• Geometrical First Principles in Proclus’ Commentary on the First Book of Euclid’s Elements

    Author(s):
    D. Gregory MacIsaac (see profile)
    Date:
    2014
    Group(s):
    Philosophy
    Subject(s):
    Classics, History and philosophy of mathematics, Philosophy
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    euclid, Geometry, History of Mathematics, Neoplatonism, Proclus
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/6xv8-p281
    Abstract:
    In his commentary on Euclid, Proclus says both that the first principle of geometry are self-evident and that they are hypotheses received from the single, highest, unhypo- thetical science, which is probably dialectic. The implication of this seems to be that a geometer both does and does not know geometrical truths. This dilemma only exists if we assume that Proclus follows Aristotle in his understanding of these terms. This paper shows that this is not the case, and explains what Proclus himself means by definition, hypothesis, axiom, postulate, and the self-evident, and how geometry is a science that receives its principles from dialectic.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    3 months ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved
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