Aristotle on the voice in Generation of Animals 5.7

  • David Lefebvre
Keywords: Heart, cardiocentrism, diaphragm, castration, voice


In this paper we discuss the theory of voice in the Aristotelian treatise on the Generation of animals (mainly GA 5.7). The article focuses on the relationship between the tone (or the pitch) of the voice and the heart, and the
variation of the tone of the voice in women, in castrati, and during moulting. For Aristotle the voice is a power (dynamis) which depends on the heart and which changes according to the tension of the body and in particular to the tension of the blood-vessels between the heart and the sexual parts.