HODOI ELEKTRONIKAI
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DION CHRYSOSTOME, Sur Homère et sur Socrate (discours 55; traduction anglaise)

οἷός



Texte grec :

[55,5] μιμούμενος τὸν διδάσκαλον καὶ προσέχων ἀναλαμβάνει τὴν τέχνην. τὸ δὲ ὁρᾶν καὶ ξυνεῖναι οὐδέν ἐστι πρὸς τὸ μανθάνειν· πολλοὶ γὰρ καὶ ὁρῶσι τοὺς αὐλητὰς καὶ ξύνεισι καὶ ἀκούουσιν ὁσημέραι, καὶ οὐδ´ ἂν ἐμφυσῆσαι τοῖς αὐλοῖς δύναιντο, οἳ ἂν μὴ ἐπὶ τέχνῃ μηδὲ προσέχοντες ξυνῶσιν. ἀλλ´ εἴ γε δυσωπῇ μαθητὴν Ὁμήρου τὸν Σωκράτην καλεῖν, ζηλωτὴν (6) δὲ μόνον, οὐδέν μοι διοίσει. (Interlocuteur) Ἐμοὶ μὲν οὐχ ἧττον παράδοξον τοῦτο ἐκείνου δοκεῖ. Ὅμηρος μὲν γὰρ ποιητὴς γέγονεν οἷος οὐδεὶς ἄλλος· Σωκράτης δὲ φιλόσοφος. (Dion) Εἶεν· οὕτως μὲν οὐδὲ Ἀρχίλοχον εἴποις ἂν Ὁμήρου ζηλωτήν, ὅτι μὴ τῷ αὐτῷ μέτρῳ κέχρηται εἰς ὅλην τὴν ποίησιν, ἀλλ´ ἑτέροις τὸ πλέον, οὐδὲ Στησίχορον, (7) ὅτι ἐκεῖνος μὲν ἔπη ἐποίει, Στησίχορος δὲ μελοποιὸς ἦν. (Interlocuteur) Ναί· τοῦτό γε ἅπαντές φασιν οἱ Ἕλληνες, Στησίχορον Ὁμήρου ζηλωτὴν γενέσθαι καὶ σφόδρα γε ἐοικέναι κατὰ τὴν ποίησιν. Σωκράτης δὲ κατὰ τί σοι δοκεῖ Ὁμήρῳ ἐοικέναι; (Dion) Τὸ μὲν πρῶτον καὶ μέγιστον κατὰ τὸ ἦθος. οὐδέτερος γὰρ αὐτοῖν ἀλαζὼν ἦν οὐδὲ ἀναιδής, ὥσπερ οἱ ἀμαθέστατοι τῶν σοφιστῶν. Ὅμηρος μὲν γὰρ οὐδὲ ὁπόθεν ἦν εἰπεῖν ἠξίωσεν οὐδὲ ὧντινων γονέων οὐδὲ ὅστις αὐτὸς ἐκαλεῖτο. ἀλλὰ ὅσον ἐπ´ ἐκείνῳ καὶ τὸ ὄνομα ἠγνοοῦμεν ἂν (8) τοῦ γράψαντος τὴν Ἰλιάδα καὶ τὴν Ὀδύσσειαν. Σωκράτης δὲ τὴν μὲν πατρίδα οὐχ οἷός τ´ ἦν ἀποκρύψασθαι διὰ τὸ μέγεθος καὶ τὸ σφόδρα ἐνδόξους εἶναι τὰς Ἀθήνας καὶ τῶν Ἑλλήνων ἄρχειν κατ´ ἐκεῖνον τὸν χρόνον· οὐδὲν δὲ πώποτε εἶπεν ὑπὲρ αὑτοῦ μέγα οὐδὲ προσεποιεῖτο σοφίαν οὐδεμίαν, καίτοι τοῦ Ἀπόλλωνος χρήσαντος ὡς εἴη σοφώτατος Ἑλλήνων καὶ βαρβάρων. τελευταῖον δὲ οὐδὲ τοὺς λόγους αὐτὸς κατέλιπε γράψας, καὶ ταύτῃ γε ὑπερέβαλε τὸν Ὅμηρον. ὥσπερ γὰρ τὸ ὄνομα τὸ ἐκείνου παρ´ ἑτέρων ἀκούοντες ἴσμεν, οὕτω καὶ τοὺς λόγους τοὺς Σωκράτους ἄλλων καταλιπόντων. οὕτως ἄγαν κεκολασμένω ἤστην καὶ ἐσωφρονείτην ἄμφω τὼ ἄνδρε. (9) ἔπειτα ὑπερεῖδον κτήσεως χρημάτων ὁμοίως Σωκράτης τε καὶ Ὅμηρος. πρὸς δὲ τούτοις ὑπὲρ τῶν αὐτῶν ἐσπουδαζέτην καὶ ἐλεγέτην, ὁ μὲν διὰ τῆς ποιήσεως, ὁ δὲ καταλογάδην· περὶ ἀρετῆς ἀνθρώπων καὶ κακίας καὶ περὶ ἁμαρτημάτων καὶ κατορθωμάτων καὶ περὶ ἀληθείας καὶ ἀπάτης καὶ ὅπως δοξάζουσιν οἱ πολλοὶ καὶ ὅπως ἐπίστανται οἱ φρόνιμοι. καὶ μὴν εἰκάσαι καὶ παραβαλεῖν ἱκανώτατοι ἦσαν. (Interlocuteur) Τοῦτο μὲν θαυμαστόν, εἰ ταῖς Ὁμήρου παραβολαῖς πυρὸς καὶ ἀνέμων καὶ θαλάττης καὶ ἀετῶν καὶ ταύρων καὶ λεόντων καὶ τῶν ἄλλων, οἷς ἐκόσμησε τὴν ποίησιν Ὅμηρος, σὺ παραβαλεῖν ἀξιώσεις τοὺς Σωκράτους κεραμέας καὶ {τοὺς} σκυτοτόμους.

Traduction française :

[55,5] by imitating his teacher and paying heed to him he tries to acquire his art. On the other hand, seeing people and associating with them has nothing to do with the process of learning. For instance, many persons not only see pipers but associate with and hear them every day, and yet they could not even blow on the pipes unless they associate with the pipers for professional ends and pay strict heed. However, if you shrink from calling Socrates a pupil of Homer, but would prefer to call him just a follower, it will make no difference to me. (6) (Interlocuteur) Why, to my way of thinking, the one seems no less surprising than the other. For Homer has proved to be a poet without a peer, whereas Socrates is a philosopher. (Dion) Very well ; on that principle you would not call even Archilochus a follower of Homer, because he has not used the same metre as Homer's for all his poetry but has used other metres for the most part ; nor would you call Stesichorus his follower either, because, while Homer composed epic poetry, Stesichorus was a melic poet. (7) (Interlocuteur) Yes I would ; all the Greeks agree on this, that Stesichorus was a follower of Homer, and indeed is very like him in his poetic art. But wherein does Socrates seem to you to resemble Homer ? (Dion) First and foremost, he resembles him in his character ; for neither of the two was boastful or brazen, as the most ignorant of the sophists are. For instance, Homer did not even deign to tell whence he came, or who were his parents, or what he himself was called. On the contrary, so far as he was concerned we should not even know the name of the man who wrote the Iliad and the Odyssey. As for Socrates, while he could not make a secret of hic- fatherland because of its greatness and because Athens was exceedingly famous and dominated the Greeks at that period, yet he never said anything boastful about himself or laid claim to any wisdom, and yet Apollo had solemnly declared that he was wisest among all Greeks and barbarians. And finally, Socrates did not even put his words into writing and himself bequeath them to posterity, and in this he outdid Homer. For jnst as we know the name of Homer by hearing it from others, so too we know the words of Socrates because others have left them to us. Thus both were exceedingly self-restrained and modest. (9) Again, both Socrates and Homer alike scorned the acquisition of wealth. Besides, they both were devoted to the same ends and spoke about the same things, the one through the medium of his verse, the other in prose—human virtue and vice, actions wrong and actions right, truth and deceit, and how the masses have only opinions, while the wise have true knowledge. Furthermore, they were most effective at making similes and comparisons. (Interlocuteur) This is indeed surprising, if with Homer's comparisons of fire and winds and sea and eagles and bulls and lions and so forth, figures with which he adorned his poetry, you shall see fit to compare the potters and cobblers of Socrates.





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Dernière mise à jour : 20/12/2007