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Plato Bilingual Anthology : THE WORLD IS A LIVING BEING

from Timaeus, * 30c-31b, 32b-34b, 92c, translated by B. Jowett

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Page 2

God placed water and air in the mean between fire and earth, and made them to have the same proportion so far as was possible (as fire is to air so is air to water, and as air is to water so is water to earth); and thus he bound and put together a visible and tangible heaven. And for these reasons, and out of such elements which are in number four, the body of the world was created, and it was harmonised by proportion, and therefore has the spirit of friendship; and having been reconciled to itself, it was indissoluble by the hand of any other than the framer. Now the creation took up the whole of each of the four elements; for the Creator compounded the world out of all the fire and all the water and all the air and all the earth, leaving no part of any of them nor any power of them outside. His intention was, in the first place, that the animal should be as far as possible a perfect whole and of perfect parts: secondly, that it should be one, leaving no remnants out of which another such world might be created: and also that it should be free from old age and unaffected by disease. Considering that if heat and cold and other powerful forces which unite bodies surround and attack them from without when they are unprepared, they decompose them, and by bringing diseases and old age upon them, make them waste away-for this cause and on these grounds he made the world one whole, having every part entire, and being therefore perfect and not liable to old age and disease. οὕτω δὴ πυρός τε καὶ γῆς ὕδωρ ἀέρα τε ὁ θεὸς ἐν μέσῳ θείς͵ καὶ πρὸς ἄλληλα καθ΄ ὅσον ἦν δυνατὸν ἀνὰ τὸν αὐτὸν λόγον ἀπεργασάμενος͵ ὅτιπερ πῦρ πρὸς ἀέρα͵ τοῦτο ἀέρα πρὸς ὕδωρ͵ καὶ ὅτι ἀὴρ πρὸς ὕδωρ͵ ὕδωρ πρὸς γῆν͵ συνέδησεν καὶ συνεστήσατο οὐρανὸν ὁρατὸν καὶ ἁπτόν. καὶ διὰ ταῦτα ἔκ τε δὴ τούτων τοιούτων καὶ τὸν ἀριθμὸν τεττάρων τὸ τοῦ κόσμου σῶμα ἐγεννήθη δι΄ ἀναλογίας ὁμολογῆσαν͵ φιλίαν τε ἔσχεν ἐκ τούτων͵ ὥστε εἰς ταὐτὸν αὑτῷ συνελθὸν ἄλυτον ὑπό του ἄλλου πλὴν ὑπὸ τοῦ συνδήσαντος γενέσθαι. Τῶν δὲ δὴ τεττάρων ἓν ὅλον ἕκαστον εἴληφεν ἡ τοῦ κόσμου σύστασις. ἐκ γὰρ πυρὸς παντὸς ὕδατός τε καὶ ἀέρος καὶ γῆς συνέστησεν αὐτὸν ὁ συνιστάς͵ μέρος οὐδὲν οὐδενὸς οὐδὲ δύναμιν ἔξωθεν ὑπολιπών͵ τάδε διανοηθείς͵ πρῶτον μὲν ἵνα ὅλον ὅτι μάλιστα ζῷον τέλεον ἐκ τελέων τῶν μερῶν εἴη͵ πρὸς δὲ τούτοις ἕν͵ ἅτε οὐχ ὑπολελειμμένων ἐξ ὧν ἄλλο τοιοῦτον γένοιτ΄ ἄν͵ ἔτι δὲ ἵν΄ ἀγήρων καὶ ἄνοσον ᾖ͵ κατανοῶν ὡς συστάτῳ σώματι θερμὰ καὶ ψυχρὰ καὶ πάνθ΄ ὅσα δυνάμεις ἰσχυρὰς ἔχει περιιστάμενα ἔξωθεν καὶ προσ πίπτοντα ἀκαίρως λύει καὶ νόσους γῆράς τε ἐπάγοντα φθίνειν ποιεῖ. διὰ δὴ τὴν αἰτίαν καὶ τὸν λογισμὸν τόνδε ἕνα ὅλον ὅλων ἐξ ἁπάντων τέλεον καὶ ἀγήρων καὶ ἄνοσον αὐτὸν ἐτεκτήνατο.
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Reference address : https://www.ellopos.net/elpenor/greek-texts/ancient-Greece/plato-living-being.asp?pg=2