Bodies that strike the eyes, awaking sight. From certain things flow odours evermore, As cold from rivers, heat from sun, and spray From waves of ocean, eater-out of walls Around the coasts. Nor ever cease to flit The varied voices, sounds athrough the air. Then too there comes into the mouth at times The wet of a salt taste, when by the sea We roam about; and so, whene'er we watch The wormword being mixed, its bitter stings. To such degree from all things is each thing Borne streamingly along, and sent about To every region round; and nature grants Nor rest nor respite of the onward flow, Since 'tis incessantly we feeling have, And all the time are suffered to descry And smell all things at hand, and hear them sound. Besides, since shape examined by our hands Within the dark is known to be the same As that by eyes perceived within the light And lustrous day, both touch and sight must be By one like cause aroused. So, if we test A square and get its stimulus on us Within the dark, within the light what square Can fall upon our sight, except a square That images the things? Wherefore it seems The source of seeing is in images, Nor without these can anything be viewed. Now these same films I name are borne about And tossed and scattered into regions all. But since we do perceive alone through eyes, It follows hence that whitherso we turn Our sight, all things do strike against it there With form and hue. And just how far from us Each thing may be away, the image yields To us the power to see and chance to tell: For when 'tis sent, at once it shoves ahead And drives along the air that's in the space Betwixt it and our eyes. And thus this air All glides athrough our eyeballs, and, as 'twere, Brushes athrough our pupils and thuswise Passes across. Therefore it comes we see How far from us each thing may be away, And the more air there be that's driven before, And too the longer be the brushing breeze Against our eyes, the farther off removed Each thing is seen to be: forsooth, this work With mightily swift order all goes on, So that upon one instant we may see What kind the object and how far away. Nor over-marvellous must this be deemed In these affairs that, though the films which strike Upon the eyes cannot be singly seen, The things themselves may be perceived. For thus When the wind beats upon us stroke by stroke And when the sharp cold streams, 'tis not our wont To feel each private particle of wind Or of that cold, but rather all at once; And so we see how blows affect our body, As if one thing were beating on the same And giving us the feel of its own body Outside of us. Again, whene'er we thump With finger-tip upon a stone, we touch But the rock's surface and the outer hue, Nor feel that hue by contact—rather feel The very hardness deep within the rock. Now come, and why beyond a looking-glass An image may be seen, perceive. For seen It soothly is, removed far within. 'Tis the same sort as objects peered upon Outside in their true shape, whene'er a door Yields through itself an open peering-place, And lets us see so many things outside Beyond the house. Also that sight is made By a twofold twin air: for first is seen The air inside the door-posts; next the doors, The twain to left and right; and afterwards A light beyond comes brushing through our eyes, Then other air, then objects peered upon Outside in their true shape. And thus, when first The image of the glass projects itself, As to our gaze it comes, it shoves ahead And drives along the air that's in the space Betwixt it and our eyes, and brings to pass That we perceive the air ere yet the glass. But when we've also seen the glass itself, Forthwith that image which from us is borne Reaches the glass, and there thrown back again Comes back unto our eyes, and driving rolls Ahead of itself another air, that then 'Tis this we see before itself, and thus It looks so far removed behind the glass. Wherefore again, again, there's naught for wonder In those which render from the mirror's plane A vision back, since each thing comes to pass By means of the two airs. Now, in the glass The right part of our members is observed Upon the left, because, when comes the image Hitting against the level of the glass, 'Tis not returned unshifted; but forced off Backwards in line direct and not oblique,— Exactly as whoso his plaster-mask Should dash, before 'twere dry, on post or beam, And it should straightway keep, at clinging there, Its shape, reversed, facing him who threw, And so remould the features it gives back: It comes that now the right eye is the left, The left the right. An image too may be From mirror into mirror handed on, Until of idol-films even five or six Have thus been gendered. For whatever things Shall hide back yonder in the house, the same, However far removed in twisting ways, May still be all brought forth through bending paths And by these several mirrors seen to be Within the house, since nature so compels All things to be borne backward and spring off At equal angles from all other things. To such degree the image gleams across From mirror unto mirror; where 'twas left It comes to be the right, and then again Returns and changes round unto the left. Again, those little sides of mirrors curved Proportionate to the bulge of our own flank Send back to us their idols with the right Upon the right; and this is so because Either the image is passed on along From mirror unto mirror, and thereafter, When twice dashed off, flies back unto ourselves; Or else the image wheels itself around, When once unto the mirror it has come, Since the curved surface teaches it to turn To usward. Further, thou might'st well believe That these film-idols step along with us And set their feet in unison with ours And imitate our carriage, since from that Part of a mirror whence thou hast withdrawn Straightway no images can be returned. Further, our eye-balls tend to flee the bright And shun to gaze thereon; the sun even blinds, If thou goest on to strain them unto him, Because his strength is mighty, and the films Heavily downward from on high are borne Through the pure ether and the viewless winds, And strike the eyes, disordering their joints. So piecing lustre often burns the eyes, Because it holdeth many seeds of fire Which, working into eyes, engender pain. Again, whatever jaundiced people view Becomes wan-yellow, since from out their bodies Flow many seeds wan-yellow forth to meet The films of things, and many too are mixed Within their eye, which by contagion paint All things with sallowness. Again, we view From dark recesses things that stand in light, Because, when first has entered and possessed The open eyes this nearer darkling air, Swiftly the shining air and luminous Followeth in, which purges then the eyes And scatters asunder of that other air The sable shadows, for in large degrees This air is nimbler, nicer, and more strong. And soon as ever 'thas filled and oped with light The pathways of the eyeballs, which before Black air had blocked, there follow straightaway Those films of things out-standing in the light, Provoking vision—what we cannot do From out the light with objects in the dark, Because that denser darkling air behind Followeth in, and fills each aperture And thus blockades the pathways of the eyes That there no images of any things Can be thrown in and agitate the eyes. And when from far away we do behold The squared towers of a city, oft Rounded they seem,—on this account because Each distant angle is perceived obtuse, Or rather it is not perceived at all; And perishes its blow nor to our gaze Arrives its stroke, since through such length of air Are borne along the idols that the air Makes blunt the idol of the angle's point By numerous collidings. When thuswise The angles of the tower each and all Have quite escaped the sense, the stones appear As rubbed and rounded on a turner's wheel— Yet not like objects near and truly round, But with a semblance to them, shadowily. Likewise, our shadow in the sun appears To move along and follow our own steps And imitate our carriage—if thou thinkest Air that is thus bereft of light can walk, Following the gait and motion of mankind. For what we use to name a shadow, sure Is naught but air deprived of light. No marvel: Because the earth from spot to spot is reft Progressively of light of sun, whenever In moving round we get within its way, While any spot of earth by us abandoned Is filled with light again, on this account It comes to pass that what was body's shadow Seems still the same to follow after us In one straight course. Since, evermore pour in New lights of rays, and perish then the old, Just like the wool that's drawn into the flame. Therefore the earth is easily spoiled of light And easily refilled and from herself Washeth the black shadows quite away. And yet in this we don't at all concede That eyes be cheated. For their task it is To note in whatsoever place be light, In what be shadow: whether or no the gleams Be still the same, and whether the shadow which Just now was here is that one passing thither, Or whether the facts be what we said above, 'Tis after all the reasoning of mind That must decide; nor can our eyeballs know The nature of reality. And so Attach thou not this fault of mind to eyes, Nor lightly think our senses everywhere Are tottering. The ship in which we sail Is borne along, although it seems to stand; The ship that bides in roadstead is supposed There to be passing by. And hills and fields Seem fleeing fast astern, past which we urge The ship and fly under the bellying sails. The stars, each one, do seem to pause, affixed To the ethereal caverns, though they all Forever are in motion, rising out And thence revisiting their far descents When they have measured with their bodies bright The span of heaven. And likewise sun and moon Seem biding in a roadstead,—objects which, As plain fact proves, are really borne along. Between two mountains far away aloft From midst the whirl of waters open lies A gaping exit for the fleet, and yet They seem conjoined in a single isle. When boys themselves have stopped their spinning round, The halls still seem to whirl and posts to reel, Until they now must almost think the roofs Threaten to ruin down upon their heads. And now, when nature begins to lift on high The sun's red splendour and the tremulous fires, And raise him o'er the mountain-tops, those mountains— O'er which he seemeth then to thee to be, His glowing self hard by atingeing them With his own fire—are yet away from us Scarcely two thousand arrow-shots, indeed Oft scarce five hundred courses of a dart; Although between those mountains and the sun Lie the huge plains of ocean spread beneath The vasty shores of ether, and intervene A thousand lands, possessed by many a folk And generations of wild beasts. Again, A pool of water of but a finger's depth, Which lies between the stones along the pave, Offers a vision downward into earth As far, as from the earth o'erspread on high The gulfs of heaven; that thus thou seemest to view Clouds down below and heavenly bodies plunged Wondrously in heaven under earth. Then too, when in the middle of the stream Sticks fast our dashing horse, and down we gaze Into the river's rapid waves, some force Seems then to bear the body of the horse, Though standing still, reversely from his course, And swiftly push up-stream. And wheresoe'er We cast our eyes across, all objects seem Thus to be onward borne and flow along In the same way as we. A portico, Albeit it stands well propped from end to end On equal columns, parallel and big, Contracts by stages in a narrow cone, When from one end the long, long whole is seen,— Until, conjoining ceiling with the floor, And the whole right side with the left, it draws Together to a cone's nigh-viewless point. To sailors on the main the sun he seems From out the waves to rise, and in the waves To set and bury his light—because indeed They gaze on naught but water and the sky. Again, to gazers ignorant of the sea, Vessels in port seem, as with broken poops, To lean upon the water, quite agog; For any portion of the oars that's raised Above the briny spray is straight, and straight The rudders from above. But other parts, Those sunk, immersed below the water-line, Seem broken all and bended and inclined Sloping to upwards, and turned back to float Almost atop the water. And when the winds Carry the scattered drifts along the sky In the night-time, then seem to glide along The radiant constellations 'gainst the clouds And there on high to take far other course From that whereon in truth they're borne. And then, If haply our hand be set beneath one eye And press below thereon, then to our gaze Each object which we gaze on seems to be, By some sensation twain—then twain the lights Of lampions burgeoning in flowers of flame, And twain the furniture in all the house, Two-fold the visages of fellow-men, And twain their bodies. And again, when sleep Has bound our members down in slumber soft And all the body lies in deep repose, Yet then we seem to self to be awake And move our members; and in night's blind gloom We think to mark the daylight and the sun; And, shut within a room, yet still we seem To change our skies, our oceans, rivers, hills, To cross the plains afoot, and hear new sounds, Though still the austere silence of the night Abides around us, and to speak replies, Though voiceless. Other cases of the sort Wondrously many do we see, which all Seek, so to say, to injure faith in sense— In vain, because the largest part of these Deceives through mere opinions of the mind, Which we do add ourselves, feigning to see What by the senses are not seen at all. For naught is harder than to separate Plain facts from dubious, which the mind forthwith Adds by itself. Again, if one suppose That naught is known, he knows not whether this Itself is able to be known, since he Confesses naught to know. Therefore with him I waive discussion—who has set his head Even where his feet should be. But let me grant That this he knows,—I question: whence he knows What 'tis to know and not-to-know in turn, And what created concept of the truth, And what device has proved the dubious To differ from the certain?—since in things He's heretofore seen naught of true. Thou'lt find That from the senses first hath been create Concept of truth, nor can the senses be Rebutted. For criterion must be found Worthy of greater trust, which shall defeat Through own authority the false by true; What, then, than these our senses must there be Worthy a greater trust? Shall reason, sprung From some false sense, prevail to contradict Those senses, sprung as reason wholly is From out the senses?—For lest these be true, All reason also then is falsified. Or shall the ears have power to blame the eyes, Or yet the touch the ears? Again, shall taste Accuse this touch or shall the nose confute Or eyes defeat it? Methinks not so it is: For unto each has been divided off Its function quite apart, its power to each; And thus we're still constrained to perceive The soft, the cold, the hot apart, apart All divers hues and whatso things there be Conjoined with hues. Likewise the tasting tongue Has its own power apart, and smells apart And sounds apart are known. And thus it is That no one sense can e'er convict another. Nor shall one sense have power to blame itself, Because it always must be deemed the same, Worthy of equal trust. And therefore what At any time unto these senses showed, The same is true. And if the reason be Unable to unravel us the cause Why objects, which at hand were square, afar Seemed rounded, yet it more availeth us, Lacking the reason, to pretend a cause For each configuration, than to let From out our hands escape the obvious things And injure primal faith in sense, and wreck All those foundations upon which do rest Our life and safety. For not only reason Would topple down; but even our very life Would straightaway collapse, unless we dared To trust our senses and to keep away From headlong heights and places to be shunned Of a like peril, and to seek with speed Their opposites! Again, as in a building, If the first plumb-line be askew, and if The square deceiving swerve from lines exact, And if the level waver but the least In any part, the whole construction then Must turn out faulty—shelving and askew, Leaning to back and front, incongruous, That now some portions seem about to fall, And falls the whole ere long—betrayed indeed By first deceiving estimates: so too Thy calculations in affairs of life Must be askew and false, if sprung for thee From senses false. So all that troop of words Marshalled against the senses is quite vain. And now remains to demonstrate with ease How other senses each their things perceive. Firstly, a sound and every voice is heard, When, getting into ears, they strike the sense With their own body. For confess we must Even voice and sound to be corporeal, Because they're able on the sense to strike. Besides voice often scrapes against the throat, And screams in going out do make more rough The wind-pipe—naturally enough, methinks, When, through the narrow exit rising up In larger throng, these primal germs of voice Have thus begun to issue forth. In sooth, Also the door of the mouth is scraped against [By air blown outward] from distended [cheeks]. And thus no doubt there is, that voice and words Consist of elements corporeal, With power to pain. Nor art thou unaware Likewise how much of body's ta'en away, How much from very thews and powers of men May be withdrawn by steady talk, prolonged Even from the rising splendour of the morn To shadows of black evening,—above all If 't be outpoured with most exceeding shouts. Therefore the voice must be corporeal, Since the long talker loses from his frame A part. Moreover, roughness in the sound Comes from the roughness in the primal germs, As a smooth sound from smooth ones is create; Nor have these elements a form the same When the trump rumbles with a hollow roar, As when barbaric Berecynthian pipe Buzzes with raucous boomings, or when swans By night from icy shores of Helicon With wailing voices raise their liquid dirge. Thus, when from deep within our frame we force These voices, and at mouth expel them forth, The mobile tongue, artificer of words, Makes them articulate, and too the lips By their formations share in shaping them. Hence when the space is short from starting-point To where that voice arrives, the very words Must too be plainly heard, distinctly marked. For then the voice conserves its own formation, Conserves its shape. But if the space between Be longer than is fit, the words must be Through the much air confounded, and the voice Disordered in its flight across the winds— And so it haps, that thou canst sound perceive, Yet not determine what the words may mean; To such degree confounded and encumbered The voice approaches us. Again, one word, Sent from the crier's mouth, may rouse all ears Among the populace. And thus one voice Scatters asunder into many voices, Since it divides itself for separate ears, Imprinting form of word and a clear tone. But whatso part of voices fails to hit The ears themselves perishes, borne beyond, Idly diffused among the winds. A part, Beating on solid porticoes, tossed back Returns a sound; and sometimes mocks the ear With a mere phantom of a word. When this Thou well hast noted, thou canst render count Unto thyself and others why it is Along the lonely places that the rocks Give back like shapes of words in order like, When search we after comrades wandering Among the shady mountains, and aloud Call unto them, the scattered. I have seen Spots that gave back even voices six or seven For one thrown forth—for so the very hills, Dashing them back against the hills, kept on With their reverberations. And these spots The neighbouring country-side doth feign to be Haunts of the goat-foot satyrs and the nymphs; And tells ye there be fauns, by whose night noise And antic revels yonder they declare The voiceless silences are broken oft, And tones of strings are made and wailings sweet Which the pipe, beat by players' finger-tips, Pours out; and far and wide the farmer-race Begins to hear, when, shaking the garmentings Of pine upon his half-beast head, god-Pan With puckered lip oft runneth o'er and o'er The open reeds,—lest flute should cease to pour The woodland music! Other prodigies And wonders of this ilk they love to tell, Lest they be thought to dwell in lonely spots And even by gods deserted. This is why They boast of marvels in their story-tellings; Or by some other reason are led on— Greedy, as all mankind hath ever been, To prattle fables into ears. Again, One need not wonder how it comes about That through those places (through which eyes cannot View objects manifest) sounds yet may pass And assail the ears. For often we observe People conversing, though the doors be closed; No marvel either, since all voice unharmed Can wind through bended apertures of things, While idol-films decline to—for they're rent, Unless along straight apertures they swim, Like those in glass, through which all images Do fly across. And yet this voice itself, In passing through shut chambers of a house, Is dulled, and in a jumble enters ears, And sound we seem to hear far more than words. Moreover, a voice is into all directions Divided up, since off from one another New voices are engendered, when one voice Hath once leapt forth, outstarting into many— As oft a spark of fire is wont to sprinkle Itself into its several fires. And so, Voices do fill those places hid behind, Which all are in a hubbub round about, Astir with sound. But idol-films do tend, As once sent forth, in straight directions all; Wherefore one can inside a wall see naught, Yet catch the voices from beyond the same. Nor tongue and palate, whereby we flavour feel, Present more problems for more work of thought. Firstly, we feel a flavour in the mouth, When forth we squeeze it, in chewing up our food,— As any one perchance begins to squeeze With hand and dry a sponge with water soaked. Next, all which forth we squeeze is spread about Along the pores and intertwined paths Of the loose-textured tongue. And so, when smooth The bodies of the oozy flavour, then Delightfully they touch, delightfully They treat all spots, around the wet and trickling Enclosures of the tongue. And contrariwise, They sting and pain the sense with their assault, According as with roughness they're supplied. Next, only up to palate is the pleasure Coming from flavour; for in truth when down 'Thas plunged along the throat, no pleasure is, Whilst into all the frame it spreads around; Nor aught it matters with what food is fed The body, if only what thou take thou canst Distribute well digested to the frame And keep the stomach in a moist career. Now, how it is we see some food for some, Others for others.... I will unfold, or wherefore what to some Is foul and bitter, yet the same to others Can seem delectable to eat,—why here So great the distance and the difference is That what is food to one to some becomes Fierce poison, as a certain snake there is Which, touched by spittle of a man, will waste And end itself by gnawing up its coil. Again, fierce poison is the hellebore To us, but puts the fat on goats and quails. That thou mayst know by what devices this Is brought about, in chief thou must recall What we have said before, that seeds are kept Commixed in things in divers modes. Again, As all the breathing creatures which take food Are outwardly unlike, and outer cut And contour of their members bounds them round, Each differing kind by kind, they thus consist Of seeds of varying shape. And furthermore, Since seeds do differ, divers too must be The interstices and paths (which we do call The apertures) in all the members, even In mouth and palate too. Thus some must be More small or yet more large, three-cornered some And others squared, and many others round, And certain of them many-angled too In many modes. For, as the combination And motion of their divers shapes demand, The shapes of apertures must be diverse And paths must vary according to their walls That bound them. Hence when what is sweet to some, Becomes to others bitter, for him to whom 'Tis sweet, the smoothest particles must needs Have entered caressingly the palate's pores. And, contrariwise, with those to whom that sweet Is sour within the mouth, beyond a doubt The rough and barbed particles have got Into the narrows of the apertures. Now easy it is from these affairs to know Whatever... Indeed, where one from o'er-abundant bile Is stricken with fever, or in other wise Feels the roused violence of some malady, There the whole frame is now upset, and there All the positions of the seeds are changed,— So that the bodies which before were fit To cause the savour, now are fit no more, And now more apt are others which be able To get within the pores and gender sour. Both sorts, in sooth, are intermixed in honey— What oft we've proved above to thee before. Now come, and I will indicate what wise Impact of odour on the nostrils touches. And first, 'tis needful there be many things From whence the streaming flow of varied odours May roll along, and we're constrained to think They stream and dart and sprinkle themselves about Impartially. But for some breathing creatures One odour is more apt, to others another— Because of differing forms of seeds and pores. Thus on and on along the zephyrs bees Are led by odour of honey, vultures too By carcasses. Again, the forward power Of scent in dogs doth lead the hunter on Whithersoever the splay-foot of wild beast Hath hastened its career; and the white goose, The saviour of the Roman citadel, Forescents afar the odour of mankind. Thus, diversly to divers ones is given Peculiar smell that leadeth each along To his own food or makes him start aback From loathsome poison, and in this wise are The generations of the wild preserved. Yet is this pungence not alone in odours Or in the class of flavours; but, likewise, The look of things and hues agree not all So well with senses unto all, but that Some unto some will be, to gaze upon, More keen and painful. Lo, the raving lions, They dare not face and gaze upon the cock Who's wont with wings to flap away the night From off the stage, and call the beaming morn With clarion voice—and lions straightway thus Bethink themselves of flight, because, ye see, Within the body of the cocks there be Some certain seeds, which, into lions' eyes Injected, bore into the pupils deep And yield such piercing pain they can't hold out Against the cocks, however fierce they be— Whilst yet these seeds can't hurt our gaze the least, Either because they do not penetrate, Or since they have free exit from the eyes As soon as penetrating, so that thus They cannot hurt our eyes in any part By there remaining. To speak once more of odour; Whatever assail the nostrils, some can travel A longer way than others. None of them, However, 's borne so far as sound or voice— While I omit all mention of such things As hit the eyesight and assail the vision. For slowly on a wandering course it comes And perishes sooner, by degrees absorbed Easily into all the winds of air;— And first, because from deep inside the thing It is discharged with labour (for the fact That every object, when 'tis shivered, ground, Or crumbled by the fire, will smell the stronger Is sign that odours flow and part away From inner regions of the things). And next, Thou mayest see that odour is create Of larger primal germs than voice, because It enters not through stony walls, wherethrough Unfailingly the voice and sound are borne; Wherefore, besides, thou wilt observe 'tis not So easy to trace out in whatso place The smelling object is. For, dallying on Along the winds, the particles cool off, And then the scurrying messengers of things Arrive our senses, when no longer hot. So dogs oft wander astray, and hunt the scent. Now mark, and hear what objects move the mind, And learn, in few, whence unto intellect Do come what come. And first I tell thee this: That many images of objects rove In many modes to every region round— So thin that easily the one with other, When once they meet, uniteth in mid-air, Like gossamer or gold-leaf. For, indeed, Far thinner are they in their fabric than Those images which take a hold on eyes And smite the vision, since through body's pores They penetrate, and inwardly stir up The subtle nature of mind and smite the sense. Thus, Centaurs and the limbs of Scyllas, thus The Cerberus-visages of dogs we see, And images of people gone before— Dead men whose bones earth bosomed long ago; Because the images of every kind Are everywhere about us borne—in part Those which are gendered in the very air Of own accord, in part those others which From divers things do part away, and those Which are compounded, made from out their shapes. For soothly from no living Centaur is That phantom gendered, since no breed of beast Like him was ever; but, when images Of horse and man by chance have come together, They easily cohere, as aforesaid, At once, through subtle nature and fabric thin. In the same fashion others of this ilk Created are. And when they're quickly borne In their exceeding lightness, easily (As earlier I showed) one subtle image, Compounded, moves by its one blow the mind, Itself so subtle and so strangely quick. That these things come to pass as I record, From this thou easily canst understand: So far as one is unto other like, Seeing with mind as well as with the eyes Must come to pass in fashion not unlike. Well, now, since I have shown that I perceive Haply a lion through those idol-films Such as assail my eyes, 'tis thine to know Also the mind is in like manner moved, And sees, nor more nor less than eyes do see (Except that it perceives more subtle films) The lion and aught else through idol-films. And when the sleep has overset our frame, The mind's intelligence is now awake, Still for no other reason, save that these— The self-same films as when we are awake— Assail our minds, to such degree indeed That we do seem to see for sure the man Whom, void of life, now death and earth have gained Dominion over. And nature forces this To come to pass because the body's senses Are resting, thwarted through the members all, Unable now to conquer false with true; And memory lies prone and languishes In slumber, nor protests that he, the man Whom the mind feigns to see alive, long since Hath been the gain of death and dissolution. And further, 'tis no marvel idols move And toss their arms and other members round In rhythmic time—and often in men's sleeps It haps an image this is seen to do; In sooth, when perishes the former image, And other is gendered of another pose, That former seemeth to have changed its gestures. Of course the change must be conceived as speedy; So great the swiftness and so great the store Of idol-things, and (in an instant brief As mind can mark) so great, again, the store Of separate idol-parts to bring supplies. It happens also that there is supplied Sometimes an image not of kind the same; But what before was woman, now at hand Is seen to stand there, altered into male; Or other visage, other age succeeds; But slumber and oblivion take care That we shall feel no wonder at the thing. And much in these affairs demands inquiry, And much, illumination—if we crave With plainness to exhibit facts. And first, Why doth the mind of one to whom the whim To think has come behold forthwith that thing? Or do the idols watch upon our will, And doth an image unto us occur, Directly we desire—if heart prefer The sea, the land, or after all the sky? Assemblies of the citizens, parades, Banquets, and battles, these and all doth she, Nature, create and furnish at our word?— Maugre the fact that in same place and spot Another's mind is meditating things All far unlike. And what, again, of this: When we in sleep behold the idols step, In measure, forward, moving supple limbs, Whilst forth they put each supple arm in turn With speedy motion, and with eyeing heads Repeat the movement, as the foot keeps time? Forsooth, the idols they are steeped in art, And wander to and fro well taught indeed,— Thus to be able in the time of night To make such games! Or will the truth be this: Because in one least moment that we mark— That is, the uttering of a single sound— There lurk yet many moments, which the reason Discovers to exist, therefore it comes That, in a moment how so brief ye will, The divers idols are hard by, and ready Each in its place diverse? So great the swiftness, So great, again, the store of idol-things, And so, when perishes the former image, And other is gendered of another pose, The former seemeth to have changed its gestures. And since they be so tenuous, mind can mark Sharply alone the ones it strains to see; And thus the rest do perish one and all, Save those for which the mind prepares itself. Further, it doth prepare itself indeed, And hopes to see what follows after each— Hence this result. For hast thou not observed How eyes, essaying to perceive the fine, Will strain in preparation, otherwise Unable sharply to perceive at all? Yet know thou canst that, even in objects plain, If thou attendest not, 'tis just the same As if 'twere all the time removed and far. What marvel, then, that mind doth lose the rest, Save those to which 'thas given up itself? So 'tis that we conjecture from small signs Things wide and weighty, and involve ourselves In snarls of self-deceit.