Prof. William Fortenbaugh Pens the “Cicero’s Knowledge of the Peripatos, 1st Edition”

November 08 23:27 2021

Edited by Prof. William Fortenbaugh, the latest contribution to Greek literature and its analysis is available in the form of “Cicero’s Knowledge of the Peripatos (Rutgers University Studies in Classical Humanities), 1st Edition”. This work is an exposé on the Roman statesmen Cicero and his political and social ideologies.

The fourth volume in the Rutgers University Studies in Classical Humanities series is based on Cicero, orator, and writer of the late Roman Republic. Interest in Cicero first came out of Project Theophrastus, an international enterprise based at Rutgers dedicated to collecting, editing, and translating the fragments of Theophrastus. This collection will be liked by philologists, classicists, philosophers, as well as those interested in the history of science.

Cicero, best known for his political speeches, was a self-proclaimed savior of the Republic. His works are much discussed in courses on Roman history. However, Cicero’s interest in Hellenistic thought is another side to Cicero which is equally important and only now receiving the attention it deserves.

“As a young man, he studied philosophy in Greece. Throughout his life, he maintained a keen interest in intellectual history, and during periods of political inactivity – especially in his last years as the Republic collapsed – he wrote treatises that today are invaluable sources for our knowledge of Hellenistic philosophy, including the School of Aristotle”, says Prof. William Fortenbaugh.

The collection of essays in this volume focus on these dissertations, and in particular with Cicero’s knowledge of Peripatetic philosophy. They pose questions such as: “Did Cicero know Aristotle first hand, or was the corpus Aristotelicum unavailable to him and his contemporaries? Did Cicero have access to the writings of Theophrastus, and in general did he know the post-Aristotelians whose works are all but lost to us?”

William W. Fortenbaugh is professor emeritus of classics at Rutgers University. He founded the Rutgers University Studies in Classical Humanities (RUSCH) series and is the current series editor.

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