Tuesday, September 09, 2014


A Doorkeeper in the House of Philology

Basil Lanneau Gildersleeve (1831-1924), Hellas and Hesperia (New York: Henry Holt and Company, 1909), pp. 44-45:
It is true that the scholar of to-day, like the scientific man of to-day, must be a specialist. A great teacher, one to whose living presence I owe a great deal, one whom I love to recall in his flashing prime, has said: Enthusiasm abides only in specialization. Rightly interpreted, I believe in this also. A man who simply raves about the glory that was Greece and the grandeur that was Rome is one for whom the real lover of antiquity has little respect. A man who exhausts his English vocabulary in extolling a Greek orator and mistranslates the passages that he selects for especial comment is worse than the infidel who does not believe in Greek. It is better to be a doorkeeper in the house of philology than to dwell in the tents of the rhetorician.
Related post: Specialists versus Generalists.

<< Home
Newer›  ‹Older

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?