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The Handbook (The Encheiridion) (Hackett Classics) [Kindle Edition]

Epictetus , Nicholas P. White
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The Handbook, or The Encheiridion, by Epictetus (c. A.D. 50-130) is a collection of extracts from his four books of Discourses complied by Flavius Arrianus. Included in this annotated translation by Nicholas. P. White is an Introduction referencing Epictetus’ life and thought along with a general understanding of Stoic philosophy as a movement and other Stoic philosophers.

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English, Greek (translation)

About the Author

Nicholas P. White is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, University of Utah.

Product Details

  • File Size: 86 KB
  • Print Length: 44 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0915145693
  • Publisher: Hackett Publishing Co. (December 7, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004EYT56I
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #219,081 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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107 of 108 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Introduction to Stoic Philosophy June 25, 2003
By A Customer
Possibly the most famous Stoic Philosopher is Marcus Aurelius, whose "Meditations" was written, not to be read as a philosophic treatise, but rather as a personal journal, complete with seemingly random entries and no apparent structure. Moreover, it is clear from his "Meditations" that Marcus Aurelius was greatly influenced by the teachings of Epictetus. In fact, according to Aulus Gellius, Herodes Atticus (who was Marcus Aurelius' teacher at the time) told Marcus Aurelius that Epictetus was the greatest of all the Stoic philosophers, which is quite convenient for us since most of the writings of earilier Stoics (such as Zeno of Citium, Cleanthes and Chrysippus) have been lost, probably in the burning of the Library of Alexandria.

Epictetus, like Socrates, apparently never wrote anything himself; however, his students took very good notes. One student by the name of Flavius Arrian may be responsible for the composition of eight volumes, titled "The Discourses of Epictetus," of which four volumes still survive. Arrian served under Emperor Hadrian who initially choose Atticus to be Marcus Aurelius' teacher. Arrian also wrote another text, titled "The Encheiridion of Epictetus" (or "Handbook" or "Manual"), which also survives and appears to be an abstract of his "Discourses". Throughout the second century, Epictetus was regarded as the greatest of the Stoic philosophers, and became even more popular than Plato. Stoicism nevertheless lost favor in the middle ages and was not revived until 1584 when Justus Lipsius published his "De Constantia".

I would highly recommend the writings of Epictetus to anyone interested in Stoic Philosophy, or anyone at all for that matter.
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48 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent translation January 3, 2006
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Funny Amazon should offer us to buy this book together with Enchiridion by Epictetus (Long Translation) when these two are in fact one and the same book, different translators and different supplemental background info/comments. Of course I only realized that when both books arrived and I compared them :(. One star to Amazon for that :((( As for the book, the reason I put it on my wish list last year was the fact that in the course of last 3 years I had to release and let go of many things (and people), and I had struggled with the conflict between fighting for what I want and never giving up (cause nothing is completely lost until we give up on it) and knowing when to let go. I reverted to stoic thought for strength to live without regret and feeling of loss. And while it helped me resolve some of my inner conflicts, I must warn you that this book is not writing of a self-help guru, its an actual philosohical work. Which is OK for me, but might not serve the same purpose for everyone that it did for me. As for translation, I prefer this one to Long's because it is more in the spirit of English language, at the same time remaining non-colloquial. I also find additional information included by translator to be very enlightening and good guide into phylosophy of the age and further reading.
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55 of 64 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Handbook January 18, 2000
By A Customer
The "Handbook" is an essential read for the student of philosophy and is quintessential for those who desire a quick glance at stoic philosophy. White's masterful introduction provides the reader with the necessary context she needs in order to digest and enjoy this treat from antiquity. His translation is pleasing to the contemporary ear and true to the text.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
I picked this short edition up after reading the public domain Long translation. I preferred this one, finding it easier to read. This has a good introduction (taking up almost as much text as the handbook itself), along with sparse but decent footnotes. Growing up reading Paul in the new testament, I already was used to the stoic mindset and like the idea of accepting things as they are, especially the things you can't change.

Long translation of #8 (Dover edition):
"Seek not that the things which happen as you wish; but wish the things which happen to be as they are, and you will have a tranquil flow of life."

compared with the White translation Hackett edition):
"Do not seek to have events happen as you want them to, but instead want them to happen as they do happen, and your life will go well"
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inexpensive, must have for collection May 17, 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
No frills, college student style version. Should be inexpensive. The information, however, is all there in an enjoyable translation.

Add this to your Tao te Ching and compare for an occidental take on the Truth. Great to keep bedside and digest one concept at a time.
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Hard to adequately rate the ancient philosophers on content alone. The book was basic and conveyed the author's intent without too much fluff. Translation seemed pretty good with plenty of background and reference. Recommended reading for all stoics or there!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Stoic satisfaction December 22, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Regardless of your faith or beliefs, Epictetus and the stoics deliver messages that, if heeded, help us keep some inner peace in an irrational world.
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Worthwhile and eloquent exposition. For Epictetus, philosophy is not just something one studies, it's something one lives. One thinks of the Christian saying that one is known by the fruit one bears.

This is a readable translation, and well rendered for Kindle with no mechanical errors. A short, thought-provoking read.
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