n Acta Classica : Proceedings of the Classical Association of South Africa - Traces of Cynic Monotheism in the early Roman Empire

Volume 51, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0065-1141
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The ancient Cynics rejected traditional religion, themselves on first appearances endorsing either atheism or agnosticism. But their criticism may also have stemmed from a radical monotheism as voiced by Antisthenes. After briefly discussing imperial Cynics and their views on religion, the article argues that the 4th letter of Pseudo-Heraclitus and the Geneva Papyrus inv. 271, Cynic texts from the Early Empire, are not contrary to the essentials of the philosophy and may represent late Hellenistic forms of the Antisthenic tradition in portraying Cynic-type sages mediating between humankind and the God of nature.

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