Tuesday, February 8, 2022


THALES (Greek, c. 548/545 BCE)

Thales of Miletus, a pre-Socratic thinker from Asia Minor, was one of the "Seven Sages of Greece," and regarded as the first Greek philosopher by no less than Aristotle. As the "Father of Science" he abandoned mythology as an explanation for the world and attempted to explain its existence rationally. In his view, the original substance from which the world developed was water (other thinkers had other ideas). He calculated the heights of pyramids using geometry, and was the first known to have used deductive reasoning in geometry and to whom a mathematical discovery has been attributed.

  • Though lists vary, the "Seven Sages" were first given by Socrates in Plato's Protagoras as Thales of Miletus, Pittacus of Mytilene, Bias of Priene, Solon of Athens, Cleobulus of Lindus, Myson of Chenae, and Chilon of Sparta.
  • Heraclitus thought the world came from fire, Anaximenes from air, and Anaximander from "the boundless."


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