The Leucippus reference article from the English Wikipedia on 24-Jul-2004
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Leucippus

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Leucippus or Leukippos (5th century BCE) was the originator of atomism, the philosophical belief that everything is composed entirely of various imperishable, indivisible elements called atoms.

There are no existing writings which we can attribute to Leucippus, since his writings seem to have been enfolded into the work of his famous student Democritus (q.v. for more on atomism). In fact, it is virtually impossible to identify any views about which Democritus and Leucippus disagreed.

Leucippus was born at Miletus (or some said Elea, for his philosophy is associated with the Eleatic philosophers), a contemporary of Zeno, Empedocles and Anaxagoras of the Ionian school of philosophy. His fame was so completely overshadowed by that of Democritus, who systematized his views on atoms, that Epicurus doubted his very existence, according to Diogenes Laertius x. 7. But Aristotle and Theophrastus expressly credit him with the invention of Atomism.


In Greek mythology, Leucippus, son of Gorgophone and Perieres, was the father of Phoebe and Hilaeira

Castor and Polydeuces abducted and married Phoebe and Hilaeira, the daughters of Leucippus. In return, Idas and Lynceus, nephews of Leucippus (or rival suitors), killed Castor. Polydeuces was granted immortality by Zeus, and further persuaded Zeus to share his gift with Castor.

Ovid VIII, 306.


This article is part of The Presocratic Philosophers series
Thales | Anaximander | Anaximenes of Miletus | Pythagoras | Empedocles | Heraclitus | Parmenides | Xenophanes | Leucippus | Democritus | Protagoras | Gorgias | Prodicus