Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1962.
First Edition. Paperback. 9" X 6". xviii, 603pp; xvi, 539pp. Mild edgewear to paper wraps, with sunning and creasing to Volume V, small faint stain to upper wrap of Volume IV, and original price stickers to rear of both. Bindings are firm and sound. Pages are clean and unmarked. A solid pair of these fourth and fifth volumes of W. K. C. Guthrie's foundational six-volume History of Greek Philosophy. Together, these fourth and fifth volumes in the series collect Professor Guthrie's history of the Greek philosopher Plato.
About Volume IV: The fourth volume of Professor Guthrie's great history of Greek thought deals exclusively with Plato. Plato, however, so prolific a writer, so profoundly original in his thought, and so colossal an influence on the later history of philosophy, that it has not been possible to confine him to one volume. Volume IV therefore offers a general introduction to his life and writings, and covers the so-called 'early' and 'middle' periods of his philosophical development (up to and including the Republic).
About Volume V: Many of the dialogues of Plato's later period have a more logical and analytic character than the earlier ones and have therefore aroused especial interest among modern philosophers. Professor Guthrie tries to show that Plato's basic ideas did not undergo any drastic change, and in particular that Plato did not abandon his central and characteristic doctrine of transcendent Forms, while at the same time coming to realize and frankly acknowledge the intellectual difficulties which it involved. This volume also includes chapters on the Platonic Letters, and the much discussed unwritten teaching of which we learn indirectly through Aristotle and his commentators together with quotations from other pupils and colleagues. The volume closes with a chapter describing what is known of the work of leading contemporary members of the Academy, most of whom were considerable philosophers in their own right. Very good. Item #5870