Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


When ancient philosophers describe the fate of the soul or the human being after death, in which cases should we attribute to them a theory of immortality? When their texts describe people – or their souls, parts, or possessions – as being or becoming ‘immortal’, what does the word mean? The research brought together here explores these questions. Whether or not we should stipulate the meaning of immortality depends on which question we are addressing. The first question is about our own use of the words ‘immortal’ and ‘immortality’ when reading and trying to understand ancient theories, and here it may be appropriate to set down that ‘immortal’ means, for example, everlasting. That is how Phillip Horky understands ‘immortal’ and ‘immortality’ in his chapter on whether Pythagorean theories of reincarnation (or, as it is also called, the transmigration of souls) require souls to be everlasting.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationImmortality in ancient philosophy
EditorsA.G. Long
Place of PublicationCambridge
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9781108935777
ISBN (Print)9781108832281, 9781108941006
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2021


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