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A new translation of the philosophical journey that has inspired luminaries from Matthew Arnold to Bill Clinton
Written in Greek by an intellectual Roman emperor without any intention of publication, the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius offer a wide range of fascinating spiritual reflections and exercises developed as the leader struggled to understand himself and make sense of the universe. Spanning from doubt and despair to conviction and exaltation, they cover such diverse topics as the question of virtue, human rationality, the nature of the gods and the values of leadership. But while the Meditations were composed to provide personal consolation, in developing his beliefs Marcus also created one of the greatest of all works of philosophy: a series of wise and practical aphorisms that have been consulted and admired by statesmen, thinkers and ordinary readers for almost two thousand years.
To provide a full understanding of Aurelius's seminal work, this edition includesexplanatory notes, a general index, an index of quotations, an index of names, andan introduction by Diskin Clay putting the work in its biographical, historical, and literary context, a chronology of Marcus Aurelius's life and career.
For more than sixty-five years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,500titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust theseries to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-datetranslations by award-winning translators.
About the Author
Diskin Clay is R. J. R. Nabisco Professor of Classical Studies at Duke University. His previous books include Paradosis and Survival: Three Chapters in the History of Epicurean Philosophy (1990) and Four Island Utopias: Plato's Atlantis, Euhemeros of Messene's Panchaia, Iamboulos' Island of the Sun, & Francis Bacon's New Atlantis, with Andrea Lee Purvis (FOCUS Philosophical Library, 1999). Chapters in the History of Epicurean Philosophy (Michigan, 1990) and Four Island Utopias: Plato's Atlantis, Euhemeros of Messene's Panchaia, Iamboulos' Island of the Sun, Francis Bacon's New Atlantis, with Andrea Lee Purvis (1999).