The Ciceronian corpus of philosophical works features a number of first-person speakers who explain how they live their Academic scepticism. Lucullus 65-6 is an interesting instance of this: the Academic way of life is contrasted with that of the dogmatist with reference to an extended allegory from navigation at sea by night. In my paper I will try to elucidate this passage, by considering how navigation by the stars worked in antiquity, to what extent the scholarly and poetic tradition on the night sky reflected these realities, and ultimately what the allegory does and does not illustrate.
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Workshop in Ancient Philosophy Convenors: Ursula Coope, Simon Shogry and Luca Castagnoli