Seneca - On the Shortness of Life

  • by James Harris, Lucius Seneca
  • Narrated by Scott R. Smith
  • 0 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

De Brevitate Vitae (frequently referred to as On the Shortness of Life in English) is a moral essay written by Seneca the Younger, a Roman Stoic philosopher, to his father-in-law Paulinus. The philosopher brings up many Stoic principles on the nature of time, namely that men waste much of it in meaningless pursuits. According to the essay, nature gives man enough time to do what is really important and the individual must allot it properly. In general, time can be best used in the study of philosophy, according to Seneca.
This essay has been carefully adapted into a contemporary form.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Terrible narration. Sorry I purchased this one!

Would you try another book from Lucius Seneca and James Harris and/or Scott R. Smith?

Not with this narrator, unfortunately.


Would you be willing to try another one of Scott R. Smith’s performances?

No. I made the mistake of purchasing two at the same time. After listening to this title, I hoped the second would have shown some improvement - but that wasn't the case.


Any additional comments?

The narration actually makes me want to go back and read this one in print - so I could follow the author/translator's intent. Smith's inflection is good, but far too often doesn't relate to the sense of the text (disjointed sentences, misinterpretation of the flow from one thought to the next, and similar discontinuities).

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- Ellis Vee

A lot of information on "stuff"

This is a long winded lecture that takes you around and around. I can actually picture the author standing in Rome admit the grand coliseums droning on and on as the Romans did back in ancient times about his philosophy on life. About his take on what we should do and shouldn't do and how he interprets all things around him. I can picture the murmuring among the crowds as they shift about on their stone benches wondering how much longer before a slave can bring refreshments. While others nod and beam encouragement. And still others boo. The only thing he says in this long winded dysentery is Philosophy last longer then the human body and things built by man. I received this book at no charge in exchange for an honest review. Glad the lecture is over. Phew!!
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- Tanya M. Spiegel

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-13-2016
  • Publisher: James Harris