ALCEBIADES, ALCIBIADES, ALCIPYADES. Alcibiades (c. 450-404 B.C.) was the son of Cleinias, Athenian general and statesman. His beauty was proverbial even in his own lifetime, as was his instability of character. Yet he was drawn to Socrates, shared a tent with him in battle, and generally revered the philosopher. When the Spartan general Lysander captured Athens in 404 B.C., Alcibiades fled to Bithnia with his mistress, Timandra, a courtesan. Lysander sent his men after them to kill the pair. The murderers did not enter Alcibiades’s house but set it afire. When Alcibiades rushed out to fight the attackers, they ran off, shooting him with arrows until he fell. Timandra wrapped Alcibiades in her garments and buried him (Plutarch, Life of Alcibiades). Jerome tells the story of Timandra in Epistola adversus Jovinianum (Letter Against Jovinian) I.44 (PL 23: 274).

Dorigen thinks the mistress of Alcebiades exemplifies loyalty, FranklT 1439-1441. The beauty of Alcipyades, a medieval commonplace, appears in BD 1056-1057. Lady Philosophy comments on the outward beauty and inward corruption of Alcibiades, Bo III, Prosa 8.44045.


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