This volume makes available to the modern reader selected writings of Thomas Taylor, the eighteenth-century English Platonist. TO Taylor we are indebted for the first full translation into English of Plato and Aristotle. Platonism, as Taylor saw it, was an informing principle, transmitted through a "golden chain of philosophers," a doctrine received by Socrates and Plato from the Orphic and Pythagorean past and transmitted to the future. It emerged again and again, enriched in the School of Alexandria, in Renaissance art, in the works of Spenser, Shelley, Yeats. Kathleen Raine is well known as a poet. GEorge Mills Harper is Professor of English, University of Florida. Bollingen Series LXXXVIII.
Originally published in 1969.
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About the Author
The translator of this work, Thomas Taylor, is known for his authoritative translations of the Platonists; he was practically the sole source of Neo-Platonic thought in the transcendentalist movement of New England. Iamblichus' Life of Pythagoras was a constant source of inspiration to the transcendentalists and a major influence on their writings throughout the Nineteenth Century. Taylor's work was enthusiastically acclaimed by Emerson, who referred to the translator as "a Greek born out of his time, and dropped on the ridicule of a blind and frivolous age."