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Philodemus, On Anger
Michael McOsker, David Armstrong
Publication Date
September 2020



The first English translation of On Anger

This latest volume in the Writings from the Greco-Roman World series provides a translation of a newly edited Greek text of Philodemus’s On Anger, now supplemented with the help of multispectral imaging. As our sole evidence for the Epicurean view of what constitutes natural and praiseworthy anger as distinguished from unnatural pleasure in vengeance and cruelty for their own sake, this text is crucial to the study of ancient thought about the emotions. Its critique of contemporary Stoic and Peripatetic theories of anger offers crucial new information for the history of philosophy in the last two centuries BCE. The introduction and commentary also make use of newly revised texts and readings from several other ancient treatises on anger.


  • An apparatus representing work on the text since the papyrus was opened in 1805
  • A full explication of the Epicurean theory of natural anger as an emotion without pleasure
  • One of the Herculaneum papyri that survived the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 CE

David Armstrong is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Classics at the University of Texas, Austin. He is the author of Horace (1989) as well as many articles on Hellenistic philosophy, ancient literary criticism, and Augustan poetry.

Michael McOsker will be an Alexander von Humboldt Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Cologne. He currently teaches in the Classics Department at Ohio Wesleyan University. He is the author of several articles on Herculaneum papyrology, Epicurean philosophy, and Latin poetry and of a forthcoming book titled On the Good Poem according to Philodemus.

Download volume front matter, including table of contents and introduction.

Download a printable publication sheet that you can put in your files or give to your librarian or bookstore.

This is Writings from the Greco-Roman World 45.See more available volumes in the WGRW series.