Page:Early Greek philosophy by John Burnet, 3rd edition, 1920.djvu/218

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2000 belonged to the former work.[1] Diels gives about 350 verses and parts of verses from the cosmological poem, or not a fifth of the whole. It is important to remember that, even in this favourable instance, so much has been lost. The other poems ascribed to Empedokles by the Alexandrian scholars were probably not his.[2]

I give the remains as they are arranged by Diels:


And do thou give ear, Pausanias, son of Anchitos the wise!


For straitened are the powers that are spread over their bodily parts, and many are the woes that burst in on them and blunt the edge of their careful thoughts! They behold but a brief span of a life that is no life,[3] and, doomed to swift death, are borne up and fly off like smoke. Each is convinced of that 5alone which he had chanced upon as he is hurried every way, and idly boasts he has found the whole. So hardly can these things be seen by the eyes or heard by the ears of men, so hardly grasped by their mind! Howbeit, thou, since thou hast found thy way hither, shalt learn no more than mortal mind hath power. R. P. 163.


. . . to keep within thy dumb heart.

  1. Diog. viii. 77 (R. P. 162); Souidas s.v. Ἐμπεδοκλῆς· καὶ ἔγραψε δι' ἐπῶν Περὶ φύσεως τῶν ὄντων βιβλία β´, καὶ ἔστιν ἔπη ὡς δισχίλια. It hardly seems likely, however, that the Katharmoi extended to 3000 verses, so Diels proposes to read πάντα τρισχίλια for πεντακισχίλια in Diogenes. See Diels, "Über die Gedichte des Empedokles" (Berl. Sitzb. 1898, pp. 396 sqq.).
  2. Hieronymos of Rhodes declared (Diog. viii. 58) that he had met with forty-three tragedies by Empedokles; but see Stein, pp. 5 sqq. The poem on the Persian wars, which he also refers to (Diog. viii. 57), seems to have arisen from a corruption in the text of Arist. Probl. 929 b 16, where Bekker reads ἐν τοῖς Περσικοῖς. The same passage, however, is said to occur ἐν τοῖς φυσικοῖς, in Meteor. Δ, 4. 382 a 1, though there too E has Περσικοῖς.
  3. The MSS. of Sextus have ζωῆσι βίου. Diels reads ζωῆς ἰδίου. I still prefer Scaliger's ζωῆς ἀβίου. Cf. fr. 15, τὸ δὴ βίοτον καλέουσι.