Damascius

Chaldaean Oracles

CHALDAEAN ORACLES A revelatory poem, written in Greek hexameter verse, composed or edited by a certain magician named Julianus, who lived during the reign of Marcus Aurelius. Its importance is twofold: it is the last major sacred book of pagan antiquity, and it had major influence on the development of Neoplatonism from Porphyry to Psellus. …

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Asclepiades

ASCLEPIADES An Alexandrian Neoplatonic philosopher of the late fifth century, from an Egyptian family that owned an ancestral estate at Phenebythis in the nome of Panopolis. He is mentioned in three primary sources: Damascius’ Life of Isidorus, composed in the early sixth century, offers information about his role as a pagan religious figure; the Syriac …

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Heraiscus

HERAISCUS An Alexandrian Neoplatonic philosopher of the late fifth century and a pagan priest. He came from an Egyptian family that owned an ancestral estate at Phenebythis in the nome Panopolis. Three primary sources mention him: Damascius’ Life of Isidore, composed in the early sixth century, offers fragmentary information about Heraiscus’ role as a pagan …

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Horapollon

HORAPOLLON An intellectual active during the late fifth century. He came from an Egyptian family who owned an ancestral estate at Phenebythis in the nome Panopolis. He was a leading Neoplatonic philosopher and religious figure in Alexandria. Three primary sources provide information about him: Damascius’ Life of Isidore, composed in the early sixth century, preserves …

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Hypatia of Alexandria

Hypatia

HYPATIA  Hypatia, a non-Christian philosopher in Alexandria (ca. 355–415), whose murder in 415 has been viewed as a watershed moment in the religious history of the city. Daughter of the mathematician Theon, she studied mathematics and philosophy and in the 380s succeeded her father as head of his school. Teaching in the Plotinian tradition of …

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