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Phaedo

(287 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Φαίδων; Phaídon) from Elis, b. 418/416 BC, date of death unknown. Title character of the Platonic dialogue Phaídōn. P. is believed to have been taken prisoner when the city of Elis was conquered, sold as a slave to Athens and forced to work in a brothel. After meeting Socrates, the philosopher apparently had one of his pupils buy P.'s freedom, and from then on P. devoted himself to philosophy (Diog. Laert. 2,31; 2,105 et passim). P. wrote two dialogues, titled Zṓpyros and Símōn. It is probably true that the story of Socrates' meeting with the magician Zopyrus,…

Paraebates

(41 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Παραιβάτης/ Paraibátēs). Cyrenaic who lived towards the end of the 4th cent. BC. Teacher of Anniceris, Hegesias [1] and Menedemus [5] of Eretria who is said to later have despised him (Diog. Laert. 2,86; 2,134). Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)

Ichthyas

(71 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Ἰχθύας; Ichthýas). Pupil of Euclides [2] of Megara, 4th cent. BC, member of the  Megarian School; eponymous character in a dialogue of  Diogenes [14] of Sinope. I. is usually identified with the man called in the MSS Icthydias or Ychtyas, who lost his life in an uprising against his home town (Megara?) (Tert. Apol. 46,16). Döring, Klaus (Bamberg) Bibliography 1 K. Döring, Die Megariker, 1972, 15, 91-94, 100-101 2 SSR II H.

Stilpo

(448 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Στίλπων/ Stílpōn) from Megara (Megarian School); second half of the 4th and first third of the 3rd cent. BC. Since the information about his teachers is confusing, it remains unclear how S. fits into the sequence of Megarians. His character is repeatedly praised in the surviving sources. Emphasis is placed on his simple unaffected nature and his open confident manner in dealings with others; numerous anecdotes document his ready wit and his superior sense of humour. His skill at d…

Sophroniscus

(62 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Σωφρονίσκος; Sōphronískos). Husband of Phaenarete with whom he fathered Socrates [2] the philosopher, stone cutter by trade. In Plato's Laches (180e), Lysimachus [1] praises S. as his true late friend with whom he had never quarreled. Nothing more is known about S. Socrates named one of his three sons after his father, as was customary. Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)

Megarian School

(346 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Μεγαρικοί; Megarikoí). This word designates those philosophers belonging to the tradition of Socrates' pupil Euclides [2], whose home town was Megara. How much they had in common, beyond being pupils of Euclides, is hard to say. It seems there was neither an institutional organisation connecting them, nor a fixed place of teaching. Only Euclides and Stilpo are known to have lived in Megara. Other members of the School lived and worked in other places, at least temporarily ( Eubuli…

Simmias

(168 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
(Σιμμίας). [German version] [1] S. from Thebes Friend of Socrates, 5th cent. BC Friend of Socrates [2] (Plat. Crit. 45b; Plat. Phdr. 242b; Xen. Mem. 1,2,48; 3,11,17); he and his companion Cebes were Socrates' main interlocutors in Plato's Phaídōn. According to Plat. Phd. 61de, before his stay in Athens S. met the Pythagorean Philolaus [2] in Thebes, but he himself was not a Pythagorean [1]. Plutarchus [2] has the conversation which is central to his work The Daimonion of Socrates (Περὶ τοῦ Σωκράτους δαιμονίου/Perì toû Sōkrátous daimoníou) take place in Thebes at the house of S., …

Chaerephon

(141 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Χαιρεφών; Chairephṓn). From the Attic deme of Sphettus; from early youth a passionate follower of  Socrates. In Aristophanes' Clouds, Wasps and Birds C. is lampooned as an especially zealous and ascetic pupil of Socrates. As a committed democrat, he lived in exile during the tyranny of the  Thirty (404-403 BC) (Pl. Ap. 21a). C. was already dead by the time of Socrates' trial (399 BC). Plato (Ap. 20e-21a) and Xenophon (Apol. 14 Xen. Apol. 14) report that C. once asked the oracle at Delphi whether anyo…

Cleinomachus

(100 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Κλεινόμαχος; Kleinómachos) of Thurii, student of  Euclides [2] of Megara,  Megarian School. According to Diog. Laert. 2,112, C. was the first to write ‘on statements and predicates and such matters’ (περὶ ἀξιωμάτων καὶ κατηγορημάτων καὶ τῶν τοιούτων). This comment hints at contributions to the development of dialectics that are greater than we can presently perceive. In any case, after C. some ancient historians of philosophy called the Megarian School the  ‘Dialectics’ (Diog. Lae…

Phaenarete

(88 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Φαιναρέτη; Phainarétē). Mother of Patrocles from her first marriage, to Chaeredemus (Pl. Euthyd. 297e) and of Socrates from her second marriage, to Sophroniscus. In Pl. Tht. 148e-151d, Socrates explains that his mother was a midwife, and he equates his deeds with hers. It is not impossible that Plato invented the profession of P. for the sake of this metaphor, after which it became included as a 'fact' into the Socrates legend. Maieutic method Döring, Klaus (Bamberg) Bibliography A. Raubitschek, s.v. P. (2), RE 19, 1562f.

Anchipylus

(61 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Ἀνχίπυλος; Anchípylos) of Elis. He was a student of  Phaedo of Elis, together with  Moschus. A. himself was the teacher of  Asclepiades of Phleious and of  Menedemus of Eretria. According to ancient hearsay, A. and Moschus subsisted on figs and water alone for their entire lives (Diog. Laert. 2,126; Ath. 2,44c). Döring, Klaus (Bamberg) Bibliography SSR III D.

Maieutic method

(164 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] from the Greek μαιευτική ( maieutikḗ, sc. téchnē), ‘midwifery. In Plato's dialogue Theaetetus (148e-151d) Socrates compares his ability to recognize whether or not hidden wisdom lies dormant in others, and to help them if necessary to bring it to light, with the craft of his mother, the midwife ( maía) Phaenarete, and of midwives in general, to recognize pregnancies and to help deliver the baby. It is contested whether or not the historical Socrates used this comparison but the stronger arguments speak against it. In Middle Plat…

Socratics

(1,010 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] The term 'Socratics' refers in a broad sense to all of those who, according to surviving evidence, had a close relationship to Socrates [2] (469-399 BC). In a narrower sense, it is limited to those known to have written philosophical works: Aeschines [1], Antisthenes [1], Aristippus [3], Euclides [2], Phaedo, Plato [1] and Xenophon. Ancient sources tell us a great deal about the personal relationships of these Socratics, both with Socrates and among themselves. Some is evidently b…

Anniceris

(235 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Ἀννίκερις; Anníkeris) of Cyrene, one of the  Cyrenaics, whose life spanned the decades before and after 300 BC. A. introduced modifications to the original Cyrenaic theory of pleasure (presumably following his analysis of Epicurus). Because of these modifications, many ancient philosophers regard his theory as the beginning of a new phase in the history of the Cyrenaics (Str. 17,3,22; Diog. Laert. 2,85). A.'s innovation consists mainly in acknowledging not only sensual pleasure, b…

Cebes

(238 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Κέβης; Kébēs) from Thebes. Friend of Socrates (Pl. Crit. 45b; Xen. Mem. 1,2,48; 3,11,17); together with his companion Simmias  Socrates' main interlocutor in Plato's ‘Phaedon’. According to Pl. Phd. 61d-e, before coming to Athens C. met the Pythagorean  Philolaus in Thebes, but was himself not a Pythagorean [1]. In Diog. Laert. 2,125 three dialogues (not extant), with the titles Pínax (‘Painting), Hebdómē (‘The Seventh Day) and Phrýnichos, are attributed to C. The dialogue entitled Pínax and falsely attributed to C. was probably written during the 1st …

Bryson

(208 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Βρύσων; Brýsōn). Son of the mythographer  Herodorus from Heraclea Pontica, of the  Megarian school (his connection with  Euclides unclear), teacher of  Pyrrhon; born  c. 400 BC, died after 340 BC. B. advocated the thesis that nobody uses distasteful -- i.e. vulgar or indecent -- expressions; if one and the same thing could be described by a variety of expressions, then all of these should carry the same meaning; therefore one term could not be more vulgar or indecent than any other. Aristotle rejected …

Alexinus

(186 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] (Ἀλεξῖνος; Alexînos) of Elis: a philosopher of the  Megarian school, who lived in the decades around 300 BC, A. first taught in his hometown of Elis, then in Olympia. In his treatise ‘On Education’ (Περὶ ἀγωγῆς; Perì agōgês), A. adopted a mediating position in the dispute between philosophers and rhetoricians concerning which of them played the primary role in education: one can learn a certain degree of skill of argument from rhetoricians, but these arguments are based on experience, probability and assumption, rath…

Letters of Socrates and of the Socratics

(534 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
[German version] Transmitted in nine MSS from the period 1269/70 to the beginning of the 17th cent. are seven letters of Socrates [2] and 20 of the Socratics in various arrangements, some complete, some in selections (epist. 1-27, numbering according to Köhler [5]), and in addition six letters from and to Speusippus (epist. 28; 30-34), a letter from Plato to the Macedonian king Philippus [4] II. (epist. 29), and a final letter written in the Doric dialect riddled with corruptions, with unknown s…

Cynicism

(1,753 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
Döring, Klaus (Bamberg) [German version] A. The Middle Ages (CT) The reception of Cynicism in the Middle Ages and in modern times is, with few exceptions, simply the reception of Diogenes. The most important source for the knowledge of Diogenes in the Middle Ages was the brief description given of Diogenes' lifestyle by the Church Father Jerome in his work Adversus Jovinianum (2, 14). Jerome summarizes what makes Diogenes into a model for him in the statement that Diogenes was ‘more powerful than King Alexander and a victor over human nature’ ( potentior rege Alexandro et naturae victo…

Cyrenaics

(1,267 words)

Author(s): Döring, Klaus (Bamberg)
(Κυρηναϊκοί; Kyrēnaïkoí). [German version] A. History The term Cyrenaics ─ derived from the home town Cyrene of Socrates' pupil  Aristippus [3] ─ is used to describe those philosophers who subscribed to the tradition founded by the latter. A list of C. can be found in Diog. Laert. 2,86. Whenever ancient texts refer globally to Aristippus and the C., the topic is almost invariably that they considered  pleasure ( hēdonḗ) the supreme good ( summum bonum) and highest aim ( télos). In the development of this view (and of the philosophy of the C. in general), two phases can be …
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