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Aristotle was born in 384 b.c., in Stagira, Greece. He achieved prominence as an eminent philosopher who greatly influenced the basic principles of philosophy and whose ideologies are still practiced today.

Aristotle was a student of the renowned philosopher Plato and tutored Alexander the Great, who became King of Macedonia in 336 b.c.

Aristotle established his own school in the Lyceum, near Athens, in 335 b.c. He often lectured his students in the portico, or walking place, of the Lyceum. The school was subsequently called Peripatetic, after the Greek word peripatos for "walking place."

In 323 b.c. the reign of Alexander ended with his death, and Aristotle sought refuge at Chalcis.

Aristotle formulated numerous beliefs about the reasoning power of humans and the essence of being. He stressed the importance of nature and instructed his pupils to closely study natural phenomena. When teaching science, he believed that all ideas must be supported by explanations based upon facts.

Concerning the realm of politics, Aristotle propounded that humans are inherently political and demonstrate an essential part of their humanity when participating in civic affairs.

Philosophy was a subject of great interest to Aristotle, and he theorized that philosophy was the foundation of the ability to understand the basic axioms that comprise knowledge. In order to study and question completely, Aristotle viewed logic as the basic means of reasoning. To think logically, one had to apply the syllogism, which was a form of thought comprised of two premises that led to a conclusion; Aristotle taught that this form can be applied to all logical reasoning.

"Man is by nature a political animal."

To understand reality, Aristotle theorized that it must be categorized as substance, quality, quantity, relation, determination in time and space, action, passion or passivity, position, and condition. To know and understand the reality of an object required an explanation of its material cause, which is why it exists or its composition; its formal cause, or its design; its efficient cause, or its creator; and its final cause, or its reason for being.

Aristotle agreed with his mentor, Plato, concerning the field of ethics. The goodness of a being depended upon the extent to which that being achieved its highest potential. For humans, the ultimate good is the continual use and development of their reasoning powers to fullest capacity. To effect fulfillment and contentment, humans must follow a life of contemplation, rather than pleasure.

The fundamental source of Aristotle's theories were his lectures to his students, which were compiled into several volumes. They include Organum, which discusses logic; Physics; Metaphysics; De Anima, concerning the soul; Rhetoric; Politics; Nichomachean Ethics and Eudemian Ethics, involving principles of conduct; and De Poetica, or poetics.

He also wrote Constitution of Athens, a description of the foundations of the government of Athens. The work was discovered in the late nineteenth century.

Aristotle died in 322 b.c., in Chalcis, Greece.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Howard Curzer offers an unfortunately superficial ranking of vices in Aristotle's ethics, neglecting the substantive ranking of virtues implicit in Aristotle's order of presentation and rooted in his distinction between the necessary and the noble (kalon).
Cutting through the controversy and confusion that have surrounded Aristotle's biography, Natali tells the story of Aristotle's eventful life and sheds new light on his role in the foundation of the Lyceum.
It was also the acknowledgment by Platonism's most potent political ofspring--Marxist communism--that economies and societies built around Aristotle's empirical system were not only wealthier and more productive but better able to meet the stress of crisis.
of a digestive problem in Chalcis about 50 miles north of Athens. His burial site has been disputed for years, and some literary sources have cited Stagira as the place where Aristotle's ashes may have ended up.
"Aristotle's Empiricism: Experience and Mechanics in the 4th Century B.C." by Jean De Groot (Associate Professor in the School of Philosophy, The Catholic University of America) is a truly impressive body of extraordinary scholarship that is erudite, exceptionally well organized, and is a critically important and highly recommended contribution to academic library Aristotelian Studies reference collections and supplemental reading lists.
In the early 20th century most Thomists considered Aristotle's philosophy to be an essential part of Aquinas's thought.
This may also explain why he brackets rather than faces head-on some of Aristotle's biggest weaknesses, such as his defense of at least some slavery as being "natural."
Although most of the essays have been published before, Allan Gotthelf's latest book is an indispensable collection for anyone interested in Aristotle's overall philosophical project.
The second major contribution that Gotthelf understands himself to have made in the area of Aristotelian science is having worked with James Lennox to show how, appearances to the contrary, the explanations to which the biological treatises are intended to lead, and that Aristotle offers in a partial form, conform to the general structure of demonstration as laid out in Aristotle's Posterior Analytics.
However, most scholars (perhaps including Peck), take the identification of the greatest kinds to be significant to Aristotle's project in other ways as well.
If we lay aside the evidence of Aristotle's pious action on the death of Hermias, holders of the first view must work out why, if Aristotle disagreed with Plato on piety, no discussion of this appears in his extant philosophical writings.