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On the Nature of Things
Translated by William Ellery Leonard
On the Nature of Things (De rerum natura) is a first century BC epic poem by the Roman poet and philosopher Lucretius with the goal of explaining Epicurean philosophy to a Roman audience. The poem, written in dactylic hexameter, is divided into six books, and concentrates heavily on Epicurean physics. It deals with the principles of atomism; the nature of the mind and soul; explanations of sensation and thought; the development of the world and its phenomena; and explains a variety of celestial and terrestrial phenomena. The poem grandly proclaims the reality of our role in a universe which is ruled by chance, with no interference from gods. It is a statement of personal responsibility in a world in which everyone is driven by hungers and passions with which they were born and do not understand.
Excerpted from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
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