Pherecydes, Testimonia, Part 3: Reception (R)

LCL 525: 184-185

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R3 (< A7) Arist. Metaph. Ν4 1091b8–10

[. . .] ἐπεὶ οἵ γε μεμιγμένοι αὐτῶν καὶ τῷ μὴ μυθικῶς πάντα λέγειν, οἷον Φερεκύδης καὶ ἕτεροί τινες, τὸ γεννῆσαν πρῶτον ἄριστον τιθέασι [. . .].

Pherecydes’ Book (R4–R9) The First Prose Author (R4–R7)

R4 (9 Schibli) Plin. Nat. hist. 7.205

[. . .] prosam orationem condere Pherecydes Syrius instituit Cyri regis aetate, historiam Cadmus Milesius [. . .].

R5 (< A2) Suda

a Φ.214

[. . . = P6] πρῶτον δὲ συγγραφὴν ἐξενεγκεῖν πεζῷ λόγῳ τινὲς ἱστοροῦσιν, ἑτέρων τοῦτο εἰς Κάδμον τὸν Μιλήσιον φερόντων [. . . = R15].

b Φ.216

Πορφύριος [. . .] ἐκεῖνον μόνον ἡγεῖται ἀρχηγὸν συγγραφῆς.

R6 (13 Schibli) Strab. 1.2.6

εἶτα ἐκείνην [sc. τὴν ποιητικὴν κατασκεύην] μιμούμενοι λύσαντες τὸ μέτρον, τἆλλα δὲ φυλάξαντες τὰ ποιητικὰ συνέγραψαν οἱ περὶ Κάδμον καὶ Φερεκύδη καὶ Ἑκαταῖον.



R3 (A7) Aristotle, Metaphysics

[. . .] those among them [i.e. the ancient poets] whose position is mixed, also because they do not say everything in a mythic way posit as the best that which engendered first, like Pherecydes and certain others [. . .].

Pherecydes’ Book (R4–R9) The First Prose Author (R4–R7)

R4 (≠ DK) Pliny, Natural History

[. . .] Pherecydes of Syros founded the composition of discourse in prose under the reign of Cyrus [= 559/29], Cadmus of Miletus did the same for history [. . .].

R5 (< A2) Suda


Some people report that he was the first to publish a treatise in prose, while others attribute this to Cadmos of Miletus [. . .].


Porphyrius [. . .] thinks that he alone [i.e. and not Pherecydes of Athens] was the originator of the [scil. prose] treatise.

R6 (≠ DK) Strabo, Geography

Then Cadmus, Pherecydes, and Hecataeus wrote treatises that imitated this [i.e. poetic presentation]: they abandoned meter but preserved all the other poetic features.

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.pherecydes-reception.2016