Title: Seneca’s Morals of a Happy Life, Benefits, Anger and Clemency
Author: Lucius Annaeus Seneca, Sir Roger L’Estrange (trans)
Publisher: The Ancient Classics Library, Privately Printed, 2012. Extremely scarce: few copies have been printed. Facsimile of the 1882 edition.
Condition: Hardcover, full black leather, all edges gilt, ribbon marker. New and perfect.
Lucius Annaeus Seneca (often known simply as Seneca; ca. 4 BC – AD 65) was a Roman Stoic philosopher, statesman, dramatist, and in one work humorist, of the Silver Age of Latin literature. He was tutor and later advisor to emperor Nero. While he was later forced to commit suicide for alleged complicity in the Pisonian conspiracy to assassinate Nero, the last of the Julio-Claudian emperors, he may have been innocent.
Seneca has been tremendously influential as a moral and political philosopher over the past 2000 years.
A quote from one of Seneca’s letters:
“How long shall we weary heaven with petitions for superfluous luxuries, as though we had not at hand wherewithal to feed ourselves? How long shall we fill our plains with huge cities? How long shall the people slave for us unnecessarily? How long shall countless numbers of ships from every sea bring us provisions for the consumption of a single mouth? An Ox is satisfied with the pasture of an acre or two: one wood suffices for several Elephants. Man alone supports himself by the pillage of the whole earth and sea. What! Has Nature indeed given us so insatiable a stomach, while she has given us so insignificant bodies? No: it is not the hunger of our stomachs, but insatiable covetousness which costs so much. The slaves of the belly (as says Sallust) are to be counted in the number of the lower animals, not of men. Nay, not of them, but rather of the dead. …You might inscribe on their doors, ‘These have anticipated death.’ “