How to use Nicomachean in a sentence
Thus the Nicomachean Ethics begins by identifying the good with happiness (euSaeµovia), and happiness with virtuous action.
These considerations make it probable that the author of all three treatises was Aristotle himself; while the analysis of the treatises favours the hypothesis that he wrote the Eudemian Ethics and the Magna Moralia more or less together as the rudimentary first drafts of the mature Nicomachean Ethics.
As then we find this identification of pleasure with activity in the Metaphysics and in the De Anima, as well as in the Nicomachean Ethics, the Eudemian Ethics and the Magna Moralia, the only logical conclusion, from which there is no escape, is that, so far as the treatment of pleasure goes, any Aristotelian treatise which defines it as activity is genuine.
Moreover, the distinction between activity and pleasure in the tenth book is really fatal to the consistency of the whole Nicomachean Ethics, which started in the first book with the identification of happiness and virtuous activity.
It is further remarkable that the Nicomachean Ethics proceeds to a different conclusion.Advertisement
Thereupon it proceeds to a discourse on friendship, which in the Nicomachean and Eudemian Ethics is discussed in an earlier position, but breaks off unfinished.
From this point the Eudemian Ethics and the Magna Moralia become more like one another than like the Nicomachean Ethics.
But the Eudemian Ethics and the Magna Moralia are more rudimentary than the Nicomachean Ethics, which as it were seems to absorb them except in the conclusion.
They are all such rudiments as Aristotle might well polish into the more developed expositions in the first four books of the Nicomachean Ethics.
After this, it can never be said that the earlier books of the Eudemian Ethics are so good a preparation as those of the Nicomachean Ethics for the distinction between prudence (Opov j ats) and wisdom (a001a), which is the main point of the common books, and one of Aristotle's main points against Plato's philosophy.Advertisement
Indeed, the final proof that the Eudemian Ethics is earlier than the Nicomachean is the very fact that it is more under Platonic influence.
Secondly, the Eudemian Ethics, while not agreeing with Plato's Republic that the just can be happy by justice alone, does not assign to the external goods of good fortune (Eutu X ia) the prominence accorded to them in the Nicomachean Ethics as the necessary conditions of all virtue, and the instruments of moral virtue.
Because, then, it is very like, but more rudimentary and more Platonic, we conclude that the Eudemian is an earlier draft of the Nicomachean Ethics, written by Aristotle when he was still in process of transition from Plato's ethics to his own.
The Magna Moralia contains similar evidence of being earlier than the Nicomachean Ethics.
In these points it is a better preparation for the Nicomachean Ethics.Advertisement
Such rudimentary and imperfect sketches would be quite excusable in a first draft, but inexcusable and incredible after the Nicomachean Ethics had been written.
Indeed, in some respects it is more like the Eudemian, though in the main more like the Nicomachean Ethics.
Because, then, the Magna Moralia is very like the Nicomachean Ethics, but more rudimentary, nearer to the Platonic dialogues in style and to a less degree in matter, and also like the Eudemian Ethics, we conclude that it is also like that treatise in having been written as an earlier draft of the Nicomachean Ethics by Aristotle himself.
Nicomachean means " addressed to Nicomachus," and Eudemian " addressed to Eudemus "; but, as Cicero thought that the Nicomachean Ethics was written by Nicomachus, so the author of the Scholium thought that the Eudemian Ethics, at least so far as the first account of pleasure goes, was written by Eudemus.
But we have seen that Aristotle wrote the first three books of the Eudemian as an earlier draft of the Nicomachean Ethics; so that, even so far as they form a better introduction, this will not prove the common books to be by Eudemus.Advertisement
Further, as Aristotle wrote both the first three Eudemian and the first four Nicomachean books, there is no reason why sometimes one, sometimes the other, should not be the best introduction to the common books by the same author.
The Eudemian and the Nicomachean treatments of this subject do not really differ.
In the Nicomachean as in the Eudemian Ethics the limit above moral virtue is right reason, or prudence, which is right reason on such matters; and above prudence wisdom, for which prudence gives its orders; while wisdom is the intelligence and science of the most venerable objects, of the most divine, and of God.
While the Eudemian Ethics in a more theological vein emphasizes God, the object of wisdom as the end for which prudence gives its orders, the Nicomachean Ethics in a more humanizing spirit emphasizes wisdom itself, the speculative activity, as that end, and afterwards as the highest happiness, because activity of the divine power of intellect, because an imitation of the activity of God, because most dear to God.
Surely, the harmony of these three moral gospels proves that Aristotle wrote them, and wrote the Eudemian Ethics and the Magna Moralia as preludes to the Nicomachean Ethics.Advertisement
Such is the great mind of Aristotle manifested in the large map of learning, by which we have now to determine the order of his extant philosophical writings, with a view to studying them in their real order, which is neither chronological nor traditional, but philosophical and scientific. Turning over the pages of the Berlin edition, but passing over works which are perhaps spurious, we should put first and foremost speculative philosophy, and therein the primary philosophy of his Metaphysics (980 a 211093 b 29); then the secondary philosophy of his Physics, followed by his other physical works, general and biological, including among the latter the Historia Animalium as preparatory to the De Partibus Animalium, and the De Anima and Parva Naturalia, which he called " physical " but we call " psychological" (184 a 10-967 b 27); next, the practical philosophy of the Ethics, including the Eudemian Ethics and the Magna Moralia as earlier and the Nicomachean Ethics as later (1094-124 9 b 25), and of the Politics (1252-1342), with the addition of the newly discovered Athenian Constitution as ancillary to it; finally, the productive science, or art, of the Rhetoric, including the earlier Rhetoric to Alexander and the later Rhetorical Art, and of the Poetics, which was unfinished (1354-end).
Such is Aristotle's practical philosophy, contained in his matured Nicomachean Ethics, and his unfinished Politics.
Commentaries on books 1 -4, 7 (in part), and 8 of the Nicomachean Ethics are preserved; that on book 8 was printed with those of Eustratius and others by Aldus Manutius at Venice in 1536.
Of all these descendants of the Nicomachean recension, the oldest is the Codex Parisinus of the 10th century, and the best the Codex Mediceus or Florentinus of the i ith.
Nevertheless, the most usual hypothesis is that, while the Nicomachean Ethics (E.N.) was written by Aristotle to Nicomachus, the Eudemian (E.E.) was written, not to, but by, Eudemus, and the Magna Moralia (M.M.) was written by some early disciple before the introduction of Stoic and Academic elements into the Peripatetic school.
There is no reason for doubting that the Nicomachean Ethics to the end of Book vii., the Eudemian Ethics to the end of Book Z, and the Magna Moralia as far as Book ii.
Some unknown Peripatetic detected a flaw in the Nicomachean Ethics when he said that pleasure is a supervening end beyond activity, and, if he had gone on to add that happiness is also a supervening end beyond the virtuous activities which are necessary to produce it, he would have destroyed the foundation of his own founder's Ethics.
The determination of the limit of good fortune and of gentlemanliness by looking to the ruler, God, who governs as the end for which prudence gives its orders, and the conclusion that the best limit is the most conducive to the service and contemplation of God, presents the Deity and man's relation to him as a final and objective standard more definitely in the Eudemian than in the Nicomachean Ethics, which only goes so far as to say that man's highest end is the speculative wisdom which is divine, like God, dearest to God.
It treats the same subjects, but always in a more rudimentary manner; and its remarks are always such as would precede rather than follow the masterly expositions of the Nicomachean Ethics.
B 5, b 7-8), in its middle part it criticizes the Nicomachean Ethics for not being clear about this limit (E.E.