Reflections on the clouds by aristophanes

Little of his Roman History survives, but missing portions are partly supplied from elsewhere and there are many excerpts. Enriched by anecdotes, gossip, and details of character and personal appearance, Lives of the Caesars by Suetonius born c.

Reflections on the clouds by aristophanes

The following text is a transcript by V. As usual, I have edited this transcript to remove excessive wordiness and any factual errors. The quotes come from the translation of the Clouds in Four Texts on Socrates.

Click here to read the first part of this lecture. Aristophanes returns to the conventions of the city and embraces most of them, but he is still critical of them and takes a critical distance from them. And the step that he takes outside the conventional viewpoint is made possible by an appeal to nature.

Not just a follower but their leader, because he is their spokesman.


Nature provides that standpoint. People do that all the time. The clouds are great judges of character. They look like big balls of wool. Socrates has merely token secrecy measures. He has a token interview; a token initiation to get into the thinkery.

Socrates has absolutely no sense that Strepsiades is not the right kind of person to initiate into the secrets of nature, even though he has ample opportunity to determine this before he takes him into the thinkery. Socrates is just a terrible judge of character.

What the clouds represent is, in a sense, knowledge not just of nature in the non-human sense, but also knowledge of the dynamics of human nature as well. But Socrates is unaware of that.

The Internet Classics Archive | The Clouds by Aristophanes

Socrates is a natural philosopher who looks away from the human things to huge things like planetary bodies and tiny things like gnats and fleas but completely leaves out the realm of the middle where we live.

Socrates has no interest in that. So, in a sense, the clouds are wiser than Socrates because they represent a wisdom according to nature that has a much more expansive notion of what nature is. In fact, when you get right down to it, Socrates is a fool in this play.

Why does he behave foolishly? Because with all of his scientific knowledge, he has no knowledge of human nature, and therefore he does not act prudently.

Reflections on the clouds by aristophanes

Socrates goes on to explain how the clouds are the only goddesses and all the others are drivel. Socrates says, well, the clouds make it rain.7, words Part 2 of 3 Author's Note: The following text is a transcript by V.

S. of part of my lecture on Aristophanes' Clouds. As usual, I have edited this The quotes come from the translation of the Clouds in Four Texts on Socrates. + free ebooks online. Did you know that you can help us produce ebooks by proof-reading just one page a day?

Go to: Distributed Proofreaders.

Reflections on the clouds by aristophanes

Frequently Asked Questions Who wrote this list? See the heading above and the credit below to find out who wrote this list. If you don't like the selections in this list .

Your Answer

Oh! most mighty king, the boundless air, that keepest the earth suspended in space, thou bright Aether and ye venerable goddesses, the Clouds, who carry in your loins the thunder and the lightning, arise, ye sovereign powers and manifest yourselves in the celestial spheres to the eyes of your sage.

Heath, M. () Political Comedy in Aristophanes. Hypomnemata, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen. ISBN Brief discussions of Clouds, Knights, Lysistrata and Acharnians are used to cast initial doubt on subsequent reflections on Aristophanes and politics can be found in Heath (a), () and.

Socrates (— B.C.E.). Socrates is one of the few individuals whom one could say has so-shaped the cultural and intellectual development of the world that, .

Loeb Classical Library | Harvard University Press