1

He sees Empedocles' work as a primitive anticipation of Plato, a significant union of spiritual other-worldiness with the philosophical and scientific traditions of the Presocratics.
(Empedocles' Cosmic Cycle, by D. O'Brien).

An activity anticipates another activity, a product anticipates another product. So either Empedocle's writing anticipates Plato's writing his dialogues, or Eempedocles' work is the forerunner of Plato's books.

Here the speaker says that a work of one thinker(an object) is an anticipation of another thinker. I donot know why, because it is beyond my understanding of "antipication" as set forth above.

2

A lot of the wording in your question seems to make little sense to me, but the core point from the sentence is that Eempedocles' work is the forerunner to Plato's books.

Anticipation in this context is an object.

  • 'Plato' in the quote is used metonymically for Plato's philosophies and writings: 'He believes that Empedocles' work is a distant foreshadowing of that of Plato ...' The concrete - or - abstract nature of 'anticipation / foreshadowing / forerunner' as used here is probably better not investigated too deeply - I'd say that, like 'work/s', it's not as concrete as Empedocle's donkey, say. – Edwin Ashworth Oct 3 '13 at 10:20
  • Edwin - that all makes perfect sense. I was more concerned by phrases such as 'conduces to Plato's writing his dialogues' – Rory Alsop Oct 3 '13 at 10:36
  • An activity anticipates another activity, a product anticipates another product. So either Empedocle's writing anticipates Plato's writing his dialogues, or Eempedocles' work is the forerunner of Plato's books. I am sorry that I put forward an unexamnined thought. I will delete it, because it can not be improved. – benlogos Oct 3 '13 at 15:24
  • Both "Empedocle's writing anticipates Plato's writing his dialogues" and "Eempedocles' work is the forerunner of Plato's books" are correct – Rory Alsop Oct 3 '13 at 17:13

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