“From this time forward Professor Conington never roused himself to any intellectual exertion worthy of him. He revised undergraduates’ Latin verses; he wrote one or two articles in reviews on liturgical subjects, and perhaps a short paper or two in his own proper person in the Journal of Philology. Otherwise he abandoned himself to the laziest of all occupation with the classics that, namely, of translating them into English…”
– Mark Pattison, Memoirs (London: Macmillan and Co. 1885) pp. 250-1
We here at Sententiae Antiquae like to indulge ourselves in a certain very gentlemanly amount of laziness.
2 thoughts on “The Laziest Task for a Scholar”
On “Laziness”: I think that our Northern European roots have confused our work ethic a bit.
I was just at a trattoria here in Siena, sipping on a glass of wine and reading an article on the scholar Zielinski. The waiter came up to me and took the article away! He said, “No! This is not the Italian philosophy. When you work, you work. When you drink you drink.” At first, I was perturbed. But Zielinski will be there in the morning, and the Brunello was just so fine…
Ah, I suppose you must be right; since neither you nor I can grow an enormous beard, and are unlikely to join a pillaging party, our Northern European barbarism is forced to manifest itself in other ways!
I would have been too embarrassed after being scolded by a waiter to truly enjoy the wine!