On the Nature of the Universe

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Digireads.com Publishing, Jan 1, 2004 - Literary Collections
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Very little is known about the Roman poet and philosopher Titus Lucretius Carus. His birth and death dates are based off of cross-referencing works that mention him, and pieces of evidence derived from his writing, and are believed to be ca. 99 BCE – ca. 54 BCE. "On The Nature of the Universe" is Lucretius' only known work. The goal of the text is to explain Epicurean philosophy to the Roman people. It is addressed to Gaius Memmius, a praetor and patron of Lucretius. Presented in this work is an argument for atomism, the assertion that it is not the Gods that are responsible for the happenings of the world, but rather atoms and voids. Lucretius also argues that death is simply the dissipation of the human mind, and that it is not something we should fear. "On The Nature of the Universe" is a detailed articulation of ancient thought-provoking debates still relevant today.
 

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Contents

PROEM
5
THE VOID
13
CONFUTATION OF OTHER PHILOSOPHERS
21
THE INFINITY OF THE UNIVERSE
28
BOOK II
34
ATOMIC FORMS AND THEIR COMBINATIONS
43
ABSENCE OF SECONDARY QUALITIES
53
INFINITE WORLDS
60
BOOK IV
94
THE SENSES AND MENTAL PICTURES
100
SOME VITAL FUNCTIONS
117
THE PASSION OF LOVE
123
BOOK V
130
THE WORLD IS NOT ETERNAL
137
FORMATION OF THE WORLD AND ASTRONOMICAL
143
ORIGINS OF VEGETABLE AND ANIMAL LIFE
154

BOOK III
66
THE SOUL IS MORTAL
76
FOLLY OF THE FEAR OF DEATH
87
BEGINNINGS OF CIVILIZATION
161
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