Bloom's Western Canon

Rousseau: Confessions

Jean_Jacques_and_Mdlle._De_Boufflers_Confessions_Aldus_Pb202The Confessions is an autobiographical work by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, written between 1765 and 1770. The first volume was published in 1782, four years after his death, while a second appeared in 1789.

The work was the first secular autobiography inaugurating a form which was soon widely imitated.

The Confessions at online book stores
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Free online texts
English translations
Gutenberg: The Confessions(expurgated translation). EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Internet Archive: The Confessions. EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
University of Adelaide (Internet Archive): The Confessions, translated by W. Conyngham Mallory. EPUB, MOBI and HTML formats.
Wikisource: The Complete Confessions, translated by S.W. Orson. HTML and other formats.
French texts
Wikisource: Les Confessions. HTML and other formats.
Other Resources
Librivox: The Confessions. Free public domain audiobook.
Wikipedia: Jean-Jacques Rousseau - Confessions (Rousseau)
Further reading
Bloom's Western Canon: The Confessions is listed.
French Language resources 


Rousseau: Emile

EmileFrontispieceEmile, or On Education (French: ) is a 1762 work by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, describing the education of its eponymous hero from infancy to manhood.

This proved to be a powerful device for expounding Rousseau's ideas about human nature. The work was banned in France and Geneva because of the heterodox religious views expressed in the section known as The Profession of Faith of a Savoyard Vicar.

A different source of controversy emerged from Book V describes the education of Sophie, a girl who is intended to be Emile's companion, and whose upbringing is largely directed towards that end. The strong critical response from women writers such as Mary Wollstonecraft was itself a reflection of the influence that Emile acquired in educational thought.

Emile at online book stores
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Free online texts
English translations

Gutenberg: Emile, translated by Barbara Foxley. EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Internet Archive: Emilius and Sophia - Vol I | Vol II | Vol III | Vol IV. Anonymous 18th Century translation. PDF, EPUB, Kindle and other formats.
Internet Archive: Emile, abridged translation by William H. Payne. PDF, EPUB, Kindle and other formats.
French texts
Wikisource: Émile, ou De l’éducation, multiple editions. HTML and other formats.

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Voltaire: Candide

800px-Voltaire_-_Candide_-_Dambrun_-_MoreauCandide (French: Candide, ou l'optimisme) is a 1759 satirical novella by Voltaire. It's eponymous hero is a young man who lives a sheltered existence on his uncle's estate under the tutelage of Doctor Pangloss, a philosopher who subscribes to Leibniz's dictum that 'all is for the best, in the best of all possible worlds.'

When Candide is forced out into the wider world, he is confronted with a series of episodes which illustrate the bankruptcy of this optimistic worldview, most famously the Lisbon earthquake of 1755.

Candide at online book stores
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Free online texts
English translations
Gutenberg: Candide, EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Internet Archive: Candide, or All for the Best, translated by Walter Jerrold (1898). EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Standard Ebooks: Candide. AZW3, EPUB, KEPUB and Advanced EPUB formats.
University of Adelaide (Internet Archive): Candide, translated by William F. Fleming. EPUB, MOBI and HTML formats.
Wikisource: Candide, translated by Tobias Smollett. HTML and other formats.
French texts
Gutenberg: Candide, ou, l'optimisme. EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Wikisource: Candide, multiple editions. HTML and other formats.

Other Resources
BBC Radio 4 In Our Time: Voltaire's Candide. Melvyn Bragg with David Wootton, Nicholas Cronk, Caroline Warman.
Librivox: Candide (multiple versions). Free public domain audiobooks.
Wikipedia: Voltaire - Candide

Further reading
Bloom's Western Canon: Candide is listed.
Leibniz: The Monadology and The Theodicy.
Swift: Gulliver's Travels - a satirical influence whose author Voltaire had met.
Voltaire: Philosophical Letters - discusses the execution of Admiral Byng, an event later worked into the plot of Candide.
French Language resources 


Voltaire: Philosophical Letters on the English

D'après_Maurice_Quentin_de_La_Tour _Portrait_de_Voltaire_(c._1737 _musée_Antoine_Lécuyer)The Philosophical Letters or Letters on the English (French: Lettres philosophiques) is a 1733 work by Voltaire, revised  in 1778, composed as a series of letters reflecting on his sojourn in England from 1726 to 1728.

Voltaire's thoughts on English literature include a number of leading writers of the day who he met while in London, such as Alexander Pope and Jonathan Swift. His account of English political and religious institutions, Newtonian science, and the empiricism of Bacon and Locke, quickly became a formative influence on continental liberalism.

Letters on England at online book stores
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Free online texts
English translations
Gutenberg: Letters on England. EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Internet Archive: French and English Philosophers, Descartes, Voltaire, Rousseau, Hobbes (includes Letters on England). Harvard Classics Vol. 34. EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Internet History Sourcebooks: Letters on the English or Lettres Philosophiques. HTML format.
Liberty Fund: The Works of Voltaire, Vol. XIX (Philosophical Letters). EPUB, HTML, MOBI and PDF formats.
Wikisource: Letters Concerning the English Nation. English translation. HTML and other formats.
French texts
Wikisource: Lettres Philosophiques. HTML and other formats.

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Ovid: Heroides

Didon_et_le_glaive_d%u2019Énée_(Epîtres_d%u2019Ovide _coll._Arcana _fol21)The Heroides or Epistulae Heroidum (Letters of Heroines) are a collection of Latin elegaic poems by the Roman poet Ovid, written around the end of the first century BCE. Each poem purports to be a letter from a legendary heroine to her lover or husband, a form which Ovid considered as a new literary genre of his own invention.  He drew widely on classical myth for his chosen subjects, as well as including the historical poet Sappho.

The Heroides at online book stores

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Free online texts
Bilingual texts
Loebulus: L041 - Ovid - Heroides. Amores. Loeb edition. PDF format.
English translations
Internet Archive: The Heroïdes or Epistles of the Heroines, The Amours, Art of Love, Remedy of Love, and Minor Works of Ovid, translated by Henry T. Riley. EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Poetry in Translation: The Heroides, translated by A.S. Kline (2001). Multiple formats.
Theoi: Heroides, translated by Grant Showerman. HTML format.
Latin texts
Latin Library: Ovid. HTML format.
Wikisource: Heroides. HTML and other formats.

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Ovid: The Art of Love

Ovid_Book_II_deBosschereThe Art of Love (Latin: Ars Amatoria) is a Latin didactic poem by Ovid, written about 1 BCE. It's first two books offer advice on seduction for men, while the third is adressed to women.

The work is often supposed to have contributed to Augustus' decision to exile Ovid to the Black Sea in 8 CE.  It has nevertheless remained consistently popular ever since.

The Art of Love
at online book stores

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Free online texts
Bilingual texts
Internet Archive: The Art of Love and Other Poems, translated by Henry John Mozley. Loeb edition. EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
English translations

Gutenberg: Ars Amatoria, or the Art of Love, translated by Henry T. Riley. EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Poetry in Translation: The Art of Love, translated by A.S. Kline (2001). Multiple formats.
Sacred-texts.com: The Love Books of Ovid, translated by J. Lewis May. HTML format.
Wikisource: Ars Amatoria - The Art of Love, translated by J. Lewis May. HTML and other formats.
Latin texts
Latin Library: Ars Amatoria - Liber I - Liber II - Liber III. HTML format.
Wikisource: Ars Amatoria. HTML and other formats.

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Terence: The Mother-in-Law

Térence_des_ducs_-_Hécyre_-_Arsenal664_f209v.jpegThe Mother-in-Law (Latin: Hecyra) is a Latin comedy by Terence. It's first performance in 165 BC was a failure, as the audience halting the performance in favour of a boxing match.

The plot centres on the unseen character of Philumela, who flees the home of her husband's parents to conceal the fact that she is pregnant, having been debauched by an unknown assailant. A resolution emerges through a ring stolen during the encounter.

The Mother-in-Law at online book stores
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Free online texts
Bilingual editions
Internet Archive: Terence II: Phormio. The Mother-in-Law. The Brothers. Loeb edition. EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Loebulus: L023N -Terence II: Phormio. The Mother-in-Law. The Brothers. Loeb edition. PDF format.
English translations
Gutenberg: The Comedies of Terence, translated by Henry T. Riley EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Gutenberg: The Comedies of Terence, translated by George Colman. EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Internet Archive: Comedies of Publius Terentius Afer, translated by John Benson Rose (1870). EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Perseus: Hecyra - The Mother-in-Law, translated by Henry T. Riley. HTML and XML format.
University of Adelaide (Internet Archive): The Step-Mother, translated by George Colman. EPUB, MOBI and HTML formats.
Latin texts
Perseus: Hecyra. HTML and XML format.
Wikisource: Hecyra. HTML and other formats.

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Terence: The Girl from Andros

ScenefromGirlFromAndroasWikimediaCommonsThe Girl from Andros (Latin: Andria) is a Latin comedy by Terence, first produced in 166 BCE. The plot centres on a young Athenian, Pamphilus who attempts to evade an arranged marriage, with the help of his cunning slave Davus, in order to be with his lover, the apparently low-born Andrian girl, Glycerium.

The Girl from Andros at online book stores
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Free online texts
Bilingual editions
Internet Archive: Terence I: The Lady of Andros. The Self-Tormentor. The Eunuch. Loeb edition. EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Loebulus: L022N -Terence I: The Lady of Andeos. The Self-Tormentor. The Eunuch. Loeb edition. PDF format.
English translations
Gutenberg: The Comedies of Terence, translated by Henry T. Riley EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Gutenberg: The Comedies of Terence, translated by George Colman. EPUB, HTML, MOBI and TXT formats.
Internet Archive: Comedies of Publius Terentius Afer, translated by John Benson Rose (1870). EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Perseus: Andria, translated by Henry T. Riley. HTML and XML format.
University of Adelaide (Internet Archive): The Girl from Andros, translated by George Colman. EPUB, MOBI and HTML formats.
Latin texts
Latin Library: Andria. HTML format.
Perseus: Andria. HTML and XML format.
Wikisource: Andria. HTML and other formats.

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Plautus: Amphitryon

643px-Pompeji_Casa_Dei_Vettii_Hercules_Child_DetailAmphitryon (Latin: Amphitruo) is a Latin comedy by Plautus, probably written in the early second century BCE. It his only play on a mythological theme, centring on the god Jupiter's seduction of Alcmena, the virtuous wife of Amphitryon, Merury's attempts to conceal the liaison, and the resulting birth of Hercules. Later adaptations inspired by the plot include versions by Dryden and Molière.

Amphitryon at online book stores
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Free online texts
Bilingual texts
Loebulus: L060 - Plautus - Plautus I: Amphitryon. The Comedy of Asses. The Pot of Gold. The Two Bacchises. The Captives. Loeb edition, translated by Paul Nixon. PDF format.
English translations
Internet Archive: The Comedies of Plautus, Vol. II, translated by Henry Thomas Riley. EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Perseus: Amphitruo, translated by Henry Thomas Riley. HTML and XML formats.
Latin texts
Latin Library: Amphitruo. HTML format.
Perseus: Amphitruo. HTML and XML formats.
Wikisource: Amphitruo. HTML and other formats.

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Plautus: The Rope

Caradosso _scena_della_Gomena_di_Plauto _1485_circaThe Rope (Latin: Rudens) is a Latin comedy by Plautus, written in the late third century BCE. Set in Cyrene in North Africa, it is one of the best regarded of his surviving plays.

The story centres on the girl Palaestra, who is in thrall to the pimp Labrax, until their shipwreck off the coast initiates a sequence of events which will reveal her true identity.

The Rope at online book stores
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Free online texts
Bilingual editions
Internet Archive: Plautus - The Little Cathaginian, Pseudolus, The Rope, translated by Paul Nixon. Loeb edition. EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Loebulus: L260 - Plautus - Plautus IV: The Little Carthaginian. Pseudolus. The Rope. Loeb edition. PDF format.
English translations
Gutenberg: Amphitryo, Asinaria, Aulularia, Bacchides, Captivi, translated by Paul Nixon. EPUB, HTML, MOBI, TXT and other formats.
Internet Archive: The Comedies of Plautus, Vol. II, translated by Henry Thomas Riley. EPUB, MOBI, PDF and TXT formats.
Latin texts
Latin Library: Rudens. HTML format.
Perseus: Rudens. HTML and XML formats.
Wikisource: Rudens. HTML and other formats.

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