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352 pages, Hardcover
First published September 29, 2020
After the death of Scipio, Panaetius understood that a chapter of his life had ended - all that was left was for him to write the next (and possibly the final) one. He returned to Athens the same year after another great loss - this time the death of Antipater - to take over as head of the school. There he served the Stoa another twenty years, continuing to teach and write. Perhaps, like retired political figures today, he returned occasionally to Rome to lecture, consult with magistrates, or promote his books.
[...] The year of his birth, 135 BC, in what is now Syria, marked the beginning of political turmoil that in a sense continues to this day. [...] Perhaps these are the ideal conditions in which Stoicism emerges: a homeland lacking strong leadership and buffeted by powerful outside forces; a ringside seat to the perils of excess and greed. [...] In any case, Posidonius would later recall with disapproval that the abundance of Syria in those days made its people "free from the bother of the necessities of life, and so were forever meeting for a continual life of feasting and their gymnasia turned into baths."