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Proclus On Plato Cratylus by Brian Duvick


Proclus On Plato Cratylus by Brian Duvick

Until the launch of this series nearly twenty years ago, the 15,000 volumes of the ancient Greek commentators on Aristotle, written mainly between 200 and 600 AD, constituted the largest corpus of extant Greek philosophical writings not translated into English or other European languages. Over 40 volumes have now appeared in the series, which is planned in some 80 volumes altogether.Proclus' Commentary on Plato's Cratylus is the only ancient commentary on this work to have come down to us, and is illuminating in two special ways. First, it is actually the work of two Neoplatonists. The majority of the material is supplied by the Athenian-based Proclus (c. 411-485 AD), who is well known for his magisterial commentaries on Plato's Timaeus and Parmenides, as well as for a host of other works involving the study of Plato. This material we have consists of excerpts from Proclus' commentary edited by another figure who appears to be a Platonist working somewhat later in Alexandria. Consequently it contains insights into the philosophy of both of the principal late antique centres of Platonism, Athens and Alexandria.Secondly, the material is divided between the grittier issues of language-theory, on which it engages freely with other ancient philosophies, and theological discussion mostly involved with the etymologies of the names of Greek gods, in which Proclus is more concerned to relate his own brand of Platonism to the 'Orphic' and 'Chaldaean' theological systems, and also to Homer. Brian Duvick's extensive notes bring out all these facets of the ancient text.


'A massive scholarly achievement of the highest importance.'
The Times

About the Author

Brian Duvick is Assistant Professor of History at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.

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Book Info

Publication date

30th July 2007


Brian Duvick

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Bristol Classical Press an imprint of Duckworth Overlook


192 pages


Western philosophy: Ancient, to c 500



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