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Amazon Price: $23.00 $16.20 You save: $6.80 (30%). (as of September 25, 2017 6:19 am – Details). Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the Amazon site at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

Few ancient works have been as influential as the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius, philosopher and emperor of Rome (A.D. 161–180). A series of spiritual exercises filled with wisdom, practical guidance, and profound understanding of human behavior, it remains one of the greatest works of spiritual and ethical reflection ever written. Marcus’s insights and advice—on everything from living in the world to coping with adversity and interacting with others—have made the Meditations required reading for statesmen and philosophers alike, while generations of ordinary readers have responded to the straightforward intimacy of his style. For anyone who struggles to reconcile the demands of leadership with a concern for personal integrity and spiritual well-being, the Meditations remains as relevant now as it was two thousand years ago.

In Gregory Hays’s new translation—the first in thirty-five years—Marcus’s thoughts speak with a new immediacy. In fresh and unencumbered English, Hays vividly conveys the spareness and compression of the original Greek text. Never before have Marcus’s insights been so directly and powerfully presented.

With an Introduction that outlines Marcus’s life and career, the essentials of Stoic doctrine, the style and construction of the Meditations, and the work’s ongoing influence, this edition makes it possible to fully rediscover the thoughts of one of the most enlightened and intelligent leaders of any era.

Product Details

  • Series: Modern Library
  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Modern Library (May 14, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679642609
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679642602
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.7 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces

Customer Reviews

A word of caution

260 people found this helpful.
 on July 23, 2016
By Nom de Bloom
Amazon lumps different translations together as merely variations on how the book is delivered. In this case, the Hays translation is the hardcover, while the authors who translated the paperback and Kindle versions aren’t specified. So use the tools available (look inside, free sample) to get an idea of the language used by the author and see if it’s something you’d like to read, or if a different translation suits you better.

It’s worth trying different translations

550 people found this helpful.
 on September 25, 2013
By davidhmorgan
I don’t know who did the translation for this one but I found it very difficult to follow. This prompted me to look around and I found another translation by George Long (Thoughts of Marcus Aurelius Antoninus 1862). Even though it’s not a recent translation, Long’s version is often easier to understand. Compare the translations of the first paragraph for example:

Meditations – 5stars

151 people found this helpful.
 on May 11, 2014
By Alex
Meditations by Marcus Aurelius

I found it very useful in my quest to ever better myself

 on September 30, 2016
By Matthew
An absolute classic and must have piece of work. I found it very useful in my quest to ever better myself, whatever that really means. The point is that each time you re-read it, and you will want to read it more than once, you’ll find something different to meditate on and to hopefully use in your everyday life. It’s a timeless classic for a reason and I highly recommend this.

New Translation

8 people found this helpful.
 on May 3, 2011
By Marshall Crutcher
The Meditations was the first philosophy book I randomly pulled of my parents’ shelves when I was a boy of 12. It was a marvel for me, with the short paragraphs of advice and humble insights from a Roman emperor writing by lamplight in his campaign tent. It seemed penned directly to me from over 2000 years ago. Magic. The irony of my adolescent romance with a stoic has amused me since, but there is some logic to it, as I was then starting to manage my own thinking and hormones at the same time while looking for form and guidance from the word outside my immediate family. The paragraphs were short, and I was inspired that I had discovered this dusty old book, so I could excavate my youthful way through the older, stiffer translation.

This is a classic for a reason.

One person found this helpful.
 on February 24, 2017
By Billy Rubin
This is a classic for a reason. I didn’t like it at first because I blew through it. Later I picked it up again and read it slowly to give it time to sink in. I’m glad I did.

If you want to get a wholesome introduction to the philosophy of Stoicism look for Donald Robertson’s Stoicism and The Art of Happiness. If you choose to follow the path of …

 on August 20, 2017
By Robert Hannah
This is what got me in to the Stoic philosophy, however after learning what I have, I took many of the writings in this book out of the intended context. This book should be supplemented with Epictetus’s Discourse, Enchiridion, and Seneca’s Letters From A Stoic.

Indispensable after 2000 years

 on March 12, 2017
By VeryBadChessPlayer
This book is in my view indispensable to anyone’s development of political and social philosophy. It is translated in a manner in which it is easy to understand but it’s simple phrasing doesn’t detract from the power of the ideas being propagated. It comes across as merely a soliloquy on Aurelius’s findings during his life, but everyone can learn something powerful from his ideas.

Great book but terrible edition

 on May 15, 2017
By James W.
Meditations is a wonderful, thoughtful book. Who knew the Stoics were like Buddhists ? But the Dover edition is a travesty. The layout is cumbersome to read, small print, paragraph breaks hard to discern, and the translation is tedious. The price is appealing and commendabe, but spend a little more and get a different version.

Must read for most

One person found this helpful.
 on February 25, 2017
By Review101
I read this book after author Timothy Ferris recommended it in the Four Hour work week. It goes over an ideal mindset to have for your life. Amazing to think Romans like this thought so heavily like this so many years ago. It’s a book I will have my son read for sure.