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Amazon Price: $24.99 $24.99 (as of November 15, 2018 11:26 am –
Méric Casaubon's famous 1634 translation of Meditations was the first English version of the Stoic masterwork to be reprinted many times because of its widespread popularity. The Shakespearean language has been called difficult by modern standards but the poetic Elizabethan prose greatly enhances this deeply spiritual work. Aurelius is no less eloquent or articulate than in later versions and the power of his thoughts and ideas are beautifully conveyed.
- Hardcover: 126 pages
- Publisher: Lulu.com (April 28, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1365925609
- ISBN-13: 978-1365925603
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces
A word of caution
Amazon lumps different translations together as merely variations on how the book is delivered. In this case, the Hays translation is the hardcover, while the authors who translated the paperback and Kindle versions aren’t specified. So use the tools available (look inside, free sample) to get an idea of the language used by the author and see if it’s something you’d like to read, or if a different translation suits you better.
It’s worth trying different translations
I don’t know who did the translation for this one but I found it very difficult to follow. This prompted me to look around and I found another translation by George Long (Thoughts of Marcus Aurelius Antoninus 1862). Even though it’s not a recent translation, Long’s version is often easier to understand. Compare the translations of the first paragraph for example:
Meditations – 5stars
Meditations by Marcus Aurelius
and Socrates is my great uncle and Thales is my grand father
I am sincerely pissed that I was not provided a copy of this as a kid growing up. I have devised a work around to the whole “Not growing up with a father figure” issue. I have decided that Marcus Aurealis is my actual father, and Socrates is my great uncle and Thales is my grand father. I realize this sounds nutty to read but I honestly feel more in common with these thinkers then the absent XY chromosome donor.
Excellent Edition of the Greatest Text Ever Written
First, do we all recognize that the author of this text, Marcus Aurelius, was a Roman Emperor? If so, why have I not been forced to read this from a young age? This is quite possibly the most insightful, existential book I’ve ever read. Emperor Aurelius has given us wisdom in its purest form. This should be a manual for every human’s life. Every sentence is mind-numbingly profound. This book is so good, that I might just have the entire text tattooed on my body. I cannot stress enough that the sagacity of this book is beyond what I have ever read. Definitely a must-read and a must-live-by.
This is one of the best books I’ve ever read about anything
You could go your whole life reading the Meditations and Seneca’s letters and still not understand Stoicism the way Hadot can teach you in 300 pages. This is one of the best books I’ve ever read about anything; it is a true masterpiece and a shame that so few people will ever read it. Do yourself a favor and dive in.
This is a book everybody ought to read. And reread. But there are problems…..
There are a lot of translations of the Meditations out there and most of them are very difficult to read. This is because the translators are doing their best to provide the reader with a translation that is faithful to the original language, which was, I believe, Ancient Greek (which seems kind of odd, considering he was a Roman).
He speaks to us all
This is a book you don’t read in 4-5 hours cover to cover and move on. It’s a philosophy. I reread passages, and am on chapter/book 3 right now. Learn and apply. Tame yourself and conquer the world. Excellent book, timeless. He speaks to us all.
One of the Greatest Stoic Philosophers
A hard read, though it is only 93 pages (the Meditations themselves, excluding introduction and notes). Do not however, concern yourself with the stylistic choices of the translation, though at times it may be confusing or simply bland. You cannot blame the translator for translating the Meditations, and you cannot blame Marcus for writing his journal his way, without ever believing anyone else would read it, for that does not matter. I have no criticism, simply I point out this book is not a light read.
Might as well enjoy life
There are many self-help books, but this is more about (what SHOULD be) common sense and little things to remember throughout your days.