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Plato: Complete Works
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From Library Journal
One might be tempted to ask whether another collection of Plato's works is really necessary, given that they have been translated many times. But several factors set this particular volume apart, making it a worthy addition to most libraries. The translations are all relatively recent and thus reflect contemporary language use and terminology. The collection includes works such as the Minos, Epinomis, Demodocus, Eryxias, and Axiochus, which, though generally considered not to have been written by Plato, are "Socratic" in form or style. The text itself is clearly printed and laid out, with useful notes, and Cooper's introduction and notes about the translations are helpful in setting the dialogs in context. Finally, given what the purchaser receives, the price is reasonable. Recommended for all libraries.?Terry C. Skeats, Bishop's Univ. Lib., Lennoxville, Quebec
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
"This is clearly the definitive edition in English of the Platonic writings. It replaces completely the Hamilton-Cairns collection. . . . The notes are at just the right level, and the index is very helpful. The translations are both readable and accurate. They are always reliable, and in most cases the best available. It is the one volume of Plato every student of philosophy will want at her or his side." --Michael D. Rohr, Rutgers University
"The most important publishing event in Platonic translation is the Complete Works edited by Cooper and Hutchinson. . . . Hackett has lavished great care in the production of this volume: fine India paper, elegant typography, sewn binding, and cloth boards. . . . It should be in every library and on the shelves of all lovers of Plato." --Steven J. Willett, Syllecta Classica
"The edition is a vast improvement over the Princeton/Bollingen edition, the former standard. Congratulations on a fine work!" --Christian K. Edemeyer, Columbia University
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It has been a delight to rediscover the dialogues in these elegant contemporary translations, and a surprise to discover so many additional works that I had never seen before. The publisher's workmanship is beautiful too, with quality paper, good cloth binding, and attractive typesetting with generous margins. I like to have room on the page to scribble my own impertinent replies to Socrates, and to ask him questions that he always affably refuses to answer.
Yesterday I had left the book open in the middle of Alcibiades. When I came back into the room one of my children was reading it. "What's this?" she said. "A novel, or a collection of stories?"
"It's philosophy," I said.
"Philosophy!" She was stunned. "I never knew philosophy was so funny."
It is a testament to the quality of these translations that a child could mistake Plato for a novelist; that she could read him without having the faintest idea that it was Serious Business; and that her first response to Plato's Socrates was laughter.
This is the standard volume of Plato owned by my philosophy buddies. It's too large to carry around with me and read on the go, but that's to be expected from a volume containing Plato's complete works.
Many reviewers have mentioned the print being much too small. Measuring the letters on my copy, it looks like it's 9 pt font.
1) Beautiful hard cover for collectors. (Well, if you really desire the insights of Plato, you should make the book as dirty as possible after you read it, raping it with your markers and margin notes.)
2) The style of writing: as I mentioned in the introductory part of this review.
3) Full Stephanus pagination is provided throughout the entire work, making it extremely convenient to the readers for scholarly research, and discussion/comparison with other people.
4) Introductory passages, to both the way you should study Plato in the beginning chapters of the book, and before each of Plato's dialogues, helping the reader to get a grand picture at first, so that you can decide, after you read the introduction, that if you really need to read the dialogues. However, I'd suggest you read all his works in its entirety, at least those that are generally agreed by scholars to be Plato's genuine work.
The only issue of this great thing is of course the quality of its printing. The pages are very thin, like the kind of paper used in printing dictionaries and the bible. As regards this aspect, I'd prefer the polished paper used in Cambridge classics. Font size (approximately 11 pt serif font) is okay for youngsters, but I would suggest the elderly to get magnifying glasses for reading this.
that my recent reading habits have been too much dictated by contemporary concerns. It was refreshing to return
to the original sources of Plato's Republic, Symposium, Meno and Aristotle's Politics.