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Lucretius And Doxography

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Chapter Summary

The theme of this chapter is Lucretius and doxography. The chapter shows that its formulation has been demonstrably influenced by Lucretius knowledge of the doxographical tradition. For many years doxography has been an indispensable but troublesome concept in the study of ancient philosophy. The chapter takes the term in the narrowest possible sense, i.e. as referring to a tradition of writings called the Placita. The significant parallels between Epicurus three surviving letters and the tradition of the Placita are indeed obvious. For all Lucretius devotion to the master, there is no need to assume that he wrote in quarantine, cut off from outside sources of information. Doxography was an important way of doing philosophy in his time.

Keywords: ancient philosophy; doxography; Lucretius

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