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But the application of thought to textual criticism is an action which ought to be within the power of anyone who canapply thought to anything. It is not, like the talent for textual criticism, a gift of nature, but it is a habit; and, like otherhabits, it can be formed. And, when formed, although it cannot fill the place of an absent talent, it can modify and minimise theill effects of the talent's absence. Because a man is not a born critic, he need not therefore act like a born fool; but when heengages in textual criticism he often does. There are reasons for everything, and there are reasons for this; and I will now setforth the chief of them. The fact that thought is not sufficiently applied to the subject I shall showhereafter by examples; but at present I consider the causes which bring that result about.

First, then, not only is a natural aptitude for the study rare, but so also is a genuine interest in it. Most people,and many scholars among them, find it rather dry and rather dull. Now if a subject bores us, we are apt to avoid the troubleof thinking about it; but if we do that, we had better go further and avoid also the trouble of writing about it. And that is whatEnglish scholars often did in the middle of the nineteenth century, when nobody in England wanted to hear about textualcriticism. This was not an ideal condition of affairs, but it had its compensation. The less one says about a subject which one doesnot understand, the less one will say about it which is foolish; and on this subject editors were allowed by public opinion to besilent if they chose. But public opinion is now aware that textual criticism, however repulsive, is nevertheless indispensable, andeditors find that some presence of dealing with the subject is obligatory; and in these circumstances they apply, not thought,but words, to textual criticism. They get rules by rote without grasping the realities of which those [71]rules are merely emblems, and recite them on inappropriate occasions instead ofseriously thinking out each problem it arises.

Secondly, it is only a minority of those who engage in this study who are sincerely bent upon the discovery oftruth. We all know that the discovery of truth is seldom the sole object of political writers; and the world believes, justly orunjustly, that it is not always the sole object of theologians: but the amount of sub-conscious dishonesty which pervades thetextual criticism of the Greek and Latin classics is little suspected except by those who have had occasion to analyseit. People come upon this field bringing with them prepossessions and preferences; they are not willing to look all facts in theface, nor to draw the most probable conclusion unless it is also the most agreeable conclusion. Most men are rather stupid, andmost of those who are not stupid are, consequently, rather vain; and it hardly possible to step aside from the pursuit of truthwithout falling a victim either to your stupidity or else to your vanity. Stupidity will then attach you to received opinions, andyou will stick in the mud; or vanity will set you hunting for novelty, and you will find mare's-nests. Added to these snares andhindrances there are the various forms of partisanship: sectarianism, which handcuffs you to your own school and teachersand associates, and patriotism, which handcuffs you to your own country. Patriotism has a great name as a virtue, and in civicmatters, at the present stage of the world's history, it possibly still does more good than harm; but in the sphere of intellect itis an unmitigated nuisance. I do not know which cuts the worse figure: a German scholar encouraging his countrymen to believethat"wir Deutsche"have nothing to learn from foreigners, or an Englishman demonstrating the unity of Homer by sneers at"Teutonic professors,"who are supposed by his audience to have goggle eyes behind large spectacles, and ragged moustaches saturated in lagerbeer, and consequently to be incapable of forming literary judgments.

Questions & Answers

Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Berger describes sociologists as concerned with
Mueller Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Text as property/property as text. OpenStax CNX. Feb 10, 2004 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10217/1.7
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