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Phip. There is, then, no essential dif seems impossible to know the marks of ference between the worship of a God, divinity, even in the features ; and if any and that of a hero or superior man; and statuary has expressed them, it was by the Deities themselves are only images of accident, or by a close imitation of some this energy which inspires men with rea- prophet, or sage, at the moment of his
“To me, on the contrary,” Soc. Thus, then, Anaxagoras reasoned; said Anaxagoras, “ the art of the statuary and now I will repeat his own words: seems as certain as that of the poet or “ With you, Socrates, it is easy to con- rhetorician; and like theirs, to be rational, verse, because you are willing to con- and subject to rules. The arts of speech fess your ignorance, though you esteem intend always an expression of some knowledge above all things. You would thought, or passion ; and the same pashave me give an opinion of this work of sion is expressed always in the same yours, whether it is well or ill designed. manner. The composer of fictions, by And you wish me to converse with you discovering in one character a variety of upon the nature of the Gods, as I have passions and emotions, following the done with others—but not always in a swift order of events, shows us the existmanner to gain the reputation of piety. ence of a superior power, presiding over First, then, for the work. If anything and controlling them. The form of this can be said with certainty of this Deity, power or principle, (which is divinity in it is that he cannot be otherwise repre- the soul,) is made apparent by the mansente 1, than by a combination of all the ner in which it rules over and controls marks of power and obedience; for he the inferior energies. He then is the true bears the attributes of obedience in union poet, who is able, by a fictitious or real with those of power. But his obedience history, to discover by its proper effects is that of a man, and not that of a slave; a certain form of the superior principle, and if he endured the tyranny of a mor- showing by the choice and order of detal, it was in obedience to the commands scription its effects upon the heart and of a God. It will be proper, therefore, to mind. But the forms of this principle give him an air of cheerful acquiescence are the forms of the Gods, and the marks and lively courage—as of a servant ready by which we know them. In Zeus we to obey á just command. Because of his discover authority; in Juno regal pride ; immense and unremitted toil, the muscu- in Minerva prudence ; and in Hercules lar envelop of his body will have a dis- obedience. In every divine or heroical proportionate vastness, seeming to bury character some one form appears of this and obscure the bones and viscera, and energy. But if the maker of fictions and giving to the head and extremities an mysteries can show the presence of any effect of littleness, as though they were form of the rational principle, it must be unnaturally small. Since the form of the through a knowledge of it in his own body expresses the temper and habit of mind." the person, this Deity cannot be repre Tell me then, I exclaimed, whether a sented with the angular frame and face knowledge of this ethical reason is not of Vulcan, nor with the smooth elegance equally necessary to the statuary, if he of Hermes; but like the pancratists, who would truly represent the Gods and heperform every exercise, his body will roes? How,” he answered, “can it be discover equal flexibility and power, otherwise ? Is it not apparent, that every muscle appearing ready for its whoever would represent a thing must proper service, but all vast, round, and have an idea of it; and that this idea well pronounced.” Such, 0 Phidias, cannot be a something hastily acquired were the words of Anaxagoras, regard- and faintly known, but must live as an ing the mode of representing Hercules. active power presiding over the mind and
Phid. Did he say in what manner the hand, shaping every line and poising marks of divinity may be distinguished ? every stroke ?-or do I speak extrava
Soc. As I remember he spoke thus : gantly?" Not extravagantly, I replied, “ To you, Socrates, these particulars but you speak impossibilities. seem proper to be observed; but if I yet,” rejoined he, “it is necessary to say that the divinity should appear, not have an idea of perfection, if we mean to only in the face, but in every feature of approach to it in action ; for it is imposthe body, do I seem to have said anything sible otherwise to forgive or be forgiven. absurd ? Not absurd, I answered, but The works of a good man, though imperimpossible to be observed : for to me it fect, discover his idea of what is best.
Why not say the same of statues and you from it. "If the knowledge of a thing paintings, that though the best of them by its marks,” continued the sage, are gross performances, compared with indeed the thing itself, what you have what they signify, or symbolize, they supposed would follow. But no man strike us with delight when they in- confounds the knowledge or idea of pride timate a certain dignity of idea in the with the being proud; or the idea of workman.” To me, I answered, it seems what is proper to anger with the being necessary that no one can truly express a easily angered. Let us admit, then, that quality of the soul, unless he is in some a certain degree only of a quality is nedegree endowed with that quality. But cessary to a knowledge of it; but that if an artist will content himself with a extreme pride or irascibility is not necescareful imitation of nature, selecting sary to a true idea of these qualities." I models which have the marks of virtue, am willing, I answered, to admit this. may he not accomplish much without “ To me, then,” he continued, “ it aiming to know the thing he represents ? seems evident, that a poet, or a statuary, “If the art of a statuary,” he replied, or an actor, must possess in some degree “ intended only to produce images of liv- the virtue and the fault which he impering men, with all their imperfections, it sonates, and that the more admirable his might happen that the images of a few, own virtue, the more profound will be taken at favorable moments, might dis- the sources of his knowledge; but that cover traces of divinity. But it is required this knowledge is the fruit of a peculiar of an artist that he be able, not only to energy, or power in reason, able to rule imitate what is set before him, but to over, and represent the passions, and able make images of the vices and virtues: as also, to conceive and personify images of of pride, courage, magnanimity, justice; the virtues, but not able to rule over or distinguishing these, not by arbitrary command them." To you, therefore, ansymbols, as the barbarians use, but by swered I, it seems, that the justice and the marks which discover them in nature; the magnanimity of the artist, enable as, magnanimity, by a certain mixture of him to see the marks of these qualseverity and openness; pride, by a lofty ities in others; and that a small degree and swelling manner; goodness, by a of virtue in me makes me sensible to a benign and amiable expression, and the much greater degree in another, through like. If he is able to do this, he may this genius, or power of conceiving virrepresent whatever he imagines; but he tue in the intellect? To this he assentcannot represent pride, without a model ed. Is there then, I asked, a power in the or image of pride in his mind. If this human spirit which is proper to it, and image is that of an individual, as, for which all men in some degree possessexample, Pericles, (who has a certain a power by which they are enabled to pride,) he will continually model images perceive in others the marks of reason, of Pericles; but if this image is conceived and so perceiving, to venerate it; and is through an experience in his own person, there also a power or genius, of represenhe will be able to compose a statue of tation, which enables them to form ideas, pride by its natural marks: just as the and impersonate what they revere? poet and the actor, th ugh the same Then he assented. But is not this the knowledge, are able to impersonate it in power, I continued, which enables the the character of a king or hero. But an orator to express the grandeur of his actor who should imitate the gait of Peri. own soul, as the poet does, feigning the cles, or a poet who should repeat his say- greatness of another? Again he assentings, would be entitled to no more of ed. Say, then, continued I, whether he our admiration, than an artist who copies who has no grandeur of soul can express a limb with all its blemishes.” It seems the marks of grandeur in marble, or in then, I answered, that a statuary cannot words; or whether by the genius of reprepresent a character without some know- resentation, he can depict anything greatledge of ihe natural marks by which it is er than himself? For but now you asdistinguished from other forms of reason. serted that to know the signs of justice But is it necessary to be a hero that we in another, it is necessary that we should may represent one, or to be just that we ourselves be inclined to justice; and if may represent justice ?
this is true at all, it is so altogether; and Puid. A hard condition, O Socrates, they will best discern virtue in others you would have laid upon us !
who have most of it in themselves. How, Soc. See, then, whether he relieved then, can I represent virtue as Homer
has done, unless I have the virtue of Ho Soc. Thus, then, he continued : “ Since mer ? But if I have it not, though I re there are two modes of representationvere, can I represent it? Then Anaxa- namely, by a symbol, which is mystical, goras, after meditating a while, made an and by the natural sign, which is artistiswer as follows. “ You have arrived, 0 cal—the poet and the statuary will desire Socrates, at a wonderful result in regard to have a knowledge of the natural signs to artists and poets, and, indeed, to all of character, and will labor diligently to men, having discovered the nature of this acquire them. They will be able not genius which represents virtue as known, only to imitate what they have seen, but or venerates it as unknown. Whatever to represent what they imagine. Their virtue is in ourselves we may represent, imaginations are symbolic of their own provided the Creator has endowed us emotions and character; not like the with the genius or energy; and if the dreams of a drunkard, but like those of a poet or the statuary is by nature a hero God. The excellence of what they imaor a king, he will represent kings and gine will be. first, in the thing signified, heroes, by their real marks; but if he and secondly in the beauty of the mark personates what is superior to himself, as or symbol. Phidias has a passion of a God or a divine man, he fails in the magnanimity in his soul, and Pericles representation, and is compelled to invent has an equal passion; but they will diartificial symbols, to express the power, versely discover this: one in war or in or the degrees of power, which he igno. oratory, the other in a poem or in the rantly reveres. Is not this, then, O my statue of a magnanimous hero. If any friend, the reason of that ancient amity man is inspired with greatness, or with between poets and heroes, that they are prudence, or with justice, or with any alike sons of glory, and full of great- other virtue, his inspiration forces him to ness; but to poets the creative, and to discover, in some manner, the quality of heroes the military genius, is accorded.” his spirit. In the strictness of his dealBut for that third kind, I replied, who re- ings, the man of wealth discovers his vere though they cannot comprehend— regard for justice, and wins the confiwhat shall be said of them? “ That they dence of the citizens. The hero shows 100,” he answered, “are the children of them that he values the fame of courage the Supreme, and his peculiar servants. and constancy above all other things; Like Hercules, they cheerfully obey and and at once 'all men accord it to him. execute, and are always employed in These are driven by necessity to perform good works: nor is their glory less, but many gross and laborious duties, that rather greater; and all men love them.” their virtue may be conspicuous. But the
Phid. Mysteriously, indeed, he talked orator and the artist are able to show with you! I have heard that he was an forth the noblest qualities by the force of atheist, and believed in no God but mat- words alone, or by the gestures and nater.
tural graces of the body. But the power Soc. As if I, beholding Phidias, should of imagining great qualities, and that of believe only in his skin. Anaxagoras beautifully representing them, are not aldenied that ideas should be mistaken for ways conferred upon the same person. the beings which they symbolize; and af- I may be able to imagine the quality of firmed that no man may comprehend a justice, and see the signs of it, though I being superior to his own.
am unable to imagine or shape forth the Puid. But if we cannot comprehend, perfect image of a just person ; but the how can we worship?
statuarv will be able, not only to conSoc. By acknowledging this very ina- ceive, but to personify justice. The debility. We just now agreed that wor sire of the artist is, therefore, to know ship is not knowledge, but a confes- the natural marks of character; for by sion of inferiority.
these he is enabled to express the greatPaid. In kind, or in degree?
ness of his own soul. But if he fails to Soc. In kind, as I think. For if I wor- acquire a knowledge of these marks, he ship what is only superior in degree to will resort to artificial symbols, invented myself, I might fall upon my knees to as substitutes. As when a speaker, unevery man who appeared wiser or able to describe a glorious action, declares stronger than I.
only that it was glorious; putting a Phid. But what said Anaxagoras in word for a thing: or, when an orator, regard to the marks by which greatness wishing to seem admirable, advises may be represented ?
promptness and vigor, but cannot say
what it is that is prompt and vigor- moment to see him fall headlong. But ous.
proceed. Phid. By Hercules, I have known Soc. “ Because the head, and espesuch! But Anaxagoras had not heard cially the face,” he continued, “is the our new tragedians, who fill the mouths most expressive part of the figure, it will of their heroes with a kind of metaphy- be necessary to have a perfect knowledge sical wisdom, while they compel them to of their paris, both internal and external. actions fit only for slaves and voluptu. For in animals, the form of the internal aries. By the Gods, if they are admitted determines that of the external parts. to Elysium, the heroes will avoid their But this knowledge (of the head and society!
face) is much more difficult than that of Soc. Is it just, then, to be in a rage the body. Strength is easily represented with their ignorance?
in the limbs, as beauty is in the face; Phid. Not with their ignorance, but because these parts are the natural seat with their treachery; for they use the of such qualities: but to confer beauty symbols and names of virtue to mislead upon the limbs is as difficult as to impart mankind-like traitors who carry a ban. vigor to the face. In regard to those ner into an ambuscade.
qualities to which strength and beauty Soc. They are what they are. But are subordinate-serving only to recomhear Anaxagoras.
mend and grace them—they appear either Phip. Go on; I desire to hear him. in the gesture of the body, or in the ex
Soc. Thus, then, he continued : “ For pression of the features. But because you, Socrates, if you mean to make im- the knowledge of the superior qualities ages of the Gods, it will be necessary to is inexpressibly difficult, and subject to acquire a knowledge of these beings, or rules known only to the most skillful, rather, of the qualities in men of which very few bave been able to compose stathey are sources : as of justice and wis- tues which fitly represent them; and the dom, in Zeus; of virtuous prudence in greater number are content with an outAthene; of knowledge, with the love of side of beauty and strength, as in a glory, in Apollo; and of all inferior qua- Lydian woman or a boxer. A few, only, lities in inferior Gods. But because these have given a divine expression to the beings have no body, they cannot be head, as in that of Zeus, and of Homer; truly represented, and must therefore be and the works of these few are incessymbolized, either by signs and ceremo- santly copied and applied to other subnies significant of their powers, or by jects. But the science of this art remains human figures, to express their place and unknown, nor has any man pretended authority in man: for to the worshiper ever to be able to teach it.” it is indifferent whether the power of Phid. I should willingly listen to any the God is suggested to him by’a statue, one who would teach me such a science. or by a ceremony; both are symbolic and Soc. Shall we, then, inquire whether equally remote from the reality. The it is possible to attain it ? statuary, therefore, will observe the Puid. Let us spare no pains to follow signs of character in the face and limbs, the inquiry : it seems to be a matter of and in the carriage and motion of the the utmost consequence. ody.
Soc. Let it be conceded that AnaxagoPuid. It is impossible to represent mo ras said nothing extravagant, when he tion by a picture or a statue.
affirmed that the human body is not only Soc. But a poet may represent it to the agent, but the image or symbol, of the mind's eye, and the actor may im- the spirit which informs it ; and that personate it, and the musician can give every limb and feature must signify, in a feeling of it; or am I wrong?
some manner, the quality of the man. Phid. The gesture of an image in The body, being therefore the natural marble should be always at a point of and only image or symbol of the spirit, rest, as when the dancer balances in his bas its true stamp and expression in the step, or the wrestler is just equaled by parts as in the whole. It is to the soul, his antagonist, or the orator pauses an
as the handle of an instrument to the instant at the close, keeping an attitude hand which grasps it. But the shape of of persuasion : an eagle may be seen the hand determines the shape of the poising himself, or even soaring upon handle; and the use to which it is apthe ether; but if Theseus, in the marble, plied, the figure and quality of the blade. rushes down to Hades, I expect at each So, the various energies of the animal
predetermined the figure of its body. But Phip. We do, indeed; nor have I ever when it happens that the substance is ill heard the contrary. tempered, and the instrument weakly Soc. If, then, the body is the agent made, it will answer but feebly to its and instrument of the instincts and of uses. And in the same manner it hap- the intellect and passions, will not these pens with the body of man—which is of powers make themselves apparent in it a nature liable to various perversions by certain marks by which an intelligent, that it rarely attains perfection, or is fitted a passionate or an intellectual disposition freely to perform its offices.
may be distinguished from one that is Puid. Why may not one spirit be infe- gross and instinctive ? rior to another, and fitted with an infe Puid. Evidently. But can we say
of rior body? Or why may not a powerful the inferior energies that they are essenspirit inhabit a weaker body?
tially variable ? Soc. It seems to me absurd to say that Soc. Can we say of two magnets, that one immortal being is inferior to another the energy of one is essentially inferior of its kind; nor is it right to speak of a to that of the other; or only, that one spirit as of a thing that may be greater discovers or possesses more of the comor less; for a spirit has no dimensions. mon power? Do they differ in degree, We may say that less of it appears, be or in kind? cause of the body's weakness; but not, Phid. In kind; and the same will be that the spirit of one man is essentially said of two men—that they differ not in inferior to that of another. Before God, kind, (for the same power is in both,) all are equal.
but only in degree--and that one, because PHID. I am perplexed with a doubt of the better disposition of his body, disThe actions of some men are wholly covers more than another of the spirit passionate, while those of others seem which inspires all. full of reason. Say, then, whether pas Soc. Every man carries in him the sion and intellect flow from the spirit of marks of his disposition, as dogs and reason, or whether one and the same tigers carry those of theirs; but the boenergy is the cause of reason, passion dies of men have also other traits ; as, and intellect.
of honor, kindness, magnanimity, rectiSoc. Say, also, of sensual desire and tude, and the like; which no othe ani. of instinct. Our inquiry now is, whether mal discovers. Must we not say, then, the governing spirit is the same with the that this body, with its inferior energies, governed ; whether the intellect, the pas- is created to be the slave of the Rational sion, the fancy, and the brute instincts, Spirit ? are the same with that divine energy Puid. How can it be otherwise ? But which governs and regulates them ? I have seen men who differed little from which is absurd.
dogs and cattle. Phid. Is man, therefore, a body in Soc. Say, rather, you have seen the spired by several souls or energies? bodies of men; and that in these bodies
Soc. That he is moved by various en the marks of reason were the faintest ergies no one denies; but if we choose possible. to call them “ souls,” then he is, indeed, Phid. Can we say, then, that a person a subject of many “souls.” But this is gifted with observation might discern the to amuse ourselves with words. Let the shape of the soul by the form of the body? grosser energies be named INSTINCT, and Soc. We are already guarded, 0 Phino one will be offended ; for we feel dias, against so gross an absurdity! for within us the instincts of irrational life.
we agreed that the human spirit is a beThen let the name Sous be applied to ing without shape or dimension, but full understanding, memory, prudence, fancy, of power, and able to originate an infi. passion and affection ; which we have in nite variety of action, when provided common with the ape and other intelli- with a body through which it may act. gent brutes. These are limited and per. Because the acts of the soul are limited ishable energies, full of pain and varia- by this condition, the marks of character bleness. As for that “human soul,” or, in the body are the marks of the body's, more properly, for that RATIONAL SPIRIT, and not of the soul's, excellence; indiwe believe in its immortal nature, and cating a greater perfection in the organ, coniess that its office is to rule over the and through this only, a greater activity intelligences, and over the instincts. Do of the Rational Spirit. Do I speak reawe not?