44 pages 1 hour read


Nicomachean Ethics

Nonfiction | Book | Adult | BCE

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Key Figures


Born in Northern Greece in 384 B.C., Aristotle was a student and teacher of philosophy. Aristotle arrived in Athens in 367 B.C. and studied with Plato until his teacher’s death 20 years later. After spending time traveling and tutoring Alexander the Great, Aristotle returned to Athens and started his own school, the Lyceum. Nicomachean Ethics was compiled from notes gathered from his lectures there. The Book is said to be named either after his son, Nicomachus, or his father, who had the same name. Many believe that Aristotle’s son edited the compilation.

Aristotle died in 322 B.C. He had a profound effect on modern philosophy; Charles Darwin, Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Marx, and Martin Heidegger were all influenced by Aristotle’s work. Considered one of the founders of observational science, Aristotle had an interest in earth science and biology. English translations of his writings comprise approximately 2,450 pages; however, many of Aristotle’s lectures and writing have been lost.

Terence Irwin

Terence Henry Irwin (1947) is a former Professor of Ancient Philosophy at the University of Oxford and a Visiting Professor at Stanford University. Irwin obtained a Ph.D. in 1973 from Princeton University. He specializes in ancient Greek philosophy and Western moral philosophy. Irwin has written and translated many works on these topics, including Plato’s Moral Theory, Plato’s Ethics, and Aristotle: Selections.