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Saturday, March 16, 2019

In Aristotle’s Garden, NY Professor Finds Philosophy, Too | The National Herald

As he perused the ancient site of Aristotle’s Lyceum, opened to the public only in 2014 after being excavated in 1996, Simon Critchley, English philosopher who is a professor at the New School for Social Research in New York City, said he was most struck by its garden.

Arisotle's Lyceum is the scene of the ancient site of learning established by the famed philosopher.
Photo: Wikimedia Commons, Joyofmuseums
It’s located between the National Garden in Syntagma Square in the Greek capital and the nearby Athens Hilton, a prime spot not so far from under the towering Mt. Lycabettus, but while just off a busy thoroughfare, in its day it was a place for learning, walking and contemplation.

Modeled exactly after Plato’s Academy, but on a much bigger scale, the Lyceum was endowed primarily with what was then a fortune given him by one his most famous student, Alexander the Great, also the Grateful for having been taught by the famed philosopher.
“Aristotle’s endowment allowed him to build a huge research and teaching facility and amass the largest and most important library in the world … there were as many as 2,000 pupils at the Lyceum, some of them sleeping in dormitories. The Lyceum was clearly the place to be, the educational destination of choice for the elites,” Critchley wrote for The New York Times...

Disliked by the Athenians for his ties to Macedonia, when Alexander died in 323 B.C.E in Babylon, Aristotle, knowing the fate of Socrates, gave up his Lyceum and garden, saying, “I will not allow the Athenians to sin twice against philosophy,” wen to his mother’s estate on the island of Euboea and died at 63. The garden’s still alive.
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Source: The National Herald


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