The Story of Cleobulus of Lindos – Exploring Ancient Wisdom

When visiting places with an ancient history, it is very easy to soak in the sites and atmosphere, but it is also easy to overlook the important people that had an effect on the history of places in years gone by. When discussing or visiting Lindos in Rhodes, we should always remember Cleobulus Of Lindos (Κλεόβουλος ὁ Λίνδιος in Greek) as a significant historical figure.

As you may recall I have mentioned Cleobulus in The History Of Lindos section. This is with good reason too, as he was a native of Lindos and he was the ruler of this land in the 6th Century BC.

So, Who Was Cleobulus Of Lindos?

Cleobulus was born in the 7th Century. Cleobulus Of Lindos, the son of Evagoras and a citizen of Lindos in Rhodes, ruled the city for over 40 years. Recognized as one of The Seven Sages Of Greece, he also earned the title ‘The Wise’.

The term Seven Sages Of Greece refers to individuals recognized for their wisdom in ancient times. This could be a Lawmaker, a Statesman or Philosopher etc.

You can see the other named persons on the Greek Arts and Literature section.

Cleobulus studied Philosophy in Egypt and was renowned as a very good Poet. He had a daughter too named Cleobulina. She also went on to be an established Poet.

Some regarded Cleobulus very highly, referring to him as the ‘King of The Lindians’. He was also perceived as a strong yet kind person.

The Temple of Athena

Lindos is very important when it comes to the history in Rhodes.

If you refer back to The History Of Lindos section, you will read that Danaos (A Son Of The King Of Egypt) and his fifty daughter absconded from Egypt to Rhodes centuries ago. This was to escape his brother (Aegyptus) and his fifty sons.

Upon arriving in Lindos, they constructed The Temple Of Athena to honor their safe escape from their homeland.

Over many years of course, this temple became frail and needed restoration work. Cleobulus raised funds from the local people to reconstruct The Temple Of Athena, earning credit for its restoration.

If you visit the Acropolis of Lindos even today, you can still see some of the remains of The Temple Of Athena.

The Legacy Of Cleobulus Of Lindos

Statue Of Cleobulus of Lindos
Statue Of Cleobulus In Lindos
Bernard Gagnon, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Cleobulus was said to live until the age of seventy. Now, if you visit Lindos, you will see a large stone on the opposite peninsular to the Acropolis of Lindos.

This is referred to as the Tomb Of Cleobulus. A beautiful setting with a gorgeous view of his native Lindos don’ you think? Although it is actually said that he is not buried there at all.

During his reign centuries ago, Cleobulus led Lindos to flourish, making this homage to him particularly fitting.

It can be said that he was very much responsible for the wealth and success of Lindos while it was under his command during the 6th Century BC.

Another really wonderful homage to Cleobulus was the naming of an asteroid in his memory. In 1989, astronomers discovered an asteroid and named it ‘4503 Cleobulus’.

Cleobulus is credited with many sayings, such as:

  • ‘Do Not Be Fickle Or Ungrateful’
  • ‘Be Superior To Pleasure’
  • ‘Do Nothing By Force’
  • ‘Be Fond Of Learning Rather Than Unwilling To Learn’
  • ‘Cherish Not A Thought’
  • ‘Moderation Is The Best Thing’
  • ‘Be Ready For Reconciliation After Quarrels’
  • ‘Avoid Injustice’

Cleobulus Of Lindos – Overall

Like I said at the beginning, it is very important not to overlook the importance of history when visiting places such as Lindos. Many visitors to this famous land often leave without even hearing the name ‘Cleobulus’.

If it was not for him, Lindos would never have become the place it is today. He is credited with bringing wealth to Lindos and to the local people.

After his death, an inscription was made that says the following.

“Here the wise Rhodian, Cleobulus, sleeps, and o’er his ashes sea-proud Lindus weeps”.

Be sure to read more about some of the historical figures that have an effect on the history of Rhodes. Also, leave me your thoughts and opinions on Cleobulus Of Lindos. They are important to me, and I will get back to all of you.

Click From Below To Learn More About Some Important Historical Figures In Rhodes

20 thoughts on “The Story of Cleobulus of Lindos – Exploring Ancient Wisdom”

  1. Hi Chris,

    You are a man after my heart with Greek mythology. This would be a great article for children in school when researching about Greece. I love the story of Athena. I wanted my mother to change my name to Athena, lol ;-). I was that fascinated about it all as a child.

    You know, I don’t remember hearing of the name Cleobulus when I was in school. On the other hand, I have heard of Lindos. 

    I wondered, why they never spoke of Cleobulus…

    • Hey there Cooki, I suppose the name Athena would be very nice for you. Shame your mother was not in agreement eh? 🙂

      A lot of people do know about Lindos. Whether it be from books or film, or even after visiting. It is surprising though how many people have overlooked Cleobulus.

      It is quite a shame when you consider what he did for the area, and to be its ruler back in the day. 

      Maybe this just comes with time, what do you think? I mean everyone remembers President Kennedy and what happened all them years ago, but will people know who he is 5000 years from now?

      Thanks Cooki (Athena), great to hear from you.


  2. Thanks for making the effort to keep the great man’s legacy alive Chris. 

    Far too many great men are stricken out of the history books due to the political views of the day or just to make room for new ones.

    Do you know if it is true that Cleobulus inscribed on the tomb of Midas? Apparently Diogenes Laertius credited him for it.

    • Hey Remy and thanks for your interest.

      As for the inscription on this tomb it is said to have read the following.

      “I am a maiden of bronze and I rest upon Midas’s tomb. So long as water shall flow and tall trees grow, 90 and the sun shall rise and shine, and the bright moon, and rivers shall run and the sea wash the shore, here abiding on his tear-sprinkled tomb I shall tell the passers‑by — Midas is buried here”

      These words have been credited to him, but of course Midas is said to have lived a long time ago. Although these words have been said to be from Cleobulus, but there is no concrete evidence.

      Myth is Myth. This is what makes it interesting. Trying to understand what is fact and what is not!

      Thanks again Remy.


  3. When you mentioned Cleobulus of Lindos, it definitely sounds like a very fancy name. I turns out to be the name of the one of the seven sages in Greece.

    I have a friend who works for a gaming company. A game is usually awesome because it is partially fiction and partially historical. This historical sage would probably do well in some kind of RPG world.

    I should tell my friend to give the tomb of Cleobulus a visit and see what kind of ideas he can gain from this journey.

    • Hey there and thanks for your comment.

      Although I am not really a gamer myself, I can appreciate some of the work that has gone into them. I also enjoy to see history and historical places come to life through games. I am just not that good at them 🙂

      There is a lot of history in Greece, Cleobulus of Lindos being one of them, and I think some of the historical events and locations throughout Greece could be well presented in some Role Playing Games.

      Great idea!

      Thanks for your visit and for your interest.


  4. Some fascinating information here and I had no knowledge of Cleobulus before reading this. I’ve never visited Rhodes but my sister and her family have been every year for the past 12 years! Same hotel and even the same rooms!

    I must quiz her a bit about what she’s discovered.

    I know it’s not historical but just for her could you name your favorite 3 beaches?

    • Yeah after 12 years coming here I would like to think she and your family has heard of Cleobulus. You will have to let me know.

      And the same hotel and same rooms every year? They do not fancy a change of scenery? Maybe see something fresh and new?

      As for the beaches, my favorites are Lindos Beach, St Paul’s Bay and Tsampika Beach!

      Thanks for your comment and interest 🙂


  5. Hi Chris,

    I have just come across your site. I enjoy reading about historical figures and have very much enjoyed reading about Cleobulus who I had not heard of before.

    It is good to hear he was such a good ruler and that the people did well under his leadership.

    Having an asteroid named after him is an excellent extra detail – I wondered who made that decision and if they had any connection with Rhodes.



    • Thanks Julia, it is nice to hear from you.

      I too enjoy reading about people from that past that have had important roles in history. Cleobulus is only one of them, and I will be covering more in the coming weeks.

      I am not sure what decisions were made and by who when it comes to the naming of the asteroid. It is a very nice touch though.

      Thanks Julia


  6. Considering how rich Greek history is, I can only hope that I will visit Greece sometime in my lifetime. 

    I really like the quotes you mentioned by Cleobulus as they are definitely very relevant to the current era. I was wondering if Lindos is near the other Greek islands such as Mykonos, Crete, Salonika etc?

    • Hello Elan and thanks for reading.

      Yes, Cleobulus was certainly a man of wisdom. His work and efforts will always be remembered without doubt.

      Okay, in answer to your questions, Lindos is located on the island of Rhodes in the Dodecanese (Greece). It is an island all on its own. You can see more about Rhodes here.

      From Rhodes to Mykonos it is a little under 420 Km.

      From Rhodes to Crete, it is a little over 480 Km.

      As for Salonika (Thessaloniki), this is not an island at all. This is the second largest major city and is on the mainland of Greece to the North. It is over 1,200 Km away from Rhodes.

      A little information there which I hope helps you.

      Let me know if you need something more.



  7. Hello Chris

    How I would like to go with my wife to visit you and get to know the island of Rhodes. 

    Reading the story of Cleobulus of Lindos, a strong man of good character. He was governor of Lindos for 40 years, he carried out reconstructions, he was a wise man, his career seems fascinating to me. 

    His sayings “Moderation is the best thing” and “Do not be ungrateful” are important and ones for people to take notice of even today.

    Hopefully today, memorable people like him will continue on their way. Thank you very much for sharing such an informative article.

    • Hello there and thank you for reading.

      Cleobulus was indeed a very important man, and Lindos would never have been what it is if it was not for him.

      Described as a strong but kind man, Cleobulus seemed to have the best intentions for his home land and its people.

      If there were more leaders in the world with strength like his, maybe the world would be different. Who knows?

      Thanks for reading. I appreciate you getting in touch too.


  8. Chris, I love history and your articles certainly provide some great information. The Greek area known as Hellas, is considered one of the cradles of civilisation. Their scholars did travel to other countries however to learn the philosophies, art etc, but when they returned they put their education to good use.

    And since then much of what they learned and taught has been passed down to later ages. Way to go.

    A very interesting article. Thanks for bring this man to my attention.



    • Thank you Helen, I am happy you enjoyed the information here.

      There certainly were (and still are) a lot of educated people from Hellas, and a lot of them have gone on to do great things. Some of these actions have even shaped places as we still know them today!



  9. Hello Chris

    I thought your page is great, what a nice history lesson that is very interesting to me. I especially love the Greek history and the way of their culture back then.

    Cleobulus is an icon of ancient Greece. I didn’t even know that there were poets in that age of time.

    This page was very informative to me and I definitely learned something about Greek history.

    You did a great job, keep on going.

    All the best


    • Thank you Waldo, I appreciate you getting in touch and letting me know your thoughts.

      There is a lot more to come within this historic figures section, so be sure to keep calling back for the latest updates 🙂



  10. I love reading these posts about historical figures. They’re so interesting! 

    It’s amazing to learn about people who lived so long ago, especially when they had such a positive influence on the place. Living to 70 years old is impressive for that time too. That’s a really old age for that era isn’t it? 

    And great to learn that an asteroid was named after Cleobulus, so long after his death too – his memory will live on for a long time to come!

    • Thanks so much my friend. I am happy you are enjoying the historical figures installments. There is a lot more to come 🙂

      Yes, I think you are right here too. When it comes to times of the past, the life expectancy was a lot shorter. I know that in the 1300’s the life expectancy was only around 30 years old. So I cannot begin to imagine what it was like thousands of years ago. It was long before the medicines we know today were available to help.

      After saying this, Cleobulus did live a longer life, and it was a life not wasted. He will always be remembered in Lindos. 

      Thanks for reading.



Leave a Comment

The Island Of Rhodes