Lorenzo Valla, Speech on the Beginning of Study:
It is so arranged by nature that nothing can achieve perfection or grow which is not composed, elaborated, and cultivated by many, especially when they are vying with each other in turn and competing for praise. What sculptor, or painter, or other artist could have stood out as perfect or at least great in their own art, if they had been the only practitioner of it? One person discovers one thing, and each person tries to imitate, emulate, and surpass whatever excellence they notice in the work of another. Thus is zeal kindled, thus is proficiency achieved, thus do the arts increase and reach the heights, indeed all the better and all the swifter when many people work toward the same thing, as in the case of creating a city, where completion is achieved faster and better if the hands of many, rather than of few, are applied to the task.
Nanque ita natura comparatum est, ut nihil admodum proficere atque excrescere queat quod non a plurimis componitur, elaboratur, excolitur, precipue emulantibus invicem et de laude certantibus. Quis enim faber statuarius, pictor item et ceteri in suo artificio perfectus aut etiam magnus extitisset, si solus opifex eius artificii fuisset? Alius aliud invenit et quod quisque in altero egregium animadvertit id ipse imitari, emulari, superare conatur. Ita studia incenduntur, profectus fiunt, artes excrescunt et in summum evadunt et eo quidem melius eoque celerius quo plures in eandem rem homines elaborant, veluti in extruenda aliqua urbe et citius et melius ad consumationem pervenitur, si plurimorum quam paucissimorum manus adhibeantur