Birmingham: Johannis Baskerville (The Baskerville Press), 1772.
Royal 4to. (ii), 280p. Printed on "Writing Royal" laid paper. In Baskerville's original full morocco and rebacked to style with blue endpapers, a.e.g. Item #21914
"Lucretius was a convinced and ardent devotee of the Epicurean philosophy, which his poem entitled On the Nature of the Universe or The Way Things Are (De Rerum Natura) sets out to describe in six books.
"[Lucretius] expresses the pathos of death in a passage that has awakened many subsequent echoes; such are the touches of genius by which he rescues and transforms the Epicurean doctrine from drabness and aridity.
"According to Lucretius, without reason, which inspires Epicureanism and eliminates the need for these pointless fears, all human activity and bustle is devoid of purpose. Yet he is far from contemptuous of humanity and its potentialities. Indeed, it is with a superb exaltation that he shares and reaffirms the confidence of Epicurus in the achievements and destiny of humankind... Lucretius also presents a highly arresting reconstruction of the early history of humankind, told in terms of its wonderful achievements and giving highly articulate expression to the humanism that had been inherent in the prose of Epicurus.... His matchless eloquence compels persuasion for his beliefs, plausible and implausible alike. Lord Tennyson reported gatherings to read the poetry of Lucretius at which everyone present was 'carried away and overwhelmed by its poignant force'." Grant. Greek and Latin Authors 800 B.C.-A.D. 100. p. 263-5.