Empedocles, Testimonia, Part 3: Reception (R)

LCL 528: 584-585

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προσποιῶνται δέ τι λέγειν· οἱ γὰρ τοιοῦτοι ἐν ποιήσει1 λέγουσι ταῦτα, οἷον Ἐμπεδοκλῆς.

R2 Cic.

a (< A25) De orat. 1.50.217

[. . .] dicantur ei1 quos physicos Graeci nominant idem poetae, quoniam Empedocles physicus egregium poema fecerit.

b (≠ DK) Lael. 24

Agrigentium quidem doctum quemdam virum carminibus Graecis vaticinatum ferunt, quae in rerum natura totoque mundo constarent quaeque moverentur, ea contrahere amicitiam, dissipare discordiam.


a (> A24) Quintil. Inst. or. 1.4.4

[. . .] nec ignara philosophiae cum propter plurimos in omnibus fere carminibus locos ex intima naturalium quaestionum subtilitate repetitos, tum vel propter Empedoclea in Graecis, Varronem ac Lucretium in Latinis, qui praecepta sapientiae versibus tradiderunt.



who have nothing to say but pretend to be saying something. People like this say these things in poetry, like Empedocles.

R2 Cicero

a (< A25) On the Orator

[. . .] those people whom the Greeks call ‘natural philosophers’ (phusikoi) may be called poets too, since Empedocles, the natural philosopher, composed an outstanding poem.

b (≠ DK) On Friendship

They say that a certain learned man from Agrigentum sang prophetically in Greek poems that friendship draws together all the things that are at rest in nature and the whole world and all the things that are in motion, and that strife drives them apart.


a (> A24) Quintilian, Training in Oratory

[. . .] Nor [scil. will the study of language and literature be perfect] if it is ignorant of philosophy, not only because there are many passages, in almost all poems, that are based on recondite points of natural philosophy, but also because of Empedocles among the Greeks as well as Varro and Lucretius among the Latins, who have transmitted the precepts of wisdom in verses.

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.empedocles-reception.2016