On the Nature of the Universe
Lucretius' poem On the Nature of the Universe 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. Latham translates this poem in a style which is both accurate and poetical, and in language accessible to the modern reader. The Introduction gives full details of the little that is known of Lucretius' life and background in 1st century BCE Rome, and also of the Epicurean philosophy that was his inspiration. It also explores why the issues Lucretius' poem raises about the scientific and poetical views of the world continue to be important. The Explanatory Notes explain all references for the non-classicist, and attempt to situate Lucretius' scientific theories within the thought of his time and subsequent scientific discoveries.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
Movements and Shapes of Atoms
Life and Mind
Sensation and Sex
Cosmology and Sociology
Meteorology and Geology
The Prelude to the Poem
The Ending of the Poem
Aeneid Anaxagoras animals argued argument Aristotle atoms beasts birth blows body BOOK born bronze Callimachus Catullus cause Cicero Classical clouds colour composed course creatures death Democritus Diogenes Laertius divine earth elements Empedocles empty space Ennius Epicurean Epicurus ether Euripides everything exist eyes fact fear fiery films fire flame force gods Greek hand happens heart heat Heraclitus Hesiod Homer human Iliad images impact infinite lacuna Letter to Herodotus light limbs living Lucrece Lucretius matter Memmius mind moon mortal motions move movement nature never objects Outlines of Pyrrhonism Ovid pain particles Penguin Philosophers plague Plato pleasure poem poet poetry Pythocles race reading reason Roman round Scepticism seeds sensation senses sentience Sextus Empiricus shape sort spring stream substance suppose surface theory things thunderbolt tion touch translation truth universe vacuity Venus vital spirit whole wind words