Myia (/ˈm.ə/; Greek: Μυῖα, literally "Fly"; fl. c. 500 BC) was a Pythagorean philosopher and, according to later tradition, one of the daughters of Theano and Pythagoras.[1]


Myia was married to Milo of Croton, the famous athlete. She was a choir leader as a girl, and as a woman, she was noted for her exemplary religious behaviour.[2] Lucian, in his In Praise of a Fly, states that he could say many things about Myia the Pythagorean were it not for the fact that her history is known to everyone.[3]

One letter attributed to Myia is still extant. It is spurious, and probably dates from the 3rd or 2nd century BC.[4] The letter is addressed to a certain Phyllis, and discusses the importance of fulfilling the needs of a newborn baby according to the principle of harmony. According to the writer, a baby naturally desires moderation in all things, such as food, clothing, heating, etc., and a nurse of that baby must be moderate also.[5]


  1. Clement of Alexandria, Stromata, iv. 19; Suda, Myia, Theano; Iamblichus, Life of Pythagoras, 30, 36; Porphyry, Life of Pythagoras, 4
  2. Iamblichus, Life of Pythagoras, 30; Porphyry, Life of Pythagoras, 4
  3. Lucian, In Praise of a Fly, 11
  4. Ian Michael Plant, (2004), Women writers of ancient Greece and London: an anthology, University of Oklahoma Press, p. 79.
  5. Mary Ellen Waithe, (1987), A History of Women Philosophers. Volume 1, 600 BC-500 AD, Springer, pp. 15–17.
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