... most comprehensive and admirable ... All in all, Brittain has brought Philo to life as a man of considerable philosophical weight, and with a distinctive, and reasonably coherent, stance. This book should remain the definitive treatment of this significant Platonist for a very long time. ( Hermathena: A Trinity College Dublin Review)
Brittain has written an important contribution to our understanding of the final period of Academic scepticism. It will be a rewarding reading for all students in Hellenistic philosophy. ( Classical World)
A work of much greater scope and appeal than one might have thought: an outstanding study of an individual philosopher, but also one of the best guides currently available to the range of epistemological thought within the Academy. ( Greece & Rome)
This is the first book-length study of Philo of Larissa. Philo (159-84 BC) was the leader of the Platonic Academy in its final period as an Athenian institution, and also the principal philosophical teacher of Cicero. Dr Brittain charts Philo's gradual rejection of the radical scepticism of Carneades (concluding with his notorious 'Roman Books' of 89 BC), and offers philosophical justifications for his initial position of modified scepticism and final advocacy of a fallibilist empiricism. Philo's controversial epistemological views are constructed through their historical context in the late Hellenistic Academy, his wider thought on the history of philosophy, ethics and rhetoric, and his controversies with his pupils Antiochus and Aenesidemus. The appendix contains full testimonia and 'fragments' of Philo.
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