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Apollonius of Tyana


Apollonius of Tyana

Apollonius, a Greek philosopher, seer and neo-Pythagorean teacher, was born in Tyana in Cappadocia around the time of the birth of Christ. Most of what we know about him comes from an idealized account of his life set down by Philostratus, a century after his death. This claims Apollonius as son of the sea-god Proteus, and covers his wide travels, speeches and miracles, including Lazurus-like episodes of raising the dead. One notable incident in the Life, that of Apollonius's unmasking of a Corinthian disciple's bride as a vampire or lamia, was later the basis for John Keats' masterful poem, Lamia, in his collection of 1820. Apollonius eventually settled at Ephesus, and died after a long life of nearly a century. Later attempts to set him up as a rival savior to Christ, left him with an unfair reputation as something of an antichrist.

The French occultist, Eliphas Levi, would later claim to have summoned the spirit of Apollonius by a necromantic rite in 1854.

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