The Documents

Science, Culture, and Society




Short Description

In this complete collection of Aristotle’s works, he addresses oligarchy, democracy, commonwealth, tyranny, and other forms of government; revolution and preserving the state; and the right forms of the constitution. Aristotle left it unfinished, but throughout his life he often revised and combined the various sections.

REmnant Trust Description

Very rare first complete edition of Aristotle (384-322 BC). In Aristotle's Politics (eight books) the good of the individual is identified with the good of the city-state. The study of human good is thus a political inquiry, as it is in Plato. Aristotle discusses different types of government of the majority. Slavery is considered natural in Aristotle's politics, because some men are adapted by nature to be the physical instruments of others. Aristotle's Rhetoric treats methods of persuasion; the Poetics is his great contribution to literary criticism.

Called by Dante "the master of those who know," Aristotle mastered every field of learning known to the Greeks. His influence on St. Thomas Aquinas and the medieval world, through the translation of the Arabic scholar Averroes, was profound and enduring. Aristotle maintained that all human knowledge originates in sensible experiences, out of which the soul perceives the universal. In Politics the good of the individual is identified with the good of the city-state. Thus, the study of human good is a political inquiry much like Plato.