Plato’s Geach Talks to Socrates: Definition by Example-and-Exemplar in the Hippias Major

In: Phronesis

Abstract

The paper argues that Plato, in the Hippias Major gives due consideration to the question whether, for some qualities F, such as beauty, it is possible to give an account of what F is by pointing to an example-and-exemplar. He takes seriously, and gives cogent reasons in defense of, an affirmative answer to this question in a manner comparable to Geach—although he argues that these reasons lead to inconsistency, if combined with the view that it is possible to make comparisons in regard to F among significantly different examples-and-exemplars of a thing that is F.

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