Seneca is considered one of the leading figures in Stoic philosophy , whose ideas have served as an example and inspiration for important philosophers, intellectuals, and religious thinkers. He was an important Spanish-Roman philosopher and one of the best orators in the Empire.

  • When was he born: Year 4 BC
  • Where he was born:  Córdoba, Spain
  • When he died:  04/12/65
  • Where he died:  Rome, Italy

Who was Seneca?

Seneca is considered one of the best philosophers and intellectuals that existed during the Roman Empire, whose participation was noted mainly for being a renowned speaker , lawyer, writer and politician .

  • Seneca biography
  • Death
  • Seneca’s thought
  • Stoicism of Lucio Anneo Seneca
  • Contributions
  • The happiness
  • Plays
  • Seneca quotes

Seneca biography

He was born in 4 BC . in Corduba, what we know today as Córdoba, Spain . He belonged to a wealthy family in the Betica province in Rome, his father Marco Lucio Anneo was known as Seneca the Elder and was an imperial procurator. Seneca was equally attracted to philosophy , and obtained teachings from various teachers who initiated him into the various modalities of the Stoic doctrine then popular in Rome. He began his political career at an early age and worked as a lawyer and quaestor . He was expelled to Corsica by Caligula and then NeroHe took him back to Rome, making him his best lawyer. He was accused of participating in a conspiracy for which he was ordered to commit suicide.



Seneca began to lose influence over Nero , until the emperor forced him to commit suicide. Seneca was involved in the Plison conspiracy , a plot created against Nero, and for this reason he was sentenced to death . In April 65 AD, Seneca cut his veins on the emperor’s order and his body was cremated without ceremony.

Seneca’s thought

Philosophy for Seneca was a way of achieving the fullness of life through peace and respect for the particular being as a full manifestation of the other. He thought that everything should be characterized as a quiet way of life to be able to shape the soul.

It was based mainly on highlighting the will as a well-differentiated faculty of the understanding; the insistence on the sinful character of man and his firm opposition to slavery and his affirmation of the full equality of all men: the only nobility is that which proceeds from the spirit and which each man can forge himself.

Stoicism of Lucio Anneo Seneca

The stoicism of Lucius Annaeus Seneca is a doctrine that is based on practical philosophy focused primarily on the question regarding the morality of man, leaving aside the approach logical and physical I already had the traditional stoicism .

His stoicism sought mainly the renewal of the Stoic doctrine, through a series of proposals that would reinforce and somehow promote the field of ethics . His stoicism was full of wise advice and reflections related to morality and the way in which human beings should take care of themselves, in order to be of use to others and to achieve a good standard of living.


Its influence can be seen in the following contributions:

  • He promoted humanism in the world.
  • The equality of all men.
  • The encouragement of a healthy , sober and moderate life to find happiness.
  • The education must be the domain of the person.
  • The broad philosophical education to educate reflection.
  • He highlighted the importance of the educator within society .
  • He made great contributions to the ethics and morals of the human being.
  • He established norms and ways of behaving, mainly moving away from vices.

The happiness

For Seneca, happiness was what all people wanted, but that they were blind and could not see what really made them happy, and that the more they tried to find it, the more they moved away from it. He thought that people should know what it was they wanted in order to set out correctly in their search and that a truly happy life was one that sought to achieve a healthy soul and a healthy body . The happy person was also honest and virtuous and had a free, upright and stable soul , without fear or any type of affliction . He also considered that unhappy people led a bad life and did not know theregret .


He raised issues regarding his sense of existence and his Stoic ideal . It reflects in them how the main problem was given by the exercise and presented consequences of despotism . The works that Seneca inherited us can be divided into four different sections: moral dialogues letters , tragedies and epigrams . Seneca’s philosophy is all summarized in these works. He did not write a systematic work on philosophy; his philosophical thought , his stoic ideas, are expressed throughout all his work.

The dialogues are ten works all of a moral nature that have been preserved in a manuscript in the Ambrosian Library . Apart from his work entitled ” On Anger “, the other writings are relatively short. The lengthy dialogue On Anger was written for his brother, Novato , who had asked him to write about how to mitigate anger. He also wrote the drama Octavia and a series of supposed Epigrams and the Moral Epistles to Lucilio.

Seneca quotes

Some of Seneca’s most important phrases are as follows:

  • The anger : an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored on anything on which it is poured.
  • The sadness , although it is always justified, it is often just lazy. Nothing takes less effort than being sad.
  • There is no one less fortunate than the man who is forgotten by adversity because he has no opportunity to test himself.
  • He who has little is not poor , but he who desires much .
  • What the law does not prohibit, honesty can prohibit.
  • The strong spirits enjoy adversities as intrepid soldiers triumph in war.

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