Chapter

The Inscription

Stephen G. Miller

in The Berkeley Plato

Published by University of California Press

Published in print April 2009 | ISBN: 9780520258334
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520943599 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520258334.003.0004
The Inscription

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This chapter examines the authenticity of the inscription, which has been described as a modern addition to an ancient herm shaft. It is in eight lines, divided into three distinct units. The first unit announces that the portrait is of Plato, the son of Ariston, the Athenian. The second unit is a quotation from Plato's Republic (617E). The third unit of text, located below the phallus socket, is also a quotation, this time from Plato's Phaedrus. The differences between the quotations and the received texts of Plato would suggest that the inscription was not copied from any text known in recent times. There is also another indication that the Berkeley Plato with its ribbons falls outside the mainstream of modern forgeries.

Keywords: ancient herm shaft; Plato; Republic; Phaedrus; modern forgeries; Berkeley Plato

Chapter.  1494 words. 

Subjects: Classical Philosophy

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