Pythagoras

Updated on: 24.02.2011

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   ► Individuals ► < BCE

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Lifetime

Born: c. 570 BCE
Passed away: c. 495 BCE

About

Pythagoras of Samos (Ὁ Πυθαγόρας ὁ Σάμιος Ho Pythagóras ho Sámios "Pythagoras the Samian", or simply Ὁ Πυθαγόρας; c. 570-c. 495 BCE) was an Ionian Greek philosopher, mathematician, and founder of the religious movement called Pythagoreanism.

  • Most of the information about Pythagoras was written down centuries after he lived, so that very little reliable information is known about him.
  • He was born on the island of Samos, and may have travelled widely in his youth, visiting Egypt and other places seeking knowledge.
  • He had a teacher named Themistoclea, who introduced him to the principles of ethics.
  • Around 530 BC, he moved to Croton, a Greek colony in southern Italy, and there set up a religious sect; his followers pursued the religious rites and practices developed by Pythagoras, and studied his philosophical theories. The society took an active role in the politics of Croton, but this eventually led to their downfall. The Pythagorean meeting-places were burned, and Pythagoras was forced to flee the city.
  • He is said to have ended his days in Metapontum.

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References

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