by Visnja Bojovic
from ClassicalWisdom Website
It doesn't matter how rich or handsome or intelligent you are - we are all heading towards the same destination. Only a few of us, however, get to be laughed at by Grim Reaper from Horrible Histories.
For those of you who don't know, it is a segment of this brilliant show (called "Stupid Deaths") in which Grim Reaper works as the receptionist for entering the Afterlife.
He asks every person for the reason of their death and then makes fun of its absurdity.
The first among them, the father of tragedy, was Aeschylus.
Besides writing plays that are still performed and used as a source of inspiration to this day, he also fought in important battles, such as the Battle of Salamis and the Battle of Marathon, during the Persian wars.
Ironically, that story
would make a great fit with his depiction of destiny's inevitability
What we don't get to hear
often is that according to
Suda (a Byzantine encyclopedia of
the ancient Mediterranean world) Draco died by suffocating in the
huge amount of hats and cloaks that his supporters threw at him!
ancient Greek Presocratic philosopher.
From Thomas Stanley, (1655).
This Pythagorean who came up with the four-element theory was quite an interesting man. He claimed to be a daimon, an immortal being that was punished with countless reincarnations for eating meat.
However, convinced that he had achieved the perfect human state, he claimed that he was to be reincarnated as an immortal.
When his teacher Cleanthes died, he formed the philosophical school of stoicism that is known to us today. Moreover, he was a very fruitful author, believed to have written 705 works.
Pythagoreans Celebrate the Sunrise
(1869) by Fyodor Bronnikov
It is believed that among many other unbelievable things said about Pythagoras, he had ridiculously strict rules about everything (such as the rule of which shoe should be put on first!).
One of the most famous rules was the prohibition of eating beans.
According to one story found in Diogenes Laertius' writings,
We don't know much about this playwright whose works are preserved only in fragments. However, we do have a Suda's account of his death, according to which Antiphanes died after being struck by a pear.
Still better than a
He was famous for his wealth, which was the strongest reason for being invited to be a member of the triumvirate in the first place. Unlike the previously mentioned guys who didn't see it coming, the way Crassus was executed was closely related to his vices.
According to the legend,
Parthians' way of executing him was pouring molten gold down his
throat as the response to his insatiable desire for wealth...!
It is known how much we owe to Pythagoras when it comes to math, or to Aeschylus when it comes to tragedy, or to Chryssipus and Empedocles when it comes to philosophy.
However, we have to admit that there is some comfort in learning that these men were human after all...
Whether the tales of
their deaths be entirely accurate or not, it is fun and humbling to
be reminded that there is no genius that can prevent a pear from
falling on your head...!