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date: 19 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines the relationship between the Aristotelian philosophers (30 bce to 200 ce) and the so-called Second Sophistic. It discusses how the study of Aristotle’s works experienced a revival, leading to a new text-based approach to his corpus. The evidence for the main protagonists of those interested in Aristotle is fragmentary. Some were leading thinkers of the school (Andronicus of Rhodes), others eclectic readers of Aristotle (Xenarchus of Seleucia, Galen of Pergamum). The views of both styles of scholar on Aristotle arose mostly in a didactic context, clarifying the texts to students. Thus philosophers began to engage in scholarly commentary as a standard way to practice philosophy. This trend quickly culminated in the running commentary, the prime example of which is the work of Alexander of Aphrodisias (ca. 200 ce), who also had connections to the imperial court.

Keywords: Alexander of Aphrodisias, Aristotelian tradition, fragmentary evidence, readers, revival, running commentary, scholarship, students

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