The Essays: A Selection

Front Cover
Penguin, 1993 - Philosophy - 445 pages
18 Reviews
To overcome a crisis of melancholy after the death of his father, Montaigne withdrew to his country estates and began to write. In the highly original essays that resulted he discussed themes such as fathers and children, conscience and cowardice, coaches and cannibals, and, above all, himself. On Some Lines of Virgil opens out into a frank discussion of sexuality and makes a revolutionary case for the equality of the sexes. In On Experience Montaigne superbly propounds his thoughts on the right way to live, while other essays touch on issues of an age struggling with religious and intellectual strife, with France torn apart by civil war. These diverse subjects are united by Montaigne's distinctive voice - that of a tolerant man, sceptical, humane, often humorous and utterly honest in his pursuit of the truth.
M. A. Screech's distinguished translation fully retains the light-hearted and inquiring nature of the essays. In his introduction, he examines Montaigne's life and times, and the remarkable self-portrait that emerges from his works.
  

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Review: The Essays: A Selection

User Review  - Cameron - Goodreads

Despite some unevenness in the content and readability of these essays, it is a privilege to live inside Montaigne's mind for a time. He was deeply schooled in the classics and manages to weave an ... Read full review

Review: The Essays: A Selection

User Review  - Ross - Goodreads

Written 400+ years ago but reads like it was from a contemporary writer. Unbelievable how many people have been influenced by him over time. The father of skepticism. From, "Life in itself is neither ... Read full review

Contents

On the inconstancy of our actions
124
On drunkenness
132
On conscience
143
On the affection of fathers for their children
148
On cruelty
169
In defence of Seneca and Plutarch
186
On three good wives
194
On the resemblance of children to their fathers
202
On three kinds of social intercourse
247
On some lines of Virgil
260
On coaches
330
On the lame
351
On experience
364
Index
427
Summary of the Symbols
446
Copyright

On repenting
232

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About the author (1993)

Born in 1533, Montaigne studied law and spent a number of years working as a counsellor before devoting his life to reading, writing and reflection. He died in 1586. Dr M.A. Screech is regarded as the world's greatest authority on Montaigne.

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