# Mathematician:Proclus Lycaeus

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## Mathematician

Greek philosopher who among other things produced a commentary on Book $\text I$ of Euclid's *The Elements*.

## Nationality

Greek, of Byzantine origin

## History

- Born: 8 Feb 411 in Constantinople (now Istanbul), Byzantium (now Turkey)
- Died: 17 April 485 in Athens, Greece

## Publications

*Platonic Theology*(6 volumes)*Elements of Theology**Elements of Physics**Commentary on Plato's "Alcibiades I"**Commentary on Plato's "Cratylus"**Commentary on Plato's "Parmenides"**Commentary on Plato's "**Republic*"*Commentary on Plato's "Timaeus"**Commentary on Euclid*(the first book of*The Elements*only)*Ten doubts concerning providence**On providence and fate**On the existence of evils**Various Hymns*(fragments)*Commentary on the Chaldaean Oracles*(fragments)

*The life of Proclus*, or*On Happiness*: written by his pupil, Marinus

## Notable Quotes

*Not much younger than these [i.e. Hermontimus of Colophon and Philippus of Medma] is Euclid, who put together**The Elements*, collecting many of Eudoxus' theorems, perfecting many of Theaetetus', and also bringing to irrefragable demonstration the things which were only somewhat loosely proved by his predecessors. This man lived in the time of the first Ptolemy. For Archimedes, who came immediately after the first (Ptolemy), makes mention of Euclid: and, further, they say that Ptolemy once asked him if there was in geometry any shorter way than that of*The Elements*, and he answered that there was no royal road to geometry. He is then younger than the pupils of Plato but older than Eratosthenes and Archimedes; for the latter were contemporary with one another, as Eratosthenes somewhere says.

*The man who was the first to bring the consideration of the irrational out of mystery and bring it to the fore in publicity perished, it is said, in a shipwreck. This happened because the inexpressible, the unformed, should have always remained hidden ...*

## Also known as

Usually known as **Proclus**.

Also known as **Proclus Diadochus** or **Proclus Didachos**, meaning **Proclus the Successor**.

**Lycaeus** is also seen presented as **Lycius**.

## Sources

- John J. O'Connor and Edmund F. Robertson: "Proclus Lycaeus": MacTutor History of Mathematics archive

- 1926: Sir Thomas L. Heath:
*Euclid: The Thirteen Books of The Elements: Volume 1*(2nd ed.) ... (previous) ... (next): Introduction: Chapter $\text{I}$. Euclid and the Traditions About Him - 1926: Sir Thomas L. Heath:
*Euclid: The Thirteen Books of The Elements: Volume 1*(2nd ed.) ... (previous) ... (next): Introduction: Chapter $\text{IV}$. Proclus and his Sources - 1986: David Wells:
*Curious and Interesting Numbers*... (previous) ... (next): A List of Mathematicians in Chronological Sequence - 1997: David Wells:
*Curious and Interesting Numbers*(2nd ed.) ... (previous) ... (next): A List of Mathematicians in Chronological Sequence - 1998: David Nelson:
*The Penguin Dictionary of Mathematics*(2nd ed.) ... (previous) ... (next): Entry:**Proclus**(*c*. 410-485) - 2008: David Nelson:
*The Penguin Dictionary of Mathematics*(4th ed.) ... (previous) ... (next): Entry:**Proclus**(*c*. 410-485)