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(782 words)

Author(s): Betegh, Gábor (Budapest)
[German version] (Θαλῆς; Thalês). One of the Seven Sages, philosopher, astronomer and mathematician, said to be the founder of the Milesian School, 1st half of 6th cent. BC. Some anecdotes about T. survive, but no reliable biographical information. He is said to have travelled in Egypt. To what extent his erudition was influenced by the Near East is unknown. The ancient sources disagree as to whether T. recorded his theories in writing. Those who argue for it name the titles of three works: Ναυτικὴ ἀστρολογία ( Nautikḕ astrología, 'Nautical Astronomy', in hexameters), Περὶ τροπῆς ( Perì t…


(228 words)

Author(s): Betegh, Gábor (Budapest)
[German version] (Κρατύλος; Kratýlos). Best known  Heraclitean, probably from Athens. Aristotle attributes C. with a radical rephrasing of  Heraclitus' statement that one cannot step into the same river twice (22 bk. 91 DK). C. supposedly claimed that one cannot step even once into the same river (Aristot. Metaph. 1010a 7ff. = 65 4 DK). This statement is understood as the idea that everything is always in motion and subject to change in every way, also as a denial of any possible identity. Accordin…


(234 words)

Author(s): Betegh, Gábor (Budapest)
[German version] The Ionian philosopher  Heraclitus [1] was considered one of the ‘scattered’ (οἱ σποράδην; oi sporádēn) philosophers in antiquity, i.e. as one who had no place in the successive sequences of teachers and students. Tradition mentions no students in the strict sense but speaks of followers of Heraclitus. A Heraclitean could be anyone who was philosophically dependent on Heraclitus in some manner (cf.  Democriteans). Some of the ‘Heraclitizing’ thinkers (Ἡρακλειτίζοντες; Hērakleitízontes), of whom  Cratylus is usually the only one named, seem to have …

Heraclitus I (Gk)

(1,845 words)

Author(s): Betegh, Gábor (Budapest) | Robbins, Emmet (Toronto) | Albiani, Maria Grazia (Bologna) | Bäbler, Balbina (Göttingen) | Fornaro, Sotera (Sassari) | Et al.
(Ἡράκλειτος; Hērákleitos). [German version] [1] H. of Ephesus Ionian philosopher, c. 500 BC Son of Bloson, outstanding personality within Ionian philosophy. Betegh, Gábor (Budapest) [German version] A. The person H.'s main period of activity is estimated to have been about 503-500 BC (Diog. Laert. 9,1). He belonged to a leading family in the public life of Ephesus. The doxographic tradition records several anecdotes of H.'s arrogance and contempt for his fellow citizens and humanity in general, which are mostly based on fragments of H. Betegh, Gábor (Budapest) [German version] B. La…