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By Bertrand Russell

Considering the fact that its first e-book in 1945? Lord Russell's A historical past of Western Philosophy has been universally acclaimed because the awesome one-volume paintings at the topic — unheard of in its comprehensiveness, its readability, its erudition, its grace and wit. In seventy-six chapters he strains philosophy from the increase of Greek civilization to the emergence of logical research within the 20th century. one of the philosophers thought of are: Pythagoras, Heraclitus, Parmenides, Empedocles, Anaxagoras, the Atomists, Protagoras, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, the Cynics, the Sceptics, the Epicureans, the Stoics, Plotinus, Ambrose, Jerome, Augustine, Benedict, Gregory the nice, John the Scot, Aquinas, Duns Scotus, William of Occam, Machiavelli, Erasmus, extra, Bacon, Hobbes, Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, Rousseau, Kant, Hegel, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, the Utilitarians, Marx, Bergson, James, Dewey, and finally the philosophers with whom Lord Russell himself is such a lot heavily linked — Cantor, Frege, and Whitehead, co-author with Russell of the enormous Principia Mathematica.

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The Persian satrap at Sardes represented that he intended to rebel against the Great King, and would pay vast sums for the help of Polycrates, who went to the mainland for an interview, was captured and crucified. Polycrates was a patron of the arts, and beautified Samos with remarkable public works. Anacreon was his court poet. Pythagoras, however, disliked his government, and therefore left Samos. It is said, and is not improbable, that Pythagoras visited Egypt, and learnt much of his wisdom there; however that may be, it is certain that he ultimately established himself at Croton, in southern Italy.

The way in which, out of his worship, there arose a profound mysticism, which greatly influenced many of the philosophers, and even had a part in shaping Christian theology, is very remarkable, and must be understood by anyone who wishes to study the development of Greek thought. Dionysus, or Bacchus, was originally a Thracian god. The Thracians were very much less civilized than the Greeks, who regarded them as barbarians. Like all primitive agriculturists, they had fertility cults, and a god who promoted fertility.

It seems probable that educated Athenians, even in the best period, however rationalistic they may have been in their explicitly conscious mental processes, retained from tradition and from childhood a more primitive way of thinking and feeling, which was always liable to prove victorious in times of stress. For this reason, no simple analysis of the Greek outlook is likely to be adequate. The influence of religion, more particularly of non-Olympian religion, on Greek thought was not adequately recognized until recent times.

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A History of Western Philosophy [poor font] by Bertrand Russell


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