Historical Sketches, Volume I (of 3)
by John Henry Newman
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In his treatise De Legibus, which was written two years later than the De Republica, when he was fifty-five, and shortly after the murder of Clodius, he represents himself as explaining to his brother Quintus and Atticus, in their walks through the woods of Arpinum, the nature and origin of the laws and their actual state, both in other countries and in Rome. The first part only of the subject is contained in the books now extant; the introduction to which we have had occasion to notice, when speaking of his Stoical sentiments on questions connected with State policy. Law he pronounces to be the perfection of reason, the eternal mind, the divine energy, which, while it pervades and unites in one the whole universe, associates gods and men by the more intimate resemblance of reason and virtue, and still more closely men with men, by the participation of common faculties, affections, and situations. He then proves, at length, that justice is not merely created by civil institutions, from the power of conscience, the imperfections of human law, the moral sense, and the disinterestedness of virtue. He next proceeds to unfold the principles, first, of religious law, under the heads of divine worship; the observance of festivals and games; the office of priests, augurs, and heralds; the punishment of sacrilege and purjury; the consecration of land, and the rights of sepulchre; and, secondly, of civil law, which gives him an opportunity of noticing the respective duties of magistrates and citizens. In these discussions, though professedly speaking of the abstract question, he does not hesitate to anticipate the subject of the lost books, by frequent allusions to the history and customs of his own country. It must be added, that in no part of his writings do worse instances occur, than in this treatise, of that vanity which was notoriously his weakness, which are rendered doubly offensive by their being put into the mouth of his brother and Atticus.[218]

Here a period of seven or eight years intervenes, during which he composed little of importance besides his Orations. He then published the De claris Oratoribus and Orator; and a year later, when he was sixty-three, his Academicae Quaestiones, in the retirement from public business to which he was driven by the dictatorship of Caesar. This work had originally consisted of two dialogues, which he entitled Catulus and Lucullus, from the names of the respective speakers in each. These he now remodelled and enlarged into four books, dedicating them to Varro, whom he introduced as advocating, in the presence of Atticus, the tenets of Antiochus, while he himself defended those of Philo. Of this most valuable composition, only the second book (Lucullus) of the first edition and part of the first book of the second are now extant. In the former of those two, Lucullus argues against, and Cicero for, the Academic sect, in the presence of Catulus and Hortensius; in the latter, Varro pursues the history of philosophy from Socrates to Arcesilas, and Cicero continues it down to the time of Carneades. In the second edition the style was corrected, the matter condensed, and the whole polished with extraordinary care and diligence.[219]

The same year he published his treatise De Finibus, or "On the chief good," in five books, in which are explained the sentiments of the Epicureans, Stoics, and Peripatetics on the subject. This is the earliest of his works in which the dialogue is of a disputatious character. It is opened with a defence of the Epicurean tenets, concerning pleasure, by Torquatus; to which Cicero replies at length. The scene then shifts from the Cuman villa to the library of young Lucullus (his father being dead), where the Stoic Cato expatiates on the sublimity of the system which maintains the existence of one only good, and is answered by Cicero in the character of a Peripatetic. Lastly, Piso, in a conversation held at Athens, enters into an explanation of the doctrine of Aristotle, that happiness is the greatest good. The general style of this treatise is elegant and perspicuous; and the last book in particular has great variety and splendour of diction.

It was about this time that Cicero was especially courted by the heads of the dictator's party, of whom Hirtius and Dolabella went so far as to declaim daily at his house for the benefit of his instructions.[220] A visit of this nature to the Tusculan villa, soon after the publication of the De Finibus, gave rise to his work entitled Tusculanae Quaestiones, which professes to be the substance of five philosophical disputes between himself and friends, digested into as many books. He argues throughout after the manner of an Academic, even with an affectation of inconsistency; sometimes making use of the Socratic dialogue, sometimes launching out into the diffuse expositions which characterise his other treatises.[221] He first disputes against the fear of death; and in so doing he adopts the opinion of the Platonic school, as regards the nature of God and the soul. The succeeding discussions on enduring pain, on alleviating grief, on the other emotions of the mind, and on virtue, are conducted for the most part on Stoical principles.[222] This is a highly ornamental composition, and contains more quotations from the poets than any other of Cicero's treatises.

We have already had occasion to remark upon the singular activity of his mind, which becomes more and more conspicuous as we approach the period of his death. During the ensuing year, which is the last of his life, in the midst of the confusion and anxieties consequent on Caesar's death, and the party warfare of his Philippics, he found time to write the De Natura Deorum, De Divinatione, De Fato, De Senectute, De Amicitia, De Officiis, and Paradoxa, besides the treatise on Rhetorical Common Places above mentioned.

Of these, the first three were intended as a full exposition of the conflicting opinions entertained on their respective subjects; the De Fato, however, was not finished according to this plan.[223] His treatise De Natura Deorum, in three books, may be reckoned the most splendid of all his works, and shows that neither age nor disappointment had done injury to the richness and vigour of his mind. In the first book, Velleius, the Epicurean, sets forth the physical tenets of his sect, and is answered by Cotta, who is of the Academic school. In the second, Balbus, the disciple of the Porch, gives an account of his own system, and is, in turn, refuted by Cotta in the third. The eloquent extravagance of the Epicurean, the solemn enthusiasm of the Stoic, and the brilliant raillery of the Academic, are contrasted with extreme vivacity and humour;—while the sublimity of the subject itself imparts to the whole composition a grander and more elevated character, and discovers in the author imaginative powers, which, celebrated as he justly is for playfulness of fancy, might yet appear more the talent of the poet than the orator.

His treatise De Divinatione is conveyed in a discussion between his brother Quintus and himself, in two books. In the former, Quintus, after dividing Divination into the heads of natural and artificial, argues with the Stoics for its sacred nature, from the evidence of facts, the agreement of all nations, and the existence of divine intelligences. In the latter, Cicero questions its authority, with Carneades, from the uncertain nature of its rules, the absurdity and uselessness of the art, and the possibility of accounting from natural causes for the phenomena on which it was founded. This is a curious work, from the numerous cases adduced from the histories of Greece and Rome to illustrate the subject in dispute.

His treatise De Fato is quite a fragment; it purports to be the substance of a dissertation in which he explained to Hirtius (soon after Consul) the sentiments of Chrysippus, Diodorus, Epicurus, Carneades, and others, upon that abstruse subject. It is supposed to have consisted at least of two books, of which we have but the proem of the first, and a small portion of the second.

In his beautiful compositions, De Senectute and De Amicitia, Cato the censor and Laelius are respectively introduced, delivering their sentiments on those subjects. The conclusion of the former, in which Cato discourses on the immortality of the soul, has been always celebrated; and the opening of the latter, in which Fannius and Scaevola come to console Laelius on the death of Scipio, is as exquisite an instance of delicacy and taste in composition as can be found in his works. In the latter he has borrowed largely from the eighth and ninth books of Aristotle's Ethics.

His treatise De Officiis was finished about the time he wrote his second Philippic, a circumstance which illustrates the great versatility of his mental powers. Of a work so extensively celebrated, it is enough to have mentioned the name. Here he lays aside the less authoritative form of dialogue, and, with the dignity of the Roman Consul, unfolds, in his own person, the principles of morals, according to the views of the older schools, particularly of the Stoics. It is written in three books, with great perspicuity and elegance of style; the first book treats of the honestum, or virtue, the second of the utile, or expedience, and the third adjusts the claims of the two, when they happen to interfere with each other.

His Paradoxa Stoicorum might have been more suitably, perhaps, included in his rhetorical works, being six short declamations in support of the positions of Zeno; in which that philosopher's subtleties are adapted to the comprehension of the vulgar, and the events of the times. The second, fourth, and sixth, are respectively directed against Antony, Clodius, and Crassus. They seem to have suffered from time.[224] The sixth is the most eloquent, but the argument of the third is strikingly maintained.

Besides the works now enumerated, we have a considerable fragment of his translation of Plato's Timaeus, which he seems to have finished in his last year. His remaining philosophical works, viz.: the Hortensius, which was a defence of philosophy; De Gloria; De Consolatione, written upon Platonic principles on his daughter's death; De Jure Civili, De Virtutibus, De Auguriis, Chorographia, translations of Plato's Protagoras, and Xenophon's OEconomics, works on Natural History, Panegyric on Cato, and some miscellaneous writings, are, except a few fragments, entirely lost.

* * * * *

His Letters, about one thousand in all, are comprised in thirty-six books, sixteen of which are addressed to Atticus, three to his brother Quintus, one to Brutus, and sixteen to his different friends; and they form a history of his life from his fortieth year. Among those addressed to his friends, some occur from Brutus, Metellus, Plancius, Caelius, and others. For the preservation of this most valuable department of Cicero's writings, we are indebted to Tyro, the author's freedman, though we possess, at the present day, but a part of those originally published. As his correspondence with his friends belongs to his character as a man and politician, rather than to his literary aspect, we have already noticed it in the first part of this memoir.

* * * * *

His Poetical and Historical works have suffered a heavier fate. The latter class, consisting of his commentary on his consulship and his history of his own times, is altogether lost. Of the former, which consisted of the heroic poems Halcyone, Limon, Marius, and his Consulate, the elegy of Tamelastes, translations of Homer and Aratus, epigrams, etc., nothing remains, except some fragments of the Phaenomena and Diosemeia of Aratus. It may, however, be questioned whether literature has suffered much by these losses. We are far, indeed, from speaking contemptuously of the poetical talent of one who possessed so much fancy, so much taste, and so fine an ear.[225] But his poems were principally composed in his youth; and afterwards, when his powers were more mature, his occupations did not allow even to his active mind the time necessary for polishing a language still more rugged in metre than it was in prose. His contemporary history, on the other hand, can hardly have conveyed more explicit, and certainly would have contained less faithful, information than his private correspondence; while, with all the penetration he assuredly possessed, it may be doubted if his diffuse and graceful style was adapted for the deep and condensed thoughts and the grasp of facts and events which are the chief excellences of historical composition.


The Orations which he is known to have composed amount in all to about eighty, of which fifty-nine, either entire or in part, are preserved. Of these some are deliberative, others judicial, others descriptive; some delivered from the rostrum, or in the senate; others in the forum, or before Caesar; and, as might be anticipated from the character already given of his talents, he is much more successful in pleading or in panegyric than in debate or invective. In deliberative oratory, indeed, great part of the effect of the composition depends on its creating in the hearer a high opinion of the speaker; and, though Cicero takes considerable pains to interest the audience in his favour, yet his style is not simple and grave enough, he is too ingenious, too declamatory, discovers too much personal feeling, to elicit that confidence in him, without which argument has little influence. His invectives, again, however grand and imposing, yet, compared with his calmer and more familiar productions, have a forced and unnatural air. Splendid as is the eloquence of his Catilinarians and Philippics, it is often the language of abuse rather than of indignation; and even his attack on Piso, the most brilliant and imaginative of its kind, becomes wearisome from want of ease and relief. His laudatory orations, on the other hand, are among his happiest efforts. Nothing can exceed the taste and beauty of those for the Manilian law, for Marcellus, for Ligarius, for Archias, and the ninth Philippic, which is principally in praise of Servius Sulpicius. But it is in judicial eloquence, particularly on subjects of a lively cast, as in his speeches for Caelius and Muraena, and against Caecilius, that his talents are displayed to the best advantage. In both these departments of oratory the grace and amiableness of his genius are manifested in their full lustre, though none of his orations are without tokens of those characteristic excellences. Historical allusions, philosophical sentiments, descriptions full of life and nature, and polite raillery, succeed each other in the most agreeable manner, without appearance of artifice or effort. Such are his pictures of the confusion of the Catilinarian conspirators on detection;[226] of the death of Metellus;[227] of Sulpicius undertaking the embassy to Antony;[228] the character he draws of Catiline;[229] and his fine sketch of old Appius, frowning on his degenerate descendant Clodia.[230]

These, however, are but incidental and occasional artifices to divert and refresh the mind, since his Orations are generally laid out according to the plan proposed in rhetorical works; the introduction, containing the ethical proof; the body of the speech, the argument, and the peroration addressing itself to the passions of the judges. In opening his case, he commonly makes a profession of timidity and diffidence, with a view to conciliate the favour of his audience; the eloquence, for instance, of Hortensius, is so powerful,[231] or so much prejudice has been excited against his client,[232] or it is his first appearance in the rostrum,[233] or he is unused to speak in an armed assembly,[234] or to plead in a private apartment.[235] He proceeds to entreat the patience of his judges; drops out some generous or popular sentiment, or contrives to excite prejudice against his opponent. He then states the circumstances of his case, and the intended plan of his oration; and here he is particularly clear. But it is when he comes actually to prove his point that his oratorical powers begin to have their full play. He accounts for everything so naturally, makes trivial circumstances tell so happily, so adroitly converts apparent objections into confirmations of his argument, connects independent facts with such ease and plausibility, that it becomes impossible to entertain a question on the truth of his statement. This is particularly observable in his defence of Cluentius, where prejudices, suspicions, and difficulties are encountered with the most triumphant ingenuity; in the antecedent probabilities of his Pro Milone;[236] in his apology for Muraena's public,[237] and Caelius's private life,[238] and his disparagement of Verres's military services in Sicily;[239] it is observable too in the address with which the Agrarian law of Rullus,[240] and the accusation of Rabirius,[241] both popular measures, are represented to be hostile to public liberty; with which Milo's impolitic unconcern is made a touching incident;[242] and Cato's attack upon the crowd of clients which accompanied the candidate for office, a tyrannical disregard for the feelings of the poor.[243] So great indeed is his talent, that he even hurts a good cause by an excess of plausibility.

But it is not enough to have barely proved his point; he proceeds, either immediately, or towards the conclusion of his speech, to heighten the effect by amplification.[244] Here he goes (as it were) round and round his object; surveys it in every light; examines it in all its parts; retires, and then advances; turns and re-turns it; compares and contrasts it; illustrates, confirms, enforces his view of the question, till at last the hearer feels ashamed of doubting a position which seems built on a foundation so strictly argumentative. Of this nature is his justification of Rabirius in taking up arms against Saturninus;[245] his account of the imprisonment of the Roman citizens by Verres, and of the crucifixion of Gavius;[246] his comparison of Antony with Tarquin;[247] and the contrast he draws of Verres with Fabius, Scipio, and Marius.[248]

And now, having established his case, he opens upon his opponent a discharge of raillery, so delicate and good-natured, that it is impossible for the latter to maintain his ground against it. Or where the subject is too grave to admit this, he colours his exaggeration with all the bitterness of irony or vehemence of passion. Such are his frequent delineations of Gabinius, Piso, Clodius, and Antony;[249] particularly his vivid and almost humorous contrast of the two consuls, who sanctioned his banishment, in his oration for Sextius.[250] Such the celebrated account (already referred to) of the crucifixion of Gavius by Verres, which it is difficult to read, even at the present day, without having our feelings roused against the merciless Praetor. But the appeal to the gentler emotions of the soul is reserved (perhaps with somewhat of sameness) for the close of his oration; as in his defence of Cluentius, Muraena, Caelius, Milo, Sylla, Flaccus, and Rabirius Postumus; the most striking instances of which are the poetical burst of feeling with which he addresses his client Plancius,[251] and his picture of the desolate condition of the Vestal Fonteia, should her brother be condemned.[252] At other times, his peroration contains more heroic and elevated sentiments; as in his invocation of the Alban groves and altars in the peroration of the Pro Milone, the panegyric on patriotism, and the love of glory in his defence of Sextius, and that on liberty at the close of the third and tenth Philippics.[253]


But it is by the invention of a style, which adapts itself with singular felicity to every class of subjects, whether lofty or familiar, philosophical or forensic, that Cicero answers even more exactly to his own definition of a perfect orator[254] than by his plausibility, pathos, and brilliancy. It is not, however, here intended to enter upon the consideration of a subject so ample and so familiar to all scholars as Cicero's diction, much less to take an extended view of it through the range of his philosophical writings and familiar correspondence. Among many excellences, the greatest is its suitableness to the genius of the Latin language; though the diffuseness thence necessarily resulting has exposed it, both in his own days and since his time, to the criticisms of those who have affected to condemn its Asiatic character, in comparison with the simplicity of Attic writers, and the strength of Demosthenes.[255] Greek, however, is celebrated for its copiousness in vocabulary, for its perspicuity, and its reproductive power; and its consequent facility of expressing the most novel or abstruse ideas with precision and elegance. Hence the Attic style of eloquence was plain and simple, because simplicity and plainness were not incompatible with clearness, energy, and harmony. But it was a singular want of judgment, an ignorance of the very principles of composition, which induced Brutus, Calvus, Sallust, and others to imitate this terse and severe beauty in their own defective language, and even to pronounce the opposite kind of diction deficient in taste and purity. In Greek, indeed, the words fall, as it were, naturally, into a distinct and harmonious order; and, from the exuberant richness of the materials, less is left to the ingenuity of the artist. But the Latin language is comparatively weak, scanty, and unmusical; and requires considerable skill and management to render it expressive and graceful. Simplicity in Latin is scarcely separable from baldness; and justly as Terence is celebrated for chaste and unadorned diction, yet, even he, compared with Attic writers, is flat and heavy.[256] Again, the perfection of strength is clearness united to brevity; but to this combination Latin is utterly unequal. From the vagueness and uncertainty of meaning which characterises its separate words, to be perspicuous it must be full. What Livy, and much more Tacitus, have gained in energy, they have lost in lucidity and elegance; the correspondence of Brutus with Cicero is forcible, indeed, but harsh and abrupt. Latin, in short, is not a philosophical language, not a language in which a deep thinker is likely to express himself with purity or neatness. Cicero found it barren and dissonant, and as such he had to deal with it. His good sense enabled him to perceive what could be done, and what it was in vain to attempt; and happily his talents answered precisely to the purpose required. He may be compared to a clever landscape-gardener, who gives depth and richness to narrow and confined premises by ingenuity and skill in the disposition of his trees and walks. Terence and Lucretius had cultivated simplicity; Cotta, Brutus, and Calvus had attempted strength; but Cicero rather made a language than a style; yet not so much by the invention as by the combination of words. Some terms, indeed, his philosophical subjects obliged him to coin;[257] but his great art lies in the application of existing materials, in converting the very disadvantages of the language into beauties,[258] in enriching it with circumlocutions and metaphors, in pruning it of harsh and uncouth expressions, in systematizing the structure of a sentence.[259] This is that copia dicendi which gained Cicero the high testimony of Caesar to his inventive powers,[260] and which, we may add, constitutes him the greatest master of composition that the world has seen.


Such, then, are the principal characteristics of Cicero's oratory; on a review of which we may, with some reason, conclude that Roman eloquence stands scarcely less indebted to his works than Roman philosophy. For, though in his De claris Oratoribus he begins his review from the age of Junius Brutus, yet, soberly speaking (and as he seems to allow in the opening of the De Oratore), we cannot assign an earlier date to the rise of eloquence among his countrymen, than that of the same Athenian embassy which introduced the study of philosophy. To aim, indeed, at persuasion, by appeals to the reason or passions, is so natural, that no country, whether refined or barbarous, is without its orators. If, however, eloquence be the mere power of persuading, it is but a relative term, limited to time and place, connected with a particular audience, and leaving to posterity no test of its merits but the report of those whom it has been successful in influencing; but we are speaking of it as the subject-matter of an art.[261]

The eloquence of Carneades and his associates had made (to use a familiar term) a great sensation among the Roman orators, who soon split into two parties,—the one adhering to the rough unpolished manners of their forefathers, the other favouring the artificial graces which distinguished the Grecian rhetoricians. In the former class were Cato and Laelius,[262] both men of cultivated minds, particularly Cato, whose opposition to Greek literature was founded solely on political considerations. But, as might have been expected, the Athenian cause had prevailed; and Carbo and the two Gracchi, who are the principal orators of the next generation, are praised as masters of an oratory learned, majestic, and harmonious in its character.[263] These were succeeded by Antonius, Crassus, Cotta, Sulpicius, and Hortensius; who, adopting greater liveliness and variety of manner, form a middle age in the history of Roman eloquence. But it was in that which immediately followed that the art was adorned by an assemblage of orators, which even Greece will find it difficult to match. Of these Caesar, Cicero, Curio, Brutus, Caelius, Calvus, and Callidius, are the most celebrated. The talents, indeed, of Caesar were not more conspicuous in arms than in his style, which was noted for its force and purity.[264] Caelius, whom Cicero brought forward into public life, excelled in natural quickness, loftiness of sentiment, and politeness in attack;[265] Brutus in philosophical gravity, though he sometimes indulged himself in a warmer and bolder style.[266] Callidius was delicate and harmonious; Curio bold and flowing; Calvus, from studied opposition to Cicero's peculiarities, cold, cautious, and accurate.[267] Brutus and Calvus have been before noticed as the advocates of the dry sententious mode of speaking, which they dignified by the name of Attic; a kind of eloquence which seems to have been popular from the comparative facility with which it was attained.

In the Ciceronian age the general character of the oratory was dignified and graceful. The popular nature of the government gave opportunities for effective appeals to the passions; and, Greek literature being as yet a novelty, philosophical sentiments were introduced with corresponding success. The republican orators were long in their introductions, diffuse in their statements, ample in their divisions, frequent in their digressions, gradual and sedate in their perorations.[268] Under the Emperors, however, the people were less consulted in state affairs; and the judges, instead of possessing an almost independent authority, being but delegates of the executive, from interested politicians became men of business; literature, too, was now familiar to all classes; and taste began sensibly to decline. The national appetite felt a craving for stronger and more stimulating compositions. Impatience was manifested at the tedious majesty and formal graces, the parade of arguments, grave sayings, and shreds of philosophy,[269] which characterized their fathers; and a smarter and more sparkling kind of oratory succeeded,[270] just as in our own country the minuet of the last century has been supplanted by the quadrille, and the stately movements of Giardini have given way to Rossini's brisker and more artificial melodies. Corvinus, even before the time of Augustus, had shown himself more elaborate and fastidious in his choice of expressions.[271] Cassius Severus, the first who openly deviated from the old style of oratory, introduced an acrimonious and virulent mode of pleading.[272] It now became the fashion to decry Cicero as inflated, languid, tame, and even deficient in ornament;[273] Mecaenas and Gallio followed in the career of degeneracy; till flippancy of attack, prettiness of expression, and glitter of decoration prevailed over the bold and manly eloquence of free Rome.


[93] De Legg. i. 1, ii. 1.

[94] Contra Rull. ii. 1.

[95] De Legg. ii. 1, iii. 16; de Orat. ii. 66.

[96] Plutarch, in Vita.

[97] Middleton's Life, vol. i. p. 13. 4to; de Clar. Orat. 89.

[98] Ibid.

[99] Pro Muraena, 11; de Orat. i. g.

[100] In Catil. iii. 6; in Pis. 3; pro Sylla, 30; pro Dom. 37; de Harusp. resp. 23; ad Fam. xv. 4.

[101] De Clar. Orat. 91.

[102] Middleton's Life, vol. i. p. 42, 4to.

[103] Plutarch, in Vita.

[104] Warburton, Div. Leg. lib, iii. sec. 3; and Vossius. de Nat. Logic. c. viii. sec. 22.

[105] Pro Planc. 26; in Ver. vi. 14.

[106] Pro Dom. 57, 58.

[107] De Offic. ii. 17; Middleton.

[108] In Pis. 1.

[109] Pro Muraena, 20.

[110] Plutarch, in Vita.

[111] [Greek: Graikos kai scholastikos]. Plutarch, in Vita.

[112] Ad Atticum, i. 18, ii. 1.

[113] See Montesquieu, Grandeur des Romains, ch. xii.

[114] Ad Atticum, i. 19.

[115] Ad Atticum, lib. iii.; ad Fam. lib. xiv.; pro Sext. 22; pro Dom. 36; Plutarch, in Vita. It is curious to observe how he converts the alleviating circumstances of his case into exaggerations of his misfortune: he writes to Atticus: "As to your many fierce objurgations of me, for my weakness of mind, I ask you, what aggravation is wanting to my calamity? Who else has ever fallen from so high a position, in so good a cause, with so large an intellect, influence, popularity, with all good men so powerfully supporting him, as I?"—iii. 10. Other persons would have reckoned the justice of their cause, and the countenance of good men, alleviations of their distress; and so, when others were concerned, he himself thought. Vid. pro Sext. 12.

[116] Ad Atticum, ix. 18.

[117] Ibid. vii. 11, ix. 6, x. 8 and 9, xi, 9, etc.

[118] Macrobius, Saturnalia, ii. 3.

[119] Ad Atticum, xi. 8, 9, 10 and 12.

[120] Ibid. xi. 13.

[121] Ad Fam. iv. 14; Middleton, vol. ii. p. 149.

[122] Ibid.

[123] Ad Fam. iv. 6.

[124] Ad Atticum, xii. 15, etc

[125] Ad Atticum, xiii. 20.

[126] Ibid. xii. 40 and 41.

[127] His want of jealousy towards his rivals was remarkable; this was exemplified in his esteem for Hortensius, and still more so in his conduct towards Calvus. See Ad Fam. xv. 21.

[128] Vol. ii. p. 525, 4to.

[129] Pro Planc.; Middleton, vol. i. p. 108.

[130] C. 39.

[131] Ad Fam. vi. 6, vii. 3.

[132] Plutarch, in Vita Cic. See also in Vita Pomp.

[133] Vid. Dr. Whately in the Encyclopaedia Metropolitana.

[134] Lactantius, Inst. iii. 16.

[135] Plutarch, in Vita Caton. See also de Invent. i. 36.

[136] Paterculus, i. 12, etc. Plutarch, in Vitt. Lucull. et Syll.

[137] Gravin. Origin. Juris Civil. lib. i. c. 44.

[138] Quinct. xii. 2. Auct. Dialog. de Orator. 31.

[139] De Nat. Deor. i. 4; de Off. i. 1; de Fin.; init. Acad. Quaest. init. etc.

[140] Tusc Quaest. i. 3; ii. 3; Acad. Quaest. i. 2; de Nat. Deor. i. 21; de Fin. i. 3, etc.; de Clar. Orat. 35.

[141] Lucullus, 2; de Fin. i. 1-3; Tusc Quaest. ii. 1, 2; iii. 2; v. 2; de Legg. i. 22-24; de Off. ii. 2; de Orat. 41, etc.

[142] Middleton's Life, vol. ii. p. 254.

[143] Ad Quinct. fratr. iii. 3.

[144] Tusc. Quaest, v. 2.

[145] De Off. i. 5. init.

[146] Johnson's observations on Addison's writings may be well applied to those of Cicero, who would have been eminently successful in short miscellaneous essays, like those of the Spectator, had the manners of the age allowed it.

[147] Orat iii. 4; Tusc. Quaest. ii. 3; de Off. i. 1. Paradox. praefat. Quinct. Instit. xii. 2.

[148] Article, Plato, in the Encyclopaedia Metropolitana.

[149] Acad. Quaest. i. 10, etc.; Lucullus, 5; de Legg. i. 20; iii. 3, etc.

[150] Acad. Quaest. i. 4, 12, 13; Lucullus, 5 and 23; de Nat. Deor. i. 5; de Fin. ii. 1; de Orat. iii. 18. Augustin. contra Acad. ii. 6. Plutarch, in Colot. 26.

[151] "Arcesilas negabat esse quidquam, quod sciri posset, ne illud quidem ipsum quod Socrates sibi reliquisset. Sic omnia latere censebat in occulto, neque esse quicquam quod cerni, quod intelligi, posset; quibus de causis nihil oportere neque profiteri neque affirmare quenquam, neque assentione approbare, etc."—Acad. Quaest. i. 12. See also Lucullus, 9 and 18. They were countenanced in these conclusions by Plato's doctrine of ideas.—Lucullus, 46.

[152] Sext. Empir. Pyrrh. Hypot. i. 33. Diogenes Laertius, lib. iv. in Arcesil. Vid. Lactant. Instit. iii. 6.

[153] Lucullus, 6.

[154] Augustin. contr. Acad. iii. 17.

[155] Lucullus, 18, 24. Augustin. contr. Acad. iii. 39.

[156] See Sext. Empir. adv. Log. i. 166., etc., p. 405.

[157] Acad. Quaest. i. 13; Lucullus, 23, 38; de Nat. Deor. i. 5; Orat. 71.

[158] "Tu autem te negas infracto remo neque columbae collo commoveri. Primum cur? nam et in remo sentio non esse id quod videatur, et in columba plures videri colores, nec esse plus uno, etc."—Lucullus, 25.

[159] Lucullus, 16-18; 26-28.

[160] "Vehementer errare eos qui dicant ab Academia sensus eripi; a quibus nunquam dictum sit aut colorem aut saporem aut sonum nullum esse, [sed] illud sit disputatum, non inesse in his propriam, quae nusquam alibi esset, veri et certi notam."—Lucullus, 32. See also 13, 24, 31; de Nat. Deor. i. 5.

[160a] [Greek: Oi goun Stoikoi katalepsin einai phasi kataleptike phantasia sugkatatheso] Sext. Empir. Pyrrh. Hypot. iii. 25. Vid. also Adv. Log. i. 152, p. 402.

[161] "Verum non posse comprehendi ex illa Stoici Zenonis definitione arripuisse videbantur, qui ait id verum percipi posse, quod ita esset animo impressum ex eo unde esset, ut esse non posset ex eo unde non esset. Quod brevius planiusque sic dicitur, his signis verum posse comprehendi, quae signa non potest habere quod falsum est."—Augustin, contra Acad. ii. 5. See also Sext. Empir. adv. Math. lib. vii. [Greek: peri metaboles], and Cf. Lucullus, 6 with 13.

[162] Lucullus, 13, 21, 40.

[163] [Greek: Tois phainomenois oun prosechoutes kata ten biotiken teresin adoxastos bioumen, epei me dunametha anenergetoi pantapasin einai].—Sext. Empir. Pyrrh. Hypot. 1, 11.

[164] Cicero terms these three impressions, "visio probabilis; quae ex circumspectione aliqua et accurata consideratione fiat; quae non impediatur."—Lucullus, 11.

[165] Pyrrh. Hypot. i. 33.

[166] Numen. apud Euseb. Praep. Evang. xiv. 7.

[167] Lucullus, 31, 34; de Off. ii. 2; de Fin. v. 26. Quinct. xii. 1.

[168] Lucullus, 22, et alibi; Tusc. Quaest. ii. 2.

[169] See a striking passage from Cicero's Academics, preserved by Augustine, contra Acad. iii. 7, and Lucullus, 18.

[170] De Nat. Deor. passim; de Div. ii. 72. "Quorum controversiam solebat tanquam honorarius arbiter judicare Carneades."—Tusc. Quaest. v. 41.

[171] De Fin. ii. 1; de Orat. i. 18; Lucullus, 3; Tusc. Quaest. v. 11; Numen. apud Euseb. Praep. Evang. xiv. 6, etc. Lactantius, Inst. iii. 4.

[172] De Nat. Deor. i. 67; de Fat. 2; Dialog. de Orat. 31, 32.

[173] Lucullus, 6, 18; de Orat. ii. 38, iii. 18. Quint, Inst. xii. 2. Numen. apud Euseb. Praep. Evang. xiv. 6 and 8.

[174] "Haec in philosophia ratio contra omnia disserendi nullamque rem aperte judicandi, profecta a Socrate, repetita ab Arcesila, confirmata a Carneade, usque ad nostram viguit aetatem; quam nunc propemodum orbam esse in ipsa Graecia intelligo. Quod non Academiae vitio, sed tarditate hominum arbitror contigisse. Nam si singulas disciplinas percipere magnum est, quanto majus omnes? quod facere iis necesse est, quibus propositum est, veri reperiendi causa, et contra omnes philosophos et pro omnibus dicere."—De Nat. Deor. i. 5.

[175] De Nat. Deor. i. 25, Augustin, contra Acad. iii. 17. Numen. apud Euseb. Praep. Evang. xiv. 6.

[176] De Fin. ii. 13, v. 7; Lucullus, 42; Tusc. Quaest. v. 29.

[177] Lucullus, 45.

[178] Lucullus, 21, 24; for an elevated moral precept of his, see de Fin. ii. 18.

[179] [Greek: Aner en tais trisin airesesi diatripsas, en te te Akademaike kai Peripate tike kai Stoike].—Diogenes Laertius, lib. iv. sub fin.

[180] "Quanquam Philo, magnus vir, negaret in libris duas Academias esse erroremque eorum qui ita putarunt coarguit."—Acad. Quaest. i. 4.

[181] De Fin, v. 5; Lucullus, 22, 43. Sext. Emp. Pyrrh. Hyp. i. 33.

[182] Acad. Quaest. i. 4; de Nat. Deor. i. 7.

[183] Lucullus, 20; see also de Nat. Deor. i. 7; de Fin. i. 5.

[184] "Nobis autem nostra Academia magnam licentiam dat, ut, quodcunque maxime probabile occurrat, id nostro jure liceat defendere."—De Off. iii. 4. See also Tusc. Quaest. iv. 4, v. 29; de Invent. ii. 3.

[185] De Legg. i. 13.

[186] Tusc. Quaest. i. 27; de Div. ii. 72; pro Milon. 31; de Legg. ii. 7.

[187] Fragm. de Rep. 3; Tusc. Quaest. i. 29.

[188] Tusc. Quaest. i. passim; de Senect. 21, 22; Somn. Scip. 8.

[189] De Div. i. 32, 49; Fragm. de Consolat.

[190] Tusc. Quaest. i. 30; Som. Scip. 9; de Legg. ii. 11.

[191] De Amic. 4; de Off. iii. 28; pro Cluent. 61; de Legg. ii. 17: Tusc. Quaest. i. 11; pro Sext. 21; de Nat. Deor. i. 17.

[192] De Senect. 23.

[193] Pro Arch. 11, 12, ad Fam. v. 21, vi. 21.

[194] He seems to have fallen into some misconceptions of Aristotle's meaning. De Invent. i. 35, 36, ii. 14; see Quinct. Inst. v. 14.

[195] De Invent. i. 7, ii. 51, et passim; ad. Fam. i. 9; de Orat. ii. 36.

[196] De Off. i. 1; de Fin. iv. 5.

[197] De Fin. ii. 21, iii. 1; de Legg. i. 13; de Orat. iii. 17; ad Fam. xiii. 1; pro Sext. 10.

[198] De Nat. Deor. i. 4; Tusc. Quaest. i. 1, v. 29; de Fin. i. 3, 4; de Off. i. 1; de Div. ii. 1, 2.

[199] Div. Leg. lib. iii. sec. 9.

[200] See Tusc. Quaest and de Republ.

[201] See Fabricius, Bibliothec. Latin.; Olivet, in Cic. opp. omn.; Middleton's Life.

[202] Quinct. Inst. x. 7.

[203] De Invent. ii. 2 et 3; ad Fam. i. 9.

[204] Cf. de part. Orat. with de Invent.

[205] Orat. 19.

[206] Vossius, de Nat. Rhet. c. xiii.; Fabricius, Bibliothec. Latin.

[207] De Invent. i. 5, 6; de clar. Orat. 76.

[208] Ad Fam. vii. 19.

[209] De Div. ii. 1.

[210] Ad Atticum. iv. 16.

[211] Orat. 16.

[212] Orat. 14, 31.

[213] Orat. 21, 29.

[214] Ad Fam. vi. 18.

[215] See Middleton, vol. ii. p. 147.

[216] De Legg. i. 5.

[217] Ang. Mai. praef. in Remp. Middleman, vol. i. p. 486

[218] Quinct. Inst. xi. 1.

[219] Ad Atticum, xiii. 13, 16, 19.

[220] Ad Fam. ix. 16, 18.

[221] Tusc. Quaest v. 4, 11.

[222] Ibid. iii. 10, v. 27.

[223] De Nat. Deor. i. 6; de Div. i. 4, de Fat. 1.

[224] Sciopp. in Olivet.

[225] See Plutarch, in Vita.

[226] In Catil. iii. 3-5.

[227] Pro Cael. 24.

[228] Philipp. ix. 3.

[229] Pro Cael. 6.

[230] Ibid. 14.

[231] Pro Quinct. 1, and In Verr. Act i. 13

[232] Pro Cluent 1.

[233] Pro Leg. Manil. 1.

[234] Pro Milon. 1.

[235] Pro Deiotar. 2.

[236] Pro Milon. 14, etc.

[237] Pro Muraen. 9.

[238] Pro Cael. 7, etc.

[239] In Verr. vi. 2, etc.

[240] Contra Rull. ii. 6, 7.

[241] Pro Rabir. 4.

[242] Pro Milon. init. et alibi.

[243] Pro Muraen. 34.

[244] De Orat. partit. 8, 16, 17.

[245] Pro Rabir. 8.

[246] In Verr. v. 56, etc., and 64, etc.

[247] Philipp. iii. 4.

[248] In Verr. vi. 10.

[249] Post Redit. in Senat. i. 4-8; pro Dom. 9, 39, etc.; in Pis. 10, 11. Philipp. ii. 18, etc.

[250] Pro Sext. 8-10.

[251] Pro Planc. 41, 42.

[252] Pro Fonteio, 17.

[253] Vid. his ideal description of an orator, in Orat. 40. Vid. also de clar. Orat. 93, his negative panegyric on his own oratorical attainments.

[254] Orat. 29.

[255] Tusc. Quaest. i. 1; de clar. Orat. 82, etc., de opt. gen. dicendi.

[256] Quinct. x. 1.

[257] De Fin. iii. 1 and 4; Lucull. 6. Plutarch, in Vita.

[258] This, which is analogous to his address in pleading, is nowhere more observable than in his rendering the recurrence of the same word, to which he is forced by the barrenness or vagueness of the language, an elegance.

[259] It is remarkable that some authors attempted to account for the invention of the Asiatic style, on the same principle we have here adduced to account for Cicero's adoption of it in Latin; viz. that the Asiatics had a defective knowledge of Greek, and devised phrases, etc., to make up for the imperfection of their scanty vocabulary. See Quinct. xii. 10.

[260] De clar. Orat. 72.

[261] "Vulgus interdum," says Cicero, "non probandum oratorem probat, sed probat sine comparatione, cum a mediocri aut etiam a malo delectatur; eo est contentus: esse melius sentit: illud quod est, qualecunque est, probat."—De clar. Orat. 52.

[262] De clar. Orat. 72. Quinct. xii. 10.

[263] De clar. Orat. 25, 27; pro Harusp. resp. 19.

[264] Quinct. x. 1 and 2. De clar. Orat. 75.

[265] Ibid.

[266] Ibid. and ad Atticum, xiv. 1.

[267] Ibid.

[268] Dialog. de Orat. 20 apud Tacit. and 22. Quinct. x. 2.

[269] "It is not uncommon for those who have grown wise by the labour of others, to add a little of their own, and overlook their master."—_Johnson. We have before compared Cicero to Addison as regards the purpose of inspiring their respective countrymen with literary taste. They resembled each other in the return they experienced.

[270] Dialog. 18.

[271] Ibid.

[272] Dialog. 19.

[273] Dialog. 18 and 22 Quinct. xii 10.















Apollonius, the Pythagorean philosopher, was born at Tyana, in Cappadocia, in the year of Rome 750, four years before the common Christian era.[274] His reputation rests, not so much on his personal merits, as on the attempt made in the early ages of the Church, and since revived,[275] to bring him forward as a rival to the Divine Author of our Religion. A narrative of his life, which is still extant, was written with this object, about a century after his death (A.D. 217), by Philostratus of Lemnos, when Ammonius was systematizing the Eclectic tenets to meet the increasing influence and the spread of Christianity. Philostratus engaged in this work at the instance of his patroness Julia Domna, wife of the Emperor Severus, a princess celebrated for her zeal in the cause of Heathen Philosophy; who put into his hands a journal of the travels of Apollonius rudely written by one Damis, an Assyrian, his companion.[276] This manuscript, an account of his residence at AEgae, prior to his acquaintance with Damis, by Maximus of that city, a collection of his letters, some private memoranda relative to his opinions and conduct, and lastly the public records of the cities he frequented, were the principal documents from which Philostratus compiled his elaborate narrative.[277] It is written with considerable elegance and command of Greek, but with more attention to ornament than is consistent with correct taste. Though it is not a professed imitation of the Gospels, it contains quite enough to show that it was written with a view of rivalling the sacred narrative; and accordingly, in the following age, it was made use of in a direct attack upon Christianity by Hierocles,[278] Prefect of Bithynia, a disciple of the Eclectic School, to whom a reply was made by Eusebius of Caesarea. The selection of a Pythagorean Philosopher for the purpose of a comparison with our Lord was judicious. The attachment of the Pythagorean Sect to the discipline of the established religion, which most other philosophies neglected, its austerity, its pretended intercourse with heaven, its profession of extraordinary power over nature, and the authoritative tone of teaching which this profession countenanced,[279] were all in favour of the proposed object. But with the plans of the Eclectics in their attack upon Christianity we have no immediate concern.


Philostratus begins his work with an account of the prodigies attending the philosopher's birth, which, with all circumstances of a like nature, we shall for the present pass over, intending to make some observations on them in the sequel. At the age of fourteen he was placed by his father under the care of Euthydemus, a distinguished rhetorician of Tarsus; but, being displeased with the dissipation of the place, he removed with his master to AEgae, a neighbouring town, frequented as a retreat for students in philosophy.[280] Here he made himself master of the Platonic, Stoic, Epicurean, and Peripatetic systems; giving, however, an exclusive preference to the Pythagorean, which he studied with Euxenus of Heraclea, a man, however, whose life ill accorded with the ascetic principles of his Sect. At the early age of sixteen years, according to his biographer, he resolved on strictly conforming himself to the precepts of Pythagoras, and, if possible, rivalling the fame of his master. He renounced animal food and wine; restricted himself to the use of linen garments and sandals made of the bark of trees; suffered his hair to grow; and betook himself to the temple of AEsculapius, who is said to have regarded him with peculiar favour.[281]

On the news of his father's death, which took place not long afterwards, he left AEgae for his native place, where he gave up half his inheritance to his elder brother, whom he is said to have reclaimed from a dissolute course of life, and the greater part of the remainder to his poorer relatives.[282]

Prior to composing any philosophical work, he thought it necessary to observe the silence of five years, which was the appointed initiation into the esoteric doctrines of his Sect. During this time he exercised his mind in storing up materials for future reflection. We are told that on several occasions he hindered insurrections in the cities in which he resided by the mute eloquence of his look and gestures;[283] but such an achievement is hardly consistent with the Pythagorean rule, which forbad its disciples during their silence the intercourse of mixed society.[284]

The period of silence being expired, Apollonius passed through the principal cities of Asia Minor, disputing in the temples in imitation of Pythagoras, unfolding the mysteries of his Sect to such as were observing their probationary silence, discoursing with the Greek Priests about divine rites, and reforming the worship of barbarian cities.[285] This must have been his employment for many years; the next incident in his life being his Eastern journey, which was not undertaken till he was between forty and fifty years of age.[286]

His object in this expedition was to consult the Magi and Brachmans on philosophical matters; still following the example of Pythagoras, who is said to have travelled as far as India with the same purpose. At Nineveh, where he arrived with two companions, he was joined by Damis, already mentioned as his journalist.[287] Proceeding thence to Babylon, he had some interviews with the Magi, who rather disappointed his expectations; and was well received by Bardanes the Parthian King, who, after detaining him at his Court for the greater part of two years, dismissed him with marks of peculiar honour.[288] From Babylon he proceeded, by way of the Caucasus and the Indus, to Taxila, the city of Phraotes, King of the Indians, who is represented as an adept in the Pythagorean Philosophy;[289] and passing on, at length accomplished the object of his expedition by visiting Iarchas, Chief of the Brachmans, from whom he is said to have learned many valuable theurgic secrets.[290]

On his return to Asia Minor, after an absence of about five years, he stationed himself for a time in Ionia; where the fame of his travels and his austere mode of life gained for him much attention to his philosophical harangues. The cities sent embassies to him, decreeing him public honours; while the oracles pronounced him more than mortal, and referred the sick to him for relief.[291]

From Ionia he passed over to Greece, and made his first tour through its principal cities;[292] visiting the temples and oracles, reforming the divine rites, and sometimes exercising his theurgic skill. Except at Sparta, however, he seems to have attracted little attention. At Eleusis his application for admittance to the Mysteries was unsuccessful; as was a similar attempt at the Cave of Trophonius at a later date.[293] In both places his reputation for magical powers was the cause of his exclusion.


Hitherto our memoir has only set before us the life of an ordinary Pythagorean, which may be comprehended in three words, mysticism, travel, and disputation. From the date, however, of his journey to Rome, which succeeded his Grecian tour, it is in some degree connected with the history of the times; and, though for much of what is told us of him we have no better authority than the word of Philostratus himself, still there is neither reason nor necessity for supposing the narrative to be in substance untrue.

Nero had at this time prohibited the study of philosophy, alleging that it was made the pretence for magical practices;[294]—and the report of his tyrannical excesses so alarmed the followers of Apollonius as they approached Rome, that out of thirty-four who had accompanied him thus far, eight only could be prevailed on to proceed. On his arrival, his religious pretensions were the occasion of his being brought successively before the consul Telesinus and Tigellinus the Minister of Nero.[295] Both of them, however, dismissed him after an examination; the former from a secret leaning towards philosophy, the latter from fear (as we are told) of his extraordinary powers. He was in consequence allowed to go about at his pleasure from temple to temple, haranguing the people, and, as in Asia, prosecuting his reforms in the worship paid to the gods. This, however, can hardly have been the case, supposing the edict against philosophers was as severe as his biographer represents. In that case neither Apollonius, nor Demetrius the Cynic, who joined him after his arrival, would have been permitted to remain in Rome; certainly not Apollonius, after his acknowledgment of his own magical powers in the presence of Tigellinus.[296]

It is more probable he was sent out of the city; anyhow we soon find him in Spain, taking part in the conspiracy forming against Nero by Vindex and others.[297] The political partisans of that day seem to have made use of professed jugglers and magicians to gain over the body of the people to their interests. To this may be attributed Nero's banishing such men from Rome;[298] and Apollonius had probably been already serviceable in this way at the Capital, as he was now in Spain, and immediately after to Vespasian; and at a later period to Nerva.

His next expeditions were to Africa, to Sicily, and so to Greece,[299] but they do not supply anything of importance to the elucidation of his character. At Athens he obtained the initiation in the Mysteries, for which he had on his former visit unsuccessfully applied.

The following spring, the seventy-third of his life, according to the common calculation, he proceeded to Alexandria,[300] where he attracted the notice of Vespasian, who had just assumed the purple, and who seemed desirous of countenancing his proceedings by the sanction of religion. Apollonius might be recommended to him for this purpose by the fame of his travels, his reputation for theurgic knowledge, and his late acts in Spain against Nero. It is satisfactory to be able to detect an historical connexion between two personages, each of whom has in his turn been made to rival our Lord and His Apostles in pretensions to miraculous power. Thus, claims which appeared to be advanced on distinct grounds are found to proceed from one centre, and by their coalition to illustrate and expose one another. The celebrated cures by Vespasian are connected with the ordinary theurgy of the Pythagorean School; and Apollonius is found here, as in many other instances, to be the instrument of a political party.

His biographer's account of his first meeting with the Emperor, which is perhaps substantially correct, is amusing from the theatrical character with which it was invested.[301] The latter, on entering Alexandria, was met by the great body of the Magistrates, Prefects, and Philosophers of the city; but, not discovering Apollonius in the number, he hastily asked, "whether the Tyanean was in Alexandria," and when told he was philosophizing in the Serapeum, proceeding thither he suppliantly entreated him to make him Emperor; and, on the Philosopher's answering he had already done so in praying for a just and venerable Sovereign,[302] Vespasian avowed his determination of putting himself entirely into his hands, and of declining the supreme power, unless he could obtain his countenance in assuming it.[303] A formal consultation was in consequence held, at which, besides Apollonius, Dio and Euphrates, Stoics in the Emperor's train, were allowed to deliver their sentiments; when the latter philosopher entered an honest protest against the sanction which Apollonius was giving to the ambition of Vespasian, and advocated the restoration of the Roman State to its ancient republican form.[304] This difference of opinion laid the foundation of a lasting quarrel between the rival advisers, to which Philostratus makes frequent allusion in the course of his history. Euphrates is mentioned by the ancients in terms of high commendation; by Pliny especially, who knew him well.[305] He seems to have seen through his opponent's religious pretences, as we gather even from Philostratus;[306] and when so plain a reason exists for the dislike which Apollonius, in his Letters, and Philostratus, manifest towards him, their censure must not be allowed to weigh against the testimony, which unbiassed writers have delivered in his favour.

After parting from Vespasian, Apollonius undertook an expedition into AEthiopia, where he held discussions with the Gymnosophists, and visited the cataracts of the Nile.[307] On his return he received the news of the destruction of Jerusalem; and being pleased with the modesty of the conqueror, wrote to him in commendation of it. Titus is said to have invited him to Argos in Cilicia, for the sake of his advice on various subjects, and obtained from him a promise that at some future time he would visit him at Rome.[308]

On the succession of Domitian, he became once more engaged in the political commotions of the day, exerting himself to excite the countries of Asia Minor against the Emperor.[309] These proceedings at length occasioned an order from the Government to bring him to Rome, which, however, according to his biographer's account, he anticipated by voluntarily surrendering himself, under the idea that by his prompt appearance he might remove the Emperor's jealousy, and save Nerva and others whose political interests he had been promoting. On arriving at Rome he was brought before Domitian; and when, very inconsistently with his wish to shield his friends from suspicion, he launched out into praise of Nerva, he was forced away into prison to the company of the worst criminals, his hair and beard were cut short, and his limbs loaded with chains. After some days he was brought to trial; the charges against him being the singularity of his dress and appearance, his being called a god, his foretelling a pestilence at Ephesus, and his sacrificing a child with Nerva for the purpose of augury.[310] Philostratus supplies us with an ample defence, which, it seems, he was to have delivered,[311] had he not in the course of the proceedings suddenly vanished from the Court, and transported himself to Puteoli, whither he had before sent on Damis.

This is the only miraculous occurrence which forces itself into the history as a component part of the narrative; the rest being of easy omission without any detriment to its entireness.[312] And strictly speaking, even here, it is only his vanishing which is of a miraculous nature, and his vanishing is not really necessary for the continuity of events. His "liberation" and "transportation" are sufficient for that continuity; and to be set free from prison and sent out of Rome are occurrences which might happen without a divine interposition. And in fact they seem very clearly to have taken place in the regular course of business. Philostratus allows that just before the philosopher's pretended disappearance, Domitian had publicly acquitted him, and that after the miracle he proceeded to hear the cause next in order, as if nothing had happened;[313] and tells us, moreover, that Apollonius on his return to Greece gave out that he had pleaded his own cause and so escaped, no allusion being made to a miraculous preservation.[314]

After spending two years in the latter country in his usual philosophical disputations, he passed into Ionia. According to his biographer's chronology, he was now approaching the completion of his hundredth year. We may easily understand, therefore, that when invited to Rome by Nerva, who had just succeeded to the Empire, he declined the proposed honour with an intimation that their meeting must be deferred to another state of being.[315] His death took place shortly after; and Ephesus, Rhodes, and Crete are variously mentioned as the spot at which it occurred.[316] A temple was dedicated to him at Tyana,[317] which was in consequence accounted one of the sacred cities, and permitted the privilege of electing its own Magistrates.[318]

He is said to have written[319] a treatise upon Judicial Astrology, a work on Sacrifices, another on Oracles, a Life of Pythagoras, and an account of the answers which he received from Trophonius, besides the memoranda noticed in the opening of our memoir. A collection of Letters ascribed to him is still extant.[320]


It may be regretted that so elaborate a history, as that which we have abridged, should not contain more authentic and valuable matter. Both the secular transactions of the times and the history of Christianity might have been illustrated by the life of one, who, while he was an instrument of the partisans of Vindex, Vespasian, and Nerva, was a contemporary and in some respects a rival of the Apostles; and who, probably, was with St. Paul at Ephesus and Rome.[321] As far as his personal character is concerned, there is nothing to be lamented in these omissions. There is nothing very winning, or very commanding, either in his biographer's picture of him, or in his own letters. His virtues, as we have already seen, were temperance and a disregard of wealth; and that he really had these, and such as these, may be safely concluded from the fact of the popularity which he enjoyed. The great object of his ambition seems to have been to emulate the fame of his master; and his efforts had their reward in the general admiration he attracted, the honours paid him by the Oracles, and the attentions shown him by men in power.

We might have been inclined, indeed, to suspect that his reputation existed principally in his biographer's panegyric, were it not attested by other writers. The celebrity, which he has enjoyed since the writings of the Eclectics, by itself affords but a faint presumption of his notoriety before they appeared. Yet, after all allowances, there remains enough to show that, however fabulous the details of his history may be, there was something extraordinary in his life and character. Some foundation there must have been for statements which his eulogists were able to maintain in the face of those who would have spoken out had they been altogether novel. Pretensions never before advanced must have excited the surprise and contempt of the advocates of Christianity.[322] Yet Eusebius styles him a wise man, and seems to admit the correctness of Philostratus, except in the miraculous parts of the narrative.[323] Lactantius does not deny that a statue was erected to him at Ephesus;[324] and Sidonius Apollinaris, who even wrote his life, speaks of him as the admiration of the countries he traversed, and the favourite of monarchs.[325] One of his works was deposited in the palace at Antium by the Emperor Hadrian, who also formed a collection of his letters;[326] statues were erected to him in the temples, divine honours paid him by Caracalla, Alexander Severus, and Aurelian, and magical virtue attributed to his name.[327]

It has in consequence been made a subject of dispute, how far his reputation was built upon that supposed claim to extraordinary power which, as was noticed in the opening of our memoir, has led to his comparison with Sacred Names. If it could be shown that he did advance such pretensions, and upon the strength of them was admitted as an object of divine honour, a case would be made out, not indeed so strong as that on which Christianity is founded, yet remarkable enough to demand our serious examination. Assuming, then, or overlooking this necessary condition, sceptical writers have been forward to urge the history and character of Apollonius as creating a difficulty in the argument for Christianity derived from miracles; while their opponents have sometimes attempted to account for a phenomenon of which they had not yet ascertained the existence, and have most gratuitously ascribed his supposed power to the influence of the Evil principle.[328] On examination, we shall find not a shadow of a reason for supposing that Apollonius worked miracles in any proper sense of the word; or that he professed to work them; or that he rested his authority on extraordinary works of any kind; and it is strange indeed that Christians, with victory in their hands, should have so mismanaged their cause as to establish an objection where none existed, and in their haste to extricate themselves from an imaginary difficulty, to overturn one of the main arguments for Revealed Religion.


1. To state these pretended prodigies is in most cases a refutation of their claim upon our notice,[329] and even those which are not in themselves exceptionable become so from the circumstances or manner in which they took place. Apollonius is said to have been an incarnation of the God Proteus; his birth was announced by the falling of a thunderbolt and a chorus of swans; his death signalized by a wonderful voice calling him up to Heaven; and after death he appeared to a youth to convince him of the immortality of the soul.[330] He is reported to have known the language of birds; to have evoked the spirit of Achilles; to have dislodged a demon from a boy; to have detected an Empusa who was seducing a youth into marriage; when brought before Tigellinus, to have caused the writing of the indictment to vanish from the paper; when imprisoned by Domitian, to have miraculously released himself from his fetters; to have discovered the soul of Amasis in the body of a lion; to have cured a youth attacked by hydrophobia, whom he pronounced to be Telephus the Mysian.[331] In declaring men's thoughts and distant events, he indulged most liberally; adopting a brevity which seemed becoming the dignity of his character, while it secured his prediction from the possibility of an entire failure. For instance: he gave previous intimation of Nero's narrow escape from lightning; foretold the short reigns of his successors; informed Vespasian at Alexandria of the burning of the Capitol; predicted the violent death of Titus by a relative; discovered a knowledge of the private history of his Egyptian guide; foresaw the wreck of a ship he had embarked in, and the execution of a Cilician Propraetor.[332] His prediction of the Propraetor's ruin was conveyed in the words, "O that particular day!" that is, of execution; of the short reigns of the Emperors in his saying that many Thebans would succeed Nero. We must not omit his first predicting and then removing a pestilence at Ephesus, the best authenticated of his professed miracles, as being attested by the erecting of a statue to him in consequence. He is said to have put an end to the malady by commanding an aged man to be stoned, whom he pointed out as its author, and who when the stones were removed was found changed into the shape of a dog.[333]

That such marvellous occurrences are wanting either in the gravity, or in the conclusiveness, proper to true miracles, is very plain; moreover, that they gain no recommendation from the mode in which they are recorded will be evident, if we extract the accounts given us by Philostratus of those two which alone among Apollonius's acts, from their internal character, demand our attention. These are the revival of a young maid at Rome, who was on her way to burial, and the announcement at Ephesus of Domitian's assassination at the very time of its occurrence.

As to the former of these, it will be seen to be an attempt, and an elaborate, pretentious attempt, to outdo certain narratives in the Gospels. It runs as follows:—

"A maiden of marriageable age seemed to have died, and the bridegroom was accompanying her bier, uttering wailing cries, as was natural on his marriage being thus cut short. And all Rome lamented with him, for the maiden belonged to a consular house. But Apollonius, coming upon this sad sight, said, 'Set down the bier, for I will stop your tears for her.' At the same time, he asked her name; and most of those present thought he was going to make a speech about her, after the manner of professed mourners. But he, doing nothing else than touching her, and saying over her some indistinct words, woke her from her seeming death. And the girl spoke, and returned to her father's house, as Alcestis, when restored to life by Hercules."[334]

As to his proclaiming at Ephesus the assassination of Domitian at the time of its occurrence, of course, if he was at a great distance from Rome and the synchronism of events could be proved, we should be bound to give it our serious consideration; but synchronisms are difficult to verify. Moreover, Apollonius is known to have taken part in the politics of the empire; and his words, if he used them, might be prompted by his knowledge, or by his furtherance, of some attempt upon Domitian's life. Apollonius was at this time busily engaged in promoting Nerva's interests among the Ionians. Dion[335] tells us that his success was foretold by the astrologers, among whom Tzetzes reckons Apollonius; and he mentions a prediction of Domitian's death which had been put into circulation in Germany. It is true that Dion confirms Philostratus's statement so far as the prediction is concerned, expressing strongly his personal belief in it. "Apollonius," he says, "ascending upon a high stone at Ephesus or elsewhere, and calling together the people, cried out, 'Well done, Stephanus!'" He adds, "This really took place, though a man should ever so much disbelieve it."[336] But it must be recollected that Dion was writing his history when Philostratus wrote; and one of them may have taken the account from the other; moreover, he is well known to be of a credulous turn of mind, and far from averse from recording marvellous stories.

Let us now turn to the statement of Philostratus; it will be found to form as strong a contrast to the simplicity and dignity of the Gospel narratives, as the dabbling in politics, which is so marked a feature in Apollonius, differs from the conduct of Him who emphatically declared that His kingdom was not of this world.

"He was conversing," says Philostratus, "among the groves attached to the porticoes, about noon, that is, just at the time when the event was occurring in the imperial palace; and first he dropped his voice, as if in terror; then, with a faltering unusual to him, he described [an action], as if he beheld something external, as his words proceeded. Then he was silent, stopping abruptly; and looking with agitation on the ground, and advancing up three or four of the steps, 'Strike the tyrant, strike!' he cried out, not as drawing a mere image of the truth from some mirror, but as seeing the thing itself, and seeming to realize what was doing; and, to the consternation of all Ephesus, for it was thronging around while he was conversing, after an interval of suspense, such as happens when spectators are following some undecided action up to its issue, he said, 'Courage, my men, for the tyrant is slaughtered this day—nay, now, now.'"[337]

Only an eye-witness is warranted to write thus pictorially; Philostratus was born 86 years after Apollonius's death.


2. But it is almost superfluous to speak either of the general character of his extraordinary acts, or of the tone and manner in which they are narrated, when, in truth, neither Apollonius nor his biographer had any notion or any intention of maintaining that, in our sense of the word "miracle," these acts were miracles at all, or were to be referred to the immediate agency of the Supreme Being. Apollonius neither claimed for himself, nor did Philostratus claim for him, any direct mission from on high; nor did he in consequence submit the exercise of his preternatural powers to such severe tests as may fairly be applied to the miracles of Christianity.

Of works, indeed, which are asserted to proceed from the Author of nature, sobriety, dignity, and conclusiveness may fairly be required; but when a man ascribes his extraordinary power to his knowledge of some merely human secret, impropriety does but evidence his own want of taste, and ambiguity his want of skill. We have no longer a right to expect a great end, worthy means, or a frugal and judicious application of the miraculous gift. Now, Apollonius claimed nothing beyond a fuller insight into nature than others had; a knowledge of the fated and immutable laws to which it is conformed, of the hidden springs on which it moves.[338] He brought a secret from the East and used it; and though he professed to be favoured, and in a manner taught, by good spirits,[339] yet he certainly referred no part of his power to a Supreme Intelligence. Theurgic virtues, or those which consisted in communion with the Powers and Principles of nature, were high in the scale of Pythagorean excellence, and to them it was that he ascribed his extraordinary gift. By temperate living, it was said, the mind was endued with ampler and more exalted faculties than it otherwise possessed; partook more fully of the nature of the One Universal Soul, was gifted with prophetic inspiration, and a kind of intuitive perception of secret things.[340] This power, derived from the favour of the celestial deities, who were led to distinguish the virtuous and high-minded, was quite distinct from magic, an infamous, uncertain, and deceitful art, consisting in a compulsory power over infernal spirits, operating by means of Astrology, Auguries, and Sacrifices, and directed to the personal emolument of those who cultivated it.[341] To our present question, however, this distinction made by the genuine Pythagorean, is unimportant. To whichever principle the miracles of Apollonius be referred, theurgy or magic, in either case they are independent of the First Cause, and not granted with a view to the particular purpose to which they are to be applied.[342]

3. We have also incidentally shown that they did not profess to be miracles in the proper meaning of the word, that is, evident innovations on the laws of nature. At the utmost they do but exemplify the aphorism, "Knowledge is power."[343] Such as are within the range of human knowledge are no miracles. Those of them, on the contrary, which are beyond it, will be found on inspection to be unintelligible, and to convey no evidence. The prediction of an earthquake (for instance) is not necessarily superhuman. An interpretation of the discourse of birds can never be verified. In understanding languages, knowing future events, discovering the purposes of others, recognising human souls when enclosed in new bodies, Apollonius merely professes extreme penetration and extraordinary acquaintance with nature. The spell by which he evokes spirits and exorcises demons, implies the mere possession of a secret;[344] and so perfectly is his biographer aware of this, as almost to doubt the resuscitation of the Roman damsel, the only decisive miracle of them all, on the ground of its being supernatural, insinuating that perhaps she was dead only in appearance.[345] Accordingly, in the narrative which we have extracted above, he begins by saying that she "seemed to have died," or "was to all appearance dead;" and again at the end of it he speaks of her "seeming death." Hence, moreover, may be understood the meaning of the charge of magic, as brought against the early Christians by their heathen adversaries; the miracles of the Gospels being strictly interruptions of physical order, and incompatible with theurgic knowledge.[346]

When our Lord and His Apostles declare themselves to be sent from God, this claim to a divine mission illustrates and gives dignity to their profession of extraordinary power; whereas the divinity,[347] no less than the gift of miracles to which Apollonius laid claim, must be understood in its Pythagorean sense, as referring not to any intimate connection with a Supreme Agent, but to his partaking, through his theurgic skill, more largely than others in the perfections of the animating principle of nature.


4. Yet, whatever is understood by his miraculous gift and his divine nature, certainly his works were not adduced as vouchers for his divinity, nor were they, in fact, the principal cause of his reputation. What we desiderate is a contemporary appeal to them, on the part of himself or his friends; as St. Paul speaks of his miracles to the Romans and Corinthians, even calling them in one place "the signs of an Apostle;" or as St. Luke, in the Acts of the Apostles, details the miracles of both St. Peter and St. Paul.[348] Far different is it with Apollonius: we meet with no claim to extraordinary power in his Letters; nor when returning thanks to a city for public honours bestowed on him, nor when complaining to his brother of the neglect of his townsmen, nor when writing to his opponent Euphrates.[349] To the Milesians, indeed, he speaks of earthquakes which he had predicted; but without appealing to the prediction in proof of his authority.[350] Since, then, he is so far from insisting on his pretended extraordinary powers, and himself connects the acquisition of them with his Eastern expedition,[351] we may conclude that credit for possessing magical secrets was a part of the reputation which that expedition conferred. A foreign appearance, singularity of manners, a life of travel, and pretences to superior knowledge, excite the imagination of beholders;[352] and, as in the case of a wandering people among ourselves, appear to invite the persons who are thus distinguished, to fraudulent practices. Apollonius is represented as making converts as soon as seen.[353] It was not, then his display of marvels, but his Pythagorean dress and mysterious deportment, which arrested attention, and made him thought superior to other men, because he was different from them. Like Lucian's Alexander[354] (who was all but his disciple), he was skilled in medicine, professed to be favoured by AEsculapius, pretended to foreknowledge, was in collusion with the heathen priests, and was supported by the Oracles; and being more strict in conduct than the Paphlagonian,[355] he established a more lasting celebrity. His usefulness to political aspirants contributed to his success; perhaps also the real and contemporary miracles of the Christian teachers would dispose many minds easily to acquiesce in any claims of a similar character.


5. In the foregoing remarks we have admitted, the general fidelity of the history, because ancient authors allow it, and there was no necessity to dispute it. Tried however on his own merits, it is quite unworthy of serious attention. Not only in the miraculous accounts (as we have already seen), but in the relation of a multitude of ordinary facts, an effort to rival our Saviour's history is distinctly visible. The favour in which Apollonius from a child was held by gods and men; his conversations when a youth in the Temple of AEsculapius; his determination in spite of danger to go up to Rome;[356] the cowardice of his disciples in deserting him; the charge brought against him of disaffection to Caesar; the Minister's acknowledging, on his private examination, that he was more than man; the ignominious treatment of him by Domitian on his second appearance at Rome; his imprisonment with criminals; his vanishing from Court and sudden reappearance to his mourning disciples at Puteoli;[357]—these, with other particulars of a similar cast, evidence a history modelled after the narrative of the Evangelists. Expressions, moreover, and descriptions occur, clearly imitated from the sacred volume. To this we must add[358] the rhetorical colouring of the whole composition, so contrary to the sobriety of truth;[359] the fabulous accounts of things and places interspersed through the history;[360] lastly, we must bear in mind the principle, recognised by the Pythagorean and Eclectic schools, of permitting exaggeration and deceit in the cause of philosophy.[361]

* * * * *

After all, it must be remembered, that were the pretended miracles as unexceptionable as we have shown them to be absurd and useless—were they plain interruptions of established laws—were they grave and dignified in their nature, and important in their object, and were there nothing to excite suspicion in the design, manner, or character of the narrator—still the testimony on which they rest is the bare word of an author writing one hundred years after the death of the person panegyrized, and far distant from the places in which most of the miracles were wrought, and who can give no better account of his information than that he gained it from an unpublished work,[362] professedly indeed composed by a witness of the extraordinary transactions, but passing into his hands through two intermediate possessors. These are circumstances which almost, without positive objections, are sufficient by their own negative force to justify a summary rejection of the whole account. Unless, indeed, the history had been perverted to a mischievous purpose, we should esteem it impertinent to direct argument against a mere romance, and to subject a work of imagination to a grave discussion.


[274] Olear. ad Philostr. i. 12.

[275] By Lord Herbert and Mr. Blount.

[276] Philostr. i. 3.

[277] Philostr. i. 2, 3.

[278] His work was called [Greek: Logoi Philaletheis pros Christianous]' on this subject see Mosheim, Dissertat. de turbata per recentiores Platonicos Ecclesia, Sec. 25.

[279] Philostr i. 17, vi. 11.

[280] Philostr. i. 7.

[281] Ibid. i. 8.

[282] Ibid. i. 13.

[283] Ibid. i. 14, 15.

[284] Brucker, vol. ii. p. 104.

[285] Philostr. i. 16.

[286] See Olear. praefat. ad vitam. As he died, U.C. 849, he is usually considered to have lived to a hundred. Since, however, here is an interval of almost twenty years in which nothing important happens, in a part also of his life unconnected with any public events to fix its chronology, it is highly probable that the date of his birth is put too early. Philostratus says that accounts varied, making him live eighty, ninety, or one hundred years; see viii. 29. See also ii. 12, where, by some inaccuracy, he makes him to have been in India twenty years before he was at Babylon.—Olear. ad locum et praefat. ad vit. The common date of his birth is fixed by his biographer's merely accidental mention of the revolt of Archelaus against the Romans, as taking place before Apollonius was twenty years old; see i. 12.

[287] Philostr. i. 19.

[288] Philostr. i. 27-41.

[289] Ibid. ii. 1-40. Brucker, vol. ii. p. 110.

[290] Ibid. iii. 51.

[291] Ibid. iv. 1. Acts xiii. 8; see also Acts viii. 9-11, and xix. 13-16.

[292] Ibid. iv. 11, et seq.

[293] When denied at the latter place he forced his way in.—Philostr. viii. 19.

[294] Ibid. iv. 35. Brucker (vol. ii. p. 118) with reason thinks this prohibition extended only to the profession of magic.

[295] Ibid. iv. 40, etc.

[296] Brucker, vol. ii. p. 120.

[297] Philostr. v. 10.

[298] Astrologers were concerned in Libo's conspiracy against Tiberius, and punished. Vespasian, as we shall have occasion to notice presently, made use of them in furthering his political plans.—Tacit. Hist. ii. 78. We read of their predicting Nero's accession, the deaths of Vitellius and Domitian, etc. They were sent into banishment by Tiberius, Claudius, Vitellius, and Domitian. Philostratus describes Nero as issuing his edict on leaving the Capital for Greece, iv. 47. These circumstances seem to imply that astrology, magic, etc, were at that time of considerable service in political intrigues.

[299] Philostr. v. ii, etc.

[300] Ibid. v. 20, etc.

[301] Philostr. v. 27.

[302] Tacitus relates, that when Vespasian was going to the Serapeum, ut super rebus imperii consuleret, Basilides, an Egyptian, who was at the time eighty miles distant, suddenly appeared to him; from his name the emperor drew an omen that the god sanctioned his assumption of the Imperial power.—Hist. iv. 82. This sufficiently agrees in substance with the narrative of Philostratus to give the latter some probability. It was on this occasion that the famous cures are said to have been wrought.

[303] As Egypt supplied Rome with corn, Vespasian by taking possession of that country almost secured to himself the Empire.—Tacit. Hist. ii. 82, iii. 8. Philostratus insinuates that he was already in possession of supreme power, and came to Egypt for the sanction of Apollonius. [Greek: Ten men archen kektemeuos, dialexomeuos de tps audri]. v. 27.

[304] Philostr. v. 31.

[305] Brucker, vol. ii. p. 566, etc.

[306] Philostr. v. 37, he makes Euphrates say to Vespasian, [Greek: Philosophian, o basileu, ten men kata physin echainei kai aspazou ten de theoklutein phaskousan paraitou katapseudomenoi gar tou theiou polla kai anoeta, emas epairousi.] See Brucker; and Apollon. Epist. 8.

[307] Ibid. vi. 1, etc.

[308] Philostr. vi. 29, etc.

[309] Ibid. vii. 1, etc., see Brucker, vol. ii. p. 128.

[310] Ibid. viii. 5, 6, etc. On account of his foretelling the pestilence he was honoured as a god by the Ephesians, vii. 21. Hence this prediction appeared in the indictment.

[311] Euseb. in Hier. 41.

[312] Perhaps his causing the writing of the indictment to vanish from the paper, when he was brought before Tigellinus, may be an exception, as being the alleged cause of his acquittal. In general, however, no consequence follows from his marvellous actions: e. g. when imprisoned by Domitian, in order to show Damis his power, he is described as drawing his leg out of the fetters, and then—as putting it back again, vii. 38. A great exertion of power with apparently a small object.

[313] Philostr. viii. 8, 9.

[314] Ibid. viii. 15.

[315] Philostr. viii. 27.

[316] Ibid. viii. 30.

[317] Ibid. i. 5. viii. 29.

[318] A coin of Hadrian's reign is extant with the inscription, which seems to run [Greek: Tyana iera, asulos autonomos]. Olear. ad Philostr. viii. 31.

[319] See Bayle, Art. Apollonius; and Brucker.

[320] Bishop Lloyd considers them spurious, but Olearius and Brucker show that there is good reason from internal evidence to suppose them genuine. See Olear. Addend. ad praefat. Epistol.; and Brucker, vol. ii. p. 147.

[321] Apollonius continued at Ephesus, Smyrna, etc., from A.D. 50 to about 59, and was at Rome from A.D. 63 to 66. St. Paul passed through Ionia into Greece A.D. 53, and was at Ephesus A.D. 54, and again from A.D. 56 to 58; he was at Rome in A.D. 65 and 66, when he was martyred.

[322] Lucian and Apuleius speak of him as if his name were familiar to them. Olear. praef. ad Vit.

[323] In Hierocl. 5.

[324] Inst. v. 3.

[325] See Bayle, Art. Apollonius; and Cudworth, Intell. Syst. iv. 14.

[326] Philostr. viii. 19, 20.

[327] See Eusebius, Vopiscus, Lampridius, etc., as quoted by Bayle.

[328] See Brucker on this point, vol. ii. p. 141, who refers to various authors. Eusebius takes a more sober view of the question, allowing the substance of the history, but disputing the extraordinary parts. See in Hierocl. 5 and 12.

[329] Most of them are imitations of the miracles attributed to Pythagoras.

[330] See Philostr. i. 4, 5, viii. 30, 31. He insinuates (Cf. viii. 29 with 31), that Apollonius was taken up alive. See Euseb. 8.

[331] Philostr. iv. 3, 16, 20, 25, 44, v. 42, vi. 43, vii. 38.

[332] Ibid. i. 12, iv. 24, 43, 11-13, 18, 30, vi. 3, 32.

[333] Ibid. iv. 10.

[334] Vit. iv. 45; Cf. Mark v. 29, etc.; Luke vii. 16; also John xi. 41-43; Acts iii. 4-6. In the sequel, the parents offer him money, which he gives as a portion to the damsel. See 2 Kings v. 15, 16 [4 Kings], and other passages in Scripture.

[335] Lib. 67.

[336] Hist. 67.

[337] Vit. viii. 26.

[338] Philostr. v. 12; in i. 2, he associates Democritus, a natural philosopher, with Pythagoras and Empedocies. See viii. 7, Sec. 8, and Brucker, vol. i. p. 1108, etc., and p. 1184.

[339] In his apology before Domitian, he expressly attributes his removal of the Ephesian pestilence to Hercules, and makes this ascription the test of a divine philosopher as distinguished from a magician, viii. 7, Sec. 9, ubi vid. Olear.

[340] Vid. viii, 7, Sec. 9. See also ii. 37, vi. 11, viii. 5.

[341] Philostr. i. 2, and Olear. ad loc. note 3, iv. 44, v. 12, vii. 39, viii. 7; Apollon. Epist. 8 and 52; Philostr. Prooem. vit. Sophist.; Euseb. in Hier. 2; Mosheim, de Simone Mago, Sec. 13. Yet it must be confessed that the views both of the Pythagoreans and Eclectics were very inconsistent on this subject. Eusebius notices several instances of [Greek: goeteia] in Apollonius's miracles; in Hierocl. 10, 28, 29, and 31. See Brucker, vol. ii. p. 447. At Eleusis, and the Cave of Triphonius, Apollonius was, as we have seen, accounted a magician, and so also by Euphrates, Moeragenes, Apuleius, etc. See Olear. Praef. ad vit. p. 33; and Brucker, vol. ii. p. 136, note k.

[342] See Mosheim, Dissertat. de turbata Ecclesia, etc., Sec. 27.

[343] See Quaest. ad Orthodox 24 as quoted by Olearius, in his Preface, p. 34.

[344] Eusebius calls it [Greek: theia tis kai arretos sophia] in Hierocl. 2. In iii. 41, Philostratus speaks of the [Greek: kleseis ais theoi chairousi], the spells for evoking them, which Apollonius brought from India; Cf. iv. 16, and in iv. 20 of the [Greek: tekmerion] used for casting out an Evil Spirit.

[345] [Greek: Ei te spinthera tes psyches euren en aute], etc.

[346] Douglas (Criterion, p. 387, note), observes that some heretics affirmed that our Lord rose from the dead [Greek: phantasiodos], only in appearance, from an idea of the impossibility of a resurrection.

[347] Apollon. Epist. 17.

[348] Vid. Rom. xv. 69; 1 Cor. ii. 4; 2 Cor. xii. 2, and Acts passim.

[349] See Epist. 1, 2, etc., 11, 44; the last-mentioned addressed to his brother begins, "What wonder, that, while the rest of mankind think me godlike, and some even a god, my own country alone hitherto ignores me, for whose sake especially I wished to distinguish myself, when not even to you, my brother, as I perceive, has it become clear how much I excel this race of men in my doctrine and my life?"—Epist. ii. 44, vid. also i. 2. He does not say "in supernatural power." Cf. John xii. 37: "But though He had done so many miracles before them, yet they believed not in Him."

[350] Epist. 68. Claudius, in a message to the Tyanaeans, Epist. 53, praises him merely as a benefactor to youth.

[351] Philostr. vi. 11. See Euseb. in Hierocl. 26, 27.

[352] Hence the first of the charges brought against him by Domitian was the strangeness of his dress.—Philostr. viii. 5. By way of contrast, Cf. 1 Cor. ii. 3, 4; 2 Cor. x. 10.

[353] Philostr. iv. 1. See also i. 19, 21, iv. 17, 20, 39, vii. 31, etc., and i. 10, 12 etc.

[354] Brucker, vol. ii. p. 144.

[355] Brucker supposes that, as in the case of Alexander, gain was his object; but we seem to have no proof of this, nor is it necessary thus to account for his conduct. We discover, indeed, in his character, no marks of that high enthusiasm which would support him in his whimsical career without any definite worldly object; yet the veneration he inspired, and the notice taken of him by great men, might be quite a sufficient recompense to a conceited and narrow mind.

[356] Cf. also Acts xx. 22, 23; xxi. 4, 11-14.

[357] Philostr. i. 8, 11, iv. 36, 38, 44, vii. 34, viii. 5, 11.

[358] See the description of his raising the Roman maid as above given. Or take again the account of his appearance to Damis and Demetrius at Puteoli, after vanishing from Court, viii. 12; in which there is much incautious agreement with Luke xxiv. 14-17, 27, 29, 32, 36-40. Also more or less in the following: vii. 30, init. and 34, fin. with Luke xii. 11, 12; iii. 38, with Matt. xvii. 14, etc., where observe the contrast of the two narratives: viii. 30, fin. with Acts xii. 7-10: iv. 44, with John xviii. 33, etc.: vii. 34, init. with Mark xiv. 65: iv. 34, init. with Acts xvi. 8-10: i. 19, fin. with Mark vii. 27, 28. Brucker and Douglas notice the following in the detection of the Empusa: [Greek: Dakruonti epskei to phasma, kai edeito me basanizein auto, mede anagkazein omolsgein dti eie], iv. 25, Cf. Mark v. 7-9. Olearius compares an expression in vii. 30, with 1 Cor. ix. 9.

[359] E. G. his ambitious descriptions of countries, etc. In iv. 30, 32, v. 22, vi. 24, he ascribes to Apollonius regular Socratic disputations, and in vi. 11, a long and flowery speech in the presence of the Gymnosophists—modes of philosophical instruction totally at variance with the genius of the Pythagorean school, the Philosopher's Letters still extant, and the writer's own description of his manner of teaching, i. 17. Some of his exaggerations and mis-statements have been noticed in the course of the narrative. As a specimen of the rhetorical style in which the work is written, vid. his account of the restoration of the Roman damsel, [Greek: O de ouden all e prosapsamenos autes aphypnise],—contrast this with the simplicity of the Scripture narrative. See also the last sentence of v. 17, and indeed passim.

[360] E. G. his accounts of Indian and AEthiopian monsters; of serpents whose eyes were jewels of magical virtue; of pygmies; of golden water; of the speaking tree; of a woman half white and half black, etc.; he incorporates in his narrative the fables of Ctesias, Agatharchidas, and other writers. His blunders in geography and natural philosophy may be added, as far as they arise from the desire of describing wonders, etc. See also his pompous description of the wonders of Babylon, which were not then in existence.—Prideaux, Connection, Part 1. Book viii. For his inconsistencies, see Eusebius and Brucker. It must be remembered, that in the age of Philostratus the composition of romantic histories was in fashion.

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