Holger Szesnat deposited ‘Mostly Aged Virgins’: Philo and the Presence of the Therapeutrides at Lake Mareotis on Humanities Commons 2 years, 6 months ago
Most scholars assume that Philo has a positive view of the female members of the community at Lake Mareotis which he describes in his De Vita Contemplativa. This article questions this from the perspective of Philo’s attitude to «pretty slave boys» used for sexual purposes, to whom he ascribes the «female disease». Philo was forced to accomodate the Therapeutrides even though he did not approve of their presence in the community as such. He describes them as «mostly aged virgins» because his view of γυναικες (as opposed to παρθενοι) does not permit him to ascribe positive values to them.