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From:John Fisher <john@...>
Date:Monday, April 5, 1999, 19:31
Here's the start of the passage from the Republic which Tom Weir
suggested we should have bash at.  Well, it's one way of spending (much
of) the Easter break...  Actually this has been done quite speedily -
the idea is that if I finish it this way, I can go back and sort out the
mistakes and inconsistencies later...

I've only put a few notes, I think a complete set of interlinear glosses
would really drive me crackers.  Still, this hows it can be done if your
language is fairly human/European in its general background...

Traditional Book Seven
(Stephanus page number 514)

"Now," I said, "let me show you something about our sophistication.
Imagine a cave, if you will. You go inside, and you see a fire. You go
further, and there=92s a walkway running across the cave, a few feet off
the floor, and people are walking back and forth on it. Some are
carrying things, others not; some are silent, and others speak.
Because of the fire, these people cast all sorts of shadows on the
back wall of the cave, which lies a little way beyond the walkway.
Near the back wall, prisoners have been chained to the floor, in the
dark, with their heads facing the back wall. They can=92t turn to see
anything else, and they=92ve been in that position since childhood."

In falon, "Yafgaw in oka 'nel camelt etlaw wa, cwent ivar soy'
etrecsisu.  Lavi alori yora.  So orle, celtis uraysa.  Sof orle,
tali tena fut candasimbaw yorartha iruty' ovod, cwuronvaw oka yencwa
irut selofe nalofe.  Fen antref antica, ten ando;  fen ufim, ten
falon.  Uraysarkaw ey-yencwa saft lenu ernevsuma ultay blandonvew
yorye, cwur sof ovodurfa tena.  Ultay blandeldaw, oka rachangyal
la pe yanggan candasonvew nuvsanvaw yu, cufa dali ultay blanda.
Mendel cawl dali toc lura celtisordaw, tali osh-shofonwa chont yirvow,
eti cesper."  =20

show: camelt, "explain"
sophistication: cwent ivar soy' etrecsisu, "how one's complexity
turn to see: mendel cawl dali toc shura celtisordaw, "they can't
 turn to face anything else in order to see"

"A strange picture," Grey said, "and strange prisoners."
Glawcon falon, "Oan washty' alorisu, washtye rachangyal."

picture: alorisu, "imagining"

"Like us," I replied. "Since the prisoners see only the back wall,
they can=92t see the people on the walkway, or themselves, or their
fellow prisoners. But because of the fire at the entrance, they can
see the weird shadows cast by the people on the walkway, and by the
things they carry. Those shadows form a moving tangle of bodies and
objects. Now, if the prisoners can talk to one another, don=92t you
suppose they=92ll invent names for the different kinds of bizarre
shadows they see, and will believe that the things they are naming are

In tomot, "I rent ant.  Rachangyal lui celtis ultay blanda, yarkaw
mendel oc yencwara ovodonvay, penna ala, induyala.  Meti orlesunvay
uraysarkaw al menel celtis washty' ernevsuma cwasuma saft ovodonvay=20
yencwa ertic envaw pe-antrefye.  En-ernevsu cos shori potarye=20
cis-avdansuma tarulye tal erticye.  Cu al u menel afat falon, lyu et
do ow barvad ya, al polic naketsuma mayshie washty' ernevsuye, cwasuma
al celtis, tali al orpav ya, na taso urcaw, cwura al naket?

like us: i rent ant, "That is like us"
they: al, from rachangyal
since: rachangyal lui celtis altay blanda, yarkaw... "The prisoners
 see only the back wall, because of that..."
fellow prisoners: induyal, "the 'al' in their company"
tangle: cis-avdansu, "disorderness"
now: cu al u menel afat falon, "If they in that case can talk to each

"With nothing else to do, I=92m sure they will."
"Et anna merand ya, al oc yarkaw, toc mendel."

I: Glaucon refers to himself as et, "witness", since Socrates
 is leading the discussion
anna: answers Socrates negative question
"I indeed am certain that, they will do that because, in other respects
 they can't (do anything)"

"Also, let=92s suppose there=92s an echo. A person on the walkway may
speak, but by the time the sound echoes back to the prisoners, someone
else may be on the walkway. In short, the prisoners must have a very
confused idea of what they are seeing and hearing, with their only
knowledge based on shadows and echoes."

"Ant fru 'nel barvad ya, oan tandam.  Ovodonvay yencwa okaci falon,
meti cwand baran crol tandam rachangyalonvew, toc fen orgaw okaci
ovodonva.  In soloc ya, rachangyal leci vas isclawviwa celeti wa,
cwura celtis corlon, yarkaw, lui shafrasu pe baruvi ernevsunvaw

in short: in soloc ya, "I summarise that..."
must: leci, "certainly"
have a very confused idea: vas isclawviwa celeti wa, "perceive in a
 very confused way"

"They certainly must."
"Ala leci oc."

"Then what happens if, after years of this, a prisoner is set free?
They turn him around towards the fire, but its light hurts his eyes.
He can=92t see at all; and then, when he does see, he doesn=92t recognize
anything, and he has no words for many of the things he sees. To
explain himself, he keeps wanting to turn back to the wall, to point
to the shadows there. Do you agree that those shadows, and the
dimness, will be far more comfortable and meaningful to him than that
strange world out there in the light?"

"U lyusu col ow, cu an rachangyal cof sondi oka frenu sarfalafgaw?  Ene
cos dali ala uraays, meti urye shilad cos shorc alye lasa.  Anotwa
mendel celtis; yafgaw, cwand na celtis, ow do comenda shura, tali do
shafra naketsuma vas oy, cwura celtis.  Camelt wa, cwasuma al falon,
yordaw chon tris crol cawl dali blanda yordaw, ilumi en-ernevsuma. Et
lyu parant ya, en-ernevsuma tal velth vas sof supram tal veniasuo
allaw washtye ormasuvaw icray tal shiladonvay?"

then: u, "in that case"
after years of this: oka frenu sarfalafgaw, "after some years of this
has no words: do shafra naketsuma, "doesn't know the names"
explain himself: camelt wa, cwasuma al falon, "explain that which he
 is saying"
dimness: velth, "twilight"
world: ormasu, "surroundings, circumstances"

"Definitely." {516}
"Lecie na."

"Finally, suppose they drag him out into the sunlight. This really
will blind him, and there won=92t be any of his familiar shadows
anywhere. After a while, at least he=92ll be able to see the different
shadows out there, and then his eyes will start to accept images, like
the ones we talked about before: shapes and patches of color. It might
take hours, or perhaps even days, but eventually he=92ll see objects
themselves, rather than merely their images or shadows, and he=92ll see
the stars in the sky -- although, of course, even now he=92ll be more
comfortable with evening than with bright daylight."

"Lacafgaw 'nel barvad ya, ene icrew chakat ala sarye shiladonvew. I
taswa cos lest ala, tali shelof doan shey alye pe-menday' ernevsu.
Okarafgaw sofodesua al menel celtis mayshien ernevsuma icray, yafgaw
las cawl menel narefi loriara rentye o, cwasurtow orgaw ant falon:
shorisu dalsu saysh.  Okaci pe-yelda oka hora sok tanathi, meti=20
lacafgaw al celtis penna ertica lui loria tal ernevsubray suye.  Tali
celtis corye srinara - meti do crinitwa sok irvaw bethenwa sof supram    =
shilye tanatuvaw."

sunlight: sarye shilad, "the light of the sun"
take hours or even days: pe-yelda oka hora sok tanathi, "some hours,
 even days are needed"
rather than merely images and their shadows: lui loria tal ernevsubray
 suye, "instead of only images and their shadows"
bright daylight: shilye tanat, "bright daytime"


"But in the end, he will see the sun as plainly as anyone else, and
will readily say that this is where we get our timekeeping, seasons,
light, and warmth, and that, in a way, the sun is the cause of
everything else we see."

"Meti lacafgaw al celtis sara froc frishwa toc shenuvaw, tali alnaywa
litoc ya, uronvow layta antye tirocsu crantaal, sartey, shilad,
marelad, tali oc ya, sar fent lhossu toc luur, cwura ant celtis."=20

readily say: alnaywa litoc, "consentingly assert"
timekeeping: tirocsu crantaal, "accounting of time"

"Of course. When he sees the sun, he=92ll begin to think about it."
"Do crinitwa na.  Cwand al celtis sara, ow ya cawl cenec."

think about it: ya...cenec, "consider this"

John Fisher
Elet Anta website:
Drummond ro cleshfan merec; fanye litoc, inye litoc