The data provided by the ancient sources for the dates of Anaximenes’ birth and death are confused, but his activity can be situated toward the middle of the sixth century BC, a little after Anaximander’s. Of his original writings only a few isolated terms survive. Diogenes Laertius reports that his mode of expression was “simple and plain” (R2): this is surely to be understood by contrast with the poetically charged style of Anaximander, to whose thought he is certainly responding. The evanescent character of his person—despite the fact that his name seems to have remained famous for a long time (cf. R10, P5)—contrasts with the importance to be assigned philosophically to his monism, which is founded on the properties of air.BIBLIOGRAPHY Editions
- G. Wöhrle, ed. Anaximenes aus Milet. Die Fragmente zu seiner Lehre (Stuttgart, 1993).
- G. Wöhrle et al., ed. Die Milesier: Anaximander und Anaximenes. Coll. Traditio Praesocratica vol. 1 (Berlin, 2012).