Gaius Musonius Rufus

Runar M. Thorsteinsson

in Roman Christianity and Roman Stoicism

Published in print April 2010 | ISBN: 9780199578641
Published online September 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191722868 | DOI:
Gaius Musonius Rufus

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Subsequent to a general introduction to the life of Musonius (ca. 25–100 CE), who was a towering figure in Roman Stoicism, an overview of his moral teaching was provided. Musonius was widely celebrated for his moral integrity. The sources on him reveal a teacher of philosophy who was particularly concerned with social issues. He considered the four traditional cardinal virtues more or less sufficient as the basis for ethics, but he could also define virtue as humanity and concern for the welfare of one's fellow human beings. This definition of virtue was in line with Musonius' heavy emphasis on concrete social matters, like questions concerning the family, the status of women, and the situation of the less fortunate in society.

Keywords: Musonius Rufus; moral integrity; virtue; humanity; social issues; family; women

Chapter.  7249 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Religion

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