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Montaigne: Essays


Montaigne: Essays Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Taken together, this selection of essays forms an exquisitely drawn portrait that depicts the strength and warmth of Montaigne's personality. And, as J.M. Cohen observes in his introduction, 'One sees, as one reads him, how broad his mind was, and how many of the ideas of the next two centuries he grasped by anticipation.'



About the Author

Michel Eyquem, Seigneur de Montaigne, was born in 1533, the son and heir of Pierre, Seigneur de Montaigne (two previous children dying soon after birth). He was brought up to speak Latin as his mother tongue and always retained a Latin turn of mind; though he knew Greek, he preferred to use translations. After studying law he eventually became counselor to the Parlement of Bordeaux. He married in 1565. In 1569 he published his French version of the Natural Theology of Raymond Sebond; his Apology is only partly a defense of Sebond and sets skeptical limits to human reasoning about God, man and nature. He retired in 1571 to his lands at Montaigne, devoting himself to reading and reflection and to composing his Essays (first version, 1580). He loathed the fanaticism and cruelties of the religious wars of the period, but sided with Catholic orthodoxy and legitimate monarchy. He was twice elected Mayor of Bordeaux (1581 and 1583), a post he held for four years. He died at Montaigne (1592) while preparing the final, and richest, edition of his Essays.

Table of Contents

Essays Introduction

To the Reader

Book One

7. That our actions should be judged by our intentions

8. On idleness

9. On liars

10. That no man should be called happy until after his death

21. On the power of the imagination

22. That one man's profit is another's loss

26. On the education of children

27. That it is folly to measure truth and error by our own capacity

28. On friendship

31. On cannibals

36. On the custom of wearing clothes

47. On the uncertainty of our judgement

50. On Democritus and Heraclitus

55. On smells

Book Two

8. On the affection of fathers for their children

10. On books

11. On cruelty

17. On presumption

28. All things have their season

32. A defence of Seneca and Plutarch

Book Three

2. On repentance

3. On three kinds of relationships

6. On vehicles

8. On the art of conversation

12. On physiognomy

13. On experience

Product Details

Montaigne, Michel de
Penguin Books
Cohen, John M.
Montaigne, Michel de
Cohen, John M.
Short Stories (single author)
European - French
Modern - Renaissance Era
History & Surveys - Modern - Renaissance Era
General Fiction
Edition Description:
Paperback / softback
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
from 12
7.81x5.12x.80 in. .61 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Anthologies » Essays
History and Social Science » Military » General History
History and Social Science » World History » General
Humanities » Philosophy » General

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