... and absolutely loving every single sentence word, every single full stop and comma of
* About Cicero's inconclusiveness at the end of one of his long dialogues:
The inconclusiveness is not intellectual modesty - Cicero was not a modest man - but a strategy of civilized openness among friends. The exchange itself, not its final conclusions, carries much of the meaning. The discussion itself is what most matters, the fact that we can reason together easily, with a blend of wit and seriousness, never descending into gossip or slander and always allowing room for alternative views. " The one who engages in conversation, "Cicero wrote" should not debar others from participating in it, as if he were entering upon a private monopoly; but, as in other things, so in a general conversation he should think it not unfair for each to have his turn".
*A quote from Petrarch :
Gold, siver, jewels, purple garments, houses built of marble, groomed states, pious paintings, caparisoned steeds, and other things of this kind offer a mutable and superficial pleasure; books give delight to the very marrow of one's bones. They speak to us, consult with us, and join with us in a living and intense intimacy.
* On the after-effects of On the Nature of Things on thought
The atomists had found joy and wonder in the way things are: Lucretius saw the universe as a constant, intensely erotic hymn to Venus