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The Ethics of the Stoic Epictetus

An English Translation, Revised Edition


William O. Stephens

This text remains the only English translation of Bonhöffer’s classic, definitive examination of Epictetus’s ethics. Thorough, knowledgeable, perceptive, and accessible, the unity of this book and its thematic presentation make it an invaluable resource for both scholars and general readers eager to apply Stoic thinking in their daily lives. The translation is crisp, clear, consistent, and very readable. Careful attention to the details and nuances of the German as well as the Greek of Epictetus make this an excellent achievement. This new edition includes a useful biography of Bonhöffer, a new overview of the last twenty years of scholarship on Epictetus, and an extensive bibliography. It is essential reading for students taking courses on ancient Hellenistic or Roman philosophy, their instructors, and any non-academics who want to learn Stoicism.

C. Ritter’s Biography of A. Bonhöffer – An Overview of Scholarship on Epictetus 2000−2020 – References – Acknowledgments – Select Abbreviations – Bonhöffer’s Foreword – Bonhöffer’s Table of Contents – The Foundation of Moral Obligation – The Highest Good or the End (Telos) – Desire According to Nature or the Rational Outlook on Life – Action According to Nature or the Correct Fulfillment of Duty – Judgment According to Nature (Intellectual Development of the Mind) – The Moral Predisposition – Sin – Moral Progress and Perfection – Concluding Consideration – Appendix – The Stoic Telos Formulae – The Stoic Doctrine of Suicide – The καθῆκον and κατόρθωμα – The Views of the Stoics on Acquisition – Stoic Pantheism – Greek Subject Index – Index of Names – List of Authors Cited.