Theano of Crotone ( // ; Greek : Θεανώ) was a 6th-century BC Pythagorean philosopher. She has been called the wife or student of Pythagoras, although others see her as the wife of Brontinus. Her place of birth and the identity of her father are uncertain as well. Some authors have suggested that there was more than one person whose details have become merged (these are sometimes referred to as Theano I and Theano II). Theano is considered by some to be the first known woman mathematician. She may have worked on The Golden Mean and The Golden Rectangle.
Little is known about the life of Theano. According to one tradition, she came from Crete and was the daughter of Pythonax,but according to others she came from Crotone and was the daughter of Brontinus. She was said by many to have been the wife of Pythagoras, although another tradition made her the wife of Brontinus. Iamblichus, in an attempt to resolve the confusion, refers to Deino as the wife of Brontinus.
The children variously ascribed to Pythagoras and Theano included three daughters, Damo, Myia, and Arignote, and a son, Telauges.Suda writes that her children with Pythagoras were Telauges, Mnesarkhos, Myia and Arignote.
Pythagoras opened up a school in Croton in Italy which primarily involved mathematics, philosophy, and nature. It is thought that Pythagoras accepted women and men in his school and at one point achieved 300 students in school while only 28 students were women. As multiple sources indicate, Pythagoras wanted to compete with other schools so he made his school not based on discrimination of genders, which influenced other women to pursue science and astronomy instead of being discriminated.It was also spoken that many men were inspired by the women studying in school. As Pythagoras life ending Theano took over as the head of the school with the help of her children. With Theano's life ending, the school still existed, even after 200 years after the deaths of both Theano and Pythagoras. Theano passed away during the 5th century B.C. and was thought to be buried right by their school.
The writings attributed to Theano were: Pythagorean Apophthegms, Female Advice, On Virtue, On Piety, On Pythagoras, Philosophical Commentaries, and Letters.None of these writings have survived except a few fragments and letters of uncertain authorship. Attempts have been made to assign some of these fragments and letters to the original Theano (Theano I) and some to a later Theano (Theano II), but it is likely that they are all pseudonymous fictions of later writers, which attempt to apply Pythagorean philosophy to a woman's life. The surviving fragment of On Piety concerns a Pythagorean analogy between numbers and objects; the various surviving letters deal with domestic concerns: how a woman should bring up children, how she should treat servants, and how she should behave virtuously towards her husband.
According to Thesleff, Stobaeus, and Heeren, Theano wrote in On Piety:
I have learned that many of the Greeks believe Pythagoras said all things are generated from number. The very assertion poses a difficulty: How can things which do not exist even be conceived to generate? But he did not say that all things come to be from number; rather, in accordance with number – on the grounds that order in the primary sense is in number and it is by participation in order that a first and a second and the rest sequentially are assigned to things which are counted.
Although some sources have claimed that Theano wrote about either the doctrine of the golden mean in philosophy, or the golden ratio in mathematics, there is no evidence from the time to justify this claim.
As mentioned earlier, Theano wrote quite a bit of treatises, which is a any sort of written work that deals formally and systematically in a certain subject. Theano wrote a few of these treatises which involved medicine, physics, mathematics, and psychology.During Theano's writing period she brought a few historical writings for us, which include Cosmology, The Theorem of the Golden Mean, The Theory of Numbers, and The Construction of the Universe. Out of all these writings it is said that, The Theorem of the Golden Mean, is the most conflicted writing due to the fact that Theano had made many arguable points. Because Theano wrote about the universe and planets in this writing, there might be some arguable points that other philosophers can make, for example Theano states that the stars are unable to move, but Aristotle would say the opposite, and say that they are able to move. The Theorem of the Golden Mean, is still used today and is one of Theano's most important writings.
It is not uncommon for the works of women, especially those who worked alongside more famous men like Pythagoras, to not receive the credit they deserve from the work that they did. This might also contribute to part of her allure. She remains a mystery for many people, but they all agree that she worked alongside Pythagoras and that she published various different works under different pseudonyms. She is considered to be an extremely intelligent woman, based on her continuous education at the school her husband taught at. A lot of her credit got lost due to the fact that her husband was a more well known philosopher and because women of the time.[ clarification needed ] Although there are varying accounts of her work and private life, there are some non-academic anecdotal stories that are considered to be true. For example, “Theano was walking along one day when her elbow came uncovered. Somebody commented that it was a beautiful elbow. She said, “Yes, but not a public one!””.[ citation needed ]
There is a belief among some scholars that the writings which are thought to have been written by Theano were actually written but men who used this as a pseudonym. To continue, for men to have published work under her name, it would have to be true that this would give them recognition for their work. This is not necessarily the case because even Theano’s own work has not been attributed to her, and she did not have as high of a social standing as Pythagoras. It is true that in the specific society that Pythagoras studied, women were considered to be equal, although in practice and in time, this is not found to be entirely true.
Pythagoras of Samos was an ancient Ionian Greek philosopher and the eponymous founder of Pythagoreanism. His political and religious teachings were well known in Magna Graecia and influenced the philosophies of Plato, Aristotle, and, through them, Western philosophy. Knowledge of his life is clouded by legend, but he appears to have been the son of Mnesarchus, a gem-engraver on the island of Samos. Modern scholars disagree regarding Pythagoras's education and influences, but they do agree that, around 530 BC, he travelled to Croton in southern Italy, where he founded a school in which initiates were sworn to secrecy and lived a communal, ascetic lifestyle. This lifestyle entailed a number of dietary prohibitions, traditionally said to have included vegetarianism, although modern scholars doubt that he ever advocated for complete vegetarianism.
Milo of Croton was a 6th-century BC wrestler from the Magna Graecian city of Croton, who enjoyed a brilliant wrestling career and won many victories in the most important athletic festivals of ancient Greece. His father was named Diotimus (Διοτίμος). In addition to his athletic victories, Milo is credited by the ancient commentator Diodorus Siculus with leading his fellow citizens to a military triumph over neighbouring Sybaris in 510 BC.
Crotone is a city and comune in Calabria. Founded c. 710 BC as the Achaean colony of Kroton, it was known as Cotrone from the Middle Ages until 1928, when its name was changed to the current one. In 1992, it became the capital of the newly established Province of Crotone. As of August 2018, its population was about 65,000.
Philolaus who was a Greek Pythagorean and pre-Socratic philosopher. He was born in a Greek colony in Italy and migrated to Greece. Philolaus has been called one of three most prominent figures in the Pythagorean tradition and the most outstanding figure in the Pythagorean school. Pythagoras developed a school of philosophy that was dominated by both mathematics and mysticism. Most of what is known today about the Pythagorean astronomical system is derived from Philolaus's views. He may have been the first write about Pythagorean doctrine. According to August Böckh (1819), who cites Nicomachus, Philolaus was the successor of Pythagoras.
Pythagoreanism originated in the 6th century BC, based on the teachings and beliefs held by Pythagoras and his followers, the Pythagoreans. Pythagoras established the first Pythagorean community in Crotone, Italy. Early Pythagorean communities spread throughout Magna Graecia.
Aesara of Lucania was a Pythagorean philosopher who wrote On Human Nature, of which a fragment is preserved by Stobaeus.
Nicomachus of Gerasa was an important ancient mathematician best known for his works Introduction to Arithmetic and Manual of Harmonics in Greek. He was born in Gerasa, in the Roman province of Syria. He was a Neopythagorean, who wrote about the mystical properties of numbers.
Hippasus of Metapontum was a Pythagorean philosopher. Little is known about his life or his beliefs, but he is sometimes credited with the discovery of the existence of irrational numbers. The discovery of irrational numbers is said to have been shocking to the Pythagoreans, and Hippasus is supposed to have drowned at sea, apparently as a punishment from the gods for divulging this. However, the few ancient sources which describe this story either do not mention Hippasus by name or alternatively tell that Hippasus drowned because he revealed how to construct a dodecahedron inside a sphere. The discovery of irrationality is not specifically ascribed to Hippasus by any ancient writer.
Timaeus of Locri is a character in two of Plato's dialogues, Timaeus and Critias. In both, he appears as a philosopher of the Pythagorean school. If there ever existed a historical Timaeus of Locri, he would have lived in the fifth century BC, but his historicity is dubious since he only appears as a literary figure in Plato; all other ancient sources are either based on Plato or are fictional accounts.
Lysis of Taras was a Greek philosopher. His life is obscure. He was said to have been a friend and disciple of Pythagoras. After the persecution of the Pythagoreans at Croton and Metapontum he escaped and went to Thebes, where he became the teacher of Epaminondas, by whom he was held in the highest esteem. There are, however, serious chronological difficulties with his being both a disciple of Pythagoras and the teacher of Epaminondas. Some of the commentators and doxographers have failed to distinguish between the two different anti-pythagorean revolutions: the first one around ~500, when Pythagoras himself died, and the second one fifty years later. This could clarify the source of the chronological incoherence.
Alcmaeon of Croton has been described as one of the most eminent natural philosophers and medical theorists of antiquity. He has been referred to as "a thinker of considerable originality and one of the greatest philosophers, naturalists, and neuroscientists of all time." His work in biology has been described as remarkable, and his originality made him likely a pioneer. Because of difficulties dating Alcmaeon's birth, his importance has been neglected.
Damo was a Pythagorean philosopher said by many to have been the daughter of Pythagoras and Theano.
This page is a list of topics in ancient philosophy.
Brontinus of Metapontum was a Pythagorean philosopher, and a friend and disciple of Pythagoras himself. Alcmaeon dedicated his works to Brontinus as well as to Leon and Bathyllus. Accounts vary as to whether he was the father or the husband of Theano.
Phintys was a Pythagorean philosopher, probably from the third century BC. She wrote a work on the correct behaviour of women, two extracts of which are preserved by Stobaeus.
Myia was a Pythagorean philosopher and, according to later tradition, one of the daughters of Theano and Pythagoras.
Arignote or Arignota was a Pythagorean philosopher from Croton or Samos. She was known as a student of Pythagoras and Theano and, according to some traditions, their daughter as well.
Telauges was a Samian Pythagorean philosopher and, according to tradition, the son of Pythagoras and Theano. Little is known about his life and works other than a scattering of remarks from much later writers.
Themistoclea Names such as Diotima, Aesara, Aristoclea, Hiparchia, Theano, Areté, Sosipatra, Porcia, and Hypatia, She is also considered one of the first European philosophers, though none of her works didn't seem to survive since the 6th century.
Aresas of Lucania, and probably of Crotone, was the head of the Pythagorean school, and the sixth head of the school in succession from Pythagoras himself. Diodorus of Aspendus was one of his students. He lived around the 4th or 5th century BCE.
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