Timaeus/Critias

ISBN: 0140442618
ISBN 13: 9780140442618
By: Plato Desmond Lee

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Genres

Ancient Atlantis Classic Classics Currently Reading Mythology Non Fiction Nonfiction Philosophy To Read

Reader's Thoughts

Samantha

Very interesting pre-Christian look at creation and the world.

Valenfore Alestreneon

Two Classical Works form a Great Philosopher.

Joshua Mark

If you're one of the many interested in the lost continent of Atlantis then these two dialogues are definite `must reads' for you. Plato's dialogue of the Timaeus introduces Atlantis and the Critias expands and develops the earlier ideas presented. These two dialogues are THE basis for the Atlantis myth. All of the money spent on explorations through the ages to find `the lost city of Atlantis' could have been spent more wisely. Atlantis is Plato's creation. There is no mention of such a place before he wrote these works and every piece dealing with the subject since is based upon them. Enjoy.

Sammi

I'm doing research for a couple of projects on Atlantis and thought, why not start with the first known written record? I'm not really a fan of Plato in general, but so far these two dialogues haven't been too painful.

Elsie

Have never read any of Plato's writing and the only purpose for picking up "Timaeus and Critias" was simply because of the frequent reference to the book by authors writing about Atlantis. Am I glad I did, for apart from Critias and the description of the lost civilization of Atlantis, this classic in fact presents great many pleasant surprises especially within the dialogue of Timaeus, were he related how the Cosmos is likely to have come about and how the cosmic intelligence employs mathematics,geometry and harmony in the construction of the Universe. And how stars,sun, moon and planets move with regular circular motions, and that the elements of earth, water, air and fire are conceived of as having specific, ideals shapes, and the ultimate building blocks for all matter and creation.Though some of the facts in the text have now been proven inaccurate, it still offers an interesting read to find the many parallels in its understanding with certain ancient Indian Ayuvedic principles and for those familiar with the writing of Rudolf Steiner's "An Occult Physiology" will certainly enjoy and appreciate the depth of Plato's insight even more...

Carl Hruza

The author is a madman and should not be trusted.

Caratstick

I wouldn't recommend it unless you have to read it. It's not bad (it's Plato for goodness sake), it's just not what I look for in my reading.

Joshua

The Timaeus is a very strange book. It attempts to explain the formation of the universe and the creation of humans. The explanations are weird and I found them somewhat disturbing. I was reminded of the surreal parody of educational television, "Look Around You". Empirical knowledge of the physical world was obviously very low which is not surprising considering the technological level of ancient Greece. I think this might be a reason why Plato considers pure rational thought to be a higher type of knowledge than knowledge of the outside world.The Critias is an unfinished story about a 9000 year old war between ancient Athens and Atlantis. I found this story interesting. Ancient Athens is described as having a society like the one outlined in "The Republic". The description of Atlantis is really interesting, and the Penguin Classics edition comes with two maps of the place. If you like fantasy role playing games this is really useful. There are two mythical metals mentioned in the two books. The first is adamant which is really hard and is a scion of gold. The other is orichalc, the second most valuable metal after gold. Once again cool stuff if you like fantasy role playing games.

Karen Roddy

Excellent!

Kei

a committed edition of Plato's works that enables readers to presume the entire plan by the philosopher, which had been abandoned.

Jen

I enjoy Plato, and this was the first of his works that I really got familiar with. The story of Atlantis is fascinating. Of course, being Plato, some patience is required while reading this, but it is rewarding I think and well worth the struggles and rereading that is sometimes required. Just a heads up, you will have "what the hell did I just read?" moments. Sorry, that's just part of Plato.

Amy ♥♫

This was pretty good, I guess. Now that I have read the "original" text I can safely say that I do not believe Atlantis ever existed. The descriptions of the island continent proved to me that it could not have possibly existed, especially if it was situated between Europe and America. However, there is evidence that a city did in fact sink in a single day and night . . . on the island of Crete, which is off the coast of Greece. The stories from the survivors could have inspired Plato to write about one of the world's most well-known island, Atlantis. The same could be said for El Dorado in South America and for Shangri La in the Himalayas, they are merely fictional cities that have sparked our interests and imaginations.

Daniel Wright

This is probably, to modern readers, the most bizarre, difficult and unusual of Plato's dialogues (although it's scarcely a dialogue). The fact that its ancient audience thought it his most important underlines the way expectations of what the work of a philosopher entails have changed, and is something to bear in mind and be wary of as we approach the interpretation of his other work.

Deborah

Myth and math! Cosmology, biology, and Atlantis! Timaeus was extremely influential in medieval philosophical thought of all kinds, and holds value for the reader of today, as well. Timaeus and Critias (together or individually) can be a daunting read, but they express the same wonder at the cosmos as we do, and seek to answer the questions, "Where did we come from?" and "Why are we here?"

scott

So glad I picked this up on the cheap. I was hoping these stories were Socratic dialogues, first off, and they are not. Each story is basically a monologue by the titular characters following a brief introductory dialogue. Timaeus gives a telling of the world's creation, which would later be reused and modified by Christians for the Bible. It's long-winded and only occasionally interesting, which led me to skip sections of it. Critias is an unfinished/abandoned work that was intended to tell the full tale of Atlantis. What Plato left us was a description of the layout and rituals of Atlantis, and then he stops before detailing the war between Atlantis and Athens and Atlantis' subsequent demise. Overall, I got more out of the editor's introductory notes and appendix on Atlantis than I did Plato's stories. The stories were a waste of my time.

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