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Philosophy before the Greeks – The Pursuit of Truth in Ancient Babylonia - Princeton Scholarship Online
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Philosophy before the Greeks: The Pursuit of Truth in Ancient Babylonia

Marc Van De Mieroop


There is a growing recognition that philosophy isn’t unique to the West, that it didn’t begin only with the classical Greeks, and that Greek philosophy was influenced by Near Eastern traditions. Yet even today there is a widespread assumption that what came before the Greeks was “before philosophy.” This book presents a groundbreaking argument that, for three millennia before the Greeks, one Near Eastern people had a rich and sophisticated tradition of philosophy fully worthy of the name. In the first century BC, the Greek historian Diodorus of Sicily praised the Babylonians for their devotion ... More

Keywords: knowledge, Greek philosophy, classical Greeks, Near East, Diodorus of Sicily, Babylonia, Babylonian philosophers, divination, law

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2015 Print ISBN-13: 9780691157184
Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017 DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691157184.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Marc Van De Mieroop, author
Columbia University

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