Epigenes is also the name shared by other figures of antiquity. Epigenes the Sicyonian is considered to be the most ancient writer of tragedy. There was also an Athenian comic poet by the same name who may have been a contemporary of Antiphanes.

Epigenes (Έπιγένης) of Byzantium (unknown-circa 200 BC) was a Greek astrologer. He seems to have been strong supporter of astrology, which, though derided by many Greek intellectuals, had been accepted and adopted by many Greeks from the seventh century BC through commercial contact with the Chaldeans of Babylonia.

It is unclear when Epigenes lived -he may have lived about the time of Augustus; some conjecture that he lived centuries earlier- but he is known to have refined the study of his chosen field, defining Saturn, for example, as "cold and windy." Along with Apollonius of Myndus and Artemidorus of Parium, he boasted of having been instructed by the Chaldean priest-astrologers, many of whom infiltrated Greece when the ports of Egypt opened to Greek ships after 640 BC.

Epigene's claims to have been educated by the Chaldeans comes from the writings of Seneca (Nat. Quaest., vii. 30.). Pliny the Elder (Historia Naturalis, vii. 56) writes that Epigenes attests to the fact that the Chaldeans preserved astral observations in inscriptions upon brick tiles (coctilibus laterculis) extending to a period of 720 years. Pliny calls Epigenes a writer of first-rate authority (gravis auctor imprimis).

The 55-km is named after him.


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