His departures from Epicurus are more in the matter of sequence than of doctrine or argument. Books I and II establish the main principles of the atomic universe, refute the rival theories of the pre-Socratic cosmic philosophers HeracleitusEmpedoclesand Anaxagorasand covertly attack the Stoicsa school of moralists rivaling that of Epicurus.
No Prometheus was needed to introduce fire, which rather was first brought to human attention by naturally kindled forest fires 5. Epicureans were not atheists, but believed that the gods had no interest in humanity or our world.
Another is the defence of a hypothesis by appeal to analogy with familiar empirical data. Sweet, too, to look upon the massive struggles of a war all arrayed over the battlefield, when you have no stake in the risk.
But if they were not in the habit of swerving, they would all fall straight down through the depths of the void, like drops of rain, and no collision would occur, nor would any blow be produced among the atoms.
After a developed poetic image of earth and sky as mother and father of the universe comes a fanfare announcing the revelation of a new and strange truth: Historians of science, however, have been critical of the limitations of his Epicurean approach to science, especially as it pertained to astronomical topics, which he relegated to the class of "unclear" objects.
It falls into three matching pairs of books: The former party maintains that Lucretius by this point in the poem is liable to leave readers to work out the moral for themselves. There is no Tantalus in the underworld fearing an overhanging rock; but there are those who make their lives miserable through morbid fear of the gods.
Furthermore, everything would long since have died from lack of nourishment or else have disappeared.
Though the gods exist, they neither made nor manipulate the world. The six books of the poem are bound together structurally as three pairs: Readers, as they progress further into the poem, are no doubt expected to accumulate the appropriate materials for understanding the proem as in tune with the true Epicurean message, but there is little agreement as to how this is meant to be achieved.
Jerome would contend in his Chronicon that Cicero amended and edited De rerum natura,  although most scholars argue that this is an erroneous claim;  the classicist David Butterfield argues that this mistake was likely made by Jerome or his sources because the earliest reference to Lucretius is in the aforementioned letter from Cicero.
Lucretius now turns polemical, attacking in sequence three Presocratic philosophers representing three rival physical systems as these had come to be classified in the Aristotelian tradition: Hereditary resemblance of character, too, proves that mind and spirit are not introduced from without into the body but rather are born with it and destined to die with it.
The universe described in the poem operates according to these physical principles, guided by fortuna, "chance", and not the divine intervention of the traditional Roman deities.
At this point Lucretius engages in what might at first seem mere wordplay based upon a particularity of the morphology of the Latin verb: What Lucretius effectively asserts is that, on a Euhemeristic ranking, Epicurus is a far greater god than Ceres or Bacchus, held to have originally been the institutors of, respectively, agriculture and wine, and also a far greater god than the divinized Hercules.
These images account for both waking senses and visions in dreams. Lucretius describes her iconographic image with a crown representing the walls of a city, and he alludes to her ritual worship by Galli eunuch-priests and by Curetes armed dancers representing the youths who clashed their armor to drown out the cries of the infant Jupiter, who was being nursed on Crete, hidden from his father Saturn.
If something could come from nothing, then anything could arise from anything: Those hellish monsters Cerberus, the Furies, and Tartarus exist, but only in the mind: When atoms move straight down through the void by their own weight, they deflect a bit in space at a quite uncertain time and in uncertain places, just enough that you could say that their motion has changed.
The soul in both aspects can be shown to be corporeal, Lucretius argues. This first pair of propositions already brings to the fore certain recognizable features of Lucretian argumentation—a passionate, almost missionary, intensity and insistence; a sense of wild and woolly absurdity lurking beneath the surface of the rational; and a keen observation and lyrical expression of the beauties of nature.
Other printed editions followed soon after. If the eyes are merely portals through which the soul sees, then tearing out the eyes ought to allow the soul to see more clearly.De rerum natura “On the Nature of Things” is a first-century BC didactic poem by the Roman poet and philosopher Lucretius (c.
99 BC – c.
55 BC) with the goal of 3/5(2). Lucretius, in full Titus Lucretius Carus, (flourished 1st century bce), Latin poet and philosopher known for his single, long poem, De rerum natura (On the Nature of Things).
The poem is the fullest extant statement of the physical theory of the Greek philosopher Epicurus. Lucretius lived from BC.
His birth date is not certain, and little is known of his parentage or birthplace. Though often referred to as Lucretius, his official name is Titus Lucretius Carus. On the Nature of Things, long poem written in Latin as De rerum natura by Lucretius that sets forth the physical theory of the Greek philosopher mi-centre.com title of Lucretius’s work translates that of the chief work of Epicurus, Peri physeōs (On Nature).
The book, a prose translation of Lucretius’ two-thousand-year-old poem “On the Nature of Things” (“De Rerum Natura”), was marked down to ten cents, and I bought it as much for the cover.
Poems on Nature. The power, ingenuity, and sheer beauty found in nature has always fascinated mankind. When we look at powerful ocean waves rolling in.Download