, a Carthaginian by birth, and called Hasdrubal in his own language, came to Athens in the 40th year of hisage, previously at least to the year 146 B. C.
He there became connected with the founder of the New Academy, the philosopher Carneades, under whose guidance he rose to be one of the most distinguished disciples of this school; but he also studied at the same time the philosophy of the Stoics and Peripatetics. Diogenes Laertius, to whom we are indebted for these notices of the life of Cleitomachus, relates also (4.67), that he succeeded Carneades as the head of the Academy on the death of the latter, B. C. 129. (Comp. Steph. Byz. s. v. Καρχηδών
He continued to teach at Athens till as late as B. C. 11 , at all events, as Crassus heard him in that year. (Cic. de Orat. 1.11
Of his works, which amounted to 400 books (βιβλία
, Diog. Laert. l.c.
), only a few titles are preserved. His main object in writing them was to make known the philosophy of his master Carneades, from whose views he never dissented. Cleitomachus continued to reside at Athens till the end of his life; but he continued to cherish a strong affection for his native country, and when Carthage was taken in B. C. 146, he wrote a work to console his unfortunate countrymen.
This work, which Cicero says he had read, was taken from a discourse of Carneades, and was intended to exhibit the consolation which philosophy supplies even under the greatest calamities. (Cic. Tusc.
3.22.) Cicero sterns indeed to have paid a good deal of attention to the works of Cleitomachus, and speaks in high terms of his industry, penetration, and philosophical talent. (Acad.
He sometimes translates from the works of Cleitomachus, as for instance from the " De sustinendis Offensionibus," which was in four books. (Acad.
Cleitomachus appears to have been well known to his contemporaries at Rome, for two of his works were dedicated to illustrious Romans; one to the poet C. Lucilius, and the other to L. Censorinus, consul in B. C. 149. (Cic. Ac. 2.32
Cleitomachus probably treated of the history of philosophy in his work on the philosophical sects (περὶ αἱρέσεων
). (D. L. 2.92
(Fabric. Bibl. Graec.
iii. p. 168; Brucker, list. Phil.
i. p. 771; Orelli, Onom. Tull.
ii. pp. 159, 160 ; Suid. s. v. Κλειτόμαχος