Aristotle Timeline

Aristotle (384-322 BC) was a Greek philosopher, a student of Plato, and the teacher of Alexander the Great. His extensive contributions in various fields such as philosophy, logic, metaphysics, biology, and physics have had a profound influence on Western thought.

In his philosophical system, he emphasized empirical observations and logical reasoning, providing a foundational framework that was later developed by other Western thinkers.

Aristotle was born in Stagira, a city in northern Greece, and moved to Athens at the age of 17 to study under Plato. After Plato’s death, he tutored Alexander the Great for several years before returning to Athens to establish his own school, the Lyceum.

His extensive body of work covers a wide range of topics, and although only a fraction of his original writings have survived, the impact of his ideas and his overall influence on Western philosophy and science remains substantial to this day.

384 BCAristotle is born in the city of Stagira, Chalkidiki.
367 BCAristotle moves to Athens to study at Plato’s Academy.
347 BCPlato dies; Aristotle likely leaves Athens.
343 BCPhilip II of Macedon invites Aristotle to tutor his son.
336 BCAristotle returns to Athens, establishes his own school.
323 BCAlexander dies; Aristotle is charged with impiety, flees to Chalcis.
322 BCAristotle dies of natural causes in Chalcis.

Timeline of Aristotle

384 BC – Born in Stagira, Chalkidiki, in Northern Greece

Aristotle was born in the city of Stagira, Chalkidiki, in Northern Greece. His family was well-established; his father, Nicomachus, served as the personal physician to King Amyntas of Macedon.

This connection to the Macedonian court gave Aristotle exposure to the political and cultural leadership of the time from an early age.


367 BC – Moved to Athens to study at Plato’s Academy

When Aristotle was 17, he moved to Athens to pursue his education at Plato’s Academy, one of the earliest known organized schools in Western history. For the next 20 years, he would learn under the guidance of Plato, emerging as one of his most distinguished students.

This period heavily influenced Aristotle’s philosophical ideas and played a significant role in shaping his future work.

347 BC – Left Athens after Plato’s death

When Plato died, many expected Aristotle to take over the leadership of the Academy due to his close relationship with Plato and his academic prowess.

However, the role was passed on to Plato’s nephew Speusippus, possibly due to internal politics or rising anti-Macedonian sentiment in Athens, given that Aristotle was originally from Stagira, a region that had connections with Macedon.

Feeling out of place, Aristotle decided to leave Athens shortly after Plato’s death.


343 BC – Tutored Alexander the Great in Macedon

After leaving Athens, Aristotle was invited by Philip II of Macedon to tutor his son, Alexander. This was a significant phase in Aristotle’s life as it gave him the opportunity to teach one of the most famous figures in world history, Alexander the Great.

During this period, he might have influenced the young Alexander’s worldview and approach to leadership, potentially shaping the future king’s thinking.

336 BC – Returned to Athens and established his own school, the Lyceum

After Philip II’s death and Alexander’s ascension to the throne of Macedon, Aristotle returned to Athens. Here, he established his own school, the Lyceum, also known as the Peripatetic School.

This was a critical phase in Aristotle’s life as it provided him with the platform to explore, teach, and write about a wide range of topics including physics, metaphysics, poetry, theater, music, logic, rhetoric, politics, government, ethics, biology, and zoology.

323 BC – Fled to Chalcis due to anti-Macedonian sentiment in Athens

Alexander the Great’s death led to political instability, and anti-Macedonian sentiment rose again in Athens.

Aristotle, due to his close ties with the Macedonian court, was charged with impiety – the same charge that led to the execution of Socrates.

Anticipating a similar fate, Aristotle decided to flee Athens to protect himself. He took refuge in Chalcis, a city on the island of Euboea.

322 BC – Died of natural causes in Chalcis

Just a year after his flight to Chalcis, Aristotle died of natural causes at the age of 62. Although he left a substantial body of work, only a fraction of his writings have survived to the present day. Despite this, his contributions to various fields, especially philosophy, make him one of the most influential figures in Western history.