Zeno, the founder of the Stoic school of philosophy, was a native of Cyprus, perhaps a merchant, who was shipwrecked on a certain voyage, and as a result of this apparent misfortune turned to philosophy. Men who wanted to be philosophers were likely to come to Athens in those days, two or three generations after Socrates, Zeno, being at Athens, one day sat down, so the story goes, by a bookseller’s stall, where the bookseller was reading aloud from a book of Xenophon, the “Memorabilia,” which described the conversations of Socrates. Greatly interested, Zeno inquired of the bookseller where such men as Socrates lived. Just at that moment Crates, a good man, a poor man, who formed his life on the life of Socrates, was passing by. The bookseller pointed to him, saying: “Follow this man.” Zeno rose up and followed Crates; and the result was that Socrates’s belief in the supremacy of reason and in the human soul and in the value of human life and freedom profoundly affected the teaching of Zeno. We may not search out now the other influences felt in Stoicism. The scientific, religious, and logical doctrines of this school are very important, and their development is interesting. But certainly the Socratic thought is strongly felt in this famous school.

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