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Athenaeus of Naucratis / The deipnosophists, or, Banquet of the learned of Athenæus
volume III (1854)

Book XIV,   pp. 978-1062


Page 1009

our minds, sitting by ourselves, what music once was."  And 
this was the discourse of Aristoxenus. 
32. Wherefore it seems to me that we ought to have a 
philosophical conversation about music: for Pythagoras the 
Samian, who had such a high reputation as a philosopher, is 
well known, from many circumstances, to have been a man 
who had no slight or superficial knowledge of music; for he 
indeed lays it down that the whole universe is put and kept 
together by music.  And altogether the ancient philosophy 
of the Greeks appears to have been very much addicted to 
music; and on this account they judged Apollo to have been 
the most musical and the wisest of the gods, and Orpheus of 
the demigods. And they called every one who devoted him- 
self to the study of this art a sophist, as zEschylus does in 
the verse where he says- 
-  And then the sophist sweetly struck the lyre. 
And that the ancients were excessively devoted to the study 
of music is plain from Homer, who, because all his own poetry 
was adapted to music, makes, from want of care, so many 
verses which are headless, and weak, and imperfect in the taiL 
But Xenophanes, and Solon, and Theognis, and Phocylides, 
and besides them Periander of Corinth, an elegiac poet, and 
the rest of those who did not set melodies to their poems, 
compose their verses with reference to number and to the 
arrangement of the metres, and take great care that none of 
their verses shall be liable to the charge of any of the irregu- 
larities which we just now imputed to Homer.   Now when 
we call a verse headless (JKc'qaXos), we mean such as have 
a mutilation or lameness at the beginning, such as- 
'-7rEL8 Pidy sE Kai 'EXXAoworor D'icovro.1 
'Emr'ovors m-reVTdO So /3is Lpt KTa/Yeolo.2 
Those we call weak (Aayapos) which are defective in the 
middle, as- 
A-lJa 8' dp' AIVELav viyv cpl[ov 'AyXiaoao.3 
M& 5' anO' 71-yde'Oqv 'AGaKXprLui &Vo Praoses. 
Iliad, xxiii. 2. *          2 Odyss. xii. 423. 
3 "This passage perplexes me on two accounts; first of all because 
I have not been able to find such a line in Homer; and secondly because 
I do not see what is faulty or weak in it; and it cannot be because it is
a spondaic verse, for of that kind there are full six hundred in Homer, 
The other line comes from Iliad, ii. 731."-S'chweigkt. 
ATH.-VOL. IMl.          3 T 
MUSIC. 
l009 


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