"Let us call it the gift of the Muses' mother, Memory, and say that whenever we wish to remember something we see or hear or conceive in our own minds, we hold this wax under the perceptions or ideas and imprint them on it as we might stamp the impression of a seal ring."

— Plato (427 BC - 347 BC)


Work Title
Date
360-355 B.C.
Metaphor
"Let us call it the gift of the Muses' mother, Memory, and say that whenever we wish to remember something we see or hear or conceive in our own minds, we hold this wax under the perceptions or ideas and imprint them on it as we might stamp the impression of a seal ring."
Metaphor in Context
SOCRATES: Let us call it the gift of the Muses' mother, Memory, and say that whenever we wish to remember something we see or hear or conceive in our own minds, we hold this wax under the perceptions or ideas and imprint them on it as we might stamp the impression of a seal ring. Whatever is so imprinted we remember and know so long as the image remains; whatever is rubbed out or has not succeeded in leaving an impression we have forgotten and do not know.
(191d-e, p. 897)
Provenance
Reading
Citation
Hamilton, E. and Cairns, H., Eds. The Collected Dialogues of Plato. Bollingen Series. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1978.
Date of Entry
05/09/2005
Date of Review
03/20/2009

The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.