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(ĕm-pĕd′ə-klēz′) Fifth century bc.
Greek philosopher who believed that all matter is composed of elemental particles of fire, water, earth, and air.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Empedoclean and Stoic notion of the four elements, rejected by Lucretius, (14) is ascribed to Pythagoras who uses typically Lucretian language such as genitalia corpora (239).
Why should Ovid put in the mouth of Pythagoras a speech which is in essence Empedoclean? The reasons are many, and this plurality itself serves Ovid's kaleidoscopic principle of imitation; but behind the plurality a unifying ground may be found in the use of Empedocles to redefine the history of Latin epos, and to establish Ovid's place at the culmination of that tradition.
The literary - historical reasons for this conjunction of philosophy and national history I shall return to; here I make the point that the conjunction is very tidily catered for by using the old, if apocryphal, story about the meeting between the south Italian philosopher Pythagoras and Numa, the second king of Rome.(10) That meeting is emblematic of the encounter between Rome and Greece which forms one of the major themes of the last book of the Metamorphoses, and of which we shall find another, metapoetic, example in the adoption in Latin by Ennius of the Greek (Empedoclean) hexameter tradition of didactic poetry.
In this (Empedoclean) model, nature--both macrocosm and microcosm--is a precarious and dynamic system of bound opposites governed by the forces of love and strife, sympathy and antipathy, mutuality and dominance.
In short, the contradictions and conflicts which afflict the Rome of Coriolanus are ultimately located within the Empedoclean model of nature as a system of concordant discord, amity and strife.
That the reluctance is attributable to nobody's knowing enough about Empedocles, as one critic has suggested (Hill 15), is not likely, since at least two others (Feshback, Neff) have been brave enough to claim the presence of Empedoclean cosmology in "Dover Beach." Far more likely it is that in the longer poem the real Empedocles, though present in a number of significant ways, is hard to locate for good reasons, one or two of which might also be at least partly responsible for Arnold's pulling the poem from the 1853 edition of his poetry and for his writing his anxiously defensive and enigmatic 1853 Preface.
Galen had combined the Empedoclean notion of the basic constituents of the universe (earth, fire, water, air) with the Hippocratic assumption that human beings were composed of four humors--black bile (melancholia), blood (sanguis), yellow bile (choler), and phlegm (phlegma).
4.m.6 17-18 on the reconciliation Love brings about between warring factors, which includes (19-20) the binding of the elements, in a quasi-"Empedoclean" conceit.
Cf., in addition to the previously cited Jouanna 1966 (who analyzes the theory expounded in Regimen, on the circular revolution of the yuch and the relationships between said theory, the Empedoclean doctrine and the Timaeus by Plato); also Byl 2002.
Empedoclean friendship, love, passion, and mating strife resurface, and we explore further the solitudes of the writer and literature.
(2) Employing the four Empedoclean elements in examples allows for a clear exposition of Aquinas.