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Parallel Lives

From Simple English Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Parallel Lives, also known as Plutarch's Lives, Comparative Lives, Lives of Illustrious Men, and the Lives of the Noble Greeks and Romans is a book written by the famous writer, philosopher, and priest Plutarch in ancient Rome. The book reads about many pairs, which these pairs are biographies (stories of people's lives) of one Greek man and one Roman man of a similar life for every pair. These pairs are set to show moral goods and moral bads in the people Plutarch writes about. there are 23 pairs of stories, and 4 biographies that are unpaired, but Plutarch still wrote. There are many biographies, so they are often shown in many volumes.

Some of the pairs include Demosthenes and Cicero, Julius Caesar and Alexander the Great, and Theseus and Romulus.

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A pair of Biographies, originally about Epaminondas and either Scipio Africanus or Scipio Aemilianus has been lost to history. Other lives have been shortened and have large lacunae (gaps), and/or have been messed with by writers of later times.

An example of Plutarch's Lives being important is Plutarch's life of Alexander the Great, which is one of the only writings about Alexander the Great, despite being a secondary or tertiary source. It has parts of Alexander's life that no other source has. This is also the same with the life of Numa Pompilius, which has unique details on the early ancient Roman calendar. Plutarch's writings have been celebrated for the liveliness and warmth of his Parallel Lives. Parallel Lives has gotten a large group of readers throughout its existence.

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