Plato (3811 words)

Context

“The safest general characterization of the European tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato.” - Alfred North Whitehead

The ancient Athenian philosopher Plato is perhaps the greatest philosopher in history. More than one eminent scholar claims that the entire course of Western philosophy has been a development of efforts to understand Plato. What is the reason for Plato's ongoing and profound influence?

Virtually nothing is known of Plato's life; there are many ancient sources of information, but these accounts were composed long after Plato's death. Moreover, there are contradictions between them and other indications of their unreliability. As a result, …

Citation: Wood, Kelsey. "Plato". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 22 October 2004 [https://staging.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=3580, accessed 01 December 2022.]

3580 Plato 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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