3. A philosopher, of Amphipolis, or Sicyon, or Nicopolis, surnamed Φιλοπράγματος
, wrote the following works: εἰκόνες κατὰ στοιχεῖον, τέχνη γραμματική, περὶ γραφικῆς καὶ ζωγράφων ἐνδόξων, γεωργικὰ βιβλία γ#.
(Suid. s.v. who confounds him with the teacher of Epicurus.) We have no other mention of any of these works, except the last, of which there are considerable fragments in the Geoponica
As two out of the four works in the above list are upon art, and as Suidas calls Pamphilus an Amphipolitan or Sicyonian, it has been conjectured that this Pamphilus was the great painter, who was a native of Amphipolis and the head of the Sicyonian school. Several of the great artists, and especially about the time of Pamphilus, wrote works on art, as, for example, Apelles and Melanthius; and it seems especially probable that Pamphilus, who was famed for the scientific character of his teaching, would do the same.
The argument is good so far as it goes, but the best conclusion to draw from it seems to be, not that the whole article in Suidas is to be referred to the painter, but that the lexicographer has here, as frequently elsewhere, confounded different persons; namely, the painter, to whom we may ascribe the "Likenesses in Alphabetical Order," and the work on "Painting and Celebrated Painters," and a philosopher, or rather grammarian of Nicopolis, author of the other two works.
The latter, again, is perhaps the same person who wrote a work on plants (περὶ βοτανῶν
) in alphabetical order, and who is frequently mentioned and ridiculed by Galen.
He is sometimes enumerated among the physicians, but Galen expressly says that he was a grammnarian, and had never seen the plants about which he wrote. (Galen, περὶ τῆς τῶν ἁπλῶν φαρμάκων δυνάμεως
, pp. 67, &c.) His book found a place in the work of the younger Dioscorides, and considerable fragments of it are found in the Geoponica.
A work of Pamphilus Περὶ φυσικῶν
also cited in the Geoponica
(13.15). To this grammarian, who busied himself also with physical science, the epithet φιλοπράγματος
, which Suidas tells us was given to Pamphilus of Nicopolis, might very well be applied, and the work on agriculture, which Suidas ascribes to the latter, may be, perhaps, the same as that on plants, which is cited by Galen.
A further point of resemblance is, that the fragments of Pamphilus's work on agriculture in the Geoponica
contain several examples of that superstition with which Galen charges the author of the work on plants. Whether they are to be identified or not, the latter writer must have lived about the first century of our era, since his work was copied by Dioscorides.