Reading List for a Lifetime

Compiled by Arthur Henry King. Taken from Arm the Children. Names following the title are recommended translators or editors.

The standard works
Homer, The Iliad (Richmond A. Lattimore)
The Odyssey (Emile V. Rieu)
The Bhagavad-Gita (Christopher Isherwood)
Aeschylus, Aeschylus I—Oresteia (Richmond A. Lattimore)
Sophocles, The Oedipus Cycle (Dudley Fitts, Robert Fitzgerald)
Plato, Phaedo
The Republic
Euripedes, Euripedes One (Richmond A. Lattimore)
Herodotus, The Persian Wars (George Rawlinson)
Virgil, The Aeneid (John Dryden or Robert Fitzgerald)
Livy, The Early History of Rome
Josephus, The Jewish War
Plutarch, Lives of the Noble Greeks and Romans
Lives of the Noble Romans (ed. Edmund Fuller)
Eusebius, The Essential Eusebius
Augustine, The City of God
Bede, The Ecclesiastical History of the English People
Dante, The Divine Comedy (John D. Sinclair or Dorothy L. Sayers)
Geoffrey Chaucer, The Canterbury Tales (Nevill Coghill)
Niccolo Machiavelli, The Prince
William Shakespeare, Hamlet
Othello
Measure for Measure
King Lear
Macbeth
Antony and Cleopatra
Coriolanus
The Winter’s Tale
The Tempest
Miguel de Cervantes, Don Quixote (Walter Starkie)
René Descartes, Discourse on Method (Wollaston)
John Milton, Paradise Lost
Paradise Regained
Samson Agonistes
George Fox, Journal (ed. Rufus M. Jones)
John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress
Jean Baptiste Racine, Athaliah
Phaedra
Molière, Tartuffe
The Would-Be Gentleman
The Precious Damsels
The Misanthrope (Morris Bishop or Kenneth Muir)
Jonathan Swift, Gulliver’s Travels
Antoine Prévost, Manon Lescaut
Samuel Richardson, Pamela (Part I)
Clarissa
Montesquieu, The Spirit of the Laws (Thomas Nugent)
Voltaire, Candide
James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Émile
Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations
Edward Gibbon, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
John Wollman, Journal
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Faust I, II (Walter Kaufmann or Charles E. Passage)
Wilhelm Meister
William Wordsworth, The Prelude (Books I & II)
John Jay, Alexander Hamilton, and James Madison, The Federalist Papers (ed. A. Hacker)
John Keats, Letters (ed. Robert Gittings)
Jane Austen, Persuasion
Emma
Sendhal, The Red and the Black
Søren Kierkegaard, Fear and Trembling
The Sickness unto Death (Walter Lowrie)
Honoré de Balzac, Eugenie Grandet
Karl Marx, Early Writings
Henry David Thoreau, Walden
Civil Disobedience
Parley P. Pratt, Autobiography
Charles Dickens, Little Dorrit
Great Expectations
George Eliot, Middlemarch
Daniel Deronda
Gustave Flaubert, A Sentimental Education (Robert Baldick)
Fedor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov
Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace (Rosemary Edmonds)
Anna Karenina
Sarah Orne Jewett, Country of the Painted Firs and Other Stories
William James, The Varieties of Religious Experience
Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, Thus Spake Zarathustra (Walter Kaufmann)
Henrik Ibsen, Peer Gynt (Michael Meyer)
Rosmersholm
Ghosts
Hedda Gabler
Thomas Hardy, The Mayor of Casterbridge
Henry James, The Ambassadors
What Maisie Knew
Anton Chekhov, The Cherry Orchard
The Seagull
Uncle Vanya
The Three Sisters (David Magarshack)
Joseph Conrad, Nostromo
James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Sigmund Freud, The Interpretation of Dreams (James Strachey)
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
Joseph and His Brothers
Marcel Proust, Swann’s Way (C.K. Scott Moncrieff)
John Maynard Keynes, The Economic Consequences of Peace
D.H. Lawrence, Women in Love
E.M. Forster, A Passage to India
Franz Kafka, The Trial
Hermann Hesse, Steppenwolf
The Glass Bead Game (chapter 7)
George Santayana, The Last Puritan
Montaigne, Essays (John Florio)

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