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     In Plato's Late Ontology: A Riddle Resolved (Princeton University Press, 1983: reprinted by Parmenides Publishing, 2005), Kenneth Sayre argues that the doctrines involving the Great and the Small attributed to Plato by Aristotle in Metaphysics A can be found expressed in other terms in the Parmenides and the Philebus. Sayre's later Metaphysics and Method in Plato's Statesman makes a similar claim for the Statesman. The argument in both cases rests, in large part, upon a set of synonymous expressions for the Great and the Small used by Aristotle's Greek commentators of the 4th through 6th centuries A.D.

     A list of passages in which these synonyms figure is show below. Since most of the passages in question have not yet been translated, it is relevant to seek input from active scholars in the field regarding both the accuracy of the present list and other passages that might be added. Please address comments and contributions to Professor Sayre at ksayre@nd.edu.

Equivalents for the Great and the Small in Aristotle and his Commentators

 

Aristotle
Physics
Metaphysics

Alexander
on Aristotle’s
Metaphysic
s

Themistius
Paraphrase of
Aristotle’s Physics

Philoponus
on Aristotle’s
Physics

Simplicius
on Aristotle’s
Physics

(the) Great and
(the) Small

187a16-17 (pl)
192a11-12
203a15 (pl)
209b33-35 (pl)
987b26 (pl)
988a13-14 (pl)
988a26 (pl)
992b1-7
1083b24
1083b32
1085a9
1087b7-10
1088a15-16
1089a35-36
1090b36-37
1091a10
1091a24
1091b32

54.12
547-11 (pl)
56.13-18
56,32(pl)
60.4-5 (pl)
86,12
117.26-27
122.10 (pl)
122.19-23
203.29-32 (pl)
228.13-14 (pl)
796.12-17
796.36-38 (pl)
797.3-6 (pl)
797.14-15
800.29-30
801.8-12
808.1-2 (pl)
809.15-16
809.32-33 (pl)
820.2 (pl)

13.13-15 (pl)
80.25-26 (pl)
93.31

91.28-29 (pl)
92.27-30 (pl)
123.15 (pl)
388.10 (pl)
389.17-18 (pl)
395.1-7 (pl)
473.5-9 (pl)
480.12-13 (pl)
541.12 (pl)

150.12-15 (pl)
151.7 (pl)
151.12-15 (pl)
189.9-11 (pl)
204.6-8
204.14 (pl)
248.1 (pl)
248.5-8
431.8 (pl)
453.25-36 (pl)
454.6-13
454.32-36 (pl)
455.5 (pl)
455.9-11 (pl)
455.15-16 (pl)
458.11-15 (pl)
493.17-18 (pl)
499.4-6 (pl)
503.13-17 (pl)
542.10 (pl)

The Indefinite
Dyad

1081a14-15
1081a22
1081b21
1081b26
1081b32
1082a13
1082b30
1083b36
1085b7
1088a15-16
1088b28-29
1089a35-36
1091a5

56.18-20 (pl)
58.2-3 (pl)
70.7 (pl)
85.17-24
86.1
117.26-27
122.10 (pl)
123.3
203.27-32 (pl)
228.13-14 (pl)
705.24-25
780.19 (pl)
796.36-38 (pl)
797.14-15
800.29-30
808.1-2 (pl)
809.32-33 (pl)
817.35-36 (pl)

 

92.27-30 (pl)

150.12-15 (pl)
151.7 (pl)
151.12-15 (pl)
181.28
453.25-36
454.6-13
454.32-36 (pl)
455.5 (pl)
458.11-15 (pl)
499.4-6 (pl)
503.13-17 (pl)

The Unlimited

203a4-9 (pl)

(2 Unlimiteds)
203a15 (pl)
206b27-28 (pl)

 

54.1-2
54.7-11 (pl)
56.20 (pl)
58.2-3 (pl)
60.4-5 (pl)

80.25-26 (pl)
80.28 (pl)
93.31

388.10 (pl)
389.17-18 (pl)
395.1-7 (pl)
473.5-9 (pl)
480.12-13 (pl)

248.5-8
453.25-36 (pl)
455.9-11 (pl)
455.15-16 (pl)
458.11-15 (pl)
493.17-18 (pl)
499.4-6 (pl)
503.13-17 (pl)
247.35 (pl)
[Unlimited and Indefinite]

The Unequal

1087b7-10
1088b28-29
1091a24
1091b32

(plural)
1081a25

56.13-17
228.13-14 (pl)
615.17
750.24-25 (pl)
796.12-17
796.36-38 (pl)
797.3-6 (pl)
800.29-30
801.8-12
809.15-16
809.32-33 (pl)

 

 

150.12-15 (pl)
248.10-13 (pl)
431.11(pl)

(the) More and
(the) Less

 

 

 

 

204.6-8
248.1 (pl)
248.5-8
248.10-13 (pl)
453.25-36 (pl)
454.25-36 (pl)
455.9-11 (pl)
503.26-27 (pl)

The Nature of
the Unlimited

 

54.7-11 (pl)

 

 

453.25-36 (pl)
454.6-13
455.9-11 (pl)

Excess and
Defect

187a16-17 (pl)
189b8-11
992b1-7

54.7-11 (pl)
56.13-18
122.19-23
123.2-3

13.13-15 (pl)
22.17 (pl)

91.28-29

150.12-15 (pl)
151.12-14
189.9-11 (pl)
204.6-8
20412-14 (pl)
454.6-13
454.32-36 (pl)
503.26-27 (pl)

‘(pl)’ = Plato mentioned by name

K. Sayre, University of Notre Dame (in process)

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