References and Further Reading 1. The word "knowledge" and its cognates are used in a variety of ways.
He died in October of He was a priest, a doctor and musician, but is best known for his work as a translator of classic works, author and philosopher. Ficino, in contrast to Cornelius Agrippawas fortunate in finding such exemplary patrons as the Medici family of Florence.
Ficino's precocious talent was recognized by Cosimo de Medici, the leading citizen of Florence, who selected Ficino as a boy to lead the Florentine Platonic Academy. Cosimo encouraged Ficino to study Greek and then to provide the first Latin translations of On the Divine Wisdom and the Creation of the World, part of the Corpus Hermeticum attributed to Hermes Trismegistus, and then the first Latin translation of the whole of Plato's works.
Cosimo's son Piero and grandson Lorenzo continued to encourage and support Ficino. Here is a detailed Renaissance biography of Ficino by his contemporary Giovanni Corsi.
TOP Ficino played a major role in the rediscovery of classical learning in the Renaissance by translating a large number of other ancient texts into Latin including the works of Synesius, Psellus, Iamblichus' On the Mysteries of the EgyptiansPorphyry and Theon of Smyrna.
Ficino also had a great interest in music, translating the The Hymns of Orpheus and gaining renown as a musician. Here is a link to Angela Voss' interesting essays: Music, Astrology and Magic: Very beautiful and useful music entitled Secrets of the Heavensbased on Ficino's writings can be obtained from River Run Records.
This combines a recording of the Hymns of Orpheus to the seven planets with readings from Ficino. There are also three pdf downloads on this page including the texts of the Orphic Hymns and more essays by Angela Voss on Ficino and his astrological music magic.
One of the most striking features of Ficino's work was his insistence that there was no contradiction between true philosophy and revelation and his belief in the inherent unity of classical and Christian teaching.
As well as translating and commenting on Platonic and Hermetic works, he wrote On Christian Religion and translated the works attributed to Dionysius the Aeropagite.
In Platonic Theology or On the Immortality of Souls Ficino traces the common classical and Christian ideas concerning the soul and shows their true unity.
TOP Since he saw that there was no inherent contradiction between classical and Christian teaching Ficino felt free to pursue his interest in astrological magic and astrological talismans. His most famous work on this subject was De triplici vita, "Three Books on Life" In the third book of De triplici vita, entitled De vita coelitus comparanda "On Obtaining Life from the Heavens" Ficino discusses the theory and practice of astrological magic.
While careful to focus on benefic talismans, particularly for improving health, it is clear that many of the talismans that Ficino discusses have their source in Picatrixa medieval book of Arabic astral magic. Unlike Pico della Mirandolla or Giordano Brunohowever, Ficino's cautious approach to astrological magic allowed him to escape any serious consequences from the Inquisition.
Two, more detailed essays, Marsilio Ficino: Astrological Magic Theoryprovide more information on the theory and philosophy behind Ficino's use of astrology and magic.
In addition, Ficino's Venus Talisman Example explains how an actual talisman was made using the techniques of Renaissance electional astrology and Ficino's instructions in De vita coelitus comparanda. TOP Ficino's writing is truly a joy to read as its elegance and clarity reflects the harmony and beauty of the themes he explores.
It is unfortunate that translations of his works so quickly go out of print. An excellent academic translation, Three Books on Life is Ficino's magnum opus on astrological magic and talismans. This is a key work for anyone interested in Renaissance astrological magic, but sadly, it has just gone out of print.
Another fascinating work, but out of print translation of Ficino's work is his Commentary on Plato's Symposium translated by Sears Jayne. Since Ficino asserts that love is the basis of magic, and indeed, the key link that ensures the unity of the Cosmos, his Commentary on Plato's renowned work on love is of great interest.
An easily accessible work by Ficino is the online translation with commentary by Michael Allen of Ficino's Nuptial Arithmetica fascinating study of geometry, Pythagorean mathematics and astrology.Marsilio Ficino, one of the greatest figures of the Italian Renaissance, was born in Florence, on October 19, He died in October of He was a priest, a doctor and musician, but is best known for his work as a translator of classic works, author and philosopher.
Marsilio Ficino, one of the greatest figures of the Italian Renaissance, was born in Florence, on October 19, He died in October of He was a priest, a doctor and musician, but is best known for his work as a translator of .
Acknowledgments. This entry is loosely based on my introduction to a volume I edited, Plato’s Myths, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, There is some inevitable overlap, but this entry is sufficiently different from the above-mentioned introduction to be considered a new text.
- Notes - References to the text of the Republic, in the form of standard Stephanus page, section, and line numbers, will appear parenthetically in the text.I use the translation of Robin Waterfield, Plato: Republic (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, ).
I have systematically emended Waterfield's translation in one important respect, however. relativism. Belief that human judgments are always conditioned by the specific social environment of a particular person, time, or place.
Cognitive relativists hold that there can be no universal knowledge of the world, but only diverse interpretations of it.
Plato: The Republic Since the mid-nineteenth century, the Republic has been Plato’s most famous and widely read dialogue. As in most other Platonic dialogues the main character is Socrates.
It is generally accepted that the Republic belongs to the dialogues of Plato’s middle period.
In Plato’s early dialogues, Socrates refutes the accounts of his interlocutors and the discussion ends.