Using old books to understand even older books

Remember how this bibliography was given at the beginning of a recent study?

That is rare to see. (Lambinus = Denis Lambin.) Usually you’re only shown scholarship from the 1980s and up. Moderns chattering with moderns.

I showed you how Harold Bloom gives you old scholarship in various of his studies, and he’s an exception. This is a chief way modern-day priests control knowledge. It’s a closed group, they only see each other as authorities.

Here’s a pdf of some old interpretations of classics.

a clear picture of the genre and its development in the period from about 1400-1700 does not yet exist.

The three centuries following this time act like these older interpretations don’t exist.

The Gutenberg printing press was invented in 1440, so go from there.

Some nerds like me might have noticed the pattern of CONSTANTLY seeing postmodern interpretations of old, older, and oldest texts. That’s the norm, by far. You’re just seeing things purely through the lens of the last few decades if you read those interpretations exclusively.

How does this Denis Lambin (1520-1572 AD) see Horace (65-8 BC)?

I know that decline is possible from the experience of juxtaposing writers from the 1880s with writers from the 1980s, when it’s palpable that the former have sounder instincts.

These are the scholars from 300-600 years ago

I mentioned before that even in the first century! people were saying that without a guide no one will be able to understand the Greeks of 400 BC.

Good way to put it

It mediated between the reader and the text by making the text–so to speak–‘ready to eat’

I can tell you right now that a few of the most important philosophers are not made ready to eat by the interpretations surrounding them, quite the opposite.

I wonder if the obsolescence of Latin is connected in any way with the Rise of the Plebs

From the thirteenth to the eighteenth century, any kind of serious teaching was done in Latin.

I bet many of these old interpretations have never been translated out of Latin.

It’s a serious problem if you only see Marx and Deleuze, say, in every book from the last two and a half centuries. And then you can take another step from there and laugh at the people who interpret shows through other shows. A 2019 show perceived through the lens of a 2014 show, that’s the level many are on. This is another sort of closed group.

At this rate in our culture, I’d probably prefer to read interpretations from 1521 rather than 2021, it’s just the former aren’t handed to me in any sense and they aren’t easy to locate.

I just feel surrounded by people who don’t want to be reminded they’re slaves. They want excuses to not think about anything. They want to live as if all the dogmas of 2021 are 100% true. How lazy. The dim spark of spirit they do have they use to snuff other ones out. What exemplary human beings. I think many of them truly do believe that consciousness is some kind of curse, and they want to be chewing watermelon without a thought in their head. “Yes!!!! YEs!!!!!” Your society has failed you if you’re like that. Would you universalize that attitude to all of humanity? If so, imagine what life would be like. We’d all be back in the wilderness with the animals. Is that really who you want to be? Consciousness is a curse to them, maybe it would’ve been better to keep them illiterate after all. In the old days, which are pretty recent actually, the majority of peasants didn’t have a clue what was going on in the academy. A simple life. I think there are many people who would rather live in total ignorance of higher learning, rather than be in a sense between the two worlds.

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