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Headword: Χιών
Adler number: chi,317
Translated headword: snow
Vetting Status: high
"The whiteness of snow is an abstract phenomenon. For it is composed out of a cloud coagulating and freezing, happening through an excess of cold and with an accompanying wind, which out of necessity the whiteness follows. For it is the retention of the air that is in the clouds and the contact and coagulation in the freezing of the cloud, which happens on account of an excess of coldness and which precedes the percipitation, which is the cause of the color: for the air rubbing it and driving it on makes it white; foam is also white for this reason. This friction and motion happens in the freezing of the cloud of air caught up in it that is closed out into the depths and trapped in the percipitation. And these are [the components] of the essence of snow. The whiteness follows upon these things: and whatever situation happens, it does not have the nature of the essence of snow. For if it does not have the frozen whiteness nor the form of snow, then it is not in the essence of snow. For the reason of its freezing it comes in this metamorphosis to change to this sort of form, by which it is indistinguishable from it [snow]."[1]
"Many had their eyes ravaged by the snow, and others had their toes rot off. It was a defence for the eyes against the cold if someone walked holding something black in front of his eyes, and for the feet if someone kept moving and was never quiet and if he took off [his shoes] at night. As many men as went to bed with [their shoes] fastened on, the thongs sank into their feet and the sandals froze on them."[2]
Greek Original:
Χιών: ὅτι ἡ λευκότης τῆς χιόνος χωριστόν ἐστι συμβεβηκός. συνίσταται γὰρ ἐκ νέφους ὕλῃ καὶ πήξει, δι' ὑπερβολὴν ψυχρότητος γινομένη μετὰ ἐναπολήψεως πνεύματός τινος, ᾗ ἐξ ἀνάγκης ἡ λευκότης ἕπεται. ἡ γὰρ ἀέρος τοῦ ἐντὸς ἐν τῷ νέφει ἐναπόληψίς τε καὶ πῆξις καὶ τρίψις ἐν τῇ τοῦ νέφους πήξει, ἥτις δι' ὑπερβολὴν ψυχρότητος γινομένη φθάνει τὴν ἔκκρισιν, αὕτη τοῦ τοιούτου χρώματος ἡ αἰτία: τριβόμενον γὰρ καὶ κινούμενον τὸ πνεῦμα λευκαίνεται: διὰ τοῦτο γὰρ καὶ ὁ ἀφρὸς λευκός. τρίψις δέ τις καὶ κίνησις γίνεται ἐν τῇ πήξει τοῦ νέφους τοῦ ἐν αὐτῷ πνεύματος συστελλομένου καὶ εἰς τὸ βάθος ἀποκλειομένου καὶ τὴν ἔκκρισιν ἐμποδιζομένου. καί ἐστιν ἐκεῖνα μὲν τῆς οὐσίας τῆς χιόνος. τὸ δὲ λευκὸν ἐπακολουθοῦν ἐκείνοις: καί ἐστι πάθος τι συμβεβηκός, τῷ μὴ εἶναι συμπληρωτικὸν τῆς οὐσίας τῆς χιόνος. εἰ γὰρ μήτε ὕλη τῆς χιόνος τὸ λευκὸν μήτε εἶδος, οὐκ ἔστιν ἐν τῇ οὐσίᾳ τῆς χιόνος. τῷ δὲ συμπτώματι τῆς ὕλης ἐπιγιγνόμενον ἐν τῇ εἰς τοιοῦτον εἶδος μεταβολῇ, τούτῳ ἀχώριστόν ἐστιν αὐτῆς. πολλοὶ δὲ τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς ὑπὸ τῆς χιόνος διεφθάρησαν, καὶ τοὺς δακτύλους τῶν ποδῶν ἀποσεσηπότες ἕτεροι. ἦν δὲ τοῖς μὲν ὀφθαλμοῖς ἐπικούρημα τῆς χιόνος, εἴ τις μέλαν τι πρὸ τῶν ὀφθαλμῶν ἔχων ἐπορεύετο, τῶν δὲ ποδῶν, εἴ τις κινοῖτο καὶ μηδέποτε ἡσυχίαν ἔχοι καὶ εἰ τὴν νύκτα ὑπολύοιτο. ὅσοι δὲ ὑποδεδεμένοι ἐκοιμῶντο, εἰσεδύοντο ἐς τοὺς πόδας οἱ ἱμάντες καὶ τὰ ὑποδήματα ἐπήγνυντο.
[1] Alexander of Aphrodisias, Commentaries on Aristotle's Topica 50.9-11, 21-51.4.
[2] Xenophon, Anabasis 4.5.12-14. See web address 1.
Associated internet address:
Web address 1
Keywords: clothing; definition; historiography; history; philosophy; science and technology
Translated by: Jennifer Benedict on 19 October 2000@18:14:53.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (added note and keywords; cosmetics) on 2 October 2002@10:11:24.
Catharine Roth (cosmetics) on 2 October 2002@17:24:02.
Catharine Roth (tweaked note and link) on 5 October 2013@00:29:45.
David Whitehead (tweaks and cosmetics) on 11 November 2013@08:43:29.
David Whitehead (coding) on 1 June 2016@03:42:06.


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