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Form: Lat. Dio.
Dio Chrysostomus, Cocceius. A Greek rhetorician and philosopher, born of a respectable family at Prusa, in Bithynia, about the middle of the 1st century A.D. He began his career by devoting himself to rhetoric. Driven from his native country by domestic intrigues, he lived for a long time in Egypt, where he obtained the favour of the future emperor Vespasian. Afterwards he lived in Rome under Domitian, until he was banished from Italy and Bithynia for his friendship with a person in high place who had incurred the suspicion of the emperor. The period of his banishment he spent, according to the command of the Delphic, oracle, in distant travels through the northern regions of the Roman empire, as far as the Borysthenes, or Dnieper, and the Getae. All this time he was studying philosophy, to which he had previously been avorse, in spite of his friendship with Apollonius of Tyana, His leaning was in the direction of Stoicism. On the accession of his friend Cocceius Nerva (from whom he took the name Cocceius), he returned to Rome, where he spent the remainder of his days, with the exception of a short stay in Prusa. He was greatly honoured both by Nerva and his successor Trajan. His contemporaries called him Chrysostomos ("Golden mouth"), from his powers as a speaker, which he often displayed in public in Rome and elsewhere. Eighty of his speeches survive. They should rather be called essays on topics of philosophy, morals, and politics. He has talent, and refinement, and healthy moral tone. In his style he imitates the best models, especially Plato and Demosthenes, and his writings are on the whole; in spite of many defects, among the best literary productions of that age.
Type: Standard
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