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A Journal for Ancient Philosophy and Science

Ed. by Wildberg, Christian / Morison, Benjamin

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Volume 48, Issue 1


Plato on Geometrical Hypothesis in the Meno

Naoya Iwata
Published Online: 2015-01-19 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apeiron-2013-0046


This paper examines the second geometrical problem in the Meno. Its purpose is to explore the implication of Cook Wilson’s interpretation, which has been most widely accepted by scholars, in relation to the nature of hypothesis. I argue that (a) the geometrical hypothesis in question is a tentative answer to a more basic problem, which could not be solved by available methods at that time, and that (b) despite the temporary nature of a hypothesis, there is a rational process for formulating it. The paper also contains discussion of the method of analysis, problem reduction and a diorism, which have often been ambiguously explained in relation to the geometrical problem in question.

Keywords: Plato; Socrates; Hypothesis; Analysis; Geometry

About the article

Published Online: 2015-01-19

Published in Print: 2015-01-01

Citation Information: Apeiron, Volume 48, Issue 1, Pages 1–20, ISSN (Online) 2156-7093, ISSN (Print) 0003-6390, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/apeiron-2013-0046.

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