Cosmos in the Ancient World

New York: Cambridge University Press (2019)
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Abstract

How did the ancient Greeks and Romans conceptualise order? This book answers that question by analysing the formative concept of kosmos in ancient literature, philosophy, science, art, and religion. This concept encouraged the Greeks and Romans to develop theories to explain core aspects of human life, including nature, beauty, society, politics, the individual, and what lies beyond human experience. Hence, Greek kosmos, and its Latin correlate mundus, are subjects of profound reflection by a wide range of important ancient figures, including philosophers, poets and playwrights, intellectuals, and religious exegetes. By revealing kosmos in its many ancient manifestations, this book asks us to rethink our own sense of 'order', and to reflect on our place within a broader cosmic history.

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Phillip Sidney Horky
Durham University

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