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About the book
  • Published: 18 April 2016
  • ISBN: 9780099573180
  • Imprint: Vintage Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 208
  • RRP: $19.99

The Ancient Art of Growing Old




An original, accessible exploration of Greek and Latin wisdom on age and ageing

Bette Davis said ‘Old age ain’t no place for sissies’. If that’s true, we could all use a little help as we approach our twilight years. Translator Tom Payne turns to Ovid, Seneca, Hippocrates, Plato, Aristotle, and Aristophanes to discover invigorating counsel on mental decline, medicine, late love affairs, death and legacy. This lively tour of ancient attitudes to ageing, supplemented by a translation of Cicero’s ‘On Old Age’, reveals the true art of growing old gracefully.

  • Pub date: 18 April 2016
  • ISBN: 9780099573180
  • Imprint: Vintage Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 208
  • RRP: $19.99

About the Author

Tom Payne

Tom Payne was born in 1971. He read Classics at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge and was deputy literary editor of the Daily Telegraph. He now lives with his wife and four children in Dorset, where he teaches English and Classics at Sherborne School, and Latin at the Gryphon School. His previous books are Fame: from the Bronze Age to Britney, and a verse translation of Ovid's The Art of Love (both in Vintage).

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Praise for The Ancient Art of Growing Old

“Payne teases out advice on mental decline, medicine, late love affairs, death and legacy from the classical world and presents it in a witty and readable way”

Antonia Charlesworth, Big Issue

“A meditative celebration and self-help book. It would make a wonderful gift for anyone hurtling, like me, towards 60”

Sara Wheeler, Observer

“A humorous guide to classical authors’ advice on the downhill catwalk of age”

Sara Wheeler, Observer


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