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Epicurus's parents were cleruchs, a class of poor Athenian citizens who settled territory appropriated from the tributary states of Athens. Cleruchs were looked down upon by Athenian residents and scorned as foreign invaders by the natives of the territories they settled, which made their social position precarious.
This proved to be the case for Epicurus's family, which was forced to evacuate Samos in B.
His father, the school teacher Neocles, and mother Chaerestrate subsequently moved the family home to the nearby coastal city of Colophon.
Epicurus's childhood took place during a momentous period in Greek history. The Greeks had long been divided into many city-states spread over the Aegean basin including modern Greece, Thrace, and the Ionian coast and southern Italy and Sicily.
Greek culture was spread into various cities as far east as Afghanistan and Pakistan.
While Alexander's empire didn't survive his death in B. These states, especially the Seleucid Empire that took over the territory of Persia, the Ptolemaic Empire that took over Egypt, and the Antigonid Empire that took over the Macedonian homeland were far vaster and more centralized than the old Greek city-states, with the consequence that the relationship between the typical Greek individual and the state he lived in underwent a radical change.
Alexander of Macedon While Epicurus was serving in the Athenian army, Alexander's death threw Greece into great turmoil, with Athenian politicians meeting a lethal end with disturbing regularity.
If the dark nature of politics was making itself felt with particular poignancy at this time, so too were the bright attractions of Greek philosophy. Just as there was great political instability, there was also a great intellectual ferment as various philosophers and their schools attempted to win the hearts and minds of the ruling classes and the citizens.
Prior to going to Athens, Epicurus had received a basic education and had been exposed to the philosophy of Plato as taught by Pamphilus.
In Athens, it is not known exactly what experiences Epicurus had, but it is likely that he encountered teachers from the Lyceum founded by Aristotle headed at this time by Aristotle's distinguished successor Theophrastus as well as the Academy founded by Plato.
After briefly returning to his family at Colophon, Epicurus began his study of philosophy in earnest, moving to the island of Rhodes to take instruction from the highly-regarded Aristotelian Praxiphanes.
The teachings of the Lyceum did not sit well with Epicurus, who quickly moved on to study the atomistic system of Democritus under Nausiphanes of Teos. The association with Nausiphanes lasted considerably longer, but eventually Epicurus had a falling out with him as well. The quarrel between Epicurus and Nausiphanes had a more distinctly personal edge to it, but we can also surmise that Epicurus's capacity for original thought was beginning to infuriate his teachers.
Hermarchus By B. He moved to the island of Lesbos to teach at the Gymnasium in the city of Mytilene. As a publicly-funded educational institution dominated by partisans of the Lyceum, the Gymnasium was a dangerous setting for Epicurus's public advocacy of a new philosophy.
Platonists and Aristotelians fancied the role of philosopher-king or at least the role of favored advisor to the king, as Aristotle was to Alexanderand were not kindly disposed towards philosophers of rival schools spreading heterodox ideas on their turf.
The aroused Mytilene orthodoxy moved against Epicurus, threatening to charge him with impiety and other thought-crimes that placed his life in grave danger. Epicurus not only made his dramatic escape from Mytilene, he departed from the realm of Antigonus Monophthalmus altogether and migrated to the relatively liberal city of Lampsacus on the Hellespont.
In Lampsacus he began to build up a devoted circle of friends who became the nucleus of his new school. Hermarchus came over from Mytilene with Epicurus.
They were soon joined by prominent Lampsacenes, including the financier Idomeneus, Leonteus and his wife Themista, the satirist Colotes, the mathematician Polyaenus, and the most famous popularizer of Epicureanism, Metrodorus.Judaism Web Sites; Lesson Plans, Activities, and more; Judaism Web Sites.
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A history of Epicurus ( B.C. to A.D.) and his ideas, tracing the development of the Epicurean school and the reaction to it in ancient times, and the modern revival of Epicureanism. One of the oldest religions in the world, Judaism is known for its ethical monotheism.
Its core beliefs and traditions are shared with Islam and Christianity. The history of early Christianity covers the period from the origins of Christianity to the First Council of Nicaea in The earliest followers of Jesus comprised an apocalyptic, Second Temple Jewish sect, which historians refer to as Jewish Christianity.
Early Christianity gradually grew apart from Judaism during the first two centuries of the Christian Era; it established itself as a.