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refined taste of an Athenian. Even Plato's Alcibiades? allows, that at first sight the discourses of Socrates appear ridiculous and rude, dealing as they invariably do with beasts of burden, smiths, tailors, and tanners, and apparently saying the same thing in the same words. Was not this the very objection raised by Xenophon ?? How strange that plain unadorned common sense must have appeared to his cotemporaries carefully avoiding all choice figures, and using the simplest and most common expressions.
This peculiarity was not, however, the result of any lack of taste, but of the profound originality of his ideas, for which customary figures were insufficient. Yet again, sometimes the soul of the philosopher, diving into its own recesses, so far lost itself in this labour as to be insensible to external impressions, and at other times gave utterance to enigmatical sayings, which appeared strange to it in a wakeful state. Serious and fond of meditation 3 as was Socrates, it not unfrequently happened that
1 Symp. 221, E. Conf. Kal- σύ, έφη, ώ Σώκρατες, εκείνα τα licles in Gorgias 490, C.: περί αυτά λέγεις & εγώ πάλαι ποτέ σιτία λέγεις και ποτά και ιατρούς σου ήκουσα. The like complaint και φλυαρίας åtexvớs ye and the like answer is met αει σκυτέας τε και γναρέας και μα- with in Plato's Gorgias, 490, γείρους λόγων και ιατρούς ουδέν E. Conf. 497, C.; σμικρά και παύει, ώς περί τούτων ημίν όντα στενά ερωτήματα. τον λόγον.
* Accordingly in the Aristo2 Mem. i. 2, 37 : 'O 8è Kpıtlas telian problems, xxx. 1, 953, a, άλλα των δέ τοι σε απέχεσθαι, 26, he is reckoned amongst the έφη, δεήσει, ώ Σώκρατες, των melancholy, which is not at σκυτέων και των τεκτόνων και variance with the gentle firmτων χαλκέων, και γαρ οίμαι αυ- ness (id ordo quov) which ArisTOùs *181 Katatetpipoal dia@pu- totle (Rhet. ii. 15) assigns to novuévous end goû. Again in iv. him, 4, 6: και ο μεν Ιππίας· έτι γάρ
deep in thought he remained, for a longer or shorter time, indifferent to the outer world, and stood there as one absent in mind. According to Plato, he once remained in this state, standing on the same spot, from one day to the next. So energetically did he struggle with himself to attain an insight into his every motive. In doing this, he discovered a residuum of feelings and impulses, which he watched with conscientious attention without being able to explain them from what he knew of his own inner life. Hence arose his belief in those divine revelations, which he thought to enjoy. And not only was he generally convinced that he stood and acted in the service of God, but he also held that supernatural suggestions were communicated to him, not only through the medium of public oracles, but also in dreams, and more particularly by a peculiar kind of higher inspiration, which goes by the name of the Socratic δαιμόνιον.5 "
· Plato, Symp. 174, D. Vol. stare solitus, etc. Philop. De quardsen, D. Dæmon. d. Socr. an. R. 12, places the occa25, 63 and Alberti, Socr. 148 sion during the battle of have entirely mistaken the Delium. meaning of the text in suppo- Conf. p. 76, 7, and 89. sing that it attributes to So- 4 Conf. p. 60, 2. In the crates any ecstatic states. passage here quoted Socrates
Symp. 220, C. The circum- refers to dreams in which the stances may indeed be regarded deity had commanded him to as a fact; still we do not know devote himself to his philosofrom what source Plato derived phical activity. In the Crito his knowledge of it, nor whether 44, A., a dream tells him that the authority which he follow- his death will follow on the ed had not exaggerated the third day. time during which Socrates 6 Volquardsen, Das Dæmostood there. Favorinus in nium d. Socr. und seine InterGell. N. A. ii. 1, makes the one preten. Kiel, 1862. Ribbing, occasion into many, and says Ueber Socrates' Daimonion
CHAP, Even among the ancients many regarded these IV.
suggestions as derived from intercourse with a special (a) The
and personally-existing genius, of which Socrates δαιμόνιον not a per. boasted; in modern times this view was for a long
time the dominant one. It was no doubt somewhat genius.
(Socratische Studien II., Up- cratis, c. 20; Max. Tyr. xiv. 3 ; sala Universitets Aorskrift, Apuleius, De Deo Socratis, the 1870.
Neoplatonists, and the Fathers, 1 The bill of accusation who, however, are not agreed against Socrates seems to have whether his genius was a good understood the saluóvlov in this one or a bad one. Plutarch, sense, since it charges him and after him Apuleius, men. with introducing étepa kalvà tion the view that by the dalδαιμόνια in the place of the μόνιον must be understood a Gods of the state; nor does power of vague apprehension, Ribbing's (Socrat. Stud. II. 1) by means of which he could remark make against this, that guess the future from prognosMeletus (in Plato Apol. 26, B.) tications or natural signs. thus explained his language; So- 2 Compare Tiedemann, Geist crates not only denies the Gods der spekulat. Philosophie, ii. of Athens but all and every 16; Meiners, Ueber den Genius God; the heavenly beings, des Sokr. (Verm. Schriften, whose introduction he attri- iii. 1); Gesch. d. Wissensch. butes to him not being regarded II. 399, 538, Buhle, Gesch, d. as Gods, just as at a later time Phil. 371, 388; Krug, Gesch. d. Christians were called &deot alten Phil. p. 158, Lasaulx, too though worshipping God and (Socrates, Leben, 1858, p. 20) Christ. Afterwards this view in his uncritical and unsatisappears to have been dropped, factory treatise respecting the thanks to the descriptions of dalubviov, believes it to be a real Xenophon and Plato, and does revelation of the deity, or even not recur for some time, even a real genius, and even Vol. in spurious works attributed to quardsen gathers as the conthese writers. Even Cicero, clusion of his careful, and in Divin. i. 54, 122, does not many respects meritorious, distranslate daluóvlov by genius, quisition, that a real divine but by 'divinum quoddam,' voice warned Socrates. The and doubtless Antipater, whose older literature in Olearius, 148, work he was quoting, took it 185, Brucker, I. 543, which inin the same sense. But in cludes many supporters of the Christian times the belief in a. opinion that the genius of genius became universal, be- Socrates was only his own reacause it fell in with the current Further particulars in belief in dæmons. For in- Krug, l. c. and Lélut, Démon de stance, Plut. De Genio So- Socrates, 163.
humiliating in the eyes of rationalising admirers, that a man otherwise so sensible as Socrates should have allowed himself to be ensnared by such a superstitious delusion. Hence attempts were not wanting to excuse him, either on the ground of the universal superstition of his age and nation, or else of his having a physical tendency to fanaticism. Some even went so far as to assert that the so-called supernatural revelations were a shrewd invention, or a result of his celebrated irony. Such a view,
| The first-named excuse is condition of the brain during universal. Marsilius Ficinus rapture affects the nerves of (Theol. Platon, xiii. 2, p. 287) the abdomen and irritates had assumed in Socrates, as them. To exercise the intellect well as in other philosophers, a immediately after a meal or to peculiar bodily disposition for indulge in deep thought proecstasy, referring their suscep- duces peculiar sensations in tibility for supernatural reve- the hypochondriacal.' In the lations to their melancholy same strain is Meiners, Verm. temperament. The personality Schr. iii. 48, Gesch. d. Wis. of the dæmon is not however sensch. ii. 538. Conf. Schwarze, called in question by him or by Historische Untersuchung: war his supporters (Olearius, 147). Socrates ein Hypochondrist ? Modern writers took refuge in quoted by Krug, Gesch. d. alten the same hypothesis in order Phil. 2 A. p. 163. to explain in Socrates the pos- 2 Plessing, Osiris and So. sibility of a superstitious belief crates, 185, who supposes that in a öalubviov. For instance, Socrates had bribed the DelTiedemann, "The degree of ex- phic oracle in order to produce ertion, which the analysis of ab- a political revolution, and stract conception requires, has, vaunted his intercourse with a in some bodies, the effect of higher spirit. Chauvin in mechanically predisposing to Olearius. ecstasy and enthusiasm.'
3 Fraguier, Sur l'ironie de crates was so cultivated that Socrate in the Mémoires de deep thought produced in him l'Académie des Inscriptions, iv. a dulness of sense, and came 368, expresses the view that So. near to the sweet dreams of crates understood by the daithe èNOTATIKOí.' Those inclined móvlov his own natural intellito ecstasy mistake suddenly gence and power of combirising thoughts for inspira- nation, which rendered it postions.' • The extraordinary sible for him to make right
CHAP. however, is hard to reconcile with the tone in which, IV.
on the testimony of both Plato and Xenophon, Socrates speaks of the suggestions of the δαιμόνιον, , or with the value which he attaches to these suggestions on the most important occasions. To explain the phenomenon by the irritability of a sickly body falls not far short of deriving it from the farcy of a monomaniac, and reduces the great reformer of philosophy to the level of a madman. All these
explanations, however, can now be dispensed with, (6) Re
Schleiermacher having shown, with the general apgarded by Socrates as probation of the most competent judges, that by an inward oracle.
guesses respecting the future; 1836) has boldly asserted, .que somewhat ironically he had Socrate était un fou '—a caterepresented this as
a matter gory,
in which he places of pure instinct, of delov or amongst others not only Cardela moipa, and employed for dan and Swedenborg, but this purpose dalubviov and simi. Luther, Pascal, Rousseau and lar expressions. He remarks, others. His chief argument is however, that Socrates had no that Socrates not only bethought of a genius famili- lieved in a real and personal aris, dalubviov here being used genius, but in his hallucinaas an adjective and not as a tions believed that he audi. substantive. Similarly Rollin bly heard its voice, Those in his Histoire ancienne, ix. 4, who rightly understand Plato, 2; and Barthélemy, Voyage du and can distinguish what is jeune Anacharsis, treats the genuine from what is false, expressions used respecting the will not need a refutation of δαιμόνιον in Plato's Apology as these untruths. plaisanterie, and considers it s Platon's Werke, i. 2, 432. an open question whether So- Brandis, Gesch. d. Gri. crates really believed in his Rom. Phil. ii. a. 60. Ritter, genius. On others sharing the Gesch. d. Phil. ii. 40. Herview, see Lélut. 1. c. p. 163. mann, Gesch. u. Syst. d. Plato
1 Xen. Mem. iv. 8, 4. Plato, i. 236. Socher, Über Platon's Apol. 31, C.; 40, A. ; 41, D. Schriften p. 99. Cousin in the
? Many have spoken of the notes to his translation of superstition and fanaticism of Plato's Apology p. 335. Krische, Socrates in a more modest way, Forschungen, 227.
Ribbing, but comparatively recently 16. Conf. Hegel, Gesch. d. Lélut (Du Démon de Socrate, Phil. ii. 77. Ast too (Platon's