Hesiod (ca.700BC)

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Biographical note

Greek oral poet, often identified as the first economist. His date is uncertain but leading scholars favor the the eighth century BC for when Hesiod lived. Since at least Herodotus's time (Histories, 2.53), Hesiod and Homer have generally been considered the earliest Greek poets whose work has survived, and they are often paired. Scholars disagree about who lived first, and the fourth-century BC sophist Alcidamas' Mouseion even brought them together in an imagined poetic agon, the Contest of Homer and Hesiod. Aristarchus first argued for Homer's priority, a claim that was generally accepted by later antiquity.

Hesiod's writings serve as a major source on Greek mythology, farming techniques, archaic Greek astronomy and ancient time-keeping.

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