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Theological Tractates. the Consolation of Philosophy (Loeb Classical Library) (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – Juni 1973

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  • Gebundene Ausgabe: 441 Seiten
  • Verlag: Harvard Univ Pr; Auflage: New. (Juni 1973)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0674990838
  • ISBN-13: 978-0674990838
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 16,6 x 11,5 x 2,5 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 290.631 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Von PJ am 23. April 2000
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
The Consolation of Philosophy is among the best books I have ever read. I understand from a friend and authority that virtually every educated person in the West read this book until the 19th century and that there have been hundreds of translations. It is a pity that the work has all but dropped from the syllabus of Higher Education in the United States.
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Amazon.com: 9 Rezensionen
15 von 17 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
From Stoicism to Scholasticism 28. Mai 2005
Von Peter Reeve - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
"The last of the Romans and the first of the scholastics" is a term often used of Boethius, a Christian of the late 5th, early 6th centuries. In fact, similar appellations are used for Augustine, who lived a century earlier. I suppose it is fair to say that the period from Augustine to Boethius represents the transition from classical to medieval thinking, and for an appreciation of how European thought evolved, you need to make the acquaintance of both.

Boethius's most famous work is The Consolation of Philosophy. The tone and content of the work are distinctively Stoical. I have said in another review that Marcus Aurelius's "Meditations" is Stoicism for monarchs, whereas "The Imitation of Christ" by Thomas A Kempis is Stoicism for monks. If so, then "Consolation" is Stoicism for martyrs. It has been argued that Stoicism formed the rational basis for the fledgling Christian theology and "Consolation" is strong evidence for that. So it is remarkable that the work, written by a Christian, makes no mention of Christianity. Boethius wanted to show (himself and his readers) that Reason alone, unaided by Faith could enable one to come to terms with the most dreadful suffering. Coming from a man who has lost status, wealth, everything, and is rotting in a prison cell, facing torture and death, it is an extraordinary achievement.

A believer in an omnipotent and omniscient god has a problem explaining the existence of free will. Actually, the atheist has just the same problem, reconciling determinism with free will. Boethius tackles the question head on, along with the related one of how evil can exist in a world designed by a god of perfect goodness. His is not the last word on these subjects -- nothing ever will be - but it is an indispensable contribution.

The Loeb Library edition includes some theological works by Boethius, to give a broader view of his thought, and has a parallel Latin text, which is nice to have even if, like me, your knowledge of the language is slight. Contrary to what the Amazon editorial suggests, the translation of "Consolation" in this edition is by SJ Tester. It is an accurate translation with a kind of taut elegance that is often more admirable than readable. If you want an authoritative edition of the works of Boethius, go with Loeb. If you want a more readable rendering of just the "Consolation", you may be better with another edition.
11 von 12 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Precursor of Medieval Scholasticism 24. Juli 2001
Von Ein Kunde - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This volume contains the five little Tractates (De Trinitate, Utrum Pater et Filius, Quomodo Substantiae, De Fide Catholica, and Contra Eutychen), plus the monumental "Consolation of Philosophy" written by Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius (A.D. 480-524) as he awaited his brutal execution. Most of the translation is the work of S.J. Tester, whose aim was "to produce throughout the volume a homogeneous rendering, reasonably literal, which would make philosophical sense." De Trinitate is a purely philosophical defense of the Christian doctrine of the Trinity. The "Consolation" is considered the last example of purely literary Latin of ancient times; a mingling of alternate dialogue and poems.
12 von 16 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
"A Collection of Masterworks" 19. Januar 2002
Von Johannes Platonicus - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Boethius was certainly a bright spot in the midst of a darkening world flooded by barbarians and intellectually on the decline. Boethius was among the few commentators and compilers of his age who endeavored to preserve the tenets of Greek Philosophy. His commentaries and translations of the original Greek texts of Aristotle were the only Latin translations known to the Western world until the renaissance and ultimately paved the way for Aquinas' "Summa Theologia." So, with this in mind, Boethius' works made a very significant impact upon the later scholastic philosophers, and to the whole of Catholic tradition as well. Italy, during Boethius' time, was under the rule of Theoderic the Ostrogoth, who unjustly imprisoned the statesman/philosopher, falsely accusing him of treason. While waiting for his execution, Boethius wrote his "Consolation of Philosophy." The book itself is among the masterpieces of all time, and the only thing as tragic as Boethius' untimely death is the fact that we were not able to obtain anymore works from this genius with the golden pen. Had he remained alive, it is very likely that we would have seen a sublime synthesis, in Latin, of Plato and Aristotle, not contradicting each other but complimenting one another. However, in short, this book is a small manifestation of what may have happened if he lived longer. What is interesting about this book is that it handles several different perspectives, namely that of the sorrowful Boethius and the consoling wisdom of Lady Philosophy, written both in eloquent prose and dazzling verse, which together ultimately culminates into a one of the most moving, inspiring, and thought provoking philosophical works of all time. The book is indefatigable, in that it never seems to quit opening new corridors of thought; and it is essential, because it is the philosopher's ideal breviary. It is interesting to note - and this is certainly not a negation to his Christian convictions - that while this Saint was awaiting his execution he remembered Athens, not Calvary. The other works contained in the volume are some minor Theological tractates: namely, "De Trinitate," "Utrem Pater Et Filius," "De Fide Catholica," "Quomodo Substanitiae," and "Contra Eutychen." While many individuals attempt to downplay Boethius' Christianity since "The Consolation" makes no direct mention of Christ, it nevertheless cannot be denied that many Christian elements underlay the theme of the work; and also it must be noted that when Boethius writes philosophy he is strictly writing philosophy and he writes theology he is strictly writing theology. Boethius is without a doubt the Christian Socrates.
Amazing 16. September 2011
Von Simon - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
I thought when I was buying this that this in fact held all of Boethius' works, I was wrong, oh well.

Boethius was a sharp man and though his Consolation of Philosophy is the more famous I found his Theological Tractates much more enthralling, maybe the Consolation is more well known because it is poetic and its philosophical discussion more easily approachable than some of the more rigorous sections of the Theological Tractates.

His discussion of the Triune nature of God was quite something to read and his discussion of genus and species in general is also impressive.

I did find -and I know I'm not the only one- parts of Boethius' Consolation of Philosophy rather disturbing, though if I recall those things were in the poetic sections and maybe I simply misunderstood them.
1 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Worthy Consolation to Remember 30. Januar 2006
Von Joshua Whitfield - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Lady Philosophy poses the question to the wearied and worried Boethius: "Then can you say, what is a man?" Boethius answers that he knows for certain that he is a "mortal, rational animal." "And do you not know," Lady Philosophy asks further, "that you are anything more?" "I am nothing more," Boethius replies. "Now I know," Lady Philosophy charges, "you have forgotten what you are" (Book I, Prose VI). In this Loeb Classical Library translation (translated by S.J. Tester), Boethius' Consolation of Philosophy and his theological tractates are rendered accessible to both the serious student as well as the leisured reader. The very fine English translation (save a few arguable points) is set side by side the Latin text which allows the student to pay deeper attention to Boethius himself as well as enter into a conversation with the translator. The notes offered throughout the Consolation help the reader to see just how embedded this work is within the ancient philosophical traditions of the Greco-Roman world. However, there is unfortunately only one explicit reference to the Book of Wisdom (following Aquinas), but it seems that the Consolation is equally indebted to the Jewish wisdom tradition. Although this link is under-represented in the notes, it is still a wonderfully referenced translation. The Consolation deals with the basic questions of the human condition and of reality as such. Journeying from the outward to the inner human being, which is also the journey of ascent to the divine, Boethius tackles the basic questions of what constitutes the good and its identity with happiness, which is all a part of deification. This is the lighter medicine of Boethius' consoling philosophy that increases in strength until Lady Philosophy brings Boethius to the question of divine foreknowledge and human freedom. If God foreknows all things, then is there ever a truly free act among voluntary beings? This is the great dilemma not only of Boethius' time but also of our time. Boethius will not stand for chaos or determinism; rather, he argues for the distinct intelligence of God that is in eternity (as he classically defined it) and which "with one glance of his mind distinguishes both those things necessarily coming to be and those not necessarily coming to be..." (Book V, Prose VI). This distinction between two intelligences (human and divine) brings Boethius to the point of prayer: "Nor vainly are our hopes placed in God, nor our prayers, which when they are right cannot be ineffectual" (Book V, Prose VI). In the history of human thought Boethius has not had the last word on this persistent question, but any student of philosophy or theology must spend time with Boethius before moving on. In the theological tractates (private correspondence) Boethius writes in a more explicitly Christian manner. Although, calling them "theological" tractates seems to imply that the Consolation is not theological which would be a wrong conclusion and one foreign to Boethius. The tractates speak to the same philosophical truth iterated in the Consolation, simply now within the specific economy of Christian language. Indeed, reading the tractates and the Consolation together makes for a fuller understanding of Boethius. The work of Boethius wielded enormous influence upon the emerging medieval and European civilization. Although a bit forgotten now, Boethius offers every student of theology, philosophy, literature or any other discipline concerned with the common good essential food for thought. This fine translation renders this enormously important work accessible to the widest possible readership. For that, this work is to be praised, bought and read.
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