Timæus

, the Locrian, was a philosopher of the Italic school, during the time of Plato, who was indebted to him, among other Pythagoreans, for his acquaintance with the doctrine of Pythagoras, and who wrote his dialogue, entitled “Timaeus,” on the ground of his book, “On the Nature of Things.” A small piece, which he wrote concerning the “Soul of the World,” is preserved by Proclus, and is in some editions prefixed to Plato’s “Timseus.” In this treatise, though generally following Pythagoras, he departs from him in two particulars; the first, that instead of one whole, or monad, he supposes two independent causes of nature, God, or mind, the fountain of intelligent nature, and necessity, or matter, the source of bodies; the second, that he explains the cause of the formation of the world, from the external action of God upon matter, after the pattern or ideas existing in his own mind. From comparing this piece with Plato’s dialogue, it will be found that the Athenian philosopher has obscured the simple doctrine | of the Locrian with fancies drawn from his own imagination, or from the Ægyptian schools. 1

1

Brucker. Fabric. Bibl. Grac. —Saxii Onomast.