So I am now moving into the final analysis of Philostratus’ Apollonius of Tyana. I have outlined the influences on Philostratus’ depiction of the Indian Wise Ones and Ethiopian Naked Ones, and will soon outline what information concerning Indians Philostratus adds that is an accurate reflection of historical ancient Indians. This will likely demonstrate that Philostratus used other Greek sources no longer extant, and will add to the historically accurate information Greeks knew about Indian sages. On the other hand, if his depiction of Indian Wise Men demonstrates both some amount of accuracy and a consistent description of a specific Indian philosophical school (e.g. Brahmans, Buddhists, etc.), then this could be interpreted as some amount of proof that Damis was real and that he and Apollonius really did visit India. But I believe, and it seems so far, that this is not true. Lastly, I will describe some of the ways Philostratus uses the Indian Wise Men and the Ethiopian Naked Ones to portray Apollonius. There are two primary ways: first, by alluding to Apollonius superiority to Alexander the Great in their interactions with India, and, second, by portraying Apollonius as a superior to Pythagoras, since Apollonius visited, according to Philostratus, the source of the Pythagorean philosophy, the Indians. Pythagoras, according to Philostratus, only got this philosophy in an incomplete form from the Egyptians, who got it from the Ethiopians, who got it from the Indians. These are the final analyses.
February 24, 2011 by ·