Nausiphanes' Tripod

  • This appears to be what is known of Nausiphanes' tripod, which is said to have inspired Epicurus' tripod of truth.

    From Ancilla to the Pre-Socratic Philosophers, by Kathleen Freeman, [1948], at p. 124

  • Thank you that is interesting on many levels, not the least as the explanation under item two bears on our recent "logic" discussions.

    I wonder where this comes from? The "on rhetoric" papyrus?

    Item four seems cryptic.

    "an accurate judgement of how to lead pupils from the known to the unknown" seems to be a good description of what we are looking for.

  • I seem to remember reading that On rhetoric was one of the first ones that much progress was made on, and there is an old book somewhat equivalent to DeLacys version of On Methods of Inference......

  • Yes that rings a dim bell from the distant past, as indicated by the red circle. I didn't absorb much of it then but maybe today I / we would get a lot more out of it, especially since we're now used to the fact that the title given to these scrolls isn't necessary an accurate reflection of the contents.

  • The quote in post #1 is online at

    It has a link to the book on Amazon, the book is:

    Ancilla to Pre-Socratic Philosophers: A Complete Translation of the Fragments in Diels, Fragmente der Vorsokratiker Paperback, August 15, 1983 by Kathleen Freeman.

    "This book is a complete translation of the fragments of the pre-Socratic philosophers given in the fifth edition of Diels, Fragmente der Vorsokratiker."

    I'm not sure what that means, since Philodemus wasn't a pre-Socratic. Diels must have used fragments from other ancients which refer to pre-Socratics since there's not much left from them.

    I believe that item 4 in post #1 comes from Pyrrho and from ancient Buddhism. It certainly is cryptic!