Article

Lucretius

Gordon Lindsay Campbell

in Classics

ISBN: 9780195389661
Published online May 2011 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780195389661-0034
Lucretius

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Lucretius (Titus Lucretius Carus, b. c. 94–d. c. 55 or 51 bce) was one of the most important Latin poets of Antiquity. He was a predecessor of Virgil, who was profoundly influenced by him. His only known work is his poem De rerum natura (On the Nature of the Universe, or On the Nature of Things; frequently referred to as DRN), a didactic work of six books in epic hexameter verse in which he expounds the philosophical system of Epicurus. Lucretius has been an important source for Epicureanism and has been profoundly influential on progressive thinking from Antiquity to the modern world. Often accused of atheism, Lucretius was in fact a deeply religious poet who strove to combat the religious errors of his day, to convince his readers that they should not fear the gods or fear death. If they can free themselves from these fears, Lucretius tells them, there is nothing to prevent them from living a life equal to that of the gods.

Article.  9772 words. 

Subjects: Classical Studies ; Classical Art and Architecture ; Classical History ; Classical Literature ; Classical Philosophy

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