Explanations for the absence of slavery in the Golden Age followed two distinct tracks in classical literature. The argument that rule by a virtuous monarch precluded the existence of slavery can be traced from Pompeius Trogus to the middle Stoa. A second argument credits the spontaneous abundance of the earth with the redundancy of slave labor. Athenaeus ascribes this idea to Old Comedy but, upon closer inspection, signals its actual origins in the Cynic tradition. While both arguments had ethical content, neither made a case for abolition, and most accounts of the Golden Age pass over the topic of slavery in silence.