Lucretius, Poet & Philosopher

Lucretius, Poet & Philosopher

Lucretius, Poet & Philosopher

Lucretius, Poet & Philosopher

Excerpt

During the past forty years of a fairly strenuous classical life, it has often occurred to me that Lucretius deserved a book to himself, as much as Catullus, Virgil and Horace, all of whom have more or less recently received the undivided attention of English scholarship. Lucretius alone has had to wait since 1909, when John Masson published a second volume on him as Epicurean and Poet. The present book has been planned -- and, I hope, executed -- on different lines. The reader will find that I have said comparatively little on the details of Atomism, ancient and modern, and have preferred to concentrate on the more human side of Lucretius as poet. A knowledge of Epicurean atoms is easily accessible from the many books which deal with the subject, notably by Dr Cyril Bailey, to whose scholarly and sympathetic treatment of Epicurus I owe a great deal of gratitude, as will be apparent from frequent acknowledgement in my own work. In this I have mainly dealt with the actual achievements of Lucretius as poet -- his attitude towards religion and ethics, his anthropology and social science . . .

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