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The regular naked exercises of the youth were often the cause of an unnatural passion among them. Crete and Lacedæmon are blamed particularly on this account. P. 636. Pleasure and pain are the two great sources
Ρ. 636. Δηλουσι δε Μιλησιων.] The confusions at Miletus were frequent, after that state had fallen into luxury and dissoluteness of manners: Heraclides Ponticus says of it; 'H Μιλησιων πολις περιπεπτωκεν ατυχιαις δια τρυφην βιου και πολιτικας εχθρας δι το επιεικες ουκ αγαπώντες εκ ριζων ανειλον τους εχθρους: and he gives a remarkable instance of the implacable cruelty which these parties shewed to each other. (Athenæus. L. 12. p. 524.)
Ib. Και δη και παλαιον.] Επιτηδευμα in this place seems to me to be the nominative, and Νομιμον the accusative: thus, Τούτο το επιτηδευμα (τα γυμνασια) δοκει μοι διεφθαρκεναι το παλαιον και κατα φυσιν νομιμον, τας περι, &c. i.e. “This practice (of exercising constantly naked) appears to me to have weakened greatly that ancient and natural law, by which the pleasures of love, not only among human creatures, but even in the brute creation, mutually belong to the two sexes.' This is a remarkable passage and Tully judges in the same manner of these exercises. How far the Cretans indulged their passions in the way here mentioned, may be seen in Ephorus, (ap. Strabonem L. 10.). The purity of manners at Sparta is strongly asserted by Xenophon, (De Lacedæmon. Republ. p. 395.) and by Plutarch in his life of Lycurgus; but here is a testimony on the other side at least of equal authority.
Ib. Δηλοῦσι δε Μιλησιων.] We learn from Polybius that the Ξυσσιτια were in use among the Boeotians (though under no such regulations, probably, as those of Crete and Lacedæmon), for speaking of that nation after the great victory at Leuctra, Ol. 102. 2. he says, Κατα μικρον ανέπεσον ταις ψυχαις, και όρμησαντες επ' ευωχιας και μεθας, διεθεντο και κοινωνεια τοις φίλοις πολλοι δε των εχοντων γενεας απεμεριζον τοις ξυσσιτιοις το πλεον μερος της ουσίας, ώστε πολλους είναι Βοιωτων, δις ὑπηρχε δειλινα του μηνος πλείω των εις τον μηνα διατεταγμένων ἡμερων.
of all human actions: the skill of a legislator consists in managing and opposing one of them to the other.
P. 639. The use of wine, when under a proper direction, in the education of youth.
(Ap. Athenæum, L. 10. p. 418. et Casaub. Annotat. in locum.) Many instances more may be observed in history of the intestine divisions in the cities of Boeotia, (see Xenoph. Græc. Hist. L. 5. p. 325.) and among the Thurians. (Thucyd. L. 7. c. 33. and Aristot. Politic. L. 5. c. 7.)
P. 637. No assemblies for the sake of drinking were ever seen in Lacedæmon, nor intemperate revels, nor frolicks, the consequences of such entertainments.
Ib. Ωσπερ εν ἁμαξαις.] A sort of drunken farces performed in the villages of Attica, during the Dionysia, which seem to be the origin of the ancient comedy and tragedy. Hence the proverb, Eg åμagns λeyei, and hence, too, Aristophanes gives the name of Tpaywdia to comedy. Acharnenses, v. 498, 499, and 627. They seem to have still continued in use in the country.
Ib. Ev Tapavτi.] Vid. Plutarch. in Pyrrho, and Strabo, L. 6. p. 230. We see here the beginnings of those vices, which some years afterwards were the ruin of Tarentum; though as yet the Pythagorean sect flourished there, and Archytas was probably at the head of their affairs.
Ib. Γυναικων παρ' ὑμιν ανεσιν.] Aristotle finds the same fault in this part of the Lacedæmonian constitution; he says of their women, Ζωσι μεν ακολαστως προς άπασαν ακολασίαν, και τρυφερως and he gives an instance of it in their behaviour, when the Thebans invaded Laconia. Χρησιμοι μεν γαρ ουδεν ησαν, ώσπερ εν ἑτεραις πολεσι· θορυβον δε παρειχον πλείω των πολεμίων. (Polit. L. 2. c. 9.)
Ib. 'NoжEρ Σкveau.] Herodot. L. 6. c. 84.—Пepσai.] Xenoph. Cyropæd. L. 8. p. 142.—Xapxndovio.] Were the Carthaginians remarkable for drinking?-KeλTOL.] See Posidonius ap. Athenæum, L. 4. p. 152.
P. 642. An apology for his own garrulity and diffuseness, which is the characteristick of an Athenian. P. 643. The nature and intent of education.
P. 644. Mankind are compared to puppets: but whether they are formed by the gods for their diversion, or for some more serious purpose (he says) is uncertain. Their pleasures and pains, their hopes and fears, are
P. 637. Opâкes.] Xenophon, describing an entertainment given by Seuthes, a Thracian king, at which he himself was present, says, Αναστας ὁ Σεύθης συνεξέπιε, και συγκατεσκέδασε το μετ' αυτου το κέρας.
638. Aoкpo.] The Locri Epizephyrii were governed by the laws of Zaleucus, and were an aristocracy, till the elder Dionysius marrying Doris, a Locrian lady, her relations grew powerful enough to bring that state into subjection to the Syracusans. Ib. Πολλαι γαρ δη φυγαι.] This may possibly allude to the unexpected defeat of the Spartans at Leuctra.
Ib. Xcovs.] The wisdom of the Chian government appears from what Thucydides says of them. Χιοι μονοι μετα Λακεδαιμονιους, ών εγω ησθόμην, ευδαιμονήσαντες ἁμα και εσωφρονησαν, και όσω επεδίδου ἡ πολις αυτοις επι το μείζον, τοσω και εκοσμοῦντο εχυρώτερον. L. 8. c. 24. But I doubt if Kelovs be not the true reading, for Chios revolted from the Athenians, Ol. 91. 4. when Plato was but seventeen years old, and Plato's Nouo were written in the latter end of his life.
641. The character of Athens, ὡς φιλολογος εστι και πολυλογος, that of Lacedæmon and Crete, ὡς ἡ μεν βραχυλογος, ἡ δε πολυνοιαν μαλλον η πολυλογιαν ασκουσα.
642. Η έστια της πολεως ουσα ὑμων προξενος.] As each private family had its Vesta, to whom the hearth was particularly sacred, so that of the publick was seated in the Prytaneum, (Pindar. Nem. Od. 11.) where in most cities a perpetual lamp was kept burning in honour of this goddess: and as every private family of rank had their IIpočevo in several cities of Greece, with whom they were connected by the ties of hospi
the springs which move them, and often draw contrary ways at once. Reason is the master-spring which ought to determine their motions; but as this draws gently and never uses violence, some of the passions must be called to its aid, which may give it strength to resist the force of the others.
P. 645. The effects of wine upon the soul: it
tality, and in whose houses they were lodged and entertained, so cities themselves had a like connection with each other; and there were publick Пpoğevo nominated to receive and to defray the expenses of such as came on business from other cities in alliance with them. The character of the Athenians is thus drawn: Το ύπο πολλων λεγομενον, ὡς ὁσοι Αθηναίων εισιν αγαθοι, διαφεροντως εισι τοιουτοι —μονοι γαρ ανευ αναγκης, αυτοφυώς, θεια μοιρα, αληθως και ουτι πλαστως εισιν αγαθοι.
Ρ. 642. Προ των Περσικών.] Epimenides, therefore, came to Athens, Ol. 70. 1. ten years before the battle of Marathon. This is not reconcileable with Plutarch (in Solone), Diogenes Laertius, or any other author, who mentions Epimenides. It is sure that he arrived at Athens ninety-six years earlier, and was then extremely old. Plato must therefore mean some other person of the same name, country, and family, perhaps descended from the old Epimenides, and practising, like him, the art of divination.
644. Oavμa μev.] It is plain, that by lavua he means a puppet, νευροσπαστον, and I suppose, that the @avuaтoπolol, or jugglers, used to carry such figures about to draw the crowd together, as the mountebanks do at Venice. To this he alludes also, L. 7. Πολιτειων· Παρ ̓ ἡν ιδε τειχιον παρωκοδομημενον, ὥσπερ τοις θαυματοποιοις των ανθρωπων προκειται τα παραφραγματα, Úжеρ ν та Оаνμata deikvûoi, &c. Puppet-shews were in such request among the Greeks, that Pothinus, a famous man in that way, performed before the whole Athenian people in the same theatre (says Athenæus, L. 1. p. 19.), in which Euripides had represented his tragedies.
heightens all our passions and diminishes our understanding, that is, in reality, it reduces us again to childhood. As physicians, for the sake of our body, give us certain potions, which for a time create sickness and pain in us, and put our whole frame into disorder; so possibly might the legislator (by a singular experiment) make wine subservient to a good purpose in education, and, without either pain or danger, put the prudence, the modesty, and the temper of youth to the trial, and see how far they could resist the disorder of the mind which is naturally produced by this liquor.
P. 646. The fear of dishonour is opposed to the fear of pain the first is a great instrument in the hands of a wise legislator to suppress and to conquer the latter.
P. 647. If there were any drug or composition known that would inspire us with fear and with dejection of spirits, for the time its influence lasted, what need would there be of fatiguing our youth with long laborious exercises, or of exposing them in battle to real danger, in order to fortify the soul against the attacks of fear and of pain? This draught alone, properly applied, would be a sufficient trial of our valour under the eye of the magistrate, who might confer honour and disgrace on a youth, according to his
P. 647. Kaλŵr audŵ.] This is what we call honour, that is, the fear of shame; and which is left to supply (as well as it can) the place of all the virtues among us. Plato calls this sentiment in another place (p. 674. Lib. 2.) Oecos poßos. Montesquieu makes it the grand principle of monarchical governments, (L'Esprit des Loix, L. 1. c. 6.) and in France its effects are most conspicuous.