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Sunday, July 28, 2019

Heraclitus: The weeping philosopher | Op-ed - Dong-A Ilbo

A white-haired man clad in black is weeping sadly. 

Photo: Heraclitus by Johannes Moreelse
He is praying earnestly with his hands clasped in front of a giant globe. The strong light that shines from the left against the dark background highlights the man’s deep wrinkles and tears streaming from his closed eyes. Who is he and why is he weeping?

The man in the picture, painted by 17th-century Holland artist Johannes Moreelse, is Greek philosopher Heraclitus. “Good and bad are one,” “Life and death, young and old are alike,” “We cannot enter the same river twice,” are some of the philosopher’s famous quotes. His riddle-like yet philosophic words had a great impact on later generations such as German philosophers Nietzsche and Hegel...

Many artists painted the philosopher as a symbol of sadness and loneliness, but Moreelses’ painting is the most well-known. Having passed away at 31 years, the artist did not leave many paintings behind but he was brought into the spotlight of this painting for his bold composition, strong light and shade contrast and outstanding character expression‎.  
Additional resources
Heraclitus - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. 

Source: Dong-A Ilbo