Single Idea 20907

[catalogued under 26. Natural Theory / A. Speculations on Nature / 6. Early Matter Theories / g. Atomism]

Full Idea

Democritus said that the properties of the atoms are in number two, magnitude and shape, but Epicurus added to these a third one, weight.

Gist of Idea

Democritus says atoms have size and shape, and Epicurus added weight


report of Epicurus (fragments/reports [c.289 BCE]) by Pseudo-Plutarch - On the Doctrine of the Philosophers 1.3.18

Book Reference

Democritus: 'Early Greek Phil VII: Democritus', ed/tr. Laks,A/Most,G [Harvard Loeb 2016], p.109

A Reaction

The addition of Epicurus seems very sensible, and an odd omission by Democritus. He seems to think that atoms have a uniform density, so that volume indicates weight.

Related Ideas

Idea 20903 The only distinctions are Configuration (shape), Disposition (order) and Turning (position) [Democritus, by Aristotle]

Idea 20919 How can things without weight compose weight? [Alexander]