Naturalis Historia / Naturgeschichte

Naturalis Historia Naturgeschichte Pliny s Natural History is an astonishingly ambitious work that ranges from astronomy to art and from geography to zoology Mingling acute observation with often wild speculation it offers a fascinati

  • Title: Naturalis Historia / Naturgeschichte
  • Author: Pliny the Elder Marion Giebel
  • ISBN: 9783150183359
  • Page: 474
  • Format: None
  • Pliny s Natural History is an astonishingly ambitious work that ranges from astronomy to art and from geography to zoology Mingling acute observation with often wild speculation, it offers a fascinating view of the world as it was understood in the first century AD, whether describing the danger of diving for sponges, the first water clock, or the use of asses milk to rePliny s Natural History is an astonishingly ambitious work that ranges from astronomy to art and from geography to zoology Mingling acute observation with often wild speculation, it offers a fascinating view of the world as it was understood in the first century AD, whether describing the danger of diving for sponges, the first water clock, or the use of asses milk to remove wrinkles Pliny himself died while investigating the volcanic eruption that destroyed Pompeii in AD 79, and the natural curiosity that brought about his death is also very much evident in the Natural History a book that proved highly influential right up until the Renaissance and that his nephew, Pliny the younger, described as full of variety as nature itself John F Healy has made a fascinating and varied selection from the Natural History for this clear, modern translation In his introduction, he discusses the book and its sources topic by topic This edition also includes a full index and notes.

    One thought on “Naturalis Historia / Naturgeschichte”

    1. Pliny’s Natural History was the go-to encyclopedia for over 1,500 years, from its publication around the year 77 until well into the Renaissance. Its frequent digressions into issues of morality and gossipy, occasionally rambling style would certainly not be at home in a modern encyclopedia, but its all-encompassing scope (covering botany, zoology, astronomy, geology, and medicine among other topics) was groundbreaking for its time and provided the model for future works of its kind to emulate [...]

    2. Modern, agnostic insights, fantastical accounts of multiple births and unusual physical formations, a disturbing anecdote about a tragic Roman actor who served song birds for supper, all this and more in the first known encyclopedia Historia Naturalis, aka Pliny’s Natural History. Portions of this text often read like the jaw-dropping entries if a Guinness Book of World Records; other times, Pliny’s remarkable accounts sound like excerpts from a book of urban legends. Moreover, the text rela [...]

    3. Une plongée dans le monde de l'antiquité romaine, accompagné par un auteur aimable et curieux, qui relate merveilles,faits et fantaisies sur un sujet vaste et ambitieux : décrire la nature dans son ensemble, non pas de manière systématique mais plutôt agréable et anecdotique. Je regrette que cette édition ne contienne qu'un huitième de l’œuvre originale.

    4. Pliny's encyclopaedia is worth reading, not just because, historically, it commands curiosity as a document summarizing the state of science in the 1st century, but because Pliny himself is a witty tour guide. Amusingly, he bemoans the very sciences he expounds upon, for instance, when he speaks of marble, saying it would really be better if we didn't know of such a material due to the miserable vanity it causes. Pliny also has a wealth of anecdotes worthy of Plutarch (Crassus' head in Parthia, [...]

    5. Een tijdreis op papier, een blik in de wereld van 2 millennia geleden, door de ogen van die tijd gezien. Terug op Aarde, die is in het geheel géén bol, het universum is het "dak", wat wil je nog meer. Lekker overzichtelijk!

    6. "Greetings, Nature, mother of all creation, show me your favor in that I alone of Rome's citizens have praised you in all of your aspects.""Undoubtedly the one race of outstanding virtue in the whole world is the Roman."- Pliny the ElderI took Pliny's advice, reading those sections of the History that caught my interest, rather than the entire work. The History was not meant to be absorbed in its entirety. Pliny writes that readers "do not need to peruse the whole work, but only have to look for [...]

    7. While reading Pliny, I felt as if I were in an alternative world where he was a reincarnation of Herodotus writing entries. Pliny also reminds me of the bibliographer Thomas Frognall Dibdin, in that his excitement is infectious. Pliny’s breadth and easy writing style soften the blow that at times he’s a little confused and, at other times, flat out wrong. Pliny was not doing original research. He collected broadly from the ideas and writings available to him and added his own analysis. This [...]

    8. Rather than review I want to make clear a concern of mine with this particular edition. The cover shows a painting from an earlier cover for a reprinted manuscript of the text in the 15th century. I warn prospective readers to not gauge this book by its cover(judge it all you want). But using such a cover, while interesting in its own right, can be misleading for those unaware of the gap in chronological context. I'm worried people who see this cover will be reminded of a time period around Chri [...]

    9. This book was fairly amazing. Written in the first century, CE, it contains such a remarkable amount of currently accurate information about astronomy, geography, medicine, cuisine and such, you have to wonder - what happened with the so-called "Dark Ages?" Were they really so "Dark?" And given so much accurate information in the first century, why aren't we more advanced, have more knowledge 2,000 years later? The book contains a lot of misinformation, hearsay, stereotypes similar to other anci [...]

    10. I laughed on almost every page (the description of mining for gold was admittedly a bit dry for my tastes). I'd start a Twitter feed and populate it with his one-liners, but someone has already beaten me to it. And they have more followers than my feed. Recommended for lovers of the "Ripley's Believer It or Not" comic, though the drawings aren't as good. Odd that Pliny was skeptical enough to dismiss rumors of werewolves in Italy considering the other oddities collected. It's Pliny's world, we o [...]

    11. Mehr als die anderen Schriftsteller seiner Epoche widmet sich Plinius d. Ä. der Erfahrung und damit allen Lebensbereichen, in denen nützliche Erfahrungen gemacht werden. So sammelte er Erfahrungswissen aus aller Welt, Wissen aus allen vier Himmelsrichtungen – angefangen bei den Berichten über die Kugelgestalt der Erde – und sollte darin erst von einer späteren Epoche übertroffen werden, in welcher die Informationstechnologien mit der Erfindung des Computers revolutioniert wurden.

    12. Books one and two of Pliny the Elder's Natural History these two books in this volume cover topics ranging from Earth's physiology, elements of nature, stars, planets, observations within the heavens, winds, tides, oceans ending with information on earth's dimensions and harmonical proportions of the universe mentioning persons who have studied and made varied observations on natural history

    13. Pliny was a "scientist" of his day. Although recording natural phenomena - he tied watching the destruction of Pompeii from a ship in its harbor - he also recorded the weird beliefs of the day, such as the weasel being the most destructive of all creatures, so horrific even alligators fear it. (They have a penchant for rushing down the throat when the gator is yawning and eating its way out!) Novel information and an entertaining book.

    14. This is classic and foundational. It's a compendium of late Roman knowledge - accurate, erroneous, mythological, naturalisticere's little that Pliny omits. All things under the sun, as they say. I especially enjoy his descriptions of animals and peoples of the known (or often just heard-of) world.

    15. Pliny the Elder's Natural History provides the reader with an excellent overview of what life was seen as during his time. As editor and translator, John F. Healy has produced an excellent selection of Pliny's works in a very readable translation with helpful, but not cumbersome, notes.

    16. A collection of the most unscientific observations I have ever had the displeasure of reading. Whenever the author is correct, I am forced to shake my head and confirm that, yes, even a blind pig finds an acorn every once in a while.

    17. Entertaining Roman wisdom, a pleasantly sceptic world view. To be read in small instalments, and re-read at leisure.

    18. Interesting to know what was known (specifically, what Pliny knew) back in the day but otherwise a little mundane.

    19. kind of a greatest hits from a roman encyclopedia. totally engrossing from cover to cover, especially the zoology section, would like to read the entire thing some day

    20. À ce propos, nous ajouterons encore une remarque concernant certaines descriptions d’êtres étranges qui se rencontrent dans ces récits : comme ces descriptions datent naturellement tout au plus de l’antiquité « classique », dans laquelle il s’était déjà produit une incontestable dégénérescence au point de vue traditionnel, il est fort possible qu’il s’y soit introduit des confusions de plus d’une sorte ; ainsi, une partie de ces descriptions peut en réalité provenir de [...]

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