Lucretius: On the Nature of Things

But, now again to weave the tale begun,
All nature, then, as self-sustained, consists
Of twain of things: of bodies and of void
In which they’re set, and where they’re moved around.
For common instinct of our race declares
That body of itself exists: unless
This primal faith, deep-founded, fail us not,
Naught will there be whereunto to appeal
On things occult when seeking aught to prove
By reasonings of mind. Again, without
That place and room, which we do call the inane,
Nowhere could bodies then be set, nor go
Hither or thither at all- as shown before.

—  From On the Nature of Things by Lucretius

A book on the  rediscovery of  the ancient Epicurean poem “On the Nature of Things” by Lucretius has recently been published. “The Swerve: how the world became modern” by Stephen Greenblatt looks quite interesting. The fourfold above was inspired by the previous fourfold Spacetime. A very nice NPR review can be found below.

References:

http://www.npr.org/books/titles/140464239/the-swerve-how-the-world-became-modern

http://classics.mit.edu/Carus/nature_things.1.i.html

[*7.18]

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2 Responses to “Lucretius: On the Nature of Things”

  1. Matter, Energy, Space, and Time | Equivalent eXchange Says:

    […] Also, there are obvious analogies between this fourfold and the Four Elements and the Four States of Matter. I have also used the pairs space-time and matter-energy as two parts of the fourfold Noether’s Theorem, the other two parts being symmetry and conservation. There is also the fourfold Spacetime that has some similarities to this one. And let’s not forget the atomism of On the Nature of Things by Lucretius. […]

  2. Wave-Particle Duality | Equivalent eXchange Says:

    […] We can also see this four-fold in a weak analogy with the Four Elements: particles for earth, waves for water, motions for fire, and fields for air (or space). Also compare to the four-fold for Lucretius! […]

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