Along with all this, however, there exists the insistent view that the Greeks did not achieve historical-mindedness, and never could have achieved it, because they had the wrong view of time and the time-process. Collingwood speaks of 'the anti-historical tendency of Greek thought'. Moses Finley writes that 'on the intellectual level everything was against the idea of history .... Of all the lines of enquiry which the Greeks initiated, history was the most abortive.' It has been pointed out that Greek historiography, which really begins in the fifth century B.C., breaks off in the fourth, 'while philosophy rises to its height' - a philosophy 'which takes no account of the work of the historians'. Again, Moses Finley tells us : 'All the Greek philosophers to the last of the Neo-Platonists were evidently agreed in their indifference to history.' The philosophy was a hostile force, drawing the
mind away from the changing and the transient and fixing it upon the eternal and immutable. T. F. Driver, in The Sense of History in Greek and Shakesperian Drama, describes the complex relationship of the drama with time and history, but notes that 'the Greek historical consciousness is essentially unhistorical'. Even in Homer (in great contra -distinction to the JEnead), 'time figures only as a literary device ... the event leads from no past to no future'. In the historical play by JEschylus, The Persians, 'time is frozen ... the experience of living in time is not communicated'. The aim in Greek tragedy is to 'minimise the factor of time and reveal the operation of cosmic laws and powers'. With the Greeks, 'time tended to be absorbed into the cosmos in such a way as to be a function of cosmic space rather than a different order of reality .... Space is the characteristic mode of thought in Hellenism as time is [amongst the Hebrews} . . . Greek syntax is the reflection of a mentality which approaches time not as a mode of experience but as a material to be measured, cut, arranged, classified .... Plato and Aristotle pondered time so much because it presented such a problem to a spatially-orientated consciousness.'