Gorgias

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Gorgias

(gôr`jēəs), c.485–c.380 B.C., Greek Sophist. From his native city, Leontini, Sicily, he was sent as an ambassador to Athens, where he settled to teach and practice rhetoric. Gorgias pursued the negative implications of the Eleatic school and asserted: (1) Nothing exists; (2) If anything does exist, it cannot be known; (3) If it can be known, the knowledge of it cannot be communicated. Objective truth being thus impossible, there remains only the art of the SophistsSophists
, originally, itinerant teachers in Greece (5th cent. B.C.) who provided education through lectures and in return received fees from their audiences. The term was given as a mark of respect.
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, persuasion. Such arguments undermined the foundations of polytheism and led to open challenges of current moral standards. His challenge to speculative thought stimulated a more sophisticated approach to the problems of philosophy. A dialogue of Plato's bears his name.
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References in periodicals archive ?
"Why Gorgias of Leontini Traveled to Athens: A Study of Recent Epigraphical Evidence," Rhetoric Review 11: 1-15.
In his description of dedications in the vicinity of the temple of Apollo, Pausanias comments [Greek Text Omitted] ('a gilded image, an offering of Gorgias of Leontini, represents Gorgias himself' 10.18.7).