Ancient Women Philosophers

Hipparchia

Hipparchia was born in 346 BC in Maroneia. Maroneia was on the coastline of Thrace which was in Greece. It was a calm place to live compared to NorthEastern Thrace in which tribe tattoos and wild celebrations in honor of the wine godess Dionysius were popular. Hipparchia's brother, Metrocles, was born soon after her. His wish was to study philosophy. He attended several different schools of philosophy. He unfortunately could'nt make ends meet. Since he barley had money to buy food, he went on a diet of beans. One sad day Metrocles was speaking in front of a very important class in school and vomitted on his classmates. He was mortified and locked himself in his room determined to starve himself to death!!! There was a knock at the door. The visitor would'nt leave so he opened the door. It was a man named Crates, the Cynic philosopher of Athens. He cheered Metrocles up about the incident. From that time forward Crates was Metrocles teacher. His family wanted to meet the new teacher that Metrocles had been singing praises to. [1]

Crates went home with Metrocles.Hipparchia fell madly in love with him. There was no stopping her. She was determined to marry him. Hipparchia had looks and a wonderful background. She had her choice of men and she choose Crates without a doubt. Crates had very little money and very little to offer her. The only thing he had was kindness, a concern for mankind, and a great sense of humor. She threatened her parents that she would kill herself if they would not let her marry him. [2]

They were married in 326 BC. They had a wonderful relationship. She went everywhere with her husband. They had an equal partnership. Hipparchia and Crates were a very popular couple. People wanted them to attend dinner parties. In 4th century BC, women seldom attended this sort of thing.[3]

As you know Hipparchia was a philosopher. She solved domestic arguments (like a marriage counselor), consoled the bereaved, councelled the sick and the troubled. During this time of work she was also raising a daughter and a son. Hipparchia kept her homelife healthy. Hipparchia also wrote many philosophical books and tragedies. It states in this book that her literary works were lost.[4]

Hipparchia led a simple life, but she did'nt long for anything. She was a content woman. It is interesting to note that when their daughter wanted to get married, Hipparchia and Crates first had her live with her boyfriend for one month. This is the first trial marriage ever recorded in history. [5]

1 Vicki Leon,"Hipparchia," Uppity Women of Ancient Greece (California: Tabula Rasa Press, 1989),37.

2 Vicki Leon,"Hipparchia," Uppity Women of Ancient Greece (California: Tabula Rasa Press, 1989),37.

3 Vicki Leon,"Hipparchia," Uppity Women of Ancient Greece (California: Tabula Rasa Press, 1989),37.

4 Vicki Leon,"Hipparchia," Uppity Women of Ancient Greece (California: Tabual Rasa Press, 1989),37.

5 Vicki Leon,"Hipparchia," Uppity Women of Ancient Greece (California: Tabula Rasa Press, 1989),37.

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