- Author : Boethius
- Publisher :
- Release Date : 1664
- Pages : 184
- ISBN 10 : BL:A0021282439
The Consolation of Philosophy A Metrical Translation by Harry Coningsby Book Description :
Landmark of medieval Western thought written by a 6th-century Roman statesman and philosopher awaiting execution. How to achieve and maintain spiritual peace amid life's inevitable pain.
Consolation of Philosophy (Latin: Consolatio Philosophiae) is a philosophical work by Boethius, written around the year 524. It has been described as the single most important and influential work in the West on Medieval and early Renaissance Christianity, and is also the last great Western work of the Classical Period. Anicius Manlius Severinus Boëthius, commonly called Boethius (c. 480–524 or 525 AD), was a philosopher of the early 6th century. He was born in Rome to an ancient and prominent family which included emperors Petronius Maximus and Olybrius and many consuls. His father, Flavius Manlius Boethius, was consul in 487 after Odoacer deposed the last Western Roman Emperor. Boethius, of the noble Anicia family, entered public life at a young age and was already a senator by the age of 25. Boethius himself was consul in 510 in the kingdom of the Ostrogoths. In 522 he saw his two sons become consuls. Boethius was imprisoned and eventually executed by King Theodoric the Great, who suspected him of conspiring with the Eastern Roman Empire. While jailed, Boethius composed his Consolation of Philosophy, a philosophical treatise on fortune, death, and other issues. The Consolation became one of the most popular and influential works of the Middle Ages.
Boethius composed De Consolation Philosophiae in the sixth century A.D. while awaiting death by torture, condemned on a charge of plotting against Gothic rule, which he protested as manifestly unjust. Though a Christian, Boethius details the true end of life as the soul's knowledge of God, and consoles himself with the tenets of Greek philosophy, not with Christian precepts. Written in a form called Meippean Satire that alternates between prose and verse, Boethius' work often consists of a story told by Ovid or Horace to illustrate the philosophy being expounded. The Consolation of Philosophy dominated the intellectual world of the Middle Ages; it inspired writers as diverse Thomas Aquinas, Jean de Meun, and Dante. In England it was rendered into Old English by Alfred the Great, into Middle English by Geoffrey Chaucer, and later Queen Elizabeth I made her own translation. The circumstances of composition, the heroic demeanor of the author, and the Meippean texture of part prose, part verse have been a fascination for students of philosophy, literature, and religion ever since. About the Series: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the broadest spectrum of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, voluminous notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
Composed while its author was imprisoned, this book remains one of Western literature’s most eloquent meditations on the transitory nature of earthly belongings, and the superiority of things of the mind. Slavitt’s translation captures the energy and passion of the original. And in an introduction intended for the general reader, Seth Lerer places Boethius’s life and achievement in context.
Boethius' best-known work is the "Consolations of Philosophy" written during his imprisonment -- "by far the most interesting example of prison literature the world has ever seen." It is a dialogue between Philosophy and Boethius, in which the Queen of Sciences strives to console the fallen statesman. The main argument of the discourse is the transitoriness and unreality of all earthly greatness and the superior desirability of the things of the mind. There are evident traces of the influence of the Neo-Platonists, especially of Proclus, and little, if anything, that can be said to reflect Christian influences.
Boethius was an eminent public figure under the Gothic emperor Theodoric, and an exceptional Greek scholar. When he became involved in a conspiracy and was imprisoned in Pavia, it was to the Greek philosophers that he turned. THE CONSOLATION was written in the period leading up to his brutal execution. It is a dialogue of alternating prose and verse between the ailing prisoner and his 'nurse' Philosophy. Her instruction on the nature of fortune and happiness, good and evil, fate and free will, restore his health and bring him to enlightenment. THE CONSOLATION was extremely popular throughout medieval Europe and his ideas were influential on the thought of Chaucer and Dante.
In preparing the text of the Consolatio I have used the apparatus in Peiper’s edition (Teubner, 1871), since his reports, as I know in the case of the Tegernseensis, are generally accurate and complete; I have depended also on my own collations or excerpts from various of the important manuscripts, nearly all of which I have at least examined, and I have also followed, not always but usually, the opinions of Engelbrecht in his admirable article, Die Consolatio Philosophiae des Boethius in the Sitzungsberichte of the Vienna Academy, cxliv. (1902) 1–60. Aeterna Press
In the last fifty years the field of Late Antiquity has advanced significantly. Today we have a picture of this period that is more precise and accurate than before. However, the study of one of the most significant texts of this age, Boethius' Consolation of Philosophy, has not benefited enough from these advances in scholarship. Antonio Donato aims to fill this gap by investigating how the study of the Consolation can profit from the knowledge of Boethius' cultural, political and social background that is available today. The book focuses on three topics: Boethius' social/political background, his notion of philosophy and its sources, and his understanding of the relation between Christianity and classical culture. These topics deal with issues that are of crucial importance for the exegesis of the Consolation. The study of Boethius' social/political background allows us to gain a better understanding of the identity of the character Boethius and to recognize his role in the Consolation. Examination of the possible sources of Boethius' notion of philosophy and of their influence on the Consolation offers valuable instruments to evaluate the role of the text's philosophical discussions and their relation to its literary features. Finally, the long-standing problem of the lack of overt Christian elements in the Consolation can be enlightened by considering how Boethius relies on a peculiar understanding of philosophy's goal and its relation to Christianity that was common among some of his predecessors and contemporaries.
"Entirely faithful to Boethius' Latin; Relihan's translation makes the philosophy of the Consolation intelligible to readers; it gives equal weight to the poetry--in fact, Relihan's metrical translation of Boethius' metra are themselves contributions of the first moment to Boethian studies. Boethius finally has a translator equal to his prodigious talents and his manifold vision." --Joseph Pucci, Brown University "This book offers a splendid new translation of the Consolatio Philosophiae that makes the philosophy of the text accessible to both the beginning student and to the Latin scholar. Any student interested in the transition in late antiquity from the pagan to the Christian worlds should own this volume." --Victoria Jordan, The Classical Outlook
Written in the sixth century, The Consolation of Philosophy was one of the most popular and influential works of the Middle Ages. Boethius composed the masterpiece while imprisoned and awaiting the death sentence for treason. The Christian author had served as a high-ranking government official before falling out of favor with Roman Emperor Theodoric, an Arian. In the Consolation, Boethius explores the true end of life-knowledge of God-through a conversation with Lady Philosophy. Part prose, part poetry, the work combines Greek philosophy and Christian faith to formulate answers to some of life's most difficult and enduring questions.
"The book called 'The Consolation of Philosophy' was throughout the Middle Ages, and down to the beginnings of the modern epoch in the sixteenth century, the scholar's familiar companion. Few books have exercised a wider influence in their time. It has been translated into every European tongue, and into English nearly a dozen times, from King Alfred's paraphrase to the translations of Lord Preston, Causton, Ridpath, and Duncan, in the eighteenth century. The belief that what once pleased so widely must still have some charm is my excuse for attempting the present translation. The great work of Boethius, with its alternate prose and verse, skilfully fitted together like dialogue and chorus in a Greek play, is unique in literature, and has a pathetic interest from the time and circumstances of its composition"--Preface. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).
From the author of How Proust Can Change Your Life, a delightful, truly consoling work that proves that philosophy can be a supreme source of help for our most painful everyday problems. Perhaps only Alain de Botton could uncover practical wisdom in the writings of some of the greatest thinkers of all time. But uncover he does, and the result is an unexpected book of both solace and humor. Dividing his work into six sections -- each highlighting a different psychic ailment and the appropriate philosopher -- de Botton offers consolation for unpopularity from Socrates, for not having enough money from Epicurus, for frustration from Seneca, for inadequacy from Montaigne, and for a broken heart from Schopenhauer (the darkest of thinkers and yet, paradoxically, the most cheering). Consolation for envy -- and, of course, the final word on consolation -- comes from Nietzsche: "Not everything which makes us feel better is good for us." This wonderfully engaging book will, however, make us feel better in a good way, with equal measures of wit and wisdom.
Reproduction of the original: The Theological Tractates and The Consolation of Philosophy by Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius
In this study, Uhlfelder (recently deceased) argues convincingly that, in portraying his literary persona as an exemplum of man in his quest for self-knowledge, Boethius has made the whole Consolatio a cosmic image representing man as microcosm. The mental faculties of sensus, imaginatio, ratio, and intellegentia are arranged as a proportion suggesting both Plato's famous "divided line" at the end of Book 6 of the Republic and, at the same time, the four elements of the physical cosmos which, according to the Platonic Timaeus, are connected with one another so as to form a geometrical proportion. The philosophical argument of the Consolatio in books II through V comprises another cosmic image with III. M.9 at its exact center; in addition, the other three cosmic depictions, revolving as concentric circles around III. M.9, may be viewed as forming an image of cosmic order. In its structure, then, Boethius' work is an anagogic eikon which formally depicts its content.
The Roman philosopher Boethius (c. 480-524) is best known for the Consolation of Philosophy, one of the most frequently cited texts in medieval literature. In the Consolation, an unnamed Boethius sits in prison awaiting execution when his muse Philosophy appears to him. Her offer to teach him who he truly is and to lead him to his heavenly home becomes a debate about how to come to terms with evil, freedom, and providence. The conventional reading of the Consolation is that it is a defense of pagan philosophy; nevertheless, many readers who accept this basic argument find that the ending is ambiguous and that Philosophy has not, finally, given the prisoner the comfort she had promised. In The Prisoner's Philosophy, Joel C. Relihan delivers a genuinely new reading of the Consolation. He argues that it is a Christian work dramatizing not the truths of philosophy as a whole, but the limits of pagan philosophy in particular. He views it as one of a number of literary experiments of late antiquity, taking its place alongside Augustine's Confessions and Soliloquies as a spiritual meditation, as an attempt by Boethius to speak objectively about the life of the mind and its relation to God. Relihan discerns three fundamental stories intertwined in the Consolation an ironic retelling of Plato's Crito, an adaptation of Lucian's Jupiter Confutatus, and a sober reduction of Job to a quiet dialogue in which the wounded innocent ultimately learns wisdom in silence. Relihan's claim that Boethius's text was written as a Menippean satire does not rest merely on identifying a mixture of disparate literary influences on the text, or on the combination of verse and prose or of fantasy and morality. More important, Relihan argues, Boethius deliberately dramatizes the act of writing about systematic knowledge in a way that calls into question the value of that knowledge. Philosophy's attempt to lead an exile to God's heaven is rejected; the exile comes to accept the value of the phenomen
The 18th century was a wealth of knowledge, exploration and rapidly growing technology and expanding record-keeping made possible by advances in the printing press. In its determination to preserve the century of revolution, Gale initiated a revolution of its own: digitization of epic proportions to preserve these invaluable works in the largest archive of its kind. Now for the first time these high-quality digital copies of original 18th century manuscripts are available in print, making them highly accessible to libraries, undergraduate students, and independent scholars. The Age of Enlightenment profoundly enriched religious and philosophical understanding and continues to influence present-day thinking. Works collected here include masterpieces by David Hume, Immanuel Kant, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, as well as religious sermons and moral debates on the issues of the day, such as the slave trade. The Age of Reason saw conflict between Protestantism and Catholicism transformed into one between faith and logic -- a debate that continues in the twenty-first century. ++++ The below data was compiled from various identification fields in the bibliographic record of this title. This data is provided as an additional tool in helping to insure edition identification: ++++ British Library T105558 With a half-title. Parallel Latin and English text. With the preface of Peter Berty in Latin and English. P.i occurs on the verso. The text appears complete despite the pagination. London: printed for the author, by J. Crowder, and sold by G. G. J. and J. Robinson, 1792. , cix, ,6-108p., plate: port.; 8°
The articles in this volume focus upon Boethius's extant works: his De arithmetica and a fragmentary De musica, his translations and commentaries on logic, his five theological texts, and, of course, his Consolation of Philosophy. They examine the effects that Boethian thought has exercised upon the learning of later generations of scholars.