The Greatest "Ancient Greece, Nonfiction" Books of All Time

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This list represents a comprehensive and trusted collection of the greatest books. Developed through a specialized algorithm, it brings together 305 'best of' book lists to form a definitive guide to the world's most acclaimed books. For those interested in how these books are chosen, additional details can be found on the rankings page.

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  1. 1. The Republic by Plato

    "The Republic" is a philosophical text that explores the concepts of justice, order, and character within the context of a just city-state and a just individual. It presents the idea of a utopian society ruled by philosopher-kings, who are the most wise and just. The dialogue also delves into theories of education, the nature of reality, and the role of the philosopher in society. It is a fundamental work in Western philosophy and political theory.

    The 143rd Greatest Book of All Time
  2. 2. The Nicomachean Ethics by Aristotle

    This philosophical work focuses on the concept of ethics, specifically virtue ethics, and how it relates to a person's character and happiness. The author argues that happiness is the highest good and the end goal of life, and that it is achieved not through pleasure, but through virtuous actions. The book also explores the nature of practical reasoning, the different kinds of virtues, the importance of friendship, and the role of luck in human welfare.

    The 499th Greatest Book of All Time
  3. 3. Corpus Aristotelicum by Aristotle

    The "Corpus Aristotelicum" is a collection of texts by an ancient Greek philosopher, providing an extensive exploration of numerous fields of knowledge, such as metaphysics, ethics, logic, politics, biology, and poetry. These works have been instrumental in shaping Western philosophy and have had a profound influence on a wide range of subjects, including science, theology, and politics. The collection is known for its systematic and logical approach, and for its groundbreaking ideas that continue to stimulate intellectual discourse.

    The 772nd Greatest Book of All Time
  4. 4. Poetics by Aristotle

    This book is a seminal work of literary criticism that has profoundly influenced western thought. The book discusses the nature of poetry, tragedy, and comedy, as well as the components that make up a good story such as plot, character, thought, diction, melody, and spectacle. The author also introduces the concept of catharsis, the purging of emotions through the experience of art, and discusses the role of the tragic hero. The book is a must-read for anyone interested in literature, drama, or philosophy.

    The 1377th Greatest Book of All Time
  5. 5. Fragments by Heraclitus

    "Fragments" is a collection of philosophical musings and theories from an ancient Greek philosopher. The book explores a wide array of topics, including the nature of the universe, the human mind, and the relationship between the two. Often cryptic and paradoxical, the author's thoughts challenge traditional perceptions of reality and encourages readers to think deeply about their own existence and understanding of the world.

    The 1511th Greatest Book of All Time
  6. 6. Hippocratic Corpus by Hippocrates

    The "Hippocratic Corpus" is a collection of around 70 early medical works from ancient Greece, written in Ionic Greek. The texts are of varying content and length, covering a wide range of medical topics, including clinical descriptions of disease, surgical procedures, medical ethics, and philosophical reflections. Although traditionally attributed to Hippocrates, modern scholars believe that many of the works were not written by him and instead represent the work of several different authors over several decades. Despite this, the collection remains an invaluable resource for understanding the beginnings of Western medicine.

    The 2135th Greatest Book of All Time
  7. 7. Metaphysics by Aristotle

    "Metaphysics" is a philosophical work that delves into the fundamental nature of reality, including the relationship between matter and substance, potentiality and actuality, form and matter, existence and essence, and the underlying principles of being. It also explores the concept of 'first philosophy' or 'wisdom', and the existence of God as an unmoved mover. The book is a profound exploration of ontology, causality, and the abstract concepts of being and knowing.

    The 2826th Greatest Book of All Time
  8. 8. Euclid's Elements by Euclid

    This book is a comprehensive collection of definitions, postulates, propositions, and mathematical proofs written by an ancient Greek mathematician. It is considered one of the most influential works in the history of mathematics, serving as the main textbook for teaching mathematics, especially geometry, from the time of its publication until the late 19th or early 20th century. The book covers topics such as plane geometry, proportion in general, the properties of numbers, incommensurable magnitudes, and solid geometry.

    The 5113th Greatest Book of All Time
  9. 9. The Class Struggle In The Ancient Greek World by G.E.M. de Ste. Croix

    "The Class Struggle in the Ancient Greek World" is a comprehensive historical analysis that explores the dynamics of class conflict from the earliest times in ancient Greece up to the Roman Empire. The book delves into how social and economic factors shaped class relations and examines the extent to which class struggle influenced political developments and historical outcomes in the ancient world. Through meticulous examination of sources and evidence, the work challenges traditional views of ancient society by highlighting the significance of class divisions and conflicts as central elements in the historical progression of the Greek and Roman periods.

    The 6460th Greatest Book of All Time
  10. 10. Moralia by Plutarch

    "Moralia" is a collection of essays and dialogues that delve into various ethical, religious, physical, political, and literary topics, reflecting the author's profound interest in the moral issues of his time. The work is not a single coherent piece but rather an eclectic compilation of thoughts and inquiries, ranging from the proper behavior at a banquet to discussions on the nature of virtue and the influence of superstition. Through these texts, the author explores the conduct of daily life and the philosophical underpinnings of human actions, often drawing on historical examples and the wisdom of Greek and Roman thinkers to illustrate his points. The collection serves as a rich source of insight into the intellectual climate of the early Imperial period and the enduring questions of human morality.

    The 7191st Greatest Book of All Time
  11. 11. Theophrastus: His Psychological, Doxographical, and Scientific Writings by William Wall Fortenbaugh, Dimitri Gutas

    This book is an extensive study of Theophrastus, a Greek philosopher and pupil of Aristotle, focusing on his psychological, doxographical, and scientific writings. The authors delve into his theories, ideas, and contributions to various fields, including biology, physics, metaphysics, and ethics. They also examine his influence on later philosophers and his role in the development of Greek philosophy. The book provides a comprehensive understanding of Theophrastus's works, making it a valuable resource for students and scholars of ancient philosophy.

    The 8168th Greatest Book of All Time
  12. 12. Outlines of Pyrrhonism by Sextus Empiricus

    "Outlines of Pyrrhonism" is a philosophical text that delves into the teachings of Pyrrho, a Greek philosopher known for his skepticism. The book explores the concept of skepticism as a pathway to "ataraxia" (tranquility), arguing that suspending judgment leads to a state of mental peace. It presents Pyrrhonism as a philosophy that encourages the suspension of judgment about the truth of beliefs in order to achieve this tranquility. The text also provides a detailed comparison of Pyrrhonism with other philosophical schools of thought, such as Stoicism and Epicureanism.

    The 8256th Greatest Book of All Time
  13. 13. Physics by Aristotle

    "Physics" is a foundational text in the field of natural philosophy that explores the nature of the physical world and the principles underlying its behavior. The work delves into concepts such as change, causality, motion, and the infinite, providing a comprehensive framework for understanding the material universe. Through logical reasoning and empirical observation, the text examines the causes and principles of natural phenomena, offering insights into the dynamics of time, space, and matter. This treatise lays the groundwork for subsequent scientific inquiry and philosophical thought, influencing the development of Western science and philosophy.

    The 8256th Greatest Book of All Time

Reading Statistics

Click the button below to see how many of these books you've read!


If you're interested in downloading this list as a CSV file for use in a spreadsheet application, you can easily do so by clicking the button below. Please note that to ensure a manageable file size and faster download, the CSV will include details for only the first 500 books.