Notes1.1 My grandfather Verus: Verus (1).1.2 My father: Verus (2).1.3 My mother: Lucilla.1.4 My great-grandfather: Severus (1).To avoid the public schools: Roman aristocrats normally preferred tohave their sons educated by private tutors (often specially trainedhousehold slaves) who were considered safer and more reliable than theprofessional schoolmasters who taught all comers for a fee.1.5 My first teacher: Not named and most likely a slave.Not to support this side or that: Literally, “not to be a Green or a Blue;not to support the parmularius [a gladiator with a small shield] or thescutarius [who carried a larger shield].”1. 6 the camp-bed and the cloak : Symbols of an ascetic lifestyle. Marcus’ssleeping arrangements are recorded by the Historia Augusta: “He usedto sleep on the ground, and his mother had a hard time convincing him tosleep on a cot spread with skins.”1. 7 his own copy: It is unclear whether this refers to Arrian’s Discourses ofEpictetus or to a set of unpublished notes, perhaps taken by Rusticushimself.1.13 Domitius and Athenodotus: The anecdote Marcus refers to is unknown.1.14 My brother: Probably a copyist’s error based on confusion between thenames Verus and Severus.Thrasea, Helvidius, Cato: For the significance of these three figures as
Stoic exemplars see the Introduction.1. 16 My adopted father: Antoninus Pius. The sketch here seems to be adevelopment and expansion of the briefer assessment in 6.30.Putting a stop to the pursuit of boys: This may be meant as a critique ofAntoninus’s predecessor, Hadrian (2), whose love affair with the youthAntinoüs was notorious. Alternatively it might refer to legal restrictions onpederasty (which was common in upper-class Greek and Roman society),or to Antoninus’s own self-restraint.The robe . . . the customs agent’s apology: These examples ofAntoninus’s modesty are too compressed and allusive to be intelligible toanyone but Marcus himself.as they say of Socrates: Marcus may be recalling a similar comment byXenophon, Memorabilia 1.3.14; Socrates’ ability to drink heavily withoutany apparent effect is celebrated in Plato’s Symposium (179c, 220a).Maximus’s illness: For Maximus see the Index of Persons; nothing isknown of his illness.1.17 someone: Antoninus.the kind of brother: Verus (3).the honors they seemed to want: Marcus may be thinking of HerodesAtticus and Fronto, both of whom held consulships in 143, soon afterMarcus became the heir apparent. Perhaps also of Rusticus, who held asecond consulship in 162.I never laid a finger: Household slaves were often exposed to sexualabuse at the hands of their owners.That I have the wife I do: Faustina.at Caieta: A seaport on the west coast of Italy. The Greek text adds an
unintelligible phrase, which some scholars interpret as a reference to “anoracle.”“we need the help . . .”: Apparently a quotation, but not from anysurviving work.2. On the River Gran, Among the Quadi: The notation is transmitted at the endof Book 1, but is more likely to belong here. The Gran (or Hron) is atributary of the Danube flowing through modern-day Slovakia. TheQuadi were a Suebian tribe in the Morava River valley, subdued duringthe Marcomannic Wars of the early 170s.2. 2 Throw away . . . right now: These words are deleted or transposedelsewhere by some editors.2. 10 the ones committed out of desire are worse: Strictly speaking, thisassessment is in conflict with Stoic doctrine, which holds that there areno degrees of wrongness; all wrong actions are equally wrong and itmakes no sense to speak of one as being “worse” than another.2.13 “delving into . . .”: A line from the lyric poet Pindar (frg. 282), quoted alsoby Plato, Theaetetus 173e.3. In Carnuntum: Transmitted at the end of Book 2, but probably meant to headBook 3. Carnuntum was a fortress on the Danube which housed theLegio XIV Gemina and served as the seat of the governor of UpperPannonia. Marcus is known to have been in the area in 172 and 173.3. 3 Chaldaeans: The Chaldaeans (Babylonians) had a special reputation asastrologers.Democritus: Apparently an error for another pre-Socratic philosopher,Pherecydes, who was said to have been eaten by worms. (Democritus’sname was often coupled with that of Heraclitus, which may explainMarcus’s slip here.)Socrates: The “vermin” who killed Socrates are the Athenians who
prosecuted and condemned him.3. 6 as Socrates used to say: It is not clear whether Marcus is alluding to aspecific passage (perhaps Plato, Phaedo 83a–b) or merely to a generalimpression of Socratic doctrine.3.14 your Brief Comments: Evidently collections of anecdotes and/or quotationsput together by Marcus himself for his own use, like parts of the extantMeditations.3.15 They don’t realize . . . : The significance of this entry (particularly the lastphrase) is unclear.3.16 people who do < . . . >: It seems clear that something is missing from thetext, perhaps deliberately omitted by a prudish copyist.4.3 to ward off all < . . . >: The missing word must be something like “anxiety.”“The world is nothing but change . . .”: Democritus frg. B 115.4.18 < . . . > not to be distracted: The text as transmitted includes the words“good,” “black character,” and “suspicion,” but no coherent sense canbe made of them.4.19 You’re out of step . . . : The text of this sentence is disturbed and thetranslation correspondingly uncertain.4.23 The poet: Aristophanes frg. 112.4.24 “If you seek tranquillity . . .”: Democritus frg. B 3.4.30 A philosopher without clothes . . . : If the text is sound it is not easy tointerpret convincingly. The rendering here (which differs from mostprevious versions) represents my best guess at the sense, but is far fromcertain.4.33 Camillus, Caeso, Volesus, Dentatus: Heroes of the Roman Republic (see
the Index of Persons). Only Camillus was well known; the others mayhave been purposely chosen for their obscurity.“unknown, unask ed-for”: Homer, Odyssey 22.214.171.124 “A little wisp of soul . . .”: Epictetus frg. 26 (presumably from one of thelost books of the Discourses).4.46 “When earth dies . . .”: Heraclitus frg. B 76.“Those who have forgotten . . .”: idem. frg. B 71.“They are at odds . . .”: idem. frg. B 72.“they find alien . . .”: idem. frg. B 73.“Our words and actions . . .”: idem. frg. B 74.4.48 Helike, Pompeii, Herculaneum: Helike was a Greek city destroyed by anearthquake and tidal wave in 373 B.C. Pompeii and its neighbor cityHerculaneum were destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D.79.4. 49a It’s unfortunate: It has been plausibly suggested that this entry is aquotation from a lost section of Epictetus’s Discourses.4. 50 Caedicianus, Fabius, Julian, Lepidus: With the possible exception ofCaedicianus and Lepidus (see the Index of Persons), none of thesefigures can be identified.5 . 8 “the doctor”: Literally, “Asclepius.” Patients sleeping in his templesometimes had dream visions of the god and received suggestions fortreatment from him. But the name might simply indicate a humanphysician.5. 10 a pervert: The Greek word (used also in 6.34) is a contemptuous termreferring to the passive partner in homosexual intercourse; it has no
exact English equivalent (“pervert,” although overly broad, at least hasthe right tone). Marcus is probably using it as a generalized term ofabuse.5.12 “so many goods . . .”: Proverbial: the rich man owns “so many goods hehas no place to shit.” The saying is at least as old as the fourth-centuryB.C. comic poet Menander, who quotes it in the surviving fragments ofhis play The Apparition.5.29 If the smoke makes me cough: The metaphor is drawn from Epictetus,Discourses 126.96.36.199.31 “wrong and unworthy . . .”: Homer, Odyssey 4.690.5.33 “gone from the earth . . .”: Hesiod, Works and Days 197.5. 36 Not to be overwhelmed: The remainder of this book is unintelligible inplaces, perhaps because the end of the original papyrus roll sufferedaccidental damage. I have divided the text into three separate sections,but without great confidence that this is correct.Like the old man: The reference is obscure. A scene from a lost tragedy?6.13 Crates on Xenocrates: The meaning of this reference is unknown.6.30 Tak e Antoninus as your model: The sketch that follows seems to be apreliminary version of the longer portrait at 188.8.131.52 perverts: See 5.10 note.6.42 “those who sleep . . .”: Heraclitus frg. B 75.the bad line in the play: Chrysippus frg. 1181 (= Plutarch, On Stoic Self-Contradictions 13f.). Chrysippus compared the existence of evil to adeliberately bathetic line in a comedy—bad in itself, but an essential part ofa good play.
7.12 not: The transmitted text reads “or,” but this can hardly be correct (compare3.5).7.15 Like gold or emerald or purple: Compare Epictetus, Discourses 1.2.17–18: “You see yourself as one thread in a garment . . . But I want to bethe purple thread, the small, glistening one that enhances the others.”7.24 “ . . . “ or in the end is put out: I have omitted a short phrase from which itis impossible to extract any meaning.7.31a “. . . all are relative . . .”: A paraphrase of Democritus frg. B 9, in whichqualities like sweetness or bitterness are said to be “relative” or“conventional” rather than inherent (what tastes sweet to one personmay be bitter to another). Marcus apparently sees the observation ascompatible with the Stoic doctrine that “it’s all in how you perceive it”(12.8), though he naturally rejects the subsequent reference to atoms.The final phrase is corrupt beyond repair.7.32 [On death]: The headings of this and the next two entries are probably notMarcus’s own, but additions by a later reader.7.35 “If his mind is filled . . .”: Plato, Republic 6.486a.7.36 “Kingship . . .”: Antisthenes frg. 20b (also quoted by Epictetus, Discourses4.6.20).7.38 “And why should we feel anger . . .”: Euripides, frg. 287 (from the lostBellerophon quoted also at 11.6).7.39 “May you bring joy . . .”: Source unknown; perhaps from a lost epic.7.40 “To harvest life . . .”: Euripides, frg. 757 (from the lost Hypsipyle).7.41 “If I and my two children . . .”: Euripides, frg. 208 (from the lost Antiope;quoted also at 11.6).7.42 “For what is just and good . . .”: Ibid., frg. 918 (from an unknown play).
7.43 No chorus of lamentation: This might be a quotation, like the precedingentries, but if so, we do not know its source.7.44 “Then the only proper response . . .”: Plato, Apology 28b.7.45 “It’s like this . . .”: Ibid., 28d.7.46 “But, my good friend . . .”: Plato, Gorgias 512d.7. 48 [Plato has it right]: The passage that follows does not correspond toanything in Plato’s preserved writings, and it seems likely that thephrase was inserted by a later reader who mistook it for a quotation.7.50 “Earth’s offspring . . .”: Euripides, frg. 839 (from the lost Chrysippus).7.51 “. . . with food and drink . . .”: Euripides, Suppliants 1110–1111.7.51a “To labor cheerfully . . .”: From an unknown tragedy.7. 63 “Against our will . . .”: Epictetus, Discourses 1.28.4 (also 2.22.37),paraphrasing Plato, Sophist 228c.7.64 what Epicurus said: Epicurus frg. 447.7.66 by spending the night out in the cold: This anecdote is told by Alcibiades inPlato’s Symposium (220).the man from Salamis: During the brief reign of the “Thirty Tyrants” atAthens, Socrates was ordered to collaborate with the regime by arresting acertain Leon, but refused; the story is told in Plato’s Apology (32c).“swaggered about the streets”: A line from Aristophanes’ comedyClouds (362), which pokes fun at Socrates.8.25 Verus . . . Lucilla: Marcus’s parents.Hadrian: Most likely this refers to the rhetorician (Hadrian 1) rather thanthe emperor (Hadrian 2).
8.35 We have various abilities . . . : The text here appears to be corrupt and thetranslation is necessarily uncertain.8.38 Look at it clearly: The text, meaning and articulation of entries 38 and 39are very uncertain. Earlier editors printed the opening of 38 as the endof 37, and took the phrases “Look at it clearly—if you can” and “To thebest of my judgment” as a single unit, though the resulting sentenceyields no coherent sense. I follow J. Dalfen in separating them.8.39 “To the best of my judgment . . .”: I have placed the entry in quotationmarks on the basis of the opening phrase, which includes a parenthetical“he [or “someone”] says.” This assumes that the phrase is correctlytransmitted (it is certainly not easy to construe), and that it should betaken with what follows rather than what precedes, which is far fromcertain (see previous note). However, the entry as a whole (an implicitcriticism of the Epicureans’ view of pleasure as the supreme good) doesnot strike me as being typical of Marcus’s style, and I suspect he mayindeed be quoting some earlier writer.8.41 “a sphere . . .”: Empedocles frg. B27, quoted in fuller form at 184.108.40.206 Its beams get their name . . . : This (false) derivation is a typical example ofancient etymology, a science in which the early Stoics were muchinterested.9.2 the “next best voyage”: A proverbial phrase meaning having to row whenone cannot sail.9. 24 “Odysseus in the Underworld”: The reference is to Book 11 of theOdyssey, in which Odysseus descends to Hades and encounters theshades of his companions who died at Troy.9.29 Demetrius of Phalerum: It has been suggested that “of Phalerum” is a laterreader’s (mistaken) addition, and that Marcus had in mind theHellenistic monarch Demetrius Poliorcetes (“the city-sacker”). Butthere seems no reason to doubt the transmitted text.
9.41 “During my illness . . .”: Epicurus frg. 191.10.10 Sarmatians: One of the barbarian tribes Marcus spent his last decadefighting.10.21 “The earth knows longing . . .”: Euripides frg. 898.10.23 “fencing a sheepfold . . .”: A paraphrase of Plato, Theaetetus 174d, inwhich we are told that the philosopher will look down on a king as if thelatter were a humble shepherd.10.31 When you look . . . : Most of the names mentioned here are mere ciphers(see the Index of Persons for the best guess as to their identities), butMarcus’s point does not depend on knowledge of the individuals.10.33 as a cylinder rolls down: The comparison is taken from Chrysippus frg.1000.10.34 “. . . leaves that the wind . . .”: Homer, Iliad 6.147 ff., a very famouspassage.11.3 [like the Christians]: This ungrammatical phrase is almost certainly amarginal comment by a later reader; there is no reason to think Marcushad the Christians in mind here. (See Introduction.)11.6 “o Mount Cithaeron!”: Sophocles, Oedipus the King 1391 (Oedipus’sanguished cry after blinding himself, invoking the mountain he wasabandoned on as a baby.)“If I and my two children . . .”: See on 7.41.“And why should we feel anger . . . ?”: See on 7.38.“To harvest life . . .”: See on 220.127.116.11 from Apollo: Often depicted as the leader of the nine Muses.
11.22 The town mouse: Aesop, Fables 297. The significance of the allusion isunclear.11.23 “the monsters under the bed”: Plato, Crito 46c and Phaedo 77e; Marcusis probably drawing on Epictetus, Discourses 18.104.22.168.25 Perdiccas’s invitation: In fact the ruler who invited Socrates to his courtwas Perdiccas’s successor Archelaus (resigned 413–399).11.26 This advice: Epicurus frg. 210.11.28 Socrates dressed in a towel: The anecdote is not preserved.11.30 “For you/Are but a slave . . .”: From a lost tragedy. Marcus twists whatmust have been the sense of the original (“it is not for you to speak”) bytaking logos in its broader, philosophical sense.11.31 “But my heart rejoiced”: Homer, Odyssey 9.413.11.32 “And jeer at virtue . . .”: Hesiod, Work s and Days 186, but “virtue” isMarcus’s substitution. Hesiod has “and jeer at them,” in a completelydifferent context.11. 33 Stupidity is expecting figs: A paraphrase of Epictetus, Discourses22.214.171.124.34 As you kiss your son: Ibid., 126.96.36.199.36 “No thefts of free will . . .”: Ibid., 3.22.105 (the attribution in the text isprobably an addition by a later reader who recognized the quotation).11.37 “We need to master . . .”: Ibid., frg. 27.11.38 “This is not a debate . . .”: Ibid., frg. 28.11.39 Socrates: What do you want?: Source uncertain: perhaps from a lostsection of Epictetus.
12.3 “a sphere rejoicing . . .”: Empedocles frg. B 27 (also quoted at 8.41).12.11a What it’s made of: Part of 12 in the manuscripts; placed in 11 by MericCasaubon. Perhaps an incomplete entry, perhaps an addition by a laterhand.12.17 Let your intention be < . . . >: The division between Chapters 17 and 18 isunclear, and it seems likely that some text has been lost.12.27 Fabius Catullinus et al.: Most of the references are obscure; see theIndex of Persons for what can be guessed of them.12.34 people whose only morality . . . : The Epicureans.
Index of PersonsThis list covers only persons named, referred to, or quoted in the text of theMeditations itself.GRIPPA: Roman general; adviser and close associate of AUGUSTUS, whosedaughter he married. (8.31)LCIPHRON: Not certainly identified, although the context makes it clear that hemust be a contemporary of Marcus’s. He might be the Alciphron whoauthored a surviving collection of imaginary letters from courtesans,fishermen, etc., or a philosopher from Magnesia on the Maeander, quotedtwice by the third-century antiquarian Athenaeus. (10.31)LEXANDER (1) “THE LITERARY CRITIC”: A Greek from Cotiaeum in Syria,teacher of the great orator Aelius Aristides, as well as Marcus. (1.10)LEXANDER (2) “THE PLATONIST”: A literary figure, mockingly dubbedAlexander Peloplaton (“The Play-Doh Plato”) by his rivals. He served ashead of the Greek side of the imperial secretariat. (1.12)LEXANDER (3) “THE GREAT”: (356–323 B.C.), ruler of Macedon (336–323)who conquered much of the Near and Middle East before dying at the age ofthirty-three. His career was a favorite topic for moralizers and rhetoricians.(3.3, 6.24, 8.3, 9.29, 10.27)NTISTHENES: Follower of SOCRATES and forerunner of the Cynic school(quoted 7.36).NTONINUS: Titus Aurelius Antoninus Pius, Roman emperor (138–161). Headopted Marcus in 138 at the age of sixteen (1.16, 1.17, 4.33, 6.30, 8.25, 9.21,10.27). Marcus also refers to himself by this name (6.44).POLLONIUS: Apollonius of Chalcedon, Stoic philosopher and one of Marcus’steachers. (1.8, 1.17)
RCHIM EDES: Mathematician, scientist and engineer (c. 287–212 B.C.) from theGreek city of Syracuse in Sicily, known especially for his work onhydrostatics. (6.47)REIUS: Stoic philosopher prominent at the court of AUGUSTUS. (8.31)RISTOPHANES: Athenian comic playwright (c. 455–c. 386 B.C.). Eleven of hisapproximately forty comedies survive, and are characterized by fantasticplots, scatological dialogue, outrageous political satire, and elegant choralsongs. (quoted 4.23, 7.66)SCLEPIUS: Greek god of medicine. (6.43; compare 5.8 and note)THENODOTUS: A Stoic philosopher and teacher of FRONTO. (1.13)UGUSTUS: (63 B.C.–A.D. 14). Born Gaius Octaviaus, great-nephew andadopted son of Julius CAESAR. He attained power following Caesar’sassassination and became sole ruler of the Roman world after defeatingCaesar’s lieutenant Marcus Antonius at the battle of Actium in 31 B.C.Through his lieutenants AGRIPPA and MAECENAS he was responsible formajor civic improvements and an active program of literary and artisticpatronage. (4.33, 8.5, 8.31)ACCHEIUS: Platonic philosopher. (1.6)ENEDICTA: Unknown, but she and THEODOTUS were most likely householdslaves. (1.17)RUTUS: Marcus Junius Brutus (85–42 B.C.), Roman aristocrat and politicianwho led the conspiracy to assassinate Julius CAESAR in 44 B.C. andcommitted suicide when the battle of Philippi ended hopes of restoring theRepublic. (1.14)AEDICIANUS: Perhaps identical with a governor of Dacia in the 120s and 130s.(4.50)AESAR: Gaius Julius Caesar (100–44 B.C.), Roman politician and general who
marched on Rome in 49 B.C., precipitating a civil war against forces loyal toPOM PEY and the Senate. After the defeat of the Republican forces at thebattle of Pharsalia and the murder of Pompey he was made dictator for life,but assassinated in 44 B.C. (3.3, 8.3)AESO: Unknown, though obviously a figure from Republican history. (4.33)AM ILLUS: Marcus Furius Camillus, the (perhaps mythical) fourth-century B.C.general who saved Rome when it was under attack by invading Gauls. (4.33)ATO (1): Marcus Porcius Cato “the Elder,” consul and censor in the secondcentury B.C.; author of a surviving work on agriculture and a lost history. Hewas an emblem of Roman moral rectitude and rough virtue. (4.33)ATO (2): Marcus Porcius Cato “the Younger” (95–46 B.C.), great-grandson ofCato (1), a senator and well-known Stoic in the late Republic. He fought onthe Republican side against Julius CAESAR and committed suicide after thebattle of Thapsus. He was immortalized in the poet Lucan’s epic The CivilWar, and became an emblem of Stoic resistance to tyranny. (1.14)ATULUS: Cinna Catulus is named, along with MAXIM US, as a Stoic mentor ofMarcus’s by the Historia Augusta, but nothing else is known of him. (1.13)ECROPS: Legendary founder of Athens. (4.23)ELER: Rhetorician who taught both Marcus and Lucius VERUS. (8.25)HABRIAS: Evidently an associate of HADRIAN (2), like DIOTIM US, but nototherwise known. (8.37)HARAX: Perhaps Charax of Pergamum, a historian known from other sourcesto have been active in the second or third century. (8.25)HRYSIPPUS: Stoic philosopher (280–207 B.C.), succeeded Zeno and Cleanthesas leader of the school. His writings laid out the fundamental doctrines ofearly Stoicism. (6.42, 7.19)
LOTHO: One of the three Fates of Greek mythology who are imagined asspinning or weaving human fortunes. (4.34)RATES: Cynic philosopher (c. 365–285 B.C.) and disciple of DIOGENES. (6.13)RITO: Most likely the physician Titus Statilius Crito, active under Trajan.(10.31)ROESUS: Sixth-century king of Lydia, famous for his wealth and power until hiskingdom fell to the Persians. (10.27)EMETER: Greek goddess of agriculture. (6.43)EMETRIUS (1) OF PHALERUM: Fourth-century B.C. philosopher, student ofTHEOPHRASTUS and governor of Athens under Macedonian rule. (9.29)EMETRIUS (2) THE PLATONIST: Probably not Demetrius (1), who was anadherent of the Peripatetic school, not a Platonist. A Cynic philosopherbanished by VESPASIAN has also been suggested, but the reference is morelikely to a contemporary figure now unknown. (8.25)EMOCRITUS: Pre-Socratic philosopher (c. 460–370 B.C.) best known fordeveloping the theory of atoms later adopted by the Epicureans. (3.3; quoted4.3, 4.24, 7.31a)ENTATUS: Manius Curius Dentatus, third-century B.C. Roman general. (4.33)IOGENES: Greek philosopher (c. 400–c. 325 B.C.) and founder of the Cynicschool, notable for his extreme ascetic lifestyle and contempt for socialconventions. (8.3, 11.6)IOGNETUS: Marcus’s drawing teacher (according to the Historia Augusta),though the entry suggests that he played a greater role in Marcus’sdevelopment than this might suggest. (1.6)ION: Sicilian aristocrat, a protégé of Plato, who saw in him a potentialphilosopher-king. (1.14)
IOTIM US: Evidently an associate of HADRIAN (2), not otherwise known. (8.25,8.37)OM ITIUS: Unidentified, perhaps a student of ATHENODOTUS. (1.13)MPEDOCLES: Fifth-century B.C. Greek philosopher and poet who regarded thenatural world as the result of constant mingling and separating of four basicelements. (quoted 8.41, 12.3)PICTETUS: Stoic philosopher (c. 55–c. 135), a former slave from Phrygia whowas among the most influential figures in later Stoicism. A record of hislectures and discussions (the Discourses) was published by his studentArrian, along with an abridged version (the Encheiridion, or “Handbook”).See also Introduction. (1.7, 7.19; quoted or paraphrased 4.41, 5.29, 7.63,11.33–34, 11.36–38; cf. 4.49a and note)PICURUS: Greek philosopher (341–270 B.C.) and founder of one of the twogreat Hellenistic philosophical systems. Epicureans identified pleasure as thesupreme good in life and viewed the world as a random conglomeration ofatoms, not ruled by any larger providence. (quoted 7.64, 9.41; compare11.26)PITYNCHANUS: Perhaps a slave or freedman of HADRIAN (2). (8.25)UDAEM ON: Perhaps to be identified with a literary official prominent underHadrian (2). (8.25)UDOXUS: Greek mathematician and astronomer active in the fourth centuryB.C. (6.47)UPHRATES: Perhaps the philosopher mentioned by Pliny the Younger (Letters1.10) and evidently close to HADRIAN (2), but he might be a later imperialofficial mentioned by Galen. (10.31)URIPIDES: Athenian playwright (480s–407/6 B.C.); some twenty of histragedies are still extant. His plays were controversial in his lifetime, but insubsequent centuries he was among the most popular of Greek authors,
thanks in large part to his quotability and accessible style. (quoted 7.38, 7.40–42, 7.50–51, 11.6)UTYCHES: Unknown; the comparison with SATYRON does not help us identifyhim. (10.31)UTYCHION: Not certainly identified, unless the name is a slip for thegrammarian Eutychius Proculus. (10.31)ABIUS: Unidentified, perhaps identical with FABIUS CATULLINUS. (4.50)ABIUS CATULLINUS: Unknown. Perhaps to be identified with the FABIUS of4.50. (12.27)AUSTINA: Wife of ANTONINUS Pius (8.25). Marcus married their daughter,also Faustina (1.17).RONTO: Marcus Cornelius Fronto (c. 95–c. 166), rhetorician from Cirta inNorth Africa, and a key figure in Marcus’s education. Portions of his lettersto Marcus survive in two palimpsest manuscripts discovered in the earlynineteenth century. (1.11)ADRIAN (1): Prominent rhetorician; no relation to the emperor. (8.25)ADRIAN (2): Roman emperor (117–138), best known for his travels andcultural interests; adopted ANTONINUS as his heir on the condition that thelatter adopt Marcus and Lucius VERUS. (4.33, 8.5, 8.37, 10.27)ELVIDIUS: Helvidius Priscus (died c. 75), son-in-law of THRASEA Paetus,exiled and later executed for his opposition to the emperor VESPASIAN. (1.14)ERACLITUS: Pre-Socratic philosopher (active c. 500 B.C.) from the city ofEphesus, famous for his cryptic and paradoxical utterances. His exaltation ofthe logos as a cosmic power and his identification of fire as the primalsubstance were important influences on the Stoics (see also Introduction).According to the third-century A.D. biographer Diogenes Laertius, he died ofdropsy, which he tried to cure by immersing himself in manure; this account
is almost certainly a later fiction. (3.3, 6.47, 8.3; quoted or paraphrased 4.46,6.42)IPPARCHUS: Second-century B.C. Greek astronomer. (6.47)IPPOCRATES: Greek doctor active in the fifth century B.C.; various medicalwritings are transmitted under his name, as is the Hippocratic Oath stilladministered to doctors. (3.3)YM EN: Unknown; the comparison with SATYRON does not help identify him.(10.31)ULIAN: This may be a friend of FRONTO’s, Claudius Julianus, a proconsul ofAsia at about this period. (4.50)EPIDUS: This might perhaps be the Roman aristocrat who briefly shared powerwith Marcus Antonius and the future emperor AUGUSTUS, but the contextsuggests an older contemporary of Marcus’s. (4.50)UCILLA: Marcus’s mother (d. 155/161). (1.3, 1.17, 8.25, 9.21)USIUS LUPUS: Unknown. (12.27)AECENAS: Adviser and unofficial minister of culture to AUGUSTUS; patron ofthe poets Vergil and Horace, among others. (8.31)ARCIANUS: Unknown philosopher. (1.6)AXIM US: Claudius Maximus. Roman consul in the early 140s. Governor ofUpper Pannonia in the early 150s. Later in that decade he governed NorthAfrica, where he served as judge in the trial of the novelist Apuleius forsorcery. (1.15, 1.16, 1.17, 8.25)ENIPPUS: Cynic philosopher (early third century B.C.) from Gadara in Syria.He features as a character in many of the satirical dialogues of Lucian.(6.47)
ONIM US: Fourth-century B.C. Cynic philosopher and student of DIOGENES.(2.15)ERO: Roman emperor (54–68); his name was a byword for tyranny andcruelty. (3.16)RIGANION: Unknown; most likely an imperial slave or freedman. (6.47)ANTHEIA: Mistress of Lucius VERUS, mentioned in several works by thesatirist Lucian. (8.37)ERDICCAS: King of Macedon (c. 450–413 B.C.). (11.25)ERGAM OS: Evidently an associate of Lucius VERUS, perhaps a slave or lover.(8.37)HALARIS: Sixth-century B.C. dictator of Agrigento in Sicily, notorious for hiscruelty. (3.16)HILIP: King of Macedon (359–336 B.C.) and father of ALEXANDER THEGREAT. (9.29, 10.27)HILISTION: Unknown, most likely an imperial slave or freedman, though acontemporary mime writer of this name is also known. (6.47)HOCION: Athenian general and statesman of the fourth century B.C. He waseventually sentenced to death for treason, and before his executionsupposedly asked his son to forgive the Athenians for condemning him.(11.13)HOEBUS: Unknown, most likely an imperial slave or freedman. (6.47)LATO: Athenian philosopher (c. 429–347 B.C.), disciple of SOCRATES andauthor of philosophical dialogues in which the latter is portrayed debating withhis disciples and other contemporary figures. The most famous of these isperhaps the Republic, in which he envisions an ideal society. (7.48, 9.29,10.23; quoted 7.44–46)
OM PEY: Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus (106–48 B.C.), Roman politician andgeneral who rose to power in the 60s on the basis of a series of successfulcampaigns in the East. His brief political alliance with Julius CAESAR gaveway to mutual rivalry and suspicion. When Caesar’s march on Romeprecipitated civil war in 49, Pompey led the senatorial resistance. Followinghis defeat at the battle of Pharsalus, he fled to Egypt, where he wasmurdered. (3.3, 8.3; family 8.31)YTHAGORAS: Greek mathematician, philosopher, and mystic of the late sixthcentury B.C. He founded a religious community in southern Italy whosemembers were known especially for their devotion to music and geometry.(6.47; compare 11.27)USTICUS: Quintus Junius Rusticus, twice consul and city prefect of Rome inthe mid-160s. His influence on Marcus is attested by the Historia Augusta,although the reference to him in 1.17 suggests that their relationship had itsups and downs. (1.7, 1.17)ATYRON: Unknown, though evidently a contemporary of Marcus. (10.31)CIPIO: Either Publius Cornelius Scipio Africanus (c. 235–183 B.C.), whodefeated Hannibal in the Second Punic War, or his grandson by adoption,Publius Cornelius Scipio Aemilianus (185/4–129 B.C.), the conqueror ofCarthage in the Third Punic War. (4.33)ECUNDA: Wife of MAXIMUS. (8.25)EVERUS (1): Lucius Catilius Severus, Marcus’s great-grandfather. (1.4)EVERUS (2): Gnaeus Claudius Severus Arabianus from Pompeiopolis in AsiaMinor, consul in 146; his son (perhaps the Severus of 10.31) married one ofMarcus’s daughters. He was an adherent of the Peripatetic school, whichtraced its heritage back to Aristotle. (1.14)EXTUS: Sextus of Chaeronea, Stoic philosopher, teacher of both Marcus andLucius VERUS, and nephew of the great biographer and antiquarian Plutarch.(1.9)
ILVANUS: Perhaps Lamia Silvanus, a son-in-law of Marcus. (10.31)OCRATES: Athenian philosopher (469–399 B.C.), teacher of PLATO. He spentmost of his life in his native city, and served with distinction in thePeloponnesian War against Sparta. Although associated with severalmembers of the aristocratic junta that ruled Athens after its defeat in 404, herefused to participate in their atrocities. He was executed by the Athenianson a charge of impiety following the restoration of democracy; Plato’sApology purports to give his speech at the trial. (1.16, 3.3, 3.6, 6.47, 7.19,7.66, 8.3, 11.23, 11.25, 11.28, 11.39)OCRATICUS: Unknown; the comparison with SATYRON does not help identifyhim. (10.31)TERTINIUS: Not certainly identified. Tacitus mentions an army officer of thisname in the reign of Tiberius. But the reference to Baiae (a Roman resort onthe Bay of Naples) suggests a more likely candidate a generation or so later:the wealthy Neapolitan physician Quintus Stertinius, mentioned by Pliny theElder (Natural History 29.7). (12.27)ANDASIS: Philosopher mentioned along with one Marcianus; neither isotherwise known. Some have suggested a scribe’s error for Basilides, listedamong Marcus’s teachers by other sources. (1.6)ELAUGES: Apparently a lesser disciple of SOCRATES, unless the reference is tothe son of PYTHAGORAS by this name. (7.66)HEODOTUS: Unknown, but he and BENEDICTA were most likely householdslaves. (1.17)HEOPHRASTUS: Philosopher (c. 371–c. 287 B.C.) who succeeded Aristotle ashead of the Peripatetic school. (2.10)HRASEA: Publius Clodius Thrasea Paetus (d. 66), Roman aristocrat (consul 56)and father-in-law of HELVIDIUS Priscus. His opposition to the regime ofNERO (by whom he was eventually forced to commit suicide) was informedby Stoic philosophy and in particular by the example of the younger CATO
(2), of whom he wrote a biography. (1.14)IBERIUS: Roman emperor (14–37) who succeeded AUGUSTUS. Late in hisreign he withdrew to a private estate on the island of Capri; his allegedexcesses there are recorded in the biography of him by Suetonius. (12.27)RAJAN: Marcus Ulpius Traianus, Roman general and emperor (98–117).(4.32)ROPAEOPHORUS: Perhaps a contemporary senator named in an inscriptionfrom Perinthus. (10.31)ELIUS RUFUS: Addressee of one of FRONTO’s letters, but otherwise unknown.(12.27)ERUS (1): Marcus Annius Verus (d. 138), grandfather of Marcus. He wasthree times consul (the last two in 121 and 126); he also served as cityprefect of Rome about this time. After the death of his wife he evidently tooka concubine who helped raise Marcus. (1.1, 1.17, 9.21)ERUS (2): Marcus Annius Verus, father of Marcus and husband of LUCILLA.He died sometime between 130 and 135. (1.2, 8.25)ERUS (3): Lucius Aurelius Verus (130–169), son of HADRIAN (2)’s intendedsuccessor, Lucius Aelius. Originally named Lucius Ceionius Commodus, hewas adopted along with Marcus by Antoninus Pius and on Antoninus’s deathbecame co-emperor with Marcus. He was entrusted with the conduct of theParthian War, and campaigned with Marcus on the northern frontier beforehis sudden death on the way back to Rome. (1.17, 8.37)ESPASIAN: Roman emperor (69–79). His reign represented a period of stabilityafter the power struggle that followed the death of NERO, but he came intoconflict with some members of the senatorial class, notably the StoicHELVIDIUS Priscus. (4.32)OLESUS: Traditional surname in the Valerius clan, which produced a numberof figures prominent in early historical accounts. Which one Marcus has in
mind is uncertain. (4.33)ANTHIPPE: Wife of SOCRATES and proverbially a shrew. (11.28)ENOCRATES: Platonic philosopher and head of the Academy at the end of thefourth century B.C. (6.13)ENOPHON: Probably a contemporary doctor mentioned by Galen. (10.31)EUS: Sky god and head of the Greek pantheon; Marcus refers to him onlyrarely and normally prefers a vaguer formulation such as “God” or “thegods.” (4.23, 5.7, 5.8, 11.8)
ABOUT THE TRANSLATORGREGORY HAYS is assistant professor of classics at theUniversity of Virginia. He has published articles andreviews on various ancient writers and is currentlycompleting a translation and critical study of themythographer Fulgentius.
THE MODERN LIBRARY EDITORIAL BOARDMaya AngelouDaniel J. BoorstinA. S. ByattCaleb CarrChristopher CerfRon ChernowShelby FooteStephen Jay GouldVartan GregorianRichard HowardCharles JohnsonJon KrakauerEdmund MorrisJoyce Carol OatesElaine PagelsJohn RichardsonSalman RushdieOliver Sacks
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2002 Modern Library EditionIntroduction and notes copyright © 2002 by Gregory HaysAll rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions.Published in the United States by Modern Library, a division of Random House, Inc., NewYork, and simultaneously in Canada by Random House of Canada Limited, Toronto.MODERN LIBRARY and the TORCHBEARER Design are registered trademarks of RandomHouse, Inc.LIBRARY OF CONGRESS CATALOGING-IN-PUBLICATION DATAMarcus Aurelius, Emperor of Rome, 121–180.[Meditations. English]Meditations / Marcus Aurelius; translated, and with an introduction, by Gregory Hays.p. cm.e-ISBN 1-58836-173-X1. Ethics. 2. Stoics. 3. Life. I. Hays, Gregory. II. Title.B580.H3 M3713 2002188—dc21 2001057947Modern Library website address: www.modernlibrary.comv1.0