UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

The changing emphasis of the imagery in satires on language and learning McCandless, Carol Anne 1979

Your browser doesn't seem to have a PDF viewer, please download the PDF to view this item.

Notice for Google Chrome users:
If you are having trouble viewing or searching the PDF with Google Chrome, please download it here instead.

Item Metadata

Download

Media
831-UBC_1979_A8 M22_5.pdf [ 5.88MB ]
Metadata
JSON: 831-1.0094831.json
JSON-LD: 831-1.0094831-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): 831-1.0094831-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: 831-1.0094831-rdf.json
Turtle: 831-1.0094831-turtle.txt
N-Triples: 831-1.0094831-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: 831-1.0094831-source.json
Full Text
831-1.0094831-fulltext.txt
Citation
831-1.0094831.ris

Full Text

T H E C H A N G I N G E M P H A S I S O F T H E I M A G E R Y I N S A T I R E S ON L A N G U A G E A N D L E A R N I N G by CAROL ANNE McCANDLESS B.A. (Honours), Simon Fraser Univers i ty , 1976 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of English) We accept th i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA June, 1979 0 Carol Anne McCandless, 1979 In presenting th i s thesis in par t i a l fu l f i lment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the Univers ity of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the Library shal l make i t f ree ly avai lable for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of th i s thesis for scholar ly purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by his representatives. It i s understood that copying or publ icat ion of th i s thesis for f inanc ia l gain shal l not be allowed without my written permission. Department of The Univers ity of B r i t i s h Columbia 2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 DE-6 B P 75-S I 1 E i i ABSTRACT The t rad i t i on of sat i res on the perversions of language and learning has been characterized by a recurrence of themes and, p a r t i c u l a r l y , of stock images. There are two broad themes that invar iab ly appear in sat i res on language and learning. One i s the rat ional man's capacity for garbled knowledge and for self-approving opinion, concomitant with his superior a b i l i t y to deceive both himself and others. The other i s the consequence of man's Faustian desire for a l l knowledge combined with a propensity for metaphysical and speculative theories and doctrines abstracted from common sense and the p r a c t i c a l i t i e s of everyday l i f e . The imagery of sat i res on learning is also consistent through-out the t r ad i t i on . Stock characters such as the pedant, the p l a g i a r i s t , the windy philosopher, the shallow-read "Modern," the. c r i t i c who preys on better men's works, and the poseur who empties a l l words of meaning, some or a l l of these form a part of a l l sat i res on language and the uses of knowledge. But, even though there was a common fund of s a t i r i c imagery and a l lu s ion that s a t i r i s t s could and did draw upon, each s a t i r i s t was s t i l l responding to the ideological context of his own period, and this response i s re f lected in each s a t i r i s t ' s pa r t i cu l a r emphasis. There are two i n te l l e c tua l events that are of pa r t i cu la r importance to this s a t i r i c a l t r ad i t i o n , the Greek r a t i o n a l i s t enlightenment of the fourth century B.C. and the "new rat ional i sm" of the eighteenth century A.D. Each resulted in a profound ideological s h i f t in Western i n t e l l e c tua l thought. The Greek enlightenment signaled the separation of the rat ional from the mythological mode of th inking. The eighteenth i i i century enlightenment was a movement which secular ized many areas of i n te l l e c tua l endeavour previously thought to l i e so le ly within the purview of the Church. These two movements are of pa r t i cu la r importance because both re ly heavily on the Word as the ultimate rat ional expression of man. H i s t o r i c a l l y , the Word has had a unique s ign i f i cance. The Class ical and Chr i s t ian humanist views of the Word are two d i s t i n c t but related att i tudes. The C lass ica l att i tude developed in two d i rect ions , in the art of rhetor ic and in. the conception of the Logos as the informing p r inc ip le of the Word. The C lass ica l doctrine of the Logos had an important place in the early Chr i s t ian church, and the idea of reason as the divine p r i nc ip le in man, and the Word as an expression of that divine p r inc ip le was absorbed in to , and reinforced by, scholast ic i sm. Even when Chr ist ian humanists rejected the methodology of scholast ic i sm, they reinforced i t s r a t i o n a l i s t i c assumptions that a l l the data of sensation "becomes an object of cognition that in i t s he i rarch ica l sweep leads ult imately to God. Thus every fact takes on, as i t were, a sacramental function of attest ing to the glory of God" (Herschel Baker, The Wars of Truth, p.t 5.) By examining a number of s a t i r i s t s from d i f fe rent h i s t o r i ca l periods we can see how stock images introduced by Aristophanes have been adopted and developed by succeeding s a t i r i s t s through to Swift and we can get the sense of a f a i r l y constant s a t i r i c t r ad i t i on . I t i s not the purpose of this paper to examine the t rad i t i on exhaustively but merely to indicate that the t rad i t i on ex i s t s , and that i t s main character i s t ic s can be determined. i v In order to establ i sh the existence of a t r ad i t i on i t i s necessary to establ i sh the reason for i t s existence, and therefore I have attempted to demonstrate the importance of the Word to men imbued with C lass ica l and Chr i s t ian humanist idea l s . I have also b r i e f l y described the nature and the impact of the ideological changes that took place during the two r a t i o n a l i s t i c movements of the f i f t h century B.C. and the eighteenth century A.D. Within the t rad i t i on of sat i res on language and learning i t i s possible to show how each s a t i r i s t ' s emphasis has d i f fered in response to the ideological context of his time. . For example, Aristophanes i s dealing with a profound ideological s h i f t while i t i s in the process of occurring, but to Lucian the s h i f t had receded into his cu l tura l background, an already established ideological fact . Consequently, although both s a t i r i s t s attack, for instance, sophist ica l philosophers, the i r concerns and the i r emphases are very d i f fe rent . This paper traces these ideological events and the consequent changes i n emphasis in the imagery of s a t i r i s t s in the t rad i t i on of language and learning. TABLE OF CONTENTS Chapter I. THE TRADITION IN SATIRES ON THE ABUSES OF LANGUAGE AND LEARNING The Importance of the Word Greek Rationalism E i gh teen th -Gen tury E nl i gh tenmen t II. CLASSICAL SATIRISTS AND THEIR EMPHASES Aristophanes: Clouds Lucian: S a t i r i c a l Sketches I I I . RENAISSANCE SATIRISTS Erasmus: The Praise of Fo l ly Rabelais: Gargantua and Pantagruel Donne: Second Sat i re Jonson: The Alchemist IV. SEVENTEENTH-CENTURY AND EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY SATIRISTS . . But ler: Characters and Elephant on the Moon Shadwell: The Virtuoso Dryden: MacFlecknoe King: Dialogues of the Dead Buckingham: The Rehearsal Swift: A Tale of a Tub V. CONCLUSION CHAPTER I THE TRADITION IN SATIRES ON THE ABUSES OF LANGUAGE AND LEARNING The Importance of the Word Greek Rationalism Eighteenth-Century Ehlightenment 2 To a contemporary r e a d e r , one o f the more p e r p l e x i n g a s p e c t s o f Augustan s a t i r e i s the p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h bad w r i t i n g and w i t h the abuse o f language and l e a r n i n g . S k i l l e d w r i t e r s such as S w i f t and Rope, Gay and A r b u t h n b t , the g r e a t e s t s a t i r i s t s of our l anguage , spent much o f t h e i r t ime and energy on t h i s t o p i c . Th i s conce rn i s p a r t i c u l a r l y d i f f i c u l t f o r us to unde r s tand today s i n c e bad w r t i n g i n the form o f the " p u l p s " has been w i t h us f o r a l o ng t i m e . Casua l d i s t o r t i o n o f language has become a commonplace f o r us , thanks to t e l e v i s i o n : and the a d v e r t i s i n g a g e n c i e s , and l e a r n i n g has by now been t r a n s l a t e d i n t o " j o b s k i l l s " w i t h " q u i c k i e " d i p l omas a v a i l a b l e upon r e q u e s t . H i s t o r i c a l l y , however, men have f e l t d i f f e r e n t l y about language and l e a r n i n g . The Word has had un ique s i g n i f i c a n c e f o r them, and they have been a l e r t to any i n d i c a t i o n o f i t s abuse. The s a t i r e o f language and l e a r n i n g i s an e x p r e s s i o n o f t h i s c o n c e r n , and t h e r e i s a t r a d i t i o n o f such s a t i r e s f rom the C l a s s i c a l p e r i o d to the e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y . The t r a d i t i o n o f s a t i r e on the p e r v e r s i o n s o f language and l e a r n i n g has been c h a r a c t e r i z e d by a r e c u r r a n c e o f themes and , p a r t i c u l a r l y , o f s t o ck images. By e xam in i n g a number o f s a t i r i s t s from d i f f e r e n t h i s t o r i c a l p e r i o d s we can see how s t ock images i n t r o d u c e d by A r i s t o p h a n e s have been adopted and deve loped by s u c c e e d i n g s a t i r i s t s th rough to S w i f t and we can get the sense of a f a i r l y c o n s t a n t s a t i r i c t r a d i t i o n . I t i s p o s s i b l e to e s t a b l i s h t h a t the t r a d i t i o n e x i s t s , and to de te rm ine i t s main c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s a l t hough I w i l l not 3 examine the t r a d i t i on e x h a u s t i v e l y S w i f t ' s A Ta l e o f a Tub i s a u s e f u l c o n c l u s i o n to t h i s paper because the s a t i r i c a l concern about the abuse o f language and l e a r n i n g had reached a c r i t i c a l s t age d u r i n g the Augus tan Age, when i t became d r a m a t i c a l l y e v i d e n t t h a t the C l a s s i c a l and the C h r i s t i a n humani s t i d e a l s o f language and l e a r n i n g were c o l l a p s i n g , a c o l l a p s e t h a t was t r a n s f o r m i n g eve ry a s p e c t o f s o c i e t y . To the Augustan s a t i r i s t s i t seemed as i f a c i v i l i z a -t i o n was coming to an end. Dur ing t h i s p e r i o d , much o f the s a t i r i c a t t a c k was d i r e c t e d a g a i n s t the p e r v e r s i o n s o f language and l e a r n i n g , as we can see from the S c r i b l e r i a n endeavou r . S w i f t ' s A T a l e o f a Tub i s a l s o a f o c a l p o i n t because t h i s s a t i r e i n c o r p o r a t e s a l l the s t o c k imagery from p r e v i o u s s a t i r e s and a t the same t ime i n i t i a t e s the most p r e v a l e n t and p r o f u s e a t t a c k i n the e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y , the a t t a c k a g a i n s t the c o r r u p t i o n and c o m m e r c i a l i z a t i o n o f language and l e a r n i n g . In eve r y p e r i o d , even though s a t i r i s t s who a t t a c k e d the p e r v e r s i o n s o f language and l e a r n i n g were w r i t i n g w i t h i n a t r a d i t i o n , they were s t i l l r e s pond i n g to the i d e o l o g i c a l c o n t e x t o f t h e i r own p e r i o d , and t h i s re sponse i s r e f l e c t e d i n each s a t i r i s t ' s p a r t i c u l a r emphas i s . For examp le , A r i s t o p h a n e s i s d e a l i n g w i t h a p ro found i d e o l o g i c a l s h i f t w h i l e i t i s in the p roce s s o f o c c u r r i n g , but to L u c i a n the , s hi i f t had receded i n t o h i s c u l t u r a l backg round , an a l r e a d y e s t a b l i s h e d i d e o l o g i c a l f a c t . C o n s e q u e n t l y , a l t hough both s a t i r i s t s a t t a c k , f o r i n s t a n c e , s o p h i s t i c a l p h i l o s o p h e r s , t h e i r concerns and t h e i r emphases are very d i f f e r e n t . 4 However, b e f o r e we can beg in to examine the t r a d i t i o n as i t d e v e l o p s , we must t r y to de te rm ine why the s a t i r i s t s p l a c e d such impo r tance on the s a n c t i t y o f the Word. The C l a s s i c a l and C h r i s t i a n humani s t v iews o f the Word are two d i s t i n c t but r e l a t e d a t t i t u d e s . The C l a s s i c a l a t t i t u d e deve l oped i n two d i r e c t i o n s , i n the a r t of r h e t o r i c and i n the c o n c e p t i o n o f the Logos as the i n f o r m i n g p r i n c i p l e o f the Word. A r i s t o t l e i s a u s e f u l s t a r t i n g p o i n t f o r b o t h , not because e i t h e r began w i t h him but because o f h i s powe r f u l i n f l u e n c e on European t hough t . A c c o r d i n g to A r i s t o t l e , the i n f o r m i n g p r i n c i p l e o f a l l m a t t e r i s the Logos , an o r d e r l y and r a t i o n a l f o r c e which t r a n s f o r m s i n e r t m a t t e r i n t o i t s v a r y i n g shapes.^ I t i s a c r e a t i v e f o r c e i n h e r e n t i n a l l t h i n g s and u l t i m a t e l y l i n k i n g God and man. The S t o i c s drew out the s i g n i f i c a n c e o f the Logos even f u r t h e r . They saw i t as the v i t a l i z i n g f o r c e and the law g u i d i n g the u n i v e r s e , as the f o r c e from which a l l t h i n g s d e v e l o p e d , and c a l l e d i t the " S p e r m a t i c Logo s . " They a l s o d i s t i n g u i s h e d between the Logos as p o t e n t i a l , unman i f e s t ed 2 Reason,and the Logos as the Thought o f God e x p r e s s e d i n a c t i o n . But b e f o r e the thought o f God c o u l d be e x p r e s s e d i n a c t i o n , they a r g u e d , i t must be e x p r e s s e d i n l a nguage , because o n l y th rough language can men t ransmute the r a t i o n a l impu l se they r e c e i v e ^ A r i s t o t l e ' s Phys i cs , Book I I I . 2 A. V. G. A l l e n , The C o n t i n u i t y o f C h r i s t i a n Thought (London: Ward, L o c k , & Bowden , 1 895) , p. W. 5 from the Logos . W a l t e r Ong exp re s se s t h i s t r a n s m u t a t i o n as o c c u r r i n g " . . . because the human word i s u t t e r e d a t the j u n c t u r e where i n t e r i o r awareness and e x t e r n a l even t meet and where , moreover , encoun te r between person and per son o c cu r s at i t s most human depths . . Thus man's r a t i o n a l e x p r e s s i o n became l i n k e d w i t h the p r i n c i p l e o f the Logos , and t h i s he lp s to e x p l a i n the impo r tance p l a c e d on the a r t and s c i e n c e o f r h e t o r i c . R h e t o r i c i n the p h i l o s o p h y o f A r i s t o t l e i s e s s e n t i a l l y the a r t o f e x p r e s s i n g and t r a n s m i t t i n g i n language an a b s t r a c t t r u t h . No l e s s than l o g i c , i t i s a means o f b r i n g i n g out t r u t h , o f making peop le see what i s t r u e and f i t t i n g . I t i s l a r g e l y through C i c e r o , the most eminent o r a t o r o f Roman c i v i l i z a t i o n , t h a t the A r i s t o t e l i a n emphasis on r h e t o r i c as a branch o f p h i l o s o p h y came i n t o the humani s t t r a d i t i o n . The o r a t o r , a c c o r d i n g to C i c e r o , i s a p h i l o s o p h e r , and h i s t r a i n i n g i n r h e t o r i c cannot be s e p a r a t e d from h i s t r a i n i n g as a p h i l o s o -pher : L e t us assume, t h e n , a t the b e g i n n i n g what w i l l become c l e a r e r h e r e a f t e r , t h a t p h i l o s o p h y i s e s s e n t i a l f o r the e d u c a t i o n o f our i d e a l o r a t o r ; not t h a t p h i l o s o p h y i s e v e r y t h i n g , but t h a t i t he l p s the o r a j o r as p h y s i c a l t r a i n i n g he l p s the a c t o r . . . . C i c e r o emphas izes the impo r tance o f the use o f l anguage : We must now t u rn to the ta sk o f p o r t r a y i n g the W a l t e r J . Ong, The P re sence o f the Word (New Yo rk : Simon and S c h u s t e r , 19 7 0 ) , p. 181. 4 C i c e r o ' s O r a t o r , Loeb C l a s s i c a l L i b r a r y , p. 315. 6 p e r f e c t o r a t o r and the h i g h e s t e l o q u e n c e . The very word " e l o q u e n t " shows t h a t he e x c e l s because o f t h i s one q u a l i t y , t h a t i s , i n the use o f l a n guage , and t h a t a l l o t h e r q u a l i t i e s a re overshadowed by t h i s . For the a l l - i n c l u s i v e word i s not " d i s c o v e r e r , " o r ^ ' a r r a n g e r , " o r " a c t o r , " but i n Greek he i s c a l l e d ftvjT top f rom the word " t o s p e a k , " and i n L a t i n he i s s a i d to be " e l o q u e n t . " For everyone c l a i m s f o r h im-s e l f some p a r t o f the o t h e r q u a l i t i e s t h a t go to make up an o r a t o r , but the supreme power i n ^ s p e a k i n g , t h a t i s e l o q u e n c e , i s g r a n t e d to him a l o n e . Q u i n t i l i a n ' s I n s t i t u t i o o r a t o r i a c o d i f i e d C i c e r o ' s p r i n c i p l e s by p r o v i d i n g a comprehens ive cour se o f i n s t r u c t i o n , t a k i n g a s t u d e n t from i n f a n c y to the t ime when he became a complete o r a t o r . To these p r i n c i p l e s , however, he gave a d i s t i n c t moral emphas i s . The o r a t o r was to be " a good man s k i l l e d a t s p e a k i n g . " S i n c e e l oquence s e r ved the p u b l i c w e l f a r e , i t must be f u sed w i t h v i r t u e , and p h i l o s o p h y was a component p a r t o f the r h e t o r i c a l t r a i n i n g : " L e t ca re i n words be s o l i c i t u d e f o r t h i n g s . " 7 In a d d i t i o n to t h e i r own p e r i o d , the r h e t o r i c a l i d e a l s o f A r i s t o t l e , C i c e r o , and Q u i n t i l i a n were to e x e r c i s e g r e a t i n f l u e n c e d u r i n g the R e n a i s s a n c e , when they became e s s e n t i a l c r i t e r i a f o r the e d u c a t i o n o f g r e a t and good men. Thomas E l y o t ' s The Gove rnou r , p u b l i s h e d i n 1 5 3 1 , expounded upon " t h e e d u c a t i o n or form o f b r i n g i n g up the c h i l d o f a gent leman wh ich i s to have 5 I b i d . , p . 351. 6 Q u i n t i l i a n ' s . . I n s t i t u t i o o r a t o r i a , Loeb C l a s s i c a l L i b r a r y , V I I I , proem. 7 I b i d . , V I I I , proem. 7 a u t h o r i t y i n a p u b l i c w e a l . " He recommends the c l a s s i c s as the sou rce o f m o r a l i t y and l e a r n i n g , and v i s u a l i z e s the " g o v e r n o u r " as a man o f p e r s o n a l v i r t u e who i s measured and v i r t u o u s i n the c l a s s i c a l sense . E l y o t ' s work had a g r e a t i n f l u e n c e , and i n i t he c o u n s e l s : By the t ime t h a t the c h i l d do come to seven teen yea r s of age, to the i n t e n t h i s courage be b r i d l e d w i t h r e a s o n , i t were n e e d f u l to read unto him some works of p h i l o s o p h y , s p e c i a l l y t h a t p a r t t h a t may i n f o r m him unto v i r t u o u s manners, wh ich p a r t of p h i l o s o p h y i s c a l l e d m o r a l . Wherefore t h e r e would be read to h im, f o r an i n t r o d u c t i o n , two the f i r s t g books of the work of A r i s t o t l e c a l l e d E t h i cae . . . However, when the c h i l d i s s t i l l too young to s tudy p h i l o s o p h y , someone . . . s t u d i o u s l y e x e r c i s e d i n the a r t of an o r a t o r , s h a l l f i r s t read to him somewhat of t h a t p a r t of l o g i c t h a t i s c a l l e d Topi c a , e i t h e r of C i c e r o . . . . o r A g r i c o l a . . . . Immedi a t e l y a f t e r t h a t , the a r t of R h e t o r i c would be s emb l ab l y t a u g h t , e i t h e r i n G reek , out of Hermogenes, or of Q u i n t i l i a n i n L a t i n , b e g i n n i n g a t the t h i r d book, and i n s t r u c t i n g d i l i -g e n t l y the c h i l d i n t h a t p a r t o f R h e t o r i c , p r i n c i p a l l y , wh ich c once rne th p e r s u a s i o n , f o r as much as i t i s most apt f o r c o n s u l t a t i o n s . These C l a s s i c a l i d e a l s , deve loped by A r i s t o t l e and expanded and c l a r i f i e d by l a t e r C l a s s i c a l w r i t e r s , were to dominate Western c u l t u r e u n t i l the e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y . There was a l s o , however, a C h r i s t i a n l i n e of deve lopment of the s a n c t i t y of the Word. C e r t a i n books o f the O ld Testament Thomas E l y o t , The Gove rnou r , i n Tudor P o e t r y and P r o s e , ed . J . W i l l i a m H e b e l , Hoyt H. Hudson, F r a n c i s R. J ohn son , A. W i g f a l l G reen , Rober t Hoopes (New Yo rk : A p p l e t o n - C e n t u r y C r o f t s , 1953 ) , p. 575. 9 I b i d . , p. 5 85. ^ I b i d . , p. 583. 8 p r e s e n t a p r i n c i p l e c a l l e d the Wisdom o f God a c t i v e i n the w o r l d . ^ At the same t ime t he re was an a n c i e n t Hebrew i d e a o f the Word o f God as a l s o a c t i v e i n the w o r l d ( the Greek word 1 2 Logos e xp re s s e s a c o a l e s c e n c e o f these two p r i n c i p l e s ). S t . J ohn , i n the f i r s t f o u r t e e n ve r se s o f h i s g o s p e l , s t a t e s the i d ea o f the Gospel s i m p l y and c l e a r l y : In the b e g i n n i n g was the Word, and the Word was w i t h God, and the Word was God. . . . And the Word was made f l e s h , and dwe l t among us, (and we behe l d h i s g l o r y , the g l o r y as o f the onlu. bego t ten o f the F a t h e r , ) f u l l o f g race and t r u t h . That i s , the Logos , wh ich i s the e t e r n a l God, took f l e s h and became man, i n t i m e , and the Logos i s C h r i s t . The d o c t r i n e o f the Logos had an i m p o r t a n t p l a c e i n the t h e o l o g y o f the e a r l y C h r i s t i a n Chu rch . I t was the answer o f the Church f a t h e r s to v a r i o u s h e r e s i e s o f the person o f C h r i s t which a t the t ime seemed p l a u s i b l e and made Jesus a phantom, an emana t i on , o r a demi -god . The e a r l y F a t he r s i d e n t i f i e d C h r i s t w i t h the Law o f God, j u s t as the Greeks had i d e n t i f i e d the Law w i t h the Logos: In d e f e n d i n g the t r u t h o f the i n c a r n a t i o n a g a i n s t those who m a i n t a i n e d t h a t such a d o c t r i n e i m p l i e d what was absurd and i m p o s s i b l e , A t h a n a s i u s draws h i s argument from Greek p h i l o s o p h y , and urges the S t o i c p r i n c i p l e o f the d i v i n e immanence, as l e n d i n g r a t i o n a l i t y and p r o b a b i l i t y to the c o n v i c t i o n t h a t the Word became f l e s h and dwe l t among men. ' F o r the 1 1 Deut. 8 : 3 ; J e r . 5:13. 1 2 As i n the S t o i c ' s d i s t i n c t i o n between Logos as a c t u a l or p o t e n t i a l . See p.3 n.2 above. 1 3 John 1:1-14. 9 w o r l d i t s e l f may be thought o f as one g r e a t body i n wh ich God i n d w e l l s ; and i f He i s i n the w h o l e , He i s a l s o i n the p a r t s . I t i s no more unworthy o f God t h a t He s h o u l d i n c a r n a t e H i m s e l f i n one man, than i t i s t h a t He s h o u l d dwe l l i n the w o r l d . S i n c e he ab ide s i n human i t y , wh ich i s a p a r t o f the u n i v e r s e , i t i s not un rea sonab l e t h a t he s h o u l d take up H i s abode i n a man who s h o u l d thus become ^ the organ by which God a c t s on the u n i v e r s a l l i f e 1 . The a p o l o g i s t s t a l k e d about the Logos to show the pagans t h a t C h r i s t i a n i t y was i n agreement w i t h " t h e be s t thought o f the t i m e s . " Thus J u s t i n argued t h a t C h r i s t was the " S p e r m a t i c L ogo s , " the Reason o f God, a t f i r s t i m m a t e r i a l i n the F a t h e r ' s bosom, then s en t f o r t h as the spoken word f o r c r e a t i o n and r e v e l a t i o n , as m a n i f e s t e d i n the g o s p e l . A l l men are made i n the image of the Logos , and " t h o s e who b e l i e v e i n C h r i s t are men i n whom the 1 5 d i v i n e s e e d , wh ich i s the Logos , d w e l l s . " Thus deve l oped the i d e a o f reason as the d i v i n e p r i n c i p l e i n man, and the Word as an e x p r e s s i o n o f t h a t d i v i n e p r i n c i p l e . Th i s c o n c e p t i o n of reason r e s t e d on a r a t i o n a l i s t i c a s s umpt i on . Th i s was the c o n v i c t i o n t h a t an e s s e n t i a l l y r a t i o n a l i s t i c God, who c r e a t e d and s u s t a i n e d the u n i v e r s e f o r H i s own b e n e v o l e n t ends , i s the l e g i t i m a t e o b j e c t of man's supreme knowledge, and t h a t t h i s knowledge, a t t a i n e d through the d i s c o u r s e of reason and c o n f i r m e d by r e v e l a t i o n , c o n s t i t u t e s h i s u l t i m a t e w e l l - b e i n g . He r s che l B a k e r , s peak i n g o f the c e n t r a l i t y o f t h i s i d e a l o f reason to med ieva l C h r i s t i a n i t y , comments: The g r e a t e f f o r t o f s c h o l a s t i c i s m had been to a c h i e v e 1 4 A l l e n , p. 83. 1 5 J u s t i n A p o l o g y , c i t e d by A l l e n i n The C o n t i nu i ty o f  C h r i s t i a n Thought p. 29. 10 a r a t i o n a l t h e o l o g y , and i n the work of S t . Thomas, as i n i t s p o e t i c r e d a c t i o n by Dante, we have the monument to what some have w i s t f u l l y c a l l e d the med ieva l s y n t h e s i s . . . . For our p u r p o s e s , the s i g n i f i c a n c e o f the g r e a t summae o f the t w e l f t h and t h i r t e e n t h c e n t u r i e s l i e s not i n t h e i r m a r s h a l l i n g o f thousands of d e t a i l s , a u t h o r i t i e s , and c o n j e c t u r e s toward the supreme end o f the knowledge o f God, but r a t h e r i n the a s sumpt ion t h a t made such an e f f o r t p o s s i b l e . For by the axiom o f knowledge e ve r y e lement i n man's e x p e r i e n c e - - a l 1 the data o f s e n s a t i o n from them wh ich c o n s t i t u t e n a t u r a l knowledge — becomes an o b j e c t o f c o g n i t i o n t h a t i n i t s h e i r a r c h i c a l sweep l e ad s u l t i m a t e l y to God. Thus eve ry f a c t t ake s on , as i t we re , a , s a c r a m e n t a l f u n c t i o n o f a t t e s t i n g the g l o r y of G o d . 1 0 Th i s " e f f o r t " a s s u red language and l e a r n i n g o f a c e n t r a l p o s i -t i o n up to the R e n a i s s a n c e , when C h r i s t i a n humanism r e j e c t e d the methodology o f s c h o l a s t i c i s m , but r e i n f o r c e d i t s r a t i o n a l -i s t i c a s s u m p t i o n s , wh ich Baker has r e f e r r e d to as " t h e axiom o f know ledge . " For Hooker , as f o r S o c r a t e s , knowledge i s v i r t u e : Laws o f Reason have these marks to be known by. Such as keep them resemble most l i v e l y i n t h e i r v o l u n t a r y a c t i o n s t h a t very manner o f w o r k i n g wh ich Nature h e r s e l f doth n e c e s s a r i l y obse rve i n the cour se o f the whole w o r l d . The works of Nature are a l l behoove fu l , b e a u t i f u l , w i t h o u t s u p e r f l u i t y o r d e f e c t ; even so t h e i r s , i f they be framed a c c o r d i n g to t h a t wh ich the Law o f Reason t e a c h e t h . S e c o n d l y , those Laws are i n v e s t i g a b l e by Reason, w i t h o u t the he lp o f R e v e l a t i o n s u p e r n a t u r a l and d i v i n e . The s i g n i f i c a n t c o n t r i b u t i o n o f C h r i s t i a n humanism i s one o f f o c u s . Whereas med ieva l l e a r n i n g p r e p a r e d men f o r the w o r l d to come, C h r i s t i a n humanism saw a C h r i s t i a n as l i v i n g an a c t i v e l i f e here i n the w o r l d , f o s t e r i n g and n u r t u r i n g a l l t h a t was good i n H e r s c h e l B a k e r , The Wars o f T ru th (Cambr idge : Ha rva rd U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1 9 5 2 ) , p. 5 . 1 7 R i c h a r d Hooker , Of the Laws o f E c c l e s i a s t i c a l P o l i t y , i n Tudor P o e t r y and P r o s e , pp. 1 0 4 4 - 4 5 . 11 him. In o r d e r to do t h i s , a l l o f h i s f a c u l t i e s must be t r a i n e d and put to the s e r v i c e o f t h i s p u r s u i t , and a l l l e g i t i m a t e sou rce s o f knowledge must be s i m i l a r l y put to use. Thus P e t r a r c h r e j e c t e d the s c h o l a s t i c p h i l o s o p h y o f the M i d d l e Ages , but he r e v e r e d language and l e a r n i n g . H i s models were the e a r l y C h r i s t i a n f a t h e r s and the C l a s s i c a l L a t i n a u t h o r s . The p r i n -c i p l e s o f C l a s s i c a l r h e t o r i c were r e i n f o r c e d by h i s De v i r i s  i l l u s t r i b u s , a p a n e g y r i c to C i c e r o n i a n i d e a l s , and he r e i n s t a t e d the c u l t o f the c l a s s i c s and p o p u l a r i z e d t h e i r i m i t a t i o n . I m i t a t i o n o f the c l a s s i c s became a p o p u l a r i d e a l , and human i s t r h e t o r i c was b o r n , w i t h i t s d i c t i o n a r i e s , i t s handbooks o f L a t i n usage, i t s e xemp la , and i t s memor i z ing p r o c e d u r e s . Th i s was n o t , however, i m i t a t i o n f o r i t s own s a k e , but i m i t a t i o n l e a d i n g to the r e e s t a b ! i s h m e n t o f a s tudy which had been n e g l e c t e d f o r c e n t u r i e s . Nor was i t a n t i q u i t y f o r i t s own s a k e , but moral p h i l o s o p h y w i t h the gu idance o f a n t i q u i t y . Language and l e a r n i n g were aga in seen as e x p r e s s i o n s o f the e d u c a t i o n o f the whole man. These, t h e n , were the i d e a l s r e i t e r a t e d aga in and a g a i n from C l a s s i c a l t imes u n t i l the e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y , by men concerned w i t h l i t e r a t u r e and l e a r n i n g as a d i d a c t i c , r e l i g i o u s , and moral f o r c e . In the l a t e Rena i s s ance P h i l i p S idney r e s t a t e s A r i s t o t l e ' s a s s e r t i o n o f the f u n c t i o n o f r h e t o r i c as a means o f r e a c h i n g t r u t h : Th i s p u r i f y i n g o f w i t , t h i s e n r i c h i n g o f memory, e n a b l i n g o f judgment , and e n l a r g i n g o f c o n c e i t , wh ich commonly we c a l l l e a r n i n g , under what name s oeve r i t come f o r t h , o r to what immediate end soeve r i t be d i r e c t e d , the f i n a l end i s to l e a d and draw us as h igh a p e r f e c t i o n as our degenera te s o u l s , made worse by t h e i r c l a y l o d g i n g s , can 12 be capab le o f . From these two s o u r c e s , the C l a s s i c a l i d e a o f the Logos e x p r e s s e d through r h e t o r i c , and the C h r i s t i a n humani s t c o n c e p t i o n o f the d i v i n i t y o f the Word, came the power and s a n c t i t y o f l anguage and l e a r n i n g . The Rena i s s ance concern w i t h e m u l a t i n g the c l a s s i c s l e d to the a d o p t i o n o f the C l a s s i c a l d o c t r i n e o f i m i t a t i o n . I t was the most d i r e c t way o f i m b i b i n g the C l a s s i c a l p r i n c i p l e s t h a t v iewed a r t as the f i n e s t p r oduc t o f human e x c e l l e n c e and w r i t e r s as p r i n c e s among men. The C l a s s i c a l d o c t r i n e of i m i t a t i o n deve l oped p a r t l y as a consequence o f the c u m u l a t i v e i n f l u e n c e o f l i t e r a r y p r a c t i c e and r h e t o r i c a l and a e s t h e t i c t h e o r i e s . George Converse F i s k e , i n L u c i 1 i us and Ho r ace , e x p l o r e s the o r i g i n and e v o l u t i o n of t h i s t h e o r y : . . . the genera l , . t rend ,of anc i en t 1 i te ra ry . t r a d i t i on , r e i n f o r c e d by the t e a c h i n g o f the r h e t o r i c a l s c h o o l s , and f o r m u l a t e d by the t r e a t i s e s on l i t e r a r y c r i t i c i s m and r h e t o r i c , was to r e g a r d the s u b j e c t ma t t e r o f an e a r l i e r master i n any g i ven genre as the common p r o p e r t y o f p o s t e r i t y . Manuals o f r h e t o r i c and p o e t i c s were de s i gned to c o d i f y f o r the b e n e f i t o f the s t u d e n t the p r a c t i c e and t h e o r y o f good usage as i l l u s t r a t e d by the g r e a t C l a s s i c a l mode l s . The b a s i c p r i n c i p l e s o f C l a s s i c a l i m i t a t i o n we re , f i r s t , t h a t i n the v a r i o u s g e n r e s , the s u b j e c t m a t t e r o r theme was r ega rded as the common p r o p e r t y 1 g P h i l i p S i d n e y , The Defence o f Poesy i n S e l e c t e d Prose  and P o e t r y , ed . Rober t K imbrough, (San F r a n c i s c o ! K i n e n a r t P r e s s , 1 969') , p. 112. 1 9 George Converse F i s k e , L u c i l i u s and Horace (Mad i s on : U n i v e r s i t y of W i s c o n s i n P r e s s , 1 9 2 0 ) , p. TT. 13 o f p o s t e r i t y , and hence t h a t i ndependen t i n v e n t i o n was shunned. Second, w i t h i n the l i m i t s of the g e n r e , the p e r p e t u a t i o n o f wh ich was seen as a s a c r e d t r u s t , o r i g i n a l i t y was g i ven ample scope by means o f t h r ee p r i n c i p l e s . These were as f o l l o w s : f i r s t , a r e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f the m a t e r i a l i n a form i n s p i r e d by the a e s t h e t i c and e t h i c a l i d e a l s o f the p r e s e n t , and so t r a n s -formed as to g i v e u t t e r a n c e to those i d e a l s . Second , by d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n of the v a r i o u s gen re s . T h i r d , by the p r i n c i p l e o f improvement o f the model and a "generous r i v a l r y " w i t h the 20 mas te r . T h e r e f o r e , i m i t a t i o n o f a model o r b o r r o w i n g from any sou rce was never the s u b j e c t o f blame i n a n t i q u i t y , p r o v i d e d the i m i t a t o r showed independence i n the t r e a t m e n t o f h i s m a t e r i a l , and aimed a t improvement i n form and c o n t e n t . F i s k e , t a l k i n g p a r t i c u l a r l y about s a t i r e i n r e l a t i o n to the C l a s s i c a l t heo r y o f i m i t a t i o n , p o i n t s o u t : In such a genre as s a t i r e w i t h i t s c o n s t a n t p r e o c c u p a t i o n w i t h the s p i r i t o f the i n d i v i d u a l and o f s o c i e t y , w i t h i t s i n s i s t e n c e upon the p r i n c i p l e s wh ich mould c h a r a c t e r , w i t h i t s f r a n k , p o p u l a r , and humorous e x p r e s s i o n o f these s o c i a l and moral l a w s , t h e r e was a c c u m u l a t e d , so to speak , a v a s t mass o f human and s o c i a l m a t e r i a l . In so f a r as human and s o c i a l e x p e r i e n c e r epea t s i t s e l f i n eve ry age, t h i s m a t e r i a l had some measure o f f i x i t y . We, t h e r e f o r e , f i n d i n s a t i r e c e r t a i n c o n v e n t i o n a l themes e l a b o r a t e d w i t h g e n e r a l , but not too r i g i d adherence to r h e t o r i c a l schemes o f e x p o s i t i o n and even to a r g u -m e n t a t i v e sequences . Such s c h e m a t i z a t i o n may even be t r a d i t i o n a l i n s e v e r a l r e l a t e d gen re s . In the second p l a c e we f i n d a l a r g e mass of b r i e f l y worded gnomic wisdom and o f p o i n t e d and humorous a n e c d o t e , wh ich i s pp. 38-45, 20 I b i d . Th i s i s a pa raph ra se o f F i s k e ' s d i s c u s s i o n , 14 f r e e l y drawn upon by a l l the s a t i r i s t s to f u r n i s h c o n c r e t e i l l u s t r a t i o n f o r t h e i r i n t e r p r e t a t i o n and commentary on contemporary l i f e . Th i s a c c u m u l a t i o n o f m a t e r i a l p r o v i d e d a s t o r e h o u s e o f s u b j e c t m a t t e r , theme and imagery f o r subsequent s a t i r i s t s down th rough the e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y . S a t i r i s t s o f the abuses o f language and l e a r n i n g p a i d p a r t i c u l a r a t t e n t i o n to the r h e t o r i c a l uses of language as an i n s t r u m e n t o f l e a r n i n g . O r i g i n a l l y , the i d e a l was t h a t the t r a i n i n g o f a p u b l i c speake r must be an e d u c a t i o n of the whole man, and not s i m p l y a s tudy o f mere r h e t o r i c a l d e v i c e s . But as ends were con fu sed w i t h means, w i n n i n g an argument became i t s own j u s t i f i c a t i o n and m o r a l i t y and t r u t h were i g n o r e d . Th i s d i s t o r t i o n of the i d e a l became a s i g n i f i c a n t t a r g e t f o r C l a s s i c a l s a t i r i s t s , and the emphasis i n t h e i r s a t i r e s p o i n t s up t h i s d i s t o r t i o n . For i n s t a n c e , A r i s t o p h a n e s r i d i c u l e d windbag p h i l o s o p h e r s and s o p h i s t s who used the d e v i c e s of r h e t o r i c to t w i s t t r u t h to whatever shape t h e i r i n t e r e s t s d i r e c t e d . In many r e s p e c t s the s a t i r e on language was i d e n t i f i e d w i t h the j u s t i f i c a t i o n o r a p o l o g i a f o r wor thy s a t i r e . Ho r a ce , f o r i n s t a n c e , a n a l y z e s and r e f i n e s L u c i l i u s ' s a t i r i c approach i n o r d e r to more c l e a r l y d e f i n e the s u b j e c t m a t t e r , themes, and moral j u s t i f i c a t i o n o f s a t i r e , and i n the p roce s s what comes i n t o focus i s the r e c o g n i t i o n t h a t the burden of commun icat ion ( t h a t i s , l e a r n i n g and the r h e t o r i c a l language wh ich p r e s e n t s and i n t e r p r e t s l e a r n i n g ) i s d i d a c t i c , r e l i g i o u s , and m o r a l . F i s ke , p. 55. 15 There are two i n t e l l e c t u a l event s t h a t are o f p a r t i c u l a r impor tance to t h i s s a t i r i c a l t r a d i t i o n , the Greek r a t i o n a l i s t e n l i g h t e n m e n t o f the f o u r t h c e n t u r y B.C. and the "new r a t i o n a l ^ , i sm " o f the e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y A.D. Each r e s u l t e d i n a p ro found i d e o l o g i c a l s h i f t i n Western i n t e l l e c t u a l t hough t . The Greek e n l i g h t e n m e n t s i g n a l e d the s e p a r a t i o n o f the r a t i o n a l from the m y t h o l o g i c a l mode o f t h i n k i n g . The e i g h t e e n t h - c e n t u r y e n l i g h t e n m e n t was a movement which s e c u l a r i z e d many a reas o f i n t e l l e c t u a l endeavour p r e v i o u s l y thought to l i e s o l e l y w i t h i n the pu rv iew o f the Church . These two movements are o f p a r t i -c u l a r impo r tance because both r e l y h e a v i l y on the Word as the u l t i m a t e r a t i o n a l e x p r e s s i o n o f man. The new r a t i o n a l i s t i d e o l o g y o f the Greeks l e d to a new p e r s p e c t i v e and a new concern w i t h the means by which men might f i n d t r u t h . I t i s u s e f u l to the r e a d e r o f e i g h t e e n t h - c e n t u r y s a t i r e to unde r s t and what happened because i t p r o v i d e s one more reason why the s a t i r e on language was so i m p o r t a n t to the S c r i b l e r i a n endeavour o f S w i f t and Pope and t h e i r c o n t e m p o r a r i e s . The p r e - S o c r a t i c w o r l d view o f the Greeks was t h a t o f a u n i v e r s e dominated by f o r c e s o u t s i d e o f man. There was an overwhe lming sense o f human h e l p l e s s n e s s i n the f ace o f d i v i n e m y s t e r y , and o f the ate t h a t w a i t s on a l l human ach i e vement . In t h i s daemonic w o r l d e v i l was seen as a f o r c e t h a t a s s a u l t e d men from w i t h o u t . E n l i g h t e n m e n t , when i t came, came s l o w l y . The Greeks g r a d u a l l y l o s t f a i t h i n t h i s m y t h i c and daemonic w o r l d , and new b e l i e f s began to ga in a scendancy . 16 Th i s w i t h d r a w a l of the daemonic had two e f f e c t s . One was the ascendancy o f the r a t i o n a l ove r the i r r a t i o n a l wh ich W i l l i a m B a r r e t t d e s c r i b e s i n I r r a t i o n a l Man: The f a l l o f Be ing . . . o c c u r r e d when the Greek t h i n k e r de tached t h i n g s as c l e a r and d i s t i n c t forms from t h e i r encompass ing backg round , i n o r d e r t h a t they might reckon c l e a r l y w i t h them. The terms used i n G e s t a l t p s y c h b l o g y - - f i g u r e and ground--may be h e l p f u l h e r e : By d e t a c h i n g the f i g u r e from the ground the o b j e c t c o u l d be made to emerge i n t o the d a y l i g h t o f human c o n s c i o u s n e s s ; but the sense o f the g round , the e n v i r o n i n g backg r ound , c o u l d a l s o be l o s t . The f i g u r e comes i n t o s h a r p e r f o c u s , t h a t i s , but the ground r e c e d e s , becomes i n v i s i b l e , i s f o r g o t t e n . The Greeks detached be ings from the v a s t e n v i r o n i n g ground o f B e i n g . Th i s a c t o f detachment was accompanied by a momentous s h i f t i n the meaning o f t r u t h f o r the G reek s , a s h i f t wh ich He idegger p i n p o i n t s as t a k i n g p l a c e . i n a s i n g l e passage i n P l a t o ' s R e p u b l i c , the c e l e b r a t e d a l l e g o r y of the cave . The q u a l i t y o f a-1 e the i a , un -h i ddenness , had been c o n s i d e r e d the mark o f t r u t h ; but w i t h P l a t o i n t h a t passage t r u t h came to be d e f i n e d , r a t h e r , as the c o r r e c t n e s s o f an i n t e l l e c t u a l judgment . T ru th h e n c e f o r t h r e s i d e d i n the human i n t e l l e c t i n s o f a r as t h a t i n t e l l e c t j udged t r u l y about t h i n g s . By a d o p t i n g t h i s meaning of t r u t h as the p r ima r y and e s s e n t i a l one, the Greeks were ab l e to deve lop s c i e n c e , the unique and d i s t i n g u i s h i n g c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f Western c i v i l i z a t i o n . The second e f f e c t happened c o i n e i d e n t a l 1 y w i t h the f i r s t . Men had to c o n f r o n t naked the mys te ry o f e v i l , no l o n g e r as an a l i e n t h i n g a s s a u l t i n g from w i t h o u t , but from w i t h i n , as an e s s e n t i a l p a r t o f t h e i r own b e i n g . Many of the i n t e l l e c t u a l s o f the t ime responded by d e v e l o p i n g a p s y cho l ogy t h a t p o s i t e d a r a t i o n a l , mechan i ca l method o f d e a l i n g w i t h the i r r a t i o n a l : "Most p e o p l e , " says S o c r a t e s , "do not t h i n k o f knowledge as a f o r c e (ccfxr^ <*V) , much l e s s a dominant W i l l i a m B a r r e t t , I r r a t i o n a l Man (New Yo r k : Doubleday & Company, 1958 ) , p. 205. 17 or r u l i n g f o r c e : they t h i n k a man may o f t e n have knowledge w h i l e he i s r u l e d by someth ing e l s e , a t one t ime ange r , a t a n o t h e r p l e a s u r e o r p a i n , some-t imes l o v e , very o f t e n f e a r ; they r e a l l y p i c t u r e knowledge as a s l a v e wh ich i s k i c k e d about by a l l these o t h e r t h i n g s . " . , . . S o c r a t e s . . . e x p l a i n s away t h i s common v iew by t r a n s l a t i n g i t i n t o i n t e l l e c t u a l t e rms : the nearness o f an immediate p l e a s u r e or pa i n l e ad s to f a l s e judgements ana logous to e r r o r s o f v i s u a l p e r s p e c t i v e ^ 3 a s c i e n t i f i c moral a r i t h m e t i c would c o r r e c t t h e s e . O t h e r s , however, were never "mere " r a t i o n a l i s t s : they were deep l y and i m a g i n a t i v e l y aware o f the power, the wonder, and the p e r i l o f the i r r a t i o n a l . I t was t h i s awareness t h a t gave a power fu l energy to A r i s t o p h a n e s ' s a t i r e . He had o n l y s c o r n f o r those whose s p e c u l a t i o n s i g n o r e d the v i t a l and i r r a t i o n a l f o r c e i n men. Thus men b rought w i t h i n t h e i r compass a whole new range o f knowledge and , p a r a d o x i c a l l y , a whole new concept o f e v i l . As a consequence o f t h i s paradox a new p r e o c c u p a t i o n d e v e l o p e d : a concern w i t h the means by which men might f i n d t r u t h through l e a r n i n g , and an awareness on the p a r t o f some a r t i s t s o f the s e d u c t i v e n e s s of the i r r a t i o n a l e lements i n human na tu r e which govern so much o f what we t h i n k i s our t h i n k i n g . E. R. Dodds, The Greeks and the I r r a t i o n a l ( B e r k e l e y : U n i v e r s i t y o f C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 1 9 7 3 ) , p. 185. DcTdds i s q u o t i n g from P l a t o ' s Py thagora s 352BC, 356C-357E. Th i s d i a l o g u e i s d i r e c t e d a g a i n s t s o p h i s t s and s o p h i s t r y , the gene ra l t h e s i s be i n g t h a t these men, d e s p i t e t h e i r renown as t e a c h e r s , had no r e a l l y sound and c r i t i c a l v i e w s , p o s i t i v e o r n e g a t i v e , to o f f e r and were themse lves a t the mercy o f c l e v e r d i a l e c t i c i a n s , i n c l u d i n g S o c r a t e s , s h o u l d he choose to chop l o g i c w i t h them. Rega rd l e s s o f the f i d e l i t y , or l a c k o f f i d e l i t y , to S o c r a t e s ' r e a l p o s i t i o n , the v iews e x p r e s s e d r e p r e s e n t i n t e l l e c t u a l a t t i t u d e s c u r r e n t i n A r i s t o p h a n e s ' t i m e . 18 The Greek temperament seemed to en joy the pa r adox , f o r w h i l e the Greeks were p u r s u i n g the good l i f e th rough r a t i o n a l i n q u i r y , they were bemused w i t h w i t t y games t h a t showed how e a s i l y Reason d e f e a t s i t s e l f . They had a lways en j o yed p r o b l e m -p l a y s , and i n the e a r l i e r days such p l a y s expounded the m a n i f e s t w o r k i n g s - o u t o f D i v i n e J u s t i c e . But as e x t e r n a l i z e d e v i l became i n t e r n a l , the e x p o s i t i o n o f D i v i n e J u s t i c e was too l i m i t e d a theme to e n t e r t a i n the w i t t y A t h e n i a n s , and they i n t r o d u c e d c o m p l e x i t i e s o f p l o t wh ich made the j u s t i c e ha rde r to work out u n t i l a t l a s t , i n the p l a y s o f E u r i p i d e s , they found a p l a y -w r i g h t whose aim was to l e a v e the p rob lem u n s o l v e d . E u r i p i d e s was the d r a m a t i c exemp la r o f the i n n a t e A t h e n i a n fondness f o r e q u i v o c a t i o n . E. R. Dodds comments on E u r i p i d e s : Whether the poet |Eur ip ides . ] had S o c r a t e s i n mind when he wrote the Medea, I d o n o t know. But a c o n s c i o u s r e j e c t i o n o f S o c r a t i c t heo r y has been s e e n , I t h i n k r i g h t l y , i n the famous words t h a t he put i n t o the mouth o f Phaedra t h r ee y e a r s l a t e r . M i s c o n d u c t , she s a y s , does not depend on a f a i l u r e o f i n s i g h t , " f o r p l e n t y of peop le have good u n d e r s t a n d i n g . " Mo, we know and r e c o g n i z e our good, but f a i l to a c t on the knowledge: e i t h e r a k i n d o f i n e r t i a o b s t r u c t s u s , o r we are d i s t r a c t e d from our purpose by "some p l e a s u r e . " . . . . Nor do these passages s t and a l o n e ; the moral impotence o f the reason i s a s ^ r t e d more than once i n f ragments from l o s t p l a y s . The amb i va l ence o f the C l a s s i c a l a t t i t u d e toward Greek r a t i o n a l i s m was e x p r e s s e d i n a s i m i l a r response by C h r i s t i a n s who a t t a c h e d s h i f t i n g va l ue s to reason and f a i t h . But r e g a r d -l e s s o f p o i n t o f v i e w , schoolman o r human i s t , c o n s e r v a t i v e o r r e f o r m e r , Rena i s s ance o p t i m i s t or s c e p t i c , the u n d e r l y i n g Dodds, p. 187. 19 as sumpt ions were the same. That i s , t h a t Reason was a g i f t o f God, g i ven to a i d those who wou ld d i s c o v e r v i r t u e . Th i s means t h a t f o r many Rena i s s ance s c h o l a r s , t r u t h i s a t t a i n a b l e on l y through the c a u t i o u s and r i g o r o u s e x e r c i s e o f r e a s o n , and i n consequence the w o r l d l i e s s u b j e c t to a l l the p e r v e r s i o n s o f reason b rought about by f o o l s and knaves . S a t i r i s t s , who l i k e to keep a f i n g e r on the moral p u l s e o f s o c i e t y , have n a t u r a l l y been conce rned w i t h the " p e r v e r s i t y " o f r e a s on . The i m p l i e d c r i t e r i o n i s the i d e a l o f wisdom as a l i f e o f a c t i v e v i r t u e , t h a t i n v o l v e s p r a c t i c e r a t h e r more than . t h e o r y - - a n d not c o m p a r t m e n t a l i z e d p r a c t i c e , but a c t i v i t y t h a t i n c l u d e s the whole man as a s i n g l e m o r a l , r e l i g i o u s , and s e n t i e n t b e i n g . The r e a l i t y i s r e p r e s e n t e d i n the two broad themes t h a t i n v a r i a b l y appear i n s a t i r e s on l e a r n i n g . One i s the r a t i o n a l man's c a p a c i t y f o r g a r b l e d knowledge and f o r s e l f -a p p r o v i n g o p i n i o n , c oncom i t an t w i t h h i s s u p e r i o r a b i l i t y to d e c e i v e both h i m s e l f and o t h e r s . The o t h e r i s the consequence of man's F a u s t i a n d e s i r e f o r a l l knowledge combined w i t h a p r o p e n s i t y f o r m e t a p h y s i c a l and s p e c u l a t i v e t h e o r i e s and d o c t r i n e s a b s t r a c t e d from common sense and the p r a c t i c a l i t i e s o f eve ryday l i f e . These themes appear i n a l l s a t i r e s on language and l e a r n i n g from the c l a s s i c s to the p r e s e n t day. To summar ize, the Greek c e l e b r a t i o n o f reason r e p r e s e n t e d an immense and nece s s a r y s t ep f o r w a r d , but i t was a l s o a l o s s , because i t meant t h a t reason was de tached from the m y t h i c , r e l i g i o u s , p o e t i c impu l se s w i t h wh ich i t had h i t h e r t o been i n t r i n s i c a l l y c o n n e c t e d . Th i s s e p a r a t i o n demanded t h a t a 20 c o n s t a n t v i g i l a n c e be m a i n t a i n e d ove r t h a t o t h e r p a r t , the e v i l , i r r a t i o n a l impu l se s c o n t a i n e d w i t h i n us. In s a t i r e , t h i s s e p a r a t i o n was m a n i f e s t e d i n the two themes d e s c r i b e d above, t h a t i s , the h e i g h t e n e d a b i l i t y of a r a t i o n a l man to d e c e i v e , and the F a u s t i a n l o n g i n g f o r complete knowledge. In the e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y , o r r a t h e r the l a t t e r p a r t of the s e v e n t e e n t h c e n t u r y , ano the r i d e o l o g i c a l s h i f t o c c u r r e d , i n some r e s p e c t s a lmos t the r e v e r s e of the Greek S o c r a t i c movement wh ich gave s a n c t i t y to the Word. The e i g h t e e n t h - c e n t u r y s h i f t made the Word a m a r k e t p l a c e commodity. Th i s debasement of the Word was the consequence o f t h r ee e l e m e n t s : a g e n e r a l s e c u l a r i z a t i o n o f knowledge, an i n c r e a s i n g s c e p t i c i s m t h a t undermined c o n f i d e n c e i n man's r a t i o n a l c a p a b i l i t i e s and , most i m p o r t a n t , the p r o l i f e r a t i o n o f bad w r i t e r s and bad w r i t i n g through c e r t a i n t e c h n o l o g i c a l deve lopments i n the p r i n t i n g p re s s and the m a n u f a c t u r i n g of p ape r . A t the b e g i n n i n g o f the s e ven teen th c e n t u r y , the word " s c i e n c e " s t i l l meant both k n o w ! e d g e - - a c q u i r e d by a s y s t e m a t i c a c q u a i n t a n c e w i t h the a s s e r t i o n s of a u t h o r i t y f rom A r i s t o t l e down through h i s s c h o l a s t i c i n t e r p r e t e r s - - a n d g e n e r a l t r u t h , made e v i d e n t by the c o n t r o l l i n g f i c t i o n s of a r t and l i t e r a t u r e . N a t u r a l p h i l o s o p h y i n c l u d e d a n y t h i n g from the dy i ng s t age s of alchemy and a s t r o l o g y to the e x c i t i n g and f r i g h t e n i n g new r e v i s i o n s of the a g e ' s sense o f the u n i v e r s e . These r e v i s i o n s were be i n g b rought about by a c e n t u r y o f g l o b a l e x p l o r a t i o n and r e v o l u t i o n a r y a s t r o n o m i c a l t h o u g h t , and they soon ex tended i n t o o t h e r a reas o f knowledge. "And new p h i l o s o p h y c a l l s a l l i n 21 d o u b t , " l amented John Donne i n h i s Anatomy o f the W o r l d , and i t was not o n l y the o l d maps o f t h a t w o r l d , the P t o l e m a i c cosmo logy , the mac r o -m i c r o co sm i c r e l a t i o n s h i p s , the h i e r a r c h i e s o f be i ng i n a n i m a l , v e g e t a b l e , and m i n e r a l k ingdoms, as w e l l as i n n a t i o n s and churches whose l o s s he bemoaned. I t was a l s o a whole a t t i t u d e towards c e r t a i n t y , a c o n d i t i o n o f c omfo r t t aken i n d e m o n s t r a t i o n s l o g i c a l l y deduced from p r o p o s i t i o n s o f unque s t i oned a u t h o r i t y . The new e m p i r i c a l a t t i t u d e s toward t r u t h s about n a t u r e t h r e a t e n e d some o f t h a t d e d u c t i v e s e c u r i t y , t h a t sense o f p r o t e c t i o n which c l o s u r e a f f o r d s . One o f the c a s u a l t i e s o f the new e m p i r i c i s m was the c e r t a i n t y o f o r t hodox r e l i g i o u s v i ews . Th i s weaken ing o f t r a d i t i o n a l r e l i g i o n i n the s e ven teen th c e n t u r y o c c u r r e d a g a i n s t a background o f v i o l e n c e and exces s t h a t l a y beneath the t h i n veneer o f c i v i l i z e d b e h a v i o u r . H a l f the c h i l d r e n borne d i e d i n i n f a n c y . The London mob, n o t o r i o u s f o r i t s t o u c h i n e s s , was a lways ready to b u r s t i n t o v i o l e n c e , and c o c k - f i g h t i n g and bear and b u l l b a i t i n g by v i c i o u s dogs were s t a n d a r d r u r a l p a s t i m e s . Drunken-ness was the pa s t ime of a l l c l a s s e s . The c o n f u s i o n s engendered by the u l t i m a t e l y c o n t r a d i c t o r y v iews o f man's n a t u r e , the o r t hodox r e l i g i o u s v iew and the modern s e c u l a r view, which w i l l be e x p l a i n e d be l ow, may he l p e x p l a i n the f r e q u e n c y o f n e u r o s i s and o u t r i g h t i n s a n i t y among s e r i o u s peop le d u r i n g t h i s p e r i o d . For a p e r i o d c a l l e d the Age o f Reason, i t was a t ime when the i r r a t i o n a l and the s e l f -d e s t r u c t i v e ro se dange rou s l y near the s u r f a c e . 22 To the a c t i v e humani s t i n t e l l e c t , compensat ion c o u l d l i e i n the expan s i on o f wisdom, but the s p r e a d i n g of r e a s o n ' s l i g h t had not o n l y r e s u l t e d i n an i n c r e a s i n g knowledge but a l s o i n c i v i l war and the h o r r o r s o f s e c t a r i a n i s m . A l t hough the r a d i c a l s were d e f e a t e d and the R e s t o r a t i o n government was f i r m l y i n c o n t r o l , many men were s t i l l haunted by the s p e c t r e o f anarchy t h a t had raged b r i e f l y d u r i n g and a f t e r the C i v i l War, when Eng l i shmen had been i n s p i r e d to " such a d e s i r e o f n o v e l t y as 25 ro se to a contempt " o f the e s t a b l i s h e d o r d e r i n church and s t a t e . Th i s d e s i r e f o r , and a d u l a t i o n o f , n o v e l t y was e x p r e s s e d i n both r e l i g i o u s and s c i e n t i f i c s p e c u l a t i o n , and s i n c e magic and s u p e r s t i t i o n s t i l l played a large part in popular thought, t h i s mix p roduced s t r a n g e and b i z a r r e t h e o r i e s and v i s i o n s . I n t e r e s t i n the s c i e n c e s o f alchemy and a s t r o l o g y was w i d e s p r e a d d u r i n g t h i s p e r i o d , not l e a s t among r e l i g i o u s and p o l i t i c a l r a d i c a l s . I t i s not a c c i d e n t a l t h a t Ra l pho , H u d i b r a s ' s q u i r e , was a t once a s e c t a r y and a He rmet i c p h i l o s o p h e r . Many o f the advocate s o f these s p e c u l a t i v e t h e o r i e s had been v o l u n t a r i l y o r i n v o l u n t a r i l y s i l e n c e d w i t h the e s t a b l i s h m e n t o f the R e s t o r a t i o n government, but t h e o r i e s such as the d o c t r i n e o f p r o g r e s s and i n s t i t u t i o n s such as the Royal S o c i e t y were the e i g h t e e n t h s c e n t u r y h e i r s to much o f the en thu s i a sm and p r o s e l y t y z i ng s p i r i t o f these men. Henry S t u b b e ' s The Lo rd Bacon ' s R e l a t i o n o f the Sweat ing  S i c k n e s s Examined, c i t e d by C h r i s t o p h e r H i l l i n The Wor ld Turned  Upsi de Down (London: Temple S m i t h , 1 9 7 2 ) , p. 299. 23 The second e lement o f the e i g h t e e n t h - c e n t u r y i d e o l o g i c a l s h i f t was a consequence o f a p a r t i c u l a r emphasis on s c e p t i c i s m t h a t deve loped w i t h Monta igne and wh ich r e s u l t e d i n the g rowing r e a l i z a t i o n t h a t man's reason was i n adequa te and p o s s i b l y even s u b v e r s i v e to man's good. B u t l e r seems to have b e l i e v e d t h i s ; he f e l t t h a t human na tu re encompassed t h r e e k i nd s o f men: those who employ reason to d e c e i v e o t h e r s , those who are r a t i o n a l l y d e c e i v e d by knaves o r by t h e m s e l v e s , and those n a t u r a l f o o l s 2 and madmen whose " l i t t l e w i t . . . tends n a t u r a l l y to k n a v e r y . " N e v e r t h e l e s s , u s i n g o n e ' s reason to d i s c r i m i n a t e between good and e v i l i s n e c e s s a r y because t h e r e i s a tendency i n man towards d e g e n e r a t i o n , and i f a man mere ly responds to h i s impu l s e s he w i l l be drawn i n t o e x p r e s s i n g t h i s d e g e n e r a t i o n . S w i f t , i n F u r t h e r Thoughts on R e l i g i o n , says t h i s very c l e a r l y : L i o n s , b e a r s , e l e p h a n t s , and some o t h e r an ima l s are s t r o n g and v a l i a n t , and t h e i r s p e c i e s never degene ra te i n t h e i r n a t i v e s o i l , e x c e p t they happen to be e n s l a v e d o r d e s t r o y e d by human f r a u d : But men degenera te e ve r y day, mere ly by the f o l l y and p e r v e r s e n e s s , the a v a r i c e , the t y r a n n y , the p r i d a , the t r e a c h e r y , o r i nhuman i t y o f t h e i r own k i n d . In A Ta le of a Tub, S w i f t ' s Hack c o n t i n u a l l y responds to h i s impu l s e s w i t h o u t the m e d i a t i o n of reason b u t , what i s wo r se , he - ' a l so w r i t e s about i t . In a market f l o o d e d w i t h p r i n t e d ma t te r t he r e were some advantages i n p r i n t i n g e c c e n t r i c i t y , even t h a t o f the H a c k ' s . For the t h i r d , and perhaps the most Samuel B u t l e r , C h a r a c t e r s and Passages From Notebook s , ed . A. R. W a l l e r (Cambri dge: U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1 9 0 8 ) , p. 275. 27 Jonathan S w i f t , The Prose W r i t i n g s o f Jonathan S w i f t , ed . H e r b e r t D a v i s , v o l . IX; I r i s h T r a c t s and Sermons ( O x f o r d : C l a rendon P r e s s , 1963 ) , p. 264. 24 power fu l e l e m e n t , i n t h i s e i g h t e e n t h - c e n t u r y change o f d i r e c t i o n was the e x p l o i t a t i o n of bad w r i t e r s and bad w r i t i n g : The commerc ia l i n v a s i o n o f l i t e r a t u r e was a m a n i f e s t a t i o n o f the chang ing v a l ue s of an e n t i r e s o c i e t y . I t r e p r e s e n t e d , i n f a c t , a s o c i a l r e v o l u t i o n . There was an economic boom i n the 1 6 9 0 ' s , p a r t i c u l a r l y between 1692 and 1695. . . . A new type of e n t h u s i a s t became a f e a t u r e o f the s cene , the economic p r o j e c t o r , who was i n t e r e s t e d i n the a p p l i e d , p r o f i t a b l e , " u s e f u l " t h i n g s o f l i f e . . . . In g e n e r a l , Eng land had become a p r o g r e s s i v e , c o m m e r c i a l l y - m i n d e d n a t i o n , w i t h new economic t h e o r i e s c e l e b r a t i n g the new economic s p i r i t . Of c o u r s e , the s e c u l a r i z i n g p roce s s i n the c o u n t r y had begun l ong b e f o r e , but as the r e l i g i o u s v a l ue s r eceded the new va l ue s o f commerce seemed to be t a k i n g t h e i r p l a c e as the m o t i v a t i n g f o r c e i n the l i v e s o f men. . . . There i s n o t h i n g new about the a c q u i s i t i v e i n s t i n c t , bu± a now t he re was l e s s p r e t e n c e about i t s moral a s p e c t s . In the C h r i s t i a n humani s t t r a d i t i o n , language as i t e x p r e s s e s knowledge s h o u l d be the h i g h e s t e x p r e s s i o n of a r a t i o n a l man, and t h i s p e r v e r s i o n o f l e a r n i n g and language (as i t was c o n s i d e r e d to be) d ismayed and d i s g u s t e d many w r i t e r s , and p a r t i c u l a r l y S c r i b l e r i a n s a t i r i s t s . To summar ize , the new r a t i o n a l i s m o f the e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y was, l i k e i t s p r e d e c e s s o r , an immense and n e c e s s a r y s t ep f o r w a r d , but the new e m p i r i c a l a t t i t u d e s toward t r u t h about na tu re had r e v e r b e r a t i o n s beyond t h e i r immediate s u b j e c t m a t t e r . Combined w i t h these r e v e r b e r a t i o n s was a more s c e p t i c a l a s s e s s -ment o f man's r e a s o n . But what was perhaps the most d i s t u r b i n g a s p e c t of t h i s movement was the ease and speed w i t h wh ich s p e c u l a t i v e and o f t e n t i m e s m i s gu ided " know ledge " was be i ng P h i l i p P i n k u s , S w i f t ' s V i s i o n o f E v i l : : Volume I, E n g l i s h L i t e r a r y S t u d i e s Monograph S e r i e s , no. 3 (V i c t o r i a : U n i v e r s i t y o f V i c t o r i a P r e s s , 1975 ) , pp. 44 -45 . 25 d i s s e m i n a t e d because o f the commerc ia l e x p l o i t a t i o n o f bad v/ri t i n g . Because a l l s a t i r e s on language and l e a r n i n g dea l e s s e n t i a l l y w i t h the same theme, the p e r v e r s i o n s o f l e a r n i n g , i t seems r e a s o n a b l e to conc lude t h a t these s a t i r i s t s have one common p e r c e p t i o n : they p e r c e i v e the g u l f - t h a t 1 i e s between the hones t p u r s u i t o f t r u t h and i t s abuse and o b f u s c a t i o n . Yet eve r y s a t i r i s t responds to h i s s u b j e c t w i t h h i s own i n d i v i d u a l p e r c e p t i o n , wh ich i n l a r g e p a r t i s d e t e rm ined by the p e r i o d i n wh ich he l i v e s . As i n d i c a t e d above , t h i s s tudy w i l l examine some o f the themes and imagery o f the s a t i r i c t r a d i t i o n o f language and l e a r n i n g from A r i s t o p h a n e s to S w i f t ' s A Ta l e o f a Tub, i n o r d e r to show the s t r e n g t h and p e r v a s i v e n e s s o f t h i s t r a d i t i o n . C l e a r l y , t he r e i s a s t r a i g h t l i n e from A r i s t o p h a n e s to S w i f t , as S w i f t h i m s e l f acknowledges i n h i s " I n t r o d u c t i o n " to the T a l e : To t h i s End, the P h i l o s o p h e r ' s Way i n a l l Ages has been by e r e c t i n g c e r t a i n Edi f i ces i n the Ai r ; B u t , whateve r P r a c t i c e and R e p u t a t i o n these k i n d of S t r u c t u r e s have f o r m e r l y p o s s e s s e d , or may s t i l l c o n t i n u e i n , not e x c e p t i n g even t h a t o f S o c r a t e s , when he was suspended i n a Ba ske t to he lp C o n t e m p l a t i o n ; I t h i n k , w i t h due S u b m i s s i o n , they seem to l a b o u r under two I n c o n v e n i e n c e s . F i r s t , That the Founda t i on s be i n g l a i d too h i g h , they have been o f t e n out of S i g h t , and eve r out o f Hea r i ng. S e c o n d l y , That the M a t e r i a l s , be i ng very t r a n s i t o r y , have s u f f e r ' d much from I n c l e m e n c i e s o f A i r , e s p e c i a l l y i n these No r th -Wes t Regi ons . Jonathan S w i f t , A T a l e o f a Tub: To Which i s Added the  B a t t l e o f the Books and the Mechan i c a l O p e r a t i o n of the S p i r i t ? ed . A .C. G u t h k e l c h and D. N i c h o l S m i t h , 2nd e d . ( O x f o r d : C l a rendon P r e s s , 1958 ) , p. 56. 26 Yet d e s p i t e the s i m i l a r i t y o f theme and image ry , the s i g n i f i -cance o f the s a t i r e changes c o n s i d e r a b l y because o f the chang ing p e r i o d s o f h i s t o r y . CHAPTER II CLASSICAL SATIRISTS AND THEIR EMPHASES Aristophanes: Clouds Lucian: S a t i r i c a l Sketches 28 A r i s t o p h a n e s wrote CIouds i n the f i f t h c e n t u r y B.C. and L u c i a n wrote h i s s a t i r e s i n the second c e n t u r y A . D . , but each used s i m i l a r themes and s t o c k images to a t t a c k the i n t e l l e c t u a l p e r v e r s i o n s p e c u l i a r to h i s own p e r i o d . The themes and the imagery t h a t A r i s t o p h a n e s had deve loped s t i l l had v a l i d i t y i n L u c i a n ' s t i m e : p h i l o s o p h e r s s t i l l i n d u l g e d i n u n b r i d l e d s p e c u l a t i o n to no u s e f u l end , and t h e i r p r o t e s t a t i o n s o f o t h e r -w o r l d l i n e s s c o u l d s t i l l s h i e l d a p a r a s i t i c i m m o r a l i t y . S o c i a l c o n d i t i o n s change, however, and so do i n t e l l e c t u a l f a s h i o n s , and as a consequence each s a t i r i s t had a d i f f e r e n t emphas i s . A r i s t o p h a n e s was w r i t i n g n e a r e r the gene s i s o f Greek r a t i o n a l i s m and h i s concerns were d i f f e r e n t from those o f L u c i a n , who wrote when the new r a t i o n a l i s m was no l o n g e r an i s s u e . The r ep l a cemen t o f m y t h o l o g i c a l by r a t i o n a l t h i n k i n g was a s low p r o c e s s , but the s i g n i f i c a n c e o f Greek r a t i o n a l i s m was b e g i n n i n g to make i t s e l f f e l t d u r i n g the f i f t h c e n t u r y B.C. One major change t h a t r e s u l t e d from the chang ing Greek view was the i n t r o d u c t i o n o f the "new e d u c a t i o n . " The "new e d u c a t i o n " answered the p o l i t i c a l and i n t e l l e c t u a l needs o f the t i m e . I t p r o v i d e d t r a i n i n g by r h e t o r i c i a n s s k i l l e d i n the a r t o f p e r s u a s i o n f o r those who a s p i r e d to p o l i t i c a l s u c c e s s , and i t f u l f i l l e d an i n t e l l e c t u a l a p p e t i t e not s a t i s f i e d by the t r a d i t i o n a l forms o f e d u c a t i o n . T r a d i t i o n a l A t h e n i a n e d u c a t i o n t r a i n e d boys i n s k i l l s and a r t s u s e f u l to the community i n war and peace , such as g y m n a s t i c s , r e a d i n g and w r i t i n g , s i n g i n g and p l a y i n g s t r i n g e d i n s t r u m e n t s , but 29 i t d i d not encourage boys to t h i n k c r i t i c a l l y . The "new e d u c a t i o n " w i t h i t s r h e t o r i c a l t e c h n i q u e s c o u l d do j u s t t h a t , but i n the p roce s s o f a c q u i r i n g these c r i t i c a l s k i l l s , i t was p o s s i b l e to a s s i m i l a t e them on a very s u p e r f i c i a l and mechan i c a l l e v e l . These s k i l l s c o u l d be adopted w i t h o u t r e a l u n d e r s t a n d i n g , r e f l e c t i o n , or even c o n v i c t i o n by those who w i shed to e x p l o i t t h e i r e f f e c t i v e n e s s . A r i s t o p h a n e s s t r a d d l e s the gap t h a t deve loped when m y t h o l o g i c a l t h i n k i n g was b e i n g r e p l a c e d by r a t i o n a l t h i n k i n g . On the one hand he c o u l d a p p r e c i a t e the s i g n i f i c a n c e of the new r a t i o n a l i s m , but on the o t h e r he c o u l d see i t s danger s . The u n d i s c r i m i n a t i n g a d o p t i o n o f the new idea s encouraged un-r e s t r a i n e d thought f r e e o f t r a d i t i o n o r "common s e n s e , " and y e t p r o v i d e d no o t h e r r e s t r a i n t i n t h e i r p l a c e . C o n s e q u e n t l y , i n C Iouds , A r i s t o p h a n e s a t t a c k s the new e d u c a t i o n and the men who p romu lga ted the new i d e o l o g y , and accuses them o f f a i l i n g to p r o v i d e the r e q u i s i t e m o r a l i t y to r e p l a c e the t r a d i t i o n a l r e s t r a i n t s t h a t were be i ng weakened or d e s t r o y e d . In f a c t , he accuses the s o p h i s t s o f u s i n g t h e i r new i d e o l o g y to j u s t i f y and r a t i o n a l i z e immoral b e h a v i o u r . L u c i a n a t t a c k s the same tendency i n the p h i l o s o p h e r s he s a t i r i z e s , but he does not accuse them o f u s i n g a new i d e o l o g y because i t i s no l o n g e r new. On the c o n t r a r y , i t had been examined and argued over u n t i l a my r i ad o f d i f f e r e n t p h i l o s o p h i c a l s e c t s had d e v e l o p e d , each c l a i m i n g to be s u b t l y but e s s e n t i a l l y d i f f e r e n t from a l l o t h e r s . P h i l o s o p h e r s were now w e l 1 - e n t r e n c h e d p r o f e s s i o n a l s , even though as f a r as L u c i a n 30 was concerned they c o u l d s t i l l be reduced to the windbag p h i l o s o p h e r s t h a t A r i s t o p h a n e s had made n o t o r i o u s . There was a d i f f e r e n c e i n the s o c i a l m i l i e u , however; p h i l o s o p h y was now f a s h i o n a b l e , and w e a l t h y househo lds kept p h i l o s o p h e r s as i n t e l l e c t u a l o rnaments . These p a r a s i t e s became L u c i a n ' s f a v o u r i t e t a r g e t , f o l l o w e d c l o s e l y by the devotees of the v a r i o u s p h i l o s o p h i c a l s e c t s , who were a t t r a c t e d to the f a s h i o n -ab l e i n t e l l e c t u a l t r a p p i n g s r a t h e r than to the sub s tance o f p h i l o s o p h y . L u c i a n made use o f the i r o n i e s o f d r a m a t i c s i t u a t i o n and p h y s i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e to add b i t e to h i s s a t i r e , and l a t e r s a t i r i s t s were to use both h i s t e c h n i q u e s and h i s image r y , some o f which were o r i g i n a l to L u c i a n h i m s e l f , and some of wh ich were deve loped from the s t ock images and types t h a t A r i s t o p h a n e s had e s t a b l i s h e d i n C Iouds . S a t i r i s t s are commonly more i r r i t a t e d by the h y p o c r i s y than by the i dea s o f those they p o r t r a y . Something o f t h i s c h a r a c t e r i s to be d i s c e r n e d i n A r i s t o p h a n e s , and C louds e xp re s se s h i s r e a c t i o n to the new r a t i o n a l i s m o f f i f t h - c e n t u r y Athens and to the s o p h i s t s , the spokesmen f o r the new r a t i o n a l i s m I have d e c i d e d to use two d i f f e r e n t s ou r ce s f o r my q u o t a t i o n s from CI ouds . These a r e : A r i s t o p h a n e s , The C Iouds , t r a n s l a t e d by A l an H. Sommersteiin (London: P e n g u i n , 1 975) and A r i s t o p h a n e s , The C l o u d s , t r a n s l a t e d by F.L. Lucas (New York : The M a c m i l l a n Company, 1967) . S ommer s te i n 1 s t r a n s l a t i o n seems to me to convey more c l e a r l y A r i s t o p h a n e s ' i r r e v e r e n t t o n e . L u c a s ' t r a n s l a t i o n o f those passages d e a l i n g w i t h language and l e a r n i n g seem to me to i l l u s t r a t e more c l e a r l y the v a r i e t y and appa ren t c o m p l e x i t y o f s o p h i s t i c a l l anguage . Q u o t a t i o n s c i t e d w i l l g i v e the t r a n s l a -t o r ' s n a m e , and then the page number. ( e . g . , L u c a s , p. 435 ) . 31 and the main p roponent s o f the "new e d u c a t i o n " t h a t was s u p e r -s ed i n g t r a d i t i o n a l Greek e d u c a t i o n . There i s not s u f f i c i e n t e v i d e n c e i n comedy to unde r s t and the s o c i a l and i n t e l l e c t u a l impo r tance o f the s o p h i s t i c move-ment, ..which i i n f a c t was f o r s e v e r a l decades the most s t i r r i n g e lement i n Greek thought and l i f e . E-. R. Dodds d e s c r i b e s the s o p h i s t movement i n t h i s way: . . . we can d im ly p e r c e i v e two g r e a t i s s u e s be i ng f ought o u t . One i s the e t h i c a l q u e s t i o n c o n c e r n i n g the sou rce and the v a l i d i t y o f moral and p o l i t i c a l o b l i g a t i o n . The o t h e r i s the p s y c h o l o g i c a l q u e s t i o n c o n c e r n i n g the s p r i n g s o f human c o n d u c t — w h y do men behave as they do, and how can they be i nduced to behave b e t t e r ? . . . . On t h a t i s s u e the f i r s t g e n e r a t i o n o f S o p h i s t s , i n p a r t i c u l a r P r o t a g o r a s , seem to have h e l d a view whose o p t i m i s m i s p a t h e t i c i n r e t r o s p e c t , but h i s t o r i c a l l y i n t e l l i g i b l e . " V i r t u e o r E f f i c i e n c y ( a r e t e ) c o u l d be t a u g h t : " by c r i t -i c i s i n g h i s t r a d i t i o n s , by m o d e r n i s i n g the Nomos which h i s a n c e s t o r s had c r e a t e d and e l i m i n a t i n g from i t the l a s t v e s t i g e s o f " b a r b a r i a n s i l l i n e s s , " man c o u l d a c q u i r e a new A r t o f L i v i n g , and human l i f e ^ c o u l d be r a i s e d to new l e v e l s h i t h e r t o undreamed o f . A r i s t o p h a n e s r e a l i z e d t h a t the p r i m i t i v e i n s t i n c t s , d e s c r i b e d as " b a r b a r i a n s i l l i n e s s " by the i d e a l i s t i c p roponent s o f the new r a t i o n a l i s m , were an i n h e r e n t p a r t o f mank ind , and t h a t an e n l i g h t e n e d view t h a t d i d not a d e q u a t e l y take t h i s i n t o a ccoun t was, at the very l e a s t , m i s l e d and m i s l e a d i n g . Thus the comedy ' s s o b e r e r i m p l i c a t i o n s r e f l e c t A r i s t o p h a n e s ' conce rn w i t h the moral dangers i n h e r e n t i n contemporary thought and l i t e r a t u r e . A r i s t o p h a n e s was no doubt a man o f h i s t i m e s , and would have E. R. Dodds, The Greeks and the T r r a t i o n a l ( B e r k e l e y : U n i v e r s i t y o f C a l i f o r n i a P r e s s , 19 7 3 ) , p. 183. Dodds i s q u o t i n g from P l a t o ' s Py thago ra s , 327CD. 32 g e n e r a l l y s u b s c r i b e d to the new r a t i o n a l i s m h i m s e l f . But a t the same t i m e , he was aware of the s ho r t com ing s of an i n t e l l e c t u a l a t t i t u d e t h a t f a i l e d to take i n t o a ccoun t the i r r a t i o n a l i t i e s o f men. The n o t i o n t h a t the p a r t p l a y e d by the pa s s i o n s i n d e t e r m i n i n g human b e h a v i o u r c o u l d be e a s i l y d i s m i s s e d a p p a l l e d A r i s t o p h a n e s . H i s imagery r e f l e c t s the immediate p o p u l a r e f f e c t s r a t h e r than the n e c e s s a r i l y s l o w e r i n t e l l e c t u a l impact o f the new r a t i o n a l i s m , an impact t h a t r e s u l t e d i n an upsurge o f Greek s c i e n t i f i c knowledge. That i s , he r e f l e c t e d not on l y the new e n l i g h t e n m e n t , but a l s o the r e a c t i o n a g a i n s t i t , as i t b rought w i t h i t i t s own baggage of h a l f - t r u t h s , d i s t o r t i o n s , and h y p o c r i s i e s . A r i s t o p h a n e s ' C louds i n t r o d u c e s one o f the most p e r v a s i v e images i n s a t i r e s on l e a r n i n g : the windbag p h i l o s o p h e r , c o m p l e t e l y a b s t r a c t e d from common sense and the p r a c t i c a l i t i e s o f eve ryday l i f e . The c h o i c e o f S o c r a t e s to r e p r e s e n t t h i s type might be found i n the appearance and b e h a v i o u r o f the r e a l S o c r a t e s . His p h y s i c a l appearance seems to have l e n t i t s e l f n a t u r a l l y to t r a v e s t y , the more so s i n c e no o t h e r p h i l o s o p h e r was so w e l l known to the p u b l i c , and t h e r e were undoubted l y f e a t u r e s o f the comic f i g u r e w h i c h , however e x a g g e r a t e d , f i t t e d S o c r a t e s f a r b e t t e r than the s o p h i s t s . Only he who had never t augh t f o r money and who l i k e d to walk b a r e f o o t e d , and not one o f the e l e g a n t s o p h i s t s who took h i gh f e e s , c o u l d be d e p i c t e d as a s t a r v i n g pauper . But A r i s t o p h a n e s a l s o ho ld s up to d e r i s i o n a S o c r a t e s who never e x i s t e d , and n e g l e c t s some o f the more obv iou s f e a t u r e s , both nove l and 33 i r r i t a t i n g , o f the h i s t o r i c a l p e r s o n . Th i s i s because S o c r a t e s was a l s o r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of a movement ( the s o p h i s t s ) and a s t o c k t y p e , and i t i s as a type t h a t he s u r v i v e s i n s u c c e e d i n g s a t i r e s . S o c r a t e s i s a mask, a t y p e , o f what C o r n f o r d c a l l s 3 the " L e a r n e d D o c t o r . " He has the p o n t i f i c a l a i r s of a p e d a n t , and the i n t o l e r a b l e c o n c e i t o f s u p e r i o r wi sdom, w h i c h , when d i s c l o s e d , t u r n s out to be e i t h e r blasphemous or a b s u r d l y t r i v i a l . Through t h i s mask the p r e t e n s i o n s o f the s o p h i s t s , no t o f S o c r a t e s , are f u l l y exposed . The mask, t h e n , to wh ich the name " S o c r a t e s " i s a t t a c h e d i s t h a t o f the p r e t e n d e r to more than o r d i n a r y wisdom and c l e v e r n e s s . S o p h i s t s a re i n s t a n t l y r e c o g n i z a b l e i n C l o u d s . They are p a l e , d i r t y , unshod, and unshaven, immune to the d i s c o m f o r t s of bedbugs and i n s u f f i c i e n t f o o d , because they are abso rbed i n " h i g h e r t h i n g s . " S t r e p s i a d e s ob se rve s t h a t " n e v e r one o f them has had h i s h a i r c u t , / Put o i l upon h i s s k i n , or v i s i t e d / The bathhouse f o r a b a t h " ( L u c a s , p. 399 -400 ) . O r d i n a r y peop le shun them. P h e l d i p p i d e s r e s i s t s h i s f a t h e r ' s p l e a s to become one of t h e i r p u p i l s because he d o e s n ' t want to become one o f " t h o s e s t u c k - u p w h i t e - f a c e d c h a r a c t e r s — l i k e t h a t b loody S o c r a t e s . . . . How c o u l d I e ve r l ook my c a v a l r y f r i e n d s i n the eye a g a i n , w i t h a f a ce l o o k i n g l i k e i t had been cove red i n c h a l k ? " ( Sommer s te i n , p. 116) P h e i d i p p i d e s , however, does f i n a l l y 3 F r a n c i s Macdonald C o r n f o r d , The O r i g i n o f A t t i c Comedy, (New York : Doubleday and Company, 1961) . C o r n f o r d d i s c u s s e s A r i s t o p h a n e s ' use o f S o c r a t e s as the type o f the Lea rned Doctor on pp. 1 3 6 f f . 34 a c q u i e s c e to h i s f a t h e r ' s p l e a s and d e l i v e r s h i m s e l f ove r to the s o p h i s t s . Upon h i s . r e t u r n h i s f a t h e r a n x i o u s l y scans h i s f ace and then g r e e t s him w i t h c r i e s o f r a p t u r e : "0 son b e l o v e d , Oh j o y , Oh j o y . / What a p l e a s u r e i t i s to see you l ook so p a l e " ( L u c a s , p. 408).. In a d d i t i o n to a c h a r a c t e r i s t i c p h y s i c a l a ppea r ance , the s l o v e n l y , h i gh -m inded s o p h i s t s have a c h a r a c t e r i s t i c l i f e s t y l e . They are contemptuous of common c o m f o r t s , p resumably so abso rbed i n a heady maze o f a b s t r a c t i o n s t h a t they are unaware of the f i l t h and vermin t h a t su r rounds them, o r the hunger t h a t p lagues them. The chorus c oun se l s S t r e p s i a d e s : . . . how r i c h s h a l l be thy b l e s s i n g , I f thou has but r e f l e c t i o n , and r e c o l l e c t i o n , and a p e r s e v e r i n g h e a r t That does not bau lk to s t and or wa lk i n the s e r v i c e o f our a r t - -I f i t i s b o l d to bear the c o l d , nor c a re s i f b r e a k f a s t come, And can r e s i g n l i c e n c e and w i n e , and the gymnas i urn . . . ( L u c a s , p. 390) S t r e p s i a d e s a c cep t s the c h a l l e n g e : I f you want to f i n d a s t ubbo rn m ind , and ca re -wo rn s l e e p l e s s n e s s , And a stomach o f t h r i f t t h a t can make s h i f t to d i ne on herbs and c r e s s , You need not f e a r - - y o u ' l l have them h e r e . No a n v i l ' s more r e s i s t a n t . ( L u c a s , p. 390) However, he needs a l l h i s s t ubbo rn c o u n t r y p e r s i s t e n c e to endure the agon ie s o f a p h i l o s o p h e r ' s bed: Wretch t h a t I am, I 'm d y i n g ! From the bed The enemy creep out to e x ve rm ina te me. A l l a l o ng my r i b s t h e y ' r e p r e y i n g Now my very l i f e b l o o d ' s shed . 35 Round my l o i n s the t h i n g s are s t r a y i n g , And my b u t t o c k s they are f l a y i n g They w i l l l e a v e me dead! (Lucas , p. 396) S o c r a t e s and h i s f o l l o w e r s pe r f o rm no u s e f u l work. The Clouds are " t h e pa t r on goddesses of the l a y a b o u t , " who . . . n o u r i s h the b r a i n s o f the whole t r i b e o f s o p h i s t s . . . . And the p rophe t s and t e a c h e r s o f med i c i ne and o t h e r such d i r t y l o n g - h a i r e d w e i r d i e s -anyone i n f a c t , so l ong as he d o e s n ' t do any u s e f u l work (Sommerste in , p. 126 ) . When t he re i s n o t h i n g to ea t f o r d i n n e r , they are p r e p a r e d to make s h i f t w i t h c a sua l t h i e v i n g : So S o c r a t e s . . . . s p r i n k l e d a l i t t l e ash on the t a b l e , bent round a skewer to s e r ve as a p a i r o f compasses, and t h e n . . . . he whipped somebody ' s coa t w h i l e they were w r e s t l i n g ( Sommer s te i n , p. 119 ) . C o n s e q u e n t l y , S o c r a t e s can teach n o t h i n g u s e f u l . S t r e p s i a d e s , the p r a c t i c a l count ryman, t r i e s to d i s c o v e r a u s e f u l a p p l i c a t i o n f o r the knowledge t h a t S o c r a t e s i s de te rm ined to i m p a r t , o n l y to win the s c o r n o f h i s t e a c h e r : S o c r a t e s : Now what do you want- to be t augh t f i r s t ? Something t h a t you h a v e n ' t been t augh t b e f o r e . Come on. Words? Rhythms? Verse measures? S t r e p s i a d e s ( e a g e r l y ) : Measu res , y e s , t h a t ' s what I want to know abou t . Only the o t h e r day a c o r n - d e a l e r chea ted me w i t h an o v e r s i z e d q u a r t measure. S o c r a t e s ( i m p a t i e n t l y ) : I 'm not t a l k i n g about t h a t . What measure do you c o n s i d e r the most a t t r a c -t i v e ? Iambic t r i m e t e r s ? T r o c h a i c t e t r a m e t e r s ? S t r e p s i a d e s : Wel l . . . l e t me see . . . I t h i n k I p r e f e r the g a l l o n . S o c r a t e s : The g a l l o n ? What on e a r t h are you b l e t h e r i n g about? S t r e p s i a d e s : I thought you s a i d t e t r a m e t e r s . That means f o u r , d o e s n ' t i t ? W e l l , I c e r t a i n l y p r e f e r f o u r qua r t s to t h r e e , i f t h a t ' s what you wanted to know. 36 S o c r a t e s : Damn you r q u a r t s , you s t u p i d pea san t . L e t ' s t r y r hy thms , perhaps y o u ' l l u nde r s t and them b e t t e r . S t r e p s i a d e s : I w i l l i f t h e y ' l l h e l p me s e l l my corn ( Sommer s te i n , p. 139 ) . But S o c r a t e s evades S t r e p s i a d e s l a s t q u e s t i o n : " W e l l , my good man, why s h o u l d I l e a r n about any o f these t h i n g s ? " ( Sommer s te in , p. 139) , S t r e p s i a d e s i n s t i n c t i v e l y r e c o g n i z e s t h a t l e a r n i n g i s u s e l e s s un l e s s i t i s grounded i n some k i n d of mean i ng fu l c o n t e x t , and t h a t the o n l y p r a c t i c a l a p p l i c a t i o n of the p h i l o s o p h e r ' s knowledge i s i n c o n f o u n d i n g the law and c o n t r o v e r t i n g j u s t i c e . The p h i l o s o p h e r s are no t so c l e a r about the m e a n i n g l e s s -ness o f most o f t h e i r a c t i v i t i e s as i s S t r e p s i a d e s . They p r e f e r to b e l i e v e t h a t they are engaged i n p r o f ound p h i l o s -o p h i c a l e x p l o r a t i o n s . A r i s t o p h a n e s ' S o c r a t e s i s an " a d e p t i n the m y s t e r i e s o f the m e t e o r s o p h i s t s , " ( S ommer s te i n , p. 121 ) . and he has a l l the p a r a p h e r n a l i a a p p r o p r i a t e to such a powe r f u l f i g u r e : a s e c r e t s o c i e t y , i n i t i a t i o n r i t e s , and a s t o r e o f e s o t e r i c wisdom a v a i l a b l e o n l y to i n i t i a t e s . The s o p h i s t s ' e s o t e r i c wisdom i s i n r e a l i t y e n t i r e l y t r i v i a l and a b s u r d , but i t i s s o l emn l y d i s c u s s e d i n h i g h - f l o w n l anguage : S t uden t (as r e p e a t i n g a s t o r y l e a r n e d by h e a r t ) : Chaerephon o f Sphe t tu s once asked S o c r a t e s whether he was of the o p i n i o n t h a t gnats produced t h e i r hum by way of the mouth o r - -the o t h e r end. S p r e p s i a d e s : W e l l , w e l l , what d i d he say? S t u d e n t : "The i n t e s t i n a l passage o f the g n a t , " he r e p l i e d , " i s very na r row, and c o n s e q u e n t l y the wind i s f o r c e d to go s t r a i g h t th rough to the back end . And then the a r s e , be i ng a ho l e f o rm ing the e x i t from t h i s narrow pa s sage , groans under the f o r c e o f the w i n d . " S t r e p s i a d e s : . . . I must say t h a t ' s a m a r v e l l o u s f e a t o f i n t e s t i n o l o g y ( Sommer s te i n , p. 118 ) . 37 These v i r t u o s o s a re abso rbed i n t h e i r own e x p e r i m e n t s , a g a i n on some a b s u r d i t y o f no i m p o r t a n c e : S t u d e n t : . . . . I t was l i k e t h i s : S o c r a t e s j u s t asked Chaerophon how many o f i t s own f e e t a f l e a c o u l d jump--do you see? because one o f them had j u s t b i t t e n Chaerophon ' s eyebrow and jumped over on to S o c r a t e s ' head. S t r e p s i a d e s : W e l l , how d i d he f i n d out ? S t u d e n t : He used a most e l e g a n t method. He me l t ed some wax and put the f l e a ' s f e e t i n t o i t , so t h a t when i t s e t the f l e a had a s t y l i s h p a i r o f s l i p p e r s on . And then he took them o f f i t s f e e t and measured the d i s t a n c e o u t , l i k e t h i s , you see ( t a k i n g a s tep o r two, toe t o u c h i n g h e e l . ) S t r e p s i a d e s : Gosh, what an i n t e l l e c t u a l b r a i n ! (Sommerste in , p. 118) Why i s S t r e p s i a d e s , w i t h h i s good coun t r yman ' s common sense and p r a c t i c a l i t y , impre s sed by t h i s man? The immediate reason i s t h a t he i s c o m p l e t e l y con fu sed by the s o p h i s t s ' c l e v e r n e s s w i t h words . C o n v e n t i o n a l l o g i c and u n d e r s t a n d i n g f a l t e r b e f o r e the s u p e r f i c i a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t language o f the p h i l o s o p h e r s . When S o c r a t e s confounds S t r e p s i a d e s w i t h h i s arguments a g a i n s t the e x i s t e n c e o f Zeus, S t r e p s i a d e s agrees w i t h h i s t e a c h e r because he i s c o n f u s e d ; he cannot app l y o l d v a l ue s and meanings : "I cannot t e l l . You speak so w e l l " ( L u c a s , p. 390 ) . S t r e p s i a d e s f i n a l l y c a p i t u l a t e s e n t i r e l y : "Zeus i s dead, and now A w h i r l i s the new k i n g " ( Sommer s te i n , p. 129) . Beh ind the mockery and comic i n s i n u a t i o n s t ood the f a c t t h a t the bonds o f t r a d i t i o n a l r e l i g i o n s and c u l t s had s l a c k e n e d , and t h i s was due, to a l a r g e e x t e n t , to the views o f the modern s o p h i s t s : the w r i t e r s , t h i n k e r s , and t e a c h e r s . The o n l y o p p o s i t i o n wh ich counted was the m o r a l i s t i c o r s c e p t i c a l r a t i o n a l i s m taugh t by the s o p h i s t s . Th i s i s e x h i b i t e d and d e r i d e d i n C Iouds , a l t h o u g h the r i d i c u l o u s b e l i e f i n A w h i r l and 38 the new d i v i n e t r i a d o f Chaos, C l o u d s , and Language i s p r i m a r i l y comic and does not g i v e us any i d e a o f the r e a l s i t u a t i o n d u r i n g t h a t i m p o r t a n t epoch i n the h i s t o r y o f human t hough t . S o c r a t e s ' c o n t e n t i o n i n CIouds t h a t 1 i g h t h i n g . c o u l d no t p o s s i b l y be .the i n s t r u m e n t o f Zeus ' j u s t i c e was r e l e v a n t and q u i t e s e r i o u s l y meant. Beh ind the comic p r e s e n t a t i o n we f e e l the u n d e r l y i n g moral energy which gave the c h i e f impetus to the r a t i o n a l i s t and e t h i c a l c r i t i c i s m o f the t r a d i t i o n a l i dea s about the gods, and s e t human reason and wisdom on the th rone o f Zeus. But i n the p l a y human reason and wisdom are the g i f t of the ephemeral C l o u d s . As they a p p r o a c h , S t r e p s i a d e s m i s t a k e s them f o r " m i s t , dew, smoke, vapour , someth ing l i k e t h a t , " but S o c r a t e s p o i n t s out t h a t " f r o m them come our i n t e l l i g e n c e , our d i a l e c t i c and our r e a s o n ; a l s o our s p e c u l a t i v e gen ius and a l l our a r g u m e n t a t i v e t a l e n t s " ( Sommer s te i n , p. 125 ) . These " t a l e n t s " a re c h i e f l y the a r t s o f q u i b b l i n g , h a i r - s p l i t t i n g , and l o g i c - c h o p p i n g , and S t r e p s i a d e s i s anx i ou s to l e a r n them a l l , as he e x p l a i n s to S o c r a t e s : I want to be a r e a l s u b t l e t h i n k e r , l i k e y o u , and be ab l e to s p l i t the t h i n n e s t h a i r g o i n g , and d e f l a t e my opponent w i t h a p o i n t e d l i t t l e argument and s t i l l have ano the r up my s l e e v e f o r my own speech . ( Sommer s te i n , p. 125) S o c r a t e s p o i n t s o u t , however, t h a t l e a r n i n g these t a l e n t s i n v o l v e s f i r s t f r e e i n g o n e s e l f from the r e s t r i c t i o n s o f e a r t h -bound common sen se : "Do not c o n s t r i c t y ou r thought s i n a narrow c i r c l e / Cen t r ed about y o u r s e l f - - 1 e t them soa r to Heaven" (Lucas , p. 397 ) . 39 As S o c r a t e s e x p l a i n s to S t r e p s i a d e s a f t e r he descends from h i s ba s ke t i n the s k y : . . ,, . f o r a c c u r a t e i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f m e t e o r o l o g i c a l phenomena i t i s e s s e n t i a l to get o n e ' s thought s i n t o a s t a t e o f , e r , s u spen s i on by m i x i n g sma l l q u a n t i t i e s o f them w i t h a i i — f o r a i r , you know, i s one of ve ry s i m i l a r p h y s i c a l c o n s t i t u t i o n to though t — a t l e a s t to mine ( Sommer s te in , p. 122 ) . S t r e p s i a d e s can l e a r n the a r t of obscu re t h i n k i n g by f o l l o w i n g h i s t e a c h e r ' s i n s t r u c t i o n s to " s u b t i l i z e you r t h o u g h t , / Survey the w h o l e , a n a l y s e , s u b d i v i d e / Each d e t a i l p o i n t by p o i n t " 5 ( L u c a s , p. 397 ) . But the o l d man i s most s u c c e s s f u l when he l e a r n s the s o p h i s t i c a l a r t o f q u i b b l i n g , as he demons t ra te s when he h i m s e l f i s a b l e to examine h i s s o n ' s a b i l i t i e s i n t h i s a r t . He had, however, been g i ven a c a r e f u l l e s s o n by S o c r a t e s : S o c r a t e s : . . . wh ich an ima l s are male? S t r e p s i a d e s : W e l l , I know t h a t , i f I h a v e n ' t gone p o t t y . A ram, a h e - g o a t , a b u l l , a j a c k a s s , a c h i c k e n -S o c r a t e s : See what you do? You c a l l the male and female by the same name ' c h i c k e n ' . S t r e p s i a d e s : Eh? S o c r a t e s ( ve r y s l o w l y as to a c h i l d ) : You j u s t c a l l e d the male ' c h i c k e n ' , and you c a l l e d the female ' c h i c k e n 1 t o o . S t r e p s i a d e s ( a f t e r some t h o u g h t ) : By P o s e i d o n , so I do. What ought I to c a l l them? S o c r a t e s : Say 1 c h i c k e n e s s ' , and the male you can ca l 1 ' c h i cken ' . ( S ommer s te i n , p. 140) S w i f t was l a t e r to draw the ana logy between l e a r n i n g and a i r ou t to i t s most g r o te sque l i m i t s i n A T a l e o f a Tub, when he devotes h i s " A e o l i s t " Chap te r to i t , w i t h i t s d e v a s t a t i n g l y r e d u c t i v e s y l l o g i s m : ,; "Wo r ds a re but W i n d ; and L e a r n i n g i s  n o t h i n g but Words; E r go , L e a r n i n g i s n o t h i n g but Wind" (p. 153) , 5 Th i s k i n d o f obscu re t h i n k i n g t y p i f i e d the t e c h n i q u e s o f the Schoolmen wh ich were l a t e r s a t i r i z e d by Erasmus and R a b e l a i s . 4 0 Th i s i s one o f the few l e s s o n s t h a t S t r e p s i a d e s i s a b l e to m a s t e r , and he i s concerned t h a t he may not be c apab l e o f the r e q u i r e d s u b t l e , s o p h i s t i c a l t h i n k i n g : "How can I cope w i t h a l l t h i s l o g i c - c h o p p i n g and h a i r - s p l i t t i n g ? I 'm an o l d man, I never was b r a i n y , and now I ' v e h a r d l y any memory a t a l l " ( Sommer s te i n , p. 117) . H i s s o l u t i o n i s to persuade P h e i d i p p i d e s to take the new e d u c a t i o n , to l e a r n " t h e a r t o f s p e a k i n g . " That i s , the "new" s p e a k i n g , where language i s no l o n g e r the i n s t r u m e n t o f t r u t h and v i r t u e , but of f a l s e h o o d and c o r r u p t i o n . For the second reason t h a t S t r e p s i a d e s i s imp re s sed w i t h S o c r a t e s i s t h a t the p h i l o s o p h e r not o n l y pos se s se s " t h e a r t o f s p e a k i n g " but he i s a b l e to condense a l l the wisdom t h a t t h i s a r t s e r ve s i n t o a m e c h a n i c a l , compact sys tem t h a t can be mas te red i n a few weeks. When P h e i d i p p i d e s a s k s , "What good can anyone l e a r n from such a s e t ? " h i s f a t h e r an swer s , " L e a r n ! You can l e a r n the sum o f human wisdom" ( L u c a s , p. 4 0 0 ) . The d o c t r i n e s o f the s o p h i s t s i n C louds were o n l y e s o t e r i c enough to p r o v i d e a c e r t a i n a t t r a c t i v e o b s c u r i t y . Many o f t h e i r i d e a s , both i n the p l a y and i n the r e a l w o r l d o f the t i m e , were w e l l f i t t e d to be t r e a t e d s u p e r f i c i a l l y and thus to be p o p u l a r i z e d , and they i n f i l t r a t e d the minds of the peop le a lmos t w i t h o u t t h e i r becoming aware o f i t . Most peop le knew n o t h i n g o f s c i e n c e , and the complete b l ankne s s o f S t r e p s i a d e s ' mind when he hears o f astronomy and geometry r e f l e c t s , though i n comic e x a g g e r a t i o n , the w i d e s p r e a d i g n o r a n c e of what was supposed to be an i m p o r t a n t p a r t o f the t e a c h i n g o f some o f the s o p h i s t s . The i n a b i l i t y of S t r e p s i a d e s to comprehend deep 41 thoughts i s overcome by the s t u d e n t ' s f r e q u e n t use o f homely a n a l o g i e s to he lp f a m i l i a r i z e S t r e p s i a d e s w i t h h i s e s o t e r i c knowledge: S t r e p s i a d e s : What on e a r t h are these t h i n g s ? S t u d e n t : W e l l , t h i s o n e ' s f o r a s t r onomy, and t h a t .. o n e ' s f o r geometry , a n d - -S t r e p s i a d e s : G e o m e t r y - - w h a t ' s t h a t u s e f u l f o r ? S t u d e n t : W e l l - f o i — f o i — s h a r i n g out a l l o t m e n t s of l a n d , f o r example ( Sommer s te i n , p. 120 ) . Or l a t e r , when t a l k i n g to S o c r a t e s : S t r e p s i a d e s : . . . . But you s t i l l h a v e n ' t t o l d me what causes the t hunde r . S o c r a t e s : D i d n ' t you hear? I s a i d t h a t i t o ccu r s when C louds s w o l l e n w i t h r a i n c o l l i d e w i t h one a n o t h e r , and i s caused by t h e i r d e n s i t y . S t r e p s i a d e s : Ha! Do you e x p e c t me to b e l i e v e t h a t ? S o c r a t e s : You y o u r s e l f a re l i v i n g p r o o f of i t . You have no doubt a t some t i m e - - s a y , a t the Pan-A t h e n i a n F e s t i v a l - - h a d a b i t too much soup f o r d i n n e r ? ( S t r e p s i a d e s nods g u i l t i l y . ) W e l l , d i d n ' t t h a t make you r tummy g rumb le , no t to say rumble? S t r e p s i a d e s : I t c e r t a i n l y does , s t r a i g h t away, a t e r r i b l e n o i s e , j u s t l i k e t h u n d e r . G e n t l y a t f i r s t ( i m i t a t e s the n o i s e ) then l i k e t h i s ( a g a i n a l i t t l e l o u d e r ) , and when I c r a p , i t r e a l l y l e t s f l y ( t r i e s to i m i t a t e the n o i s e a g a i n , but f i n d s h i m s e l f b r e a k i n g w ind i n ve ry t r u t h ) - - j u s t l i k e they do ( i n d i c a t i n g the C h o r u s ) . S o c r a t e s ( a p p r o v i n g l y ) : W e l l , i f a l i t t l e tummy l i k e you r s (pa t s i t ) c o u l d l e t o f f a f a r t l i k e t h a t , what do you t h i n k an i n f i n i t y o f a i r can do? T h a t ' s how thunder comes about . (Sommerste in , p. 129) Thus, the s o p h i s t s e x p l o i t the Greek a d m i r a t i o n and enjoyment o f l anguage , and promise t h a t most t a n t a l i z i n g r ewa rd : an i n s t a n t e d u c a t i o n t augh t i n e a s y - t o - 1 e a r n i n s t a l l m e n t s . But the most m o r a l l y d e s t r u c t i v e a s p e c t o f the new e d u c a t i o n , as p r e s e n t e d by the s o p h i s t s i n C l o u d s , i s t h a t i t appea l s to the b a s e s t i n s t i n c t s i n men, and a l l o w s them to 42 j u s t i f y t h e i r b a s e s t a c t i o n s . Commenting on the e f f e c t o f the new r a t i o n a l i s m , , E . R. Dodds reminds us: . . . i t would be d i s h o n e s t not to r e c o g n i z e t h a t the new r a t i o n a l i s m c a r r i e d w i t h i t r e a l as w e l l as i m a g i n a r y dangers f o r the s o c i a l o r d e r . In d i s c a r d -i n g the I n h e r i t e d Cong l omera te , many peop le d i s c a r d e d w i t h i t the r e l i g i o u s r e s t r a i n t s t h a t had h e l d human e g o t i s m on the l e a s h . To men o f s t r o n g moral p r i n c i p l e — a P r o t a g o r a s o r a Democri tus — t h a t d i d not m a t t e r : t h e i r c o n s c i e n c e was a d u l t enough to s t and up w i t h o u t p r op s . I t was o t h e r w i s e w i t h most of t h e i r p u p i l s . To them, the l i b e r a t i o n o f the i n d i v i d -ual meant an u n l i m i t e d freedom of s e l f - a s s e r t i o n ; i t meant r i g h t s w i t h o u t d u t i e s , un l e s s s e l f - a s s e r t i o n i s a d u t y ; "what t h e i r f a t h e r s had c a l l e d s e l f - c o n t r o l they c a l l e d an excuse f o r c o w a r d i c e . " Th i s " u n l i m i t e d freedom of s e l f - a s s e r t i o n " i s d e p l o r e d by R i g h t when he i s d e b a t i n g w i t h Wrong over the new e d u c a t i o n , w i t h i t s " t r i c k s . . . t h e y ' r e i n f a s h i o n now, a r e n ' t they ( to the a u d i e n c e ) because o f you i d i o t s " ( Sommer s te i n , p. 149 ) . Wrong ' s q u i c k r e j o i n d e r i s r e v e a l i n g : " I d i o t s i n d e e d . T h e y ' r e e x t r e m e l y i n t e l l i g e n t . " He i s e x p l o i t i n g the same p r i n c i p l e t h a t R i g h t d e p l o r e d , c o n f i d e n t t h a t he can seduce the aud i ence w i t h h i s s u g g e s t i o n t h a t they are capab le o f , and have the r i g h t t o , a r b i t r a t e t h e i r own i d e o l o g i c a l b e l i e f s and a s s e r t the s u p e r i o r i t y o f t h e i r own knowledge and judgment. Wrong ' s c o n t e n t i o n i s t h a t once P h e i d i p p i d e s conquers shame and a s s e r t s h i s r i g h t to de te rm ine h i s own b e h a v i o u r , he w i l l f i n d v i r t u e e x p e n d a b l e , because i t d o e s n ' t s e r ve man i n any p r a g m a t i c way: L i s t e n to a l l the t h i n g s t h a t v i r t u e c a n ' t do f o r y o u , Dodds, p. 191. Dodds i s q u o t i n g from Thucyd ides 3 .82 .4 . 43 my l a d — a l l the p l e a s u r e s y o u ' l l f o r f e i t . No boys . No women. No gamb l i n g . No f ancy s t u f f to e a t . No booze. No b e l l y l a u g h s . Cou ld you l i v e w i t h o u t a l l t hese ? I thought n o t . L e t me t u rn now t o - - t o the demands o f N a t u r e . Suppose you f a l l i n l o v e w i t h a m a r r i e d woman--have a b i t of f u n - - a n d got caught i n the a c t . As you are now, w i t h o u t a tongue i n y o u r head, y o u ' r e done f o r . But i f you come and l e a r n from me, then you can do what you l i k e and get away w i t h i t — i n d u l g e you r d e s i r e s , l a u g h , and p l a y , have no shame. (Sommers te in , p. 156 ) . When P h e i d i p p i d e s emerges from the T h i n k e r y he i s no l o n g e r i n h i b i t e d by t r a d i t i o n a l r e s t r a i n t s o r by a sense o f o b l i g a t i o n : I t ' s d e l i g h t f u l to be a c q u a i n t e d w i t h the wisdom o f t o d a y , and be ab l e to l ook down on c o n v e n t i o n . Do you know, t he r e was a t ime when I thought about n o t h i n g but h o r s e s , and i n those days I c o u l d n ' t say t h r e e words t o g e t h e r t h a t made sense . But now my f a t h e r has made sure t h a t ' s a l l beh ind me. I 'm i n t i m a t e w i t h a l l the new i dea s and a rgument s , I can dance on the p o i n t o f a n e e d l e . And I can prove t h a t i t ' s r i g h t f o r me to pun i s h my f a t h e r . ( Sommer s te i n , p. 169) The Chorus has a l r e a d y p r epa red us f o r t h i s when they comment: We ' re a l l agog to hear the o t h e r s i d e . For i f he proves i t w a s n ' t bad For him to s u f f o c a t e h i s dad, Soon a l l young men w i l l f l a y t h e i r e l d e r s ' h i d e . ( Sommer s te in , p. 169) P h e i d i p p i d e s i s a l s o aware t h a t he can c h a l l e n g e the v a l i d i t y o f the t r a d i t i o n a l laws t h a t had h i t h e r t o h e l d meaning f o r h im: But what i s a law anyway? I t must have been made a t some t i m e , and made by a man j u s t l i k e you o r me; and he must have per suaded h i s peop le by argument to a c c e p t i t . Why s h o u l d n ' t I now make a new law a l l o w i n g sons to beat t h e i r f a t h e r s i n r e t u r n ? I ' l l be gene rou s ; the t imes we boys got h i t b e f o r e the law was changed, w e ' l l renounce a l l c l a i m to compensat ion f o r them ( Sommer s te i n , p. 170 ) . 4 4 What he cannot do w i t h h i s newly l e a r n e d , c o r r u p t sys tem i s r e p l a c e the t r a d i t i o n a l framework w i t h any v a l i d laws o f h i s own, and the consequence i s a mean ing le s s w o r l d , d e v o i d o f v a l u e s , whe re i n men not o n l y c o n t r o v e r t j u s t i c e and the l a w , but a l s o ou t rage the most s a n c t i f i e d bonds between human b e i n g s . I t i s a w o r l d devo i d o f m o r a l i t y , where P h e i d i p p i d e s can j u s t i f y b e a t i n g h i s f a t h e r and h i s mother. Thus, perhaps the most p e r v a s i v e image o f a l l i s t h a t o f an o l d t r a d i t i o n empt i ed o f meaning and r e p l a c e d by a d i s t o r t e d and n o n s e n s i c a l w o r l d w i t h o u t any s u s t a i n i n g v a l u e s . The s o p h i s t s ' c l e v e r n e s s w i t h l a nguage , t h e i r " a r t o f s p e a k i n g " d i s t o r t s words and i d e a s . D i t h y r a m b i s t s have " tongues askew" and d e c l a i m "nonsense H e a v e n - h u r l e d . " The Chorus coaxes S t r e p s i a d e s to l e t h i s thought s " t w i s t and w r i g g l e " as he w r i t h e s on h i s v e r m i n - r i d d e n bed. The r e s u l t i s a mad w o r l d . When S t r e p s i a d e s e x p l a i n s to h i s son t h a t "There i s no Zeus/ R o t a t i o n ' s c a s t him out and r e i g n s i n s t e a d , " P h e i d i p p i d e s ' re sponse i s "Have you come to such a p i t c h o f c r a z i n e s s / That you t r u s t these l u n a t i c s ? " A f t e r P h e i d i p p i d e s i s c o n v e r t e d to the new ways, however, the language of the o l d Greek i n t e r p r e t e r s o f s o c i a l m o r a l i t y becomes empt i ed o f mean ing , and Ae s chy l u s i s now a "mi 1 1 s t o n e - v e n t i n g b l u s t e r e r , mere j a r g o n , n o i s e , and y e l l i n g . " Yet Ae s chy l u s i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of those who had t r a d i t i o n a l l y s e r v e d as gu ides to any who sought d i r e c t i o n i n p rope r moral c onduc t . The f a u l t l i e s w i t h P h e i d i p p i d e s ; h i s new e d u c a t i o n has made him i n c a p a b l e o f r e c o g n i z i n g or e x t r a c t i n g any moral d i r e c t i o n , s i n c e a c t i o n 45 i n f o r m e d by m o r a l i t y i s c o n s i d e r e d to be s u p e r f l u o u s i n h i s new wo r l d. The r a t i o n a l i s t v iew t h a t i t was a m a t t e r o n l y o f knowing the good to pursue i t was opposed by those such as A r i s t o p h a n e s who were aware of the s t r e n g t h o f human p a s s i o n s . A r i s t o p h a n e s ' mockery , t h e n , was aimed a t the r ep l a cemen t o f the l i v i n g gods by vague and a b s t r a c t c o n c e p t i o n s , and a t a new concep t o f e d u c a t i o n t h a t encouraged the c e l e b r a t i o n of the i n d i v i d u a l a t the expense o f t r a d i t i o n a l r e s t r a i n t s . But t h i s i s p r o -s a i c a l l y e x p r e s s e d , and A r i s t o p h a n e s ' e x p r e s s i o n was n o t , f o r t u n a t e l y , so p r o s a i c . S t r e p s i a d e s p r o v i d e s us w i t h a p i c t u r e o f the c o r r u p t i n g i n f l u e n c e o f p h i l o s o p h y : Now l e t them do t h e i r ve ry w o r s t , With blows torment t h i s body o f m ine , With c o l d o r s q u a l o r , hunger o r t h i r s t -Ay, f l a y my h ide as a s k i n f o r w i n e , As l ong as I l e a v e my depts u n p a i d , And r i s e to seem i n eve r y eye V o l u b l e , s hame le s s , u n a f r a i d ; An impudent f o r g e r o f eve ry l i e , A f o x , a p e t t i f o g g i n g c h e a t ; Brazen to b u l l y , smooth to wheed l e , Cunning a t law f o r a l l d e c e i t ; A t w i s t y t r immer as sharp as a n e e d l e , Who w i l l do aught to e a t . I f they w i l l but win me such names as t h e s e , They may do whateve r they l i k e w i t h me — Ay , i f they p l e a s e , By God they may mince me to s au sage s , To se r ve i n t h e i r R e f l e c t o r y . ( L u c a s , p. 891) But a b o v e . a l l , we are l e f t w i t h the i n d e l i b l e image o f an o u t r a g e o u s , e x a g g e r a t e d , r i d i c u l o u s S o c r a t e s , the m e t e o r o s o p h i s t / v i r t u o s o / a d e p t who can teach men how to l o g i c - c h o p and h a i r - s p l i t , how to compute "how many o f i t s own f e e t a f l e a c o u l d jump" o r pe r f o rm the "marve l ou s f e a t o f i n t e s t i n o l o g y . " To put i t , 46 a g a i n , i n S t r e p s i a d e s 1 wo rd s , "a man who knows a l l about g n a t ' s g u t s . " De sp i t e A r i s t o p h a n e s ' r i d i c u l e , f i v e c e n t u r i e s l a t e r w i n d -bag p h i l o s o p h e r s were not o n l y s t i l l i n e v i d e n c e , they were p r e s e n t i n even g r e a t e r numbers. They were the pet hate of L u c i a n , a Greek s a t i r i s t o f the Second C e n t u r y . L u c i a n was born about A.D. 1 2 0 a t Samosata on the E u p h r a t e s , a l e c t u r e r by p r o f e s s i o n , and a t the t ime o f h i s death he h e l d h i gh o f f i c e i n the I m p e r i a l T r ea su r y i n Egypt . He was one o f the l a t e r w i t s of a n t i q u i t y , and he l e f t e i g h t y p i e c e s , l ong and s h o r t , o f v a r y i n g e x c e l l e n c e . Through h i s m ind , we are a b l e to l ook a t the M e d i t e r r a n e a n w o r l d o f the Second C e n t u r y , the Romanized, p a c i f i e d , c i t i f i e d , l u x u r i o u s , l e t t e r e d , H e l l e n i z e d , d i s s o l u t e , M e d i t e r r a n e a n w o r l d . The Greek e n l i g h t e n m e n t o f the F i f t h Centu ry was now i n i t s decadence , and l a t e r Greek ir. i n t e l l e c t u a l a t t i t u d e s and contemporary Roman s o c i a l l i f e , common c o n v e r s a t i o n , e d u c a t i o n , and manners are r e v i ewed f o r our b e n e f i t by a s o p h i s t i c a t e d and w i t t y s a t i r i s t . The p h i l o s o p h e r s i n L u c i a n ' s Greco-Roman w o r l d share many s i m i l a r i t i e s w i t h those i n A r i s t o p h a n e s ' T h i n k e r y . They, t o o , are removed from the eve ryday w o r l d , f u l l o f deep thought s and absorbed i n t h e i r e s o t e r i c a b s t r a c t t h e o r i e s . T h e i r s e l f -impo r tance and t h e i r mys tery impres se s the g u l l i b l e : P y t h a g o r a s : What d i d I t e l l you? What you t h i n k i s f o u r , i s a c t u a l l y t e n - - a n e q u i l a t e r a l t r i a n g l e , , and the oath by wh ich we swear. Customer: By Fou r , then:, I swear I ' v e never heard 47 a n y t h i n g so m y s t e r i o u s and h o l y i n my l i f e ! The r e a d e r has an o p p o r t u n i t y to examine L u c i a n ' s p h i l o s o p h e r s when they are a u c t i o n e d o f f i n " P h i l o s o p h e r s Going Cheap. " L u c i a n ' s t e c h n i q u e i n t h i s s a t i r e , as i n many o t h e r s , i s to s e t up an i r o n i c s i t u a t i o n and, i n the e n s u i n g d i a l o g u e , a l l o w each p h i l o s o p h e r unknowing ly to condemn h i m s e l f . Only one of the seven p h i l o s o p h e r s i s s o l d to a man who e xpec t s to be i n s t r u c t e d i n p h i l o s o p h y , and the buyer i s p r e s e n t e d as a g u l l i b l e , i m p r e s s i o n a b l e f o o l : C h r y s i p p u s : And are you a l i v i n g c r e a t u r e ? Customer: I c e r t a i n l y thought I was. C h r y s i p p u s : Then y o u ' r e a s o l i d body, and t h e r e f o r e a s t o n e . Customer: Oh, p l e a s e d o n ' t say t h a t ! For God ' s sake g i ve me some r e d u c t i v e a n a l y s i s and t u r n me back i n t o a human b e i n g ! (p . 162) Two o f these p h i l o s o p h i c a l " l o t s " a re r e j e c t e d o u t r i g h t , two are bought to pe r f o rm men ia l l a b o u r , and two o t h e r s are s o l d because they are f r e a k s : Py thago ra s has a go lden t h i g h and S o c r a t e s has superhuman e y e s i g h t . S o c r a t e s i n t h i s s k e t c h i s not l i t e r a l l y up i n a b a s k e t , but he may as w e l l be. H i s " o t h e r w o r l d " i s more immediate to him than the r e a l w o r l d , and, l i k e the s o p h i s t i c a l w o r l d i n C Iouds , i t has a b o l i s h e d t r a d i t i o n a l r e s t r a i n t s : Customer: . . . what s o r t of l i f e do you l ead ? S o c r a t e s : I l i v e i n a s t r a n g e Repub l i c o f my own i n v e n t i o n , and ab ide by my own Laws. L u c i a n , " P h i l o s o p h e r s Going Cheap, " i n S a t i r i c a l Sketches,, t r a n s l a t e d by Paul Tu rne r (London: P e n g u i n , 1961 ) , p. 149. A l l f u r t h e r r e f e r e n c e s to t h i s work appear i n the t e x t . 48 Customer: Cou ld you t e l l me one of them? S o c r a t e s : The most i m p o r t a n t one i s the N a t i o n a l s , i z a t i o n o f Women A c t , wh ich a b o l i s h e d p r i v a t e o w n e r s h i p , and en su red t h a t the Means of R e p r o d u c t i o n were sha red by a l l the males i n the community. Customer: Do you mean t h a t t he r e i s no law a g a i n s t a d u l t e r y ? S o c r a t e s : C e r t a i n l y not- We've done away w i t h a l l nonsense o f t h a t s o r t (p. 157 ) . The p h i l o s o p h e r s are s i m i l a r to those i n C louds i n o t h e r ways. They, t o o , can o f f e r "supreme i n t e l l i g e n c e and u n i v e r s a l knowledge" (p. 163 ) , o r the a b i l i t y to " h e a r the mus ic o f the s p h e r e s " and "be s upe rhuman " , ( p . 148 ) . These l e a r n e d men use obscu re and d i f f i c u l t l a nguage , but i f n e ce s s a r y they reduce i t to homely language t h a t can be e a s i l y unde r s t ood by the common peop le , j u s t as the s t u d e n t a t the T h i n k e r y c o u l d s i m p l i f y h i s terms f o r S t r e p s i a d e s . In the p roce s s these men . r evea l the t r i v i a l i t y o r a b s u r d i t y o f t h e i r s u b j e c t s : Chy s i ppu s : Why, d o n ' t you unde r s t and t h a t some t h i n g s are P r e f e r a b l e and o t h e r s Non-P r e f e r a b l e ? Customer: No, I d o n ' t unde r s t and t h a t e i t h e r . C h y s i p p u s : T h a t ' s p r o b a b l y because y o u ' r e not used to our t e r m i n o l o g y , and have no I m a g i n a t i v e G ra sp - -wherea s a s e r i o u s s t u d e n t who has mas te red L o g i c a l Theory not o n l y knows about t h a t , but can a l s o e x p l a i n the i m p o r t a n t d i s t i n c t i o n between a P r ima r y and a Secondary A c c i den t . Customer: Oh, be a good p h i l o s o p h e r and t e l l me what P r ima r y and Secondary A c c i d e n t s a r e . T h e r e ' s someth ing so a t t r a c t i v e about the rhythm o f those words . C h r y s i p p u s : I ' l l be on l y too g l a d t o : Suppose someone has a gammy l e g and a c c i d e n t a l l y bangs t h a t gammy l e g a g a i n s t a s tone and cu t s i t open. W e l l , the gaminess i s a P r i m a r y A c c i d e n t , and to cu t i s a Secondary A c c i d e n t , (p . 159).;-49 L u c i a n does n o t , however, c o n f i n e h i s a t t a c k s to the moral p h i l o s o p h e r s . In " I c a r o m e n i p p u s " he s a t i r i z e s n a t u r a l p h i l o s o p h e r s w i t h t h e i r " u t t e r l y c o n f l i c t i n g and c o n t r a d i c t o r y " g s t a t e m e n t s . On the one hand they i n s i s t on a s s e r t i n g t h a t the p rope r approach to n a t u r e i s a mechan i ca l and m a t h e m a t i c a l one: They measured the h e i g h t o f the a tmosphe re , the depth o f the s e a , and the c i r c u m f e r e n c e of the e a r t h . Not c o n t e n t w i t h t h a t , by d e s c r i b i n g c i r c l e s , c o n s t r u c t i n g t r i a n g l e s on top o f q u a d r i l a t e r a l s , and i n v e n t i n g a c o m p l i c a t e d sys tem o f s p h e r e s , they a c t u a l l y c l a i m e d to measure the sky i t s e l f (p. 1 14 -15 ) . On the o t h e r hand the t h e o l o g i c a l d o c t r i n e s of these same p h i l o s o p h e r s are a mix of s u p e r s t i t i o n and n o n s e n s i c a l f a n t a s y : Some, i d e n t i f i e d God w i t h a c e r t a i n number, w h i l e o t h e r s swore by dogs, or gee se , o r p l a n e - t r e e s . Then t he re was a s e c t t h a t k i c k e d out a l l the gods e x cep t one, to whom they handed over c o n t r o l of the u n i v e r s e . I t r a t h e r upset me, I must a d m i t , to t h i n k o f gods be i n g i n such s h o r t s u p p l y . However, ano the r s e c t went o f f to the o p p o s i t e e x t r e m e , and were p o s i t i v e l y o ve r - gene rou s i n t h e i r o u t p u t o f gods , whom they graded a c c o r d i n g to the degree o f d i v i n i t y d i s p l a y e d . The one who came out top r e c e i v e d the t i t l e o f God, and the r e s t mere ly got Second o r T h i r d - C l a s s Honours. Then t he re were some who thought t h a t the d e i t y was f o r m l e s s and i n c o r p o r e a l , w h i l e o t h e r s r e ga rded i t as a p h y s i c a l e n t i t y . There w a s n ' t any gene ra l agreement t h a t the gods take an i n t e r e s t i n human a f f a i r s , f o r some t h i n k e r s r e l i e v e d them o f a l l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , j u s t as we exempt e l d e r l y peop le from c i v i c d u t i e s — thus r e d u c i n g gods to e x t r a s , and g i v i n g them o n l y w a l k - o n p a r t s (p. 116 ) . The f i n a l i r o n y of these c o n f l i c t i n g v iews i s t h a t a l t h o u g h i n s ub s tance they are a b s u r d , s u p e r f i c i a l l y they are a lmos t c o n v i n c i n g , because they are argued i n terms o f o r d e r e d , L u c i a n , " I c a r o m e n i p p u s , " i n T u r n e r ' s S a t i r i c a l S k e t c h e s . A l l f u r t h e r r e f e r e n c e s to t h i s work appear in" the t e x t . 50 r a t i o n a l d i s c o u r s e . C o n s e q u e n t l y , Menippus i s c on fu sed and cannot t e l l where the t r u t h l i e s : . . . I found i t q u i t e i m p o s s i b l e to r e f u t e a t heo r y which d e s c r i b e d a s i n g l e o b j e c t as both hot and c o l d , though I knew t h a t t h i n g c o u l d n ' t p o s s i b l y be hot and c o l d a t the same t i m e " (p . 116 ) . Men ippus ' c o n f u s i o n i s never s a t i s f a c t o r i l y r e s o l v e d i n " I c a r o m e n i p p u s . " Only when he c o n s u l t s T i r e s i u s i n "Menippus Goes to H e l l " does he r e c e i v e a u s e f u l r e s p o n s e : The b e s t way to l i v e i s to be an o r d i n a r y human b e i n g . So g i v e up a l l t h i s m e t a p h y s i c a l nonsense . Stop w o r r y i n g about f i r s t p r i n c i p l e s and f i n a l c a u s e s , and f o r g e t a l l those c l e v e r a r gumen t s - -they d o n ' t mean a t h i n g . J u s t l i v e i n the moment and get a l ong as be s t you c a n , t r y i n g to see the funny s i d e o f t h i n g s and t a k i n g n o t h i n g very s e r i o u s l y (pp. 109 -110 ) . T i r e s i u s i s v o i c i n g L u c i a n ' s own p o s i t i o n and , f o r t h a t m a t t e r , i t i s A r i s t o p h a n e s ' a l s o . Both f e l t t h a t m e t a p h y s i c a l s p e c -u l a t i o n was a waste o f a man's t ime and e n e r g i e s . L u c i a n ' s p h i l o s o p h e r s are s i m i l a r to A r i s t o p h a n e s ' i n p h y s i c a l appearance t o o . They are s t i l l p a l e , " l o n g - h a i r e d t y p e s , " " f i l t h y c r e a t u r e s , " and t h e y , t o o , are capab le o f o t h e r - w o r l d l y s t o i c i s m . D i ogene s ' recommended t r a i n i n g f o r wou ld -be s o p h i s t s sounds s i m i l a r to the regime recommended to S t r ep s i ades : . . . the f i r s t s tage w i l l be to e l i m i n a t e a l l l u x u r i e s , reduce you to p o v e r t y , and make you wear a b l a n k e t . A f t e r t h a t I ' l l o r d e r p l e n t y o f hard l a b o u r , s l e e p i n g on the g round , and a d i e t of wa te r and any o l d food t h a t happens to come a l ong (p. 152) . The end r e s u l t i s the same as t h a t o f the s o p h i s t s i n C Iouds. The t r a i n i n g t h a t they r e c e i v e e l i m i n a t e s shame so t h a t , 51 r e l e a s e d from r e s t r a i n t s , a s u b j e c t can become a moral r enegade , f r e e to e x p l o i t o t h e r s i n h i s t u r n . D i ogenes ' programme, as he s a y s , . . . i s a ve ry easy one to f o l l o w , my good man. Anyone can do i t . You d o n ' t need to have any t r a i n i n g , o r go to any l e c t u r e s , o r any nonsense o f t h a t s o r t . I t ' s a r e a l s h o r t c u t to fame. Even i f y o u ' r e a p e r f e c t l y o r d i n a r y p e r s o n , a c o b b l e r , a f i s h m o n g e r , a c a r p e n t e r , o r a bank c l e r k , t h e r e ' s n o t h i n g to s top you be i n g a huge s u c c e s s , so l o ng as y o u ' r e shameless enough, and l e a r n the t e c h n i q u e o f v u l g a r abuse (p. 153) . But even though t he re are many s i m i l a r i t i e s to h i s p r e d e c e s s o r A r i s t o p h a n e s , L u c i a n does more than mere l y shape s t o c k tmages to f i t contemporary themes. H i s re sponse was n e c e s s a r i l y d i f f e r e n t because contemporary c i r c u m s t a n c e s had , n a t u r a l l y enough, changed, and these changes were r e f l e c t e d i n h i s image ry . S i n c e A r i s t o p h a n e s ' t ime d i f f e r e n t s c h o o l s o f p h i l o s o p h y had p r o l i f e r a t e d and i n c r e a s e d i n s i z e and number. In t h e i r development they had a t t r a c t e d q u a c k s , mountebanks , a s t r o l o g e r s , c o n j u r o r s , s yncophant s , p imps , f o r t u n e - t e l l e r s , and d e a l e r s i n mag i c , and d u r i n g L u c i a n ' s epoch these c h a r l a t a n s abounded i n a l l ranks o f Greek and Roman s o c i e t y and preyed upon the v i c e s and s u p e r s t i t i o n s o f r i c h and poor a l i k e . L u c i a n h a r r i e s t h i s c l a s s o f p r e t e n d e r w i t h o u t mercy , and he emphas izes the degeneracy and the h y p o c r i s y of these men who p r e t e n d to a l e a r n i n g they do not have. These d i s s o l u t e men f l o u r i s h e d because they found g u l l i b l e v i c t i m s . . Dur ing the decay o f the o l d Roman r e l i g i o n , s t ance s and l e c t u r e s , s pook -meet i ng s and magic h e a l i n g s were i n vogue, and they were p o p u l a r because they e x p l o i t e d human f o l l y ; t h a t i s , t h a t s eem ing l y 52 w i l l f u l b e l i e f i n s u p e r s t i t i o n and nonsense r a t h e r than t r u t h and common sense . Something o f t h i s s h i f t i n focus can be seen i n L u c i a n ' s S o c r a t e s . He has a s i m i l a r appearance to the " L e a r n e d D o c t o r " i n C l o u d s , but h i s debauchery i s more p ronounced : ( S o c r a t e s comes down from the p l a t f o r m . He has a squashed nose , t h i c k l i p s , p o p - e y e s , and a very l a r g e s tomach.) A Customer ( to S o c r a t e s ) : T e l l me, w h a t ' s y ou r s p e c i a l s u b j e c t ? S o c r a t e s : Sexo logy and h o m o s e x u a l i t y . Customer: Then y o u ' r e no use to me. I want a p r i v a t e t u t o r f o r my s on - - and he happens to be r a t h e r g o o d - l o o k i n g . S o c r a t e s ( l i c k i n g h i s l i p s ) : P r i v a t e t u t o r to a good-l o o k i n g boy? You w o n ' t f i n d anyone b e t t e r q u a l i f i e d f o r the j ob than I am. You s e e , I 'm q u i t e P l a t o n i c — i t ' s o n l y t h e i r minds I 'm i n t e r e s t e d i n . Why, even when I go to bed w i t h them, t h e y ' l l t e l l you n o t h i n g ve ry t e r r i b l e happens (p. 156) . S o c r a t e s ' p e r v e r s i o n s are p a i n t e d i n b r o a d , r ough , s t r o k e s h e r e , but the d e g e n e r a t i o n and h y p o c r i s y o f the p h i l o s o p h e r s i s more s u b t l y and perhaps more damning ly p r e s e n t e d i n "The Dependent 9 S c h o l a r . " Amid a l l the t a n g l e d mass and mess o f h y p o c r i s y i n the Greco-Roman w o r l d , the househo ld p h i l o s o p h e r s of the p l u t o c r a t s seemed to L u c i a n to be the most od ious examp le s . They were Greeks who made a l i v i n g by t e a c h i n g p h i l o s o p h y . They were educa ted men, sometimes h i g h l y e d u c a t e d , and they became the hou seho ld ornaments and pet dogs of the Roman upper L u c i a n , "The Dependent S c h o l a r , " i n The Works of L u c i a n  o f Samosata, t r a n s l a t e d by H. W. Fowle r and F. G. Fow le r ( O x f o r d : C l a rendon P r e s s , 1905 ) , pp. 1-27. A l l f u r t h e r r e f e r e n c e s to t h i s work appear i n the t e x t . 53 c l a s s e s . L u c i a n saw these househo ld pet s as i n s a t i a b l e mon s t e r s , f r a u d u l e n t l y p r e t e n d i n g to be p h i l o s o p h e r s and i n the p roces s p e r v e r t i n g language and t r u t h . These men p l e a d p o v e r t y and n e c e s s i t y , but L u c i a n d i s a g r e e s : And now f o r the t r u e r e a s o n , wh ich you w i l l never hear from t h e i r l i p s . Vo l up tuou sne s s and a whole pack o f d e s i r e s are what i nduce them to f o r c e t h e i r way i n t o g r e a t houses . The d a z z l i n g s p e c t a c l e of abundant g o l d and s i l v e r , the j o y s o f h igh f e e d i n g and l u x u r i o u s l i v i n g , the immediate p r o s p e c t of w a l l o w i n g i n r i c h e s , w i t h no man to say them nay^ these are the t e m p t a t i o n s t h a t l u r e them o n , and make s l a v e s o f f r e e men; not l a c k o f the n e c e s s a r i e s o f l i f e , as they p r e t e n d , but l u s t o f i t s s u p e r -f l u i t i e s , g reed o f i t s c o s t l y r e f i n e m e n t s (p. 5 - 6 ) . He then d e s c r i b e s i n d e t a i l the p roce s s of t h e i r d e g e n e r a t i o n and f i n i s h e s w i t h a contemptuous q u e s t i o n : . . . Do you count i t no shame to be p i t t e d a g a i n s t t o a d i e s and v u l g a r p a r a s i t e s ? No shame to s i t a t the n o i s y banquets of a p romiscuous and f o r the most p a r t a d i s r e p u t a b l e company--a Greek among Romans, wea r i n g the f o r e i g n garb of p h i l o s o p h y and s tammer ing t h e i r tongue w i t h a f o r e i g n a c cen t ? (p. L u c i a n has s c a r c e l y more r e s p e c t f o r those who h i r e these p a r a s i t e s and the heavy sarcasm in t h i s passage u n d e r l i n e s h i s con tempt: As to the s t u d i e s i n wh ich you r employer p r o f e s s e d an i n t e r e s t when he engaged y o u , they are n o t h i n g to h im. S h a l l an ass a f f e c t the l y r e ? Remove from these men's minds the go ld and the s i l v e r , w i t h the c a r e s t h a t these i n v o l v e , and what rema ins ? P r i d e , l u x u r y , s e n s u a l i t y , i n s o l e n c e , wan tonne s s , i g n o r a n c e Consuming must be t h e i r d e s i r e , doubt i t n o t , f o r the wisdom of Homer, the e l oquence o f Demosthenes, the s u b l i m i t y of P l a t o ! (p . 17) Thus, we have an image o f the g r eedy , s y c o p h a n t i c p h i l o s -ophers who a re n o t h i n g more than kept an ima l s and y e t who p r e t e n d to g r e a t knowledge and v i r t u e . T h e i r keepers are no b e t t e r , they too are greedy and s e l f - i n d u l g e n t , anx i ou s to 54 a c q u i r e the r e p u t a t i o n o f be i n g c u l t u r e d . But s t r i p p e d of t h e i r h y p o c r i t i c a l veneer o f r e s p e c t a b i l i t y the pa t r on s are r e v e a l e d as s a vage , depraved men, and Lucian-.'s image i s c l e a r and u n f o r g e t t a b l e : The f a c t i s , t h a t these g r e a t men are f o r a l l the w o r l d l i k e handsomely bound books. O u t s i d e are the g i l t edges and the p u r p l e c o v e r : and w i t h i n ? a Thyes te s f e a s t s upon h i s own c h i l d r e n ; and Oedipus commits i n c e s t w i t h h i s mother ; a Tereus woos two s i s t e r s a t once. Such a re these human books : t h e i r b r i l l i a n c y a t t r a c t s a l l e y e s , but between the p u r p l e cover s l u r k s many a h o r r i d t a l e . Turn ove r the pages o f any one of them, and you f i n d a drama worthy the pen o f Sophoc le s or E u r i p i d e s : c l o s e the v o l u m e - -a l l i s g i l t edge and e x q u i s i t e t o o l i n g (p . 2 5 ) . T h e i r outward appearance i s a s t a r t l i n g c o n t r a s t to the c h i l l i n g dep r a v i ty wi t h i n. "The Dependent S c h o l a r " c l o s e s w i t h an i n d e l i b l e image of the p h i l o s o p h e r grown o l d . He i s a s chem ing , me r cene r y , degenerate h y p o c r i t e who p l anned to l i v e as a p a r a s i t e on h i s p a t r o n . H i s f a t e i s i r o n i c because h i s p a t r on proves h i m s e l f to be a copy o f h i s s y c o p h a n t , e x c e p t t h a t he i s even more v i c i o u s and p o w e r f u l . C o n s e q u e n t l y , i t i s the p h i l o s o p h e r who i s Sucked dry . . . . . you r pr ime has gone by, y o u r b o d i l y v i g o r i s e x h a u s t e d , you are a t a t t e r e d remnant. Your master beg in s to l ook f o r a c o n v e n i e n t d u n g h i l l whereon to d e p o s i t you ( p . 2 4 ) . The p h i l o s o p h e r i s l e f t w i t h n o t h i n g to f eed on but h i m s e l f : Whatever you once knew, you have u n l e a r n t i n a l l these y e a r s : on the o t h e r hand, you have deve loped a paunch l i k e a b a l l o o n - - a monster i n s a t i a b l e , i n e x o r a b l e , which has a c q u i r e d a h a b i t o f a s k i n g f o r more, and l i k e s not the u n l e a r n i n g p roce s s (p. 24 ) . P h i l o s o p h e r s i n L u c i a n ' s w o r l d were not so s c a r c e t h a t they c o u l d o n l y be found i n the homes o f the w e a l t h y , however. On the c o n t r a r y , they were e ve r ywhe re , a s e e t h i n g , c h a o t i c mass 55 of men, and i t i s t h i s t h a t p r o v i d e s the most powe r f u l image i n L u c i a n ' s " F i s h i n g f o r P h o n i e s " : the image of the p r o ! i f e r a t i o n o f a n i m a l i s t i c , f a w n i n g , a p p a l l i n g l y v u l g a r " p h i l o s o p h e r s " who p r e t e n d to t r u t h : They s n a r l l i k e dogs, c r i n g e l i k e h a r e s , fawn l i k e apes , r u t l i k e s t a g s , s t e a l l i k e c a t s , and q u a r r e l l i k e f i g h t i n g c o c k s . They make l a u g h i n g s t o c k s of themse lves by e l b o w i n g each o t h e r out o f the way to get to a r i c h man's doo r , o r go ing to b i g d i n n e r p a r t i e s and c r u d e l y f l a t t e r i n g t h e i r h o s t s , e a t i n g more than i s good f o r them, and f i n a l l y p a s s i n g out from a s u r f e i t o f nea t a l c o h o l (p . 188 ) . These phoney p h i l o s o p h e r s a re not p e r i p h e r a l members o f L u c i a n ' s w o r l d ; on the c o n t r a r y " t h e r e ' s n o t h i n g to be seen f o r m i l e s but b e a r d s , s t i c k s , k nap sack s , s y l l o g i s m s , b razen f a c e s , mealy mouths, greedy g u t s , and c l o s e f i s t s " (p. 188 ) . T h e i r l e a r n e d p a r a p h e r n a l i a ( t h a t i s , t h e i r s y l l o g i s m s ) a r e r l umped t o g e t h e r w i t h t h e i r p h y s i c a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s as p a r t o f the n e c e s s a r y bag o f t r i c k s f o r a p h i l o s o p h e r . I n d i v i d u a l l y , they would be r i d i c u l o u s , ab su rd f i g u r e s , but t o g e t h e r they a re dangerous because they are so p l e n t i f u l . When L u c i a n c a l l s f rom the top o f the A c r o p o l i s and o f f e r s a l l r e s p o n d i n g p h i l o s o p h e r s t h e i r "unemployment b e n e f i t " he i s overwhelmed by a m u l t i t u d e : My goodnes s , l ook a t them a l l pu sh i ng and s h o v i n g t h e i r way up h e r e . I t o n l y needed those two minas to f e t c h them. And t h e r e a re crowds more coming up the o t h e r s i d e o f the h i 1 1 — a n d - a n o t h e r l o t s t r e a m i n g p a s t the temple A s c l e p i us — a n d an even l a r g e r p a r t y c r o s s i n g over from the A r e o p a g u s — a n d some o t h e r s h u r r y i n g p a s t T a l u s ' s Tomb—and j u s t l o o k , t h e y ' r e a c t u a l l y p u t t i n g l a d d e r s a g a i n s t the temple o f C a s t o r L u c i a n , " F i s h i n g f o r P h o n i e s , " i n T u r n e r ' s S a t i r i c a l  S k e t c h e s . A l l f u r t h e r r e f e r e n c e s to t h i s work appear i n the t e x t . 56 and Pollux and clambering up that way! Why, they ' re l i k e a great swarm of insects buzzing towards us, or to adapt Homer, They're pouring in from th is side and from that, Unnumbered as the leaves and flowers of Spring. (p. 188) When they rea l i ze that the i r r ight to the name of "philosopher" w i l l be invest igated, the multitude of fa l se prophets rapidly disperses. These men f lourished because they exploited the weaknesses in human nature, and Lucian 's technique for examining these weak-nesses i s perhaps his most s i gn i f i c an t contr ibution to s a t i r e . This technique was his use of perspective, both actual physical perspective, as when Menippus surveys the a c t i v i t i e s of men from out i n space, or the more t e l l i n g oblique comment expressed through the use of the th i rd person point of view and the dramatic s i tuat ion i t s e l f . We have an example of his use of physical perspective in "Icaromenippus," when Menippus, his v is ion sharpened and focussed by Empedocles, matter -of - fact ly provides a c h i l l i n g vignette of human a c t i v i t i e s as he relates his observations: . . . human actions were c lea r l y v i s i b l e to me I saw Ptolemy going to bed with his s i s t e r , Agathocles planning to murder his father, Antiochus the F i r s t making a secret signal to his stepmother, Stratonice, Alexander of Pherae being k i l l e d by his w i fe , Antigonus having an a f f a i r with his daughter-in-law, and Attalus being poisoned by his son. Elsewhere I saw Arsaces cutt ing his pretty l i t t l e w i fe ' s throat, and the eunuch Arbaces drawing a sword to k i l l Arsaces. Spatinus the Mede was being dragged f e e t - f i r s t out of a dinner-party by his own bodyguard, a f te r having his skul l smashed in with a golden cup. The same sort of thing was happening in the palaces of L ibya, Scythia, and Thrace, where people were equally busy committing adultery, murder, high treason, the f t , and perjury, going in constant fear of the i r l i v e s , and being informed on by the i r nearest and dearest. . . . As for the rest- -but there ' s no point in t ry ing to t e l l you about a l l the people I saw burgling houses, lending money, going to law, and begging. I t ' s enough to say that i t was a spectacle of i n f i n i t e var iety . (p. 121) 57 This " i n f i n i t e var iety" conveys not only the scope of human f o l l y and e v i l , but also i t s pervasiveness. Menippus l ikens the human colony to an a n t - h i l l , "a degrading comparison" he admits, but a r e a l i s t i c one. It i s a comparison that Erasmus and Swift adapted in the i r own works, centuries l a t e r , ju s t as they borrowed the detached ob jec t i v i t y of the dramatic s i tuat ion which makes the spectacle so devastating. To write about human weaknesses is to write about human f o l l i e s and i r r a t i o n a l i t i e s , and these had another dimension which intr igued Lucian: man's apparent obliviousness to the fact of death. Lucian understood the dramatic p o s s i b i l i t i e s of death too, and in "Charon Sees L i f e " he explo its them to the f u l l e s t . ^ Charon, who knows nothing whatever about the conditions of human existence, i s consequently myst i f ied and exasperated by mankind's refusal to come to grips with unexpected, unwelcome, omnipresent Death. The only thing Charon knows i s Death--namely, that a l l men d ie. Yet Hermes shows him scene a f te r scene where men ignore i t s inev itable coming, unt i l Charon's dismay prompts his comment: Do you think i t would be a good idea, while we're up here, for me to shout out some advice to them as loud as I possibly c a n — t e l l them to stop wasting the i r energy, and l i v e with the thought of death perpetually in the i r minds? (p. 9 3 ) But Hermes' response shows the f u t i l i t y of any attempt to dispel the i l l u s i on s of men: My dear chap, don't you rea l i ze how impenetrable they are? Why, you could take a d r i l l to them, but y o u . s t i l l wouldn't get through to the i r consciousness. Ignorance and delusion Lucian, "Charon Sees'...Life," in Turner's S a t i r i c a l Sketches. A l l further references to th is work appear in the text . 58 have given them the treatment that Odysseus gave his c r e w -bunged up the i r ears with wax, for fear they should l i s t e n to the Sirens (p. 93). This stubborn refusal to confront the r e a l i t y of death i s a symptom of a general malaise among men, a malaise that interested s a t i r i s t s concerned with language and learning. Men who ignore death ignore the overwhelming evidence of common sense experience. They know that death is arb i t rary and inev i tab le , and yet they pers i s t in conducting themselves as though they were going to l i v e forever. Hermes hints at the reason: "You see, ignorance performs the same function up here as Lethe does down below . . ." (p. 93). Again, Erasmus and Swift were to pursue this theme in the i r s a t i r e . Erasmus was to write a paradoxical praise of th is f o l l y precisely because i t insulates men from the t ru th , or , as i t metamorphoses into Pauline f o l l y , reveals divine knowledge to men. Lucian 's emphasis, however, i s on the fact that such f o l l y e x i s t s , rather than on the reason for i t s existence. This stubborn ignorance can be applied more s p e c i f i c a l l y to learning in other sketches, where Lucian again uses dramatic irony to point out man's fascinat ion with the i r r a t i o n a l . In "Hermotimus, or the Rival Philosophies," Lucian 's Lycinus t e l l s Hermotimus: Hermotimus, I cannot show what truth i s , so well as wise people l i k e you and your professor, but one thing I do know about i t , and that i s that i t i s not pleasant to the ear; falsehood is far more esteemed; i t i s p r e t t i e r , and  therefore pleasanter; while Truth, conscious of i t § pur i t y , b lurts out downright remarks, and offends people. Lucian, "Hermotimus, or the Rival Phi losophies," in Fowler's Works, p. 70, underlining mine. A l l further references to th is work appear in the text. 59 But men who pretend to learning w i l l believe anything, no matter how fantast ic or unbelieveable the story might be, and no matter how much i t contradicts the dictates of common sense. Men do this because they have f a l l en into the delusion that haunts so many savants, the delusion of supposing that man can at ta in truth by some instantaneous, chop-logic process without ever committing himself to the f a l l i b l e engine of his personal ity. They are trapped by the i r own delusion, and instead of r i s i n g above the vagaries of i r r a t i ona l passions, they become ensnared by them. One sa t i re that c lea r l y focuses on this delusion i s "The 13 Pathological L i a r . " This i s a dialogue on magic cures, ghosts, second-s ight , ra i s ing the dead, and enchantments and superst it ions of a l l kinds. But the t i t l e covers more than ghosts and magic. I t goes to the bottom of the subject; i t explains the curious v i t a l i t y and wi l fulness of men who, i f unable to believe in these false superst i t ions , w i l l believe in something else that i s equally fa l se . They do this because they are pretending to a knowledge they do not have. Tychiades, the narrator, a'fter noting that many men, otherwise sensible and remarkable for the i r i n te l l i gence , have somehow become infected with this plague and are lovers of l y i n g , describes a recent v i s i t to the house of a r i ch i n va l i d f r i end , Everates, who i s a v ict im of quacks and second-sighters, magic cures, div inat ions and necromancies. The v ict im s i t s surrounded by marble statues, bronzes, and rare cu r i o s i t i e s as well as by toadies and fami l iars who feed his passion for l i e s . Preposterous stor ies are t o l d , and as the superst it ious tales accumulate, Tychiades' 13 Lucian, "The Pathological L i a r , " in Turner's S a t i r i c a l Sketches. A l l further references to this work appear in the text. 60 dismay mounts. As each new v i s i t o r appears, Tychiades expects a sudden return to common sense: We were now joined by Arignotus the Pythagorean, a gentleman of imposing appearance with very long ha i r . You must know him--he's got a tremendous reputation for wisdom. They ca l l him the Holy Man. As soon as I saw him, I breathed a sigh of rel i e f . 'Here comes a pair of scissors j ' , I thought, ' t o snip through the i r t issue of l i e s . H e ' l l soon shut them up, i f they s t a r t ta lk ing any more nonsense' (p. 212). But Arignotus disappoints Tychiades; he launches into a story about a haunted house even more preposterous than those already t o l d . Tychiades' disgust i s obvious: " I 'm disappointed in you, Arignotus,"."I sa id, ' "You were our only hope as a champion of t ru th , and a l l we get is a l o t of hot air'.' (p. 214). The company is at f i r s t incredulous, and then alarmed as Tychiades t r i e s to persuade them to try " t ruth and common sense." F ina l l y they are act i ve ly hos t i le and accuse him of having no " s c i e n t i f i c cu r i o s i t y . " But the dramatic s i tuat ion demonstrates that the i r " t r u t h " cannot be shown to correspond to any nameable or thinkable r e a l i t y . I t i s , instead, a t issue of superst i t ion and nonsense, and th i s would be ins tant ly apparent i f Everates and his guests could apply Tychiades! " t ruth and common-sense." I t i s through the dramatic perspective that Lucian provides that we are able to see c lea r l y what the characters, mired in the i r s ub jec t i v i t y , cannot perceive. Lucian 's in teres t in the i r r a t i ona l was more ana lyt ica l than Aristophanes ' , and his technique was i dea l l y suited to his in teres t because i t provided the necessary distancing and perspective. But both Aristophanes and Lucian understood that metaphysical speculation abstracted from common sense r e a l i t y was not j u s t absurd, but immoral. The windbag 61 philosopher, with his casuistry and chop-logic, pretends to a learning he does not have, and his perversions are revealed to us by the words he uses, words which indicate the gulf that l i e s between the honest use of language and learning, and i t s abuse and obfuscation. CHAPTER III RENAISSANCE SATIRISTS Erasmus: The Praise of Fo l ly Rabelais: Gargantua and Pantagruel Donne: Second Sat i re Jonson: The Alchemist 63 Lucian provided a storehouse of images and techniques for succeed-ing s a t i r i s t s , pa r t i cu l a r l y in the Renaissance. The professional philosophers whom Lucian hounded so unmercifully were the ancestors and the congeners of the whole doctorate class of succeeding generations, such as Rabelais ' Men of the Law and the Doctors of Letters at the Sorbonne and Erasmus' Schoolmen. A l l three s a t i r i s t s perceive a world run by f o l l y twist ing words and knowledge out of the i r r a t i ona l , common sense patterns into h a i r - s p l i t t i n g casuistry and chop l o g i c , measuring, mechanizing, abstracting the ful lness of human experience into dry, sh r i ve l l ed deformities for the benefit of foo l s . Most of the Lucianic devices, such as the " l y i ng h i s to r i an " who i s the putative author of the True History, Menippus looking down in judgment upon the world, the speaker who condemns himself with every word he utters , may be found in Erasmus and Rabelais. But the Renaissance s a t i r i s t s use the Lucianic heritage with a d i f fe rent emphasis, a Chr i s t ian humanist emphasis. Within th is new context Erasmus dwells on the paradoxical re lat ionship between happiness and f o l l y . Rabelais explores the ambiguity of language. Erasmus (1475-1536) in The Praise of Fo l ly borrows almost i n tac t Lucian's "Icaromenippus" image, and i s very e x p l i c i t about his debt: . . . i f a man l i k e Menippus of old could look down from the moon and behold those innumerable ru f f l i ng s of mankind, he would think he saw a swarm of f l i e s and gnats quarrel ing among themselves, f i gh t i ng , lay ing traps for one another, snatching, playing, wantoning, growing up, f a l l i n g , and dying. Nor is i t to be believed what s t i r , what b r o i l s , th is l i t t l e creature ra i ses , and yet in how short a time i t comes to nothing i t s e l f ; while sometimes war, other times pest i lence, sweeps o f f many thousands of them together. Erasmus, The Praise of T o l l y , translated by John Wilson (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1972), p. 83. A l l further references to this work appear in the text. ,This image was l a te r adapted by Swift 64 The "new" Menippus sees l i t t l e that is d i f fe rent from that of the " o l d " Menippus. Both f ind a p l en t i f u l supply of Aristophanes' sophis t ica l philosophers, s t i l l unkempt and dishevel led, as we see again in Erasmus: Divines are hal f starved, natura l i s t s out of heart, astrologers laughed at , and logic ians s l i gh ted; only the physician i s worth a l l the rest . And among them too, the more unlearned, impudent, or unadvised he i s , the more he i s esteemed, even among princes. For physic, espec ia l ly i as i t i s now professed by most men, i s nothing but a branch of f l a t t e r y , no less than rhetor i c . Next them, the second place is given to our law-dr ivers, i f not the f i r s t , whose profession, though I say i t myself, most men laugh at as the ass of philosophy; yet there 's scarce any business, e i ther so great or so smal l , but i s managed by these asses. These purchase the i r great lordships, while in the meantime the d iv ine, having run through the whole body of d i v i n i t y , s i t s gnawing a radish and i s in continual warfare with l i c e and f leas . Erasmus, in The Praise of Fo l l y , systematical ly sets out to show a world of f o l l y peopled by lawyers, sophists, d iv ines, rhetor ic ians , and court iers . Lucian 's natural philosophers in "Icaromenippus" had in s i s ted that the proper approach to nature was a mechanical one: They measured the height of the atmosphere, the depth of the sea, and the circumference of the earth. Not content with that, by describing c i r c l e s , constructing tr iangles on top of quadr i l a tera l s , and inventing a complicated system of 3 spheres, they actua l ly claimed to measure the sky i t s e l f . in the second book of G u l l i v e r ' s Travels, when the King of Brobdingnag concludes that the society described by Gu l l i ve r constitutes the "most pernicious Race of l i t t l e odious Vermin that Nature ever suffered to crawl upon the Surface of the Earth." 2 I b id . , p. 53-54. See also Lucian, "Philosophers Going Cheap," in Turner's S a t i r i c a l Sketches for s im i l a r descriptions of the various types of philosophers. Lucian, "Icaromenippus," in S a t i r i c a l Sketches, pp. 114-115. 65 The philosophers in The Praise of Fo l l y have a s im i l a r approach: . . . how pleasantly do they dote while they frame in the i r heads innumerable worlds; measure out the sun, the moon, the s ta r s , nay and heaven i t s e l f , as i t were, with a pair of compasses; lay down the causes of l i gh tn ing , winds, ec l ip ses , and other the l i k e inexpl icable matters; and th i s too without the least doubting, as i f they were Nature's secretar ies , or dropped down among us from the council of the gods . . . (pp. 91-92). Lucian 's Menippus had discovered that his " s c i e n t i s t s " were completely abstracted from the everyday world: . . . I picked out a few s c i e n t i s t s , who, to judge from the grimness of the i r expressions, the paleness of the i r faces, and the luxuriance of the i r beards were at the very top of the i r profession—and i t was obvious enough from the way they talked that tj je i r knowledge of astronomy was quite out of th i s world. S im i l a r l y , "Nature's secretar ies " in The Praise of Fo l ly are obl iv ious to everyday r e a l i t y , so that "they neither know themselves, nor perceive a ditch or block that l i e s in the i r way" (p. 92). Erasmus1 indictment continues as he shows lawyers, l og ic ians , and sophists en t i r e l y preoccupied with t r i v i a . Lawyers " da i l y r o l l Sisyphus his stone," log ic ians and sophists "hack and hew one another about a matter of nothing" (p. 92). But his most severe s t r i c tu res are against a Renaissance var iat ion of the t rad i t i ona l sophist, the h a i r - s p l i t t i n g theologians. Lucian had complained of the "torturous arguments" of the philosophers ("these revolt ing characters " ) , who pursued nothingness into i n f i n i t e regions. But the centuries intervening between Lucian and Erasmus had seen generations of Schoolmen whose sole vocation seemed to be the minute d i f fus ion of abstract ions, espec ia l ly theological abstract ions, into even a i r i e r and more minute abstractions. At a time when the Church Lucian, "Icaromenippus," in S a t i r i c a l Sketches, p. 114. 66 perceived i t s e l f to be in grave p e r i l , i t s authority under attack, i t must have seemed to Erasmus that now, more than ever before, a Chr i s t ian who l i v ed a l i f e of Chr ist ian v i rtue acted as a more powerful witness than a l l the c a v i l l i n g , sophist ic churchmen with the i r h a i r s p l i t t i n g and the i r pretensions to a higher knowledge not accessible to lesser mortals. Consequently, he presents contemporary theologians as men who obscure understanding under the guise of exegesis: . . . they expl icate the most hidden mysteries according to the i r own fancy--as how the world was f i r s t made; how or ig ina l s in i s derived to pos ter i ty ; in what manner, how much room, and how long time Chr ist lay in the V i r g in ' s womb; how accidents subsist i n the Eucharist without the i r subject. . . . whether there was any instant of time in the generation of the Second Person; whether there be more than one f i l i a t i o n in Chr i s t ; whether i t be a possible proposition that God the Father Hates the Son; or whether i t was possible that Chr i s t could have taken upon Him the likeness of a woman, or of the d e v i l , or of an ass, or of a stone, or of a gourd; and then how that gourd should have preached, wrought miracles, or been hung on the cross; and what Peter had consecrated i f he had administered the Sacrament at that time the body of Chr i s t hung upon the cross; or whether at the same time he might be said to be man; whether af ter the Resurrection there w i l l be any eating and dr ink ing, since we are so much a f ra id of hunger and t h i r s t in th is world. There are i n f i n i t e of these subtle t r i f l e s . . . (p. 9 4 ) . Erasmus shows how far these theologians have s l i d from the ideal Pauline s imp l i c i t y . He throws the i r pious pettifoggery into r e l i e f , pointing out the log ica l absurdity and the moral outrageousness of the i r pronouncements: . . . as ' t i s a lesser crime to k i l l a thousand men than to set a s t i t ch on a poor man's shoe on the Sabbath day; and that a man should choose rather that the whole world with a l l food and raiment, as they say, should per i sh, then t e l l a l i e , though never so inconsiderable (p. 9 5 ) . The sheer volume of the i r material i s stupendous and overwhelming, and Erasmus' use of catalogues v i sua l l y establishes the ponderous power of the i r pedantry, where words and chop log ic smother common sense and r e a l i t y : Here they erect the i r theological crests and beat into the people's ears those magnificent t i t l e s of i l l u s t r i o u s doctors, 67 subtle doctors, seraphic doctors, cherubin doctors, holy doctors, unquestionable doctors, and the l i k e ; and then throw abroad among the ignorant people syl logisms, majors, minors, conclusions, c o r o l l a r i e s , suppositions, and those so weak and foo l i sh that they are below pedantry. There remains yet the f i f t h act in which one would think they should show the i r mastery. And here they bring in some foo l i sh i n s i p i d fable out of Speculum his to r i ale or Gesta romanorum and expound i t a l l e g o r i c a l l y , t ropo log i ca l l y , and anagogically. (p. no) Erasmus' description of another kind of pedant provides the prototype for Sw i f t ' s Hack in A Tale of a Tub, a var iat ion of Lucian 's self-exposing wr i te r : the hack wr i te r who puts down the f i r s t thing that comes into his head, "well knowing that the vainer those t r i f l e s are, the higher esteem they w i l l have with the greater number." He i s a p l a g i a r i s t , and for t h i s , too, he i s "applauded by the common people, pointed at in a crowd" (p. 89). The hack may borrow the names of more 5 famous and eminent wr i ter s . In short, hack writers bu i ld upon nothing, pra is ing each other ' s works and contr ibut ing to the growing mountain of empty words: . . . I they] praise one another with reciprocal ep i s t l e s , verses, and encomiums; fools the i r fel low foo l s , and dunces the i r brother dunces. This, in another's opinion, i s an absolute Alcaeus; and the other, in h i s , a very Calimachus. He looks upon Tul ly as nothing to the other, and the other again pronounces him more learned than Plato. And sometimes too they pick out the i r antagonist and think to raise themselves a fame by wr i t i ng one against the other; while the giddy multitude are so long divided to whether of the two they sha l l determine the v i c to ry , t i l l each goes o f f conqueror, and as i f he had done some great act ion, fancies himself a triumph (p. 90). Pope alludes to th is same pract ice i n The Dunciad, Book I I , 11. 119-120: Curl stretches after Gay, but Gay i s gone, He grasps an empty Joseph for a John. 68 Erasmus' development of the t rad i t i ona l bad poet with his bad wr i t ing needed only one element, the commercial i n s t i n c t , to complete the type of Sw i f t ' s Hack in the Tale. Erasmus' theologians and bad wr i te r s , so systematical ly and thoroughly analyzed by Fo l l y , share two q u a l i t i e s , they are self-deceived and they deceive others. They deceive others because they can "turn black into white, blow hot and cold with the.same breath, and carry.a far d i f fe rent meaning in the i r breasts from what they feign with the i r tongue" (p. 59). They are self-deceived because they l i v e under the delusion that things are as they appear and, unt i l they are d i s i l l u s i oned at the Last Judgment, "they are happy in the i r hopes, and for th i s also they are beholding to me [Folly] (p. 106). Fo l ly at f i r s t i s a l l - i n c l u s i v e , as when she imperceptibly incorporates a l l the v i t a l i t y and courage of l i f e with in herse l f : "without me there is no l i v i n g " (p. 44). To l i v e i s to be f oo l i s h , that i s , s e l f -deceived: In f i ne , that wise man whoever he be, i f he intends to have ch i ld ren, must have recourse to me. But t e l l me, I beseech you, what man i s that would submit his neck to the noose of wedlock, i f , as wise men should, he did but f i r s t t ru l y weigh the inconvenience of the thing? Or what woman i s there would ever go to i t did she ser iously consider e i ther the pe r i l of chi ld-bear ing or the trouble of bringing them up? So then i f you owe your beings to wedlock, you owe that wedlock to th is my fo l lower, Madness; and what you owe to me I have already to ld you. I b id . , p. 16. This same sentiment i s echoed by Swift in his Thoughts on Rel ig ion: Although reason were intended by providence to govern our passions, yet i t seems that, in two points of the greatest moment to the being and continuance of the world, God hath intended our passions to prevai l over reason. The f i r s t i s , the propagation of our species, since no wise man ever married from the dictates of reason. The other i s , the love of l i f e , which, from the dictates of reason, 69 Fol ly and happiness.are equated: "But what i s more foo l i sh than those, or rather more happy . . ." (p. 68), and l a t e r , " there ' s no man can l i v e pleasantly unless he be i n i t i a t e d to my r i t e s and have me propitious to him" (p. 124). Knowledge can be attained only at great cost, as shown by the scholar who laboured years for the approval of a few men: "For so great i s the obscurity and variety of human a f f a i r s that nothing can be c lea r l y known, as i t i s t ru ly said by our academics, the least insolent of a l l the philosophers; or i f i t could, i t would but obstruct the pleasure of l i f e " (p. 75). The argument i s l a te r turned to Fo l l y ' s advantage when she demonstrates that the i l l u s i o n i s a l l , and that knowing the r e a l i t y does not I: improve matters: For suppose a man were eating rotten s tock f i sh , the very smell of which would choke another, and yet believed i t a dish for the gods, what difference is there as to his happiness? . . . . Whereas on the contrary, i f another's stomach should turn at a sturgeon, wherein, I pray, i s he happier than the other? I f a man have a crooked, i l l -favoured wi fe , and yet in his eye may stand in competition with Venus, is i t not the same as i f she were t ru ly beautiful? (p. 76) Moreover, "the fools have the advantage: f i r s t , in that the i r happiness costs them leas t , that i s to say, only some small persuasion; next, they enjoy i t in common" (p. 77). The "small persuasion" i s transformed l a t e r by Swift into a "Strong Delusion": But when a Man's Fancy gets astr ide his Reason, when Imagination i s at Cuffs with the Senses, and common Understanding, as well as common Sense, i s K ickt out of every man would despise, and wish i t at an end, or that i t never had a beginning. From Jonathan Swift , I r i sh Tracts and Sermons, IX, ed. Herbert Davis (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1963), p. 164. 70 Doors; the f i r s t Proselyte he makes, i s Himself, and when that i s once compass'd, the D i f f i c u l t y is not so great in bringing over others; A strong Delusion always operating from without, as vigorously as from wi th in . The paradoxical value of delusion in The Praise of Folly i s developed in a complex of images suggested by the Si lenus: For f i r s t ' t i s evident that a l l human things, l i k e A lc ib iades ' S i l en i or rural gods, carry a double face, but not the least a l i k e ; so that what at f i r s t s ight seems to be death, i f you view i t narrowly may prove to be l i f e ; and so the contrary. What appears beautiful may chance to be deformed; what wealthy, a very beggar; what infamous, praise-worthy; what learned, a dunce; what l u s t y , feeble; what jocund, sad; what noble, base; what lucky, unfortunate; what f r i end l y , an enemy; and what hea l th fu l , noisome. In short, view the inside of these S i l e n i , and y o u ' l l f ind them quite other than they appear. . . (p. 43). This image stands for the difference between what is and what should be, or between what i s and what pretends to be. And i m p l i c i t in the paradoxical nature of the image i s a c r i t i que of language as a means of expressing r e a l i t y . Rabelais ' use of th is same image, as we shal l see l a t e r in th i s chapter, allows him to examine the content and the function of language. Erasmus, and Swift a f te r him, use the Silenus image to suggest that perhaps underneath the ugly and the stupid exter io r what i s discovered may be ju s t as ugly and jus t as stupid. I f there is no d i s t i n c t i on between the odious appearance and the substance, then Fo l ly serves a useful funct ion; she can allow man "the Possession of being well^deceived." S a t i r i s t s have always been concerned with the human pretence to a moral i n teg r i t y that mankind i s e i ther unwil l ing or unable to a t ta in . Lucian had compared the dependent philosopher 's decadent patron to a book, l av i sh l y decorated on the outside but revealing a vicious depravity:,within. Swift, A Tale of a Tub, p. 171. 71 The same i s true of courtiers in The Praise of Fo l l y : The court lords . . . are contented to wear about them gold, jewels, purple, and those other marks of v i rtue and wisdom . . . . But i f you look into the i r manner of l i f e y o u ' l l f ind them meer sots: they l i v e a l i f e of idleness and d i s s ipat ion (p. 115). This attention to surface rather than substance also preoccupies the scholar. The theologians of Erasmus' day miss the profundity of truth in the i r close attention to the deta i l of the text , as Fo l ly i r o n i c a l l y observes: .{The apostles] worshipped, ' t i s t rue, but in s p i r i t , fol lowing herein no other than that of the Gospel, "God i s a S p i r i t , and they that worship, must worship him in s p i r i t and t ru th ; " yet i t does not appear i t was at that time revealed to them that an image sketched on the wall with a coal was to be worshiped with the same worship as Chr i st Himself, i f at least the tv/o forefingers be stretched out, the hair long and uncut, and have three rays about the crown of his head. For who can conceive these things, unless he has spent at least s i x and t h i r t y years in the philosophical and sypercelest ia l whims of A r i s t o t l e and the Schoolmen? (p. 97) Erasmus keeps to the t rad i t i ona l types and themes of sat i res on learning and, as we have seen, he i s indebted to Lucian for many of his images and techniques, which he then infuses with a Chr ist ian content, pa r t i cu l a r l y when he expresses his scorn for the supposedly e lec t who are more devoted to the l e t t e r than to the s p i r i t of the i r c a l l i n g . But Lucian had made the same complaint in "Hermotimus, or the Rival Philosophies," in Fowler's Works, vo l . 2, p. 86: Virtue i s manifested, of course, i n act ion, in doing what i s j u s t and wise and manly; but you--and when I say you, I mean the most advanced philosophers—you do not seek these things and ensue them, but spend the greater part of your l i f e conning over miserable sentences and demonstrations and problems; i t i s the man who does best at these that you ha i l a glorious v i c t o r . . . . . You pay no attention to the f ru i t—wh ich consists in a c t i on - - , but are extremely busy with the husks 72 Erasmus, in his turn, was to provide a legacy for the s a t i r i s t s who followed him. Rabelais acknowledged his debt to Erasmus, and Swift was to develop his hack wr i ter from the prototype provided pr imar i ly by Erasmus. In addit ion, Swift was to make f u l l use of Erasmus' emphasis on the paradoxical re lat ionship between happiness and f o l l y and the focus on man's attention to surface rather than substance in learning and moral ity. Francois Rabelais (14957-1553), another great s a t i r i s t of the Renaissance, was contemporary with Erasmus (1465-1536). Erasmus published The Praise of Fol ly i n 1509 and Rabelais ' f i r s t work, Pantagruel, was wr itten i n 1532. Rabelais corresponded with Erasmus, admired him, and borrowed from his works, but his examination of the perversions of language and learning was quite d i f fe rent both from Erasmus or from any of the other s a t i r i s t s who preceded him. The understanding of C las s ica l s a t i r i s t s seemed to be that the abuse of learning led to the abuse of language, and therefore that i f you remedied the f i r s t , the second would automatically take care of i t s e l f . Lucian objected to men l i v i n g a pa ra s i t i ca l existence based on the i r pretense to learning, pointing out that as a resu l t such men spoke with a "stammering tongue" a language of philosophy which they did not r ea l l y know. Aristophanes fought against an i n t e l l e c tua l approach which did not adequately take into account human psychology, and heaped scorn on the d istorted and d i s to r t ing "new ar t of speaking" that resulted. Rabelais examines this cause and e f fec t re lat ionship between learning and language, and in the process emphasizes that each i s indepen-dently vulnerable to abuse, without necessary reference to the other. In addit ion, Rabelais questions the e f f i cacy of language as the transmitter of knowledge (true or f a l se ) - -o r of experience and sensation too, for that 73 matter. Much of the imagery of the book demonstrates the ambiguous nature of language or the problem of maintaining a common understanding through words: I t ' s nonsense [says Pantagruel]' to say that we have a natural language; languages ar ise from arb i t rary conventions and the needs of peoples. Words, as the d ia lec t i c i ans say, have meanings not by nature, but at choice. This interest in the radical ambiguity of language arises out of an att i tude central to Rabelais, an att i tude epitomized in the Silenus image with i t s t an ta l i z i ng promise of hidden richness. In describing this a t t i tude, Erich Auerbach says: I consider i t a mistake to probe Rabelais ' hidden meaning--that i s , the marrow of the bone--for some def in i te and c lea r l y outl ined doctr ine; the thing which l i e s concealed in his work, yet which is conveyed i n a thousand ways, is an i n t e l l e c tua l a t t i tude , which he himself c a l l s Pantagruelism; a grasp of l i f e which comprehends the s p i r i t u a l and the sensual simultaneously, which allows none of l i f e ' s p o s s i b i l i t i e s to escape. Rabelais ' imagery i s the resu l t of the m u l t i p l i c i t y of his perspective, which draws the reader out of his conventional world with i t s s ingle-v is ioned view of l i f e into the many-sided facets of experience, a l l bombarding him at the same time. Late medieval works were confined within a def in i te frame; s o c i a l l y , geographically, cosmologically, r e l i g i ou s l y , and e t h i c a l l y , they present but one aspect of things at a time. Where they have to deal with a m u l t i p l i c i t y of things medieval scholars g Frangois Rabelais, Garqantua and Pantagruel, translated by J . M. Cohen (London: Penguin Books, 1976), p. 339. A l l further references to th work appear i n the text. ^ Erich Auerback, Mimesis, translated by Wi l la rd Trask (New York: Doubleday, 1957), p. 247. 74 attempt to work them into the def in i te frame of a general order. Rabelais ' reaction against scholast ic order arose from his impatience with men who knew so much and yet were so l i t t l e inspired by the i r knowledge. His quarrel with monasticism was that i t had preserved knowledge which i t no longer had the power to use. He detested dullness and pedantry, the academic tendency to prefer the forms to the substance. The s ign i f icance of Rabelais ' imagery i s that, rather than defining and in a sense l im i t i n g the purview of language and learning, i t tends to push against the l i m i t s , thus forcing a radical s h i f t in perspective upon the reader. To accomplish th is change of perspective, Rabelais gives his readers an avalanche of d e t a i l , thus i n s i s t i n g upon the complexity of his work, and at the same time he indicates on his t i t l e page that he i s an "abstractor of quintessence." As Auerbach points out about Rabelais, what he attacks i s "thickheadedness, i n a b i l i t y to adjust, [and] one-track arrogance which blinds a man to the complexity of the real 12 s i t ua t i on . " In short, Rabelais i s attacking the dunce. He does so by drawing our attent ion to the contingency and ambiguity of language, and by showing how i t can therefore be eas i l y d i s torted or misused by narrow, i n f l e x i b l e minds. Although we are reminded of the contingency of language throughout Gargantua and Pantagruel, this contingency is the primary focus of the Third Book. In this Book, Panurge attempts to f o re te l l the future and to ^ Herschel Baker, The Wars Of Truth (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1952), Chapter I: "The Strength of T rad i t i on . " 12 Auerback, p. 275. 75 receive conclusive advice on whether or not he should marry and, i f he should marry, on whether or not he w i l l be cuckolded. He sets out to seek answers from a l l the sources of human knowledge, accepted or esoter ic : d ice, dreams, a s i b y l , a deaf-mute, a poet, a s c i e n t i s t , a theologian, a physician, a sceptic philosopher, a judge, and a f oo l . Each of the answers he receives i s open to con f l i c t i n g in te rpretat ion . The nature of these consultations creates a sense of ambivalence and suspension. Nothing is set down d e f i n i t e l y . I f an attempt i s made to i so la te or define an idea, an opposite reasoning which completely destroys the preceding argument is also presented. The Socrat ic method, not the question at hand, triumphs throughout the Third Book, and the composite image i s that of the arch-philosopher who can use language any way he wishes to support any thesis whatsoever. The ambiguity of language is pa r t i cu l a r l y obvious in Panurge's consultation with Wordspinner, whose words are interpreted in four d i f fe rent ways. When Pantagruel explains that "Panurge is protesting against these con f l i c t i n g and contradictory answers," the reply i s scarcely more i l l uminat ing : 'I believe that I understand, though, 1 said Gargantua. 'This answer i s l i k e the one given by an ancient philosopher, when asked whether he had a certa in woman, whose name they gave him as his wife. "I have her," he answered, "but she hasn 't got me. I possess her, but I'm not possessed by her . 1 " . . . . 'So, 1 said Rond ib i l i s , ' l e t us put i t as neuter in medicine and a mean in philosophy: going to both extremes' and avoiding both extremes, and by d iv i s ion of time, swinging now to one extreme, now to the other. ' 'The Holy Apostle seems to me to have put i t more p l a i n l y , ' said Hippothadeus, 'when he sa id: "Let those that are married be as i f they were not married; those who have wives be as i f they had no,;wives."' 'I interpret having and not having a wife in th is way.' said Pantagruel, ' that to have a wife is to have her for the purpose for which Nature created her, that i s for the a i d , pleasure, and so.ciety of man. Not to have her means not to be t ied to her apron-str ings; not for her sake to debase the 76 unique and supreme love that a man owes to God . . . " (p. 385-86). I t i s character i s t i c of Rabelais that when Panurge is furthest from the truth he i s also furthest removed from sensual apprehension: 'You ta lk l i k e a book,' rep l ied Panurge. 'But I feel as i f I were at the bottom of the dark well where Heracl itus says truth i s hidden. I can ' t see a th ing, I hear nothing, I feel my senses a l l numbed, and I very much wonder whether I'm not bewitched' (p. 386). What should be a f e r t i l e exchange of information and sensation becomes a mechanical game that numbs the mind and the senses of the protagonists. In add i t ion, because of the i r redundancy, the words lose expressive value and the dialogue no longer has i t s usual purpose of question and answer. Another way in which Rabelais empties words of expressive value i s by giving us long comically grotesque and ut ter ly gratuitous l i s t s and catalogues which have almost no perceptible meaning. Sometimes these grow out of the narrative s i t ua t i on , sometimes they may be simply a volume of words with l i t t l e or no reference to anything outside themselves. These l i s t s lay bare the contingency of language, ind icat ing that the mere aggregate of words in themselves suggests a meaning that may not ex i s t . But always with Rabelais the words themselves impress us with the i r sheer corporeal v i t a l i t y and exuberance, with or without meaning. Bridlegoose's speech i s an instance of this exuberance, giving the form of profound meaning, yet communicating seni le dr ive l mixed with acc idental ly i ron i c wisdom, a torrent of legal terminology, wonderful anecdotes a l l presented in an immense cascade of words in which every obvious and absurd opinion i s supported by a welter of comical quotations from Roman law and the g los sar i s t s . Rabelais ' copiousness, his mix of styles and genre, and the overflowing energy of his w r i t i n g , breaks down the cramped, doctr ina i re att itudes of the Schoolmen and transforms, r i g i d i t y of mind into the 77 immense range and f e r t i l i t y of Pantagruelism. What was on one level incomprehensible thus becomes a metaphoric means of exploding the mind into new perceptions, and is at once a comment on the l im i ta t ions of expression and a standard by which these should be judged. Because language is inherently ambiguous, i t i s easy to d i s t o r t i t in such a way as to make i t impossible to develop any common understanding of the abstract knowledge avai lable to men through language. One example i s the frequent use of professional jargon, as in lawyer's ta lk . Thus, the lawsuit over which Pantagruel presides is incomprehensible to any layman, even though i t i s arb i t rated in simple one or two sy l l ab le words. Rabelais does not abandon the customary s a t i r i c attacks on the abuses of language and learning. On the contrary, his v/ork i s f i l l e d with images of men as pedants and logic-choppers, men who use words and learning to t r i c k and p r o f i t from the i r brothers. The obscurity of scholar ly and legal jargon suffers some of Rabelais ' worst scorn and best s a t i r e . Men use crypt ic language to mask the t r i v i a l i t y of the i r subject: I could have a panier painted to show that I am much pained, and a mustard-pot to stand for the tardiness of my heart. A piss-pot w i l l denote an o f f i c e r ; the bottom of my breeches, a j a r f u l l of wind; my codpiece, a lance in re s t ; and a dog's  turd (estront de chien), the f i r s t lance Within (tronc de ceans), wherein l i e s the love of my 1ady (p. 58). Sophists use hard words and pedantry to confound the i r l i s t ene r s , because they are rea l l y speaking nonsense: We transfretate the Sequana at the d i lucu le and crepuscule; we deambulate through the compites and quadrives of the urb; we despumate the Lat in verbocination and, as ver i s imi le amorabunds, we capatate the benevolence of the omnijugal, omniform, and omnigenous feminine sex. At certain interva ls we i n v i s i t a t e the lupanars, and in venerean ecstasy we inculcate our vertres into the penit iss im recesses of the pudenda of these amicabilissime meretricules (p. 184). 78 The fondness of scholars for the commentaries and glosses considered a necessary part of learning i s parodied in the descr ipt ion of Gargantua's education by the sophists: Af ter this the sophist read him De mddis s i gn i f i ca i id i with the commentaries of Bang-breeze, Scallywag, Claptrap, Gualehaul, John the Ca l f , Copper-coin, Flowery-tongue, and a number of others . . . (p.. 70). Although Rabelais does not forget the t rad i t i ona l targets of s a t i r i c attack, he sooner or l a te r reminds us of his own par t i cu la r emphasis: the d i f f i c u l t y of giving rat ional expression to what man perceives with an inexact and ambiguous verbal language. Rabelais ' rattack on the abuse of learning is informed by the same i n te l l e c tua l att i tude that underlies his examination of language, the att i tude that Auerbach has described above as "a grasp of l i f e . . . which allows none of l i f e ' s p o s s i b i l i t i e s to escape." As a re su l t , the image that emerges in the recounting of Gargantua's education i s that of a man who part ic ipates to his utmost a b i l i t y in a l l aspects of human l i f e . Gargantua i s the- true representative of the "universal man" of the Renaissance. He wants to know theoret i ca l l y or have f i rst-hand knowledge of everything. There i s a sense in which the whole educational enterprise recounted here i s a magnificent, unsurpassable game, a game i n f i n i t e l y more engrossing than a l l the ch i ld i sh contrivances interminably l i s t e d before in an account of Gargantua's previous education by the sophists. I t i s a game sweet and de l i c ious : "so sweet, easy, and pleasant as i t went on that i t was more l i k e a k ing ' s recreation than a student 's plan of study" (p. 93). Gargantua's regime is engrossing because the conception of education that dictates i t i s bound up with a conception of human l i f e as i t should be l i v e d . The a c t i v i t y of the young Gargantua t e s t i f i e s not only to the 79 goodness of knowledge, but also to the goodness of l i f e and the l i v i n g human creature. The strenuous density of his da i ly calendar indicates a world dense with actions that are proper to man and de l ight fu l to perform. In spite of i t s r igour, Gargantua's schedule is not i n f l e x i b l e or mechanical; i t i s as e l a s t i c as the body's own capac i t ies ; i t leaves a lternat ives open at every point and contains nothing to offend the philosophy of a F r i a r John: "T never subject myself to hours; hours were made for man, and not man for hours" (p. 128). Gargantua's schedule allows him to take advantage of the manifold variety of experience and apply i t to his learn ing, because the larger goal of th is method i s the t ra in ing of a l l the human facu l t ie s and the development of a l l the capac i t ies , physical and pragmatic as well as i n t e l l e c tua l and academic. The student and his tutor Ponocrates " ga i l y exercise the i r bodies as they had previously exercised the i r minds" (p. 87). Ponocrates i s at pains not merely to t ra in the body as well as the mind, but a body which contains the mind and i s i n d i v i s i b l e from i t , a body whose well-being is necessary for the mind to function at a l l . This character i s t i c inclusiveness combines with the exuberance and v i t a l i t y that runs through Rabelais ' s a t i re to give us a glimpse of a new, sometimes fr ightening world. Rabelais i s not content to observe the eccen t r i c i t i e s of deviation from the s o l i d centre of experience and convention. He does not command the assurance of the theologian, f o r t i f i e d by rat ional wisdom and an authorized eth ic . He writes rather from the fr inge of nonsense, and probes at the abyss of lunacy that underlies our rat ional constructions. Panurge is the incarnation of the universal pervers ity in things. Rabelais i s powerful and disturbing because he portrays human l i f e as r ad i ca l l y i r r a t i o n a l , v i t a l l y unhinged, sublimely grotesque. He knows 80 that to be a l i ve i s to be paradoxical and f i n a l l y incomprehensible. Two other s a t i r i s t s of th is period should be mentioned b r i e f l y . Ben Jonson and John Donne both attack in the i r sa t i re a value that was beginning to emerge as a s i gn i f i can t motivating force in men's a f f a i r s . These writers share Rabelais ' concern with the mechanical short-cuts to learn ing, but they also attack man's growing desire for the worldly goods of fame and r iches. In^ Jonson's The Alchemist, three knaves b i l k ' a succession of w i l l i n g dupes, a l l of whom hope to receive something for nothing. The means is alchemy, which is the central metaphor in the play. Alv in Kernan e f f ec t i ve l y describes the s ign i f icance of alchemy in Jonson's plays: In a very real sense, l i f e in a l l of Jonson's plays is viewed as a process of alchemy, the transmutation of base matter into gold; and each of the characters i s an alchemist attempting to transform himself by means of his pa r t i cu la r "phi losopher 's stone" into some form higher up on the scale of being than the point at which he began. The lady who paints, the young man who dresses himself in s i l k s and feathers, the pedant who pretends to vast amounts of learn ing, the fool who seems to know a l l the great men in the world, the amorous fop who sighs a f te r his lady and writes her sugared sonnets, a l l these are alchemists t ry ing by various means to transmute the i r base metal into the gold of beauty, learn ing, soph i s t i cat ion, love. And although the i r pa r t i cu la r "stones" or " e l i x i r s " - - co smet i c s , books, a grave demeanor--may vary, in the final-.analysis the ultimate "stone" of a l l the fools i s language. The use of alchemy and the occult as a means of transforming learning into riches i s a theme of Jonson's that i s repeated in Butler and Swift . But in each case i t i s the s k i l l f u l use of language that permits one to use a l l the advantages of hypocrisy to p r o f i t from these measures while keeping a pure conscience. A l l the language in the play i s meant to transform the foo l i sh and vicious into the " r i c h and strange," or the sleazy, dishonest A l v in Kernan, The Cankered Muse (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1959), pp. 173-174. 81 ventures into decent and honourable conduct. When Subtle finds i t necessary to prove his alchemical powers to Ananias and Tr ibu lat ion Wholesome, he offers to counterfeit money for them. The Anabaptists in The Alchemist are a criminal l o t who i n s i s t on describing the stolen goods they deal in as "widows and orphan's goods,;" and.they hide the i r depravity under an unctuous piety expressed in Puritan vocabulary. When Subtle can assure them that what he i s about to do i s "no coyning, s i r " : " I t i s but cas t ing " , they are re l ieved at having found a su i table l i n g u i s t i c euphemism for the i r criminal a c t i v i t y . An equivalent expedient must also be found for conduct so that rogues need not be inh ib i ted by admitting to any kind of re s t ra in t . Mammon has the idea that he can be as sensual and se l f - indulgent as he l i k e s , so long as his agent, Subtle, i s pure in heart: Mammon: . My sh i r t s I ' l l have of taf feta-sarsnet, sof t and l i g h t As cobwebs; and for a l l my other raiment, I t shal l be such, as might provoke the Persian, Were he to teach the world r i o t , anew. My gloves of f i shes ' and b i rds ' sk ins, perfum'd With gums of paradise, and eastern a i r -Surly: And do you think to have the stone, with this? Mammon: No, I do think t 1 have a l l t h i s , with the stone. Surly: Why, I have heard, he must be homo f r u g i , A pious, holy and re l ig ious man, One free of mortal s i n , a very v i r g i n . Mammon: That makes i t , s i r , he is so. But I buy i t . My venture brings i t me. He, honest wretch, A notable, superst i t ious , good sou l , Has worn his knees bare, and his s l ippers bald, With prayer and fast ing for i t : and, s i r , l e t him Do i t alone for me, s t i l l . Here he comes, •]„ Not a profane word afore him: ' t i s poison. More s p e c i f i c a l l y , Jonson often uses the language of business and Ben Jonson, The Alchemist, ed] F. H. Mares (London: Methuen & Co., 1967), I I . i i .88-106. A l l further references to this work appear in the text. 82 commerce to explore the divergence between pretense and r e a l i t y . Subtle, Face, and Doll repeatedly refer to themselves as a business enterpr i se - -"the venture t r i p a r t i t e " ( I . i .135) - - for which there ex ists a formal agreement between the par t ie s - - " the instrument drawn up between us" (V.iv.81). To them, the language of commerce provides the facade of a • business enterprise to the i r scheme for gu l l ing money and riches from the v ict ims, and they have a business agreement to that e f fec t . The imagery and language of commerce was being used more and more s a t i r e , as commerce came more and more to occupy the forefront of a f f a i r s When i t was used in sat i res on the perversions of language and learn ing, the emphasis was natura l ly on mis-use. Consequently, the use of the imagery of p ros t i tut ion to denote s e l l i n g something pr iceless for gain became l inked into the growing tendency to attach a monetary value to things which had previously transcended the province of commerce. The imagery of p ros t i tut ion had t r ad i t i o na l l y been used in sat i res on learning. Juvenal uses th i s imagery in his Second Sat i re when he refers to the homosexuals as prost i tutes because they trade on the i r supposed knowledge of philosophy to insinuate themselves into Roman house holds so they can pract ice the i r seductive arts on thei r v ict ims. Pros t i tut ion imagery i s also a pervasive device in John Donne's Second Sat i re but Donne t ie s the imagery more d i r e c t l y to the theme of business and commercial in terest s . He attacks the treachery and deceit of men who are motivated by a craving for wealth and power. He uses the imagery of p ro s t i tu t i on to bu i ld up gradually the accusation that those who use thei a b i l i t i e s to exp lo i t others for gain "are worse than whores, since whores s e l l the v i l e r and worse parts of the i r body, but lawyers the nobler and 83 better, forsooth the mouth and the tongue." Donne's target, the lawyer Coscus, i s a former poet, and so Donne i s able to attack poets who are frauds and s p i r i t u a l prost i tutes as w e l l . Lawyer Coscus b i l k s his c l i en t s much as the "venture t r i p a r t i t e " b i lked the i r s . As a former poet he was one of a company of bad writers who wrote f l a t t e r i n g l y of Lords for the sake of advancement or because i t was the fashionable thing to do. When he becomes a lawyer, he has more scope because he can trade on his pos it ion and profession to exp lo i t his v ict ims: When sicke with Poet r ie , ' and possest with muse Thou wast, and mad, I hop'd; but men which chuse Law practise for meere gaine, bold soule, repute Worse than imbrothel 'd strumpets p ros t i tu te . (11.61-64) The remainder of the sa t i re i s a monologue on the theme that the corrupt lawyer i s worse than "carted whores" who l i e to judges to save themselves, for the corrupt lawyer cons istently and convincingly l i e s in order to achieve personal success. Furthermore, he thrives on the ex i s -tence of sin with a s e l f i s h de l ight , because i t i s g r i s t to his gainful m i l l . Encouraging his c l i en t s i n the i r v ices, the corrupt lawyer manages to defend them and gain the i r property for himself. Lust for great secular wealth and power i s the prime temptation for men such as Coscus, and he harnesses to that l u s t a l l of his a b i l i t y and his knowledge, and uses them to exp lo i t others. Although Donne ends by advocating simple moderation: "None starve, none su r fe t , " i t i s a small 15 Quoted by W. Mi lgate, in John Donne, The Sat i res , Epigrams, and  Verse^Letters, ed: by W. Milgate (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1967), pp^ 135-136, note to 1. 72. A l l further references to this work appear in the text. 84 weak voice, because the strongest image in the sa t i re i s that of the man who has prost i tuted his sou l , a l l that which ought to be his greatest adornment, his honour and his knowledge, for gain. The element of s e l l i n g knowledge for gain, of s e l l i n g the e f fo r t s of one's a r t i s t i c creation for money instead of pursuing the interests of truth and wisdom was anathema to the Chr i s t ian humanists, and from Rabelais to the Scribler ians. i t becomes an increasingly dominant element in the s a t i r e . CHAPTER IV SEVENTEENTH-CENTURY AND EIGHTEENTH-CENTURY SATIRISTS But ler: Characters and Elephant on the Moon Shadwell: The Virtuoso Dryden: MacFleckhoe King: Dialogues of the Dead Bucki ngham: The Rehearsal Swift: A Tale of a Tub 86 The Greek celebration of reason and the humanist's celebration of man entered i t s long decline at the close of the Renaissance, ass isted by an emerging scept ical t r ad i t i on . The seminal work of th is t r ad i t i on i s Montaigne's Apology for Raymond Sebond. Montaigne attacks the venerable notion of man's supremacy as a rat ional creature crowning a universe ra t i ona l l y conceived and sustained. His avowed intent i s c l ea r l y stated: . . . to crush and tread under foot human pride and arrogance, to make them sensible of the inan i ty , the vanity and ins ign i f icance of man; to wrest out of the i r f i s t s the miserable weapons of the i r reason; to make them bow the head and b i te the dust under the authority and reverence of the divine majesty. But ler wrote his sat i res in the context of this t r a d i t i o n . Except for Hudibras, most of his wr i t ing was not published unt i l long a f ter he died, though i t i s almost certain they were known in manuscript long before th i s . In But le r ' s Common-place Book he records his be l i e f that human nature encompasses three kinds of men: those who employ reason to deceive others; those who are r a t i ona l l y deceived by knaves or by themselves; and those natural fools and madmen whose " l i t t l e wit . . . tends natura l ly to 2 knavery." Man's reason i s both a legacy and a consequence of his F a l l ; therefore, i t i s not only his redemption but also his punishment. I t i s a punishment because the "indulgences" of man, that i s , his 3 propensity for ";the sett ing of fa l se values upon some l i t t l e things" i s ^ Montaigne, Apology for Raymond Sebond, I, 439-40. 2 Samuel But ler , Characters and Passages from Ndte-Bboks, ed. A. R. Waller (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1908), p. 275. 3 I b id . , p. 457. 87 the cause of s t r i f e in learn ing, theology, and law. Men de l iberate ly confound truth and falsehood, in the process preying upon each other and themselves and bringing about the i r own punishment: The Cheat i s a Kind of a ju s t Judgment, sent into this World to punish the Confidence and Cur ios i ty of Ignorance, that out of a natural Inc l inat ion to Er ror^wi l l tempt i t s own Punishment, and help to abuse i t s e l f . This co l lu s i ve interdependence between dupe and cheat i s inherent in the conventions and i n s t i tu t i on s that have been constructed by society. I t seems clear from his writ ings that Butler i s interested in socia l analysis as well as moral po r t r a i t s , even in his Characters. But le r ' s method in Characters i s reductive. Although he appears to be pr imari ly interested in describing a m u l t i p l i c i t y of types, what his characters in fact reveal i s the persistence of one or two motives of f o l l y or v i l l a i n y inherent in almost every variety of human nature. Spec i f i c a l l y these motivations are man's i n sat iab le appetite for s e l f -deception and his ingenuity in the use of reason to devise the means of deceiving others. The actions resu l t ing from these motives are successful because under certa in conditions they have become soc i a l l y acceptable. In "A Cheat," Butler wr i tes , " A l l the greater Sort of Cheats, being allowed y by Authority, have l o s t the i r Names (as Judges, when they are ca l l ed to the Bench,..are no;:more s t i l e d Lawyers) and l e f t the T i t l e to the meaner only, and the unallowed" (p. 171). But ler is more interested in what he terms the "Ca l l i ng s " - - the inherent aptitudes or ru l ing passions--than in the "Professions" of his characters, and the difference constitutes the i r 4 Samuel But ler , Samuel Butler 1612-1680: Characters, ed. Charles W. Daves (Cleveland: The Press of Case Western Reserve Un iver s i t i e s , 1970). A l l further references to th is work appear in the text. 88 s a t i r i c s i t ua t i on . In the character of "A Cheat," "Fraud and Treachery are his Ca l l i n g , though his Profession be the s t r i c t e s t Integr ity and Truth" (p. 171). The s a t i r i s t ' s imagery i l l u s t r a t e s the thesis that a l l extremes are ult imately i d e n t i c a l , as in "A Philosopher" and "A Mathematician." The mathematician, beginning in "Nonsense . . . ends in Sense, and the other (the philosopher) quite contrary begins in Sense and ends in Nonsense" (p. 119). But le r ' s "Hermetic Philosopher" gives us the stock type of the philosopher d i s t i l l e d . He i s Aristophanes' philosopher with a l l the accretions of misguided learning picked up in his progress through the centuries. He i s replete with a l l manner of lore and schemes from alchemists, Rosicrucians, astrologers, and virtuosos: They have f ine devices to make counterfe it Maggots of Lute-Strings, translate Agues into Dogs, or f r i gh t them away with Spiders; to cure the Tooth-ach or sore Eyes with Medicines l a i d to the Imagination; k i l l Rats and Warts with Rhimes; quote Moles on any Part of the Body by an Index in the Face; discover l o s t Maidenheads; pimp with Figures, Charms, aid Characters; cut Noses out of Buttocks with Ta l i acot iu s ; blow the Philosophers F ire with Words of pure Wind, and draw the g l o r i f y ' d S p i r i t of the E l i x i r not out of gross Matter, but the pure incorporeal Hope and Faith of the Credulous, which is the best and the most rat ional Way of Mu l t i p l i c a t i on ; for a small Dose so prepared and projected upon the du l le s t Metal, converts i t presently into Gold already coined. (p. 147-8) But le r ' s tendency to repeat images imparts a broader sense of unity to the ent i re co l l ec t i on of characters than might f i r s t appear. The s i gn i f i c an t patterns emerge only in broad perspective. Man i s a beast--or worse--the characters say c o l l e c t i v e l y ; or man, the rat ional animal, i s a f l a t t e r i n g f i c t i o n , in r e a l i t y , he i s an automaton; or men are never what they appear to be; a l l pract ice some form of deception. But le r ' s denigration of human reason says a great deal about how man learns. But le r ' s characters pretend to a learning they do not have 89 because they pretend to a reason that they do not possess, a reason that would help them practice a virtuous l i f e . There are two other patterns of imagery in Butler that should be mentioned b r i e f l y . The f i r s t i s his use of mechanical imagery. Butler adopted the new s c i e n t i f i c in teres t in motion to explain the processes of deception and ca l led these processes the "Mechanics of Cheat." Hence, : deception is a problem in mechanics: the knave i s "an Engineer of Treachery, Fraud, and Perfidiousness," learning "how to manage Matters of great Weight with very l i t t l e Force, by the Advantage of his trepanning Screws"1 (p. 214). The second pattern i s i l l u s t r a t i v e o"f a growing tendency that had been slowly gathering momentum. The growing prosperity of the merchant class was beginning to be an observable factor in But le r ' s time. Retai l shops were becoming a f ami l i a r part of the urban scene. Shopkeepers were, of course, much lower in soc ia l standing than the great merchant traders, yet they were capable of great social mobi l i ty. Their newly gained l i t e r a cy led to a decided t h i r s t for the arts . As benef ic iar ies of the cu l tura l explosion, they came to epitomize nouveau-riche values in the i r extravagant spending and pompous a f fec ta t ion . Addisom.denounced 5 shopkeepers as " po s i t i ve l y the greatest fops in the kingdom." Butler i s adept at employing the special vocabularies of the professions and trades he describes. But he also uses commerce as a metaphor: the "Small Poet" as Haberdasher . . . with a very small Stock, and no Credit " (p. 82); the lawyer as "Reta i l e r of Jus t i ce , that uses false L ights , fa lse Weights, and false Measures" (p. I l l ) ; and the astrologer as "Reta i le r Quoted in Miriam Beard, A History of Business, (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1962), p. 443. 90 of Destiny, and petty Chapman to the Planets" (p. 110). In these instances the brand of commerce was for Butler not a s o c i a l , but an e t h i c a l , stigma, and this imagery was to come into increasing use as the commercial s p i r i t became more and more pronounced. Butler, and Swift af ter him, was c r i t i c a l of the imprac t i ca l i t i e s of modern science, i t s exhibit ionism, and i t s apparent refusal to d i rec t i t s own ef for t s by common sense standards of value. The obvious joke of The Elephant in the Moon, But le r ' s sa t i re on the Royal Society, i s that science makes mountains out of mo leh i l l s : the virtuosos of a "Learn 'd Society" make a lunar elephant out of a mouse. But more interest ing than the theme of s c i e n t i f i c error in the poem i s But le r ' s concern with the general eth ica l issue of man's att i tude toward f a l s e -hood and t ruth. The poem presents two "discoveries" ' : an elephant on the moon, and a mouse in a telescope. The f i r s t discovery i s ant ic ipated; the end of a long sequence of c i r c u l a r reasonings, and deductions from i nva l i d assumptions. Sensit ive to the publ ic r i d i c u l e of the i r past experiments, the virtuosos seize upon the notion of a lunar war as the means of improving the image of the society. No longer, says the chief spokesman for the group, . . . shal l our ablest Virtuosos Prove Arguments for Coffee-houses; Nor shal l our past Misfortunes more Be charg'd upon the ancient Score: This one Discovery's enough, To take a l l former Scandals o f f (11.205-26). Samuel But ler , "The Elephant on the Moon," in The Genuine  Poetical Remains, ed. Robert Thyer (London: Joseph Booker, 1827). A l l further references to th is work appear in the text. 91 The second discovery (that of the mouse, or truth) i s res i s ted and i s reasoned against by the members of the Society. At one point, i t i s suggested that "the Cause of t h ' Elephant, or Mouse" be decided by b a l l o t , that the virtuosos " f i n d , or make, the Truth by Votes" (1. 475). When an e a r l i e r observation casts some doubt upon the existence of the elephant, each virtuoso i s "Resolv 'd . . . to make [the discovery]: good . . . And rather his own Eyes condemn,/ Than question what h 1 had seen with them" (11. 257-60). But what had the virtuosos seen? The elephant i s not a perception at a l l ; i t i s a rat ional invention, a " speculat ion. " Thus one of B u t l e r ' s virtuosos triumphantly concludes that the existence of "Elephants . . . in the Moon/ Though we had now discover 1 d none,/ Is eas i l y made manifest" (11. 145-47). Satires on the Royal Society and i t s "new science" were commonplace in the eighteenth century, and they were, again, a response to the secular izat ion that was occurring, for although the eighteenth century was a period of s c i e n t i f i c enlightenment, i t was also a period of pseudo-science, charlatanism, and quackery. The progressive separation of science and r e l i g i on in this period helped to create some of the conditions favourable to charlatanism. S c i e n t i f i c invest igat ion l e f t many unanswered questions and gaps that could be answered and f i l l e d by imagination and f i c t i o n . To draw the l i ne between science and pseudo-science was d i f f i c u l t even for s c i en t i s t s and i t was even more so for unc r i t i ca l laymen. Under such conditions the t rans i t i on from what was strange to what was marvelous was easy and imperceptible. Without r ea l i z i n g that the real world had been l e f t behind, one was soon surrounded by the fantas t i c . Where i t was not possible to ver i fy assert ions, analogies and s i m i l a r i t i e s were explo i ted. Among the semi-educated, the phenomena 92 of e l e c t r i c i t y , magnetism, and gases seemed to endow nature with forces which were not far from the older occult doctrines of astrology, alchemy, d i v inat ion , the intervention of s p i r i t s , and the l i k e . To a considerable extent, the l a t t e r were s t i l l a part of the popular culture of the eighteenth century. I t was therefore enough to accept new marvels without any real understanding and to assume that i t would be possible to achieve the impossible for anyone who knew the magic secrets. An easy acceptance of dubious "proofs" was espec ia l ly true in the eighteenth century, when the obscurity of causal relat ionships was even greater than i t i s today. Such a s i tuat ion opened the door to a l l kinds of i r r a t i ona l and often fraudulent enterprises. In addition to the murky no-man's land where charlatanism f lour i shed, there was the fact that science, or what people thought of as science, had become fash ionab le- - i t was a l a mode. Fashionable gentlemen ^sc ient i s t s , or "virtuosos!,"' prided themselves on the i r f a m i l i a r i t y with the newest experiments,, but s a t i r i s t s derided them for the i r pedantry and the pract ica l uselessness of the i r studies. Their self-regarding seriousness seemed grotesquely disproportionate to the t r i v i a l and vulgar objects of some of the i r enquir ies, and consequently a l l the old stock images about windbag philosophers who b u i l t something out of nothing were dragged out of the c loset again. The dramatist Thomas Shadwell wrote a play ca l led The V i r tuoso 7 which was presented in 1676, in which he s a t i r i z e s the Royal Society and contemporary science. 7 Thomas Shadwell, The Virtuoso, in The Complete Works of Thomas  Shadwell, ed. Montague Summers (London: The Fortune Press, 1927). A l l further references to this work appear in the text. 93 The term virtuoso had come into use e a r l i e r in the century, o r i g i n a l l y applied to an "ant iquar ian" who interested himself in such 8 ant iqu i t ies as statues, i n s c r i p t i on s , and coins. The word might be used as a compliment or disparagement, suggesting a connoisseur or a mere dabbler. S i r Nicholas Gimcrack, the virtuoso in Shadwell 's play, i s . a co l l e c to r , and from the point of view of his nieces at l ea s t , a co l l ec to r of worthless objects: One who has broken his brains about the nature of maggots, who has studied these twenty years to f ind out the several sorts of spiders and never cares for understanding mankind. (I.i.11-13) "Virtuoso" as Shadwell uses the term involves much more than merely co l l e c t i ng . In the comedy i t denotes, s c ien t i s t s in general, and g "the Royal Society in pa r t i cu l a r . The s c i e n t i f i c in teres t of S i r Nicholas Gimcrack may be divided broadly into three groups. A few of them look back to Ga l i l eo ' s discoveries of the true nature of the universe. Most interest ing to lay imagination was his report on the moon. During the ensuing years astronomers charted moon-maps, pioneers attempted to solve problems of human f l i g h t , and l i t e r a r y imagination ran r i o t in moon-voyages, serious, f a n c i f u l , and s a t i r i c . Natura l ly , S i r Nicholas has spent many years compiling a book of geography for the world in the moon ( I . i i .242-243). Natura l ly , a l so, he i s so far advanced in the ar t g Marjorie Hope Nicolson, "The Microscope and English Imagination," in Science and Imagination (Ithaca: Great Seal Books, 1956). g Shadwell 's technique antic ipates that of Swift in the Third Book of Gu l l i v e r ' s Travels, in which the Grand Academy of Logado i s also a sa t i re upon the experimenters in the Royal Society. For the most part, each wr i ter merely related an actual experiment which sounded absurd to the layman and occasional ly Swift combined two real experiments into an absurdity. 94 of f l y i n g that he "can already out f l y that ponderous animal c a l l ' d a bustard" ( I I . i i .30-31) . The enthusiasm of S i r Nicholas for the microscope contributes to the interest he shares with other virtuosos in l i c e and other insects ( I I I . i i i . 1 - 2 4 ) , and his profound knowledge of ants, spiders, and tarantulas, including the spider Nick whom he has trained as other men tra in dogs ( I I I . i i i . 69 -101) . Gimcrack's niece Clarinda complains of his extravagant passion for t r i v i a : ,[<He]. has spent two thousand pounds in microscopes to f ind out the nature of eels in vinegar, mites in a cheese, and the blue of plums which he has subtly found out to be l i v i n g creatures ( I . i i . 7 -10 ) . The th i rd group of s c i e n t i f i c experiments and hypotheses that interests Gimcrack have to do with the air-pump. Gimcrack aspired to be "the Universal Philosopher" and spent much of his time in weighing a i r and conducting experiments on resp i rat ion ( I I . i i .96-105). As other men of qua l i ty had the i r wine c e l l a r s , so S i r Nicholas has his ce l l a r s of bott les of a i r , in which some scenes of the comedy are played. Of a l l the s c i e n t i f i c s a t i r e , the scene that remains most comic i s an early one in which S i r Nicholas is "discovered" in his laboratory. I t i l l u s t r a t e s the basic c r i t i c i s m made by laymen of science, a c r i t i c i s m underlying most of the res t . S i r Nicholas i s l y ing on his laboratory table, learning to swim, by imitat ing the motions of a frog in a bowl. His swimming master and his toady stand by admiringly. In answer to Longv i l ' s inquiry whether he has t r i ed to swim in water, Gimcrack r ep l i e s , "Never, s i r . I hate the water." "What, then," asks Longvi l , " i s the use of swimming?" "I content myself," says Gimcrack, "with the speculative part of swimming: I care not for the p rac t i c . I 95 seldom bring anything to use; ' t i s not my way. Knowledge i s my ultimate end" (II .i i.73-86). At the end of the play, when he i s threatened by an angry crowd of weavers who think he has made an automatic loom that w i l l leave them without work, the great Virtuoso makes a complete and ignominious confession. Never in a l l his l i f e has he invented anything of use, not even an "engine" with which to pare cheese ( V . i i i .76-78):. Nothing could have been more objectionable to men with a humanist cast of mind, whose emphasis was always on moral and philosophic standards as they can be applied to l i f e , than to see learning reduced to an end in i t s e l f , and i t was in such matters that the r i f t between science and the humanities openly appeared. Behind i t a l l was something more than an i t ch for carping or the exh i larat ion of wi t ty burlesque. Men educated in the older t r ad i t i on of learning were genuinely repel led by the growing pedantry of the times. "Dullness" was the i r word for i t , and "dul lness" denoted a preoccupation with the mechanics of learning rather than a celebration of man as the v i t a l product of his education. Two years af ter The Virtuoso, in 1778, John Dryden wrote MacFlecknoe, a s a t i r i c poem that made bad poetry, bad c r i t i c i s m , and bad taste synonymous with dullness. Lucian 's society had been overrun with pseudo-philosophers, and Dryden adopts the same technique when he shows society overrun with dunces: Heavens bless my Son, from Ireland l e t him reign To f a r r Barbadoes on the Western main; Of his Dominion may no end be known, And greater than his Father 's be his Throne. '96 Beyond loves Kingdom l e t him stretch his Pen; He paus'd, and a l l the people c ry 'd Amen. The dunces' ideas are not f r ighten ing, the i r numbers are. Dryden uses imagery that suggests the Second Coming, and the implications of th is imagery suggest that MacFlecknoe's ascendancy i s a longed-for culmination of events. The qua l i ty of the dunces.' power i s suggested by the central metaphor: the contrast between l i g h t and dark that gives us images of obscurity, mists, and fogs and suggests the overwhelming, paralyzing power of the dunces, as opposed to the rapidly receding c l a r i t y and l i g h t of the Anc ient s .^ Wil l iam King, one of the Queen Anne w i t s , also wrote a number of s a t i r i c a l sketches on pedantry in 1698. He acknowledged his debt to 12 Lucian by c a l l i n g them The Dialogues of the Dead. In these Dialogues he s a t i r i z e s the contemporary scholar, Richard Bentley, under the name of Bentivogl io. For the most part these Dialogues are directed against contemporary pedantry, and although they are the outcome of a contemporary controversy that raged at the time, the imagery i s t r a d i t i o n a l . They are peopled with windbag philosophers who pretend to a learning they do not have. The philosopher in "Impudence: or, the Sophist," must p lag iar ize to compensate for his lack of real learning. ^ John Dryden, MacFlecknoe, i n Eighteenth Century English L i terature ed. Geoffrey T i l l o t s on , Paul Fus se l l , J r . , and Marshall Waingrow (New York: Harcourt, Brace & World, 1969), l ines 139-144. ^ This same theme was developed in 1743 by Alexander Pope in The  DUhciad. 1 2 Will iam King and John Arbuthnot, A Miscellany of the Wits:  Select-Pieces by Will iam King.and John Arbuthnot and other Hands, ed. K. N. Col v i l e (London: P h i l i p A l l a n , 1920). A l l further references to this work appear in the text. 97 He i s a brash, arrogant Modern ( " i t was always my humour to plume myself with borrowed feather s . " ) , who j u s t i f i e s his plagiarism by pointing out that "Benti.vogl io; took whole passages from Nevelet and Vizzanius" (p. 39). King attacks the more Modern innovations of pedantry i n the F i f th Dialogue, in which Benti.voglio recommends the use of Dict ionaries and Compendiums rather than or ig ina l works. When i t i s pointed out that d ict ionar ies merely l i s t words, but that "the jo in ing them is the a r t our d ict ionar ies w i l l never teach a man," the pedant responds with some surpr ise: "So then, you would have a man put words together properly to make sense of them. Very f ine. How then could I or my fr iend:Bent ivogl io be authors?" (p. 52). King takes aim at the antiquarian in A Journey to London, a parody on travel journals popular at th is time. The antiquarian, as he himself proudly announces, is "a Virtuoso." The Virtuoso meets a fel low co l l ec to r during his peregrinations around London and they exchange information on old coins,and a co l lec t ion of playthings and r a t t l e s , unt i l f i n a l l y they part, a f ter exchanging "D issertat ions " on "The Remarkable Thickness and Thinness of Mufflers . . ." (p. 20). The antiquarians ' preoccupation with these t r i v i a l i t i e s i s r id icu lous and amusing, but King's emphasis points up the i r r a t i ona l self- indulgence and indolence of these men who have a mania for co l l ec t i ng what can only be regarded as useless junk. A l l these sat i res of the period t e s t i f y to the passing of the Chr ist ian humanist t r ad i t i on . The s a t i r i s t s discussed believed that the purpose of man's actions was moral and re l ig ious and that learning for i t s own sake was immoral unless i t had some pract ica l virtuous app l i cat ion. S im i l a r l y , a r t intended so le ly to entertain or for gain was a travesty. Reason had dwindled from a moral perception to mathematical preciseness. 98 The consequent new natural philosophy with i t s counterpart in economics, coupled with the decline of t rad i t i on led to a new ind iv idual i sm, to an increasingly dominant middle c las s , and to new aesthetic tastes with a new breed of wr i te r to pander to them. One of the e a r l i e s t sat i res against the spectacular for i t s own sake, the mark of the new wr i t i n g , 13 was Buckingham's The Rehearsal. The play began as a sa t i re on Dryden s heroic tragedy, but soon l e f t Dryden far behind ju s t as Dryden universal ized Shadwell in MacFlecknoe. Bayes, the hero of The Rehearsal, i s a modern wr i ter of heroic tragedies which have captured the publ ic imagination. His name, aside from i t s e x p l i c i t reference to Dryden as "Old Bayes," the poet laureate, i s an adaptation of V i r g i l ' s bad poet Bavius. Bayes has managed to transform his " a r t " into a sensation-packed sequence of events en t i r e l y lacking any real coherence or purpose. The creative process has been reduced at his hands to a mechanical system of three ru les . The f i r s t i s the "Rule of Transversion; or Regula  Duplex: changing Verse into Prose, or Prose into Verse . . ." ( I . i .96 ) . His second he ca l l s the "Rule of Record" by which he means eavesdropping. His th i rd rule is a " ru le for invention" which i s plagiarism. Just as Jonson's characters had euphemisms for a l l the i r immoral schemes, Bayes has euphemistic terms for his immoral mechanical wr i t i ng . I f he were asked what moral function his wr i t ing serves he would have dismissed the question as i r re levant . A r t , to Bayes and other hack wr i t e r s , serves no d idact ic purpose; t i t i l l a t i o n i s a l l , and the more surpr i s ing and George V i l l i e r s , Duke of Buckingham, The Rehearsal, ed. D. E. L. Crane (University of Durham, 1976). A l l further ' references to th i s work appear in the text. 99 spectacular the better: Bayes: . . . for my part, I prefer that one qua l i ty of s ing ly beating of whole Armies above a l l your moral virtues put together, I gad ( I V . i . 110). This concern with e f fec t i s the modern hack w r i t e r ' s chief preoccupation. Bayes remarks: . . . the chief Art in Poetry i s to elevate your expectation and then bring you o f f some extraordinary way (IV.i.216). In this respect, Bayes i s the progenitor of the Grub Street Hack in Jonathan Swi f t ' s A Tale of a Tub': " . . . as Mankind i s now disposed," the Hack points out, "he receives much greater Advantage by being 14 Diverted than Instructed . . . ." In A Tale of a Tub, Jonathan Swift wrote what was to be the f i r s t of a series of sat i res concerned with the Grub Street abuse of language and learning. In "A Letter to a Young Poet," Swift gives us a succinct image of Grub Street. He i s discussing l i t e r a r y l i f e in Dublin: Seriously then, I have many Years lamented the want of a Grub-Street in this our large and po l i te C i t y , unless the whole may be ca l led one. And this I have accounted an unpardonable Defect in our Const i tut ion, ever since I had any Opinions I could c a l l my own. Every one knows, Grub-street i s a Market for Small-Ware in WIT, and as necessary considering the usual Purgings of the Human Bra in, as the Nose is upon a Man's Face . . . . And t ru ly this Defect has been attended with unspeakable inconveniences; for not to mention the Prejudice done to the Common-wealth of Let te r s , I am of the opinion we suffer in our Health by i t : I believe our corrupted A i r , and frequent thick Fogs are in a great measure owing to the common exposal of our Wit, and that with good Management, our Poetical Vapours might be carr ied o f f in a Common 'Drain, and f a l l into one Quarter of the Town, without in fect ing the whole, as the Case i s at present, to the Jona th an Swift , A Tale of a_Tub: - To whi ch ' i s added The Ba t t l e of the Books and the Mechanical Operation of the S p i r i t , ed. A. C. Guthkelch" and D. Nichol Smith, 2nd ed. (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1958) p. 122. A l l further references to th is work appear i n the tex t . 100 great Offence of our Nob i l i t y , • and the Gentry, and Others of nice Noses. Grub Street, the market for the "purgings of the Bra in, " i s a metaphor that incorporates a l l the images that have been evoked through-out the s a t i r i c t rad i t i on on language and learning, but i t also provides a new focus: the commercial s p i r i t . Grub Street was a market for a new commodity: the o f fa l of the human i n t e l l e c t , blown up to monstrous proportions of s ize and weight and passed o f f as the product of profound learning. This commercial s p i r i t i s endemic in the Tale, so that the Hack, a product of Grub Street himself, takes i t for granted, and automatically sets about devising "long Digressionfs] unsought f o r , " and " f o r t y or f i f t y Pages of Preface and Dedication" (p. 131). As he very sensibly points out, "the Society of Writers would quickly be reduced to a very inconsiderable Number, i f Men were put upon making Books, with the fata l Confinement of del iver ing nothing beyond what i s to the Purpose" (p. 144). Swi f t , as a Chr i s t ian and a humanist, assumed that ethics and expression were c losely a l l i e d . When a man has himself in order, his wr i t ing w i l l natural ly r e f l e c t his internal c l a r i t y and coherence. Good wr i t i ng thus becomes an index of moral v i r tue , and the moral squalor of Sw i f t ' s Hack i s exhibited in the language that he uses and by a corresponding st ructura l and s t y l i s t i c incoherence. His incoherent s ty le i s obvious when, in order to fol low the thread of the argument in the Tale, the reader must consult footnotes that supplement, qua l i f y , Jonathan Swift , I r i sh Tracts and Sermons, IX, ed. Herbert Davis (Oxford: Clarendon Press , 1963), p. 341. 101 p a r a l l e l , digress, or e luc idate, and marginalia that conducts i t s own dialogue with the text. The Hack prides himself on his capacity for sheer miscellaneousness; he is a connoisseur of the worthless. Bad writers had been endemic during the l i fe t imes of e a r l i e r s a t i r i s t s . Now, however, the un iversa l i ty of the new commercial s p i r i t that Butler had complained of became l inked with the dissemination of learning,/and the resu l t was the monstrous b i r th of the Modern Dunce. Dryden's imagery of the Second Coming of the Ant i -Chr i s t twenty years e a r l i e r in MacFlecknoe had hinted at.the same th ing, but in the Tale the composite of images that make up Grub Street conveys in a complete sense the new ev i l l e t loose upon the world. The d i rect ion that th is e v i l takes in the Tale i s that of the i r r a t i ona l enthusiast indulged and allowed to run r i o t ; the resu l t ing product i s packaged and sold to an eager publ ic. The exuberance and the v i t a l i t y that Rabelais had used to test the boundaries of re ferent ia l meaning, and thus the r a t i ona l , Swift has harnessed to his Hack, so that he can attack from the opposite s ide, and expose the Grub Street exp lo i tat ion of the i r r a t i o n a l . The Hack's imagination i s cont inual ly running away with him so that every action of his mind inev i tab ly leads him into some i r r a t i o n a l i t y , for what the Hack believes to be disembodied s p i r i t u a l i t y i s r ea l l y a misleading and unproductive delusion. But ler , in Elephant on the Moon, had pointed out that the i l l u s o r y discovery of the virtuosos was the product of purely subjective speculation, and the Hack's delusion are a product of the same sub jec t i v i t y : . ... the Question i s only t h i s ; Whether Things that have Place in the Imagination, may not as properly be said to Ex i s t , as those that are seated in the Memory; which may be j u s t l y held i n the Af f i rmat ive. . . (p. 172). 102 The Hack rat iona l i zes th i s view by pointing out that a l l great actions have proceeded out of madness: For, i f we take a Survey of the greatest Actions that have been performed in the World, under the Influence of Single Men; which are, The Establishment of New Empires by Conquest: The Advance and Progress of New Schemes in Philosophy; and the  contr iv ing, as well as the propagating of New Rel ig ions; We shal l f ind the Authors of them a l l , to have been Persons, whose natural Reason hath admitted great Revolutions . . . (p1. 162). . The Hack himself admits to "overturned I n te l l ec tua l s " which do not in the least impair his a b i l i t i e s . The s t e r i l i t y and the squalor of the "Modern" mind i s at the centre of Grub Street, and i t i s given expression, not by the sacred Word, but by a debased language devoid of meaning. The unlimited indulgence of the Hack's mind and the meaninglessness of his "Comprehensive Discourse" are evident when he suggests that seven "of the deepest Scholars" w i l l each produce fundamentally d i f fe rent interpretat ions of the Tale he has wr i t ten. These d i f f e r i n g interpretat ions are "manifestly deduceable" from the text only because the text i s so vague and general that v i r t u a l l y anything could be read into i t . There i s no p ro l i f e ra t i on of knowledge because the o r i g ina l text is s t e r i l e and non-productive. '.'.It i s so "comprehensive" that i t i s meaningless. The "Modern" mind i s pr imar i ly an eighteenth-century phenomenon, characterized by i t s a b i l i t y to be "Deep-learned and Shallow-read." This learning requires the use of " large Indexes and l i t t l e Compendiums . . . To this End, tho' Authors need be l i t t l e consulted, yet C r i t i c k s , and Commentators, and Lexicons care fu l l y must" (pp. 147-148). The Modern i s a composite of the virtuoso and the antiquarian. That i s , he spends his time co l l ec t i ng curious and useless b i t s of information and, from this 103 miscellaneous co l l ec t i on he draws certa in conclusions that are not only useless but meaningless. In "A Digression in Praise of Digressions," the Hack proudly presents "the noblest Branch of Modern Wit or Invention" by pointing out the newest ta lent of "Modern" authors: What I mean, i s that highly celebrated Talent among the Modern Wits, of deducing S imi l i tudes , A l lu s ions , and Appl icat ions, very Surpr i s ing, Agreeable, and Apposite, from the Pudenda of e i ther Sex, together with t he i r proper Uses. And t r u l y , having observed how l i t t l e Invention bears any Vogue, besides what i s derived into these Channels, I have sometimes had a Thought, That the happy Genius of our Age and Country, was prophet ical ly held forth by that antient typ ica l Description of the Indian Pygmies; whose Stature did not exceed above two  Foot, Sed quorum pudenda crassa, & ad talos usque pert ingent ia * . Now, I have been very curious to inspect the la te Productions, wherein the Beauties of th is kind have most prominently appeared. And a l tho 1 th is Vein hath bled so f r ee l y , and a l l Endeavours have been used in the Power of Human Breath, to d i l a t e , extend, and keep i t open: Like the Scythians, who  had a Custom, and an Instrument, to blow up the P r i v i t i e s of  the i r Mares, that they might y i e l d the more Mi lk; Yet I am under an Apprehension, i t i s near growing dry, and past a l l Recovery; And that e i ther some new Fonde of Wit should, i f poss ible, be provided, or else that we must e'en be content with Repetition here, as well as upon a l l other Occasions. (p. 147) To the Hack, a l l things "Modern" are superior to "the Remains . . . l e f t us by the Antients" (p. 146). His contention i s simply that his "noblest Branch" owes nothing to e a r l i e r periods of i n t e l l e c tua l achievement, but is completely self-generated in the best "Modern" manner. However, he represents the achievements of modern learning as embodied in the gross physical image of the deformity of the Pygmies. Thus, in the process of himself "deducing S imi l i tudes , " he establishes the small-body, la rge-genetalia image of the pygmies, "whose Stature did hot exceed above two Foot; Sed quorum pudenda crassa, & ad talos usque pert ingent ia, " as a *But whose genitals were thick and reached a l l the way to the i r ankles. 104 su itable type of his own i n te l l e c tua l pursuits. S imi lar to this pygmy-type of modern genius is the image of the Scythian mares. With the i r a r t i f i c i a l l y i n f l a ted " p r i v i t i e s , " they are typ ica l of the "Modern" scholarship of which the Hack boasts so proudly. They too are blown up with a i r , or nothing. Yet everything unnaturally enlarged w i l l eventually col lapse: thus the small body of Modern learning with i t s swollen appendages is e s sent ia l l y temporary, constantly i n danger of running dry of newly invented matter. Like But le r ' s "Hermetic Philosopher," the Grub Street Hack compensates for the lack of substance in his works by h int ing that he has a ready fund of deep meanings and profound occult wisdom that is avai lable only to the "true i l luminated. " Like Socrates in his basket (The Clouds) he i s suspended in a i r , above the r e a l i t i e s of l i f e . His insp i rat ion i s of the same Wind which sustained Aristophanes' sophists, but with an occult accret ion: Their Gods were the four Winds, whom they worshipped, as the Sp i r i t s that pervade and enliven the Universe, and as those from whom alone a l l Inspirat ion can properly be said to proceed (p. 154). The inhabitants of Grub Street are s im i l a r to e a r l i e r s a t i r i c targets in other ways. Lucian 's multitude of philosophers, quar re l l ing among themselves as they stormed the Acropolis are now the "Multitude of Writers, whereof the whole Multitude of Writers most reasonably complains" (p. 45). The Hack, l i k e the philosophers in Clouds or Diogenes in Fishing for Phonies, has endured hardships, presumably in the service of his " l ea rn ing " : Whatever Reader desires to have a thorow Comprehension of an Author's Thoughts, cannot take a better Method, than by putting himself into the Circumstances and Postures of L i f e , that the Writer was i n , upon every important Passage as i t 105 f low 'd from his Pen; For th is w i l l introduce a Par i ty and s t r i c t Correspondence of Idea's between the Reader and the Author. . . . the shrewdest Pieces of his Treatise were conceived in Bed, in a Garret: At other times (for a Reason best known to my se l f ) I thought f i t to sharpen my Invention with Hunger; and in general, the whole work was begun, continued, and ended, under a long Course of Physick, and a great want of Money,(p. 44). But to the spuriousness of the scholar and wr i t e r , Swift adds an element of corrupt ion; as when the Hack describes the "True C r i t i c k s " of the age: Amongst the rest . . . there is a Serpent that wants Teeth, and consequently cannot b i t e , but i f i t s Vomit (to~Athich i t  i s much addicted) happens to f a l l upon any Thing, a certa in  Rottenness or Corruption ensues: These Serpents are generally  found among the Mountains where Jewels grow, and they  frequently emit a poisonous Juice whereof, whoever dr inks, that Person's Brains f l i e out of his Nos t r i l s . (p . 100). I f one looks c losely at any image i n the Tale one discovers the rot and corruption that underlie Grub Street. The Hack, who writes as a consequence of " . . . a drunken V i g i l . . . an i l l Run at Dice . . . and a ju s t Contempt of Learning" (p. 183) does not recognize this corruption because he himself i s indigenous to the Grub Street world. Swift borrows the images that both Rabelais and Erasmus had used to suggest ambiguity, images such as the I l i a d in a Nut - she l l , the Silenus box, and the maggoty cheese. I f we examine Sw i f t ' s use of these images, however, we can see that the emphasis d i f f e r s . Rabelais and Erasmus were intent on i l l u s t r a t i n g the paradoxical re lat ionsh ip between s u p e r f i c i a l i t y and substance. Sw i f t ' s Hack thinks he i s suggesting the same paradoxical re lat ionsh ip , but he i s i r o n i c a l l y undercut by his own p la t i tudes , and by his extravagantly r id icu lous and unil luminating f igures, the e f fec t of which makes wisdom appear, not a hidden treasure, but a revolt ing or d i s tastefu l surpr i se, i f i t i s there at a l l : 106 But the greatest Maim given to that general reception, which the Writings of our Society have formerly received, (next to the t rans i tory State of a l l sublunary Things,) hath been a super f i c i a l Vein among many Readers of the present Age, who w i l l by no means be persuaded to inspect beyond the Surface and Rind of Things; whereas, Wisdom is a Fox, who a f te r long hunting, w i l l at l a s t cost you the Pains to dig out; 'T is a Cheese, which by how much the r i che r , has the th icker , the homlier and the courser Coat; and whereof to a judicious Palate, the Maggots are the best. 'T i s a Sack-Posset, wherein the deeper you go, you w i l l f ind i t the sweeter. Wisdom i s a Hen, whose Cackling we must value and consider, because i t i s attended with an Egg; But then, l a s t l y , ' t i s a Nut, which unless you chuse with Judgment, may cost you a Tooth, and pay you with nothing but a Worm. In consequence of these momentous Truths, the Grubean Sages have always chosen to convey the i r Precepts and the i r A r t s , shut up within the Vehicles of Types and Fables, which having been perhaps more careful and curious in adorning, than was altogether necessary, i t has fared with these Vehicles a f te r the usual Fate of Coaches over - f ine ly painted and g i l t ; that the trans i tory Gazers have so dazzled the i r Eyes, and f i l l ' d the i r Imaginations with the outward Lustre, as neither to regard or consider, the Person or the Parts of the Owner w i th in . A Misfortune we undergo with somewhat less Reluctancy, because i t has been common to us with Pythagoras, AEsop, Socrates, and other of our Predecessors (p. 66). The Hack i s saying that an obstinate refusal on the part of readers to look beneath the "Surface and Rind" constitutes a great handicap to the publ ic acceptance of the deep meanings and "momentous Truths" :GOR-tdAne'd iin Modern wr i t ings . But underneath, these writ ings are more absurd than on top. The Hack thinks he has presented a paradox; in f ac t , he has not. Instead, the absurdity and the lack of substance i s more than ever c lea r l y demonstrated. Nevertheless, Grub Street works do have a value. Not the t rad i t i ona l d idact ic and morally i n s t ruc t i ve value, but a value as a commodity. On Grub Street everything i s for sale except pr inc ip les and moral i ty, which have no value, and no place, here. This means that hack writers can turn the i r talents and the i r coats to any serv ice. The Hack explains that his " Q u i l l " has been 107 worn to the P i th in the Service of the State, in Pro 's and Con's upon Popish P lo t s , and Meal -Tubs, and Exclusion B i l l s , "and Passive Obedience, and Addresses_of Lives and Fortunes; and Prerogative, and Property, and Liberty 6T Coriscierice, and Letters to a Friend: From an Understanding and a Conscience, thread-bare and ragged with perpetual turning; From a Head broken in a hundred places, by the Malignants of the opposite Factions, and from a Body spent with Poxes i l l cured, by trust ing to Bawds and Surgeons, who, (as i t afterwards appeared) were profess 'd Enemies to Me and the Government, and revenged the i r Party ' s Quarrel upon my Nose and Shins. Four-score and eleven Pamphlets have I written under three Reigns, and for the Service 'of s i x and t h i r t y Factions (p. 70). In spite of these hardships, the Hack is accustomed to his c r a f t , and s a t i s f i ed with his work: I am also happy, that Fate has flung me into so blessed an Age for the mutual F e l i c i t y of Booksellers and Authors, whom I may safely aff i rm to be at this Day the two only s a t i s f i ed Parties in England (p. 182). The Bookseller should be content; he has ju s t sold out a second ed i t ion of some "Thing." Both the Bookseller and the Hack wr i te r are matter-of-fac t l y concerned with only the commercial aspects of the i r trade, and they do not, of course, share the i r on i c perspective of the reader. Af ter consulting his Almanak, and considering "the Bulk and the Subject" of the Hack's t r ea t i s e , the Bookseller concludes that " i t would never take, but a f te r a long Vacation, and then only, in case i t should happen to be a hard year for Turnips'.' 1 (p. 207). Together they discuss what could be "turned to Account" th is month: At length we agreed upon this Expedient; That when a Customer comes for one of these, and desires in Confidence to know the Author; he w i l l t e l l him very p r i va te l y , as a Friend, naming which ever of the Wits shal l happen to be that Week in the Vogue; and i f Durfy's l a s t Play should be in Course, I have as l i eve he may be the Person as Cdngreve (p. 207). The bulk and the subject, the r i ght pr ice to the r ight person, the fashion of the day; a l l these are expedient to the trade. Honesty, i n t e g r i t y , and learning are not; they cannot be "turned to Account." 108 Hack wr i t ing enables men, with l i t t l e learning or morality to commend them, to set themselves up as the a r t i s t s of the age. The "Evacuations" of the i r learning are expressed i n the mad language of delusions, occult nonsense, chop-logic, and sophis t ica l speculation. Moreover, because thei r products are in demand as a popular commodity, hack wr i t ing extends i t s operations into what were previously the strongholds of the t rad i t iona l c u l t u r e — r e l i g i o n , a r t , and philosophy. Everyman could walk around with a " l i t t l e Compendium" of culture im hiis hand and pass as a man of learning and consequently i t becomes more and more d i f f i c u l t to d ist inguish secondhand learning from the real thing. The success of the booksellers and authors of Grub Street, a success grounded in a technique that r e l i ed on "the Assistance of A r t i f i c i a l Mediurns, fa lse L ights, refracted Angles, Varnish, and T inse l " (p. 172) fostered a whole att i tude and s ty le of l i f e which subsisted purely on externals. What l i e s beyond the externals i s in danger of dwindling to a shadow and a ghost. Jonathan Swift fought a los ing batt le against the perversions of language and learning that attended the eighteenth-century ideological s h i f t , j u s t as Aristophanes had fought a los ing batt le against the abuses of language and learning during the Greek ideological s h i f t . Evidently the bat t le between Ancients and Moderns i s fought over and over again. The h i s t o r i c a l period changes, and with i t the s a t i r i s t ' s emphasis, but the imagery and the themes remain the same. CHAPTER V CONCLUSION 110 To some degree, sat i res on language and learning from C l a s s i c a l times into the eighteenth century have been a reaction to two main assumptions of r a t i o n a l i s t ideologies. F i r s t , everything i s ult imately knowable, and in the i r search for knowledge men can discern and make use of some underlying order. Second, i f men know the good, they w i l l pursue i t . Philosophies do not spring forth f u l l y mature; they are organic things that grow and change. I f there ever were such a thing as "pure" rat ional i sm, i t would have taken pride in s e t t l i n g a l l questions before the bar of reason and interpret ing a l l human behaviour in terms of rat ional s e l f - i n t e r e s t , and the b e l i e f that v i rtue consisted es sent ia l l y in a technique of rat ional l i v i n g . P la to ' s e a r l i e s t wr i t ings , such as Protagoras and the Gorgias with the i r frank u t i l i t a r i a n i s m and the i r Socrates who i s s t i l l no more than l i f e s i z e , come closest to th is hypothetical a t t i tude. P la to ' s l a t e r wr i t ings , such as the Cratylus modified th i s pos it ion when he c r o s s - f e r t i l i z e d the t r ad i t i on of Greek rat ional ism with magico-religious ideas and transformed the meaning of rat ional ism by giving i t a metaphysical extension. Ch r i s t i an i t y inher ited and assimilated the dichotomy between the rat ional and the supra-rat ional : reason and f a i t h J In his great symbol ^ Will iam Barret, in I r ra t iona l Man makes this comment about the h i s t o r i c a l contexts of the Chr i s t ian and the c l a s s i ca l world: Again and again, at the beginning of Ch r i s t i an i t y , St. Paul t e l l s us that the f a i t h he preaches i s foolishness to the Greeks, for they demand "wisdom"--which of course to the Greek meant rat ional philosophy and not re l i g ious f a i t h . But the h i s t o r i c a l fact that Ch r i s t i an i t y arose in a world which already knew about reason through the Greeks distinguishes Chr i s t ian f a i t h from the Hebraic f a i t h of the Old Testament (p. 81). I l l of the two c i t i e s Augustine enunciated that basic Chr i s t ian dualism which gives meaning to a l l i t s dichotomies of earth and heaven, nature and grace, man and God, the re l a t i ve and the absolute, time and e te rn i t y . Augustine also distinguished between the two d i f fe rent kinds of knowledge. The f i r s t was associated with nature, man, reason and t ru th ; the second with Ch r i s t i an i t y , grace, God, f a i t h , and goodness. I t was the great achievement of Aquinas (and of the Schoolmen in general) to attempt a workable synthesis of the two, a l locat ing to reason the things proper to reason, to f a i th the things proper to f a i t h , and reconc i l ing the two under the providence of God. And in terms of human psychology, Aquinas sought to ident i f y goodness with t ru th , the object of reason, and he asserted the uses of human reason i n a r r i v ing at an i n t e l l i g i b l e view of God's creat ion. The ideological s h i f t that developed in the eighteenth century as a re su l t of the new rat ional ism in e f fec t destroyed Aquinas' r econc i l i a t i on between the two kinds of knowledge, although few of the devout r a t i o n a l -i s t i c proponents could perceive i t . The s h i f t was destructive because i t replaced a providential God with an ind i f fe rent one, and i t separated virtue from knowledge. Regardless of the stresses and strains of the ideological sh i f t s i n the f i f t h century B.C. and the eighteenth century A.D., the importance of language and learning remained a constant. In f ac t , from the Greeks to the eighteenth-century Augustans there was an increased awareness of language as the rat ional expression of men, and Chr i s t ian humanists would have said that language was an expression of both the divine and the rat ional parts in men. S im i l a r l y , learning also takes on increased importance as the avenue not only to v i r tue , but also to God. 112 Consequently, we have seen develop a s a t i r i c t rad i t i on attacking the abuses of language and learning; a t r ad i t i on that uses recurring stock images and themes but that changes i t s emphasis depending upon the d i f f e r i ng ideological context. Aristophanes wrote in a period when the Greek mythic att i tudes had not quite been replaced by the new rat ional i sm, and his imagery re f lec t s his ambivalent response to the new i n te l l e c tua l fashion. To i l l u s t r a t e the arrogance and the absurdity of the new philosophers, Aristophanes adopted or developed images that would express the dangers and the t r i v i a l i t y of the i r thought. His windbag philosopher appeals to the undiscipl ined passions of men, pa r t i cu l a r l y to the i r s e l f - i n t e r e s t and greed, while pretending to feed the i r i n t e l l e c tua l appetite by creating a glorious ed i f i ce b u i l t on a i r . This pompous, pedantic philosopher has pumped himself up with the wind of importance but nothing else of substance, and he explo i ts those credulous or venal enough to be attracted to his "wisdom." But i t i s neither the n o b i l i t y of his wisdom nor the c l a r i t y of his language that wins popularity for his "new education," i t i s the appeal of the new learning to the basest i n s t inc t s of greed, an appeal voiced in casu i s t ic chop-logic. By Lucian 's time, the o r i g ina l sophists had mul t ip l ied and divided into the i r d i f fe rent schools, each intent on i t s own par t i cu la r interpretat ion of ideas. They were a burgeoning population because they had a ready fund of human f o l l y to exp lo i t . Lucian 's world i s a teeming an th i l l of foo l i sh and misguided and d iabo l ica l a c t i v i t y , a l l seen in i r on i c perspective so that we can perceive for ourselves the distance between what we are and what we profess to be. The windbag philosopher i s s t i l l the same, there is ju s t more of him, and he has been assimilated 113 into a society now comfortable with his sophist ica l ideas. The undiscipl ined and unprincipled learning of the few has now become the gospel of the many. In the centuries intervening between the Class ica l s a t i r i s t s and the Renaissance, Western i n t e l l e c tua l thought was pr imar i ly concerned with consolidation and as s imi la t ion. Medieval scholars succeeded in putting a t i gh t box around c la s s i ca l learning through analysis and exegesis of the apostles and the early Chr i s t ian fathers. By the sixteenth century, the Schoolmen had become mired in the accretions of years of exegesis--so much so that i t rendered them incapable of any but the narrowest of v i s ions. This moribund scholast ic ism is the target of ear ly Renaissance s a t i r i s t s such as Rabelais and Erasmus who, through the i r imagery, dwell on the myopic v is ion of scholast ic ism. Rabelais and Erasmus, each in his own way, express the early Renaissance emphasis on a complexity, d i ve r s i t y , and contradict ion not amenable to Scholast ic systemization. Instead of l i m i t i n g his view to one essential aspect of a subject, a Renaissance wr i ter is more l i k e l y to explore a l l of i t s aspects, espec ia l ly i f they are contradictory, and to open up as'many d i f ferent perspectives as poss ible. This exploratory approach explains why, rather than symmetry, order, and balance, he w i l l prefer paradox, enigma, argument, an t i thes i s , and ambiguity. Erasmus, by using the paradox, could surround his readers with a continuum of madness and f o l l y , i r o n i c a l l y i n v i t i n g them to choose from a variety ranging from the dessicated introversions of the theologian to the Pauline s imp l i c i t y that leads them to God. Out of th is paradox Erasmus could caution men to look c losely at the choice they make. They must be aware that attention to the surface rather than substance in learning and morality i s s e l f -114 deceiving and 1imi t i ng i and that the transient happiness they cu l t i va te i s at the co s t of a much greater happiness which l i e s within the i r grasp. Rabelais explodes the introverted world of the medieval i n t e l l e c tua l by pushing against the l im i ta t ions of language and education. The imagery of the world of Pantagruel owes part of i t s v i t a l i t y to the words that give i t being, words which i n s i s t upon the i r own colour and texture and the i r mediating posit ion between the f i c t i o n and the.^reader. Rabelais i s incessantly assault ing and belabouring his language, twist ing i t out of shape and then moulding i t into new forms. The word, which i s the instrument of the medieval scholar ' s narrow, l i t e r a l , l og i ca l mind becomes in Rabelais ' hands the weapon that undermines the i r systems and exposes the i r unconscious servitudes. Yet even in the midst of a l l the ant i rat iona l verbal exuberance, the word remains for Rabelais the instrument of penetrating thought and l uc i d r e f l e c t i o n . The education of Gargantua i s at once a humanist's v i s ion of what ought to constitute the learning of a man, and an expose1 of conventional education. Janotus, a doctor of the Sorbonne, although that name never appears in the tex t , i s representative of conventional higher education, and his searing, se l f - i nc r iminat ing d ia t r ibe against his colleagues reveals the moral night of his i n s t i t u t i o n : "Reason!" exclaimed Janotus, "we use none of that here. You wretched, worthless t r a i t o r s , there i s n ' t a more depraved bunch than you on the whole face of the earth, as well I know. Don't t ry a fa lse limp in front of a cr ipp le. I 've had a share in your v i l l a i n i e s . God's spleen! I ' l l inform the king of the manifold abuses that are planned and carr ied out by you, with your own hands. The leprosy s t r i ke me i f he doesn't have you a l l burnt a l i ve as buggers, t r a i t o r s , heretics and seducers, enemies of God and a l l v i r t ue . " Rabelais, Gargantua and Pantagruel, p. 80. 115 Set against th is bleak l i t t l e world, the a c t i v i t y of the young Gargantua t e s t i f i e s not only to the goodness of knowledge but also of l i f e and the l i v i n g human creature. Thus Rabelais ' imagery reveals a noble and expansive mode of human l i f e i n sharp contrast to the medieval Chr i s t ian mode, enlarging the horizons of the mind and the a r t i s t i c imagination, giving man a new f l e x i b i l i t y , a l i b e r t y , a dignity that could not be rea l i zed within the medieval framework. With Ben Jonson we turn from the ambiguity of language to the more t rad i t iona l target of the misuse of language. The characters of The  Alchemist a l l use language as a means of concealing the true nature of the i r actions. Whatever v i l l a i n y they commit i s enveloped in sophist ica l euphemisms, a w i l l i n g deception that a l l the characters accept, even the Puritan dupes, because they are accustomed to the abuse of language in every other aspect of the i r l i v e s . They do not need to be taught how to abuse language; they already know how. Jonson's imagery points up the misuse of language; Donne's centres on the misuse of learning. Donne also assumes the Chr ist ian humanist conception of learn ing, that i s , re la t ing learning to an act ive rather than to a contemplative l i f e which i s measured in moral and re l ig ious terms. He condemns Coscus because he s e l l s his learning instead of using i t to l i v e the good l i f e . I t i s this betrayal of Coscus' invaluable g i f t s that makes more meaningful Donne's use of the imagery of p ro s t i tu t i on . I f the t rans i t ion from a sacramental to a secular view of nature had i t s beginning in the sixteenth century, with the questions of men l i k e Erasmus and Rabelais, the seventeenth century was r ea l l y the pivotal epoch in the s h i f t . The scept ical t r ad i t i on bore s a t i r i c a l f r u i t in th is 116 3 century, and Samuel Butler wrote within the context of th i s t r ad i t i on . His Characters i l l u s t r a t e his scept ical view of man's reason. But ler was never able to ascribe any pos i t ive function to man's rat ional facu l ty . But But le r ' s emphasis in his s a t i r e s , and for that matter, the emphasis of Jonson and Donne in the i r s , was also a response to the moral impl i ca -tion of an increasing secu lar i zat ion. Secular izat ion was in turn a product of the new rat ional i sm, the discoveries of astronomers, and Bacon's reevaluation of knowledge and the introduction of the inductive method. The widening breach between the sacred and the secular had become : an established fact by the eighteenth century, and as a resu l t s a t i r i s t s began to look closely at the secular domain and to point to the moral implications of the separation or, as Butler neatly distinguishes i t , the difference between a man's "Profess ion" and his " Ca l l i n g . " . This meant a rigorous examination of such secular concerns as science, p o l i t i c s , and money-making, a l l of which had become i so lated from re l i g i on and consequently from moral considerations. Pedantry came under attack by Wil l iam King with his s a t i r i c po r t r a i t of the Modern, who is a var iat ion on the philosopher absorbed in t r i v i a l abstractions to the exclusion of those p r a c t i c a l i t i e s which ought to concern any man of common sense. To the image of the philosopher the Modern adds the associations of fashion, of being a l a mode, which i s l inked to the s c i e n t i f i c doctrine of progress. I t was King who pointed out that the Modern was " i n a ditch by choice," a succinct metaphor pointing 3 And in the eighteenth century with i t s numerous sat i res against mankind in imitat ion of Boi leau 's Eighth Sat i re . 117 up the kind of moral choice open to the eighteenth-century i n t e l l e c t u a l . There were many sat i res on the new science in general and the Royal Society in pa r t i cu la r in the l a t t e r part of the seventeenth century. The Virtuoso i s representative of the type, and in th is play Shadwell r i d i cu le s the v i r tuoso ' s s c i e n t i f i c interest in knowledge for i t s own sake rather than i t s useful app l icat ion. This l a s t charge was perhaps the most serious l a i d at the door of the Royal Society, although in Elephant oh the Moon Samuel Butler was to add another equally grave: the virtuosos would even f a l s i f y and subvert truth in the in teres t of s e l f -esteem and the i r eagerness for the notoriety that would be theirs should a sensational discovery be announced. But i t i s the secularized concern with money making that increasingly concerns the s a t i r i s t s . During the seventeenth century the acqu i s i t i ve urges s t i l l hid behind re l ig ious and p o l i t i c a l outworks, but by the eighteenth century i t was too c lear that what both ind iv iduals and states were a f te r was the material spoi l s of the world, now ly ing readier for exp lo i tat ion than ever before. This commercial s p i r i t was not directed so le ly at the outside world; i t had appl icat ion close to home as w e l l . The rapid expansion of trade and commerce was accompanied by a new s e n s i b i l i t y which attached pos i t ive values to the aggressive transaction of business, and accounted for the appearance of a new phenomenon, the economic projector. Att itudes towards economics changed, and now, in the s a t i r i s t ' s view, v i r t u a l l y anything could be bought and so ld. Jonathan Swift managed to capture the essence of the new s h i f t in the metaphor of Grub Street. Grub Street i s represented as both the commercial and the a r t i s t i c hub of the c i t y , and i t i s an appall ing prospect that Swift lays out before 118 us. The perennial acqu i s i t i ve impulse has taken on a new dimension; i t i s now subverting the moral and re l ig ious functions of the a r t i s t . Donne's Coscus had sold out, but he was s t i l l only a lawyer. He had been a poet, but a f a i l e d poet, and recognized as a f a i l e d poet. But Grub Street i s populated with f a i l e d writers who present themselves as a r t i s t s of the age. Buckingham's Bayes i s a good example of the acclaim that a charlatan can command. His dramatic " a r t i s t r y " consists of s t r ing ing together a sequence of secondhand theatr ica l e f f ec t s , and the product i s a commodity shrewdly constructed to appeal to the lowest common denominator of his audience. Johnson.arid Smith may sneer at Bayes, and ca l l him a P h i l i s t i n e masquerading as an a r t i s t , but Bayes i s "acclaimed by country and by c i t y w i t s . " He has been very careful to write " f o r Reputation," and he.has been successful S im i l a r l y , in the Grub Street world, the a r t i s t has sold out. His a r t i s another commodity on the market, and he i s reduced to a hack, churning out whatever i s in vogue regardless of whether or not i t has any i n t r i n s i c value. Grub Street productions w i l l not withstand close scrut iny, nor need they do so. It i s much eas ier, as borne out by Bayes, to lower the standards and values of the society than to maintain an a r t i s t i c s e n s i b i l i t y informed by moral standards. Sw i f t ' s Hack and his fellows adjust standards by transforming themselves into Modern " C r i t i c s , " who set themselves up as l i t e r a r y and a r t i s t i c arb iters and then declare the Modern way to be the de f i n i t i v e a r t i s t i c s e n s i b i l i t y of the times. 4 Pope was to delineate the necessary ingredients of works written for such "Reputation" in Peri Bathous: or the Art of Sinking in Poetry. 119 Swi f t ' s Grub Street metaphor captures the destructive essence of the eighteenth-century s h i f t because i t manages to incorporate a l l the elements that profoundly disturbed men in the eighteenth century who s t i l l worked within the Chr i s t ian humanist t r a d i t i o n . Grub Street, with i t s Moderns, C r i t i c s , Virtuosos, Projectors, and Hacks, a l l inflamed by zea l , i n f l a ted by wind, and i l luminated with esoter ic knowledge, was at the service of the highest bidder. This destructive influence s p i r a l l ed out into the whole soc iety. The Grub Street writers assumed the name, but not the v i r tues , of learn ing, p ie ty , n o b i l i t y , and a r t i s t i c s e n s i b i l i t y , creating a confusion that makes these virtues a l l the more remote and inaccess ib le. The resu l t i s a rapid degeneration of moral values and ult imately moral standards. Swift uses Rabelais ' exuberance and v i t a l i t y with t e r r i f y i n g e f f e c t , to paint a world gone mad, a world that aspires, not to truth and v i r tue , but to "what w i l l best go o f f in a Dry Year." The wr iters and philosophers of this world had created a new kingdom for themselves, a kingdom of dunces in which a l l things had been sh r i ve l led into commodities for the market place. 120 SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY Primary Sources Aristophanes. The Acharnians: The Clouds? Ly s i s t ra ta . Translated by Alan H. Sommerstein. London: Penguin Books, 1973. . The Clouds in Greek Tragedy and Comedy. Edited by F. L. Lucas. New York: the Viking Press, 1967. A r i s t o t l e . The "A r t " of Rhetoric. Translated by John Henry Freese. Loeb C lass ica l Series. Cambridge; Harvard University Press, 1967. But ler , Samuel. Characters. Edited by Charles W. Daves. Cleveland: The Press of Case Western Reserve Univers i ty, 1970. . Characters and Passages from Note-Books. Edited by A. R. Waller. Cambridge: University Press, .1908. . The Genuine Poetical Remains of Samuel But ler . Edited by Robert Thyer. London: Joseph Booker, 1827. . Hudibras. Edited by Zachary Grey. London: Frederick Warne, 1887. Cicero. Brutus: Orator. Translated by G. L. Hendrickson. Loeb C lass ica l Series. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1952. . On The Good L i f e . Translated by Michael Grant. London: Penguin Books, 1971'. Donne, John. The Sat i res , Epigrams and Verse Letters. Edited by W. Milgate. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1967. E lyot, S i r Thomas. The Governour. Edited by J . Wil l iam Hebel, Hoyt H. Hudson, Francis R. Johnson, A. Wigfal l Green, and Robert Hoopes. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1953. Erasmus. The Praise of Fo l l y . Translated by John Wilson. Ann Arbor: Univers ity of Michigan Press, 1972. Horace. The Satires of Horace and Pefs ius. Translated by Ni al1 Rudd. London: Penguin Books, 1973. . Works. Translated by James Lonsdale and Samuel Lee. London: Macmillan Company, 1900. Jonson, Ben. The Alchemist. Edited by F. H. Mares. London: Methuen Educational, 1971. 121 Juvenal. The Sixteen Sat i res. Translated by Peter Green. London: Penguin Books, 1967. King, Wi l l iam, and Arbuthnot, John. A Miscellany of the Wits: Select  Pieces by Will iam King, John Arbuthnot, and Other Hands. Edited by K. N. Co l v i l e . London: P h i l i p A l l a n , 1920. * ~~ Lucian. S a t i r i c a l Sketches. Translated by Paul Turner. London: Penguin Books, 1961. . The Works of Lucian of Samosata. Translated by H. W. Fowler and" F. G. Fowler. Vol. 1. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1905. The Works of Lucian of Samosata. Translated by H. W. Fowler and F. G. Fowler. Vol . 2. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1905. P lato. Protagoras. Translated by C. C. W. Taylor. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1976. Rabelais, Frangois. Gargantua and Pantagruel. Translated by J . M. Cohen. London: Penguin Books, 1976. Shadwell, Thomas. The Complete Works of Thomas Shadwell. Edited by Montague Summers^ Vol. 3: The Virtuoso"; London: The Fortune Press, 1927. Sidney, S i r P h i l i p . Selected Prose and Poetry. Edited by Robert Kimbrough. San Francisco: Rinehart Press, 1969. Swift, Jonathan. The Prose Writings of Jonathan Swift . Edited by Herbert Davis" 10 vols. V o l . 9 : I r i sh Tracts and Sermons. Introduction and notes to Sermons by Lois Landa. Oxford: Blackwell Press, 1945. . A Tale of a Tub: To Which i s Added The Batt le of the Books and the Mechanical Operation of the S p i r i t . Edited by A. C. Guthkelch and D. Nichol Smith. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1958. V i l l i e r s , George, Duke of Buckingham. The Rehearsal. Edited by D. E. L. Crane. Durham: University Press, 1976. V i r g i l . The Pastoral^Poems. Translated by E. V. Rieu. Penguin C lass ics . Penguin Books, 1967. Secondary Sources A l l en , Alexander V. G. The Continuity of Chr ist ian Thought: A Study of Modern Theology in the Light of i t s History. London: Ward, Lock & Bowden, 1895. 122 Anderson, Graham. Lucian: Theme and Var iat ion in the Second Sophist ic. Leiden: E. J . B r i l l , 1976. " r Baker, Herschel.. The Wars of Truth: Studies in the Decay of Humanism in the Ea r l i e r Seventeenth Century. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1952. Baldwin, Charles Sears. Ancient Rhetoric and Poet ic. Gloucester, Mass.: Peter Smith, 1959. ' " ' ' ' ' Renaissance L i terary Theory and Pract ice. New York: Columbia University Press, 1939. Barrett , Wil l iam. I r rat iona l Man. Garden C i ty : Doubledav Anchor Books, 1958. ~ ~ Beard, Marion. A History of Business. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1962. ~ Bolgar, R. R. The Class ica l Heritage and i t s Benef ic ia r ies . Cambridge: Univers ity Press, 1958. Bowen, Barbara C. The Age of B lu f f : Paradox and Ambiguity in Rabelais and Montaigne. Urbana: University of I l l i n o i s Press, 1972. Cubberley, E l l wood P. A B r i e f History of Education. Boston: Houghton M i f f l i n , 1922. Dickens, A. G. The English Reformation. New York: Schocken Books, 1964. Dodds, E...R. The Greeks and the I r r a t i ona l . Los Angeles: Univers ity of Ca l i f o rn i a Press, 1973. Dover, K. J . Aristophanic Comedy. Los Angeles: Univers ity of Ca l i fo rn ia Press, 1972. Duff, J . Wright. A L i terary History of Rome. London: Ernest Benn Limited, 1967. E l ton, G. R. Reformation Europe: 151 7-1559. Fontana: Co l l i n s , 1963. Fiske, George Converse. Luc i l i u s and Horace. University of Wisconson Studies i n Language and L i te ra tu re , No. 7. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1920. Fusse l l , Paul. The Rhetorical World of Augustan Humanism. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1965. Greene, Thomas M. Rabelais: A Study in Comic Courage. New Jersey: P rent i ce -Ha l l , 1970. 123 Havelock, Er ic A. Preface to P lato. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1963. Hay, Denys. The I ta l i an Renaissance. Cambridge: University Press, 1961. ' ~~~ H i l l , Christopher. The World Turned Upside Down. London: TemDle Smith, 1972. Howell, Wilbur Samuel. Logic and Rhetoric in England: 1500-1700. New York: Russell & Russe l l , 1961, Kernan, A l v i n . The Cankered Muse. New Haven: Yale Univers ity Press, 1959. ~ ~ " ~ Masters, G. Mallary. Rabelaisian D ia lect i c and the Platonic-Hermetic  Tradit ion. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1969. Murray, G i lber t . Tradit ion and Progress. Freeport, New York: Books for L ibrar ies Press, Inc., 1968. Nicol son, Marjorie Hope. Science and Imagination. Ithaca: Great Seal Books, 1956. O l i ver , E. J . Hypocrisy and Humour. London: Sheed and Ward, 1960. Ong, Walter. Ramus, Method, and the Decay of Dialogue. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1958. Parry, R. H., ed. The English C i v i l War and After . London: Macmillan Press, 1970. Paulson, Ronald. Theme and Structure in Sw i f t ' s "Tale of a Tub." New Haven: Yale University Press, 1960. Pinkus, P h i l i p . Sw i f t ' s Vision of E v i l . Vo l . 1: A Tale of a Tub. V i c t o r i a : University of V i c to r i a Press, 1975. . Sw i f t ' s Vis ion of Ev i l . Vfr l. 2: Gu l l i v e r ' s Travels. V i c t o r i a : University of V i c to r i a Press, 1975. Russelli Conrad, ed. The Origins of the English C i v i l War. London: The Macmillan Press, 1973. Sp i t z , Lewis W., ed. The Protestant Reformation. New Jersey: Prent ice-H a l l , 1966. ' Thompson, Geraldine, S i s te r . Under Pretext of Praise: S a t i r i c Mode in  Erasmus' F i c t i on . To ro n to: University of Toronto Press, 1973. Webster, T. B. L. Greek Art and L i te ra ture . Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1930. 124 Wil ley, B a s i l . The Ei gh teen th Cen tiiry Background. London: Chatto & Windus, 1940. 

Cite

Citation Scheme:

        

Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics

Share

Embed

Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                        
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            src="{[{embed.src}]}"
                            data-item="{[{embed.item}]}"
                            data-collection="{[{embed.collection}]}"
                            data-metadata="{[{embed.showMetadata}]}"
                            data-width="{[{embed.width}]}"
                            data-media="{[{embed.selectedMedia}]}"
                            async >
                            </script>
                            </div>
                        
                    
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:
https://iiif.library.ubc.ca/presentation/dsp.831.1-0094831/manifest

Comment

Related Items