The Greeks Had A Word For It

Cow Parsley?
Cow Parsley?

We’ve started to come across clumps of this on the roadside. What, we wonder is it? A quick look on google gives us a number of options. And they all look the same to us. We’ve decided to title this photo Cow Parsley for no particular reason. It could easily be Wild Carrot or even Hemlock. We did have a poke around the base of the clump looking for a pile of dead Greek philosophers and even called out “Socrates, Socrates. Wherefore art thou?” Getting no reply we tried calling out “Plato, Plato, are you around?” Some people think he just made Socrates up, you know, and the whole poisoning with Hemlock thing was just a literary device, to save himself embarrassment when people asked to be introduced. Conan Doyle had the same problem with Sherlock Holmes.

Our plant is probably quite harmless – but we won’t be tasting it – we’ll trust to rhetoric rather than the scientific method this time.

You can’t really talk about philosophers without quoting one of their wise sayings now, can you?

Socrates (or Plato) said:

I decided that it was not wisdom that enabled poets to write their poetry, but a kind of instinct or inspiration, such as you find in seers and prophets who deliver all their sublime messages without knowing in the least what they mean.

For a moment you thought I knew what I was talking about there, didn’t you?


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