Adeimantus of Collytus

Adeimantus (Greek Ἀδείμαντος Adeimantus; * probably around 432 BC) was an older brother of the famous philosopher Plato. It is named after its place of origin and Adeimantus of Kollytos.


Adeimantus was the eldest of the three sons of Ariston and his wife Periktione. His brothers were Glaucon and Plato; Plato was the youngest. They had a sister named Potone.

The family was aristocratic and wealthy. She lived in Kollytos, a suburb of Athens. Ariston considered himself a descendant of the Kodros, a mythical king of Athens; at any rate one of his ancestors, Aristokles already been 605/604 BC Archon. Under Periktiones ancestors was a friend and relative of the legendary Athenian legislator Solon.

Adeimantus was born not more than 429, probably around 432 After the early death of his father, his mother married to her maternal uncle Pyrilampes 423, a distinguished Athenian who had worked as an envoy to Pericles ' time. From this marriage was Antiphon, a half-brother of Adeimantus forth. Pyrilampes had a son from a previous marriage, demos, which Adeimantus 's stepbrother was.

According to Plato, Adeimantus in the Peloponnesian War took part in a battle of Megara, where he distinguished himself. If this is not literary fiction, but historical reality, it is probably at the battle of the Keratahügeln near Megara, which took place in the year 409.

While Adeimantus ' stepfather Pyrilampes was democratically minded, belonging to the family of his mother several prominent politicians with oligarchic attitude: Periktiones uncle Kallaischros was 411 BC the briefly brought in with coup to power the Council of the Four Hundred at her cousin Critias was a member of the oligarchical Council of Thirty ( " Thirty Tyrants " ), who ruled Athens BC 404/403. Under the rule of the Thirty was Periktiones brother Charmides, Adeimantus ' uncle, was appointed to an oligarchic body and fell in battle against the Democrats.

In the year 399 Adeimantus was in the process, was sentenced to death in Socrates, present.

Probably Adeimantus was married and has descendants leave, because in the will of his brother Plato, who died at the age of eighty years, is the only heritage listed a Adeimantus. In this heir is probably a grandson of Plato's eponymous brother.

Role in the works of Plato

Adeimantus comes in three works of Plato. In the Parmenides dialogue, he is involved in the framing story. In the Apology of Socrates Socrates calls him, defending himself as a defendant, among those present who come as witnesses into consideration. In Politeia dialogue he takes part in the conversation; there are he and his brother Glaucon from the second book, the main interlocutor of Socrates. Here, Adeimantus proves ehrliebend and status conscious; he wants to gain honor, but do not want to strain excessively in the process. With restrictions as imposed by the Platonic ideal of the state to the citizens, he could come to terms well, as long as his social status is guaranteed. As a thinker he is skeptical and difficult to persuade of his convictions; He is thoughtful and serious attitude, a prudent and realistic, focused on the benefits to the eligible judge behavior options, their advantages and disadvantages he weighs sober.