Xenophanes

Xenophanes (zĕnŏfˈənēz) [key], c.570–c.480 B.C., pre-Socratic Greek philosopher of Colophon. Although thought by some to be the founder of the Eleatic school, his thought is only superficially similar to that of Parmenides. Xenophanes opposed the anthropomorphic representation of the gods common to the Greeks since Homer and Hesiod. Instead he asserted there is only one god, eternal and immutable but intimately connected with the world. Although interpretations of his thought vary, it was probably a form of pantheism. He was a singer of elegies, a poet, and a satirist who exhorted his hearers to virtue.

See G. S. Kirk and J. E. Raven, The Presocratic Philosophers (1957).

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

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