Synopses & Reviews
Marsilio Ficino (1433-1499), the Florentine scholar-philosopher-magus, was largely responsible for the Renaissance revival of Plato. Ficino's commentaries on Plato remained the standard guide to the Greek philosopher's works for centuries. Vanhaelen's new translation of Ficino's vast commentary on the Parmenides makes this monument of Renaissance metaphysics accessible to the modern student of philosophy. The volume contains the first critical edition of the Latin text, an ample introduction, and extensive notes.
Ficino's focus was on the writings of Plato, which were the subject of his study, his translation, and his extensive commentary. One of the most extensive of those commentaries--on Plato's Parmenides--is now one of the most recent additions to Harvard's superb ongoing I Tatti Renaissance Library. In a two-volume accomplishment all the more astounding for being conducted so unassumingly, Maude Vanhaelen has taken Ficino's 1496 edition of the commentary on Parmenides, regularized its usages, combed out its typos, modernized its spellings, and thereby produced the single finest scholarly version of this long and problematic work yet made...Thanks to Maude Vanhaelen and the I Tatti Library, we can now study Ficino's epic Parmenides commentary as it should be studied: with a clear, nailed-down text, a fine English translation, and some wide-ranging, hard-working notes. Renaissance scholars--that tiny, hard-drinking enclave--will rightly rejoice. Steve Donoghue
Marsilio Ficino, the Florentine scholar-philosopher-magus, was largely responsible for the Renaissance revival of Plato. His commentaries remained the standard guide to the philosopher's works for centuries. Vanhaelen's new translation of Parmenides makes this monument of metaphysics accessible to the modern student.
About the Author
Maude Vanhaelen is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Italian and Classics at the University of Warwick.
University of Warwick