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Lucretius' poem On the Nature of Things combines a scientific and philosophical treatise with some of the greatest poetry ever written. With intense moral fervour he demonstrates to humanity that in death there is nothing to fear since the soul is mortal, and the world and everything in it is governed by the mechanical laws of nature and not by gods; and that by believing this men can live in peace of mind and happiness. He bases this on the atomic theory expounded by the Greek philosopher Epicurus, and continues with an examination of sensation, sex, cosmology, meteorology, and geology, all of these subjects made more attractive by the poetry with which he illustrates them.
Throughout history, some books have changed the world. They have transformed the way we see ourselves - and each other. They have inspired debate, dissent, war and revolution. They have enlightened, outraged, provoked and comforted. They have enriched lives - and destroyed them. Now Penguin brings you the works of the great thinkers, pioneers, radicals and visionaries whose ideas shook civilization and helped make us who we are. Elegant, insightful and startlingly modern, the philosophy of Lucretius deeply influenced the course of European thought; here, he provides one of the first accounts of atomic theory, argues that there can be no life of the soul after death, and explores the sickness that we call love.
The brilliant writings of a highly influential Greek philosopher, with a foreword by Daniel Klein, author of Travels with Epicurus The teachings of Epicurus—about life and death, religion and science, physical sensation, happiness, morality, and friendship—attracted legions of adherents throughout the ancient Mediterranean world and deeply influenced later European thought. Though Epicurus faced hostile opposition for centuries after his death, he counts among his many admirers Thomas Hobbes, Thomas Jefferson, Karl Marx, and Isaac Newton. This volume includes all of his extant writings—his letters, doctrines, and Vatican sayings—alongside parallel passages from the greatest exponent of his philosophy, Lucretius, extracts from Diogenes Laertius' Life of Epicurus, a lucid introductory essay about Epicurean philosophy, and a foreword by Daniel Klein, author of Travels with Epicurus and coauthor of the New York Times bestseller Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar. For more than sixty-five years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,500 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators. From the Trade Paperback edition.
In the first century BC, Marcus Tullius Cicero, orator, statesman, and defender of republican values, created these philosophical treatises on such diverse topics as friendship, religion, death, fate and scientific inquiry. A pragmatist at heart, Cicero's philosophies were frequently personal and ethical, drawn not from abstract reasoning but through careful observation of the world. The resulting works remind us of the importance of social ties, the questions of free will, and the justification of any creative endeavour. This lively, lucid new translation from Thomas Habinek, editor of Classical Antiquity and the Classics and Contemporary Thought book series, makes Cicero's influential ideas accessible to every reader.
A new verse translation of one of the foundational ancient Greek works by the award-winning poet Alicia Stallings. Hesiod was the first self-styled 'poet' in western literature, revered by the ancient Greeks. Ostensibly written to chide and educate his lazy brother, Works and Days tells the story of Pandora's jar and humanity's place in a fallen world. Blending the cosmic and the earthy, and mixing myth, lyrical description, personal asides, astronomy, proverbs and down-to-earth advice on rural tasks and rituals, it is also a hymn to honest toil as man's salvation. This vibrant new verse translation by award-winning poet A. E. Stallings conveys the clarity and unexpected humour of a founding work of classical literature.
Author : John D. Barrow
ISBN : 9780307554819
Genre : Science
File Size : 64.86 MB
Format : PDF, ePub
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What conceptual blind spot kept the ancient Greeks (unlike the Indians and Maya) from developing a concept of zero? Why did St. Augustine equate nothingness with the Devil? What tortuous means did 17th-century scientists employ in their attempts to create a vacuum? And why do contemporary quantum physicists believe that the void is actually seething with subatomic activity? You’ll find the answers in this dizzyingly erudite and elegantly explained book by the English cosmologist John D. Barrow. Ranging through mathematics, theology, philosophy, literature, particle physics, and cosmology, The Book of Nothing explores the enduring hold that vacuity has exercised on the human imagination. Combining high-wire speculation with a wealth of reference that takes in Freddy Mercury and Shakespeare alongside Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, and Stephen Hawking, the result is a fascinating excursion to the vanishing point of our knowledge. From the Trade Paperback edition.
Author : William Ellery Leonard
ISBN : 0299003647
Genre : History
File Size : 65.58 MB
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Titus Lucretius Carus (ca. 99–55 b.c.) is known primarily as the Roman author of the long didactic poem De Rerum Natura (On the Nature of Things). In it, he set out to explicate the universe, embracing and refuting ideas of the great Greek philosophers. Now available in paperback, this annotated scholarly edition of the Latin text of De Rerum Natura has long been hailed as one of the finest editions of this monumental work. It features an introduction to Lucretius’s life and work by William Ellery Leonard, an introduction to and commentary on the poem by Stanley Barney Smith, the complete Latin text with detailed annotations, and an index of ancient sources.