The Nicomachean Ethics

The Nicomachean Ethics

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  • Paperback
  • ISBN 9780140449495
  • 400 Pages
  • Penguin Classics
  • Adult


“One swallow does not make a summer; neither does one day. Similarly neither can one day, or a brief space of time, make a man blessed and happy” 

Previously published as Ethics, Aristotle’s The Nicomachean Ethics addresses the question of how to live well and originates the concept of cultivating a virtuous character as the basis of his ethical system. Here Aristotle sets out to examine the nature of happiness, and argues that happiness consists in ‘activity of the soul in accordance with virtue’, including moral virtues, such as courage, generosity and justice, and intellectual virtues, such as knowledge, wisdom and insight. The Ethics also discusses the nature of practical reasoning, the value and the objects of pleasure, the different forms of friendship, and the relationship between individual virtue, society and the State. Aristotle’s work has had a profound and lasting influence on all subsequent Western thought about ethical matters. 

This Penguin Classics edition is translated from the Greek by J.A.K. Thomson with revisions and notes by Hugh Tredennick, and an introduction and bibliography by Jonathan Barnes. 

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

Table of Contents

The Nicomachean EthicsPreface
Further Reading
A Note on the Text

The Nicomachean Ethics
Book I: The Object of Life
Book II: Moral Goodness
Book III: Moral Responsibility: Two Virtues
Book IV: Other Moral Virtues
Book V: Justice
Book VI: Intellectual Virtues
Book VII: Continence and Incontinence: THe Nature of Pleasure
Book VIII: The Kinds of Friendship
Book IX: The Grounds of Friendship
Book X: Pleasure and the Life of Happiness

Appendix 1: Table of Virtues and Vices
Appendix 2: Pythagoreanism
Appendix 3: The Sophists and Socrates
Appendix 4: Plato’s Theory of Forms
Appendix 5: The Catagories
Appendix 6: Substance and Change
Appendix 7: Nature and Theology
Appendix 8: The Practical Syllogism
Appendix 9: Pleasure and Process
Appendix 10: Liturgies
Appendix 11: Aristotle in the Middle Ages

Glossary of Greek Words
Index of Names
Subject Index

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