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Panaetius

(c. 185—109 bc)


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(c.185–109 bc),

Stoic philosopher (see stoicism) from Rhodes. He studied with Crates of Mallus at Pergamum and with the leaders of the Stoic school at Athens. He moved to Rome in the 140s and became, like Polybius, part of the entourage of Cornelius Scipio Aemilianus. He accompanied Scipio on a long journey in the Mediterranean (140/139). It is said that he lived alternately in Rome and Athens. In 129 he became head of the school. He died in Athens in 109.

Panaetius seems to have been more open to the views of Plato and Aristotle than were many Stoics, and to have questioned the earlier belief in a periodic world‐conflagration. Unlike earlier Stoics, he doubted the efficacy of astrology and divination, though he retained a belief in divine providence. In ethics, he is associated with a more practical emphasis on the moral situation of ordinary men and a reduced emphasis on the morally perfect sage. Bks. 1–2 of  Cicero's On Duty were heavily influenced by Panaetius.

Subjects: Classical Studies — Philosophy.


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