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Headword: *sebh=ros
Adler number: sigma,182
Translated headword: Severus
Vetting Status: high
A sophist; a Roman.[1]
This man came to Arabia via Syria and to Palestine and he sailed the Nile upstream towards Upper Egypt and he saw all of it apart from a few [parts]; for he was not able to reach the Ethiopian frontier because of a plague. And he was inquisitive about everything, even the things completely hidden; because he was the sort of person that would not leave anything unsearchable, neither human nor divine. For this reason he took from all the sanctuaries any book he could find that contained something not to be spoken about, and he closed off the tomb of Alexander [sc. the Great], in order that nobody would see his body any more or read[2] what was written in those [books].[3]
This man was a Libyan by race, both noble and courageous in the administration of state-affairs, accustomed to a hard and rough life and able to endure pain with ease, fast at thinking and sharp at accomplishing what he thought. After he ascended to the throne, he accused the friends of Albinus[4] in the senate and he brought forward their letters and [sc. other] proofs, and, charging them all with other indictments, he executed all the prominent members of the senate at the time and those who were preponderant in wealth and ancestry from all the nations. He was also very avaricious, to the point that it surpassed the gains of his bravery.[5]
This Severus lived at the time of emperor Anthemius;[6] after arriving in Alexandria, he lived a life of leisure, philosophizing, having plenty of books of all kinds. And if there was someone else capable of influencing those who excelled in education, he visited him in person in many occasions; and moderate [he was] ...[7]
Greek Original:
*sebh=ros, sofisth/s: *(rwmai=os. ou(=tos ei)s *)arabi/an e)k th=s *suri/as kai\ e)s th\n *palaisti/nhn h)=lqe kai\ ei)s th\n *ai)/gupton th\n a)/nw dia\ tou= *nei/lou a)ne/pleuse kai\ ei)=de pa=san au)th\n plh\n braxe/wn: ou) ga\r h)dunh/qh pro\s ta\ th=s *ai)qiopi/as meqo/ria dia\ loimw/dh no/son e)sbalei=n. kai\ e)polupragmo/nhse pa/nta, kai\ ta\ pa/nu kekrumme/na: h)=n ga\r oi(=os mhde\n mh/t' a)nqrw/peion mh/te qei=on a)diereu/nhton e)a=n. ka)k tou/tou ta/ te bibli/a pa/nta ta\ a)po/rrhto/n ti e)/xonta, o(/sa ge kai\ eu(rei=n h)dunh/qh, e)k pa/ntwn tw=n a)du/twn a)nei=le kai\ to\ tou= *)aleca/ndrou mnhmei=on sune/kleisen, i(/na mhdei\s e)/ti mh/te to\ tou/tou sw=ma i)/dh| mh/te ta\ e)n e)kei/nois gegramme/na a)nale/chtai. ou(=tos to\ ge/nos h)=n *li/bus, e)s pragma/twn dioi/khsin gennai=os a(/ma kai\ qumoeidh/s, sklhrw=| te bi/w| kai\ traxei= e)neiqisme/nos po/nois te a)ne/xwn r(a=|sta, noh=sai/ te taxu\s kai\ to\ nohqe\n e)pitele/sai o)cu/s. ou(=tos meta\ to\ ei)selqei=n ei)s ta\ basi/leia tw=n *)albi/nou fi/lwn e)pi\ th=s sugklh/tou kathgo/rei gra/mmata/ te au)tw=n kai\ e)le/gxous prose/feren, a)/llas te a)/llois e)pife/rwn ai)ti/as pa/ntas tou\s e)ce/xontas to/te th=s sugklh/tou kai\ tw=n kata\ e)/qnh plou/tw| te kai\ ge/nei u(pere/xontas die/fqeire. pa/nu de\ h)=n au)tw=| kai\ to\ filo/xruson, w(s u(perba/llein ta\ pleonekth/mata th=s a)ndrei/as. o( *sebh=ros ou(=tos e)pi\ *)anqemi/ou basile/ws h)=n: e)n *)alecandrei/a| de\ a)fiko/menos to\n a)pra/gmona bi/on e)/zh filosofw=n, e)n bibli/ois a)fqo/nois ou)=sin au)tw=| kai\ pantodapoi=s. ei)/per de/ tis e(/teros i(kano\s h)=n e)pagage/sqai tou\s e)pi\ paidei/a| diene/gkontas w(s e(auto\n i)e/nai polla/kis: e)pieikh/s te .....
This entry conflates two homonymous persons: a sophist by the name of Severus, perhaps identifiable as the Severus of Alexandria edited by Walz (see also Amato 2006, esp. p.64 n.4), and the Roman emperor Septimius Severus (for whom see already sigma 181). De Imperatoribus Romanis entry at web address 1.
[1] cf. Damascius, Life of Isidore fr. 6 Zintzen.
[2] cf. alpha 1935.
[3] Cassius Dio 75.13.1-2 (cf. Constantine Porphyrogenitus, De virtutibus et vitiis 2.385.13-23).
[4] Clodius Albinus (c. 150-197). De Imperatoribus Romanis entry at web address 2.
[5] Quoted from Constantine Porphyrogenitus, De virtutibus et vitiis 1.190.5-10; cf. Herodian, Ab excessu divi Marci 3.8.6.
[6] Anthemius, Roman Emperor 467-472. De Imperatoribus Romanis entry at web address 3.
[7] Damascius, Life of Isidore fr. 116 Zintzen.
Amato, E., 'An Unpublished Ethopoea of Severus of Alexandria', GRBS 46 (2006) 63-72
Walz, C., Rhetores Graeci, vol. 1, Stuttgart 1832, pp. 534-548
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2,
Web address 3
Keywords: biography; chronology; economics; ethics; geography; historiography; history; law; medicine; philosophy; politics; religion; rhetoric
Translated by: Ioannis Doukas on 10 August 2007@10:22:57.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (augmented notes and keywords; tweaks and cosmetics) on 12 August 2007@04:37:05.
Catharine Roth (tweaked note, coding) on 6 December 2013@23:54:15.
David Whitehead (tweaking) on 22 December 2013@09:12:35.


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