2007 Archive Edition - See the Archive Notice on the Project Homepage for more information.
Porphyry (234-305 CE) was a major contributor to the spread of Neoplatonism, particularly within the Roman Empire. In 263, he moved to Rome and became a close friend and follower of Plotinus. He is best known for organizing and editing the lectures and writings of Plotinus, producing the collection of texts we know as The Enneads, and for writing The Life of Plotinus, a work that provides many clues to interpretting Plotinus' thought. In addition, Porphyry also made his own philosophical contributions: 1) he developed the idea that the One exists prior to and independently of Being or Intellect and 2) established the identity of Intellect and Thought with its objects. Porphyry argued that everything that did not seem to be the One was in fact an appearance of the One resulting from our inability to think the One as it truly is. Porphyry wrote many philosophical works, including Against The Christians, a critical work attacking Christianity, Introduction to the Categories, a valued commentary on Aristotle's Categories, and Aids to the Study of the Intelligibles, a basic summary of Neoplatonism.
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