Marcus Tullius Cicero, De Fato [On Fate]

Magnus Schallenberg (Independent Scholar - Europe)
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De fato

(“On Fate”) Cicero is concerned with the compatibility of freedom and determinism. This topic had been widely and vehemently discussed during the Hellenistic period – and continues to be discussed with equal vehemence today. The positions taken in current debates have, in their essence, already been touched upon in Cicero’s work, which summarizes and engages with the theories of the Stoics Chrysippus (3rd cent. BCE) and Posidonius (1st cent. BCE), the dialectician Diodorus Cronus (Megarian school, 3rd cent. BCE), Epicurus (atomism, c. 341–271 BCE) and the sceptic Carneades (New Academy, 2nd cent. BCE).

The central problem of De fato can be outlined as follows: if fate were a reality and everything had been fated before it happens, as some physicists and logicians try

2714 words

Citation: Schallenberg, Magnus. "De Fato". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 06 December 2010 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=32021, accessed 05 March 2024.]

32021 De Fato 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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