Abdera, 470 or 460 - approx. 370 B.C.

Great philosopher of antiquity. The first who devised the atomic theory, or received it from his teacher Leucippus, to formulate and extend it to all natural phenomena, establishing the theory scientifically, and opening the gates to the Natural sciences. He was born in Abdera to a very rich father. He spent his share of his father's fortune (100 talents, an enormous amount) on long journeys, to satisfy his scientific curiosity. He visited, among other countries, Egypt, Babylonia, Arabia, Ethiopia. He stayed for a considerable period of time in Athens, where he actually heard Socrates talk, but without getting to know him. He was not at all ambitious and preferred the "live without drawing attention". He himself says: "I came to Athens and no one knew me". He returned to Abdera, where he lived the life of a hermit, writing, researching and teaching. So strong was his love of scientific research that he said he would rather find an "etiology" (ie the scientific explanation of a phenomenon) than be given the throne of the kingdom of Persia.

His writings were written in the Ionic dialect, and include all branches of human knowledge: mathematics, physics, medicine, agriculture, ethics, poetry, music, painting, grammar, aesthetics, phonetics, and martial arts. Democritus asserted that "being" (the universe) is eternal, unchanging and indestructible, however it is not "simple" as the Eleatic philosophers believed, but "multiple". Since, according to Democritus, being is multiple, i.e. it is composed of infinitesimal pieces of matter (atoms) which are eternal, indestructible, unchanging and indivisible, these must necessarily come into relation with others, so that what we call movement is born.

The atoms, infinite in number and shape, whirl into infinity, like dust in the air, and, as they coalesce, form infinite worlds, (the "Great Universe"), to one of which the Earth belongs. Everything is done by mechanical necessity. Democritus gives a clear explanation of the birth of the constellations and also maintains that the soul also consists of smooth, thin and round atoms, which the body inhales from the air, thus giving the mental life a purely material and mechanical function. From his "Ethics" 230 passages have survived, most of them quotations. Only after two millennia, Bacchus and Ghassadi, brought the giant Democritus to the surface, and only in the 10th century, the supreme importance of his philosophy was understood, which led to the interpretation of the laws of sound, light, heat, as well as in chemical and physical changes (splitting of atoms) on a very wide scale. Under Socrates, the search for natural laws for the interpretation and understanding of being ended, in order to develop the philosophy of "useful virtue" and political philosophy, as Democritus himself said.

The life of the wise Abderitis is surrounded by the fog of legend and mystery, and many wonderful things are mentioned, especially around the last years of his life, by various authors, such as his meeting with Hippocrates and the dialogue that took place between them. However, the authenticity of all these biographical details is questioned by critics. However, one of the characteristics of Democritus that is not disputed, is that he laughed a lot, and every moment, seeing how insignificant and funny all the serious and great things of people were, in front of the greatness of the World. That is why it was called "Gelasinos". And, also, that the Abderites worshiped him as a god and, after his death, set up a bronze statue of him. He died at a very old age.