Cynics, a school of Greek philosophers, founded by Antisthenes, a pupil of Socrates, in Athens, in the gymnasium Cynosarges, about 380 B. G. The most renowned among them were Diogenes, Crates of Thebes, his wife Hipparchia, and Menippus. They taught that speculative philosophy led to no real knowledge of truth, but only to sophistry and the destruction of virtue and human society, and that the only task of philosophy was to show how men might best live morally and peaceably. In this they harmonized with the Stoics, but they differed from them in defining virtue to be the highest possible simplicity in living, and independence of external or sensual goods, and in carrying this so far that they despised decency, cleanliness, civilization, and labor. Hence their name became a byword, and was sneeringly derived fromCynics 0500345 (dog); they were called a doggish set, and the name Cynic is still applied to men who disregard the proprieties of life under the pretence of independence of character.