|previous article in this issue||next article in this issue|
Document Details :
Title: Reconciling Cicero's Anti-Epicureanism in De Amicitia with his Friendship with Atticus
Author(s): EVANGELOU, Gabriel
Volume: 77 Issue: 4 Date: 2018
In De Amicitia Cicero provides an account of amicitia which may give the impression that he is criticizing both Epicurus and his followers for the kind of relationships that they were interested in developing. It follows that his attack on the Epicurean school and his dedication of De Amicitia to Atticus create an apparent paradox, since Atticus is considered to have been an Epicurean. This paper argues that certain passages, mainly from De Finibus and the correspondence, suggest that the chief target of Cicero’s attack in De Amicitia was neither Epicurus nor all of his followers, but specifically those men who chose to pursue friendships based on personal advantage instead of relationships grounded in virtue. As a result, Cicero’s treatise could not be perceived by Atticus as offensive, as Atticus’ conduct and amicitia with Cicero were at variance with the Epicurean approach to φιλία.