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[700b] one class of song was that of prayers to the gods, which bore the name of “hymns”; contrasted with this was another class, best called “dirges”; “paeans” formed another; and yet another was the “dithyramb,” named, I fancy, after Dionysus. “Nomes” also were so called as being a distinct class of song; and these were further described as “citharoedic nomes.”1 So these and other kinds being classified and fixed, it was forbidden to set one kind of words to a different class of tune.2

1 i.e., solemn chants sung to the “cithara” or lyre. “Dithyrambs” were choral odes to Dionysus; “paeans” were mostly hymns of praise to Apollo.

2 Cp. Plat. Laws 657c ff., 699c ff.

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