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Lunes, Oktubre 17, 2011


Search the internet for facts and information on the following topics. Send your answer thru this blog using the same pattern as i do. Deadline of submission is Tuesday (August 16, 2011)

1.Pope Benedict XV is the only pope honored by Turkey, a Muslim nation. His statue stands at center of city square of Saint Esprit Cathedral,  Istanbul,  Turkey.
2. Who designed the tallest building in Hong Kong?
The designer of the tallest building in Honk Kong is Chris Emmanuelle Daero Fransisco
3. In September 11, 2011, two commercial airplanes commandeered by terrorist crashed and destroyed the World Trade Center in New York. Is this the first time that an airplane crashed into skycraper in New York?
No because the first time that an airplane crashed into a skycraper in New York was in
4. Burj Khalifa (828m) is the tallest building in the world. It is located in Dubai, UAE. The construction started in Sept. 21, 2004 and was finished October 1, 2009.
5. What are the four territories composing the United Kingdom? and where the name Great Britain came from? The 4 territories of UK are England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales.
The name Britain goes back to Roman times when they called England and Wales "Britannia" (or "Britannia Major", to distinguished from "Britannia Minor", ie Brittany in France). The Roman province of Britannia only covered the areas of modern England and Wales. The area of modern Scotland was never finally conquered.
Please research on the following and post through your blog or to this blog as comment.
a) Brief account having the content of who are involved, what are the issues/reasons for the war, how it ended and its result.
            The Peloponnesian War, 431 to 404 BC, was an ancient Greek war fought by Athens and its empire against the Peloponnesian League led by Sparta. Historians have traditionally divided     the war into three phases. In the first phase, the Archidamian War, Sparta launched repeated invasions of Attica, while Athens took advantage of its naval supremacy to raid the coast of the Peloponnese attempting to suppress signs of unrest in its empire. This period of the war was concluded in 421 BC, with the signing of the Peace of Nicias. That treaty, however, was soon undermined by renewed fighting in the Peloponnese. In 415 BC, Athens dispatched a massive expeditionary force to attack Syracuse in Sicily; the attack failed disastrously, with the destruction of the entire force, in 413 BC. This ushered in the final phase of the war, generally referred to either as the Decelean War, or the Ionian War. In this phase, Sparta, now receiving support from Persia, supported rebellions in Athens' subject states in the Aegean Sea and Ionia, undermining Athens' empire, and, eventually, depriving the city of naval supremacy. The destruction of Athens' fleet at Aegospotami effectively ended the war, and Athens surrendered in the following year.
The Peloponnesian War reshaped the Ancient Greek world. On the level of international relations, Athens, the strongest city-state in Greece prior to the war's beginning, was reduced to a state of near-complete subjection, while Sparta became established as the leading power of Greece. The economic costs of the war were felt all across Greece; poverty became widespread in the Peloponnese, while Athens found itself completely devastated, and never regained its pre-war prosperity.[1][2] The war also wrought subtler changes to Greek society; the conflict between democratic Athens and oligarchic Sparta, each of which supported friendly political factions within other states, made civil war a common occurrence in the Greek world.
Greek warfare, meanwhile, originally a limited and formalized form of conflict, was transformed into an all-out struggle between city-states, complete with atrocities on a large scale. Shattering religious and cultural taboos, devastating vast swathes of countryside, and destroying whole cities, the Peloponnesian War marked the dramatic end to the fifth century BC and the golden age of Greece.
It involves the athenian generals(including) Pericles,Cleon,Nicias,Alcibiades, and Demosthenes.And also the spartan generals(including)Archimadus II, Brasidas,and Lysander
2. Persian War
a) Brief account having the content of who are involved, what are the issues/reasons for the war, how it ended and its result.
              The Greco-Persian Wars (also often called the Persian Wars) were a series of conflicts between the Achaemenid Empire of Persia and city-states of the Hellenic world that started in 499 BC and lasted until 449 BC. The collision between the fractious political world of the Greeks and the enormous empire of the Persians began when Cyrus the Great conquered Ionia in 547 BC. Struggling to rule the independent-minded cities of Ionia, the Persians appointed tyrants to rule each of them. This would prove to be the source of much trouble for the Greeks and Persians alike.
In 499 BC, the then tyrant of MiletusAristagoras, embarked on an expedition to conquer the island of Naxos, with Persian support; however, the expedition was a debacle and, pre-empting his dismissal, Aristagoras incited all of Hellenic Asia Minor into rebellion against the Persians. This was the beginning of the Ionian Revolt, which would last until 493 BC, progressively drawing more regions of Asia Minor into the conflict. Aristagoras secured military support from Athens and Eretria, and in 498 BC these forces helped to capture and burn the Persian regional capital of Sardis. The Persian king Darius the Great vowed to have revenge on Athens and Eretria for this act. The revolt continued, with the two sides effectively stalemated throughout 497–495 BC. In 494 BC, the Persians regrouped, and attacked the epicentre of the revolt in Miletus. At the Battle of Lade, the Ionians suffered a decisive defeat, and the rebellion collapsed, with the final members being stamped out the following year.
Seeking to secure his empire from further revolts and from the interference of the mainland Greeks, Darius embarked on a scheme to conquer Greece and to punish Athens and Eretria for burning Sardis. The first Persian invasion of Greece began in 492 BC, with the Persian general Mardonius conquering Thrace and Macedon before several mishaps forced an early end to the campaign. In 490 BC a second force was sent to Greece, this time across the Aegean Sea, under the command of Datis and Artaphernes. This expedition subjugated the Cyclades, before besieging, capturing and razing Eretria. However, while on route to attack Athens, the Persian force was decisively defeated by the Athenians at the Battle of Marathon, ending Persian efforts for the time being. Darius then began to plan to complete the conquest of Greece, but died in 486 BC and responsibility for the conquest passed to his son Xerxes I. In 480 BC, Xerxes personally led the second Persian invasion of Greece with one of the largest ancient armies ever assembled. Victory over the 'Allied' Greek states (led by Sparta and Athens) at the Battle of Thermopylae allowed the Persians to overrun most of Greece. However, while seeking to destroy the combined Greek fleet, the Persians suffered a severe defeat at the Battle of Salamis. The following year, the confederated Greeks went on the offensive, defeating the Persian army at the Battle of Plataea, and ending the invasion of Greece.
The allied Greeks followed up their success by destroying the rest of the Persian fleet at the Battle of Mycale, before expelling Persian garrisons from Sestos (479 BC) and Byzantium (478 BC). The actions of the general Pausanias at the siege of Byzantium alienated many of the Greek states from the Spartans, and the anti-Persian alliance was therefore reconstituted around Athenian leadership, as the so-called Delian League. The Delian League continued to campaign against Persia for the next three decades, beginning with the expulsion of the remaining Persian garrisons from Europe. At the Battle of the Eurymedon in 466 BC, the League won a double victory that finally secured freedom for the cities of Ionia. However, the League's involvement in an Egyptian revolt (from 460–454 BC) resulted in a disastrous defeat, and further campaigning was suspended. A fleet was sent to Cyprus in 451 BC, but achieved little, and when it withdrew the Greco-Persian Wars drew to a quiet end. Some historical sources suggest the end of hostilities was marked by a peace treaty between Athens and Persia, the so-called Peace of Callias.
It involves the greek generals(including)Miltiades,Themistocles,Leonidas I,Pausunias,Cimon,and Pericles.And also the persian generals(including)Artaphernes I,Datis,Artaphernes II,
Xerxes I,Mardonius,Hydarnes,Artabazus,and Megabyzus.

3. Gods and Goddesses of Greece and Rome Compared
Major Gods and Goddesses
Roman and their descriptions
Venus-goddess of beauty
Apollo-god of medicine and music
Mars-god of war
Diana-goddess of hunting
Minerva-goddess of wisdom
Ceres-goddess of good harvest
Pluto-god of the underworld
Vulcan-god of fire
Juno-goddess of the marriage women
Mercury-messenger of the gods
Vesta-goddess of fire and home
Saturn-father of the gods and goddess
Proserpina-wife of Hades
Neptune-god of the oceans and waters
Jupiter-god of lightning and king of the gods 

a)brief history
Ancient Olympic Games 
         The Olympic Games begun at Olympia in Greece in 776 BC. The Greek calendar was based on the Olympiad, the four-year period between games. The games were staged in the wooded valley of Olympia in Elis. Here the Greeks erected statues and built temples in a grove dedicated to Zeus, supreme among the gods. The greatest shrine was an ivory and gold statue of Zeus. Created by the sculptor Phidias, it was considered one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Scholars have speculated that the games in 776 BC were not the first games, but rather the first games held after they were organized into festivals held every four years as a result of a peace agreement between the city-states of Elis and Pisa. The Eleans traced the founding of the Olympic games to their King Iphitos, who was told by the Delphi Oracle to plant the olive tree from which the victors' wreaths were made.
According to Hippias of Elis, who compiled a list of Olympic victors c.400 BC, at first the only Olympic event was a 200-yard dash, called a stadium. This was the only event until 724 BC, when a two-stadia race was added. Two years later the 24-stadia event began, and in 708 the pentathlon was added and wrestling became part of the games. This pentathlon, a five-event match consisted of running, wrestling, leaping, throwing the discus, and hurling the javelin. In time boxing, a chariot race, and other events were included.
The victors of these early games were crowned with wreaths from a sacred olive tree that grew behind the temple of Zeus. According to tradition this tree was planted by Hercules (Heracles), founder of the games. The winners marched around the grove to the accompaniment of a flute while admirers chanted songs written by a prominent poet.
The Olympic Games were held without interruptions in ancient Greece. The games were even held in 480 BC during the Persian Wars, and coincided with the Battle of Thermopylae. Although the Olympic games were never suspended, the games of 364 BC were not considered Olympic since the Arkadians had captured the sanctuary and reorganized the games.
After the Battle of Chaironeia in 338 BC, Philip of Makedon and his son Alexander gained control over the Greek city-states. They erected the Philippeion (a family memorial) in the sanctuary, and held political meetings at Olympia during each Olympiad. In 146 BC, the Romans gained control of Greece and, therefore, of the Olympic games. In 85 BC, the Roman general Sulla plundered the sanctuary to finance his campaign against Mithridates. Sulla also moved the 175th Olympiad (80 BC) to Rome.
The games were held every four years from 776 BC to 393 AD, when they were abolished by the Christian Byzantine Emperor Theodosius I. The ancient Olympic Games lasted for 1170 years.
The successful campaign to revive the Olympics was started in France by Baron Pierre de Coubertin late in the 19th century. The first of the modern Summer Games opened on Sunday, March 24, 1896, in Athens, Greece. The first race was won by an American college student named James Connolly.
             The best amateur athletes in the world match skill and endurance in a series of contests called the Olympic Games. Almost every nation sends teams of selected athletes to take part. The purposes of the Olympic Games are to foster the ideal of a "sound mind in a sound body" and to promote friendship among nations.
The modern Olympic Games are named for athletic contests held in ancient Greece for almost 12 centuries. They were banned in AD 394 but were revived and made international in 1896. The Winter Games were added in 1924. World War I and World War II forced cancellation of the Olympics in 1916, 1940, and 1944, but they resumed in 1948 and are held every four years. After 1992 the Winter and Summer Games were no longer held within the same calendar year. Winter Games were scheduled for 1994, after only a two-year interval, and every four years thereafter. The Summer Games were scheduled for 1996, and every four years thereafter.

b)The games and events in the olympics games are the following:basketball,boxing,swimming,wushu,shooting,taekwondo,track and   field,diving,fencing,gymnastics,soccer,baseball,curling,extreme skateboarding,dog sledding,mix martial arts etc.
c)Filipino winners to the Beijing Olympics
Mark Javier: This is the first Olympic games for the 27-year-old from Dumaguete City, Philippines. He earned an Olympic berth after placing first in the Asian Continental competition in Xian, China. He’s a 2005 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games gold medalist and won a bronze medal in the 2007 SEA Games in Thailand.
Mary Antoinette Rivero: Rivero is also another gold medal hopeful. The 20-year-old student at Ateneo de Manila University nearly captured a silver medal four years ago in Athens. In the semifinals, she faced off against Greece’s Elizavet Mystakidou losing a close 2-3 decision. A win would have guaranteed Rivero a silver medal and a shot at gold. She got neither and lost the bronze medal match.
Marestella Torres: Torres is a 27-year-old competing in the women’s long jump. She captured the gold medal at the 2005 SEA and 2007 SEA Games. The Philippine Track and Field Association (PATAFA) selected Torres to represent the country at the Beijing Games.
Harry Tañamor: Tañamor is the country’s best chance for an Olympic medal perhaps even a gold, according to Sports Illustrated Olympic edition. This is Tañamor’s second Olympic berth. The 29-year-old southpaw boxer from Zamboanga City is competing in the Light Flyweight (48 kg) division. He placed ninth in the 2004 Olympics.
Sheila Mae Perez: This is the third time Perez has qualified for the Olympics. After placing 32nd in the 2000 Australia games, she qualified but did not compete in the 2004 Athens Olympics. She’s won a gold and a silver medal in the 2007 SEA games and is considered by many as one of the best divers in Southeast Asia.
Daniel Coakley: Coakley is a 19-year-old FilAm hailing from Hawaii. He holds the Philippine Record in the 50m freestyle (23.08 seconds) and the SEA Games Record in the same event (22.80 sec.). It’s been reported that Coakley is the grand nephew of the late Teofilo Yldefonso, who is considered by many as the greatest Philippine swimmer. Yldefonso won the Philippines first Olympic medal (bronze) in the 200m-breaststroke event at the 1928 Amsterdam Games.
Miguel Molina: This is the second Olympic berth for the former FilAm Cal Berkeley graduate. Molina is competing in the men’s 200m breaststroke and men’s 200m individual Medley. During the last Olympic, he posted a 2:05.28 time in the 200m individual medley.
Christel Simms: Simms is a 17-year-old FilAm also from Hawaii. Born and raised in the US, she almost did not have a chance to represent the Philippines but the Court of Arbitration of Sports (CAS) upheld her petition to represent her parent’s home country. She qualified for the Olympics after posting 57.17 seconds, the qualifying standard for the 100m freestyle swimming events, at the USA Junior National Swimming Championships.


                                            We know almost nothing about Thales of Miletus. Later generations told many anecdotes about this wise man, but it is difficult to verify the reliability of these stories. What seems certain, however, is that he predicted the solar eclipse of 28 May 585, which was remembered because the Lydian king Alyattes and the Median leader Cyaxares were fighting a battle on that day. Another reliable bit of information is that he did geometrical research, which enabled him to measure the pyramids. However, his most important contribution to European civilization is his attempt to give rational explanations for physical phenomena. Behind the phenomena was not a catalogue of deities, but one single, first principle. Although his identification of this principle with water is rather unfortunate, his idea to look for deeper causes was the true beginning of philosophy and science. Thales died after 547.

Pythagoras. Musei Capitolini, Roma (Italy). Photo Jona Lendering.             Thales was not the only one who was looking for a first cause. Pythagoras of Samos (c.570-c.495) did the same. According to legend, he left his country and studied with the wise men of Egypt, but was taken captive when the Persian king Cambyses invaded the country of the Nile (525). He now became a student of the Chaldaeans of Babylon and the Magians of Persia. Some even say that he visited the Indian Brahmans, because Pythagoras believed in reincarnation. At the end of the sixth century, he lived in southern Italy, where he founded a community of philosophers. In his view, our world was governed by numbers, and therefore essentially harmonious.

Bust of Heraclitus from the Villa dei papiri, Herculaneo (Italy). Photo Marco Prins.    Heraclitus was a rich man from Ephesus and lived c.500, during the Persian occupation of his home town. His philosophical work consists of a series of cryptical pronouncements that force a reader to think. Unfortunately, a great part of his work is lost, which makes it very difficult to reconstruct Heraclitus' ideas. It seems certain, however, that he thought that the basic principle of the universe was the logos, i.e. the fact that it was rationally organized and therefore understandable. Bipolar oppositions are one form of organization, but the sage understands that these oppositions are just aspects of one reality. Fire is the physical aspect of the perfect logos.

Parmenides. Bust from Velia (Italy). Photo Jan van Vliet.
                                          Parmenides of Elea was a younger contemporary of Heraclitus of Ephesus, but he lived at the opposite end of the Greek world: in Italy. Both men were intrigued by the immense variety of phenomena, but where Heraclitus discerned order in the chaos, Parmenides pointed out that the endless variety and eternal changes were just an illusion. In a long poem, which partially survives, he opposed 'being' to 'not being', and pointed out that change was impossible, because it would mean that something that was 'not being' changed into 'being', which is absurd. In other words, we had to distrust our senses and rely solely on our intellect. The result was a distinction between two worlds: the unreal world which we experience every day, and the reality, which we can reach by thinking. This idea was to prove one of the most influential in western culture.

Bust of Democritus. Musei Capitolini, Roma (Italy). Photo Jona Lendering.     One of the solutions to the problem postulated by Parmenides of Elea, was the hypothesis of Democritus of Abdera: matter is made up from atoms. There was no real evidence for this idea (which was not completely new), but it explained why change was possible. The atoms were always moving and clustering in various, temporary combinations. Therefore, things seemed to change, but 'not being' never changed into 'being'. (It was assumed that 'not being' was a vacuum, which means that it is in fact not a 'not being' because a vacuum exists in four dimensions.) The consequence of this idea is that we are allowed to use our senses, although Democritus warns us to be careful.

Socrates. Bust at the Louvre, Paris (France). Photo Marco Prins.
                                          Thales, Pythagoras, Heraclitus, Parmenides, and Democritus had been trying to explain the diversity of nature. The object of the studies of the Athenian philosopher Socrates (469-399) was altogether different: he was interested in ethics. It was his axiom that no one would knowingly do a bad thing. So knowledge was important, because it resulted in good behavior. If we are to believe his student Plato, Socrates was always asking people about what they knew, and invariably they had to admit that they did not really understand what was meant by words like courage, friendship, love etc. Socrates was never without critics. The comic poet Aristophanes ridiculed him in The clouds, and when his pupil Alcibiades had committed high treason, Socrates' position became very difficult. He was forced to drink hemlock after a charge that he had corrupted the youth. Among his students were Antisthenes, Plato and Xenophon.

Antisthenes. Bust at the British museum, London (Britain). Photo Marco Prins.   In the decade after the death of Socrates, Antisthenes (c.445-c.365) was the most important Athenian philosopher. Like his master, he tried to find out what words mean, but he was convinced that it was not possible to establish really good definitions (which brought him into conflict with Plato). He did only partially agree with Socrates that someone who knew what was good, would not do a bad thing. Antisthenes added that one also had to be strong enough ("as strong as Socrates") to pursue what was good. Therefore, Antisthenes recommended physical training of all kinds, and wanted his students to refrain from luxury. His most famous pupil was Diogenes of Sinope.

Plato. Bust at the Musei Capitolini, Roma (Italy). Photo Jona Lendering.
                                         The Athenian philosopher Plato (427-347) is usually called a pupil of Socrates, but his ideas are no less inspired by Parmenides. Plato accepted the world of the phenomena as a mere shadow of the real world of the ideas. When we observe a horse, we recognize what it is because our soul remembers the idea of the horse from the time before our birth. In Plato's political philosophy, only wise men who understand the dual nature of reality are fit to rule the country. He made three voyages to Syracuse to establish his ideal state, both times without lasting results. Plato's hypothesis that our soul was once in a better place and now lives in a fallen world made it easy to combine platonic philosophy and Christianity, which accounts for the popularity of Platonism in Late Antiquity. One element, however, was not acceptable: the idea of platonic love - a homosexual relation with pedagogical aspects.

Diogenes. Musei Vaticani, Roma (Italy). Photo Marco Prins.        Diogenes of Sinope (c.412-c.323) was a student of Antisthenes. Both men are called the founder of the school that is known as Cynicism. The essential point in this world-view is that man suffers from too much civilization. We are happiest when our life is simplest, which means that we have to live in accordance with nature - just like animals. Human culture, however, is dominated by things that prevent simplicity: money, for example, and our longing for status. Like his master, Diogenes refrained from luxury and often ridiculed civilized life. His philosophy gained some popularity because he focused upon personal integrity, whereas men like Plato and Aristotle of Stagira had been thinking about man's life and honor as member of a city state - a type of political unit that was losing importance in the age of Alexander the Great. However, we can not return to nature. The Cynics became some sort of jesters, accepted at the royal courts because their criticism was essentially harmless.

Bust of the philosopher and scientist Aristotle. Archaeological Museum, Palermo (Italy). Photo Jona Lendering.       Plato's most famous student was the Macedonian scientist Aristotle of Stagira (384-322). After the death of his master, he studied biology and accepted a position as teacher of the Macedonian crown prince Alexander at Mieza. When the Macedonians subdued Greece, Aristotle founded a school at Athens. Most of his writings are lost; what remains are his lecture notes, which were rediscovered in the first century BCE. During the last decades, scholars have started to re-examine the fragments of the lost works, which has led to important changes in our understanding of Aristotle's philosophy. However, the accepted view remains that he replaced his master's speculations with a more down-to-earth philosophy. His main works are the Prior Analytics(in which he described the rules of logic), the Physics, the Animal History, the Rhetorics, the Poetics, the Metaphysics, the Nicomachean Ethics, and the Politics. All these books have become classics, and it is not exaggerated to say that Aristotle is the most influential philosopher of all ages and the founder of modern science.

            All philosophers are confident that rational thinking is the road to truth. Except for Pyrrho of Elis (c.360-c.270BCE), who entertained some doubts about the quest for knowledge. He argued that we can not fully comprehend nature, do not know for certain whether a statement is true or false, and are unable to build an ethical system on so weak a fundament. People would be happier if they gave up these useless intellectual exercises and postponed their judgment. The result was a conservative political philosophy, because Pyrrho recommended that, even though we had no moral absolutes, we should live by time-honored traditions. The weakness of his system is, of course, twofold: in the first place, one can not postpone a judgment forever, because sometimes action has to be undertaken; in the second place, how can you be certain that certain knowledge is impossible? Pyrrho's world-view is called Skepticism, and may be compared to the postmodernist philosophy of the 1980's.

Epicurus. Bust at the British museum, London (Britain). Photo Marco Prins.           We live happiest when we are free from the pains of life, and a virtuous life is the best way to obtain this goal. This is, in a nutshell, the view of the Samian philosopher Epicurus (342-271). In his opinion, we are unable to understand the gods, who may or may not have created this world but are in any case not really interested in mankind. Nor do we know life after death - if there is an existence at all after our bodies have decomposed. Therefore, we must not speculate about gods and afterlife. In Antiquity, Epicurism was the most popular of all philosophical schools, a popularity which it partially owed to the fact that its founder had explained his thoughts in several maxims, which even the illiterate could remember. Predictably, Christian philosophers attacked Epicurus' ideas about the afterlife and divine providence.

Bust of Zeno from the Villa dei papiri, Herculaneo (Italy). Photo Marco Prins.

                                          After the conquests of Alexander, the world was larger than ever, and the city-state had ceased to be an important political unit. Like Diogenes of Sinope and Epicurus, Zeno of Citium (336-264 BCE) ignored traditional values like prestige and honor, and focused on man's inner peace. In his view, this was reached when a person accepted life as it was, knowing that the world was rationally organized by the logos. A man's mind should control his emotions and body, so that one could live according to the rational principles of the world. It has often been said that Zeno's ideas combine Greek philosophy with Semitic mysticism, but except for his descent from a Phoenician town on Cyprus and an interest in (Babylonian) astronomy, there is not much proof for this idea. This philosophy, called Stoicism, became very influential under Roman officials.

Chrysippus. Bust at the British museum, London (Britain). Photo Marco Prins.    Zeno of Citium was succeeded as head of the Stoic school at Athens by Cleanthes, who was in turn succeeded by Chrysippus, a native of Soli in Cilicia (c.279-c.206). His contributions to the development of philosophy can especially be found in the field of logic, where he studied paradoxes and the way an argument should be constructed. He also reflected upon the use of allegoresis, which is a way to read a text metaphorically and find hidden meanings (or construct them). From now on, philosophers started to use the epics of Homer and the tragedies of Euripides as if they were philosophical treatises. Finally, Chrysippus was the man who concluded that if the rational principle of the universe, the logos, was divine, the world could be defined as a manifestation of God.

Bust of Posidonius (?). Museum of Rhodes (Greece). Photo Bert van der Spek.   We are ill-informed about the development of philosophy after the origin of the Stoa, Epicurism, Skepticism, Cynicism, Aristoteleanism, and Platonism. For several reasons, nearly all texts are lost. This was also the fate of the works of the Stoic sage Posidonius of Apamea (c.135-51), but his books are often quoted by other authors. As a philosopher, he was not an innovator, but applied the theory to science and scholarship. For example, his Histories were a philosophical continuation of the World History of Polybius of Megalopolis. Among his other publications were treatises in which the Stoic world view was applied to everyday subjects: On angerOn virtue, and Consolation. Being more interested in educating the masses than in theoretical purity, he often borrowed ideas from other schools. Philosophy after Posidonius often was a cross-fertilization between viewpoints (e.g., Plutarch of Chaeronea and Plotinus).

      The charismatic teacher and miracle worker Apollonius lived in the first century AD. He was born in Tyana and gave a new interpretation to Pythagoreanism, which was essentially a combination of ascesis and mysticism. In his books On astrology and On sacrifices, he demanded bloodless offerings to the One God, who needs nothing even from beings higher than ourselves. This brought Apollonius into conflict with the religious establishment, but he was recognized as a great sage and received divine honors in the third century. Although the Athenian Philostratus wrote a lengthy Life of Apollonius, hardly anything is certain about the man who was and is frequently compared to the Jewish sage and miracle worker Jesus of Nazareth.

Bust of Plutarch. Museum of Delphi (Greece). Photo Jona Lendering.
                                             In his own age, the Delphian oracle priest Plutarch of Chaeronea (46-c.122) was immensely popular because he was, like Posidonius of Apamea, able to explain philosophical discussions to a general audience. Among his Moral treatises are treatises like Checking anger, the useful The art of listening, the fascinating How to know whether one progresses to virtue, and the charming Advice to bride and groom. Plutarch also wrote double biographies, in which he usually compared a Greek to a Roman (e.g., Alexander and Julius Caesar). In the epilogue, he analyzed their respective characters. The result is not only an entertaining biography, but also a better understanding of a morally exemplary person, which the reader can use for his own progress to virtue.

                        Born in Phrygia, Epictetus (c.50-c.125 CE) became a slave of the emperor Nero's courtier Epaphroditus. When he was old, useless and therefore "freed" from slavery, he had to make a living and started to teach the Stoic philosophy, first at Rome and (after the emperor Domitian had expelled the philosophers in 89) at Nicopolis in western Greece. Because Epictetus was able to explain Stoicism in a systematic way and with an open eye to its practical applications, he had many students from the rich senatorial order, which ruled the Roman empire. Among these men were the future emperor Hadrian and the historian Arrian of Nicomedia, who published several of his conversations. Epictetus wrote a Handbook, which is arguably the most popular book on philosophy that was ever written.

                                          After the age of Posidonius of Apamea, it was not uncommon that philosophers from one school borrowed concepts and ideas from other branches of philosophy. Slowly, the schools were merging, and a new synthesis (called Neo-Platonism) was created by Plotinus (205-270). Like Plato, he accepted that our world was a mere shadow of the world of the ideas, which was in turn -and this was a novel idea- a shadow of an even higher world, which was again a shadow of the One God. In other words, the world has four levels of reality: God was the highest level, and then there were the levels of the intellect, the soul, and matter. (That matter is more real than the speculative levels of existence, was an unusual idea in Antiquity.)  According to Plotinus, the wise man would try, by means of ascesis, to free his soul from matter and unite it with God. Plotinus achieved this mystical unity several times. His philosophy was adopted by the fathers of the church Ambrose and Augustine, and was to remain the philosophical school par excellence until Aristotle of Stagira was rediscovered in the twelfth century.

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