Friday, December 04, 2009


What Is a Humanist?

Edward Kennard Rand, Founders of the Middle Ages (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1928; rpt. New York: Dover Press, 1957), pp. 102-103:
A humanist is one who has a love of things human, one whose regard is centred on the world about him and the best that man has done; one who cares more for art and letters, particularly the art and letters of Greece and Rome, than for the dry light of reason or the mystic's flight into the unknown; one who distrusts allegory; one who adores critical editions with variants and variorum notes; one who has a passion for manuscripts, which he would like to discover, beg, borrow, or steal; one who has an eloquent tongue which he frequently exercises; one who has a sharp tongue, which on occasion can let free a flood of good billingsgate or sting an opponent with an epigram.

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