Epistulae Morales Selectae
By: Lucius Annaeus Seneca (4-65)
Seneca is an important repository of Stoic doctrine. His reputation, based on the ancient testimony, has remained ambiguous down to the present day: he was a Stoic hero who attempted to advise Nero, he was a dissolute hypocrite, he was a Christian saint. That said, his letters provided a format for philosophical discourse that long remained valid for Western Europe. His musings always sprang from concrete situations: the games in the Coliseum, the noise from a public bath below his apartment. Montaigne admired the style of his Latin, which he called "nerveux": taut and full of energy.