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Archytas

(1,232 words)

Author(s): Riedweg, Christoph (Zürich) | Frede, Michael (Oxford) | Selzer, Christoph (Frankfurt/Main)
(Ἀρχύτας, Archỳtas) [1] of Tarentum Pythagoraean philosopher [German version] A. Life Important Pythagorean philosopher of the ‘mathematical’ orientation, politician of Tarentum, a friend of Plato's. His life and his teachings are known in little more than outline because of insufficient records; his true works, with the exception of a few fragments, are lost, as is Aristoxenus' biography, Aristotle's treatise on A.'s philosophy and his comparison of Plato's Timaeus and A. (no. 94 in Diog. Laert. 5,25 = no. 85 in Hesychius' catalogue). A. is described as the so…

Sextus

(2,046 words)

Author(s): Holzhausen, Jens (Bamberg) | Frede, Michael (Oxford) | Steinbauer, Dieter (Regensburg) | Rist, Josef (Würzburg)
I Greek [German version] [I 1] Author of a collection of 'gnomes' The name 'Sextus' is associated with a Greek collection of 610 maxims (Gnome) in all, known from two Greek MSS (Patm. 263, Vat. Gr. 742; Pap. Palau Rib. 225v, c. AD 400 offers 21 'gnomes'); they probably originated c. AD 200. Origenes [2] is the first to mention the title Σέξτου γνῶμαι ( Séxtou gnômai), remarking among other things that 'most Christians read them' (Orig. Contra Celsum 8,30). In about 399, Rufinus [II 6] Tyrannius translated a collection of 451 maxims into Latin, naming as author…

Perictione

(280 words)

Author(s): Stanzel, Karl-Heinz (Tübingen) | Frede, Michael (Oxford)
(Περικτιόνη; Periktiónē). [German version] [1] Mother of Plato Mother of Plato; came from an old aristocratic Athenian family to which Critias and Charmides [1] also belonged. Also born of her marriage to Ariston were the pair of brothers Glaucon and Adeimantus, Socrates' discussion partner in the Platonian Politeía, as well as Potone, the moth…

Pythagorean pseudepigrapha

(466 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford)
[German version] An abundance of writings, for the most part surviving only fragmentarily, which purport to originate from the defunct tradition of the Pythagorean School; they were published under the name of an ancient Pythagorean, but are in fact of later origin. They are to be distinguished (1) from a very small number of genuine fragments of Philolaus [2] and of Archytas [1] and (2) perhaps from a number of Pythagoreanizing fragments which are not pseudonymous but represent an attempt in the …

Eclecticism

(346 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford)
[German version] The eclecticists are a school of philosophers documented in one source only (Diog. Laert. 2,12). Their founder, Potamon of Alexandria, taught that the aim was to select the most plausible teachings of the various schools. In the same manner, Galenos refused to identify with any branch of philosophy or medicine (De libris propriis 1; De dignot. affect. 8). Modern research often refers to eclecticism, most of all in respect of the philosophy of the ear…

Melissa

(817 words)

Author(s): Kowalzig, Barbara (Oxford) | Frede, Michael (Oxford) | Stanzel, Karl-Heinz (Tübingen) | Drew-Bear, Thomas (Lyon)
(Μέλισσα/ Mélissa, ‘bee’). Epithet of priestesses, name of nymphs and proper name, sometimes in aetiological myths. [German version] [1] Priestesses of Demeter Mélissai are the priestesses of Demeter (Pind. Fr. 158; Callim. H. 2,110; [1. no. 91]; Apollod. FGrH 244 F 89, on Paros), and in schol. Theoc. 15,94 of Persephone as well. The name probably derives from the association of bees and their behaviour, which was thought of as especially pure (Aristot. Hist. an. 4,535a 2 f.; schol. Pind. P. 4,106a), with idealised f…

Pyrrho

(514 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford)
[German version] (Πύρρων/ Pýrrhōn) of Elis c. 365 - c. 275 BC; left no written work. He accompanied Alexander [4] the Great on the campaign to India, where he is said to have met the gymnosophists (Diog. Laert. 9,61). P. owes his place in the history of philosophy to the fact that Pyrrhonian skeptics, beginning with Aenesidemus, referred to him (Scepticism). P. was long considered the founder of the Pyrrhonian school. However, Cicero speaks repeatedly of P., Ariston [7] and Herillus as representatives of…

Scepticism

(2,040 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford)
[German version] I. Definition The modern term 'sceptic' normally refers to someone who believes that in genera…

Moderatus

(215 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford)

Callicratidas

(431 words)

Author(s): Welwei, Karl-Wilhelm (Bochum) | Frede, Michael (Oxford)
(Καλλικρατίδας; Kallikratídas). [German version] [1] Spartan nauarch, 407/6 BC Spartan nauarch (naval commander) in 407/6 BC, was only able to relieve  Lysander of his command in the spring of 406 and was confronted through the latter's intrigues with extremely serious problems while preparing his operations. However, he was as unimpressed by these as by the affront he suffered from Cyrus the Younger. C. secured the finances for his warfare and took the initiative. After relocating his naval base from Ephesus to Miletus he conquered Methymna and blockaded an Athenian squadron under Conon at Mytilene. However, he was defeated by the Athenian relief fleet in August 406 near Arginusae and died in battle there (Xen. Hell. 1,6,1-33; Diod. Sic. 13,76-79; 97-99; Plut. Lysander 5-7,1). C. was characterized by Xenophon as a represent…

Diotogenes

(117 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford)
[German version] Name uncertain, missing in Iamblichus' Pythagorean catalogue (v. P. 267), also in Photius' catalogue of Stobaeus' philosophical sources (Bibl. c. 167,114a-b). Author of pseudo-Pythagorean treatises on kingship and piety, fragments of which can be found in Stobaeus. The date of their composition is a matter of dispute. There is no indication in the treatise on kingship which would indicate a reference to the Principate; nor is there an attempt to …

Theano

(496 words)

Author(s): Waldner, Katharina (Berlin) | Frede, Michael (Oxford)
(Θεανώ/ Theanṓ). [German version] [1] Priestess of Athena in Troy Priestess of Athena in Troy, daughter of Thracian King Cisseus and of Teleclia, daughter of Ilus [1] (Hom. Il. 6,298-300; 11,223-224; schol. Eur. Hec. 3; Lucian. Imagines 19), since Euripides, sister of Hecabe as well (Eur. Hec. 3 and schol.; schol. A Hom. Il. 16,718; cf. Verg. Aen. 7,320). Mother of many children with Antenor [1] (the so-called Antenorids). As a priestess of Athena, she was of crucial importance for the Greeks in the battl…

Epoche

(163 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford)
[German version] (ἐποχή; epochḗ). Expression used in sceptic philosophy (Sext. Emp. P.H. 1,196), meaning that the sceptic suspends judgement or refrains from a particular notion (ἐπέχειν; epéchein). A sceptic refrains from judgement, not only because it is not proven that a certain notion is true, but also because there is not a single reason for its acceptance, which was not opposed by a different reason. Later sceptics distinguish between various kinds of ‘assent’ ─ and thus of

Agrippa

(1,444 words)

Author(s): Kienast, Dietmar (Neu-Esting) | Frede, Michael (Oxford) | Hübner, Wolfgang (Münster) | Savvidis, Kyriakos (Bochum)
According to modern etymology, the name derives from *agrei-pod-, ‘having the feet in front’ (according to Leumann, 398, ‘very dubious’). Originally a praenomen (thus still in the Iulii, especially A. Postumus), then a cognomen in the families of the Antonii, Asinii, Cassii(?), Fonteii, Furii, Haterii, Helvii, Iulii, Lurii, Menenii, Vibuleni, Vipsanii, but also of Jewish kings ( Herodes A.). Documented as name of various persons. Kienast, Dietmar (Neu-Esting) [German version] [1] M. Vipsanius, consul 37, 28, 27 BC M. Vipsanius, born 64/3 BC, of knightly lineage, probabl…

Apollonius

(7,446 words)

Author(s): Ameling, Walter (Jena) | Fantuzzi, Marco (Florence) | Hunter, Richard (Cambridge) | Pressler, Frank (Heidelberg) | Hidber, Thomas (Berne) | Et al.
(Ἀπολλώνιος; Apollṓnnios). [German version] [1] Dioiketes of Ptolemy II (259-245 BC) Of Caria, possibly Ptolemaic o ikonomos there in 267 BC. Was dioiketes of Ptolemy II from April /May 259 until the end of 245; in 252 escorted Berenice to her wedding to Antiochus II. At a critical transition period A. found himself responsible for the economy of the kingdom of the Ptolemies, adapting the fiscal system to the monetary economy of the Lagids, for which purpose he was entrusted with the management of finances and the coinage, adm…

Dogmatists

(632 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford) | Nutton, Vivian (London)
[German version] [1] Philosophers Originally a sceptical expression to designate those who adopt as their own a view ( dógma; cf. S. Emp. P.H. 1,13) ─ especially a philosophical or scientific view ─ which, in sceptical thinking, cannot be justified let alone proven (S. Emp. P.H. 1,3). Also applied by the Pyrrhonians in an extended sense to those Academicians who adopted views such as that nothing can be known (cf. the ἰδίως/ idíōs in S. Emp., ibid.). Because of the close link between empiricism and Scepticism in medicine, the term ‘Dogmatists’ was often also applied by Empiricists to physicians otherwise known as Rationalists (Gal. de sect. 1, S. 2, 10 Helmreich). Because of its origin the expression readily came to connote an attitude that holds firm to a view despite all counter-arguments or that simply follows some authority.…

Neopythagoreanism

(486 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford)
[German version] Modern collective term for a several very different philosophical schools of the late Hellenistic and early Imperial period (after the late 1st cent. BC). All these schools based their teachings on Pythagoras – either of tradition or legend – although some of them focused more on purely philosophical aspects of his doctrine, whereas others emphasised practical and ethical aspects, sometimes in conjunction with a religious motivation and an interest in the arcane arts. When Plato a…

Phintys

(145 words)

Author(s): Frede, Michael (Oxford) | Riedweg, Christoph (Zürich)
[German version] (Φίντυς; Phíntys). Pseudonymous female author of a work in Pythagorean spirit, Περὶ γυναικὸς σωφροσύνας ( Perì gynaikòs sōphrosýnas, 'On the self-control of women'; two relatively long fragments in Doric dialect are preserved in Stob. 4,23,61): a woman's character…
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