Scrinium Classical Antiquity

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  • Plato's Progress. University Press, Cambridge, 1966. VIII,311p. Cloth wrps. Name on free endpaper. 'This is a challenging book. Professor Ryle rejects the orthodox account of Plato's life and intellectual development and offers in its place a new and radically different version, giving fairly precise dates for the composition of all the major dialogues. (...) Since this book is essentially an historical study, its value depends on the way in which Ryle treats historical evidence, and here Ryle seems to lay himself open to three main criticisms. 1. Ryle's use of evidence is extremely scarce and uncritical. (...) 2. Ryle presents his evidence in a tendentious and dogmatic way. (...) 3. Ryle is too easily carried away by fanciful speculation that have only the flimsiest evidence to support them. This is a fundamental weakness of the book (....). Ryle has done a valuable service in reminding us that there are difficulties in the accepted account and that the evidence for it is often very slight. But the value of his reminder is sadly diminished by the irresponsible way in which he presents his own account.' (H.J. EASTERLING in The Classical Review (New Series), 1967, pp.332-36). € 17.50 (Antiquarian)

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