Διττοῦ δὴ λόγου κατὰ τοὺς ἀπὸ τῆς στοᾶς ὄντος, τοῦ μὲν ἐνδιαθέτου, τοῦ δὲ προφορικοῦ, καὶ πάλιν τοῦ μὲν κατωρθωμένου, τοῦ δὲ ἡμαρτημένου, ποτέρου ἀποστεροῦσι τὰ ζῷα διαρθρῶσαι προσῆκον. ἆρά γε τοῦ ὀρθοῦ μόνου, οὐχ ἁπλῶς δὲ τοῦ λόγου; ἢ παντελῶς παντὸς τοῦ τε ἔσω καὶ τοῦ ἔξω προϊόντος; ἐοίκασι δὴ τὴν παντελῆ στέρησιν αὐτῶν κατηγορεῖν, οὐ τὴν τοῦ κατωρθωμένου μόνον. οὕτω γὰρ ἂν οὐκ ἄλογα, λογικὰ δὲ ἦν ἔτι τὰ ζῷα, καθάπερ σχεδὸν πάντες κατ’ αὐτοὺς οἱ ἄνθρωποι. σοφὸς μὲν γὰρ ἢ εἷς ἢ καὶ δύο κατ’ αὐτοὺς γεγόνασιν, ἐν οἷς μόνοις ὁ λόγος κατώρθωται, οἱ δὲ ἄλλοι φαῦλοι πάντες· κἂν οἳ μὲν ὦσι προκόπτοντες, οἳ δὲ χύσιν τῆς φαυλότητος ἔχοντες, εἰ καὶ πάντες ὁμοίως λογικοί· ὑπὸ δὲ τῆς φιλαυτίας παρηγμένοι ἄλογα φασὶν τὰ ζῷα ἐφεξῆς τὰ ἄλλα σύμπαντα, τὴν παντελῆ στέρησιν τοῦ λόγου διὰ τῆς ἀλογίας μηνύειν ἐθέλοντες· καίτοι εἰ χρὴ τἀληθὲς εἰπεῖν, οὐ μόνον ἁπλῶς ὁ λόγος ἐν πᾶσι τοῖς ζῴοις θεωρεῖται, ἐν πολλοῖς δὲ αὐτῶν καὶ ὑποβολὰς ἔχων πρὸς τὸ τέλειον. ἐπεὶ τοίνυν διττὸς ἦν, ὃ μὲν ἐν τῇ προφορᾷ, ὃ δὲ ἐν τῇ διαθέσει, ἀρξώμεθα πρότερον ἀπὸ τοῦ προφορικοῦ καὶ τοῦ κατὰ τὴν φωνὴν τεταγμένου. εἰ δὴ προφορικός ἐστι λόγος φωνὴ διὰ γλώττης σημαντικὴ τῶν ἔνδον καὶ κατὰ ψυχὴν παθῶν· κοινοτάτη γὰρ ἡ ἀπόδοσις αὕτη καὶ αἱρέσεως οὐδέπω ἐχομένη, ἀλλὰ μόνον τῆς τοῦ λόγου ἐννοίας· τί τούτου ἄπεστι τῶν ζῴων ὅσα φθέγγεται; τί δὲ οὐχὶ καὶ ἃ πάσχει τι, πρότερον καὶ πρὶν εἰπεῖν ὃ μέλλει, διενοήθη; λέγω δὴ διάνοιαν τὸ ἐν τῇ ψυχῇ κατὰ σιγὴν φωνούμενον. τοῦ τοίνυν ὑπὸ τῆς γλώττης φωνηθέντος, ὅπως ἂν καὶ φωνηθῇ, εἴτε βαρβάρως εἴτε Ἑλληνικῶς εἴτε κυνικῶς ἢ βοϊκῶς, λόγου γε ὄντος μέτοχα τὰ ζῷα τὰ φωνητικά, τῶν μὲν ἀνθρώπων κατὰ νόμους τοὺς ἀνθρωπείους φθεγγομένων, τῶν δὲ ζῴων κατὰ νόμους οὓς παρὰ τῶν θεῶν καὶ τῆς φύσεως εἴληχεν ἕκαστον. εἰ δὲ μὴ ἡμεῖς ξυνίεμεν, τί τοῦτο; οὐδὲ γὰρ τῆς Ἰνδῶν οἱ Ἕλληνες οὐδὲ τῆς Σκυθῶν ἢ Θρᾳκῶν ἢ Σύρων οἱ ἐν τῇ Ἀττικῇ τραφέντες· ἀλλ’ ἴσα κλαγγῇ γεράνων ὁ τῶν ἑτέρων τοῖς ἑτέροις ἦχος προσπίπτει. καίτοι ἐγγράμματος τοῖς ἑτέροις ἡ αὐτῶν καὶ ἔναρθρος, ὡς καὶ ἡμῖν ἡ ἡμετέρα· ἄναρθρος δὲ καὶ ἀγράμματος ἡ τῶν Σύρων φέρε εἰπεῖν ἢ τῶν Περσῶν, ὡς καὶ πᾶσιν ἡ τῶν ζῴων. καθάπερ γὰρ ἡμεῖς ψόφου μόνου ἀντιλαμβανόμεθα καὶ ἤχου, ἀξύνετοι ὄντες τῆς Σκυθῶν ὁμιλίας, καὶ κλαγγάζειν δοκοῦσιν καὶ μηδὲν διαρθροῦν, ἀλλ’ ἑνὶ ψόφῳ χρῆσθαι μακροτέρῳ ἢ βραχυτέρῳ, τὸ παρηλλαγμένον δὲ αὐτοῦ εἰς σημασίαν οὐδαμῶς προσπίπτει, ἐκείνοις δὲ εὐσύνετος ἡ φθέγξις καὶ πολὺ τὸ διάφορον ἔχουσα, καθάπερ ἡμῖν ἡ συνήθης· οὕτως καὶ ἐπὶ τῶν ζῴων ἡ ξύνεσις μὲν ἐκείνοις κατὰ γένος ἰδίως προσπίπτει, ἡμῖν δὲ ὁ ψόφος μόνος ἐξάκουστος, τῆς σημασίας ἐκλειπούσης, διὰ τὸ μηδένα διδαχθέντα τὴν ἡμετέραν διδάξαι ἡμᾶς διὰ τῆς ἡμετέρας τὴν ἑρμηνείαν τῶν λεγομένων παρὰ τοῖς ζῴοις. καίτοι εἰ δεῖ πιστεύειν τοῖς παλαιοῖς καὶ τοῖς ἐφ’ ἡμῶν καὶ τῶν πατέρων γεγονόσιν, εἰσὶν οἳ λέγονται ἐπακοῦσαι καὶ σύνεσιν ἔχειν τῆς τῶν ζῴων φθέγξεως· ὡς ἐπὶ μὲν τῶν παλαιῶν ὁ Μελάμπους καὶ ὁ Τειρεσίας καὶ οἱ τοιοῦτοι, οὐ πρὸ πολλοῦ δὲ Ἀπολλώνιος ὁ Τυανεύς, ἐφ’ οὗ καὶ λέγεται, ὅτι τοῖς ἑταίροις συνόντος, χελιδόνος ἐπιπτάσης καὶ φθεγγομένης, εἶπεν ὅτι μηνύει ἡ χελιδὼν ταῖς ἄλλαις ὄνον πρὸ τοῦ ἄστεως πεπτωκέναι σίτου βαστάζοντα φορτίον, ὃ δὴ κεχύσθαι εἰς τὴν γῆν τοῦ ἀχθοφοροῦντος πεπτωκότος. ἑταῖρος δὲ ἡμῶν ἐξηγεῖτό τις, οἰκέτου εὐτυχῆσαι παιδός, ὃς πάντα ξυνίει τὰ φθέγματα τῶν ὀρνίθων, καὶ ἦν πάντα μαντικὰ καὶ τοῦ μετ’ ὀλίγον μέλλοντος ἀγγελτικά· ἀφαιρεθῆναι δὲ τὴν σύνεσιν, τῆς μητρὸς εὐλαβηθείσης μὴ δῶρον αὐτὸν βασιλεῖ πέμψειεν, καὶ καθεύδοντος εἰς τὰ ὦτα ἐνουρησάσης.
(Porphyrius, Peri Apochēs Empsuchōn 3.2-3)
According to the Stoics there are two kinds of logos, the internal and the expressive, and moreover there is correct and faulty logos. So it is proper to state exactly which of these animals lack. Is it only correct logos, and not logos altogether? Or is it logos in all respects, both the internal and that which proceeds to the outside? They appear to predicate complete deprivation of logos, not just of correct logos, for in the latter case even animals would be not irrational but rational, in the same way as (according to the Stoics) almost all human beings are. For, according to them, there have been one or even two wise men, in whom alone logos is correct, and the rest are all bad, even if some are making progress and others are overflowing with badness, and even though all alike are rational. It is self-love which leads them to say that all the other animals without exception are non-rational, meaning by ‘non-rationality’ complete deprivation of logos. But if we must speak the truth, not only can logos be seen in absolutely all animals, but in many of them it has the groundwork for being perfected. Now since there are two kinds of logos, one in expression and one in disposition, let us begin with expressive logos, logos organised by voice. If expressive logos is voice signifying with the tongue that which is experienced internally and in the soul (this is the most general definition, which does not depend on any school but only on the concept of logos) what in this is absent from those animals that speak? And why should a creature not first have thought what it experiences, even before it says what it is going to say? I mean by ‘thought’ that which is silently voiced in the soul. Now since that which is voiced by the tongue is logos however it is voiced, whether in barbarian or Greek, dog or cattle fashion, animals which have a voice share in logos, humans speaking in accordance with human customs and animals in accordance with the customs each has acquired from the gods and nature. And if we do not understand them, so what? Greeks do not understand Indian, nor do those brought up on Attic understand Scythian or Thracian or Syrian: the sound that each makes strikes the others like the calling of cranes. Yet for each their [language] can be written in letters and articulated, as ours can for us; but for us the [language] of Syrians, for instance, or Persians cannot be articulated or written, just as that of animals cannot be for any people. For we are aware only of noise and sound, because we do not understand (for instance) Scythian conversation, and they seem to us to be calling and articulating nothing, but making one noise which is longer or shorter, whereas the modification of the noise to convey meaning does not strike us at all; yet to them their speech is easy to understand and very diverse, just as our accustomed speech is to us. Similarly in the case of animals, understanding comes to them in a way which is peculiar to each species, but we can hear only noise deficient in meaning, because no one who has been taught our language has taught us to translate into it what is said by animals. Yet, if we are to believe the ancients and those who lived in our own time and our fathers’ time, there are those who are said to have heard and understood the speech of animals. In ancient times there were Melampous and Tiresias and the like, and not long ago Apollonius of Tyana, of whom it is said that when he was with his companions a swallow flew over and called. ‘The swallow,’ he said, ‘is telling other swallows that a donkey has fallen outside the town carrying a load of grain, which spilled on the ground when the load-bearer fell.’ A friend of mine used to relate how he was lucky enough to have a slave-boy who understood all the speech of birds, and everything they said was a prophecy announcing what would shortly happen; but he lost his understanding because his mother feared that he would be sent as a gift to the emperor, and urinated in his ears as he slept. (tr. Gillian Clark)