Thursday, September 27, 2012


Totus in Illis

Francis Wayland, "Address [on Moses Stuart]," in Memorial of the Semi-Centennial Celebration of the Founding of the Theological Seminary at Andover (Andover: Warren F. Draper, 1859), pp. 156-165 (at 158):
His motto was totus in illis, and no man ever exemplified it more perfectly in every pursuit of his life. No matter whether the subject were great or small, if he thought upon it at all, it was with an absorbing interest. Connected with this were, instinctive exultation in success, and mortification at even the fear of failure. He could not be satisfied with anything that he had done, unless he had done it as well as he could. To fail, after he had done all in his power to secure success, troubled him, whether in his garden, on his farm, or in his study. I well remember that on one occasion he needed a little assistance in getting in his hay, and indicated to his class that he would be gratified if some of us would help him for an hour or two. There was, of course, a general turn out. The crop was a sorry one, and as I was raking near him, I intimated to him something of the kind. I shall never forget his reply. "Bah! was there ever climate and soil like this! Manure the land as much as you will, it all leaches through this gravel, and very soon not a trace of it can be seen. If you plant early, everything is liable to be cut off by the late frosts of spring. If you plant late, your crop is destroyed by the early frosts of autumn. If you escape these, the burning sun of summer scorches your crop, and it perishes by heat and drought. If none of these evils overtake you, clouds of insects eat up your crop, and what the caterpillar leaves the canker-worm devours." Spoken in his deliberate and solemn utterance, I could compare it to nothing but the maledictions of one of the old prophets. I trust that both the climate and soil of this hill of Zion have improved since I last raked hay here in Professor Stuart's meadow.
The motto totus in illis comes from Horace, Satires 1.9.2. Here is the beginning of Horace's satire (tr. H. Rushton Fairclough):
I was strolling by chance along the Sacred Way, musing after my fashion on some trifle or other, and wholly intent thereon...

Ibam forte via sacra, sicut meus est mos,
nescio quid meditans nugarum, totus in illis...
The motto doesn't appear in Renzo Tosi, Dictionnaire des sentences latines et grecques, tr. Rebecca Lenoir (Grenoble: Jérôme Millon, 2010). Commentators compare Horace, Epistles 1.1.11: omnis in hoc sum.

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