Classical element/Talk

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Notice, I've changed this page to classical element from Classical Element. See naming conventions, please.

The pages about each individual elements will, when we finally (don't know when that will happen...) upload some software that will allow parentheses in titles, have to be moved from subpages to such pages as fire (classical element). Classical element/Fire and classical element/Water are perfect examples pages that could be subpages of other pages: the fire page could be under Fire/Classical views, for instance.

Also about the pages about fire, water, etc.: what does it mean to say that Plato associated the different elements with different solids? I don't understand that.

--Larry Sanger


I've no idea what these associations were supposed to mean. But I notice that the Johannes Kepler article claims it was Kepler who made them, so there's a mistake somewhere. --Zundark


Why do all these things link to subpages? Information on fire's position among the four elements would fit just fine on a Fire page, and the reader would have quick access to a lot more information about it.


My memory is a little fuzzy, but wasn't one of the chinese elements wood?


The Chinese elements correspond to the brighter planets visible with unaided eyes in the night sky: Metal (Venus), Wood (Jupiter), Water (Mercury), Fire (Mars), Earth (Saturn). Air from Plato's system was not part of the Chinese system. The Moon represents Yin, The Sun represents Yang. Yin Yang, and the five elements are topics in I-Ching which obviously was related to Chinese cosmology and astrology.


I have a nomenclature question. Since we know that these are not the modern Elements, and since they and the Chinese elements are almost always referred to in the plural ("Oh, that is a classical element from the Presocratics" is a usage with which I am unfamiliar, while "Oh, that is one of the 4 elements" is a sentence I have used in a class this semester.) I wonder if this is a useful nomenclature. If Presocratics are plural their elements should be plural, and vice versa. I'm confused. --MichaelTinkler