Many of you dear readers are avid learners and researches but maybe you have NOT heard about the Harvard Classics- gasp! I came across this list a few years ago BEFORE my older two were in High School.
The Harvard Classics originally known as Dr. Eliot’s Five Foot Shelf, is a 51-volume anthology of classic works from world literature, compiled and edited by Harvard University president Charles W. Eliot and first published in 1909. “Dr.Charles W.Eliot, the former Harvard president who edited the series, maintained that if one read just 15 minutes a day from the 51 volumes he assembled, it would constitute “a good substitute for a liberal education to anyone who would read them with devotion.”
I want to tackle this huge list of books but there’s no way this mama of 4 is going to lug huge books around for the next several years! Then I thought why not create an audio addition that can be uploaded to your phone or Kindle! (you can purchase a Kindle on Amazon here or grab the free Kindle App for pc, mac, phone or tablets!)
Eureka! a much better solution not only for me but for my audiobook loving friends and children. So without further ado I will share links to as many of the Harvard Classics in audio form as possible. I will also include the length of time for each so that a high school student can keep track of time spent for their transcript. If you prefer to read the Harvard Classics they are available on Kindle here!
Disclaimer: I have not personally listened to or read through all of these so please us this list of audiobooks at your own discretion.
Benjamin Franklin (07:30:39), John Woolman, William Penn
Plato: The Apology, Crito and Phaedo, Epictecus (02:40:11), Marcus Aurelius (04:47:46)
Bacon Essays (06:17:02), The New Atlantis (01:37:09), Milton’s Prose: Areopagitcica and Tractate of Education, Thomas Browne: Religio Medici (5:24:54)
Milton’s Complete Poems in English- On the Morning of Christ’s Nativity (00:09:06), On Time (00:01:15), Il Penseroso (00:12:25), L’Allegro (00:07:35), Paradise Lost (10:59:21)
EXTRA -Milton Poetry Yale Course ENGL220 Open Courses or iTunes
Emerson. Essays and English Traits- Essays, First Series (8:28:33), Essays, Second Series (6:34:59)
Burns. Poems and Songs- 250th Anniversary (01:15:06)
EXTRA- Robert Burns: Poems, Songs and Legacy MOOC Course
Saint Augustine, The Confessions (13:49:38) and Thomas A Kempis, Imitation of Christ (08:42:03)
Nine Greek Dramas- The House of Atreus and Prometheus Bound (01:09:17)
Letters and Treatises of Cicero (03:11:37) and Pliny (10:36:57)
Adam Smith. The Wealth of Nations Book 1 (09:17:25 ), Book 2 & 3 (05:39:01), Book 4 (10:46:19), and Book 5 (10:51:09)
Darwin. The Origin of Species (23:44:21)
Plutarch’s Lives of the Noble Greeks and Romans Book 1 (08:43:09), Book 2 (08:54:52), Book 3 (05:46:03) and Book 4 (08:32:15)
Virgil’s Aeneid (10:42:22)
Cervantes. Don Quixote, Part I (18:58:10)
Bunyan, Life of Bunyan and The Pilgrim’s Progress (13:00:26) and Walton, Lives of Donne and Herbert (05:00:27)
The Thousand and One Nights/Arabian Nights Volume 1 (13:29:30) & Volume 3 (15:59:53)
Folk-Lore and Fable: Aesop Fables (04:29:26), Grimm’s Fairytales (11:07:21), Andersen’s Fairytale Vol.2 (05:49:14)
Modern English Drama: Dryden All for Love (02:44:19) , Sheridan The School for Scandal (2:56:42), Goldsmith She Stoops to Conquer (2:23:18), Shelley The Cenci (01:06:22), Browning, Byron Manfred (1:34:43)
Goethe: Faust (4:18:58), Egmont, Hermann and Dorothea (02:29:40) Marlowe: Doctor Faustus (02:18:24)
Dante: The Divine Comedy (13:04:17)
Manzoni: I Promessi Sposi (29:10:52)
Homer: The Odyssey (14:42:14)
Dana: Two Years Before the Mast (17:41:32)
Burke: On Taste, A Letter to a Noble Lord, On the Sublime (02:55:34); Reflections on the Revolution in France (10:47:58), A Philosophical Enquiry (06:33:49)
J. S. Mill: Autobiography and Essay on Liberty and Thomas Carlyle: Characteristics, Inaugural Address, and Essay on Scott
As overwhelming as this might seem this is just HALF of The Harvard Classics please join me next week when I publish The Harvard Classics Audiobook Edition Part 2!
Remember that you could listen to a little each day all year and make some major headway on this classical education via The Harvard Classics!
Hey there! Where can I find Part 2?
I realized that I never completed it. I have spent 2 hours working on it today!
Did you make a part 2 yet?
Matthew R says
Grateful for this. Im just getting started.
Matt, I am still working one it. That particular list has been much harder to find in audio form but I will get it posted soon whether I find all the links or not.