Aesara – 3rd Century BCE – Luciana, Greece

Ancient Greece

Aesara is almost unique among the classical women Greek philosophers in that some of her work survives today.

20150808_104912

Another Pythagorean* woman, Aesara was from the ancient district of Luciana, now part of the Italian coast. There she authored On Human Nature, an early treatise arguing that only by studying human nature can we understand natural law and morality.

‘Human nature seems to me to provide a standard of law and justice both for the home and for the city.’

Aesara’s theory divided the soul into three parts:

  • Mind: judgment and thought
  • Spirit: courage and strength
  • Desire: love and kindness

These three parts affected the three Pythagorean applications of morality; the individual, the family and social institutions.

There are some arguments that On Human Nature is actually a much later Roman forgery. There is no strong evidence to support this theory, but even if this was the case, it suggests that there was an Aesara of Luciana whose work was well known and worth imitating.

*Other Pythagorean women mentioned in this project so far are: Theano and Timycha.


References:

Women Writers of Ancient Greece and Rome: An AnthologyIan Michael Plant

On Wikipedia:

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s