said in Cicero’s Life:1 “If we were required to decide what ancient writings have most directly influenced the modern world, the award must probably go in favour of Plutarch’s Lives and of the philosophical writings of Cicero.”


Zeller’s Stoics, Epicureans and Sceptics, trans. Reichel.

Zielinski, Cicero im Wandel der Jahrhunderte, 1912.

Grant’s Essay on “The Ancient Stoics,” Ethics of Aristotle, vol I.

Introduction, Reid’s Academica.

Roman Philosophy, R. D. Hicks in Companion to Latin Studies and the article on philosophy in Companion to Greek Studies, Cambridge Press.

Among editions of the Tusculans are those of Davies first printed in 1709, Orelli’s Oxford edition of 1834, a translation of Tischer and Sorof by the Rev. T. K. Arnold, and the edition of T. W. Dougan and R. M. Henry, Cambridge, 1905 and 1934; also the volume by G. Fohlen and J. Humbert in the Budé series. Orelli’s Oxford edition contains the emendations of Bentley as well as the lectures of F. A. Wolf and other commentaries upon the Tusculans.

We have now (1971) H. Drexler’s edition, Milan 1964. For this translation Klotz, and Baiter and Kayser chiefly have been used for the text, and Kühner (Hanover, 1874) for the meaning.

Arguments Book I.—On Despising Death.

Reasons for writing on philosophy in Latin, and comparison of Greeks and Romans, 1–6.

Proposition. “Death is an evil.” If an evil and so wretchedness to dead and living who have to die, all must be wretched always, 9. But death is not an evil for either. The terrors of the lower world are fictions, 10. If the dead do not exist they cannot be wretched, 11–14. If there is no evil after death the living are not wretched, 15, 16. Death is not an evil but a good. What is death? is it annihilation or not? What is the soul? does it survive death or not? 18–24.

26–81. The belief that the soul is immortal is confirmed historically by the practices of antiquity, 28, 29; the general consent of mankind, 30; the care of the best men for posterity, 31–35: theoretically by the views of philosophers, Pherecydes, Pythagoras, Plato, as to the nature of the soul which is separable from the body and mounts aloft, 36–52. The soul is self-moving, therefore immortal, 53–55; it is simple and indivisible (56 and 71); highest in scale of existence and has pre-eminent powers, 57–70. Belief of Socrates and Cato, 71–74. Yet many philosophers reject doctrine of immortality, 76–81.

82–116. Even if the soul is mortal death is not an evil. If the soul perishes, there is no evil in