CriticaLink | Plato: Phaedrus | Terms


The Greek word for truth, aletheia, incorporates the word for "forgetting"; a-letheia might be translated as "unforgetting" or "remembering". This etymology is particularly significant in Plato's epistemology, which maintains that true knowledge can be achieved only through anamnesis, the soul's recollection of the Forms it has glimpsed during its circuit through heaven in metempsychosis. For Plato, knowledge of mere phenomena cannot attain the truth, as only the ideal Forms are truly real.