Plato as "Architect of Science" Author(s): Leonid Zhmud Reviewed work(s): Source: Phronesis, Vol. 43, No. 3 (Aug., 1998), pp.

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Plato as "Architect Science" of


The figureof thecordialhostof the Academy, who invitedthe mostgiftedmathand ematicians cultivated whose keen intellectwas able if not to pureresearch, then at least to show the methodfor its solution: solve the particular problem to this figureis quitefamiliar students Greekscience.But was the Academy of as such a centerof scientificresearch, did Platoreally set for mathematiand the cians and astronomers problems they shouldstudyand methods they should use? Oursourcestell aboutPlato'sfriendship at leastacquaintance many or with of brilliant mathematicians his day (Theodorus, Archytas, Theaetetus), they but wereneverhis pupils,rather versa- he learned vice muchfromthemandactively used this knowledge developing philosophy. in his Thereis no reliableevidence that Eudoxus,Menaechmus, Dinostratus, Theudius,and others,whom many scholars uniteintothe groupof so-called "Academic ever mathematicians," were his pupilsor close associates. analysis therelevant Our of passages (Eratosthenes'
Platonicus, Sosigenes ap. Simplicius, Proclus' Catalogue of geometers, and

Philodemus' Historyof the Academy, etc.) showsthatthe very tendency porof trayingPlatoas the architect sciencegoes backto the earlyAcademyand is of bornout of interpretations his dialogues. of

Plato's relationship to the exact sciences used to be one of the traditional problems in the history of ancient Greek science and philosophy.' From the nineteenth century on it was examined in various aspects, the most significant of which were the historical, philosophical and methodological. In the last century and at the beginning of this century attention was paid peredominantly, although not exclusively, to the first of these aspects, especially to the questions how great Plato's contribution to specific mathematical research really was, and how reliable our sources are in ascribing to him particular scientific discoveries. The studies focused first on the
Accepted September 1997 I This article was written during my fellowship at the Centre for Hellenic Studies (Washington, D.C.). An earlier version of it was given as a talk at the Departmentof Classical Studies, Yale University. I am very grateful to Heinrich von Staden for his kind invitation to Yale and to Charles Price for his generous help in preparingthe final English version. In quoting Greek authorsI have used standardEnglish translations where available. C) Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 1998 Phronesis XLIII13



mathematical passages of Plato's dialogues and second on the evidence (usually late) abouthis mathematical discoveries,such as the golden section, the method of analysis, the method of foundingthe "Pythagorean triplets,"etc. The generalconclusionof these studieswas that Plato himself was notan activescientistandthatthescientific discoveries hypotheand ses attributed him in the ancienttradition not really belong to him.2 to do In the second half of the 20th centuryit seems there have been no serious attemptsto debatethis conclusion,3 the discussionhas been conand cernedwith the two other aspects- philosophicaland methodological. In the first case the main question usually focused on the extent to which Platonismstimulatedthe developmentof the exact sciences in anof tiquityand/orhow much it hinderedthe formation the appliedsciences and empiricallyorientedresearch.I recentlystatedmy positionregarding the this question,4 essence of which can be summedup as follows: there is no groundfor believing that in ancientGreece mathematics was much more influencedby philosophy(includingPlato's philosophy)than it has been in the modernperiod.Because of the fundamental epistemological heterogeneityof science and philosophy,they had to be developed in a differentway from their very beginning,i.e. from the sixth centuryB.C.
on, and all the evidence available to us shows that they were actually

between the exact developed in a differentway. In fact, the relationship sciences and philosophywas essentiallythe same in antiquityas it is in that the modernperiod:it was mathematics influenced philosophyand not vice versa. As W. Knorr,one of the leadingexpertsin ancientmathematics, emphasizes:
. . . mathematical studies were autonomous, almoust completely so, while the philosophical debates... frequently drew supportand clarificationfrom mathematical work.... My view conforms to what one may observe as the usual relation between mathematics and philosophy throughout history and especially

See, for example C. Blass, De Platone mathematico, Bonn 1861; G.J. Allman, Greek Geometry from Thales to Euclid, Dublin 1889 (Repr. New York 1976); M. Simon, Geschichte der Mathematikim Altertum, Berlin 1909 (Repr. Amsterdam 1973), 183ff; T.L. Heath, A History of Greek Mathematics,V. I, Oxford 1921, 284ff. 3 See, however Ch. Mugler, Platon et la recherche mathematique de son epoque, Strasbourg 1948; cf. a long review of Mugler by H. Cherniss, "Plato as Mathematician," Rev.Met. 4 (1951), 395-425 (= Selected Papers, Ed. L. Tarin, Leiden 1977, 222-252). 1 L. Zhmud,"Die BeziehungenzwischenPhilosophieundWissenschaftin derAntike," SudhoffsArchiv 78 (1994), 1-13. 5 W. Knorr, "The Interaction of Mathematics and Philosophy in Antiquity," in:

ist wegzulegen. 144f. 867-877. Bonn 1946. Kretzman (ed. Firenze 1974. Szab6. Antigonos von Karistos. besagt: Plato hat natiirlich keine mathematische Entdeckungengemacht. aber Plato hat der Mathematikdie allgemeinen Direktivengegeben."Die Begrundungder mathematischenWissenschaften durch Eudoxos" (1932). 7 H. Wollen." AHES 1 (1960). Hauser. Mondolfo."Die Antike 1 (1925).1 Despite the criticism of this position frequently expressed both by in philologists and by historiansof mathematics. Shorey. Theatet und Eudoxus. 434ff.die ihm Dodekaederzuschreibt. La filosofia dei Greci nel suo sviluppo storico.7I quote only one typical opinion: Die traditionelle Platosauffassung.L. R. Berlin 1889. "Platons EinfluB auf die Bildung der mathematischenMethode. Ithaca 1982." in: E.Darmstadt 1965. 93-107 (= K. 127-138. Vortrdge und Aufsatze. und Antike. "Mathematik O. U. II." Q&St. B.Leipzig 1912. Platons Akademie. Abt. Geometrie der Griechen von Thales bis Euklid. in: idem. Geschichte der Mathematik und Naturwissenschaftim Altertum. die analytische Methode sind Platos Werk. Zurich 1955. 279ff. 0 Toeplitz. Wissen. Glauben. Die platonische Akademie und die moderne universitas litterarum. who defined the problemsmathematicians astronomers and studied and the methodsthey used. Isnardi Parente.). die Beschrankungauf Konstruktionen mit Zirkel und Lineal allein. I. Leipzig 1907. Frank.6Many suggestedthat even if Plato did not achieve any success in the exact sciences. Luzern 1955. die groBen Mathematikerseines Kreises. or on his belief in the mathematical verse. 9f. 6 See the review article by M.. Gaiser (ed.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 213 It is revealing that we can discern the obvious influenceof the exact sciences on Plato's convictionthat any firmknowledgeof physicalreality structure the uniof is impossible. he did play a considerablerole as an organiserof scientificresearchand as a methodologist. Becker (ed. Heiberg. . Edelstein (ed.). "Carattere strutturadell' Accae demia antica. die Uberlieferung. Herter. Solmsen. 1 (1929). 69-102. L. Taran) New York 1980. Zeller. 99ff (= 0. It is worth pointing out that Toeplitz himself understood the vulnerability of this position. Hildesheim 1969. Selected Papers.Bern 1921. (Ed. A. but we can hardlyprovethatthese ideas in turnhad any immediate influenceon those who carriedout researchin ancientGreece. I For example E. haben die sogenannte Euklidische Mathematikunter seinem EinfluBgeschaffen.wie sie auch von den beteiligten Mathematikem im wesentlichen geteilt wird.9 the last decades it has N. die axiomatische Strukturder Elemente. "Platonismand the Unity of Science" (1927). von Wilamowitz-Moellendorff.). "Anfange des Euklidischen Axiomensystem.3. G. E. 112. 125139). H.). Howald. Infinity and Continuity in Ancient and Medieval Thought. Usener. Zur Geschichte der griechischen Mathematik. Das Platonbild. P. in: L. 201 (italics are mine). In the fieldof methodology argument the concerned so muchPlatonism not as the exact sciences in the Platonicschool. "Organisation der wissenschaftlichen Arbeit" (1884). F.

which also emphasises Plato's importancefor the developmentof geometry. which can shed light on the origin of the Academic legend about Plato 450ff). where the duplicationof the cube and the "saving of the appearances. VI. 342ff. 10K.'0 been developedin many important these studies share the tendencyto presentthe Academy as a kind of a of and wherethe best mathematicians astronomers the researchinstitution. 217-221). K. The CambridgeCompanionto Plato. 130-132 (= Selected Papers. . V. 175). Platon. mathematiciansof the rank of Eudoxus belonged to his circle is no proof of Plato's influence on mathematicalresearch. "I. Kraut(ed. Cambridge 1992. Platons Akademie. New York 1962. His own direct contribution mathematicknowledge was obviously nil. idem. idem. which is a centralpartof the paper. demus that directlycalls Plato an architectof the mathematical of passage and The focus of this section is the authorship this particular its similarityto the well-knownCatalogueof geometersin Proclus'commentary to Euclid. supervision. CQ 43 (1948). Fowler. analyses what exactly the Catalogue says about Plato's relationshipto and what is known about this from the contemporarymathematicians.Berlin 1971. for a short while. mainly from Books VI and VII of the Republic.2nd ed. Neugebauer expressed his opinion definitively: "I think that it is evident that Plato's role has been widely exagto gerated.). I fondamenti dell' aritmetica e della geometria in Platone." time worked underPlato's methodological In the following sections of my paperI will discuss variousaspects of this issue. Herter. Rev. London 1964. The Mathematics of Plato's Academy. Napoli 1987 (further quoted as Lasserre).The exceedingly elementarycharacter of the examples of mathematicalproceduresquoted by Plato and Aristotle gives no support to the hypothesis that Theaetetus or Eudoxus had anything to leam from Plato. Oxford 1987. 152). F.214 LEONID ZHMUD While differentin approach. The often adopted notion that Plato 'directed' research fortunatelyis not born out of facts" (The Exact Sciences in Antiquity. The next section. Grundproblemeder Geschichte der antiken Wissenschaft." Plato is supposedto play the role of the scientificorganiserand methodologist. K. Mueller is also ready to admit that Plato was a "general mathematicaldirec(MathematicalMethod and Philosophical tor. De Leodamasde Thasos d Philippe d'Oponte. Platons ungeschriebeneLehre. section VII deals with some passages from Plato's dialogues. Philodems Academica.H. of H.The Birth of Mathematicsin the Age of Plato. A New Reconstruction.Section V. Gaiser. Milano 1994. Chemiss. finally. Stuttgart1963. That. discusses the place occupied by the exact sciences in the educationalcurriculumand scientific practice of the early Academy. 250ff. Theaetet und die antike Mathematik (1932). D. 293ff. Then. Sections II and III deal with two specific scientificproblems. other sources. Gaiser. Stuttgart 1988. Hosle. Darmstadt 1969 (especially Nachtrag). 0. H. Lasserre. von Fritz. Section IV considers a recently restoredpapyrustext of Philosciences. in: R. studies. posing problems to the mathematicians" Truth.

2. as I am convincedthat it is a legend.C.'4 versions can be generally summed up in the following his way. 11ff. '4 De E ap.moving back from such late authorsas Proclusand Simpliciusto theirclassical and Hellenisticsources and then to the early Academy. The people of Delos.) who does not propose his own solution to this problem. Accordingto generalopinionPlutarch'ssourcewas Ha-rowovtk. conv.C. p. 579 A-D.'2 For Greek mathematicsthe Delian problemwas not unlike Fermat'stheoremfor modem mathematics: thereis hardlya single famousGreekmathematician fromHippocrates of Chios (c. having reprimanded Greeks for the their contemptof geometry. Boston 1986. this one was already solved in the generation after Hippocrates. Delph. 718 E-F. Plutarch and several late commentators. 17ff. Plato. which begins in the early Academyitself. I will try to trace its development. 2 . Textual Studies in Ancient and Medieval Geometry. because by sinking to the level of crude mechanicsthey ruinedthe value of geometry. Platonica. II The idea of the Platonicschool as a centerof scientificresearchis a continuationof an ancienttradition.) to PappusAlexandrinus (fourthcenturyA. and Plato himself. 49ff. Marc. The Anecdotes Concerning the Life and Writingsof Plato. the tradition connectingit with Plato makes him seem like the originator one of the of centralproblemsin Greekgeometry. Plutarchdiscussed the problemin several works.. However. 14. Riginos.'"The a See A. scientistand poet of the thirdcenturyB. and Plato rebukedthem.In their approachthey employedmechanicaldevices. Thus. 1s Theon refers directly to this work (Expos. posed by the Delphic oracle. diaa logue by Eratosthenes.Eudoxusand Menaechmusto find a solution to the problem. Knorr. The Ancient Tradition of Geometric Problems. 440 B. Leiden 1976. See W.3-12 Hiller). 141ff (NN 99-100). A classic exampleis the story aboutthe solutionto the well-knownDelian problemof the duplicationof the cube. preservedby Theon of Smyrna.D. tormented a plague which Apollo had laid by upon them. unlike Fermat's theorem. Boston 1989. 386 E. 13 Knorr came up with more than ten solutions: W.E. De genio Socr. Knorr.9-11. Quest.'3 Thus. who after all was an originatorof the idea that science needs an architect. asked Plato to solve the problemof duplicatinga cubic altar.commissionedthe famous "academicmathematicians"Archytas. giving various interpretations.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 215 as an architectof the exact sciences.

who analysed this text in great detail.He manufactured device for drawinglines. and it is noteworthythat his own a solutionwas mechanical. 48-70. To whom does the legend about three great mathematicians three subsequent generations (Eudoxus was a pupil of Archytas.Eudemusof Rhodes. convincingly showed that the letter is not a later forgery (as Wilamowitz Eratosthenes also studied and thought). 90.Eratosthenes' by muchbetterwith the "mechanical" endingof the storythanwith the "antione presentedby Plutarch.4f Heiberg= 47 A 15)..recorded 16 Eud.p.and anothermore literaryversion. fr. 131ff.Eudoxusand Menaechmus proposedtheirsolutionsto the problem.Knorr. von Wilamowitz-Moellendorff.D. 17 U.and was not set for Plato by the Delians (Eratosthenes. as well as the mention of Hippocrates (cf.216 LEONID ZHMUD plot of this dialogue is clearly literaryfiction:the problemof the duplication of the cube arose in the middle of the fifth century.'7 that it belongs to Eratosthenes. preservedby the later commentator endingto the story Ascalon (sixth centuryA. 2. gives an entirelydifferent (Eutoc.goes into great detail about Archytas' solution.all workingunderPlato's supervision. solutioncorrelates accompanied a letterand an epigram. and Menaechmusa pupil of Eudoxus). belong? Was Eratosthenesits authoror does it date back to an earlier time? The answer is made more complicatedby the fact that Eratosthenes' Eutocius of letter to king Ptolemy. . with the exceptionof Menaechmus' (thougheven he met this practicalcriteriononly to a very small degree and with difficulty). 139-140 Wehrli). It is probablyfrom Eudemus that the evidence on Eudoxus' and Menaechmus' solutions derives.De sphaera. Textual Studies. "Ein Weihgeschenk des Eratosthenes" Kleine Schriften. in the letterto Ptolemy.'8 the problemof duplicatingthe cube. Bd. IS Knoff.Hence Knorr had concludesthatEratosthenes two versions:one morehistoricallyaccurate. was well aware by of this fact).In Archim.'6but does not once mention of Plato. (1894). It statesthat Archytas. the way.all the more so because the epimechanical" gram which is widely recognisedas authenticalso says that Archytas' solution was badly adaptedfor practice(8oidgXavaepya). fr. but they were all too abstract and thereforedid not deal with the problemin a practicalandusefulway. Hippocrates Chios had reducedit to the findingof two of mean proportionals between two given lines." dedicateda bronzemodelof it to king Ptolemy. the and so-called"mesolabe. Berlin 1962. a student of Aristotleand our most reliablesourceon pre-Euclidean geometry. and a brilliantsolution to this last problemwas found by Archytas.). 141 Wehrli = 47 A 14.

24.E. 488.20 III A paralleltraditionin the historyof astronomy depicts Plato as being the first to put forward the principle of "saving the appearances" (a(4ctv Ta\ explaining the apparentlyirregularmovement of heavenly (patvogcva). to Plutarch himself. fr. we turn to the only ancient evidence on this story. 202-222. comm. of Europeanscience. however.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 217 Knorrconsiders in the Platonicus and carrieddown to us by Plutarch. is said to have been the first of the Greeks to deal with this type of hypothesis.. De caelo.).the first to achieve success was Eudoxus. It is easy to see that the roles in this story are distributed in exactly the same way as in the legend about the Delian problem:Plato's powerfulintellect uncoversthe essence of the problemand formulatesit for the professionalscientists.the principleof "saving the appearances" a is cornerstoneof Greek astronomy. cit. and not to Eratosthenes (Riginos. p. Wehrli also noted this (Eud. the brightcolours of this pictureimmediatelybegin to fade. 19 20 21 It is very likely. Simpliciussays the following: Eudoxus of Cnidus. See G. ad loc." If. that the "anti-mechanical" ending of this story belongs Knorr. which despite all of its importance cannot be relatedto the foundations of ancient mathematics.then this fact alone would be sufficient justificationfor calling of him an "architect science. set this problem for students of astronomy:"By the assumption of what circular and orderedmotions can the apparentmotions of the planets be accounted for?" (In Arist. Tradition.'9 the story about the Delian problemto be a legend that arose in the middle of the fourthcenturyin the Academy. fr.R. nearly as and one of the founders. "Saving the Appearances.they then compete among themselves and in the end come up with an answer (eitherone or several in succesion). For Plato. Lloyd. however. 22.2' it could be successfullyshown that If Plato really did have a connectionwith the formulation this scientific of principle. 141.18f Heiberg = Eud. . op. bodies by attributinguniform circular movement to them. 145)."CQ 28 (1978). 148 Wehrli). as Eudemus reports in the second book of his History of astronomy and as Sosigenes repeats on the authorityof Eudemus. Having formulated the problem in this way Plato posed it to the scientists who then studiedit using their own methods. Sosigenes says. It is very revealing that this story occupies a central place in the arguments of those who seek to presentPlato as a forerunner. Unlike the Delian problem.

. 497 Heiberg = Eud. but that the latter made it clear that the reference to Plato belonged to himself (Op. 149ff.22Actually.Sosigenescould rely on much earliersources. W. imot6p-aev De caelo. p. fr.179 n. Defacie 24 They both also discussed the principleof "saving the appearances": 923 A."Beitrage zur Geschichteder Wissenschaft und Technik 5 (1965).23 should also be noted that if Eudemus It really did mentionPlato in the contextof posing such an important problem. and was not sure exactly where the quotationfrom Eudemusends." JHA 21 (1990). who lived in the same This tradition Plato as a methodologist centurywrote aboutit. we would surely know about it not only from Sosigenes. 149 Wehrli).he was probably problem:both Plutarchand Theon of Smyrna. auvo>6iw. a commentator the late second centuryA. 5-24. 180 Hiller. fr.could not find in it anythingrelatingto Plato.2) three of the seven quotations preservedfrom the History of astronomy are quoted by Simplicius. who analysedthis passage in great detail came to a very groundedconclusion:the mentionof Plato belongs not to Eudemus. Thus Simplicius. Berlin 1963. commenting on this passage. As for the awareof the storyconnectingPlatowith the Delian latter.. This is clear from .VtoVt?WS i'taP6pIiae. Simplicius makes it clear that he is ? dealing with his book: E16Tnto."Der Mathematikosund der Physikos. Knorr. Theon. Expos.25 However. Simpliciusnotes that Eudoxuswas mentionedby bothEudemusand Sosigenes(who reliedon Eudemus).Kat aomwp (In Eiigo. "Plato and Eudoxus on the Planetary Motions. cit."Plato and Eudoxus.24 presenting of trv gaNigaw&v very likely encouraged Sosigenes to ascribe to him the most important principleof Greekastronomy. this makes it very likely that he did have access to Eudemus' History of astronomy. Krafft.on the other hand. In Arist. 21 Before Sosigenes this principlewas not connected with Plato. Plut. 60 Diels = Eud. Bemerkungenzu der angeblichen Platonischen Aufgabe..D.Die Rettung der Phanomene. Therefore everything speaks for the first alternativementioned by von Fritz. points out that the repetitionof Sosigenes' name might mean either that: 1) the words about Plato do not belong to Eudemus. believes that Simplicius knew this book only throughSosigenes. or 2) that Simplicius knew about Eudemus' opinion only throughSosigenes. Cf. Knorr. 140 Wehrli) and quotes more than a hundredtimes from his Physics. Krafft. 23 Von Fritz (Grundprobleme.. whereas the words concerningPlato belong to Sosigenes only. 313-329. 3) in quoting Eudemus.R."319f. I cannot see any reason why Simplicius should have praised the laconic and clear style of Eudemus' work if he did not have access to it. Since von Fritz did not see any evidence that Eudemus' History of astronomy was available to Simplicius he was inclined towards the second alternative. 375).218 LEONID ZHMUD MittelstraB. ? a. 16). See also Fr.Yet such evidence does exist: 1) Simplicius gives a long wordy quotationfrom Eudemus' History 22 of geometry (?'cfootalt i Ta&bo`r so Ev8j"-u caTa 44tv Xey6cvDa. of with his characteristic pedantry. p. J MittelstraB.. whom Eudemus'Historyof astronomy was still available. p.but to Sosigenes. die Phanomenezu retten.

takenby Philodemusfrom some early source. Napoli 1991. moreover. In this way. toi.T even if it does not allow us to speak for certain about a direct connectionbetween the two'rw fromSosigenes(cpi0To. alleged "anti-mechanical" The nameof the authorof this passage.C.In columnY of the Herculanum tains a partof Philodemus'book. Wissenschaft.). Filodemo. flUow0VO. 26 The similarity of this passage (apltrtcCTovoiVTo.) in his Introductionto the phenomena says that the Pythagoreans were the first to introduce the principle of uniform circular movement of heavenly bodies (Eisag.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" Iv 219 devotedto the Historyof the Academyby Philodemus Recent publications support (first centuryB. he believed. gierpoXo'y1'a (the theory of proportions?)and research on definitions reached their peak.His remarkonly relating to astronomy.seems to be a natural development of Philodemus' text. .. 'EXXitvwEi6oto. They neither explained nor even noticed the deviations of the planets from their circular orbits (retrograde movements. unlike Eudoxus the Pythagoreans did not make conscious efforts to reduce the visibly irregularmovement of the planets to combinations of the circular movements. Revci'a npoWi iiata czr %tivw it t5t~vo4TOMflX&rov.. 126f. we read the following: At this time the mathematical sciences (or giaMara) were also greatly advanced. Philosophie und Religion im fruhen Pythagoreismus. 0x pTnat FO)0tYEV1%."Plato and Eudoxus. as Eudoxusof Cnidusand his studentscompletelyrevised the old theoryof Hippocrates of Chios. See L. and that Geminus (first century B. To be sure.. at least shows that Sosigenes was following an already long established pattern. Academica. Lpo'ikn3 a i?pi ToOTo notuaa?VOvaota loJox1uac0t).6nx. T.and several theories have been proposed about his identity. Berlin 1997. Especially great progress was made in geometry. Dorandi. 26 Gaiser. the fact that Theon does not mention it in his special work on Plato's mathematics. aWaaoat Tlv to the quotation XvyErat rdv 'roto'6tT@wv bnOkEoeEV. Zhmud. Knorr. with Plato being the architect of this development. 1. 152. to.C. . Twv R*TK nTBXV6 noU8vsn aiora tii j?aOiiarticCov) nxXvC ela aroii aI6OVTOg_~.who in turn eagerly studied them.). which conearly Academy. as the methods of were discovered. formerlyknown as the Indexacademicorum.The occurrenceof mechanics in this early text seriously undermines the historicity of the attitudeof Plato. turnings. . 19). is omitted in the papyrus. etc. . 215ff. Optics analysis and of diorismos (TONrpi Xpat) nttoptu6oqi and mechanics also were not (left in contempt). Platone e l'Accademia. he set problems for the mathematicians. Lasserresuggested that the passage comes ultimatelyfrom Plato's secretaryPhilip of Opus.." 235. Storia dei filosofi. where all the mathematicalsciences including mechanics and optics are mentioned. of the opinion that Plato's image as "architect science" goes back to the papyrus1021. ascribedto him by Plutarch.

" ZPE 97 (1993). 44.23ff Heiberg).W. of course. 20 F 15a-15b. Dorandiwas carefulenough to supportneithertheory explicitly. cit.). havif in had ing neverbeen seriouslyinterested mathematics.if. 87-94. Burkert.. 76f.27 Gaiserarguedat lengthin favourof Peripatetic Dicaearchus as the author of the passage. 207f. 611ff. he did not have any other achievements in the field of t& gaOigata that he might be proud of. 42. p. Rutgers UniversitySeries in the Classical Humanities.a pupilwhomPlatohadencouraged studymathematics carried his investigations on and according Plato'sinstructions set himselfto to wouldcontribute Plato'sphilosophy. so enthusiastically praisedPlato's leading role in the developmentof this science. 238.. Academica.he was preciselyone of those "academicmathematidirection: underPlato's methodological cians" who studiedmathematics to also Philipof Mende.a partisanof Pio.Ein Buch aus Herculaneum. 1' T. Gaiser. "Philodems Arbeitstext zur Geschichte der Akademie. it is possible to expect such self-appraisal from a devoted pupil and secretary of Plato who published the Laws and added to this the Epinomis. also derivesfrom must admit that Lasserre'ssuggestionis much more plausiblethanGaiser's. 43.33 But if one agrees with Lasserrethat both of the passages quoted above are to be Lasserre. which lists particular achievements of the Greek geometers. .In Eucl. to studyall the problems he thought that This extract from the Catalogue is in its own way an illustration of the papyrus passage. 30 W. 342ff. op.220 LEONID ZHMUD that Proclus' Catalogue of geometers.New Brunswick 1998 (in press). nLpaKccKto.32 As for Philip. Burkert. idem.?0 but Withoutgoing into details of the DorandiacceptedPhilip's authorship. 32 To judge from the preservedfragmentsof Dicaearchus(fr. 27 2U 11 Dorandi.Leipzig 1993. accordingto the Catalogueof geometers(Procl. he had a critical if not hostile opinion of Plato. 97f..3' papyrological problemsdiscussedby Gaiserand Dorandi. 33 Evaluating the little that is known about Philip's scientific work. 67.It would and be quite unnatural Dicaearchus. one comes to the conclusion that this was in fact the case.which is very close to this passage. Dorandi. it looks ratherodd: Philip's fore- most merit in mathematicsis that he studiedproblemsconnectedas he thoughtwith Platonic philosophy! Although this phrase does not necessarily come from Philip. "La tradizione papirologicada Dicearco a Demetrio del Falero. yet in the context of the Catalogue.. p. 71 Wehrli). Platon in Nachaufnahme. 26f.28In his edition of Philodemus'book." in: W. See below. Fortenbaugh(ed.29 after recent publicationson the subjectby W.

they say. 91. which helped the latter make many new discoveries in the field of geometry" (In Eucl." as well as anothergeometer.. Lasserre. 3 .).he refers to "thosewho wrote the hisbeforeEuclid. Earlier. See. but he has hardly made any significant change in this passage.q npOPXARMTc. at ncepi demus was not a specialist in mathematics. p. These words used to be regarded as a later insertion by either Proclus or one of his Neoplatonic predecessors. 24) had mentioned this. Philo0oi5. 133 Wehrli.fragments Eudemus. for instance.34 importantquestion arises: does it follow. who discovered the method of diorismos (used to determine whether the problemposed is capable of solution or not). 211.besides. Optajoi. AlthoughProclusdoes not mentionhis name in connectionwith the Catalogue.which begins with Plato and ends with Philip himself. Diogenes Laertius (E.35 it possible now to connect Is them with the papyrus passage. albeit throughintermediaries. Although the mathematical terminology of the two passages does not coincide word for word. r& iepi T& irpi otpl8OAjot dTv Y&?@Tpiav. On the other hand. Philip? This seems not unlikely. but the whole of the Catalogue? in It is customaryto think of the information the Catalogue as going to back.. Eudemus'Historyof geometry(fr. that we shouldattribute Philip not only the concludingphraseof the Catalogue. Leon. p. 36 In another chapter of his commentary Proclus remarks: "Plato. since further on in the Catalogue Eudoxus is mentionedas the one who "appliedthe methodof analysis to the theory 36 of the section. and so with its putative author. as Lasserrethought. is well knownthathis writings thickly It with mathematical tries termsand thathe everywhere to arouseadmisprinkled of rationfor mathematics amongstudents philosophy. 3 The papyrus passage uses rather vague terms: Ta 7Eept.PLATO AS "ARCHITECrOF SCIENCE" 221 then the following very traced back to Philip's book rep' HX&rovo. coincidethematically (fr.TpokOyiav (?).Science Awakening.L. which originatedwith Plato.comm. 134-141 Wehrli).New York 1961. the passage from Philodemus closely matchesthe descriptionof Plato given in the Catalogue(In Eucl.including of tory of geometry" with the Catalogue those quotedby Proclushimself.37the similarity between them is entirely sufficient to make us take seriously the arguments in favour of Philip's being the author of at least the second partof the Catalogue. referringto Favorinus.18f). 611ff.8ff): Plato greatly advancedmathematicsin general and geometry in particular are becauseof his zeal for thesestudies. told Leodamas of Phasos about a method of analysis. van der Waerden. to which concernshim. B. 66. Xigca. ad loc.

127-204) do.38 Philodemus mentionsHermodorus' book on Plato (col. Unlike Eudemus. 71ff. 140f. p. It contains too much detailed information that has no connectionwith Plato. Eggers Lan ("Eudemoy el 'cat6logo de ge6metras' de Proclo.but an intellectualbiographyof Plato and he was scarcely interestedin such or half-forgottenfigures from the sixth and fifth centuriesas Mamerkus Oenopides(Eud.4-42. Fortenbaugh& 1. so it is likely to have been availableto him. In Eucl. the main one of whom is thoughtto be Geminus.4However. La geometrie grecque. .which narratesthe development of geometry from Thales to Hippocratesof Chios." in: W.may well have been its author: besides Plato's biographyhe wrote a historical(?) work Ukpi't jaair0wv (D. See on this my forthcoming paper "Eudemus' History of Mathematics.4' believe that the NeoplatonistPorphyry. such a solution is by no means obvious. 2 and 8 = fr.pia (Procl. Bodnar (ed.. 6 IsnardiParente). van der Lasserre (599ff. the formknownto us.Philip did not write a history of geometry. op.the authorof a mathematical encyclopaedia.8) is consistentwith either Neoplatonicinfluencein the Catalogueor with its special interest in those predecessorsof Euclid. 38.).L. was available to Philodemus.anotherstudentof Plato. Tannery. who compiled the who wrote a comElements. Elements. 2) By its form the Catalogue belongs ratherto the historyof science than to the biographicalgenre.Die Pythagoreer. especially in its first part. 1) There are no convincing argumentseither that Philip was the authorof the papyruspassage or that it was taken from his book [Ispi of 'Utrwvoq. 38. 46) and can be thus tracedback to a commontradition that has no connectionwith the Catalogue.39 3) It is unlikelythatthe Catalogue. 6) only two of the twelve mathematiciansfrom the second part of the Catalogue are mentioned:Amyclas (who however occurs here underthe nameAmyntas)and Archytas. Rutgers UniversitySeries in the Classical Humanities. cit.222 LEONID ZHMUD Still.Both of these namesoccuralso in Diogenes Laertius'list (III. I. I Lasserre (433f) considered Hermodorusas only an intermediaryfigure between Philodemus and Philip. Zurich 1979. 40 P. 41 Heath.W. 39 There are too many coincidences between the Catalogue and Eudemus'fragments to deny his authorship.none of what we know about Geminus and his work Ma0iaXwv 0E0.L. 37. 61lff) and C. 6). 133 Wehrli)." Emerita 53 [1985]. XI. Eggers Lan. Hermodorus Syracuse. fr. Paris 1887. New Brunswick 1999. 4) We know that Proclusreceivedthe Cataloguethroughintermediary sources.In a list of Plato's studentscompiledby him (col. Vol.

the intermediate variants.which could scarcelybelong to Eudemus. is a much more appropriate betweenEudemus Proclus. This impressionis reinforced the constantemphasison by temporalproximityand personalrelationship: some "lived at the time of 42 For a detailed argumentationsee my "Eudemus' History of Mathematics.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 223 candidatefor the role of mentaryon Euclid. But even then.for example in the section where a discovery of five cosmic bodies is ascribed to Pythagoras. with Because of this arrangement.. casts a shadow on all his contemporaries. The author(or editor?)of the Catalogue uses more subtle means to express what is directly said in Philodemus: all the mathematicians Plato's time worked underhis methodological of supervision.But we will delay our conclusion about the origin of the Catalogue until we have completeda more detailed analysis of what exactly it says about mathematicians of Plato's time.This effect is achieved mainly by situatingall these mathematiciansin the text between Plato and Philip. V Plato occupies a central place in the second part of the Catalogue and such a perspective." . and The reference to the late pseudo-Platonic dialogue Anterastai(p.bringsit closer to the papyruspassage. p. typicallyNeoplatonictermsare used (In Eucl. 66. the latterbeing described as a devotedstudent workingin accordance Plato' arrivesat the following alternatives: eitherthe Cataloguewas takenfrom a book by and one of Plato's students(Philipor Hermodorus) does not have any connectionwith Eudemus. only one mathematician whose name occurs here is directly named as a pupil of Plato.3) also can belong neitherto it were.since the traces of such editing are discerniblealso in the first partof the Catalogue. Discarding.42 and editorof theCatalogueandan intermediary Thus the passages aboutPlato and Philip. might have been insertedinto the Catalogue by Porphyryor have been writtenby himself.15f).for the time being. nor to Eudemus. What is said about his contribution the developmentof matheto with a referenceto his dialoguesbut not to his role matics is supported as an architectof ta ga%gata. The second alternativeseems to me preferable. and nothingis said about the posing of problems. Plato's figure.or it was compiledon the basis of Eudemus'writing and its Platonic features are explainedby later Neoplatonicediting.of course. 65.

III. in particular.It is with him that Lasserrebegins his alcollection of sources concerning the "Academic mathematicians. that Plato taughthim a methodof analysis. Wissenschaft. 385/380). 21 1. H. 239-255. Proclus .73.4 then at the time the Meno was written(c. in spite of its clear bias. Paris 1987."others"wereassociatedwith him. we have Eratosthenes' Platonicus. 435/430). and the pseudoPlatonicLetterXI addressedto a certainLeodamas. " B. there is much more evidence concerning him: first.since unlike Leodamas. 43 L.It seems very unlikelythat laterauthorswould omit such a fact.the fact thatArchytas(but not Leodamas!) occurs in several lists of Plato's students. Nothingis said abouttheir connectionwith the Academy or about their personalrelationships with Plato.L. and third. Mathieu. for our present To analysis it is not very important whetherthis perspective derivesfrom the early or from the laterPlatonists. 445) himself acknowledges this. See also K." in: J. Zhmud. The first three mathematiciansof Plato's time mentioned here are Leodamasof Thasos. Saffrey (eds.But then why should not Archytasbe includedin Lasserre'scollectionas well? After is not so easy to make an Academic mathematician Archytas. "Proclus on the Old Academy. one moreoverof a Pythagorean But even if Leodamaswas the same age as Archytas(bornc. "Archytasde Tarent pythagoricienet ami de Platon.However. 273. repeatedwith some hesitationby Proclus(In Eucl. be sure.Lecteur et interprete des meansthat this was not knownin the last part of the fourthcentury. scientist.I would proposethe following approach to the second part of the Catalogue:if. if they found it eitherin Eudemusor in Philip (Hermodorus). 24). students.. the first dialogue in a which Plato shows an interestin mathematics and gives. the authenticLetter VII that mentions the help he gave to Plato. Lasserre (24.).he could play such a role both for the early Academiciansand for the Neoplatonists. second. it does not specifically mention that someone was a pupil of Plato or that he workedat the Academy."and others"werefriendsof his etc.he was a of famous and independent bent. L.43 only things linking him with Plato are Favorinus'statement (D. p." though there is absolutelyno evidence about Leodamas'working at the The Academy.18f). .D.224 LEONID ZHMUD Plato. VII (1940) 371-372. "Leodamas."BAGB (1987). Pepin. one can suggest thatLeodamaswas the oldest of the three." AlthoughPlato could not have been a referencepointin Eudemus'history of fourthcenturygeometry. von Fritz. Tarin.or at least that he was not youngerthanArchytas. Since the chronologyin this partof the Catalogueis very accurate."RE Suppl.

History. who visited him several times in Tarentum.E. and with Plato's total silence about Archytas.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 225 description of the method 4 Dino0goeo). 165f.S.R. 159-173. 71f.although the latter is not named as its discoverer. oconouvTat).. 418f. 251f. Thomas. Cherniss. 71f. 143ff. (one of the forms of analysis). Plato's Meno. Wiesbaden 1970. makes the original propositionevident" and identifies it with the method that Hippocrates used for solving the problem of the duplication of the cube (In Eucl. 41 n. 212.45 3) to studyanalysison the basis of the Meno (or of Plato in general)would not only be embarrassing the not very young Leodamas. Lasserre (457f) eventually comes to the conclusion that it was Leodamas who influenced Plato ratherthan vice versa. it only means that Plato was unwilling to acknowledge this dependency. Heath. Cambridge 1964. 448. but Proclusrepeatsit elsewhere. op.. Lasserre.24f). About the application of analysis in the fifth century see Allman. Leodamasmusthave been 45-55 years old. there is no information whatsoeveraboutwhetherhe ever went to Athens. 441ff. 97f. 451f. Bluck. Klein. describingthe method 4 I'MoOia.Problems.Dynamische und statische Betrachtungsweisein der antiken Mechanik.The Hague 1980.where analysisis linkedwith Eudoxus. 47 Lasserre.The influence of Archytason Plato has been repeatedlynoted.. Lloyd. J. Problems. Mlusingson the Meno.E. in the Meno says that it was already in use by geometers(ii)anep oi yeirppac noUa'Xt.which Hippoof crates used in tryingto solve the problemof the duplication the cube. which either being known. 62. If the Seventh Letter emphasises Plato's independence from Archytas. p. op. Krafft.and not in the context of the Catalogue. 434. See also J. he was never Plato's pupil but rather:Plato studiedwith him and actively used what he learnt."273.but impossifor ble: despite endless interpretations this passage.he must be 50-60. A Commentaryon Plato's Menon. If he was only five years older of than Archytas(what logically follows from arrangement names in the Catalogue) then accordingly. Academica. A New Translation with Commentary. Proclus defined it as "the reductionof a problemor theoremto anotherone. even from Plato? The improbability such an apprenticeship strengthened the folof is by lowing: 1) the statementrelatingto analysis can probablybe tracedback to early Platonic sources. This tendency coincides with the scarcity of mentions of the Pythagoreans in the dialogues. 46 R. "Plato and Archytas in the Seventh Letter. " Fr. a clear understanding of of what Plato had in mind has not been achieved to this day. or already solved.."Proclus. Tardn." Phronesis 35 (1990). Gaiser.47 Sources talk about his friendshipwith Plato. . op. cit. Is this not too late for learninganalysis. 291. cit.4"but no one has Knorr.2) Plato himself. Knorr. icayoyaywas one of the earliest forms of analysis. G.the methoddescribed by him is identical to the methodof reduction(ainay&"'). Mathieu. Chapel Hill 1965. cit. 205ff. 322f.46 Despite the mentionof Archytasin the Academiclegend aboutthe duplication of the cube.

This revision would make sense. 147-159).and his studieswith Theodorus 475/70(c. if we prefer the dating of the Catalogue. Sachs' suggestion that his dates were 415/412-369 (E.. Eudoxus was also given this acme. E. 415-369).Where it is possible to find comparable material.However. The biographyof Theaetetus(Lasserre. L. His studentLeon is See 47 A 23-25. and correspondingly understates Theaetetus'dateof birth. which makes the influenceof Plato entirelyredundant. Lasserre (461f) also proceeds from the dates of the Catalogue.a student of Plato. Sachs. make this suggestionvery unlikely. "Proclus.the positionof Archytashas eitherdifferedfrom Plato's position or been directlyopposedto it." AHES 14 (1974).Theaetetus was of Leodamas'and Archytas' generation. De Theaeteto Atheniensi mathematico."Die stereometrischeBucher der Elemente Euklids. who follows Theaetetusin the Catalogue. Eusebius places his acme in 438/5. 400) on the other. Thesleff proposed returningto the old date for his death. Cf.and only the Suda calls him a studentof Plato.e. 531c.226 LEONID ZHMUD yet succeeded in tracingthe opposite influence. whose dramatic date is 399.49 Accordingto the Catalogue."Arctos 24 (1991). 461). cf.the absenceof any evidenceabouthis activitythereon the one hand. also 47 B 1 and Res. In the Suda there are two Theaetetuses. 145c).5' Nothing is known about Neokleides. and it is the conversion of this acme into his date of birth which would explain his synchronisation with Leodamas and Archytas. which implies that Theaetetus belonged to the generation of Archytas and Plato. 47 B 3 and Res. he might have been one of the older associates of Plato workingat the Academy. Theaetetusdoes not occur in any list of the Academics. him as a studentof the Pythagorean were the developmentof Theaetetus'basic achievementsin mathematics the theoryof the five regularsolids and the generaltheoryof irrationals. without changing the date for his birth.Berlin 1914. but in this case Lasserre reasonably refused to accept Eratosthenes'evidence. Recently H. Waterhaus. 13ff) relies mainly on the fact that in the Theaetetus. but he places Archytas' acme in 368/7." AHES 9 (1972).one a student of Socrates who lived at the time of the Peloponnesian war. althoughPlato himself describes Theodorusof Cyrene (Tht. 50 .On the basis of a commonlyacceptedchronologyof Theaetetus (c. about 415. but she failed to explain either the confusion in Eusebius or the appearanceof the two articles in the Suda (Lasserre. Wissenschaft. and the other . Both of these theoriessuggest his Pythagorean predecessors (Hippasus)50 and teachers(Theodorus).Archytas'acmewas clearlytakenfromEratosthenes' Platonicus (dramaticdate 368/7). Neuenschwander."The Discovery of the Regular Solids. therewas not muchdifferencein age betweenhim and Plato. E. s' Taran. i.463.C. 212ff.171f. Lasserre. he is depicted as an adolescent. this makes his date of birth 435/425. W. 104. Zhmud. and he is not mentionedanywhereelse. which gives his date of birth impossibly as 408/407. about 390 ("Theodorosand Theaetetus. 3 T 1-3) remains extremely confused."273.

a historianof the fourth century B. 3.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 227 named as the authorof Elementsand the discoveryof the methodof diorismos is attributed him. "Die iItere Akademie. H. 516f). which still appearin some works."54 us turn first to Eudoxus' chronology. 'dozierte' also nicht dort" (F. According to Lasserre (513f) the author of the Alcyon is actually the mathematician Leon.J. In the Catalogue Eudoxusis carefully named as ?anipoqtdv neppi rk&awva ysvojievoq.althoughthatpassagedoes not mentionLeon. since: 1) Leon of Byzantium. One of them was a sophist from Byzantium and possibly the author of the pseudo-Platonicdialogue Alcyon.e. 130). the alleged author of the Alcyon! 4) None of these three persons can be certainly identified with the mathematician Leon. Kramer. and this serves as the main evidence that he belonged to the Academy. Cf. which was written in the Hellenistic period.and there is not a slightestreasonfor doing so52 then no connectionbetween him and Leon can definitelybe established." 273f. Die Philosophieder Antike. 141). VIII. the discoveryof curvedlines (iclwgXat indicateshis source: Eratosthenes' diaypaggjat).53 Eudoxus is a key figure for understanding natureof the real relathe tionship between the Academy and mathematicians the time. 90)..C. former student of Plato. a parto has allel in the papyruspassage.and this unmistakably logue the Platonicus. Lasserre. S3 Taran. . as we remember. has nothing in common with the alleged author of the Alcyon. AlthoughTannerythoughtit impossible to make any reliable identification of the mathematicianLeon. (368/5). Basel 1983. somethingwhich."in: H. 52 Actually. because of in this case it is possible to make comparisonswith an independent tradition. where Eudoxus finds the solution to the Delian problem8t'a r&v Kcqttaovw The ypa1oqjv. 73ff. 90. Unless we want to regardPlato as responsiblefor this discovery. Flashar(ed. he gives the names of two "platoniciens" with the same name (op. which says that Eudoxus lived to the age of 53. Berlin attemptto synchronize 368/7 Archytas. 3) these two contemporariesof Plato are "platoniciens"only in the sense that they have the same (or almost the same) name as the "platonicien"Leon. Apollodorusconnects the acme with the most important event in Eudoxus'life.). cit.L. Die Fragmente des Eudoxos von Knidos. History."Proclus. Lasserre.His traditional dates (408-355). the other was from Heraclea and took part in the assassination of the tyrant Clearchus.. the method of diorismos was used even before Leon (Heath. i. All this has absolutely no basis.Plato and Eudoxus.relied firstly on his acme as given by Apollodorus (D. dramaticdate of the dialogue is . which was corruptedinto Leon in Tzetzes' transmissionof Memnon's work. S4 "Sicher trat er nicht in die Akademie ein. 103 01. and nothing is said here about his being at the Academy. 319f. and secondly on Diogenes LaertiusVIII. so Lasserrerightly does not include him in his list of "AcaLet demic mathematicians.2) the name of Clearchus'assassin was Leonides.

von Waschkies. 248-282." Philologus 39 (1930). sXLasserre.. Cf. in the year 367. i. both of them relied on the fact that Eudoxus mentionedthe death of Plato (fr. when he was 23."6' According Santillana Lasserre Eudoxus ss F. Trampedach. Trampedach. 59 An attemptby Merlanto propose anotherdating (395-342) is unconvincing. The firsttime.The impossibility of this reconstruction been shown many times has (Waschkies.228 LEONID ZHMUD Eudoxus' traditionaldating was criticised for a long time. Merlan. Susemihl. op. 626ff.395-342. 60 It is to this visit that the well known statement from the late biography of Aristotle refers: 'AparoriXTi (p(otr& lHXircovt Eu6)64ou(Vita Marciana 10). 137ff. cit.Eudoxos. These in' words used to be taken as evidence that during Plato's absence Eudoxus played the role of scholarch. F.since it depends.Studies in Epicurusand Aristotle. ited the Academy. he went therefor two months. Amsterdam 1977.L.60 man and came to Athens "bringingwith him a great numberof pupils: accordingto some. Leipzig 1923. on the early dating of MetaphysicsA 8. Waschkies. von Fritz. one has seriouslytriedto defendthe traditional chronology.56 in a specialarticleaboutEudoxus'chronology but The latterdates are accepted Santillanareasonablyreturned 390-337. S7 G. 34ff. 478-48 1. Susemihl suggested 390-337. A Study in Chronology. 61 The traditionabout the personal hostility between Plato and Eudoxus has hardly ."Isis 32 (1940). 56 K.Platon. where Eudoxus and Callippus are mentioned.59 Eudoxus'teacherin mathematics Archytas(D. VIII. which fully correlates with the chronologies of Santillana and Lasserre. first. 5.58 Since then.thoughit has been tacitlyused even since Lasserre'sedition. and second. op. K. de Santillana. op. this was for the purposeof annoyingPlato who had and to originallypassedhimover. Kramer. cit. 41f. Gisinger. 86-88). 342 Lasserre)and could not thereforehave died before 347. cit. die Akademieund die zeitgenossische Politik.VonEudoxoszu Aristoteles. and it is was not by chance that Diogenes Laertiusfinishesthe book aboutwell-known of Pythagoreans (VIII)with a biography Eudoxus.He attendedthe Sophists'lecturesand possibly viswith Plato. cit.but nothingis said abouthis acquaintance The second time he was alreadya grown since the latterwas in Sicily. "Eudoxus and Plato. Stuttgart 1994.He visitedAthenstwice (VIII." RhM 53 (1898).. The point of the statement is probably that Aristotle. 59). on the highly unlikely proposition that at the age of 27 Eudoxus came to Athens with a group of his students and at 28 became a scholarch in the Academy (P.See also H..57 to by Lasserrewho gives a detailedproofof them in his editionof Eudoxus' fragments.. "Die Lebenszeit des Eudoxos von Knidos.e.86). 98ff) Von Fritz proposedhis "minimal" datesas being400-347. 41f. 57ff. 74. joining the Academy in 367. met Eudoxus there. Die Erdbeschreibungdes Eudoxos von Knidos. Gisinger. "Die Lebenszeit des Eudoxos von Knidos. Wiesbaden 1960.

65 are stronggroundsfor suggestingthat there it was exactly his mathematical mechanicalresearchthatled Eudoxus and to discover the hyppopede the curve which is createdby the rotationof several interconnected spheresand describesthe visible looped motion of the planets. It seems in that one may relate his participation academicdiscussionson the relationship between Forms and things and on what is the highest Good to Eudoxus' second visit to Athens.63 fact that both The Plato and Eudoxus were adherentsof the principleof uniform circular movement shows the common Pythagorean source of their astronomical ideas. Met. M 5. X. the moon and the five planets are circular and uniform" (Gemin. Eth.op. 66 Krafft. as Krafft which he put forwardhis system of homocentricspheres. 25. 62 Arist. Mechanik. His answersto both problemswere so un-Platonicin character62 it is totally inconceivablethat he should that have served his apprenticeship the head of the Academy. 2. 12. 6S On the astronomicalaspect of Archytas' work see Zhmud.the problemof the anomalousmovementsof the planets and their varying brightnessbecame very important. 80f with suggestions on the preceding literature. from about 350 to about 349. Nic. 323f. I.66 any historical ground. 63 Knorr. .64which was most likely Archytas. See Kramer.219ff. 149ff.where he died in 337. It is exactly on this principle that the Aristotelian treatise Mechanicalproblems is based. Eisag. and they assumed that the motions of the sun. VIII.On the one handhe introduced movementinto geometry. One of the few pieces of evidence pertaining to Archytas' Mechanics reports that natural movement "generates circles and circular forms" (47 A 23a). The only time when Eudoxus mentions Plato it is with great respect (fr. and then returnedto his homelandin Cnidus. where. derives its main features from Archytas' Mechanics. A 9. See above. Archytas' researchin mechanicswas as it were a mirrorreflectionof his mathematical research.. I. in the middleof the fourth century.but from professionalastronomy. cit.while on the otherhe appliedgeometryto the movementof the mechanisms(D. 19). which. "Plato and Eudoxus". 74f.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 229 probablyspent a few years in Athens. n. Wissenschaft. 342 Lasserre).L.The impulseto createthis system comes not from Plato's metaphysics. 83).AlthoughArchytasis practically unknownas an astronomer. at There seems to have been still less of Plato's influence in Eudoxus' famous work On velocities. the moon and the five planets circulate at uniform speeds in the direction opposite to that of the heavenly sphere. 64 "The hypothesis underlying the whole astronomy is that the sun. The Pythagoreanswere the first to approachsuch questions.

230 LEONID ZHMUD Mechanicalproblems reduced all mechanismsdescribed (the lever. 110.Eudoxus'treatiseOn velocitiesdeveloped Archytas' investigations. How is it possible to be under the influence of Eudoxus' theory and not mention spheres at all? 2) There are no traces of Eudoxus' conception even in the Epinomis written by Philip after Plato's death (Taran. R. 45 1c).the cone.68 Thus rotating all the mathematical and astronomical elements necessaryfor the developmentof Eudoxus'theorywere containedin the Pythagorean tradition. Berlin 1975. History.. Knorr.Part I-I. Philadelphia 1975. Eudoxos. Tradition. neverthelessadmittedthat Plato did not change his formerastronomical system. Academica: Plato.C. Riddell. Eudoxus' book On velocities was most likely written during the last period of his activity.Academica. P1. although a keen adherent of the idea of such an influence (relying on the old chronology for Eudoxus). Herethe necessarycurveis madeby the intersection three of bodies . and he ascribes to his from ?ep't XXv a5arpowv r&q Pythagoreanpredecessors a "clear knowledge" of this subject (47 B 1). as proposed in the Republic and Timaeus. etc.and he gave a mathematical analysis of this movement.. 333f. Taran. primarilythe idea that all planets are attachedto spheres by which they rotate.etc. Theoretically.However. 678. no one has succeededin findingconvincingevidence of his knowledge of the system of homocentricspheres in the Laws. Neugebauer. the windlass.) to the principle unequalconcentric of circles. i Heath. Not accidentally. 54f. Archytasestablishedthat the linear speeds of concentriccircles. To unravel Platonic hints is not a very rewarding task. cit."Plato 67 .is linkedwith anothersphere. 0.and it is only reasonable to suppose that Plato knew nothing about it. Knorr."AHES 20 (1979) 1-19. 133ff).67 perceivingevery planet as fixed to a rotating sphere. Philip of Opus and the Pseudo-Platonic Epinomis.the pulley. Gorg. L. "Eudoxian Mathematics and Eudoxian Spheres. 14Sf. Ibid. 6) Lasserre. The curve resultingfrom the rotationof these spherescan be regarded the as intersection the innerspherewith the cylinder. 107. when he was living in Cnidus. 181f.1) The most importantelements of Eudoxus' theory are missing from the Laws. the torus and the cylinder(47 A 14). so as Eudoxus'influenceon Plato remainsas unproved69 Plato's influenceon Eudoxus.A History of Ancient MathematicalAstronomy.he might have learnedabout the basics of Eudoxus'astronomical system in 350 when the Timaeuswas alreadywritten. so I propose a few more obvious arguments. moving with equal angularspeed. MittelstraB (op.This construction very of is similarto the one which helpedArchytasto solve the problemof duplicating the cube. the winch. in turn. and that only from some occasional hints in the Laws can we conclude that Plato was acquaintedwith Eudoxus' theory.and the Laws had not yet been finished.the axis of which. (cf. Archytas' definition of astronomy begins rarlr&ro. are different.

9). In Arist. Proclus (In Tim. Amyclas..wuc6. eypmxie pJX6oo(paKacti. p. p. Cleinias (DK 54). and Eudoxus. 3) Aristotle. which refers certainly to a later writer. where he had his own school with a large numberof pupils(VIII.The Suda says: (ptX6oopo. ratipcov (In Eucl. already in a form modified by Callippus (Simpl. learned about Eudoxus' system after 330. of and Menaechmus.1-2 Diehl) names Crantor(340/35-275).it is revealing that almost all Eudoxus'young contemporaries came from Asia Minor. quaintance Plato. It3k4ca y' (Lasserre. in all probability. Academica..The Catalogue names Menaechmusand his brother from Dinostratusas Eudoxus' students. In Arist. tov HaX&ovo. 76. a student of Xenocrates as the first interpreter Plato. 107 n. Theudius' (In origin (whicheverof the two Magnesia's he was born in) may also indicate that he studied with Eudoxus in Cyzicus and travelledwith him to Athens. 484). cit. They are said to have had spent their time togetherin the Academy and collaboratedin their research. p. of See Kramer. Dinostratus.87).CallippusandPolemarchus. De Caelo." When this Menaechmuswas alive is not clear (in Proclus' commentaryon the Republic he is not mentioned). p. Taran. 71 The origin of Menaechmus and Dinostratusis unknown. 504-505 Heiberg). unlike Amyclas . of Theudius Magnesia Athenaeus Cyzicus. otherwise he would be called his "student" and not just "a Platonic philosopher.after Eudoxusthere are six mathematiciansmentioned(after whom follows Philip): Amyclas of Heraclea. Tarin. De Caelo..and to them two mathematicians Cyzicus must be added:Athenaeusand Helicon (who was mentionedby and Plutarch)70 perhapsHermotimuswho "continuedthe work that has been done by Eudoxus and Theaetetus" Eucl. t&. Hotoxeia.7 From this group. is directlynamedei." 323). but it is well known that with the first generationof Academics there were no special commentarieson the Platonic dialogues. and not to a contemporaryof Plato. "Proclus.only one mathematician. Eudoxos. but the Pythagoreans Amyclas and Cleinias persuaded him not to do this.separatefrom this group follows Hermotimus of Colophon. also were from Cyzicus (Simpl.. is presented Aristoxenus a Pythagorean 131 by as Wehrli)!72 any case.20f)." 270f. 72 Aristoxenus tells us that Plato wanted to collect all Democritus' books and burn them. an ac- of (fr. op. explaining that too many people had copies of them.. p. 161f. we do not know anythingaboutAmyclas' matheIn matical research. 493 Heiberg. 141. Althoughthe last possibilityremainsunproved. The identificationof the mathematicianMenaechmus with a certain Menaechmus of Alopecae or Proconnesus who is mentioned in the Suda is unconvincing. 67. 70 Lasserre. FIXaro. 12 T 2).PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 231 to talks aboutEudoxus' Let us return the pointwhereDiogenesLaertius second visit to Athens from Cyzicus. I believe it was this groupof Eudoxus' of studentsthat formedthe main body of "Academicmathematicians" the younger generation. Two otherstudentsof Eudoxus. Meanwhile Amyclas. 67. HTXrvoo.In the Catalogue.

.232 LEONID ZHMUD It seems very likely that after Eudoxus'returnto Cnidus(before 348 accordingto Lasserre)his studentsremained some time in Athens and for worked at the Academy. 36f. It is evidentthatArchytasandMenaechmus because they were.74 their stay at the Academy was very short and did not leave any traces outside the Catalogue. On the alleged argument between Menaechmus and Speusippus (Procl. The other five are not on any list of early Academicsand practicallynothingis known This could mean either that about their connectionwith the Academy. and not because of their association with Plato.10). a teacher and a student of Eudoxus' and proposed their solutions to the problem of the duplicationof the cube. 67f).C. As has been alreadynoted above. In Eucl. "Menaechmusversus the Platonists:Two Theories of Science in the Early Academy. 110ff. 67."but here even Archytas is present. p.or that they workedthereonly afterPlato's death.only Amyclasis named. p. 46). MEVaIXFS a&cpoa. cf. Wissenschaft. compiled by Aristoxenus (Zhmud.why in his own list of occurs in a catalogue of Pythagoreans. the perspectiveof the second part is much wider than in Philodemus'text. Tarin.despite the following: 1) he never went to the Academy.and he is the only one of this groupwho appearsin Diogenes Laertius'list of Academics(III." AncPhil 3 (1983). 74 Menaechmus occurs in Eratosthenes'Platonicus as one of the "Academic mathematicians. Whicheverof these versions we is the natureof theirrelationship with Plato. none of them supportthe Acascience. thereforeI do not see any problems in identifying Amyclas of Heraclea with the hero of this anecdote. Academica. 2) when Eudoxus went to Athens in 350 Archytas was probably were includedin thePlatonicus alreadydead. the latter did not say that Amyclas was born in Italy or that he was an opponent of Plato.thereare a numberof features which preventsuggestinga commonoriginof these two texts. 13-29.Despite its undoubtedproximityto the papyruspassage."237 n. "Proclus.75 the quotation from Philodemusgoes back to the Catalogue. How long they stayed there is unknown. 7S This part of the papyrus is in a very damaged state. who considered the evidence of Aristoxenus doubtful (7 T 6). in the earliestknown list of his students. . Menaechmus' peculiar description in the Catalogue. respectively. It should be also pointed out that the Pythagoreans from Italy were Plato's friends. 443ff. 73 Gaiser. who was nearlyeighty. xv Eu86EouKati & av yeyovdS (In Eucl. Apartfrom the lack of connectionof the first partof the Cataloguewith Plato. demic legend of Plato as the architectof mathematical of Let us now returnto the authorship the Catalogue. 77. studentsof Plato which concludeswith a polemicagainstcertainunnamed If who used the "fruitsof knowledge"for their own benefit. Pace Lasserre."the names of five of these mathematicians are missing.2 = Lasserre 12 F 4-5) see A. Bowen. very likely goes back to the Platonicus.7-79.preserved by Philodemus.

76 .1 Wehrli). 68. 21. ad loc.such as Leodamas.. where those who wrote the history of mathematicsbefore Euclid are explicitly mentioned (oi raq iTnopia4 avayp&coavTe. All this leads us to the conclusionthat the Platonicfeatures in the Catalogue must be attributed ratherto Porphyry. but belonged to his school and had an excellent knowledge of his philosophy. information ematiciansof the fourthcenturynamedin the Catalogue. Was Philip (Hermodorus) among them as well? Thereis nothing inconceivable in the suggestion that Eudemus used the writings of the from them Academics.76 does the evidence about Dinostratus (Papp. says: Euclid was younger than l(i)V Jt?pi HoTva. math.. and he even set the final goal of the Elements as the constructionof the five Platonic bodies (In Eucl. Proclus. . except for the fact that they did make some mathematical All this speaks ratherin favour of Eudemus'History of geometry eries. one can hardly exclude Eudemus from the list of possible sources of Proclus' Catalogue. Knorr.Menaechmus. 141 Wehrli. ..Athenaeus. historicaldigressionof Proclus'Introduction was subjectedto PlatonizII ing editing.4). the informationabout Eudoxus' and Menaechmus'solutions to the problemof duplicatingthe cube very likely also goes back as to Eudemus. 141141.Although Porphyrymight have used some Academic writings. 148-149 Wehrli). When analysingthe Cataloguemany have overlookedthe fact that the Platonizingtendencyin this text does not finish with Philip.than to the early Academicians. Leon.. We know that Eudemuswrote aboutArchytasand Theaetetus(fr. IV. p. Neokleides. This descriptioncould not come either from Eudemusor from Philip which means it was after the fourthcenturythat the whole (Hermodorus). 68.. Coll.30 = Lasserre 13 D 1). In Eucl. comm. once again uniting all previous mathematicians aroundPlato. than of Philip's biographyof Plato. in the History of astronomy he mentions Eudoxus and his student Callippus (fr. So. Theudius. it is revealing that the descriptionof Philip in the Catalogueseems to be writtenin the same Fr. but it is hard to agree that he simply transferred the descriptionsof Plato and Philip.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 233 Plato's studentsis the overwhelmingmajorityof the names mentionedin the about most of the maththe Catalogue missing?Further.Problems.20f). p.Dinostratus with theirwritingsratherthan and Hermotimus presumesan acquaintance personal acquaintanceat the Academy.who reworked Eudemus'Historyof geometry. but includes Euclid as well. We know almost nothing about discovthem.

one older thanhim and the threeothersyounger?The view of ancient philosophy is honouredbecause of its "Plato-centric" antiquity(it comes from the Neoplatonicschool) and becauseof the number of people who sharedit. (p. cait Tp ipoaltp&Et SC E'K?ij5 InlXaO)VIKO. KaTa txaita iotciro 4nijaeq 1rqlb9aet.and theirfinal goal in mathematics was Plato's philosophy. (p. preceding Hippocratesand containing the basis of the first four books of Euclid: "Die Postulate und Konstruktionenin der fruhgriechischenGeometrie. 7rpOecnTiaaTO TiV T&V icalouIeVMv [atwvtiKdv oXg&T@ov a{UXaat. . Burkert.. van der Waerden convincingly reconstructs a Pythagorean compendium.. and it has broughtnothingexcept misto understanding the history of Greek science. icai tra.L.. Eine semasiologische Studie. 67. Ka cpoD3a?XEv iaut4. aT(OOtKEtO. 0OEV 8K0 at Tji rlkHX6vo."YTOIXEION. xI OX T?5XO. O'Lktno. 343-357.The first of these is well known and the last threeare not mentionedat all outsidethe of Catalogue. 68.and not Philip (as Lasserrethought)who standsbehindthe Platonizingtendencyof the second partof the Catalogue.But whoeverfollowed in the tradition writingthe Elements. It is very likely that therewere attemptsto systematise but was geometrical knowledge beforeHippocrates. What is behind it except the naturaldesire to see genius in everything? the Primarily."AHES 18 (1978).23f). 167-197. This makes it more likely that it is Porphyry. 79 B.234 LEONID ZHMUD vein and by the same hand as that of Euclid:77 both Philip and Euclid worked underPlato's guidance(even though in Euclid's case it was not direct guidance). 7 W. . thereanythingespecially significantin the fact that all the authorsof the Elementswere contemporariesof Plato .79 his achievement greater Is and servedas an exampleto latergenerations.Leon.." Philologus 103 (1959). VI The Catalogue names four predecessorsof Euclid who had written the Elements: Hippocrates. o0aa q)ETO pOLoCoopii aUVte?XiV .aTt iCat rM tXooopia tcaxUiT L aS lrxYaT. E. however the majorityof expertsfor a long time now has not sharedthis view.20f).. Theudius. it is obvious that its originator was Hippocrates78 as in the case of the the cube and the quadraother two famous problems:the duplicationof ture of the circle. and Hermotimus. obvious fact that from the pre-Euclidean period not a single mathematical writing is 77 Notice a similar structureof these two phrasesand the closeness of theirwording: Et& flXAi?OVo.

C. Taylor.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 235 preserved. Dordrecht 1981. "' expertsuch as Kramernotes: "We have no knowledgeof a stable program education of at the Academy like the one describedin the Republicand in the Laws.).whereasthe CorpusPlatonicumwas handeddown throughthe generationsin its entirety. "What Euclid Meant: On the Use of Evidence in Studying Ancient Mathematics. Brumbaugh. Hence one might conclude that during the last decade of his life mathematics was especially intensively taughtat the Academy.). Most reconstructions rely on the Platonicdialogues. 193-203."REG 81 (1968).Platone e la matematica nel mondo antico.D. Aristotle and Euclid." in: J. Science and Philosophy in Classical Greece. 84 Kramer. 59-97.where a solid program mathematical of educationis put forward (for those between the age of 20 and 30). The sort of educationknown from these dialogues could not be directly to transferred the reality of the Academy. "On the Early History of Axiomatics: A Reply on Some Criticism. 82 In practice this demand meant the construction of the "philosophical base" for mathematicaldefinitions:C.Plato knew and valued mathematics and often used mathematicalexamples in his reasoning.and in particular book VII of the on Republic.83 we actuallyknow very and little about what exactly was taught at the Academy. Hintikka et al.Certainly. but it is more reasonableto base these guesses on the naturaltendencyof all the sciences of that time to systematise accumulatedknowledge rather than on Plato's demand for the axiomatizationof geometry82 on his or more prosaic demandof text books for the Academy." in: A.the mathematical elementin his work increases towards the end of his life. Theory Change. 141ff. However.C.' But was this love mutual?To judge from the Elementsof Euclid. op.. Mueller.D. "On the Notion of Mathematical Starting Point in Plato. eiairw is a later literary fiction (the fourth century A. (eds). Bowen (ed. cit. 1991.MHAEIZElHITQ:Une inscription legendaire.Bloomington 1954." ibid. Saffrey "ArE(lMETPHTO.almost none of the youngerAcademics 10 The mathematicalpassages from the dialogues are collected in: R. 67-87. 194ff. Plato's MathematicalImagination.this was not the case. "Plato and the Mathematicians. idem."84 To judge from Plato's dialogues. TISd. 5. Roma 1963. Frajese..W. Nevertheless. 13 The famous inscription ayEo)Tpnrto." PhilosQ 17 (1968). Ancient Axiomatics and Galileo Methodology.8'One can only guess about the contents and natureof the books of Euclid's predecessors. Knorr.whom Proclusor his source enlisted as a Platonist. I. . On what does the currentgeneral opinion that geometryand possibly other mathematicalsciences were taught at the Academy rest? There is no reliablehistoricalevidenceon this subject. A. New York. See H.

85 for the older Academics. The Riddle of the Early Academy. Hippocrates. Berkeley 1945.87 Thereis no doubtthatPhilolaus.but did this take place in the Academy?It is difficultto imaginePlato himself teachingmathematics. Aristotleand Philip about37.Hippiasof Elis was especiallyknown Platoadopted forhis teachingof thefour ca%giata Prot. Xenocratesabout48.although they profess that mathematicsis only to be studiedas a means to some otherend"(Met. 318e). 60ff.236 LEONID ZHMUD show any special interestin geometry.the role of founderof mathematical educationstill does not belong to him. At this age they were more suitedto teachingthanto learningmathematics.Theaetetus.Aristotlewrote abouthis colleagues at the Academy: "Philosophyhas become mathematicsfor modem thinkers. but Even if one agrees that Plato was not only a propagandist also a of practitioner mathematical education. 992 a 31). 169ff. He handedthis attitudedown to his students. The four sciences which make were and up the quadrivium (arithmetic. Gaiser.)Chernissdevelopedhis idea about the teaching of mathematics the Academy only because it was at necessaryto supporthis thesis that Platonic metaphysicswas not taught there. Cherniss. 86 H.which was for him far more important than any other science.1 What then was taught at the Academy if not mathematics? The easiest answer to this is dialectic. The only exception is Amyclas who is discussed above. Whether (PI. His commentator. Wissenschaft. and Archytas(see 47 B 1) received this kind of Pythagorean of Fromthe generation the sophists. 11 List of Academics see Lasserre. butif he didnot. geometry.astronomy harmonics) the Acadschool at least a hundred taughtat the Pythagorean years before of emy was founded.and even for there only as a preparation the study of dialectic.Theodorus Cyrene education. no one has yet come to the conclusionthat Aristotle himself taughtthese sciences at the Lyceum.andwhatkindof mathematics? (Although Eudemuswas the majorauthority the exact sciences and Aristoxenus on on musical theory.Academica.444. . Theirwritingsimply that they received some mathematical training. significantpoint is thathis predecessors the such tical teaching and producedgenerationsof brilliantmathematicians as Theodorus.the most honest answer is that we do not know. at As the time of Plato's death Speusippus was about62.thenwho did.I T 2-9. Archytas. With Plato we come across this program only in the dialogues. or this educationalprogramfrom the Pythagoreans the sophistsis not so realisedit in pracimportant. 87 On the Pythagoreanorigin of the quadriviumsee Zhmud. Eudoxusand his pupils. Heraclidesabout42.

Oxford 1949. 121.. Hep't y&e(oiepCov in five books. in about340..the materialthey were interestedin was very far from the real could in no mathematics theirapproach and problemsof the contemporary The reasonfor this is very simple:they way be describedas professional. They philosophised only about mathematical objects and dealt only with them . six books.If we look at the sciences as a whole. 19 T.. (In Met.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 237 one quotingwhat is probably of Aristotle'slost Alexanderof Aphrodisias. . this evidence. however. and [lepi tGv [n0ayopEiov in Hermodorus [lep'tga tiaicv. the Platonists) eagerness to study ra paaficLataand their conviction that philosophy is reasoning about these things.e.. p. Xenocrates.that success was primarilyin biology. 11 Ibid. Speusippus wrote a MaOTIgawtc6. Since this speech was written soon after the death of Plato. 13-14).88 Because of their (sc. it is very likely thatIsocrateshad in mindSpeusippus. Archytas and Eudoxus we have only a few fragments at our disposal. i. Mathematics in Aristotle. 27-28).. IV. they spent all their time in the study of mathematical science. studiedmathematicsfor sake of philosophyrather One can of course object that the fragments that remain may not be very representative. for instance the large fragmentfrom Speusippus'book On Pythagoreannumbers(fr. Heath. an 'Apt0g&ivOacopia..and several other Academicswho often wrote on mathematical themes.89 and his interest in actual mathematical problems is even less. in six books and a Hepi yecwgTspica. but that those who "have become so thoroughly versed in these studies as to instruct others in them" do not become wiser in the other things (Panath. But despite all their fertility in the field of the philosophy (and none of them left any mark in the possibly the history) of mathematics. seems completely different. then it is only Aristotle who achieves any real suc- cess. But also in the case of Hippocrates. To judge from fragmentsof their work. in an area that was not studiedat the Academy. Xenocrates Hep't tiv WaaxOr. explains: treatises.Strictlyspeaking.iro)v aptOji&v. comm. the thanfor its own sake. in a [lEpiaitpokoyfia. and significantly.none of Plato's immediatestudents achieved anything remarkablein mathematics. two books (D.The natureof the mathematical examples Aristotle uses in his writings shows the rathermodest level of his mathematical knowledge.25ff Diels).L. Xenocrates and Hermo- dorusare no exceptions. 28 Tarnn). Isocrates remarked that it is worth studying mathematics at a young age. exact sciences.L.. Speusippus. HEpi &pt0ov. 323ff.

109 Wehrli). . 12). lcpi astronomy:rlep' xXavnrCrv.Plato. which Taran refers to (Academica. Even in the field of ncxpaw'ytara Philip was not independent(Neugebauer. of the sphericity of the 93 In the second half of the fourth century a demonstration moon. on an incorThe of rect interpretation the sources. to observational i. 115ff. 740 n. Academica. MwaoTmiy. which his teacher. however." AJP 93 (1972).. is that we do not know about any personaldiscoveries is And made by Philip in astronomy. Gottschalk. 0.93 still more important the fact that in the Epinomis. Chalcidius. nEpP noX-oy6VWv ica rlepi gyi0ouo. aEXiv. What is significant. rlp't tt &ua?6ae ftXiou Kai GEXiV%. as Evans and Neugebauershowed. Relatively successful attempts were made to identify the book on lunar eclipses and the meteorologicalwritings. 733. flcp't &v4uov. 104-110 Wehrli). tradition connectstwo interWithanother Ponticus. 574. optics: 'Oxrticrv '. Mathematics: 'Apt0I11ticK&. &aTpati)cv. ?}ei?Xe. Evans. 600-601. 98-114.One of these.238 LEONID ZHMUD the to Philip was known as an astronomer.written in all probability Philip. meteorology: rflpi 91 Neugebauer.24-34 Adler.rests. 135f. held in very low opinion(Res. ogy..History. "On the Alleged Heliocentric Theory of Venus by Heraclides Ponticus. "The Astronomy of Heraclides Ponticus. 9 P.B. fiXiouxic oekXvmj. Academic. 176 Wrobel = fr.whichwe know practically only by their titles.e. 136). Our main source.then the resultsof this work seem ratherpoor. 9 Taran. Suda attributes him a number of mathematical astronomical and writings. there are no astroby If nomical ideas which cannotbe found in the Timaeusor the Republic.History. 92 Taran. &ptOgdov. yfj.was by no means an expert in astronomy (In Tim. 102-111. Heraclides of Pontus.92 most of the astronomical materialconnectedwith Philip's namerelatesto and astronomy meteorolthe so-called napawnciygarac. Neugebauer.Heraclides esting astronomical hypotheses(fr. 'Evonr(p)tIKV I. about the rotationof Venus and Mercuryaroundthe Sun which in turnrotates aroundthe Earth.9' aboutthe authenticity the majority the astronomical of of TarAn and Lasserrehave succeededonly in some cases in linkingthe flimsy surParadoxically. 596ff. Academica. cannot be regarded as a discovery. Neugebauerexpressedserious doubts treatises. and the fact that he attributesthe same epicyclical model to Plato makes his evidence about Heraclides especially suspicious. Lasserre." CQ 20 (1970).. p. 529a-530c) and could hardly have encouragedPhilip to study them.90 is hardlypossible to prove whetherPhilip really It was the authorof all these books. viving evidence with titles known only from the Suda. Oxford 1980.a'.95 other hypothesisabout the rotation of the Eartharoundits own axis has nothingin commonwith Platonic 90 IV.94 Philip really was converted by Plato to study the exact sciences and workedunderhis guidance. Gottschalk's arguments in favour of Heraclides' epicyclical model do not seem convincing (H. 69ff).

125141. d."Konstruktion und Seinsstruktur: Praxis und Platonismus in der griechischen Mathematik. then the Peripateticswere themselves less than objective in their assessmentof him as well. 104. they wrotea philosophical commentaryon Euclid. having begun the study of it. 86). See Taran.col. Heraclides (fr. refused to consider him a student of Plato. Eudemus I . the "saving of the apthe pearances.if the Academics exaggerated the role of their teacher. whereas Aetius mentions both Ecphantus and Heraclides (51 A 5)." However. 131 Wehrli).The Republic. Arist.That these stories arenotsupported sourcesoutsidetheAcademy. Dicaearchus wrote that he raised and then destroyedphilosophy (Philodemus. TheaetetusandLaws probablypersuaded a few talentedyouthsto take not but up mathematics. BraunschweigischenWiss. I Hippolitus attributesthis theory to Ecphantus(51 A 1)."263f.or in the best case.or compiled a commentary the mathematical on passages in the Platonicdialogues. it turned out to be a point of much debate between the Academics (cf. by is not decisive in itself. Is it really necessary to go on insisting that the Academy in all the time of its existence never producedeven one significantmathematician or astronomer? does seem necessary. they inevitablyhad to comply with the demandsworkedout by the professional mathematicians.According to Diogenes Laertius. "Proclus. since one can always objectthat. If they still consideredPlato more worthwhilethan mathematical truth.98 VII It is evident that tracingback all the stories about Plato as an organiser of the exact sciences (the duplicationof the cube. W. " Aristoxenes gathered all the gossip about Plato (fr. 2). 34 (1982). seeing such a divergence between Plato and Heraclides. 106 Wehrli) interpreteda controversialpassage in Timaeus (40b) in this sense. 61-68. then they developeda mathematical theology in the spiritof Anatoliusor Iamblichus.especiallyPeripatetic. 91 Cf. Burkert. as Proclusdid.96 all probabilityit was borrowedby Heraclidesfrom the Pythagorean Ecphantus/'who continuedthe line of Philolaus.Heraclidesstudiedwith the Pythagoreans wrote and a special book about them (V. De caelo 293 b 30f)."Abh. It is interesting that Proclus. 113 Wehrli). Gesell.PLATO AS "ARCHITECr OF SCIENCE" 239 in astronomy.especially when one takes into It account the exaggerated significance usually given to the programof mathematical educationdescribedin the Platonicdialogues. his ideas have a whole series of other similaritieswith Pythagorean astronomy(fr." discoveryof analysisand generalprogressin mathematics) to their Academic sources does not prove their reliability.

which was then developed furtherby the Academics. London 1965. These well-known passages have been discussed many times. New Essays on Plato and Aristotle. the basis for the idea of Plato as an architectof the sciences. 60 Wehrli). and Aristotle himself was known for his inordinatecriticism for his teacher. "Astronomy and Kinematics in Plato's Project of Rationalist Explanation. especially in books VI-VII of the Republic.London 1965.E. which they considerto be self-evidentand do not give them any further explanation(SlOc-e). now in supportof Plato's anti-empiricism of his hostilitytowardsthe real sciand ences of that time.D. not the real relationship between Plato and contemporarymathematicians. New York 1980. op." CPh 73 (1978). For Plato true astronomyis concernednot with the movement of the visible heavenlybodies.). cit. Mourelatos.Archytas'description numerous servations(47 B 1) with Plato's remark thatthe true science of harmonics and must be independent all this. A.Was the very idea of science dependingon and patronised philosophybornfrom Plato? He by often criticised the scientific methodologyof his contemporaries. ."SHPS 12 (1981). J.240 LEONID ZHMUD it is also impossibleto findsupport the idea of the exact sciences flourfor ishing under Plato's directorship even in Academic writings concerned with ta gla0fgata. 'l See for instance F. Allen (ed. for of acousticexperiments oband example. Science and the Sciences in Plato. in: R.where he outlines a programof education for future guardiansof the ideal polis.). Taylor."in: R. "?'g.but his dialogues. 1-32.. The source of these legends was."Mathematicsand Dialectic in the Republic VIVII" (1932). Anton (ed. but with ideal kinematicsof mathematical heavens (529a-530c). therefore.0'?do not thinkit possible to add anythingsigclearly preferredArchytas to him (fr. solid geometryis in a very undevelopedstate (528b-c).P. Cornford. Plato insists that arithmetic should be pursuedfor the sake of pure knowledge. 21-38.not for any practical from severalpremends (525c-d).M. Barker.). A. The geometersderivetheirpropositions ises. While Archytassings the praisesof the social and even moralconsequences of practicalarithmetic(47 B 3).which is somethingwhat even Pythagoreans to realise (531c). Studies in Plato's Metaphysics. Hare.M.It is here thatwe must look for. and now as an example of his prescienceof future I mathematical astronomy. and can find.P.l4pWvoI A aptOotoi: Note on Republic 531cl-4. 61-95. Bambrough(ed. So far I have neglectedthe issue about the extent to which the efforts of the Academicsto emphasisePlato's role in establishingthe methodology of the exact sciences reflectedhis own position. 337-342. measuringmathematical not audible of fail consonances. R. "Plato and the Mathematicians. Let us compare.

dialectic. Gaiser. a&X' ?i4 _pOXviattv taCFolcEtv. Cambridge1991. Philodemus and Simplicius use it in a wider sense.E." CQ 34 (1984).R. Bulmer-Thomas.'0' but preted as valuable methodologicalinstructionson how to develop the exact sciences. Robins. K. 4gpywvOt &ptgolot cat tive. inevitably remainin the memoriesof readersof the Republic. 272ff. N. "Astronomy and Observation in Plato's Republic. Methodsand Problems in GreekScience. AncPhil 15 (1995). Hetherington.If. known from the story about the J. then it must be said that the position of external and competentcritic was only naturalfor Plato. in the quotationsfrom Philodemusand Simplicius:Plato sets problems This is the approachinsistentlyput forwardin the for the specialists. It is also obvious that the exact sciences at that time variously suited Plato's goal: some to a greaterextent. 45 1-471. "Plato on Mathematicsand Nature. I personallypreferthe secI am readyto admitthatthese passagescould be interond answer." SHPS 27 (1996). 333-351. as were his effortsto put the results and methodsof the exact sciences to the use of his favourite science . at least to avoid extreme points of view. The resemblancesbecome even greaterif one comparesPlato's reprimands for the contempt of geometry. . on the groundof Plato's often rathervague The controversy remarks. "Platons Zusammenschau der mathematischenWissenschaften. An Introductionto Plato's Republic. which we came across The first indicationhere is the term npOXinga. "Plato and Eudoxus: Instrumentalists. or Prisoners of Themata?. the appeals themselves.Realists. Myth and Science. Lloyd." in: idem. I think they were understoodin exactly this way in the early Academy. '01 G."SHPS 27 (1996). When discussing astronomySocrates proposes: ECpoNXAuacytv aatpovopaav giETJItEV (530b6). 14. some to a lesser. for to make them a true preliminary dialectic. BXnaiCxta WhateverPlato meant by these appeals. or one tries to concentrateon what is uncontroversial. anticipatingthe work of Euclid and Ptolemy.TivES. "Mathematics and the Conversion of the Mind. '1' Plutarch(Marc. I. 89-124. urging the necessity to study the real problems of a true science."but here the term has a special mathematicalmeaning. Gregory. Oxford 1981.'02 Republic.we try to understandwhat stands behind his criticism: is he proposingan alternativeprogramfor developingthe exact sciences.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 241 nificantlynew to what has alreadybeen said on this subject. apa XpwCvtOI wynp yE0)iTptaV ovo] Kcat oiKic and returnsto this when discussingharmonics: (toiotv. 107-112. 359-39.or is he simply worriedabout how to adapt the exact sciences for his own pedagogicalpurposes.9-11) also mentions the "problems."A&A 32 (1986). oVi (531c3). Annas. "Plato's Astronomy. A." Republic vii 522cl-531e3. 278. however. begins when.S.

cit. 177. as things are now. and being very complex. Archytasor Eudoxusdid not need such a supportand they definitelywould react to the dialectician'sadvice with a pzyaXkopoaiuvil. The passage from Philodemus (&pXtt?E)covoivxo. S16?Tt ioiUToi-ko nEpi dgv t6v Xc tuv au`. Heath. jetxov.withoutwhom they will hardlydiscoveranything (itaa'&rou tE Skeovtatoit niobvrFec. as was long ago noted.'03 Glaucon agrees with this definitionand remarksthat this field is not yet properlyinvestigated. contains. '0 P. 'rFov becomesthusan immediate reflection aiov8fiqax&.Socratesgives two reasons for this situation:first. Cambridge(Mass.. since they are superiorby nature (fr. characteristic all specialists. Robins. . mathematicians prompted exclusively by their intellectualinterestto solve problems. these specialists would accept advice and continuousand strenuousstudies would bring out the tuth (528b8-c4).one who would be obeyed only in the ideal state and only with the supportof this state. nevertheless develop faster than r?xvat. '? It is worth mentioning that according to Aristotle the situation was quite different: the exact sciences. Hippocrates.and then if he could be found. they develop ratherslowly.). are So long as this is not so. V. op.& liaNtaucCov) getca and come from of Plato's words. Cornford. a clear referenceto the problemof the duplicationof the cube. investigators in this field would be too arrogantto submit to his guidance. Obviouslywhat is meanthere is not a specialistbut a dialecticalphilosopher. apXlttFiccov the same technicalfield and mean in this context practicallythe same.rvo4. 123f. cit. 2. aveU ou Ou1c av eiVpotrv).) 1935. Adam (ed. Shorey (ed. for Shorey's suggestionthat Plato designed the role of this Einicyta'&m. 122.).Interpretations takingthis "director" some famousmathematician thattime. Toji nX&. so to IU3 J. 370. History. It is hard to find a more clear expression of the need for philosophicalor even state-philosophical patronageof science. with Socrates'description the situationin solid of of SE' geometry(528b-c). Cambridge 1902. His definitionof solid geomety. being unsupported by society and the state. for example. 4n1o13vTv 8C. The Republic of Plato. 78. Plato's Republic.'04 and second (andthis is my Kronzeuge) investhe tigatorsneed a director.242 LEONID ZHMUD duplication the cube. himself'05 acquiressubstancefrom the following words of Socrates: It is not easy to find such a director. 106 See Adam.nv icai tO aou.the moreso as bothkrta?&rai. op. V. 53). the state does not supportthese studies. But if the state as a whole join in superintending these studies and honour them. jev cat npopXirjara 8tI6vto. 12f. 2.Archytas as of or Eudoxus'06 seem naive.. and to imputeto Plato an unlikelygenerosity.

since it was also bornout of an interpretation the Platonicdialogues. 176f.The legend abouthis Apollonianancestry..10The tendencyto reconstruct rather. guided by philosophers-dialecticians. who are not utter How blockheads" lavTalaatvavo6ilrot). 1 Taran).were necessaryand sufficientconditionsfor the creation of the academiclegend aboutPlato as the architectof science?If we take into accountthe previousanalysisshowingan absenceof any firmhistoric evidence that he really did play this role.. 324f. Meanwhile. '1 Riginos.but to develop them would take us too far from our central theme. (In Eucl. Xapo'vta p. Can we concludethat the seventhbook of the Republic. which originates from Plato: Eudoxus augmented ta sepiTilvToiiiv a&pxTiv napa HXamvo.but he was only following a tendencywhich came from the early Academy. I'l . 67. 9ff.Eudoxos. or similar passages from other dialogues. such a conclusionseems to me very compelling. cit. Lasserre. at least. Plato did not yet lay claims to setof ting problemsfor the scientists. relying on the author'swritingwas widespreadin antiquity..those of them. constructa biography or. History.but only to a true interpretation scienthemselves notknow do Mathematicians astronomers and tificachievements. The author of the remark about the section was probably Proclus.6).serves here as an excellent parallel.PLATO AS "ARCHITECTOF SCIENCE" 243 Earlier. I do not think these associations to be entirely inappropriate. how to use their discoveries.If the image of a Plato who gives the instructions the scientistsoriginatedfrom the to One has to put in much effort to dispel the associations evoked by these passages with a state science. op.'08 only someso one who was absolutely sure that everything Plato says about mathematics derivesfrom himself could have regarded him as an authorof this discovery. The only place where Plato mentionsgeometricalsection is the well-known passage about the division of a line into extreme and mean ratio (golden section):this proportion symbolisesthe relationship between the materialworld and the world of ideas (Res.the golden section was alreadyknown to the which Plato gives valuable instructionson how to develop mathematical sciences in order to make them most useful for the Euthydemus (290c). which we know so well from the Soviet experience.mentionedby Speusippus(fr. I' this case the of Phaedo. 509d-e). so they have to "hand them over to the dialecticiansto use properly. thenwereArchytas Eudoxus and (pit supposedto respondto such advice?107 One more line which leads towardsthe Republicis the referencein the Catalogue to a certain section.

Institute for the History of Science and Technology St.since it corresponded to the basic intention of their teacher: to see furtherand to penetrate deeper than any of those whose knowledgehe used. Petersburg .the hero of the dialogues.such a transformation have been well justifiedin the eyes of the Platonists.244 LEONID ZHMUD would image of Socrates.