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Bust of the philosopher and scientist Aristotle. Archaeological Museum, Palermo (Italy). Photo Jona Lendering.
Aristotle (Archaeological 
Museum, Palermo)
Aristotle (384-322): greatest philosopher of Antiquity, teacher of Alexander the Great.

Plato's most famous student was Aristotle of Stagira, the son of a Macedonian court physician and himself a physician too. After the death of his master, Aristotle, living in Assos, studied biology and accepted a position as teacher of the Macedonian crown prince Alexander at Mieza. When the Macedonians subdued Greece, Aristotle founded a school at Athens, the Lyceum.

Most of his writings are lost. What remains are his lecture notes, which were rediscovered in the first century BCE. During the last decades, scholars have started to re-examine the fragments of the lost works, which has led to important changes in our understanding of Aristotle's philosophy. However, the accepted view remains that he replaced his master's speculations with a more down-to-earth philosophy.

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Aristotle's school at Mieza (modern Naoussa). Photo Jona Lendering.
Aristotle's school in Mieza. In the second century CE, the building was still shown to visitors.

Among Aristotle's main works are the Prior Analytics (in which he described the rules of logic), the Physics, the Animal History, the Rhetorics, the Poetics, the Metaphysics, the Nicomachean Ethics, and the Politics. All these books have become classics, and it is not exaggerated to say that Aristotle is the most influential philosopher of all ages and the founder of modern science.

At the moment, several aspects of the Stagirite's philosophy are reconsidered. Go here for an interesting new view on Aristotle's teachings about the soul, and its influence on Plutarch of Chaeronea.

This brief article has been written to offer background information
to the real articles on Livius.Org. One day, this webpage will be
improved. A list of completed articles can be found here.
Jona Lendering for 
Livius.Org, 2005
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