Marcus Aurelius Antoninus was born in 121 AD. He is believed to have been a bookish young boy who studied with a number of Stoic philosophers. He had a reputation for virtue from a young age and was subsequently adopted into the imperial family. This led to him becoming Emperor of Rome, a post he held from 161 until his death in 180.
For many thinkers of the 19th century - from Darwin to Nietzsche - Marcus was an intellectual hero -- Mary Beard * London Review of Books * His meditations can indeed still offer all of us, historians included, worthwhile advice -- Tom Holland * Guardian *