Praise Of Folly

Paperback | March 1, 1994

byDesiderius ErasmusTranslated byBetty RadiceIntroduction byA. H. T. Levi

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Erasmus of Rotterdam (c. 1466-1536) is one of the greatest figures of the Renaissance humanist movement, which abandoned medieval pieties in favour of a rich new vision of the individual's potential. Praise of Folly, written to amuse his friend Sir Thomas More, is Erasmus's best-known work. Its dazzling mixture of fantasy and satire is narrated by a personification of Folly, dressed as a jester, who celebrates youth, pleasure, drunkenness and sexual desire, and goes on to lambast human pretensions, foibles and frailties, to mock theologians and monks and to praise the 'folly' of simple Christian piety. Erasmus's wit, wordplay and wisdom made the book an instant success, but it also attracted what may have been sales-boosting criticism. The Letter to Maarten van Dorp, which is a defence of his ideas and methods, is also included.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

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From Our Editors

 Penned by Erasmus for Thomas More, this novel looks at the use and abuse of intellectual power and the relationship between wisdom and goodness through the eyes of the main character, Folly. Praise of Folly looks at the function of learning in religious life and criticizes what the author views as the shortcomings of the church. Writt...

From the Publisher

Erasmus of Rotterdam (c. 1466-1536) is one of the greatest figures of the Renaissance humanist movement, which abandoned medieval pieties in favour of a rich new vision of the individual's potential. Praise of Folly, written to amuse his friend Sir Thomas More, is Erasmus's best-known work. Its dazzling mixture of fantasy and satire is...

From the Jacket

Erasmus of Rotterdam (c. 1466-1536) is one of the greatest figures of the Renaissance humanist movement, which abandoned medieval pieties in favour of a rich new vision of the individual’s potential. Praise of Folly, written to amuse his friend Sir Thomas More, is Erasmus’s best-known work. Its dazzling mixture of fantasy and satire is...

Desiderius Erasmus, (born October 27, 1469, Rotterdam, Holland—died July 12, 1536, Basel, Switzerland) was the greatest scholar of the northern Renaissance, the first editor of the New Testament, and an important figure in classical literature. He helped lay the groundwork for the historical-critical study of the past, and his educatio...

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The Praise of Folly
The Praise of Folly

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Erasmus in Praise of Folly
Erasmus in Praise of Folly

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see all books by Desiderius Erasmus
Format:PaperbackDimensions:256 pages, 7.81 × 5.09 × 0.59 inPublished:March 1, 1994Publisher:Penguin Publishing Group

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0140446087

ISBN - 13:9780140446081

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Praise of Folly Preface to the 1993 Edition
Introduction
1. The importance of the Praise of Folly
2. Erasmus, scholastics, humanists and reformers
3. The Praise of Folly, Dorp and the spirituality of Erasmus
Select Bibliography
Praise of Folly
Prefatory Letter
Moriae Encomium, that is, the Praise of Folly
Letter to Maarten Van Dorp, 1515
Index

From Our Editors

 Penned by Erasmus for Thomas More, this novel looks at the use and abuse of intellectual power and the relationship between wisdom and goodness through the eyes of the main character, Folly. Praise of Folly looks at the function of learning in religious life and criticizes what the author views as the shortcomings of the church. Written with the politics of the time in mind, this work is still relevant today as it reveals elemental human tendencies and the implications they can have in different environments.