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Apollonius of Tyana

Apollonius of Tyana, fl. 1st cent. A.D., Greek philosopher, b. Tyana, Cappadocia. A philosopher of the Neo-Pythagorean school, he traveled widely and became famous for his wisdom and reputed magical powers. He was accused of treason by both Nero and Domitian, but escaped by supposedly magical means. A record of his travels, based on the journal of his companion, Damis, and written (c.A.D. 216) by Flavius Philostratus, is a mixture of truth and romantic fiction. Some critics have denounced it for its similarity to the Christ story, but others, such as Voltaire and Charles Blount, have championed the doctrines of Apollonius. He died, supposedly at age 100, after setting up a school in Ephesus.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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