Friday, June 18, 2004


Bentley's Method

R.C. Jebb, Bentley (London, 1909), p. 224:
Even with a Bentley's power, a Bentley could have been made only by his method, -- by his devoted and systematic study, not of books about the classics, but of the classical texts themselves; by testing, at each step, his comprehension of what he read; by not allowing the mere authority of tradition to supersede the free exercise of independent judgement; and by remembering that the very right of such judgement must rest on the patience, the intelligence, the completeness with which the tradition itself has been surveyed.
Bentley is the famous English classical scholar, Richard Bentley (1662-1742). Jebb's own devotion to this same ideal is evident on every page of his magisterial commentary on Sophocles.

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