Aspasia

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Aspasia

(ăspā`shə, –zhə), fl. mid-5th cent. B.C., Athenian courtesan. A woman of great beauty and intelligence, she became the mistress and, according to some poets, adviser of PericlesPericles
, c.495–429 B.C., Athenian statesman. He was a member of the Alcmaeonidae family through his mother, a niece of Cleisthenes. He first came to prominence as an opponent of the Areopagus (462) and as one of the prosecutors of Cimon, whom he replaced in influence.
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 after he divorced (445 B.C.) his wife. She is the chief figure in Aspasia, a dialogue by Aeschines the Socratic, in which she criticizes the training of women. She also appears in the Menexnus, probably written by Plato, and in the writings of XenophonXenophon
, c.430 B.C.–c.355 B.C., Greek historian, b. Athens. He was one of the well-to-do young disciples of Socrates before leaving Athens to join the Greek force (the Ten Thousand) that was in the service of Cyrus the Younger of Persia.
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, who wrote favorably of her.

Aspasia

mistress of Pericles; byword for cultured courtesan. [Gk. Hist.: Benét, 58]

Aspasia

pathetic figure bearing fate with fortitude. [Br. Lit.: The Maid’s Tragedy]