Persaeus of Citium: A lapsed stoic?

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Abstract

This article examines the historical evidence on the life of Persaeus of Citium, a Stoic philosopher and immediate student of Zeno, the founder of Stoicism. It also considers the anecdotal accounts of Persaeus’ actions with regard to Stoic philosophy as it was understood to apply during his lifetime. Persaeus was one of an elite group of scholars present at the court of Antigonus II Gonatus, King of Macedon and appears to have had a direct involvement in the political affairs of Macedonia. His activities, as recounted in the surviving sources, seem to run contrary to established Stoic customs, in particular the preference for praxis over theoria.1 However, there is also some indication that he may have been vilified by his scholarly and political enemies. This article provides a brief glimpse into the life and times of Persaeus as well as the turbulent fourth/third centuries in Greece.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages21
JournalRosetta: Papers of The Institute of Archaeology and Antiquity
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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