previous next
[398e] are the dirge-like modes of music? Tell me, for you are a musician.” “The mixed Lydian,1” he said, “and the tense or higher Lydian, and similar modes.” “These, then,” said I, “we must do away with. For they are useless even to women2 who are to make the best of themselves, let alone to men.” “Assuredly.” “But again, drunkenness is a thing most unbefitting guardians, and so is softness and sloth.” “Yes.” “What, then, are the soft and convivial modes?” “There are certain Ionian and also Lydian modes

1 The modes of Greek music are known to the English reader only from Milton's allusions, his “Lap me in soft Lydian airs” and, P.L. i. 549 f., his “Anon they move/ in perfect phalanx to the Dorian mood/ Of flutes and soft recorders; such as rasied/ To highth of noblest temper heroes old.” The adaptation of particualr modes, harmonies, or scales to the expression of particular feelings is something that we are obliged to accept on faith. Plato's statements here were challenged by some later critics, but the majority believed that there was a connection between modes of music and modes of feeling, as Ruskin and many others have in our day. The hard-headed Epicureans and sceptics denied it, as well as the moral significance of music generally.

2 Cf. 387 E.

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.

load focus Greek (1903)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Ruskin (Canada) (1)
Milton (Missouri, United States) (1)
Dorian (Pennsylvania, United States) (1)

Visualize the most frequently mentioned Pleiades ancient places in this text.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (13 total)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: