The Ancient Library

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(sense J the fertility of his invention ; the raciness of his humour ; and the simplicity and Attic grace of his diction. His knowledge was probably not very profound, and it may be suspected that he was not always master of the philosophy that he attacked. He nowhere grapples with the tenets of a sect, but confines himself to ridiculing the manners of the philosophers, or at most some of the salient and obvious points of their doctrines. Du Soul, in a note on the Hippias, § 3, has collected two or three passages to show Lucian's ignorance of the elements of mathematics ; and from this charge he has hardly, perhaps, been rescued by the defence of Belin de Ballu. He had, however, the talent of displaying what he did know to the best advantage ; and as he had travelled much and held extensive intercourse with mankind, he had opportunities to acquire that sort of knowledge which books alone can never give. Gesner justly calls him Tjflt/cewTaTos, and affirms that there is scarcely a sect or race of men whose history or chief characteristics he has not noted: presenting us with the portraits of philosophers of almost every sect; rhetors, flatterers, parasites ; rich and poor, old and young ; the superstitious and the atheistic ; Romans, Athenians, Scythians ; im­postors, actors, courtezans, soldiers, clowns, kings, tyrants, gods and goddesses. (Dissert., de Philop. xvi.) His writings have a more modern air than those of any other classic author ; and the keenness of his wit, the richness, yet extravagance of his humour, the fertility and liveliness of his fancy, his proneness to scepticism, and the clearness and simplicity of his style, present us with a kind of compound between Swift and Voltaire. There was abundance to justify his attacks in the systems against which they were directed. Yet he establishes nothing in their stead. His aim is only to pull down ; to spread a universal scepticism. Nor were his assaults confined to religion and philosophy, but extended to every thing old and venerated, the poems of Homer and Hesiod, and the history of Herodotus. Yet writing as he did amidst the doomed idols of an absurd superstition, and the contradictory tenets of an almost equally absurd philosophy, his works had undoubtedly a beneficial influence on the cause of truth. That they were indirectly serviceable to Christianity, can hardly be disputed ; but, though Lucian is generally just in his representations of the Christians, we may be sure that such a result was as far from his wishes as from his thoughts.

Photius (Cod. 128) gives a very high character of Lucian's style, of the purity of which he piqued himself, as* may be seen in the Bis Ace. § 34, and other places, though occasional exceptions might perhaps be pointed out. Erasmus, who was af great admirer of Lucian, and translated many of his works into Latin, gives the following cha­racter of his writings in one of his epistles, and which, making a little allowance for the studied antithesis of the style, is not far from the truth. " Tantum obtinet in dicendo gratiae, tantum in ih-veniendo felicitatis, tantum in jocando leporis, in mordendo aceti; sic titillat allusionibus;, sic seria nugis, nugas seriia miscet; sic ridens vera dicit, vera dicendo ridet; sic hominum mores, affectus, studia, quasi penidllo depingit, neque legenda, sed plane spectanda, oculis exponit, ut nulla comoedia, nulla satyra, cum hujus dialogis conferri debeat, geu voluptatem spectes, seu spectes utilitatem."

The following are some of the principal editions


of Lucian's works:—Florence, 1496, fol. (printer unknown) Editio Princeps. First Aldine edition, Venice, 1503, fol. This edition, printed from bad MSS. and very incorrect, was somewhat improved in the second Aldine, 1522, fol., but is still inferior to the Florentine. In this edition the Peregrinus and Philopatris are generally wanting, which had been put into the Index- Eocpurgatomts^ by the court of Rome. The Aldine, however, served as the basis of subsequent editions, till 1615, when Bourdelot published at Paris a Greek and Latin edition in folio, the text corrected from MSS. and the Editio Princeps. This was repeated with emendations in the Saumur edition, 16'19. Le Clerc's edition, 2 vols. 8vo., Amsterdam, 1687, is very incorrect. In 1730 Tib. Hemsterhuis began to print his excellent edition, but dying in 1736. before a quarter of it had been finished, the editor­ship was assigned to J. F. Reitz, and the book was published at Amsterdam, .in 3 vols. 4to., in 1743. In 1746 K. K. Reitz, brother of the editor, printed-at Utrecht an Index, or Lexicon Lucianeum^ in 1 vol. 4to., which, though extensive, is not complete. The edition of Hemsterhuis, besides his own notes, also contains those of Jensius, Kuster, L. Bos, Vitringa, Du Soul, Gesner, Reitz, and other com­mentators. Ah appendix to the notes of Hems­terhuis, taken from a MS. in the Leyden library, was published at that place by J. Geel, 1824, 4to. Hemsterhuis corrected the Latin version for his edition as far as De Sacrificiis; and of the re­mainder a new translation was made by Gesner. The reprint by Schmidt, Mittau 1776—80, 8 vols. 8vo., is incorrect. The Bipont edition, in 10 vols. 8vo., 1789—93, is an accurate and elegant reprint of Hemsterhuis's edition, with the addition of col­lations of Parisian MSS. ; but the omission of the Greek index is a drawback to it. A good edition of the text and scholia only is that of Schmieder, Halle, 1800—1801,2 vols. 8vo. Lehman's edition, Leipzig, 1821—31, 9 vols. 8vo., is well spoken of. There is a very convenient edition of the text by W. Dindorf, with a Latin version, but without notes, published at Paris, 1840, 8vo.

Amongst editions of separate pieces may be named Colloquia Selecta, by Hemsterhuis, Amst. 1708,12mo., and 1732. Dialogi Selecti, by Edward Leedes, London, 8vo., 1710 and 1726. Mythologie Dramatique de Lucien, avec le texte Grecque par J. B. Gail, Paris, 1798,4to. Dialogues des Morts, par le meme, Paris, 1806, 8vo. La Litciade, avec le texte Grecque par Courier, Paris, 1818, 12mo. Toxaris, Halle, 1825, and Alexander, Coin, 1828 8vo., with notes, and prolegomena by K. G. Jacob. Alexander^ Demonax, Gallus, Icaromenippus, &c., by Fritzsche, Leipzig, 1826. Dialogi Deorum, Ibid. ]829.

Lucian has been translated into most of the European languages. In German there is an excel­lent version by Wieland (Leipzig, 1788-—9,6 vols. 8vo.), accompanied with valuable comments and illustrations. The French translation of D'Ablan-court (Paris, 1654, 2 vols. 4to.) is elegant but un­faithful. There is another version by.'B. de Ballu, Paris, 1788, 6 vols. 8vo. In Italian there is a translation by Manzi, 1819—20. , Among the English versions may be named one by several hands, including W. Moyle, Sir H. Shere, and Charles Blount, London, 1711. For this edition, which had been undertaken several years before it was published, Dryden wrote a life' of Lucian, a

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