6. Of SCEPSIS, a contemporary and friend of Demetrius of Scepsis, to whom he was indebted for his advancement, when he abandoned philosophy, and betook himself to politics. Hie was originally poor, but gained distinction by his writings, the style of which was peculiar and new, and married a wealthy Carthaginian lady.
He attached himself to Mithridates Eupator, accompanied him into Pontus, and was raised to a position of great influence and trust, being appointed supreme judge, without appeal even to the king. Subsequently, however, he was led to desert his allegiance, when sent by Mithridates on an embassy to Tigranes, king of Armenia. Tigranes sent him back to Mithridates, but he died on the road.
According to some accounts he was despatched by order of the king; according to others he died of disease (Strab. xiii. pp. 609, 610). Methodorus is frequently mentioned by Cicero; he seems to have been particularly celebrated for his powers of memory (Cic. de Orat. 2.88
This is also mentioned by Pliny (Plin. Nat. 7.24
In consequence of his hostility to the Romans he was surnamed the Roman-hater
34.7 or 16).
He was a contemporary of L. Crassus, the orator, who heard him when in Asia (Cic. de Orat. 3.20
.75). Athenaeus (xii. p. 552c.) quotes a work by this Metrodorus, Περὶ ἀλειπτικῆς
. We also find mention of a Metrodorus as the author of a Περιήγησις
(Placidus Lutatius on Statius, 3.478). Notices which might very well have been derived from a work of that kind, are given by Pliny (Plin. Nat. 5.31. s. 38
, 8.14), on the authority of a Metrodorus ; and as similar notices (H. N.
3.16. s. 20, 28.7. s. 23, 37.4. s. 15) are taken by him from Metrodorus of Scepsis, the latter was very probably the author of the Περιήγησις
in question. Strabo also (xi. p. 504) quotes from Metrodorus of Scepsis a geographical notice respecting the Amazons. (Voss. de Hist. Graecis,
p. 180, ed. West.)