Ancient Greek history spans several centuries and is typically divided into distinct periods, each marked by significant developments in politics, culture, and philosophy. Here’s a general timeline along with some of the core philosophers and thinkers associated with each period:

1. Pre-Socratic Period (c. 600–450 BC)

  • Milesian School: Thales (c. 624–546 BC), Anaximander (c. 610–546 BC), Anaximenes (c. 585–528 BC)
  • Pythagoras (c. 570–495 BC)
  • Heraclitus (c. 535–475 BC)
  • Parmenides (early 5th century BC)
  • Empedocles (c. 494–434 BC)
  • Anaxagoras (c. 500–428 BC)
  • Democritus (c. 460–370 BC)

This period is characterized by the development of early metaphysical concepts and the questioning of mythological explanations of the world.

2. Classical Period (c. 450–323 BC)

  • Sophists (Protagoras, Gorgias)
  • Socrates (c. 470–399 BC)
  • Plato (c. 428–348 BC)
  • Aristotle (384–322 BC)

This era saw the birth of Western philosophy as we know it, with Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle laying much of the groundwork for future Western philosophical thought.

3. Hellenistic Period (323–31 BC)

  • Diogenes of Sinope (c. 412–323 BC)
  • Pyrrho (c. 360–270 BC)
  • Epicurus (341–270 BC)
  • Zeno of Citium (founder of Stoicism, c. 334–262 BC)

Following Alexander the Great’s conquests, Greek culture and philosophy spread across the Mediterranean and Near East. This period is marked by the development of schools like Stoicism, Epicureanism, and Skepticism.

4. Roman Period (31 BC–onwards)

  • Plotinus (204–270 AD) – Though later, he is significant as the founder of Neoplatonism, heavily influenced by Plato.

These periods are not rigid and some philosophers’ lives and works span multiple periods. Also, the focus of philosophy shifted over time, starting with physical explanations of the universe in the Pre-Socratic era, moving to ethics and epistemology in the Classical period, and then to personal ethics and logic in the Hellenistic era.

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Shiva Rajaya

Tantrika / Life coach / Activator of new evolutionary codes for the planet and humankind