Plutarch’s “Lives”: A Tale of Spiritual & Moral Instruction

By |2019-07-18T08:36:02-05:00July 12th, 2019|Categories: Great Books, History, Morality, Paul Krause, Plutarch, Rome, Senior Contributors|

Plutarch’s “Parallel Lives” is a profoundly spiritual and moral work, and one which calls each and every one of us to become great men and not to remain in the shadow of the great men of history who may, in fact, have been petty instead of great. Lucius Mestrius Plutarchus, better known as Plutarch, lived [...]

Augustine: A Saint for Eternity

By |2019-05-14T13:56:25-05:00August 27th, 2017|Categories: Aeneid, Catholicism, Civilization, Modernity, Paul Krause, Plutarch, Sainthood, St. Augustine, Thucydides, War|

Augustine passed on to us, and all posterity, prescient words of wisdom: that even in the most disconcerting and dark of times, beauty, compassion, truth, love, and happiness abound… When the Visigoths sacked Rome in 410, the city that had taken the world captive had fallen into captivity. The event was a transformative moment in [...]

Reviving Plutarch’s “Lives”

By |2017-06-19T10:11:10-05:00June 20th, 2017|Categories: Books, Plutarch|

Plutarch’s writing combines the comfortable, gossipy moralizing of Livy with the precise rhetorical calibration of Tacitus, and the result sparks with human insight unmatched by any other writer of the ancient world except the Greek tragedians… Bard College classicist James Romm, author of memorably good books such as Dying Every Day: Seneca at the Court [...]

The Chicken, the Egg… and God

By |2016-09-13T23:13:04-05:00September 13th, 2016|Categories: Culture, Existence of God, Great Books, Philosophy, Plutarch|

The great Greek historian Lucius Mestrius Plutarchus was born a little more than a decade after the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, and it was at that early date that he considered up the significance of the seemingly insignificant chicken-and-egg question. In his notable work Moralia, in a discussion on love, Plutarch appropriately notes that the “problem about the [...]

An Unexpected Bestseller: Plutarch’s “Lives”

By |2016-03-26T13:04:22-05:00December 3rd, 2015|Categories: Aristotle, Christopher B. Nelson, Featured, Liberal Learning, Plutarch, Rome, St. John's College|

Now that school is back in session, I will shortly be resuming a study group that began last year on Plutarch’s Lives of the Noble Grecians and Romans. I thought I might say just two things here about the particular excellence of this great book—that it fuses history and philosophy, and that it promotes the [...]

Plutarch’s Life Studies: for Everybody

By |2015-05-19T23:19:52-05:00October 9th, 2011|Categories: Books, Classics, Culture, Plutarch|Tags: |

This past year my two oldest boys (high school age) read Plutarch’s biographical essays on Solon, Pericles, Alexander and Caesar. One of my sons loved it, the other was much more grumpy about the exercise, but I think some of it rubbed off. There was even an unexpected trickle-down effect. One day my 10-year-old daughter accused [...]

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