Wednesday, September 02, 2015


Men of Taste versus Barbarians

All My Road Before Me: The Diary of C.S. Lewis, 1922-1927, ed. Walter Hooper (San Diego: Harcourt, Inc., 1991), pp. 444-445 (diary entry for February 1, 1927; footnote omitted):
Went to Peacock's room at Oriel afterwards to the Mermaids. I don't know why I am in this society. They are all (except Brett-Smith) rather vulgar and strident young men, who guffawed so at every suggestion of obscenity in the White Divel wh. we were reading as to ruin the tragic scene. There's no doubt at all when one passes from the Greats to the English crowd, one leaves the χαριέντες for the τυχουτες, the men of taste and wit and humanity for a mere collection of barbarians.
I doubt that Lewis wrote the nonsensical τυχουτες, and if the manuscript of his diary shows that he did, the editor should have corrected it. Surely what Lewis wrote or meant to write was τυχόντες (Liddell-Scott-Jones, s.v. τυγχάνω, sense A.2.b: "everyday men, the vulgar").


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