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Philo the Dialectician (late 4th–early 3rd centuries BC)

DOI: 10.4324/9780415249126-A082-1
Version: v1,  Published online: 1998
Retrieved January 29, 2022, from

Article Summary

A member of the Dialectical school, Philo was a Greek philosopher whose claim to fame is twofold. First, he maintained that one proposition implies another if and only if either the former is false or the latter is true, however irrelevant the two propositions may be to one another. Second, he maintained that some things are necessarily prevented from happening and are nevertheless possible: the water around them prevents shells at the bottom of the ocean from ever being actually perceived; nevertheless, such things are perceptible. As often happened with Dialecticians’ ideas, these ideas of Philo elicited (and perhaps were meant to elicit) notoriety rather than agreement.

Citing this article:
Denyer, Nicholas. Philo the Dialectician (late 4th–early 3rd centuries BC), 1998, doi:10.4324/9780415249126-A082-1. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Taylor and Francis,
Copyright © 1998-2022 Routledge.

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