« PreviousContinue »
(Boutemont), Savigny, de la Mothe Fouqué, Michelet, and others, which also enriched England with her Laboucheres, Romillys, and Latouches, her Gambiers, Garniers, Chevaliers, &c., filled Holland with men whose names have become illustrious in the liberal arts. Of the professors who have added a lustre of late years to the University of Leyden several are derived from this stock, — the eminent Latinist Peerlkamp (Perlechamps), the Orientalist Dozy, and last but not least Cobet. The happy admixture of the phlegmatic Batavian with the vivacious Gaul would seem to offer the very best physical conditions for the making of a consummate scholar; but in the last-named gentleman there is a double proportion of the Gallic element, as his mother was a Frenchwoman, the niece of a General in the French army. He was created an extra Professor of Greek in the University of Leyden in 1846 on account of his great merits, though there was no vacancy at the time.*
Cobet stands unquestionably at the head of the band of scholars who have revived in the University of Leyden the school of criticism which was founded there by Scaliger, but with the advances which experience has taught them to make upon the methods of former times. To the discursive learning of Bentley, who was chiefly concerned to restore concinnity of phrase, and correctness of statement, and metrical harmony; and to the grammatical accuracy of the school of Porson, Elmsley, and Dobree; the Dutch school add a profound study of the ancient grammarians and of the Byzantine writers, through whose works
* It may interest our readers to have before them a list of Professor Cobet's works, and the following is, we believe, complete:
1. Prosopographia Xenophontea. "An undergraduate's prize essay, but shor ing the future scholar.
2. 'Observationes Criticæ in Platonis Comici Reliquias' (1840). His thesis for the doctor's degree; which attracted the notice of the German scholars, and among others of old Godfrey Hermann.
3. The Inaugural Discourse upon his appointment as Professor in 1846, which we have referred to more than once in the course of this article.
4. The Scholia on Euripides at the end of Geel's edition of the Phænissæ (1846).
5. The edition of Diogenes Laertius, in Didot's series of Greek authors (about 1847 or 8). 6. An edition of the Anabasis of Xenophon (Leyden, 1859). 7. An edition of the Hellenics of Xenophon (F. Muller, Amsterdam, 1862).
8. The Fragment of Hyperides' Funeral Oration, with admirably learned and ingenious notes (Leyden, 1858).
9. The Treatise of Philostratus, nepl youvaotuhs, and a severe critique on its discoverer, Minoides Menas, which is well deserved (Leyden, 1858).
10. An edition of Lysias, with an excellent preface (Amsterdam, F. Muller, 1863), 11. The Mnemosyne: a periodical, which, as it went on for several years, became more and more the work of Cobet, and was written almost entirely by himself. He afterwards published separately his own contributions to the early portions under the title of Variæ Lectiones and Novæ Lectiones (1857 and 1858).
But there is as yet no separate publication of the later numbers of the Mnemosyne.
12. An edition of the Greek Testament, edited in conjunction with A. Kuenen (1860), with a Preface which will well repay perusal.
they are able to trace the actual steps of corruption in the Greek language. In the latter they detect the forms familiar to the copyists, those very forms of the introduction of which they find the Attic grammarians-Mæris, Ammonius, and Phrynichus, constantly complaining. While thus convinced that the MSS. must not be servilely followed, they rely on the familiarity, which may be acquired by long study, on the one hand with the tricks and peculiarities of copyists, on the other with the pure ancient idioms, to enable us to substitute those idioms for the errors of the copyists. To a superficial observer these critics may seem to disparage and undervalue the authority of manuscripts; but the careful study of what the MSS. really are tends more and more to confirm the judgment of the Dutch school, and to justify their refusal to follow blindly such blind guides.
England still possesses distinguished scholars trained in the school of Porson, Elmsley, and Dobree. Trinity College, Cambridge, continues to be the chief seat of sound criticism. Its new Master, PROFESSOR THOMPSON, has few equals and certainly no superior in Europe in Greek scholarship; to one of its former Fellows, CANON BLAKESLEY, we owe an edition of Herodotus, which is full of original criticism most successfully applied to many of the innumerable questions in history, topography, mythology and genealogy, which that author presents ; two of its present Fellows, MR. COPE and MR. CLARK, the Public Orator, have gained honourable distinction by their critical labours, and from the latter we are anxiously expecting the long-promised edition of Aristophanes: while from the same College has come MR. MUNRO's edition of Lucretius, which is the most valuable contribution made to Latin scholarship for many years past. But it were vain to deny that, amidst the attention devoted to other branches of classical learning, the art of criticism needs that new impulse which, after the lapse of centuries, is once more offered to us by the example of Leyden. And therefore it is that we desire to welcome the efforts of an English scholar who has made this field of study peculiarly his own. We do not assign to DR. CHARLES BADHAM the invidious distinction of standing alone in his devotion to the traditions of our older scholarship, like a literary Abdiel
• faithful found Among the faithless, faithful only he ;' but, at all events, he is the special exponent among us of the views of the Dutch school, with whose leaders he is personally familiar, and whose principles he has thoroughly mastered. He is well known to the best scholars at home and abroad by his critical editions of the Iphigenia in Tauris, the Helena and 2 B 2
But the por
the Ion of Euripides, and of the Phædrus and Philebus of Plato ; which contain many felicitous emendations, marked by sagacity and critical insight worthy of a Porson or an Elmsley. Having lately received from the University of Leyden the honorary degree of Doctor Litterarum, as the recognition of the merits with which the chiefs of the University were personally conversant, he has acknowledged the honour by an essay in the art of emendation, worthy of the school of criticism to which he has been affiliated. His choice has fallen upon the Euthydemus of Plato, to which the Laches is appended to fill up the just measure of the volume. How well he has exemplified the principles he has adopted, will be confessed by every classical scholar who will make a minute examination of his text. tion of the volume which will prove most generally interesting is the prefatory Epistola ad Senatum Lugdunensem Batavorum, in which Dr. Badham gives specimens of emendations over a wide range of authors, including Æschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, Thucydides, Plato, and Plutarch. Among the works passed under review in the Letter to the University of Leyden, the Laws of Plato were but scantily quoted, and no wonder; for, like all preceding scholars, Dr. Badham had judged that the extent of the corruption was such as in most cases to baffle all attempts at emendation ; but on a closer inspection, and reasoning from analogy, of a few passages which he thought he could correct with certainty, he saw reasons for changing his mind and renewing his endeavours. To account for the well-known difficulties in settling the text of this Treatise, Dr. Badham contends that no other work within the compass of Greek literature has suffered to so great an extent from two of the commonest forms of corruption, the additions made by ignorant correctors, and the mistakes in the endings of words. The reason of this he finds in the probability, of which renewed examination has convinced him, that all the existing copies of Plato's work which contain this Treatise are derived from one MS., in which the final syllables were compendia; and the ignorant copyists accommodated the cases and other terminations to those of the nearest words, without studying the true syntax; thus giving us innumerable corruptions of such a form as εφ' ίππων oχoυμένων for εφ' ίππων óxoúueva. Guided by these principles, Dr. Badham has come to the conclusion that many of the cases that seemed hopeless are not beyond the art of the critical physician. He has published the result of his experiments in a letter addressed to Professor Thompson, on whose elevation to the Mastership of Trinity he passes a well-deserved encomium.
* Libentissime sane ex hoc exemplo didici non omnes honores in verbosissimum et inanissimum quemque conferri, sed valere etiamnum apud civitatis principes honeste partam doctrinæ virtutisque famam. Tibi vero quis non ex animo gratuletur, qui te semper strenuum amicum atque adjutorem omnibus præbueris, quorum studia et conatus probares ?
It remains to cull a few emendations, out of the hundreds which crowd the pages of both letters, as samples of Dr. Badham's critical performances, and of the principles which guide him.
In the beautiful Chorus of the Trachinia (vv. 497-530), describing the contest between Hercules and the river Acheloüs for the hand of Dejanira, Sophocles, sceing the objection to the description being put into the mouths of the virgins who could not have seen the fight, throws in at the end the phrase which is commonly read εγώ δε μάτηρ μεν οία φράζω, and which the commentators explain on the principle of making some sense out of anything,—' Ego autem velut mater (i.e. verecundanter) loquor,' or else, I relate it as the mother (did).' But, by the insertion of a single letter, Dr. Badham reads, "Eyvo dè párnp wèv oia opátw, for, as we read in the ensuing words, Dejanira left the side of her mother, who remained the only close spectator of the combat.
We have not space to show how sense is restored to a beautiful passage of the Edipus at Colonus (1119-20) by the correction of TÒ AIII APEC to TA'AEI IIAPOC, but it is worth while to quote in Dr. Badham's own words an example from the same play, in which the principles of metre and sense guide to a correction :1164-5. σοι φασίν αυτόν εις λόγους ελθεϊν μολόντ'
αίτεϊν, απελθείν τ' άσφαλώς της δεύρ' οδού. Non nego fieri posse ut Sophocles si verbum magna vi præditum aliter commode inserere non posset trisyllabicam vocem in tine versus truncatam positurus fuerit. Sed molóvra non modo vi caret, sed vel ad explendum metrum vix admitti deberet. Non enim hic de loco unde venerit Polynices nec de itinere agitur, sed tantummodo de rebus quas sibi concedi precatur. Mihi persuasum (est) modóvta locum vocabuli occupare quod magnopere sensum adjuvaret, scilicet povov, cujus prius v postquam ut toties factum est cum à confusum est, scriba masculinum postulari ratus 7 adjecit.'
The metrical argument suggests to the author a converse emendation on Catullus :
'Eandem quam Sophocli extorquere conor licentiam alii poetæ concedendam puto ut sensum versui reddamus. In Catulli Coma Berenices, vv. 78-9,
Quicum ego, quum virgo quondam fuit, omnibus expers
Unguentis una millia multa bibi. Pro expers legendum aspers'. Literas A et X a librariis sæpe confundi docuit Magnus Gronovius in Observationibus ad Livium.
Euripides Euripides supplies two interesting examples of palæographic corrections. Medea having appealed to Ægeus (v. 744),
"Όμνυ πέδον Γης πατέρα θ' “Ήλιον πατρός
τουμού θεών τε συντιθείς άπαν γένος. Ægeus makes the fit response (v. 750),–
"Όμνυμι Γαίας δάπεδον, Ηλίου τε φώς. But the copyist, misreading AANEAON as AAMIIPON, attached this word to the second clause, and then, to set the grammar straight, Γαίας was changed to Γαίαν.
We are reminded of Porson's saying that in criticism, as in Love and War, nothing however slight must be overlooked, by the correction of another passage in the same play, which has hitherto been the crun of all Editors : (909-910)-εικός γάρ οργάς θήλυ ποιείσθαι γένος Γάμους παρεμπολώντος αλλοίoυς «πόσει. All the ingenious and unsatisfactory notes on this unheard of construction might have been spared if scholars had only observed that the Vatican ΜS. has γάμου. Following this indication our Corrector borrows a o from årroious which does not want it, and restores it to the unjustly despoiled πόσει. This brings out the true force of the word παρεμπολάν: When a strange union beguiles and conveys away their husbands.
A striking instance of mistaking abbreviations is found in the Hecuba (vv. 846-7), where the common text has,
Δεινόν γε, θνητούς ώς άπαντα συμπίτνει
εχθρούς τε τους μεν πρίν ευμενείς ποιούμενοι. Strange and inconsistent results, indeed, for laros to work out. But in truth Hecuba is speaking of the power and inscrutable providence of the gods ; and the copyist, not understanding the abbreviation OI MONOI, altered it by the common error, notum pro ignoto, into OI NOMOI.
Aristophanes supplies our author with, as he says, one έρμαιον, which he thinks will please all 'qui judicium auctoritati anteponendum putant.' Having quoted an example of the reverence of the editors for the MSS. in their rejection of the reading of Diogenes Laertius, οίνου τ' απέχει κάδηφαγίας for οίνου τ' απέχει και γυμνασίων, he gives the following as a proof not merely of errors of MSS., but of the mala fides of scribes in the same play of the Clouds : : V. 376-8: “Όταν εμπλησθώσ' ύδατος πολλού κάναγκασθώσι φέρεσθαι,
κατακρημνάμεναι πλήρεις όμβρου δι' ανάγκην, είτα βαρείαι εις άλλήλας εμπίπτουσαι ρήγνυνται και πατάγoύσιν.