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This version of Gassendi’s Life and Doctrine of Epicurus comes from Volume III of Thomas Stanley’s 1660 History of Philosophy .” Please note that this version contains numerous typos, and should be checked against the PDF of the original here . [Note re the PDF version: In Gassendi's day the Herculaneaum busts of Epicurus had not been recovered, and apparently Stanley – or his publisher – was not aware of Epicurus’ true appearance. The etching of Epicurus at the beginning of this book is not an accurate depiction of Epicurus.]
Life of Epicurus Epicurus – His Life And Doctrine – Written By Petrus Gassendus
- The Life of Epicurus
- Chap 1. Epicurus – His Country, Parents, Brethren
- Chap 2. The Time of His Birth
- Chap. 3. Where He Lived In His Younger Time
- Chap 4. His Masters
- Chap 5. When, and upon what occasion, he addicted himself to Philosophy, and instituted a Sect
- Chap 6. His School
- Chap 7. How He Lived With His Friends
- Chap 8. His Friends And Disciples
- Chap 9. How Much He Wrote
- Chap 10. What Writings of His Are, Particularly, Mentioned By Authors
- Chap 11. His Will
- Chap 12. The Manner of His Death
- Chap 13. The Time of His Death
- Chap 14. How Dear His Memory Was To His Followers
- Chap 15. With What Constancy, And Unanimity, the Succession of His School Flourished
- Chap 16. The Successors and Followers of Epicurus
- Chap 17. Laertius, His Vindication of Epicurus
Epicurus – His Life And Doctrine – Written By Petrus Gassendus
The Life of Epicurus
Chap 1. Epicurus – His Country, Parents, Brethren
Epicurus is by some considered to be a Samian; for Timon (in  Laertius) saith, He was the last of the Natural Philosophers that came out of Samos. And  Constantinus Porphyrageneta conceives that he derived his originall from Samos, as well as Pythagoras. But the occasion of this was, for that he passed the first part of his younger years at Samos, with his father and brethren; for thither came his father, Agripeta, as  Cicero terms him, (that is, one who claimeth a portion in the division of lands.) Upon the like ground  Strabo conceives him a Lampsacene, for he lived at Lampsacum, and conversed with the chief personages there. But Epicurus indeed was by country an Athenian, as  Laertius,  Suidas, and infinite other Writers affirm; whence  Laertius, about to praise him, begins thus.
First Ceres-gifts to human indigence, Renowned Athens did long since dispense, And mens disordered waies by Laws redrest, And firsbour life with greatest comfort blest, When it produc’d a person of such worth, Whose breast contain’d, whose lips allerush brought forth.
Now forasmuch as the Athenian people, being distinguished by Tribes, were dispersed into τδς οιμυας, the adjacent Towns, which were made free Corporations, even from the time of Theseus; Epicurus was born at Gargettus, a Town (as  Helschius and Phavorinus describe it) belonging to the Ægean Tribe, where Theseus (saith  Plutarch) overcame the Pallantide, who conspired against him and Ægeus; and where Eurystheus, (as  Stephanus relates) was buried. For this reason; he is said, by  Laertius to have been σιμυον Γαργεττισ; by  Stecius termed, the Gargettick Author, and the Gargettick old man; by  Cicero,  Ælian, and others, simply the Gargettian.
Laertius (out of Metrodorus, in his Treatise of Nobility) writes, that Epicurus was of the family of the Philaiad; the Philaide were denominated from Phileus, the second son of Ajax, who dwelt in Melite, and is mentioned by  Plutaroh; who addes, that Pisistraius also was of the Philaidae. Of this family was the father of Epicurus, (according to  Laertius and others) named Neocles, his mother Chaerestrasa. He is also frequently cited, after the Greek-fashion, Epicurus Neoclis, sometimes simply termed Neoclides, as when compared by  Menander with Themistocles, whose father was Neocles also. I omit, that his father was (according to  Strabo) one of the two thousand Citizens, whom the Athenians sent to Samus, to share the land by lots, whither they had before sent Pericles and Sophocles, who strictly besieged the revolted Samians. I omit also, that he was a School-Master, which (besides Strabo)  Cicero observes, when proceeding to reproach him, But his little Farm, saith he, not being sufficient to maintain him, as I conceive, he became a School-master.
Suidas mentions onely two brethren of Epicurus, Neocles and Cheredemus; but  Laertius (out of Philodemus the Epicurean) adds a third, Aristobulus, whom  Plutarch sometimes seems to call Agathobulus. By what care and benevolence Epicurus gained their reverence and affection, is excellently declared by  Plutach, who conceives it worthy admiration, how he came so to win them, and they to be won. That all these died before Epicurus, may be inferred from his Will, wherein he ordereth nothing, either to them, or of them, as alive; but onely appointed a day to be celebrated for his brethren in the Month Posideon. And though of Cheredemus there is no further testimony, yet of Aristobulus it is more apparent from  Plutarch, who writes, that Epicurus was wholly taken up about Metrodorus, Polyemus, and Aristobulus, tending them in their sicknesse, and mourning for them when they died. But of Neocles it is most manifest, from the same  Plutarch, relating, that Epicurus broke forth into a kind of joy, mixt with tears, upon the remembrance of the last words of Neocles. Of how great and painfull sicknesses they dyed, is sufficiently aggravated by  Plutarch and  Suidas.
Chap 2. The Time of His Birth
Epicurus was born (as  Laertius relates out of the Chronology of Apollodorus) in the 3rd year of the 109th Olympiad, the 7th day of the month Gamelion; at whose birth,  Pliny saith, the Moon was twenty daies old. Hecatombeon (the first month) this year falling in the Summer of the year 4372. of the Julian Period, (now used by Chronologers) it is manifest, that Gamelion the same year, being the 7th month from Hecatombeon, fell upon the beginning of the year 4373, which was before the ordinary computation from Christ 341 compleat years. Now forasmuch as in January, in which month the beginning of Gamelion is observ’d to have fallen, there happened a new Moon in the Attick Horizon, by the Tables of Celestiall Motions, the fourth day, in the morning, (or the third day, according to the Athenians, who as  Censorinus saith, reckon their day from Sun-set to Sun-set) and therefore the twentieth day of the Moon is co-incident with the three and twentieth of January; it will follow, that Epicurus was born on the 23rd of January, if we suppose the same form of the year extended from the time of Cefar, upwards. And this in the old style, according to which the cycle of the Sun, or of the Dominical letters for that year, (it being Biffextile) was BA, whence the 23rd day of January must have been Sunday. But if we suit it with the Gregorian account, which is ten daies earlier, (now in use with us we shall find, that Epicurus was born on the 2nd of February, which was Sunday, (for the Dominicall Letters must have been ED.) in the year before Christ, or the Christian computation, 341. and consequently in the 1974th year, compleat, before the beginning of February this year, which is from Christ 1634. Some things here must not be passed by.
First, that  Laertius observes Sosigenes to have been Archon the same year, wherein Epicurs was born, and that it was the 7th year from the death of Plato. Moreover, it was the 16th of Alexander, for it was, as the same  Laertius affirms, the year immediately following that, in which Aristotle was sent for to come to him, then 15 years old.
Secondly, that  Eusebius can hardly be excused from a mistake, making Epicurus to flourish in the 112th Olympiad; for at that time, Epicurus scarce had pass’d his childhood, and Aristotle began but to flourish in the Lyceum, being returned the foregoing Olympiad out of Macedonia, as appears from  Laertius.
Thirdly, that the error which is crept into  Suidas, and hath deceived his Interpreter, is not to be allowed, who reports Epicurus born in the 79th Olympiad. I need not take notice, how much this is inconsistent, not onely with other relations, but even with that which followeth in Suidas, where he extends his life to Antigonus Gonotas: I shall onely observe, that, for the number of Olympiads, Suidas having doubtlesse set down ςθ, which denote the 109th Olympiad, the end of the ς was easily defaced in the Manuscript, so as there remained onely ο, by which means of οθ, was made the 79th Olympiad.
Fourthly, that it matters not that the Chronicon Alexandrinum, Georgius Sincellus, and others, speak too largely of the time wherein Epicurus flourished, and that we heed not the errous of some person, otherwise very learned, who make Aristippus later then Epicurus, and something of the like kind. Let us onely observe what  St. Hierom cites out of Cicero pro Gallio; a Poet is there mentioned, making Epicurus and Socrates discoursing together, Whose times, saith Cicero, we know were disjoyned, not by years, but ages.
Fifthly, that the birth-day of Epicurus, taken from Laertius and Pliny, seems to argue, that amongst the Athenians of old, the Civill months and the Lunary had different beginnings. This indeed will seem strange, unlesse we should imagine it may be collected, that the month Gamelion began onely from the full Moon that went before it; for, if we account the 14th day of the Moon to be the first of the month, the first of the Moon will fall upon the 7th of the month. Not to mention, that Epicurus seems in his Will to appoint his birth to be celebrated on the first Decad of the dayes of the month Gamelion, because he was born in one of them; and then ordaineth something more particular concerning the 20th of the Moon, for that it was his birth-day, as we shall relate hereafter. Unlesse you think it fit to follow the  anonymous Writer, who affirms, Epicurus was born on the 20th day of Gamelion; but I know not whether his authority should out-weigh Laertius. Certainly, many errours, and those very great, have been observed in him, particularly by Meurfius. I shall not take notice, that the XXXX of Gamelion might perhaps be understood of the 20th of the Moon, happening within the month Gamelion, from Cicero, whose words we shall cite hereafter. But this by the way.
Chap. 3. Where He Lived In His Younger Time
 Laertius, out of Heracles, in his Epitome of Sotion, relates, that a Colony being sent by the Athenians to Samos, Epicurus was bred up there till the 18th year of his age, in which he went to Athens; Xenocrates living in the Academy, Aristotle at Chalcis.  Strabo adds, that being first brought up, partly at Samos, partly at Teos, he spent the first part of his youth at Athens, growing up together with Menander, the Comick Poet.  Laertius further relates, that Alexander dying, and the Athenians being opprest by Perdiccas, he went to Colophon to his father, (about the 23rd year of his age) and that he lived a while there. And adds afterwards out of Apollodorus, that from the 32nd year of his age to the 37th he lived partly at Mitylene, partly at Lampsacum, (whither he made a dangerous voyage, as  Plutarch observes.  Suidas sets down, how much time he bestowed in each of these places, one year at Mitylene, four at Lamsacum. Laertius adds, that he returned to Athens, when Anaxicrates was Archon. Now forasmuch as Anaxicrates (who succeeded Charinus, in the year of whose Magistracy, as  Seneca notes, Epicurus writ to Polyaenus) was Archon in the 2nd year of the 118th Olympiad, and consequently the 36th of Epicurus’s age, there must necessarily be here a metachronism of one year.
Hitherto of the places where Epicurus lived in his younger times, partly learning, partly teaching, before he setled at Athens, where he instituted a Sect.
Chap 4. His Masters
As for the Masters which he had, we read in  Laertius, that some relate, Epicurus was Auditor of Pamphilus the Platonick;  Suidas saith the same;  Cicero also mentions Epicurus, himself acknowledging, that he heard him at Samus, but exceedingly fleighted his doctrin. Others also report the same.
Moreover,  Clemens Alexandrinus and others, report Nausiphanes the Pythagorean, disciple of Pyrrho, to have been his Master, though  Sextus Empiricus writes, that he himself deny’d he had been disciple to Nausiphanes. Apollodorus, in his Chronology, reports that Epicurus heard Lyciphanes and Praxiphanes; but this, saith  Laertius, he doth not himself acknowledge, in his Epistle to Euridicus.
He might indeed have heard Xenocrates, and some there are (saith  Cicero) who think, he did hear him, (as Demetrius the Magnefian in Laertius) but Epicurus himself will not allow it.
I would mention Democrates, with whom,  Plutarch saith, Epicurus contested about Syllables and Accents; but that I suspect Democrates to be falsly read instead of Democritus, even from this, that Plutarch adds, that Epicurus stole all his opinions from him, which was the common objection concerning Democritus, as shall be shewn hereafter.
I should mention also Metrodorus, whom  Stobaeus calls, καταγλτην, his Interpreter; Doctorem, the Master of Epicurus; and should suspect he were the same with him, whom  Solinus makes contemporary with Diogenes the Cynick; did not the opinion, attributed to him of the infinity of Worlds, and of Atoms, argue, that this was Metrodorus the Chian, disciple of Democritus, whom Epicurus might have, not as Doctorem, a Teacher by word of mouth; but as Ductorem, a Leader, by writing.
Thus also is Lucian to be taken, when he saith sportingly, that Epicurus was disciple to Democritus, making him to be disciple of Aristippus also, by reason of his opinion of Pleasure, wherein yet there was great difference between them, as we shall show in its due place. But notwhitstanding all we have alledged,  Cicero, Plutarch, Empericus, and others, write, that Epicurus used to boast, that the never had any Master, but was αυτοδιδαμτσ, his own Teacher, and attained Philosophy by his own wit and industry. And though they seem to mention this, not without some disparagement of him, yet it will easily be granted, that he found out many things of himself, since this was that wherein he too most delight at his last end; and withall, seeing he writ so many books, filled onely with his own sayings, as we shall show hereafter. And indeed  Athenaus, delivering in an Epigram an excellent sentence of his, concludes, as if Epicurus learnt it not from any other, than from the Muses and Apollo. Hither also conduce these commendations of Laertius:
Dispencing gifts acquir’d by his own breast.
He rous’d his soul to break the narrow bonds, Which fetter Nature.
And others of the same kind.
As for those whom Epicurus particularly esteem’d,  Laertius (citing Diocles) affirms, he was chiefly addicted to Anaxagoras, (though in some things he contradicted him) and Archelaus, who was master to Socrates. Of Democritus we shall speak hereafter. I onely add, that Epicurus much admiring the conversation of Pyrrho, continually question’d his disciple Nausiphanes concerning; as  Laertius saith, in the life of Pyrrho.
Chap 5. When, and upon what occasion, he addicted himself to Philosophy, and instituted a Sect
 Suidas saith, that he began to apply himself to Philosophy in the 12th year of his age, which is confirmed by others, who wrote his life, as  Laertius relates. But Epicurus himself (alledged by the same  Laertius) attesteth, that he did not addict himself to Philosophy till he was fourteen years old. Hermippus (in  Laertius) saith, that, lighting accidentally upon the books of Democritus, he betook himself to Philosophy; but Apollodorus the Epicurean, in the first book of the life of Epicurus, affirms, he applied himself to Philosophy upon dislike of the Sophists and Grammarians, for that they could not explain what Hesiod meant by Chaos.  Sextus Empiricus having related this more fully, it will not be amiss to transcribe his words. Having proposed some doubts concerning these Verses of Hesiod,
First, Chaos, next broad-breasted Earth was made, The seat of all
he addes, and some affirm, that this was the occasion of Epicurus’s sudden applying himself to Philosophy; for being yet very young, he asked a Grammarian, who read to him [Chaos was first made]: Of what was Chaos made, if it was first made? The other answering that it did not belong to him to teach such things, but to those who were called Philosophers. Then, saith Epicurus, I must goe to those, for they are the persons that know the truth of Beings.
To omit, what some affirm, that he was, as Hermippus ( in Laertius) relates, before he addicted himselfe to Philosophy, a School-master: and though the  Stoicks, who were much his enemies, reproached him that with his Father he taught Boyes for a small stipend, and that with his Mother he went from house to house reading expiatory praiers; I observe that after he had applyed himself to Philosophy, he instituted a School, being thirty two years old, as  Laertius relates, and this first at Mitylene afterwards at Lampsacum, as may be collected from the relation of Suidas, but had Disciples also from Colophon, as  Laertius relates.
Returning to Athens in the 36 or 37th yeare of his age, he awhile discours’d (saith  Laertius) of Philosophy in publick with others, but afterwards instituted a Sect in private dominated by him. At first indeed, admiring the doctrine of Democritus, he professed himselfe a Democritian as  Plutarch relates; but afterwards, for that he changed or added many things, his followers were from him called Epicureans.
Chap 6. His School
Whereas other Professors of Sects made choice of particular places in Athens, as the Academy, the Lycaeum, and the like, he purchased a very pleasant Garden, for fourscore Minae, where he lived with his friends and disciples, and taught Philosophy. Thus, amongst others,  Laertius citing Apollodorus.  Pliny writes, that Epicurus first brought into Athens the custome of having under the name of Hortus a garden, the delight of fields and Country-mansions within the citty it felt, whereas, untill his time, ’twas not the fashion to have those kinds of mansions (rura) in townes.
Hence we may conjecture that this was the place which  Pausanias reports to have been called, even in his time, the Gardens, adding that there was in it a Statue of Venus made by Alcamenes, one of the most eminent things in Athens, (as may be gathered also from  Lucian) and that the Temple of Venus, with the statue of caelestiall Venus, did joyn to it. This Garden is often mentioned in the Plurall number by  Cicero,  Juvenal, and others, and sometimes diminutively, Hortulus, as Virgil; but howsoever it be us’d, it is commonly taken for the Sect or Doctrine delivered in that place by Epicurus and his Schollers. Whence Sextus Empiricus calls the Epicureans, the Philosophers of the Gardens (as the Stoicks, the Philosophers of the Stoa or cloister), and Apollodorus, being in his time the Master of the Gardens, was, as Laertius affirms, called υηποτυζαννσ, the Garden King.
Besides this Garden, which, with houses belonging to it, joyned upon the City, Epicurus had a house in Melite, which was a Town of the Cecropian Tribe, as  Suidas affirms, inhabited by Philaeus, one of the Ancestors of Epicurus, as was formerly said, having (according to Phavorinus) a famous temple dedicated to Hercules. Hither Epicurus sometimes retired with his Disciples, and at last bequeathed it to his Successors, as we shall declare hereafter. 
Chap 7. How He Lived With His Friends
Epicurus after his return to Athens, at what time Anaxicrates was Archon, went onely twice or thrice to Ionia, to visit his friends, but lived all the rest of his time at Athens, unmarried, nor would never forsake his Country, though at that time reduc’d to great extremities, as  Laertius observes. The worst of which was when Demetrius besieged Athens, about the 44th year of Epicurus’s age. How great a famine at that time oppress’d the Citty is described by  Plutarch. But it is observable, that having related a story of the contest between a Father & his Son about a dead mouse which had fallen from the top of a house, he adds, They say that Epicurus the Philosopher sustain’d his friends with Beans which he shared equally amongst them.
Epicurus therefore lived all the rest of his time at Athens, together with so many friends and Disciples whom he conversed with and instructed, as that whole Cities were not sufficient to contain them (they are the words of  Laertius) who resorted to him, not onely from Greece but all other parts, and lived with him in his gardens, as he cites out of Apollodorus; but especially from Asia, and particularly from Lampsacum, and from AEgypt as may be collected out of  Plutarch. Of the temperance and frugality of his diet we shall speak hereafter. As to his living with his friends, it is remarkable what Diocles, in Laertius, and others, relate. That Epicurus did not, as Pythagoras, who said the goods of Friends ought to be in common, appoint them to put their estates into one joynt-Stock, (for that imply’d a distrust, not a friendship) but that any one upon occasion should be freely supply’d by the rest. This will appeare more manifest hereafter. In the mean time, we must not omit an eminent place of  Cicero; Neither (saith he) did Epicurus approve friendship in discourse onely, but much more by life, actions, and manners, which how great a thing it is, the fables of the Ancients declare. For amongst the many various stories repeated from utmost antiquity, there are hardly found three paire of Friends, from Theseus his time down to Orestes. But how many great companies of friends, and how unanimously-loving did Epicurus keep in one house, and that very little? which is done even unto this day by the Epicureans. Thus Cicero.
Amongst the rest of his friends,  Laertius mentions Polystratus, who seems to be the same, of whom together with Hippoclides another Epicurean  Valerius Maximus gives a strange account. I shall insert the words of Valerius, the rather because they will serve to illustrate part of Epicurus’s Will hereafter concerning communication of the goods of his Disciples: they are these. Hither may aptly be referred Polystratus & Hippoclides, Philosophers, who, born the same day, followers of the sect of the same Master, Epicurus, joyned together in the common possession of estate and maintenance of that School, died very old, in the same moment of time. So equall a society of fortune and friendship, who thinks not have been begotten, bred, and ended, in the bosome of celestiall Concord? Thus hee.
Chap 8. His Friends And Disciples
Being now to give a Catalogue of the chiefest of his Friends and Disciples, we must not in the first place passe-by the three Brethren of Epicurus,
mention’d in the beginning, for they by his advice studied Philosophy with him, as Philodemus (in  Laertius) affirms.  Plutarch addes, that they took-in the Philosophy of their Brother, as greedily as if they had been divinely inspired, believing and professing from their first youth, that there was not any man wiser than Epicurus. The most eminent of the the three was Neocles: hee declaring from a boy, that his Brother was the wisest of Mortalls, added, as a wonder, that his Mother could contain so many and so great atome, as, by their convention, made up such a wise man; as  Plutarch relates. Hence it appearing that Neocles followed not any Philosophy of his own, but that of his Brother, I know not why  some affirme that he introduced a Sect like that of his Brother, unlesse perhaps they ground it upon that place of  Suidas, where he saith that Neocles writ concerning his Sect: but who sees not, it may be understood, that he writ concerning the Sect which he himselfe professed, but was instituted by another, especially for that there is nothing said any where of the Sect of the Neoclidae.
Observe by the way, that this saying λαθε βιωσαζ, Live closly (which  Plutarch, oppugnes, and is brought in  amongst the proverbial speeches) did belong to this neocles, as the same  Suidas affirmeth.
To his three Brethren, may be added those three Friends, who, (as we read in  Seneca) became great persons, through the conversation of Epicurus.
Metrodorus is to be first nam’d; for he was, as  Cicero saith, almost another Epicurus.  Strabo plainly declareth, he was of Lampsacum. For whereas Laertius seems to say he was an Athenian, the place is very corrupt; especially seeing it is manifest he was not an Athenian, from this Antithesis of  Cicero, How much was Epicurus happier for being in his Country, than Metrodorus for being at Athens; because Athens was not the Country of Metrodorus: the text of  Laertius is this, He had many Disciples but the most eminent were Metrodorus Αθηναιον, and Timocrates, and Sandes a Lampsacene, who from his first acquaintance with the man never left him, etc. For my part I am of opinion, that these words Αθηναιον ξ Τιμοψρατεσ ξ Σανδεσ should be quite expunged, for if you take them away, the rest joyns together very well; if you admit them, they will not hang together: for it was Metrodorus that was indeed a Lampsacene, and with whom all the rest that followes agreeth, not Sandes, whom, besides other things, it is false that Epicurus shoulc mention in his Will. And though  Casaubon conceaves, that Αθηναιον may be the proper name of a Man, yet is it strange that we heare nothing elsewhere, as well of Athenaeus as of Sandes, as Epicureans; since Laertius in this place reckons up his most eminent disciples: but taking these away, the three viz; Metrodorus, Polyaenus, and Hermarchus are described in a continued series; who, as we said, are put together by Seneca, as most eminent. As for Timocrates, he is mentioned afterwards by the way, when he comes to name Metrodorus as his Brother, and seems here to be inserted amisse. The occasion upon which these names crept into the Text I suspect to be, that, perhaps, some Transcriber had noted in the margent that what is delivered in the Text was confirmed also by Athenaus (author of the Deipnosophistae; for in him there is something concerning the Epicureans) and by Timocrates (for he also is cited by Laertius), and by one Sandes (perhaps Suidas or some other). That many things have hererofore been inserted out of the margents into the texts themselves by carelesslesse of the Transcribers, is most manifest.
Metrodorus therefore was by country a Lampsacene (not the same with that friend of Anaxagoras, whom  Laertius mentions of the same name) born in the 12th year of Epicurus’s age; for, dying in the 53rd year of his age, (the coherence of the words and sense makes me think it should be read XXXXXXXXX XXXXX) and that being the 7th before the death of Epicurus, who lived to the 72nd year, it is evident, that the year of his birth must fall upon the 12th of Epicurus’s. From the first time that Metrodorus became acquainted with Epicurus, (which might happen in the 22nd year of his age, at which time Epicurus lived at Lampsacum) he never (as we began to say out of Laertius) parted from him, but one six months, in which time he was absent at home, and thence returned to Epicurus. He had a sister, Batis, whom he married to Idomeneus, and a concubine named Leontium. He had children, whom Epicurus recommended in his Will, and in the Epistle which he writ dying; and particularly a son, named Epicurus. He was a very good man, undaunted with troubles, or death itself, as Epicurus himself, in Laertius, attests. He had the Dropsie;  for Cornelius Celsus writes, that whilst he was sick of that disease, and could no longer abstain, as was convenient, from drinking; he used, after he had forborn a great while, to drink, and cast it up again. But whether it was of this disease, or of some other, that he dyed; is not certain. The books which he writ are, by Laertius, reckoned to be these; Against Physicians III. Of the Senses, to Timocrates. Of Magnanimity. Of the Infirmity of Epicurus. Against the Dialecticks. Against the Sophists IX. Of the way to Wisdom. Of Alteration. Of Riches. Against Democritus. Of Nobility. Besides which,  Plutarch cites his Books, Of Philosophy. Of the Poets. Against Timarchus. Likewise  Clemens Alexandrinus cites a Treatise, That the cause of felicity which comes from our selves is greater, than that which comes from other things. But of Metrodorus, enough.
Polyaenus was son of Athenodorus, a Lampsacene also. He was a great Mathematician,  to use the words of Cicero, and (to comprise much in little) modest and amiable, as Philodemus (in  Laertius) saith.
Hermarchus was son of Agemarchus, a Mitylean, his father of mean quality. At first he studied Rhetorick, but afterwards became so knowing in Philosophy, that Epicurus dying, committed the government of the School to him. He dyed at Lysias. There is a great mention of him in Epicurus’s Will. His Writings, which Laertius commends for excellent, these. Epistolicks, concerning Empedocles, XXII. Of Disciplines, (for Casaubone well reads not Μαδητων, but Μαδυατων) two Books. Against Plato. Against Aristotle.
To these must be added  Leontius, a Lampsacene, whom Plutarch calleth, one of the most eminent disciples of Epicurus; adding that this was he who writ to Lycophron, that Epicurus honoured Democritus.
Moreover, Colotes and Idomeneus, Lampsacenes also. Of the former we shal have occasion to speak oftner, especially because of the two Books which Plutarch writ against him.  Laertius elsewhere writes that Menedeamus the Cynick was his disciple, (unlesse perhaps there were some other Colotes of Lampsacum). The same Colotes it is, who, cited by  Macrobius, argues, that Plato ought not to have invented the fable of Erus, because no kind of fiction agreeth with the professor of truth. The latter, Idomeneus, Epicurus design’d to make famous by his Letters, as indeed he did, which appears from  Seneca: I will alledge, saith he, Epicurus for an example, who writing to Idomeneus, (the a minister of State, employ’d in great affairs) to persuade him, from a specious kind of life, to true setled glory. “If, saith he, “you affect glory, my Epistles will make you more famous, than all those things” which you esteem, and for which you are esteemed. Who would have known Idomeneus, if Epicurus had not graved his name in his Letters? All those Magistrates and Princes, even the King himself, from whom Idomeneus derived his Title, are now suppressed by a deep oblivion. Thus he, And these (saith Laertius) were the more eminent disciples.
But to these may be added two out of Valerius, already mentioned, Polystratus and Hippoclides; especially seeing Laertius reckons Polystratus as successor to Hermarchus; unless the Polystratus who is joyned to Hippoclides, were not the same with him that succeeded Hermarchus.
We might adde Timocrates of Lampsacum, Brother of Metrodorus; but he seems to have fallen off, not brooking the reprehensions of his Brother. We shall therefore rather joyn to these Mus, the servant of Epicurus, who, as Laertius affirms, became an eminent Philosopher, not omitted by  Agellius, and  Macrobius, in reckoning up those, who, of servants, became famous for Philosophy.
To omit Apelles, somewhere derided by Plutarch, we must here mention three Women, who together with others of the same sex, learnt Philosophy of Epicurus. One, Leontium, who studied Philosophy under Epicurus, as  Athenaus recites, and may also be collected from  Cicero, who saith, she wrote a Book against Theophrastus, in an elegant style, and in the Attick dialect. The second, Themista, Daughter of Zoilus, a Lampsacene, Wife of the forementioned Leontius. Of he, besides the testimonies which we shall hereafter alledge,  Clemens Alexandrinus taketh expresse notice. The third, Philenis, whom  Athenaeus affirms to have written many things; adding that the obscene books ascribed to her, were put forth under her Name, by Polycrates the Sophist, to discredit the Woman.
To these may be added Herodotus, to whom Epicurus writ a little Epitome of Physick, extant in Laertius, writ a book of the youth of Epicurus.
Pithocles, to whom Epicurus writ of Superiour things, extant in Laertius, and who affirmed, that when he was 18 years old, he had not his equall for ingenuity in all Greece, as Plutarch relates.
Menaeceus, to whom Epicurus writ that Epistle concerning Morality, which is extant in Laertius, its beginning recited also by Clemens Alexandrinus.
Timocrates, son of Demetrius, a Potamian, and Amynomachus, son of Philocrates of Bate, whom Epicurus made the Executors of his Will.
Nicanor, whom Epicurus recommended to the care of the said Executors.
Eurydicus, on the those to whom, as Laertius saith, he writ Epistles.
Dositheus, and his Sons Pyrrho, and Hegefianax, to whom Epicurus wrote wrote a consolatory letter, upon the death of their Father, as we find in Plutarch.
I omit Polymedes, Antidorus, and others, to be mentioned hereafter in treating of his Books.
Chap 9. How Much He Wrote
Neither did Epicurus, spend the time in giving his Disciples only Oral Instructions, but bestowed much pains in composing severall books. But to understand how much he laubour’d herein, by comparison with other Philosophers, hear but Laertius in his  preface; Many things, saith he, Zeno writ; more, Xenophanes; more, Democritus; more, Aristotle; more, Epicurus; more, Chrysippus. Where we see that Epicurus, as to multitude of writing came short onely of Chrysippus. But observe, that elsewhere  Laertius; to show, he may be thought to have exceeded Chrysippus herein; cites Apollodorus the Athenian, who, saith he, to show that what Epicurus writ of himselfe, not borrowed from any other, did far exceed the books of Chrysippus, saith expresly thus: If a man should take out of the books of Chrysippus, the things which he hath burrowed of others, the paper will be left blank. But that his may not seem strange, the same  Laertius elsewhere relates that Chrysippus for his emulation of Epicurus in writing much, was called by Carneades, the Parasite of his books, because, if Epicurus writ any thing, (read γωξζαι not γωξζας) he would affect to write as much. Whence it came to passe, that he often wrote the same things over again, and whatsoever came next to hand, and presently thrust it in for haste, without correction; and brought in so many testimonies of other Writers, that his books were filled up onely with them, as may be found in Zeno also, and Aristotle. Thus Laertius, of Chrysippus, but of Epicurus not so: for  he relates that his volumes amounted to three hundred, in which, saith he, there is no testimony of any other Author, but the are all the very words of Epicurus. Which I observe to show (seeing Epicurus wrote so many things,  a great Writer, as he termes him, and exceeding for multitude of Books, so as  Origen charging Celsus with temerity, objects as a thing he conceives impossible, There is not any of us, who, saith he, knowes all that Epicurus writ) his fluent vein, and how he was chiefly employ’d.
Chap 10. What Writings of His Are, Particularly, Mentioned By Authors
Here it is fit, we give a kind of Catalogue of his Books, not of all he wrote, but of those whose Titles are extant in other Authors. I say their Titles, for the books themselves have so miscarried by the injury of time, that besides some few compendiums preserv’d by Laertius, and some fragments scatter’d up and down amongst severall Writers, there is not any thing of them remaining, at least, as yet known to us.
To begin with those, which Laertius accounts the best, they are ranked thus.
Of Nature, XXXVII. They are sometimes cited simply, Of Nature, sometimes with the number of the Books, as when Laertius hereafter in his Life, cites the I. the XI. XII. XIIII. XV.  Galen also mentions the Title and number of the Books.
Of Atoms, and Vacuum, so usually cited,  Cleomenes seemeth to mean the same under another name, Of the Principles of all things.
An Epitome of things appertaining to Naturall Philosophers. This Epitome was twofold, great and little; both are cited by Laertius; the lesser, that which is written to Herodotus.
Against the Megarick (or Dialectick) Philosophers, Doubts. These Doubts, seem chiefly to have concerned certain Moral Arguments, as concerning Justice, Marriage, and Dower: for this seems to be the same which, and  Plutarch, cite under the name of Doubts, without adding, To the Megaricks.
Κυριαι δοχαι, Maxims, or, as  Cicero interprets, Maxime rata Sententiae, because, saith he, they are sentences briefly expressed, which conduce exceedingly to living happily. He  elsewhere calls them select, and short Sentences.  Sextus seems to call them Memorable Sayings. Laertius hath put them at the end, and  Lucian some where commends them, as  Cicero the Book of Crantor, which is, saith he, not great indeed, but golden, and, as Panaetius advised Tubero, to be gotten by heart. He was in opinion different from Suidas, who calls them Wicked notions.
Πεςι αιζεσεων, Of Elections, so I conceive it ought rather to be rendered, then Of Sects; because in this book Epicurus, seems not to design a History of Sects, but Morall Institutution, which is conversant about the choice of things, as Laertius declares at the end of Epicurus’s Epistle to Menaeceus. Not to mention, that the teacheth the Ethick kind to consist onely of election and avoidance. For which reason, the Book, which is ordinarily and next to this cited,
Περι φυτων, Of Plants, ought rather be entituled, Περι φευητων, Of things to be avoided; as well for coherence of the title, as for that Epicurus, almost wholly taken up with Morall Philosophy, scarce treated of any particular subject in Physick, unless they were such as conduced to take away vain terrours from the minds of men; of which kind, this of Plants could not be. Moreover, because in Manuscripts, this title is connected to the former by the conjunction υαι, we may conjecture, that the Inscription was, Περι αιρησεων, ιη φυγων; Of Election and Avoidance. Yet might the Inscription have been in the plurall number, forasmuch as it is afterwards said, Elections and avoidance are dijudicated from pleasure and grief.
Of the End; So this Book is generally cited, as, amongst others, by  Plutarch. Neither doth Cicero seem to mean any other, though he cite a Book Of the Ends of Good and Evill.
Of the Criterie, or the Canon; or, as  Cicero translates it, Of the Rule, and of Judgement. But if instead of Judgment we render it Judicatory, the force of the word will be more fully express’d.
Chaeredemus; or Of the Gods. This is one of those Books, which Epicurus entituled by the names of his brethren and friends, that, being dead, their names might not be forgotten, as  Plutarch observes.
Of Sanctity, or Hegesianax. This perhaps is he, whom  Plutarch terms Hegetoanax, concerning whose death, Epicurus wrote to his Parents; unless perhaps it were he who wrote Histories, and Troica, cited by  Athenaeus; for he was of Alexandria, and Epicurus had friends out of AEgypt.
Of Lives IV, which is all one as if the Inscription had been, Of Life and Manners. Neither doth Epicurus seem in these Books to relate the story of some eminent persons, as Plutarch and Laertius have done in their Books of Lives; but to give rules, whereby to lead a quiet life, as may plainly enough be collected from the catalogue of the Morall Treatises, and the places cited out of this by Laertius. The word Lives seems here to be taken in the same sense, as with  Plutarch, when he speaketh of The Difference of Lives and Politicks, which the Interpreter well renders, Of Manners and Publick Institutes. Of these Books, are hereafter cited by Laertius, the first and second.
Of Just Action.
Neocles to Themista. This seems to have been that Neocles who was brother to Epicurus, not his father; for in like manner he called other of his books after the names of his brothers.
The Banquet, cited by  Plutarch,  Athenaeus, and others.  Plutarch mentions Questions handled in it, concerning the heat of Wine, the time of Coition. Laertius, concerning troubles about Marriage, &c.
Eurylochus to Metrodorus. I guess, that this Eurylochus was the same with that Eurydicus, to whom, as we said formerly, Epicurus writ; but the thing is uncertain.
Of the Angle which is in the Atome.
Of Touching; or perhaps, Of the tangibility of Atoms: for  Epicurus called Vacuum το ανοαφες, that which cannot be touched.
Of Passions. Sentences to Timocrates.
Πεογνωςιμον, Praecognitorium; so I render it, because he seemeth in this to have discoursed of the Praecognitive faculty.
Protreptick, (exhortatory) that is, Discourse; for so Isocrates and Clemens, expresly.
Of Images, ειδωλα, simulacra, imagines, species, formae, spectra; so several persons variously interpret them, which are now commonly tearmed Intentionall species.
Of Phantasie, or the impression thereof, which appeareth in the knowing faculty; for neither did Epicurus, nor most of the ancient Philosophers, understand by this word, as we now for the most part do, the faculty is felt.
Aristobulus; this book bears the name of Epicurus’s third brother.
Of Musick; viz. as it conduceth to Manners; for this may be collected from  Plutarch and  Empiricus.
Of Gifts and Gratitude, mentioned by  Empiricus, who cites something Grammaticall out of it.
Polynaedes; he seems to have been some friend or disciple of Epicurus.
Timocrates, III. Whether meaning the brother of Metrodorus, or the Executor of his Will, or some other. Hence I should believe, that by Laertius was cited the third book of Timocrates, or written by Timocrates; but that instead of Τιμοψρατες, I suspect it should be written Τιμοψρατει, relating to the third book, which, by Epicurus, was so entituled. This text seems to confirm.
Metrodorus V. That this was the same Metrodorus, of whom we have spoken formerly, cannot be doubted. From the first book, cited by Laertius, may be collected, that Epicurus related the story of Metrodorus’s life.
Antidorus II. This Antidorus is mentioned by  Plutarch, and perhaps by  Laertius also, in the life of Heraclides, if we there read Antidorus for Autodorus.
Περι νοτων δοξαι πρας Μιθρμν, Of the South-winds, Sentences, to Mithres. But perhaps the Title ought rather to be read, περι νοσων, Of Diseases, as well for the reasons alledged about the Title, περι φυτων, as for that these Sentences seem not to have been severall opinions, concerning some particular Winds, as Morall Sentences to moderate the pain of diseases. This seems to be the same Mithres a Syrian, whom Metrodorus relieved, as  Plutarch hath severall times delivered; and the same whom  Laertius relates to have been the Steward of Lysimachus’s house; adding, that Mithres saying to Theodorus, Thou seemest not onely not to acknowledge gods, but Kings also. Theodorus repli’d, How can I but acknowledge gods, who think thee an enemy to the gods?
Callistolas; who, it may be presumed, was some friend of Epicurus’s.
Of a Kingdom, mentioned by  Plutarch.
Anaximenes; perhaps the same Lampsacene who is mentioned by  Strabo, and whom both  Plutarch, and  seem to mean; for though he were one of Alexander’s Masters, yet did he survive him, (for he wrote his actions) and was, according to Suidas, disciple to Diogenes the Cynick, and consequently younger than he; whereas Diogenes died in
the eighteeth year of Epicurus’s age, viz. in the beginning of the 114th Olympiad.
Epistles. Of these, four are extant in Laertius; one, to Herodotus, which was, as we said, the lesser Epitome, and under that name cited by  Achilles Tatius; Of Naturall Things. The second, to Pythocles, Of Meteors, or superiour things, as well Celestiall, as all others above the earth. The third, to Menaeceus, Of Manners. The last is very short, which he writ dying, to Idomeneus. That, besides these, he writ innumerable others, may be collected from  Plutarch,  Laertius, and others. For Plutarch, for example, cites an Epistle of his, To Anaxarchus;  Laertius his Epistle, To Aristobulus; also an Epistle, To his friends at Mytilene. This seems to be the same with that, which  Sextus Empiricus cites thus, To the Philosophers at Mitylene. But Laertius implyeth, there were more which bore that inscription, εν ταις πρδς τους Μιτυλμνμ φιλοσυφος; so as there might be one of them suppositious. In the same ranck may be reckoned his Epistles, concerning severall institutions of life, hinted by  Laertius, cited by  Athenaeus and  Eusebius. I omit, that the same  Athenaeus mentions his Epistles to Hermarchus; and, not to enquire after any more, the highest in repute were those written to Idomeneus, as we may understand from  Seneca, who also citeth something excellent out of his Epistles to Polyaenus. Amongst those to Idomeneus was that, out of which  Michael Apostolius, cites a fragment, containing the originall of the Proverb, These shall be to thee both Pythian and Delian, apply’d to those that shall dye within a short time; though Erasmus affirms, the Proverb it self to be cited out of Menander.
As to the Epistles, we shall by the way observe, that Epicurus used to write, by way of salutation in the beginning of his Epistles, sometimes χαιρειν, joy; sometimes , well to do; sometimes , sometimes , well to life; sometimes , Health. For that which we read in  Laertius, , is defective, there seems some word wanting to the sentence; neither doth the word X seem to belong to the form of salutation. And besides these words, X, exclude X from the Epicurean form of Salutation; whereas his word is not onely put before his Epistles, extant in Laertius, but it is rendred by  Cicero also, when he alledgeth that which he wrote at his death. For this reason, when heretofore I would, in the room of these two words, have put X, (as a lesse alteration, than if I should have substituted X X, or the like) the learned Puteanus approved it; but withall conceive X ought to be retained; but the excellent Menagius was of opinion, that since a word is wanting, for X should be read X, used on the like occasion by Laertius; but that X X ought to be retainded, forasmuch as Epicurus seemeth not to have used the word X, it being mentioned as proper to Cleon, both by  Lucian and  Laertius himself. Or whether instead of X might we not put X, or, with the least alteration, X, signifying, that for salutation, he was best pleased with those words, X X, and X X; or might not X X be retained, implying, that he did not quite cast aside the word X, but instead of it sometimes used the other two, as if X were either wanting or imply’d. Indeed,  Lucian seems not-obscurely to hint as much, when relating, that Epicurus was exreanly delighted with the word X, he addes, that sometimes he used other words, and that sometimes in his more accurate and profound Epistles, (which yet he saith were not many) or when he writ to his most intimate friends, he chiefly used X. Laertius therefore attributing the word X to him, may as well be thought to have intended X, as used by him; since, attributing X X to him also, he makes X X as peculiar to Plato, as X to Cleon.
This Catalogue of his Books is compiled by Laertius; but besides these, there are others, cited both by Laertius himself, and other Writers. Laertius formerly cited his Book, Of Rhetorick, mentioned also by the Scholiast of Hermogenes. But that which is cited, Of Perspicuity requisite to Discourse, belongs to Canonick, which he substituted in the room of Dialectick.
He likewise seems to cite his X, Antecedentia, or Praecipua; things precedent or preferred, in the sense of the Stoicks. I should think it meant of some of the Books before cited, if amongst them there were any, wherein that which is alledged were written by Epicurus.
There are cited also Staecheioses, Institutions or Elements, XII.
There seems also to be cited, Of Worlds, XII. For, describing severall Worlds, he is said to have done it in the XIIth. X, or, as the Manuscripts, X X, upon this very subject; the rather, because it seems not meant of those XXXVII which are constantly cited, Of Nature.
I should add his Physicall Problemes, and Ethicall Doctrines; but that under these names may be comprised, all that Epicurus wrote concerning Nature and Morality.
Moreover,  Cicero cites his Book, Of the Chief Good; unlesse it be the same with that, Of the End, already mentioned.
By the  same also is cited his Book, Of Pleasure; this perhaps Laertius meant, when he said, It was objected by some against Epicurus, that he usurped the Treatise of Aristippus concerning Pleasure, as if it had been his own.
Besides these,  Cicero cites his Book, Of Piety towards the Gods, distinct, as it seems, from that, Of Sanctity, reckoned by Laertius. Of Sanctity, saith he, Of piety towards the gods, he wrote Books.
Again, Plutarch declares, that he wrote Books against Theophrastus: for, the second of them, he saith, contained a discourse concerning Colours. Hitherto of his Books.
Chap 11. His Will
Epicus having employed his life in Teaching and Writing, and being no grown old, made, as the custom was, his Will, which being preserv’d entire by  Laertius, we shall not need to have recourse to those fragments of it, which lye dispersedly in Cicero, and other Writers. It was in this form.
Thus I bequeathe. I give all my Estate to Amynomachus, son of Philocrates, of Batis, (a Town of the AEgean Tribe, as  Hefychius describes it) and to Timocrates son of Demetrius, a Potamian, (of Potamus, a Town belonging to the Leontian Tribe,  Phavorin.) according to the donation which hath already been made, and is recorded among the Deeds in the Metronum, (a Temple of the great goddesse at Athens, seated upon the Haven, in which the Lawes, Judgments, and other Acts were preserved, as Athenaeus, Suidas, and others affirm) with this condition, that they bestow the Garden and all that belongs
to it, on Hermarchus, son of Agemarchus, a Mitylean, and those that shall study Philosophy with him; and on those, whom Hermachus shall leave his successors in Philosophy, and to those who shall succeed us in the profession of Philosophy, for ever. And, that it may be preserved with all possible care, I assign the School to Amynomachus and Timocrates, and to their heirs, according to the surest form of Law, that they may keep the Garden and deliver it to those who shall professe Philosophy after us. The house which is at Melite, let Amynomachus and Timocrates deliver to Hermachus, and to those that study Philosophy with him, to dwell in it as long as he shall live. Of the Revenues made over by us to Amynomachus and Timocrates, let them set apart as much as shall be sufficient (advising with Hermachus) to celebrate the exequies of my father, mother, and brethren; and to keep, as they have done hitherto, my birth-day, in the first Decad of the month Gamelion; as also to provide a Feast for entertainment of all those, who study Philosophy with us, every month, on the twentieth day of the moon, in commemoration of us, and of Metrodorus. Let them also keep a day in memory of my brethren in the month Posideon, as we used to do; and another to Polyaenus, in the month Metagirnion. Let Amynomachus and Timocrates take care of Epicurus, son of Metrodorus, and of the son of Polyaenus; and let them study Philosophy, and live with Hermachus. In like manner, let them take care of the daughter of Metrodorus, and as soon as she shall be Marriageable, bestow her upon him of the students of Philosophy, whom Hermachus shall choose; provided she be modest, and obedient to Hermachus. Let Amynomachus and Timocreates, out of our Revenues, bestow yearly so much as shall be sufficient, for their maintenance, with the consent of Hermachus. For let them so esteem Hermachus, having an equall share in our Revenues, and grown old in studying Philosophy under us, and left by us Guide of those that studied Philosophy under us, that all things be done by his advice. As for her portion, when she shall come to be marriageable, let Amynomachus and Timocrates take as much as they shall think convenient, with the consent of Hermachus. Likewise, let them take the same care of Nicanor as we did, that all they who studying Philosophy with us, have communicated the use of their Estates, and expressing all friendship, have chosen to grow old with us in Philosophy, want not any necessaries to the utmost of our power. All my Books I bequeath to Hermachus; but if any thing of mortality happen to Hermachus, before the children of Metrodorus arrive at full age, let Amynomachus and Timocrates take care, that all necessaries be decently provided for them, as much as shall be necessary, out of the Revenues left by us. Let all the rest be ordered as we have appointed, as much as is possible. I manumit of my servants, Mus, Licias, Lycon; Phaedria also, I set free.
Chap 12. The Manner of His Death
As concerning his last sicknesse, and death, we must know that Epicurus was of a constitution not very strong. This is implied even by the Title of the Book, written by  Metrodorus, Of the infirmity, (or unhealthfullnesse) of Epicurus. It is implied also by the envious exaggeration of  Suidas, that Epicurus could not endure to put on his Cloaths, nor to rise out of bed, nor to look upon the Sun, and the fire, and the like. These may at least perswade, that Epicurus was of a complexion not strong, and as in the whole course of his life, he had not a constant health, so at last he died of a painfull disease, the Stone, whereof it is probable he had many fits.  Laertius, out of Hermachus, in his Epistles, relates that he died of the Stone stopping his urine, having lyen sick 14 dayes.
It is memorable, that being near death, he writ that Epistle which Laertius mentions, as written to Idomeneus;  Cicero, to Hermachus; perhaps it was sent to both, because of the τονμιν: or to Idomeneus, rather then to Hermachus, because the children of Metrodorus were sufficiently recommended to Hermachus, by his Will. Moreover it is not likely likely that Hermachus, his next successor, was absent at that time, especially seeing he sen a relation of Epicurus’s death in Letters, not to presse, that he from his youth was more addicted to Rhetorick, then Philosophy, as appeareth from Laertius. The Epistle is this.
Leading a most happy life, and withall dying, we writ this to you, seized by the Strangury and Dysentery beyond expression; but all these were counterpoised by the joy of mind, which I conceived in remembring out discourses and inventions. But thou, as becomes the good will which thou hast had from thy youth to me, and Philosophy, take care of the children of Metrodorus.
 Laertius adds (out of Hermippus) that Epicurus went into a bath of warm water, called for wine, drunk it off, and exhorting his friends to be mindfull of his Doctrine, whilst he was discoursing, died. Upon which Laertius hath this Epigram:
Farewell, and bear my Doctrine in your minds; Said dying Epicurus to his Friends: Into a warm bath going, wine he quaft, And then from Pluto took a colder draft. Chap 13. The Time of His Death
Epicurus, died in the 2nd year of the 127th Olympiad, Pytharatus being Archon. After διετεων ετος, which  Laertius cites out of Apollodorus’s Chronology, Casaubone rightly reads τγς εικοςγς χ εκα το ςγς Ολυμπιαδ; for in the ordinary reading εικοςγς being wanting, Who could imagine that Epicurus, being born in the 109th Olympiad could dye in the 107th. And indeed, the 72nd year of Epicurus, in which he is said to have dyed, falls upon the 127th Olympiad.
The month and day of the year, in which Epicurus, died, is told by  Clemens Alexandrinus, who saith, that Antilochus from the time of Pythagoras to the death of Epicurus, reckoned 312 years, adding that the death of Epicurus happened on the tenth of the day of the Month, Gamelion. Where observe, if the time of Pythagoras be reckoned from the 60th Olympiad, in which Laertius saith, he flourished; there will be found to be but 270 years, from thence to the death of Epicurus, and consequently the account of Antilochus will fall short 42 years. Wherefore this υλιυια must be taken from the birth of Pythagoras, who began to flourish in the 40th year of his age.
Now whereas Apollodorus saith, that Epicurus lived 72 years, which is confirmed also by  Cicero, saying, It always was true, that Epicurus shall dye, having lived 72 years: Pytharatus being Archon (whence some conjecture Epicurus died in his Climactericall year, which is commensurated by 9) the last, or 72nd year, is not to be understood as complear, for Epicurus had but newly entred into it, there being but three daies over and above the 71 years; for he was born on the 7th and dy’d on the 10th of the Month Gamelion, there being between the time of his Birth, and his Death, 18 compleat Olympiads, except one year. Wherefore, this is in the same manner, as when  Pliny,  Lucian, and  Censorinus affirm the Sicilian (or Leontine) Gorgias did life 108 years, whereas  Cicero, and  Valerius Maximus say, the compleated but 107. Here is observable, the comparison which  Plutarch makes between Epicurus, and Gorgias; for after he had said that Alexis the Comick Poet, (son of Menander, and Father of Stephanus the Comick Poet, as  Suidas relates) lived double the time of Metrodorus, that is 106 years, Metrodorus living according to  Laertius, 53. he addes, that Gorgias the Sophist, out-lived Epicurus; πλεον η επιτξιτον more then one third; for if we take the number 36 it will be the same which Epicurus lived double, Gorgias treble; and whereas Plutarch saies more, perhaps he reflected upon the opinion which  Quintilian and  Suidas afterwards followed, that Gorgias lived 109 years.
I see not why the  Interpreter of Clemens Alexandrinus, should render Gamelion, October; for though there be some controversie about the order of the Greek months, yet shall we not find any, but make Gamelion the 6th, 7th, or 8th, from Hecatombaeon; which seeing it cannot begin higher then June, certainly Gamelion will be far distant from October. But since by many argument it is evince, that Gamelion is the 7th from Hecatombaeon, it ought rather to be reduced to January. Now because the 2nd year of the 1217th Olympiad began in Summer, in the 4443rd year of the Julian period, the Gamelion of that year must fall upon January, in the beginning of the 4444th year of the Julian Period. Upon what day of January, the tenth of Gamelion might fall, it is not easie to determine. But if we may make Gamelion commence, (as is done in the time of the nativity) from the 14th Moon, or from the 7th full Moon after the Summer Solstice, for as much as the new Moon happened upon the 30th of December, and consequently the 14th Moon upon the 12th of January, hereupon if we make that the 1st of Gamelion, the 10th will fall upon the 21st of January, upon which the death of Epicurus might fall. Where we must further observe, that whereas Epicurus is said to have lived 72 years, it must be understood of the Grecian years, not Julian, for so it would fall short two daies, it being already proved, he was born on the 23rd of January. Now, to reduce the death of Epicurus to our account, is easie: for if we substract ten daies, and for the cycle of the Sun that year which is 20 and, for the Dominicall Letter D according to the old style, put G according to our owne, it will appear that Epicurus died the 31st of January, it being the 4th day of the week, or Wednesday, before the computation of Christ, 270 years.
Chap 14. How Dear His Memory Was To His Followers
It remains, that we briefly tell how the memory of Epicurus, after his death, was respected by his followers. For, to omit, that his Country honoured him with brasen Statues, as  Laertius writes; I observe, that the set-dayes, and ceremonies appointed in his Will, were punctually kept by his Followers.  Pliny, (writing 350 years after upon this thing) On his birth-day, saith he, the twentieth Moon, they sacrifice, and keep feasts every Month, which they call Icades; whence it may be conceived, that Epicureans were by Greek Writers, as  Athenaeus, termed εικαδιςαι, from observing εικαδας, as Rhediginus also takes notice. Although  some there are who think, they were called Icadistae, from εικων an image, because there was not one of them, but had the picture of Epicurus. And of these images,  Pliny also, thus; They keep (saith he) the countenance of Epicurus in their chambers, and carry it up and down with them; and  Cicero, in the person of Atticus, Neither, saith he, can we forget Epicurus of any man; whose representation we have not onely in pictures, but in cups, and rings also.  There are who adde, that some took great care to have Pictures of Epicurus not onely in Rings, but in Cups, as conceiving it a fortunate Omen, to the nation, and their owne name. As for the affection which they bare to him, hear Patro, Honour, saith  Cicero, Office, right of Wills, the authority of Epicurus, the attestation of Phaedrus, the seat, house, foot-steps of excellent Persons, he saith that we must preserve; but especially  Torquatus, Owe we not much to him, saith he, who, as if he had heard the voice of Nature her selfe, did so firmly and soundly comprehend her, as that he brought all ingennous persons into the way of a peacefull, calm, quiet, happy life? And  again, Who, saith he, I think onely saw truth, and freed the minds of men, from the greatest errours, and delivered all things appertaining to well and happy living.
And because Epicurus dying, advised his friends to be mindfull of his Doctrines,  Cicero saith, that all of them got by heart, his Maxims and some there were who learned without book, all his Doctrines, as particularly Scyro, mentioned in his Academicks. But let it suffice, to alledge some few verses of  Lucretius, by which we may perceive how affectionate they were, to the memory, and doctrines of their Master. He begins his Third Book, thus:
Who first from darknesse couldst a light so clear Strike forth, and make life’s benefits appear, Great ornament of Graecia, I am lead By thee, and in thy sacred foot-steps tread: Not to contend, but kindly imitate. For how can chatt’ring Swallowes emulate The Swan? or tender kids keep equall pace, With the stout well-breath’d Steed’s imperious race? From thee, O Father, every thing receives Invention, thou giv’st precepts, from thy leaves As Bees skip up and down, and sweetly suck In frow’ry groves, we golden sayings pluck; Golden, deserving an eternall life.
By these a pleasure I receiv’d from Thee
Divine; withall a reverence, to see
That Nature every way thou hadst unvaild.
Great Epicurus died, his lives race run,
Whose wit mankind exceeded, as the Sun
Eclipseth by his rising all the Stars.
Chap 15. With What Constancy, And Unanimity, the Succession of His School Flourished
It deserves to be taken notice of, not onely that the succession of his School was constant, but that his successors and followers did alwayes so agree, as was indeed wonderfull. As concerning the constancy, it is known that the Presidents of the Gardens, or Masters of the School, from the death of Epicurus, to the time of Julius Caesar, and Augustus, succeeding one another in a continued Series, were, according to  Suidas, XIV and that for 237 years: In which latter times, how many Epicureans there were, eminent persons, and of great account in the State, appears from Cicero.  Lucian also writes, that in his time, there was a stipend allowed to the Epicureans, by the Emperour, no lesse then to other Philosophers; adding, that, when any one of them died, he whom they most approved of, was substituted in his room.  Laertius, who lived after Lucian, declares, that whereas the succession of the other Philosophers did almost quite faile, yet the succession of Epicurus did constantly persevere, so many succeeding one another in government of the Disciples, as could not be reckoned up. Numenius, (cited by  Eusebius) adds, that this succession lasted till his time, and that so perfectly, as it was likely to endure a great while after. After these  Lactantius; The Discipline of Epicurus, saith he, was much more celebrious. In a word, as long as Learning flourished in Greece, and Rome was preserved from the Barbarians, the School, and discipline of Epicurus, continued eminent.
As for their unanimity, to omit that of  Cicero, I will maintain the Epicureans who are so many, my Friends, men that are so loving to one another, and the like places; and shall rather observe, that whereas other Sects almost at their very beginning were distracted with intestine dissentions, the Epicurean was far from suffering any such thing. For  Themistius writes, that the Opinions of Epicurus, were kept by all the Epicureans, as Lawes of Solon of Lycurgus. And, as if they had all one Soul amongst them, saith  Seneca, whatsoever Hermachus affirm’d, whatsoever Menodorus, is referred to one. All things that any man delivers in that Society, go under one mans name; This will appear more plainly, if we alledge the words of Numenius, the Pythagorean, in  Eusebius; who after he hath complain’d, that the successors of Plato did not preserve that unanimity, for which the Pythagoreans we esteemed, addes, after this manner the Epicureans being instituted (though unworthy) seeming not in any thing to dissent from Epicurus, and professing to have the same tenents with their wise Master, have not unjustly attained their scope. Hence it hath happened to the Epicureans for a long time, that they never, in anything worth notice, contradicted either one another, or Epicurus. Amongst them it is an offence, or rather impiety, and sin, to bring in any innovation, wherefore none dares attempt it. Hence, by reason, of their constant agreement among themselves, they enjoy their doctrines peacably and quietly, and this Institution of Epicurus resembles the true state of a perfect Common-wealth; which being far from sedition, is governed by one joynt mind and opinion. For which reason, there have not, nor are not, nor, in likelyhood, will be wanting, those, that shall willingly follow it; but amongst the Stoicall faction, &tc. One would think, there were nothing wanting to this testimony, but, to say of all the Epicureans, as  Valerius (before cited) did of two of them, that Such a Society might be thought, to have been begotten, nourish’d, and terminated, in the bosom of celestiall Concord.
Chap 16. The Successors and Followers of Epicurus
It remains, that we give a Catalogue of those who were eminent in that Sect, after the death of Epicurus. We have already said, that Hermachus succeeded Epicurus, and Polystratus Hermachus. It also is manifest from Laertius, that Dionysius succeeded Polystratus; and Basilides, Dionysius. But, who those ten Successors were from Basilides, to him who govern’d the School in the time of Augustus, we cannot easily say. Perhaps after Basilides, succeeded Protarchus Bargyleites, whom  Strabo terms an illustrious person. The same Strabo saith, that disciple to Protarchus was Demetrius, surnamed Lacon, who is mentioned also by  Laerius, and was, as  Sextus Empiricus saith, eminent amongst the followers of Epicurus. Perhaps after him succeeded Diogenes of Tarsus, Author of the Select Schools, where of Laertius mentions XX Books. He also cites an Epitome of Morall Doctrine, written by the same person. Laertius mentions also (but whether they belong to this series of Successors, is uncertain) two Pealomies of Alexandria; whether from differences of complexion, or some other respect, one surnamed black, the other white. He mentions also Orion, and seems to mention one Democritys, who, in his Timocrates, takes notice of Pleasure after Epicurus’s doctrine.
There follow two out of this rank, named by  Athenaeus; the first, Diogenes of Seleucia near Babylon, whom he describes to have been eloquent, but of an ill life; the other, Lysias, who, as he saith, governed at Tarsus; and being chosen by the Country Stephanophorus (Priest of Hercules) he enjoy’d the supream government, and wore Regall Ornaments. This is he, who distributed the estates of the rich amongst the poor, and put many of them to death for refusing to part with them. At what time he lived, we cannot certainly determine; but Diogenes, being contemporary with Alexander King of Syria, and Antiochus his Successor, may be referred to the 155th Olympiad.
About the same time seemeth to have flourished Eucratidas, to whom belongs this inscription, recited by Janus Gruterus, At Brundufium, before the gase of Diomedes Athenaeus, a Physician, on the bafis; EUCRATIDAS son OF PISIDAMUS, A RHODIAN, AN EPICUREAN PHILOSOPHER. THIS PLACE APPOINTED FOR BURIALL BY THE SENATE OF BRUNDUSIUM.
Not long after seems to have flourished in the School that Apollodorus, whom Laertius termeth eminent, κυποτυεγμον, for that (as I conceive) he bore such sway in the Garden, as Demosthenes is said to have done in Courts of Judicature. He wrote above 300 Books, amongst which were some concerning the life of Epicurus, cited by Laertius. It may be conjectured, that he was the same, whose Chronology is cited by Laertius and others.
Auditor of Apollodorus was Zeno the Sidonian, according to  Laertius, who adds, that the wrote much, and that he was famous both for Philosophy and Rhetorick; whence I conjecture, it is the same Zeno, of
whom  Cicero saith, He spoke distinctly, gravely, and neatly, and that he was chief of the Epicureans; unlesse both he and Apollodorus lived earlier: which if it were so, this other belongs to the times of the Emperours, for  Cicero heard him, and writing concerning him to  Atticus; Zeno, saith he, I love as well as thou dost.
Chap 17. Laertius, His Vindication of Epicurus
Dlotymus the Stoick much maligning Epicurus, traduced him exceedingly, producing fifty Epistles very lascivious, as written by Epicurus; to which he added, as Epicurus’s also, the short Epistles, commonly ascribed to Chrysippus. No lesse disaffected to him were Pofidonius the Stoick, and Nicolaus, and Sotion, in the 12th of his Dioclean Confutations, (which are in all XXIV) and Dionysius Halicarnassaeus. For they say,He went from house to house with his mother reading expiatory prayers, and that with his father he taught children for a small stipend; that one of his brothers was a pander; that he himself used the company of Leontium a Curtezan; that he ascribed to himself the Books of Democritus concerning Atomes, and of Aristippus concerning Pleasure; that he was not a true Native of the City, as Timocrates acknowledgeth, and Herodotus, in his Book of the Youth of Epicurus; That he basely flattered Mithres, Steward of Lysimachus, calling him in his Epistles, Apollo and King; That Idomeneus, Herodotus, and Timocrates, who published some obscure Pieces of his, did commend and flatter him for the same; That in his Epistles, he writes to Leontium thus; O King Apollo, my dear little Leontium; how were we transported and filled with joy at the reading of thy Letter! To Themista wife of Leontius, thus; If you come not to me, I shall roll to you whithersoever you call me. And to Pithocles, a handsome youth; I consume in the expectation of your amiable and divine company. And again, writing to Themista, he thinks to perswade her: as Theodorus affirms, in his fourth Book against Epicurus. That he wrote to many other Curtezans, especially to Leontium, with whom Metrodorus also was in love. That in his Book concerning the End, he writes thus, Neither know I what is this good, if we take away the pleasures of the Taste, if we take away those of Coition, if we take away those of Hearing, if we take away those of Sight. That in his Epistle to Pithocles he writes; Happy Youth, fly as fast as thou canst from all Discipline. Epicurus calls him, Cinaedologum, and rails at him exceedingly. Timocrates, brother of Metrodorus, who was a while a disciple of Epicurus, but at last forsook the School, saith; That he vomited twice a day, upon over-charging his stomack, and that he himself had much ado to get away from their Nocturnall Philosophy, and conversation in secret. That Epicurus was ignorant of many things belonging to Discourse, but much more of those which belonged to Life. That he was of such a miserable constitution, that he was not able of himself for many years, to get out of bed, or rise out of the chair in which he was carried. That he spent every day a Mina at his Table, as he himself writeth in his Epistle to Leontium, and in his Epistles to the Philosophers at Mitylene. That he and Metrodorus also used the company of Curtezans; amongst others, Marmarium, Hedia, Erotium, Nicidium. That in the thirty Books which he writ concerning Nature, he saith most of the same things over and over; and that in them he writes against many persons, and, amongst the rest, against Nausiphanes, and that in these very words; But this man, if ever any, had a way of seeming a Sophistick brag, like many other slaves. And that in his Epistles, he writes concerning Nausiphanes; This so far transported him, that he railed at me, and called himself my Master. Likewise, that he called Nausiphanes, Lungs (as senslesse), and unlearned, and deceitfull, and lascivious. The disciples of Plato, Dionysius’s Parasites; Plato himself, Golden; Aristotle, a Prodigall, that, having wasted his Patrimony, was fain to turn Souldier and Apothecary; Protagoras, a Basket-carrier, an Amanuensis to Democritus, and a high-way School-master; Heraclitus, κυκμτμν, a causer of confusion; Democritus, Αμυοηειτον, purblind; Antidorus, Σαινιδαων, a fawner upon gifts; the Cyrenaicks, Enemies of Greece; the Dialecticks, Envious; Pyrrho, Unlearned and unmanner’d.
But these men are mad; for, of the excellent candor of Epicurus towards all men, there are many witnesses; his Country, which honoured him with Statues of Brasse; his Friends, who were so many, that whole Cities could not contain them; his disciples, who were also taken with his Sirenicall doctrine, except Metrodorus the Stratonicean, who, perhaps over-burdened with his excessive goodnesse, revolted to Carneades; the Succession of his School, which, when all the rest were almost quite worn out, remained constant, and ordained so many Masters one after another, as cannot be numbered; his piety towards his parents, his kindnesse towards his brethren, his meeknesse towards his servants, (as may appear by his Will, and their studying Philosophy with him, amongst whom, Mus, formerly mentioned, was most eminent); and in general, his humanity towards all, his devotion to the gods, and love to his Country, was beyond expression. He would not accept of any publick Office, out of an excessive modesty; and, in the most difficult troublesome times, continued in Greece, where he lived constantly; except that twice or thrice he made a journey to his friends on the borders of Ionia. But to him they resorted from all parts, and lived with him (as Apollodorus relates) in the Garden, which he purchased with 80 Minae. Diocles, in his third Book, De Incursione, saith, They used a most frugall spare diet, for they were contended with a pint of small wine, and for the most part they drunk nothing but water. And that Epicurus would not have them
to put their Estates into one common stock, as Pythagoras ordained, saying, The goods of friends are common; for this argued distrust, and where there is distrust, there is no friendship. As for himself, in his Epistles, that he was contented with water onely, and coose bread; And send me, saith he, a little Cytheridian Cheese, that I may feast my self when I have a mind. Such was he, who professed, that Pleasure is the End, or chief Good; for which, Athenaeus, in an Epigram, thus commends him:
Man’s most unhappy race for worst things toils, For wealth (unsatiate) raiseth wars and broils. Nature to wealth a narrow bound assign’d, But vain opinions waies unbounded find. Thus Neoclided; whom the sacred Quire Of Muses, or Apollo did inspire.
But this we shall understand better from his own doctrine and words. Hitherto Laertius in vindication of Epicurus; which subject is more fully and rhetorically handled by the learned Gassendus, De vita & Moribus Epicuri, in the six last Books.
TOP LEVEL TABLE OF CONTENTS
 lib. 10
 lib. 1. de themat.
 de nat. deor. lib 1.
 lib. 13.
 loc cit.
 in voce Epicurus
 lib. 6.
 in Lemide.
 in Thesee.
 de urb.
 loc. cit.
 Silv. lib 1 & 2
 lib. 15. cp. 16
 var. hist, 4.
 lib. 10.
 in Solone.
 loc. cit.
 in Anthol. lib. 3.
 lib. 14.
 de nat.deor. lib. 1.
 in voc. Epicur.
 loc. cit.
 adv. Colot. lib. 2
 de amor. Frat.
 adv. Col. 2.
 loc. cit.
 lib. 10.
 lib. 35. cap. 2.
 de die nat.
 lib. 10.
 lib. 5.
 in Chron.
 loc. cit.
 in voc. Epis.
 de vi. Cler.
 This anonymous Writer is no other than Scaliger, whose mistakes, for the most part, Meurfius hath unhappily followed, and taken pains to confute the rest, conceiving him some ancient Author.
 lib 10.
 lib. 14.
 loc. cit.
 adv. Col. iib.2
 in Epic.
 Epist. 18
 lib. 10
 in Epic.
 de nat. deor. 1.
 Stroim. lib. 1.
 adv. nath. 1.
 loc. cit.
 de nat. deor.
 adv. Col. 1.a.
 Ecl. Phyf.
 cap: 1.
 locis citatis.
 apud Laert. lib. 10.
 loc. cit.
 lib. 9.
 in Epic.
 lib. 10.
 adv. Phys. lib. 2.
 loc. cit.
 lib. 1.
 adv. Col: 1.
 loc. cit.
 lib. 19, cap. 4.
 in Attic.
 in Imag.
 ad Attic: ep: 2.14.
 Sat. 14.
 in lexic.
 in lexic.
 lib. 10.
 in demetr.
 loc. cit.
 de occ. viv
 de fin. lib?
 loc. cit. cap 8.
 lib. 1. cap. 8.
 lib. 10
 de amor. fra.
 adv. Col. 2
 as Genebr. lib: 2. Chronol.
 in Epic.
 lib: de co.
 Erasm: Chil: 2. Centur: 10.
 in Neocl.
 Epist. 6.
 de din: lib. 2.
 lib. 13.
 loc. cit.
 lib. 10.
 in Not: ad Laert.
 lib. 2.
 lib. 3. cap 21.
 adv. Col.
 Strom. 2.
 Acad. 2?
 lib. 10.
 adv. Col 1. x.
 lib. 6.
 in Somn. Scip. lib. 1.
 Epist. 21.
 lib. 1. cap. 12
 Saturn. I. II.
 lib. 13.
 de Nat. deor.
 Strom. lib. 4.
 lib. 8. and 10.
 lib. 1.
 lib. 19.
 lib. 10.
 adv. Celf. lib. 7.
 Comment in 1. lib. Hipp. de nat. hum.
 lib. 2. cap. 1.
 adv. Col lib. 1.
 de din. lib. 2.
 de nat. deor. 2.
 adv. Phys. lib. 2.
 in Pseudom.
 lib. 4. Acad.
 adv. Col. 2.
 de nat. deor. 1.
 de occ. viv.
 adv. Col. 2.
 lib. 3 & 9.
 in Lycurgo.
 Symp. quaest. 1. 1.
 deipn. 5.
 adv. Col. 1. Symp. quaest. 3. 3.
 apud Laert.
 adv. Col. 3.
 adv. Math.
 adv. Gram.
 adv. Col. 1.
 lib. 5.
 adv. Col.
 lib. 10.
 adv. Col. 2.
 lib. 14.
 in Pub.
 lib. 2.
 in Phaen. Arat.
 adv. Col. 1.
 lib. 7.
 lib. 10.
 adv. Math. 1.
 in Protag. lib. 9.
 deipn. 8.
 de Praepar. lib. 15.
 deipn. 13.
 Epist. 13.
 Cent. 16. Paraem. 95.
 lib. 10.
 de fin. 2.
 de Iaps. in salut.
 lib. 3.
 Tusc. 3.
 de devin. 2.
 de nat. deor. 1.
 lib. 10.
 in Lex.
 in Lex.
 Laert. lib. 10
 in Lex.
 loc. cit.
 de fin. lib. 2.
 loc. cit.
 lib. 10.
 Strom. lib. 2.
 de fato
 lib. 7. cap. 48.
 in Maerob.
 de die nat.
 in Cat. Majore
 lib. 8. cap. 13.
 de orae. def.
 in Lex.
 lib. 10.
 lib. 3. cap.1.
 in Lex.
 lib. 10.
 lib. 35. cap. 2.
 lib. 7.
 loc. citat.
 de fin. 1.
 Alex. XXX ab. Alex. 2. 19.
 Epist. 13. 1.
 de fin. 1;
 de finib. 2.
 lib. 4.
 in Epic.
 in Eun.
 lib. 10.
 praep. lib. 14.
 lib. 3. cap. 17.
 Acad. 4.
 Orat. 4.
 Epist. 35.
 Praep. lib. 14
 lib. 1. cap. 8.
 lib. 14.
 lib. 10.
 adv.log. 2.
 deipn. 3.
 lib. 7.
 de nat. deor. 1.
 Epist. 5. 11.