HYPSOSHyperactivité - SOS
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(13) For instance, in the body of his translation, da Falgano translates "hypsos" as "un concetto alto et pieno di vanto" (a lofty concept and full of significance), explicitly classifying the sublime as an abstract noun, rather than a stylistic quality.
In particular, for one of Longinus's most central phrases, "[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]" (sublimity is the echo of the noble mind), Pizzimenti offers the marginal comment: "hypsos in oratione manare ex animae magnitudine" (sublimity in speech emanates from greatness of soul).
While the disease sounds a lot like "hypospadia," a medical/sexual deformity that is characterized in men by an increased opening of the urethra on the underside of the penis that makes the external genitalia look more like a woman's, the addition of the s turns what might be read as a degenerate hermaphroditic condition into a transcendent and empowering one, as indicated by the term hypsos. As Paul Scorn has pointed out, such an addition "strongly suggests that this combination of the masculine and feminine traits in a single individual is a higher form of human life" (114), and that this kind of progressive "evolution" (109) is what "Circe," and a large portion of Ulysses, is all about.
For Joyce, the real pathology of hypsospadia is not the "spadia," the androgynous condition itself, but the "hypsos," the sublime dynamic that forces the subject into a highly destructive cycle of transcendence and self-abasement.
The author defines sublimity (hypsos) in literature as the moral and imaginative power of the writer that pervades his work.
"HYPSOS and the Problem of Cultural Decline in the De Sublimitate," Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 64 (1959): 121-46.