Plutarch (c. AD 46-AD 120) was born to a prominent family in the small Greek town of Chaeronea, about 20 miles east of Delphi in the region known as Boeotia. His best known work is Parallel Lives, a series of biographies of famous Greeks and Romans, arranged in pairs to illuminate their common moral virtues and vices. The surviving Lives contain 23 pairs, each with one Greek life and one Roman life as well as four unpaired single lives. Currently only 19 of the parallel lives end with comparisons while possibly all of them did at one time.
Plutarch was not concerned with history so much as the influence of character, good or bad, on the lives and destinies of men. Whereas sometimes he barely touched on epoch-making events, he devoted much space to charming anecdotes and incidental triviality, reasoning that this often revealed far more about his subjects than even their most famous accomplishments. In many ways he must be counted among the earliest moral philosophers.
This volume follows the translation of Arthur Hugh Clough and John Dryden. Please see the accompanying PDF file for duration and starting times of all biographies.
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