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Synesius of Cyrene


Mosaic depicting an angel. Museum of Ptolemais. Photo Marco Prins.
Mosaic depicting an angel. Museum of Ptolemais
Synesius of Cyrene (c.370-c.413) was a Neo-Platonic philosopher who became bishop of Ptolemais in the Cyrenaica. He left behind a small corpus of texts that offer much information about daily life in Late Antiquity, and about the christianization of the Roman world.

Letter 37, written in 411, is offered here in the translation by A. Fitzgerald.

Letter 37: Illness

To Anysius

Joannes, whom I love especially because of his affection for you, has been in the grip of a grievous malady. But he is suffering less from his illness than from the disappointment of being separated from your sacred self. He is still in the same state, and in addition to this there is a third thing which is making his illness worse. He is longing to do something that may become a soldier, and he frets against his forced inaction.
Online 2007
Revision: 20 August 2007
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