The Ancient Library

Scanned text contains errors.

On this page: Zopyrus – Zoroaster



the preceding, revolted from the Persians, and fled to Athens. (Herod, iii. 160.)

3. The Thracian, a slave of Pericles, was ap­pointed by the latter the Paedagogus of Alcibiades. (Pint. Alcib. i. p. 122.)

4. The Physiognomist, attributed many vices to Socrates in an assembly of his disciples, who laughed at him and at his art in consequence ; but Socrates admitted the truth of his remarks, and said that such were his natural propensities, but that they had been overcome by philosophy. (Cic. Tusc. iv. 37, de Fato, 5 ; Alex. Aphrodis. de Fato, c. 6, p. 48, ed. Orelli.)

ZOPYRUS (ZcSTrupos), literary. 1. Of Ta-rentum, a Pythagorean philosopher. (Iambi. Vit. Pylli. extr.)

2. Of Clazomenae, a rhetorician, was a contem­porary of Timon. (Quintil. iii. 6. § 3 ; Diog. Lae'rt. ix. 114.)

3. Of Byzantium, an historian (Plut. Parall. Min. c. 36), was probably the author of MiA-^rou KTi<m, the fourth book of which is cited by the Scholiast on Homer (//. x. 274). He is perhaps the same person as the Zopyrus mentioned by Marcelli-nus ( Vit. Time. § 32). Stobaeus quotes two verses from Zopyrus (Floril. Ixiii. 8), and likewise makes an extract from a work entitled Theseis, also by Zopyrus, but it is impossible to determine whether this Zopyrus was the same as the Byzantine, or whether Stobaeus quotes from the same or from two different persons. There are some other persons of the name. (See Vossius, de Hist. Graec. p. 511, ed. Westermann.)

ZOPYRUS (ZcoTTvpos). 1. A surgeon at Alex­andria, the tutor of Apollonius Citiensis and Posidonius (Apoll. Cit. ap. Dietz, Schol. in Hippocr. et Gal. vol. i. p. 2) about the beginning of the first century b. c. He invented an antidote, which he recommended to Mithridates, king of Pontus, and wrote a letter to that king, begging to be allowed to test its efficacy on the person of a criminal (Galen, De Antid. ii. 8, vol. xiv. p. 150). Another somewhat similar composition he prepared for one of the Ptolemies. (Gels. v. 23. § 2. p. 94.) Some of his medical formulae are quoted and mentioned by various ancient authors, viz. Caelius Aurelianus (De Morb. Chron. ii. 14, v. 10. pp. 425, 592), Oribasius (Coll. Medic, xiv. 45, 50, 52, 56, 58, 61, 64, pp.478, 481, 482, 483, 485, 487), Aetius (ii. 4. 57, iii. 1. 31, iv. 2. 74, pp. 417, 476, 732), Paulus Aegineta (vii. 11, p. 660), Marcellus Em-piricus (De Medicam. c. 22, p. 342), and Nicolaus Myrepsus (i. 291, p. 420): and Pliny (//. N. xxiv. 87), and Dioscorides (iii. 99. vol. i. p. 446) mention that a certain plant was called zopyron, perhaps after his name. Nicarchus satirizes in one of his epigrams (Aniliol. Gr. xi. 124), a physician named Zopyrus, who appears to have lived in Egypt, and who may possibly be the person mentioned by Apollonius Citiensis and Celsus ; in which case Nicarchus must have lived earlier than is commonly supposed. [nicarchus.]

2. An acquaintance of Scribonius Largus in the first century after Christ (Scrib. Larg. De Compos. Medicam. c. 171, p. 222), a native either of Gordium in Phrygia (Gordiensis) or of Gortyna in Crete (Gortynensis)^ may perhaps have been the same physician who is introduced by Plutarch as one of the speakers in his Symposiaca (iii. 6) and said to have belonged to the Epicurean school of philosophy.


A physician of this name is also mentioned in an old Latin inscription in Gruter's Inscript. p. 635. § 7. (See Fabric. Bibl. Graec. vol. xiii. p. 455, ed. vet. ; Sprengel's GescJi. der Arzneik. vol. i. ed. 1846.) [W. A. G.]

ZOPYRUS, is mentioned by Pliny as one of the eminent silver chasers who flourished in the time of Pompey the Great. Two cups of his, re­ presenting the trial of Orestes by the Areopagus, were valued at twelve thousand sesterces. (Plin. H. N. xxxiii. 12. s. 55 : Zopyrus^ qui Areopagitas etjudicium Orestis in duobus scyphis [caelavit] H. S. XII. aestimatis.) [P. S.]

ZOROASTER or ZOROASTRES (ZoyW-o-Tprjs), the zarathcjstra of the Zendavesta, and the zerdusht of the Persians, was the founder of the Magian religion. The most opposite opinions have been held both by ancient and modern writers respecting the time in which he lived. In the Zendavesta itself, as well as in the writings of the Parsees, Zoroaster is said to have lived in the reign of Vitafpa (as he is called in the Zendavesta) or Gushtasp (as the Persians name him), whom most modern writers identify with Dareius Hystaspis. According to this view the system of Zoroaster was not promulgated till the time of the third Per­sian monarch, and he must therefore be looked upon as the reformer and not the founder of the Magian religion, which was of much higher anti­quity. This opinion was maintained by Hyde and Prideaux, who also attempted to prove that Zoro­aster was a pupil of Daniel, and learnt from the prophet all those parts of his system which re­semble the tenets of the Sacred Writings. But although this opinion has been adopted by An-quetil du Perron, Kleuker, Malcolm, and many other modern writers, it will be found to possess no other evidence in its favour but the identification of Gushtasp with Dareius Hystaspis ; for the testi­mony of the later Greek and Roman writers, who place Zoroaster at this period, is of no value in such an inquiry, and is counterbalanced by the statements of other classical writers who assign to him a much earlier date. Moreover, while this supposition has such a slender amount of evidence in its favour, it is open to the most serious objections. First, Zoroaster is universally represented as the founder of the Magian religion both by the Ori­entals and the Greeks, and it is unnecessary to prove that this religion was of greater antiquity than the commencement of the Persian empire, and that it had been previously the national reli­gion of the Medes. The first Greek writer who mentions Zoroaster is Plato, who says that the Persian youths were taught the Mageia of Zoro­aster, the son of Horomazes, which he interprets to mean the worship of the gods (6 fjLtv /uayeiav 5f5a<r/cet rty Zwpodffrpov rov '£lpo/nd£ou— g<rn 8e rovro £ecoj/ ^epcwreia, Plut. Alcib. i. p. 122, a). Secondly, if Zoroaster had been the reformer of the Persian religion in the reign of Dareius Hystaspis, he would certainly have been mentioned by Hero­dotus. The silence of the historian is a conclusive argument to us against Zoroaster being a contem­porary of Dareius. Thirdly, the king Gushtasp, under whom Zoroaster lived, is said in the Zenda­vesta to be the son of Auravatacpa, the Lohrasp of the modern Persians, while Hystaspes, the father of Dareius, was never king, and was the son of Arskama or Arsames. It would therefore seem that the Gushtasp, the contemporary of Zoroaster,

About | First



page #  
Search this site
All non-public domain material, including introductions, markup, and OCR © 2005 Tim Spalding.
Ancient Library was developed and hosted by Tim Spalding of