|6. Diogenes Laertius, Lives of The Philosophers, 6.7, 6.11, 6.15, 6.22-6.23, 6.26-6.29, 6.31, 6.34-6.35, 6.37-6.38, 6.46, 6.51, 6.54, 6.57-6.59, 6.61, 6.63, 6.66, 6.69, 6.72, 6.83, 6.85-6.88, 6.96-6.98, 6.103-6.104, 7.3-7.4, 7.183 (3rd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)
Tagged with subjects: • Crates • Crates of Athens • Crates of Thebes • Crates the Cynic • Crates, Cynic • Crates, Cynic, Sex debunked • Hipparchia, wife of Crates • Musonius some level of equality required, Crates exceptional among Cynics in marrying someone who loved him • tuphos, and Crates the Cynic • wisdom (sophia), Crates the Cynic
Found in books: Bowie (2023), Essays on Ancient Greek Literature and Culture, Volume 2: Comedy, Herodotus, Hellenistic and Imperial Greek Poetry, the Novels. 424; Brouwer (2013), The Stoic Sage: The Early Stoics on Wisdom, Sagehood and Socrates, 123, 138, 141, 157; Esler (2000), The Early Christian World, 64; Long (2006), From Epicurus to Epictetus Studies in Hellenistic and Roman Philosophy, 11, 79, 81, 82, 105, 106; Malherbe et al. (2014), Light from the Gentiles: Hellenistic Philosophy and Early Christianity: Collected Essays of Abraham J, 156, 524, 639; Masterson (2016), Man to Man: Desire, Homosociality, and Authority in Late-Roman Manhood. 74; Rutledge (2012), Ancient Rome as a Museum: Power, Identity, and the Culture of Collecting, 78; Sorabji (2000), Emotion and Peace of Mind: From Stoic Agitation to Christian Temptation, 197, 274; Wolfsdorf (2020), Early Greek Ethics, 657, 663, 666, 672
6.7 Being asked what learning is the most necessary, he replied, How to get rid of having anything to unlearn. And he advised that when men are slandered, they should endure it more courageously than if they were pelted with stones.And he used to taunt Plato with being conceited. At all events when in a procession he spied a spirited charger he said, turning to Plato, It seems to me that you would have made just such a proud, showy steed. This because Plato was constantly praising horseflesh. And one day he visited Plato, who was ill, and seeing the basin into which Plato had vomited, remarked, The bile I see, but not the pride.
6.11 And he held virtue to be sufficient in itself to ensure happiness, since it needed nothing else except the strength of a Socrates. And he maintained that virtue is an affair of deeds and does not need a store of words or learning; that the wise man is self-sufficing, for all the goods of others are his; that ill repute is a good thing and much the same as pain; that the wise man will be guided in his public acts not by the established laws but by the law of virtue; that he will also marry in order to have children from union with the handsomest women; furthermore that he will not disdain to love, for only the wise man knows who are worthy to be loved.
6.15 Antisthenes gave the impulse to the indifference of Diogenes, the continence of Crates, and the hardihood of Zeno, himself laying the foundations of their state. Xenophon calls him the most agreeable of men in conversation and the most temperate in everything else.His writings are preserved in ten volumes. The first includes:A Treatise on Expression, or Styles of Speaking.Ajax, or The Speech of Ajax.Odysseus, or Concerning Odysseus.A Defence of Orestes, or Concerning Forensic Writers.Isography (similar writing), or Lysias and Isocrates.A Reply to the Speech of Isocrates entitled Without Witnesses.Vol. 2 includes:of the Nature of Animals.of Procreation of Children, or of Marriage: a discourse on love.of the Sophists: a work on Physiognomy.
6.22 Through watching a mouse running about, says Theophrastus in the Megarian dialogue, not looking for a place to lie down in, not afraid of the dark, not seeking any of the things which are considered to be dainties, he discovered the means of adapting himself to circumstances. He was the first, say some, to fold his cloak because he was obliged to sleep in it as well, and he carried a wallet to hold his victuals, and he used any place for any purpose, for breakfasting, sleeping, or conversing. And then he would say, pointing to the Stoa of Zeus and the Pompeion, that the Athenians had provided him with places to live in. 6.23 He did not lean upon a staff until he grew infirm; but afterwards he would carry it everywhere, not indeed in the city, but when walking along the road with it and with his wallet; so say Olympiodorus, once a magistrate at Athens, Polyeuctus the orator, and Lysanias the son of Aeschrio. He had written to some one to try and procure a cottage for him. When this man was a long time about it, he took for his abode the tub in the Metroon, as he himself explains in his letters. And in summer he used to roll in it over hot sand, while in winter he used to embrace statues covered with snow, using every means of inuring himself to hardship.' "
6.26 And one day when Plato had invited to his house friends coming from Dionysius, Diogenes trampled upon his carpets and said, I trample upon Plato's vainglory. Plato's reply was, How much pride you expose to view, Diogenes, by seeming not to be proud. Others tell us that what Diogenes said was, I trample upon the pride of Plato, who retorted, Yes, Diogenes, with pride of another sort. Sotion, however, in his fourth book makes the Cynic address this remark to Plato himself. Diogenes once asked him for wine, and after that also for some dried figs; and Plato sent him a whole jar full. Then the other said, If some one asks you how many two and two are, will you answer, Twenty? So, it seems, you neither give as you are asked nor answer as you are questioned. Thus he scoffed at him as one who talked without end." '6.27 Being asked where in Greece he saw good men, he replied, Good men nowhere, but good boys at Lacedaemon. When one day he was gravely discoursing and nobody attended to him, he began whistling, and as people clustered about him, he reproached them with coming in all seriousness to hear nonsense, but slowly and contemptuously when the theme was serious. He would say that men strive in digging and kicking to outdo one another, but no one strives to become a good man and true. 6.28 And he would wonder that the grammarians should investigate the ills of Odysseus, while they were ignorant of their own. Or that the musicians should tune the strings of the lyre, while leaving the dispositions of their own souls discordant; that the mathematicians should gaze at the sun and the moon, but overlook matters close at hand; that the orators should make a fuss about justice in their speeches, but never practise it; or that the avaricious should cry out against money, while inordinately fond of it. He used also to condemn those who praised honest men for being superior to money, while themselves envying the very rich. He was moved to anger that men should sacrifice to the gods to ensure health and in the midst of the sacrifice should feast to the detriment of health. He was astonished that when slaves saw their masters were gluttons, they did not steal some of the viands. 6.29 He would praise those who were about to marry and refrained, those who intending to go a voyage never set sail, those who thinking to engage in politics do no such thing, those also who purposing to rear a family do not do so, and those who make ready to live with potentates, yet never come near them after all. He used to say, moreover, that we ought to stretch out our hands to our friends with the fingers open and not closed. Menippus in his Sale of Diogenes tells how, when he was captured and put up for sale, he was asked what he could do. He replied, Govern men. And he told the crier to give notice in case anybody wanted to purchase a master for himself. Having been forbidden to sit down, It makes no difference, said he, for in whatever position fishes lie, they still find purchasers.
6.31 The boys used to get by heart many passages from poets, historians, and the writings of Diogenes himself; and he would practise them in every short cut to a good memory. In the house too he taught them to wait upon themselves, and to be content with plain fare and water to drink. He used to make them crop their hair close and to wear it unadorned, and to go lightly clad, barefoot, silent, and not looking about them in the streets. He would also take them out hunting. They on their part had a great regard for Diogenes and made requests of their parents for him. The same Eubulus relates that he grew old in the house of Xeniades, and when he died was buried by his sons.' "
6.34 To those who said to him, You are an old man; take a rest, What? he replied, if I were running in the stadium, ought I to slacken my pace when approaching the goal? ought I not rather to put on speed? Having been invited to a dinner, he declared that he wouldn't go; for, the last time he went, his host had not expressed a proper gratitude. He would walk upon snow barefoot and do the other things mentioned above. Not only so; he even attempted to eat meat raw, but could not manage to digest it. He once found Demosthenes the orator lunching at an inn, and, when he retired within, Diogenes said, All the more you will be inside the tavern. When some strangers expressed a wish to see Demosthenes, he stretched out his middle finger and said, There goes the demagogue of Athens." "6.35 Some one dropped a loaf of bread and was ashamed to pick it up; whereupon Diogenes, wishing to read him a lesson, tied a rope to the neck of a wine-jar and proceeded to drag it across the Ceramicus.He used to say that he followed the example of the trainers of choruses; for they too set the note a little high, to ensure that the rest should hit the right note. Most people, he would say, are so nearly mad that a finger makes all the difference. For, if you go along with your middle finger stretched out, some one will think you mad, but, if it's the little finger, he will not think so. Very valuable things, said he, were bartered for things of no value, and vice versa. At all events a statue fetches three thousand drachmas, while a quart of barley-flour is sold for two copper coins." 6.37 One day, observing a child drinking out of his hands, he cast away the cup from his wallet with the words, A child has beaten me in plainness of living. He also threw away his bowl when in like manner he saw a child who had broken his plate taking up his lentils with the hollow part of a morsel of bread. He used also to reason thus: All things belong to the gods. The wise are friends of the gods, and friends hold things in common. Therefore all things belong to the wise. One day he saw a woman kneeling before the gods in an ungraceful attitude, and wishing to free her of superstition, according to Zoilus of Perga, he came forward and said, Are you not afraid, my good woman, that a god may be standing behind you? – for all things are full of his presence – and you may be put to shame?' "6.38 He dedicated to Asclepius a bruiser who, whenever people fell on their faces, used to run up to them and bruise them.All the curses of tragedy, he used to say, had lighted upon him. At all events he wasA homeless exile, to his country dead. A wanderer who begs his daily bread.But he claimed that to fortune he could oppose courage, to convention nature, to passion reason. When he was sunning himself in the Craneum, Alexander came and stood over him and said, Ask of me any boon you like. To which he replied, Stand out of my light. Some one had been reading aloud for a very long time, and when he was near the end of the roll pointed to a space with no writing on it. Cheer up, my men, cried Diogenes; there's land in sight." "
6.46 Being short of money, he told his friends that he applied to them not for alms, but for repayment of his due. When behaving indecently in the marketplace, he wished it were as easy to relieve hunger by rubbing an empty stomach. Seeing a youth starting off to dine with satraps, he dragged him off, took him to his friends and bade them keep strict watch over him. When a youth effeminately attired put a question to him, he declined to answer unless he pulled up his robe and showed whether he was man or woman. A youth was playing cottabos in the baths. Diogenes said to him, The better you play, the worse it is for you. At a feast certain people kept throwing all the bones to him as they would have done to a dog. Thereupon he played a dog's trick and drenched them." "
6.51 Good men he called images of the gods, and love the business of the idle. To the question what is wretched in life he replied, An old man destitute. Being asked what creature's bite is the worst, he said, of those that are wild a sycophant's; of those that are tame a flatterer's. Upon seeing two centaurs very badly painted, he asked, Which of these is Chiron? (worse man). Ingratiating speech he compared to honey used to choke you. The stomach he called livelihood's Charybdis. Hearing a report that Didymon the flute-player had been caught in adultery, his comment was, His name alone is sufficient to hang him. To the question why gold is pale, his reply was, Because it has so many thieves plotting against it. On seeing a woman carried in a litter, he remarked that the cage was not in keeping with the quarry." "
6.54 On being asked by somebody, What sort of a man do you consider Diogenes to be? A Socrates gone mad, said he. Being asked what was the right time to marry, Diogenes replied, For a young man not yet: for an old man never at all. Being asked what he would take to be soundly cuffed, he replied, A helmet. Seeing a youth dressing with elaborate care, he said, If it's for men, you're a fool; if for women, a knave. One day he detected a youth blushing. Courage, quoth he, that is the hue of virtue. One day after listening to a couple of lawyers disputing, he condemned them both, saying that the one had no doubt stolen, but the other had not lost anything. To the question what wine he found pleasant to drink, he replied, That for which other people pay. When he was told that many people laughed at him, he made answer, But I am not laughed down." "
6.57 On coming to Myndus and finding the gates large, though the city itself was very small, he cried, Men of Myndus, bar your gates, lest the city should run away. Seeing a man who had been caught stealing purple, he said:Fast gripped by purple death and forceful fate.When Craterus wanted him to come and visit him, No, he replied, I would rather live on a few grains of salt at Athens than enjoy sumptuous fare at Craterus's table. He went up to Anaximenes the rhetorician, who was fat, and said, Let us beggars have something of your paunch; it will be a relief to you, and we shall get advantage. And when the same man was discoursing, Diogenes distracted his audience by producing some salt fish. This annoyed the lecturer, and Diogenes said, An obol's worth of salt fish has broken up Anaximenes' lecture-class." "6.58 Being reproached for eating in the market-place, Well, it was in the market-place, he said, that I felt hungry. Some authors affirm that the following also belongs to him: that Plato saw him washing lettuces, came up to him and quietly said to him, Had you paid court to Dionysius, you wouldn't now be washing lettuces, and that he with equal calmness made answer, If you had washed lettuces, you wouldn't have paid court to Dionysius. When some one said, Most people laugh at you, his reply was, And so very likely do the asses at them; but as they don't care for the asses, so neither do I care for them. One day observing a youth studying philosophy, he said, Well done, Philosophy, that thou divertest admirers of bodily charms to the real beauty of the soul." "6.59 When some one expressed astonishment at the votive offerings in Samothrace, his comment was, There would have been far more, if those who were not saved had set up offerings. But others attribute this remark to Diagoras of Melos. To a handsome youth, who was going out to dinner, he said, You will come back a worse man. When he came back and said next day, I went and am none the worse for it, Diogenes said, Not Worse-man (Chiron), but Lax-man (Eurytion). He was asking alms of a bad-tempered man, who said, Yes, if you can persuade me. If I could have persuaded you, said Diogenes, I would have persuaded you to hang yourself. He was returning from Lacedaemon to Athens; and on some one asking, Whither and whence? he replied, From the men's apartments to the women's." "
6.61 He was gathering figs, and was told by the keeper that not long before a man had hanged himself on that very fig-tree. Then, said he, I will now purge it. Seeing an Olympian victor casting repeated glances at a courtesan, See, he said, yonder ram frenzied for battle, how he is held fast by the neck fascinated by a common minx. Handsome courtesans he would compare to a deadly honeyed potion. He was breakfasting in the marketplace, and the bystanders gathered round him with cries of dog. It is you who are dogs, cried he, when you stand round and watch me at my breakfast. When two cowards hid away from him, he called out, Don't be afraid, a hound is not fond of beetroot." 6.63 On being asked what he had gained from philosophy, he replied, This at least, if nothing else – to be prepared for every fortune. Asked where he came from, he said, I am a citizen of the world. Certain parents were sacrificing to the gods, that a son might be born to them. But, said he, do you not sacrifice to ensure what manner of man he shall turn out to be? When asked for a subscription towards a club, he said to the president:Despoil the rest; off Hector keep thy hands.The mistresses of kings he designated queens; for, said he, they make the kings do their bidding. When the Athenians gave Alexander the title of Dionysus, he said, Me too you might make Sarapis. Some one having reproached him for going into dirty places, his reply was that the sun too visits cesspools without being defiled.' "
6.66 Being reproached with drinking in a tavern, Well, said he, I also get my hair cut in a barber's shop. Being reproached with accepting a cloak from Antipater, he replied:The gods' choice gifts are nowise to be spurned.When some one first shook a beam at him and then shouted Look out, Diogenes struck the man with his staff and added Look out. To a man who was urgently pressing his suit to a courtesan he said, Why, hapless man, are you at such pains to gain your suit, when it would be better for you to lose it? To one with perfumed hair he said, Beware lest the sweet scent on your head cause an ill odour in your life. He said that bad men obey their lusts as servants obey their masters." "
6.69 Being asked what was the most beautiful thing in the world, he replied, Freedom of speech. On entering a boys' school, he found there many statues of the Muses, but few pupils. By the help of the gods, said he, schoolmaster, you have plenty of pupils. It was his habit to do everything in public, the works of Demeter and of Aphrodite alike. He used to draw out the following arguments. If to breakfast be not absurd, neither is it absurd in the market-place; but to breakfast is not absurd, therefore it is not absurd to breakfast in the marketplace. Behaving indecently in public, he wished it were as easy to banish hunger by rubbing the belly. Many other sayings are attributed to him, which it would take long to enumerate."
6.72 He maintained that all things are the property of the wise, and employed such arguments as those cited above. All things belong to the gods. The gods are friends to the wise, and friends share all property in common; therefore all things are the property of the wise. Again as to law: that it is impossible for society to exist without law; for without a city no benefit can be derived from that which is civilized. But the city is civilized, and there is no advantage in law without a city; therefore law is something civilized. He would ridicule good birth and fame and all such distinctions, calling them showy ornaments of vice. The only true commonwealth was, he said, that which is as wide as the universe. He advocated community of wives, recognizing no other marriage than a union of the man who persuades with the woman who consents. And for this reason he thought sons too should be held in common.' "
6.83 He came to be a distinguished man; so much so that he is even mentioned by the comic poet Meder. At any rate in one of his plays, The Groom, his words are:One Monimus there was, a wise man, Philo,But not so very famous.a. He, you mean,Who carried the scrip?b. Nay, not one scrip, but three.Yet never a word, so help me Zeus, spake heTo match the saying, Know thyself, nor suchFamed watchwords. Far beyond all these he went,Your dusty mendicant, pronouncing wholly vainAll man's supposings.Monimus indeed showed himself a very grave moralist, so that he ever despised mere opinion and sought only truth.He has left us, besides some trifles blended with covert earnestness, two books, On Impulses and an Exhortation to Philosophy." "
6.85 5. CRATESCrates, son of Ascondas, was a Theban. He too was amongst the Cynic's famous pupils. Hippobotus, however, alleges that he was a pupil not of Diogenes, but of Bryson the Achaean. The following playful lines are attributed to him:There is a city Pera in the midst of wine-dark vapour,Fair, fruitful, passing squalid, owning nought,Into which sails nor fool nor parasiteNor glutton, slave of sensual appetite,But thyme it bears, garlic, and figs and loaves,For which things' sake men fight not each with other,Nor stand to arms for money or for fame." '6.86 There is also his widely circulated day-book, which runs as follows:Set down for the chef ten minas, for the doctorOne drachma, for a flatterer talents five,For counsel smoke, for mercenary beautyA talent, for a philosopher three obols.He was known as the Door-opener – the caller to whom all doors fly open – from his habit of entering every house and admonishing those within. Here is another specimen of his composition:That much I have which I have learnt and thought,The noble lessons taught me by the Muses:But wealth amassed is prey to vanity.And again he says that what he has gained from philosophy isA quart of lupins and to care for no one.This too is quoted as his:Hunger stops love, or, if not hunger, Time,Or, failing both these means of help, – a halter. 6.87 He flourished in the 113th Olympiad.According to Antisthenes in his Successions, the first impulse to the Cynic philosophy was given to him when he saw Telephus in a certain tragedy carrying a little basket and altogether in a wretched plight. So he turned his property into money, – for he belonged to a distinguished family, – and having thus collected about 200 talents, distributed that sum among his fellow-citizens. And (it is added) so sturdy a philosopher did he become that he is mentioned by the comic poet Philemon. At all events the latter says:In summer-time a thick cloak he would wearTo be like Crates, and in winter rags.Diocles relates how Diogenes persuaded Crates to give up his fields to sheep pasture, and throw into the sea any money he had.' "6.88 In the home of Crates Alexander is said to have lodged, as Philip once lived in Hipparchia's. often, too, certain of his kinsmen would come to visit him and try to divert him from his purpose. These he would drive from him with his stick, and his resolution was unshaken. Demetrius of Magnesia tells a story that he entrusted a banker with a sum of money on condition that, if his sons proved ordinary men he was to pay it to them, but, if they became philosophers, then to distribute it among the people: for his sons would need nothing, if they took to philosophy. Eratosthenes tells us that by Hipparchia, of whom we shall presently speak, he had a son born to him named Pasicles, and after he had ceased to be a cadet on service, Crates took him to a brothel and told him that was how his father had married." 6.96 7. HIPPARCHIAHipparchia too, sister of Metrocles, was captured by their doctrines. Both of them were born at Maroneia.She fell in love with the discourses and the life of Crates, and would not pay attention to any of her suitors, their wealth, their high birth or their beauty. But to her Crates was everything. She used even to threaten her parents she would make away with herself, unless she were given in marriage to him. Crates therefore was implored by her parents to dissuade the girl, and did all he could, and at last, failing to persuade her, got up, took off his clothes before her face and said, This is the bridegroom, here are his possessions; make your choice accordingly; for you will be no helpmeet of mine, unless you share my pursuits. 6.97 The girl chose and, adopting the same dress, went about with her husband and lived with him in public and went out to dinners with him. Accordingly she appeared at the banquet given by Lysimachus, and there put down Theodorus, known as the atheist, by means of the following sophism. Any action which would not be called wrong if done by Theodorus, would not be called wrong if done by Hipparchia. Now Theodorus does no wrong when he strikes himself: therefore neither does Hipparchia do wrong when she strikes Theodorus. He had no reply wherewith to meet the argument, but tried to strip her of her cloak. But Hipparchia showed no sign of alarm or of the perturbation natural in a woman.' "
6.103 Such are the lives of the several Cynics. But we will go on to append the doctrines which they held in common – if, that is, we decide that Cynicism is really a philosophy, and not, as some maintain, just a way of life. They are content then, like Ariston of Chios, to do away with the subjects of Logic and Physics and to devote their whole attention to Ethics. And what some assert of Socrates, Diocles records of Diogenes, representing him as saying: We must inquire intoWhate'er of good or ill within our halls is wrought.They also dispense with the ordinary subjects of instruction. At least Antisthenes used to say that those who had attained discretion had better not study literature, lest they should be perverted by alien influences." "6.104 So they get rid of geometry and music and all such studies. Anyhow, when somebody showed Diogenes a clock, he pronounced it a serviceable instrument to save one from being late for dinner. Again, to a man who gave a musical recital before him he said:By men's minds states are ordered well, and households,Not by the lyre's twanged strings or flute's trilled notes.They hold further that Life according to Virtue is the End to be sought, as Antisthenes says in his Heracles: exactly like the Stoics. For indeed there is a certain close relationship between the two schools. Hence it has been said that Cynicism is a short cut to virtue; and after the same pattern did Zeno of Citium live his life." "
7.3 As he went on reading the second book of Xenophon's Memorabilia, he was so pleased that he inquired where men like Socrates were to be found. Crates passed by in the nick of time, so the bookseller pointed to him and said, Follow yonder man. From that day he became Crates's pupil, showing in other respects a strong bent for philosophy, though with too much native modesty to assimilate Cynic shamelessness. Hence Crates, desirous of curing this defect in him, gave him a potful of lentil-soup to carry through the Ceramicus; and when he saw that he was ashamed and tried to keep it out of sight, with a blow of his staff he broke the pot. As Zeno took to flight with the lentil-soup flowing down his legs, Why run away, my little Phoenician? quoth Crates, nothing terrible has befallen you." "7.4 For a certain space, then, he was instructed by Crates, and when at this time he had written his Republic, some said in jest that he had written it on Cynosura, i.e. on the dog's tail. Besides the Republic he wrote the following works:of Life according to Nature.of Impulse, or Human Nature.of Emotions.of Duty.of Law.of Greek Education.of Vision.of the Whole World.of Signs.Pythagorean Questions.Universals.of Varieties of Style.Homeric Problems, in five books.of the Reading of Poetry.There are also by him:A Handbook of Rhetoric.Solutions.Two books of Refutations.Recollections of Crates.Ethics.This is a list of his writings. But at last he left Crates, and the men above mentioned were his masters for twenty years. Hence he is reported to have said, I made a prosperous voyage when I suffered shipwreck. But others attribute this saying of his to the time when he was under Crates." 7.183 At wine-parties he used to behave quietly, though he was unsteady on his legs; which caused the woman-slave to say, As for Chrysippus, only his legs get tipsy. His opinion of himself was so high that when some one inquired, To whom shall I entrust my son? he replied, To me: for, if I had dreamt of there being anyone better than myself, I should myself be studying with him. Hence, it is said, the application to him of the line:He alone has understanding; the others flit shadow-like around;andBut for Chrysippus, there had been no Stoa.' ' None