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On this page: Diogenes – Diogenes Oenomaus

DIOGENES.

lost. Montaigne (Essais, ii. 10) therefore justly wished, that we had a dozen Laertiuses, or that his work were more complete and better arranged. One must indeed confess, that he made bad use of the enormous quantity of materials which he had at his command in writing his work, and that he was un­equal to the task of writing a history of Greek phi­losophy. His work is in reality nothing but a com­pilation of the most heterogeneous, and often di­rectly contradictory, accounts, put together without plan, criticism, or connexion. Even some early scholars, such as H. Stephens, considered these bio­graphies of the philosophers to be anything but worthy of the philosophers. His object evidently was to furnish a book which was to amuse its read­ers by piquant anecdotes, for he had no conception of the value and dignity of philosophy, or of the greatness of the men whose lives he described. The traces of carelessness and mistakes are very nume­rous ; much in the work is confused, and there is much also that is quite absurd ; and as far as phi­losophy itself is concerned, Diogenes very frequently did not know what he was talking about, when he abridged the theories of the philosophers.

The love of scandal and anecdotes, which had arisen from petty views of men and things, at a time when all political freedom was gone, and among a people which had become demoralized, 'had crept into literature also, and such compila­tions as those of Phlegon, Ptolemaeus Chennus, Athenaeus, Aelian, and Diogenes Laertius display this taste of a decaying literature. All the defects of such a period, however, are so glaring in the work of Diogenes, that in order to rescue the com­mon sense of the writer, critics have had recourse to the hypothesis, that the present work is a muti­lated abridgment of the original production of Diogenes. (J. G. Schneider in F. A. Wolfs Lit. Anal. iii. p. 227.) Gualterus Burlaeus, who lived at the close of the 13th century, wrote a work " De Vita et Moribus Philosophorum," in which he principally used Diogenes. Now Burlaeus makes many statements, and quotes sayings of the philo­sophers, which seem to be derived from no other source than Diogenes, and yet are not to be found in our present text. Burlaeus, moreover, gives us several valuable various readings, a better order . and plan, and several accounts which in his work are minute and complete, but which are abridged in Diogenes in a manner which renders them unintel­ligible. From these circumstances Schneider infers, that Burlaeus had a more complete copy of Dio­genes. But the hope of discovering a more com­plete MS. has not been realized as yet.

The work of Diogenes became first known in western Europe through a Latin translation made by Ambrosius, a pupil of Chrysoloras, which, however, is rather a free paraphrase than a translation. It was printed after Ambrosius's death. (Rome, before A. d. 1475 ; reprinted Venice, 1475 ; Brixen, 1485 ; Venice, 1493 ; and Antwerp, 1566.) Of the Greek text only some portions were then printed in the editions of Aristotle, Theophrastus, Plato, and Xenophon. The first complete edition is that of Basel, 1533, 4to., ap. Frobenium. It was followed by that of H. Stephens, with notes, which, however, extend only to the ninth book, Paris, 1570, and of Isaac Casaubon, with notes, 1594. Stephens's edition, with the addition of Hesychius Milesius, de Vita Illustr. Philos. ap­peared again at Colon. Allobrog. 1515. Then fol-

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DIOGENES.

lowed the editions of Th. Aldobrandimis (Rome, 1594, fol.), corrected by a collation of new MSS., and of J. Pearson with a new Latin translation (London, 1664, fol.), which contains the valuable commentary of Menage, and the notes of the earlier commentators. All these editions were surpassed in some respects by that of Meibom (Amsterd. 1692, 2 vols.4to.), but the text is here treated care­lessly, and altered by conjectures. This edition was badly reprinted in the editions of Longolius (1739 and 1759), in which only the preface of Longolius is of value. The best modern edition is that of H. G. Hubner, Leipzig, 2 vols. 8vo. 1828 — 1831. The text is here greatly improved, and accompanied by short critical notes. In 1831, the commentaries of Menage, Casaubon, and others, were printed in 2 vols. 8vo. uniformly with Hubner's edition. (Comp. P. Gassendi, Animadv. in x librum Diog. Latrt., Lugdun. 1649, 3 vols. fol. 3rd edition, Lugdun. 1675 ; I. Bossius, Com-mentationes Latrtianae, Rome, 1788, 4to. ; S. Bat­tier, Observat. in Diog. Latrt. in the Mus. Helvet. xv. p. 32, &c. ; Fabric. Bibl. Graec. v. p. 564.)

Diogenes seems to have taken the lists of the writings of his philosophers from Hermippus and Alexandrian authors. (Stahr, Aristot. ii. p. 68 ; Brandis, in the Rliein. Mus. i. 3, p. 249 ; Tren- delenburg, ad Aristot. de Anim. p. 123.) Besides the work on Greek philosophers, Diogenes Laer­ tius also composed other works, to which he him­ self (ii. 65) refers with the words us eV aAAots slpritcau.€v. The epigrams, many of which are in­ terspersed in his biographies, and with reference to which Tzetzes (Chil. iii. 61) calls him an epi­ grammatic poet, were collected in a separate work, and divided into several books. (Diog. Laert. i. 39, 63, where the first book is quoted.) It bore the title $ Tra/^uerpos, but, unfortunate!}7, these poetical attempts, so far as they are extant, shew the same deficiencies as the history of philosophy, and the vanity with which he quotes them, does not give us a favourable notion of his taste. (G'. H. Klippel. de Diogcnis Latrtii Vita., Scriptis atque Auctoritate, Gb'ttingen, 1831, 4to.) [A. S.]

DIOGENES OENOMAUS, a tragic poet, who is said to have begun to exhibit at Athens in b. c. 404. Of his tragedies only a few titles re­ main, namely, ©uecrTTjs, 3A%iAAevs, 'EAe*/??, 'Hpa- /cA?7S, MTJSeia, OfSiTrous, Xpvannros., 5e/x.eAi7/ and it is remarkable that all of these, except the last, are ascribed by Diogenes Laertius to Diogenes the Cynic, (vi. 80, or 73.) Others ascribe them to Philiscus of Aegina, a friend of Diogenes the Cynic (Menagius, ad Diog. Laiirt. I. c.), and others to Pasiphaon. Melanthius in Plutarch (de And. Poet. 4, p. 41, d.) complains of the obscurity of a certain Diogenes. Aelian (V. H. iii. 30, N. A. vi. 1) mentions a tragic poet Diogenes, who seems, how­ ever, to be a different person from either Diogenes the Cynic or Diogenes Oenomaus. (Suid. s. v.; Ath. xiv. p. 636, a. ; Fabric. Bibl. Graec. ii. p. 295.) f [P. S.]

DIOGENES (Aioysv^s), a Greek physician who must have lived in or before the first century after Christ, as he is quoted by Celsus. (De Medic. v. 19, 27, pp. 90, 104.) Some of his medical for­mulae are preserved by Celsus (1. c.), Galen (de Compos. Medicam. sec. Locos, iii. 3, vol. xii. p. 686; ix. 7, vol. xiii. p. 313), and Ae'tius (i. 3. 109, p. 135). He is probably not the same person with any of the other individuals of this name. [W. A. G.J

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