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Alexander of Aphrodisias, On Aristotle Topics 1

Alexander of Aphrodisias, On Aristotle Topics 1

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Alexander of Aphrodisias
On Aristotle Topics 1
Translated byJohannes M. Van Ophuijsen
First published in 2001 byGerald Duckworth & Co. Ltd.61 Frith StreetLondon W1D 3JL
020 7434 4242Fax: 020 7434 4420Email:enquiries@duckworth-publishers.co.uk www.ducknet.co.uk Translation © 2001 by J.M. Van OphuijsenPreface © 2001 by Richard SorabjiAll rights reserved. No part of
publication may bereproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in anyform or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recordingor otherwise, without the prior permission of the publisher.The present translations have been made possible by generous and imaginative funding from the following sources: the National Endowment for theHumanities, Division of Research Programs, an independent federal agencyof the USA; the Leverhulme Trust; the British Academy; the Jowett Copyright Trustees; the Royal Society (UK); Centro Internazionale A. Beltramedi Storia dello Spazio e del Tempo (Padua); Mario Mignucci; LiverpoolUniversity; the Leventis Foundation; the Arts and Humanities ResearchBoard of the British Academy; the Esmee Fairbairn Charitable Trust; theHenry Brown Trust; Mr and Mrs N. Egon; the Netherlands Organisation forScientific Research (NWO/GW). The editor wishes to thank Giancarlo Ab-bamonte, Jacques Brunschwig, Frans de Haas, Erik Ostenfeld and RobinSmith for their comments and Han Baltussen for preparing the volume for
A catalogue record for this book is available\ from the British Library
ISBN 0 7156 2853 4Typeset by Ray DaviesPrinted in Great Britain byRedwood Books Limited, Trowbridge
chosen or about what is to be done. Propositions of science we shallcall those about increase, movement, coming-to-be and passing away,and that everything that has come to be is perishable, and thoseconnected with these. Here among those
science too we find someproblems and propositions which have reference 'to choice and avoid
'Whether all things happen according to fate and by necessity?'10 is a problem of science but has reference 'to choice and avoidance',since it depends on this whether we decide to deliberate about whatshould be done or not. And propositions of logic <we shall call>: thatrelations are given with the nature of a thing;
that contraries arethe objects of the same science; that contradiction divides betweenthe true and the false;
problems about genus and species, about thesyllogistic figures, about the (syllogistic) pairs
and about proposi-15 tions. By all of this Aristotle indicates that we should collect propositions for each species of problems - ethical, scientific and logical - onits own.
With a view to philosophy we must treat of these thingsaccording to the truth, [but dialectically (we must treat of them)with a view to opinion.] (105b30-l)After saying that some problems and propositions are ethical, some20 scientific and some logical, Aristotle adds that the philosopher'sexamination and treatment of these should proceed according to whatis true. He will deal with these in each of the said species
for thesake of finding the truth: in lectures on ethics and politics withproblems of ethics, so that he will collect propositions truly bearing25 on choice and avoidance, about things truly to be chosen; in lectureson theoretical subjects
and science he will investigate what isgenuinely true, and in the
in work on propositions and indistinguishing things said in many ways and the like, he will collectwhat is truly useful from a logical point of view.'But dialectically we must treat of them with a view to opinion', as30 in the present treatise, in his
and his works for outsiders: inthese too a great deal is said on problems both of ethics and of sciencewhich is merely approved.
We must take all propositions as generally as possible[and produce many out of
such as <first> that opposites areobjects of the same branch of knowledge, and then that contraries are so, and that correlatives are. In the same way we mustin turn divide these too, as far as it is possible to go on dividing,for instance (into the propositions) that good and bad are objectsof the same branch of knowledge, and that white and black are,

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