AbstractThis essay examines the inconsistencies in the discussion of proofs in Rhetoric 1.1 and 1.2. Recent commentators have attempted to reconcile these inconsistencies by claiming that ethos and pathos are to be understood as rational, inferential, or cognitive aspects of Aristotle's conception of rhetorical proof, thus linking the proofs in 1.2 to those in 1.1. In sharp contrast, I contend that the rift between the two conceptions of rhetorical proofs is even greater than most commentators acknowledge. I argue that there are two completely different conceptions of rhetorical proofs that cannot be reconciled in these two sections of the Rhetoric, that the inconsistencies are due to the tumultuous transmission and editorial history of the corpus Aristotelicum (and not to any of Aristotle's developmental views on rhetoric), and that the transmission and editorial history of the text needs to play a much more important role in our interpretation of the Rhetoric than it has hitherto.
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