Thales, Greek Philosopher

625-546 BC

Philosopher from Miletus in Asia Minor, who was not only one of the Seven Wise Men of Greece but is also considered the founder of philosophy and the first geometrist.

Thales was also an astonomer, widely renowned for having pre-dicted an eclipse of the sun on May 28 585 BC. Until Thales, the world and the universe were explained mythologically, but with him the first profane explanation was sought.

Thales believed everything originated from water, and that eventually it all returns to this substance. He also travelled a lot, and when he was in Egypt he managed to find a way to calculate the height of the pyramids by measuring their shadow. He liked to calculate measures in general, and he also discovered that any triangle one would draw within a circle would have straight angles.

Many young men came to study under Thales, and his most famous students were Pythagoras and Anaximander.

"A multitude of words is no proof of a prudent mind."

"The past is certain, the future obscure."

"The most difficult thing in life is to know yourself."

"I will be sufficiently rewarded if when telling it to others you will not claim the discovery as your own, but will say it was mine."

"Hope is the only good that is common to all men; those who have nothing else possess hope still"

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