This new translation of a selection of Plutarch's miscellaneous works - the Moralia - illustrates his thinking on religious, ethical, social, and political issues. Two genres are represented: the dialogue, which Plutarch wrote in a tradition nearer to Cicero than to Plato, and the informal treatise or essay, in which his personality is most clearly displayed. His diffuse and individual style conveys a character of great charm and authority. Plutarch's works have been admired and imitated in Western literature since the Renaissance. Montaigne, who read Amyot's translation, considered Plutarch's Moralia to be a 'breviary', a book without which 'we ignorant folk would have been lost'. For Ralph Waldo Emerson it was a favourite bedside book, and an inspiration: 'a poet might rhyme all day with hints drawn from Plutarch, page on page.'.