I argue for the interpretation of Anaximander's world as an unstable system. The inconsistency found by scholars in Theophrastus/Simplicius' text disappears when it is realized that the elemental forces of nature do not change into each other. They are in the Infinite in time as well as in space. To some extent preference is given to Aristotle's evidence over the doxographical vulgate habitually derived from Theophrastus, though of course the Theophrastean passage containing the verbatim quotation remains the primary witness.
The short treatise On the Cosmos, which most scholars believe to be not by Aristotle, has confidently been attributed to Aristotle by G. Reale and A. P. Bos. I do not wish to enter into their arguments for this attribution, because I believe it can be proved to be untenable.
This ground-breaking study offers the first full-length critical examination of H. Diel's Doxographi Graeci , focussing on the doxographer Aëtius, whose work Diels reconstructed from various later sources. Diel's theory is analysed, revised and improved at significant points.
Several influential literary sources connect the attack upon Anaxagoras with attacks upon Phidias, Aspasia and Pericles [relative chronology] and associate these attacks as a whole with the origins of the Peloponnesian war [absolute chronology]. Since the attack upon Phidias pace Philochorus as supported by the evidence of the digging at Olympia has to be dated to 438/7, this absolute chronology cannot be right. The relative chronology, however, can be defended, which entails that the attack upon Anaxagoras by Diopeithes should be (...) dated to 438/7.-First, I shall discuss such data about Anaxagoras' trial as are provided by the biographical tradition, especially Diogenes Laertius, who summarizes a good part of it. Next, I shall discuss the evidence concerned with the attacks upon Pericles and his associates as provided by the historiographical tradition, viz. Diodorus Siculus and Plutarch, both deriving from Ephorus. Philochorus' evidence as to the chronology of Phidias' career will be discussed in connection with the problem of the absolute vs. the relative chronology as a whole. An argument directed against the modern hypothesis that Phidias' statue of Athena was dedicated during the Great Panathenaea of 438/7 follows. In the course of this argument, it will be necessary to have a closer look at the technical, administrative and religious aspects of the installation of such a statue. The Dracontides/Hagnon decree, aimed at Pericles, can be proved to have been associated with the attacks upon Phidias. This, again, combined with considerations derived from the legal responsibilities of the commissioners in charge of the statue, permits us to date the decree to 438/7. The relative chronology of Ephorus and Plutarch will be defended by an argument purporting to show that the attacks upon Pericles and his associates are inextricably bound up with one another, which allows us to date the Diopeithes decree, too, to 438/7. Next, I shall argue that the trial of Anaxagoras is a historical fact, and that it should probably be dated to 437/6. Finally, the tradition about Anaxagoras' sojourn at Lampsacus will be studied, and a chronology of his career as a whole will be proposed. (shrink)
The formula 'the elements of logos' in the Zeno quotation by Epictetus at Arrian, Diss. 4.8.12 need not, pace e.g. von Arnim, pertain to the parts of speech, but more probably means the elements i.e. primary theorems of philosophical theory, or doctrine. Theory moreover should become internalized to the soul and 'lived': philosophy is also the so-called 'art of life'. These theorems are to be distinguished but should reciprocally entail each other. Philosophy according to Zeno is both tripartite and one, (...) and tripartite especially in that its parts (and subparts) cannot be transferred simultaneously: of necessity these have to taught and learned one after the other. (shrink)
In the "Doxographi Graeci" the preferred short heading of Aët. 2.31 (Greek text below, p. 28) is 'On Distances', though ps.Plutarch has a long heading. This chapter is about the distances of the sun and moon from each other and from the earth (lemmas 1 to 3, in both ps.Plutarch and Stobaeus), and of the real or apparent shape of the heaven relative to its distance from the earth (lemmas 4 and 5, Stobaeus only). Parallels from Ioann. Lydus and Theodoret (...) for what is in ps.Plutarch are given by Diels in apparatu. To the best of my knowledge it has not been noticed that a version of ps.Plutarch's text is preserved in a scholium on the "Almagest", which constitutes our earliest evidence for the text. The correctness of Diels' reconstruction is questionable. Though certainty, naturally, is beyond our reach it is quite possible that these two sets of lemmas represent two distinct Aëtian (or proto-Aëtian) chapters. These may have been coalesced by Stobaeus (or Aëtius), while ps.Plutarch abridged the second (or the two final lemmas) away. These considerations necessitate an inquiry into the parallels that are available, including material from an introduction to Aratus. The vexing question of short versus long(er) chapter headings is also relevant in this context. Furthermore, the contrasting views regarding cosmic distances are not only a feature of the Placita literature with a distant origin in Aristotle, but also, apparently, of the commentary literature on Plato's "Timaeus". Arguably in a passage in Plutarch's "De facie" these two traditions intersect. Finally, a case can be made out for Eudemus not Theophrastus as an intermediary source of Presocratic astronomical data in the Placita. (shrink)
In the first part of this paper, I shall argue that Apollodorus of Athens, in his Chronica, dated Anaxagoras' arrival at Athens to 456/5, following Demetrius of Phalerum. Rejecting the divergent opinion of others, he also followed Demetrius' estimation of the Athenian period as having lasted 20 years, which makes 437/6 Anaxagoras' last year at Athens 1). In the second part I shall argue that the trial of Anaxagoras, about which no information survives in the remains of Apollodorus but which (...) is reported by several other sources, should probably be dated to 437/6. This second argument is independent of the first; both run counter to the view, still rather popular among historians of ancient philosophy, which favours a date for the trial either immediately preceding or even following upon the beginning of the Peloponnesian War, as well as to the communis opinio according to which the Athenian period lasted 30 years. What is common to both parts of this inquiry is a refusal to study the chronology of Anaxagoras' career in isolation. In part I, which is chiefly concerned with an analysis of the relevant passage in Diogenes Laertius qua specimen of Apollodorean reasoning, the problem is discussed against the background of Apollodorus' synchronistic matrices. In part II, the trial and the decree of Diopeithes which made it possible are studied in connection with the plot against Pericles and certain members of his circle.-A suggestion regarding the date of 'publication' of Anaxagoras' treatise will be appended to part II. (shrink)