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Pliny the Elder, The Natural History (ed. John Bostock, M.D., F.R.S., H.T. Riley, Esq., B.A.) 4 0 Browse Search
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Pliny the Elder, The Natural History (ed. John Bostock, M.D., F.R.S., H.T. Riley, Esq., B.A.), BOOK II. AN ACCOUNT OF THE WORLD AND THE ELEMENTS., CHAP. 1. (1.)—WHETHER THE WORLD BE FINITE, AND WHETHER THERE BE MORE THAN ONE WORLD. (search)
est," § 2. Pomponius Mela's work commences with a similar expression; "Omne igitur hoc, quidquid est, cui mundi cœlique nomen indideris, unum id est." They were probably taken from a passage in Plato's Timæus, "Universum igitur hoc, Cœlum, sive Mundum, sive quo alio vocabulo gaudet, cognominemus," according to the translation of Ficinus; Platonis Op. ix. p. 302. The word cœlum, which is employed in the original, in its ordinary acceptation, signifies the heavens, the visible firmament; as in Ovid, Met. i. 5, "quod tegit omnia, cœlum." It is, in most cases, employed in this sense by Lucretius and by Manilius, as in i. 2. of the former and in i. 14. of the latter. Occasionally, however, it is employed by both of these writers in the more general sense of celestial regions, in opposition to the earth, as by Lucretius, i. 65, and by Manilius, i. 352. In the line quoted by Cicero from Pacuvius, it would seem to mean the place in which the planets are situated; De Nat. Deor. ii. 91. The Gre<
Pliny the Elder, The Natural History (ed. John Bostock, M.D., F.R.S., H.T. Riley, Esq., B.A.), BOOK II. AN ACCOUNT OF THE WORLD AND THE ELEMENTS., CHAP. 4. (5.)—OF THE ELEMENTSThe account of the elements, of their nature, difference, and, more especially, the necessity of their being four, are fully discussed by Aristotle in various parts of his works, more particularly in his treatise De Cœlo, lib. iii. cap. 3, 4 and 5, lib. iv. cap. 5, and De Gener. et Cor. lib. ii. cap. 2, 3, 4 and 5. For a judicious summary of the opinions of Aristotle on this subject, I may refer to Stanley's History of Philosophy; Aristotle, doctrines of, p. 2. 1. 7, and to Enfield, i. 764 et seq. For the Epicurean doctrine, see Lucretius, i. 764 et seq. AND THE PLANETSAlthough the word planeta, as taken from the Greek planh/ths, is inserted in the title of this chapter, it does not occur in any part of the text. It is not found either in Lucretius, Manilius, or Seneca, nor, I believe, was it used by any of their contemporaries, except Hyginus, p. 76. The planets were generally styled stellæ erraticæ, errantes, or vagæ, sidera palantia, as in Lucretius, ii. 1030, or simply the five stars, as in Cicero, De Nat. Deor. ii. 51, and in Seneca, Nat. Quæst. vii. 24. Pliny, by including the sun and moon, makes the number seven. Aratus calls them pe/nt' a)/steres, l. 454.. (search)
what we term a constellation, a particular assemblage of them, and sometimes specially for an individual star. Manilius employs the word in all these senses, as will appear by the three following passages respectively; the first taken from the opening of his poem, "Carmine divinas artes, et conscia fati Sidera...." The second, "Hæc igitur texunt æquali sidera tractu Ignibus in varias cœlum laqueantia formas." i. 275, 276. The third "....pectus, fulgenti sidere clarius;"i. 356. In the Fasti of Ovid, we have examples of the two latter of these significations:— "Ex Ariadnæo sidere nosse potes;" v. 346. "Et canis (Icarium dicunt) quo sidere noto Tosta sitit tellus;" iv. 939, 940. Lucretius appears always to employ the term in the general sense. J. Obsequens applies the word sidus to a meteor; "sidus ingens cœlo demissum," cap. 16. In a subsequent part of this book, chap. 18 et seq., our author more particularly restricts the term sidus to the planets., separated by determinate spaces, whic