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

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

Reader's Thoughts

Karen Roddy


Valenfore Alestreneon

Two Classical Works form a Great Philosopher.


Required reading for Traditional Cosmologies. Year 2, Semester 1, Latrobe University. Am having a hard time reading this...I don't understand the subtleties and the under currents nor what it has to do with Cosmologies...Maybe I should have done Greek Mythology before this subject, not after...Learning about alchemy, horoscopes and Gods/Goddesses...Still not getting it though...




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.


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?"


Anyone who's remotely interested in Atlantis should look no further and read this pair of dialogues. It offers probably the most detailed (and realistic) layout on what the legendary lost civilization was like, how it was run, and what ultimately befell of it's end days. Unlike modern depictions of Atlantis being a mythical, magic place, Plato lays it out like a legit civilization, advanced but not fantastical, and paints a number of beautiful images for your imagination. It's also short and sweet, which for this day and age can always be a plus.


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


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...


The leading scientist of his time Plato gives it his all in a top-down attempt to explain the universe in his own unique cosmology.

Alex Lee

These two works together were meant to be a trilogy about Athens, Greeks and their place in the world. Unfortunately, the 3rd book was lost, or never written, and the 2nd book, Critias only survives as a fragment. Still, interesting. The three men, speak to Socartes about the nature of everything, highlighting the Other of the Greeks, the Egyptians, as being part of the primary source needed to complete the story.The first book, Timaeus is interesting because he speaks of how the universe started before man was made... how man was made rationally with intention, and all that. With Timaeus you see how Plato tries to ground everything, the 4 elements for example, into Being, with ideas being the root... (as the 4 elements are basically tiny shapes, and what's more pure as an idea than a shape?) From this, you get the idea that once everything is built up from Truth, we should then, with the history of Atlantis in Critias, and the lost 3rd book, come to a systematic understanding of the way in which Athens has developed and should develop... with an eye on purity and rightness. The idea is simple. If there was a way we were made, a reason for us being the way we are, then there too is a way for us to be, an intented way for us to live, and a right way for us to not go against our nature.Only in a democracy like Athens can someone like Plato have existed... Plato who feared the nihilism of the Sophists, in which their collectively disordered wisdom threatened to destroy the inherent meaning and values that made Athens what it is. He of course, wrote his entire life, to try and find coherence; find Being which could bind those disorderly ideas, and bring them up from negating each other, so that we can have values, so that we can have orderly society. So that we can be a people with a moral and ethical content we could be proud of and exhibit.At least, that's how I see this book within the larger scheme of what Plato was doing.


To be honest, I only started this book because I wanted to know more about the stories of Atlantis. If that is all you are interested in, I recommend only reading Critias as that focuses on the topic of Atlantis while Timaeus only mentions it briefly. However, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I got out of Timaeus. Focusing primarily on cosmology, Timaeus gave me a much greater understanding of how the Ancient Greeks viewed the universe and their role in it. Furthermore, it was helpful to me as a medievalist to read how Plato's understanding of the universe influenced the medieval Church's cosmology. Because Plato (via the dialogue of Timaeus) spoke of a single cosmic God that created the universe and everything it in, the medieval Church regarded Plato as a pagan whose wisdom had led him to Christian truths, and therefore his writings on how the universe was organized was widely accepted in medieval Christian cosmology. So much so, that the Church had real trouble letting go of Platonic cosmology when Copernicus and others discovered mistakes in his universal model.


good morning Atlantis. sounds bollocks right now and I get really scared when thinking that this was the main basis for scientific stuff for a long time.Plato is good, yes. but too much geometry. the universe through triangles - how cool is that?

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.

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.

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