Look who reads Plutarch

I’ve told you about Plutarch, the father of biography, who has an important place in my bibliography. A lot of people of course love Plutarch. J.K. Rowling does, Truman did. And so does Sam Donaldson, who recommends the Parallel Lives here:

Plutarch’s Lives is simply the biographies of people back in an ancient era, Caesar and the Antonines. You study how they lived and what they did, and how they thought. I can’t tell you I came away from it saying, “Now I’ll pattern myself after this guy, and this guy.” But I came away with the sense that some of the people who were very ordinary when they started out could make something of themselves. … But lives, what is it about various people’s lives who are successful, who make something of themselves, who make a mark on history and on the world? That book influenced me.

2 thoughts on “Look who reads Plutarch

  1. Can I just generalize for a moment? (Once again, apropos of nothing.) People complain about global warming and then complain when it’s cold outside. Or worse, they’re cheerful when it’s 15 C and sunny – in January! Is Our instinct to live for one ‘nice’ day at a time?

    Rather than just be a troll, I did some digging so that I could stay ‘on blog.’ From ‘Antony’ by Plutarch.
    “[…] Phraates […] sat awaiting the arrival of the two fiercest and worst enemies, winter and famine.”

    Maybe it is our instinct.

  2. The Hannibal Blog officially declares Triumph: One reader has already picked up an actual copy of Plutarch!

    In “Antony”, read the description of Cleopatra sailing on her golden ship with silver oars and purple sails; and nymphs and Cupids waiting on her; and perfume wafting off the boat onto shore, until it meets the nostrils of Antony, who has already turned into her stammering and helpless poodle before she even disembarks….

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