A Short History of Greek Philosophy
by John Marshall
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The State therefore is also an entelechy. For man is not made to dwell alone. "There is first the fact of sex; then the fact of children; third, the fact of variety of capacity, implying variety of position, some having greater powers of wisdom and forethought, and being therefore naturally the rulers; others having bodily powers suitable for carrying out the rulers' designs, and being therefore naturally subjects. Thus we have as a first or simplest community the family, next the village, then the full or perfect state, which, seeking to realise an absolute self-sufficiency within itself, rises from mere living to well-living as an aim of existence. This higher existence is as natural and necessary as any simpler form, being, in fact, the end or final and necessary perfection of all such lower forms of existence. Man therefore is by the natural necessity of his being a 'political animal,' and he who is not a citizen,—that is, by reason of something peculiar in his nature and not by a mere accident,—must either be deficient or something superhuman. And while man is the noblest of animals when thus fully perfected in an ordered community, on the other hand when deprived of law and justice he is the very worst. {198} For there is nothing so dreadful as lawlessness armed. And man is born with the arms of thought and special capacities or excellences, which it is quite possible for him to use for other and contrary purposes. And therefore man is the most wicked and cruel animal living when he is vicious, the most lustful and the most gluttonous. The justice which restrains all this is a civic quality; and law is the orderly arrangement of the civic community" (Arist. Pol. i. p. 2).



ARISTOTLE (concluded)

God and necessity—The vital principle—Soul as realisation—Function and capacity—His method

Throughout Aristotle's physical philosophy the [334] same conception runs: "All animals in their fully developed state require two members above all—one whereby to take in nourishment, the other whereby to get rid of what is superfluous. For no animal can exist or grow without nourishment. And there is a third member in them all half-way between these, in which resides the principle of their life. This is the heart, which all blood-possessing animals have. From it comes the arterial system which Nature has made hollow to contain the liquid blood. The situation of the heart is a commanding one, being near the middle and rather above than below, and rather towards the front than the back. For Nature ever establishes that which is most honourable in the most honourable places, unless some supreme necessity overrules. We see this most clearly in the case of man; but the same tendency for the heart to occupy the centre is seen also in {200} other animals, when we regard only that portion of their body which is essential, and the limit of this is at the place where superfluities are removed. The limbs are arranged differently in different animals, and are not among the parts essential to life; consequently animals may live even if these are removed. . . . Anaxagoras says that man is the wisest of animals because he possesses hands. It would be more reasonable to say that he possesses hands because he is the wisest. For the hands are an instrument; and Nature always assigns an instrument to the one fitted to use it, just as a sensible man would. For it is more reasonable to give a flute to a flute-player than to confer on a man who has some flutes the art of playing them. To that which is the greater and higher she adds what is less important, and not vice versa. Therefore to the creature fitted to acquire the largest number of skills Nature assigned the hand, the instrument useful for the largest number of purposes" (Arist. De Part. An. iv. p. 10).


And in the macrocosm, the visible and invisible world about us, the same conception holds: "The existence of God is an eternally perfect entelechy, a life everlasting. In that, therefore, which belongs to the divine there must be an eternally perfect movement. Therefore the heavens, which are as it were the body of the Divine, are in form a sphere, of {201} necessity ever in circular motion. Why then is not this true of every portion of the universe? Because there must of necessity be a point of rest of the circling body at the centre. Yet the circling body cannot rest either as a whole or as regards any part of it, otherwise its motion could not be eternal, which by nature it is. Now that which is a violation of nature cannot be eternal, but the violation is posterior to that which is in accordance with nature, and thus the unnatural is a kind of displacement or degeneracy from the natural, taking the form of a coming into being.

"Necessity then requires earth, as the element standing still at the centre. Now if there must be earth, there must be fire. For if one of two opposites is natural or necessary, the other must be necessary too, each, in fact, implying the necessity of the other. For the two have the same substantial basis, only the positive form is naturally prior to the negative; for instance, warm is prior to cold. And in the same way motionlessness and heaviness are predicated in virtue of the absence of motion and lightness, i.e. the latter are essentially prior.

"Further, if there are fire and earth, there must also be the elements which lie between these, each having an antithetic relation to each. From this it follows that there must be a process of coming into being, because none of these elements can be eternal, {202} but each affects, and is affected by each, and they are mutually destructive. Now it is not to be argued that anything which can be moved can be eternal, except in the case of that which by its own nature has eternal motion. And if coming into being must be predicated of these, then other forms of change can also be predicated" (Arist. De Coelo, ii. p. 3).

This passage is worth quoting as illustrating, not only Aristotle's conception of the divine entelechy, but also the ingenuity with which he gave that appearance of logical completeness to the vague and ill-digested scientific imaginations of the time, which remained so evil an inheritance for thousands of years. It is to be observed, in order to complete Aristotle's theory on this subject, that the four elements, Earth, Water, Air, Fire, are all equally in a world which is "contrary to nature," that is, the world of change, of coming into being, and going out of being. Apart from these there is the element of the Eternal Cosmos, which is "in accordance with nature," having its own natural and eternal motion ever the same. This is the fifth or divine element, the aetherial, by the schoolmen translated Quinta Essentia, whence by a curious degradation we have our modern word Quintessence, of that which is the finest and subtlest extract.

Still more clearly is the organic conception carried {203} out in Aristotle's discussion of the Vital principle or Soul in the various grades of living creatures and in man. It will be sufficient to quote at length a chapter of Aristotle's treatise on the subject (De Anima, ii. p. 1) in which this fundamental conception of Aristotle's philosophy is very completely illustrated:—

"Now as to Substance we remark that this is one particular category among existences, having three different aspects. First there is, so to say, the raw material or Matter, having in it no definite character or quality; next the Form or Specific character, in virtue of which the thing becomes namable; and third, there is the Thing or Substance which these two together constitute. The Matter is, in other words, the potentiality of the thing, the Form is the realisation of that potentiality. We may further have this realisation in two ways, corresponding in character to the distinction between knowledge (which we have but are not necessarily using) and actual contemplation or mental perception.

"Among substances as above defined those are most truly such which we call bodily objects, and among these most especially objects which are the products of nature, inasmuch as all other bodies must be derived from them. Now among such natural objects some are possessed of life, some are not; by life I mean a process of spontaneous nourishment, growth, and decay. Every natural {204} object having life is a substance compounded, so to say, of several qualities. It is, in fact, a bodily substance defined in virtue of its having life. Between the living body thus defined and the Soul or Vital principle, a marked distinction must be drawn. The body cannot be said to 'subsist in' something else; rather must we say that it is the matter or substratum in which something else subsists. And what we mean by the soul is just this substance in the sense of the form or specific character that subsists in the natural body which is potentially living. In other words, the Soul is substance as realisation, only, however, of such a body as has just been defined. Recalling now the distinction between realisation as possessed knowledge and as actual contemplation, we shall see that in its essential nature the Soul or Vital principle corresponds rather with the first than with the second. For both sleep and waking depend on the Soul or Life being there, but of these waking only can be said to correspond with the active form of knowledge; sleep is rather to be compared with the state of having without being immediately conscious that we have. Now if we compare these two states in respect of their priority of development in a particular person, we shall see that the state of latent possession comes first. We may therefore define the Soul or Vital principle as The earliest {205} realisation (entelechy) of a natural body having in it the potentiality of life.

"To every form of organic structure this definition applies, for even the parts of plants are organs, although very simple ones; thus the outer leaf is a protection to the pericarp, and the pericarp to the fruit. Or, again, the roots are organs bearing an analogy to the mouth in animals, both serving to take in food. Putting our definition, then, into a form applicable to every stage of the Vital principle, we shall say that The Soul is the earliest realisation of a natural body having organisation.

"In this way we are relieved from the necessity of asking whether Soul and body are one. We might as well ask whether the wax and the impression are one, or, in short, whether the matter of any object and that whereof it is the matter or substratum are one. As has been pointed out, unity and substantiality may have several significations, but the truest sense of both is found in realisation.

"The general definition of the Soul or Vital principle above given may be further explained as follows. The Soul is the rational substance (or function), that is to say, it is that which gives essential meaning and reality to a body as knowable. Thus if an axe were a natural instrument or organ, its rational substance would be found in its realisation of what an axe means; this would be its soul. Apart {206} from such realisation it would not be an axe at all, except in name. Being, however, such as it is, the axe remains an axe independently of any such realisation. For the statement that the Soul is the reason of a thing, that which gives it essential meaning and reality, does not apply to such objects as an axe, but only to natural bodies having power of spontaneous motion (including growth) and rest.

"Or we may illustrate what has been said by reference to the bodily members. If the eye be a living creature, sight will be its soul, for this is the rational substance (or function) of the eye. On the other hand, the eye itself is the material substance in which this function subsists, which function being gone, the eye would no longer be an eye, except in name, just as we can speak of the eye of a statue or of a painted form. Now apply this illustration from a part of the body to the whole. For as any one sense stands related to its organ, so does the vital sense in general to the whole sensitive organism as such, always remembering that we do not mean a dead body, but one which really has in it potential life, as the seed or fruit has. Of course there is a form of realisation to which the name applies in a specially full sense, as when the axe is actually cutting, the eye actually seeing, the man fully awake. But the Soul or Vital principle corresponds rather with the function of sight, or the capacity for cutting which {207} the axe has, the body, on the other hand, standing in a relation of potentiality to it. Now just as the eye may mean both the actual organ or pupil, and also the function of sight, so also the living creature means both the body and the soul. We cannot, therefore, think of body apart from soul, or soul apart from body. If, however, we regard the soul as composed of parts, we can see that the realisation to which we give the name of soul is in some cases essentially a realisation of certain parts of the body. We may, however, conceive the soul as in other aspects separable, in so far as the realisation cannot be connected with any bodily parts. Nay, we cannot be certain whether the soul may not be the realisation or perfection of the body as the sailor is of his boat."

Observe that at the last Aristotle, though very tentatively, leaves an opening for immortality, where, as in the case of man, there are functions of the soul, such as philosophic contemplation, which cannot be related to bodily conditions. He really was convinced that in man there was a portion of that diviner aether which dwelt eternally in the heavens, and was the ever-moving cause of all things. If there was in man a passive mind, which became all things, as all things through sensation affected it, there was also, Aristotle argued, a creative mind in man, which is above, and unmixed with, that which it apprehends, {208} gives laws to this, is essentially prior to all particular knowledge, is therefore eternal, not subject to the conditions of time and space, consequently indestructible.

Finally, as a note on Aristotle's method, one may observe in this passage, first, Aristotle's use of 'defining examples,' the wax, the leaf and fruit, the axe, the eye, etc.; second, his practice of developing his distinctions gradually, Form and Matter in the abstract, then in substances of every kind, then in natural bodies, then in organic bodies of various grades, in separate organs, in the body as a whole, and in the Soul as separable in man; and thirdly, his method of approaching completeness in thought, by apparent contradictions or qualifications, which aim at meeting the complexity of nature by an equally organised complexity of analysis. To this let us simply add, by way of final characterisation, that in the preceding pages we have given but the merest fragment here and there of Aristotle's vast accomplishment. So wide is the range of his ken, so minute his observation, so subtle and complicated and allusive his illustrations, that it is doubtful if any student of his, through all the centuries in which he has influenced the world, ever found life long enough to fairly and fully grasp him. Meanwhile he retains his grasp upon us. Form and matter, final and efficient causes, potential and actual existences, {209} substance, accident, difference, genus, species, predication, syllogism, deduction, induction, analogy, and multitudes of other joints in the machinery of thought for all time, were forged for us in the workshop of Aristotle.




Greek decay—The praises of Lucretius—Canonics—Physics—The proofs of Lucretius—The atomic soul—Mental pleasures—Natural pleasures—Lower philosophy and higher

Philosophy, equally complete, equally perfect in all its parts, had its final word in Plato and Aristotle; on the great lines of universal knowledge no further really original structures were destined to be raised by Greek hands. We have seen a parallelism between Greek philosophy and Greek politics in their earlier phases (see above, p. 82); the same parallelism continues to the end. Greece broke the bonds of her intense but narrow civic life and civic thought, and spread herself out over the world in a universal monarchy and a cosmopolitan philosophy; but with this widening of the area of her influence reaction came and disruption and decay; an immense stimulus was given on the one hand to the political activity, on the other, to the thought and knowledge of the world as a whole, but at the centre Greece was 'living Greece no more,' her politics sank to the level of a dreary farce, her philosophy died down to a dull and spiritless scepticism, to an Epicureanism {211} that 'seasoned the wine-cup with the dust of death,' or to a Stoicism not undignified yet still sad and narrow and stern. The hope of the world, alike in politics and in philosophy, faded as the life of Greece decayed.


The first phase of the change, Scepticism, or Pyrrhonism, as it was named from its first teacher, need not detain us long. Pyrrho was priest of Elis; in earlier life he accompanied Alexander the Great as far as India, and is said to have become acquainted with certain of the philosophic sects in that country. In his sceptical doctrine he had, like his predecessors, a school with its succession of teachers; but the [358] world has remembered little more of him or them than two phrases 'suspense of judgment'—this for the intellectual side of philosophy; 'impassibility'—this for the moral. The doctrine is a negation of doctrine, the idle dream of idle men; even Pyrrho once, when surprised in some sudden access of fear, confessed that it was hard for him 'to get rid of the man in himself.' Vigorous men and growing nations are never agnostic. They decline to rest in mere suspense; they are extremely the opposite of impassive; they believe earnestly, they feel strongly.


A more interesting, because more positive and constructive, personality was that of Epicurus. This philosopher was born at Samos, in the year 341 B.C., of Athenian parents. He came to Athens in his eighteenth year. Xenocrates was then teaching at {212} the Academy, Aristotle at the Lyceum, but Epicurus heard neither the one nor the other. After some wanderings he returned to Athens and set up on his [366] own account as a teacher of philosophy. He made it a matter of boasting that he was a self-taught philosopher; and Cicero (De Nat. Deor. i. 26) sarcastically remarks that one could have guessed as much, even if Epicurus had not stated it himself; as one might of the proprietor of an ugly house, who should boast that he had employed no architect. The style of Epicurus was, in fact, plain and unadorned, but he seems all the same to have been able to say what he meant; and few if any writers ancient or modern have ever had so splendid a literary tribute, as Epicurus had from the great Roman poet Lucretius, his follower and expositor.

"Glory of the Greek race," he says, "who first hadst power to raise high so bright a light in the midst of darkness so profound, shedding a beam on all the interests of life, thee do I follow, and in the markings of thy track do I set my footsteps now. Not that I desire to rival thee, but rather for love of thee would fain call myself thy disciple. For how shall the swallow rival the swan, or what speed may the kid with its tottering limbs attain, compared with the brave might of the scampering steed? Thou; O father, art the discoverer of nature, thou suppliest to us a father's teachings, and from thy pages, {213} illustrious one, even as bees sip all manner of sweets along the flowery glades, we in like manner devour all thy golden words, golden and right worthy to live for ever. For soon as thy philosophy, birth of thy godlike mind, hath begun to declare the origin of things, straightway the terrors of the soul are scattered, earth's walls are broken apart, and through all the void I see nature in the working. I behold the gods in manifestation of their power, I discern their blissful seats, which never winds assail nor rain-clouds sprinkle with their showers, nor snow falling white with hoary frost doth buffet, but cloudless aether ever wraps them round, beaming in broad diffusion of glorious light. For nature supplies their every want nor aught impairs their peace of soul. But nowhere do I see any regions of hellish darkness, nor does the earth impose a barrier to our sight of what is done in the void beneath our feet. Wherefore a holy ecstasy and thrill of awe possess me, while thus by thy power the secrets of nature are disclosed to view" (Lucret. De Nat. Rer. iii, 1-30).


This devotion to the memory of Epicurus on the part of Lucretius was paralleled by the love felt for him by his contemporaries; he had crowds of followers who loved him and who were proud to learn his words by heart. He seems indeed to have been a man of exceptional kindness and amiability, and the 'garden of Epicurus' became proverbial as {214} a place of temperate pleasures and wise delights. Personally we may take it that Epicurus was a man of simple tastes and moderate desires; and indeed throughout its history Epicureanism as a rule of conduct has generally been associated with the finer forms of enjoyment, rather than the more sensual. The 'sensual sty' is a nickname, not a description.


Philosophy Epicurus defined as a process of thought and reasoning tending to the realisation of happiness. Arts or sciences which had no such practical end he contemned; and, as will be observed in Lucretius' praises of him above, even physics had but one purpose or interest, to free the soul from [370] terrors of the unseen. Thus philosophy was mainly concerned with conduct, i.e. with Ethics, but secondarily and negatively with Physics, to which was appended what Epicurus called Canonics, or the science of testing, that is, a kind of logic.


Beginning with Canonics, as the first part of philosophy in order of time, from the point of view of human knowledge, Epicurus laid it down that the only source of knowledge was the senses, which gave us an immediate and true perception of that which actually came into contact with them. Even the visions of madmen or of dreamers he considered were in themselves true, being produced by a physical cause of some kind, of which these visions were the direct and immediate report. Falsity came in with {215} people's interpretations or imaginations with respect to these sensations.

Sensations leave a trace in the memory, and out of similarities or analogies among sensations there are developed in the mind general notions or types, such as 'man,' 'house,' which are also true, because [373] they are reproductions of sensations. Thirdly, when a sensation occurs, it is brought into relation in the mind with one or more of these types or notions; this is predication, true also in so far as its elements are true, but capable of falsehood, as subsequent or independent sensation may prove. If supported or not contradicted by sensation, it is or may be true; if contradicted or not supported by sensation, it is or may be false. The importance of this statement of the canon of truth or falsehood will be understood when we come to the physics of Epicurus, at the basis of which is his theory of Atoms, which by their very nature can never be directly testified to by sensation.


This and no more was what Epicurus had to teach on the subject of logic. He had no theory of definition, or division, or ratiocination, or refutation, or explication; on all these matters Epicurus was, as Cicero said, 'naked and unarmed.' Like most self-taught or ill-taught teachers, Epicurus trusted to his dogmas; he knew nothing and cared nothing for logical defence.



In his Physics Epicurus did little more than reproduce the doctrine of Democritus. He starts from the fundamental proposition that 'nothing can be produced from nothing, nothing can really perish.' The veritable existences in nature are the Atoms, which are too minute to be discernible by the senses, but which nevertheless have a definite size, and cannot further be divided. They have also a definite weight and form, but no qualities other than these. There is an infinity of empty space; this Epicurus proves on abstract grounds, practically because a limit to space is unthinkable. It follows that there must be an infinite number of the atoms, otherwise they would disperse throughout the infinite void and disappear. There is a limit, however, to the number of varieties among the atoms in respect of form, size, and weight. The existence of the void space is proved by the fact that motion takes place, to which he adds the argument that it necessarily exists also to separate the atoms one from another. So far Epicurus and Democritus are agreed.

To the Democritean doctrine, however, Epicurus made a curious addition, to which he himself is said to have attached much importance. The natural course (he said) for all bodies having weight is downwards in a straight line. It struck Epicurus that this being so, the atoms would all travel for ever in parallel lines, and those 'clashings and interminglings' of {217} atoms out of which he conceived all visible forms to be produced, could never occur. He therefore laid it down that the atoms deviated the least little bit from the straight, thus making a world possible. And Epicurus considered that this supposed deviation of the atoms not only made a world possible, but human freedom also. In the deviation, without apparent cause, of the descending atoms, the law of necessity was broken, and there was room on the one hand for man's free will, on the other, for prayer to the gods, and for hope of their interference on our behalf.

It may be worth while summarising the proofs which Lucretius in his great poem, professedly following in the footsteps of Epicurus, adduces for these various doctrines.

Epicurus' first dogma is, 'Nothing proceeds from nothing,' that is, every material object has some matter previously existing exactly equal in quantity to it, out of which it was made. To prove this Lucretius appeals to the order of nature as seen in the seasons, in the phenomena of growth, in the fixed relations which exist between life and its environment as regards what is helpful or harmful, in the limitation of size and of faculties in the several species and the fixity of the characteristics generally in each, in the possibilities of cultivation and improvement of species within certain limits and under certain conditions.


To prove his second position, 'Nothing passes into nothing,' Lucretius points out to begin with that there is a law even in destruction; force is required to dissolve or dismember anything; were it otherwise the world would have disappeared long ago. Moreover, he points out that it is from the elements set free by decay and death that new things are built up; there is no waste, no visible lessening of the resources of nature, whether in the generations of living things, in the flow of streams and the fulness of ocean, or in the eternal stars. Were it not so, infinite time past would have exhausted all the matter in the universe, but Nature is clearly immortal. Moreover, there is a correspondence between the structure of bodies and the forces necessary to their destruction. Finally, apparent violations of the law, when carefully examined, only tend to confirm it. The rains no doubt disappear, but it is that their particles may reappear in the juices of the crops and the trees and the beasts which feed on them.

Nor need we be surprised at the doctrine that the atoms, so all-powerful in the formation of things, are themselves invisible. The same is true of the forest-rending blasts, the 'viewless winds' which lash the waves and overwhelm great fleets. There are odours also that float unseen upon the air; there are heat, and cold, and voices. There is the process of evaporation, whereby we know that the water has gone, {219} yet cannot see its vapour departing. There is the gradual invisible detrition of rings upon the finger, of stones hollowed out by dripping water, of the ploughshare in the field, and the flags upon the streets, and the brazen statues of the gods whose fingers men kiss as they pass the gates, and the rocks that the salt sea-brine eats into along the shore.

That there is Empty Space or Void he proves by all the varied motions on land and sea which we behold; by the porosity even of hardest things, as we see in dripping caves. There is the food also which disperses itself throughout the body, in trees and cattle. Voices pass through closed doors, frost can pierce even to the bones. Things equal in size vary in weight; a lump of wool has more of void in it than a lump of lead. So much for Lucretius.

For abstract theories on physics, except as an adjunct and support to his moral conceptions, Epicurus seems to have had very little inclination. He thus speaks of the visible universe or Cosmos. [373] The Cosmos is a sort of skyey enclosure, which holds within it the stars, the earth, and all visible things. It is cut off from the infinite by a wall of division which may be either rare or dense, in motion or at rest, round or three-cornered or any other form. That there is such a wall of division is quite admissible, for no object of which we have observation is without its limit. Were this wall of division to {220} break, everything contained within it would tumble out. We may conceive that there are an infinite number of such Cosmic systems, with inter-cosmic intervals throughout the infinity of space.

He is very disinclined to assume that similar phenomena, e.g. eclipses of the sun or moon, always have the same cause. The various accidental implications and interminglings of the atoms may produce the same effect in various ways. In fact Epicurus has the same impatience of theoretical physics as of theoretical philosophy. He is a 'practical man.'


He is getting nearer his object when he comes to the nature of the soul. The soul, like everything else, is composed of atoms, extremely delicate and fine. It very much resembles the breath, with a mixture of heat thrown in, sometimes coming nearer in nature to the first, sometimes to the second. Owing to the delicacy of its composition it is extremely subject to variation, as we see in its passions and liability to emotion, its phases of thought and the varied experiences without which we cannot live. It is, moreover, the chief cause of sensation being possible for us. Not that it could of itself have had sensation, without the enwrapping support of the rest of the structure. The rest of the structure, in fact, having prepared this chief cause, gets from it a share of what comes to it, but not a share of all which the soul has.

The soul being of material composition equally {221} with the other portions of the bodily structure, dies of course with it, that is, its particles like the rest are dispersed, to form new bodies. There is nothing dreadful therefore about death, for there is nothing left to know or feel anything about it.

As regards the process of sensation, Epicurus, like Democritus, conceived bodies as having a power of emitting from their surface extremely delicate images of themselves. These are composed of very fine atoms, but, in spite of their tenuity, they are able to maintain for a considerable time their relative form and order, though liable after a time to distortion. They fly with great celerity through the void, and find their way through the windows of the senses to the soul, which by its delicacy of nature is in sympathy with them, and apprehends their form.


The gods are indestructible, being composed of the very finest and subtlest atoms, so as to have not a body, but as it were a body. Their life is one of perfect blessedness and peace. They are in number countless; but the conceptions of the vulgar are erroneous respecting them. They are not subject to the passions of humanity. Anger and joy are alike alien to their nature; for all such feelings imply a lack of strength. They dwell apart in the inter-cosmic spaces. As Cicero jestingly remarks: "Epicurus by way of a joke introduced his gods so pure that you could see through them, {222} so delicate that the wind could blow through them, having their dwelling-place outside between two worlds, for fear of breakage."


Coming finally to Epicurus' theory of Ethics, we find a general resemblance to the doctrine of Democritus and Aristippus. The end of life is pleasure or the absence of pain. He differs, however, from the Cyrenaics in maintaining that not the pleasure of the moment is the end, but pleasure throughout the whole of life, and that therefore we ought in our conduct to have regard to the future. Further he denies that pleasure exists only in activity, it exists equally in rest and quiet; in short, he places more emphasis in his definition on the absence of pain or disturbance, than on the presence of positive pleasure. And thirdly, while the Cyrenaics maintained that bodily pleasures and pains were the keenest, Epicurus claimed these characteristics for the pleasures of the mind, which intensified the present feeling by anticipations of the future and recollections of the past. And thus the wise man might be happy, even on the rack. Better indeed was it to be unlucky and wise, than lucky and foolish. In a similar temper Epicurus on his death-bed wrote thus to a friend: "In the enjoyment of blessedness and peace, on this the last day of my life I write this letter to you. Strangury has supervened, and the extremest agony of internal {223} pains, yet resisting these has been my joy of soul, as I recalled the thoughts which I have had in the past."


We must note, however, that while mental pleasures counted for much with the Epicureans, these mental pleasures consisted not in thought for thought's sake in any form; they had nothing to do with contemplation. They were essentially connected with bodily experiences; they were the memory of past, the anticipation of future, bodily pleasures. For it is to be remembered that thoughts were with Epicurus only converted sensations, and sensations were bodily processes. Thus every joy of the mind was conditioned by a bodily experience preceding it. Or as Metrodorus, Epicurus' disciple, defined the matter: "A man is happy when his body is in good case, and he has good hope that it will continue so." Directly or indirectly, therefore, every happiness came back, in the rough phrase of Epicurus, to one's belly at last.


This theory did not, however, reduce morality to bestial self-indulgence. If profligate pleasures could be had free from mental apprehensions of another world and of death and pain and disease in this, and if they brought with them guidance as to their own proper restriction, there would be no reason whatever to blame a man for filling himself to the full of pleasures, which brought no pain or sorrow, that is, {224} no evil, in their train. But (Epicurus argues) this is far from being the case. Moreover there are many pleasures keen enough at the time, which are by no means pleasant in the remembering. And even when we have them they bring no enjoyment to the highest parts of our nature. What those 'highest parts' are, and by what standard their relative importance is determined, Epicurus does not say. He probably meant those parts of our nature which had the widest range in space and time, our faculties, namely, of memory and hope, of conception, of sight and hearing.

Moreover there are distinctions among desires; some are both natural and compulsory, such as thirst; some are natural but not compulsory, as the desire for dainties; some are neither natural nor compulsory, such as the desire for crowns or statues. The last of these the wise man will contemn, the second he will admit, but so as to retain his freedom. For independence of such things is desirable, not necessarily that we may reduce our wants to a minimum, but in order that if we cannot enjoy many things, we may be content with few. "For I am convinced," Epicurus continues, "that they have the greatest enjoyment of wealth, who are least dependent upon it for enjoyment."

Thus if Epicurus did not absolutely teach simplicity of living, he taught his disciples the necessity of being capable of such simplicity, which they could {225} hardly be without practice. So that in reality the doctrine of Epicurus came very near that of his opponents. As Seneca the Stoic observed, "Pleasure with him comes to be something very thin and pale. In fact that law which we declare for virtue, the same law he lays down for pleasure."

One of the chief and highest pleasures of life Epicurus found in the possession of friends, who provided for each other not only help and protection, but a lifelong joy. For the 'larger friendship' of the civic community, Epicurus seems to have had only a very neutral regard. Justice, he says, is a convention of interests, with a view of neither hurting or being hurt. The wise man will have nothing to do with politics, if he can help it.

In spite of much that may offend in the doctrines of Epicurus, there is much at least in the man which is sympathetic and attractive. What one observes, however, when we compare such a philosophy with that of Plato or Aristotle, is first, a total loss of constructive imagination. The parts of the 'philosophy,' if we are so to call it, of Epicurus hang badly together, and neither the Canonics nor the Physics show any real faculty of serious thinking at all. The Ethics has a wider scope and a more real relation to experience if not to reason. But it can never satisfy the deeper apprehension of mankind.

The truest and most permanently valid revelations {226} of life come not to the many but to the one or the few, who communicate the truth to the many, sometimes at the cost of their own lives, always at the cost of antagonism and ridicule. A philosophy therefore which only represents in theoretical form the average practice of the average man, comes into the world still-born. It has nothing to say; its hearers know it all, and the exact value of it all, already. And in their heart of hearts, many even of those who have stooped to a lower ideal, and sold their birthright of hopes beyond the passing hour, for a mess of pottage in the form of material success and easy enjoyment, have a lurking contempt for the preachers of what they practise; as many a slaveholder in America probably had for the clerical defenders of the 'divine institution.'

There is a wasting sense of inadequacy in this 'hand-to-mouth' theory of living, which compels most of those who follow it to tread softly and speak moderately. They are generally a little weary if not cynical; they don't think much of themselves or of their success; but they prefer to hold on as they have begun, rather than launch out into new courses, which they feel they have not the moral force to continue. "May I die," said the Cynic, "rather than lead a life of pleasure." "May I die," says the Epicurean, "rather than make a fool of myself." The Idealist is to them, if not {227} a hypocrite, at least a visionary,—if not a Tartuffe, at least a Don Quixote tilting at windmills. Yet even for poor Don Quixote, with all his blindness and his follies, the world retains a sneaking admiration. It can spare a few or a good many of its worldly-wisdoms, rather than lose altogether its enthusiasms and its dreams. And the one thing which saves Epicureanism from utter extinction as a theory, is invariably the idealism which like a 'purple patch' adorns it here and there. No man and no theory is wholly self-centred. Pleasure is supplanted by Utility, and Utility becomes the greatest Happiness of the greatest Number, and so, as Horace says (Ep. I. x. 24)—

Naturam expellas furca, tamen usque recurret,

Nature (like Love) thrust out of the door, will come back by the window; and the Idealism which is not allowed to make pain a pleasure, is required at last to translate pleasure into pains.




Semitic admixture—Closed fist and open hand—'Tabula rasa'—Necessity of evil—Hymn of Cleanthes—Things indifferent—Ideal and real—Philosophy and humanity

Zeno, the founder of the Stoic school of philosophy (born circa 340 B.C.), was a native of Citium in Cyprus. The city was Greek, but with a large Phoenician admixture. And it is curious that in this last and sternest phase of Greek thought, not the founder only, but a large proportion of the successive leaders of the school, came from this and other places having Semitic elements in them. Among these places notable as nurseries of Stoicism was Tarsus in Cilicia, the birthplace of St. Paul. The times of preparation were drawing to a close; and through these men, with their Eastern intensity and capacities of self-searching and self-abasement, the philosophy of Greece was linking itself on to the wisdom of the Hebrews.

Zeno came to Athens to study philosophy, and for twenty years he was a pupil first of Crates the Cynic, and then of other teachers. At length he set up a school of his own in the celebrated Stoa {229} Poecile (Painted Colonnade), so named because it was adorned with frescoes by Polygnotus. There he taught for nearly sixty years, and voluntarily ended his life when close on a century old. His life, as Antigonus, King of Macedon, recorded on his tomb, was consistent with his doctrine—abstemious, [386] frugal, laborious, dutiful. He was succeeded by Cleanthes, a native of Assos in Asia [387] Minor. But the great constructor of the Stoic doctrine, without whom, as his contemporaries said, there had been no Stoic school at all, was Chrysippus, a native of Soli or of Tarsus in Cilicia. He wrote at enormous length, supporting his teachings by an immense erudition, and culling liberally from the poets to illustrate and enforce his views. Learned and pedantic, his works had no inherent attraction, and nothing of them but fragments has been preserved. We know the Stoic doctrine mainly from the testimony and criticisms of later times.


Like the Epicureans, Zeno and his successors made philosophy primarily a search for the chief good, a doctrine of practice and morals. But like them they were impelled to admit a logic and a physics, at least by way of preliminary basis to their [390] ethics. The relations of the three they illustrated by various images. Philosophy was like an animal; logic was its bones and sinews, ethics its flesh, physics its life or soul. Or again, philosophy was {230} an egg; logic was the shell, ethics the white, physics, the yolk. Or again, it was a fruitful field; logic was the hedge, ethics the crop, physics the soil. Or it was a city, well ordered and strongly fortified, and so on. The images seem somewhat confused, but the general idea is clear enough. Morality was the essential, the living body, of philosophy; physics supplied its raw material, or the conditions under which a moral life could be lived; logic secured that we should use that material rightly and wisely for the end desired.


Logic the Stoics divided into two parts—Rhetoric, the 'science of the open hand,' and Dialectic, the 'science of the closed fist,' as Zeno called them. They indulged in elaborate divisions and subdivisions of each, with which we need not meddle. The only points of interest to us are contained in their analysis [392] of the processes of perception and thought. A sensation, Zeno taught, was the result of an external impulse, which when combined with an internal assent, produced a mental state that revealed at the same time itself and the external object producing it. The perception thus produced he compared to the grip which the hand took of a solid object; and real perceptions, those, that is, which were caused by a real external object, and not by some illusion, always testified to the reality of their cause by this sensation of 'grip.'


The internal assent of the mind was voluntary, and at the same time necessary; for the mind could not do otherwise than will the acceptance of that which it was fitted to receive. The peculiarity of their physics, which we shall have to refer to later on, namely, the denial of the existence of anything not material, implied that in some way there was a material action of the external object on the structure of the perceiving mind (itself also material). What exactly the nature of this action was the Stoics themselves were not quite agreed. The idea of an 'impression' such as a seal makes upon wax was a tempting one, but they had difficulty in comprehending how there could be a multitude of different impressions on the same spot without effacing each other. Some therefore preferred the vaguer and safer expression, 'modification'; had they possessed our modern science, they might have illustrated their meaning by reference to the phenomena of magnetism or electricity.

An interesting passage may be quoted from [393] Plutarch on the Stoic doctrine of knowledge: "The Stoics maintain," he says, "that when a human being is born, he has the governing part of his soul like a sheet of paper ready prepared for the reception of writing, and on this the soul inscribes in succession its various ideas. The first form of the writing is produced through the senses. When we perceive, for example, {232} a white object, the recollection remains when the object is gone. And when many similar recollections have accumulated, we have what is called experience. Besides the ideas which we get in this natural and quite undesigned way, there are other ideas which we get through teaching and information. In the strict sense only these latter ought to be called ideas; the former should rather be called perceptions. Now the rational faculty, in virtue of which we are called reasoning beings, is developed out of, or over and beyond, the mass of perceptions, in the second seven years' period of life. In fact a thought may be defined as a kind of mental image, such as a rational animal alone is capable of having."

Thus there are various gradations of mental apprehensions; first, those of sensible qualities obtained through the action of the objects and the assent of the perceiving subject, as already described; then by experience, by comparison, by analogy, by the combinations of the reasoning faculty, further and more general notions are arrived at, and conclusions formed, as, for example, that the gods exist and exercise a providential care over the world. By this faculty also the wise man ascends to the apprehension of the good and true.

The physics of the Stoics started from the fundamental [398] proposition that in the universe of things there were two elements—the active and the passive. {233} The latter was Matter or unqualified existence; the former was the reason or qualifying element in Matter, that is, God, who being eternal, is the fashioner of every individual thing throughout the universe of matter. God is One; He is Reason, and Fate, and Zeus. In fact all the gods are only various representations of His faculties and powers. He being from the beginning of things by Himself, turneth all existence through air to water. And even as the genital seed is enclosed in the semen, so also was the seed of the world concealed in the water, making its matter apt for the further birth of things; then first it brought into being the four elements—fire, water, air, earth. For there was a finer fire or air which was the moving spirit of things; later and lower than this were the material elements of fire and air. It follows that the universe of things is threefold; there is first God Himself, the source of all character and individuality, who is indestructible and eternal, the fashioner of all things, who in certain cycles of ages gathers up all things into Himself, and then out of Himself brings them again to birth; there is the matter of the universe whereon God works; and thirdly, there is the union of the two. Thus the world is governed by reason and forethought, and this reason extends through every part, even as the soul or life extends to every part of us. The universe therefore is a living thing, having a {234} soul or reason in it. This soul or reason one teacher likened to the air, another to the sky, another to the sun. For the soul of nature is, as it were, a finer air or fire, having a power of creation in it, and moving in an ordered way to the production of things.


The universe is one and of limited extension, being spherical in form, for this is the form which best adapts itself to movement. Outside this universe is infinite bodiless space; but within the universe there is no empty part; all is continuous and united, as is proved by the harmony of relation which exists between the heavenly bodies and those upon the earth. The world as such is destructible, for its parts are subject to change and to decay; yet is this change or destruction only in respect of the qualities imposed upon it from time to time by the Reason inherent in it; the mere unqualified Matter remains indestructible.


In the universe evil of necessity exists; for evil being the opposite of good, where no evil is there no good can be. For just as in a comedy there are absurdities, which are in themselves bad, but yet add a certain attraction to the poem as a whole, so also one may blame evil regarded in itself, yet for the whole it is not without its use. So also God is the cause of death equally with birth; for even as cities when the inhabitants have multiplied overmuch, {235} remove their superfluous members by colonisation or by war, so also is God a cause of destruction. In man in like manner good cannot exist save with evil; for wisdom being a knowledge of good and evil, remove the evil and wisdom itself goes. Disease and other natural evils, when looked at in the light of their effects, are means not of evil but of good; there is throughout the universe a balance and interrelation of good and evil. Not that God hath in Himself any evil; the law is not the cause of lawlessness, nor God Himself responsible for any violation of right.


The Stoics indulged in a strange fancy that the world reverted after a mighty cycle of years in all its parts to the same form and structure which it possessed at the beginning, so that there would be once more a Socrates, a Plato, and all the men that had lived, each with the same friends and fellow-citizens, the same experiences, and the same endeavours. At the termination of each cycle there was a burning up of all things, and thereafter a renewal of the great round of life.


Nothing incorporeal, they maintained, can be affected by or affect that which is corporeal; body alone can affect body. The soul therefore must be corporeal. Death is the separation of soul from body, but it is impossible to separate what is incorporeal from body; therefore, again, the soul must {236} be corporeal. In the belief of Cleanthes, the souls of all creatures remained to the next period of cyclic conflagration; Chrysippus believed that only the souls of the wise and good remained.


Coming finally to the Ethics of the Stoic philosophy, we find for the chief end of life this definition, 'A life consistent with itself,' or, as it was otherwise expressed, 'A life consistent with Nature.' The two definitions are really identical; for the law of nature is the law of our nature, and the reason in our being the reason which also is in God, the supreme Ruler of the universe. This is substantially in accordance with the celebrated law of right action laid down by Kant, "Act so that the maxim of thine action be capable of being made a law of universal action." Whether a man act thus or no, by evil if not by good the eternal law will satisfy itself; the question is of import only for the man's own happiness. Let his will accord with the universal will, then the law will be fulfilled, and the man will be happy. Let his will resist the universal will, then the law will be fulfilled, but the man will bear the penalty. This was expressed by Cleanthes in a hymn which ran somewhat thus—

Lead me, O Zeus most great, And thou, Eternal Fate: What way soe'er thy will doth bid me travel That way I'll follow without fret or cavil. {237} Or if I evil be And spurn thy high decree, Even so I still shall follow, soon or late.

Thus in the will alone consists the difference of good or ill for us; in either case Nature's great law fulfils itself infallibly. To their view on this point we may apply the words of Hamlet: "If it be now, 'tis not to come; if it be not to come, it will be now; if it be not now, yet it will come; the readiness is all."

This universal law expresses itself in us in various successive manifestations. From the moment of birth it implants in us a supreme self-affection, whereby of infallible instinct we seek our own self-preservation, rejoice in that which is suitable to our existence, shrink from that which is unsuitable. As we grow older, further and higher principles manifest themselves—reason and reflection, a more and more careful and complete apprehension of that which is honourable and advantageous, a capacity of choice among goods. Till finally the surpassing glory of that which is just and honourable shines out so clear upon us, that any pain or loss is esteemed of no account, if only we may attain to that. Thus at last, by the very law of our being, we come to know that nothing is truly and absolutely good but goodness, nothing absolutely bad but sin. Other things, inasmuch as they have no character of moral good {238} or moral evil, cannot be deemed really good or bad; in comparison with the absolutely good, they are things indifferent, though in comparison with each other they may be relatively preferable or relatively undesirable. Even pleasure and pain, so far as concerns the absolute end or happiness of our being, are things indifferent; we cannot call them either good or evil. Yet have they a relation to the higher law, for the consciousness of them was so implanted in us at the first that our souls by natural impulse are drawn to pleasure, while they shrink from pain as from a deadly enemy. Wherefore reason neither can nor ought to seek wholly to eradicate these primitive and deep-seated affections of our nature; but so to exercise a resisting and ordering influence upon them, as to render them obedient and subservient to herself.


That which is absolutely good—wisdom, righteousness, courage, temperance—does good only and never ill to us. All other things,—life, health, pleasure, beauty, strength, wealth, reputation, birth,—and their opposites,—death, disease, pain, deformity, weakness, poverty, contempt, humility of station,—these are in themselves neither a benefit nor a curse. They may do us good, they may do us harm. We may use them for good, we may use them for evil.


Thus the Stoics worked out on ideal and absolute lines the thought of righteousness as the chief and {239} only good. Across this ideal picture were continually being drawn by opponents without or inquirers within, clouds of difficulty drawn from real experience. 'What,' it was asked, 'of progress in goodness? Is this a middle state between good and evil; or if a middle state between good and evil be a contradiction, in terms, how may we characterise it?' Here the wiser teachers had to be content to answer that it tended towards good, was good in possibility, would be absolutely good when the full attainment came, and the straining after right had been swallowed up in the perfect calm of settled virtue.

'How also of the wise man tormented by pain, or in hunger and poverty and rags, is his perfectness of wisdom and goodness really sufficient to make him happy?' Here, again, the answer had to be hesitating and provisional, through no fault of the Stoics. In this world, while we are still under the strange dominion of time and circumstance, the ideal can never wholly fit the real. There must still be difficulty and incompleteness here, only to be solved and perfected 'when iniquity shall have an end.' Our eyes may fail with looking upward, yet the upward look is well; and the jibes upon the Stoic 'king in rags' that Horace and others were so fond of, do not affect the question. It may have been, and probably often was, the case that Stoic teachers {240} were apt to transfer to themselves personally the ideal attributes, which they justly assigned to the ideal man in whom wisdom was perfected. The doctrine gave much scope for cant and mental pride and hypocrisy, as every ideal doctrine does, including the Christian. But the existence of these vices in individuals no more affected the doctrine of an ideal goodness in its Stoic form, than it does now in its Christian one. That only the good man is truly wise or free or happy; that vice, however lavishly it surround itself with luxury and ease and power, is inherently wretched and foolish and slavish;—these are things which are worth saying and worth believing, things, indeed, which the world dare not and cannot permanently disbelieve, however difficult or even impossible it may be to mark men off into two classes, the good and the bad, however strange the irony of circumstance which so often shows the wicked who 'are not troubled as other men, neither are they plagued like other men; they have more than their heart could wish,' while good men battle with adversity, often in vain. Still will the permanent, fruitful, progressive faith of man 'look to the end'; still will the ideal be powerful to plead for the painful right, and spoil, even in the tasting, the pleasant wrong.

The doctrine, of course, like every doctrine worth anything, was pushed to extravagant lengths, and {241} thrust into inappropriate quarters, by foolish doctrinaires. As that the wise man is the only orator, critic, poet, physician, nay, cobbler if you please; that the wise man knows all that is to be known, and can do everything that is worth doing, and so on. The school was often too academic, too abstract, too fond of hearing itself talk. This, alas! is what most schools are, and most schoolmasters.

Yet the Stoics were not altogether alien to the ordinary interests and duties of life. They admitted a duty of co-operating in politics, at least in such states as showed some desire for, or approach to, virtue. They approved of the wise man taking part in education, of his marrying and bringing up children, both for his own sake and his country's. He will be ready even to 'withdraw himself from life on behalf of his country or his friends. This 'withdrawal,' which was their word for suicide, came unhappily to be much in the mouths of later, and especially of the Roman, Stoics, who, in the sadness and restraint of prevailing despotism, came to thank God that no one was compelled to remain in life; he might 'withdraw' when the burden of life, the hopelessness of useful activity, became too great.

With this sad, stern, yet not undignified note, the philosophy of Greece speaks its last word. The later scepticism of the New Academy, directed mainly to a negative criticism of the crude enough logic of the {242} Stoics, or of the extravagances of their ethical doctrine, contributed no substantial element to thought or morals. As an eclectic system it had much vogue, side by side with Stoicism and Epicureanism, among the Romans, having as its chief exponent Cicero, as Epicureanism had Lucretius, and Stoicism, Seneca.

The common characteristic of all these systems in their later developments, is their cosmopolitanism. Homo sum, nil humani a me alienum puto, 'I am a man; nothing appertaining to humanity do I deem alien from myself,' this was the true keynote of whatever was vital in any of them. And the reason of this is not far to seek. We have seen already (p. 82) how the chaos of sophistic doctrine was largely conditioned, if not produced, by the breakdown of the old civic life of Greece. The process hardly suffered delay from all the efforts of Socrates and Plato. Cosmopolitanism was already a point of union between the Cynics and Cyrenaics (see p. 128). And the march of politics was always tending in the same direction. First through great leagues, such as the Spartan or Athenian or Theban, each with a predominant or tyrannical city at the head; then later through the conquest of Greece by Alexander, and the leaguing of all Greek-speaking peoples in the great invasion of Asia; then through the spread of Greek letters all over the Eastern {243} world, and the influx upon Greek centres such as Athens and Alexandria, of all manner of foreign intelligences; and finally, through the conquest of all this teeming world of culture by the discipline and practical ability of Rome, and its incorporation in a universal empire of law, all the barriers which had divided city from city and tribe from tribe and race from race disappeared, and only a common humanity remained.

The only effective philosophies for such a community were those which regarded man as an individual, with a world politically omnipotent hedging him about, and driving him in upon himself. Thus the New Academy enlarged on the doubtfulness of all beyond the individual consciousness; Stoicism insisted on individual dutifulness, Epicureanism on individual self-satisfaction. The first sought to make life worth living through culture, the second through indifference, the third through a moderate enjoyment. But all alike felt themselves very helpless in face of the growing sadness of life, in face of the deepening mystery of the world beyond. All alike were controversial, and quick enough to ridicule their rivals; none was hopefully constructive, or (unless in the poetic enthusiasm of a Lucretius) very confident of the adequacy of its own conceptions. They all rather quickened the sense of emptiness in human existence, than satisfied it; {244} at the best they enabled men to "absent themselves a little while from the felicity of death."

Thus all over the wide area of Greek and Roman civilisation, the activity of the later schools was effectual to familiarise humanity with the language of philosophy, and to convince humanity of the inadequacy of its results. Both of these things the Greeks taught to Saul of Tarsus; at a higher Source he found the satisfying of his soul; but from the Greek philosophies he learned the language through which the new Revelation was to be taught in the great world of Roman rule and Grecian culture. And thus through the Pauline theology, Greek philosophy had its part in the moral regeneration of the world; as it has had, in later times, in every emancipation and renascence of its thought.



Abdera, birthplace of Democritus, 74; of Protagoras, 86

Absolute knowledge, unattainable by man, 19; absorption in, 133; no separate existence, 182

Abstract ideas not derivable from experience, 45; abstract truth impossible, 87; of no value, 132; revival of, 133

Academus, grove of, 135

Achilles and tortoise, 44; death of, 139

Acroatic, kind of lectures, 175

Actuality, see Realisation.

Agrigentum, birthplace of Empedocles, 59

Air, beginning of things, 14

Alcestis, referred to, 139

Alcibiades, dialogue, 137

Alexander, relations with Aristotle, 174; influence of conquests of, 242

Anarchy, in politics and in philosophy, 83; reaction against, by Socrates, 102

Anaxagoras, 52; relation of Empedocles to, 62; quoted by Aristotle, 200

Anaximander, 7

Anaximenes, 14

Anthropomorphism, criticised, 32

Antigonus, friend of Zeno, 229

Antisthenes, 128

Apology, dialogue, 136

Appetite, the only reality, 96

Archilochus, criticised by Heraclitus, 16

Aristippus, 124

Aristocracy, in politics and in philosophy, 82

Aristotle, on Thales, 4; on Xenophanes, 32; on Zeno, 42; on Melissus, 47; on Anaxagoras, 54; on Empedocles, 59, 63, 70; a complete Socratic, 103; on Socrates, 106; on Sophists, 115; debt to Plato, 159; on Plato, 163; chapters on, 172 sqq.; his fresh contributions to Academic philosophy, 173; two classes of lectures, 175; library, ib.; predominance of, 176; style, 177; differences from Plato, 178

Art, a greater revealer than science, 66; relation of Love to, 137; a mode of creation, 139

Asceticism, of Cynics, 128; of Plato, 168; of Epicurus, 225

Atarneus, residence of Aristotle, 174

Athens, visited by Parmenides and Zeno, 34, 42, 157; residence of Anaxagoras, 52; centre of sophistry, 85; birthplace of Socrates, 103; visited by Aristippus, 124; birthplace of Antisthenes, 129; and of Plato, 134; dialogue in praise of, 137; residence of Aristotle, 173; of Epicurus, 211

Atlantis, kingdom of, 153

Atomists, 52; revived theory of, 215

Atoms, constituents of nature, 76, 216; deviation of, 216

Beauty, one aspect of ideal, 110; relation to creative instinct, 139; science of universal beauty, 141

Becoming, the fundamental principle, 16; passage from Being to, 36, 39

Beginning (arche), of Thales, 3; Aristotle's definition, 4; difficulties of material theories of, 36l

Being, eternal being like a sphere, 32; passage from, to Becoming, 36, 39; a co-equal element with Nonentity, 75; analysis of, 159; and the Other, 165

Body, realisation of soul, 27; a prison, 28; unthinkable except with reference to space, 75; source of illusion, 164

Canonics, form of logic, 215

Cause, three causes, 110; equals essence, 167; first causes subject of philosophy, 179; relation of, to potentiality, 185

Cave, of this life, 148, 166

Chaldaea, visited by Pythagoras, 22; by Democritus, 74

Change, how account for, 10, 35, 39, 75

Chaos, of the Atomists, 53; of Empedocles, 69; king in philosophy, 83; life not a chaos, 105

Charmides, dialogue, 136

Christ, brings sword, 99; kingdom of, 149

Chrysippus, successor of Cleanthes, 229

Cicero, mistranslates Pythagoras, 28; criticises Epicurus, 212, 221; exponent of New Academy, 242

Citium, birthplace of Zeno, 228

Clazomenae, birthplace of Anaxagoras, 52

Cleanthes, successor of Zeno, 229; hymn of, 236

Codrus, Plato descended from, 134; sacrifice of, 139

Colophon, birthplace of Xenophanes, 31

Commonplaces, function of, in sophistry, 84

Community of wives, 148; ideal community, 149 (and see State)

Contradiction, philosophy of, 65

Cosmogony, of Democritus, 77; of Plato, 150; of Aristotle, 200; of Epicurus, 219; of the Stoics, 231

Cosmopolitanism, of Cyrenaics and Cynics, 128; of later systems, 242

Courage, treated of in Laches, 136

Cratylus, dialogue, 137

Creation, a great expiation, 73; in the soul, 139; working out of God's image, 151; union of Essence and Matter, 167

Criterion, feeling the only, 127

Critias, dialogue, 153

Crito, dialogue, 136

Crux, in philosophy, 190

Cynic, origin of name, 130; influence of school on Plato, 154; v. Epicurean, 226

Cyrene, seat of Cyrenaic school, 124; visited by Plato, 134; influence of school on Plato, 154

Death, birth of the soul, 19

Deduction, v. Induction, 48; function of, in Aristotle, 184

Definitions, search for, by Socrates, 106; of no value, 132; rules for, laid down by Plato, 156

Democritus, 74; relation of Epicurus to, 216

Demonstrative science, based on abstraction, 11

Desire, part of soul, 28, 169; thought without, gives no motive, 191; distinctions among, 224

Destruction, meaning of, 53

Dialectic, Parmenides founder of, 39; Zeno inventor of, 42; Platonic theory of, 164, 171

Dichotomy, invented by Zeno, 43

Difference (see Essence), all difference quantitative, 76; conditioned by dissimilarity in atoms, 77

Dilemma, Melissus' use of, 46

Diogenes, pupil of Antisthenes, 130

Dionysius, elder and younger, connection of Plato with, 135

Diotima, conversation of, with Socrates, 137

Dry light, 19

Dualism, unthinkable, 32; in nature, 38; of Plato and Aristotle, 184

Dynamic, see Potentiality

Earth, principle in nature, 38

Education, preparation for heaven, 148; ideal, 149; true function of, 169; three stages, 170; an entelechy, 191

Egypt, visited by Pythagoras, 22; Democritus, 74; Plato, 135

Elea, seat of Eleatic school, 30; birthplace of Parmenides, 33

Eleatics, relation of Empedocles to, 62; of Democritus, 75; of Plato, 154, 165

Elements, the four, 62; in creation, 151; in body and in soul, 156

Empedocles, 58

Ends of Life, indifference as to, 96; importance in later Greek philosophy, 125; Plato's view of, 168; Aristotle's, 193; Epicurean, 222

Entelechy, Life, 186, 190; God, 188; Thought, ib.; Education, 191; Morality, 193; State, 197; physical world, 199; Soul, 203

Ephesus, birthplace of Heraclitus, 15

Epicurus, 211; praises of, by Lucretius, 212; garden of, 213; relation to Democritus, 216

Essence v. Difference, 48; equals Cause, 167

Euclides, 132

Euripides, friend of Anaxagoras, 52

Euthydemus, conversation with Socrates, 116; dialogue, 137

Euthyphro, dialogue, 136

Even, v. Odd, 24

Evil, origin of, 33; necessary on earth, 168; God cause of evil, but hath none, 234

Evolution, Anaximander's conception of, 12; Xenophanes' theory of, 33; relation of, to fundamental conception of Being, ib.; view of Empedocles, 70

Existence, an idea prior to Time and Space, 37; not given by Experience, 45; four forms of, 166; philosophy treats of existence as such, 181

Exoteric kind of lectures, 175

Female, see Male

Fire, original of things, 17; one of two principles, 38

Flux, of all things, 16; of life, 27, 73; sophistic theory of, 87

Form v. Matter, 25, 48; Aristotle's theory of, 203

Formulae, never adequate, 122

Freewill, problem of, 33; relation to law, 113; and overruling providence, 155

Friendship, treated of in Lysis, 136

Genus, has less of existence than species, 183

God, soul of the world, 27; the Odd-Even, 26; the universe His self-picturing, 26; God is one, 32; not a function of matter, 33; atomic origin of idea of, 80; the law or ideal in the universe, 112; Man the friend of God, 142; works out His image in creation, 151; God's thought and God's working, 152; is Mind universal, 164; cause of union in creation, 166; His visible images in Man and Nature, ib.; cause both of good and of knowledge, 166; thoughts of, eternally existing, 187; an entelechy, 188; Epicurean theory of, 221; Stoic theory of, 233

Golden age, 73

Gorgias, 92; Antisthenes pupil of, 129; dialogue, 137

Greek v. Modern difficulties, 158

Gymnastic, function of, 170

Habit, Aristotle's definition of, 195

Happiness, chief good, 193; reason standard of, 196

Harmony, the eternal, 19; soul a harmony, 29

Hecataeus, referred to by Herodotus, 2

Hegel, philosophic system of, 159

Heraclitus, 15; v. Democritus, 74; Plato student of, 134; relation of Plato to, 163

Hercules, patron-god of Cynics, 130

Herodotus, notices Hecataeus, 2

Hesiod, praised, 139

Hippias, dialogue, 137

Homer, criticised by Heraclitus, 16; anthropomorphism of, 31; praised, 139

Horace, quoted, 125

Humanitarianism, began in scepticism, 99

Humanity, granted only to possessors of eternal truth, 145

Husk, symbol of evolution, 12

Idea, exists prior to sensation, 143; eternal in universe, 150; rational element in sensation, 152; Platonic criticism of, 157; universals are ideas of real existences, 163; things partake of, 164; relation of, to Pythagorean 'Numbers,' 167; Aristotelian criticism of, 181; necessarily prior to sensation, 187

Ideal, struggle of old and new, 99; in the arts, 110; has three aspects, Justice, Beauty, Utility, ib.; great ideal in the universe, 112; can never wholly fit the real, 239

Idealism, v. Practicality, 4, 96; Parmenides founder of, 39; v. Realism, 51; v. Epicureanism, 216

Immortality, aspect of, to Greeks, 40; Parmenides pioneer for, 41; Phaedo dialogue on, 136; Love and immortality, 138; of soul, 150; relation of doctrine to Platonic recollection, 154; faith as to, 155; Man must put on, 168; Aristotle's view of, 207

Inconsistency, not forbidden in philosophy, 64

Individual, v. Universal, 99; relation of, to community, 147, 196; reality of, 184; importance of, in later systems, 243

Individualism, in philosophy, 83, 85; not wholly bad, 98; required reconciling with universalism, 100

Induction (see Deduction); Socrates inventor of, 106; Plato's contributions to, 160; function of, in Aristotle, 184

Infinite or indefinite, origin of things, 8; function of, in mathematics, 10; relation to definite, 24, 26, 165

Infinity, origin of idea of, 46

Intellect, division of soul, 28, 169

Ion, dialogue, 136

Irony, of Socrates, 105

Jowett, Prof., quoted, 39, 43, 89, 138, 142, 153, 158

Judgment, vision of, 150

Justice, a cheating device, 95; one form of ideal or universal, 110; related to law and to utility, 120; the fairest wisdom, 139; dialogue on, 146; only interest of stronger, 147; writ large in state, 147; perfection of whole man, and of state, 169; a civic quality restraining, 198; Epicurean theory of, 225

Kant, his Critic referred to, 158; maxim of, 236

Knowledge, v. Opinion, 33, 35, 51; impossible, 93; really exists, 164; first causes pertain to, 179; must have real object, 183; potential and actual, 203

'Know thyself,' 113; dialogue on, 137

Laches, dialogue, 136

Lampsacus, place of death of Anaxagoras, 57

Laughing philosopher, 74

Law, in universe, 112; relation to Freewill, 113; relation to Justice, 120; fulfilled through Love, 122; Laws, dialogue, 160; potential and actual, 192

Leontini, birthplace of Gorgias, 92

Leucippus, 74

Life, death of the soul, 19; a prison, 28; a sentinel-post, ib.; a union of contradictories, 66; a dwelling in cave, 148; organic idea of, 185; an entelechy, 190; different kinds of, 194; Aristotle's definition, 203

Listeners, in Pythagorean system, 23

Logic, Parmenides founder of, 39; Zeno inventor of, 42; contributions of Plato and Aristotle to, 159; governing idea of Aristotle's, 184; of Epicurus, 215; Stoic divisions of, 230

Love, motive force in Nature, 38; one of two principles, 38, 63; fulfilling of the law, 122; dialogues on, 137, 144; pure and impure, 145

Lucretius, praises Empedocles, 59; Epicurus, 212; proofs by, of Epicurus' theory, 217; exponent of Roman Epicureanism, 242

Lyceum, school of Aristotle, 174

Lycurgus, praised, 140

Lysis, dialogue, 136

Magnet, soul of, 6

Male and Female, Pythagorean view of, 24; principles in Nature, 38; equality of, 148; correlative, 167; basis of State, 197

Man, measure of truth, 87; working with Eternal Mind, 155; Does Man partake in God's ideas? 158; differentia of, possession of reason, 191; function of, 193; a political animal, 197; wisest of animals, why? 200

Materialism, ancient and modern, 57; of Epicureans, 220; of Stoics, 233

Mathematicians, in system of Pythagoras, 23

Mathematics, based on indefinables, 10; function of, in Pythagorean philosophy, 25; and in Platonic, 170

Matter (see Mind), v. Thought, 48; another name for the formless, 151, 167; correlative of Mind, 167; what it symbolises, 184; relation to Form, 203

Mechanical theory, of universe, 56, 78; of virtue, 195

Megara, birthplace of Euclides, 132; influence of school on Plato, 154

Melissus, 46

Menexenus, dialogue, 137

Meno, dialogue, 136; relation to Aristotle's doctrine, 191

Midwifery of Socrates, 104

Might, without Right is weak, 147; is Right in tyrant, 149

Miletus, birthplace of Thales, 1; of Anaximander, 7; of Anaximenes, 14

Mind, v. Matter, 51, 167; function of, in the universe, 54; God's mind working on matter, 151; ruler of universe, 155; must rule pleasure, 156; home of ideas, 164; correlative of matter, 167; passive and creative, 207

Moist or base element, 18

Monarchy, in politics and in philosophy, 82

Morality, a convention, 95, 126; traditional morality of Greece required remodelling, 98; question as to origin solved by Socrates, 121; can never exhaust Subject, 188; an entelechy, 192; potential and actual, 194

Motion, animal, how accounted for, 79

Multiplicity, see Unity

Music, of the spheres, 27; of seven planets, 151; function of, in education, 29, 170

Myth, of Steeds, 144; of Judgment, 150; of Creation, 152; philosophers fond of, 178

Names, approximations to reality, 165

Nature, treatises on, 16, 34, 46, 217; a reason in, 37; male and female principles in, 38; Love motive force in, ib.; the non-existent, 92; 'touch of nature,' 191; Aristotle's conception of, 199; violations of, 201; order of, 217; clearly immortal, 218; a life consistent with, 236

Necessity, creative power, 38, 63; how used by Democritus, 78; Aristotle's conception of, 201

Neleus, family (owners of Aristotle's library), 175

Nicomachus, father of Aristotle, 172

Notions, Epicurus' view of, 215

Number, original of things, 24; relation of ideas to, 167

Obedience, through disobedience, 122

Obscure, epithet of Heraclitus, 15

Odd, v. Even, 24

Opinion, v. Knowledge, 33, 35

Oracle, answer of, respecting Socrates, 107; maxim engraved on, 113

Organism, idea of, in Aristotle, 185, 205

Organon, of Aristotle, 159

Origination, meaning of, 53, 62

Other, the 'Other' of Plato, 165

Pains, classification of, 131; converted into pleasures, 131, 227; moral function of, 238

Pantheistic apathy, 20

Parmenides, 33; relation of Zeno to, 42; visited Athens, 157; dialogue, ib.

Particular, see Universal

Passion, part of soul, 28, 169

Paul, St., influence of Stoicism on, 228; relation of, to Greek philosophy, 244

Pericles, friend of Anaxagoras, 52; and of Protagoras, 86

Peripatetics, origin of name, 174

Personality, absence of, in Greek thought, 40

Persuasion, only true wisdom, 88

Phaedo, quoted from, 54; dialogue, 136

Phaedrus, dialogue, 142

Phenomena, not source of abstract ideas, 15

Philebus, dialogue, 156

Philosophy, different from science, 9; does not forbid inconsistency, 64; a form of poesy or fiction, 66; at the basis of religion, art, and morals, 67; great philosophies never die, 68; first systematically divided by Democritus, 75; relation to politics, 82, 97; paradox of, 100; crisis of, ib.; of nature and of moral, 101; a means of social culture, 125; relation of Love to, 137; must rule on earth, 149; only makes happy guesses in science, 152; origin of, 178; investigates first causes, 179; crux in, 190; Epicurus' definition of, 214; a search for chief good, 229

Plato, criticism of Protagoras, 89; a complete Socratic, 103: took refuge with Euclides, 132, 134; compared to Shakespeare, 134; as psychologist, 155; central doctrines of, 155; dogma impossible, 162; Aristotle on, 163; relation to Heraclitus, ib.; and to the Eleatics, 165; relation of Aristotle to, 178, 181; his mistake as to universals, 182

Pleasure, end of life, 126; contempt of, 131; reason gives law to, 149; is it chief good? 156; Epicurean theory of, 222; moral function of, 238

Politics, relation to philosophy, 82, 97; influence of sophistry upon, 88

Politicus, see Statesman

Potentiality (Dynamic idea), how used by Aristotle, 185; of feeling, 195; equals matter, 203

Practicality, v. Idealism, 4

Predication, Epicurus' view of, 215

Propositions, v. Things, 189

Protagoras, 85; Plato's criticism of, 89; dialogue, 136

Protoplasm, explains nothing, 37

Punishment, Sophistic theory of, 88

Pyrrho, founder of Scepticism, 211

Pythagoras, 23

Quinta Essentia, origin of, 202

Quixote, the world admires, 227

Realisation (Actuality), correlative of potentiality, 185; relation to Plato's Recollection, 188; chief good, 194

Reality, standard of, 40, 51; distinction between, and appearance, abolished, 83, 87; no necessary relation between thought and reality, 94; the only reality appetite, 96; thoughts of God the only reality, 164; approximations to, 165; ideal can never wholly fit, 239

Reason, function of, 37, 56; corrector of the senses, 61; governs evolution, 70; worse made to appear better, 84; realises itself through individuals, 114; gives law to pleasure, 149, 156; man possesses, 191; actual and latent, 192; partly obedient, partly contemplative, 194; an element in Habit, 195; an impersonal ruler, 196

Recollection (or Reminiscence), departure and renewal of knowledge, 138; doctrine of, in Plato, 142; Platonic criticism of, 154; nature of, 165; relation of Aristotle's theory to, 188

Reminiscence, see Recollection

Republic, dialogue, 146; relation of, to Aristotle's doctrine, 192

Revelation, how criticise? 158

Right, Might without, is weak, 147

Samos, birthplace of Pythagoras, 23; of Melissus, 46; of Epicurus, 211

Scepticism, its isolating influence, 94; destroys not appetite, but moral restraint, 95; represented birth of new conditions, 98; phase of decay in distinctively Greek life, 211

Science, philosophy different from, 9; happy guesses in, 152; different kinds of, 180; can never exhaust object, 188

Scrip and staff, emblems of Cynics, 130

Semitic elements in later Greek philosophy, 228

Seneca, on Epicurus, 225; exponent of Roman Stoicism, 242

Senses (or Sensation), channel for the eternal wisdom, 18; data of, no measure of reality, 40; not source of ideas, 45; untrustworthy, 49; necessary to truth, 56; no test of truth, 60; relation to reason, 61; based on composite character of body, 71; atomic theory of, 79; give no absolute truth, 80; no distinction between, and thing or mind, 87; reaction of moral theory on theory of sensation, 102; invalid as against reason, 133; has rational elements conditioning, 151; universal cannot belong to, 163; universals furthest removed from, 180; only source of knowledge, 214; Epicurean theory of emission, 221; Stoic theory, 230

Shakespeare, Plato compared to, 134

Sicily, birthplace of Empedocles, 58; connection with rise of Sophistry, 84, 86, 92; connection of Plato with, 135

Sin, willing and unwilling, 121

Sinope, birthplace of Diogenes, 130

Sleep, cuts us off from eternal wisdom, 18

Socrates, 101; relation to Anaxagoras, 54; his doctrine in general, 100; marks a parting of ways, 103; warning 'voice' or 'daemon' of, 104; philosophic midwifery, ib.; irony, 105; not an expositor, 115; relation to Sophists, ib.; Aristippus student of, 124; criticises Antisthenes, 129; Plato pupil of, 134; dialogue concerning, 136; conversation of Diotima with, 137; in Republic, 146

Socratics, complete and incomplete, 103; incomplete, 125, 128

Solon, Plato descended from, 134; praised, 140

Sophists, 82; name first used by Protagoras, 85; influence of, on politics, 88, 97; refuted by the arts, 111; relation to Socrates, 115; Platonic dialogues on, 136; dialogue so named, 159

Soul of all things, 6; a fiery exhalation, 18; God soul of the world, 27; soul realised in body, ib.; soul double, 28; triple, 28, 169; life of soul a harmony, 29; composed of finest atoms, 78; even that of universe, 80; loss of one's soul, 150; world-soul the first creation, 151; divisions of, 169; an entelechy, 203; definition of, 204; v. body, 205; Epicurean theory of, 220

Space, existence prior to, 37, 167; unthinkable except with reference to body, 75

Sparta, ideas from, in Republic, 148; influence on Plato's Laws, 160

Species, has more of existence than genus, 183

Speusippus, successor of Plato, 172

Stagira, birthplace of Aristotle, 172

State, Justice writ large in, 147; classes in, 169; an entelechy, 196

Statesman (or Politicus), dialogue, 159

Stoicism, Semitic element in, 228; origin of name, 229

Strife, original of things, 17; one of two principles, 38, 63

Substance defined, 203

Sulla, brought Aristotle's library to Rome, 176

Summum bonum, what? 156; relation of man's perfection, 168; philosophy search for, 229

Symposium, dialogue, 137

Tabula rasa, Stoic theory of, 231

Tarsus, birthplace of St. Paul and (possibly) of Chrysippus, 229

Temperance, treated of in Charmides, 136; fairest sort of wisdom, 139

Thales, 2

Theaetetus, quoted from, 89; dialogue, 159

Theophrastus, successor of Aristotle, 175

Things, in themselves, how known? 158; partake in the idea, 164; v. Propositions, 189

Thought, of God, 150; ideal elements in, 152; of God, source of reality, 164; relation to matter, 184; of God, eternally existing in ideas, 187; an entelechy, 188; without desire, no motive, 191; arms of, 198; only converted sensation, 223

Thucydides, quoted, 97

Thurii, code for, drawn up by Protagoras, 86

Timaeus, dialogue, 150

Time, brings its revenges, 8; plays with the dice, 20; existence prior to, 37, 168

Tortoise, see Achilles

Transmigration of souls, 27, 73

Truth, first duty of man, 29 senses give no absolute, 80; title of work by Protagoras, 86; man measure of, 87; abstract truth impossible, ib.; dialogue concerning, 137

Tyranny, in politics and in philosophy, 83

Ultimately, significance of word, 190

Unity, v. Multiplicity, 28; of objects only apparent, 76; no absolute unity either of body or soul, 138; analysis of, 159; in thoughts of God, 164

Universal, v. Particular, 48; v. Individual, 99; search after lost, 105, 163; three forms, Justice, Beauty, Utility, 110; cannot belong to sense, 163; knowledge of, function of philosophy, 180; does not exist apart from particulars, 181; has less of existence than particulars, 183; they are not antithetical, 189


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