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    Bown, Alexander 2016. Epicurus on Truth and Falsehood. Phronesis, Vol. 61, Issue. 4, p. 463.

    2012. Pneuma and Realized Eschatology in the Book of Wisdom. p. 245.

  • Print publication year: 1999
  • Online publication date: March 2008

11 - Hellenistic physics and metaphysics

The Stoics are leading champions of the continuum, the Epicureans its leading opponents. Diodorus Cronus postulated material continuity but structural discontinuity. Since Diodorus' theory is an integral part of the background to Epicurus' atomism, this chapter first discusses his theory. Diodorus postulates ultimate constituents of the world which he names minimal and partless bodies perhaps adding minimal precisely in order to specify that they are partless yet extended. Epicurus, like Diodorus, has a thesis to propound about a set of ultimate indivisibles. For a complete physical system, Epicurus' method is to develop it in linear fashion from a foundational series of principles. Unlike the case of Epicurean physics, for Stoic physics there is no text which argues for the theory from first principles. But the presentation of it, at least, did follow some such sequence, as is clear from Diogenes Laertius' report.
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