Plutarch (c. AD 46 – AD 120) was a Greek biographer and essayist who lived under the Roman Empire. His Lives, in which he provides parallel biographies of famous individuals from Greek and Roman history and philosophy, is an important historical source. His Moralia is a series of moralizing essays displaying Platonic philosophical tendencies.
Special Collections has a number of important early translations of Plutarch into a variety of languages. These include the humanist translation of the Lives into Latin used by the early printer Nicolas Jenson; the translation of the Moralia into Latin by the famous French humanist Guillaume Budé; various editions of the influential first translation of Plutarch into French by Jacques Amyot; and two editions of Sir Thomas North's translation into English of Amyot's French version (an important source for William Shakespeare's Roman plays).