Aristotle is one of the most influential philosophers in the History of
Western thought. Logic into the 20th century was primarily Aristitlian logic.
Aristotle was the founder of biology; Charles Darwin regarded him as the
most important contributor to the subject. He is also said to have a great
impact on modern physics. His Poetics were the first formal work of literacy
criticism. His Poetics had a strong influence on the theory and practice of
modern classical drama.
Aristotle was born in 384 BC in Stagira in northern Greece. His father was
the physician to the king of Macedonia. In 367 BC, he went to Athens to
join Plato's Academy, first as a student, then as a teacher. After Plato's
death, he returned to Macedonia where he became the tutor for Alexander the
Great. In 335 BC, Aristotle returned to Athens and found his own school, the
Peripatus or Lyceum. The Peripatus under Aristotle and his successor
pursued a wider range of subjects than the Academy ever had. Prominence
was given to the study of nature. After the death of Alexander the Great in
323, Aristotle retired to Chalcis. He died there the following year.
All of Aristotle's writings for a larger audience have been lost except
for some fragments. These form the so-called Corpus Aristotelicum. In the
Corpus, there is a division of philosophy into logic, physics, and ethics.
What is left are some treatises which were meant for use within the school.
In addition, a mutilated version of his Constitution of Athens survived. It
includes some letters, poems, and an elegy on Plato.
Here is a classification of Aristotle's writings. (1) Logical writings--
Categories. (2) Physical writings--On the Heavens, Meteorologica. (3)
Ethical writings--Eudemean Ethics, Magna Moralia.
***This was written by Far Sider for a High School World History Class
in 1996. Please use this with care. I got an A on it by the way.