E-Books; Title Support Pages; About & Contact; Home > On the Nature of Things (Smith Edition) On the Nature of Things (Smith Edition) Lucretius Translated, with Introduction and Notes, by Martin Ferguson Smith. The different kinds of atoms are many, but not infinite. Enabling JavaScript in your browser will allow you to experience all the features of our site. It provides the basic information to the non-specialist reader without overburdening him or her with excessive details. Whence take the proof that things enlarge and feed From out their proper matter. Even so must move the blasts of all the winds, Which, when they spread, like to a mighty flood, Hither or thither, drive things on before And hurl to ground with still renewed assault, Or sometimes in their circling vortex seize And bear in cones of whirlwind down the world: The winds are sightless bodies and naught else— Since both in works and ways they rival well The mighty rivers, the visible in form. 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Learn how to enable JavaScript on your browser, On the Nature of Things / Edition 2 available in Among his scholarly achievements are his revisions of the Rouse translation of De Rerum Natura for the Loeb Classical Library. --David Sedley, Christ's College, University of Cambridge, ©1997-2021 Barnes & Noble Booksellers, Inc. 33 East 17th Street, New York, NY 10003, Submit your email address to receive Barnes & Noble offers & updates. – Francis Bacon, Copyright © 2021 Know-It-All to Know-Nothing, on Lucretius – On the Nature of Things, Book 2, 10 Years of Reading in Great Books of the Western World, Lucretius – On the Nature of Things, Book 2, Thomas Paine – The American Crisis, 1 (December 1776) →, ← Thomas Paine – The American Crisis, 13 (April 1783), It’s comforting to watch another ship fight the sea & wind while yours is calm, not because you rejoice in others’ struggles but because it reminds you of how nice it is to be free from struggle yourself, It reminds you that you don’t actually need very much at all – just calm & ease, & to have your body refreshed from time to time, Luxury & worship of the gods are useless to our bodies & souls, & will only cause you pain if you feel that you need them, Atomic Motion – engendering bodies move & give things life through their motion, Everything grows but everything also decays, As atoms leave something, the thing diminishes & eventually dies, just as when atoms form, they build up & the thing blooms, Things whither & are later renewed through the movement of atoms, Atoms will continue to move, bouncing off one another, Remember, there’s no bottom of the universe where the atoms can collect, so they crash around & collect together to form shapes & things we know in the world, You can understand how they work by watching dust in the sunlight, moving around, never ceasing to be there, Atoms move quickly but once they bounce into one another, they slow down but still move with great force – sometimes even faster than the speed of light. Book I Summary . Use up arrow (for mozilla firefox browser alt+up arrow) and down arrow (for mozilla firefox browser alt+down arrow) to review and enter to select. Again, why see we lavished o'er the lands At spring the rose, at summer heat the corn, The vines that mellow when the autumn lures, If not because the fixèd seeds of things At their own season must together stream, And new creations only be revealed When the due times arrive and pregnant earth Safely may give unto the shores of light Her tender progenies? Martin Ferguson Smith's work on Lucretius is both well known and highly regarded. Gets the nature of most things dead wrong, but still of historical significance. He asks her to bring charm to his words that will help them to endure. For we know that material things exist by the general acknowledgement of mankind. I fear perhaps thou deemest that we fare An impious road to realms of thought profane; But 'tis that same religion oftener far Hath bred the foul impieties of men: As once at Aulis, the elected chiefs, Foremost of heroes, Danaan counsellors, Defiled Diana's altar, virgin queen, With Agamemnon's daughter, foully slain. Hence too it comes that Nature all dissolves Into their primal bodies again, and naught Perishes ever to annihilation. Else would ye mark, without all toil of ours, Spontaneous generations, fairer forms. The Venerable Bede composed On the Nature of Things and On Times at the outset of his career in AD 703, shaping a mass of difficult and sometimes dangerous material on the mathematical and physical basis of time into a lucid and well-organized account that laid the framework for much of Carolingian and Scholastic scientific thought. Lucretius – On the Nature of Things, Book 2. "Nothing ever springs miraculously from nothing... all are formed fr… And raiment, hung by surf-beat shore, grows moist, The same, spread out before the sun, will dry; Yet no one saw how sank the moisture in, Nor how by heat off-driven. Whence may the water-springs, beneath the sea, Or inland rivers, far and wide away, Keep the unfathomable ocean full? Nor on the mingling of the living seeds Would space be needed for the growth of things Were life an increment of nothing: then The tiny babe forthwith would walk a man, And from the turf would leap a branching tree— Wonders unheard of; for, by Nature, each Slowly increases from its lawful seed, And through that increase shall conserve its kind. And, too, the selfsame power might end alike All things, were they not still together held By matter eternal, shackled through its parts, Now more, now less. 1:15:35. is excellent. Mendelssohn - Songs Without Words (complete set) - Rena Kyriakou - Duration: 2… . [and] it is streets ahead of the competition. view Kindle eBook | view Audible audiobook. Reviewed in the United States on August 24, 2015. I know how hard it is in Latian verse To tell the dark discoveries of the Greeks, Chiefly because our pauper-speech must find Strange terms to fit the strangeness of the thing; Yet worth of thine and the expected joy Of thy sweet friendship do persuade me on To bear all toil and wake the clear nights through, Seeking with what of words and what of song I may at last most gloriously uncloud For thee the light beyond, wherewith to view The core of being at the centre hid. These are all perishable & the perishable nature of animals comes from the combination of non-perishable atoms, Sense comes after the birth of an animal because the constituent atoms aren’t together until the birth & only when they come together do we have an animal who can sense, When an animal gets pounded extremely hard, all the senses, the soul & body get hit & the atoms get unravelled, Sometimes the blow isn’t too hard & motions of life prevail & the atoms settle, rallying the animal back to life, Atoms don’t feel pain but when they are upset, the animal feels pain & feels pleasure once they are settled, If they could feel pain or pleasure, you’d see them laughing & crying, which is an absolutely ridiculous idea, Death is not the destruction of atoms but a break down in the functioning of the thing that they atoms have formed, I know this is all new & hard to believe but we know of many things being true that are hard to believe at first, There’s no consequence, negative or positive, of not believing this but don’t let the novelty or strangeness of this deter you, There’s no reason to think that this world is unique, If atoms could combine to make the earth & there’s an infinite number of them, there’s every chance that there’s another world out there just like ours with different animals & different men, There’s nothing that’s one-of-a-kind because nothing comes from nothing & things come from other similar things, There’s infinite sky, earth, sun, moon & sea, Nature is free & unchained from the gods that men claim to rule the universe, When the world was born, a lot was added together, Water settles with water, earth atoms grow together & air collects with air, Maturity grows with the continuation of atoms accumulating faster than separating, As time goes on, they being to separate faster than they accumulate & this is old age, The world will be battered & will crumble into ruin, Eventually, nature won’t be able to supply what’s needed & things collapse to become food & source for growth for new things, We curse our old age & loss of our lives but forget that we once fed off dying things when we were young. Smith has incorporated the most recent research, including the new discoveries of Epicurean materials from Herculaneum. Lastly whatever days and nature add Little by little, constraining things to grow In due proportion, no gaze however keen Of these our eyes hath watched and known. With the passion of a true poet, Titus Lucretius Carus (ca. Opens with an prayer to Venus, lamenting the barbarous business of warfare [e.g., civil war, butchery of the Sammites, Spartacus' revolt, Catiline's conspiracy], and an appeal to Memmius. If you are available to assist (as simple as typing the text from the PDF into an email) please email or check in here. For what the soul may be they do not know, Whether 'tis born, or enter in at birth, And whether, snatched by death, it die with us, Or visit the shadows and the vasty caves Of Orcus, or by some divine decree Enter the brute herds, as our Ennius sang, Who first from lovely Helicon brought down A laurel wreath of bright perennial leaves, Renowned forever among the Italian clans. Smith outlines in a highly accessible manner what little is known of Lucretius' life and times, the poem's position and status in the Epic and Didactic tradition, and the philosophy of Epicurus that Lucretius puts forward, but also manages to include some of the most up to date research, including recent scholarship on the Herculaneum papyri. Word Count: 460. Lull to a timely rest O'er sea and land the savage works of war, For thou alone hast power with public peace To aid mortality; since he who rules The savage works of battle, puissant Mars, How often to thy bosom flings his strength O'ermastered by the eternal wound of love— And there, with eyes and full throat backward thrown, Gazing, my Goddess, open-mouthed at thee, Pastures on love his greedy sight, his breath Hanging upon thy lips. . Lucretius divided his argument into six On the Nature of Things is carefully structured. . Buy Books and CD-ROMs: Help : On the Nature of Things By Lucretius. In Book 3 he expounds the nature and composition of mind and spirit, proves their mortality, and argues that there is nothing to fear in death. She felt the chaplet round her maiden locks And fillets, fluttering down on either cheek, And at the altar marked her grieving sire, The priests beside him who concealed the knife, And all the folk in tears at sight of her. Commentary: Many comments have been posted about On the Nature of Things. The body has seeds of many things hidden in it of various shapes, smells, tastes & colors all lumped together in one mass, Like the letters of the alphabet – a letter can be used in many different words to give different sounds & meanings, You don’t see things like a half-man, half-animal because things have their own seeds & they don’t fuse together to make a mixture very often, Nature usually doesn’t all such things – if they do happen, nature finds a way to get rid of it quickly, Atoms don’t have color – it all depends on how they’re combined for color to appear, Taking away or adding atoms can change the color, No colors can exist without light & therefore atoms can’t have color without it, Atomic shapes aren’t assigned a certain color because each shape can occur in any color, Not all things have a smell or sound, so not everything has a color, Just like atoms have no color, they don’t have any perishable qualities like smell, heat or cold because objects can be smelly or not smelly, hot or cold & still be the same thing, Atoms don’t have any sensation but they do form to make things that do: animals grow from insensate matter, Worms grow in manure, cattle turn into our flesh by our eating them, If you blend matter willy-nilly, you probably won’t get anything living or sensing, It all depends on how the atoms collect – it has to be in a special way to produce life. More from the same. On the Nature of Things: Book 1 (57 BC) by Lucretius - Duration: 1:15:35. Wherefore Religion now is under foot, And us his victory now exalts to heaven. Lucretius also tells us in this prayer that he is writing this work for his friend, Memmius. dtai claustra, • the Iastnesses of life,' olu UrminuJ baerms, •the deepset boundary-mark,' &c.- but one is possessed with a atrong feeling that he has There’s a smorgasbord of matter in any grass, stream, etc. . 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 Epicurus. Moreover, why should Nature not prepare Men of a bulk to ford the seas afoot, Or rend the mighty mountains with their hands, Or conquer Time with length of days, if not Because for all begotten things abides The changeless stuff, and what from that may spring Is fixed forevermore? Report abuse. 05 - Book 2, pt 2 - Attack on those who refuse the theories of Epicurus. Epicurus was the first to raise men above the curse of superstition and the wicked deeds it leads to, such as the sacrifice of Iphianassa (Iphigenia) at Aulis by Agammenon, and the fear that people have from priests that they will be endlessly tormented after death. expounds the most coherent and eloquent system of materialism surviving from the ancient world. The poem, written in dactylic hexameter, is divided into six books, and concentrates heavily on Epicurean physics. 2001 - 262 pp. And since 'tis thou alone Guidest the Cosmos, and without thee naught Is risen to reach the shining shores of light, Nor aught of joyful or of lovely born, Thee do I crave co-partner in that verse Which I presume on Nature to compose For Memmius mine, whom thou hast willed to be Peerless in every grace at every hour— Wherefore indeed, Divine one, give my words Immortal charm. Him thus reclined Fill with thy holy body, round, above! BOOK I PROEM—1–145 MOTHER of Rome, delight of Gods and men, Dear Venus that beneath the gliding stars Makest to teem the many-voyagèd main And fruitful lands—for all of living things Through thee alone are evermore conceived, Through thee are risen to visit the great sun— Before thee, Goddess, and thy coming on, But now nor skill nor instrument is theirs, Since men must dread eternal pains in death. And more than this, if Time, That wastes with eld the works along the world, Destroy entire, consuming matter all, Whence then may Venus back to light of life Restore the generations kind by kind? For lapsèd years and infinite age must else Have eat all shapes of mortal stock away: But be it the Long Ago contained those germs, By which this sum of things recruited lives, Those same infallibly can never die, Nor nothing to nothing evermore return. Jade Vine 680 views. But of course, the translation is the most important part of the work . Figure, flavor, surface of atoms. Verified Purchase. Whilst human kind Throughout the lands lay miserably crushed Before all eyes beneath Religion—who Would show her head along the region skies, Glowering on mortals with her hideous face— A Greek it was who first opposing dared Raise mortal eyes that terror to withstand, Whom nor the fame of Gods nor lightning's stroke Nor threatening thunder of the ominous sky Abashed; but rather chafed to angry zest His dauntless heart to be the first to rend The crossbars at the gates of Nature old. in English Author. Sense requires muscles, flesh, veins, etc. Lucretius and the Greeks got it right in the 1st century BC. The introduction is excellent. Martin Ferguson Smith has for many years been one of the leading Lucretian scholars in the world. These standards follow straightforwardly from the fundamental precepts spread out in Book I, which express that nothing originates from nothing, nothing can be totally decimated, and the universe is unending. Ah, many a dream even now Can they concoct to rout thy plans of life, And trouble all thy fortunes with base fears. 99-ca. Book I defines atoms and lays out the fundamental laws that govern them. But now Because the fastenings of primordial parts Are put together diversly and stuff Is everlasting, things abide the same Unhurt and sure, until some power comes on Strong to destroy the warp and woof of each: Nothing returns to naught; but all return At their collapse to primal forms of stuff. Javascript is not enabled in your browser. For this edition, Professor Smith provides a revised translation, new Introduction, headnotes and bibliography. On the Nature of Things is divided into six sections, or books, which we can loosely divide into three pairs. Auto Suggestions are available once you type at least 3 letters. But, since produced from fixèd seeds are all, Each birth goes forth upon the shores of light From its own stuff, from its own primal bodies. . Lucretius discusses the motion of atoms, natural phenomena, sensation, free will, and the soul's relation to the body. Thus nature ever by unseen bodies works. Some will say that they need the gods to turn atoms into the things we need like fruit, grain, etc. . And for the rest, summon to judgments true, Unbusied ears and singleness of mind Withdrawn from cares; lest these my gifts, arranged For thee with eager service, thou disdain Before thou comprehendest: since for thee I prove the súpreme law of Gods and sky, And the primordial germs of things unfold, Whence Nature all creates, and multiplies And fosters all, and whither she resolves Each in the end when each is overthrown. Your email address will not be published. 5.0 out of 5 stars you need to read this wonderful book. Or how, when thus restored, may daedal Earth Foster and plenish with her ancient food, Which, kind by kind, she offers unto each? Meticulous, judicious and reader-friendly in equal measure, it embodies the fruits of a lifetime's study of Lucretius' poetic masterpiece. 1-62. FreeBookSummary.com . . * * * And now, since I have taught that things cannot Be born from nothing, nor the same, when born, To nothing be recalled, doubt not my words, Because our eyes no primal germs perceive; For mark those bodies which, though known to be In this our world, are yet invisible: The winds infuriate lash our face and frame, Unseen, and swamp huge ships and rend the clouds, Or, eddying wildly down, bestrew the plains With mighty trees, or scour the mountain tops With forest-crackling blasts. In Book 2 he explains atomic movement, the variety of atomic shapes, and argues that the atoms lack colour, sensation, and other secondary qualities. Another case: A ring upon the finger thins away Along the under side, with years and suns; The drippings from the eaves will scoop the stone; The hookèd ploughshare, though of iron, wastes Amid the fields insidiously. Thus we know, That moisture is dispersed about in bits Too small for eyes to see. It’s comforting to watch another ship fight the sea & wind while yours is calm, not because you rejoice in others’ struggles but because it reminds you of how nice it is to be free from struggle yourself Written in the first century b.C., On the Nature of Things (in Latin, De Rerum Natura) is a poem in six books that aims at explaining the Epicurean philosophy to the Roman audience.Among digressions about the importance of philosophy in men's life and praises of Epicurus, Lucretius created a solid treatise on the atomic theory, the falseness of religion and many kinds of natural phenomena. In this prayer that he is writing this work for his friend, Memmius ( ca hexameter. 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