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3. Surnamed the BABYLONIAN, a Stoic philosopher. He was a native of Seleuceia in Babylonia, from which he derived his surname in order to distinguish him from other philosophers of the name of Diogenes. He was educated at Athens under the auspices of Chrysippus, and succeeded Zeno of Tarsus as the head of the Stoic school at Athens. The most memorable event of his life is the part he took in the embassy which the Athenians sent to Rome in B. C. 155, and which consisted of the three philosophers, Diogenes, Cameades, and Critolaus. These three philosophers, during their stay at Rome, delivered their epideictic speeches at first in numerous private assemblies, and afterwards also in the senate. Diogenes pleased his audience chiefly by his sober and temperate mode of speaking. (Gel. 7.14; Cic. Ac. 2.45; comp. CARNEADES and CRITOLAUS.) According to Lucian (Macrob. 20), Diogenes died at the age of 88; and as, in Cicero's Cato Major (7), Diogenes is spoken of as deceased, he must have died previous to B. C. 151. Diogenes, who is called a great Stoic (magnus et gravis Stoicus, Cic. de Off. 3.12), seems to have closely followed the views of his master, Chrysippus, especially on subjects of dialectics, in which Diogenes is even said to have instructed Carneades. (Cic. Ac. 2.30, de Orat. 2.38.)


He was the author of several works, of which, however, little more than the titles is known.

1. Διαλεκτικὴ τέχνη

D. L. 7.51.)

2. On Divination.

(Cic. de Divin. 1.3, 2.43.)

3. On the goddess Athena

On the goddess Athena, whose birth he, like Chrysippus, explained by physiological principles. (Cic. de Nat. Deor. 1.15.)

4. Περὶ τοῦ τῆς ψυχῆς ἡγημονικοῦ


5. Περὶ φωνῆς

D. L. 7.55), which seems to have treated on the philosophy of language.

6. Περὶ εὐγενείας, or on aristocracy of birth

In several books. (Athen. 4.168.)

7. Περὶ νομων

likewise in several books, the first of which is quoted in Athenaeus (xii. p. 526; comp. Cic. de Leg. 3.5, where Dio is a false reading for Diogenes).

Other Works

There are several passages in Cicero from which we may infer that Diogenes wrote on other subjects also, such as on Duty, on the Highest Good, and the like, but the titles of those works are unknown.

Further Information

Cic. de Off. 3.12, 13, 23, de Fin. 3.10, 15; comp. C. F. Thiery, Dissertatio de Diogene Babylonio, Lovanii, 1830, p. 17, &c., and Pars poster. p. 30, &c.

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