I assume there actually was an Academy set up by Plato and not taken over by him and made famous.

In the paintings I've seen of it - admittedly done in the Renaissance -, it looks rather grand, like the Acropolis. I imagine this is far from the actual truth.


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Glucker, Antiochus and the Late Academy:

To us ... the word 'Academy' has come to mean an institution of learning, a learned society, or at least a place of theoretical ('academic') education. In ancient Athens, the Academy was first and foremost a public park dominated by its gymnasium, and the connection between it and Plato's school was only one of the numerous historical reminiscences in an area rich in history.

Source and otherwise related stuff

The fresco The School of Athens by Raphael represents the modern idea of an academy and he has placed Plato and Aristotle into such a setting, but the reality of Plato's Academy must have been totally different.

Same source

  • ah, now the expression groves of academia makes sense! Commented Jun 4, 2013 at 0:05

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