Maarten Maartensz:    Philosophical Dictionary | Filosofisch Woordenboek                      

 E - Epicurus

Epicurus: 341 BC - 270 BC: Greek philosopher, founder of Epicureanism. "Epicurus" is the Latinized form of Epikouros, "ally, comrade".

He was influenced by Democritus and influenced Lucretius. His school was known as "The Garden", and he taught that the greatest goods are happiness and pleasure, and that nothing can be rationally believed that is not based on direct observation or logical deduction, and was therefore one of the founders of the scientific method. His moral teaching emphasized that happiness is best reach by minimizing doing harm to oneself and others, while insisting that worthwile pleasures are those of the mind and of friendship with gifted and noble men. He followed Democritus in being an atomist, but insisted these may move subject to chance.

Most of his writings are lost, and Lucretius's "On the nature of things" may be the best summary of his teachings.


See also: Epicureanism, Lucretius


Epicurus, Edwards, Runes

 Original: May 9, 2011                                                Last edited: 12 December 2011.   Top