118 - Fate, Hope and Clarity: Boethius

Boethius ushers in the medieval age with expert works on Aristotle, subtle treatises on theology, and the Consolation of Philosophy, written while he awaited execution.

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Further Reading: 


• Boethius, Theological Tractates and Consolation of Philosophy, trans. H.F. Stewart E.K. Rand, and S.J. Tester (London: 1973).

• Boethius, Consolation of Philosophy, trans. J.C. Relihan (Indianapolis: 2001).

• M. Gibson (ed.), Boethius. His Life, Thought and Influence (Oxford: 1981).

• S. MacDonald, “Boethius’s Claim that all Substances are Good,” Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie 70 (1988), 245–79.

• J. Marenbon, Boethius (New York: 2003).

• J. Marenbon (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Boethius (Cambridge: 2009).

Ollie Killingback's picture


Once Boethius is in the past, will it be an opportune moment to change the introductory music too?

Peter Adamson's picture

New music

Yes! There will be new music as of episode 120, when I start philosophy in the Islamic world. It's a very nice clip, I hope people will like it. And actually from now on I plan to change a bit more often, I think this last clip hung around for too long, though I did like it a lot.


Michael's picture


Hi Peter,

Thanks for the great podcast!

As well as a big philosophy fan I'm a massive music fan, and was wondering if you could you provide us with a song listing?

Thanks, and keep up the good work!


Rhys W. Roark's picture

Fate, Hope & Clarity: Boethius

Hey Peter,

Along with the nice episode as usual, I am taken with your posted illustration for the episode, with apparently Boethius, Philosophy and Fortune spinning her wheel.

When I Google "Boethius" or "Boethius Consolation . . ." it shows on some editions of the Consolation (mainly by Penguin, it appears), but I still can't find any info on it.

It appears as something either late Medieval (Gothic) or maybe early Renaissance. Possibly Northern European (i.e., non-Italian) Any further info on it?

At your convenience.


Peter Adamson's picture

Boethius picture

Hi, glad you like it! I got it off Wikipedia Commons (where I get most of the images since they are copyright free). Here's a link to that site which has more info on the picture but not much.

Rhys W. Roark's picture

Boethius picture

Thanks Peter.

Curious I didn't spot this in my Google search--but should've checked Wikimedia Commons. A great source for images.