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Sallustius or Sallust (/ˈsæləst/; Ancient Greek: Σαλούστιος) was a 4th-century writer, a friend of the Roman Emperor Julian. He wrote the treatise On the Gods and the Cosmos, a kind of catechism of 4th-century Hellenic paganism. Sallustius' work owes much to that of Iamblichus of Chalcis, who synthesized Platonism with Pythagoreanism and theurgy, and also to Julian's own philosophical writings.[1] The treatise is quite concise, and generally free of the lengthy metaphysical theorizing of the more detailed Neoplatonic texts. Its aim is in part "to parry the usual onslaughts of Christian polemic" in the face of Christianity's growing preeminence, and "me[e]t theology with theology".[2]

Sallustius' exact identity is a matter of some uncertainty. By some he is identified as Flavius Sallustius (a native of Spain who was praetorian prefect of Gaul from 361 until 363 and Julian's colleague as consul in 363),[3][4] by others with Saturninius Secundus Salutius (died after 367 AD,[5] a native of Gaul who was praetorian prefect of the Orient in 361).[6] The latter is said to have been offered the purple, but declined it, after Julian's death.[7]


  • Gilbert Murray. 1925 "On the Gods and the World," appended to Murray's Five Stages of Greek Religion, first published in 1912 as Four Stages of Greek Religion.
  • Arthur Darby Nock (ed/trans.). 1926. Sallustius concerning the gods and the universe. Edited with prolegomena and translation. Available in various reprints, for example ISBN 0-89005-550-5 and ISBN 3-487-01413-0.
  • Gabriel Rochefort. 1960. Des dieux et du monde. Edition of the Greek text, with French translation and notes, in the Collection Budé.
  • Thomas Taylor (ed/trans.). 1793. Sallust, On the gods and the world; and the Pythagoric sentences of Demophilus, translated from the Greek; and five hymns by Proclus, in the original Greek, with a poetical version. To which are added five hymns by the translator. Reprinted many times, for example ISBN 0-7661-6735-6.


  1. Nock 1926:xcvii
  2. Nock 1926:cii
  3. Sallustius Page of The Encyclopedia of the Goddess Athena.
  4. Jona Lendering. "Julianus Apostata" on
  5. [1] Archived May 9, 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  6. Mario Meunier. "Prolégomènes", in Salluste le Philosophe, Des Dieux et du Monde, p.5. (French)
  7. "Jovianus Flavius, Christian emperor" in Henry Wace (1911). Dictionary of Christian Biography and Literature to the End of the Sixth Century A.D., with an Account of the Principal Sects and Heresies.

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Political offices
Preceded by
Claudius Mamertinus,
Consul of the Roman Empire
with Julian the Apostate
Succeeded by