ORPHIC FRAGMENT 114 - OTTO KERN

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For links to many more fragments: The Orphic Fragments of Otto Kern.

SUMMARY: This set of fragments begins with one stating that Yî (Γῆ), unknown to Ouranós (Οὐρανός), gave birth to the Seven Pairs of Titánæs (Τιτᾶνες).

114. (95) σχόλιον Πρόκλου επὶ Τιμαίου Πλάτωνος 40e (III 184, 1 Diehl):

δόξειε γὰρ ἂν (sc. ὁ Πλάτων) τοῦτο λέγειν οὐχ ἑπομένως ταῖς <Ὀρφικαῖς> [1] ἀρχαῖς· ἐκεῖ γὰρ ἀδελφοὶ λέγονται τούτων, ἀλλ' οὐ γεννήτορες· τίκτει γὰρ ἡ Γῆ λαθοῦσα τὸν Οὐρανόν, ὥσ φησιν ὁ θεολόγος·

ἑπτὰ μὲν εὐειδεῖς [2] κούρας (ἑλικώπιδας, ἁγνάς,)

ἑπτὰ δὲ παῖδας ἄνακτας (ἐγείνατο λαχνήεντας)·

θυγατέρας μὲν (τίκτε?) Θέμιν καὶ ἐΰφρονα Τηθὺν

Μνημοσύνην τε βαθυπλόκαμον Θείαν τε μάκαιραν,

ἠδὲ Διώνην τίκτεν ἀριπρεπὲς εἶδος ἔχουσαν

Φοίβην τε Ῥείην τε, Διὸς γενέτειραν ἄνακτος·

παῖδας δὲ ἄλλους τοσούτους·

Κοῖόν τε Κρῖόν τε μέγαν Φόρκυν τε κραταιὸν

καὶ Κρόνον Ὠκεανόν θ' Ὑπερίονά τ' Ἰαπετόν τε.

τούτων οὖν παρὰ τῶι θεολόγωι προαναγεγραμμένων πῶς ὁ Τίμαιος ἐξ Ὠκεανοῦ καὶ Τηθύος (de Tethye v. etiam in σχόλιον Πρόκλου επὶ Τιμαίου Πλάτωνος 40e [III 179, 8 Diehl]) παράγει Κρόνον τε καὶ Ρέαν;

“For he (Πλάτων) may seem to say this, contrary to the Orphic [1] origins; there (in the Orphic mythology) the sons are reckoned thus, not of other parents; for Yî (Γῆ) gave birth unknown by Ouranós, so the theologian declares:

(Yaia begot:) ‘Indeed seven comely daughters [2] (with rolling eyes, holy)

Daughters indeed (begotten) Thǽmis (θέμις) and cheerful Tîthýs (Τηθύς)

Both thick-haired Mnîmosýnî (Μνημοσύνη) and happy Theia (Φεία),

And she begot Dióhnî (Διώνη) possessed of splendid form,

And Phívî (Φοίβη) and Rhǽa (Ῥέα), the mother of Zefs (Ζεὺς) the king.’

“Now the other children were as many:

‘Kíos (Κοῖος) and Kreios (Κρεῖος) and mighty Phórkys (Φόρκυς)

And Krónos (Κρόνος), Ôkæanós (Ὠκεανός); both Ypæríôn (Ὑπερίων) and Iapætós (Ἰαπετός).’

“From these things. which certainly had been written by the theologian before (Plato), how did Tímaios produce Krónos and Rǽa from Ôkæanós and Tîthýs?”

(trans. by the author)

[1] <Ὀρφικαῖς> dubitanter Diehl.

[2] εὐώδεις Proclus hoc loco; sed cf. eundem in σχόλιον Πρόκλου επὶ Τιμαίου Πλάτωνος 31 a (I 450, 16 Diehl):

κατὰ γὰρ τὴν τρίτην γονὴν ἡ Γῆ προήγαγεν· ἑπτὰ μὲν εὐειδεῖς κούρας, ἑλικώπιδας, ἁγνάς,

‘ἑπτὰ δὲ παῖδας ἄνακτας ἐγείνατο λαχνήεντας’ unde vs. 1. 2 supplevi.

“For according to a third progeny, Earth produced [as the theologist says,]

‘seven pure beautiful virgins with rolling eyes, and seven sons that were kings, with fine long hair.’ ”

(trans. Thomas Taylor, 1820)

Idem in σχόλιον Πρόκλου επὶ Τιμαίου Πλάτωνος 40 e (III 189, 2 Diehl):

ὁμοίως δὲ καὶ ἐπὶ τῶν ἄλλων τῶν κρειττόνων γένῶν τῶν ὑπ’ αὐτοὺς τεταγμένων ἔοικε τὸ ‘ὅσοι μετὰ τούτων’ δηλοῦν τούς τε λοιποὺς Τιτᾶνας, Κοῖον καὶ Ὑπερίονα, Κρεῖον, Ἰαπετόν, Φόρκυν, καὶ τὰς λοιπὰς Τιτανίδας, τὴν Φοίβην, τὴν Θείαν, τὴν Μνημοσύνην, τὴν Θέμιν, τὴν Διώνην, μεθ’ ὧν ὁ Κρόνος καὶ ἡ Ῥέα προῆλθον, καὶ τοὺς ἅμα τῶι Φόρκυι προελθόντας, τὸν Νηρέα, τὸν Θαύμαντα, τὴν κινητικωτάτην Εὐρυβίαν, καὶ τοὺς μάλιστα τὴν γένεσιν ὅλην συνέχοντας. ἐκεῖνο μὴν γινώσκειν ἄξιον, ὡς οὐ προσῆκεν ἀκριβολογεῖσθαι περὶ τῆς ἐν αὐτοῖς τάξεως, πότερον ὁ Κρόνος ἐστὶν ὑπέρτερος ἢ ὁ Φόρκυς· ἕνωσις γὰρ αὐτῶν ἐστι καὶ ὁμοιότης.

“By the words also ‘such as subsist together with these,’ Plato appears to signify the remaining Titans viz. Cœus and Hyperion, Crœus, Iapetus, and likewise the remaining Titannidæ, viz. Phœbe, Theia, Mnemosyne, Themis, and Dione, with whom Saturn (Κρόνος) and Rhea proceeded into light. Also, those that proceeded together with Phorcys, viz. Nereus and Thaumas, the most motive Eurybia, and those who especially contain and connect the whole of generation. Moreover, it is worth while to observe that it is not proper to discuss accurately the arrangement in these divinities, and whether Saturn or Phorcys is the superior deity; for they are united and similar to each other.” (trans. Thomas Taylor, 1820)

De eodem Platonis loco dicit Chalcidius 127 p. 192, 3 Wrobel:

simul exponit ea, quae Orpheus et Linus et Musaeus de divinis potestatibus vaticinati sunt, non quo delectaretur aut crederet, sed quod tanta esset auctoritas vaticinantium, ut iis (ut hisque CU 1. 2) adseverantibus parcius credi non oporteret.

“Likewise, he explains, that Orpheus, Linus, and Musaeus are prophesying with divine powers, whereby not to charm or gain confidence, but such that he so greatly desired to be persuaded of their prophesying, by asserting moderate trust, but not as is proper.” (trans. by the author)

Spectat huc etiam Ἀπορίαι καὶ λύσεις περὶ τῶν πρώτων ἀρχῶν εἰς τὸν Πλάτωνος Παρμενίδην Δαμασκίου 265 (II 131, 11 Rue.) et 267 (II 134, 24 Rue.); v. Kroll Philol. LIII 1894, 419 n. 4. De Themide.

Cf. σχόλιον Πρόκλου επὶ Πολιτείας Πλάτωνος II 94, 18 Kr.:

(ἡ δὲ αὖ Ἀνάγκη παρίστησι τὴν μίαν θεότητα τὴν προεστῶσαν τῆς εἱμαρμένης καὶ τὴν τάξιν τῶν οὐρανίων κυβερνῶσαν, αὐτὴν δηλοῦσα)

(“But again Anángî (Ἀνάγκη) sits beside one divinity, placed in front as decreed by fate, an arrangement governed from the heavens, making herself visible)

τὴν παρὰ τοῖς θεολόγοις Θέμιν,

“with Thǽmis (Θέμις) beside her, (as is said) by the theologians.” (trans. by the author)

Ibidem p. 345, 4 Kr.:

ἀλλὰ καὶ ὅτι τῆι Θέμιδι τὴν αὐτὴν εἶναι τὴν Ἀνάγκην ταύτην οἰητέον, οὐ μόνον ἐκ τῶν Ἑλληνικῶν θεογονιῶν πιστόν et frr. 126. 144.

“But that even with Thǽmis (Θέμις) one must suppose her to be Anángî (Ἀνάγκη), (an idea) not only trusted by the Hellenic theologians...” (trans. by the author)

Θεογονία Ἡσιόδου vs. 133 de Terra:

Οὐρανῶι εὐνηθεῖσα τέκ᾽ Ὠκεανὸν βαθυδίνην,

Κοῖόν τε Κρῖόν θ᾽ Ὑπερίονά τ᾽ Ἰαπετόν τε

Θείαν τε Ῥείαν τε Θέμιν τε Μνημοσύνην τε

Φοίβην τε χρυσοστέφανον Τηθύν τ᾽ ἐρατεινήν.

“But afterwards she lay with Heaven and bore deep-swirling Oceanus,

Coeus and Crius and Hyperion and Iapetus,

Theia and Rhea, Themis and Mnemosyne and

gold-crowned Phoebe and lovely Tethys.”

(trans. Hugh G. Evelyn-White, 1914)


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