, a Greek philosopher, who flourished 300 B.C. was born at Borysthenes, a Greek town on the borders of the river of that name, now the Dneiper. Of his family, he is said to have given the following account to king Antigonus, who had heard something of his mean birth, and thinking to embarrass him, demanded his name, his country, his origin, &c. Bion, without being in the least disconcerted, answered, “My father was a freed-man, whose employment was to sell salt-fish. He had been a Scythian, born on the banks of the Borysthenes. He got acquainted with my mother in a place of bad fame, and there the couple celebrated their hopeful marriage. My father afterwards committed some crime, with the precise nature of which I am unacquainted; and for this, he, his wife, and his children, were exposed to sale. I was then a sprightly boy. An orator purchased me and on his death, bequeathed to me all his effects. I instantly tore his will, threw it into the fire, and went to Athens, where I applied to the study of philosophy.” In this city he first attached himself to Crates, and became a cynic, and then embraced the opinions of Theodoras, the atheist, and Theophrastus, and at last became a philosopher in his own way, without belonging to any sect. The name of philosopher, however, seems ill applied to him. He uttered, indeed, some | wise and moral sayings, but his general conduct was that of extreme profligacy. He died at Chalcis, and during his last illness, is said to have repented of his libertinism, for which he endeavoured to atone by superstitious observances. He wrote copiously on the subject of morals, and Stobeus has preserved a few fragments. 1


Stanley.—Gen. Dict.—Moreri.—Fenelon’s Lives by Cormack.—Brucker.