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Lucretius: De Rerum NaturaBook V$
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Monica R. Gale

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780856688843

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9780856688843.001.0001

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Note on references to the Presocratic philosophers

Note on references to the Presocratic philosophers

(p.15) Note on references to the Presocratic philosophers
Lucretius: De Rerum Natura
Monica R. Gale
Liverpool University Press

This chapter provides the note on references to the Presocratic philosophers in Book V of Lucretius' De Rerum Natura. Presocratic thought is largely available through indirect tradition, such as The Poem of Empedocles which can be supplemented from recently deciphered papyrus fragments. The chapter mentions quotations that are usually brief and preserved in the works of later writers, emphasizing that the bulk of what is known about the ideas of these thinkers is derived from descriptions or summaries of their doctrines. It also talks about the doxographer known as Aetius, who compiled a catalogue of opinions of the philosophers under various headings some time in the late first or second century AD. Aetius' work has not survived, but Hermann Diels proposed to reconstruct it from the Pseudo-Plutarchan work Opinions of the Philosophers and the Anthology of Johannes Stobaeus.

Keywords:   Lucretius, De Rerum Natura, Book V, Presocratic thought, papyrus, Aetius, Pseudo-Plutarchan

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