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of sympathy and understanding, which they would certainly never suspect from the kind of German literature which circumstances have made best known to us to-day.
T. W. ROLLESTON,
IN sheer straightforward professional erudition Germany easily leads the way. And the more professional the work is—the more it depends on labour, method and organisation--the more absolute and incontestable is her lead. This comes out most clearly in the great works of reference. It is Germany which publishes the Corpus of Greek Inscriptions and the Corpus of Latin Inscriptions; Germany which is now, or has been until lately, undertaking the great Latin Thesaurus and the best Greek Lexicon. For Greek Grammar there is no book in any other language which stands beside the four volumes of Kühner-Blass and Kühner-Gerth. There is no classical encyclopædia which, for thoroughness and mastery of the whole subject, can vie with the Realencyclopädie' of Pauly-Wissowa, though in some ways the French work of Darenberg and Saglio is more convenient. No dictionary of mythology can compare with Roscher's 'Ausführliches Lexicon.' No manual of Greek or Roman religion is as comprehensive as the volumes of Iwan Müller's Handbuch' by Gruppe and Wissowa. Indeed that Handbuch' itself is, by English standards, an unapproached marvel.
If we take the great works of collection, the result is much the same. The fragments of the Pre-socratic Greek Philosophers have been recently edited by Diels, the fragments of the Stoics by von Arnim. Now in point of quality neither of these works could be pronounced superior to the late Prof. Bywater's edition of the fragments of Heraclitus; but, as collections, no work produced by another country could for a moment compete with either. The Epicurean fragments still need doing, but the material which the editor will use will be mostly the work of Germans-Usener's Epicurea,' Sudhaus's • Philodemus' (based on English work at Herculaneum),
and divers lesser works, such as William's · Diogenes of Oenoanda.' The 'Fragmenta Historicorum’have still to be sought in Karl Müller's Didot edition of 1848 and onward to 1885; the fragments of the tragedians in Nauck's admirable collection of 1884; the fragments of the Comedians in Kock and Meineke. In the issuing of cheap but wellexecuted texts of Greek and Latin authors of all periods the Teubners easily lead the way. The Oxford series of texts, though generally in detail better and more cautiously edited, does not cover nearly so wide a field. Again, a little series like Lietzmann's Kleine Texte' leaves one greatly impressed both by the excellence of the work and the large educational demand which the series seems to imply.
If we take works by a single author as our basis of comparison, the lead of Germany is not so marked. True, no one scholar in any other country can be compared for range and brilliancy with the Professor of Greek in Berlin, Ulric von Wilamowitz-Moellendorff, It would be hard to put any general Greek history, since Grote, on a level with Eduard Meyer's; or any book on style and language above Norden's Antike Kunstprosa.' Still there are books in English which clearly take the lead in their own subjects. In the matter of texts, for instance, the English Plato and the English Cicero are undoubtedly the best. I shrink from such personal comparisons; but, to take the recent work of one English University alone, it would be hard to find any German book on a kindred subject more learned and complete than Sir James Frazer's 'Pausanias,' or the account of Zeus, the Indo-European Sky-God,' by Mr A. B. Cook.
Lastly, one must not forget the periodical literature and the small dissertations. Here the German lead is enormous. I cannot find the actual figures, but I should judge that the bulk of specialist journals and magazines must be fully ten times as great in Germany as in England, and that of tracts and dissertations even more disproportionate. In quality it might be safe to pronounce that, as a rule, the English work shows sounder scholarship and less lack of judgment, while the German shows far more thoroughness and daring and power of research. But we must remember that these results
are largely caused by the university systems in vogue in the two countries. In Germany students, to get their degree, have to write, and often to publish, a thesis. In England they get their degree by a very hard and wide examination. To win teaching appointments in Germany a man has to publish a book and, probably, to plunge into a controversy; in Great Britain men are usually appointed on private evidence of their teaching capacity, intellect and general character. The Germans, therefore, tend to put most of their force into writing and publishing, the English into life and teaching.
Is there anything whatever to be said on the other side of this account? Anything in which English or French or Italian or American or Russian scholarship can be said to be equal or superior to that of Germany? I think there is. I will not lay stress on certain achievements which happen to be great but are not specially characteristic. The greatest advance of the past century in the realm of classical antiquity was, I suppose, the excavation of Cnossus, the work chiefly of an Englishman, Sir Arthur Evans. The next, perhaps, was the discovery of Egyptian papyri, where again the most important part has fallen to Englishmen, Dr Grenfell, Dr Hunt and Sir Frederick Kenyon. If Germany had been in occupation of Egypt or had obtained the permission to excavate at Cnossus, it is quite likely that Germans would have done the work as well or nearly as well; they could hardly have done it better. Much the same conclusion holds about Numismatics. The English habit of travel brought many collections of coins to this country in the 18th century; consequently a large amount of the work on coins has been done by Englishmen, and it is certainly not inferior in quality to the work of any other nation.
This point is worth dwelling upon for a moment. Great Britain is, on the whole, a somewhat silent member of the international comity of scholars. Her output is rather small, and sometimes it is hard to tell how much competence or incompetence her silence covers. Now the various excavations and the discoveries of papyri have, as it were, compelled her to speak. They have put suddenly into British hands new and enormous enigmas, each demanding its answer.
And the answers received,
whether you take the case of Crete, of Sparta, of the Oxyrhyncus Papyri or any similar test, have been obviously and undeniably in the very first rank of competence. For my own part, I can hardly imagine a severer or more searching test of any scholar's knowledge of Greece and Greek, than to make him edit for the first time a mass of unsifted fragments of papyrus out of an ancient rubbish-heap.
These branches of work, therefore, give us reason for confidence in the general adequacy of English scholarship; and one may, perhaps, in all humility, raise the question whether there is any region or any aspect of scholarship in which Great Britain can actually claim a superiority over Germany. It is easy to deceive oneself in such matters, but the point on which I would lay stress is this. If, instead of looking merely at the effectiveness of the book, we try to estimate some quality in the mind of the writer, the comparison will come out in a very different way. The quality in question
. may be some form of what in England is called 'scholarship’; it may be something much wider. For instance, I have said above that the best Greek Grammar is that of Kühner-Blass-Gerth. But supposing I wanted guidance on some very delicate point of Greek usage, and was looking for some one with a subtle flair and feeling for the language, there are two Americans and also certain English people whom I would consult in preference. Where a thing can be ascertained and proved, and the instances counted, I go to the German; where it is a question of feeling, no. This difference goes along with a great difference in method. In England we write Greek and Latin, both prose and verse. In Germany the best scholars have a great command of fluent Latin and can often speak it without hesitation ; but otherwise they are not good at 'composition. I have certainly had undergraduate pupils who wrote better Greek prose and incomparably better Greek verse than any German known to me, except, perhaps, two. Germans do not write Greek verses; they write books on Greek • Metrik.' They aim more at knowing; we at feeling and understanding. They are professionals, we are amateurs.
An institution like the Greek and Latin Verse competitions in the Westminster Gazette'-competitions
sometimes won by elderly K.C.s and Indian civilians as well as by dons and schoolmasters--may or may not be defensible as a social fact, but it certainly shows an attitude of mind towards the classics which is characteristically English. Scholarship with us is an art rather than a science, though, of course, like other arts it has its scientific basis. It is even expected to form an integral part of character; it helps to make a scholar and a gentleman.' And, if one tries to analyse that old-fashioned phrase, assuredly the scholar' is one who feels certain beauties and delicacies, not merely one who knows many recondite facts. We may put the same distinction from another point of view. Both nations, of course, use classical study mainly as a general foundation on which the later practice of the literary and learned professions is based. But it would seem that in England the study of the classics has conserved to a greater extent this general and foundational character; in Germany, it was either dropped or became professional. From what I can make out, I do not suppose it would be possible to find in Germany men like Mr Gladstone, Mr Asquith, Lord Bryce, Lord Cromer, Lord Halsbury, Lord Morley, and many others, statesmen in the first rank of public life who read and enjoy their Homer and Plato and Lucretius. The corresponding German phenomenon would, perhaps, be a specialist professor who might be given a title and commissioned to write a pamphlet about some political question. With us the statesman, in many cases, is a good Greek and Latin scholar and takes an interest in ancient studies. With them the professor is apt to be decorated and produced in public with éclat when he is wanted.
We may illustrate the strength and weakness of German professional scholarship, at its average level, by two concrete cases. There is an ancient writer of choliambics named Phoinix of Colophon, represented to us by some five quotations, mostly in Athenæus. Some further fragments have recently been found on 8 papyrus. The total comes to about one hundred complete or nearly complete verses and another hundred very fragmentary. This small amount of moderately interesting verse has been edited by Dr Gerhard of Heidelberg in a book of three hundred pages, full of