Evidences of Civil Unrest, 2

Who appropriated the name ‘Younger Socrates’ for himself near the time when Plato was writing STATESMAN and LAWS ?  I find it likely to be a ‘diadochos’ or ‘successor’ in the sense of LAWS VI, Ch. xiv, — in this case a self-nominated Nomo-phylax.   This self-appointed man also composed the pseudo-Plato ‘Epinomis‘, possibly also the ps.-Aristotle De Mundo, arrogating to himself the role of lawful Successor, the heir-apparent to Plato Himself at the Academy, a compound of Astronomer-Philosopher-King.   This singular man would  make it no longer required for Plato to author his promised dialogue The Philosopher.

That is to say, a man whose specific skills lie precisely at the border between the lower and the higher rank of ‘noEta’ [ νοητ ].   It is as if objects of mathematical cognition could suffer their subordinate rank amongst ‘noEta’ to be overruled, even at the cost of making Plato contradict himself late in Book VI.   Both Adam [Appendix XI to Bk VI] and Campbell [Vol II, p. 16] think Plato himself was in this way falling into contradiction,  R. 511 d2.   Slings emends to salvage Plato (and truth) by excluding the entire phrase ‘kaitoi… archEs’ from his OCT text [Slings drops this and his reasons are published in the posthumous notes assembled by Boter et al.]         Slings advanced an abundance of reasons for his excision, his explanation running to the greatest length of any of this volume’s notes].    Venetus T includes, late in the final chapter (=Chapt. 21) of Book VI, a suggestive erasure and copyist’s overstrike exactly where Slings calls for the dropping of the crucial 5-word phrase, begun with the ‘kaitoi’.    This point of manuscript criticism seems not to have been taken into account in the discussions of this emendation that critical edition.   The discussion was otherwise highly nuanced.   More details of this matter will be presented below.

If several of these bold doctrinal initiatives from Plato’s subordinates there during Olymp. 103-105 be taken together, we may bring into focus a rebellious or insurrectionary attitude at the early Academy.    This will have been prior to the contributions of a rebellious young Aristotle.    More detail is naturally needed here, to bring together the concentration of these various overturnings and reversals.   As can be expected in such times of insurrection, sub-schisms can be expected to take shape within the main branch of ‘insurrectionaries’.    [Shortly after the French Revolution, schismatic forces were at work at many levels:  its Commune Insurrectionelle, is illustrative.   Many Frenchmen, a profusion of various rival ‘distitutions’ at their various elbows [Plato’s term was ‘Stasiwteiai’.  Early summer of the year 2017 a number of nations are experiencing essentially the same center-fleeing forces].

It will be the main challenge to keep closer track of these internal battles than is allowed by the simpler division Plato gives rough formulas, between ‘Friends of Earth’ and ‘Friends of Forms’.   It is a useful guide, however, to have Plato say pointedly that certain Friends of Earth are in the habit of shunning open discussions altogether.    This will be central to investigating the legendary ‘silent Socrates’, in Maximus of Tyre and other late Platonists.   They overlook the possibility of an insurrectionary Socrates.    Our Venetus T gives an alternate name to the standard ‘Younger Socrates’, namely ‘Socrates Allos’ or ‘Socrates Alternate’.     Within our evidences we can hope to locate patterns of insurrection and reaction.  As far as practicable this website will treat as ‘inadmissible’ much of the evidence from the early Aristotle.   Thus much of the Cherniss-Taran ‘amicus Plato, sed…‘ drama need not be replayed here.   May it rest.

Many of the best pointers toward this civil unrest — apart from those in Seventh Letter — come from the final few chapters of Republic Book IV, and (surprisingly, given its ‘early’ location in standard chronologies of Plato’s writing) from Euthydemus.     If the lightly veiled references to  “disturbing and wandering” [ ταραχὴ καὶ πλανὴ ] effects can be responsibly traced to a single cluster of causes, we have major landmarks to guide us in doing some reconstruction of these troubles.  In  Timaeus, in Euthydemusin a puzzling string of light irregularities late in Republic Bk. II and continuing into the first Chapter of Republic III, and in various of the ideas of the young Aristotle as he works on early works such as Rhetoric,  Analytics, De Gen. et Corr. and De Caelo.

Further, it may be that this presumptuous King Socrates will have pushed his personal self-assertion to the point where he imagines substituting himself for Plato, the underling for the Master, somewhat in the pattern of the Bodleian Library’s medieval ms., a writing Socrates displacing a temporarily non-writing (and clearly perturbed) Plato.    Another way of describing this gradually advancing habit of insubordination within the Academy near to Olympiad 106:   ‘insurrection’ or ‘insurgency’ or ‘epanastasis  [παναστάσις]  ‘ as outlined early in Chapt. xviii of Republic IV.  

more about the unrest at the early Academy will be discussed below.  Meantime here is a drawing from Matthew of Paris’s ‘Prognostica socratis basilei’, exhibiting an inverted order of the pair Plato, Socrates



It will be fitting to pause here to deal with the delicate subject of “chapter divisions” and the scholarly uneasiness about these and other divisions within our texts.  The recently published (2013) non-Shorey edition of the Loeb Republic lands Harvard University Press in an extreme (and in my judgment untenable) view of this matter.   It is illustrative of the extreme of over-caution and routine skepticism against which W. Burkert warned his fellow philologists.   Here is their routinised hyperskeptical statement .   You be the judge:

“The division of Republic into ‘books’ was almost certainly [emphasis mine] not made by Plato himself, but at some later date in the history of transmission.” [vol. I, p. ix, fn. 5].

It ought not be left as mere dogmatic assertion on my part if I express (as I in fact do) my wholehearted rejection of this opinion.   Consider this argument:

  1.  These same editors and translators, — who have been party to Harvard’s Loeb edition’s moving aside Paul Shorey’s abundance of judicious notes, — proceed to translate R. VII, xvii, its final words , as follows [II, p. 203] :   “Are we satisfied now with our discussion of this state [sc. kallipolis] and the man who resembles it ?. . .  Clearly, and to answer your question, I think we’ve reached the end.”    Our editors agree with Shorey here in printing the emphatic word   τέλος  at  541 b5.      This word has a specialist force in this position.  It expresses the ‘bookender’ ending to this seminal Book within The Republic.  The agreement of Republic scholars  is overwhelmingly favorable to attributing this word “telos” to Plato himself.   A strong consensus seems to take (and rightly so !) Plato himself to be authorising this bookending marker  τέλος.   Indeed all his editors do entitle set the beginning of a new Book (h.e. Book 8) at precisely this point.  A man of Shorey’s stature would not translate a phrase recently excised from a Plato text before him.   Shorey of course did not live into the Slings era, but he likely would have respected this excision.   Certainly not remain silent as he translated it.

2.      Plato is likely to have been still at work writing or revising Republic in Olympiad 106 when he was also at work on Statesman and Laws.    E.R. Dodds’s edition of Gorgias implies that he was still revising that as late as 354 BC.  If so, we would expect our texts of Republic to be subject to repercussions of this micropolitan disturbance and trepidation and wandering.     We may gather some unusual phrasings from Books I, IV and VII of Republic and its discussions of ‘the true Astronomer’ [ Book VII:   τ ντι στρόνομος  ] or ‘the True Calculator [Book I:   τ ντι λογίστης ] to give some of these hypotheses a particular footing in Plato’s texts.    Some puzzles about the cosmic layers within the De Generatione et Corruptione will be made less puzzling, on this hypothesis.    This blood-and-bone man, — King Socrates as he did not shrink from calling himself —  risked creating a fundamental per-disturbance inside that late-Plato period of the Earliest Academy.    A significant linguistic signal from that same Olympiad:  the poorly attested specialist word  diatarassw [ διαταράσσω ] of Laws 693 e, echoed in Plutarch, but very rarely found elsewhere.    More on this specialist language and its background in the usage of early mathematics is pursued below.

Let us assume that the case is made, and made convincingly, that divisions into Books are justified, and even into Chapters within these.   Two other specialist words descriptive of similar kinds of disturbance should  be drawn from a list in a very late chapter in Book IV of Republic.   These all  allude to a pattern of human behavior, likely manifest within this same this man’s disruptive activities at the Academy.   One of these two terms is extremely uncommon and the other (on which the first is clearly patterned) is rather common.      allotriopragmosunE,  [ λλοτριοπραγμόσυνη : ‘behaving like someone foreign to our family group’] and ‘polypragmosunE’ [ πολυπραγμόσυνη : ‘behaving in a meddlesome or interfering way’ ].     The former word is a great rarity, a ‘PAWAG’ we will call it if we follow the suggestion of a recent scholarly coinage, h.e.  a PoorlyAttestedWordinAncientGreek).    This word not only lacks any recognised examples outside its unique-within-Plato Republic IV passage.   Even within Plato’s lexicon it has a further distinction:   the relay of this Book IV passage by Stobaeus simply drops out this word from Plato’s text [Slings’s 2003 note repairs the lack of scholarly notes to Plato’s official OCT text;  Burnet had remained silent in his OCT of 1901 — also silent was Adam’s Cambridge text and the Bude text and Shorey’s Loeb, mutually independent and all major editions from the first part of the XXth century].    The prevailing consensus of the Plato mss. however does carry all three of Plato’s list (1) “polypragmosunE”, (2) “allotriopragmosunE” and (3) “epanastasis”;  all of them making reference to insurgencies of one sort or another.   The second of these words stands out here for its lexical rarity:  it is the only  PAWAG.     It creates an echo of “polypragmosunE”, the sensitive word from Elder Socrates’s older accusers, who made him out to be guilty of punishable political meddling.

The word ‘taraxh’ [ταραχὴ ] , which is closely associated with the broader context of this rare word,  is itself not at all a rarity in Plato.   It is commonly translated with terms such as ‘perturbance’ or ‘disturbance’ or ‘turbulence’ or ‘turmoil’.  We might think of it as a polar opposite to the squarely opposed specialist term ‘ataraxy’ [ ἀταραξία ] — from which a present-day drug called ‘Atarax’ has borrowed its name.    Ataraxy amounts to the calming or suppression of ‘taraxh’ [ταραχ ]; so it is the same as  the psychic calm which has to do with a person’s  self-protection from various troubling passions, anxieties, turmoils or perturbed states of mind.     

We may pause to follow down a specialist usage of this ‘perturbance’ word, within mathematics.    An early book of Euclid (Book V) has roots in the Early Academy, its original author being Plato’s colleague Eudoxus of Cnidus.  Sir T.L. Heath wrote notes on this term, in his 1921 History of Greek Mathematics, echoed in the 1996 edition of LSJ.   The usage comes from ratio theory, where it makes a curious appearance in Elements Book V, Def. 18.     It is the same same root word   ταράσσω  from which this definition draws its ‘tetaragmenh analogia’.   This definition refers to a disturbed order in ratios within the “ex aequali” operation. In specific, it involves the reversal-of-order of the ‘leader’ and ‘follower’ terms within a suite of ratios.     Now Book V is a book whose origins we can trace with confidence to a single person, a man who will have been Philip of Opus’s contemporary.  This was precisely Plato’s colleague Eudoxus.    A well-informed scholiast writes “this book is by Eudoxus”.   LSJ singles out Def. 18, alongside a somewhat similar usage by Archimedes, calling this the “math.” usage of  the verb ‘tarassw’ [ταράσσω   see LSJ s.v. I, 7]   

This particular Book authored by Eudoxus puts us in touch in turn with the young Aristotle, who was on intimate terms with Eudoxus.   Grant’s edition of Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics suggests the two of them may have even been linked in an erotic relationship.    There is a pointed and generally political meaning to  ‘taraxh’  in Rep. IV’s and the Academy’s particular human context, since on the mathematical side of it we find pairs of ratios which share a ‘middle’ term.    The special kind of disturbance involves displacing something from the ‘follower’ position (we now call this the ‘denominator’) in a ratio, re-locating it to the ‘leader’ position (now called ‘numerator’), found in the course of ‘compounding’ a pair of ratios.    Thus  Plato’s use of ‘taraxh’ in a political or micro-political context, if we keep in mind the Eudoxan connotations, will give more detailed significance to ‘allotriopragmosunE‘.  

    We may usefully pause here to anticipate a serious objection.  There are scholars who get much troubled by anyone’s suggesting (via use of terms such as ‘numerator’ or ‘denominator’) that anything impliedly Germanic ‘rational numbers’ or ‘real numbers’ can be without gross anachronism brought in as relevant to ancient Greeks before and at Euclid’s time.  A.E. Taylor got himself accused of unwarranted anachronisms of this very sort.  Let such worries, however, be counteracted by our pointing to a fact about Euclid’s text of Book V as it has come down to us, complete with its marginalia.

Scholion #30, written alongside V, Def. 9 in our best ms., offers a background explanation of , that Eudoxan book’s definition of ‘diplasion’.  Let them meantime stay calm and ataractic at our apparent anachronism, and give us all a full explanation of the Scholiast’s examples.  I mean the example he uses by taking a 1:3 ratio “meta_itself” and getting something he here puts forward as ‘double’, which is 1:9 .   Our scholiast wants us (recall that he is writing good classical Greek and thus writing at a distinctly pre-German era within our indogermanic languages) clearly wants us to compare A meta B [or A meta A] where the ‘meta’ is multiplying a pair of rational numbers to a slightly different operation.  For he offers the other result on the 1:3, namely 1:6, asking us to note that 1:6 is not identical to 1:9.  He draws the logical moral too:  what is here set down as a ‘l e g e t a i’ [perhaps originally by Eudoxus] appears to conflict with Truth, ‘a l E th e i a’ ( ἀ λ ή θ ε ι α  !)   Heiberg’s edition of this scholion use typographical highlighting to emphasise this word Truth.

 [Bringing in Book V of Euclid sets up in me a special feeling of personal pride, in that I had a brief exchange of letters in spring of 1972 with Prof. Abraham Robinson,  then at Yale, about Book V of Euclid, and its concept of Equality.  Not surpisingly, I have carefully held onto the original of Prof. Robinson’s brief letter to me these past 47 years.   Sadly for the world of philosophy and of mathematics (and for Plato scholarship) the past 41  years have suffered from Robinson’s having died very prematurely, 1974.   Robert Goldblatt in his 2012 book on the ‘hyperreals’ is not exaggerating when he calls Robinson’s 1966 book  Non-standard analysis “immortal”.   In the personal collection of letters dating back to the 1960, Robinson’s short letter to me mentioning Euclid Book V it is hard for me personally to think of its surviving the man.    It gives me the personal feeling of having been in close touch with at least two immortals, Eudoxus and Robinson.  

    Our singularly insightful American mathematician and cosmologist Rudy Rucker formulates a list of logicians working on Foundations, at the end of his recent book “The Lifebox, The Seashell and the Soul” (2005).   His list (call them the series of foundationalists) runs from the Russell-Whitehead optimisms about formal systems, via Hilbert’s equally optimistic pronouncement about “no ignorabimus” [“you have to love a guy so scholarly that he can’t avoid lapsing into Latin”] and then on via the explosive work of Goedel,  Turing and Rucker himself (formal systems are shown in repeated examples to be incomplete as they apply to the natural world, says Rucker, instances that are impossible either to prove true or to prove false, “thanks to my [emphasis mine] analysis of computation”, Op. cit., p. 442.    Rucker is here avoiding colliding with the advice of Plutarch in his “Executing self-praise, whilst avoiding giving offense” essay, by appearing to be an outside observer.)    Unhappily, however, Rucker omits Robinson from this sequence of foundation-theorists.   But General Quantification Theory and its revisions to Russellian denotation can helpfully look back via the shadows or halos, monads, or overlapping neighbourhoods of these extensions of Robinson’s work.   This will also be looking back past what Goldblatt’s book calls provocatively ‘weighting’ of infinitesimals.   Today’s theorists in cosmology and post-Einsteinian physics seem to resonate to a ‘quantum loop cosmic structure’, and to specialist a variety of terms prefixed with ‘quasi-‘     As an example, take ‘quasi-particles’.  It looks toward Robinson’s own non-standard sign of Identity  [], helpful in reconstructing denotation and the quantifier  Q^(the).   Douglas Hofstadter coined the specialist phrase “SeekWhence” to encode the inverse of the mathematical relation of “Sequence”.  ]    

Let us return to that concept of ‘uprising’ or ‘overturning’ or ]upsetting, or ‘turning upside down’.  Plato is likely to be taking up  Eudoxan connotations of this usage as he borrows from the mathematician’s language.    The Eudoxan usage of ‘tetaragmenE’ occurs, as noted above, in the same famous list of Definitions in which the so-called “Archimedean Axiom” appears as Def. 3.   “Perturbed proportion” as defined in Def. 18, carries the precise sense of a suite of ratios in which we encounter the reversal of order within a ratio or ex aequali proportion.  This reverses of the positions of  the Leader-Term (hgoumenon,  γούμενον ] and the Follower-Term ‘epomenon’ [ πόμενον ] in relation to a ‘something else’ [‘allo ti’:   λλο τι ].    LSJ cites V, Def. 18 as his mathematics example — the all-but-singular example he finds — of the mathematical use of “tarassw”  [ταράσσω].   ‘Leaders’ and ‘followers’ of course can be quite easily exchanged in the context of doctrinal leaders and followers within the Early Academy.  We have the mathematician-admiring Plato working to formulate political disturbance or turmoil or position-exchanges, amongst men he was consorting with, some of them named in Letter #7.  

Here the concept of ‘following’ is not at all distant from that phrase in the Phaedo,  [ ” ‘following’  the rational” πομενή τ λογισμ , the phrase which gives Barnard College at Columbia University its motto].     It is rationality positioned as the Leader, the individual human (in this case a female) the Follower, [perhaps not unlike one of the nymphs from the Epizephyrian Locrian caves near Rhegium, which fascinate poet and archaeologist Howard Baker of Washington DC.]   The Hermes figure in the recently reported mosaic from Amphipolis in IVth century BC Macedonia appears to be setting a direction for (and leading) one individual soul (his vehicle following in turn).   Likely in his role as guide, and towards the next life.   A nomo-phylax as in Laws VI will lead a whole Cretan City, or perhaps a whole Atlantis or Athens, after exercising his twofold freedoms to repair and to expand upon the versions of the now-deceased lawmaker’s best efforts.  The laws will have been perfected as best the Lawmaker was able, may his soul be led on to still more perfect versions on the other side, by a Hermes-inspired guide [see LAWS VI, xiv, on the ‘successor’  [ διάδοχος ].

Much life is present inside this following example:  London’s Oliver Sacks, still alive in August 2015, had been deeply disaffected by the ‘bigoted and cruel’ law in Leviticus imposed upon him by his mother around 1950, so his own words say.   Sacks was writing in the 16 August 2015 (Sunday) edition of NY Times, about the highly symbolic and emblematic ‘seventh day’ of an individual person’s life.   He then knew his days were both numbered and few.   His metaphor is quite parallel to that of LAWS VI, xiv “en dusmais [etais] tou biou” [  ν δυσμας  το βίου ]  Sacks was still alive on 16 August, as a million or more of us learned from that newspaper that same ‘seventh day’.    Sacks died very shortly thereafter.

A parallel that may be worth drawing here.  It may lend some strength to the present hypothesis of “Socrates-Alternate”, this being one of the aliases for Philip of Opus, yet another alias being “Amphinomus”.   Someone associated closely with “Younger Socrates”,  namely his fellow student of the geometer and astronomer Theodorus of Cyrene, namely Theaetetus of Sunium, is reported (in the Vita Pythagorica) as having “written laws” for Rhegium.   This is a town not much distant from Epizephyrian Locris.  This same report about such a man had authority enough to provoke Ivor Bulmer-Thomas in his 1968 article in Dictionary of Scientific Biography entitled “Theaetetus” to come forward with the idea of a kind of Theaetetus_Junior, son of Plato’s mathematician of distinction.   An anonymous Scholiast mentions the elder Theaetetus by name in the margin of our very fine ms. of Republic VII, Paris A (#1807, now viewable online at the French National Library).   This scholion uses the imperfect tense of when describing him, and also the masculine pronoun ‘hoios’ as if Theaetetus himself were someone (now no longer alive),  known to him personally.    It is located in the margin of our best Plato ms., Parisinus #1807, adjoining its Rep. VII, 525  e.   Greene of Haverford had published it  in 1938, likely to be re-published in the much expanded critical edition of the scholia, unless an obstacle reported by him on his LinkedIn page blocks this, before 2020 —  by Domenico Cufalo of University of Pisa.

Meantime the Bibliotecque Nationale de France has a good quality digital edition of Plato ms. Parisinus A up on its website for all to inspect directly, and to take images from.  That ms. frequently inserts “iota superscripts” frequently into the word Leon Robin found so fascinating — yet uniformly unreported by the OCT edition of his day.   That minutia is of great philological and historical interest.    That word occurs 38 times in the Venice ms. of Symposium, in all cases our Venetus T commits a “misspelling” from the OCT’s point of view.    Very many corroborating readings are to be found in the 9th Century ‘Parisinus 1807’ as you, the e-reader here, can confirm direcrtly.   If we take the extra step of including this word’s variant which bears a  superscripted Iota, the subject only gets more interesting, since the data appear ‘skewed’ in favor of chronologically ‘late’ writings.    Plato’s and Robin’s specialist word  is  αἰεὶ    .    Various points will need to be made about this special point of lexical texture in the Venice ms., not just in Symp. and Phaedrus , where Leonard Brandwood called special attention to it in 1976, but also and very notably in Euthydemus.   In general where the OCT commits errors of both omission and commission about the reporting of its occurrence(s).  I will be saying more about this matter below.

Can there have been a man assuming the name Theaetetus_Alt. parallel to Socrates_Alt. ?  Plato’s recognised “anger” against the “Socrates” doing upside-down or “Earth-OverFriendly” astronomy.  I will be arguing that in Bk VII, Chapters x-xi give good evidence here.   Further, I propose to interpret the anger J. Adam’s notes find against “your” Socrates, as targeting the one with the polypragmosunE-prone and gape-mouthed attitude, seeming to prefer looking downward.   It will be fitting to name that ‘other’ Socrates_Alt., not entirely unlike the ‘SwkratE tina’ of Apol. 19c, which however was a stage presence created by Aristophanes.   whether comically floating above the earth or just as comically floating over a body of water ( the sea, perhaps, or a reflecting pool fit to be looked down at by an astronomer inside his ‘cave’ or ‘observatory’).    In this latter case we have the not-comic figure, open to mockery the way a Thales may have been in an earlier ‘observatory’ and well — but bending his attention downward toward an image of the sensible order.

It is likely that Younger Socrates differs as an ‘allotriopragmosunE’ of a physical-sciences type differs from a ‘polypragmosunE’ type constantly getting entangled in debates over how best to live one’s life, including inside a sophisticated city.    The new form of -pragmosunE, Plato is saying or implying is expresseed in this exotic word ‘allotriopragmosunE’.   A mathematical thinker bending his thoughts downward toward Earth or toward a mirror of the sky, but claiming to be the newly-come-down-from-Heaven dialectician.   This new and ‘handsome’ man will be from Boeotia, not far from Thebes, where Locrian and Tarentine dialects may well have been easily understood, pythagoreans and other scientists doing both the theoretical and the lexical bridgework.    Recall the ittw Zeus Theban exclamation of Seventh Letter [ττω Ζεύς , 345  a3likely written some years prior to Plato’s completing his revisions,  — on my ‘chorizontic’ view of it at least — of Republic.   There is a harmony-of-effects with this present interpretation if the year -354 is that of Letter 7 and if Dodds is right to surmise Plato’s re-editing Gorgias near that date and also making serious revisions to Republic.    

We have an irritable young comic named Crates taunting Plato from the Theban side [ ττω Ζεύς , 345  a3 would be an echo of this within the the thrice-enraged-Plato passage of Letter VII 345 d – 346 c ].   These cynical provocations may have come via the literary side.   This is to say (for example) via the comic stage or via letters and diatribes of the usual uninhibited or cynical rudeness [see our ‘Arteno=l’ drawing of the provocative young Crates and his mentor Diogenes of Sinope, with a book of diatribes and letters opened before him; Socrate et Denys might be thought of under the rubric of ‘Twins’ or ‘Gemini’, perfectly willing to take up images and interpret them, say pictures from Homer’s epic stage or Aristophanes’ more vivid stages, or conceivably a ‘cave’ or ‘well’ such as Plato imagines in the dialogue “Theaetetus”, Thales at the bottom and a Thracian maid_or_nymph looking down mockingly at him.    J. Adam glossed a difficult passage about astronomy within Republic VII by surmising that the astronomer might be looking downward into the ritual water-trough there in the ‘pit’ or ‘cave’, conceivably getting more precision into his star_charts with help. from the nearly vertical walls.    If we shift attention from the half-mythical Thales figure forward to the fully blood_and_bone man Eudoxus, we may get a good rationalisation of the report on him “at the moment he died, he was logging data inside his observatory”.   Did the sun have a “third motion” ?  Eudoxus said “yes”, but when asked HOW LARGE was the little trepidation or anomaly, at the solsticial horizon point (say at the observatory at the Academy) he would only say “very little”.

This would be like saying that Aubrey Diller, when he died, was searching out new botanical specimens in the woods in Bloomington, Indiana, near his beloved Indiana University.   Prof. Diller, amongst his many other acccomplishments, identified Ephraim of the Souris scriptorium as the copyist of our  Marciana Library’s “Venetus T”.   Diller found many botanical treasures, and also several medieval manuscript treasures before he died, much praised by his Indiana colleagues — he died in he woods, on a botanical mission, “with his boots on”.

Returning now to the approximate scene of Eubulus’s play “Dionysius”, which included a character named “Philip”.   More irritating and insulting yet to the aging Plato would be the pseudo-philosophical pseudo-kings, the tyrants of imperial Syracuse.   These men (at the time of Seventh Letter anyway) will be straying young pseudo-platonists, thinking themselves fully equipped to recruit ‘followers’ after having heard Plato’s theories just a single time, and having not really digested the philosophical content, which is to say having not truly reflected upon them or taken counsel in the appropriate way.   This might be something like a junior mathematician experimenting with cube-doubling perhaps using a mechanical device or two.   Or like a precocious philosopher, deciding on which “enemy combatant” to subject to a targeted character_assassination, presuming to call such tyrannical and impulsive decisions by the name Philosopher_Emperor).

All this could be put under the name “science and knowledge” if one were in such an immmature way ready to interchange night-time alchemical guessing with true quadrivial knowledge, or hypothesis-based science with unhypothetical dialectical ascent to the ideas themselves.   We do have fragments of the tract by a pair of authors “Socrates and Dionysius”, fragments of material Plato might have scornfully put under the name “scientific-ish” little_technia [ τέχνια ].    Such are the tracts recently published in France, and analysed under the authors’ names “Socrates and Dionysius [Socrate et Denys]”, by French scholars Halleux and Schamp in their collection “Lapidaires Grecs” (Paris, Les belles lettres, 1985).  These tracts have approximately the value that Sir Isaac Newton’s night-time researches into Alchemy have to that same author’s day-light hour theories about the Three-Body problem and the Moon’s motions — and about fluxions of his pre-Robinsonian form.

The poet’s line “let Newton be, and all was Light” does not truly describe today’s situation (according to Curtis Wilson’s recent book, “The Hill-Brown Theory of the Moon’s Motion”, from Springer)  — describing with precision and fearlessness the precarious situation of our best present-day knowledge of the moon’s motions.    This is Sir Isaac’s Earth and his Moon.  Still less do Sir Isaac’s researches into Alchemy tell the entire scientific story about muriatic acid and various stones.   A late 2015 striking NASA photograph with the “dark side of the moon” in the foreground, our Earth in the background will have allowed today’s astronomers to pin down that moment’s position of the moon, relatively to a selected latitude_longitude on Earth, and will have helped resolve and regularise what Curtis Wilson refers to as a remaining and intellectually unpalatable irregularity (h.e. a “wobble”) in relation to our very best Einsteino-Newtonian theories, applied to the Jet Propulsion Lab’s data.

We may well have revealing cross-connections amongst these following 3 seemingly unrelated points:

please click on the following link, to get a close-up view of an image of Venetus T, fol 235r; it can make a contribution to this discussion:


Slings’s emendation at R 511, new support from Ven T (2017)


(i) a young Aristotle (ii)De Caelo I, x , a middle-aged Philip’s De Mundo chapt 7, pointed to in  Archer-Hind’s note to Tim. Chapt V,

(ii)  Timaeus Chapt V itself, where we find a manifest of the ‘inciser’ critical instrument in the anakolouthic remark about the terms ‘Heaven’ and ‘World’,  and again

(iii)  that portion of Rep. where Holger Thesleff detected an “onkos” style of the late-Plato:  Republic V, Chapt     Plato may be pointing to an ‘valorous and eristic’ [ νδρεις κα ριστικως ] phase of growth at his own Olympiad 106-107 Academy of ‘that noble power of empty verbal disputes’ [ἡ γενναίη δύναμις τῆς ἐριστικῆς τεχνῆς ]   These phrasings both occur in the same chapter of the same book of Rep.(V,iv) — the same chapter where Thesleff found the surprising “onkos” style of the late Plato asserting itself.   This can only help boost the ‘chorizontic’ argument, that some of Books IV and V were written rather late (Thesleff allows a time-range for composing of Rep.  to extend into Olympiad 106.

A further point of  Plato’s language  in Rep. V needs emphasis.  The term ‘gennaios‘ is listed by L. Campbell (Republic Essays II, p. 290) as among Plato’s “facetious” usages.   It may also be facetious when used by the wayward [disaffected?] Platonist — possibly as early as Olympiad 106 — who used the phrase “καθάπερ γενναος Πλάτων φησίν ” at De Mundo 401 b, — where he proceeds to mis-quote the Timaeus.     We will be seeing symptoms of the same ‘eristic’ stresses on that Early Academic scene, as Philip gains authority and men such as Menaechmus, Heraclides, Eudoxus and Aristotle are maneuvered into positions of lesser influence (or they opt to move elsewhere) — symptoms of this wayward behavior are properly described in in the exact language of Republic IV, Ch. xviii with its suggestive phrase  “ταραχή κα πλανή  [tarachE kai planE” ,   ‘Turmoil and straying’].

F.M. Cornford’s ‘microcosmographia’ tract, its recent new edition, carries a snapshot of Royalty on a suitable carpet in front of Cambridge University in 1894, calling the King one of Cambridge University’s “influential friends”.    There are naturally many ways of  decoding that Cornford pamphlet, some of which lead back to the blood-and-bone man who served as a kind of personal secretary to Plato when he was composing his LAWS.   His mother, from Opus, called him “Philip”.   As with the character late in the Odyssey, birthname Arnaios, but nicknamed “Iros”, we need to some decoding, some de-Iros’ing as a verse in our epic puts it.    Eudoxus’s peer in that early department of Astronomy, who may have bequeathed to Eudoxus some of the disturbing controversies involving both Plato and Philip (see the anticipated Ire of the man whom Plato says he is attacking personally under the scornful term “philodoxos” (479 a), in Republic Book V (likely written very near in time to Statesman and LAWS).   Plato will have been Number Zero in the natural sequence of ‘chorizontics’, on this accounting, beginning to separate his own final edition of Republic from its various earlier editions. in the final three chapters of our Adam-Shorey-Slings edition.   Sadly, Slings drops the Chapter designations, or we could call them Chapts. xvii-xviii-xix.    More on this topic of chapter divisions in Republic below.

This new (or, as our Venetus T  ms. calls him, ‘Socrates Alternate’) Socrates will be running the risk of ‘incurring a sinning’ by Athens’, to give it an easily decoded but ironic name.    Plato’s name for it, if he had one,  was ‘allotriopragmosunE’.   Do please check the solitary outcropping of this term, occurring as it does alongside the equally technical term ‘polupragmosunE’.   In the text of Stobaeus, this solitary outcropping does not occur, as Slings’s 2003 edition makes clear.  The pair of specialist-words (adapted to the law-court) point to something like this decoding.   You will find the two of them adjacent,  in the same passage within Chapt. XVIII of Adam’s (and Shorey’s) edition, — most especially its  lines 444 b1-b8.   These deserve a most careful reading, and even some checking of the best 3 families of mss.   Venetus T is the chief ms. from Family II.    If all goes well, this dark-horse ms. will soon be made much more available via digital images.   Projects such as those at the Polonsky Foundation and Roger Pearse’s various websites aim to put all such materials up onto the internet.   Conceivably Venetus T might be accessible in its archival quality, some 83 MB per image.

This name ‘Younger Socrates’ will in theory no longer name only a literary character, internal to Plato’s late-dialogue pair Sophist-Statesman.  Rather, it will begin to refer to a blood-and-bone human individual there at the Academy when Aristotle had recently arrived, eligible to become one of Aristotle’s early teachers.   In the subjects of astronomy and theology especially, but possibly also in geometry and spherics.   I have it pictured (but tentatively so) that Philip indulged in digressions.   I mean mental gymnastics and word-magic, numerology such as you find in Epinomis, and sorties into his own ‘true opinions about the gods’.     This would mean we should find echoes of a Euthyphro Alternate to go along with ‘Socrates Alternate’.    It fits with this that there are echoes  about the Euthyphro-inspired new understandings of language in Cratylus.    The man sometimes called ‘newer Socrates’ and sometimes (in Venetus T) called ‘Socrates Alternate’ is companionable with this alternate Euthyphro.

There is much work needed on Chapt XVIII of Republic IV.    What are we to make of the text’s phrase ‘tarachE kai planE’ ?    Philip of Opus wrote many treatises, one provocatively entitled ‘p. Graphein’.    Can this mean About Writing ?  Not likely, at least in the conventional meaning of this, since he was  a rather clumsy writer.   Denniston wrote things (about the late-Plato clumsiness) that suggest that he agrees.    Then can it be about Proving ?  This is a perfectly possible meaning, and somewhat more likely for Philip, since he did a treatise on Optics, where he wrote out proofs [some of these may even have chanced to survive, inside the corpus attributed to Euclid, alongside material which Burnyeat attributes to Plato’s other confrere, Archytas].   A third meaning of ‘graphein’ is perhaps most relevant to the tale being developed here — filing legal charges.    Filing such charges, that is, in the way orators and politicians of that day not infrequently did, to advance their political or micropolitical ambitions.   That was then regularly called ‘graphein’.

Yes, admittedly, there was in fact a ‘dramatis persona’ in Plato’s later dialogues — Sophist, Politicus and [prospectively at least in “Philosopher”] named ‘Socrates the Younger’.    Lewis Campbell brought his vivid imagination to bear on the third of this series of dialogues, the part which third part it seems Plato never wrote.    I will be suggesting that portions of Republic IV and V connect rather closely to a draft Plato created for the planned dialogue;   I have it that parts of this material  got embedded within the body, by Plato editing Plato, in this major work, Republic.  

 [Admittedly, this requires me to accept the accusatory categorization (the tone of accusation is clear in John Adam, for example) — of Chorizontics.  My defence, if I do in fact develop it, will begin by the argument that Plato joins me in this class — and even gives us a kind of leadership with  it — the way Dionysius of Halicarnassus has him doing, “combing and curling” his prose.  So if it is an offense to do this kind of cutting or incising of Plato’s corpus, Plato himself will be a leading offender, his own worst chorizontic.  Call him Choridzwn-Presbyteros.]

We may well be able to find traces of Plato’s Politicus-era thinking about and drafting of his intended separate dialogue Philosopher in the dialectical divisions within Republic V.   This is the very place where we find the seemingly personal reference to a man he calls  ChrEstos   [  χρηστός ,  479 a1   ], and blames for his look-alike behavior imitative of the perfect Philosopher:  the names Plato there coins are ‘philo-theamwn’ and ‘philo-doxos’, names likely to provoke a reaction of Anger in their target, he says.     It will turn out to be relevant to this reconstruction that each of Aristotle and Philip wrote separate works entitled ‘Of Anger’.    Neither is extant, but much of Aristotle’s thinking on the emotions  found a place in his early work, the Rhetoric.   Scholars such as David Konstan, William Fortenbaugh and others have recently done careful work on this material.

Naturally, these two authors Philip and Aristotle  writing at the Early Academy on the topic of Anger will have had their eye on angers of many types and on many  variations on the theme.    They had an abundance of types to draw upon.  The familiar epic rage of Achilles against his fellow noblemen [would that warlike passions had never been planted in the human soul, an exclamation from the angriest of the heroes], to Archytas, the restrained intellectual angered at someone from his own household [let us restrain our impulse to lash out at that slave — until the passion of our anger against him has subsided.]

Can this have been the same blood-and-bone man whom our Venetus T ms. names “Socrates Alternate” ?     The same as the man Aristotle names, — following Plato — Socrates Junior, named by Aristotle in Metaphysics Z, 11 for his ‘comparison [ παραβολ ] to the animals’ ?   I believe this to be likely.   It would give one of the common formulas for the ‘magis amica veritas’ sayings much better point, one of the forms put to the side by L. Taran.    And a still better point to the formula dismissed by Taran, — the version in which Aristotle says he preferred Lady Truth to both of his two teachers — Plato and Socrates.   This latter man will have been identical to the Early Academy personage whose Opuntian mother knew him as “Philip”, a blood-and-bone man from Boeotia, a northeast region of the Greek peninsula whose dialectal expressions Plato sometimes uses playfully, including in Seventh Letter.

But some of the subject angers will have been nearer to Plato and the Dionysius-dynasty.    This means for example the one Plato reports his having experienced in himself towards his wayward pupil, Dionysius — the one he reported on in his Seventh Letter.   Other nearby angers for this pair of “De Ira” authors to have had in view are also intimately linked to  the Academy.     For example the angry exchange reviewed by John Dillon [Heirs of Plato], the incident in which Aristotle abusively attacks  the 80-year old Plato.   This incident was recently re-described by Phillip Horky [Plato and Pythagoreanism] .    Most scholarly reports about matters like this resemble the report by novelist-scholar Margaret Atwood on Amphinomus’s taking advantage of Penelope sexually:  the scholars tend to refute the content of the story, or bury the story altogether.    This story about Philip, revelatory as it is of some of the intramural incidents within the Early Academy, points to the observation that the old man’s memory was faulty, irritatingly so to a younger man at that time and place.     It requires only the lightest generalisation before this story allows room for “some alternate”  disciple of Plato’s  — say a Philippus or a Speusippus or a Kalippus, or a Helicon of Cyzicus — to give it a quite plausible footing inside that contentious setting — all the while leaving Aristotle out of it altogether.   This latter level of generality seems to be the best one to give good sense (without descending to the level of what H.H. Joachim called ‘”substances” both universal and sheerly singular’ and  : DeGenetCorr. pp. xxxv,f.     Joachim had made a further identification here.  He identifies this ‘this-here-and-now’ sheer singularity with the Academy’s formula  ”  ἄτομον εἶδος  ” [p. xxiii].

In the present argument we have The Academy’s Prime Suitor, and incidentally tarnisher of Penelope’s otherwise Hypermnestra-like fame, Amphinomus.  Decoding some of these terms, we come finally to the sheerly singular teacher of Aristotle, Plato’s younger Socrates-like man, known to his own Boeoteian mother as the ‘this-here-and-now’ issue, the son she called ‘Philip’.   She will have known him even before he earned the ‘valorous and victorious’ analysis of his name ‘philo-‘ ‘hippos’.    The analyst’s name:   Aristotle of Stagira.

We can still keep other anger-objects in our view, whilst not omitting Socrates-Alternate.   And we get good alignment with the cautionary words in Seventh Letter, where Plato exhorts controversialists (likely his own colleagues !) against incivility and excessively personal reactions to their (or our?) forms of “manful” disputation and intellectual combat.    Plato is clearly scolding some people, and explicitly differentiating the present targets from “the many”, when he forms his scornful phrases “andreiws kai eristikws”  [ ἀνδρείως καὶ ἐριστικῶς ]and “the patrician thoroughbred power of shallow verbal quarrelling”. [ἡ γενναῖη δύναμις τῆς ἀντιλογικῆς τεχνῆς]

Now which of us — call us by our collective name, we the Professoriate — familiar with our intramural feuds and quarrels (staseis in Plato’s word),  — which of us will think it unlikely that particular tempers will flare up now and then as these prototypical academic battles raged ?   That all-too- familiar form of nuanced verbal battling we call ‘noisy quarrels inside our quiet grove of Academe’, no part of our professoriate is immune from it, ever.    Not difficult to surmise, then, that it will have been one of Plato’s own colleagues, the original source of the angry outburst now written in the margins of our Venetus T, its text of Timaeus 42 b1.   Here is a link to that scholion to fol. 259r in Venetus T:

schol. to Tim 42 b1, fol. 259r    <<   scholion from the text of TIMAEUS 42b, as relayed by Venetus T ( = Gr. IV, 1)

The scholiast at that moment will have been suffering from the peculiar pathology,  an out-of-control rage of the dispute variety ‘academic’.   I mean the angry outburst against Plato himself, on this manuscript’s fol. 259r  addressed  at the “Fool” [i.e. Plato !] who authored that line of theodicy at Tim. 42 b1, presuming to say it of our Cosmic Creator that he was overly harsh in describing our passion-burdened human nature.   The particularly dark picture of Ch XIV. . .The kind which would block him from implanting in our very natures passions such as fear, jealousy, hatred and their congeners [I learnt the phrase “congener” from Jonathan Barnes, who has helped make English what it is today, almost as vigorously as his younger brother Julian has done this.  He has published, alongside David Wiggins, penetrating analysis of ].    Our scholiast rails sarcastically at such an aristophanes-like Fool, [note how closely he manages to echo Apol. and its venomous words about Aristophanes; and then he addresses Plato himself, as if he were a man still alive, “O Supremely Wise Plato !  [    σοφώτατε πλάτων  ] “, and draws on the word strikingly prevalent in Timaeus and Critias, “enthen”.       Quite comparable is Plato’s own phrase  ”   σοφώτατε Θρασύμαχε  ”  in Rep I, 339 E.   It is a biting and seemingly cunning form of wit we see here, such as a Diogenes or his pupil Crates of Thebes might have executed with that famous joke about watching Plato as he offered to “participate in” the eating of some Theban figs (metechein, so say our cynic-like texts !, [ μετεχεν ]  this is the way Eleatics pictured individuals being ‘covered’ by a sail, thus securing their perfect associated unity.  Diogenes’s complaint was that Plato swallowed them as an undivided unity, rather than sharing them out).

Has this scholion been published before ?   Yes and no.   Domenico Cufalo’s compendious new critical edition of the scholia to Plato’s texts has not yet arrived at Tetralogy VIII, so the Venetus ms. T and this scholion on its fol. 259r has not yet [early 2015] appeared in his publication.   Within a year or two, however, Prof. Cufalo will doubtless give it his critical attention and call this scholion to the notice of a wider scholarly public.   Much wider this public — we may hope — than the 50 or so researchers now alive who have inspected Gr. IV, 1 and this folio in situ in the past 50 years.   One acute student of Plato’s corpus, a man who has paid the ms. more than one personal visit, is David J. Murphy of the Banford-Nightingale School on Manhattan’s upper East Side. Dr. Murphy is likely to turn his attention to Venetus T (again), and write more, and more insistently, about what the OCT editors ought to do about working through Tetralogy VIII.  It is not a defect Dr. Murphy is likely to find particularly troublesome, that the scribe to whom we owe fol. 259r is not Ephraim Monachus, known to Murphy.   Our later Timaeus scribe may well have found a true gem here in the margins of fol. 259r.      Ephraim has plenty to be proud of in any case, with or without fol. 259.     His “SwkratEs Allos”, — published already by Cufalo, — from the margins of fol 67, at the beginning of Statesman, comes to us direct from the 10th century hand of Ephraim.   The excerpt presented below is from the top of col. A of Venetus T’s fol. 12v.

Two points here are likely to be a matter of some interest to manuscript-scholars.   (a)  Ephraim’s text of Apology 34d manifest a particle-pair declared impossible in good Greek prose by Denniston-Dover (GP 2, p. 480), and  (b) this seemingly impossible particle-pair begins with an uncial character, more characteristic of 9th century mss. such as he Clarkianus, than mss. of Ephraim’s own period, the mid-10th.   Please look closely at Ephraim’s ‘Delta’ in the JDD-proscribed coalesced pair       δον    :

Can this scholiast have been one of those same Early Academicians, wanting to ascend to the heights, the More-Platonistic-than Plato ?   Or can he have been someone not unlike Antisthenes, but more like Krates the Theban, known for his diatribe, satire and parody ?   It would be of interest to track down more of the context of this particular scholiast.   Krates’s date of birth is commonly given as 365BC, so he would nearly 20 years younger than Aristotle, perhaps too young to have authored much before the time of Plato’s death in 347.     But he wrote plenty, and some in the right vein to contribute sarcastic or cynical laughter to add on top of those early academic feuds.   His prose is said to have resembled Plato’s own, — thus perhaps gaining pieces of it some access to the margins of what Plato himself wrote ?

We may pause to reflect a moment on the pair of variant readings  “(a) misein de kai stasiadzein”/”(b) misein te kai stasiadzein”.    Variant (a) is less likely to be Plato’s own phrase, since it suggests a contrast between “hating” and “family feuding”.   The second is vastly more expressive, and suggests that these two things are as close as a hand and a glove; most hatreds (even the ones implied at Timaeus 20 b4, the ideal polity’s “suitable war”).   This is where we want our newly set-up City, [our conversation ‘yesterday’] or human unit within this,  to quarrel and start a contentious fight just to test its vigor, do a kind of proof of performance.   This will be the primal testing of our micropolitan unit, larger than a mere domicile but smaller than a Republic: the intermediate size, the size echoed in Plautus’s play ‘Menaechmi’ when he refers to an over-refined group of judges trying to pin down a particular odor (the ‘collegium’ he calls them).     Likely the Academy at the time of Aristotle and Menaechmus of Alopeconnesus.     Our standard Socrates (in Timaeus) says he “would like to hear” how his warrior-citizens would comport themselves in a “suitable war”  [ polemon preponta].

One of Timaeus 42 b1‘s choices — the one leading to injustice, Plato says — is a ‘helpless’ submission to passions, where the human soul loses control and submissively undergoes a being-mastered by such passions.     Plutarch has quoted a “Socrates”  in his tract on the Slowness of Divine Anger, a Socrates analysing anger.  Plutarch’s source writes on the out-of-control animal rage humans sometimes experience, and notes that on occasion they are even subject to these sentiments against members of their own household (hoi suggenoi).     Heaven forbid, an out-of-control rage against a fellow Academic, we are free to imagine !     But where does our familiar Socrates say anything similar to this ?   Scholars have been perplexed.    There is a consensus that nothing exists either in Plato’s or  Xenophon’s works, nothing to match Plutarch’s “Socrates”.

We may fairly make the move to the man fitly named Socrates-Alternate, or Socrates Junior, well suited to be Aristotle’s teacher in the 106th and 107th Olympiads.   Nothing particularly difficult for a Cornford or any other latter-day academician to imagine — feuding in the pattern of academic ‘bickering’, and acting as if the entire cosmopolis and its destiny might depend upon which intra-academic faction comes out victorious at this stage of the all-too-Academic embattled factions.    Can it even get bitter, we ask?   A quarrel between homoiousians [similar-substance-theorists] and homoousians [same-substance-theorists]  for example ?   It can, certifiably, though not more than an Iota separates the warring camps.

In any case we may get further light on each of these two men from the Early Academy in the course of restoring fragments of Philip’s 2-book tract De Ira and Aristotle’s lost work on Anger and other emotions.   Some of the disputings there at the Early Academy, before Aristotle completed the Organon, will have been background to Plato’s plea for civility-in-disputing (Seventh Letter), and various of these elements will equally have been background  for one another, neighboring those De Ira writings.

[It is certainly an attractive theory that we have an allusive reference by Aristotle in E.N. I, 9, 1099 a 8-11  to a man we would call Philo-Theamwn, parallel to calling someone  Philo-Ippos.    This reference, — first demoted to the apparatus criticus by Bekker and others, then dropped entirely by Bywater at Oxford — may well mean to allude to a draft by Plato of something he was preparing for insertion into the text of Republic, Book V.     More of this story will be developed below.   In any case, Halliwell and others see plenty of room for depth and complexity (opacity, even ?) in this particular book of Republic.    Plato’s intentions in announcing his dialogue “Philosopher” may have included some polemical points against an intra-Academy adversary.   Not a juvenile Aristotle;  rather a mature man,  a teacher of Aristotle’s, so the narrative goes here.   This would be a proud man, even an arrogant man.   On the One-to-Ten continuum between the extreme of the over-likeable, man, Mr. ARESKHS [ρέσκης] and the over-irritable Mr. AUT’ADHS  [αθαδής ],   — I have Aristotle’s teacher nicknamed ‘Socrates Alternate’ scoring   9.5, self-willed and sometimes even impulsively uncommunicative.    This same man was variously known in antiquity, — as evidenced in this same Venetus T ms.  [its folium 67v, with the Cufalo-published material from the margin of the text of STATESMAN]  — under the label, or “code-name ” SWKRATHS ALLOS ”  [ ΣΩΚΡΑΤHΣ ΑΛΛΟΣ ]   I have corresponded with various scholars, Domenico Cufalo, Roger Pearse and David Murphy among them,  about this point.   

Now to be sure we have a name of great logical similarity at Plato’s Apol. 19 c3.   It is a generalised, ‘Socrates-Guy’ name:   [Σωκρατ τιν , Apol. 19 c3] .     I have yet to learn the opinion [ as of March 2015 ] of D. Cufalo and Dorothea Frede on this following point , but hope to learn it in the coming months:  Is the source of this irritable outburst now applied to Tim. 42 b1 likely to be the ill-tempered intimate of Plato’s, the man who assumed the Academic name Socrates Alternate ?    This is the scholion, image printed above, whose gist is “you are the most eminent Fool, O Eminently Wise Plato…”  can then be brought into proximity with exactly the man whose slave-turned-ruler kind is criticised as bringing on ‘turmoil and wandering’  somewhere.  Inside the Academy, as my narrative has it, where Amphinomus disputed (not always amicably) with the likes of Menaechmus, creating that “valorous and eristic” climate  [‘taraxhn kai planhn’     ταραχήν κα πλανήν   ] in Plato’s immediate vicinity at the Early Academy  He once indulged in a piece of impulsive anger-display for us in his writing his uncontrollably-angry outburst against Plato’s TIMAEUS 42 b .    This barbed scholion (see above for an image of it in Ven. T) is priceless in its fury, and in its high public profile (this is being echoed, I judge, from an original work of Philip’s, — likely not often offering such raw ‘laboratory specimens’ of the passion which Philip gave the title “De Ira” [ = π. ργς).    I have framed this impulsive outburst and have given a link to an image of it above.

If you don’t yourself perceive the anger in this Scholion, ask a classical colleague of your own choosing, or ask one of the two men of my choosing:    Gregory Nagy of the Center for Hellenic Studies or any good student of that master of the nuanced Marginal Comment, K. J. Dover, St. Andrews.

[to insert here :   the specific words in this sarcastic formula ( = w sofwtate Platwn) echo a formula used by Plato of the “Boeotian” poet Pindar.   Philip of Opus will have shared the target zone with this Boeotian Pindar, being himself of Boeotian origin.   Aristotle will soon be using predicates of some Socrates, a ‘leukos’ and ‘mousikos’.  The former of these descriptors may point to the Republic V ‘pale’ humans who understood themselves to have consorted with gods in recent times, perhaps being their direct offspring.   The gift of prophesy might come along, as belonged to the man listed as a member of the early Academy [ref. here to Joyal’s edition of Theages].   Further, this ‘leukos’ need not surprise us if he manifests the special ability to name the divinity with a full list of its suitable names (like the author of the ps.-Aristotelian tract ‘De Mundo’, its final chapter).    The De Mundo the author (possibly astronomer-theologian Philip) indulged himself in an unreasonably large ratio of  uses of “ge mEn”, as was pointed out by a scholar to David Furley.   Furley had published a piece about this work’s being a fake — a deliberate forgery, thus not entirely unlike the ps.-Platonic Theages, edited recently by Mark Joyal.   In any case the ‘mantic’ colleague of both the elderly Plato and the juvenile Aristotle  would fit the picture of the Divine-Right king,     The light- and dark-skinned references in Rep. V are followed by some hard-to-construe points about the honey-hued skin as a kind of ‘middle’ in the leukos-to-melanos spectrum of skins.  One of Philip’s treatises was on the technical topic “On Means”.    And Philip’s fellow-mortal Pindar is nothing if not ‘mousikos’.     A touchstone of the muse-inspired poets.   Plato, Aristophanes, The Muses,  The Muses, Philip the pretender — all these have the right nature or temperament for this role.   On his more optimistic days Philip may have thought he belonged to this exalted brotherhood, a pretender to the role Complete Philosopher or Philosopher King as well as to the ‘mathematikoi’ amongst latter-day pythagorean saints.]

Quite likely Philip was wounded by this moralising passage from his teacher’s Timaeus, Chapter XIV ?    Philip may possibly have taken it as targeting him personally — not at all unlike the equally famous passage in Republic V (475 – 480, targeting Mr. Filoqeamwn [Φιλοθεαμν]    From our present viewpoint, this man is much like the man who wrote the DeMundo, and drew upon himself the derisive or dismissive remark (from Plutarch) “he wants to be an Empedocles, a Democritus or a Plato”.    If Plutarch ended his list at a diachronic endpoint, it will be pointedly prior to Aristotle.   And he may have done this.   There are reasons for thinking Philip as actively composing Plato-like writings in the 106th Olympiad, near the time of Epistles II and III.   He will have been helping Plato compose LAWS, including its Book XII, and also ambitiously imagining himself as a ‘Socrates Basileus’ kind of perfect-philosopher worthy to be named a member of the august Nocturnal Council in LAWS XII.   This will have been at the same time-period when Philip was helping Plato compose the final parts of the Platono-Philipic treatise LAWS.   This was  essentially the same time when Philip was composing the almost-Plato dialogue “Epinomis”, and quite possibly the little tract mentioned by Joyal, a tetralogy-mate of the Epinomis and Laws — the Minos.   So Plato-like was Philip’s Epinomis that in antiquity it sometimes went by the name “LAWS, Book XIII”.    SUDA seems to have made Philip “the philosopher” and the author of Epinomis (subtitled “Philosopher” in one manuscript).   Philip seems to have wanted to call himself the Complete (or Perfect) philosopher — which is all the same [so the Epinomis]  as the astronomer perfected.     My hypothesis puts this Academician to be more-platonistic-than-Plato as something of an adversary of Plato.   He will be aiming  to capture for  himself the role “successor of Plato”, more precisely the διάδοχος  of “the teaching of Plato”  .    Thus he will have claimed to be personally ready to be a kind of ‘Socrates newly generated’ as the formula of Epistle II has it.    A curious scholion to Euclid’s Elements suddenly digresses into speculations on “to pan” (The All) and on re-incarnation of the soul; it has some hints and traces of the astronomical lore associated with this same Philip.   More on that in due course.   It links quite naturally to the ‘mathematical pythagorean’ topics now under active scholarly investigation on both sides of the Atlantic.     


24.xi.12; 29.iv.14:    Examples #6 and #7 here illustrate the special grammatical form “kaitoi + participle”, similar to the clause (possibly intruded into Plato’s text by Philip of Opus) at Rep. VI, 511 D 2.

At the Old Academy, Philip’s nickname appears to have been “Amphinomus”.  possibly he had a plurality of speaker-names, a pair of lead examples being :  “Younger Socrates” and [this latter made standard in Venetus T, around folio 67, beginning of Polit.] “Socrates Alternate”.   This second variation on the name of this renewed man there beside the late Plato — it should be followed down carefully & methodically soon, perhaps myself, when a blogsite like youngersocrates.net exists and is hospitable to this.   In any case the bone-&-blood man was well acquainted with mathematics,  was personally known to the elderly Plato and by the juvenile Aristotle.   Aristotle seems likely to have been a student of “Socrates Alternate”.   This is strongly suggested by Aristotle’s giving a critical summary of the “parable about the animals” he derived from this man’s “repeatedly putting it forward”.

This report has all the signs of something Aristotle is matter-of-factly reporting from his memory records, rather than whimsically inventing or imagining.   We need hardly remind ourselves that this matter-of-fact turn of mind is characteristic of Aristotle (whatever else we might think about Plato or Empedocles, men of poetico-imaginative ‘natures’ or ‘temperaments’:   ‘physis’ is a standard term for what we might call ‘temperament’ or ‘personality type’ today, — for example there in Problems 30, 6     So this remark from our customarily understood Aristotle, a man not given to imaginative inventiveness or given to attributing opinions to non-existent men, or behavior by actual men which was itself non-existent.    Someone he matter-of-factly refers to as “Younger Socrates” put forward this parable (not persuasive at all to Aristotle) “repeatedly”.       This is the man described in the text of Metaphys. “Younger Socrates,” there at Met. Z, 11    Anyone from that same Early Academy will have associated Amphinomus with LeiOdEs, in the tradition of Homer being the ‘doublet’ character to Amphinomus.   [so B. Fenik ‘Studies in the Odyssey’ (Mnemosyne 1974), esp. pp. 192-196.].

Philip is credited with a Euclid-like work “Optics” (noticed by Burnyeat in his recent piece reviving Archytas’s “Optics”).   He may also have been the same man under reference in the puzzling “twn sophwn tis” in Rep. IX,ix, 583B,ff.   Adam’s App. IV makes a mighty effort to identify this “tis”, spoken of as one of the “sophoi”, perhaps with a hint of irony.    The two leading nominees whom he reviews are Antisthenes and Democritus.   Then there is – paradoxically —  Plato Himself – Philebus 44 B,ff, where the attitudes toward Pleasure are distinctly less preacherly.

But one particular man at the Old Academy who, apart from Plato, wrote at some length about Pleasure.   He should be a lively candidate; but he seems overlooked here.   If we trust the SUDA report (you might as well say  [kaitoige] ‘surely you don’t want to give preference to trusting ourselves, critics from 11 centuries later !’).   Philip is credited with a treatise  p. h(donh=s a.  (“p. HEdonEs, 1 book”.)    Our present-day vantagepoint does not allow us to say confidently that no part of that book found its way into what we now call Plato’s Philebus .    Nor can we be sure none of it found its way, alongside material from Eudoxus, into EN Books X and IX. 

It may be worthwhile to insert an excursus here, based upon a series of Scholia to Euclid I, 15 (esp. Scholl. ##59-62).   This will take us down a path JL Heiberg laid down.   He collected and published with Teubner in 1888, the scholia to all of Euclid’s Elements.      The Scholion of greatest interest here is the one leading toward the Philip-like sentiment also expressed in Schol. #18 (skeptical towards ‘poiEsis’, on the grounds of its debatable concessiveness to ‘time-dependence’ inside mathematics).   We might take steps to follow the distinctive verb ‘diamphisbEtein’ written by Aristotle in his piece ‘On Friendship’, — on some good accounts of Aristotle’s early writing this will have found its way into EN, at Bk IX, 2 1155 a 32ff.   Campbell had called attention to the relative novelty of this term of art as of Plato’s time.    In Aristotle himself, however, it occurs several times, once in the suspect book of the Metaphysics, namely  Kappa.     This is the book that repeats much earlier material from the same treatise, and that is further peculiar in suffering from a rash of that special DeMundo phrase, shared with Xenophon:   ‘ge mhn’ [ γε μν].     Various of these peculiarities were too much for Aristotle scholars beginning with W. Christ and continuing past W.D. Ross.   They agreed that Book Kappa should be deleted in its entirety.    Herbert Granger has recently shown a disinclination to comply  with this scholarly consensus, wanting to restore it to Aristotle himself.   Harold H. Joachim in his 1922 edition of the De Gen et Corr.  indicates that he is open to either idea about Book Kappa:   its 1061 a28 – b33, which Joachim cites  (see his note 1 to p. xx) may or may not be genuine Aristotle .

A noteworthy piece of statistical information can be brought in here:    in just a little over 2 Bekker pages at the beginning of Book Kappa as Bekker has it, we find a total of 6  cases of  γε μν.  This is a rate at least ten-fold greater than Aristotle’s average, but it is in line with the rate of its occurrences within the De Mundo, and also with a paraphrase in Proclus “On Euclid I”, Friedlein edition’s pp. 201, 202, 205, 207.   This material is all applied to Euclid I, 1, — as is the Philip_like Scholion #18.

There is a good sense of ‘halfway’ which permits us to say that “Halfway back to Plato, — if we began from Aristotle, — we have our filo-qeamw=n(“ PhilotheamOn”) adjacent to Aristotle’s toying with the etymology   fil[o]-ippos  “Phil-ippos”.   An allusion, possibly, to this self-same student of Plato’s — Philip of Opus ?   This would put him in a fully plausible position, a pupil of Plato’s and a teacher of Aristotle’s  [see 1099 a 10 in the ‘E’ MS, commended by myself in my letter to J. Barnes,  — of early Feb 2010].

There is already some allusiveness in Aristotle’s playing with  the name of this man between himself and Plato — Philip of Opus.   But we can find much more in the vicinity of this allusion if we include the point that the word   filoqeamw=n [‘philotheamOn’] is more likely what Aristotle wrote at 1099 a 10.    We need not follow I. Bywater, who not only does not read this word, but also declines to mention its having some ms. authority,  even in his apparatus criticus.    Certainly H.H. Joachim’s high admiration for Bywater and his other early ‘Aristotelian Society’ scholars was well founded [his preface to the 1922 edition of De Gen. et Corr.].    All the same we ought to follow the example of Slings (his Clitophon, p. 342,f), follow him in keeping the door open to some ‘ancient tradition’ behind any of various manuscript peculiarities which have survived these dozens of centuries in the textual traditions of Plato and of Aristotle.  In any case the present Oxford edition has the [considerably less plausible] reading filo-qeorw=n  (‘philo-theorwn’).    And, alas, Bywater did not preserve the Bekker note listing the “philo-theamwn” varia lectio.    This shift, however, imports a quite different meaning, a difference of substance.   It is as if we let a ‘theoretician’ be interchangeable with a theater-goer !      A lover-of-abstract-knowledge  (qeorhmata)  is allowed to be exchanged for a lover-of-spectacles qea/mata  (‘theamata’) !      ‘Theama’ is in fact the root word meant to be echoed at  Bekker  1099 a10.     So  qeamw=n  has precisely commensurate authority at   a10.

Roughly that same time (say early Olymp. 106, when Philebus  is being composed, and Plato in his very advanced years – those poignantly called ‘our sunset years’ in Laws VI, xiv  — see Slings on Plato’s using the first-personal plural form, in Clitophon for example, to indicate ‘myself’ at Clit. 406 a10.    Around this date we have Phil. 44B, referring to ‘some wise someone’ who is further described as  ‘deinos peri physin’.    John Adam made penetrating suggestions on the type of man here alluded to by Plato.   ‘Pythagorean preachers’, says Adam (app. x to Rep. Bk IX.   This would put our author at the Academy and make him not unlike the Empedocles referred to by Aristotle here in EN IX,2.

A threesome of men (and their temperaments) is put together in Problems 6, 30.    They have attributed to them the shared temperament or ‘personalilty-type’, something about their black bile.   This triumvirate has oddities of various sorts.  But one striking point is its listing Socrates after Plato:     Empedocles, Plato and Socrates.     The Elder Socrates kept his bile pretty well controlled, we might think:  “Go ahead and condemn me to death, O Athens !    As far as I know this may be a not so severe penalty, especially for a peaceable man who has avoided misbehaving.   Temperamentally a reflective and perhaps even phlegmatic man, all the more free from black bild now that I have reached the age of seventy”.

Can Younger Socrates, — or Socrates Alternate — have had something more bilious, even choleric, about him ?    He would have to have had considerable personal energy and a willingness to thrust himself forward there at the Academy, claiming  a position in that succession of eminent men beginning back at Socrates Himself, moving forward via Plato and pointing ahead to such prominent men as Eudoxus, Dicaearchus, Aristotle and Theophrastus.    Again, as we have reliable evidence to inform us, Philip put himself forward as having opinions worth publishing on topics under vigorous debate, such as pleasure, the passion of anger, and On Writing (p. graphein).    Either of the standard meanings of ‘graphein’ here would make Philip a bold man:  “On proving [as in geometry] or On Writing [as in Plato’s Phaedrus”].

Some further thoughts about the intra-Academy personage who was philosopher, eponymised figure from Homer, close associate of Plato’s before Aristotle came of age:


31.v.17, inserted today, from hullwind.com, its ‘Amphinomus…’ ,  (originally drafted in 2012, 2014):


At the Old Academy, Philip’s nickname appears to have been “Amphinomus”.  possibly he had a plurality of speaker-names, a pair of lead examples being :  “Younger Socrates” and [this latter made standard in Venetus T, around folio 67, beginning of Polit.] “Socrates Alternate”.   This second variation on the name of this renewed man there beside the late Plato — it should be followed down carefully & methodically soon by someone, perhaps myself, when a blogsite like youngersocrates.net exists and is hospitable to this.   In any case the bone-&-blood man was well acquainted with mathematics,  was personally known to the elderly Plato and to the juvenile Aristotle.   Aristotle seems likely to have been a student of “Socrates Alternate”.   This is strongly suggested by Aristotle’s giving a critical summary of the “parable about the animals” he derived from a point he soberly reports.  Someone Aristotle calls “Younger Socrates” repeatedly putting that parable forward” [Metaphys Z,11].

This remark of Aristotle’s has all the signs of something matter-of-factly reported from memory records,  — thus not at all imagining, or projecting onto a persona from Plato’s late dialogues.   Still less is there any whiff of the whimsically invented story about what he (Aristotle) is fictionalising about.   We need hardly remind ourselves that this matter-of-fact turn of mind is wholly characteristic of Aristotle, early and late, and strongly contrasting with the temperamental bent of a Plato or Empedocles, men of poetico-imaginative ‘natures’ or ‘temperaments’.   The way of speaking about a man’s ‘temperament’ is well illustrated by the term ‘physis’ is a standard term for what we might call ‘temperament’ or ‘personality type’ today, — for example there in Problems 30, 6     So this remark from our customarily understood Aristotle, a man not given to imaginative inventiveness or given to attributing opinions to non-existent men, or behavior by actual man which was itself non-extant.    Someone he matter-of-factly refers to as “Younger Socrates” put forward this parable (not persuasive at all to Aristotle) “repeatedly” (Aristotle’s imperfect tense brings along this meaning).       This is the man described in the text of Metaphys. “Younger Socrates, there at Met. Z, 11  Anyone from that same Early Academy will have associated the Academy’s Amphinomus — as in the phrase ‘Amphinomus and Speusippus’ — regardless of whether the local nicknaming was meant to allude to literary figures, such as those of the late books of Homer’s Odyssey.

A further expansion of the parallelism needs to be made (it is a reasonably good parallel) between Amphinomus-suitor-to-Odysseus’s-wife-and-legacy and Amphinomus-suitor-to-Academy-and-Plato’s-didascalic-legacy.   There is the further parallel, between the ‘Ctesippus’ figure among Penelope’s suitors inside homeric legend and the ‘Ctesippus’ local to Plato’s Euthydemus.   The latter is some kind of ‘socratic’ descendant in those early days, not far from Olymp. 101 when Eubulus was writing comedy material about the Rich Man. Likely the Elder Socrates, a legend already in his own time, will have already  grown to become the larger-than-life heroic ancestor to the variety of later minds, Socratics Plato and Xenophon (both writers of ‘Symposium’ and ‘Apologia’).    Not yet grown toward the heroic Sage for Zeno of Citium, and for successor schools ‘descendancies’.    Were there to have been a blood-and-bone person (perhaps wealthy) there when Plato was writing Euthydemus, we would have room for asking “do we have, right here in the Academy, a  ‘socratic’ in the generic sense” ?      The parallel to be drawn is between the pair Amphinomus/Ctesippus from the homeric legends (both being suitors of Penelope, but the first having won her admiration, the second being notable for his wealth).   A figure whom Homer makes a kind of ‘doublet’ character of Amphinomus might seem a good , LeiOdEs namely.     Unlike the names “Amphinomus” and “Ctesippus”, history seems not to have preserved for us reports of any such third suitor, LeiOdEs.   But inside the inherited legends of Plato’s time, homeric scholarship has identified as a ‘doublet’ of Amphinomus  [so B. Fenik ‘Studies in the Odyssey’ (Mnemosyne 1974),  pp. 192-196.].

Let us make use of more of this (liberally provided) e-space to develop this theory further.   In today’s roomier surroundings, we need not fret over the cramped space Ephraim the Monk and his limited parchments, [in the XXIst century there will be no such calamity as befell L. Campbell at the beginning of the XXth — his Plato Lexicon being cut from 900 to 600 pages, fretful editors at Clarendon too illiberal with their allocation of printed pages].        Back in Ephraim’s time — a few years away from 954 AD — this monastic scribe was abbreviating his Plato texts and his Aristotle, squeezing in an odd example or two of the “half-H” character such as with his word “hidion”, all in order to save space.     Ephraim also crafted ligatures to keep within his space limits.    He was the dutiful copyist of the now proud primary witness to Plato, Venetus  T, and also the space-conscious mansusript called Marcianus 201, containing Aristotle’s Organon.   These two treasures are today kept in safety and cloistered solitude (so to speak ‘in a silo’) adjacent to Piazza San Marco.  This present theory wants to sketch the third Academician near Plato near in time to Olympiad 106,  (Mr. X of the formula Plato+Aristotle+X).     The formula  is designed to situate an Old Academy man capable of wearing  several epithets simultaneously, even proudly and almost regally.     The author naturally wants to emulate his immortal counterparts, even their deliberately assumed polyonymity.   The figure of  Zeus as  described devotedly by the author of the DeMundo Chapt. 7 expatiates on this very point.      That is where Zeus gets praised as ‘polyonymous’ .    

There are several further signs of the Old Academy’s habit of playing on names.  Simplicius echoes elaborate plays on the name “Eudoxus”.    “Theophrastus” was a nickname, not his birthname.  No shame therefore if our DeMundo Academician with an epi-anthropic scope of vision [do you have an opinion on who originally wrote the Scholion numbered 18 in JL Heiberg’s edition, to Euclid I, 1 ?    His attitudes have a deeply reactionary Platonism about them, like those of Amphinomus.  He is a reactionary devotee, writing prose that is “more Platonistic than Plato”, and alive during the final years of Plato’s own life.   This was when Aristotle was reaching maturity, but perhaps had not finished working on his  Analytics, or Topics.    Pamela Huby demonstrated that the latter work dates to near the year 360 [Olympiad 106].    [there will some day soon be more on this subject in “Lemma 1 on Philip of Opus and the angle-sum within the Triangle”.    The date of this coinage seems likely to be close to Huby’s date forTopics.     In any case this scholiast creates the startling coinage “epi-dhmiourgesthai” in Schol # 18.   He appears also to indulge in word-plays on  “epi” in other passages now following their paradromic-course in our best mss. of Euclid.     Some kernels of gold (as Heiberg put it) in these marginalia.   This scholiast is leading up to his famous remarks on the #1 illustrative “Academic” morsel of geometry’, the famous “internal angle sum of the triangle,  I, 32.   An immediate pupil of Plato’s and immediate teacher of Aristotle’s.   Who better to claim the nickname “Socrates Junior” than a teacher at the Old Academy well versed in geometry and astronomy ?     This might well be Amphinomus, or Aristotle’s teacher “Socrates Allos”.

My lightly speculative Early Academy narrative has him naming himself “Amphinomus” as pretender to succeed Odysseus.    “Neocles” or “Neos SokratEs” [ Socrates-the-Younger] will be other suitable nicknames for this polyonymous man.   Call him a hero, a daemon, a demi-god.    After all Amphinomus and his doublet LeiodEs were heroes [B.  Fenik, “Studies in the Odyssey”, 1974, proves these two mutually dual].     Plato was soon to be called ‘divine’, Aristotle ‘daemonic’,  Theophrastus ‘divine in his phrasings’  [B. Einarson, in his Loeb edition of the De causis plantarum proves that the divinity of his prose style is only a notch below that of the divine Plato.  Einarson’s magisterial work deserves more attention.   He is on a par with Denniston,  Slings and Dover ].       We may speculate a bit further  towards Old Academy nicknames like Hermogenes and Hermokrates [Philip was a devoted follower of Hermes] or Kal-Ippos (a fellow astronomer,  familiar to young Aristotle, obliquely complimented in Metaphys. Lambda 8 ( 1073b) ?   “Amicus Calippus, sed…”    I once tried to interest Jonathan Barnes in this ‘Amicus Kalippus, sed…’ formula, but not to any effect.    Perhaps he thinks this topic treated to a finality by L. Taran.   At least so I surmise).    If Plato did in truth compose a draft for his announced dialogue The Philosopher, this would have been near Olympiad 106 when all three men, — he, Younger Socrates” (if any),  Philip and the young Aristotle were hard at work.   If Plato were so inclined, he could weave material from it into Republic V, that draft might have been much the way Republic-scholar Campbell once imagined this.    [Campbell was crafting a speculative note to his edition of “Politicus” 257]       I would diverge from Campbell’s suggestion– that Plato has as his central speaker  a repeat character :  young Theaetetus again.    We mightdo better to imagine a repeat of our astronomical expert, Younger Socrates himself.    It will only be a fuller credit to his play-on-the-word-epi if this same blood and bone man also wrote the (now-lost) pair of dialogues, entitled “epi DialektikEs” [π Διαλεκτικς ]  and “epi Tyrannou”, deploying his genitives startlingly.   [see below, Lemma 2, “Philip’s startling uses of the prefix “epi-“, as Hellenic prose was devolving into Hellenistic prose”]

[22.vii.15]  Do please notice the possibility of a serious connection to Chrysippus’s “On Dialectic”,  from whose Book III we have a fragment.   It forms the basis of what we may call the Brunschwig_Barnes puzzle:  how to find a dialectician “Socrates” —  listed in seemingly non-chronological order, as AFTER ARISTOTLE !  This substantive anomaly (Brunschwig called it ‘scandaleux’) is reduced to a tolerable and even regular phenomenon.   We just need to recall our subscriptives, where n>1  within the formula Socrates(n), and think of the self-styled “dialectician”, Aristotle’s teacher, his sometime friend and colleague Philip of Mende, Opus and Athens.   Philip the mannigfaltig, in Ortsname, in EpiklEsis [here again, Philip’s Epi-X work the Epinomis includes a striking and standout term, ‘epi-klEsis’, perhaps to be sorted with the slightly more general sort_word ‘epi-thet’, where both a hat and a label can be epi-thetised on a man’s head.   Philip’s generalized_uppity character would allow him to interpolate something at Republic 511d, something self-servingly and deliberately put there to help him create a blurring (recall LCampbell’s consciously blurred formula “not absolute noEta”.  We may paraphrase this blurred marker, brightly demarcating the mathematicians’s hypothesis-undercut entities so as to set them off distinctly from true Realia: “these fancy new mathematica will have the (correspondingly fancy) feature that they are not truly or appreciably lowered [see R. Goldblatt on the hyperreal special meaning of ‘appreciable‘]  from the ‘epi’ range of noEta.”   Continuing our effort to paraphrase the conciliatory Victorian interpreter:  “. . . and this inappreciable little lowering need not trouble those of us at the Academy, during the tumult years of our Epi_Stasis ,  — also rightly called the taraxh_kai_planE years, — h.e. the miserable period for us, Olympiad 106”.  

These Olymp. 106 years would be those same ones when we may reasonably look for “originaria” for the vivid drawings of Plato and Socrates (in that order) —  caricatures really (h.e. that preserved to this day at the Bodleian library, under the curatorial supervision of Barker Bentley).  Plato the Unwriting and Socrates the Writing philosopher !   We need a Socrates_Allos.   Fortunately, we have at least one, the almost-dialectician Philip of Opus/Athens.   [Philip’s way of writing our numeral ’13’  may possibly survive into the template from which our monk Ephraim was working in the mid-10th century, as he wrote numerals such as  ‘GI’ and ‘DI’, meaning three_atop_ten and four_atop_ten.   Fol. 109v in Ephraim’s “Phaedrus” suffers anomalising forces just as our count reaches ’11’.   The ‘intrusive’ preposition ‘epi’ pushes aside the conventional ‘kai’, we have the Calendaric days of the Athenian month numeralised thus ‘tris epi deka’ &c.Thus he must render our ’12’ and ’13’ with his “mu” and “nu”, both lower-case cursives (again, anomalously).   Unhappily D. Cufalo’s critical edition of the Scholia opts to ‘neglect’ some of these anomalies over the numerals.  See Cufalo’s Vol. I, pp. 122-123, his apparatus criticus.  from the time when H.W. Smyth’s chart on p. 722 lists a series of ‘epi’ intrusions.   The ‘intrusive’ preposition ‘epi’ pushes aside the conventional ‘kai’, we have the Calendaric days of the Athenian month numeralised thus ‘tris epi deka’ &c.   The ordinal numerals listed by John the Lydian in his Annals (Roger Pearse has called attention to this material) are of interest here.  The backward-looking numeral “hendeka” for our date “11th” is undeclined; but John Lydus’s “dekamias” , “dekatetras” and “dekaheptas” are not so.  Conceivably our Venice ms. has sources in common with those of John Lydus ?  John shows much interest in writing in an “archaising” manner.

KJ Dover takes an example, a speech by Alcibiades, relayed by Thucydides.    He makes it a milestone in the evolution of Hellenic prose.   But we may fairly think ahead some 50 years [counting from the ‘dramatic date’ of Plato’s , and to a time when Attic prose was showing marks of decay (Denniston had put on exhibit some of the Epinomis and some of LAWS as samples and exempla of this decline).     To resume the account of Philip’s super-ambitious manner at the Old Academy and its deservedly admired wise men of astronomy.       We may recall once again those oscillations of the Wheel moved ahead by Fortune.   That Wheel can have also moved backwards, just as kingdoms can do, indeed are not infrequently witnessed to do.   Could the generation of Dionysius II  find its way back  to the times  and  patterns of  Sicilian Dionysius I, or his wife’s father Hermocrates ? Sym   The myth about cosmic time reversing itself, micro-cosmic time with it, could apply to microcosms like Syracuse and Athens.    Still smaller microcosms can have the “clock turn back” to a “Father Parmenides”  or a “Great Uncle Pythagoras”.   [a demon or demi-god there near Philebus 16 ?]     So it might seem to Plato and some of his then-Academicians.].    In this un-actualised scenario, we will have Plato’s intended Philosophos aspiring to publish his draft treatise  Epi DialektikEs (  π διαλέκτικς )  This is a title actually preserved in the Vatican Palatine #173 ms., seeming to entitle a work by Plato].     

My theory has this same Academician Mr. X someone who will have known Plato intimately when he was composing Republic VII, and will also have known much of the mathematics (especially Astronomy) and much of the ‘dialectical science’ there under discussion.   Of Plato’s mathematical companions the two greatest were no doubt Theaetetus and Eudoxus.   But the third was not Aristotle; it was (or may have appeared briefly to be) this very Mr. X.  It surely fits in nicely with this theory that we have here the same X   who satisfies the formula   Plato+X+Aristotle, where X narrowly precedes Aristotle at the Old Academy.     [see below, Lemma 1]     

This point will be developed more fully below.    Proposition 15 of Elements Book I is a sort of Lemma to prop. 32 of that same book, about the “two right angles” property of the Triangle qua triangle.     The man whom Proclus names as complaining about I, 32 is likely to be (for various reasons which I will offer elsewhere.   Not because space is lacking here (which it is not), but because we are better advised to keep in reserve the voluminous material coming to be known as  TLG5022.txt,, h.e. Scholia in Euclidem, as published in Heiberg’s Volume V and discussed in his Danish monograph of 1888.    Its Scholion #61 makes the scholiast a devotee of Hermes;   but the closely related scholia ## 112-114 (to I, 32) have the same scholiast [this is a to-be-proved lemma] — a personal devotee of Plato, during Plato’s own lifetime.    Proclus has a name for this man.   He calls him   PHILIP .]

To resume.    We may well have had a blood-and-bone man Younger Socrates will have been likely to be nearby when Plato was writing the final lines of his dialogue ‘Statesman’, the lines now appearing in the revised OCT edition of Plato attributed by our Oxford editors to Socrates the Elder.   It is all somewhat confusing, this interweaving of artistically created persons and real ones.    We risk making things less clear if we attempt to decipher the famous remark or remarks to the effect  “my friendship with Plato and Socrates is true, but my greatest friendship is [reserved for] Truth.”     Some recent scholarship (not to be accepted uncritically here) makes some drastic simplifications by denying that Aristotle had any teacher named Socrates, and by also denying that Aristotle said the famous words about two men, rather than about Plato solely.    Prof. Taran prefers to think Aristotle said it, if indeed he said it at all, only in reference to just the one man (Plato).   Socrates ends by being dropped, both in name and in substance.

Here the idea is to suppose that Younger Socrates will have been a  flesh-bone-and-blood individual man, ‘sheerly singular’ in the phrase of H.H. Joachim, — writing in the immediate vicinity of both Plato and Aristotle near Olympiad 107.   We may safely begin with this hypothesis, and see where we may responsibly take its consequences.  There is certainly a coherent theory which makes him the same man alive within that Old Academy, the man referred to as helping craft cities in Epistle XI.   Taking a less agnostic view of our evidence, he will also be the man wrote the Epinomis  and the pre-Aristotle tract  De Ira.    On my theory he will have been an ambitious man, claiming the prerogatives of ‘philosopher’,  ‘dialectician’.     Perhaps he also wrote the little dialogue which shares a Tetralogy IX place with LAWS and EPINOMIS, namely the ps.-platonic  Minos.  Only somewhat less compelling is the hypothesis that this same man wrote both the DeMundo and several of the Scholia that come down to us in Euclid’s margins, one of them explicitly attributed to Philip of Opus by Proclus.    But this more extended set of hypotheses can be left for another time and another site, perhaps calendar 2015 and http://www.youngersocrates.net.     There will then be reasons for preferring the older OCT text, edited by Burnet, to the revised OCT now before readers of Plato, at least in the readings at the very end of the Statesman.   The young and kingly Socrates (as will there be argued) felt ready to succeed Plato, ascend to the role of DIADOCHOS  ( διάδοχος-of-platonic-teaching — so SUDA) at the Early Academy.

Do you think it possible, even likely, that certain other puzzles about historical personages at the Old Academy are linked to this one about ‘Socrates the King’ ?   I for one do think this, and will devote some time and research to gathering supporting evidences.     Certainly one unresolved puzzle was very troubling to the late much-lamented Prof. Jacques Brunschwig of the Sorbonne.   Rather recently, but years before his all-too-early death he had done a Bude edition of Aristotle’s Topics.    This involved his hunting down the source of the “dialectic” attributed to earlier sources by various philosophers  of late antiquity (Stoics and Platonists notably).   The scholarly issue here was over attributing this special amalgam of ‘dialectic’ to someone called ‘Socrates’.     Oddly enough, a knowledgeable Plutarch lists such a Socrates AFTER Plato, not before him, and lists him alongside Plato’s followers, not Plato’s predecessors.   He also attributes to him a concept of dialectic strongly incompatible with that of our familiar Socrates.

So severe is the incompatibility of these variant ‘Socratic’ dialectics that Prof. Brunschwig was provoked to call the amalgam “scandaleux”.     Now a Sorbonne scholar is not easily scandalised (less easily, for example, than the ex-Oxonian  Jonathan Barnes, whose Gallic sensibilities do not always sit peaceably with his Anglican).     But why, asked Brunschwig, why should Chrysippus in Book III of his “On Dialectic” have things so wrong about Socrates and dialectic  ?         After all,  Chrysippus was in a fine position to know his Old Academy intimately, and many of the nuances of its patterns of “Dialectic”.  Perhaps he even knew two or three variants of which we today have almost no remaining trace.   Or traces so faint as just an idiosyncratic title in a Vatican ms. of Plato ?   Certainly many of the writings of some latter-day Socrates (yet a man living before Chrysippus’s time) may have gone lost in then-preceding centuries.   Lost to us, therefore, but nevertheless still available to Chrysippus and Plutarch.     These well-read scholars of late antiquity would naturally assume that their readers would have copies of their own.   So they will be unaware of what becomes so confusing to Brunschwig and others of us, more than 2 millenia later.       Easy enough for them to dis-ambiguate their various ‘Socrates’s.   Not so easy for us.

One quite special item in evidence:  a tract  from near Plato makes a ghostly appearance in the Palatine ms. now called “P”.     It is a work entitled “ἐπὶ Διαλεκτικῆς   [Epi DialektikEs]“;  this title is relayed in the margins of a curiously complex  Plato ms. now held by the Vatican [they call it Vaticanus Palatinus Gr. 173],  from  the Tenth Century.     Alongside various complete dialogues, it also contains excerpts from Plato and paraphrases of his writings.   With help from the Leonard Polonsky Foundation of London, this ms. may achieve its digitally-archived format, available to scholars from Oxford or London, Paris or Rome — or Hull, Massachusetts.      According to a full feature story on the BBC in early 2012, the coming 4 years ought to see a major outpouring of digitally processed mss., some from the Bodleian, some from the Vatican.      With luck, this will include the Vatican’s Plato ms. Palatinus Gr. #173.   It may possibly insight into some of our seek-whence questions, a kind of apostolic succession leading back to Aristotle, Philip and to Plato himself.

In any case, this title ‘epi dialektikEs’ is tantalising both as to its content and in as to its syntax.   There is a reason for suspecting that this title was coined in the near-vicinity of Plato:   two passages in Aristotle have similar “epi+genitive”  X syntax, meaning “concerning X”; this is otherwise quite rare in classic al Greek, according to LSJ s.v.].      This title, along with the one nearby it in this same Palatine ms., suffering from the same peculiarity of syntax — “Epi Tyrannou” —  calls out for more detailed study.      As to its authority,  sometimes (as at Symp. 207 d2)  it ascends near to the status of a primary witness to Plato himself.   It is in any case in a stemma near  to our Tenth Century ms. in Venice,  Venetus    T  .    P and are close, and not distant from a third authoritative family of Plato mss.,  W.   At Symp. there is a broad consensus (especially of the striking word   AIEI  ) of  B, T, W, P and the Oxy. papyrus.    It is startling that it should include also this pair of titles with the two little “sprachliche Anstoesse” delivered by their surprising pair of “epi” locutions.   Again, these may match some wordings now preserved in Euclid’s margins.

Is  a surviving trace  of a tract from the Old Academy, familiar in some form to Chrysippus and his readers, including Plutarch, — but not otherwise familiar to us  ?     In any case this pair of works twice shares strange grammatical construction “epi+genitive-of X”, meaning “concerning X”.    Vastly more standard was ‘Peri X’ as in the De Anima, De Caelo or De Ira.      The LSJ article on “epi”, III includes the sub-section on “epi+genitive”.   Their two examples of this  rare usage are drawn from the Rhetoric and Nicomachean Ethics — both being works from just the right period of Aristotle’s writing — the earliest.    This agrees nicely with the theory that has Younger Socrates one of Aristotle’s teachers — teaching Plato to the impressionable young man.    The man Aristotle calls “Younger Socrates” (Met. Z, 11)  may have created this special way of using “epi” to mean our “concerning”.    Did this Socrates initiate this, or did Aristotle ?

One of the fragments preserved of Amphinomus (see the Lasserre collection) brings out a similar point about ‘priority’.   Which of the two men (Aristotle or Amhinomus) was FIRST to insist on a point about mathematicians NOT seeking out CAUSES ?     The fuller story theory to be developed at  http://www.youngersocrates.net will draw on a lengthy passage in Proclus on mathematics and will conclude that this poly-onymous man of Epinomis, DeMundo and Book XII-alt. of Elements, this very same man was the mathematician-astronomer-philosopher, Philip of Opus.     No shame to him if he assumed a variety of names.   This ‘polyonymy’ parallels that of Zeus, as outlined and celebrated in DeMundo 7.

To resume our work on the now lost work “epi DialektikEs”.    There will have been plenty of time for this work to have (a) had an influence, say on Chrysippus, but (b) being largely lost to the tradition — except for its ghost of a title, surviving now in Vaticanus  P.    Both Plutarch and Chrysippus before him will have had a broad and deep acquaintance with the Old Academy (Sandbach’s skepticism on the transmission of Aristotle can reasonably be kept to the side here).    Plutarch may have been willing to cite over-free versions of some of his texts, or been willing to paraphrase where we would prefer precise quotation.    But he was fond of the proverbial:   “let us begin from our own hearth”, meaning in Plutarch’s case that same Old Academy, Plato alongside personally.     And Plutarch had a broad range of books to cite from or paraphrase from — books we sadly lack today.

We may follow down yet another nickname which originated at or near the Old Academy and involves the name “Socrates”.     Epistle #2 riddlingly refers to a man it calls :  “Socrates, born anew [neos gegonotos], but handsome this time”.     The handsome man stage-right in the mosaic picture of Astronomers (the so-called ‘Philosophenmosaik in Neapel’) has many of the right characteristics and attitudes to match this Handsome Younger Socrates.    See Figure 2 below, where our ‘Socrates, new series’ brings along his pixelated face.    [The physiognomy of Eudoxus can be extracted from the seated figure stage-left, also with a scroll in his hand.     This point will be a focus of the analysis projected to appear in fuller form at a wordpress blog with this following name or one not much distant from it, ‘younger’ replaced by ‘alternate’:


The ps.-Aristotle work Problemata has just the same mis-ordering issue when giving a list of “mad poets”, so to speak driven crazy by their ‘Melancholic’ personalities/temperaments.    The list given has this historical mis-ordering:   Empedocles=>Plato=>Socrates.    A wild poet Socrates ?   Well the author of  DeMundo Ch. 7 , — especially in his poetic and melancholic rant on the ‘polyonymous Zeus’, — fits this personality type neatly.   Call him Socrates Homericus, or S. Musiko-Manikos.      Ask Jonathan Barnes if he could write a tract entitled “Coffee with Socrates-Teacher-of-Aristotle”.    He surely could do, but likely will not do.  In the process, this elder brother of the novelist Julian Barnes might encounter evidence about the authorship of the ps.-Aristotle tract, the DeMundo.      We are entitled to a ‘secundum mentem’ inference here, I think.   My possible-Barnes sometimes answers my questions in these arcane matters.    He answers my question:   “was the DeMundo written near in time to Aristotle’s De Caelo, and less than one human generation after Plato wrote Timaeus ? ”     

Jonathan has attributed to Aristotle a fondness for answering complex questions : ” Yes and No “.      Some three years ago now I wrote to Jonathan and asked that question, namely about the authorship of the DeMundo.   Was its author Philip of Opus ?   As I interpret his answer, it was a friendly “Yes and No”.    This agrees with the answer I got from David Furley of Princeton, to whom I had written three years previously.

In that mixed mass of early-Academy material gathered under the name “Problems” (later getting attributed to Aristotle) we come upon a man named “NeoklEs”  (956 a 13), who had a special relationship with Plato.   He could confront Plato with a question, and demand to get an answer.    Scholars have been unable to identify this man.   A young Pittsburgh scholar with good access to libraries in Italy is now working on some mss. of Aristotle’s ‘Mechanical Problems‘, the diagrams especially.  She is likely to throw valuable new light on that scene in the Old Academy, based on various of  these north-Italy sources of evidence.    One particular question that arises is:   does the author use the diagram-letter “K” to stand for a figure’s “kentron”.   This involves a bit of special attention, when one is parcelling out letters of the alphabet over somewhat complicated figures or diagrams.    One has to think ahead, when naming a pair of quadrilaterals Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta  and  Epsilon, Zeta, Eta, Theta, lest he be called on to parcel out the letter Kappa prematurely, rather than putting it “on reserve” for the central point of a circle or sphere also part of the diagram.  But Meteorologica III, v   does this thinking ahead, as do some diagrams late in Book XII of Euclid [interestingly, this does NOT happen in Book XIII of the same work].     An example easy to find is in XII, 12 .    This book of the Elements was likely written by Aristotle’s teacher,  Eudoxus of Cnidus, somewhere near the 106th Olympiad (354 BC).

Returning to the case of our man  “NeoklEs” who plagued Plato with a question — scholars don’t know who he was.    But it looks as if this bold had required Plato to answer him — “Why is it that obedience is not called for in a general way within our the animal kingdom — but rather manifests uniquely in obedience to a human ?”       Plato is reported to have “replied [apokrinai]” to this man.    We may rightly call him “Mr. Neo-“.    The reply runs  as follows:  because humans are properly cognisant of numbers, and uniquely so among our fellow-animals.    This very topic has been researched in a new way by neuroscientists, biologists and evolutionists in the early XXIth century.   It seems other primates are not obedient or disobedient to one another the same way we humans are.   It has long been recognised by scholars that this reply about numbers matches precisely the point made repeatedly in the ps-Platonic dialogue  Epinomis, or The Philosopher [see P. Shorey, What Plato Said, p. 62].   The teacher of that particular doctrine at the Old Academy was Plato’s immediate disciple Philip of Opus.   But scholars have been shy to take a reasonable next step.

This following is a reasonable next step.    We may have this “Mr. Neo-” identical to the man of kingly voice at Politicus 311c, and also identical with the man of regal bearing amongst the Old Academy astronomers of the ‘philosophenmosaik’.   Therefore he will have been,  within that nanocosm of the Academy, a King-of-the-contest, feeling temporarily entitled to require of Plato a kind of “command performance” reply to his questions.    “Answer my question, O Plato” says our emboldened young man [as an author, he will soon presume to entitle his piece appended to Plato’s Laws with a provocative title.   His title was “The Philosopher”   Later editions tend to agree in calling it Epinomis, or “epi” the Nomoi.   A lEmmation or two, when proved, will allow us to identify this ‘New Socrates’ with ‘Amphinomus’, and again identify Amphinoms with Philip of Opus].     I have Philip continuing:  “. . .since I have not become the donkey of the child’s game, the one making an error.    Rather I have been coronated (for now) the King of the victorious Opinion !”

What is a lEmmation, you ask ?     It is a lEmma still in its juniority.     We note a word of like construction (diminutive) occurring in the scholia to Euclid I (also not noticed by LSJ):     “ANTISTROPHION”.      L. Campbell had paid special attention to Plato’s own coinages of diminutives, in his Republic Vol. II.    This classical Greek word could rightly be rendered  “converse-junior”.      Other material of great interest follow this same ‘paradromic’ path on their way to reaching us today.    It looks to have originated in the Academy near Olympiad 106, and arrives in our the digital era of Plato scholarship XXI centuries into the Christian era [Slings, for example, was wary of over-reliance on the TLG — yet saw much value in making use of it].     An example (not to be pursued here) is a report on a ‘pythagorean’ version of the definition of   SXHMA.      Scholars who refuse to credit the early Greek mathematicians, especially those around Plato and Aristotle, with any concept of structure in mathematical proof sequences are  too ready, I judge,  to dismiss these little-people present here and there in Euclid’s scholia, some of them destined to grow up.     LEmmatia can grow up to be lEmmata, antistrophia to be antistrophai, and proof-positions which “want” to be earlier rather than later inside Euclid Bk I can grow up to be mature gratified wishes and wants.

Consider this picture, a kind of graphic-novel,  of the de-crowning of  Socrates-Elder, followed by the next cycle’s renewed-crowning of  “Socrates-the-Reborn” (ho neos gegonotos as the description goes in Letter #2)”:

see how the crown is ready to fall off, as the fateful wheel-turner moves history ‘ever onward’  (AIEI would be the right word for Thucydides here).    In cycles of 50-years, however, one meets up with ever-reborn reminders of cycles past.    Our “Socrates, new series”, seems to have flourished near Olymp. 107.  

Younger Socrates’s ‘coronation’ will have been more of a child’s-game level of culture, thus many steps below the cultural level of a ‘coronation’ of Demosthenes (we recall Tht. 146 A again for our ‘child-king Socrates’).    To be sure, this coronation in turn, will have been many steps below the one depicted at  Phaedo 118.   This picture is from White Sulphur Springs artist  David Dann, varying the themes of “Secular Cycles”, of Elder Socrates by French painter David, and the mosaic in Naples.      Socrates Junior  of   Polit. 311cd  reaches upward to displace the Socrates coronated one cycle earlier  [Phdo. 118] .

facial features for Younger Socrates, taken from the Konrad Gaiser mosaic now in Naples: his “philosophenmosaik” (1980)

But where can a person reasonably begin in this historical inquiry, seeking for a second blood-and-bone Socrates, near the time of Leodamas ?    It is admittedly not an Academy easy to unriddle, after all.   Can we find a definite pointer to such a man at the Old Academy ?      Answer:   Metaphysics Book Zeta, Chapter 11 gives us such a pointer, advancing the interesting concept of “noetic matter”.   Scholars have been shy of identifying any ‘blood and bone’ person in the immediate vicinity of Plato and Aristotle, to whom Aristotle is there pointing his finger.    Yet Plato’s Letter 11 refers to just such a man.  And Merton College scholar David Bostock in his commentary is willing to say of such a real-life person, that he appears to have been a mathematician.    Siem Slings (his Clitophon edition) has two Socrates’s in Plato’s vicinity, but only one is a ‘blood & bone’ individual, and that one is not mathematically inclined.    D.B. Robinson’s OCT text of ‘Politicus’ — one may rightly follow CJ Rowe in calling this recent OCT work ‘interventionist’ —   is so bold as to intervene textually at Politicus 311 c9.   The result is to remove any traces of a truly human individual — Younger Socrates by nickname.     There will have been lots of room for paronymy and ambiguity, the names  (Older/Junior) Socrates.    Robinson inserts some text and causes Older Socrates to make a return here, where Plato had Socrates Junior.   At least if we allow   Venetus  and all the other primary witnesses count as authoritative, Plato is pointing to  Socrates Junior.

Admittedly, what Aristotle says of him there in Metaphysics Zeta is rather harsh.   Aristotle tells us that his opinion ‘leads away from the truth [ap-agwgE].    This is likely an allusion to the admired elder Socrates, a sharp-edged allusion if we have a re-incarnated “Socrates” alongside Plato amongst young Aristotle’s teachers.    A chief feature of the Elder Socrates (admired by both Plato and Aristotle) was his trademark ‘induction’ [ep-agwgE] or ‘[reasoning ]leading towards [truth]‘.   Yes, it’s truly an irony that Aristotle would turn the standard prefix into its exact opposite,  an apo– instead of an epi– [‘away from’  instead of ‘towards’].     C.J. Rowe and D.B. Robinson have recently done some public agreeing about the meaning of a related term,  ‘par-agein’.   It occurs in a discussion of rhetoric, at Phdr. 262 d2.    It refers to a rhetorical  ‘side-slipping’ past the truth, or side-stepping of it.     Yet this is not so complete a mishandling of Truth as to lead away from it.   This is a  dragging-away from truth, and our text has Aristotle accusing “his” Socrates of doing this.     

Our moment in history is back when we are nearby the proverbial   “hearth to begin from” as Plutarch’s proverb has it — Platonism in its nascent stages.   This is also the place place where  W. Jaeger’s young philosopher was analysing rhetoric, writing on the emotions (anger and other emotions).    That time and place seems to have had Leodamas, Socrates and the very young Aristotle all learning from one another.   And Plato learning too, as his nature required of him to do perennially.

Aristotle adds one further point to the acidity of his remark about ‘Socrates Junior’ in this same passage of Met. Zeta.   He uses a perverse word to focus our attention on  Younger Socrates’s ‘repeatedly/habitually’ making this misleading and wrong comparison.   Aristotle uses the imperfect tense by way of suggesting he had heard this recently inside the Old Academy, and by way of emphasising its misleadingness.   For it was an ‘oft-repeated’ misleading comparison — with animal-parts.     Or perhaps, as in Politicus, parts of the portrait (zw-on) being stagewise assembled by a Zo-ographos ( = a painter).

Be this as it may, the 13th century  treatise held by the Ashmolean in Oxford bears the title PROGNOSTICA.    You might think its contents disreputable popular-style Astrology or Fortune-telling.   The Oxford MS. is illustrated by Matthew Paris.   Jacques Derrida got very excited by it, thought up some elaborate, perhaps over-elaborate neo-Freudian fancies to expand upon it.    Derrida adds some valuable points, however, when he brings in the (I believe falsified) Letter #2 of Plato.    The contents and the underlying motivation(s) of this Letter are certainly hard to decipher.   It may be helpful to turn toPaul Friedlaender,  a man who knew his Plato and his Old Academy well.   In his chapter “Plato’s Letters” he reviews the contentious scholarship about Letter #2.      What of those who dismiss it as “silly, childish [and its] falseness requires no proof”.     Or this, relayed from another august authority, Shorey:    “this mystico-theosophical gabble”  [Friedlaender’s Plato, An Introduction, p. 243].     In any case the Ashmolean curator Mr. Benfield is far from proud of this PROGNOSTICA’S contents [his scornful tone as he exhibited the work to me at the Bodleian in 2010 relayed this unambiguously].    But he was and is immensely proud of its standing as one of the Bodleian’s chief “treasures”.     Its composer can have been an over-ambitious hyper-platonist “climber”, scrambling to secure for himself a satisfying role within the governing “Nocturnal Council” outlined at the end of Plato’s Laws (Book XII).    Philip was ambitious enough, anyhow, to append his mystico-astronomical literary piece “The Philosopher” at this very point in Plato’s writings.    The final book of Plato’s final work — by Philip of Opus as it turns out, and subtitled with that title left with nothing underneath itself.   “The Philosopher”, which Campbell speculated might have had Theaetetus as its principal speaker, was put into the crowning position, perhaps by Philip.

[a subtle and subtly allusive point surfaces in the text of  in Book I of Aristotle’s Ethica Nicomachea   (1099 a 10) , possibly written when Aristotle was a young scholar at the Academy — etymologising the name “Philip”.    This runs closely parallel to the etymological work by Plato in Republic Bk V, on ‘philo-X, where X intends to be set equal to ‘sophia’.   Plato had some complex motives there in Rep. V, one being to chide the type of man over-fond of ‘glory’ (doxa). Plato respects his more moderate intellectual compeers, such as Helicon of Cyzicus.    When honor and glory take charge, Plato there writes, you can find a man so pre-occupied with them that (like the glory-driven military commander, content to reduce the measure of his chosen unit, the one he ‘commands’ just so long as he remains the glorious chief {of this reduced unit, call it the Sandbox Unit !}     On the purely cognitive side, this same temperament is often willing to bargain away truth just to win the ‘prevailing opinion’.   Beloved rightminded-opinion, nevermind truth (as a benighted Euthyphro might put it).       This is the passage of Rep. V where Plato coins the word  ‘philo-theamwn’  and sharply contrasts him and his attitudes from the true ‘philo-sophos’.     Here in EN Bk I Aristotle makes bold to use the example of ‘horse-lovers’ (phil-ippoi) under his deliberately generalised heading ‘philo-toioutos’.    And two of our good mss. include a reference to the ‘philo-theamwn’ [these vv. ll., alas, do not survive in apparatus criticus of Bywater’s Oxford edition — though they had survived in Bekker].     The Bywater preferred reading has the more innocuous term ‘philo-theoros’.    The standard Oxford text thus permits Aristotle an ever-so-slight slip to the side, since it is a ‘theama’ which the text wants to be echoing, not a ‘theoria’, and not a ‘theorhma’.   Thus  a ‘spectacle’, not a ‘theoretical truth’ as the Bywater text offers us the point [notably omitting the vv. ll. ad loc].       Noteworthy here is J. Barnes’s point about Aristotle’s prose style [His “Coffee with Aristotle”]:   not just sinewy prose, says Barns approvingly — also allusive prose.      Alas, we already find that the Bekker text de-prefers the ‘philo-theamwn’ readings. And then — double-alas, Bywater-Oxford text carries this one step further. Bywater does not trouble to let us readers know of these vv. ll., serious though they are.   To compare: the 1995 OCT has dropped Burnet’s report at Polit. 311 c4 [it is even Bodleian’s B that is losing critical force here !]. There is further editorial trouble back in Rep. IV, Chapt. xviii, where PAWAG terms like ἀλλοτριοπραγμόσυνη suffer from neglectful editing.

Back to Aristotle and his EN I. I mean his ‘philo-X’ factoring, isolating the varieties of X. φιλο-τοιοῦτος is Aristotle’s precise word for this open-formula, where he will factor in ‘horse’ or ‘spectacle’ or [conceivably anyhow] ‘ideal object ‘ Aristotle’s meaning seems better captured   (a)  a ‘theama’ when loved is a case of ‘philo-theamwn’ ; but this has the further consequence of associating Aristotle’s teacher with a falling-away from Platonic truth.   For  (b)  the lover spectacle/opinion/glory comes up precisely parallel in these variant texts to the character sharing his name with Aristotle’s ‘socratic’ teacher: Phil-ippos {of Opus !} ]

There is due to be more about all of this (except for the Derrida part) at the site now called  youngersocrates.net   If this succeeds in evolving into a WordPress blog [sun te du’ erxomenw], its name will likely evolve  also.   It would then likely include observations about the San Marco Library’s  Plato  MS  Gr. IV, 1, —  the Plato ms. which scholars commonly call    T  .   This  MS got close attention in spring of 1994  from certain British scholars.    But the Clarendon Press editors of today — now at work at re-issuing Volume II of their Plato OCT — lean toward readings from another family they have recently come to groupname    β    .      This can sometimes be a vexation to manuscript scholars.    Wilamowitz, for example, taxed some of his philologue brethren across the English Channel with succumbing to a “dummes Aberglauben” getting them to prefer the ms. in their own Bodleian location.       [S. Slings permitted himself a naughty swipe or two in his 1998 review in Mnemosyne, endorsing the substance, if not the rhetoric, of his colleague Wilamowitz’s opinion]       As with the “idion” added by  T   at Soph. 264 e, so with the special extra meaning of “oikeion” there;  Campbell finds “something of an ethical force” both in Soph216 and in “oikeioteta” at Polit. 257d,f.    Here we can supplement Campbell’s remarks with the arguments of Philip Merlan, showing that “oikeion” was a kind of signature term for the Old Academy.   This strengthens Campbell’s intuitive point, and bases it on a more detailed analysis.    It has a bit of parallelism in the proverb quoted by Plutarch, treating the Academy as the true “home base” for the best scholars:    “let us begin from our hearth” is Plutarch’s self-exhortation, meaning by hearth and home exactly this, The Academy.      Whereas some of the brittler part Anglican opinion may want to cleave to the authority of  Beta, there will always be room for the strength of continental learning and memory.     In any case publishers in Leipzig and Amsterdam ought not be demoted to an inferior “league”, as one British scholar (Rowe by name) presumed to write in a recent review article.

On the other hand,  Campbell’s successors — now a whole century later — at Clarendon Press have kept Sophist 264’s  “idion” demoted to their apparatus criticus.     Thus no part of that committee’s OCT text.    They give it only as a v.l. in case one wants to consult the parchment pages of  the Marciana’s Venetus  T .      In due course it may be possible to make all of this about Soph. 263-264 clearer, and more directly available to the scholarly eyes, such as those of the OCT editors of Plato.    Three of these editors have recently done direct inspections of our Venice ms.   T.

My opinion, offered truly in humility (I speak here not of the perhaps artificial and certainly ceremonial ‘humilissime’ in Heiberg’s dedication to Madvig — but rather in a less-than-European humility-on-the-merits;  you will be able to weigh these merits, Dear e-Reader, especially if you have spent time with any of the abundance of mss. edited by Heiberg)  is the following.     We may all need to be patient for another century, awaiting the hitherto unimagined length and breadth [after electronic enlargements] of open spaces for our editorial efforts.   Thus  the XXII. cent.  OCT may find a way to expand itself to give a fuller understanding of that “idion” word at Soph. 264 e3, firmly lodged there ad loc. in our Marciana ms.     Prof. Whitaker of Glasgow University has told the story of the late-19th century plans at Clarendon Press, which imposed a severe page-limit on Prof. Campbell’s proposed lexicon to Plato.   The book would have to be reduced from its proposed size of 900 pages, compressed into a 600 page format.     Yes, it troubled the “Plato Lexicon” around 1903, a book anticipated quite explicitly by Campbell, in  Vol II of his Oxford Republic on p. 270, and less explicitly on p. 323, elliptically at the top of p. 339.

See now Prof. Whitaker of Glasgow’s e-article “Unvollendetes”.    In summer of 2009 I made a hard-copy of portions of this Whitaker essay and snail-mailed it to Jonathan Barnes, the former Balliol professor and admirer of Timaeus Sophistes’s lexicon to Plato who lives in central France, seemingly away from connection to electronic communications.      May we call in a ‘mantic’ Socrates-Basileus here ?   I mean to produce for us a glimpse of lexicography available to scholars one pentacontaeteia forward from today, via a kind of prognostication.    Perhaps the King prognosticator can be imagined equipped to take charge [see his aspiring ‘climbing’ attitude in David Dann’s portrait above] .      At this present time (early in 2015)  only Volume I of the early Twenty-First Century’s anticipated five-volume OCT has yet appeared.

In addition to the 3 midwives  (Phenarete, Socrates and Theaetetus), we may add the man soon to appear — Socrates Alternate.    This additional midwife is brought in by a group of scholiasts to Chapter 4 of Euclid’s most “Theaetetan” book — i.e. Euclid’s present Book X.   It is thematic of this set of scholia that the metaphors of ‘progeny’, ‘mothers’ and ‘ancestors’ will assist in the reader’s understanding of the text’s theorems about Binomials.    That chapter of  Elements, running as it does from Prop.  29  through Prop.  47,  certainly calls for serious extra research, over and above what recent scholarship in Paris has contributed.


One needs a ‘lEmmation’ to aid in proving this.    But these may grow up to be firmly established lemmas.    [see above on diminutivised Lemmatia and diminutivised Antistrophia, admittedly rare words in ancient Greek]

Leon Robin had challenged some parts of the then-consensus of scholars (1911 through the 1930s), — including those scholars around J. Burnet, — by finding literally scores of examples of what I am now calling a ‘vectoral’ or ‘ever-onward’ interpretation of Plato’s word for  ‘ever’.    Many manuscripts read   “AIEI” , and Robin reflected this frequently in his critical apparatus.    There is a striking dominance of this reading among Robin’s collection of good mss. of Symp. and Phdr. ,  — they are present in large numbers, for example, in the Marciana’s Gr. IV, 1, also known as Venetus  T.    Further, the passage of Euthydemus, 296 ab singles out exactly the term AIEI for detailed attention, a close focus not unlike the one given to AIEI at Symp. 206.   That is where Diotima chooses her words precisely and carefully, speaking of ‘adding’ EINAI’ to ‘AIEI’ to build up the  summary description of ERWS.   It seems reasonable to look for a meaning  similar to what we find inside the word “AIEI” as deployed by a then-young Theaetetus, composing Ur-Book-X of Elements.         This same word “AIEI” turns up,  — signally in its location — adjacent to that word “idion [oikeian]” in Soph. 264 e1.      [Dramatically, and inside his dialogue, Plato has his ‘Eleatic Visitor’ in conversation with a then-young mathematician named Theaetetus.]

A passage in Theorem 2 of Euclid XII  quotes verbatim from Theaetetus’s signature proposition, i.e. Book X, Prop. 1, and quotes the “AIEI”  (in that spelling) in the course of doing this act of referring.   So we have a pattern of D-C-B-A here.    Plato-in-Sophist (=D) paraphrasing Eudoxus-in-Ur-XII (=C), citing Theaetetus-in-Ur-X (=B).   And this series continues back towards an Archytas-era piece of mathematical theory (=A).    Here we do best not to indulge in the “expansion” of this early Pythagorean ‘Areskon’, such as Proclus, Friedlein p. 142 admits he has done — bringing in mirrors and other digressive topics.       It is better to guide by the purer and more condensed echo, seemingly that self-same Pythagorean ‘Areskon’.  I refer to the one relayed in Scholion 1, to Def. 14 of Bk. I.   The scholion applies to the euclidean definition of “SXHMA”.   This more elegant version of the ‘Areskon’ is less than half the length of Proclus’s expanded version.   There are some internal indications that the simpler formulation is also the purer and older, sourced most likely from the Old Academy itself.    Plato’s Meno helps us date the early (pre-euclid) interest in the definitions being premissed at that time by geometers.   It touched on this very definition, that of ‘schEma’.   At that very early time, perhaps 387 BC, we not only had no treatise by Euclid of Alexandria on the Athenian horizon, we barely had much of the early Academy.   Our witness here is the anonymous scholiast relayed by Heiberg from the margins of Elements, — at his Vol. V, pp. 91 – 93.     Quite conceivably the scholiast is working from a source from the pre-Academy period, nearer in time and place to Archytas in Tarentum, when the Fourth Century BC was itself only beginning.    This is an attractive and not implausible place to locate our initial term “A” in this A-B-C-D , where D stands for Sophist 264 de.

Several scholarly puzzles could be rendered less puzzling if we follow some independent evidences from the history of geometry and astronomy here, and guide also by these outlined clues from the philology of ‘aiei’.    Some arguments can be developed, for example, for attributing  the tract named “epi dialektikEs” in the Plato ms. “P” to this same man near the young Aristotle and the aging Plato — Philip of Opus.     Philip will have been making his syntax “epi-plus-genitive” a case of the LSJ article s.v. III, where all their illustrations are from the early Aristotle [a student of Younger Socrates]. In any case, more is likely to be learned when scholars can have a leisurely look at  that 163-leaf manuscript, and its Plato Lexicon.     It seems likely to be scanned into digitised  format, under the Polonsky Foundation project, due to run until 2016.       Several issues in the early history of logic and the exact sciences, brought into sharper focus by JBrunschwig of Paris and CWilson of Annapolis, will be provoking scholars to carry forward their recent efforts, alas in the cases of these two men now discontinued.     We can imagine this in the pattern of an Archytas ‘ever-onward’ series of stages, greater knowledge being harvested as the series continues.

There is in any case a time-neutral sense of ‘ever-onward’, not so exalted as a thing timeless pure and simple.    Rather, it resembles that middle item between the time-neutral status of a Theorem and the time-connected status of a Problem (when if ever will our solution be completed ?).      De Morgan wrote affectingly in 1855 [his friend Boole died then] about mathematical research he and George Boole were advancing, moving it towards a more perfect result than Hobbes had achieved.   The two of them in 1855, wrote De Morgan, made a point of abstaining from each of three claims:    priority, posteriority and simultaneity — with ongoing work by other mathematical researchers.     All the same De Morgan prognosticated that the name ‘Boole’ would one day be widely known for the fundamental idea [we now call it Boolean Algebra] that Algebra, so far from limiting its scope to a handful of the mind’s operations — might be seen by a very wide public indeed to underlie them all.     Porisms and Episkepseis can rise to such levels of aspiration.    So say some of our ancient scholia to Euclid.    We might rephrase this as: a not-fully-vetted proof can lead researchers to a porismatic-onward, or episkeptic-onward, or peirastic-onward effort of thought.    If this leads in turn to an heroic or ‘Orphic’ aspiration, so much the better.    Plato was forever keeping himself open to such aspiration, certainly.

The philological thread, unbroken from point-D back to point-B at least, has textual warrant to support it.   More so if the forthcoming editions of the OCT texts of Symp. and Phaedrus keep many (or even keep half) of the “AIEI” readings now manifest in the Marciana MS  #542.    A most curious detour, on the way back from C to B.    It occurs right at  Ur-XII, where Heiberg preserves a non-standard edition, one in his main text and the other under the title “Appendix II”.    This is not merely an alternate reading of one or another proposition in Book XII, it is an alternate version of the entire book (together with a few propositions from the end of Book XI).    Heiberg calls it Appendix II to his Vol. III.    No MS reads this way except the one now residing in Bologna [which I have inspected].    Its Heiberg siglum is    b  .    Guiding by the philological thread I am now following, Book XII in its entirety has a variant reading.   It has what one may call a  “deviation into standard later-Attic”.    This will have required Eudemus’s  altering its “AIEI” into the later-Attic variant  “AEI”.

This “regularising”was to become  standard for Plato editors (including, one can now in 2017 venture to prognosticate’, — the OCT editorial team of Duke, Nicoll, Robinson et al.    Which is due to become our XXI. century standard for Plato’s texts)  [ note well, Leonard Brandwood sounds a non-compliant note here, something of a Cassandra note, possibly foretelling a XXII. cent. restoration of  the “AIEI” form, at least for Symp.  Phdr. , Euthydemus and Sophist]   A passage from late in Plato’s SophistEs manifests a pair of peculiar variants in close proximity, in the Venice ms. “T” (1) it adds in a modifier word “idion” [“” {own/private}] where it wants to point to the “exclusive” or “private” location where the dichotomous divisions have enclosed ‘The Sophist Himself’.

This is the ‘peculiarity’  of logical tightness signaled to Aristotle scholars by Harold H. Joachim, paraphrasing Aristotle himself with the phrase “universal but sheerly singular”.   Joachim has Aristotle’s illustrating this by his example: this  moon here.  Joachim does not refer to the text of ms. E for Met. Lambda 8, where the uniqueness of the denotatum of “Socrates” is the issue.  The general consensus of texts has “Socrates is One” and E has in the margin “gr.  Oux Eis”.
Something peculiar also occurs here – in the Venetus “T” , but not only in “T”. A variant spelling of the word “AEI [“AIEI”]) manifests in the same sentence. The form Brandwood puzzled over in his Word Index (1976), following the extensive puzzling of L. Robin in the 1920s and 1930s in his Budé editions of Symp. and Phdr. Here Sophist appears to revert to an older-Attic spelling.  This is the 4-letter variant, which is more common in the epigraphic evidence for Athens prior to 360 B.C. (see LSJ s.v.  aei   and L. Threatte’s recent studies).

This particular orthography has a special way of marking texts from at or near Plato’s time, Thucydides favoring the 4-letter variant by a ratio of  of 128:0.   [TLG reveals this].  In Xenophon the Attic koinE predominates, except for his Cyropaedia, where the 4-letter variant prevails.   In this case, however, the data are more nuanced (nothing nuanced about a 128:0 ratio).    Xenophon’s data may need more nuanced mining than our published concordances have so far given us.     It would be helpful to have a finer level of detail here, since the latest period of Xenophon’s writing coincides with the late-middle period of Plato’s.   writing given that Plato’s composing of late-middle dialogues such as Symposium, Phaedrus and Euthydemus, is datable to the late period of Xenophon’s life.  Dide Xenophon have a hand in the editing of the texts of Thucydides ?  More light might be shed on questions of this sort also, with more nuanced data-mining in these 3 dialogues (where the 4-letter variant prevails), and in both Thucydides and Xenophon. – “aiei”.     Scholarship has
It may be that “AIEI” is used by Plato somewhat differently from “AEI”. The ‘forever’ series, a series of ‘ever onward’ dichotomizing cuts.

This is not the place to go into detail about the “poiEsis” question in Books XII.   The key indicator of Philip’s authorship (thus ‘tampering’ with the original version, by Eudoxus) will be this one:   C-alt   executes a near-total removal of the poiEsis language, which characterises Eudoxus’s original version (now the standard text of Bk XII).       There are a number of further reasons, several based on scholia to Euclid, — notably  Schol. #3 to Book V in the Heiberg edition —  for believing the following about this “Bologna ms.” edition of Book XII:  The true author of  C-alt. flourished some 50 yrs prior to Euclid’s floruit.   He was (as his mother knew him) Philippus.    This is the same man tradition has known under various names, but in any case he functioned as Plato’s personal amaneunsis.    Standardly his name has come to settle on “Philip of Opus”.    Philip will have been willing and able to assume code-names there at the Academy [Campbell wrote about officials in mystery religion being required to assume code-names.  This phenomenon is much broader than Campbell’s focus on religion left him scope to discuss.   Religion, to be sure, was in no way a remote topic to our Younger Euthyphro there at the Academy training young Aristotle in logic, theology and theodicy.  In Cratylus Plato manages to hint about someone nearby breathing the breath inspired by Euthyphro the Elder.    Possibly Eudoxus would take the less pious line that “we may subject the Divine Sun to our klepshydra’s, as I. Kant was to subject The Holy one of the Gospels to the Imperative”.

Anaxagoras and Eudoxus might think risky thoughts here-below, if surrounded by self-righteous and pious Alternate Euthyphro’s, bent on recruiting The Sun some devout worshippers.  Philip (as in Epinomis) was more the evangelist, breathing new life into Elder Euthyphro, all the while joining young Aristotle at the Early Academy.   The two of them, Socrates and Aristotle, will have done what Chrysippus (and Plutarch, citing his tract P. DialektikEs, Bk III) called Socratic dialectic.   Philip (alias Socrates) will have been both teaching and co-studying alongside Aristotle there at the very early Academy.   Among other things, the neo-Euthyphrontic dialectic involved in Definitio per genus et differentiam [I owe this Romanised formula to Dr. George Pepe, a good decoder of the Aristotle of late antiquity, as well as a pious man himself.]

Somewhat speculatively, I have this same man, ne’ Philip, assuming the code-name within the Academy   “Amphinomus”.    Thus Proclus has the pair “Speusippus and Amphinomus” complaining about “poiEsis” language infecting mathematics.    The timeless sense of “ever” in mathematics is threatened by this.   This subject needs fuller discussion elsewhere.   Here at Book XIIa, his spelling preference for this technical word would naturally be   “AEI”, his motivations strongly “eternalist” similar to Phaedo.     This will be entirely like the man (likely also Philip) who wrote Scholion #18 to Euclid I.     He fairly shudders at the thought of a “tote trigwnon”, a ‘then-triangle’ with one side having recently suffered [such an indignity to its essence!] a geometer’s operation of ‘extending’.    Much needs developing here — and that which is susceptible of near-proof needs near-proving.    But there is a real possibility that such proofs may be found, with your help, dear reader !    Scholion #3 to Book V, when rightly interpreted,  is likely to be a major boost to this argument.

In any case we need to continue the retro-progression backward from the post-Platonic viewpoints of a Philip/Amphinomus or of a Eudemus of Rhodes, towards the pre-Platonic viewpoiont of an Archytas or Ocellus.   Just where Archytas urges us to think of ‘stretching forth’ vectors, he manages to put his mathematics into motion, bring it to life..   But this means a series or “AIEI” formulation will point towards futurity, the subjunctive and optative, the contingent.    His coding of this was   “AIDIA”.    Therefore something of the old ‘Areskon’ era is likely getting lost amongst the partisans devoted to timeless Forms.   Or so I opine.    Much remains to be investigated here.   Including very notably   Venetus    T.

Back in his 1920s edition of Phaedo Robin had achieved a measure of consensus-challenging textual work.   But his follow-up editions of Symp. and Phaedrus made major extra contributions.   Had Robin commented on Soph. 264 E, we would have had a wider basis to build upon.    This was not to be.

A truly valuable, but hitherto largely unexploited ancient source is available.   It was already available in 1888, but has become much more so since the TLG entered it into machine-readable form.   This is:   the commentary —  published in the late 1880s by JL Heiberg of Denmark in his Teubner edition of Euclid’s Elements.      They come from the margins of Euclid’s best mss., thus  Euclid’s “Scholia”.   Heiberg had collected them methodically from a variety of mss.    His monograph on the subject was unfortunately only published in Danish.

Scholiasts to Euclid (no, this need NOT refer simply to what we find in Proclus on Book I) have asked us to recognise Theaetetus’s “AIEI” front-matter to Book X as making up a “Chapter One” of that Old Academy work.    That will be Chapter One of what is now Book X of Euclid.    What authority lies behind my calling the definitions and first 18 propositions of Book X “Chapter One” ?   JL Heiberg published a scholion to X,19 — he found it in two excellent  MSS — calling theorem 19 the first theorem of “Chapter Two“.     Heiberg gave this Scholion the number 133.    Proclus makes no reference to it.

Do we have some common material in the background of all four, Symposium, Phaedrus, Theaetetus, and Ur-Chapter-One of Elements?     If so, this will be material pointing back to the time of the Old Academy when Theaetetus was writing this “Chapter One”.    But there are signs that Theaetetus’s Chapter One was itself an outgrowth of earlier pythagorean work.       It may not be unreasonable to entitle some of this material (following other scholia published by Heiberg) a Pythagorean Areskon.     A significant trace of such a guidepost may be present in a troubled passage of Tht., troubled in a special way inside the Venetus   T .    When the new editions of Symp.  and Phaedr. come out from Clarendon Press in the coming few years, we may see more attention to the frequently occurring spelling variant   “AIEI”  in this Marciana MS called Venetus    .

Possibly this MS. at the Marciana can help point the way back to such before-Plato sources.      As of this date (early September 2012) we can reasonably conjecture about our series of texts of Plato, of Theaetetus, and of Philip of Opus.

Scholarly initiatives began in earnest with the Bude editions by L. Robin in the 1920s and 1930s — and from there we have another ‘onward-vector’ impetus from scholarly work by Leonard Brandwood, his his 1976 “Word Index to Plato”.     WordPress.com may one day make new offerings here.

Some of these scholia clearly echo material handed down from antiquity.   Proclus confirms this fully.  So the trick may be (do recall that ‘tricks’ and Hermes go together).      Nothing prevents there having been an outcropping of Theurgical arts in the days before Euclid.     This could even have happened at the  Old Academy.    This seems oddly anachronistic, but yet such early Theurgy is not an impossibility.    Scholion #61 to Euclid Book I makes early Theurgy there look to be a possibility.     Of course, this and related scholia (like 109-114) may have been written generations or even centuries after Euclid’s own time.   But there are real indications here and there of a surprisingly different history behind such scholia to Euclid, even behind this relic of an early reference to “Theurgy”.    The new open-access journal “Entangled Religions” may be a place where investigating this, and expanding on the pioneering work of E.R. Dodds, [Greeks and the Irrational, appendix on ‘Theurgy’] might be in order.    In any case, we may be now looking at sources that go back some decades or even three generations before Euclid (say around the time of the young Aristotle).

There is a title “Enstaseis“, a work seemingly attributed to Aristotle — but in scholia to Euclid there are not only scores of remarks [our modern mathematico-philosopher Descartes would one day collect these and call them ‘objections & replies’]     Those ancient scholia even include a short compendium of definitions.    This material includes definitions of the terms ‘e)/nstasis’, ‘lh=mma’, ‘po/risma’ and so forth.    Aristotle can have composed his lists of Enstaseis , about Olymp. 107, close in time to his composing his Posterior Analytics.      It would be no great surprise if Aristotle’s early colleagues (the mathematicians, such as Menaechmus and Amphinomus) sang out the repeated a pair of refrains in these scholia — the ones that begin “a)porese/ie a)\n tis”   or   “po/qen dh there are likely to have been written comments to various pieces of Ur-Euclid, what Heiberg used to call the elementisings of the ‘antiquiores’.    This is true of many of the scholia, such as Schol #95 to Bk X.     Scholia #3 and #30 to Book V give us another outside-of-Proclus vantage point, likely tracing back to antiquity, to make this mathematical material clearer both in its history and its contributions to mathematics and Early Academic philosophy.

The trick when trying to strengthen our understanding this aspect of Archytas will be  to get clearer on what kind of “vector” he understood mathematical series to imply.    This will be encoded in optative and subjunctive moods, some of them not still alive in the mathematical prose of Euclid’s time.    We need to follow the scholiasts’s lead, wherever the evidence encourages this, with fuller explanations.    This means firming up the voices of our personified and dramatised ‘narratives’ from the Old Academy’s mathematicians.       This will mean leaving behind the softer moods of wished-for’s, might-have-been’s, narratives and counter-narratives  — therefore stretching our “duna/it’ a)\n ei)=nai” optatives onward to the simple and declarative ‘on’.    We may usefully draw on the language which Eudemus (his Phys. Frag. 30) draws in turn from Archytas.    This fragment has found its best and boldest interpreter in  T.L. Heath, his “History”.   Over-cautious philology remains compliant with Diels & Kranz, but loses the force of his word “AIDIA”.    By Eudemus’s time, roughly that of Alexander the Great, the settled later-Attic or koinE form prevaled:  by then the form was simply   “AEI”  the three-letter variant, was the prevalent one.

The idea is to set out results avoiding this kind of ‘compliance’ [to borrow a term from Plutarch].    This way of ‘stretching onward’ via “AIDIA” will have been what the Old Academy’s ideals held up for emulation.

We do in fact have several lines of evidence, some within the history of mathematics, of working mathematicians at the Old Academy, near in time to Aristotle’s first arrival there (around -366).   One may rightly think of them as hyper-enthusiasts, men overcome with a passion for thinking like Plato.    Or even thinking more Platonically than Plato himself.    Such a man was Philip of Opus.    These were men known ironically to Plato as ‘Friends of Forms’.   In Philip’s case we may have a more furtive and evasive man, now siding with the ‘-of Forms’ faction, again siding with the ‘-of Earth’ faction within the perturbed atmosphere of every least topic’s being ‘manfully and eristically’ [νδρείως κα ριστικς] quarreled about [Rep. V, Ch iv (end), — where Thesleff has independently identified Plato’s late ‘onkos’ style of writing].

Such ‘unwitting lapses into eristic’ are further illustrated by Plato when, at Tim. 28b 1-4, he dubs in an anacoluthon to scold the empty verbal quibbling [of fellow academicians ?] over the pair of words ‘caelum’ and ‘mundus’, or ‘Ορανος’  and ‘Κόσμος’.   Slings and his Amsterdam colleagues have done much to decode Plato’s playful tricks with the word “Ouranos”.    A welcome subtlety to match that of Plato himself.   And here in Tim. 28b Plato may be asking us to pick up his reference to a pair of  then-recently  circulated tracts — by a pair of his closest students, students also of  Timaeus.    H.H. Joachim had stated in his 1922 Oxford edition of the De Gen. et Corr, (Introduction, p. xxiii, n1)  that the author of that early-Aristotle piece comes ‘perilously near’ to endorsing an extreme of the Forms-Friendly position (the one Aristotle often manifests a sharp unfriendlness towards).

Returning to the terminology of ‘Ouranos’ and ‘Kosmos’.   The ‘p. Ouranou’ of a young Aristotle and the ‘p. Kosmou’ of ps.-Aristotle, perhaps the same blood-&-bone man who was also known as the astronomer-mathematician-dialectician Socrates-Alt.    The man whose  Venetus T name “Socrates Allos” lends itself to word-plays such as giving him the sub-nickname “Kurios Allos” or “Mr. Allos”.    Were this wayward Socrates to suffer a hostile play on his names and nicknames, by a Plato of the word-subtlety who etymologises “epistEmE” so as to allow it an ‘embolised’ half-H mark, so to speak ‘thrown’ from the front end of the word “histEmai” [Crat. 437 a7]  is in the target zone when Plato is ready to write about the internal unhealthiness, the disordered segments of the soul under Plato’s attack, which is exhibiting symptoms of psychic disease.   These would be like pathologies Plato describes as un-natural, drawing on Hippocratic concepts of a natural rank-order:  “allo up’ allou” [this repeated phrase at 444 d10 — echoing 444 d5 — forms the climactic point of all of this itself climactic chapter, being one chapter later than the one our best texts seem to want to call the ‘final’ one in Bk IV].

Archytas’s quadrivial credentials were exemplary [see Lasserre’s scholarship on the early stages of the Quadrivium, his ‘Museum Helveticum’ article of some 20 years ago now].     An ounce of Heath’s Archytas-via-Eudemus is worth a pound or more of conjectures about Philolaus and Ocellus the Lucanian —  anyhow if we take as primary controls for our speculative histories the surviving mathematical material [chiefly Euclid’s Elements and the scholia in their margins, but also similar material from works of ‘elements’ from such as Aristoxenus and Autolycus; we now have the good fortune of Heiberg’s magisterial scholarly work on many of these texts, and have his painstaking work fully encoded into the TLG canon, under TLG numbers such as authors 1799 and 5022].      But much of this is still remaining to be developed, this line of argument about the Academy, so far as it struggled to be neither an echo of Plato nor a partisan of Aristotle’s.   These would be men perhaps in a contentious rivalry, each of them ambitious to be Plato’s “diadochos”, perhaps wanting to lead the Academy in the direction of mathematics and astronomy, or even astrology and numerology.

Will a WordPress site have something to offer here ?     Conceivably, yes.   If wishes were horses, Philip of Opus might have lightened his pythagorean burden.   [For now, we can do little but exclaim in the promissory-indefinite manner of lines 551-566 of Hymn to Hermes.    This would be a subjunctive or optative wish for help from The [Unreliable] God of Discovery or seeming-Discovery.     The god to whom sacrifices are suggested (=Hermes) in scholia to Euclid.   This is the very god against whom [or at least the poet’s standard picture of whom] Plato  unleashes sharply hostile, we may say near-blasphemous rhetoric early in Laws XII.    Do try this experiment:  see if you can find a more Hermes-hostile piece of prose than Plato’s attack on this god — or common image of him put forward by the poets — near the beginning of Laws Book XII.

There are admittedly major risks in a modern-day critic’s launching into para-historical parallels, in the effort to throw some new light on a topic from antiquity.   Our phrase “far fetched” gets its meaning for just such prope-responsible ramblings into topics our subjects cannot have had any awareness of.   Can I give some striking examples of how risky this is ?   Yes I can give two scholars of ancient culture.   Critic-A is likely to be pulling our leg, a twinkle in his eye as he indulges in his prope-historical ramble — E.R. Dodds subdividing the “eighties” within the pre-Christian decade  -390 through -380 so as to encumber his argument (his Introduction to his 1959 Oxford edition of Gorgias)  with the concept “the early eighties” [op. cit., p. 25 n4].   He impishly denies that Plato wrote Republic in “the early eighties”.   From a man of his leprechaun-like humor, this must be taken as facetious usage.  Critic B is Leonardo Taran, who keeps a straight and characteristically solemn face, he executes his pedantic romp through portions of modern scholarship, his topic being “amicus Plato [et Socrates], sed” formula.   Taran draws on the material familiar to himself, post-Renaissance Iberian scholarship on Cervantes and others.    The recently published Mark Twain scholarship from Prof. Trombley is a third, but her target has plenty of universality, and may well recall Plutarch on the near superhuman temperance and sobriety of Alexander the Great.

Modern French uses “mon cher” in parallel to Plato’s usage of “chrEstos” [ χρηστός ] late in Republic Book V. To be sure such terms of endearment are always subject to major ambiguities.    Let us borrow from a sholiast to Euclid’s Def. 9 of Elements Bk V, when he writes “we call this perambiguity” [ διακαταχρηστικότερον ] .     I am here taking a few short steps beyond a Cicero passage in hisOrator”, where he analyses ‘katachrEsis’ (he uses the Greek word there).  I need only add what Cicero WOULD HAVE done, had someone led him onto it, the quite special phrasings of tklhis scholion [=Schol #30 to Euclid Bk V, in the Heiberg edition of 1888] .   “διακαταχρηστικότερον” is the word which our Scholiast says “we call” the ambiguous word “double”.     This is a term much worried over by Plato himself. What are the various meanings, he has Socrates ask, of our familiar term “double” ? As it first stands, it is perambiguous.

In the case of this Campbell-selected word ‘ChrEstos’ [ χρηστός], I point to a range of meanings like ‘my precious’, ‘my sweetie’, ‘our late-lamented indentured servant’ and the rest. LCampbell included this term in his list of Plato’s “facetious words”. A lively case in point: early in Chapt. xxii of Rep. V, where it is livelier in the way it draws upon the also-perambiguous term ‘kallos’. This term is used facetiously [so Campbell, Rep. Vol II, p. 290] by Plato in Rep. VIII (the government by Tyranny is ‘kallistos’, the ‘loveliest’ government). It had already been used that same way by Leontius back in Bk. IV (he blames himself for his pathological desire to look on at that ‘lovely’ spectacle — of a clump of dead bodies ! [440 a]. If I have various of the strands decoded suitably here, Plato has encoded facetious references to the very man who was later to become his personal amanuensis and disciple, namely Philip of Opus.    This will be the very man, the very blood-&-bone individual, Plato whom wants to point to under the unflattering rubric ‘philo-theamwn’. Or so I believe.   It was precisely “theamata” that had enabled the unhealthy work of his wretched eyes, inside the soul of poor Leontius.

I have this individual man identical to the man known to fellow astronomers at the Early Academy as (and this will have been his birthname, thus the name used by his Opuntian mother) ‘Philip’.   His name occurs literally scores of times in the Lasserre critical edition of the fragments of Eudoxus of Cnidos, Plato’s chief astronomer.  The name ‘Philip’ is taken apart etymologically, that is dismembered into its philological components by Aristotle, in EN I, Ch. 11. Aristotle takes steps to give it as a a vivid instance of his open-formula, offered alongside: ‘philo-toioutos’,  [φιλοτοιούτος] — we might fairly decode this term of Aristotle’s ‘a philo-Such-and-So’.   Now Aristotle was an immediate pupil of ‘younger-socrates’. He all but says so in Metaphys. Z, 11.   Again, the point of view now is not that of naming and philology, but of locating a blood-and-bone individual, capable also of being the same man as Amphinomus [whose town of origin is pointedly unknown to scholarship].    There are a few stray indicators which might encourage one’s giving Philip the place-name formula ‘the Onchestian’. These come from the homeric “Hymn to Hermes”.  I once tried to interest Prof. Nicholas J. Richardson, author of the article “Penelope”  (OCD 2003) in linking our early-Academy Amphinomus to the hero killed by Telemachus in the Odyssey.

I may well offer more on all of these reather arcane (yes, admittedly arcane) pointers in the near future. This would be on a separate WordPress site, to be set up and to be entitled youngersocrates.net. Very likely the argument will look hard at Polit. 311 c, where the 1995 updated OCT text of Plato’s Politicus has admitted some really quite bold conjectures.   Bolder, I judge, than some of the conjectures one finds here on the page “Plato and other ancient Greeks”. . But boldness verges sometimes on rashness, and the less bold surmises here may in the end win over more Plato-readers ? A whimsical wise saying was published some years since “A fool who rushes in sometimes gets the job done”, and the latitudinarian attitudes of the editors here at “Arteno=l” give encouragement to thought and experimentation.

Relatedly [I lifted this word from Congressman Christopher P. Gibson’s book “Securing the State”, p. 66] — one of the ambiguities surrounding our man called Socrates — or our men called by that same name — was precisely his apparent gift as “fortune teller”.   The book’s title is “Prognostica”.   Matthew Paris’s 12th century ms. has its author named “Socrates Basileus”, or “King Socrates”.   Its famous sketch or graphic of Plato and Socrates (the one now in the Ashmolean, recently much dissected by J. Derrida in his “Post Card” book) has the Socrates figure behaving uncharacteristically. Yes, in Matthew’s relayed illustration the Socrates figure is doing the writing, whilst Plato looks on, no writing instrument in hand, in manifest alarm.   I at least sense alarm or disturbance in the intent look in Plato’s eyes — one might compare the Euclid scholiast’s word ‘[Plato’s] so-to-speak Character’ [this allusion to what one might call Plato’s “personality” is in the scholion to I, Def. iv, — as this stands in JLH, Vol V, but not as it stands in Proclus’s version.]. In any case, no writer’s paraphernalia are to be seen in reach of the en-humored or alarmed Plato figure in the “Prognostica” text of Matthew of Paris.

Matthew Paris’s ms. appears to have a remark in its text about Amorians. Thus people of the earliest period of Alexander’s world-conquest. I can relay it here, something told me by Barker [“Bruce”] Benfield, then curator of this Matthew Paris ms. Mr. Barker reported to me live-voice at the Bodleian  on 2 September 2010, when the two of us had the treasured ms. open before us there at the 1937 building at the Bodleian, as follows: his Matthew-ms. ‘Socrates basileus’ included in his text that he had “showed this work to the King of the Amorians“. Thus we have a reference to a people resident in Asia Minor, perhaps the conquests of a young Alexander still in the future and calling for Prognostic art and wisdom, such as this Prognostica contains in abundance. In any case the Amorians under reference may well reside or have resided just where the conquest-minded Alexander began his famousEktaseis. We might compare the way Queen Elizabeth looked for a John Dee, another Euclid-linked individual of historical stature. And our Queen wishing for an empire on which the sun never sets.

Yes, these are Fortune-Tellers all, — none as yet online ! Dee was deeply unaquainted with online work. Similarly the major donor of books to Widener Library at Harvard, Mr. Hollis, after whom the ‘HarvardOnLineLibraryInfoService’ catalog later came to be named (HOLLIS). (Our pre-internet man the Monk Matthew gives us his precious Socrates ms. under the heading ” Prognostica Socratis Basilei.” These future-oriented visionaries will have risked demoting their own work to the status of something disreputable, such as Public Service Commissioner Alfred Kahn said about the art of “economic forecasting”.   “These people are about the task of making astrology and numerology look positively reputable, — by comparison” [I paraphrase].   I once spoke to this man over the phone; he was at his summer home near Ithaca NY at the time, intending to take a swim in his backyard pool.   This same Fred Kahn wrote a book centered on politically influential members of the establishment, whom he wittily called “kleptocrats”.

These days there tends to be less writing of this species, biting satire or invective.   Mike Royko the journalist from Chicago used to write vituperative pieces about Henry Kissinger — back when Kissinger was still alive — which had that kind of venom and bite.  A still more venomous variety of such invective came from humorist Mark Twain [Samuel Clemens], heaping venomous invective on his personal intimate, his own private secretary Isabel Lyon [see picture].

The cause of the author’s anger has much in common with Plato’s cause for anger against his own personal secretary Philip of Opus.   Here are Clemens’s words, the parts left in struck-through words where one cannot transpose them readily from the modern to the ancient author defending his literary legacy.   In personal letters Clemens calls his secretary :

“a liar, a forger, a thief, a hypocrite, , a sneak, a humbug, a traitor, a conspirator, ”  Trombley, Laura Skandera, ‘Mark Twain’s Other Woman’, Random House 2010.

It is now a century and more since the 450-page ms. about Ms. Lyon came from Clemens’s hand. Not surprisingly, it is not yet published.    Not surprisingly, neither are Plato’s invectives against Socrates-Alternate, a devotee of the humbug and conspirator Hermes.  This was Plato’s personal secretary, pretender to the role of literary executor for the entire Academy, perhaps even the platonic teaching’s Diadochos.   This is the role Olympiodorus seems to claim for him.    Hermes the forger and misleader.    See mosaic from Macedonia :

Much further work is needed, to see if there is a good match between the alarm expressed in Matthew’s drawing of the upstaged Plato and this remark from the man who has just written about ‘characters’ and looking down from above, and ‘primurgic’ causes. A scholiast to Euclid I [not well preserved by Proclus] looks to be interested in Plato’s thinking about the Demiurge and ‘pronoia’, also about ‘characters’ in the way those reformist (sc. non-Olympian) thinkers among the “older philosophers” conceived these, and responded to them, ἐν τῷ ἑαυτῶν [sic] κατὰ τρόπον ἤθει.

More is to be worked about that matter of “personality” or “humor” or “temperament” in Plato and his immediate companions, some contemporary with Aristotle. What our scholiast is drawing upon, conceivably even from his personal experience, is sources that may go back to before the time of the early Aristotle. If some are traceable to Plato’s biographer Philip, researched recently by Swiss scholar F. Lasserre. Some features we may learn more about may even go back to the younger Plato.

Of great interest would it be, if the Organon and the De Caelo and the DeMundo were not yet written — but that they were only a few Olympiads off into the future, like the conquests of Alexander were. The author of the DeMundo seems to attribute to Zeus a more comprehensive way of being in charge of the Universe.    As grandson of Chronos [Χρόνος] (this leaves a telling one-generation open space for Kronos between the two), —  Zeus masters somewhat more than just  Aristotle’s “heavens”.   To be included in this expanded “all-Universe”” Heavens, Earth, Winds, events down here even including chance-events so-called, such as Alexander’s conquests, Caesar’s crossing the Rubicon, or the sinking of the Spanish Armada. The polyonymous of the perambiguous name is in charge of them all. Not just the limited range of things in the worlds of Timaeus or DeCaelo. Perhaps the author of DeMundo lived and wrote between Olympiads 103 and 107, thus had not yet seen the final version of DeCaeloand thought he could improve on Timaeus.

We ourselves would want to retreat to a safe rear-guard position in these theological battles, and will want to incant [cf. Tht. 157 c9, ‘epaidw’ ,  πδ]  some kind of counter-wish against a threat of divine retribution.   Especially against the threat of hostility from Hermes’s property-conscious older Brother, Apollo.   The calming climate of Venice will one day soon help moderate one or several of my venturous speculations here.   In any case there is more to this story, or would that there might be.

Conceivably the singular atmosphere of that peculiar Nietschean aesthetic at Artenl will overcome inhibitions.]

I once sent a rant-email Christopher Hitchens, may he rest, on the subject of a curious illiteracy often repeated by one of his favourite newspapers, the NY Times:   their way of encoding their so-called “Quotation of the Day”.  It was also the regular way that Borealis Press says  “QuoteUnquote”,  more precisely thus:   “”.    What is between that open-quote and the close-quote?  Well something like nothing.  The Null Character, as it is called in computer jargon.   It is also the same as what goes under the listing of “Special Character”, ASCII=0,  the no-space break.

What is the string-length of a single iteration of the no-space break ?  None, I think.  Or length=0.  As in the saying (or no-saying) attributed to Socrates:  “That One-Thing that I know is precisely this:  No-One-Thing, or Nothing”.

Now render this with some help from personal references, and you come back to that world’s oldest joke, the ManyMinded Odysseus confusing his Cyclops captor by telling him “My name is Outis”, or “I’m Mr. Nobody”.  Whence, by a good substitution, the One-Eyed king concludes “Nobody is putting out my (one) eye”.  And Polyphemus cried out.  Epically.   A friend and colleague (Neal Katz by name) enjoyed a laugh with me, about what we called the “Second joke” of the Polyphemus legend in Odyssey.   The first is has a substantival ‘nobody’ injuring himself, Polyphemus.   The second joke has an implicit reference to Neal Katz.   Polyphemus says to our Fulano-man, Mr. WhatsHisName, “Of the ordered list of your shipmates, I promise to EAT YOU LAST”.   A Robinsonian ordering of this eat-the-next-shipmate-next policy (we will suppose Polyphemus good to his word) has plenty of room left over.   There is no ‘last’ (nobody), or Nobody is last.  Katz and I, we mused, are in a Robinsonian neighborhood with no terminal term.  So in some order, either Katz-Brown or Brown-Katz, we are scheduled to be — in that very cave — eaten raw.   Polyphemus is like those uncivilized souls given to anthropophagic orgies.   With nobody at the end.   Again, epic.

Back to the NY Times and its self-nullifying quotations of the day.   If you do a string-addition of a single no-space break (say the day’s quotation for Tuesday)  +  the no-space break for the next day, Wednesday, do you get a quotation whose string-length is  2 ?  I’m guessing that a standard function for appraising string-lengths would answer,  Yes, Tuesday + Wednesday, point of view summed-up null characters results in a string of length  2.     ”  “.

We may extend this little excursus enough to enable our exhibiting an echo of a  Tuesday + Wednesday   sum, consisting of a concatenated pair of NY Times (or Borealis Press) nulls.   The string-length of the sum being 2, a natural successor is a sum of daily quotations   Tuesday + Wednesday + Thursday threesome:

  ”       “   “.    Whom does one indicate or point to, with the name (simplex-null) OUTISOKRATHS ?   KratEs of Thebes is not impossible here, either as a matter of string-summings (‘grammar’ in the old sense of word-formation).   Prefixing now the 3-day reference to the front of the string  -ocrates, we get   “   “[o]crates.   This is an agglomerated name with 3-underbars prefixed, then a set of 3 null-string characters and then the 7 easy-to-read suffixed characters, totalling 13 bytes in all.   A sophisticate’s variation on the proper name ‘Crates of Thebes’.   Someday I’ll have to tax Vicki’s brain with these nothings (real) & somethings (nominal).

Proclus makes reference to a man, not otherwise easy to identify, whose name is in our best edition as “Kratistos” (“Cratistus) [Friedlein 211,16].   Proclus puts him alongside points about the traditional methods at the time of Plato and Leodamas.   Plato, “Kratistos” and Leodamas (a  parallel had occurred just 9 pages above in Proclus’s commentary, when he discusses two other men contemporary with these Early Academy thinkers:  Amphinomus and Aristotle — Friedlein p. 202).     It seems likely that we are here hearing echoes of a point made in Politicus  when Socrates is talking to teachers and learners of mathematics at the Early Academy, young men who sat at the feet of Theodorus of Cyrene.   I refer especially to the wording of a remark by Socrates to the teacher (Theodorus), who taught both Theaetetus and Younger Socrates.    Plato’s text at the beginning of Statesman has this teaching described as “most powerful [kratistos] concerning ratios and geometrical matters”:   περὶ λογισμοὺς καὶ τὰ γεωμετρικὰ κρατίστου , Polit. 257 a8.  ).    Worth further inquiry, the seemingly ‘non-proper’ name ‘kratiston’ at Euthydemus Ch. 24, 297 d6.    In this latter case it will have been used facetiously by Plato, referring as it does to the youngster eponymised from Dionysius II — the lad named “Dionysiodorus”.   G.R. Morrow had remarked in his translation of the Friedlein edition of Proclus — that we know nothing of who may be indicated, under the name ‘Cratistus’.   He may be named here in Proclus and other scholia to Euclid ‘improperly’, the way we might name Elder Socrates ‘dikaiotatos’.

R.G. Bury raises historical points about a man named “Polycrates” — in relation to the late-middle dialogue Symposium.    Only some light work on the etymology of this name is needed to see the ‘poly-‘ prefix as an invitation to trying out several variants, such as were in the nomenclature of the Early Academy.   ‘Hermocrates’, ‘Socrates’ and [more in the background, son of Dionysius II] ‘Apollokrates’…

Back to names now, and the idea of prepending a null-string so as to produce variants with a suffixed string -[o]krates.   A fully familiar completed name is SOdzein-kratEs, or SW-KRATHS.  Plato had done word-play on the two halves of Socrates’s name in Republic Book VII.  But consider a series of other strings to prefix, the balance being ‘o-crates’. Hermes and Apollo were two well-known names woven into the Sicilian family line, the one with the strong linkages to the voyaging Plato and his Early Academy:   Dionysius I.    Dionysius’s father-in-law was named ‘Hermo-kratEs’, and then this same man’s grandson (son of Dionysius II) got named ‘Apoll-[o]kratEs’, conceivably a reference to Plato’s influence, Plato himself a reputed ‘son of Apollo’ or Apollonides.      Perhaps not a co-incidence that Plato should  incorporate a character in his late dialogue ‘Critias‘, named ‘Hermocrates’.   This name is mis-echoed in Campbell’s ‘Excursus’ on the style of the late dialogues, his Rep. Vol II, p. 59, — Campbell’s Oxford book in 1894 manifests  ‘Herm-ogenes‘, and the various reprintings of his book since then have left this erroneous name (paradoxically enough ) precisely in its Clarendon Press place.  Co-incidentally enough, we can find a sort of parallel error in a Teubner Verlag printing of Xenophon’s Memorabilia I, 2, 48.   Please note it carefully, that Teubner in 1886 , as if to interchange a disciple of the Socrates1 for a disciple of Socrates2,  makes the exact same mis-substitution:  it puts in the -ogenes man a disciple of Socrates1 ( Thebes) for the -ocrates man, associate of Socrates2 (the King, Socrates-Alternate as he is variously known within Ephraim’s text)].

Crates of Thebes is reported to be a disciple of Diogenes of Sinope, (did he carry Diogenes’s famous figs, to set the comic stage for platonic ‘metechein’ (participating), h.e. Plato’s swallowing the plurality of them whole  ?   The Diogenes image where we see Crates opening his purse displays the Cynic teacher’s open book.  See the artful drawing by Vicki Winchester of Liberty, giving a careful rendition of a 15th cent. ms.  Here is her detail, showing both Diogenes and Crates:

In the 15th century ms. after which Ms. Winchester did her copied image, Diogenes sits in his tub poring over a book seemingly containing the standard cynic’s fare.   This would be an anthology of comic plays, letters and diatribes.   All of this material suitable to evolve into scholia in the margins of (say) a IV cent. B.C. ms. behind  Venetus T.    If so, we would have a plausible source for the marginalium on its folio 259r, with a stinging satire on Plato’s flippant word-plays on the root word “KRATHS/KRATEIN” at Tim. 42 b1.    ‘Such-and-such -o-crates’  or ‘crates-a-so-and-so’ we might encode Plato’s line, allowing ourselves to borrow from Aristotle’s etymological dissecting of the nouns ‘Phil-ippos’ and ‘philo-theamwn’ at EN 1099.   In the Aristotle word-play we see a varying of the whole word’s suffix, whereas our case requires that we vary the prefix.   Bywater’s Oxford text unhappily omits part of this word-play in Aristotle, blocking the reader from seeing the good ms. variant   ‘philo-theamwn’ [ φιλο-θεαμῶν ], a word of great interest to the philologically-minded critic of Republic V.

More from Domenico Cufalo in his critical edition of the Tetralogy VIII scholia, unless he opts not to continue with Volume II.  But possibly the Cufalo project can get help from scholars in Holland, such as young Bram Demulder and or his elder-generation associates in Holland, such as Schenkeveld, who have a special interest in the ps-Aristotelian work De Mundo.

  1.  new Chaucer fragment, found in meta-phrased language of 21st cent. A.D. American urban ghetto language.
  2. Archytas  his fragment (a Testimonium only ?) A24, from near Olymp. 100, in Tarentum or Ancona or Athens.
  3. Plato’s mysterious phrase in Phaedrus, ” The Sweet Elbow”, describing the shape of the harbor (Ancona, or    γκων ).
  4.  the 75 KG astronomy stone, (‘il globo di Matelica’), up in the hills above Ancona, along Ad Aesim river (transported there by river quite likely)
  5. the 65 cm diameter ‘Famese’ globus, many of whose features traced to Hipparchus, 2 centuries B.C. by Bradley E. Schaefer, LSU Physics Dept.  Much skill and care are admirably exhibited in Schaefer’s work on Eudoxus and Hipparchus.
  6.  Plato’s friend and ally Dionysius I, and the colony he founded near -387 at Ancona.
  7.   getting back to the word “atopon” in fragments of Archytas near Olymp. 100, from meta-phrased  243.24
  8.  31.v.17   a play on words, via all the best mss. of Euclid’s Elements III, 16, “no room in between for” any named point   X    Could the following happen:  someone comes up with a logically coherent concept of ‘greater than’ in strict accordance with which we could ‘order’ a series of angles, all of them rectilinear and each of them in some sense ‘infinitesimal’ ?    This might also be formulated in terms of a quasi-series of some kind:  thus we are looking for a logically coherent of quasi-series in which we are able to give ‘order’ to several rectilineal angles, each of them of only ‘infinitesimal’ size ?   The intent would be to achieve a ‘fitting inside’ or ‘harmonising’ of one or more of the tiny (horn angle) sizes, paradoxically enough inside a space where there is [according to the text of III, 16 as we now have it] ‘NO ROOM’ for much of anything.   Perhaps this shrunk-down size could find an icon to reflect itself, and be reflected to ‘ad oculos’ clarity seekers, h.e. the public at large ?
  9. what of a ‘private language’, in which such pico-miniscule sizes are expressible and appreciable, the ‘hotan’ to be uncovered being close to that causing the boundary between ‘hylE gewmetrikE’ and ‘hylE noEtikE’ — see next entry, i.e. #10, on Euthydemus.   Here we may give the side-note that A.E. Taylor, in his final weeks or months of life in 1945, was focussing his mind on logical infinitesimals, greater than nothing at all, greater than logical Zero, but only sayable publicly as “not even nohow” — around Tht. 183, where his translation gets incoherent and then abruptly terminates itself (this ‘torso’ of the complete Theaetetus is still today extant in a box inside Edinburgh Univ library, and had been put on public view sometime near 1980, at that very library, according to posted signs nearby, best understood after one has spoken directly with Mr. R. Ovenden, now of Oxford’s library system).       Inside Euchydemus’s Chapt 22, we encounter the infinitely fine logical scalpel’s edge, this mentioned ‘subtractible hotan’.    In full akribological precision, this subtractible edge of the Distinguo appears in Euthydemus 296, its line b3.    The example of its deployment, at b3-b5, requires a 3-word phrase, counting the ‘ge’ in mid-phrase — or a 2-word phrase if we take the specimen at c7 as decisive example.  All of this needs illustration, both from the Burnet OCT text and from folium
  10. We must have a size quasi-inappreciable to sense or even to intellect (perhaps the ‘Hotan’ drawing the boundary here between the logically lesser and the logically greater is somehow related to what Archytas shrunk to well below a ‘non-weighted infinitesimal’ would give an iconic (yes, even visible — see the graphic, ‘The shortest (angular) distance’, its progressively less-roomy ‘in-between’ intersticessense of this latter concept) of angles (or quasi-angles, — this time coherent and also meeting requirements set by standards set in Eudemus’s ‘p. gwnias‘)
  11.   Holger Thesleff, with his gnarly-difficult Sense of Humor (=’sisu’) —  about modern Greek researchers trying to isolate and identify the ‘true’ behind the ‘pseudo’ in that early Pythagorean brotherhood and sisterhood. ps.-Archytas and Plato.
  12.   Rudy Rucker’s dimension#4, spacial, so not the dimension of Time, provider of “room” for ps.-Archytan   Atopon .  Supplements from the Loop Quantum Gravity cosmological insights of Leonid Perlov of Cambridge, Massachusetts, about ‘internal’ features of time.
  13.  Borealis Press image of the shared Laugh, rendered in 4-D by artists in Manhattan and Sullivan County NY [2015]    Its elaboration via the “ultra-violet cutoff” limit and the not fully reputable concept of ‘quasiparticles’ — this last concept under serious criticism from Physics Nobel Laureate R. Laughlin (=2005, p. 105).
  14. [31.v.17 PS]:   Further elaborations possible via the R. Goldblatt concept, Robinsonian in inspiration, of ‘weighted infinitesimals’  (‘Lectures on the Hyperreals’, 2012).   Still further reflections via Schol #109, to Euclid I, 30, and its unusual (perhaps Early Academy in inspiration:  see pre-Apollonius Dyscolus’s dating of the ‘neologism’ “parallelotEs”).   Further still:  the seemingly pre-Prior Analytics deployment of ‘middles/extremes’ language, the ‘middles’ being a kind of rhetorico-logical foretaste of Philip’s student, his soon-to-appear works Topics, Soph. El. and Prior Analytics.      
  15. Divining what B. Einarson’s ms. on Epinomis (commentary) may well hold, on ‘means’, ‘extremes’ as here in #109 deployed.  Are we halfway between older Arts of Rhetoric (see Wm Falcetano) and Aristotle’s ‘Rhetoric’, specifically between the sophistic analysis of the tropes of homeoteleuton and ‘symplokE’ —  halfway to Plato’s ‘symplokE eidwn’ and Aristotle’s syllogism in First Figure ?  ‘elimination of middle (term)’ is the ergon of such sun-logizein, as its survival in Euclid V, Defn. 17A, the “allws” to “ex aequali [distantia]” rules.    Do come to our assistance, O Einarson, masterful researcher into Philip of Opus and the mathematical background of the Organon !



M. Brown  31.v.17