Consolation of Philosophy
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Written in the 6th century, The Consolation of
Philosophy is the best-known--and most profound--work of the
and philosopher St. Boethius. He composed this great work while he was
unjustly imprisoned, directly before his unlawful execution.
Consequently, The Consolation--which takes the form of a dialogue
between Boethius and 'Lady Philosophy'--discusses a variety of important
and weighty issues including ethics, the nature of God, God's
relationship to the world, the problem of evil, and the true nature of
happiness. In particular, an often-emphasized and key theme throughout
the book is the importance of both loving God and developing virtue.
Because it is written in dialogue form, the literary qualities of the
book are somewhat 'light,' which contrasts with the occasionally weighty
topics it discusses. The Consolation of Philosophy was enormously
influential on medieval and renaissance Christianity--statesmen, poets,
historians, philosophers, and theologians all read and studied it
extensively. Moreover, it remains even today an important and
instructive book. Both compelling and illuminating, The Consolation
Philosophy is profitable for all readers and comes highly
CCEL Staff Writer
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