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  • Cited by 5
  • Edited by Jon Miller, Queen's University, Ontario
Cambridge University Press
Online publication date:
February 2013
Print publication year:
Online ISBN:

Book description

Aristotle's ethics are the most important in the history of Western philosophy, but little has been said about the reception of his ethics by his many successors. The present volume offers thirteen newly commissioned essays covering figures and periods from the ancient world, starting with the impact of the ethics on Hellenistic philosophy, taking in medieval, Jewish and Islamic reception and extending as far as Kant and the twentieth century. Each essay focuses on a single philosopher, school of philosophers, or philosophical era. The accounts examine and compare Aristotle's views and those of his heirs and also offer a reception history of the ethics, dealing with matters such as the availability and circulation of Aristotle's texts during the periods in question. The resulting volume will be a valuable source of information and arguments for anyone working in the history of ethics.


'As this engaging volume makes clear, different periods in the history of the reception of Aristotle’s ethical theorizing have unsurprisingly drawn different morals from his teachings, as they were made available from the Nicomachean Ethics and other sources. As the authors of this fascinating volume attest, by comparing our own approaches and preoccupations to those of earlier encounters with Aristotle’s ethical writings, we stand to learn a great [deal] about our own philosophical practices and preferences - and, of course, about Aristotelian ethical theory itself.'

Christopher Shields - University of Oxford

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Page 1 of 2

  • Chapter 8 - Using Seneca to read Aristotle
    pp 155-170
  • The curious methods of Buridan's Ethics
  • View abstract


    Two late Hellenistic authors display detailed knowledge of Aristotle's ethics. In Stobaeus' compendium of ancient philosophical schools, Eclogae II, one can find a summary of "The Ethics of Aristotle and the Other Peripatetics". Arius' presentation of Peripatetic ethics draws heavily on Stoic terminology. After the death of Theophrastus, his associate Neleus of Scepsis, incidentally, the son of Aristotle's "everyman" Coriscus, inherited all the books in Theophrastus' possession, thereby cutting off later Peripatetics from Aristotle's and Theophrastus' most important work. According to Kenny, the ten-book Nicomachean Ethics (N.E.) that we know was most likely created by the Aristotle commentator Aspasius in the second century AD through an inventive act of cut-and-paste. This chapter follows Irwin's lead and examines the relationship between Zeno's eudaimonism and the account of happiness defended by Aristotle in N.E. It revisits Long's arguments for supposing that Aristotle exerted a profound influence on early Stoic ethics.

Page 1 of 2


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