The Consolation of Philosophy (Aziloth Books)

Overview

Born into a Christian patrician family in late Roman society, Ancius Boethius (480-525) rose in favour under the Emperor Theodoric until he attained 'magister officiorum' - the highest bureaucratic position in the empire. From this lofty pinnacle he was suddenly cast down, unjustly arrested and condemned as a traitor.
Imprisoned, despondent, facing torture and certain death, Boethius wrote 'The Consolation of Philosophy', a dialogue between the author and the allegorical 'Lady ...
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The Consolation of Philosophy (Barnes & Noble Library of Essential Reading)

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Overview

Born into a Christian patrician family in late Roman society, Ancius Boethius (480-525) rose in favour under the Emperor Theodoric until he attained 'magister officiorum' - the highest bureaucratic position in the empire. From this lofty pinnacle he was suddenly cast down, unjustly arrested and condemned as a traitor.
Imprisoned, despondent, facing torture and certain death, Boethius wrote 'The Consolation of Philosophy', a dialogue between the author and the allegorical 'Lady Philosophy', who comes to his place of confinement to 'cure' him of his attachment to earthly desires. In a series of discussions based on classical authors such as Plato, Cicero and Ovid, the book covers a swathe of issues - Chance, Fortune, the existence of Evil, Freewill, and the path to true happiness. This is a book of many levels that will appeal to all those interested in the well-springs of our being.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

Slavitt, a poet and translator of over 80 works of fiction, poetry, and drama, presents a new translation of this philosophical classic directed at general readers. Written under the threat of Boethius's impending execution, the work comes on the cusp between the classical and medieval worlds. In alternating prose and verse, Boethius spins a dialog concerning the harsh vicissitudes of fortune and the lasting happiness provided by the life of the mind. Slavitt's prose translation is accessible and makes frequent use of colloquialisms. His poetic translations-too often paraphrased in earlier editions-are not weighed down with attempted fidelities to ancient meter and use contemporary forms to evoke the gravity and grace of the original. While the book does include a brief biographical and textual introduction by Seth Lerer (English & comparative literature, Stanford Univ.), its lack of textual apparatus makes this edition less than ideal for students. It does succeed, however, as a springboard for personal reflection and a source of literate pleasure. Recommended for large public and academic libraries.-Steven Chabot, Univ. of Toronto

Books and Culture - John Wilson
This is a beautifully made little book that I have taken with me on a number of trips, partly just for the pleasure of holding it. At any time I would be glad to have it.
Henry Taylor
This is a sensitive and readable translation, whose poetic merits place it beyond other translations of Boethius's great text.
Books and Culture

This is a beautifully made little book that I have taken with me on a number of trips, partly just for the pleasure of holding it. At any time I would be glad to have it.
— John Wilson

openlettersmonthly.com

It's a remarkable book (though a short one), and its latest edition, rendered into fluid, compellingly immediate English by veteran translator David R. Slavitt, is very markedly the best one it's ever had...Slavitt presents the reader with Boethius brought to vibrant, vigorous life, to a degree that makes all previous English versions seem pedantic and irrelevant. Harvard University Press has crafted a physically beautiful volume, sturdy and small enough to fit in your pocket—an extremely fitting format for a book that's meant to be a comfort against life's ills. Reading this edition, even readers who've never encountered Boethius before will see at once why his book has meant so much to so many people for the last 1,500 years.
— Steve Donoghue

openlettersmonthly.com - Steve Donoghue
It's a remarkable book (though a short one), and its latest edition, rendered into fluid, compellingly immediate English by veteran translator David R. Slavitt, is very markedly the best one it's ever had...Slavitt presents the reader with Boethius brought to vibrant, vigorous life, to a degree that makes all previous English versions seem pedantic and irrelevant. Harvard University Press has crafted a physically beautiful volume, sturdy and small enough to fit in your pocket--an extremely fitting format for a book that's meant to be a comfort against life's ills. Reading this edition, even readers who've never encountered Boethius before will see at once why his book has meant so much to so many people for the last 1,500 years.
Gail Holst-Warhaft
A remarkable translation of one of the great masterpieces of philosophical literature.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781909735248
  • Publisher: Aziloth Books
  • Publication date: 10/4/2013
  • Pages: 146
  • Product dimensions: 5.06 (w) x 7.81 (h) x 0.31 (d)

Meet the Author

David R. Slavitt is a poet and the translator of more than ninety works of fiction, poetry, and drama.

Seth Lerer is Dean of Arts and Humanities and Distinguished Professor of Literature at the University of California at San Diego.

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Table of Contents

Preface viii
Introduction xi
I Introductory xi
II Boethius' Life and Writings xiii
III The Consolation of Philosophy xxii
IV The Christianity of Boethius xxxii
V The Text xxxv
Book I3
Book II22
Book III47
Book IV85
Book V116
Bibliography 139
Glossary 143
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Sort by: Showing all of 10 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 24, 2011

    A must read to understand free will

    Read it slowly, ready it several times, read it while reflecting on some of things that you have chosen to do. I read this book specifically for chapter 5 to help my understanding of free will. I now have a deeper understanding of free will and how Whatever I chose, I can still be in Gods favor. But like all of Gods work, that chapter 5 has left me with more questions which I need to continue on in my learning, deepening my understanding of God and developing that relationship. Read this and discover your question that will have you wanting to learn more. PS - I didn't like all the poems so skipped over most of them, but then again I am free to do that (LOL).

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Broke

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