By Luis Navia
The existence and teachings of Diogenes of Sinope, the Greek thinker who gave upward thrust to classical Cynicism, deserve cautious attention due to their relevance to modern moral matters. the duty of reconstructing the philosopher's existence, notwithstanding, is highly tricky, simply because in his case, greater than in these of different old philosophers, we needs to deal not just with the shortage of trustworthy resources and stories, but additionally with the mountains of anecdotal and fictional bills which are answerable for the production of a veritable literary legend round the Cynic who as soon as lived in a bathtub. This finished learn reconstructs his biography at the foundation of classical and Arabic resources, identifies the most rules and rules of his philosophy, and indicates the applying of his philosophical message for our modern world.
It additionally contains an generally annotated translation of Diogenes Laertius' Life of Diogenes of Sinope, that's our important resource of knowledge concerning the philosopher.
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Extra resources for Diogenes of Sinope: The Man in the Tub
Throughout the night he lay gasping for breath, until, as we are told, he did not j ust die but banish the fever through his death. There is also a report that attributes his death to the bite of a dog, 77 a most fitting explanation, regardless of its questionable historical basis. The scene itself is colorful: Diogenes, known universally as the Dog and depicted in works of art living in the company of dogs, is about to eat a raw octopus. The surrounding dogs want a piece of the octopus, and while distributing the creature among them, one of the dogs bites the philosopher, which occasions his death.
Muhtasar Siwan al-hikma, for instance, tells us that he was ugly, and Ibn-Hindu (Diogenes 50) recounts how Alexander once sent a magnificent robe to Diogenes, who, declining the gift, said that when someone ugly wears a beautiful robe, its beauty renders him uglier, whereas if he wears something plain and ugly, his own ugliness is hidden and he gives the appearance of being handsome. In a passage of Sahrastani (Diogenes 5), we hear that once a handsome man expressed amazement at Diogenes' remarkable ugliness, which elicited from him the com ment that his physical appearance was not something that he had chosen or some thing within his power to change, for which reason he could not be blamed for it.
H . " Litterre Numismaticre Vindobonenses I ( I 979), pp. 49-63 . For comments on various numismatic findings that could shed light on Diogenes ' role in the defacement of the currency, see J. " Revue Numismatique 1 8 ( 1 9 1 4), pp. 1 41 9. 3 7 . Sayre (Diogenes ofSinope, p. C. and that the currency defacement must have occurrep after that time. This may be supported by the numismatic research of T. " Revue des Etudes Grecques 39 ( 1 926), pp. xlv-xlvi. 38. D. R. Dudley, A History of Cynicism From Diogenes to the 61h Century A .