Thales -


Thales of Miletos (Θαλής ο Μιλήσιος)
SchoolIonian Philosophy, Milesian school, Naturalism
Main interests
Ethics, Metaphysics, Mathematics, Astronomy
Notable ideas
Water is the physis, Thales' theorem

Thales of Miletus,[1] about 624 BC – 546 BC,[2] was a pre-Socratic Greek philosopher. He was from Miletus in Asia Minor. Many, notably Aristotle, regard him as the first philosopher in the Greek tradition.[3]

According to Bertrand Russell, "Western philosophy begins with Thales".[4] Thales attempted to explain natural phenomena without reference to mythology and was tremendously influential in this respect. Almost all of the other pre-Socratic philosophers follow him in attempting to provide an explanation of ultimate substance, change, and the existence of the world—without reference to mythology. Those philosophers were also influential, and eventually Thales' rejection of mythological explanations became an essential idea for science. He was also the first to define general principles and set forth hypotheses. As a result he has been called the "Father of Science", though maybe Democritus is more deserving of this title.[5][6]

In mathematics, Thales used geometry to solve problems such as calculating the height of pyramids and the distance of ships from the shore. He is the first known individual to whom a mathematical discovery has been attributed. Also, Thales was the first person known to have studied electricity.[7]


  1. Θαλῆς ὁ Μιλήσιος (pronounced /ˈθeɪliːz/: the a is a long a as in 'base'; the e as in 'eez'
  2. exact dates unknown
  3. Aristotle Metaphysics. Alpha, 983b18.
  4. Russell, Bertrand (1945). The history of western philosophy. New York: Simon and Schuster.
  5. Singer, C. (2008). A short history of science to the 19th century. Streeter Press. p. 35.
  6. Needham, C. W. (1978). Cerebral logic: solving the problem of mind and brain. Loose Leaf. p. 75. ISBN 0-398-03754-X.
  7. (Boyer 1991, "Ionia and the Pythagoreans" p. 43)

Categories: Presocratic philosophers

Information as of: 24.05.2020 03:00:21 CEST

Source: Wikipedia (Authors [History])    License : CC-by-sa-3.0

Changes: All pictures and most design elements which are related to those, were removed. Some Icons were replaced by FontAwesome-Icons. Some templates were removed (like “article needs expansion) or assigned (like “hatnotes”). CSS classes were either removed or harmonized.
Wikipedia specific links which do not lead to an article or category (like “Redlinks”, “links to the edit page”, “links to portals”) were removed. Every external link has an additional FontAwesome-Icon. Beside some small changes of design, media-container, maps, navigation-boxes, spoken versions and Geo-microformats were removed.

Please note: Because the given content is automatically taken from Wikipedia at the given point of time, a manual verification was and is not possible. Therefore does not guarantee the accuracy and actuality of the acquired content. If there is an Information which is wrong at the moment or has an inaccurate display please feel free to contact us: email.
See also: Legal Notice & Privacy policy.