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Author: Harold Tarrant

This paper takes issue with the thesis of Rashed and Auffret that the Critias that has come down to us is not a genuine dialogue of Plato. Authors do not consider the style of the Critias, which should be a factor in any complete study of authorship. It observes the widespread consensus that the style of the Timaeus and Critias are virtually inseparable. It surveys a wide range of stylistic studies that have tended to confirm this, before answering a possible objection that cites the similarity of style between the genuine Laws and Philip of Opus’ Epinomis. Since the main argument used by Rashed and Auffret relies on an inconsistency between Timaeus and Critias consideration is given to the types of inconsistency found within Platonic dialogues and sequences of dialogues, particularly the hiatus-avoiding dialogues including Timaeus itself and Laws. Finally, alternative explanations of the alleged inconsistency are offered.

In: Méthexis
In: Religio-Philosophical Discourses in the Mediterranean World
In: Mnemosyne
In: Voice into Text
Author: Harold Tarrant


The beginning of the Alcibiades commentary mentions four different ‘inspirations’ (enthousiasmoi) which are to be found in Plato’s dialogues. These passages of elevated discourse have in the past been interpreted in terms of the intellectual and/or ethical level at which these ‘inspirations’ operate. This chapter, however, explores the possibility that Olympiodorus is concerned rather with kinds of inspiring discourse that we meet in particular passages of Platonic works, explaining them in terms of different higher voices that Plato’s protagonists adopt. This is probably dependent on a reading of the Phaedrus, and marks an important shift in analyzing such passages compared to Olympiodorus’ predecessors.

In: Olympiodorus of Alexandria
In: Ancient Readings of Plato’s Phaedo
In: Ancient Readings of Plato’s Phaedo
In: Brill’s Companion to the Reception of Plato in Antiquity