The Cratylus, Phaedo, Parmenides, and Timaeus of Plato
1793, the first English translation by Thomas Taylor
First edition. Hardback, half-leather binding (rebound), with simple gilt titling and five raised bands to the spine, pebbled cloth covered boards. 22.5 × 13.5cm, xxiii + 554pp [errata].
Full title: The Cratylus, Phaedo, Parmenides, and Timaeus of Plato. With notes on the Cratylus, and an Explanatory Introduction to Each Dialogue
This is the first edition in English of Neoplatonist Thomas Taylor's translation of Plato's The Cratylus, Phaedo, Parmenides, and Timaeus. The four pieces form four of Plato's dialogues, being 'The Cratylus, a Dialogue on the Rectitude of Names', this is the Platonic dialogue devoted exclusively to language and its relation to reality. 'The Phaedo, a Dialogue on the Immortality of the Soul' and is one of the best-known dialogues of Plato's middle period. 'The Parmenides, A Dialogue on the Gods', this is considered to be one of the most challenging and enigmatic of Plato's dialogues. The Parmenides purports to be an account of a meeting between the two great philosophers of the Eleatic school, Parmenides and Zeno of Elea, and a young Socrates. And 'The Timaeus, A Dialogue on Nature', in which Plato presents an elaborately wrought account of the formation of the universe and an explanation of its impressive order and beauty.
This copy is in very good condition for age. The leather is a little rubbed to the joints and with some sunning to the spine, most noticeable to the leather of the upper board. There is slight loss to the leather at the rear joint at the base of the spine. The inner binding is very secure, with some light surface wear to the front hinge. The pages are clean with occasional tanning, and pages 15, 31, 45, and 175 have browning to the fore-edge but not affecting text. Overall, a very good copy in strong readable condition of a rare first English translation of four of Plato's dialogues.Sold