Anicius Manlius Severinus Boëthius was a philosopher of the early 6th century. He was born in Rome to the ancient and prominent family of the Anicii, which included emperors Petronius Maximus and Olybrius and many consuls. His father, Flavius Manlius Boethius, was consul in 487 after Odoacer deposed the last Roman Emperor. Boethius himself entered public life at a young age and was already a senator by the age of 25. He was consul in 510 in the kingdom of the Ostrogoths. In 522 he saw his two sons become consuls. Boethius was imprisoned and eventually executed by King Theodoric the Great, who suspected him of conspiring with the Byzantine Empire. While jailed, Boethius composed his Consolation of Philosophy, a philosophical treatise on fortune, death, and other issues. The Consolation became one of the most popular and influential works of the Middle Ages.
So dry your tears. Fortune has not yet turned her hatred against all your blessings. The storm has not yet broken upon you with too much violence. Your anchors are holding firm and they permit you both comfort in the present, and hope in the future.Boethius
He is in no real danger. He merely suffers from a lethargy, a sickness that is common among the depressed. He has forgotten who he really is, but he will recover, for he used to know me, and all I have to do is cloud the mist that beclouds his vision...Boethius
Men who give up the common goal of all things that exist, thereby cease to exist themselves. Some may perhaps think it strange that we say that wicked men, who form the majority of men, do not exist; but that is how it is. I am not trying to deny the...Boethius
And so sovereign Providence has often produced a remarkable effect--evil men making other evil men good. For some, when they think they suffer injustice at the hands of the worst of men, burn with hatred for evil men, and being eager to be different ...Boethius
So it follows that those who have reason have freedom to will or not to will, although this freedom is not equal in all of them. [...] human souls are more free when they persevere in the contemplation of the mind of God, less free when they descend ...Boethius
Indeed, the condition of human nature is just this; man towers above the rest of creation so long as he realizes his own nature, and when he forgets it, he sinks lower than the beasts. For other living things to be ignorant of themselves, is natural;...Boethius