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Elenchos

Journal of Studies on Ancient Thought

Ed. by Alesse, Francesca / Chiaradonna, Riccardo / Spinelli, Emidio

Editorial Board: Aronadio, Francesco / Berti, Enrico / Brancacci, Aldo / Centrone, Bruno / Decleva Caizzi, Fernanda / Dorandi, Tiziano / Ioppolo, Anna Maria / Opsomer, Jan / Rashed, Marwan / Reydams-Schils, Gretchen / Sedley, David


CiteScore 2018: 0.22

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.111
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.522

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2037-7177
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Destructible Worlds in an Aristotelian Scholion (Alexander of Aphrodisias’ Lost Commentary on Aristotle’s Physics, Frag. 539 Rashed)

André Laks
Published Online: 2018-11-24 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/elen-2018-0022

Abstract

Does Anaxagoras admit that the world is destructible? Aëtius’ doxographical handbook says as much, and so does a doxographical scholion derived from Alexander of Aphrodisias’ lost commentary on Aristotle’s Physics (Frag. 539 Rashed) according to the transmitted text. However, because of other difficulties occurring in the same scholion, Rashed was led to correct not only this text, thus making it contradict Aëtius’ testimony, but also the entry dedicated to Plato. My article suggests that while Rashed’s corrections are superfluous, the problems that triggered them are of great interest for the history of the doxographical tradition, for the way in which this tradition was used by Alexander of Aphrodisias and Simplicius in their commentaries on Aristotle’s Physics and, last but not least, for the understanding of the difficulties that ancient interpreters had to confront when they had to make sense of the lines now known as Anaxagoras B12 DK – difficulties that modern interpreters have still to confront.

Keywords: doxography; Alexander of Aphrodisias; Simplicius; Anaxagoras; Plato

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About the article

Published Online: 2018-11-24

Published in Print: 2018-11-30


Citation Information: Elenchos, Volume 39, Issue 2, Pages 403–420, ISSN (Online) 2037-7177, ISSN (Print) 0392-7342, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/elen-2018-0022.

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