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Selected Works (Penguin Classics) (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 26. August 2004

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Lawyer, philosopher, statesman and defender of Rome's Republic, Cicero was a master of eloquence, and his pure literary and oratorical style and strict sense of morality have been a powerful influence on European literature and thought for over two thousand years in matters of politics, philosophy, and faith. This selection demonstrates the diversity of his writings, and includes letters to friends and statesmen on Roman life and politics; the vitriolic Second Philippic Against Antony; and, his two most famous philosophical treatises, "On Duties" and "On Old Age" - a celebration of his own declining years. Written at a time of brutal political and social change, Cicero's lucid ethical writings formed the foundation of the Western liberal tradition in political and moral thought that continues to this day.

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Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 bc), Roman orator and statesman, was born at Arpinium of a wealthy local family. Having been educated in Rome, by 70 bc he had established himself as a leading barrister and was beginning a successful political career. Cicero received honors usually reserved only for the Roman aristocracy and was one of the greatest Roman orators.


Michael Grant has been successively Chancellor's Medallist and Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, Professor of Humanity at Edinburgh University, first Vice-chancellor of Khartoum University, President and Vice-chancellor of Queen's University, Belfast and President of the Classical Association.

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Format: Taschenbuch
Michael Grant is one of the foremost scholars of classical civilization in the world. Being thus, he is an ideal candidate to translate the works of what was perhaps the greatest orator of all time.
This book contains some wonderful tirades which Cicero wrote - including his bitter (not to mention comical) attacks on Marc Antony (the same vehement and outspoken verbal assaults which led to his execution after the the banishment of Brutus and Cassius). It also contains Cicero's thoughts on topics such as old age and duty ethics (I wonder: how much Cicero did Kant read?). These are the writings of one of the most influential Romans from all time; a man who made his imprint on the history of the discourse of polemics. This is a fine book that contains the works of a gentleman who is sadly far under-read in this day & age.
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Amazon.com: 4.4 von 5 Sternen 29 Rezensionen
92 von 96 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen The Heart That Beats Beneath the Statuary 17. Oktober 2000
Von James Paris - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
How many men and women who have lived more than 2,000 years ago have impressed us with their humanity? We tend to see the statuary, but rarely the person behind it. When you read this outstanding selection edited by the excellent classical historian Michael Grant, you see that Marcus Tullius Cicero has a human face -- and it shows in his work.
The Roman Republic that Cicero loved was falling apart. Marius and Sulla, the Gracchi, the conflicts over the powers of the tribunes had dealt a severe blow to a form of government that had proved itself adequate for governing a city-state, but less so for managing a multi-cultural empire. Cicero fought valiantly against corrupt governors like Verres ("Against Verres") and would-be dictators like Marc Antony ("2nd Phillipic Against Antony"). When he finally threw in his lot with Pompey, he picked the wrong horse and put himself in harm's way. Eventually, Augustus and Antony had him killed as an obstacle to their plans.
The wonderful letters that Cicero wrote to his friend Atticus and others such as Pompey show his hurt at having been rudely pushed aside. He saw himself as the Savior of Rome for his part in quashing the conspiracy of Catiline, but he lived in a world where "What have you done for me lately?" was the question of the day.
Increasingly, Cicero turned to farming and philosophizing. His essays "On Duty" and "On Old Age," reprinted here, are penetrating, humane, and even Christian in a way. One could see why monk copyists of the Middle Ages saw in the Roman senator a pre-Christian piety at work.
Michael Grant supplies an excellent introduction, maps, genealogical charts, timelines, and even a glossary to guide the reader through Cicero's work. This book is definitely a keeper.
91 von 98 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Michael Grant + Cicero = pure greatness! 27. Februar 2000
Von D. Roberts - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Michael Grant is one of the foremost scholars of classical civilization in the world. Being thus, he is an ideal candidate to translate the works of what was perhaps the greatest orator of all time.
This book contains some wonderful tirades which Cicero wrote - including his bitter (not to mention comical) attacks on Marc Antony (the same vehement and outspoken verbal assaults which led to his execution after the the banishment of Brutus and Cassius). It also contains Cicero's thoughts on topics such as old age and duty ethics (I wonder: how much Cicero did Kant read?). These are the writings of one of the most influential Romans from all time; a man who made his imprint on the history of the discourse of polemics. This is a fine book that contains the works of a gentleman who is sadly far under-read in this day & age.
72 von 80 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen A note on the translation 21. November 2004
Von Lao Tzu - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
I don't want to summarize the content here. I only want to talk about Michael Grant's translation.

Let's admit one fact: Grant's translation is not that good. I suggest you to check out Cicero's works published by OXFORD WORLD'S CLASSCIS: P.G.Walsh and D.H.Berry are more competent than Grant, and they are fascinating indeed. Grant often unnecessarily chops up a sentence, rendering it ends up with a whole lot of commas, and this utterly destroy the fluency and lucidity of Cicero. In my opinion, D.H.Berry (who published Cicero's DEFENCE SPEECHES) is thus far the best Ciceronian translator.

So why is it still worth 3 stars? It is mainly because of the contents, such as AGAINST VERRES, THE SECOND PHILIPIC, and ON OLD AGE, which are still not translated by OXFORD. Therefore, we have no choice but to stick with Grant's translation (unless you want to buy the expensive Loeb edition). If OXFORD will release more of Cicero's titles, I will definitely throw away Michael Grant's.
16 von 17 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen A Partial Selection 28. September 2009
Von reader 451 - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Cicero perhaps doesn't need introducing. He was a powerful politician of the last decades of the Roman Republic, the 70s to the 40s BC. Originally a lawyer and an orator, he made his name prosecuting corrupt figures of the senatorial establishment, before joining the conservative camp against the populist tribunes and against Caesar. Cicero was consul in 63BC. His writings are massive and are one of the period's key historical sources, even if obviously not unbiased. He also wrote a set of philosophical treatises.

This edition contains only a tiny portion of the 800 or so letters, countless speeches, works on the constitution, on laws, and on moral questions that Cicero produced. The selection, furthermore, is problematic. The editors have labelled the larger section, comprising political texts, `Against Tyranny' (which they also call, anachronistically, `totalitarianism'). This section includes the Verrine indictment and speeches in defiance of Marc Antony, glossing over Cicero's switching to the side of Verres' friends in the intervening decades. Moreover, the editors avoid mention of Cicero's contentious role, as consul, in using extra-judicial means to repress the Catilinarian conspiracy. The Catilinarian speeches, perhaps his best known, are essential to an honest portrait of Cicero's politics; they are missing from this edition. The philosophical, second section likewise aims to portray Cicero as a grand old moral figure, comprising only On Duties and On Old Age. It misses fancier but interesting essays such as On Divination (Cicero was also an augur, an official soothsayer) and On the Nature of the Gods. The selection of letters, finally, is interesting, though only for the reader with good basic knowledge of their background (the editors' notes don't quite suffice).

Cicero's style is easy to read. Without necessarily wanting to reach for the multiple tomes of the complete Loeb edition, you may consider browsing for a meatier sample of Cicero's political writings, perhaps the Oxford Classics, and a separate selection of the treatises and letters.
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Nice selection, great ideas, good translation 25. Oktober 2008
Von Christopher R. Travers - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
First, I think the selection is quite good and sheds a lot of light on the thoughts and life of Marcus Tullius Cicero. I particularly enjoyed the Second Phillipic against Antony and the correspondence. Duties III was also interesting. I found the remainder less interesting, but still quite thoughtful.

Secondly, I think Cicero's ideas speak for themselves. As a US Citizen, I see our own great republic faltering, government tending towards autocracy, the rule of law undermined, etc. and these threats coming from both extremes of the policial spectrum. Cicero's ideas on governance are important today to help shape the political discourse and save our republic from the same fate as Rome's. His arguments on duty are as applicable today as they were in his time as well.

Finally, I appreciated the Grant translation. While another reviewer has complained about the occasional choppiness to the translation, I think that Cicero's oratory-like prose (even in his essays) comes across well in this translation. It is tempting to remove phrases like "I must now return to my point" which make no sense in a literate medium, but this temptation leads to losing an essential aspect of Cicero's writings and I am glad that he does not do this.
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