More's Utopia and the golden age
Ferguson, Richard B.
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In the eighth century B.C.^ Heslod wrote In his poem. Works and Days, about the Golden Age of Saturn when there was no sin, pain, or corruption. Prom that time men of all centuries have attempted to create similarly desirable societies. Most of the perfect societies that were created were but Imperfect attempts to imitate the Golden Age of Saturn. Thomas More, in the early sixteenth century, also aspired to create a perfect society; however, he was unique primarily because he did not imitate or redescribe the age of Saturn. There are obvious dissimilarities between the Utopian society and the Golden Age. More, being the scholar that he was, must have been aware of this mythological Golden Age; yet, there is a conspicuous lack of reference to it in Utopia. It is the purpose of this thesis to discover why Sir Thomas More did not allude to the Golden Age in his Utopia. In approaching this problem I have discussed (1) the life and philosophy of More himself, (2) the Utopia and how it was composed, (3) the Golden Age as it has been described since Heslod. And finally, I have attempted to explain the similarities and differences between the Utopian commonwealth and the Golden Age.