Parmenides (Greek Philosopher)


Parmenides (pärmĕn´Ĭdēz), b. c.515 BC, Greek philosopher of Elea, leading figure of the Eleatic school. Parmenides' great contribution to philosophy was the method of reasoned proof for assertions. Parmenides began his argument with the assertion that being is the material substance of which the universe is composed and argued that it was the sole and eternal reality. With this as a premise he proceeded to destroy by his dialectic argument the possibility of generation, destruction, change, and motion. All change and motion are illusions of the senses. Since being is spatially extended and is all that exists, there is no empty space, and motion is therefore impossible. Only fragments of his work have survived.

See Parmenides (text, tr., commentary, and critical essays by L. Tarán, 1965); study by A. P. Mourelatos (1970).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2014, The Columbia University Press.

Parmenides (Greek Philosopher): Selected full-text books and articles

By Being, It Is: The Thesis of Parmenides
Néstor-Luis Cordero.
Parmenides, 2004
The Legacy of Parmenides: Eleatic Monism and Later Presocratic Thought
Patricia Curd.
Parmenides, 2004
To Think like God: Pythagoras and Parmenides, the Origins of Philosophy
Arnold Hermann.
Parmenides, 2004
Plato's Reception of Parmenides
John A. Palmer.
Clarendon Press, 1999
The Presocratic Philosophers
Jonathan Barnes.
Routledge, 1989
Librarian’s tip: Chap. IX "Parmenides and the Objects of Inquiry"
The Worlds of the Early Greek Philosophers
J. B. Wilbur; H. J. Allen.
Prometheus Books, 1979
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 5 "The Eleatics: Parmenides"
Presocratic Reflexivity: The Construction of Philosophical Discourse C. 600-450 BC
Barry Sandywell.
Routledge, 1996
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 7 "Eleatic Ontology from Xenophanes to Parmenides and Beyond"
The Theology of the Early Greek Philosophers
Werner Jaeger.
Clarendon Press, 1947
Librarian’s tip: Chap. VI "Parmenides' Mystery of Being"
History of Western Philosophy
Bertrand Russell.
Routledge, 2004
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 5 "Parmenides"
Rewriting the History of Ancient Greek Philosophy
V. Tejera.
Greenwood Press, 1997
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 3 "Parmenides"
A Brief History of the Paradox: Philosophy and the Labyrinths of the Mind
Roy Sorensen.
Oxford University Press, 2003
Librarian’s tip: Chap. Three "Parmenides on What Is Not"
A History of Ancient Philosophy: From the Beginnings to Augustine
Karsten Friis Johansen.
Routledge, 1998
Librarian’s tip: "Parmenides" begins on p. 47
The First Philosophers: The Presocratics and Sophists
Robin Waterfield.
Oxford University Press, 2000
Librarian’s tip: "Parmenides of Elea" begins on p. 49
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