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Pre-Socratic Philosophy Parmenides Parmenides pronounced as prmenidz was a pre-Socratic Greek philosopher and poet as well as a leading figure of the Eleatic school of philosophy Son of Pyres Parmenides was born of an illustrious family in Elea between BC 505-515 Elea was a colony located in southern Italy and said to be founded by refugees from Phocia in 540-539 BC Parmenides was held in high esteem by his fellow-citizens for his excellent legislation to which they attributed the prosperity and wealth of the town He was also admired for his exemplary life A Parmenidean life was proverbial among the Greeks Parmenides is believed to have died sometime around 450 BC Parmenides great contribution to philosophy was the method of reasoned proof for assertions Only fragments of his work have survived These include parts of his poem said to be on nature which contains a prologue and two additional parts called The Way of Truth and The Way of Seeming About one hundred and fifty lines amounting perhaps to one third of the original poem have survived the ages Parmenides used sophisticated logical language in his epic poem to argue that all of reality is a single unchanging substance He began his argument with the assertion that being is the material substance of which the universe is composed and argued that it was the sole and eternal reality With this as a premise he proceeded to eradicate by his argument the possibility of generation destruction change and motion Further in his poem Parmenides used his theory of what is real to explain in some measure the existence and structure of the earth and the heavens In the prologue of his poem Parmenides describes his ascent to the home of a goddess who is supposed to speak the remainder of the verses The prologue opens with Parmenides representing himself as borne on a chariot and attended by the Sunmaidens who have left
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