές which cannot well be attributed to the king of beasts, e.g. δυσκολία (III 411 C), perfidiousness etc. Cf. Theogn. 601 f. ἔρρε, θεοῖσίν τ᾽ ἐχθρὲ καὶ ἀνθρώποισιν ἄπιστε | ψυχρὸν ὃς ἐν κόλπῳ ποικίλον εἶχες ὄφιν. Clement (Strom. IV 3. 1225 B Migne) is thinking of the Old Testament when he says ὄφις ὁ ἀπατεών, but the idea is also Greek. It should also be remarked that expansions and amplifications like the addition of ὀφεῶδες in this passage are characteristic of the style of Plato: cf. for example Theaet. 147 A, B and 161 C. The emendation ὀχλῶδες, which Nettleship appears to favour (Lect. and Remains II p. 335), is excessively weak, and would moreover refer not to the θυμοειδές, but to the ἐπιθυμητικόν (cf. τῷ ὀχλώδει θηρίῳ below). It seems to me clear both from λεοντῶδες and from αὐτοῦ τούτου below that at present Plato is thinking only of the θυμοειδές and its degenerate kinds. We must therefore beware of referring ὀφεῶδες to τοὺς φιληδόνους, τοὺς γαστρὶ καὶ αἰδοίοις δουλεύοντας (Clement's interpretation of Matt. 3. 7: see Strom. IV 16. 1308 A). τρυφὴ δὲ καὶ μαλθακία κτλ. Cf. III 411 A, B. On πίθηκον see X 620 C note
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