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Preliminary Material

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Chapter Summary

This introductory chapter presents an overview of the book, which attempts to determine Syrianus' metaphysics based on the fragments of his teaching on the Timaeus and Parmenides found in the writings of Proclus and Damascius. Syrianus, successor to Plutarch of Athens as head of the Athenian school of Platonism from 432-437, is best known through the writings of his well-published pupil, Proclus. The written product of Syrianus' teaching is scant: extant works include a textbook on rhetoric and a commentary on Aristotle's Metaphysics, books Β, Γ,Μ, Ν (In Metaphysica). While it is clear that Proclus adopts the bulk of his metaphysics from his teacher, it is difficult to sort through precisely what in his thought is purely Syrianic and what is his own elaboration of Syrianus' teaching.

Keywords: Damascius; metaphysics; Parmenides; Proclus; Syrianus; Timaeus



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