Epictetus in Roman Biography

Ep-ic-te'tus, [Gf.'EOT/cT^ros-; Fr. Epictete, i'pekW; Ger. Epiktet, a-pik-tat' ; It. Epitetto, 4-pe-tet'to,] a celebrated Stoic philosopher, was born at Hierapolis, in Phrygia, about 60 a.d. He was a freedman of Epaphroditus, a favourite servant of Nero. He retired from Rome to Nicopolis, in Epii us, in consequence of an edict by which Doniitian banished the philosophers, in 89 A.D. Few other events of his life are known. He acquired a great reputation as a teacher of philosophy, which he made subservient to practical morality. His fife was an example of temperance, moderation, and other virtues. His temper and principles were less austere, and more allied to the spirit of the gospel, than those of the early Stoics. He left no written works ; but his doctrines were recorded by his disciple Arrian in eight books, four of which have come down to us. No heathen philosopher taught a higher or purer system of morality. "The maxim suffer and abstain (from evil)," says Professor liiandis, "which he followed throughout his life, was based with him on the firm belief in a wise and benevolent government of Providence; and in this respect he approaches the Christian doctrine more than any of the earlier Stoics, though there is not a trace in the Epietetea to show that he was acquainted with Christianity." (Smith's "Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology.") His "Enchiridion," or "Manual," has been translated into English by Mrs. E. Carter. See Ritter, "History of Philosophy;" Fabricius, " P.ibliotheca Graca ; ' J. V. Bkver, " Ueber Epiktet imd sein Handbuch der Stoischen Moral," 1705; (;. BoiUtAU, "Vie d'Epictete et sa Philosophic 1655, and English version of the same, by I Davies 1670.

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