Timeline of Greek and Roman Philosophers

Greek and Roman Philosophers and Mathematicians

Greek philosopher and statesman Empedocles (c.490 - c.430 BC), a follower of Pythagoras and Parmenides, circa 1493. Original Artwork: From Hartmann Schedel - Liber Chronicorum Mundi, Nuremberg Chronicle. Hulton Archive / Stringer/ Hulton Archive / Getty Images

The Pre-Socratic philosophers are the earliest of the philosophers. Their concern was not so much with the topics of ethics and knowledge that modern people associate with philosophy, but concepts we might associate with physics. The Milesian School consists of Thales, Anaximander, and Anaximenes (all from Miletus). The three are also known as Materialists, who believed the world is created from matter -- even if imperceptibly small, plus the void. Xenophanes, Parmenides,​ and Zeno of Elea are members of the Eleatic School (named for its location in Elea). Empedocles and Anaxagoras are counted as Pluralists, who believed there is more than one basic element from which everything is composed. Leucippus and Democritus are Atomists.

More or less following the Pre-Socratics came the trio of Socrates-Plato-Aristotle, the schools of the Cynics, Skeptics, Stoics, and Epicureans.

7th Century B.C.

  • Thales
    Greek philosopher

6th Century B.C.

5th Century B.C.

  • Anaxagoras of Clazomenae
    (c. 499-c. 428 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Empedocles of Acragas
    (c. 492-c. 432 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Zeno of Elea
    (c. 490-c. 430 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Leucippus
    (c. 480-c. 420 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher - Presocratic Philosophy
  • Protagoras
    (480-411 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher & Sophist
  • Hippocrates of Chios
    (c. 470-c. 410 B.C.)
    Greek geometer
  • Philolaus
    (c.470 - c.385)
    Greek philosopher
  • Socrates
    (c. 469-399 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Democritus
    (b. c. 460)
    Greek philosopher
  • Antisthenes
    (c. 445-c. 365 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Xenophon
    (c. 431 - 355 BC B.C.)
    Greek historian and philosopher
  • Plato
    (c. 427-347 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Diogenes of Sinope
    (412-323 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher

4th Century B.C.

  • Stilpo (Stilpon)
    (c. 380-330 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Aristotle
    (384-322 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Demetrius of Phalerum
    (c. 350-283 B.C.)
    Greek "philosopher-king"
  • Epicurus
    (341-271 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Pyrrho
    (c. 270 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Zeno of Citium
    (c. 336-264 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Cleanthes
    (c. 331-232 B.C.)
    Greek philosopher
  • Euclid
    (c. 325-265 B.C.)
    Greek mathematician
  • Aristarchos
    (c. 310-250 B.C.)
    Greek astronomer

3rd Century B.C.

2nd Century B.C.

  • Panaetius
    (c. 185-110 B.C.)
    Stoic and Neo-Platonic Philosopher
  • Cicero
    (106-43 B.C.)
    Roman statesman and philosopher
  • Lucretius
    (c. 98-55 B.C.)
    Roman poet and Epicurean philosopher

1st Century A.D.

  • Epictetus
    (A.D. 50 - 138)
    Roman philosopher
  • Claudius Ptolemy
    (c. A.D. 85-c. 165)
    Greek astronomer and geographer

2nd Century A.D.

3rd Century A.D.

  • Plotinus
    (c. A.D. 204-270)
    Greco-roman philosopher

4th Century A.D.

  • Augustine of Hippo
    (A.D. 354-430)
    Church father/theologian
  • Hypatia of Alexandria
    (c. A.D. 370-415)
    Alexandrian philosopher

5th Century A.D.

529 A.D.

  • Proclus Diadochus
    (A.D. 8 Feb 411-17 April 485)
    Greco-roman philosopher and mathematician
  • Boethius
    (A.D. 480-525)
    Philosopher and Christian martyr who was called the last of the Romans.​
    • The Byzantine Emperor Justinian closed the schools of Athens.

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