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[6] “She, having come (fem.) and having conversed (fem.) with me, went away.” The fifth rule consists in observing number, according as many, few, or one are referred to: “They, having come (pl.), began to beat (pl.) me.”

Generally speaking, that which is written should be easy to read or easy to utter, which is the same thing. Now, this is not the case when there is a number of connecting particles, or when the punctuation is hard, as in the writings of Heraclitus.1 For it is hard, since it is uncertain to which word another belongs, whether to that which follows or that which precedes; for instance, at the beginning of his composition he says: “Of this reason which exists2 always men are ignorant,” where it is uncertain whether “always” should go with “which exists” or with “are ignorant.”

1 Heraclitus of Ephesus (c. 535-475). His chief work was on Nature. From the harshness of his language and the carelessness of his style he was called σκοτεινός (the obscure). According to him, fire was the origin of all things; all things become fire, and then fire becomes all other things. All things are in a constant state of flux; all is the same and yet not the same. Knowledge is founded upon sensual perception, but only the gods possess knowledge in perfection.

2 Or, “although this reason exists for ever men are born . . . without understanding” (Welldon).

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