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Des Dieux Et Du Monde (On the Gods and the World)

Saloustios; Gabriel Rochefort (Text established and translated by)

Published by Société d'Edition Les Belles Lettres, Paris, 1960
Condition: Good Soft cover

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Octavo. L, 59, [3]pp. Uncut. Original printed wrappers with printer's device on covers and title-page. French translation of this fascinating treatise "On the Gods and the Cosmos" being a kind of catechism of 4th century Hellenic paganism. Written during the reign of Julian the Apostate, in the fourth century AD, when Hellenism made its last attempt to survive the religious forces which would soon end the ancient tradition of philosophical thought, Sallustius' brilliantly concise work attempts to argue in defense of the Hellenic religious beliefs without attacking the Christian source of the tradition's inevitable demise. Such questions as why the myths should be considered holy, even if at first glance they seem immoral, are explained in relation to their significance in the yearly cycle of life and death, as was still represented in the festivals' dates and rituals in Sallustius' own time--perhaps here, one would gain from a further study of such festivals, though it's certainly not necessary. The no less important question of "in what sense, though the Gods never change and are as such constant in temperament, they are said to be made angry and appeased" is given such answers as "if by prayers and sacrifices we find forgiveness of sins, we do not appease or change the Gods, but by what we do and by our turning toward the divine we heal our own badness and so enjoy again the goodness of the Gods. To say that god turns away from the evil is like saying that the sun hides himself from the blind." Also dealt with is the possibility of the transmigration of souls, which in keeping with what I believe to be the work's main theme, Sallustius addresses by analogy with all types of universal energy, which while being constantly redirected, are neither created nor destroyed. Finally, worth pointing out are Sallustius' answers to why Hellenes considered sacrifice important and why the virtuous are happy, both living and dead. Wrappers slightly age-toned. Minor and sporadic pen underlining throughout (essentially on Greek text). Text in French and Greek. Wrappers and interior in overall good to very good condition. Bookseller Inventory # 26394

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Des Dieux Et Du Monde (On the Gods and the ...

Publisher: Société d'Edition Les Belles Lettres, Paris

Publication Date: 1960

Binding: Softcover

Book Condition: Good

Edition: First edition.

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