Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Critical Essays 4. Letter to Gnaeus Pompeius

LCL 466: 352-353

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Dionysius of Halicarnassus




Ἐπιστολήν τινα παρὰ σοῦ κομισθεῖσαν ἐδεξάμην εὐπαίδευτόν τε καὶ πάνυ μοι κεχαρισμένην, ἐν ᾗ γράφεις, ὅτι τὰς συντάξεις τὰς ἐμὰς ἐπιχορηγοῦντός σοι Ζήνωνος τοῦ κοινοῦ φίλου διαπορευόμενος καὶ πάνυ διατιθέμενος οἰκείως, ἐν αὐταῖς τὰ μὲν ἄλλα θαυμάζεις, ἑνὶ δὲ μέρει δυσχεραίνεις τῶν ἐν αὐταῖς κατακεχωρισμένων, τῇ Πλάτωνος κατηγορίᾳ. ὅτι μὲν οὖν σεβαστικῶς διάκεισαι πρὸς τὸν ἄνδρα, ὀρθῶς ποιεῖς· ὅτι δὲ περὶ ἡμῶν τἀναντία ὑπείληφας, οὐκ ὀρθῶς. εἰ γάρ τις ἄλλος ἐκπλήττεται ταῖς Πλατωνικαῖς ἑρμηνείαις, εὖ ἴσθι νῦν, κἀγὼ τούτων εἷς εἰμι. ὃ δὲ πέπονθα πρὸς ἅπαντας, ὅσοι τὰς αὑτῶν ἐπινοίας εἰς τὴν κοινὴν φέρουσιν ὠφέλειαν ἐπανορθοῦντες ἡμῶν βίους τε καὶ λόγους, ἐρῶ σοι, καὶ πείσω γε νὴ Δία, πιστεύων καινὸν οὐδὲν ἐρεῖν οὐδὲ παράδοξον οὐδ᾿ ὃ μὴ πᾶσιν ὁμοίως δοκεῖ.


Letter to Gnaeus Pompeius

Letter to Gnaeus Pompeius

Dionysius to Gnaeus Pompeius Greetings

A scholarly letter has been brought to me from1 you, which I have received with great pleasure. In it you write that Zeno, a friend of both of us, has supplied you with copies of my treatises,1 and that in perusing and familiarising yourself with them you find that you feel a general admiration for them, but are dissatisfied with one portion of their contents, namely the criticism of Plato.2 Now you are right to feel reverence for that author, but not right in your contrary assumption about my attitude. I want to assure you here and now that, if anyone is astounded by Plato’s powers of expression, I am to be numbered among these admirers.3 But I will tell you what I feel about all those who direct their thoughts towards public benefaction in their desire to reform our lives and words; and indeed I intend to convince you that I have discovered nothing new or unexpected or contrary to the universally accepted view.

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.dionysius_halicarnassus-letter_gnaeus_pompeius.1985