Opening an entirely new dimension of Platonic studies, this volume addresses major themes: the nature of law, property, and acquisitiveness; Socrates' famous "demonic voice"; the poetic claim to inspiration; and the psychology of the ...
The Heirs of Plato is the first book exclusively devoted to an in-depth study of the various directions in philosophy taken by Plato's followers in the first seventy years or so following his death in 347 BC--the period generally known as 'The Old Academy'. Speusippus, Xenocrates, and Polemon, the three successive heads of the Academy in this period, though personally devoted to the memory of Plato, were independent philosophers in their own right, and felt free to develop (...) his heritage in individual directions. Dillon's clear and accessible book fills a significant gap in our understanding of Plato's immediate philosophical influence, and will be of great value to scholars and historians of ancient philosophy. (shrink)
Aristotle, great Greek philosopher, researcher, reasoner, and writer, born at Stagirus in 384 BCE, was the son of Nicomachus, a physician, and Phaestis. He studied under Plato at Athens and taught there (367?347); subsequently he spent three years at the court of a former pupil, Hermeias, in Asia Minor and at this time married Pythias, one of Hermeias's relations. After some time at Mitylene, in 343?2 he was appointed by King Philip of Macedon to be tutor of his teen-aged (...) son Alexander. After Philip's death in 336, Aristotle became head of his own school (of 'Peripatetics'), the Lyceum at Athens. Because of anti-Macedonian feeling there after Alexander's death in 323, he withdrew to Chalcis in Euboea, where he died in 322. Nearly all the works Aristotle prepared for publication are lost; the priceless ones extant are lecture-materials, notes, and memoranda (some are spurious). They can be categorized as follows: I Practical: Nicomachean Ethics; Great Ethics (Magna Moralia); Eudemian Ethics; Politics; Economics (on the good of the family); On Virtues and Vices. II Logical: Categories; Analytics (Prior and Posterior); Interpretation; Refutations used by Sophists; Topica. III Physical: Twenty-six works (some suspect) including astronomy, generation and destruction, the senses, memory, sleep, dreams, life, facts about animals, etc. IV Metaphysics: on being as being. V Art: Rhetoric and Poetics. VI Other works including the Constitution of Athens; more works also of doubtful authorship. VII Fragments of various works such as dialogues on philosophy and literature; and of treatises on rhetoric, politics and metaphysics. The Loeb Classical Library edition of Aristotle is in twenty-three volumes. (shrink)
Homer (mid to late 8th century B.C.) : founder of western humanism -- Solon (630-560 B.C.) : poet, lawgiver, statesman -- Thales (early 6th century) : father of western science -- Sappho (612-580 B.C.) : poet on fire -- Pythagoras (mid-500s-496 B.C.) : mystic mathematician -- Parmenides (born c. 515 B.C.) : father of metaphysics and logic -- Themistocles (524-459 B.C.) : savior of the western world Phidias (490-430 B.C.) : lord of western aesthetics -- Gorgias (483-376 B.C.) : master (...) of the word -- Socrates (469-399 B.C.) : iconoclast and moral revolutionary -- Thucydides (460-399 B.C.) : true father of history -- Plato (427-347 B.C.) : fountainhead of western philosophy -- Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) : polymathic genius -- Alexander the Great (356-323 B.C.) : disseminator of Greek culture -- Epicurus (341-270 B.C.) : physicist and ethician -- Zeno (335-263 B.C.) : stoic sage -- Galen (A.D. 129-199) : physician, scientist, philosopher --. (shrink)
Plato's earthly life ended in the year 347 B. C. At the same time, however, began his posthumous life - a life of great influence and fame leaving its mark on aU eras of the history of European learning -lasting until present times. Plato's philosophy has taken root earlier or later in innumerable souls of others, it has matured and given birth to new ideas whose proliferation further dissemi nated the vital force of the original thoughts. It happened (...) sometimes, of course, that by various interpretations different and sometimes altogether contradictory thoughts were deduced from one and the same Platonic doctrine: this possibility is also characteristic of Plato's genius. Even though in the history of Platonism there were times less active and creative, the continuity of its tradition has never been completely interrupted and where there was no growth and progress, at least that what had been once accepted has been kept alive. When enquiring into Plato's influence on the development of learning, we shall above all consider the individual approach of various personalities to Plato's philosophy, personal Platonism, which at its best concerns itself with the literary heritage of Plato and though accessible was not always much sought for. (shrink)
The history of Athenian relations with Sicily in the fifth century is beset with difficulties; and no part of it, perhaps, is more obscure than the story of what is commonly known as the First Sicilian Expedition, which set sail from Athens in the late summer of 427 under Laches, and was reinforced under Pythodorus, Sophocles and Eurymedon in the winter of 426.
Professor N. G. L. Hammond has of late published some of his thoughts on the activities of Philip II in 347 and 346 B.C. In addition he has treated aspects of Philip's earlier involvement in Thessalian, Thracian, and Phokian affairs. In the process he has in many instances disagreed with a number of current findings. Among those challenged are some of mine. Healthy scholarly debate is always desirable, and in this f spirit I should welcome an opportunity to contest Professor (...) Hammond's views on several points, the most important being the basic factor of methodology and the interpretation of various factual details. (shrink)
The just war tradition is often dated back to St. Augustine (354–430), sometimes with the caveat that it has roots back to Augustine’s teacher St. Ambrose (c. 337/40–397), and even to Roman thought, especially Cicero (106–43 BC). Arguably, the lineage can be traced further back, at least to Plato (c. 427–347 BC), whose thought contains a wealth of materials highlighting the importance of virtues in the preparation for and actual use of armed force. Although he wrote no single dialogue (...) with war as its explicit, main topic, it should still come with some surprise that there has been so little secondary literature on Plato’s treatment of ethical aspects of warfare and indeed of his treatment of warfare as a whole. The lack of scholarly attention to Plato's discussions about war is even more surprising in light of the fact that most of his dialogues are set during or shortly after the Peloponnesian War, which lasted – with interruptions – from 431 to 404. This war was the single most significant feature of the political life of Athens du ing this period. Hence, when we see Socrates and his interlocutors discussing ethical questions, relating these to the life of the city and the right way to live for human beings, we can reasonably assume that the topic of war is rarely far away, even if the link is not always made explicit. (shrink)
Although much of great interest has been written recently about the period of the socalled Peace of Philocrates, little or nothing has been said of a passage which provides important information in Justin's Epitome of the Historiae Philippicae of Pompeius Trogus. This passage, 8.3.12–15, comes between the destruction of Olynthus and the arrival of the Athenian envoys at Pella . In subject matter it corresponds with ‘the subjugation of Thrace and Thessaly’ in Prologue 8 of Pompeius Trogus – a topic (...) which Justin began in 8.3.1–6 and continued in our passage, 8.3.12–15. (shrink)
In 385B-C of the Cratylus, Plato appears to be formulating a version of the correspondence theory of truth, in such a way that it applies not only to discourse, but to individual names as well. However commentators who have remarked on this passage, either take exception to the reasoning, or find it necessary to interpret the conclusion with qualifications that Plato never could have intended. Richard Robinson, for example, on p.328 of “A Criticism of Plato’s Cratylus”, sums (...) up the argument thus:... since statements have a truthvalue, their parts, including names, must have a truthvalue too. Therefore names are true or false.and criticises it for involving a fallacy of division. Lorenz and Mittelstrasse, by contrast, construe the argument as validly proceeding from the true-false distinction of sentences to a corresponding true-false distinction of their parts. (shrink)
In various philosophical, religious and mystical traditions, beauty is often related to intellectual upliftment and spiritual ascent, which suggests that besides its common aesthetic value it may also acquire an epistemic, metaphysical and spiritual meaning or value. I will examine in detail three accounts in which beauty, at times inseparable from desire and love, mediates between physical, intellectual and spiritual levels of existence. Since beauty, in all three accounts, takes on a mediatory role or function,1 I will name these mediations (...) as follows: ancient Greek Eros-mediation or Beauty-mediation (Plato: ca. 429-347 BCE), late medieval Italian Beauty and Love-mediation (Dante Alighieri: 1265-1321) and pre-modern Indian Beauty and Love-mediation (Rūpa Gosvāmi: 1470/90-1564 CE).2 In the first section, I will analyse the stages of Eros or Beauty mediation in Plato; in the second section, I will turn to Dante’s Beauty and Love-mediation and compare it with Plato’s account. In the third section, I will analyse Rūpa’s account of Beauty and Love-mediation in comparison with both Plato and Dante. I will argue that there are certain patterns of mediation mutually shared if not between all three accounts, then at least between two of them. While Plato’s account clearly influenced Dante and was well integrated into Dante’s account, there is no mention or evidence of a pre-modern Bengali theologian influenced by ancient Greek and medieval Italian philosophy and mysticism. However, a strong convergence of elements of Beauty-mediations in Plato and Dante, as well as Beauty and Love-mediations in Dante and Rūpa Gosvāmi, confirms the universality of certain features of Beauty and Love-mediation and speaks in support of an all-inclusive account of them.3 -/- 1 By Beauty-mediation I mean an aesthetic, intellectual or spiritual reconciliation between opposites, such as human and divine, mortal and immortal, particular and universal, sexual and sacred and so on. 2 Rūpa Gosvāmi was an Indian theologian. More information about him is provided in section 3. 3 I am here applying transitivity: if Plato’s account (A) shares elements with Dante’s account (B) and if Dante’s account (B) shares those same elements with Rūpa’s account (C), then Plato’s (A) and Rūpa’s (C) accounts share some elements as well. Obviously, all accounts have some different elements not mutually shared, but I will not deal with them here. (shrink)
This book, splendidly produced by Messrs. Nelson, comes to us from beyond the tomb. The great platonist whose text it is died in 1945. The present work is a first selection from a set of unpublished papers by him, which were deposited in Edinburgh University Library after his death. These papers are mainly translations and studies of the later Platonic dialogues, commencing with the Theaetetus. They represent the author’s labours in the years 1933-4, following the publication of his ‘magnum opus’, (...)Plato, the Man and his Work and of his translations of Timaeus and Critias ; Parmenides and Laws. The author’s own intention had been to publish the translations of the Sophistes, Politicus and Philebus together. The editor and publishers have in this edition decided to bring out the Philebus and Epinomis in one volume, leaving the Sophistes and Politicus for later publication. The long introduction to the Philebus is from the pen of A. E. Taylor himself; the introduction to the Epinomis has been supplied by A. C. Lloyd. (shrink)
Someone called A. N. Whitehead “the latest and greatest of the Cambridge Platonists”. That the tradition of Platonic scholarship still survives in Cambridge is evidenced by the appearance of these two books, one by the veteran Professor Hackforth, the other by the young scholar, Mr. John Gould. As produced by the University Press, both are examples of British book-making at its best.