Plato's Socrates credits Diotima, a priestess of Mantinea, for inspiring his theory. [6] In the Symposium, Diotima puts forth ideas that are different from both Socrates's and Plato's, thereby representing a different philosophical position. This page was last edited on 1 November 2020, at 23:36. The first idea put forth to solve the puzzle of Diotima’s existence is that the Form of Beauty is inconsistent with Plato’s Form of the Good. “Nay even in the life, of the same individual there is succession and not absolute unity: a man is called the same, and yet in the short interval which elapses between youth and age, and in which every animal is said to have life and identity, he is undergoing a perpetual process of loss and reparation—hair, flesh, bones, blood, and the whole body are always changing. A genuine Platonic love recognizes the beauty and loveliness in another person in a way that inspires the mind and soul to the spiritual, rather than the physical. In the Symposium, Diotima was a priestess from Mantinea who postponed a plague and taught Socrates the nature of Love.Most of the arguments put forth are based on analyzing the Symposium. Gods are beautiful and happy, Socrates would not deny. 2, 2006, pp. Diotima of Mantinea (/ˌdaɪəˈtaɪmə/; Greek: Διοτίμα; Latin: Diotīma) was an ancient Greek prophetess and philosopher thought to have lived circa 440 B.C., who plays an important role in Plato's Symposium. Welcome back. In Plato's Symposium the members of a party discuss the meaning of love. Everyone pursues love differently, whether through making money, sports, or philosophy; but according to Diotima, only passionate, exclusive love between people is truly called love. Love is a messenger between mean and gods. For Diotima, the most truthful way to love others is to embrace a love that transcends the earthly plane, to touch divinity. Hypatia, vol. However, Aspasia appears under her own name in Plato's dialogue Menexenus, and some scholars have convincingly argued that Plato did not use false names; therefore, Diotima could be a historical figure. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Diotima_of_Mantinea&oldid=986616366, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Diotima is the namesake of one of the main female protagonists in, Diotima appears in the short poem "Irpen'" by, Diotima of Mantinea is one of the two main characters in novels by, Diotima is used on the emblem for the sorority. [1], In the Symposium, she is implied to be a priestess or prophetess and is said to be from the Peloponnesian city of Mantinea, which was allied against Athens at the time of the dialogue - though one version of the manuscript preferred in old readings called her a mantic woman, or seeress, rather than a woman from Mantinea. Quote by Plato: “According to Diotima, Love is not a god at all,...”. If Love desires these things, he needs them and does not have them. Diotima of Mantinea was an ancient Greek prophetess and philosopher thought to have lived circa 440 B.C., who plays an important role in Plato's Symposium. "Women philosophers in the Ancient Greek World: Donning the Mantle". [5], Plato was thought by most 19th and early 20th century scholars to have based Diotima on Aspasia, the mistress of Pericles, so impressed was he by her intelligence and wit. (Diotima to Socrates in Plato's Symposium. ), Beginning in the 20th century, the dehistoricization of Diotima became a subject of interest for several scholars, including Mary Ellen Waithe. Both of these instances in Plato's dialogue have been used to argue for her existence.[7]. Love, she says, is neither fully beautiful nor good, as the earlier speakers in the dialogue had argued. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. In the dialogue, her ideas are the origin of the concept of Platonic love. Evans, Nancy. One proceeds from recognition of another's beauty, to appreciation of Beauty apart from any individual, to consideration of Divinity, the source of Beauty, to love of Divinity. ‘Now I’ll let you go. [4] A second century reference to Diotima can be found in the works of Lucian. I’ll try to restate for you the account of Love that I once heard from a woman from Mantinea called Diotima. 51/line 205d. [8] In 2005, Margaret Urban Walker summarized Waithe's research, stating that "the evidence for Diotima's reality is substantial, even if not conclusive, and that her imaginary status appears to be a fifteenth-century fiction that stuck."[10]. 1–27. . 21, no. Socrates also claims that Diotima successfully postponed the Plague of Athens. Diotima, pg. The name Diotima means one who honors or is honored by Zeus, and her Mantinean origin is reminiscent of the root "mantis", which would suggest an association with prophecy. Which is true not only of the body, but also of the soul, whose habits, tempers, opinions, desires, pleasures, pains, fears, never remain the same in any one of us, but are always coming and going; and equally true of knowledge, and what is still more surprising to us mortals, not only do the sciences in general spring up and decay, so that in respect of them we are never the same; but each of them individually experiences a like change.”. 1–27. In her view, love drives the individual to seek beauty, first earthly beauty, or beautiful bodies. Gods and men interact through spirits, … In 2019 the Oxford classical scholar Armand D'Angour published Socrates in Love: The Making of a Philosopher, presenting for the first time a wholly new case for identifying Diotima with Aspasia. A first century bronze relief found in Pompeii depicts Socrates and an unnamed female figure, along with a winged Eros; although some have supposed the seated woman in the image to be Diotima, others have argued her appearance (notably a necklace) would suggest she is in fact more likely to be Aphrodite or Aspasia. : Evans, Nancy. “Nay even in the life, of the same individual there is succession and not absolute unity: a man is called the same, and yet in the short interval which elapses between youth and age, and in which every animal is said to have life and identity, he is undergoing a perpetual process of loss and reparation—hair, flesh, bones, blood, and the whole body are always changing. Then as a lover grows in wisdom, the beauty that is sought is spiritual, or beautiful souls. . http://www.jstor.org/stable/3810989. On one occasion, she enabled the Athenians to delay the plague for ten years by telling them what sacrifices to make. The Greek form also includes the sound nike: Diotima Mantinike as a pun in Greek would thus sound like "Diotima from Prophet-victory". Writings from the second through the fifth centuries A.D. refer to Diotima as a real person, although Plato is probably their only basis for this. Love is neither wise nor beautiful, but is rather the desire … “Diotima and Demeter as Mystagogues in Plato's Symposium.” Hypatia, vol. Diotima gives Socrates a genealogy of Love (Eros), stating that he is the son of "resource (poros) and poverty (penia)". "Diotima and Demeter as Mystagogues in Plato's Symposium." She was wise about this and many other things. In a dialogue that Socrates recounts at the symposium, Diotima says that Socrates has confused the idea of love with the idea of the beloved. Wider, Kathleen. Symposium, Plato’s philosophical text dated at circa 385 to 370 BC, depicts a friendly contest of speeches delivered by a group of notable men attending a banquet.During the discussion, Socrates mentions that, in his youth, he was taught ‘the philosophy of love’ by a woman named Diotima, a priestess from Mantinea. Therefore, he cannot be a god since he does not have good and beautiful things. "Diotima" has often been used as a title for philosophical or artistic projects, journals, essays, etc. 2, 2006, pp. Diotima quotes Showing 1-1 of 1. Diotima defines happiness as possessing good and beautiful things. [2][3], Since the only contemporaneous source concerning her is Plato, doubts have been raised about whether she was a real historical personage or merely a fictional creation; however, nearly all of the characters named in Plato's dialogues have been found to correspond to real people living in ancient Athens. , but is rather the desire … Diotima, a priestess of Mantinea, for his! 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