'Happiness, then, is the best, noblest, and most pleasant thing in the world.'
In the Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle's guiding question is: what is the best thing for a human being? His answer is happiness, but he means, not something we feel, but rather a specially good kind of life. Happiness is made up of activities in which we use the best human capacities, both ones that contribute to our flourishing as members of a community, and ones that allow us to engage in god-like contemplation. Contemporary ethical writings on the role and importance of
the moral virtues such as courage and justice have drawn inspiration from this work, which also contains important discussions on responsibility for actions, on the nature of practical reasoning, and on friendship and its role in the best life.
This new edition retains and lightly revises David Ross's justly admired translation. It also includes a valuable introduction to this seminal work, and notes designed to elucidate Aristotle's arguments.
ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
Sir David Ross (1877-1971) was Provost of Oriel College and Deputy Professor of Moral Philosophy at Oxford. He was General Editor of the complete Oxford Translation of Aristotle. Lesley Brown has published articles on ancient philosophy, contributed introductory material to Plato, Selected Myths (OWC, 2004) and introduced Plato's Protagoras and Meno for Penguin Classics.