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How Philosophers Saved MythsAllegorical Interpretation and Classical Mythology$
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Luc Brisson

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780226075358

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226075389.001.0001

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Byzantium and the Pagan Myths

Byzantium and the Pagan Myths

(p.107) SEVEN Byzantium and the Pagan Myths
How Philosophers Saved Myths
University of Chicago Press

This chapter gives an outline about the obstinately truthful Byzantine society, which is a model of the culture of antiquity. Its fondness did suffer blows from the economic, social, and political crises affecting the Roman Empire which resulted in the punishment of the Pagan-oriented renaissances. The Christian empire did not want to put advanced education to a religious mold. However, the closure of the Neoplatonic School of Athens by Justinian in A.D. 529 was linked to the struggle of state Christianity against militant paganism. The Byzantine world preserved the Greek culture it had inherited and was quite concerned to do so untill the end. This chapter summarizes the types of interpretation carried out by Byzantine, including the interpretation of the moral, physical, and historical types of Stoic inspiration by grammarians such as Eustathius and Tzetzes. It also looks at Neoplatonic inspired mysterical interpretation by philosophers such as Psellus.

Keywords:   Byzantine society, culture of antiquity, Pagan, Neoplatonic School of Athens, Psellus, Roman Empire, Stoic inspiration

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