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LONGINUS
Form: Cassius.
A Greek rhetorician, born at Athens about 213 A.D., who studied Neoplatonism at Alexandria, and practised as teacher of philosophy, grammar [i.e. literary criticism], and rhetoric, in his native city, from about 260, until the accomplished queen Zenobia of Palmyra summoned him as minister to her court. As he persuaded her to resist the Roman yoke, the emperor Aurelian caused him to be executed after Zenobia's overthrow in 273. He possessed such an extent of learning, that Eunapius called him a living library and a walking museum. His versatility is proved by compositions on philosophy, grammar, rhetoric, chronology, and literature. Of these, only fragments are extant, for example, the introduction to a commentary on Hephaestio's handbook of metres, and a short Rhetoric incomplete at the beginning. A brief treatise On the Sublime, commonly ascribed to him, is more probably to be assigned to an unknown writer about the Christian era. It treats and illustrates by classic examples the characteristics of the Iofty style from a philosophical and aesthetic point of view. It is written in a vigorous manner.
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