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Lucretius, epicurean and poet

De
232 pages
LUCRETIUS: EPICUREAN AND POET LUCRETIUS EPICUREAN AND POET COMPLEMENTARY VOLUME BY LL.D.MASSON, M.A.,JOHN JYol.-z.! LONDON ALBEMARLE W.JOHN MURRAY, STREET, 1909 n 2.V' PREFACE either to discuss in the former volumeIt was impossible the doctrines referred to or toall Lucretius,Epicurean by all the evidence for the conclusions I have stated,give these based texts some of which are verybeing upon intricate and difficult. In certain cases a choice had to be made as to to be left over to the points Appendix. one ortwo of these have been treated moremightPerhaps 1 in the book if had allowed.itself,appropriately space I am conscious of the extreme of thedeeply difficulty and have to the value ofsubject, gratefully acknowledge several criticisms from which I the book onehope may day profit. The main as to which critics have differed frompoint '1 I mention here the attack cannot be called criti-(itmay on book in the Times Thecism writer') my (January 16, 1908). condemns it on the of minor which heomissions,ground mag- nifies as if were central At the same hetime,they points. to mention that in theomits Preface and elsewhere anentirely ' or is referred tovolume, forAppendix,' supplementary frequently which there was not to treat in full. The critic,subjects space who is of the extreme academic does not totype, attempt grasp ' ' the real content of the while in his remarksbook, upon Epi- cureanism he is satisfied to deal with its merest surface.
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LUCRETIUS: EPICUREAN AND POETLUCRETIUS
EPICUREAN AND POET
COMPLEMENTARY VOLUME
BY LL.D.MASSON, M.A.,JOHN
JYol.-z.!
LONDON
ALBEMARLE W.JOHN MURRAY, STREET,
1909n
2.V'PREFACE
either to discuss in the former volumeIt was impossible
the doctrines referred to or toall Lucretius,Epicurean by
all the evidence for the conclusions I have stated,give
these based texts some of which are verybeing upon
intricate and difficult. In certain cases a choice had to
be made as to to be left over to the
points Appendix.
one ortwo of these have been treated moremightPerhaps
1
in the book if had allowed.itself,appropriately space
I am conscious of the extreme of thedeeply difficulty
and have to the value ofsubject, gratefully acknowledge
several criticisms from which I the book onehope may
day profit.
The main as to which critics have differed frompoint
'1
I mention here the attack cannot be called criti-(itmay
on book in the Times Thecism writer') my (January 16, 1908).
condemns it on the of minor which heomissions,ground mag-
nifies as if were central At the same hetime,they points.
to mention that in theomits Preface and elsewhere anentirely
'
or is referred tovolume, forAppendix,' supplementary frequently
which there was not to treat in full. The critic,subjects space
who is of the extreme academic does not totype, attempt grasp
' '
the real content of the while in his remarksbook, upon Epi-
cureanism he is satisfied to deal with its merest surface. But,
from this total difference of his criticisms coverapart standpoint,
a small of the matters dealt with. heonly portion Notably,
avoids the doctrines. While hegreater emphasizing details,
does not even name central and treatedtenets,capital Epicurean
in whichat much fresh research. Ilength chapters embody
for to atomic Declination andrefer, example, Epicurus's theology,
the most difficult and the most distinctive of hiscertainly among
doctrines.vi PREFACE
'
me is with to the Electron.' Several of theseregard
have that the new fromforgotten knowledge resulting
the of radium has in no thediscovery way destroyed
Atomic as a No doubt theTheory working hypothesis.
' '
atom in the strict sense of the word is now the Electron
— we knew athat is to if little more about thatsay. only
! In the essential of onparticle quality indivisibility,
which Lucretius bases the fact of law in Nature and the
all in theof his atom corre-world,persistence things
the Electron. Theto of thesponds unchangeableness
is a at false. Butatom dogma present demonstrably
Lucretius have the Electron aswould accepted equivalent
? I do not think he would. Theto his atom Lucretian
—that ofatom has another andquality forming groups,
combination with other to forminto atoms,entering
in which it answers to the modernsubstances, quality
of which the essential is that itchemical atom, property
1
in fixed with other atoms. Butcan combine proportions
we know as to the of thewhat do combining properties
'
'? The doctrine of atoms which has beenElectron
the nineteenth is aevolved during century conception
will never be able to with as awhich chemistry dispense
so far as one can for all timeworking hypothesis, judge,
to come.
'
critic that I have not anOne able complains given
of the ofauthoritative exposition (sic) present position
the in this the of Elec-atomic theory,' including theory
2
trons ! In face of the extreme of the chiefdisagreement
authorities with each other and with asthemselves,
in this critic well toV.,quoted Appendix might appear
a humorist. It is as to think of com-be yet premature
Lucretius's atom with the so is ourElectron,paring vague
about the latter. If the Daltonian atom per-knowledge
and will as a house to thesists, half-wayalways persist,
it must do this in \irtue of some close and vitalElectron,
'
1 This is Lucretius is fond of his atoms seeds ofwhy calling
'—semina rerum.ings
2
The Xation. i,February 1908.

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