Citations in Plato, Symposium 178b-c


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In Plato’s Symposium, Phaedrus proposes the main theme of ‘encomium to Eros’ at Agathon’s party. This paper examines the beginning of his speech, which cites the authorities, namely Hesiod, Parmenides, and Acusilaus (178b-c). The passage has been suffering many editorial emendations since the late eighteenth century, but the philological examination reveals that the prevailing text of John Burnet (OCT) lacks a firm ground against the manuscripts’ reading. On the other hand, the recent studies of doxography shed a new light on the passage: the citations derive from the Anthology edited by the sophist Hippias. This consideration shows how Phaedrus performs sophistic presentation on the theme of ‘Eros’