plutarch's morals

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Page 367 - For nothing bears such a resemblance to an animal as fire. It is moved and nourished by itself, and by its brightness, like the soul, discovers and makes every thing apparent ; but in its quenching it principally shows some power that seems to proceed from our vital principle, for it makes a noise and resists, like an animal dying or violently slaughtered.
Page 492 - ... of all the passions of the mind, fear. For men tremble and shake and bewray themselves upon apprehension of great danger. They that sail in a river are troubled with neither of these. And the smell of sweet and potable water is familiar to all, and the voyage is without danger. On the sea an unusual smell is troublesome ; and men are afraid, not knowing what the issue may be. Therefore tranquillity abroad avails not, while an estuating and disturbed mind disorders the body. XII. WHY DOES POURING...
Page 309 - ... a beast or a cup of the same metal, he will rather choose that in which he sees a mixture of art and reason. Upon the same account it is that children are much in love with riddles, and such fooleries as are difficult and intricate ; for whatever is curious and subtle doth attract and allure human nature, as antecedently to all instruction ' agreeable and proper to it. And therefore, because he that is really affected with grief or anger presents us with nothing but the common bare passion, but...
Page 309 - Cyrenaics may use as a strong argument against you Epicureans, that all the sense of pleasure which arises from the working of any object on the ear or eye is not in those organs, but in the intellect itself. Thus the continual cackling of a hen or cawing of a crow is very ungrateful and disturbing ; yet he that imitates those noises well pleases the hearers. Thus to behold a consumptive man is no delightful spectacle ; yet with pleasure we can view the pictures and statues of such persons, because...
Page 453 - ... peculiar virtue to be formed, before he was aware, raised (as Plato hath it) a whole swarm of virtues never before known or used among the philosophers. For as from brave he derived bravery ; from mild, mildness ; and from just, justice ; so from pleasant he fetched pleasantness; from good, goodness; from grand, grandeur; and from honest, honesty; placing these and all kind of dexterous application of discourse, all kind of facetiousness of conversation, and all witty turns of expression in the...
Page 420 - Hellen sacrificed to Neptune as the first* father, imagining, as likewise the Syrians did, that man rose from a liquid substance. And therefore they worship a fish as of the same production and breeding with themselves, in this matter being more happy in their philosophy than Anaximander ; for he says that fish and men were not produced in the same substances, but that men were first produced in fishes, and, when they were grown up and able to help themselves, were thrown out, and so lived upon the...
Page 323 - Love, that greatest and most violent passion of the soul, takes its be ginning from the eye ; so that a lover, when he looks upon the fair, flows out, as it were, and seems to mix with them. And therefore why should any one, that believes men can be affected and prejudiced by the sight, imagine that they cannot act and hurt as well ? For the mutual looks of mature beauties, and that which comes from the eye. whether light or a stream of spirits, melt and dissolve the lovers with a pleasing pain,...
Page 305 - Kradephoria, from carrying palm-trees, and Thyrsophoria, when they enter into the temple carrying thyrsi. What they do within I know not; but it is very probable that they perform the rites of Bacchus. First they have little trumpets, such as the Grecians used to have at their Bacchanalia to call upon their gods withal. Others go before them playing upon harps, which they call Levites, whether so named from Lusius or Evius,—either word agrees with Bacchus.
Page 310 - Parmeno's sow ; one took a pig under his arm and came upon the stage. And when, though they heard the very pig, they still continued, This is nothing comparable to Parmeno's sow ; he threw his pig amongst them, to show that they judged according to opinion and not truth. And hence it is very evident, that like motions of the sense do not always raise like affections in the mind, when there is not an opinion • that the thing done was not neatly and ingeniously performed.
Page 486 - WATERING ? WHETHER is it because (as Laitus thinks) showers, parting the earth by the violence of their fall, make passages, whereby the water may more easily penetrate to the root ? Or cannot this be true ; and did Laitus never consider that marsh-plants (as cat's-tail, pond-weeds, and rushes) neither thrive nor sprout when the rains fall not in their season ; but it is true, as Aristotle said, rain-water is new and fresh, that of lakes old and stale ? And what if this be rather probable than true?...

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