Abstract

Plato's Sophist features a discussion of false statements, the literal sense of which has been the source of much scholarly controversy. Two readings of the discussion, the Oxford Interpretation and the Incompatibility Range Interpretation, seem especially plausible. This essay enters the exegetical debate by placing the discussion of false statements in the broader context of the dialogue, which is principally concerned with sophistic speech, not false statements. When the discussion of false statements is understood as contributing to an inquiry into sophistic speech, the Incompatibility Range Interpretation—with slight modification—emerges as the clear favorite.

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