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Antisthenes of Athens | Julian, Oration 9.264

But if we conceive this to be true, or that only those are happy who administer public affairs and who are in authority and rule over many, what then are we to say about Socrates? As for Pythagoras and Democritus and Anaxagoras of Clazomenae, you will perhaps say that they were happy in another sense of the word, because of their philosophic speculations. But as for Socrates who, having rejected the speculative life and embraced a life of action, had no authority over his own wife or his son, can we say of him that he governed even two or three of his fellow-citizens? Then will you assert that since he had no authority over any one he accomplished nothing? On the contrary I maintain that the son of Sophroniscus performed greater tasks than Alexander, for to him I ascribe the wisdom of Plato, the generalship of Xenophon, the fortitude of Antisthenes, the Eretrian and Megarian philosophies, Cebes, Simmias, Phaedo and a host of others; not to mention the offshoots derived from the same source, the Lyceum, the Stoa and the Academies.

Source: The Works of the Emperor Julian, volume II (1913) Loeb Classical Library. Translated by Emily Wilmer Cave Wright.

antisthenes_of_athens/julian_oration_9.264.txt · Last modified: 2014/03/02 14:30 by frank