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by the gold tablet-originated in ritual practised by those who consulted oracles of the dead, is rendered probable by a passage in Pausanias ix. 39 (which Dante cannot be supposed to have known), in which the method of consulting Trophonius at Lebadeia is described. The priests of Trophonius, before they take the applicant to the wavreiov, lead him to certain fountains, Lethe and Mnemosyne, which are very close to each other –αι δε εγγύτατα εισιν αλλήλων. First, he must drink of Lethe that he may forget all that he thought of before; then he must drink of Mnemosyne that he may have power given him to remember what he sees when he goes down into the Cave of Trophonius. There is evidently a connection between the mythology of the Descent into Hades and the practice of consulting oracles of the dead like that of Trophonius. It is to consult his father Anchises that Aeneas goes down into Avernus; and even the inmates of Dante's Inferno (for instance, Farinata, Inf. x.) have prophetic power.

To summarise the results so far reached :-Dante was true to mythological data at his disposal in placing Lethe in, or near, Elysium or the Earthly Paradise, and making it a stream, not subterranean, but on the surface of the Earth but there is no evidence to show that he had any knowledge of the Orphic mythology of the twin-streams as we have it in the Petelia inscription. Nor can we suppose that he knew of Pausanias' (ix. 39) mention of the streams of Lethe and Mnemosyne at the entrance of the Cave of Trophonius. The safest course is to allow that Dante, taking the general idea of streams encircling the Earthly Paradise from Genesis, and the idea of Lethe as one of these streams from Aen. vi., may have hit, quite independently of mythological tradition, on the very natural idea of a stream of Memory to contrast with the stream of Oblivion, although his description of the attributes of Eunoè as stream of Memory certainly resembles Platonic and Neo-Platonic passages in which the process of kábapois is identified with that of åváuvnous.

1 It is possible that he may have seen Pliny, H. N. xxxi. 15. For Dante's acquaintance with Pliny, see Toynbee's Dante Dictionary, art. “Plinius," and his Index of Authors quoted by Benvenuto da Imola in his Commentary on the D. C., published as Annual Report of the Dante Society (Canubridge, Mass.), 1900, art. “Plinius."

With regard to the name Eunoè (not a name obviously appropriate to the stream of Memory) I have a suggestion to make, which, if it goes in the right direction at all, perhaps does not go very far. I offer it, however, for what it may be worth, as a contribution to a difficult subject. My suggestion is that Dante's use of the name Eunoè may have some connection with the idea of refrigerium, which apparently found its way into Christian literature from the early Christian epitaphs which reproduce the fruxpòv ūdwp of the pagan epitaphs. Thus, we have such pagan epitaphs as the following published by Kaibel, and referred to by Dieterich in his Neyia and Rohde in his Psyche: ψυχρόν ύδωρ δοίη σου άναξ ενέρων Αιδωνεύς (Kaibel, I. G., 1842)-ευψύχει και δοίη σοι ο "Όσιρις το ψυχρόν ύδωρ (Kaibel, I. G., 1488)D.M. IVLIA POLITICE DOESE OSIRIS TO PSYCRON HYDOR (inscription found in Via Nomentana, Rome; Kaibel, I. G., 1705; cf. Dieterich, Nek. p. 95); and such Christian epitaphs (quoted by Dieterich, Nek. p. 95, and Rohde, Psyche, ii. 391) as in refrigerio et pace anima tuaDeus te refrigeret -spiritum tuum Dominus refrigeret.

I suggest, then, that the name Eunoè-Eůvota, benevolentia -was chosen by Dante, or rather by an unknown authority from whom he borrowed it, to indicate that a boon was graciously bestowed by God through the water of this stream - the boon of refrigerium-ψυχρόν ύδωρ δοίη σοι άναξ évépwv 'Aidwveús - Dominus te refrigeret. Dante's Eunoè would thus mean the Stream of the Loving-kindness and Grace of God.

Considering the probable descent of the Christian refrigerium (the idea of which makes itself felt in the lines with which the Purgatorio ends), through epitaphs, from the Orphic ψυχρόν ύδωρ, I am inclined to think that it is to Christian epitaphs that we ought to go for the more immediate source of Dante's Eunoè. If the word were found there in connection with refrigerium, we might infer with some confidence that it had occurred in Orphic epitaphs.?

1 Tertullian, Apologeticus, xxxix., speaking of the Lord's Supper, says, "inopes quosque refrigerio isto juvamus”; and Dante, Par. xiv. 27, has “ Lo refrigerio dell' eterna ploia."

2 In the "Query” in the Classical Review, Feb. 1903, p. 58, referred to on p. 154 supra, Miss Harrison conjectured Ef úvjolas in Kaibel, I.G.S.I. 642. In a note on "The Source of Dante's Eunoè” in the Classical Review, March 1903,




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Dante's Mount of Purgatory has characteristics belonging to the Islands of the Blessed, or mansions émi yns, to the Plain of Lethe, and to Tartarus, as these places are described in Plato's Myths. The Earthly Paradise on the aethereal top of the Mount of Purgatory answers to the mansions émi yns

-“ on the True Surface of the Earth.” Lethe, as well as Eunoè, is on the top of the Mount of Purgatory; and the disciplinary punishment undergone by those not incorrigibly wicked, in Plato's Tartarus, answers in part to the penance undergone on the various cornices or terraces of Dante's Purgatory. Looking at the composition of the Myth of Er as a whole, we may say that in this Myth we have the sketch of a Divina Commedia, complete with its three parts—Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. The Inferno is painted with a few touches, where the torments of Ardiaeus are described. The Purgatorio is given in more detail, not only in the reference to what those who come out of Tartarus have suffered during their imprisonment, but also in the account of the march of these Souls to the throne of Necessity, and their choosing of new Lives, and further journey on to the water of Lethe: pp. 117, 118, in reply to Miss Harrison's “Query," I wrote :: "Until Miss Harrison's E[ \v ]olas has been proved to belong to the original text of Kaibel, 1.G.S.I. 642, and the reference in that inscription has been shown to belong certainly to the Orphic Κρήνη Μνημοσύνης, it will be enough to admit that an Orphic writer in the third century B.c. might very naturally speak of tho púðakes of the Well of Memory as eüvoi towards those múotai on whom they bestowed to yuxpòv üôwp, or refrigerium, and that he might very naturally describe that well itself as Eůvoias kpávn—the Fountain of Loving-kindness."

Since writing the above I have been reminded by a reference in Dieterich's Eine Mithrasliturgie (1903), p. 74, n. 1, that Plutarch, in his Is. et Osir. ch. 47, says that the Persian god Ormuzd made six gods, the first of whom is the God of εύνοια- ο μεν 'Ωρομάζης έκ του καθαρωτάτου φάους ο δ' 'Αρειμάνιος εκ του ζόφου γεγονώς πολεμούσιν αλλήλους και ο μεν εξ θεους εποίησε, τον μεν πρώτον ευνοίας τον δε δεύτερον αληθείας, τον δε τρίτον ευνομίας, των δε λοιπών τον μεν σοφίας, τον δε πλούτου, τον δε των επί τους καλούς ήδέων δημιουργόν· ο δε τούτους ώσπερ αντιτέχνους ίσους τον αριθμόν. Here, I take it, τον μεν πρώτον is the first counted from Ormuzd himself ; so that the God of civola would be the last reached by the ascending Soul of the initiated person on its way up the Mithraic Kliuaš ÉT TÁT VÀOs. It is a strange coincidence that the last stage in Dante's kliuag of purification—the Mount of Purgatory--should also be Eóvola, having passed which his μύστης is

Puro e disposto a salire alle stelle. Miss Harrison (Prolegomena, p. 584) refers to tomb-inscriptions with eüvolas kai uvjuns xápıv. This only means, I take it, “in affectionate remembrance," and can hardly give the clue to the problem of Dante's Eunoè = Mnemosyne.

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these experiences, leading up, as they do, to yéveous in the flesh, are all parts of a purgatorial discipline. Lastly, we have the Paradiso of the Myth of Er in the vision of the orrerythe little model of the great Universe, by means of which the astronomical theory of Plato's age—essentially the same as that of Dante's age—is illustrated and presented in a form which appeals to poetical fancy, and yet—so Plato thoughtis scientifically correct. This ancient astronomy, first poetised by Plato, has indeed played a notable part in the history of poetry. Dante's Paradiso is dominated by it—renders it into poetry, and yet leaves it "scientific"; and Milton, although he was acquainted with the Copernican system, adheres, in Paradise Lost, to the old astronomy with its concentric spheres revolving round the Earth." But when we say that Dante's Paradiso—the noblest of all Eschatological Myths—is dominated by the ancient astronomy,—renders its theory of the heavens into poetry and still leaves it “scientific,”—we must not forget that the theory came down to Dante already touched into poetry by an influence not commonly considered poetical, to which, however, Dante's rendering owes much of its poetical effect. I refer to the influence of Aristotle. He put poetry into astronomy when he explained the revolutions of the spheres as actuated by the attraction of God—the Best Beloved, Who draws all things unto Himself with strong desire (see Met. A 7; de Coelo, ii. 2; and Mr. A. J. Butler's note, The Paradise of Dante, p. 8). It is Aristotle who dictates the first line of the Paradiso

La gloria di Colui che tutto muove ; ? and it is with Aristotle's doctrine-or poetry—that the Paradiso ends


All alta fantasia qui mancò possa :

Ma già volgeva il mio disiro e 'l velle,
Si come ruota che igualmente è mossa,

L' Amor che muove il Sole e l'altre stelle.3

1 See Masson's Milton's Poetical Works, vol. i. pp. 89 ff. ? His glory by whose might all things are moved.

CARY. 3 Here vigour failed the towering fantasy ;

But yet the will rolled onward, like a wheel
In even motion, by the Love impelled
That moves the Sun in Heaven and all the Stars.


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The Aristotelian doctrine-or poetry of these lines is set forth fully in the Convivio, ii. 44:

There are nine moving heavens, and the order of their position is as follows: The first that is reckoned is that of the Moon; the second, that in which Mercury is; the third, Venus ; the fourth, the Sun; the fifth, Mars; the sixth, Jupiter; the seventh, Saturn; the eighth is that of the Stars; the ninth is that which can only be perceived by the movement above mentioned, which is called the crystalline or diaphanous, or wholly transparent. But outside of these, Catholics suppose the Empyrean Heaven, which is as much as to say the Heaven of Flame, or the luminous ; and they suppose this to be immovable, since it has, in itself, in respect of every part, that which its matter requires. And this is the reason why the primum mobile has most rapid movement: because by reason of the fervent longing which every part of it has to be joined to every part of that most divine motionless Heaven, it revolves within that with so great desire that its velocity is, as it were, incomprehensible. And this motionless and peaceful Heaven is the place of that Supreme Deity which alone fully beholds itself. This is the place of the blessed spirits, according as Holy Church, which cannot lie, will have it; and this Aristotle, to whoso understands him aright, seems to mean, in the first book de Coelo.2

This is μύθος-as truly μύθος as the Spindle of Necessity in the Vision of Er; which Dante sufficiently recognises in Conv. ii. 3, where he says that although, as regards the truth of these things, little can be known, yet that little which human reason can know has more delectation than all the certainties of sense.

To pass now to another point:—The vôtov, or continuous surface formed by the edges or lips of the concentric whorls of the orrery (Rep. 616 E), has been identified by some with the vôtov Toù oúpavoù of Phaedrus, 247 —the outside of the outermost sphere of the sensible Cosmos, on which the Chariot-Souls emerge in sight of the Super-sensible Forms. Hence, it is inferred, the place where the Souls of the Myth of Er are assembled before the throne of Necessity, and where they choose new Lives before they journey on to the Plain of

Against the view here advanced—that Aristotle's doctrine of God is “poetry" -the reader may consult an interesting article on “The Conception of ενέργεια årivnolas,” by Mr. F. C. S. Schiller, in Mind, Oct. 1900, republished in revised and expanded form, under the title of Activity and Substance, as Essay xii. in Mr. Schiller's Humanism (1903).

2 A. J. Butler's Translation of Scartazzini's Companion to Dante, p. 420.

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