Authentic memoirs of the life of Pythagoras--the father of philosophy and the inventor of geometry--hold the great interest for every lover of wisdom. Iamblichus' biography is universally acknowledged as deriving from sources of the highest antiquity. Its classic translation by Thomas Taylor was first printed in 1818 and is once again brought to light in this edition.During Iamblichus' life, the depth and sublimity of his writing and discourse attracted a multitude of associates and disciples from all parts of the world. The Emperor Julian wrote of him, that he was posterior indeed in time, but not in genius, to Plato, and all the Platonists who succeeded him honored him with the epithet of divine. Iamblichus' account of the life of Pythagoras begins with the great philosopher's birth on the island of Samos, his youth, and his wide renown in Greece. It briefly covers his early travels and his studies with the philosophers Anaximander and Thales, his twenty-two years of instruction in the temples of Egypt, and his initiation into the Egyptian and Babylonian mysteries. The later life and work of Pythagoras are richly elaborated, with humorous and profound anecdotes illustrating his philosophy and providing a unique view of community life under his tutelage in Crotona. Included are excerpts from his teachings on harmonic science, dietetic medicine, friendship, temperance, politics, parenthood, the soul's former lives and many other topics. The book also contains substantial sections on the Fragments of the Ethical Writings (the work of very early Pythagoreans) and the Pythagoric Sentences.
The trial and death of Socrates (469-399 BCE) have almost as central a place in Western consciousness as the trial and death of Jesus. In four superb dialogues, Plato provides the classic account. Euthyphro finds Socrates outside the court-house, debating the nature of piety, while the Apology is his robust rebuttal of the charges of impiety and a defence of the philosopher's life. In the Crito, while awaiting execution in prison, Socrates counters the arguments of friends urging him to escape. Finally, in the Phaedo, he is shown calmly confident in the face of death, skilfully arguing the case for the immortality of the soul.For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
From the Preface by Nicholas D. Smith.
These essays represent the full range of Dodds' literary and philosophical interests, and his ability to combine profound scholarship with the lucid humanity of a teacher convinced of the value of Greek studies to the modern world.
This is the first book to analyze systematically crucial aspects of ancient Greek philosophy in their original context of mystery, religion, and magic. The author brings to light recently uncovered evidence about ancient Pythagoreanism and its influence on Plato, and reconstructs the fascinating esoteric transmission of Pythagorean ideas from the Greek West down to the alchemists and magicians of Egypt, and from there into the world of Islam.
The ancient Greek philosopher Antiphon was a contemporary of Socrates who lived in the fifth century BCE Athens. Antiphon wrote several major works, which have survived only in very fragmentary form. All that is known about these works as well as about Antiphon is included in this study. The material is translated, and its significance assessed in a detailed commentary that addresses the numerous problems raised by the fragmentary material. Antiphon's contribution to the wider history of ideas is addressed in conclusion.
The influence of Aristotle, the prince of philosophers, on the intellectual history of the West is second to none. In this book, Jonathan Barnes examines Aristotle's scientific researches, his discoveries in logic and his metaphysical theories, his work in psychology and in ethics and politics, and his ideas about art and poetry, placing his teachings in their historical context.About the Series: Combining authority with wit, accessibility, and style, Very Short Introductions offer an introduction to some of life's most interesting topics. Written by experts for the newcomer, they demonstrate the finest contemporary thinking about the central problems and issues in hundreds of key topics, from philosophy to Freud, quantum theory to Islam.
In On the Parts of Animals, Aristotle develops his systematic principles for biological investigation and explanation, and applies those principles to explain why the different animals have the different parts that they do. This new translation and commentary reflects the subtlety and detail of Aristotle's reasoning.
Aristotle and Natural Law lays out a new theoretical approach which distinguishes between the notions of 'interpretation, ' 'appropriation, ' 'negotiation' and 'reconstruction' of the meaning of texts and their component concepts. These categories are then deployed in an examination of the role which the concept of natural law is used by Aristotle in a number of key texts. The book argues that Aristotle appropriated the concept of natural law, first formulated by the defenders of naturalism in the 'nature versus convention debate' in classical Athens. Thereby he contributed to the emergence and historical evolution of the meaning of one of the most important concept in the lexicon of Western political thought. Aristotle and Natural Law argues that Aristotle's ethics is best seen as a certain type of natural law theory which does not allow for the possibility that individuals might appeal to natural law in order to criticize existing laws and institutions. Rather its function is to provide them with a philosophical justification from the standpoint of Aristotle's metaphysic