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Reconstructing Brutus’ De Virtute: Consolation and Antiochean Fundamentalism

In: Phronesis
Author: Peter Osorio1
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  • 1 Departments of Classics and Philosophy, Cornell University
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Abstract

Brutus’ De virtute, a lost work that had important but overlooked influence on Cicero’s ethical dialogues, is more dependent on Antiochus’ ethics than has been recognized. In reviewing the sources for De virtute (collected in an appendix), I arrive at a conception of Brutus’ work as a consolation written in a fundamentalist—rather than ecumenical—mode that focalizes its arguments and commonplaces from the perspective of Antiochus’ philosophical system. This conception is supported by the only other testimony for Brutus’ consolatory writing.

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