Word Origin & History
late 14c., "follower of Epicurus," from L. Epicurus, from Gk. Epicouros (341-270 B.C.E.), Athenian philosopher who taught that pleasure is the highest good and identified virtue as the greatest pleasure; the first lesson recalled, the second forgotten, and the name used pejoratively for "one who gives
himself up to sensual pleasure" (1640s), especially "glutton, sybarite" (1774). Epicurus' school opposed by stoics, who first gave his name a reproachful sense.