International Womens Day: A First Female Philosopher

It was international women’s day yesterday and to celebrate (a little late) I thought I should write about a female philosopher of note; a surprisingly rare species even to this day. Let’s look at an early example of a Great female philosopher…

Hypatia of Alexandria

Hypatia was the daughter of Theon of Alexandria, a mathematician and philosopher. Hypatia grew to also become a mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher in around 400 AD. She became head of the Platonist school at Alexandria and was particularly keen on the teachings of neoplatonism. She was described by commentators as charismatic in her teachings.

However, Christians at the time distrusted science for whoch Hypatia became a symbol; science was paganism. She become a central feature in riots between Christians and non-Christians due to this ‘paganism’ and also due to her political connections. According to reports (although they vary widely in details) she is generally believed to have been murdered by Christians for what she represented to them. 

All of Hypatia’s works have been lost bar their titles and references to them. However, it is believed that she aided her father with some of his works which have been preserved. 

Hypatia is another great women who’s full story and achievements have been lost to history. Today is a day to celebrate these women who have come before and achieved much but have been forgoten.