Introduction to the Monochord

IntroductionMonochord titlepageThe principle of harmonia – the mediation between extremes through the application of logos or proportion – is the preeminent, central concern of Pythagorean cosmology and philosophy. According to Philolaus (b. c. 470 B.C.E.), the earliest Pythagorean whose fragments have survived, “Nature in the universe was harmonized from Limited and Unlimited elements, both the totality of the kosmos and all the things in it.” Moreover, “Harmonia comes to be in all respects out of contraries; for harmonia is the unity of multiplicity, and the agreement of things that disagree.” The nature of harmonia, the “fitting together” of extremes, was studied by the Pythagoreans on the monochord.

(Quoted from the Editors Introduction by David Fideler)

This article was published in Alexandria: the Journal of the Western Cosmological Traditions, Volume 2, 1993

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