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STUDIES

HARVARD

IN

COMPARATIVE

LITERATURE

FOUNDED

BY

WILLIAM

THE

GENERAL

HENRY

OF

PROFESSOR

IN

EDITOR

SCHOFIELD

COMPARATIVE

LITERATURE

UNIVERSITY

HARVARD

THREE

PHILOSOPHICAL

POETS

DANTE,

LUCRETIUS,

GOETHE

AND

IN

STUDIES

HARVARD

LITERATURE

COMPARATIVE

VOLUME

THREE

PHILOSOPHICAL

POETS
AND

DANTE,

LUCRETIUS,

GOETHE

BY

SANTAYANA

GEORGE
PROFESSOR

OF

IN

PHILOSOPHY

HARVARD

UNIVERSITY

ii
CAMBRIDGE
HARVARD

UNIVERSITY

1910

COPYRIGHT,

1910,

BY

HARVARD

UNIVERSITY

1671

D.

B.

UPDIKE,

THE

MERRYMOUNT

PRESS,

BOSTON

PREFACE

THE

is

volume

present

read

additions, of six lectures

Universityin February,
of the

same

These

lectures, in

course

which

learned

furnish

actuallyhave

lifetime,and

university
I

memory.
I

am

these

about

My

poet

attracted

they
and

which

are

for

not

at

they

the

revealed

express,

to

me

which
if

moved
certain
I

am

anybody

scholar.

upon

which

They
spring.
to

miliar
fa-

standing,
notwith-

them,

every
have

reflection;

aspects

of nature

prompted by
seems

their

in their

hand

me

of

hypotheses

no

excuse

least

of Lucretius

commentaries

human

have

to

Goethe

propose

writingabout

philosophy

to
sincerity

nor

cerning
con-

studies

study

writing about

the

merely

me;

the

in well-known

or

has for

have
of

and

excuse

is
new

facts

men

works,
them.

no

at

teur,
ama-

libraries,and

academies,

scholar

Dante

claims

an

whom

for the

in
specialist

no

not

report

can

of

especiallyconsecrated

chairs
am

great

no

at

such

under

ordinary reader,

an

enough

matter

time

impressionsof

the

great writers, two

three

might

make

regular

some

produced
can

appreciationsof

the

book

contains

Wisconsin.

on

for

giving

been

auspices,my

learning.It

based

were

College. Though

Harvard

to

had

Columbia

at

University of

turn,

few

repeated in April

and

1910,

the

at

year,

with

composed,

mere

interested

or

PREFACE

vi

listen.

willing

to

reader,

therefore,

only
first

piece

lesson

broad

in

perhaps,

of

What

is

no

literary
in

philosophy

the

can

offer

learned

benevolent

It

investigation.

criticism,

history

the

of

together

philosophy

with

and,
"

itself.
Cr.
O.

Harvard

June,

College
1910

is

CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION

Page
Goethe

Lucretius, Dante, and

sum

the

up

chiefphases of European

and
philosophy, naturalism,supernaturalism,

romanticism

"

Ideal

lation
re-

and poetry.
philosophy

between

II

LUCRETIUS

Page

Development of Greek cosmology:

Changes inspiredby it in

of materialism

alliance
The

Lucretian

cretian
and
the

the

or

fear of life:

Shelleyand

it :

Wordsworth

he

Things

and
worth of his insight
Indefeasible

Accidental

Lu-

The

Preponderantmelancholy,

soul

poet of

true

in nature

movement
propitious

of the
Materiality

Lucretius

ment
senti-

Epicureanmoral

value of naturalism
Imaginative

the destructive movement

for

reason

the

system of Democritus

the

with hedonism

Venus, or

Mars,

Democritus

19

The

fear of death

nature

might

have

and
with

Comparison

added

:
consistently

sentiment.

Ill

DANTE

Page

Character
with

of Platonism

Hebraic

Dante

Beatrice

the

His

judgement on
the

woman,

the

Papacy

Florence

symbol,and

the

magic,and symbolismconstitutive principles


of Dante's

of the

Divine

Comedy

theoryof rewards
even

The

execution

The

of

scheme

punishments:

punishment intrinsic
:

the

and

to

Comedy

type of a supreme

His

poet.

His

and

Esoteric view

the sins

geniusof the poet


the

of virtues

of this

Combination

cosmologya parable :

: Theory of
of history
philosophy

Empire adopted by
lyricpoet

Its

73

and

Dante

the
as

: Love,
reality

universe

vices

Idea

Retributive

of this,which

makes

graphy
Examples : Dantesquecosmo-

universal scope

in spiteof
defects,

His

which

triumphant
he remains

viii

CONTENTS

IV

FAUST

GOETHE'S

The
both

Faust

the

Modifications

Helen

in

fitted
:

The

ambition

Moral

The

of

series

ambition

eternal

and

conflict

the

his

over

liv'mg

theory of life
judgement
soul

and

his

tion
dissatisfacThe

and

ascent

The

of

story

rejuvenation

classicism

on

of

vindicate

to

Magician"

in

139

Expression

Tendency

and

of experiments

naturalistic

manner

the

version

Wonder-working

"

universal

Goethe's

classic

Renaissance

"

The

the

Marlowe's

Calderons

of Goethe,

of

ideals

Faust

with

Faust

Gretchen

The

legendary

Contrast

original

last

spirit

romantic

in

Page

to

Faust's

heaven

bolical
sym-

whole.

CONCLUSION

Page

Comparison
or

of

the

three

comprehensive

poets
poet

Their

Untried

relative

rank

possibilities of

Ideal

art.

of

203

sophic
philo-

INTRODUCTION

INTRODUCTION
sole

THE

themselves,

In

truth

day. We

can

value

inherent

or

they

as

that

neither

take

add

the

to

present

for
reinterpreted

each

naturalness

natural

in

Even

native

classics

every

reader.

It

insightsof

and

for the

the

Regarded
be

the

from

shall

Goethe

and

only they, in

we

value

and

dignityof

retranslated

be

and

of

(though

that

their

human

nial
peren-

in the

may

year

the

renders

present
ciation,
appre-

to year

on

genius.
substances

as

to

of Lucretius, Dante,

it is his

genius they

and

assimilation.

alone

from

point of view,

rather

our

digestion of

potent

draw

us,

reapprehended by

past

still

far

their old

render

keep

be

to

capitalof
this

past

so

Living criticism, genuine

speak of) afford

doctrine

their

to

poison for

to

the

our

not

digested,the poetic remains

and

add

capable

have

past

interest

unrecoverable

their

is this continual

future.

is the

of

none

and

way,

supplied by

the

their

generation,to

humanity living and

substance

is

have

classics

Foreign

performed by

nor

away

dignity.It

to

us

perished before

had

they

appropriate food

are

can

minds.

if

greatness

or

help

can

forfeited

have

authors, they would

they

feats

as

works

possessinggreat

lies in what

of literature

become.

in

advantage

Faust

varied
seem

only

that

feast. In
to

be

too

their
much

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

opposed

be

to

perhaps,of
whether
other

these

Yet

I venture

the

one

makes
any

in one's criterion of taste

system in one's

ness
vaguemay

in turn

philosophy,
lack of definition

intuition,of each, without


positive
or

them

one

of each

essential

accept the

may

speak;

to

without

the

nating
discrimi-

mean

that in what

the poetry
enthusiastically

that

hope

that I

in turn

doubt

learn from

to

in

for one,

care

disposedto

"

compatible;that

doubleness

admire
and

be

pupil

maintain

to

great they are


or

as

of each

"

and

anything vital

it is

combinable

or

know

poets, may

have

pupil
and

who

Some,

they

two.

all convergent

at

their wisdom.

POETS

thinking.

own

of these three poets passes,


Indeed, the diversity
if I may
a

Hegelian dialect,into

the

use

higherkind.

Each

they sum

another

birth and

these

which

are

to

motion,

are

all

out

he

geniusof

all its

growing

the

of
composition,

elements, which

the

to

be

acting
parts re-

of

out

one

generalpervasiveprocess

describes

compounded

gether
to-

correct

the world

sees

another, and

poem

the most

great machine,

in obedience

life. His

they

one

He

devised.

had

great edifice,one
upon

or

radical and

most

age. Taken

an

cretius
LuEuropean philosophy.

cosmologicalsystems

earlyGreece
one

typicalof

all

up

adoptsthe
of those

is

unity of

nature,

things.It

shows

how

and

how

of elements,

thinks

are

is,the

that

atoms

in perpetual

being constantlyredistributed,

INTRODUCTION

things perishand

that old

so

ought

it

is

materialism

for to-morrow
be

lest

we

This

Such

is

was

art

moderately

natural

the

gistof

all Greek

the

towards

movement

in

reasonableness
is the

Such

Greek

manners,

libertyin

to science

of

called

men

on

philosophy,
"

in

naturalism

ethics.

which

movement

crates,
So-

duced
pro-

simplicity,
autonomy,

may

dress to

and

religion.

be called the

losophy
phi-

of science

world, by Bacon, by Spinoza,


school

that looks

to the

for its ideal. This

and

terialism
ma-

trulyHellenic

was

of the facts,and

earth

mire,
ad-

art,

philosophybefore

contemporary

for its view

and

government, and Greek

of what

modern

the whole

by
of

the

repeat

much

of the Renaissance, the reassertion


and

once

to-day.

from
everything,

gistalso

His

eat, drink,

with

and

philosophywhich

correspondedwith

"

die

look

science, humanism

in

Greek

is to

should

we

complete system

one

to look

should

we

miserably,and

of that
and

conditions.

towards
aspiration

an

die;

we

but

merry,

die

such

to
In-

of human

view

which
spectacle,

for ever,

itself in the world

and

fits

completed by

wonderful

the

upon

he

be led under

to

things arise.

new

Allowed
quietnessof spirit.

and

freedom

world

of the

this view
life as

ness
happi-

system is

of this Lucretius

is the

rivalled
un-

poet.

Skip a

thousand

years

spectacleis before

us.

and

more,

All

minds, all institutions,

and

ing
contrast-

THREE

dominated

are

as

PHILOSOPHICAL

by

the

that represents the


religion

earth; the world

pilgrimupon
to

POETS

devil; pain and

is fallen and

poverty

in

only

pleasuresof
Meantime
the

the

he

and
wonderful

the

which

on

the heaven

of Jacob's

his

before
become

him

Catholic

pagans,

and
down

to

This

or

widespread
to

the

such

of
a

in Asia

is

with

Europe

chiefly
by

and

quity
anti-

remote

Little

as

America

the
may

mentary
mo-

now

view, it is always possiblefor the


race,

of the

between
opposition,

is fitted to

Him,

supernatural-

from

present time.

in the solitude
the

sad,

Church, but adopted also by the later

individual,or for the


are

be

mity
perfectconfor-

of union

and

figured
trans-

are

ceasingto

raptures of

in his prayers.

temper
incline

stories,

his destiny;

ism, a system representedin Christendom


the

cending
as-

will be his

that of the world

the will of God,

overtake

into

sees

partlyunderstands

and, without
The

beautiful.
with

He

him

head

beautiful

earth, of what

on

historyand

own

from

comfortingrites. Through

even
partakes,

heavenly existence.

stretches

angels he

it are

descending upon
theories, and

he

the

and

snares

wayfarerlays his

hopes for;and

hoped

entrapped us.

not

ladder

be

to

life,provided the

present life have

sort

stone

these

future

ject
sub-

considered

are

normal, happinessimpossiblehere and


for

soul

do, and

to return

and
spirit
what

to it. Its

in the
the

sources

disparity,

feels
spirit

what, in this world, it is

con-

it

INTRODUCTION
demned

The

itself upon.

waste

to

unmatched

is Dante.
supernaturalism

of this

another

of

change

The

scene.

Teutonic

Protestants,

for

begun

to

have

come
be-

They

protestersagainstthe
of life

their bosom.

within
to the

or

infinite fountain

An

world.

themselves.

understand

and

They

Roman
be

to

seems

love

objects to
but

have

they

maturity, to

rest

drives them

successively

turn

much

too

worlds

to

quer;
con-

little

too
or
vitality,

of these

this demon,

; and

on

fresh

and

in any

in its apparent

things.A
divine

and

waywardness, is their

demon
tal
immor-

inmost

self.

It is their insatiable will,their radical courage.

though

this be

hard

will is the creator


sometimes
tamed.

of all those

Their

will

of

all

nothingto

attained,thingsare

remains

conquests
It is an

baffled,but

over

attitude

new

it is
never

and
opportunities

lies their sole

to

are

be

and

Once
reality.

Like
smiled

spiritthat feigned and

always strong

which

feed its appetitefor action;

transcended.

spent dream, they


the

new

sometimes

in that ideal function

objectsby

summons

Nay,

the uninitiated,their

saying to

amused, and

dangers out

of

locked
un-

to industry,
Bible, to learning,to patriotism,

new

and

is

that

races

have

previouslyconquered Europe

dominate

there

years, and

five hundred

Skip again some


had

poet

the

episodes
gotten;
for-

at and

discarded

them

undefiled; it aches

fictions. This

often found

in

for

cism.
is romanti-

English poetry,

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

characteristic

and

German

of

Emerson

adopted by
to Americans

POETS

and

philosophy.It

ought

it expresses

; for

monument

greatest

Goethe's
Can

to

in will and

this

it be

accident

an

poets?Are poets,at heart, in

search

If

the

philosophy,in
think

we

truth, or

as

of

philosophyas
is

discovered, there

Epicurus,or

is

some

the form

of

"

As

as

when

loathsome
first moisten

by

philosophy?
poetry?

the

into
investigation

an

truths

nothing in philosophyakin

to

supposed

the works

where

in Dante

and

selves
them-

except
nothingis poetical

incidental

In such

ornament.

poetry is thrown

over

the substance

himself

confesses

would
physicians

contrive

Lucretius

wormwood
rim

of

Aquinas, or Kant; they are

Lucretius

or

of prose,
:

made

be

St. Thomas

the metre,

he says

three

to

find passages

passages

of

nothing poeticabout

leafless forests. In
we

been

end, nothing but

reasoning upon

poetry. There

these

the situation.

consider

us

sweet

is

adequate and

lastingexpositionof

most

have

Let

romanticism

that the most

philosophyshould

of

schools

is

action.

Faust.

probablythe

Or

sympathetic

the self-trust of world-

buildingyouth,and mysticalfaith
The

be

to

was

to

of the cup

little

round

where

minister
to ad-

boys they

about

with

pecting
golden honey, that the children's,unsusbut no
youth may be beguiled to the lips,

and

"

further

"

while

they

drink

down

the

bitter

potion,

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

10

truths

and

knots

forth

if

...

mind

intent

dark

so

means

theme

might keep

until

verses,

my

thine

of nature, and

eye

the fixed

it beautiful."1
the solution

have

if poetry is to be linked

arduous, and
be

only,and
artificially
world

in the

In

or

is

to

doubt.

our

on

bad

grace. But

The

order

justwhat

servile

parts,means

922-34, 948-50:

Percussit

thyrso

simul

incussit

Musarum,

Pieridum

Trita

solo

haurire

Atque

Insignemque
Unde

;
meo

meum

magna

mi

in

instinctus

peragro

iuvat

spes

suavem

nunc

quo

Avia

laudis

cor

pectus amorem
vigenti

mente

loca nullius ante

integros accedere fontes,


decerpereflores,
iuvatque novos
capitipetere inde coronam,

prius nulli velarint

Primum,

tempora musae.
quod magnis doceo de rebus,

Religionum

Deinde, quod obscura


Carmina,

musaeo

exsolvere

nodis

animum

de

re

tarn

contingens

cuncta

tali ratione

Si tibi forte animum


Versibus

in nostris

Naturam

rerum,

possem,

qua

constet

dum

et artis

pergo

lucida

pango

lepore.

tenere

perspicisomnem
compta figura.

catch.

reasoning

Acri

Et

it reveals

largescale,is always tryingto

only preparatory and


i.

the

poet, on

every

and
philosophyitself investigation

Lucretius,

them, it

with

something beautiful, tragic,sympathetic

the mind, and

to

small

with

philosophyis sublime.

vision of

on

strangling

of philosophyare
reasoningsand investigations

The

are

such

structure

Here, I think, we

can

the

all with poetic


suffusing

song,

upon

makes

that

haply by

the whole

fathoms
form

clear

so

beauty,
thy

that

superstition
; then, in

of

I pour

free the soul from

to

come

POETS

to

an

INTRODUCTION
end.

word

of the

sense

in

terminate

They

or
insight,

worth.

one

can

it who

his heart. A

tamed

the moment,
and

if we

even

poet

the order

is a

of all

the whole, is

has his worst

poet, we

the

pher,
philoso-

may

suspect

when

moments

or
rather,when
philosopher,

he

Philosophy is something

one.

his practised

turns

that

grant

in his best moments,

being

who

lightof

the

and

philosopher.

Nevertheless,

poet

mind

attains it is,for

who
philosopher

poet ; and

for that moment

be

enlargedhis

has not

anything in

on

their order

thingsin

passionate
imaginationon

things,or

that the

theory,tfew/na,"

contemplationis imaginative.No

Such

reach

all

in the noblest

what

called

be

may

steady contemplationof

and

to

11

he tries

succeeds

reasoned

in
and

heavy; poetry something winged, flashing,


inspired.
Take
are

almost

than

better

few

togethera

longishpoem,

any

the

words,

image. He
of
keen

But

is relaxed, the
succeeds

from

poet

cadence

renders

or

the

parts of

is able

two,

in that way

to

it

put

terestin
singleinsome

ment
mo-

comparatively
hightension, of comparatively

sentiment.

or

whole.

and

is
at

what

at

the

next

sentiment

has

it had

what

thought

fore,
be-

went

drifts away

started to be. It is lost in the sands

of versification. As
brief is almost

what

faded, and

usuallyincongruouswith
least inferior. The

the tension

moment

man

condition

is

now

of

constituted,

to

being inspired.

be

THREE

12

Shall
which

PHILOSOPHICAL

say, then,

we

I set

store,

some

short-winded, that

moment,
fleeting

poetry

writingsof poets,
the

unfit for

I cannot

often is,that

thingsarid
in

of

and

in

This

himself

lack

excel

in what

the
who

or

in that his moment

vision,a scope,
it

deep

intense

moment.

at all must

always

the

come

repellentto

poets

to lack

simply due

of

great

better

are

it

fact,as

imaginationand
discipline.

does the short-winded

stares?

Is it that
in that he

symbolicsomething

and

and

he
feels

of intuition,though
a

abstract

unimaginativeperson

common

thinks
more

be

about

it that

Yes, everythingthat
us

at

fleetingmoment

some

mentary
mo-

ports
expressedat all,com-

suggestioncompressedinto
to

has
fleeting,

even
Intensity,
expressive.

if it can
intensity,
fullness

and

as

objects

relyon something so

to

less ? Rather, I suppose,

renders

life

shown, I think, by psychological

cared

talks

is

all to lack of

debatable. For

who
even

be

might

so

poet

part,

above

if we
analysis,
and

epic,that

an

our

and

while

If it be

if we

formless, and

facultyon

memory,

be rapturously

destinyare
on,

so.

only the

find little thingspleasingand

we

line than

dwell

think

by

essentially

that

rapturouslyrendered,

imaginationto

poeticart?

is

can
episode,

whole, history,
character, and

idea

an

termitt
inpoetic is necessarily

is

the mood,

felt,or

broach

now

that

"

what

in the

and

"

POETS

time

in which

or

comes

that
to

us

other. It is
we

live. To

INTRODUCTION
the

moment
fleeting

this

as
philosopher,

Each

poet, is actuallyconfined.

here
a

be disclosed

to

and

passionsof

that

which

carries us,

we

of

jewel? And

If
with

suggestionof

grows

how,

in

in them

mountain-

to

by

us

long experience?

is it not
poeticthrill,
and

of
lights

is

depth in
the

that

the clear,

in the water

sea

philosophic
thought but

and

is poetical
because
a

makes

poeticalought
with

give

poet selects his

poeticqualityof phrases

concise

all the

short passage

attention
more

more

epitome?

an

have

concentratingand liberating

feel the

what

between

momentum

not

the

not

in the

might find

such

know

we

we

find sweep

as

magic

promptings left

When
we

it with

vulgar moment

poeticmoment

to their

images due

the confused

the

they have

tops of intuition. Is
and

the difference

the short-winded

Even
perspective.
so

makes

poeticinsightand

of

moment

words

enrich

must

the

as

all,in the eye of the observer,

at

What

now.

is that the

well

focused, if they
vistas,vistas necessarily

his endless
are

13

all we

some

care

scope

and

few
us

things,which
rapt and

all

serious,how

for? Focus

depth
it

to

more

experiencewithin

was

our

much
nant
preg-

little experience,

your

vision of the world, and


in

stretches

vision to be which

imaginative;give

depth, focus

it is pregnant

and
feeling,

scope

it,make

and
it

it will grow

superlative
degree,and

be

it

more
a

losophe
phiginative
ima-

supremely

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

14

POETS

after having the experience


difficulty,

The
poetical.
to

lies only in having enough imagination


symbolize,

to

hold

suspend it in

and

verbal

give this thought such


able to

maybe
by

wind

thought; and

that
expression

decipherit,and

be stirred

to

suggestionsweeping the

of

further

to

others

by

whole

it

as

forest

of their memories.
ed
Poetry, then, is not poeticalfor beingshort-wind-

and
renders

it

of the

If too

range.

outstretched

this

render

same

and

the littleone

present,and

and

shaping our

poet

the whole

cry,

it would

he is
he

never

of

much

the

acme

poet
has

understand

as

of

supreme

focused

in

consciousness

philosophic

when,

in

affinityto

the

single

him

in

destiny.It

life. The

speak the language of

enough

be

unity

gatheredtogether;

salutes his ultimate

of life to

in

for each
is

man

be flatter

much

as

As
to

seems

grasp

er
contrary,deep-

colouringour

all that

summons

is to

in

world

universe, and

But

quicker

picturethat
not

possess

decisions,so

the

poetry

life

our

used

so

the

on

greatervolume.

with

crisis all

the

and

The

largersubjectwould

stronger,since

dramatic

matter

poet'sweak

world.

ease.

feebler for its extent, but,

and

much

is the fault of the

the

largersubjectwith
would

prehensive
contrary,for being com-

syntheticimagination,might

more

eye,

having

heavy,that

intellect,not

as

the

incidental,but, on

or

is

height of

gods.

and
analysis
psychological

of

rea-

INTRODUCTION

soning
prove

in

my

the

point

void.

more

Three

15

historical

clearly

and

illustrations

more

will

conclusively.

II

LUCRETIUS
is

THERE

perhaps
of which

antecedents
as

those

can

Natura.

Rerum

lie in the
able

to

These

poet

himself.

them,

trace

nothing,about

to

B.C.

philtrehad
the

the

too

the

of

story

nothing, or

his

of the
end

are

noted

we

read

year,

of his
this

by

and

atheist

and

poem

the

where

means

should

we

and

been

year
love-

which
hand

own

in

at

some

attributes

Epicurean
to

of the

poet

strange

the

not

story

feel between

may

find

that

apocryphal;

colour

we

and

incredible
have

curred
oc-

written, in

suicide

genius

strange vehemence,
no

which
for the

sounds

report

which

consonance

next

age."

madness
an

his

by

be

chronicon,

books

insanity,several

not

Suetonius,

he had

and

mad,

to

in his work,
a

of

largely out

him

tragic incidents

love,

In

man.

suspected.If anything lends

it is a certain

the

successive

turned

edifyingan

It is

know

we

events

in
love-philtre

to be

its

not

should

they did, we

since

forty-fourthyear

and

If

revised, he killed himself

The

Lucretius, De

Lucretius, poet, is born. After

intervals

Cicero

of

do

Lucretius

each

"Titus

work

tively
exhaus-

so

antecedents, however,

miscellaneous
in

94

the

the

poem

be traced

can

St. Jerome

compiled by
in which

of

important

no

as

scorn

vealed
re-

of

high melancholy.
the

author

time

the

of such
slave

of

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

20

that
pathological
passion,
should

should

have

taken

have

what

whether

his

fact

think, much

to be

him

which

part of

worthy
untrust-

cannot

the

assure

us

founded

life of Lucretius

he himself

To

work

on

is not, I
that

preserves

would

have

wished

to

ignoresitself,
ing
proclaim-

reach

this

doubt

no

is attained,the
intelligence

where

to
scaffolding

like the

irrelevant.

We

do

not

finished

wish

it to

of the solid structure, which


the artist

if he

"

requires

not

the

in

poured

own

by

were

us

shabby

person.

chance
but

part of

vision

that

to

to
us

not

that

the

to posterity,

precededthat
if

incidents, even

into which
which

by

was

down

could
interesting,

his faculties,and

view

intended

was

hand

These

the vision

is communicable
vigils,

Since

incidents

man,

interceptour

intellectual
to

becomes
building,

alone

wishes
particular

in his

vision

they

in

rest of

buildingfor others,and

was

is his

It

coxcomb.

naturalist

that he

the

tradition

His
regretted.

publictruth.

and

spirati
in-

for intellige
geniuswhich is called intelligence;
peculiar
is quicknessin seeingthingsas they are.

But
"**"

Perfect conviction

preserve.
the

St. Jerome

repeats is

ignoranceof

Our

life. But

own

and

ingeniousfiction.

an

or

he

his vehemence

passed into mania,

authorityof

POETS

he

not

be

peated
re-

the thinker
devoted

also,and may

his

become

ourselves.
Lucretius

is thus

identical for

us

with

his

LUCRETIUS

of Lucretius

first

To

the

only too familiar;yet

are

blind

subjectmay

us

the

to

very

thingsis

greater,I think, than


:

up

the

into

dramatic

imagination,"
moral

or

is

cried, "The

and

a
logically

truism

thought of the

have

So, in
registers.

the truism

an
thingsis logically

the most
be

sense,

to

and

unity.Yet

cast

the eye

called

one

it

was

any

stone

sum

such
or

of many

parts,is yet called

It

doubtless

was

some

fore
be-

worlds

all

unityof
would
so,

in

for

still
some

great imaginativefeat

round
deliberately

realitymakes
; as

the

aggregate,and

an

mentally the

to draw

that

so

unrelated

be,

one

evident, if barren, truth

and
disparate

multitude, and

no

is

analogywhich

obvious

this case,

All

often

may

because
a great discovery,
imaginatively,
may

logy
mytho-

that he looked

Xenophanes

heaven

round

What

One."

of

ception
con-

it.
inspire

told of the old

are

audacity

able to
We

of the

triteness

conceptionfit to inspiregreat poetry,


ception
end, perhaps,it will prove the only con-

it is

in the

and

great work
any

of them

naturalistic

ception
con-

human

some

grandeur and

of the intellectual feat involved.


of

his

itself in the

shaped

stages is easy;

these

retrace

antecedents

which

simply the stages by

are

of nature
mind.

the
philosophy,

is lost in his

and

poem,

21

the entire horizon,

of all
a

ering
discovreality,

sum,

and

may

be

animal, though composed


one

in

common

prehistoricman

parlance.
of

genius,

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

22

long

to

way

which

wholeness

everybody

thingssingly,and

of

for all natural


to

ask

how

notion

of

gained by

who

first ventured
is to

so

philosophy,and
solution

vation
obser-

the

set

in

to

blem
pro-

certain

of that

problem

things hang together,and

they do hang togetherin

that

unity and

had

do

the
anticipate

for it is to
assume

To

world."

"the

measure

first appliedin this

thingstogetherthat

all

speak of

who

Xenophanes,

before

POETS

one

to
or

way

another.

thingsare

in

in natural
to

and

see

and

knows

thingsform

all pass
them

wisdom

farther,

go
a

of the

far

deeper

first things,
of feeling

man

spiteof

death

placeof

not

succeed

remains

at work

what

the

of
place there-

other

they vanish,

thingsarise
and

always young

everywhere;and

what

is
continually
disappears

with
incompatible

that while

that

Yet, when

more.

like it in character.

was

to

unityin

One

and

away,

no

their stead. Nature

so

beginningof

all

system by

impressesthe poet,the

nothingness does

is not

form

it is easy

philosophy.But
that

perceivethat

reflection,is that these objectsthat people

the world

the

rude

mysteriousway.

more

to

landscapeand

one

for instance,that

in

is One," and

is the
juxtaposition,

their

and

All

cry "The

To

Heraclitus

Universal

great monotony
lamented

in flux,Ecclesiastes,who

was

that
also

in

whole
takes

often

markably
re-

instability
in

things;

everything

entirelycon-

LUCRETIUS

23
t

truth, could

of that

vinced

under

nothing new
double

This

the

and

which

it a very

also,may

all
be

This

substance.
in

same

has

about

selves
our-

and

us,

in inward

of

aggregates which

find

call

we

thingsare dust, and

to dust

eternallyfertile,and
into
notion
the

new,

of substance

outspreadworld;

pass into

one

from

which

they

return.

The

it

we

All
reappearing.
;a

destined

fall

to

ever,
dust, how-

ally
perpetu-

beautiful,forms.
much

have

This

greater unity to

persuadesus

another, and

which

that all

things

ground

common

and
they springsuccessively,

to

which

spectacleof inexorable,change, the triumph

of time, or
a

lends

stantly
con-

it forms

they return

doubtless

and

manent
per-

quality,is

things,and

constantly disappearingand

remaining

redistributed;in its redistribution


those

hit

ever

cretius.
Lu-

substance, while

quantity and

tific,
scien-

of
inspiration

passingforms

many

rence,
recur-

and

mankind

observe

we

so

was

great thought,perhaps

chief

the

was

and

sentimental

once

greatestthought that

It is that

the

mutation

experienceof

brought with

soon

there

that

sun.

experienceat

an

upon,

the

lament

whatever

favourite theme

we

for

religiousmeditation.
to

may

call it,has

been

lyricand tragicpoetry,and
To

perceiveuniversal

feel the vanity of life,


has

beginningof

always

seriousness.

tion,
muta-

always been

It is the condition

for

the

for any

'

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

24

beautiful,measured,

or

POETS

tender

Prior
philosophy.

that, everythingis barbarous, both

poetry; for

mankind

until then

anything,has

renounce

not

the

removed

To

life of reason,
as
negatively

that

term

and

moments

has

and

animal,

of its faith,

great step in

be

conceived

the

quite

merely to mark, by

serves

the vanity,of
unsubstantiality,

contrast, the

to

imagination.
if substance

even

in

the instinctive

being,or

substance, then, is

discover

and

learned

not

outgrown

of its

centre

the will to the

from

has

the young

egotismand optimism of
not

in morals

to

things.That

all particular

in which

is the way

philosophyconceived substance.
and by the
But the step taken
by Greek physics,
and
poetry of Lucretius, passes beyond. Lucretius
Indian

the

poetry

and

Greeks, in observinguniversal

vanityof life,conceived

behind

intelligible
process,

evolution

an

and

mutation

in

realitybecame

as
interesting,

well

Physicsbecame

which
scientific,

had

as

great

appearance

the

The

nature.

illusion.

the

been
previously

merely spectacular.
Here

was

much

launched
who
was
philosopher,
of the ground and secret causes
flux. The
to
no

discover
Indian

these

the

upon

causes

did for the


no

himself

poet

and

discovery

of this gay

understanding that

mystic,what

anywhere, suffers

for the

richer theme

ancholy
mel-

or

him

enabled

European

what

despiserof understanding
to

do ;

namely, to

domi-

THREE

26

the

that

systems

like water,

had

have

to

only

should

be

the

should

find

other

only,and
mind.

to

was

by

their

space

their

convention

of

Light,colour,

causes.

such

imputed

and

space
no

was

their form, real

nature, because

ent
appar-

mythologist,and

born

qualities;
only
empty

changed

matter

less real than


of matter

atoms

changes

could

take

positionmight change

real space.

Unlike
substance

the

useless

substance

of Democritus

ground for the


was

them

Consequently,althoughthe

placein
in

sharp enough, we

beauty,excellence,were

real. But

never

things.It

of thingswere
qualities

mind

conventional

matter.

all

and solidity;
in
figure,

looked

we

imputed

The

taste,warmth,

were

in others; it ought

Materiality,
accordingto

into
projectedits feelings

and

qualities

nothing but particles


possessingthese

All
properties.

the

of the

any

absent

the world

the substance

qualities
present in

ether, if

thinnest

have

of extension,

him, consisted
the

tried to make

to

merelymatter.

substance,

substances, as

thought that

thingsand

some

obvious

one

done, and

everythingought not

presentin

POETS

all the obvious

Democritus

of them.

out

selected

collected

or

Anaxagoras
of

PHILOSOPHICAL

of the

could

flux of appearances;

distributed

unequally in

moving. Every

correspondedto

offer

Indians, the
a

for this substance

the void, and

appearance,

calculable,

however

was

stantly
con-

fleeting,

of substance;
preciseconfiguration

LUCRETIUS
it

configurationand

perished with

substance, accordingly,was

physical,not

that

with

arose

it. This

27

It
metaphysical.

was

dialectical term,

no

to what

a prophecy as
anticipation,

should

who

be

Materialism

metaphysics; it is

physiology,to

deep enough,

it would

homogeneous,

and

Though
the

ultimate

the
not,

the

as

been

sundry objectsin

formed

eternal

vortices

with

and

sense

as
as

to

to

of them

of

stituted
con-

Motion

simplicity.
Only

moral

some

to the

was

cause

atoms.

mechanical

On
rents
cur-

occasioned

contacts

studded.

was

motion, atomism

as

substance, that
It is

for the

as
understanding,

boldest

forms

of stellar systems, called worlds,

of Democritus.
in its

the

Democritus,

to

nature.

the

and
these

infinite space

Mechanism
materialism

was

regular.

was

native

was

which

multitude

which

go

tural,
vulgar(and Aristotle)supposed,unna-

striking,
they rebounded;
or

system

all substance

sundry combinations

produced magicallyby

and
it had

find that

according
particles,

various; and

were

analysiscould

homogeneous,

was

ver
obser-

in chemistryand
speculation

that all motion

matter

entific
sci-

discover

is not

effect that, if

the

an

properlyequippedwould

in the interior of bodies.

of

but

as

wonderful

strange

the most

prophet,could

and

it

tem
sys-

in its insight,
of method
audacious

convinced

embrace

structure,

is the whole

ideal demands

it is

to

and
in its

rationalist,the

dogmatically;yet

time

has

he

largelygiven

look

could

down

would

of his

There

this

partlyat

is her

maxim

will

of fools. Nature

no

lighton

hope

and

for

if she

Ibid., i.

sed

in

far

so

Nox

iter

Pervideas

quod

us

as

alio clarescet,

ita

we

res

nee

ultima

accendent

us

may

tibi

usura.

caeca

natural

lumina

scorner

all ; the wise

id procreat

natumst

eripiet,quin
:

to

merely descriptive

1115-18:
ex

things."2

minds.

our

ut uti

in corpora,

Alid

carding
dis-

thingsof

seems

Possemus,
2

says,

thing will

thingsthrow

laughingat

natumst
.

One

in science

aristocratic observer, a

an

was

834, 835
.

"

ultimate

standard

was

Nil

is that

the

judge from scanty evidence, were

iv.

This

is

it,but

use

may

runs

of Democritus,

satirical.He

who

compared with another: and blind


obliterate the path for thee, before

own

ethics

that suffice,

all progress

which

other

unnatural, there is

Lucretius,

portions

thinker

its use."1

on

much

Nature

doing,

that
stupidity

our

that"we

thoroughlyscanned

so

or

of

"Nothing,"he

is not.

causes

not

nature;

The

habit

in Lucretius

brings forth

plainwhen
hast

of science,

state

furnish to

can

in order

body

depends. The
night shall

we

who

one

of final

thou

in the

a
day, to distinguish

from

arises

grow

was

maxims

two

"arises in the
what

present

Democritus

the rest.

are

naturalist

proof.If

the

the confirmation

guess

to

it the

he

philosophy,and

cannot

even

upon

laugh,as

partlyat

POETS

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

28

rebus.

man

LUCRETIUS
his fate and,

considered
in

above

measure

29

it.All

livingthingspursued

the greatest happinessthey could

they

but

business

philosopherwas

rough a world,

abstention
it

was

probablethat

more

It

you.
it

was

very

The

but not

asked

the event

would

because

faith
to

minute,

should
same

on

been

been

the

moral

defended

moral

eye fixed not

an

faith,

inward

grounds,deemed

at

sophy
philo-

knowledge.

an

exigenciesof

adopted

sary
neces-

at all costs, with

that

grounds

that materialism

juncture on
which

on

any

the

it has

ally
usu-

those

who

rejected.

Epicurus, strange
have

of

inconsistent,he gathered

and

It is instructive

weapon.

irrelevant

in his natural

miscellanywith

acceptedon

have

fool,but

any keenness

second-hand

vague

salvation,and

available

curus,
adopted by Epi-

Epicurushad

encyclopaediaof

nature, but

"a

be

appoint
dis-

not

bert
the contrary, Epicurus,
the Her-

his scientific
on

to

was

was
Spencer of antiquity,

and

for little,

If you

of Democritus

scientific vision. On

Prolix

sue
pur-

hard.

system

an

the

in
chiefly

be found

importantnot

was

and

to;

reallypossible.

was

to

was

retrenchment.

and

foresee

to

happinessthat

the greatest
so

their way

see

and
marvellouslyshort-sighted;

were

of the

This, in

self
him-

by knowing it,raised

heard, with

sty, Epicurus

was

as

horror
a

it may
or

envy,

saint. The

sound
of

to

wallowing

ways

of the

in his
world

THREE

30

filled him
which

PHILOSOPHICAL

with
of

some

all its
but

nothing

Theatres,

dismay. The
would

us

splendour amid

there

interested

he

the

to exercise

it in

swimming

influence

by

few

friends

and

he lived abstemious
alms

gave

to

the

such

too

wild

with

He

the

an

too

There

in due

was

not

quieting
dis-

many
no

be distorted

with

as

the human

unhappy

happiness; he

man

was

tuous
volup-

pleasantto

was

in the spaces

the worlds, the

gods were
form.

Their

gazed at them,
refreshed

like

earthly things.

calls their"

Nevertheless, it

wore

; the

happy, secluded

too

meddle

of nature

course

Wordsworth

between

beautiful,and

denied

have

render

momentous.

frequenttheir temples.There,
they dwelt

current.

belief in it would

and

what

unconcern."

he

imaginings.

remote

Nothing ruffled

free-will because

livingwiselymust

good Epicureans,to

of

all the

the world,

thingshappened

gods were

him

the mind, and

on

life: the art of

when

above

withdrawingfrom

thingscompulsory and

and

and

tired
Revanityand folly.

defended

since
supernatural,

All

tained
re-

decay;
political

of peace;

ways

see,

preachedagainstwealth, againstambition,

in not

future

to

pleasedEpicurus.

or

spoke gently;he

against passion.He
and

its

with

of his time,

eyes

privategarden, with

he sought the
disciples,

wished

our

porches,gymnasiums,

in his

he

Athens

give

agora, reeked, to his sense,

poor;

POETS

and

where
silent
ues,
stat-

reminded

weaned

for

LUCRETIUS
the senseless tumult

from

moment

returned

wisdom,

his

to

herbs, fruits,and

bears

decadence,

His

so

in

for its

science

Although

the

life of
"full of

was

hush

philosophy of

monkish

nature, yet science

it.

Epicurus

that

of

in
the

flight

and

"

of Democritus

the

any

other

the madness

adopted

these

grounds, the system

imperative.The

wholly regularand
that Fate
notion.

It

be

and

atoms

nounce
re-

and

to

by

at

need
least
not

must

Fate
the

since

pragmatic

must

Chance

of

that

to

men

did not

be removed.

spoken

losophy
phi-

Better
edifying.

change

mechanical.

was

the

he found

enjoyed.But,

external

of the

might

from

be renounced

fact,one

motion

ful
use-

natural

persuade

of Democritus

entire. In

be

"

may

might

terest
in-

ethics. Of all the systems

that must

on

for

legion

it would

not

tions
removing objec-

helpfuland

most

enjoy the pleasuresthat

adopted

looked

they were

could

departed

might support his

extant

than

in

therefore

of Socrates, and

reserve

was

sake

own

buttressingthe faith,or
to

be

Thus

There

was

his

and
friendly

philosophyof negation,and

losophe
phi-

the world.

from

it

the

witness, was

abstinences."

of bereavement.

it,as

sanctuaries

all the world.

to

affairs.

garden strengthenedin

St. Jerome

Epicurus,as

of human

his isolation,more

happier in

indifferent

more

hallowed

and

those groves

From

31

was

to
was

be

mitted,
be ada

rifying
ter-

peoplewith

Chance

unction.
superstitious

only the

atoms

then

and

to

their courses,

from

the

Therefore, Epicurus decreed


fantastic

that

of nature
as

downpour
and

and
aspirations
to

have

of his own;
express,
but

his human
may

the

to

be

declares certain

constituted

constituted

as

as

to

to

embrace

pursue

refers all
man,

even

science,
con-

his science,
and

Any system

with

ence
experiof ethics

materialism; for if

things(likeimmortality)
declare

cannot

vice.
ad-

no

precepts and policywill

shaped them.

it
impossible,

sophy,
philo-

world, includingthe

instincts,as inheritance

have

on.

and

and
preferences,

Nevertheless, it is
so

pass

materialist,being a

might accordinglycoexist
materialism

us

of mortals, and

but his

ganization
or-

original
parallel

of
logicalimplications

the

not

in the

of the atoms,

commandments

consciences

fail to

to show

added
aid

flected,
de-

yieldedto vortices,

Let

ground. The

material

will not

it no

describes

merely

atoms

main
re-

saved.

system of natural

Materialism, like any

It

the

the

have

might

carries with

be

for the declension

organizedbodies.

to

so

of them

might

would

explainhow

it is called,would

little now

might

were

If

street.

future

that

arguments

of chance

this intrusion

deflect

free-will

and
unpredictable,

and

in the

man

allowed

were

bler,
hum-

something

was

the

congenialto

more

POETS

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

32

not

them

to

likelythat

materialism

thingswhich

be
a

desirable.
un-

man

will be

so

he considers

THREE

34

has

PHILOSOPHICAL

excitement

no

modest, and

and

horror

utter
are

not

be

apt

were

for his mercy,

of war,

sentiments

that

share.

Pity and

vain

and

evil; what

will believe

in

his

to

cost

imperialist,
rapt

an

In
formative

age,

aristocratic and
in

or

in

or

certain scorn,
He

of what
in the

have

genius

about

this

of the

he

poetry

us

not

because

because
Lucretius

achieves;he

hue

of materialism

on

its power

about

poet

That

of what

of their
proves

too

will be

of

thing.
achievingsome-

in

we

and

in

would

decadent

be
age,

timidlysensual.

The
of

ponents
com-

remains

greatest thing

losingitself in

seem

to be

but
things,

thingshave
make

and

There

nature.

himself.

poet

things themselves.

count

the antecedents

poem

genius is
of

laughter

joy

We
object,its impersonality.
the

the

it would
renouncingeverything,

of Lucretius'
the

Nietzsche

as

as

power
ist
natural-

aggressivemind,

an

before

now

The

will not

be, as in Epicurus,humanitarian
We

would

man's

hardness,

imaginative
; but

soul that is

These
suffering.

goodnessalso.

word, the moral

his
friendliness,

increased

scornful.

was

the
scrupulously

vital. Epicurus

repentance, Spinoza said,

certain

did; he will incline

his

ideal is

genuine naturalist

to

of Democritus

it.This

of sacrifice,
of

his joy increased

and

risk about

no

chaste,but it is not

even

remarkable

was

POETS

them

its

readingnot

the poetry of
their

poetry,

symbols of,but
and

own

movement

once

for all to mankind.

life,is what

LUCRETIUS
Of

the

course,

might be

nature

it would

be

stirred

by

dreams, draw
out

her full

taut

the

of nature

nature

the

into

and

naturalism

is

substance

behind

those

behind

sights and

that connects
has
as

an

well

and

depth as
as

sensuous

for

music.
of

to

the

and

faculties,

stuffy

or

the soul, and

bring

is

losophy
phi-

imagination that
sightsand

sounds

:-

it their directness,
At

the

same

time,
divines

continuitybehind

It therefore

explainsthem.
as

merely

philosophy;it

appearance,

well

discerned

an

stress.

intellectual

sounds

what

persons

Naturalism

lend

fortune.

It

ever.

own

moodiness

our

it,and

be

nature

employs. These

of
strings

coercive

our

be

may

it awakens

observable; all the

pungency,

change,law

for

be

may

it

and
vitality

enter

were

fancy.
self-indulgent

our

of observation, and
extends

chose,

to

what

will do

and

suggest to

say, than

should

it

as

selfish preoccupation
with

understanding which
more,

with

to

the life of

emotion

our

of intuition which

the power

in ourselves

realities involve

be used to

us

if there

us

concerned

does, has been

No, the poetry of

by

to

romantic

be

may

immense

may

ashes

is due

sublime

and

sympathy. But

arise from

not

these

and

it to

reallyis and

romantic
and

dust

ingenuous ; it
need

as

sublime

nothing

in nature

see

we

produces in
spectacle

the

the emotion

or

poetry

35

hidden

attaches

all

background

So understood,

ture
na-

surface, force and necessity

variety.Before

the

sublimityof

THREE

36

this

PHILOSOPHICAL

all
insight,

cheap
mind

and

of the

in

comparison.The

the
history,

actual

has reached

best

childish
like bad

naturalistic poet abandons

he

has

passionsof

discovered
His

man.

maturity; its pleasureis

nature,

imagination
dominate,

to

play.

to

Poetic

~~

to

only possiblepoetry, sounds

fairyland, because

not

patheticfallacyseem

artificial.Mythology, that

is the

rhetoric

forms

POETS

dominion

in

over

Shakespearefor
for the

Lucretius

thingsas they are

is

the

and

of men,

ways

of nature.

ways

seen

in

Unapproachably

vivid,relentless,direct in detail,he is unflinchingly


and

grand

serious in his

the truth that absorbs


wishes

us

the

by

to be

him

convinced

nature.
our

its

there

His

is

no

it is

composed
day
to

them

fact,

with

one

would

tenable

then

he

as

in his science,

lose its

could

describes.
a

Democritus

tion,
supposi-

substance, and

no

space,

lived in such

when

the

thingafter thing,

quite wrong

imaginativegrandeur. We

the

of

by

or

not

lose

stillconceive

Fancy

world

no

pertinenceto

personalconvictions; it would

those who
on

is

poem

lives and

world

sobered

along.He

bearingwitness

and

"

that Lucretius

that

facts. It is

of the world.

Suppose,however,
and

the

carries him

and

all

us,

upon

the nature

to

"

and

overwhelming evidence

rainingdown
voice

grouping of

what

would
a

have

Lucretius

their actual situation. How

tions
emo-

felt
vealed
re-

great the

LUCRETIUS

blindness

the

or

the vision

What

the

every

nook
here

with

and

about

who

It would

have

And
out

task

been

the

to

foundations
mankind
follies to

refute

life of

troubles,more
our

and

than

ideals. Yet

to attain

of his hexameters

in
in

his own,

our

to

was

enough

Greek

to

the

sure

summon

passionsand

as

was

self
him-

it is often

mine
attainments, that deter-

heraldingthe

paintingthat

an

"

to

perstition,
dispelsu-

He

peace.

that

unwieldy

lay

its cruel

soaringupon

into

was

things,as

of wisdom,

distracted

and
happiness,
was

He

and
simplicity

and

but

antagonists,to

of science

combative
our

of all

them.

He

him.

sonorous

nature

compellinglyfrom
a

the

his poem

to make

overwhelmed

discerned

to

tius,
Lucre-

Epicurus,the greatness of

Latin, the birth and

subtletyhad

its poetry.

world, heard

himself

for the first time, in

unfold

ing
play-

it down.

he set

have

had

of naturalism.

poetry

wrote

of the system of

resemble,
of life

smile

have

lived in such

yet, when

seems

would

Surely that universe,

lived in it,would

of it,and

swarming

starrynight,that

of nature

constellations.

thinking he
music

on

eyes

cranny

those

for those

our

there the tentative

and

the

marvellous

unintentional, perpetualfertility!

is to

sky

derful
won-

clear the future, how

gained ! How

their

in

how

and
dissipated,

madness

the past, how


intelligible
atoms,

37

of human

advent
of the

gods,he

the strong

wings

ecstasy of contemplation

THREE

38

and

PHILOSOPHICAL

these

read

if

of nature,

forces

the

only

succeed

of

seeds

been

? Could

if

and

back

for

could
To

be

suspended

fortunate

his first

being. To

Conscious

his

he

give him
at

breath

and

these

once

powers

There

distinguishin

creative

movement,

values, and

is moral
No
as

one

only,or

else has

he that

knows

send

him

universal

his

as

of

nothing arises

upon

these

well

may

them.

Empedocles.
the

moralist

the

"

moralist

abolishingthe
that

this distinction

say,

often

and

in this world

not

so

they

drift of atoms,

people now

pointed out

success.

happy inspiration,

movement,
very

owes

phere,
atmos-

to describe

producing what

destructive

Lucretius

same.

and

describe, that

reminiscence

the

wrote.

child

which
great perspectives

two

are

be blown

beginsby invoking

geniusenough

perhaps a happy

may

of atoms,

undertaking hangs

to

spirit
;

and

thought

and
inspiration

is about

always

of civil conflicts

propitiousseason

his

owes

that

powers

And

he

din

conjunctions,Lucretius

chance
the

while

conjunction

poet

if the

and

the

madness, which

always coursingthrough the air,could


moment

pose
com-

great

into his

corruptionand

to

only

infinite and

always

were

to

such

they might,

into his brain

pass

emotion

an

it have

his lot ? Yes,

to

hand, could

at

he

great

so

must

could

? Yet

things fall
creative

what

verses,

them

it is

When

enthusiasm.

POETS

subjective.
so

clearly

helped to

LUCRETIUS

of

life by the death

from

all-important.To

mechanical

it is not

to you,

or

its local and

the

to

but

he

will

regard

the

him

doubtless

things present

the

one

the

but

in order
265

Alid

An

double

show

how

me

ex

to

that

before

stage,

principlein
had

which

forces

teresting
in-

aspect which

Empedocles

these

spoken

of

respectively
so

Penelope'slabour

as

to

carry

of the world,

fresh forms

perpetuallyundoing

Rem
2

two

as

them

Lucretius, i. 264,

chanical
me-

hostile to

so

disruptedthe elements,

and

It needed

to

the mechanical

dual

perpetuallyweaving

the other

rhetoric

as

So

Strife

between

on

to

themselves.

gathered

much

so
philosopher;

has reached

and

the

livingproducts.

physicalscience

Love

is real and

morally, how

friendlyor

are

his

things

only

of any
between

deny

to

ment
move-

colouring of things is supremely

double

This

force

is fruitful

structure

it

of view

distinction

make

outlying parts of

the

creative

point

destructive

of nature,

structure

this

the

and

force

creative

the

interest, the

or

that the destructive

thing;1so

and

creates

destroys.Yet

other

some

movement

particularlife

39

of life,
and

them.2

slightconcession

exchange these

to

traditional

names,

Love

and

alio reficit natura,

gigni patitur, nisi

morte

ullam

nee

adiuta

excellent expression of this view


is put by
physician Eryximachus in the Symposium, pp.

aliena.

Plato
186-88.

into the

mouth

of the

THREE

40

PHILOSOPHICAL

Strife,which

designateddivine

cles,into the
the
Mars

of Venus

names

Venus

destroyslife,or

now

like this of Lucretius


Mars

of

other

some

or
happierin itself,

is

she

her

woos

the

fields

floods the

Lucretius,

1-13

times

the

arises is

than

what

that
prevails,

it is springon

with

earth ; the

flowers, the

Venus

in their hearts.

Quae

mare

Concelebras

Adventumque

tuum

Submittit flores

Placatumque
reserata

tibi

genus

nubila

aequora

volucres

caeli,
tellus

ponti,
caelum.

speciespatefactastverna

aura
viget genitabilis

primum

soils

daedala

nitet diffuse lumine

ac

animantum

omne

lumina

suaves

tibi rident

signa
frugiferentis

terras

navigerum, quae
; per te quoniam

Concipitur,
visitqueexortum
Te, dea, te fugiuntventi, te

simul

divomque voluptas,

labentia

caeli subter

favoni

diei,
;

te, diva, tuumque

corda
initum, perculsae
Significant

tua

sunshine

tribes of animals

all the

genetrix,hominum

Venus,

Ae'riae

by

suspend his unprofitable

to

sky, and

Alma

Et

us,

jEneadum

Nam

what

when

rule

arms,

save

says that Venus

covered

are

serene

i.

other's

congenialto

mighty impulse of

feel the

produces

(I paraphrasethe opening passage),1

recede

storms

in each

more

such

they are

composing his savingpoem.

captivelover

raging.At

forces,

preciousenterprise,

thing.Yet

the poet
destroyed,

now

together;nothing arises

universe

death

it

as

any

Venus, linked

and

the

in

moral

not

of atoms

far

nated
desig-

mythology. The

are

so

Empedo-

Mars, which

the mechanism

in
itself,

this mechanism
and

and

of Lucretius

incompatiblewith

in

powers

influences in Roman

same

and

POETS

vi.

THREE

42

This

PHILOSOPHICAL

impersonation in

the

whatever

makes

it would

really contradict

nature

if it

"

The

These

by

blandishments

sides

two

of

and

of Venus

had

wished

to

Effice,ut interea fera


maria

terras

ac

Nam

stand

for

make

in rebus

Sed

me

tua

Suavis

virtus tamen,

et inducit

Quaerentem,
tuae

noctes

dictis

chime

,the end
it were,

one

saluti
.

et

sperata voluptas

sufferre laborem

vigilareserenas,

quibus

et quo

clara propago

Memmi
desse

communi

amicitiae, quemvis

Suadet,

and
finished,

nee

carmine

possim praepandere lumina

and

described

are

sopitaquiescant.
patriaitempore iniquo

hoc

Talibus

tendency.

militiai

omnes

nos

"

is,for any

drop out,

been

ever

moenera

agere
neque
Possumus
animo,
aequo

Clara

this

being essential

not
to

had

poem

death

victorious

beginning,and represent,as

Per

and

their motion,

allowed

they

processes

nakedly;yet,ifthe
the

raging in

transmutation,

and

Mars,

poet'sthought,are

Lucretius

irrepressible
fury.

tendencytowards

The

actual

for

"

final and

the

subdued

thingdestroysanother;

particular
thing,the
the

less universal

no

able
beingperpetual, nothingbeingdur-

it follows that the

to

of

view

figurerepresenting

every

except the void, the atoms,

names

"

of love, is

in his

poem

one
creating,

transmutation

of

legitimate

mechanical

opening passage,

of the
the

Venus

death.

the

rest
are

that in

be

not

balanced

not

were

of the

by

all the

for life would

towards

Mars

moment

figure of

oppositetendency,the

the

tendency

POETS

demum

menti.

with

great

LUCRETIUS

cycle of

the

world, it

have

placedat

that

at

Mars

the

43

is conceivable

the close

his luxurious

from

his immortal

and

nature,

have

might

we

rushing,firebrand

the

palace of

throughout

the

universe, till all things should

and
fiercely,

be consumed

and

desirable

than

into
sink

world

new

would

These

endless

exactlybalance
arise than

Besides,

; and

that

nature

given,and
to

think

not

am

sadder

this world

from

would

slaughter;

the

scattered

it would

of her

as

the

should

be

from

not

in

but

solelyin

interest

destructive

form, and

(ifwe

to

us

beneath.

matter;

continue.
she

thankless

in

destructive

create, and
express

should

than

more

only,or

may

the movement

not

always

unspeculativefashion

particularthings,nor

the flux of substance

worlds

new

captiousand

She destroysto
pessimists.

destroy,her

in themselves,

that, impartially

sure

that

take

cannot

after
essentially,

to

with

revolutions, taken

considered, it is any

us

of War

drunk

arise

stinctiv
beauty. In-

of the old.

atoms

has

and

weary

God

divine

more

averted

the

bosom

burn

quiteall ;

not

remain,

in her

in

spread destruction

Yet
together.

ever

her

again,when

and

love to

herself would

goddess

seen

ing
lethargy,reassert-

hand, from

for the

might

to match

mythical passage

beginning; and

aroused

that he

of modern
creates

it so)

to

being

in their continuance,
that

underlies

them, in

Life, however, belongs


or

in the

language

of

THREE

44

PHILOSOPHICAL

Lucretius, life is

of matter;
a

the

as

makes

game

of dice, so

in

the

viewed

by

chance

has taken

reflect

or

acme

of atoms

; and

he

the

and

as

into

being,all

the

wave.

prospect
a

is

all. The

prophecy

after,when

of death.

the

atoms

Of

Lucretius, who

throbbingas

of ambition, of

are

his

in

or
morally,

is

happy
can

we

the

top

rollingtempest

knows

he

is the

by

is

and

almost

bursts
fall of

is the

only
be

come

may

can

shares,all
spent.

nothing if

not

est,
hon-

picturesof spring,of love,

budding culture,of
the vivid

paintsthe approachof

lassitude

point

profoundmelancholy.Vigorous

they pale before


he

the

until that

life that

and

possible

together again,he

come

waning

and

of

philosophymust

the

that is life to him, is

this

as

process

risen before

his whole

life he

is possessed
by

whole

of all he lives

imagine nothing;the
Therefore

the

lives to witness

decadence
him

best

it is from

in the

have

that he

Yet,

philosopheris at

foam

must

before

and

exist

we

eventum,

an

possibleissue

judged. Not

is the

wave

The

that

do
place,

judge at

of the wave,

best

tion
equilibra-

sionally
aspect,occa-

dice-box.

life is the

and

us,

in the

incidental

and

of this eventum

ideal product

of sixes is

shaking a

acme

issue of the dance


of view

throw

productor

involved
throw

redundant

aspect,involved

ideal

redundant

eventum,

an

incidental

or

POETS

death

"

intellectual victory,

strokes

with

fatigueof

pleasure,corruptionand

which

the will,

disintegration

LUCRETIUS
in

soil exhausted, the wild animals

the
society,

hand

and for the individual,almost

of
dissipation

universal

thing

flkw..Nothing

falls back

back

nothingif we

into

of

of love and
on

the

void ; but

and
In

by
inspired

liberate

tepidenjoyment

Lucretius,

of

1139-41,

n.

Omnia
Et

debet

Et

cum

quassans

incassum

Nee
Ad

tenet, omnia

sons,
per-

arbitrary

for the

There

sustentare.

circura

moenia

mundi

putrisque ruinas.
grandis suspiratarator
cecidisse

manuum

fortunas

paulatim

capulum, spatio aetatis

tempora temporibus

Praeteritis,laudat

mind

integrarenovando,

orania

igiturmagni quoque
Expugnata dabunt labem
Crebrius

over

of future

Sic

lamque caput

an

1164-74:

cibus

fulcire cibus, cibus

Nequidquam,

the

of this world.

1148-49,
enim

in the

tius
immortalityLucre-

dispelall fear

to

to

is itself

that the soul is mortal

zeal to prove

so

objects

of atoms

is absolute

falls

sion
impres-

no

nay, time

motion

the soul and

the wish

and

make

imperfectpsychologistand

an

the

"

can

time

stance;
sub-

nothingand

things

atoms

the

nothing,no-

worlds.1

nations, and

moralist. His

and

by

triumph of

treatingof
is

the

on

or

created

even-turn

an

consider

in the

consider

we

from

Time
experience.

the void

of

out

comes

everythingcomes

but

the final

at once,

lose themselves

and

nothing, if

into

at

of his soul,escapingfrom

the atoms

body, to mingle

relaxed

tamed

famine

and
poverty, pestilence,

exterminated,

or

45

laborem

praesentia confert
saepe

parentis,

tabescere
defessa

et ire
vetusto.

is

is

ishments,
puncalm
some-

THREE

46

thing

be

to

used

in this

gained

if
especially
are

tales about

sanction

to

direction,undoubtedly,

divine

irrational

people from

poor

POETS

PHILOSOPHICAL

the

only prospect which


to

open

of

any

that
threaten

the

deterrent

and,

at

while

age,

tempting fortune, that

that human
any

He

produced already all


of few kinds.

being

were

was

so

afraid of
he wished

the

infinite in* number

sided
one-

and
afraid

running
to prove

subjectto

capableof
animals

racterist
cha-

element
pure

that
taught accordingly

produce,for though
were

so

been

brief business, not

great transformations, nor

achievements.
had

life was

very

ideal. This

He
moralist,but pusillanimous.

or

the mind.

betrays a

tender

being hurt,

life

polemic against

fear of life. Epicurus had

risks

evil-doing

and
highlyinteresting

decadent

of

part,symbols

experienceof

in this

bottom, untenable

hurtingand

serve
ob-

to

that the fear of hell is not

is the

of

hell is

religiousfables

degradation which

element

immortalitywhich,
of

the

clearly
brought before

is another

There

lot. At

for the most

than
repressive

be if it were

would

are,

so
living;
or

vent
pre-

it is also unfair not

with

actual
the

bringsupon

to

that

assume

come

immortalitycould possibly

and

to

punishments which

the dead

for the

more

us

and
practices,

improving their

time, it is hardly fair

same

to

vengeance

any

great

the atoms

they
the

could
atoms

sorts
Consequently the possible

finite and

soon

of

exhausted; this world,

LUCRETIUS

though
The

the

on

could

not

the

suns

new

under

it is

of destruction,was

eve

around

worlds

it,or

much

them.

We

little

garden, six

in. If

people rage
there

because
because

need

make

and

be

morally comfortable

after death
atomic

to

any

prove

across

in

not

arguments

true
perfectly

lines of

Bough,
and

"

Thou

"

enow!

this sunny
awake

theoryto

by

world

which

what

now

if

What

to which

the

serve
apply? Ob-

in the least

opposed

science

be correct.

the universe
of it ; but

ties
possibili-

retreat?

in the least
not

world

physically
poor

of incalculable

suggestionis

the atomic

inhabits

the Wilderness

Paradise

were

should

of the

thought

well-known

Loaf of Bread

shadow

taught about
be

The

philosophymight
that this

who

small, and

singing in

me

if the

we

be mad,

not

is not

fear,but

to

the

Jug of Wine,

fall

much

Verses underneath

should

great noise, it
or

stretch

to

man

perfectly:

Book

what

home,

"

this sentiment

Oh, Wilderness
But

me

mortal

in its infinite monotony.

Beside

for

Let

and

All

ments
reasonable, cultivatingsenti-

appropriateto

of

future,

nothing

was

scene,

win,

to

mad.

me

Fitzgeraldecho

date.

not, then, fear the world

feet of earth

peopleare

there

domestic

is much

Epicurus; let

in

produced

alike,and

explored and

an

be

to

of recent

different.
anything essentially

afford
were

47

All

before

if to-morrow

might

that
us

curus
Epi-

might
a

new

THREE

48

PHILOSOPHICAL

should

universe

have

is doubtless
be much

troubled

left

great void;

shall

we

"

illusions,or

tendencies
of Plato

had

the

barbarous

and

such

dogmas

imperative for Epicurus


what

might

all his arguments

are

than

zeal. With

of the sc"ul and

taught the

her

about

to
incapacity

to

We

ears.

world

has

live after Descartes,

that the
to

strange and

usage

gave

The

call consciousness

warm,

of the soul

the word

essence

as

soul

of the soul

of white.
rather

the formation

and

it. And

guide

in
exclusively
even

this

seem

light,it
a

ferent
dif-

not

was

to govern

move,

paradox,it may

of the

essence

be to talk of the blackness

to be conscious

better

myths

was

to modern

meaning.

seem

hopes and

body.

would

body,

fresh

seem

may

the

as

this end

nature

ancient

think

fled
muf-

actuallyrushed

life with

consciousness; and

was

much

The

long supernatu-

anxiouslyall thought of

sound

who

the

before

say that the soul is material

material

will

man

Epicurusconceived

fanatical

and

betrayed,it

death. To

survive

But

and

alreadyafoot

the material

soul

dreams.

as

(what

terrors

to banish

To

tion
sugges-

the heart is empty

it in Dante"

see

least

at

nothing)with

follow

when

the wise man,

busy

no

attenuated

quicken the pulsesof

in to

place?The

reallya provocationto superhaturalism.

were

ralism

its

by it;yet
such

of
pleasures

They

taken

and
gratuitous,

it fillsitself with

him,

POETS

if

so

of
we

will not

truism,

to

say

THREE

50

To

PHILOSOPHICAL

convince

is not

changes

ends ; mental
fortunes

of the

bodily life

and

to

they

begins,

and

(not demonstrably
relevant

different mask

future

enforced

of

scientifically
by such

death

is

of

which

many

death

an

the model; he

on

is

it.

upon

painting

can

and

the

distress

of extinction; and

to

idea

after it, we

of

stuck

says

to

us,

touch

you? While

when

you

are

still fear

pig.Against this
has many

dying Lucretius
he

may

why
you

do

if

for the

fear death, like Hamlet,


come

may

arguments. Fools,
never

succeed in banishingthe

feel at the

like
instinctively,

is absent

loftyjudgment

remains

horror

what

passes

ence
experi-

there
after-life,

ceased
that

dreams

proved

deliverance, yet it is good

considerations

dread

have

we

the life.

to

If these

we

if

his usual

with

reality.
Nothing

artist has his eye

new

should

philosophyand good poetry ; it bringsmuch


The

impressive,

are

Lucretius

by

smack

in

or

existence, we

reflections

to

should

previousexistence

no

in

togetherand

the

earthlysituation;we

an

this. These

are

vividness

whole

under

so,

remember

and

as

remember
and

one,

:
probability

soul-atoms); the passionsare

setting
; we
not

inherent

he has to

what
indestructible;

body

be ourselves

had

death

growth,health, sanity,
accompany

those of the

not

perishat

we

vulgarexperienceand

relyon
what

that

us

POETS

stinctiv
in-

brave

you

fear

stilllive,death

dead, you

are

so

dead

LUCRETIUS
that you

will be

You

will

you

fear

fear it,you

but

the

not

was

the

if

even

enteringthis world,

of

shudder

the

at

makes

no

should

be ; and

is
no

fault of his

death

is

were

if

show

to

by

you

our

of

way

nor

of his

merely

in

he shrank

being dead,
is

thing
some-

Dante's

offende,

"

the

philosophy.If

fear of

medicine

There

is,or there might be,

an

and
willingly,
dying painlessly,

partingswhich

Attic

the

dying, it
than
art

of

in

it

this life

that
leavingit pitiful,

dealt

by

into

"I

part,

everythingis as

coming

quittingor

still say what


ancor

of

way

calcitrant
re-

something ridiculous

that

better

those noble

is

of it." Lucretius, for his

our

with

of

involved

might

we

way

attempt

ignoble,and

where;
no-

other

some

dying. Dying

says of it: // modo

Francesca

or

metaphysicalstate

pain were

no

be

If
experience.

that what

retort

as
being born
ghastly,

and,

"

word.

real agony

very

some

exist. Death

excludes

that

soul

yourselfwill

you

reader, might
from

being

dancing in

all this,perhaps,Memmius,

To

fear of

of your

be

absolutelynot

state

will

"

and

far away,

definition

childish

born.

were

you

be there; the atoms

unconscious

themselves
sunbeam

the

regret it.

nor

earth, or feelingits weight stifling


you

will not

you

before

as

ease

you

dead,

are

you

at

troubles

cold in the
But

much

as

is what

Or

know

cannot

51

is

fear of

would

be

by argument.
dying well, of
season,

"

as

in

gravestones depict,

THREE

52

PHILOSOPHICAL

if we
especially

"

allow

is

the

feared

primordialand
he

against.Had
been

from

the

it in

meet

founded

fauna.

which

its mate,

and

flyfrom

from

threatened

which

good

from

marshal

have

and

by

attack

an

something
life.It is

tional,
ra-

thing
some-

spontaneous. It is that Venus


the

earth

animal

every

the

injuryto
death.

with

its flora and

seek its food

to

body, and

It is the

is discriminated

could

tendency

another
to

premises,and
some

be

and

also to resist
of all

most

impulse by
original

from

evil,and

hope

futile,therefore,than

more

againstthat

arguments

merely

name

-these

premises,in

not

of life,or

is not

the

involve

given case,

press
ex-

of the love of life;


whence

conclude
at

the

to

which

self-preservation.
Arguments

impossibleto
dreaded

fear of death

for the energy

form
particular

evil and
most

would

fear.

Nothing

it is

fighting

was

as
protect its offspring;

to

all

it were,

of life is not

covers

It teaches

here

radical way,

experience of

and

of life.

missed

he

more

as

love
on

antecedent
Genetrix

force

think,

to

love

to have

colossal

The

rear.

or

is

seems
life,

envelopingmovement,

an

It is the

perceivedthat force,he

obligedto

would

time.

own

something quite different.

Epicurus,who

or

our

radical fear of death, I venture

the

But

allowed, as Lucretius

were

to choose

us,

POETS

all to

that
be

the agony

death

feared.
of

is in
For

dying,nor

no

what

gree
deis

yet the

LUCRETIUS

53

that when
strange impossibility

the defeat

of

present will

various

undertakings.Such

argued

away,

it may

but

directed

be

ascetic

by

or

To
discipline.

bring out

to

the

of

means

risingfrom

that fire,would

introduce

of life.His

madness

lifethat is ardent, on

end

and

have

vanished

the

was

ground

ignominious.To

againstthe

Epicurus,who

the saviour

of mankind.

lifeand what

have

of the

the

delivered

it retained

that

and
science,friendship,

long step

that it is

painfulin

from

it all is
be ardent

genius must
out

pours

brought this

of salvation,and
further would

of Lucretius,

surrenderingall in

escape

since

something, Lucretius
on

also.

pictureit draws

of life,by

great deliverance. And

about

if the love

philosophydeprecatescovetous-

the surrender

towards

expose

fear of death, like smoke

it takes
ambition, love,and religion;

ness,

the

the

pline,
disci-

be the true

of the third book

chieflyfrom

comes

dictions
contra-

ascetic

Indeed, the force of the great passage


fear of death, at the end

be

irony of experience,

love of life;and

the
extinguished,

of lifewere

by

of the will,would

mitigatingthe

its

cannot

irony of experience,to

the self-contradictions

is

life and

upon

weakened

the

we

is dreaded

present will

arisingwithin it,by

exist

not

What
existing.

suffer for not

should

do

we

Yet

deliverance

this

only a

was

and
ginning
be-

carried
principles

same
us

asm
his enthusi-

from

was

the

Greek

the

Epicurean

and

istic:
natural-

healthy pleasures

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

54

of the

it renounced

body. Had

have

would

To

of elaborate

being nothing

loved

be

can

it is

because

One

that

culture

it must

to

at

I have

"

disillusioned
or

rather

and

feared

done

carry

the

who

men

care

for the

interested

their last will and

in

or

criticize

orator

may
who

go

of

not
can-

does it

pened
hapafter

on

puts

such

with him, and raise


Yet
sincerity.

proud of

the

their ancestors,

the
securinglegally
What

men

What

of their children, and

testament.

One

debate, what

what

of human

applaudare
future

in

the audience

the expense

very

that

witness.

say

born,

were

? And

buried

laugh at

may

to

in

muster

inexcusablyfalse.

be

they cannot
we

this subject.

pass

stop

we

fallacies is the maxim

you,

challengemay

with

rhetorical. It abounded

was

to

once

before you
are

spiteof

nothing

hated

be

case

should

in

it is

because

and
verballyplausible,

are

live for what

much

nothing;for

publicspeech,but that, if

matter

death

"

point,and

more

these rhetorical

that

in that

fatiguedand

"

them, prove

you

by

nothing

Ancient

death, death

vigorous animal.

every

ideas

it is

pursuit of

spiteof being nothing

in

spirit,
just as

the

need

prove

rather

or

"

death

to

arguments

feared, because

be

not

in

ascetic, a
altogether

evil,but the highestgood. No

is no

by

become

thingsalso,Epicureani

sincerelypursue

who

those

these

of mortification,or

thorough system
death.

POETS

may

are

very

execution
go

on

of

after

LUCRETIUS
their death

but

the

watch

because

is not

the

observing,or

his emotion.

excites
the whole

incubus

passion.The

of

and
superstition,

imagination,and

that
it.

nature, in

his tears
the

by

for

hope

having observed,
in its true

mankind

sees

vision kindles

what

forgetshimself.

spread out

he
proportions;

and
the

universe

He

heaven,

or

moved
of

memory

they

to witness

never

enlightenment, in

long since dead,


Iphigenia,

sees

hell

ideallyin

although they are

his zeal for human

what

from

event

himself, in his sympathy with

Lucretius

of

because

deeply,not

interested

they are

shall be,

event

them

concerns

to

expect

55

from

He

ment
move-

freed from
the

havoc

of

his enthusiasm, exalts his

swells his

into unmistakable

verse

earnestness.

If
the

we

sum

follow

Lucretius, therefore, in narrowing

of

personal fortunes

our

partialglimpse of earth, we
we

need

at all the

narrow

On

the

strengthen the
we

direct

feel in the world

before us, after us,


and

time

sphereof
and

and
as

every
all

or

and

and

moral

our

ests.
inter-

sentimental

in what
our

may

even

hopes,and
which

shall
wish

there,

on

go

ken. If,like Lucretius

philosophical
poet, we

he did, and

spise
de-

we

primitiveconcern

beyond

existence, we

that

suppose

shall
we
self-forgetful,

imagination becomes

our

not

must

brief and

one

contrary, just in proportionas

terrors
superstitious
as

to

range

forgetour

them

to

be

over

own

all
sons,
per-

forgotten,

THREE

56

if

PHILOSOPHICAL

only the thingswe


who

He
that

should

God

the life of the


for his

served

would

be

it would

ourselves
of

each

stages of

than

us

not,

that have

fit to

reproduce

animate

have

unlike

are

is unlike

another,

one

himself

more

the

at

or

various

his life.
in the elements

that, if a

elements, is transitory
; so
for what

happens to
or

young

what

other men,

of it,is then,
;

only the

for
principle,

what

finitude and

be

broken

be

and
dissipated;

down;

care,

may

go

the
he

his

nature

has

when

old, he

imaginative

same

for

ever.

personallife would

illusion of selfishness would

might

many

himself, I have

say to

and nothing that


imagination,

word

care

befell him

in the world

on

of
injustice

him

the

on

could

man

for what

overtake

may

well
might perfectly

The

tius,
Lucre-

accordingto

the chance composition


of those
individuality,

human

The

later

somewhat

accordingto Lucretius, actuallyimmortal

when

is but

species; perhaps not

we

soul of nature,

The

would

lives

concerned

atoms

life remain

new
totally

wish

who

much

The

ours.

and

one,

career,

of

be

new

different

than

be

One

althoughthe body they might

it;and

unlike

of

arise.

or

all,the life of the universe

produce

to

in return.

cannot

extension

the locus and


once

universe

subsist

Spinoza,cannot

says

love him

After

own.

for may

care

trulyloves God,

POETS

is real is alien to

senses

but

if we

me.

pre-

THREE

58

chance

PHILOSOPHICAL
of consciousness.

overtones

them

Hence

symbolists,
mixing perhapssome
in the

of

POETS

an

term,

if they

as

or
empty, super-subtle,

shade

sort. For

making
play with thingsluxuriously,
for their

to render
intelligently,

be

poet might

the

to

in order

different

nature,

they reveal

which

to

would

they
that

then

better

The

reason.

made

were

might

be led in that

landscape poet
Francis
his
wove

fancy

took

them

into

gossamer

for new-born

habitation
was

the musician

in this

of

the

things he

idealization

it

of his wild

and

was

scape
landof

of them

out

in
that

of landscape,

recombined

for this

the ideal world

for the

To

sense.

ideal life

world,

bolic
sym-

Shelley,as
toy-shop;

was

of the

landscapeand
brightethereal

Shelley
irresponsible
spirits.

landscape; he

suggestions
; transformed
into

"

elements

Shelleyis a
paradise.

materials

the

sense,

elements

has said,nature

Thompson

things.

world, than

suggest,and

to

for

these sensations

symbols for

be

thoughts

to the

build

to

chosen, emphasized,and
purpose,

their

another

associate

to

in order

but
together,
lazily

symbols

objectsuggestedby

reverted

they

them

symbols

symbolistin

mind, and

not
landscape,

mending

them

up nature, the

if he broke

fancy a

of

thoughts,instead

of disparageme

symbolists

were

fatuous

call

we

would

traced
the

fain have

out

its

thingshe
seen.

that guided him,


spirit
and
exquisiteimagination,

In
the
he

realized
unsaw

this
bent
fan-

LUCRETIUS
that the

cied sometimes

of

of

earthlylandscape seemed
earth
verse,

with

which

his

in which

fevered

symbol

of the

crystallandscapesof

his
in

symbols

images
expressed,

was
spirit

passionrested.

his

Another

the

pensive flowers, were

their
own

him

this sense,

In

power.

to

starlit

the

as
spirit,

earth

stress,
half-spiritual

some

dreaming
restlessly

some

landscapesof

grosser

the work

likewise

were

59

of

sort

landscapepoetry

for whom

in Wordsworth,

is to

be found

poet

of nature

the title of

WMOMMMMHt

claimed.

might perhapsbe
touches

language

as

which

the

is not
inspiration
which

of nature

aspect and

for

the method

matter, not

of

capableof, is
at all from

drawn

the

landscapeto

would

have

manifestations.

Only

his interest,or

of
for

as

part of

touches

chasteningof

or

wine

the

animal

of

the contrary,

the cosmic

influences

keeps the

of the

is no

force in its

purposes

been

poetry

He

"

some

aginativ
passedim-

sources

on

his soul

human

These
landscape.

food

the

in

have

have

matters.

natural

moral

This

would

disclosed

human

spiratio
in-

the real processes

Wordsworth,
spirit.

evolution,and
genesis,

or

Such

pictorial
moral

landscapemanifests

moment.

one

the

him.

bringsto

scene

adventitious

on

landscapeis

the

of Lucretius; he would

landscape;he

of

is

every

from

dwells

him

he renders,beyond such

influence. What

an

To

myriad

process
the

gages
en-

ening
strengthences
the influ-

by
are

poet

very

heart

real ;

beating,

THREE

60

PHILOSOPHICAL

POETS

quickens it,so largespaces

or

stretches
solitary

dells,or

or

of calm

the breast,disperse
the obsessions

dailyexistence,and
the moment,

all

to

expand

that cramp

Wordsworth,

friend

tains,
moun-

of water,

if he be less

even

than

less virtuous

and

sky,or

man's

contemplative
make

things,and

him, for
friend

to

himself.
Yet

influences

these

are

Wordsworth
part fleeting.
them
a

and
distinctly

so

further link to bind

Such

life. Every

human
with

the sort

the
no

country

was

key

fitted into

to

the French

"

in
constantly

he

so

was

of

scene

in that

men

and

age

seldom

without

At least,
figures.

of

guided

the

man

meditation.

the

it,was

far,however,

so

was

as

he

life was
it

march

not

far

as

he

of

was

still fundamentally a

poet

poet

ciety
so-

were

"

trulya poet
was

of

present

revolutions

Revolution, for instance

thoughts.In

set

landscapewas;

while

conceived

and

poet

Country

than

life,Wordsworth

of human
In

his

found

is associated

falls to

the
imagination,

to Wordsworth's

felt

sentiment.
the

season,

picture;and

Lucretius

things,as

moral

for Wordsworth's

Wordsworth

every

he not

landscapeis
which

most

hardly have

landscapeto

spot, every

for his moral

less dear

for the

had
constantly

Landscape

visible trace

some

so

of existence

environment.
in his

would

exists. The

link

and

vague

poet

of

ture.
na-

of landscape,

of human

When
life,or merely of his personalexperience.

he

LUCRETIUS

talked

he

of nature

61

generallymoralizing,and

was

altogethersubjectto

the

he talked

of himself, he

part of

of man,

or

uprighthuman

the

nature,

when

but
patheticfallacy;

unfoldinga

was

heart,and

ing
study-

it in its truth.

Lucretius,a poet of universal nature, studied everything


moral

in its truth. Even


much

better understood

did, was
for

view

it

small

as

and

as

part

of the world.

small

and

facultyof
familiar

as

idealization
of

presence

view

in the world.

power
sees

taken

and

human

has
setting,

life and
a

has Wordsworth,
for the

fears her, as

by

her creatures.

torrent

it is the
and

of

universal

of both

view

greater refinement.

to

it be

be loved
a

wind

or

war,

or

than
ture,
Na-

He

loves

and

feared

blowing, a

the magic
bleating,

geniusachievingits purpose,

ruin

in their natural

poet, is reallynature.

lamb

of what

idealism

she deserves

rushing,a

moral

Lucretius, who

maturer

Whether

men.

reason

for all his

Latin

and

human
and

saner

this

part

it. It is

as

image

an

do

ing
habit of liv-

of the central

For

is a

in the life of

would, in everything,be best. But


idealism

they

dependent part of
taken

him

fault of

Idealism

dependent part even

in the

is

It
setting.

This fact is nothingagainstidealism


energy,

by

sung

misrepresentidealism, because

of the world,
a

Wordsworth

better

and

in its natural

being seen

idealists to
not

coldlythan

narrowly and

more

life,
though he felt it

of love,

pestilence,

THREE

62

Lucretius
total

POETS

everything in

sees

One

career.

of

law

PHILOSOPHICAL

breath

change,runs

its causes,

and

in its

of lavish creation,one
the whole,

through

thingskin

in their inmost

end.

Here

is the touch

and

Here
eternity.

elements

of nature

iron
all

making

in their last

and

indeed, her largeness

is the true

echo

of the life

of matter.

Any comprehensive
pictureof
if the
in

picturebe credited,must

reflective and

for what
the

vivid mind

which

objectsfrom

draw

poet might

Lucretius
rich in

poetry, the

It
friendship.
to

speak

denied

take

did not

of the

the world.

livingin

the

any

form

gods they attributed

had

Yet

which

one

but

the

sickly

naturally

are

the

strain of

legitimate

sense,

atheists,since they

government

between

the various

those
worlds.

in

of God

the existence

the human

In

strains which

pietyand

and, in

quiet spaces

whirlpoolswhich
life to which

up, and

they admitted

Yet

doubt.

two

were

Epicureans as

providenceand

losophi
poeticalof phi-

which

strain of

is usual

poem

materialism.

from

materialism, there

on

"

exhaustingthe inspiration

far from

was

least

sublime

point beyond

of Epicurus,even,
philosophy
hold

inspire
poetry

must

it springs?
The

this

proves

emotion, and

arouse

of Lucretius, expounding the

which

destiny,

poetry but emotion, fixingand colouring

is

Lucretius

and

nature

of

gods,

celestial
these

To

form, and the

serene

Epicurushimself
Epicurusaspired.

was

LUCRETIUS

63

sincere in this belief,and

so

that he used

frequentthe temples,keep

to

of the

gods,

images

in

often

and

the

of Hellenism.

essence

other

there
religions,
Survivals

rational

in Greek
what

and

and

revivals

it

and
a

its

was

religionits

rendered

and

worship,

rhetoric
objectified

end; yet if we

characteristic

To

the

Greek, in

sider
con-

tendency,
we

far

so

to
aspiration

an

that

see

he

as

was

like

grow

ing
gods by invokingtheir companionship,rehearsthe glow
story,feelingvicariously

and placingthem,
splendidprerogatives,
of beautiful

and

took
of any
it made

vivid
such

the

place,in
hope

gods;

other.

and

the

Imagine

of Homer,
simplicity

mortals
im-

mind,

immortality;perhaps
superfluousand

seem

one

in the

typicalGreek

the

Mortalitybelongedto
the

fore
constantlybe-

statues,

of human

of their

in the form

sympatheticinterest

hope
a

human

very

his eyes. This

the

in all

disinterestedness,
unprecedentedideality,

aestheticism.

their

to

reforming

of totem-

it distinctively
Greek,

Greek, religionwas

the

carryingout

perstition.
background of vulgar su-

in it to the very

be found

to

their

as
religion,

was

taboo, magic, ritual barter, and


are

the feasts

prayer.

Greek

In

by it,

before

else,Epicurus was

logicalconclusion

its

hours

spend

contemplationand

In this,as in much
to

affected

much

so

the

was

poet who,
should

man,

to

have

as

propriat
inap-

immortality

complement
the

freedom

added

the

of

and
more

THREE

64

PHILOSOPHICAL

idealism

reverent

of

fund
found
a

in this

human

POETS

later age ; and

of

he

might

poetry

conceptionof

life,without

what

the

have

not

immortals

leading

contrarieties

its sordid

limitations, eternallyyoung,

exhausti
in-

an

and
ferent
dif-

frank, and

and

!
Hints

of such

poetry

myths

that

life in

These
pictures.

and

present the

ideal
he

them
pale,calling

embodies

them

by

franker

some

was,

wine

tended

or

into

the

in
been

our

for

chosen,

the

the

the

world

poets

later

to make

this ideal

ancients

immortal

excluding all the

of

other

the mock-scientific,and

of

theless,
Neverancient

logy
mythohave

themselves, had

they

of their

dying

Epicurus do
the

on
religion;
uses

then

it would

easy

poetry out

denials

use

how

the

of classic

echoes
irrepressible

his

diverted

was

to

Plato

was

channel.

Hebrew

tonic
Pla-

turned

years

whole

the

show
literature,
the

imaginary

reactionary
poet than
as

he

carried further

been

of modern

hymns

The
superstitions.

moral

have

become,

into

general

Republic.This

Imaginationflagged,or

Greek

the

gods, and

to,

vinegar.But

gettingsour.
from

might

human

times

at other

in detailed

of his

and less

leaves

sometimes

in deities,or

of mind

in Plato,

found

suggestionsof

ideas ; but

constructions, like that


habit

be

to

are

of it

not

clude
ex-

contrary, by

the commercial,

"

the selfish
"

they

leave the

standingalone,
interpretative
aspectof religion

THREE

66

PHILOSOPHICAL

the green

on

by

grass

word

"together"is

what

must

flowingbrook

all he

the

be

POETS

chief

but

vouchsafes

the little

ingredientin

mark

to

us

such

rural

happiness.
Horace, usuallyso much
is less cursory
oftener
and

the

here. Not
of

note

agreement.

mutual

the sweet

is to

in

believe

to

he should
in

have

which

without

are

for

austere, he
of

in

at
"

bubble

once

or

from

up

feels

twice

vague

Perhaps

to

then

and

always

be

noted

where
friendship,
bodies

again we

life may

even

that

was

serious
the

us

be

possible
imand

choly
melan-

nature

has

mortal, is rich also


may

he lets the

the heart

shown

fear. Yet, if it

least have

for

and

pleasuresof

and

need

sympathy, and
that

isolated and

melancholy. This

where

he

might

on

uncompromising fervour

care

not

gence
intelli-

be

now

him

assume

it would

those

friendship

minds

made

unbent

detail what

some

the

In Lucretius,
friendship.

of his

much

askingtoo

is to

mutual

assume

humour.

mightierthan

artifice of

of human

savour

the other hand, zeal is mightierthan


scorn

expected

and

gentlyironical

and
intelligence;

mind

joy in tastingwith

pungent

or

be brief and

things.To

and

is,in the very charm

There

few

his whole

of friendliness

his lines,a sort of confidential

kindred

he strike much

does

only

but
friendship,

breathe

temper

than Lucretius,
slighter

find in Horace,

"something bitter"
of this flower, when

survives

and
satiety,

LUCRETIUS

perverselyfor

yearns

when
to be

the

could

they

carried

but

other

the

his system. To

historyof

To

materialism

all

the

of all the

beauties

pageantry of

is calculated
the

by
of

of

is not

in its

bodies.

for
1

iv.

lam
Sed
Manat

beautiful

of the

human
in

animus

meas

poet

should
to

half he is aware

by

all the

itself,a capitalsubject for

credula

rara

illusions

imagination,superstition

spes animi
!

the

surrounded

but

heu

refine

half,and makes

meaner

comedy,

cur,

The

blinds him

it reinforces

nee

and

but
superstition,

naturalistic

and
totality,

only moving

Horace, Odes,

vigorous

dramas, with

animal

studies

the

its more

products of

tragedy and

whole

suggested to Epicurus

nothing.His

distrust his version

other

and

thingsand by

and

object,to

of. Seen

abstention

enemy;

be the enemy
half the

the

less natural

no

or

Lucretius
vulgarpassion.
an

are

sketches

this world, surveyed scientifically

of material

flux

only as

us

arts,

into

wonderfullyto strengthen and

philosophyof
the

add

national

days

our

weave

Lucretius

consistent

flowers

are

in
to

might

personaland

than
interesting

Epicurusmight

poeticthemes

picturewhich

mankind.

of

materialist

we
primitivecivilization,

moral

reans,
Epicu-

learn, like their master,

not

materialism

poet;

find many

might
of

Poor
impossible.1

saints !

So far the decadent


have

67

mutui

Ligurine, cur
lacrima

per genas?

the

ma-

THREE

68

PHILOSOPHICAL

terialistic way
be

extended

spheresof
lesson

the

to

The

have

and

which

from

involved

action,

place of

serious,and

are

rather
a

than

not

he

with

the

mechanism

believed

trying to

explainthem.

to

more

"

escape

his

and

his

though

case,

doctrines

we

in,

with

necessarily

poet sought to clarifythem.

that which

associated

emotions

are

whatever
standing,

curean
Epi-

fortified.

in life.They will exist in any

this

remain

and

denials
religious

necessarilyassociated

which

the

to

imagination would

Lucretius
his

Epicurean

opened

his maxims

and

void, with

abstentions

independence

of nature

dimension

new

emotions

atoms

bringshome

transform

enlargeand

enriched

been

not

facts

His
spectacleof folly.

varied

emotional

contradictingEpicurean principles,

much

poet

it may

time, a naturalism

same

moral

History would

sentiment.

in

the

that

and

of tolerance,scepticism,
and

very

have

At

shows

complex

most

existence.

which, without
would

thinking,and

over
impartially

extended
a

of

POETS

If the ideas

will

They
put

that
from

by

in the

is, if we
the facts

embodied

philosophyrepresenta comprehensivesurvey

of

in the presence

of

will have

to

the facts,and

them, any

acquirethe

mature

ideas

new

same

morally except

sentiment

adopted instead

values,and nothing will be changed


the

language

or

euphony

of

the

mind.
Of

course

one

theory of

the

world

must

be

true

LUCRETIUS

applicableto reality
; but

theory are

false resides in

like the

it which

of

there

are

nature,

the

of

we

powers

at least there

life. If

to

intrusions

equally external

must

bow,

of

and

Lucretius

chance;

groundless

bowed

always be importantand

surrounds

between

us;

and

materialism

is that

and

other
has

inevitable

method

of

if

soul

our

is not;

Lucretius
are

one.

are,

to

its

was

Emerson

deaths, as if
what

lously
scrupu-

the

and

lives

much
we

are

we

are

mortal

which

ciled
recon-

needed

if

to

have

we

face

only

been

and

says:

losingis

This is
This
Star

maxim

as

spect
re-

steadilychanging

sentiment

is

gradual losingof

This

The

death

to

face many

The

the

more

wrong,

Our
possessions.
and

ates
gener-

dependence.

our

soul is immortal, it is nevertheless


its interests and

to

systems in this

studied

if Lucretius

even
Similarly,

his

to

perhapsthe only difference

materialism

the detail and

of

dialectics of progress,

external, something that


recognizesomething
or

truth

be habits

must

these

as

theory

the

is its truth

grasps

providence,or

It will

atoms.

the true

imagination,and

laws of evolution, or

or

before

and

poet

atoms,

no

decrees

or

false,at least if the categoriesof any

the rest

and

69

true

dying;

lordlyman's

down-lying.
his slow but sure
reclining.
by star his world resigning.

of Lucretius, that

nothing

arises

save

THREE

70

the

by

PHILOSOPHICAL

of

death

immortality.

enjoying

what

will

tell

that

gives

of

the

perennial

us

of

doctrines

literal

and

from

alike

flux

evil,

and

is

man.

tell

of

which

are

or

the

ways

images,
will

complete

hearts

of

visit

of

meeting
same

all

the

nounce,
re-

The

parables.
they
the

about

another

thoughts
poets.

poet

clothes

where

one

will

must

wisdom

guesses

faith,

the

we

cosmic

many

symbolic,

the

that

us

disagree

or

in

Goethe,

Thus

mere

"

agree

expressive

are

in

philosophers

they

experience

same

truths

arbitrary,

but

they

will

also

of

poet

Then

and

are

known;
un-

where

by

wrung
all

sophies
philothe

recording

vicissitudes

generations,

our

and

afford

peace

portion.

perpetually.

moral

the

our

in

accepting

being

our

find

experience,

same

of

Dante,

must

still

us

art

of

limited

renounce

meets

his

conditions

we

our

romantic

the

And

application.

that

us

else,

something

crawling

has

POETS

of

while

good
man

THREE

74

PHILOSOPHICAL

this

plainthat
other

any

the

things,he

I would

he

other

read

them

the

was

formed
I

These

hopes

of money,

and

fast

as

better

As
disappointed!

of their

largesum

know

I could,

as

and

the

and

how

other

Thus

one

instead

and

the world

who

of

yet this

is the

would

if anyone

vovs

from

'*

mind

"to

'*

as

trough.
they

into

another

are

their

good; of

Atlas

of

and
everlasting

more

the

good they

which
principle

Plato, Phaedo, 97fl-99c, Jowett's


of

to discover

the

teach

findingany superior
strength

of the

containingpower

as

enters

never

strongerand

containingthan

air

is a sort of broad

best

expect

is

air,

steadies

gives the

arrangingthem

in

any

to

all round, and

vortex

for the

them

in it,they rather

and

or

eccentricities.

heaven; another

which

power

arranges

more

found

the earth, which

support to

minds

the

by

other

water, and
makes

man

the earth

Any

ously
griev-

of order, but having recourse


principle

ether, and

and

worse.

proceeded,I

forsakingReason
philosopheraltogether

my

agine
im-

disposer

account

be

want

not

the

as

best.

I had
expectations

"What

give any
was

not

I could

Reason

and
to

eagerness

spoke of

sold for

I seized the books


in my

that this

have

not

For

cause.

would

being,except

I should

explanationgiven,and

of

sort

that when
of

the best,and

was
position

satisfied with

POETS

and
obligatory
think

I would

nothing;
fain learn

me."1

translation.

reason."

I have

changed

ing
the render-

DANTE
Here

Things

have

might
his

by

duty

himself

and

compositionof
the

move

The

is

world

motives.

work

And

these

had

the better and


lives. For

the

would

not

instance, the

be

to the

to

ground. Now,

front

of the

nobler

"

if he

man

obviate

the

side

the

poets of

study
of

our

of

own

had

to

con-

its

nose

of

study
mouth

eat-

(
JV
\r

would

not

side) had

sophy.
philoin the

are

(saysPlato) the
front

be

useful ; therefore

are

and

if the back

(and the

this

necessityof

is the

eyes, nose,

as

as

its

by

not

guess,

grazing animal, with

head, because

side,

by

man,

philosophy;but

intestines

the nobler
the

of

of

Again, the

such

preted,
inter-

ing
highestoccupation,accord-

long intestines

long

of nature.

conscientious

the time,

cause

that, are

be

must

we

might

as

It must
of

the

reasons

or

in the conduct

possiblefor
a

the

Such

order

actions

study

like
tinually
feeding,

ing all

by

worse

Plato, is the

to

the

mythology,

invented, but

he

by

not

this

decree

reason.

motives

fanciful dramatic

old

of

the
interpret

we

as

muscles.

publicassembly to

as

is best,of his

actions,such grounds

our

or

prison,when

of what

and

uses

is to be understood

given in explanationof

be

to

his bones

give for

we

as

their

his country, and

to

phy.
philoso-

new

antecedents;

or

escapedto Euboea,
his notion

by

sits in his

Socrates

to
allegiance

to

understood

their elements

by

fact that

the

of

programme
be

to

are

not

purposes,

the

have

we

75

front is

have

been

the

eyes,

"

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

76

and

nose,

mouth

chorus

Malade

the

All

the

physicsenough;

though he forgotsometimes

"

What
playful.

were

it is

is rather

remember

all,the

of

use

is

And

it

say

that

make

they

them

are

What
possible.

Its

is true

is to

use

virtue

and
happiness,

Plato
parables,
the

in your

the

these

of the

you

of

of the

whole

good

"

says

with

rulingforce
will have

his whole

in the

many

must

be.
to

uses

that

organs
particular

frame
make

to

understood

hundred

years

you

of

why

and
is fertile,

yieldto

school

of

life,

supreme

spheres

mankind

yieldto
T"
aspiration.
must

Dis-

Evoke

the

why

will have

universe.

essence

exists. Observation

art
political

may

Therefore, speaking
possible.

revolve, why the earth


suffers and

or

body

organs

is true

the
rapt aspiration

good,and

It took

vindicate

of action,and
rightprinciple

\discovered

of the

use

body

the

serve

now

morality.

the

"causes"

the

substances

or

nature.

dignifyand

to

seems

The

originof

the

us

is that it is a narcotic;no

opium

is the mind, whatever

sics
phy-

this childish
serious

Plato

that his

"

that, under

it is one.
why, physically,

matter

is to

but

important for

there
metaphoricalphysics,
After

of which

nature

slumber.

senses

this is ridiculous

knew

| cover

is what

when
Imaginaire,

virtue,the

dormitive

make

in

method

singsthat opium puts peopleto sleepbecause

it has

to

there 1 This

been

ridicules in Le

Moliere

POETS

tic;
dialec-

for the revolution

to

DANTE

looked

mankind

of civilization. In

intellectually
long before,
Fathers

of the

and

in that
poetically,

all the sanctions


it.There

world, and
them.
inert

host of

and

was

the

environment

sired, the sole

Having
mankind

and

essence

evil in all their


which

task

; a

in almost

They

battle-groundbetween

legion of

So

demons.
as

"

better

Socrates

de-

thinking part

grades,and
Dante

moral

of

fining
to dein their

brings to

distinctions

visible

shapes,as

materialized

the terms

Plato

philosophyinto existingobjectsand
highestgood

The

did
earnestlyand exclusively

they speculate about


his ideas.

and

sin and

all its energies


henceforward

perfectconclusion.
them

cleavagefor

of ideal purposes

Socratic, the

become

good

saw

lines of

the

of understanding.
principles

devoted

ultimate

cleavage in

conflict betwreen

was

and

assimilated

been

actually become,

had

worse

complete morally

lines of

compound

angels and

completed

reinterpret
everything,

to

Life^wasa

matter.

grace. The
a

time

moral
substituting

Nature

complete,

all the habits of the mind

natural

the
obliterating

is

been

publiclife had

been

cycle

and
Neoplatonists

Church), but

of

had

in the

Greek)

next

the revolution

Dante

the

was

in the

(forit had
merely intellectually

not

to

(forhe

was

become

to

was

propheticgenius,and

he

what

from

away

what

to

had

itself out ; Plato

work

77

in Plato

stillchiefly
a

that
had

they
seen

of their moral
powers.

The

ideal,
political

THREE

78

of

the aim

PHILOSOPHICAL

policyand

of the world.

The

became

art

became

"

various

POETS

stages or
in the

persons

soul. Evil
of

stages

smothered
This

the

of perfection

lower

or

The

rious
va-

to

the

weighted

that
sparkof divinity
be

of the

types

ascribed

bodies, which

animated

and

them.

released; then

its parent fire and

flyup againto

angelic

or

matter.

imperfectionwere

spark, however, might

would

elements

identified with

was

of various

grossness

creator

Godhead,

aerial demons,
or
intelligences,
animal

God, the

it

soul would

be saved.
This
nature

philosophywas
evolution

or

them.

upon

discerned
these
of and

The
and

is

then

but it

was

in.

Plato, and

In this way
forces

for the

ideal of excellence

pinefor
were

and

this

when
it

can

to

came

But

pass

if

be

they

of evil

exist outside:

must

The

man

compound

beckons

not.

are

values

in nature.

perfectform, they

ing
symboliz-

another

long ago,

was

been

firsttalked

been

when

moral

working

and

nature

judgement

serious

history
; and

has lived

matter

in

of
description

of powers,

Myth,

pass for

in nature, which

we

mythicalbevy

it,can

regarded as

what

serious

good, the better,the best,had

believed

for revelation.

worked

degreesof excellence,had

has invented
man

not

from

afar ; it is

forces that worked

accordinglysupernaturalvirtues,
; each

supernaturalincubus,

guardian angel,or

natural

thing had

dominations, and powers

its

devil

DANTE

possessedit. The

that

moral

was

effect of

an

in life
Into

it

was

miraculous

earth.

The

for which

action

had

the

that

life.
en-

cosmos

shalled
beings,mar-

this vile

but

supplieda
rably
admi-

stage seemed

the whole

stages.There

lower
be

might

salvation. In

of descent
it again,was

from

Platonic.

the

good eternallyshed

and

received

of love and

to

human

race,

perpetual.The
had

double

this

even

ascent

the

and

was

towards

without

light,

increase

rays that, in the form


the ends

to it from

monotonous

of

this

the Platonist

movement

fountain

ception
con-

Platonists,

diation
ra-

both

eternal. The

was

or

rather

significant
history,but only

like that of

fall,and

were
focusingof aspiration

the world
no

sense,

its vital influence,like

accordingto

of life and

been

According to

reflected
itself)

But

had

good, and

thought,reverted

the universe.

of
history

the

(thoughunawares

of excellence

world

; everything

through these
singlesoul, passedsuccessively

higher and
there

lower

Christians

fitted,a story in which


or

conceived

circles,around

in concentric

dramatic

the world

historyto symbolic

higher and

were

of

istence
ex-

the world

something beyond

Platonists

there

an

fitted easily.
It
Christianity

by adding

pivotallump

to

and

power

Everything in

us.

step

cosmology. The
in which

something beyond

this system

riched

"

all about

was

"

that is,something

supernatural

regardedas

ideal

or

79

playingfor

ever,

the

ment
moveor

like

THREE

80

the

PHILOSOPHICAL

circulation

the clouds
This

in rain and

fall,or
the

was

of water

in

merely
from

God.

had

to be

If

the

evil for the

and
the

was

of the

being,fixed

God

return

conflict

deity,
sisted
con-

to

creature

of

revert

sential
es-

the

on
aspiration

various

types which

an

types

of

led up, like

the ineffable

temple,to

were

its source;

to

expressedin

was

exist, it

Salvation, on

current

"

the

to

was

to existence.

in the eternal,

steps of

from

vapour.

Platonists; evil

anything besides

which
aspiration

the

of the world

and
imperfect; instability

hand,

part

from
always falling

otherness
finitude,materiality,
or

to finitude

other

that is

always risingagain in

emanation

originof

POETS

good

the

at

top.
In

the

became

Christian

only

creation, the

this

system

true

only
a

scene,

fall,and

The

once.

the

historical drama,

material

play; and

of mankind,

of
especially

The

and

persons

events

import ; each
plan.Each
in

some

Jews

material; even

this

world

playwas

Israel and

of this

be

the

of the

part

in

never

some

propriat
ap-

Church.
a

sophic
philodential
provivation
sal-

level.
particular

felt uncomfortable

in the other world

history

illustrated creation,sin,and
on

curring
oc-

only

was

historyhad

played some

degree,and
had

true

salvation;all

true

stage-setting,
designedexpresslyto
for the

The

circulation

figureor symbol expressingthe

being reallyepisodesin

three

cosmic

at

they hoped

being
to

re-

THREE

82

PHILOSOPHICAL

POETS

! Not merely their personal


ically
prudence,but
zeal
religious

corporate and
bad

which

conduct

With

desolation.
in mind,
and

they

framed

far

so

to

as

casual sin of

with

not

was

of conduct

of

continually
all

of sin.

suffering,

Finallythey

evil in all creation

and

the

to

the taint of it transmitted

to

; thus

the suffering

passingover

of all creatures

indifference

an

that

abomination

theory that

attribute

first man,

death

the

the wages

to his descendants

and

and

the

abhor

It
prosperity.

the lessons

death, were

even

went

defeated

wickedness

but
folly,

mere

them

made

their

that

that would

are

have

man
hu-

not

astonished

the Hindoos.
of things,
in
imperfection

The

due

was

accidents

to

the Platonic

view,

their

and

source

in their

their

Just

so,

like the

the Jews

had

by

existence
the

harmony

by

come

conceived

in

as

virtue of

with
some

or^death of

Christ.

salvation

and

as

val
revi-

greatness,to be

patienceand
miracles

tremendous

elect,with

of
fidelity

the

superveningto

ward
re-

fall and

demption
re-

virtues.

these
Thus

should

view,

from
separation

It is in

incarnation

of their national

brought about

end.

Hebraic

operation;not,

their essential

to

this that salvation too

specialact,

the

their

historical. And

was

to

conceptionof

man

of

the

this

was

of the
a

vantage
great ad-

their
imaginationinheriting

system; for the personages

and

the

miracles

that

DANTE

figuredin
for

their sacred

histories afforded

work

fancy to

83

from
patriarchs

The

and

upon,

for the arts to depict.

Adam

deliverance

the

tradition

livingin

draw,

he drew

was

the Church,
at the

rich fund,
which

on

time

same

from

Dante

could

the

parallel

he also inherited. To

these

and

dignityhe
Church

had

the Fathers

as

of his

time

own

doing, into

were

importance besides
have

to

soul

the

Israel

to

for

moral

some

that

to

upon

rear

foundation
'*

Est

pro

was

state

or

sense

fundamento

of

Thomas

which

to

veritas

it
the

to

moral

some

as

he

peated
re-

vited
in-

day, was

interpretations
spiritual

of the narrative,which

always

tenenda

the

gospelof

hold

for the others.1 In

positionesfabricandae."
conclusio.

the

structure

the literal
he

on

losophe
phi-

came
Every episodebe-

Every preacher in Christendom,


principle.
homily

the

in exile, or

of sin.

conscious

symbol

his

of the

ethics.

new

seemed

Christian

all

philosophical

sacred historyacquiredfor
interpreted,
a

had

lend

done, into the Neoplatoniccosmology,

the Aristotelian
So

fit them,

only to

the doctors

as

or,

had

incidents

much
familiar

classic tradition which


Biblical persons

the law

and

all this and

"

kings

deluge, the

thunders

exile

fillsthe Bible

that

as

Egypt, the

temple, the

of Sinai, the
more

of

out

the

down,

prophets,the creation, Eden,

and

rich subject

and
world

historiae

Aquinas,

Summa

theless
never-

preserve

as

made

God

by

exdesuper spirituales
i. quaest. 102,
Theologiae,

et

THREE

84

for the

PHILOSOPHICAL

illustration

of his

intention
the

and

them.

The

flames

of fire and

historical facts. The

people;it
with

was

the

the order
of moral

of the
life

on

for which

all her

embodied

were

the

in the

Hebrew

hope.The

generationto generation,
"

Greek

tradition

brought him

These
philosophy.

moral

had

Although

this

and
imagination,

only interest; or

his own,

fusing all

enthusiasm.
poetical

personaland

the

and

natural

and

Dante's

it

rather

the

The

great

generaltheme, yet

into

vidential
pro-

be transmitted

guide to

he

put

theology theories

of orthodox

theology.

theology was
his

types

gether,
contributions, joined to-

Christian

made

of

to

"

in

tradition

the consciousness

a great earthlytask,
history,

from

fight.

channels

they were

and
heavenlyspheres,

mind

dren
chil-

mysteriesand

were

that

earth. Thus

all

chosen

the

they should

facts

graces

Dante's

brought to

Ghost

institution,
political

privatesoul

moral

same

heir to

was

all those

for the

rection
resur-

giftof tongues, were

Church

is

creation,

Holy

this world, in which

time

sacraments

for the

the

share, and

same

of the

coming

historic and

an

destiny in

should

the

there

deluge,the incarnation,crucifixion,and

with

his

events,

symbolical;for

proprietybehind

of Christ, the

At

glory,things and

also

be

though real, must

POETS

one

moral

fusion

the traditional

was

into
and

not

was

work
frame-

visions

unity and

of

one

perfectbetween

elements.

He

threw

DANTE
love into the

and
politics

melting-pot,and they,too,

impuritiesand

lost their

85

refined

were

Theology became,
religion.
in

and,
guardian of patriotism,

angel of

the

sense,

The

one.
largelyoriginal

that

last for

ever.

different

same

so

far

his
like

own.

sex

country

rational

Very
him

right,or

want

the

must

is

ging
constantlychan-

of

cal
geographi-

diversities between

right,to

reasonable

rivals and

of them

its

ities.
peculiar-

must

of his

enemies

inevitable
an

and

days,
nowa-

irrational

man's

patriotismhas

to
allegiance

such

different

the

to

the

try,
coun-

pathetic as
accident,

to
allegiance

conditional,at least if he is

was

that

something

product

of

thing
some-

imaginationpermits,share

complexion,a
be

has caused

irrational;each

Nationalitybeing
or

is

The

is just and

patriotismas

His

For

It is the

his

its extreme

sense,

its ideals; it is

are

as

patriotismof
"

only from

and

it deserves.

nations

who

man

sublime

and
inapplicable,

historical accidents.

has the

is

yesterday,that

arose

and

and
our

it

less than

its limits
cannot

strangelyliteral

country, in the modern

man's

sophic
philo-

his mind, the

to

of Dante

It suffers

makes

it to be studied

love.

theory
political

which
ideality,

into

be

subordinated

thingsas justiceand
situation

the love of country could

in Dante's
be

his

losophe
phito

manity.
hu-

case.

something ab-

THREE

86

PHILOSOPHICAL
at the

solute,and

moral.

was
allegiance

heads, like the

were,

by
pope

different
should

of the
lands

and

should
the

on

"

He

to

the

be

other

An

commissions.

in them,

betray or
them,
The

was

the

should

bear

though
end, al-

same

spheres.

and

earth

on

that. The

guard

two

peace

emperor,

and

princesthe
had

powers

divine

resist these

accordinglya

evils from

which

of such

been
and

or
rights,

to

found
con-

sin of the first magnitude.

societysuffered

were

The
transgressions.

acquiredtemporalpower,

which

was

the emperor,

and

pope

alien to his

office ; besides,he had become


purelyspiritual
of the French
king,who was (what no king
with

lation
regu-

through all history.

had

war

justice

nating
providential
design,culmi-

consequence

at

was

through specialmiracles

the

be)

pline
disci-

witness, in all

life

free cities or

evident
ran

both

in the other world,

existence

preparationfor

God

the

and

faith

fact that

hand, should

by

Rome;

in different

over

of local affairs. These


established

two

and

pope

to the

and

watch

everywhere,leavingto

To

in

seat

means

to
merely a preliminary

and

the

eagle,

had

by right,universal potentates;

Church.

ages,

claiminghis

political
body

direct their government

should

The

This

their

have

should

both

he found

political
body quite ideal,providential,
heraldic

Both

something reasonable,

What

universal.

and

emperor.

time

same

deliberate,and

POETS

rebellious

tool

should

against

DANTE

indeed, the
imperialauthority;

the supreme

actuallybeen

was

sign of

outward

Caesar, and

and

Romans
native

Germany,

if the whole

as

the

and

here

Dante,

as

Catholic

Had

Florence

of its

been

the

and

stock, and
?

thought, for

the

that

the world

taint

then

moral

budding

age

ruin. He

walls
"Then

in the

held
the

one

of

when

to

the

the

one-fifth

city abided

try,
its indus-

decadence

his ancestor,

only

manners.

historyof

literature. But

time

its

contaminated

"

Cacciaguida,
praisethe
of the

its Roman

onlyjustbeginning,

makes

Roman

austerityin

had

great

seemed

the

Dante
responsible,

was

Florence

worthy

purity of

immigrants

refinements, arts, and


that

was

prevalentcorruptionof

has made
was

Florence
the

and

authorityof

double

and
simplicity

this

the

his

passed into

its duties

to

Empire?

Alas, Etruscan

its blood, and

All

true

Roman

patriotismof

Roman,

it maintained

colony.Had

princelings,

patriotismas_a_Florejjtine.

under
privileges,

Church

laws

and

actual

and

narrower

his

by righthis country,

not

larger,theoretical

the

of the

in
loitering

its forests and

were

emperor,

King

was

the

his solicitude.

objectof

And

Avignon,

sacrament,

of

fond

was

among

world

he

had

pope

disgrace.The

inward

forgottenthat

in his turn, had

for

of satanic

sort

an

Rome

abandon

to

seen

which

act

"an

87

Dante
and

crusader

narrow

cuit
cir-

habitant
of its later in-

in peace,

sober

THREE

88

and

PHILOSOPHICAL

chaste."1 The

the cradle,and

POETS

or
pliedthe distaff,

women

their children

to
prattled

legends of Troy, Fiesole,and


turn

girdlefar

no

own

person.

birth of

The

would

was

great

was

greater.Florence,

in
assisting

Paradiso,

houses

none

97, 99

xv.

not

of the

dalla cerchia

dentro

Si stava

sobria

in pace,

to

emperors

antica

Non

catenella, non

avea

Non

donne

Che
Non

fosse

faceva

corona,

veder

piu

nascendo

che

ancor

al padre, che
figlia

La

cintura

contigiate,non

la persona.
paura

il tempo

la dote

la misura.

fuggian quinci e quindi


di famiglia vote ;
case
avea
Non
v' era
Sardanapalo
giunto ancor

Non
Non

O fortunate
Delia
Era
L'

una

cio che

mostrar

! Ciascuna

Che

vegghiava
prima

studio

padri e

Favoleggiava

certa
ancor

nulla

alia
con

della culla,

1' idioma

usava

L' altra traendo

De'

era

puote.

nel letto deserta.

Francia

consolando

si

camera

sepoltura,ed

sua

per

in

le madri

rocca

la

sua

were

graced
disall ;

trastulla ;

la chioma,

famiglia

Troiani, di Fiesole, e di Roma.

from
their

traitorously,

pudica.

cessive,
ex-

Florence, faction

Fiorenza

Ibid.,100-26

were

was

had foughtagainstthem
rights,

universal

to be

imperialcity,far

an

restitution

the

to

curse

her

frighten

not

This
orgies.2

wore

than

have

not

in exile ;

being

unmentionable

for if luxury

admiration

daughterdid

could

woman

marriagepremature. No

her

by

of the heroic

unpainted; she

deservingof

more

their masters

empty,

her face

good burgher; her dowry


nor

glasswith

her

from

Rome.

rocked

THREE

90

sustained

PHILOSOPHICAL

and
the

Italyas

cumulative.

Hebrew

make

there

be

the

and

their

for

philosophy,
any
missed
human

of

than

the great

of their

or

Behind

he
history,

he had

should
to

be

the

and

in his

true

trade

be sure,

are

universal
the

narrow

of

ceptions
con-

for the moral

the

insight

good
political
"

and

that mankind
obvious

the merchant.
socialist,

Science

"

theory,that

outsider

different

very

to that

of the

that

might

see

idea. And

Catholic

church

form,

the

Church,

itself to

in that

to

this

ideal of

societya symbol or premonitionof


spiritual

rightof
or

great aims

is now

literally
by

the

phets,
pro-

A
well-being.

our

dream

realization
practical

is maintained
and

political

Hebrew

nothingfrom

day seemed

giving,in

other half of his

day;

subtract

the
idealist,

powering.
quite over-

sense

great commonwealth

one

woe

the

into the difference between

evil.What

strong,and

Dante's

and

that reallycondition
principles
better science need

judgements,

mythicaland

had

of soul,

very

that of the

causes

their

part of either,

that their wholeness

that at bottom
more

progress.

the

on

impending weal

does it seem

signsof

criticaljudgement

facts
particular

on

contemporary

the

our

propheticabsoluteness

sense

Nor

read

illusions

doubt

no

their hold

made

allowance

for generous

can

Dante

prophetsread

times; and whatever


may

POETS

the mind

of the

common

to freedom

from

sions,
legalcompul-

of honest
allegiance

minds

to

DANTE

science, and

their

to

91

spiritual
heritageand

common

destiny.
the

On

of his

like the enthusiasm

wrongs,

warmth

wonderful

hand, the sting of Dante's

other

imagination.We

of his

them

the

to

little

Dante
keenly and sincerely.
art of

his

lover

Platonic

diminished.
rentinus

had

He

of power

want

feel

we

enlargethe objectof
and

ardour

banished

of it unFlo-

unjustly
"

it did not

but

fester,in his heart

all wrong,

indignationspreadto

in that

Dante
corrupt and perfidious.

loved.

of that

memory
not

love had
and

largerobjectand

been

spark of

that "love

comfort,
Paradiso,

and

143-45

xxxin.

L'

come

amor

had

known,
The

henceforth

rota

che

move

il mio

disiro

il velle,

egualmente
il sole

moves

in that

His
the
velation,
re-

full of sweetness,

ch'

it did

spheres,the

light.

Volgeva
Si

The

his adoration

which

of the universe.

angels,the sciences,were

they

less accidental.

one

the other stars."1 He


the secret

also, but

for
degenerateinto sentimentality;

passedto

sun

had

passion remained

thundered

and

againstFlorence, Europe, and mankind,


were

to

exul immeritus, he liked to call himself. That

rankled,
injustice
for his

kept from

had, in this respect,the

warmth

been

often

jects
great ob-

thingswhich

he could

and keep the


passion,

the

to

too

are

feelinggreat things greatly for


assimilate

privateloves, lent

clearness

and

private

raossa,

1'altre stelle.

THREE

92

PHILOSOPHICAL

Of this Platonic

expansionof emotion,

all that deserves


version

the

to

younger

of another

eighteen; of

to

feigned another

no

meeting

the

keep

poet

had

and

he could
been

ever

clear
absolutely
work

of

and
mystical,
and

The

learned

death
to

praiseher

little
of

that he

so

quent
conse-

of Beatrice,

speak publicly
in such wise

of the most

and in versification.

veiled

perfectin

tender.

meaning

stained

problem.It

glass,
geometrical,

of
singular
limpidity
is

in

is a matter

It
imagination.

for
must

accent

combined
strangely

and

light
de-

charade.

ever

of these confessions
those

but

their artful structure,

disputefor

perhaps not

tations,
medi-

meanings,

scholastic distinctions

will

as

praisedbefore.]

in sentiment

traceryand

learned

are

even

blind ; of

not

as
hiding and hinting,

basis and

meeting,at

much

so

of the

in their

and

pieceswith

in

the

as

naivete,
image, a singular

in these

book,

musical
dreamlike, allegorical,

are

ambiguous

secret,

resolved

both
exquisitedelicacy,

They

derful
won-

her at the age

with poems
story is interspersed

This

like

with

This

of Dante's

attachment

again,until

woman

Nuova.

have

Beatrice, a child

estrangement;

of her

Vita

tillit suffuses

overwhelming mysticpassionwhich

an

the lover wished

whereupon

it,we

account

an

of nine, with

age

kindle

in Dante's

the surface,is

on

POETS

best

on

the

of Dante.
fitted to

tact
literary

and

exact

The
solve
pathetic
sym-

be left to the delicate

DANTE
of
intelligence

His

the reader, if he has

does

not, Dante

wish

not

to

criticism,I think

we

mediaeval

in the

of what
this matter
there

but

is

which
above
This

the

hobbies
peculiar

before

the

after the

is that universal

eternallyin

how

his mind

the

horse, etc., after which

to

in

or

to

which, in

be restored, either
force of nature,

or

by
by

case

the

stractio
ab-

all. Now,

disputedabout;
orthodox

mind

the

or

of the

tion,
soluage,

to

natures

exist

and
particulars,
he

before

notions
the

particulars,

them

terms

intended

he

such

heresies of individuals.

or

for God,
particulars:

world, knew

modelled,

much

true

and
particulars,

the

by
particulars,

comprehensive and

one

represents the

solution

the

that

was

natures,

or

to

undoubtedly

was

days

before

common

was

read

may

those

after the

or
particulars,

in

instance, in any

terms

humanity, existed

pretations,
inter-

time, and

philosophyyou
universal

question whether

learned

the various

For

great subject of dispute in

or

him.

mutually exclusive.

not

are

simultaneous.

are
practice,

man,

sphere of

literalness,in Dante's

and

Symbolism

as

to

againstthe
protection

say this

may

in this matter,

his heart

the

passingbeyond

historyof

if he has

uncongenialminds.

of

Without

his

it;and

open

is his

manner
enigmatical

intrusion

93

make
of

made

the

it,and

had

perfectman,

were
particulars

of accident,

healing and

the ministrations

to

be

they were
tive
recuperaof grace.

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

94

universal

But

terms

since
particulars,
shared

mind

of man,

could

not

deny

: for
particulars

often

in them;

recur

mind, is
three

of the

any

view, which, in every


such

of Beatrice.

We

such

this

lady,as easilyas

have

called forth the

Vita

donne,

Nuova,
e

s' adunaro

of

" 22

uomini

cola,

con
ove

Secondo

questa

Also, Purgatorio,xxxi.

Beatrice

50, 51

and

fui,e

no

person,

pecially
es-

Dante

reason

why

should
our

not

poet.

sopradetta cittade, donne


cotale

tristizia; molte

piangea pietosamente, "c.

belle membra
sono

in the

terpreta
inallegorical

Le
Rinchiusa

there

; and

passionof

della

si adunino

actually

occasion
see

can

dreamful

1' usanza

uomini

in the

of Beatrice, and

other

any

an

which

sympatheticpoem.1 1

see

Catholic.

there

Nuova

the death

as

to

point of

was

Portinari

hardlyadmit

that of her father,on


a

time

Vita

in the

not

natural

me

also.

term

mentary
independentdocu-

on

Bice

certain

which

Commedia

it

common

mediaeval

to

seems

have

incidents

many

the

things,

postfacto

ex

universal

that in Dante's

lived in Florence

writes

discursive

natural

of the word,

sense

solution

evidence

are

the

this

and

virtue

universals

theories,and

miss

is to
consistency,

Just

by

the

surveying the varietyof

idea, in the human

case

they were

the
helpnoticingand abstracting

types that

their

what

were

also after the

existed

also in the

illustrated them,
particulars

the

Nevertheless,
participation.

of that

To

existed

natures

or

in them, and

POETS

in terra

in ch' io

sparte.

con

donne

DANTE

That

he had

loved

should

and

why

found

the

language

is certain. Most

one

some

have;

95

of love

love is
and

no

; but

the

love

Dante

and

their

easilybe

and

troubadours

to vibrate

The
disposition.

in the

and
influence
deserve
than

this

him;
if they

they

are

shapeof

seem

"

the fashion
he shared

to

if real
and

in themselves.

some

of

their

visible form

this vision

the actual

to

come

and

"

came

hardly deserve

and
only physically,
His

would

one

sounds

tinuously,
con-

divine

deserves

it more

never

pressed
im-

it either,
for what

creates
sensibility

his

ideal.
If to

deny

the

existence

of

an

once

Beatrice,or

poet. No

who

sightsand

he would

impressed him

in

shapethrough which

of poet

name

Dante?

whether

in every

may

man

beautiful,the unapproachable,the

nothing

only,and

sponsive
re-

that which

and

the average

because

divine, had passed before him


it matters

the most

on

in their hearers.

if he followed

mystics,it was

crossed

harped

it was

natures,

own

made

generation;and

minstrels

the

Dante's

commonly

are

less sensitive than

not

was

of his

language of

poetry of

simply because

stringin
most

The

love

of mystics,
allegories

mystics themselves

stringof

could

in the

veil for his

language of

in the conventional

lovers
potential

or

the

mother-tongue?

usual

doubt

current

was

time

his

been

not

have
particular,

natural

philosophy,if the passionand


had

in

Dante,

people

historical Beatrice

PHILOSOPHICAL

96

THREE

seems

violent

it
gratuitous,

misunderstanding not

worse

is also
in

and

POETS

the

symbol. On

Vita

inevitablyfixed
his

found

profound passionfrom

he chose

another

lady,who

her to Beatrice.
became
gentile,

and

the

to

the

greet him

Schermo

della veritade,

Convito,

ii.

"

cap.

16

sue

ragiona ! Veraraente
guarda, e salvo dalla
secondo

appresso

Imperadore

lo

che

they
them,

with

not

an

ing
refus-

real and

sounds

when
surprise

we

gentile,

If the
love,is philosophy.3

philosophy.

gli occhi
libera

rubatori
della
in voi

drudi

namorai

that

by
displeasure

our

d1 esta Donna

dimostrazioni, le

occhi

negli

questo

is

true

I* anima,

innaraorano

ineffabili sembianti,

fine di

far and

passed.This

natural

Faccia

le

sono

dimostrazioni

love.2 But

herself observed

her

what

donna

v.

"

Donna

intelletto

he

to Dante's

Nuova,

Beatrice, and

and

the Convito,t\\at
the donna

Vita

questa

showed

but

in
expressly,
screen

ceal
con-

stand in the

assiduous

so

going too

as

vi

were

was

purpose,

earthlyenough
read

to

gossipingcrowd,

his true

to

screen

her

to

thinkinghe

honourable

were

eyes

interveninglady,la

This

Beatrice
misinterpreted.

were

him

yond
looking begazing at her, in reality

be

his attentions

His

happened to

direct line of vision between

pretended to

the

read

we

he wished

as

trice
Bea-

himself, in

of Beatrice.

her ; but

upon

much

occasion, as

one

church, in the presence

be

perceive that

to

Dante

Nuova,1

would

morte

dell' universe,

alia

nelle condizioni.

miri; gli occhi di

negli occhi
Oh

della

Filosofia

apparite,quando

mente

la

la salute, per

della

ignoranza
e

affermo

fu la bellissima

che
e

quale Pittagora pose

la Donna,
onestissima
nome

alii suoi

essa

ed

nelle

si fa beato

delli vizi.

che

umana,

quale

dello

dolcissimi

subitani

Trattato, dico

priraoamore,

quali

dritte

chi

cosi, in

di cui io in-

figliadello

Filosofia.

THREE

98

PHILOSOPHICAL

POETS

God, the beatific vision,that alone


and

be the

and

reason

the

of

end

make

can

happy

us

loves and

our

our

pilgrimages.
A

ideal of peace

supreme

the lover, and

moves

easilynamed

than

which

beatific vision, he

our

notion

value

does not
the attitude
real

it

to

it contains
him

causes

an

in the

image

any

ideal does not

articulate,but rather
towards

all the

coordinate

of

goods

not

by

and

to

an

evils,and

ultimate

no

ideal is
but

condemning

stood

him

more

or

moral

less
titude
at-

judge

hierarchy

and

persons,

or

in

tendency. So
mere

derstood,
un-

vision of the

powerfuland passionate

the orator.

It is the voice of his

sorrow,

lenging,
chalidealizing,

the world.

It is here that the feverish


Dante

events

and

hate, of his hope


or

value

to

to have

this world, to

their real nature

force in the poet and


or

much

personalimpressionor instinct,but

dreamer,
philosophical

love

so

consistent

thingsof

in

be better to say

Utopia
a

pher
philosotowards

assume

interests,to establish

our

casual

accordingto

to take

but
positively,

mean

fancy,any

quate.
inade-

and

poet or

that

over

vague

experience.Or perhapsit would

that to have

and

be

of the notion

which

times

many

says

lie in what

of

last canto

the

In

of this ideal must

The

sky, is more

is attempting to describe

Dante

the

the

moves

understood.

the Paradiso, where

perfectionwhich

and

of the
sensibility

good stead; it

gave

an

young
unpre-

DANTE

vigour and

cedented

the

time, it helped

same

everybody

him,

in his

instance

vision,an

of the

day

wholly due

to

the

of love; it was

earth.

in

Everything

generationbecame

pride,to

to

of

background

and

the

tated
merely irri-

starting-point

is the intellettocT amore,

Dante

everythingin

the

Para-

whole

by

sentment,
re-

figureslike

Manfred, and

evoked

was

the discipline

to

lightand rapture vibratingthrough the


genius.The

of devilish

of soul

But
prejudices.
and

to

his inward

loyaltyto

part also

diso,could hardly have been

At

upright

an

graciousnessor

di Rimini

of Francesca

that

him

giftof loving,or

due

vision;it

of heaven.

this keenness

theoretical

to

and

of divine

Doubtless
perversity.
not

make

of his intense

account

on

his moral

to

to

terrible accuser,

judge, a
and

clearness

the classic poet of hell and

him

made

99

the

renius of love.

Everybody
love makes
traced

round

go

this latter notion


have

as

we

saw

beginning,that

and

to

in

we

by

ideal which

aspireto,

and

any

should

moving

not

cedents,
ante-

should

their purpose
and

or

ing
liv-

be said to love.

may
fact

It

means.

We
infinitum.

life rather

itself is not
justifies

it

have

in Aristotle

life by their natural

back

run

end, by that unrealized

thingsseem

of what

in the

and

who

source

notion

for these

explain motion

its

to

that

and

those

and

back

is love

some

try to explainmotion

What

that God

heard

the world

may
means,

has

or

law; for why

100

THREE

should

these

not

itself is what

is

PHILOSOPHICAL
have

that

some

different

which

is

motion

condition.

life,could

consist in

its different

the purpose

of

is that which

Such

unmoved
But
the

fulfilment

lapsing

activityis

how,

measured:

we

for

But

their natural

not

being.It

by

since
causes,

call this

may

changing
un-

and

tual
even-

will be their

we

how

ask,

may

"

the

can

unchanging,

ideal,the eventual, initiate anything


and tendency
disposition

lives and
of
word

The

moves?

givingan
:

magic. It

is credited
the
I should

with

is magic when

it would

to

are

hungry,and

thingssuitable

prove

marshallingthe

beingsthat
be

be

may

for

me

sharpenough, should

of what

actually
bility
impossi-

expressedin
a

good

good

or

interesting,

or

conditions

natural
"

if my

and evoking

that there should

for otherwise

hunger, in

be able of itself to

gle
sin-

ing
interest-

realize it. It is natural

to eat

hungry long ; but

mine
deter-

or

rather the

or

answer,

answer,

result,because

be

the

life advances

stages are

explainsthem,

inwardlyonly ;

mover.

the

not

to

be in

to

never
activity,

which

reason

ought

them

an

things,and

their
activity

be. But

to

fulfilment,if it included

include

goal towards
which

look

They

sustained

ought

justifies

conceived, declare,as it

yet ideal. This

as

it

as

and
satisfied,

not

sufferingchange.

nor

is

Aristotle

they are

and

it would

different? What

good, what

thingsin motion,
were,

been

POETS

that
be

I should
case

it is

produce the

DANTE

101

it calls for,that would

food

be evoked
I do

him,

by

of the will.

the incantations

forget that Aristotle,with

not

life is

goal of

the

that

asserts

mind

namely, the
alreadyexisting,
what
realizing

the world

than
its

would

be that

is

it; it does

leaves

Plotinus,

know

even

their ideal; let

as

will pursue

they

nowhere

has

an

actual

it exists elsewhere
in its

capacityof

works

frame

its presence,

image, as

the

and
of the

waves

person.

catches

world

accordinglyis

fibre

by magic, by

moved

the

magic

less if at

no

It works

goal to

flect
re-

The

moon.

vivified

of its

and

receive
the

by

of the

only

feels the

something

and

it

if it exists,it

might

tremblingly the light shed

pursue

beneath

matter

sea

and

if by chance

ideal ; therefore,even

only by magic. The

spellof

their ideal

own

virtue

and
disposition,

this

existence,than

in its

physical.

No

disposed to

things keep
and

or

Indeed, it works

it works.

things are

cal
magi-

Aristotle

to

of

ideal. For

working.

according

that

other

because

only

not,

less

no

transitive

in

eternally

influence

non-existent

change

not

of God,

the world
of

after

separate being

The

operationis admittedlynot

It itself does

Dante

aspiresto.

this mind, however, upon

would

magic. Nature

be

in

every

which

it

aspires.
But
The

this

earth, bore

magic, on

life of the world

magic

attraction

of

was

good

the

name

of love.

love, produced by the


it has

never

possessed

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

102

and,

long

so

it remains

as

Actual
possessing.
what

the

to be:

they were

be

corrupted,but

be

manifested

causes

like

we,

merits

should

and

garments

the power
rarer

above.

In the world

accidental
divine
had

created

they
use,

energy,

which

by

in their

mind

like words,

the intercession
the miracle,
saint's bones

thingsexerted

its

flowed

to

magic

things,in

were

originand

to

us

mere

assimilation
order

like the

"

to

for divine energy;

persuadedthat
are

of

superstitious

substance, but

they

symbols altogethernot

were

but

of values

channels

these

the

of

capacity.
Similarly,

the influences which

"

Things merely localized

existed to express.

sort

and
they existed by expressing,

the eternal ideas that

saint's relics

to

denser

or

it will

vulgarattribution

reallywork

it instead

mere

of the idea

power

forgetthat

in their material

to the

us, not

over

should

of the saint

attribute

should

we

was

Anaxagoras,resemble

attribute

and

In the

will arise and

acorn

the miraculous

who
relic-worshipper
and

place.The

enshrined.

was

good ground

the idea of the oak

in its

somehow

was

acorn

ought

for the ideal oak;

"

falls into

acorn

which

reliquaryin

symbols.The

existingsymbol
the

when

because

only suggestionsof

ulterior existence

in that

mere

an

"

world, is incapableof

things were

elements

prophecy

POETS

from
bols,
sym-

and

since

of matter,

express

merely

itself,

in their

nature.

it lives among

and
significant,
essentially

thingsthat,
that what

DANTE

103

they signifyis the magic attraction,called love,which


if its

even

philosophyof

and

in order

verse

did not

become

to

in their

they

into

launched

take the

The
authority.
illusion

degree; and
their

one

no

than
spell

ever

keep

the

is safe to
than

and
to

cease

be

should

which

defended

obscure

to Platonism

been

wisdom

Dante
minute

with

his bad

theology.These

his poetry, but


thousand

; and

Paganism

to

of them

should

one

surd
the abin

of this system have


think

science, and
will not

integralparts of
years after Homer,

seem

bad

of

it

more

envy

passionsthat

will

will

alive; and

generationswill

factious

no

and

Dante
scientifically,

the nature

passed away,

high

thoroughly under

When
they will despisehis philosophy.

measure

to

losingits

was

like Paganism,
Christianity,

and

stop

begin,

philosophersin

more

had

say that later

and

mythology,

new

became

Homer

poetry and

controversies

He

Dante.

what
Christianity
if Platonism

ever

was

Plato

should

nature

one

these

possessedby

was

When

poets had lost of producing

the

power

poetry

were

rates,
precept of Soc-

Homeric

science

be put into

to

of nature

the world

placeof the

have

momentous

of
interpretation

moral

prose. The

essence.

that observation

decreed

tuition,
its in-

poetic in

poetry: they

Aristotle, followingthe

be

language

Dante

fundamentallyand

and

mind

things after it,is a

all

draws

some

pletely
com-

ing
reproach-

and
history,
blemishes

in

it.

Alexandrian

critics

THREE

104

POETS

expounding his charming myths

were
a

PHILOSOPHICAL

revealed

treatise of

physicsand

after Dante

years

vision

we

of the

poetry. So

high

Plato's

dialoguesmark

thousand

in that

which

the

moral

of

with

during a rainyday
for his years,

books

his father's histories,


and

middle

The
the

new

ideal

age

In

of Verona
Divine
taken

his

the

"

own

at

and

home
literal
out

romance

of

infantile

in

vision. It is for

to
delightful
symbols in-

assignsto Dante,

The

are

these

subject of

in its literal sense,

is understood

demerits

those

Vicenza,

Comedy:

subjectof

hard

too

good

tradition

after death, considered


work

boy, kept

protector,Cangrande

and

merely

ing
dur-

of manhood.

letter which
to

of two

of itself

out

might define,with

to translate

the purposes

of which

battles,and kingdoms.
lady-love,

saw

age

Comedy

political
reason,

might spin his

his
precision,

sively
exclu-

pause

imaginationspun

allegorical
philosophy,as

an

mankind

beginning:a

in the work

years

scientious
con-

all is love,

long day-dream

the

sand
thou-

his

conceived, the Divine

marks

noon

charm

that

universe, where

magic, and symbolism, may


as

morals.

hope

may

if they were

as

it is man,

in the

use

in its

della Scala,lord

words

the

about
whole

is the state

simply as

dressed
ad-

fact. But

the

work,
of souls
if the

intention, the
allegorical

accordingas, by

his deserts and

of his freewill,he is justlyopen

THREE

106

PHILOSOPHICAL

landscapeof

the poem,

for
general,

in

for whatever
life may

king of

robbed

faith and

the Divine

rewards
dramatic

and

prideor

France

in

and
particular,

of

from

of

pictures
; and

the poem,

the

other

out

intervenes

to

miracle

of the

moral

the

work

of

graphicway,

of divine

of the soul. Then


characteristic

body, and
To
such

give
a

in

and
an

the

he

favourable

is

Comedy

"

cordingly
ac-

mantic,
ro-

these

moral

poet performed a

double

he

chose

historical

some

each

picturedthis

person
of mind

tion
condiin

some

of

and

symbolic environment.
appropriate,
would

embodiment

nowadays

; but
perhapsimpossible
was

that

in all its levels,

symbolicattitude

material

method

the

grace

illustrate
might plausibly

that

Church

lover, conscious

the Divine

universe

First
imagination.

personage

tory
his-

exile; and

To present
political,
religious.
facts in

souls, is

him.

save

of
subject-matter

The

of the

this life;

an

neath
be-

besides

theory of

of

Christian,and

of his sins and

to

passionsin
;

lurk

world, and

meted

of the world

distracted

meaning

State; the autobiographyof

confessions

personal

and

of human

Italyand

power

piety.Thus, throughout

punishment

view

in Dante's

happinessor

and

of

him

descriptionof

for

Comedy meaning

the luminous

being

symbol

ambitions
political

have

from

him

the

is a

POETS

to the

to

moral

ideas

by

and
be very artificial,

in Dante's

attempt.We

time
are

everything
accustomed

DANTE
to think

of

life,sparks struck
with
a

of

matter

discerned,

chance

another.

one

that moral

course

merely

not

functions

as

in the

out

with

things or

evils

and

goods

107

For

they

the

displayed in

are

of

men

was

be

might

in
incidentally

genuinely,as

more

order

natural

Dante, it

arise

experience,but also,and

human

shock

distinctions

they

as

of

creation/The

of

Creator

himself

material

world

in
a

ordered

natural
been

The

be

to

enacted.
of

symbols

images ; the symbols of

or

things and

devised

for

he had

parablewhich

great charade.

words

The
poet producing allegories.

was

and

space,

was

earthlypoets
of

as

to show
Koran, too, declares,had been precisely

the great difference

In Platonic
bodies

cosmology,the

formed

and

orders. The
and

is in God's

outward,

whence

the

animated

nobler
or

an

concentric

the
intelligence,

higher,was

identification

the
of

and

purpose

better,

while Dante

literal truth to his fancies about

heaven, he believed

heaven, purgatory, and


on

swift

more

"higher"with

not

hell,purgatory, and

ous
vari-

sphere it moved;

could

attribute

sphereswere

of
by intelligences

to this day.And
survives,absurdly,

God

forth

sightbetween

which

by

the

evil.

and

good

there

had

They

men.

are

poet were

this purpose,

and

purpose;

History was

the divine

fortunes

the

built out

to

complexion ;

hell had

receive
so

souls

that while

that

been
of

an

tual
ac-

fashioned

serts
varying de-

the

poet'sim-

THREE

108

PHILOSOPHICAL

unless
agination,

only human
and

POETS

it reechoed

and

divine

prophetic,
yet

not

plausibleimagination,
moving

nature, and

such
anticipating

might

well

very

morality,his
habitations
a

of

thoroughlyserious

had

created

The

nature

poet's method
ii

; it

laboured
This

was

and

that very

on

the
i

in

fit

this

which

made

and

render

were

has

curious

in the

moral

nil ii

mmii

symbolical
mere

on

systematic

classified the various

"

as

palpablethose

eternal,and

he had
as
qualities,

"

it

moral
and

to express

if Aristotle

the

great poet.Aristotle

and

purpose

ably
Prob-

historyof

by

out

the vision of

varieties ; and

in

consequence.

last time

palpablein great detail,with


and

in

allegory.

But observe:
virtues,with their opposites.
was

principle.

of fact,no
anticipation

named,
distinguished,

world

God

of Genesis.

magic

'

ii

first and

guided

for him

life

classification worked

moralist
had

wilful

local

and

sincere

situation

for the
world

and

vices,was

symbolicalimaginationmirrored

world

experience

exercise.
philosophical

'

--

His

lines of

and

'

_-

the

on

of
objectification

and

repeated

"*"

genuine

visible forms

giving

ideal virtues

to

it was

things as

realize. Dante's

art

revelation,was

all their
had

then

ifthe other

was

"

to

press
ex-

distinctions
render

them

possibletints

classified
correctly
it follows that Aris*""""

totle

(without knowing it)must

ground-plan,as
was

Dante's

it

were,

have

of hell and

thought.With

suppliedthe

of heaven.

Aristotle's Ethics

Such
open

him, with

before

there, drawn

DANTE

109

supplementary hint, here

and

the

from

catechism, and

preference(piousand
three and

the number

without

voyage

almost

soberness
be
a

and

be

It

treated

to be

was

not

visionaryof

This
deep sincerity.

dream.

wanton

no

for
philosophic)

most

life after death, could

with

to

jects,
sub-

tific
scien-

vision

to

was

sober meditation,

philosophical
prophecy, a probable drama,
poignant,terrible,and consolingof

most

grained
in-

an

its multiples,
he needed

chart. The

with

all

"

the

possible

truths.
The

good

Aristotle
end

No

not

at

hate

would

the

Since

it

that
1

that

see

good,

our

for if that

God;

God

goal

faculties should

Purgatorio, xvn.

perche
Amor

mai

del

Ball' odio

perch6
E
Da

per

suo

non

emotions.
knew

man

of his actual

be

pu6

dalla salute

le

tute

cose

si puo

s" stante, alcuno

quello odiare

Nor

could

himself, he
natural

aspirations.1
this

insight,

evil,all evil
intrinsically

proprio son
non

hate

be, and contradict,

suggetto volger viso,

intender

judgesof

says, could

106-11:

Or

the

impossible,
according to

was

is the

of life cannot

by definition,his

was,

ultimate

they are

once

the voice of his instincts and


mar\

demands

Dante

as

man,

soul;he could

own

"

since

radically
perverse,

thought of

ethics, the good

aims. The

nature

excellence.

every

the fundamental

was

of all Greek

and

at which

be

his

this

"

diviso,

esser

o^niaffetto

dal primo,
e

deciso.

110

THREE

PHILOSOPHICAL

had

to arise from

the disorder

fall,their
to

strong for

too

that

into which

great weakness

too

another.

one

POETS

If the

his reason,

aims

from

came

excessive

an

natural

goods.

most

excusable

those

who

have

of

round
Below

place his
misers,

ill-timed

because

in another
than

crimes

way.

lack

of the

the senses,

be

odious

harm
there

on

is malice

pride,because

faculties

gluttons,"

been

obligedto

again
the

to

the

are

of

excuse

arise,however,

or

out

element,
spirited
of hand, and

lead

Violence, like incontinence, is


in its personalorigin,
and

if it did
others ;

not
so

and
inflict,

that

besides

in it. Ill-will to others


one

topmost

the

may

get

may

of violence.

spontaneous enough

puts

of self-control.

combative

The

Dante

earthlyparadise.

these

less open

character

in the

have

Beneath

nature

in the first circle

are

case,

would

poet

childish

odious.

the

to

pride.

accordinglythe

are

sunlight,or

nearest

drunkards.

was

or

of what

part

through love

lovers, in each

disorder

rather

least

the

to

worse

"

merely
The

the

sinned

northern

sins

purgatory,

the

where

These

and

of hell, nearest

not

man

or

at; for food, children, property, and

are

to

of

tion
rela-

he fell into incontinence,"

pursuitof something good, of

part

is,into lust,gluttony,avarice, wrath,

Incontinence

ties
facul-

strengthin

or

animal

these

loves to be

intend

would
to

flict,
in-

incontinence,
may

arise from

superiorto them,

or

DANTE
from

because

envy,

111

that

abhors

one

they

superiorto oneself; or through desire


because
kinds

feels less

he

who

those

have

of

joy

in

gladlylash

would

and
justice,

divine

them:

by

malefactors
sort

petual,
per-

hateful.

are

suffer

these
sufferings

caused, and he feels

themselves
the

pity for

the

remembers

they

more;

They

crimes.
self-propagating
Dante

world

moral

tinence
incon-

oppositionof interests,and

endless

introduce

of these

of foolish

those

they complicatethe

seem

for vengeance,

injury.Sins

some

than

serious

more

are

under

smarts

one

should

ing
jointhem

himself.

sin of those
or

violence, however, is

still than

Worse

in the

who

their malice

establishes

disorder, is
into

an

and

this

Dante

ten
distinguishes

fraud,

as

Besides
of
This

as

these

three

hope,but

organizing

it turns

sorts

of

with

puts
the
outside

the

evil

of

dishonestyor simple

treachery.

there
transgressions
positive

Dante,

his hell; within

faculty

has stages;and
perversity

sorts

general moral

hates. He

the
of

means

Cor-

reason.

reason,

perversitytruly satanic
even

intemperance

giftof

to turn

order, into

art. But

well

of their

the

abused

have

ruptiooptimipessima ;
that

service

guile: the

sluggishnessand
his

fervid

Laodiceans

gate, that

nature,
in the

they

of limbo, that

may

they

is a possibility
ence.
indiffer-

larly
particufringeof
be

out
with-

may

have

THREE

112
torments

to

hornets

into

To

these

moralist

PHILOSOPHICAL

endure, and

be

stung by

to

add

obligedto

Aristotle,the Catholic
others

two

disbelief is

spontaneous

heresy,or misbelief,after

and

one

it,if they lead

privationof

mere

revelation

has been

the

paganism

nothing worse,

to

excellence

sin,
original

consequence,

given and accepted.Originalsin,and


that goes with

and

wasps

activity.1

vices,known

was

of which

belated

POETS

and

involve

are

in eternity

of joy:they are punishedin


merely a privation
limbo.
and

the

This
and

There

experiencehere.

Inferno,in.

Dante

Erano
Da
iv.

da

vespe

fur vivi,

non

molto

stimolati

ignudi e

raosconi

mai

ch'

ivi.

erano

41, 42:
Semo
Che

Purgatorio,in.

perduti,e
senza

contenti,

Che

se

Virgilsays

non

aveste

eternalmente

di molti

piu non

veder

tutto,
;

lor disio quetato,


dato

lo dico d' Aristotele


E

frutto

senza

Tai, che sarebbe


Ch'

in disio.

partorirMaria

era

disiar vedeste

offesi

gente, al quia;

umana

potuto

Mestier

vivemo

speme

37-45, where

"State

sol di tanto

altri." E

lor per lutto.

di Plato,

qui chino

disse, e rimase

often

justerthan

never

Quest! sciaurati,che

2/6tU,

it is so

the other hand, is

Heresy,on

64-66

was

hope.

to the noble

appropriately
imputed

in the hereafter,since
clear-sighted

this stroke.2

Cf.

lamentation,

no

is to live in desire without

only sorrow

fate is most

their

heard, but

sighsare

la fronte

turbato.

kind

in
of

THREE

114

the tree

as

have

falleth

further

no

The

PHILOSOPHICAL

POETS

it lieth,and

so

souls

after death

initiative.

theory Dante

earlier views; in

mediates

adopts
far

so

between

it is Greek, it conceives

as

as something timeless
immortalityideally,

far

it is Hebraic, it conceives

as

second, different

and

of

second

sums

of this

purpose

entered
is

do) the
Were

Dante's

merely

fashion

than

the

excellence

of

was

Nothing
Moral

no

would

make

least

say of the excellences


:

there may

love them, but

they

Dante, however,
excellence

he

was

of the

logue
epi-

able
unmistak-

more

also

misery of

they might

up with

good

men.

difference.

simplelover

none

of

ness,
good-

this situation. I may

prizewhat
to

Wordsworth

praiseand

all the difference

not

that

boast

largelyimpertinentand

am

be

vice.

might laugh.

that of many

be

make

was

the

overwhelming

an

perhapsput

Lucy

(in a

play

immortality

purpose

the wicked

than

worse

remarkablyjumbled. If

of his

of

it. The

the

on

carry

goodnessand

distinctions would

I may

episodein

play,beingillacted, itselfcould

wholly happy, at

their lot

thinks

epiloguewhich

an

to

The

vindicate

to

existence

new

notion

mind.

this life all,he thinks

If not

is

is the last

romantic

so

that is wholly retrospective

one

epilogueis not

: such
indefinitely
never

of

It
changeless.

play,and

the

up

of

in

; but

of life. Dante

taste

experience,but
and

two

says
few to
to

me.

merely a simplelover

keen

hater

of

of wickedness,

DANTE

that took

one

the moral

heightenthe

to

absolute
in his

115

world

he felt into

distinctions

infinite. Now

and

and
tragically

something

who

man

any

will probably say,


preferences

wished

is enrage

with

med,
Moham-

Tertullian,and Calvin, that good is dishonoured


who

if those

of their

repent
the

consequences

the

presence

the

of

of

be

the

universe.

it

convinced

established
of that

shine

the

This

at

the world

and

that

of the damned

that there

is

the

as

the
the

placesover
well

in

perfectharmony

in
principle,

torture-house

famous

scription
in-

gate of hell,

justiceand

power,

sun.

The

primal love, that is,I


extreme
punishment of 1

damned

are

damned

for

human

cannot

help thinking,is a great

nature.

It shows

heart, is the follyof

an

how

desperate,

or
egotistic
anthropocen-

This philosophybeginsby assuring


philosophy.
that everythingis obviouslycreated to serve
our

needs; it then

serves

our

God.

doctrine, I

ideals;and

tric
us

it,is honoured, vindicated,and made

like the

disgraceto

tolerable

more

the saints to sit quiet,

primal love,as

scorn

gloryof

horrible

more

contortions

never

possiblefor

good which, by

those who
to

and

Dante

that

the

the
evil-doing,

this

On

which
read that

scot-free,and

go

is in
evil-doing

will make

and

can

negligence;that

shrieks
everlasting

alone

we

it

contemn

in

maintains
the

blind

that

everythingserves

end, it reveals

hatreds

and

that

our

everything

superstitious
qualms.

THREE

116

Because

PHILOSOPHICAL
instinct

my

POETS

taboos

something,the

whole

shall taboo it for


universe,with insane intensity,
This

infatuation

Nevertheless, he
other

Christian

esoteric
makes
of

of

them

good

rewards

evil ways.

itself pursues

For

it is

that desired

there

an

punishments,which

The

the intrinsic

quality

punishment, he
;

it is what

the

then

passion

the soul
fulfilment,horrifying

instance, spirits
newly arrived in hell require
his prong

devil with

accord.1
their

and

many

it.

own

external

the
Similarly,
will at

it

souls in

the

purgatory

penance

able,because

not

themselves.2

to absolve

124-26

their

The

doing.No

they

are

until

they are

they

whole

pronti sono

not

are

la divina

Si che la tema

si

volge in

disio.

61-69:

Delia

mondizia

Che,

tutta

L' alma
Ed

io che

sol voler fa prova,


libera

mutar

Cinquecento

giaciuto

anni

Libera volonta

di

convento,

di voler le

sorprende, e
son

giova.
doglia
questa

sentii
piti,
pur mo
migliorsoglia.
e

quite
ing,
will-

mountain,

trapassarlo rio,
giustiziaglisprona

own

kept by

are

Che

Purgatorio,xxi.

to their punishment.

eagerly,of

force retains them, but

purged they are

Inferno,in.

drive them

to

flit towards

They

and

simplysymbols for

and

it was

intemperatespleen.

betrayshere

to say, is nothingadded

seems

he

and

it at times. Like

beyond

saw

seers,

view

by Dante,

his bitter and

uncongenialto

not

no

inherited

was

ever.

we

DANTE

told, trembles

are

frees himself

one

any

and

much

of

bursts

they change

state

of soul is its

proclaimsthe

Dante

in express

He

says: "Such

and

is not

mortified,thou
other than

alive,such

was

to

match

art

thy

which

men

world.

If

scenes

in the

have
we

to

were

Inferno,we

story of Ugolino, but


what
A

Pisa

one,

Inferno,xiv.

and
be

may

63-66

No

tion
imaginahorrors
in this

fearful of the

most

should

ture,
tor-

enough

woe

have

to

choose

the

only a pale recital

interestinginstance, if a
found

in the

of

Capaneo,

tua

in ci6 che

superbia,se' tu

Nullo
Sarebbe

s'

piiipunito

martirio, fuor che


al tuo

non

la tua

furor dolor

less

punishment

"O
La

thy pride

more.

be

had

actuallywitnessed.

subtle

more

obvious

had

the

this is

dead."

am

themselves

upon

choose

of Jupiter.

equal,the

even

brought

certain

punishment

indeed, Dante's

cannot

rate,

punishment

punished the

ferior
in-

mines
deter-

any

that

"In

their

an

force Dante

rage, would

own

outdo, it

before:

thy fury."1And

cannot

of

indifferent to his

in his voice

found

that

thunderbolts

Whereupon Virgilexclaims, with


never

change

blasphemersis a

defied the

as

Is it too

place,at

one

the

himself

shows

souls

intrinsic nature

of Thebes, who

king

heaven.

purgatory, and

In

Among

terms.

when

psalmody

their ideal,and
own

duration?

own

reaches

and

prisonwhen
its

into

say that these

glossto

117

ammorza
:

rabbia,

compito."

of

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

118

Paolo

and

lovers

so

is

arms,

be

their

passion,if

left to

It is what

chosen.

have

would

gladlyprolongfor

This

by renunciation,

won

be

poet, Alfred

romantic

for not

Dante
he
not

has
the

overlook

Alfred

Paolo

and

de

the

to

seems

souvenir

Cette

Ce
.

Un

blaspheme

souvenir
Plus

Et

c'est

Que
Elle

ta

au

vante*

ne

instinct

jours de

est

vrai que

le bonheur.

eternel baiser

ton

ange

mots
center
!

de ton

pas

peut-etre

Francoise, a

douleur?

vient

be

did Dante

parole amere,

heureux

ces
pouvais
qui s'interrompt,pour

D'un

great

perfectfulfilment

true; but

malheur

donner

tu

les

dans

dicte" cette

offense

if it

would

qu'iln'est pire misere

heureux

Quel chagrin t'a

be

destinyas

Francesca

be very

dis-tu

pourquoi

to

Nouvelles, Souvenir:

Musset, Poesies

QiTun

heaven

eternal

an

of it? If so, what

truth

Dante,

Musset, actuallyupbraids

de

such

last

has

for himself

fancies. And

ruin of their love,1but the

of it.This

and

what
precisely

even
possession,

and

seeingthat

assignedto

not

"

the

but

wind, in

judgement

tale,wishes

he loves

in hell,of what

the

speak for itself,

fate is

Nicolette,

his sweetheart

still together.

are

for lovers ? That

Divine

ever.

it at its word.

these

passion stops at,

Aucassin, in the well-known


and

They

punishment

would

only taken

makes

on
eternityof floating

an

just what

What

Inferno

in the

wretched

other's

each

di Rimini.

Francesca

Can

POETS

sur

coeur.

terre

de

gloire,

prononcer,
son

histoire,

guided

DANTE

him

to choose

would
There

is

Musset

of life

the

He

he had

and

to

the ideal of

He

had

discovered

to
reason

the

he

other

no

soul

to

be

shared

which
activities,

is

varied
shall be

the lovers. But


into this
mere

Paolo

and

and

other

of all else

"

one

any

mere

conceive

ideal bonds

tween
be-

pass out
to

the dark, without

future. It is love among


that is the torment

they might

life
and

events

love cannot

love among

of

sion;
posses-

It is condemned

this
precisely

Francesca

must

little

hopes in abey-

than

and

new

"

absolute

our

world, full of

public fulfilment.

it is

of

for this

for hell than

possessedby

possession possessionin

ruins. And

And

furniture

unlawful

environment, without

peace.

fulfilments
that

of them

happinessand

it
happiness,

in

manticist;
ro-

nature,

renounce.

passionsnevertheless has
ance^Love itself dreams of more
conceive

any

of human

rest

these

to

or

thingsthrough,he

the literal ideals and

was

ally
necessityof saying continushalt

needed

youngster,

ultimate

an

Alfred

feel the fresh promptings

the

to

tices
appren-

and

impossibleissue

oneself: Thou

passions.The

they

apprentices
; Dante

any

the

the

Aucassin

"

lived these

possibleand

their relation

saw

between

could

keenly as

as

but

knew

the

among

of the masters.

one

he

the masters,

were

lovers that

for themselves?

great difference

in life,
and
de

fate for these

justthe

chosen

have

119

be
an

the
of

the ruins of themselves


have

had

to

give to

THREE

120

PHILOSOPHICAL

anotheraAbandon

one

us,

abandon

"

Dante
yourself,

inspiredpoet
sound

little moral

these

could

Creator

be the

fit theatre
and

had

each

him

is successful. Mankind,
conceived

dark

Dante, with

before

him, turned

symbolic
poet

hideous
chart

windy

vague

demons.

of the vices
into

caverns

concentric

terraces

step by step,towards

the waters

of the

in turn

of Dis,

or

Pluto.

led down
"

perhapsa

pitof

the

to

the brazen

Within
the

thousand

hell. At

towards

encircled

of

miles

deep

were

of the

walls,two

edge

the bottom

centre,

these

walls

by
had

Seven
symmetricallabyrinth.

which

who

had
antiquity,

times, these shades

by

to

Virgil

hell,inhabited

the Aristotelian
those

world

and

in this

remotest

lost souls, tormented

become

butes
attri-

gination
Popular ima-

always carries

Christian

in

set. The

he

Homer

subterranean

In
unhappy ghosts.

But

attitudes.

from

Only

appear

material

halfway

labour, as tradition almost

moralist.

feat which

precedentsof

carried

is

Only
already.

episodeis

he evokes

for moral

the

indeed

that

also in the sympathetic

poet actuallyaccomplishesthe
to the

love

feelingthat

appear

which

say to

tragica poet.

so

fine

dramas

landscapein

subtle

so

be

and

tact

same

be

in hell

are

you

could

moralist

The

would

yourselfaltogetherto

nothing but love, and


an

POETS

more

scended,
de-

Styx,
City
races
ter-

prodigiousprecipice
"

which

formed

the

of this,stillsinkinggently
ten

concentric

furrows

THREE

122

the mountain

of

and
it carries,

is back

the

on

When

high as

so

ledge above,

the

above

moon,

top, which

Eunoe,

watered

heal

to

one

the

is easy
upward flight

poetictask.

firmament

that would

posthumous

heaven

spheresof
their centre.

The

system
mind.
sun

is

by

He

were

from

of Dante's

his

the

mountain

sphere of

day

rivers Lethe
and

and

and
risingor setting,

and
the

heaven,

measured

identified

had

night

in what
what

with

the

visible
whirlinginthe

of
complexities

us

the

clearness. From

saints. The

and

the

tempests. The

the lowest

that astronomy
sublime

guilty

sphereto sphere.
day fell in beautifully

still be
of the

at

purged, and

plain,contains

It described

loves to tell

mountain

the

touches
literally

place,which
astronomy

stay upon

painfulmemories,

all

this

with

the

bring all good thoughtsto

to

The

must

passed

if he has been

into

circular

broad

of Eden,

Garden

other

is

he has

of terrestrial

reach

slope soon

for there. The

lift its head

to

the

of his sins is

also of the sin that is atoned


is

gatory.
pur-

it finds the skirts of the

encircle

one

again

approach to

repentance, he

ledges that

the next

upon

for the

but
spreading,

until
heights,

various

of the Tiber

When
precipitous.
of

gate

of the

then

much

and

and

hard

narrow

each

at the mouth

lands
spirit

broad

becomes
the

the spirits
purgatory,there deposits

day. So

same

mountain

POETS

PHILOSOPHICAL

earth

for

this Ptolemaic

before

Dante's

constellation

portionof

the

the

sky

DANTE

orrery

the

that

shows

positionof
Such

him,

to

of

lore

the

of

unveiled

the

secrets

of nature.

imagination,but

too

feeble to conceive

too

cowardly to

cheap fictions
poetry

empty
real

him

or

him

the

this

There

as

reason

these

kind

shows,

who

from

to

fine

us

the

of nature,

enough

fancy
the

on

of

an

course

and

is not

study of

divines their

jsense,

anticipation
into his

or

verse.

of
simplicity

images,which
interesting

of sensualism

or

for

details of science

curious
matter

are

it to those

Greek
is,in the original

the mysteriesof
clarify
is

us

away

Dante

faith
straightforward

he devours
to

art

rehearsal

or

theology enter
With

of

things.It adoptstheir tendency and

For
Jjate.

age

In
religion.

than

the real world,

arbitrary
; it is serious,fed

imitation

fin

is those

seem

as

imaginativepower

true

run

or

more

in this he

master

face it,that

destiny.His

true

of

for

or

and

that alone

hard-

things as they are,

see

imaginativematurity.It

and

lights

charm

to
straight,

of

want

scape,
land-

the

fancy things impossible;and

not

of

wonderful

most

they might naturallybe, interested


to

for Dante

it also had

discoverythat
think

of astronomical

the charm

had

situation

shadows; and

To

the

puerileor pedantic; but

us

full
literally

won

an

moment,

given

any

dragging in

the astronomical

and

at

carries in his mind

star.

every

constant

seem

may

antipodes; he

over

is then

123

his

help

this world.
or

aestheticism

that

THREE

124

has

in

decreed
if all the

as

PHILOSOPHICAL

images and

mind

alone
The

such

theory is

than
human

the

and

justas

pure

sort

and

common

ing
the howlthis

mindless,

reason

enters

it has entered

his verse,

throw

over

of

evitably
in-

into his

vision of
Never

connections

arm's

before

since has

or

of little

object
words

the

suous
sen-

for ; and
which

yet

words

that

poetry

attenuation, a rehandling,

an

thingsat

landscapeas Dante;
are

without

thingsthey stand
new

alike lie

to
objecting

experience; it is

of crude

both

his ideal. To

them,
things,in recalling

arises at all. Poetry is


echo

to

symbols

are

of the

when

be like

theory in poetry would

it is only by the net

is not

has led him

path that

character

an

of cities.For

poetry,since

there ; for words, too,

in retirement,

intense than

more

poet

equallyinto

ideas pass

to

music, heard

life is,

rather, the detail of things and the detail of

or

in the

experiencethan
and

when
philosophy,

life;

typically

more

of

the rumble

into his

tional
emo-

Philosophyis a

subtle

or

arts.

less

or

it is

the

keenly emotional.

is somethingkeener
of storms

theory.The

less human

not

vated
culti-

aestheticism would

or

life of sense;

more

intense

more

with

saturated

sensualism

that enter

explainthe impotence of

suffice to
life of

theoryis not poetical;

emotions

not

were

prevalenceof

that

day

our

POETS

itself a

theoretic

length.

for

our

poet

lived in

infinite times

poeticvalue

while

we

so

large

and
have

tances
disno

DANTE

graphicimage of

what

125

fillthem.

may

Dante's

spaces

filled;they,enlarged,to the limits of human

were

habitations

imagination,the
the

the empyrean

but
spheres,

could

be

which

was

saints did

the

Although

manifested

spirits
appear

to

his

also

flow

than

reportingtheir

sometimes,

words

tells

He

has indeed, at the end,

the

and
of

Deity

rainbow,
triple

midst.

this is

But

with

his

help us

to

not

pure

divine this intention

the

rise

accordingto
real seat

through

the
velocity,
eyes

which
of

want

of any

them

with

they come

nearer

of Beatrice

him

"

What

and

theatre,
amphi-

an

in the form
of

in the

man

what
some-

has

Dante
better

course
re-

image

to

perhaps

may

is the fact,justmentioned,
the

celestial

human

spheres

soul ; that

to

the
and

increasingease

God; and that the

the revelation

of God

only mirrors, shedding merely

are

them.

symbol, a

mere

mystical intention.

that
are

in

them

semblance

pictureto

unwillingly,for
render

Further

celestial rose

as

overarches

avowedly

conventional

vision of
seated

are

voices

little about

us

of

usuallyabout

(which are

thingsof earth)Dante
tier of saints

spirit
vision

which

radiance.

as

the

tier upon

each

In Dante's

own.

well

as

kind.
man-

sphere the genius

pointsof light,from

as

of

inhabit
literally

not

beyond,yet

in that

akin

most

destinies

and

to

man

"

reflected

beauty

that the

goal of

light.

These

hints suggest the doctrine

THREE

126

PHILOSOPHICAL

life is the very bosom

existence,however

of God;

landscape is borrowed;

after she

been

because

her earlier
for

higher station

share

carry

him.
the

the order

Paradiso,

in.

The

inconstant

prompting

her if she

wish

to be

soul farther

"Se

disiassimo

God
since

away,

Dal
E

la

be

would
it would

superne,

volontate

sua

Cio

Chiaro

quel mare

ch' ella crea,


mi

In cielo
sommo

al
e

che

d'

un

ne

cerne,

pace

qual

Paradiso,
ben

qui

nostra

fu allor com'
e

disiri

li nostri

voler di colui che

Ella

Del

piu

esser

discord!

to

tutto

si

move

face."

natura

ogni

dove

si la

grazia

modo

non

vi

piove.

God,
that

has established

nearer

renew

longs

answers

Foran

to

never

he has established.1

73-90

moon,

nearer

She
aspiration.
who

morable
me-

her convent

in his house, is to

mansions

the

is in the lowest

She

one
paradise,

all

mystics

pointin

stolen from

asks

the will of God,

different
with

goal of

in

mained
always re-

not

of Piccarda,
spirit

of the

felt no

Dante

vows.

the natural

had

married, she
forcibly

and

the

of the Paradiso.
that

that

reservations

this very

sphere of heaven,

heavenly

of Christian

he has with

in the third canto

So the Neo-

all this

the

minds

broaches

interview

to

the

to

poets.Dante

and

whom

and

of

tion
completeabsorp-

orthodoxy requireshave
present

finite form

any

the Godhead.

had thought,from
platonists

Christian

not

excellent,but

in
disappearance

and

POETS

many

trulyone
actually
oppose

DANTE

heaven, therefore,the Christian

Even

in

keep

his essential

to

He

happy only in

holding him

was

that

she

would

shares

it,as Dante

her moral

she

dare

not

For

thoughts are

forbidden

inconstant

it.The

the

Piccarda
not

means

to

**

it. She

demands

nature

perfectly
ceived;
per-

"

it,for she knows

mention

that God, whose

ness.
lowli-

angel of

submits

Platonist
incorrigible

"

but

hand.

she

that

it,but

higher,for

fain go

that the

the

by

was

lost in himself,

accepts the will of God

she

say that

to

saint

and
fidelity,
separation,

and
to feel still helpless

was

like Tobias, and


Lord

127

not

her

sphereof

thoughts,has
the

does^"f(

moon

not

afford her

she

is,she says it brings her happinessenough ; all \

that
to

broken

hope
Such

perfecthappiness; but, chastened

and

heart

contrite

the

are

of the

Paradiso.

that

was

traditions.

The

conflicts of his

left behind

upon

in other

with

Col

viso

Le

the

ritornai

sette

per

spere,

men

quante

vidi questo

io sorrisi del

1' ha per

Chiamar

only his

suo

si

meno

puote

; e

globo

vil sembiante

chi ad altro pensa

veramente

been

threshing-floor

quel consiglioper miglioreapprobo


Che

was

height of heaven,

tutte

the

not

had
spirit

that

regions; on

the

was

Tal, ch'
E

own

that
wonder,1 surprised

133-39

xxn.

It

in conflict here ; it

of earth which, from

Paradiso,

courage

beneath
conflicting
inspirations

poet'ssoul

the

for.

lovely harmonies

back

has

as

probo.

he looked
should

THREE

128

take

PHILOSOPHICAL

this
passionately

so

judges best, says Dante,


In this

as

poet.He

often

and

; for

with

wrote

is

much

the

does

Ugolino that

an

figuresare
into the
mosaic

of Platonic

forgetsit. The

transmuted
bits in the

become

himself

reader, accustomed

modern

this lack

of

thoughts,may

or
perspective,

if he is judicious,
he will not
Bonifaces
the

and

the

the Divine

trulylovelyfiguresof
relative sense,

are,

in

too

much, in these

or

dips for

not

stop

forgetsthat
the

moment

or
market-place,

factious
about

to

is not

think,

into

into the

and

Comedy. They

of the

just,as

as

he

feel

poet'sprejudice
he

usually

almost

always

he is in the eternal world, and

condottiere. The

Boniface

trulydeep,

in it.We
vulgarities

the heat

cases,

He
indignation.

is;he does
does. He

the

it. But,

long. The

it

the

not

notice

not

in
rejoice

Ugolinos are

nificant
insig-

be entertained

rejoicein

may

almost
to

and expectingto
wayward fictions,

by images without

face
Boni-

these historical

been

Dante

essences.

of

read

we

have

have

to

time,

own

clarified into

forgetthat

we

purelypersonaland
as

us

supposed to

eternal, and

of his

man

of

even
perfect,

passion not

interest dominate

or

far from
a

he

least of it.

perhaps conscious

was

much

too

of ants, which

thinks

who

Dante

was

judgement. So
dramatic

trouble

sayingthe poet

personalfault

POETS

brawl

in

council-chamber
passages

Ugolino

"

which

"

Italian

some

such
Dante

of
as

some

those

writes in

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

130

offered

for
and

poet)

complete

Faust

could
it

In the

next

There

merit, or

at least

Dante
would

element

lost
of

of the

his

experience,or

Dante's

as

of his
rather

It
philosophy.

the shadow

of his person

of

purgatory (as he

his

poetry

made

to

himself

than

was

insightmight
so

only

But
quisite,
re-

not

far that he cast

over

is careful to tell

in

everythingas

further

extended
not

philosophy

personalsalvation.

that the transcendental

fail in his

being egotistical

His

described

losophy
phi-

placed himself

revelation

egotism goes

In

depth,and

he not

stage,and

for the sake

so

of

moderns

us

of modern

of his time.

pathos,had

centre

made

of interest for

element

an

about

egotism is a

this

sentiment.

ahead

the

and

ground

of romantic
was

have

in which

sense

progress.

much

too

distinctive attitude

egotismis the
and

an

is

genuine

only

not

ought to inspire

talks

place,Dante

himself.

for

had

Had

only was

not

loved, which

be

have

Faust,

passages.

but which
life,

should

we

more

even

to

a whole
inspire

then

"

Dante.

something which

deserved

loved, but

his

and

Helen, and partlyback

to

made

and

gress
pro-

hearty

like Goethe

like Plato

led to

of them

natural

accordinglybe

Gretchen

Goethe

again; and

seems

lover

"

than

rather

"

too, passes from

any

that

should

lover

from
convincingly

to pass

philosophy(and

to

tion.
transforma-

mysticala

so

wishes

poet who

The
love

resistance to

more

POETS

us

the terraces

repeatedly),

DANTE
but

the

over

he

and

saw

judged

Dante

sometimes
his

of his

he is under

magician
even

hell with

upon

far is this
the

des Pudels

days

poet who

Perhaps

into

and

sage and
looked

have

How

were

in those

have

midst

poodle

cloud, and

finally

once:

Das

Dante

was

says at

fear of the
the

days ; but

clusion
con-

that the virtues


to is precisely
not

spokesman
we

his

sees

Doubtless

Kern!

come

peopled Dante's
if

who

man

confidence.

more

best virtues, and

the

represents that time

ultimate

into the

tears, of

contrition,humility,and

must

we

that

then

great virtues

were

of those

tire

may

guide,might

and
Mephistopheles,

mediaeval, and
devil

one

has such

of Faust, who

monster,

into

war

and

shiveringand swooning philosopherfrom

swell into

also

who

little

laughingcourage

change

of God,
special
protection

the

Virgilfor

as

of contemplation.

bitter ; at the

his intricate doubts.

of three celestial ladies,and

and

very

trusivel
ob-

so

perpetualtremblings and

fits and
fainting

knows

an

and

proud

is very

forward

respect worthy

in every

time, he is curiouslytimid

same

of

influence

resentments.

thrust
Moreover, the personality
is not

which

Europe,

evident

the

under

privatepassionsand

of

Italy and

of

whole

131

for

be

cannot

that
fair

nor

humanity.
the

chief

objects

the
imagination,

chief

objects

now

of which

reviewed

his poetry

poet'sgenius avails

to

transports us

transport us

into his

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

132

world, the character

enchanted

the

with

atmosphereof

unmistakable

visionarylove

of his

conversion, affected

divine

grace

which

his conversion

and

these

of

and

the

history,in
where

poet'stime,

or

back

of

the

is

expressed
among

revealed

religion

brevityof
danse

carnival,no
confused

prominent

before

us

dramatist

macabre:

These

yet

it is

no

pathy
symmere

throughout,above

for

we
partiesand passions,

strife of

hear

of the prophet

judges them.

Dante,

Thus

thering
in fur-

the

with

steadyvoice, the implacablesentence,


that

Italyin

ideal of Christendom.
set

are

the

crimes, the

the

survey

of

its great

of

the panorama

of those

sorrows

persons
and

colour, and
whole

the

ideal to

supreme

is embodied

and

we

thwartingthe

numerous

the

history
by

its great crises and

into
particularly

virtues,and

the

firstinto the

empire.To trace the fortunes


providential
are
institutions,we
transportednext into

panorama
,men;

poetry.Dante

this love, or

brought him
institution

will determine

into the

; then

it.The

by universal nature,

his

power,

by

identified with

in the double

men

of that world

qualityand dignityof

transportsus,

for him

POETS

world

giftedwith

the
into

firmest
his

art

canvas.

tenderest

the
of

design,has put

Seen

of

sense

his

there, that world

becomes complete,clear,beautiful,and tragic.It


vivid and
and

truthful

in its

in its detail,sublime

harmony.

This

is not

is

in its march

poetry

where

the

DANTE

parts

the whole.

than

better

are

133

Here,

in

as

is cumulative:
great symphony, everything

the

some

ments
move-

the volume
the tension grows,
doubles,
reconspire,
the keen melody soars
higher and higher;
with

and it all ends, not

and

revelation

to

love

What

and

nature

he found

as

ultimate

the

them.

goal

the

became

to say that he

of

merit
The

type

is the

poets

is

critic appears

poet

can

But

always
a

Dante

His

we

world.

He

which

which

poetry

may

be

poet. This

opened

of

is not

when

we

may

that

say

or

be confident

successful

of the

the whole

fetched, and

applied,from

task of

new

of the opposite.

example

be

poetry may

the

greater

no

inmost

bounds

destiny.If to giveimaginativevalue

is the minimum

pire;
as-

relative

anew,

temperament

of the heart to the uttermost


and

can

thing to wrangle about.

fresh

givesa

be

life

thereby

poet

of poetry.His poetry covers


highest
species
field from

minated
imagination do-

supreme

less need
arise ;

ever

of

barren

with

criterion. Even

worship.

to

poetizedall

which

to

taught us

"greatest"of poets.The

questioncan

and

totality,

for all possible


performance,

he set the standard


and

do? Dante

the whole

focused

and
touched

poet

It has

ever.

that

sense

in its

us

judge

to

renounce,

could

by

for

resource

to

more

and

remains

ended, but

it has not

casual

some

in the
reflection,

in sustained

incident,but

with

bang, not

to
cesses
re-

of nature
to

thing
some-

poet, to giveimagina-

THREE

134

tive value

PHILOSOPHICAL
all

to

things,and

is

thingscompose,
conditions

and

evidentlyhis greatest task.

poetry.Even

and
lifeand

Homer,

one-sidedness.

as

we

from

intentional

spreadan
in Dante

; he

loves, and

the

in the

It
ignored.

associate with

now

to the

and

conquerors;
their

glamour over

was

sort of pervasive

paintswhat
in all

If any

similar

poet, it

will not

he hates

it

ities
past brutal-

franklyas

as

is

adequacy

is attained

be, presumably,by

in the
conceive

the

insightof this

expectedto

age, not

the

the unrivalled

phase of thought

part

to

be

express

for this very

however,
remain

"

would

it otherwise

To

it. Dante,

mind,

human

and

supreme

or

and

to

an

natural.
of

complete
may

be

of the supernatural,

exponent, after Plato,

feelingin

of

est
hon-

fall short

reason,

poet

poet

figureas

of the
to

cere.
sin-

again by

wide

for any

Henceforth,
supernatural.

what

complete and

thingshe

must
the supernatural
imagination,

idea

tionality
conven-

No
such partiality
present self-deceptions.

and

any

beginning

poetry addressed

was

state, to the

in the

rulingcaste

he

It

sermon.

we

conditions

much

was

a euphemistic
art; it had
flattering,

fashionable

social;but

are

that his art

of his time
religion

special

certain

There

blandness, like that which


a

under

course

therebyfulfilled the

he

nowadays, suffered
perceive

to

system which

limitations,personaland

he fulfilled it,and
of supreme

the

to

fulfilled this task, of

Dante

POETS

of that

which^he
super-

DANTE

natural

to

seems

ness.^This

is

unitynas

been

we

the

have

Dante

is

the

to

hypothesis

the

best

most

of

key

the

be

135

attained

in

complete
achieved

things
type

on

of

consummate

and

nature

which,
this

as

world.

idealization

by

to

yet,
Here,
and

mankind

poet.

happimoral

then,

prehension
com-

hitherto.

IV

FAUST

GOETHE'S

INpoets,
Lucretius
whole
a

as

is

there

is devoted

poem
of

fable; yet

Divine

the

philosophical,but
the

of moral

poet. But
Faust
If

we

is

and
attitude

sense,

of

is almost

and

personal
explicitly

inspiredand

trolled
con-

and

religioussystems
unmistakably

Goethe

sophical
philo-

philosopher?And

be

is

the

was

to

or

try

to

without
a

of

of

It

fundamental

in his

naturalist

did not
own

by Spinoza.He

kind
man-

to

the

exclude

views,

world
he

was

he may
in

the

be

phy
philosogeneral
great

on

the

not

mit
ad-

even

Goethe

did

interpretationof

nature

cated
advo-

least to

privi-

points.Thus

mechanical

that

that

adherence

Spinoza, however,

of

this wild

is true

Spinoza, and

pantheist.His

wisest

philosopherin

harness

hesitation, a

freedom

tude
lati-

certain

by giving a

Goethe

follower

and
plasticity

the

defending

passages
is

brain-spun terminology.

termed,

moral

wise, perhaps, to be

all his life

most

case

many

it must

terms.

our

technical
a

so,

say

; too

in

the

Dante

too, is

was

his

philosophicalpoem?

to

and

whole

Dante,

the mind.

cross

may

expounding

definite

most

codes.

are

philosophical

our

philosophicalpoet;

Comedy

only

not

by

to

philosophy.In

plain.The

of

scruplethat

undoubtedly

was

system

third

the

approaching

also

assigned,at

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

140

his own,

leged souls, like


than

harboured

generous

explanationsof
Germany

and

the

the world

making

was

infinite
absolutely
was

for the

march

not

of

did not

great

men
can

ideas

firm

than

Goethe

to other

times

this

the situation
the young

is not

Goethe

in the first line,


"

less

it appeared
there, and

we

"

They
and

and persons.

advantage over
organic,

They

nun

and

scatter

it is as the

shall consider

ambiguous.

first wrote
Hob

his age.

beingmore

to Faust

turn

only that

of Faust

scientific.

seeds.

more
we

sophical
philo-

miscellaneous.

easilypropagate themselves.

less influence,but

author

an

word,

attitude,radical
personal

that their minds,


of letters,

If from

In

indeed

was

fresh and

life were

after all,have
philosophers,

more

dent
resi-

sparksin

of
geniusand learning

express

spiritual

of
significance

for the

romantic

unified,and transmissible
For

themselves

thingsand
and

the

ism,
ideal-

are
energies

world.
purposeless

and

thoughtsupon
voiced

in the

transcendental

all moral

although more
They

dramatic

His feeling
systematic
philosopher.

great personages

His

the

expressionof

creatures,
particular

Goethe

with

total reversal of that conviction,so

profound in Spinoza,that
in

he

Moreover,

historycurrent

such

day. Yet

of his

endeavour,

sympathy

nature

of

personal sort

more

Spinoza allowed.

immortality
a

POETS

In the

him

"

play,as

it,philosophy
appeared
ach die

but
Philosophey;

merely
throughoutthe piece,

GOETHE'S
human

of

images or

ambitious

an

fashion

spellof

in heaven,

This

with

indicated

left

Frankly, it
having

was

the

been

that

moral

vent

to

heart,to bewilder
to

vivid

pregnant and

to

amuse,

the mind

with

there
speak of philosophy,
in the

that

exceeded

official moral

in

warned

Faust

is, then,

or

Eckermann,

manches
zen

deliberate
the

to

moral

Conversation

not

zugrunde liege."

even

pressing
ex-

Faust

mained
re-

of

to

fashion

problem
of

May

images,
must

we

ims
max-

express

the

belated

affixed to it,
and
take

too

of existence

6, 1827
aber

es

"

Das

ist

ist keine

which

after

yet it offers

and

and

seriously.1

philosophical
poem,

no

the

touch

and, if

many

give

to

half betrayed,
insights,

many

erkla'render,guter Gedanke,
.

were

the author
us

out
tale,with-

written

carnival

philosophicvalue

which

he himself

open

and

poem,

satirical

without

genius,to

humanize

thrill,to

the

poem,

his

the earlier.

it breathes.

romantic
essentially

he

the whole

less than

adorned

which
the spirit
fairly
an

all that
which

of it,and

seed

that

straying finds

with

abounds, the later parts no

poem

in which

namely,

standing

Mephistophelianwisdom

and

rounded
sur-

others,like the prologue

of Faust,
apotheosis

life was

idea

illusion,
a fund

Schiller, Goethe

strays, yet in that

strives

salvation.

the

or

philosophyof

who

of

and

an

Later, it is true, under

art.

scenes
original

his

141

a passion
or
experience,

as

the

FAUST

Idee

tion
solu-

truly as

as

zwar

an

ein

wirksamer,

die dem

Gan-

THREE

142

PHILOSOPHICAL
of Lucretius

do the poems

be

may

unmixed

more

and

Heard

sophies
philo-

be sweeter.

may

profoundfor

more

rather

than

might

taught.This

is not

said of every

object,that

work

it could

say what

merely to
of art

be

chain of inferences

universe, like the

the

made

that

for
starting-point

should

flower

in

the

natural

of every

and

the whole

reveal

wall. It

crannied

is to say, rather, that the vital

towards
straining

ideal,definite but latent,when

it dominates

life,may

Now

Faust

themselves

is the

from
be

read

of

wave

then

Faust

into

return

that nature,

there, will
as

Dante

not

could

and

the

drama.
;a

to

and

philosophies

not

are

critic ;

they

It is the

are

sions
pasof

drama

tion;
againstconven-

tenderness,

convention

heaping

traditions

rebellion
to

great

paganism coming

new

the

of two

of romanticism

northern

by

flight to nature,
a

top

wave

Italy.These

over

adventure
philosophical

and

the

depths of

seethingin

the

on

"

the

Greece

foam

together,

the

genius,and

whole

fullythan

more

aspiration,
merging

up

risingfrom

ideal

an

words.

of human

waves

to

that

express

the best-chosen

Dante.

for being lived


being adopted unconsciously,

be

and

sweet, but those unheard

are

They

POETS

to

again, with

beauty ;
a

ing
feel-

tenderness, and beauty,unless found


be found

at all. Goethe

never

depicts,

does, the objecthis hero is pursuing;he is

satisfied with

Like Lessing,in
depictingthe pursuit.

FAUST

GOETHE'S

143

apologue,he prefersthe pursuit of the


of
ideal to the ideal itself;perhaps,as in the case
the ideal,and
Lessing,because the hope of realizing
his famous

sake
for-

beginning to

realizingit,were

in

interest

the

him.
The
have

is somewhat

case

of

if,instead

been

as

world, ready-made and

to

from

passed
donna

have

been

be

goal,and
Goethe

gives us

divine

Goethe
verse.

to the

He

have

we

is
is

the

in turn.

or

Now

and

comedy
for

be

to

came

and

more

cal
philosophithe

retrace

ney;
jour-

philosophic
journey,and

we

goal.
poet;

the

he

is

novelist

zest

it

in

comes

philosopherof life,as action,

soliloquymay
the

without

momentum

givesus

recall and

to

yet it

mation
consum-

very

philosopherof experienceas

individual

memory,

Dante

romantic

Divine

human

our

of

eyes

The

deeply felt

more

adequatelyunderstood.

to

them.

that consummation

would

expressed,it

the

and
Comedy depicts;

materials

furnished

it,such that, if ever

have

for

only human,

expressingthis consummation,
have

gentile

donna

love, from

meeting

that the Divine

might

vision of the eternal

suggestedand requiredthe

have

would

ordered, Dante
perfectly

to

ever

then

would

Comedy

always longing
gentile,
without

Beatrice

might

love

of Dante

and lovingBeatrice
recognizing

into
rising

at first sightand

had

that

put life before each

of romanticism

of

consists

us

in

THREE

144

PHILOSOPHICAL

taking what
world

if it

as

know

you

The

of nature

aware

about

them,

and

be

take

conscious
a

with

them

about

rich

The

be

mantic
ro-

would

be

his

primitiveness

something paradoxicaland

; and

that his life may

so

his reflection

and
experience,

all varieties of sentiment

time, in his inmost

same

He

be

romanticist,then,

that

so

man,

have

egotism may

not

not

everythingquiteunsuspectingly

in him.

it was

civilized

should

himself.

about

nor

ancient

tions.
privateemo-

historyat all,could

and
blandlyidiotic,

should

for your

the animal, who

or

or

for what

and
independent

is an

material

were

savage

POETS

may

thought.At

and

genius,he

should

tain
con-

play
the
be

barbarian, a child,a transcendentalist,so that his life


may

him

to

seem

unforeseeable.

unforeseen, and

or

with

earth

new

all the conditions

Faust, Part

Act

375-82

v.

durch

Ich

bin

Ein

jed'Gelust

nur

Was

nicht

Was

mir

Ich habe
Und
Mein

Nun

revolution

heaven

new

in his moods

seeks

to

ignore,

perhapsby livinghe
ence,
Faust, he flouts sci-

Like

trial of

make

of his inspirati

magic, which

die Welt

ergriffich

gerannt ;
bei den

Haaren,

geniigte, liess ich fahren,

entwischte,
nur

abermals
Leben
aber

to

part

creates

or
ignores,

them.1

is minded
IT.

It is

of life,until

discovers
personally

he

each

He

in his purposes.

and

that

believe

to

and

fresh,self-determined,
absolutely

liess ich ziehn.

begehrt und nur


gewiinscht und
durchgestiirmt;

geht es

weise,

vollbracht
so

erst

mit

Macht

gross

und

geht bedachtig.

machtig,

THREE

146

his

PHILOSOPHICAL

It

name.

his soul to

This

publishedabroad

was

the

of wild

years

POETS

earth.

pleasures
'upon

offer

legendpurportedto
of science, of

snares

These

thingshad

upon

that

even

Doctor

the

at

Faustus

here

into hell-fire;

could

be turned

not

we

suspect

may

beginning people recognized in


braver

brother, a somewhat

had

dared

relish

to

the sad

this life above

able
envi-

the

might

religionor worldlylife

well doubt
that

unlovely.Doubtless

more

Lutheran

first chapbook felt,and

felt

fine

things which

Faustus

and

gelical,
pagan,
altogetherto
revival had

had

beginning in

Faustus

time

to

the

the sort of personage

the

were

covet

of

authors

those

unevan-

not

cease

them,

pecially
es-

of the Old-Christian

few

rehabilitation

is still damned,

was

cool.

only a

wrote

to

even

the first ardours

Marlowe, who
a

and

the

it

that
rightly,

popish; yet they could

admire

when

gift;and

whether

the

tempted

valued

thereby made

was

the

good

joys vaguely promised

in the devil's

representedas

in the street

man

avoid

to

for the other. All that the Renaissance


was

fying
edi-

of ambition.

Faustus

Nevertheless,

reprobatewho
thingsof

and
pleasure,

face downward,

its back.

terrible and

all Christians

Doctor

sent

his corpse, found


over

sold

devil, in exchange for twenty-four

example, a warning to
the

that he had

but

years later,made
of the

hero.

he is transformed

that Aristotle

approves

His
into

of for

FAUST

GOETHE'S
the

hero

but

led

astray by

far

too

by

ambition

conscienceless

affections. A
in his
it is in

damned

which

often
bad

part.This

devil

had

signedaway

in

his soul, driven

lies almost

taste

this sort

moment

damnation.

despairand
solution

and

thereby heightened;we
because

at

The

pering
whis-

overheard

angel finally
prevails,
tion
hesita-

and

Faustus

for the lurid and

to

is

see

clusion
con-

essentially

an

of infatuation

againsthis
it is

is

repent

of the

terror

alternative

hand; and

of melodrama,

all those

spontaneous

forbidden

reallyrepented.The

man,

is

he
by predestination";

or

When

good

his

excellent

by

is

bit

typicalvillain

remorse

brow-beaten
he has

for the devil,

mate

express

continual

spiteof

the

error.

Faustus

manfully to

if the

and

accident

by

holds

good angel is
ear

or

the contrary, he has become

and

the Doctor's

on

natural

no

On

creed

of the

noble,

He
pleasure.

heathen, like the

and

good Protestant,

parts

the love of

and

of the Renaissance.
a

vice

Doctor

in

see

and

like themselves, carried

Christian

radical unbeliever,

no

excusable

some

publicwould

and

man

human
tragedy,essentially

of

Marlowe's

147

of

he

will to

happy

only a lingering

the horrible,ingrainedin

that sends

him

shriekingto

hell.
What

makes

and
to any

the
one

more

not

Marlowe's

conclusion

unphilosophicalis
dominated

lent
vio-

the

more

the

fact that,

by convention,

the

good

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

148

the

angel,in

dialogue,seems

of the

worse

admonition

argument.

he has

All

external

and

And

gaze

not

And

heap

God's

book

There

thou

can

earth

on

and

be

and

commander

doubt

no

Renaissance

he

of

the world.

In other

good,and

beauty. He

Even

pope,

of these

elements.

that the devil here


or

the

no

us

but
make

healthy
trial of

Faustus

like him

for his

And

burnt

towers
topless

he cries:

all when

this the face that launched

him

vague

in nature, for his enthusiasm

Was

endear

child of the

if the honest

wonder

speaksfor

his irreverent

represents

of any

We
suggestions.

the

sky,

words, this devil representsthe

it is

resist his

is contained.

is in the

Jove

art,

soul,that would

young

love of life,for his trust


for

of wealth.

famous

treasure

appealsto

ambitions

cannot

as

in that

ideal of Faustus,

the natural

true

place:

all nature's

Wherein

Lord

angelreplies:

forward,Faustus,

Be

aside,

Faustus, think of heaven, and heavenlythings.

in another
Go

sour

tempt thy soul.

No, Faustus, think of honour


And

offer is

the evil

which

to

the

much

heavy wrath upon thy head.


that is blasphemy.
Scriptures;

Read, read,the
Sweet

so

warnings:

it lest it

on

have

to

Faustus, lay that damned

To

POETS

thousand

of Ilium

ships

pranks,being directed againstthe


the

more

to

an

anti-clerical

pub-

FAUST

GOETHE'S
lie ; and

he

the law, medicine,


Faustus

is

"

wealth, and

curious

power,

word, Marlowe's

the

sance
Renais-

beauty.
and

be

if

seen

we

Goethe

Christian

reversingthe

towards

life may

his

knowledge,enterprise,

thoroughlyMarlowe

How

by

as
professions

everythingthat

to

martyr

prized,

way

theology.In

or

cavaliers

crabbed

for such

loftypoeticalscorn

and

courtiers

appealsto

149

(as,in other respects,has often been

for

moment

The

done) with

of Calderon.

Wonder-working Magician

the

on

philosophyof

Faust

compare

are

This

lier
ear-

hero, St. Cyprian of Antioch, is like Faust


his soul

being a scholar, signingaway


magic, embracing
practising
and

and

Here

being ultimatelysaved.

Cyprian,far

from

with theology,is
particularly
and

full faith in his method, toward

his power,

falls in love, and

sells his soul

all

working his
Christian

same

reason

of the

but

Christian

magic
lady

The

devil

of her person,

can

and

orthodoxy.
about

in the

loves

the

hope

of

the freewill

(a modern
adorn

supply only a
as

with

way,

overrule

Spanishone, though supposed to

Antioch).

pher
philoso-

magic chieflyfor

cannot

he

theory,

goodness. He

merely

studies

beauty,

analogyends.

pagan

wisdom, and

his passion.
He
satisfying

very

of

floors the devil in scholastic argument

unity of God,

the

ghost
the

the devil,

to

being disgustedwith

eagerlyseekingGod,
He

the

in

and

ancient

false

tasm
phan-

Cyprian approachesher

and

liftsher veil,he finds


God

can

magician,and

can

; for

Thunderstruck

miracles

work
beat

death's-head

own

game.

for

goodness

of the

power,

God;

true

one

and,
he is

of Decius
is then going on,
persecution
sentenced
away to martyrdom. His lady,

since the
hurried
for the

same

Their

words.

and
their souls

In this drama

their

with
is

dramas
which

they are

philosophyin
in

poets

supposedto

disillusion and

that

which
"

the

tells

to the

to

render

so

their

respective
ages

in

glorifies

The
Christianity.

culminated"

movement

but

ties
greatestliber-

Calderon

occur.

be

not

spiritof

the

stilldominates

perfunctoryway,

could

Faust

take

paganism

from

imagination,and

all the

air.

chronology,yet

orthodoxy

Catholic

Goethe's

remarkably true

the movement

not

with

contrast

complete.Both

more

but

cles,
mira-

are
nothing,the poet
glories

dust, ashes, smoke, and

The

by

zeal, and

before
collapsing

the world

asceticism. These
but

titude
at-

immortality.

checkmated

into

passiontransformed

us,

her heroic

tation,
tempyieldingto faith,purityresisting

doubt

of
glories

in

and

magic

see

we

by

also

earthlypassionis dead;

in death

united

are

him

encourages

cause,

madman,

to the
loudlyand persistently

he bears witness
and

those of any

to cap

devil at his

the

neath
be-

portent, Cyprian becomes

this

at

hideous

taken
Half-naked, ecstatic,

Christian.

wisdom,

POETS

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

150

the
as

his personages

mind,
poet's

to

kindle

sublime

his
and

FAUST

GOETHE'S
his

rapturous. Goethe's

verses

the
glorifies

return

traditional

faith and

Renaissance

seemed

during the

world

to

in
continued

lend

to

head

in many

freed

the

itself from
that

had

years. Goethe's

emancipation of
pupil of

Christian

for all
an

the

the

In

naissance
ReThe

men.

gathering

was

romantic

ment
move-

politic
compromises and

been

hero

it

Revolution, this love of life

in the French

and

stractly
only ab-

second

the souls of

adventurous,

individual.

an

acters
char-

pseudo-classic

or

time, however,

love of life,
primal and

great

to
allegiance

survived

classic

takingplacein

was

the

fine arts, to which

the

certain

Goethe's

elegance.In

in

their old

reaffirmed

or
scholarship

festing
mani-

century. Men's

the Renaissance

and
Christianity,

ing
liberat-

of the historical

time

seventeenth

laws had

and

ism.
pagan-

after
spirit,

smothered

be

trary,
con-

of traditional

bonds

This

morals.

itself brilliantly
at the

Faust, had

the

on

to
Christianity

bursting the

soul, and

the

Faust,

the

of
spirit

the

It shows

from

151

it
stifling

hundred

this second, romantic

embodies

mind,

for two

ventions
con-

too

tradition. He

long

an

unwilling

cries for air,for

experience.Cyprian,on

the other

ture,
na-

hand,

unwillingpupilof paganism,had yearned for truth,

for solitude,and
Such

was

the

of mankind,
took

root

in his

for heaven.

legend that, to
fascinated

the

great good

the young

fancy.Around

it

Goethe,

gathered the

tune
forand
ex-

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

152

POETS

of sixtywell-filled
and insights
periences

poetical
autobiographyand

the

became

of Goethe.

testament

He

stuffed

that

diversified

his

great alternative

of romantic

or

enthusiasm

ism
Lord
the

in

geology,and
in

Byron. Yet

the

legend,and

in its historical

him

to

national

the

spellof

and

he had

he gave

in externals,amid

classic

was

as

had

lines,and

later to

was

humanitarian

craze,

idealizingthe

of

who,
others,the poor girl
with

her

seducer

new-born
and

infinite

lyricand

for

sense

with

we*

mortal
im-

Helena,

own

he had

physical
meta-

caught

the

for defendingand
prevalent,

then

victims

mirth, in

and

inspirehis

instead

but

yet dormant;

him

on

multitudinous

inspiredMario

beauty which

municated
com-

manners;

The
passions.

the

outpouringsof

diaeval
me-

for all that

Shakespearethe

lifelike medleys of sadness

realism

humble

the

fallen

strengthof suggestionin details,in

life

had

imaginativecult
had

with

His

made

fancy;Herder

to feel in

learned

for

it,nothing

escaped him.

architecture

Gothic

glimpses,in

Vulcan-

and

characteristic in art and

and

the

classical art, down

Strassburghad

an

every

life,from

own

personalturn
in

it with

the liberties he took

familiar to his

scene

was

spiteof

phic
philoso-

fatherlyadmiration

associations

and

in Frankfort

his

to

the

Neptunism

controversy between

to the

years: Faust

law

and

to escape

child. Such

Pharisaical

society,among

did
disgrace,
victim

publicwas

to

of

add

away
selfish
a

de-

THREE

154

fame
air

or

was

PHILOSOPHICAL

riches.

Perhaps magic might do

full of

spirits
they be
; could

aid, possiblythe

our

POETS

We

reach

might

it undreamt-of

secrets

of nature

better. The

summoned

might

to

be

locked.
un-

science,and through

true

the

material

world.

For

has
Nature, accordingto Goethe, really

secrets.

She

is not

to eventual

all open

mechanism

over

power

of minute

last view

of her, like

; from

the

she
inspection;

parts and

and

of

magic,has

makes

it,there is

no

faith and

Goethe's

Faust

he

is

Faust, unlike Marlowe's, has


the

point of

alreadyas
the bolder

hoping

view

to

find

His

magic

him

into his

turns

to

arts

Christian

of
spirits
in

are

universal

of the

age

of Goethe

sense,

than

longsfor grandiosesolitudes.

nature,
the

Christian

law.

that will initiate

sacrament

also in another

other
an-

from

escape
and

in

the Renaissance,

the religion
of
religion,

new

nature

the

doctrine

of the

unbeliever; but,

an

infinite,placid,
non-censorious, an
of
prison-house

of

even

unbeliever, he is looking for salvation

an

quarter.Like

He

unveilingher,
the truth.

as
spirits,

fear. From

no

cal
rhetori-

or
questionof selling,

no

he is damned

church
as

of

soul. This

the
risking,

of

face to face with

bringingus

this invocation

In

chance

Our

must

we

onlya poeticand

any

mere

be interpreted

of her manifestations

sum

no

statable laws.

first glimpse,must

our

divine her soul. Therefore

art, like

is

He

nature.

more

He

teristic
charac-

of that of Faust.
feels that

moon-

FAUST

GOETHE'S

Byron,

this Faust, the


coexist

They

Giordano

and

there

with

and

of all romantic

wild

his heart, while

cosmic

hopes,Faust

Full of these
at the

law

and

and
he

magic

helpshim

signof

his book

opens

the Macrocosm

it shows

of the world, all forces and


into

another

one

and

him; he

of his dearest

ambitions.

one
once

upon

the

other

the other

of the

moment,

what
Thus

we

attain,our

the vision

has before

universe, which

who

renders

lives and

Faust, Part

i.,

call it,

No
be

mantic
ro-

matter

perpetual.

Faust

now

renderingof

it is
the

Shakespeare,for instance,
it

it. Experience,as

to

comes

him

works, is not given by that theoretical

Studierzimmer,

Welch
Wo

as

is not

at

comes

him, is,he remembers, only a vision

life of the world

feels and

attained

life. Every

dissatisfaction must

of the

chanism
me-

playing

Hegel would

romantic

It
theory or conception.1

inner

he

realized,disenchants.

ideal,once

magic

the

have

here

But
as

him

events

to

seems

half,or,

of

infinite chain. The

forming an

spectacleentrances

rebellions.

exploitthem.

to

souls of

of nature,

aspects

renew

mysteriesof

the

The

the souls of Paracelsus

The

Bruno.

be his

in
pre-incarnate

Shelley are

epitome

thinks, will melt


reveals

his best counsellors.

and

best medicine

Rousseau,

drivingclouds, would

mountains,

light,
caves,

155

i. :

Schauspiel! aber,

ach ! ein

fass' ich dich, unendliche

Euch, Briiste,wo?

Schauspielnur

Natur

THREE

156

PHILOSOPHICAL

POETS

vision;in science experienceis turned


reviewed

events, the

through so
\|

image

or

and

become

to

the

present wish.

This

to

undertake

done.

for

experiencethat

horror.

bursts

the

for any

all bounds

of

Faust, Part

i.,

him

Geist

Du,

Schon

ich
gliih'

Ich fiihle Mut,


Der

Erde

Mit

Sturmen

Und

in des

Weh,

mich
der

mich

von

man

may

Erde

zu

wagen,

zu

tragen,

Gliick

herumzuschlagen

Schiffbruchs

Knirschen

nicht

zu

similate
as-

his understanding,

thingswear

Wein

in die Welt

it. This

rehearse; it

to

hoher,

neuem

to

finite
flux, the in-

falls within

naher

its

criminate
furious,indis-

is the

individual

Krafte

sees

is turned

inconstancy of

der Erde, bist mir

fiihl'ich meine
wie

he

Schon

have

may

red flame

Each
personality.

Studierzimmer

is ready

is his yearning

mighty

only that aspectwhich


1

mortal

thing
no-

is softened
Earth-Spirit

part only which

that

from

; he

his enthusiasm

absolute

generallife is not

experience.

shrinks

of life,the merciless

variety,the

his

live;and with the last man

Outspread before
cataract

any

bidding.In

visage,and

monstrous

all

endured

die.1 So

to

at his

enact

sign of

the

on

to

he

have

may

he would

content

appears

an

to
propitious

signis the key

mortal

In all nien

to

yearns

more

everythingthat

he will be

and

seems

experiencetempts Faust;
that any

substance

does not want

search,he fixes his eye

new

many

itself.
reality

which
Earth-Spirit,

All

Faust

But

so

much

so

he
of reality;
description

In this
the

forms.

many

of

passage

into

zagen.

from

his

FAUST

157

interests.
particular

Du

GOETHE'S

angle,and
particular

his

to

cries
the Earth-Spirit
gleichst,
Geist

dem

This

\ man
\ a

that the

saying
"

is the

hard

U Faust.

life of reason,

the whole

with

from
he

scope

by

attain

His
representation.
universal ; his life
from

sentence

under

it. He

accept
a

the
feels

All

scarcelysuffice
in the two

says to the young


of what
the

Faust

vanity of

had

to

truth.

his purposes

Any great

purposes.
to

Faust,

impotent

his

the

the

nearer

be due

can.

his powers
render

as

he

to

hears

gainsaywhat

of
him
this

unwelcome

and

long experience to

convince

him

student

of Goethe's

is

he will
ing
chastenwill

come

of it.

ideas
philosophical

Fragment.

the tumult

but

thundering at him,

earlier versions

Urfaust and

akin

departingEarth- Spirit,
collapses

the chief

are

be

understandingmay

is

to

of experience,

sum

stations,and

must

authorityso

on

truth.

These

is

"

of
philosopher

part of the

all other

never

of the world
not

for

his limitations,by his station

all other

amongst

can

oppositeis far

in fact the

contrasted
chosen

another

experienceshould

of

is constituted

Man

good

the life of nature

not

since his is

that
feeling,

his. But

gleichst

mir.

life possible
and

thinks,like many

He

du

"

the romantic, unintellectual,insatiable

to

one

nicht
begreifst,

du

den

him,

to

What

only a

that appear

Faust,

"

the

Mephistopheles
clever

expansion

said in his first monologue about

science

and

of the learned

professions.

THREE

158

PHILOSOPHICAL

too,
Mephistopheles,
of life green

full of

and

experiencethan

more

that this
the mouth,

or

of life ?

When

we

the

to

that

to the

drama,

than

of art
and

if

bought

its total
The

world.
Faust

as

gave

touches
centre

the

of the

pression
ex-

tions
addi-

ancient

the intention

moral

is justthe

be

them

from

character

beginning.It

centre, and

thors.
au-

dearly
what

to the

the

rious
va-

sult
re-

moral

of Goethe's

world

placewhich

at

of their

would

by

and individual

the

ligently
intel-

more

what,
accurately

historical and
old

ture
picin

more

analyzethem

to

distracted

it in the

is the

shape,

rounded

substance, and

been

place in

more

are

us

its place in
idiosyncrasy,

whole

science

the romantic

bits of information

were

we

Science

changes and

to offer

and

in

study the Entstehungsgeschichte

have

givespoeticvalue
"

transform

reproducemore

these

Yet

find many

we

illustrations

help us

times, may

ashes

to

first part in its final

in ultimate

Critics who

chanting
disen-

he foresees
dialectic,

changes,however,

chieflynew

of works

scene

to

seem

philosophy.The

theme.

second

better ; for after all is not

opening scene,

are

of the

garden of Eden.

turn

of the

Faust

it did in the

entire

additions

golden fruit;only,having

also will turn

is folly,
but life is no

the tree

and

golden fruit

as

part

theoryashen,

in the romantic

moment

finds

POETS

the

fillsmore

opening
space, it

poeticmatters;

but

its result the

old

its
re-

GOETHE'S
suit. It remains

FAUST
in its

romantic

159

picturesand

in its

philosophy.
lighton

the

Heaven.

In

the

that

first addition

The

of the

idea

morning

stars

together;and

then

the

"

that the

of Faust's

soul. But

being the

what

his disembodied

observes, do
a

subterranean
to

increase

the

of earth ; he knows

the life of

is not

dwells

of

overtake

or

atmosphere
the worlds,

remains

"

Fatist,Prolog im Himmel:
Mit
Hab'

ich mich

Am

meisten

Fur

einen

Mir

geht

Von
Ich

Leichnam

und

nur,

Toten

befangen.

gern

die vollen, frischen

bin ich nicht

der Katze

es, wie

Sonn'
sehe

niemals

lieb' ich mir

den

mit

zu

Haus
.

Welten
wie

weiss

ich nichts

sich die Menschen

zu

Wangen.

der Maus.

sageh,

plagen.

bition1,
am-

shades

tortured

suns

He

devil from

pique or

in the

the

ing
dur-

Mephistopheles

out

is his element.1

man

is far

sense,

questionis what

men,

nothingof

us

the salvation

was

populationof

region.He

lead

might

fate will afterwards

He

morous
hu-

mediaeval

will maintain

hell,concerned,

in that fabulous

"

mortal

interest him.

find

Me-

and

styleof

issue

Dead
spirit.

not

Lord

in Job, the

tempted

this life,
not

the

that, in the literal


As

we

agreeableand

very

point at

case.

the

sentiments

of Job,

this circumstance

suppose

Prologue in

"

is in the

scene

religious
plays,and

from

new

archangels singing

between

conversation

to

Book

three

follows

The
phistopheles.

is the

drama

of The

imitation

throw

promises to

what

THREE

160

he

in the

was

the

PHILOSOPHICAL
first versions

one
Earth-Spirit,
as
office,

that

which

renewal

of life.He

Faust

demand

everythingand

his wager

nothing;and
to demand

throws

in his way,

lick it with

that

cular
partiin the

foolish of

satisfied with

be

be

may

brought

be satisfied with what


he

shall lick the

that
pleasure,1

dignityof willingwhat
crawl

His

finds it very

is that Faust

nothingand

part of

"

is involved

continual
to

play

is to precipitate
presently,

see

destruction

continual

of the

of its embodiments.

shall

we

POETS

he

shall

is not

and

chance

dust, and
the

renounce

be, and

cannot

about, like the serpent,baskingin the comforts

of the moment.

Against this,the
his servant,

Lord

the servant, that is,of

"

declares

that

needs

astray; yet in

man

go

to

have

to

be

does
some

ideal

an

his necessary

rightroad.2

and

concrete

violent

ideal,

an

"

ideal

an

errors,

In

this. He
ultimate

of

soil

er

Lust.

mit

Ibid.:
Es

Ein

irrt der

Mensch,

guter Mensch

1st sich des

there
and

in his dissatisfaction;
but

fressen, und

rechten

so

lang'er

in seinem

Weges

strebt.

dunkeln
wohl

Drange

bewusst.

never

Faust

half believes

Faust, Prolog im Himmel:

good

words,

man.

good beyond,

and
must

the

other

be

to

strive for,and, like Faust,

yet know

not

Staub
2

the

to

after

strives

is itself the salvation


satisfied,

bitter and

whoever

misses

never

Faust

pronounces

so

is
is

in due

THREE

162

PHILOSOPHICAL

the
surprise

to

learned.1 The

were
religion

devils of

cut

not

with

the

chthonic

gods of Olympus

deities,blackened

by

these pagan
and

and

coarse

elemental
irresponsible,

whole

dartingthrough
They

not

were
were

Often

swarmed

they

in Faust

and

and

not

if at

like

One
1

Faust, Part

Wald

i.,

Erhabner
Warum
Dein

earth

the

and

subterranean

tormented.

nor

as
they
blithely,

sang

Empfind' ich
Die

mich

Mir

den

im

they

croaked

hooted,

or

than

hast

Du

Gottern

mich

sich letzt?

atmo-

Herz

umsonst

zugewendet.
nichts

gabst
nah

wird,

Vollkommnes

dieser

Wonne,

naher

bringt,

zu

und

alles,

mir

"c.

Also, ibid.,Triiher Tag: Grosser


mein

the

of
spirits

nicht

mir

Feuer

Gefahrten,

du

less natural.

not

Menschen

nun.

den

do

cian;
Wonder-working Magi-

Geist, du gabst mir, gabst

Angesicht

in

Hohle:

und

O, dass dem

derben

in

less amiable

ich bat. Du

der
wiirdigtest,
Schandgesellen

malice

frogsand owls, less lovelycreatures

of these

of

"

dwellers

times

humming-birds,but

ture
na-

life, winged powers

tormentors

other

of

dreams

without

the

in the

even

aspects of

all the

between

and

graded
de-

originally
ish
imp-

all the

they were

space

hell; they

was

been

not

their

as

ancient

more

Many
imagination.

indeed, had
sprites,

But

they

sectarian zeal,and

timid

men.

moon.

the

nor
lovelyor propitious,

are

cloth:

of the air,together

and

by

mischievous, since

aeval
popularmedi-

of whole

out

simplythe Neoplatonicdemons

were

it

POETS

Geist, der du

herrlicher
kennest

und

schmieden, der sich

am

meine

Schaden

mir

Seele,

zu

erscheinen

warum

weidet

und

an
am

den
Ver-

GOETHE'S

its ambient

of
sphere,especially
Goethe.

tophelesof
than

in

alone

darkness

his mind,
and

which
privation

exists

be

can

therefore

wish

in

one

deny

is the

might

has

great power

of its

Part

with

compare

being

Nothing that
to

of whatever

is the

change

is the

Studierzimmer,

das

Recht

mit

1st wert,

dass

besser

Ich bin ein


Ein

es

zu

denn

alles,was

Grunde

geht

change,
of its

one

of

Teil des Teils, der

Teil der

anfangs alles

Etwas, diese plumpe Welt,

Nichts

viel als ich schon


nicht

Wie

viele hab'

Und

immer

geht

es

Finsternis, die sich das

Das

Ich wusste

entsteht,

war,

gebar.

unternommen,

ich schon

fort,man

Licht

entgegenstellt,

ihr beizukommen.

cirkuliert

ein

begraben
neues,

mochte

frisches

rasend

Blut.

werden

thing.
some-

it wills

war's, dass nichts entstiinde.

sich dem

So

of Lucretius

it,since in

verneint

tinually,
con-

"

destruction

Was

So

Mars

only

spirit

n.:

Ich bin der Geist, der stets

Drum

This

in the world; every

aspects,expresses

be;

is,and

is always willingevil,for
spirit

i.,

Und

the

to

if nothing had

better

the value

of

it deserve

does

been

and,

mixture

of that

everlastingNo.

we

This
Faust,

fundamental

call existence.

have

says,

light.
Nothingness

ambition; he is the spiritthat denies

aspects, every

profound and

destroy it,according to him,

to

he

"

the

part
we

it would

rational

which

of

nor
preserved,

existed.1 To

ever

to

better

evil rather

nothingness,he

or

still remains
the

fire,is the Mephis-

explainsin

the birth

before

163

delightedin

Darkness

ingeniousfashion.

or

he

Why

he himself

good

existed

FAUST

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

164

death, with
minister

all the
death.

to

folly,crime,
in

But

good;

and

despairthat

complishing
willingevil,it is always ac-

for these

evils make

nothingness is the

and

POETS

for
The

good.

true

ness,
nothingfamous

couplet
"

Em

Die

stets das

will,und

Bose

Teil

stets das

vonjenerKraft
Gute schafft"

is far from

expressingthe Hegelian commonplace

with

it is usuallyidentified. It does

that

which

destruction

serves

it clears the

because

not

who

and

change

He

aiming

does

contributes

He

cures.

all

those

philosophers
selves.
in them-

good

his

while
activity,

to
unintentionally

the

cause
begood intentionally,

less than the


is,in his opinion,

the evil it does


evil it

that

the

to

after

purpose

evolution

admit

not

mean

"something higher."

of

one

evil, contributes

at

good. It

for

way

Mephistopheles is
think

good

not

is the

cruel surgeon

to

the disease

of life.
If he admitted
be
the
own

ipsofacto converted

and

the view

to

eyes,

needful

service

of life being

might

then

yet be

continue

adopt

sanctioned
the

smile

in the

reallyvital

witticisms, without
and

he would
interpretation,
of the

Prologue.His naughtinesswould

condition
He

other

the

his
one

in

cause

and

of life,
"

worth

drop more
of the

living.

slyoperationsand

halo

in

become, in his

everythingby

and

Lord

ing
bit-

of kindness,
the Absolute,
He
optimist.

GOETHE'S
would

FAUST

perceivedthat

have

of the

the

was

of the

red pepper

the yeast and

he

165

world, necessary

the

perfectsavour

As

it is, Mephistopheles is far rhore

his victims

these

what

the bud.

acknowledge, the

to

trary
con-

dictor,
contra-

he does

good,

hopes,if let alone, wouid

young

follyof livingin

He

he wills is

hopes.Yet

misery and absurdity.His

to

modest.

will;he is the great

the blaster of young


because

to

providentialconcoction.

says that he wills evil,because


to what

spiceof life,

contradiction

To

be sure,

destructive

nipsthe

he goes

as

on

wins

never

power

lead

decisive

While
victory.

everythingfalls successively

beneath

his sickle,the

seeds

perpetuallybehind

Ve/iushas
The

her

as
innings,

eternal see-saw,
end

and

Thus

well

without

consistent

moods.

All

Goethe

tered
being scat-

are

The

Lucretian

the Lucretian

Mars.

flux,continues

out
with-

abatement.

he

own

he says and

Mephistopheleshad

been

does

the

masks

it.The

in the

and

has

of his mind,

dramatic

long

is

be made

cannot

essence

fixed

yet

eyes;

various

wears

conceived
finally

philosophy,and

in his

altogethercompatiblewith
as

as

the ancient

of the drama

various

his back.

Mephistopheleshas

and
justified
course

of life

figureof

before

in

its

for instance,
graphiccharacteristics. Mephistopheles,
is

extremely old;

There
His

is

nothing

feelingfor

he
new

anyone

feels older

than

for him

he

is

sees

he

has

the

illusions.

no

choked,

universe.

as

happens

THREE

166

old

to

people,by

of persons
is

PHILOSOPHICAL

He

has

he

often

the

assumes

He
obscenity.

thrice,and

Dogs

not

Earth-

is

the tastes

nor

of

"

good-naturedlywith

the

observes
spirit-world,

much

as

air

than

has

the snake, also. He


he has had

enamoured

the other
not

he

is not

thoroughly.
cause
beimpartial,
thize
sympa-

which
Earth-Spirit,

half of the
"

keys.
mon-

self;
himdespises

of death; he cannot

represent,

are

the

creative, propulsive,

side,the side that worshipsthe ideal,the

love that makes

the world

ingenuous soul

what

special

no

of other

himself

know

to

he is the advocate

an

and

however,
understanding,

does

of the

despiseshis cousin,

he

understands

time

he

prejudiceagainstthe

no

and

all

respect.Man's

the conventions

snake; he understands

he

forms

are

man

man;

Mephistopheleshas

with

should

of the moralities,his conventions

less absurd

the

in blood, knocking

of the

demons

moralityis one

His

is not

up

puts

dignitythat Mephistophelesshould
not

He

respecting
pentagrams. Why

Spiritas

man.

kitchen, with its senseless din

signingcontracts

and

of

it is his favourite

dog,

he

inhuman
altogether

earthlycarnival.

of
grotesque etiquette
the rules about

He

form

in this

the infinite number

is heartless,because

universal.

to the witches'

averse

He

the shames

not

mask

and

for
feelings

he remembers.

impersonaland
;

his

POETS

torments

it

can

go round.

only amuse

gives him

What

enchants

Mephistopheles;

sardonic satisfaction.

FAUST

GOETHE'S
Thus

he

devil. At
and

in fact

be

to

comes

of Faust, he

romanticism

of all experienceand
Faust

that

be

to

Yet
particular.
and

truth, when

sentimental
that

spite of

in

various

says

unwelcome,

diabolical

as

be

must

the

by

passionfor

Faust's

man
spokes-

he

warns

of checking

way

cynicallie ;

mask,

recognizehis
think

we

is the

Such

him

and
spirit,

tone

and, under

villain and

such

are

find him

the

for all

experience,includingall experienceof

he fears

hell ; and

no

in

undertakes

magic

his adventures.

he

hopes for

by

nature

experience it
His

by

covets

with

for neither
believes

or

such

earth

torments

faith. It is

such

nor

cost

willingto
evoke

can

force

and
an

of torments

are
pleasures

surance.
as-

pression
ex-

bargain to

no

Faust,

possible.

evil ;

settled conditions

its sheer

at the

Goethe,
that

thirsts

Mephistophelesis

of this romantic
on
buy pleasures

is

God, personalwill

or

bond

any

He

He
happiness.

that is,he believes,or

believe,that apart from

laid down

no

lightful
de-

conditions,in

Faust

the

his

ever
what-

which

make

so

matic
sentiments, Mephistophelesretains his dra-

unity.We

trusts

the

to

seem

may

unequal justness of

very

in

something

the infinite. The

the most

as

the silliness

when

; as

reason

this he

mocking

to be the

seems

all you

even

denying

soberest

at

and

sour

he opposes

times, when

other

167

nor

after
here-

topheles
Mephis-

worth

ing,
hav-

THREE

168

The

PHILOSOPHICAL

Auerbach's

amused

that

is without
find

Brander,

drunken

"pathosof

distance

ideal

nothing,like

in

youth
mirror.

the

beauty, and

forth

comes

he

has

view

he

He

is henceforth

being

seen

youth
orgy.

for

love

His

mouth

sees

of

of

the

little red

nymph

inclination

he

turns

the

points

is
to

mouse

image

he

is able

to

sees.

follows ; and

with

of

with

in love

her

when

brother) to

Walpurgisnacht,his
contagion of

the

beauty, which

of ideal

him, however,

saves

He

duel

catches

moment

; here

two

again,he

young

Gretchen

revels

wild

the

its,
vis-

the

and

(afterthe

her

leaves

next

rehabilitation;he has taken

great episodeof

The

of

fancy more

with

Njind ideal beauty in the first woman

*/

he

shallow

ugly and

in his romantic

Helen

which

;"he is acutelyconscious

nonsensical, and

Faust

Yet

elixir of

the

know

kitchen, which

witches'

more

even

gained

heartiness

must

pleasureis still more


obscene.

there. He

sees

gaiety attractive;to put

follies,
one

the

In

is

be

cannot

something incomparablynoble just out

of

din

table.
unpala-

like Mephistopheles.
Faust
everything,

or

stillfeels the

reach.

simplicityand

even

such

with

he

in

is

once

mind

merriment

the sodden

world

finds it at

disdainful

and

mature

by

might

he

the

of

gets

cellar,and

His

up

Faust

first taste

POETS

from

remains

running

aversion.

satisfied,
un-

sion.
lastingillu-

any

pursuing,and

that

out

his

When

of the

tary
momen-

he

goes

THREE

170

stanzas,

PHILOSOPHICAL
for each

one

invokes

of

of

is incidental
;

The

the

up

watch

untried

the

fresh

Forces

in repose

renewed
is open

of

by

down

n.

Act

i.,

whole

scene

kann

versteht

will repay

study.

of

full;

grow
a

der,
ten-

tempt

his eyes.

new

career.

all
intelligent;

be so.1

He

watches

awakes
with

mountain-topsand
When
valleys.

der Edle
und

division.

Faust

Anmutige Gey end:

Alles
Der

the

tion
circula-

of the fourth watch

petalsand

ambition.
the

with

sea

and
individuality

should

to

buds

these ministrations,Faust

graduallyinto

ture.
na-

plasticstress

the brave, to the

sunlighttouch

Faust, Part

The

their

dare

strengthand

new

the

to

be noble, who

Soothed

the

the song
will. Finally,
open

the

permanent

thawing branches,
a

soul

seeds swell, sap


itself;

reassert

bids the flowers

may

no

of

In this universal

find

we

everythingrecovers

Nature

has

unhappy

and

peace,

privatewill,no

no

beginningto

mounts

vain ; failure

little,
twinklingor pure, fill

their ordered

next

nature

to

seem

Nature

the

merges

tremblingreflection.

the

evil and

healing

substance
incorruptible

stars, great or

there is
In

watch

infinite

sky with

their

they

is innocent.

error

to the

first

and yoti are forgiven.


The
yourself,
forgive

the

again in

night.The

remorse,

Spinoza,are

of the second

song

of the

and

sleep.Pity

say, in the words

memory

watch

surrender
forgetfulness,

peace,

influence

POETS

leisten,

rasch

ergreift.

full
ture
rapcreep

it reaches

GOETHE'S

him, he

dazzled. He
had

to

turns

look

kindle

says, to

hate. Let

medley

our

turn

us

eyes the waterfall

our

image

wish, he

produce

we

joy and

sorrow,

upon

the sun,

over

againstit,the

torrent

of

into

always vanishing,but
true

of

We

for

it the

mists that rise from

he is

Fitter

broken
affairs,

human

but

that
Earth-Spirit

backs

our

infinite existence.

infinite force and

upon

the

sun

of life,
and

torch

a monstrous
conflagration,

love and

the

rejectedhim.

then

our

171

directlyat

to remember

seems

allured and

once

FAUST

rills.Upon

myriad

sunlightpaintsa rainbow,

always

restored.

is the

This

achievement.

of rational human

have

We

of the world.1 Or,

lifein the iridescence

the

Shelley

as

has said it for us,"

Life,like a

dome

the white radiance

Stains

by reshapingour

builds that coloured


is renewed,

down,
1

and

Faust, Part

the

Act

i.,

mists
is

Feuermeer

wollten

die Sonne

wir
uns,

mir

Der

Wassersturz,

das

Felsenriff

Ihn

schau'

mit

wachsendem

ich

herrlich, diesem

Allein

wie

Wolbt

sich des

Der
Am

an

bunten

instincts,
rainbow

the wind

again or

Sturm

entziinden,
welch
im

ein

Feuer

!
.

Riicken

durchbrausend,
Entziicken.

erspriessend,

Bogens Wechseldauer,

spiegeltab das menschliche


farbigen Abglanz haben wir

Bestreben.
das

dies

the first day.

on

Gegend:

umschlingt

So bleibe denn

Lucre-

The

more.

gloriousas

The

and

senses

once

rise

Anmutige

Fackel

Lebens

Des
Ein

as

dome

creation
n.

of eternity,

is itself unstable.

death, however,

tian Venus,

glass,

tramplesit to fragments.

Until death

This

-coloured

of many

Leben.

THREE

172

PHILOSOPHICAL

is Goethe's

This

(.
It
7 mortality.
1

is

theory of rejuvenationand

thoroughly naturalistic.

lifeafter death, but

onlyfor

nature, in her uncertain

reproduce.A deep

mind

has

times

over.

many

carries

into its next

over

and

remains
so

"

demerits, its load of


These

washed

are

that

deep

after the

When,

thought

deep

It
his

another.

deep mind,
and

was

if a

as

Such

presumption,this
a

new

and

to

means

begin a

to

and

known.
un-

life,disgusted
it to

take

up

is serious. It expresses

thingsas they stand, but

great hope. Death, for Faust, is


other ; and

adventure

risk he is

lifted the

as

abandon

resolution

adventure, like any

to

it

in middle

man

should
profession,

that, too, is

Faust
Earth-Spirit,

wholly different

conditions

it also expresses

dawn,

ries.
memo-

again imply

may

regarded

great dissatisfaction with

he

merits

baptism.What

oppressiveconditions

fresh life under

as

mind

perhaps in

"

in that

with the

scene

of suicide,he

from

escape

an

in its new

was

deep

its sordid

or

to

it.

admit

with

which

its conventional

remorse,

enough

forms

what

But

situations

new

is

in nature,"

incarnation

away

only what

is

those

deep roots

is not

sphere

remote

with

There

have

as

im-

oscillations,
always tends

itwill bloom

some

such souls

themselves
identify

to

scope

POETS

should

willingto

poisonto

if,contrary to his

his

springtimeof

the

prove

run.

he
lips,

last,

Accordingly,
drank

existence.

It

to
was

the

by

FAUST

GOETHE'S
no

the saddest

means

the

nor

173

weakest

of

moment

his life.1
of

sound

the

Although
he

he looked

for

difference
and

only postponed.There

was

dying

between
he

livingas

as

about

was

brewed,
artificially

bring him

to

without

suicidal

wilfulness
of
discipline
first

art

part, he

of itself into
or

like

or

Faust, Part

i.,

Meer

at the

Hier

ist

Dass

Manneswiirde

Zu
Und

es

diesem

ich

war'

reiner

Zeit, durch
Schritt
es

rait

tering
en-

sionate
pas-

close of the

poisoned

life to

the

he falls carries him


is not

grown

ter
bet-

simply startingafresh,
ever,
tains,howhis
^iiafacter;

hL

will

his achievements

he will henceforth

werd'

Spharen

neuen

to

acceptingthe

hinausgewiesen,
.

Zu

sences,
es-

to strive

was

person.

Only

was

die

be

stage,that of historyand civi-

Studierzimmer

Ins hohe

he

indomitable, and

broader

is

he

proceed by

to

He

part of

fruitless.

remain
on

this

he

new

but

wayward,

romantic

hardlynecessary

Now,

existence.

new

much

thought to

enough,for

drained

the fundamental
remains

live. Venomous

fever into which

day

new

to
were

reason.

reasonable

more

or

has

the

dregs,and

is not

had

magic, without

or

scene

he

of attainment, and

hope

in
religion

life;the adventures

new

were

upon

of

transformation

longerbelieved, the

no

checked

hymn

memories

him, bringing sentimental


which

Easter

an

Thatigkeit.

Thaten

nicht

der

sich heiter

zu

beweisen,

Gotterhohe
zu

weicht,

entschliessen

Gefahr, ins Nichts

dahin

zu

fliessen.

THREE

174

PHILOSOPHICAL

lization;and his magic will


somewhat

like the
dreamlike
to

the

his

among

had

or

of

he

more

found

be

of

this ideal. He

took

beauty

alone

for
pecially
second

into

the

as

of the

from

Troy. And
simply
a

"

woman

She

is the

Helen

attracted

for all

love,

"

more

placein

of feminine

beauty, and
of Hellas.

passionfor

by

Later, also,

to her

symbol

man,
Ger-

true

tenderer
senses.

was

young

legendagainin

symbol

not

highestbeauty, that

love of Faust

beauty

legend,was

restored

her

of

poet and

up the old

and
spirit,
antiquarian

it,he transformed

Helen

his soul,was

well

as

of the

vulgarthing.The

his Faust

gave

love of the heart

real

beautiful. Pedantic

women.
ravishing

was

lovefl with

devil, one

noticed

never

Tannhauser,

to

other

instance

Goethe

forth

recluse,grown

thought

of the

Goethe, ho\yever,who

when

he

Faust

than
ravishing

and

only a

goes

the

to

poor

them

when

might

the supreme

The

thought only of

the

Venus

over,

with
he

errors,

of

which, in the old legend,

woman.

not

of woman,

what

past

parchments,had

he was,

to

sions
illu-

blown

and

year;

sell his soul

to

child that

Helen,

bygone

allurements

beauty

women,

old loves have

of his

Faust

prompted

him

day.

new

the

Among

gray

His

memory

meet

was

of

storms

before

summon

intellectual,counterfeits

more

of power.

beauty and

POETS

es-

The

classicism.

GOETHE'S
This

passionin

romantic

also

poetry and

the charm

everythingwas

in those

statues, how

romantic

was

It

sentimental

ruined

the

thing in

sad, delicious emotion

Iliad

of Rousseau

historyof

same

marble

mankind.
ruined

The

temple
choice.

more

heroes

of the

the savages

as

the

as

The

feel before

could

way

idealized,or

were

of

eyes

vision,the
fascinating

marble.

in the

idealized

were

blind

elegantand

more

perience
ex-

noble, serene,

folds of the

anything one

sentimentalityin

was

the

felt before

one

as

castle,but

white

the

was

dignified

days ! How

pure

philo-

for them,

How
antiquity.

remote,

It

that made,

"

heroic

the

chaste

drapery!Greece

of

How

abstracted!

and

as

the

for the faded

"

of the ancients

was

cal
paradoxi-

so

and

passionfor all experience

romantic

most

is not

restoringsomething ancient.

logianswere

the

age

175

Winckelmann

sound.

it may

as

FAUST

robbers

of

Schiller.
The

romantic

between

the

classicism of the

politeclassicism

lies

Napoleonicera

of the

French

teenth
seven-

classicism
century and the archaeological
our

present Grecians.

French

classicism

had

of

been

^"MM^BBMMBMMHM|||HMpMH"MBM*lMB*aM'

quiteindifferent
life ; it could

periwig and

adopted from
standard
taste.

of

They
"

to the

tolerate

picturesqueaspectsof

laces. What
the

the

on

studied

an

the French

ancients

character

stage

and

was

"/

Achilles

in

and

tragedianshad

something inward,

motive,

harmony

ancient

or

criterion

restraint,not

of
be-

THREE

176

PHILOSOPHICAL

these

cause

had

POETS

Greek

been

but
qualities,

reasonable
essentially
qualities

they were
cultivated

societyand

cultivated

which

admiration

for

time

peopleof judgement

among

Goethe

his age ; for if

and

expressionof
know

by

Greece

life in

ancient

that these

spiteof

that

less
than
and

livingidea, a
he

gestures;he
them

off. His

human,
verftucht
Helena

is an

The

For

in the

and

of

feudal

this Helen

present dream

and

by

as

like theatrical

are

as

he rounds
dream"

feel ; and

to

story,but

castle,are

is not

of art

his

magic, magical not merely

of
apparent incongruities
surrounded

was

romantic

so

came

essentially
so,

and

ghostlysemi-consciousness

she appears,
court

of

forms

new

sentimental

very

scientifically

of his toga

he himself

evocation

accident

her

as

possible

remained

never

distich

Iphigeniais

made

studied

was

feels the sweep

we
sculpture,

Byron, Greece
to

classical.His

was

artistic

impure.

summons

Goethe

of sentiment.

when

by

be

to
past civilization,

our

that of

the

or

art

for

as

and that,in
discipline,

ancient
discipline,

Goethe, however,

differs from

were

mixed, and often grotesque and


For

in

common

poetry

moral

times, to

admire

we

ful,
beauti-

poet.Again, the

is

manifestations

and
long political

and

in modern

even
naturallybelonging,

because

the

glassybeauty.
scenes

German

thing of

affectation

the

of

in which

knightsin

real

not

in

the

incongruities.

past; she

is the

things classical

in

THREE

178

belongsto

PHILOSOPHICAL
distant

POETS
if our

past;and

enthusiasm,like

that of Faust, is passionate


and indomitable,we

actually
persuadethe Queen
Helen

that

we

faithful imitation

our
philosophy,

actuallyrender

literature,
may
to

Yet

us.

her. Our

wed

may

the

will stillbe modern

; itwill

yieldup

to

and
scholarship
of Greek

the Greek

of
setting

and

art

miliar
fa-

scene

this recovered

genius

half modern

become

shall have to teach Helen

we

of the Dead

may

itself;

rhyme.The product

to

of this

will be a romantic
soul
hybridinspiration
wild thing,fated
a lovely
garb of classicism,

in

the

to

againstthe

hard

Greece, that
our

this enthusiasm

When

die young.

was

its mother, will also

to the realm

garment, the

of irrevocable

to raise us, if we

in
vulgarity
It is an

taste

evidence

felt that romantic

and

Gretcheii

to

Germany

was

his true

turn
re-

its

thought,will
all

allegiance.
greatwisdom

classicism must
must

to let it

loved them, above

in moral

of Goethe's

abandoned; that Helen


returned

have

pale before

Only
pastthings.

of its art and

monuments

itself

beauty of

of life,
the

shall be, perforce,


content

eyes. We

remain

conditions

has dashed

that he

be subordinated

or

evaporate,while Faust

and to the
love.1 At

that
feeling
the

after all
time

same

the

issue of this wonderful

ing.
episodeis a littledisappointof Helen
in a mirthejvjsion
Atjjifi
beginning,

Faust
rorJiadiBspired
1

Faust, Part

n.

Act

iv.,

with renewed

The
Hochgebirg:

enthusiasm/The

firstmonologue.

'

FAUST

GOETHE'S

sightof

her

again,in

had
he

resolved

but
first,

the

to

rather

the

incomparable and
the very

move

follow

on

his

within

Arcadia

would

have

Helen,
which

to

heart

that
to

the

found, Faust

leaves

mind

and

the

would

freedom, but

have

our

hero

boon.

But

is also

Du, Erde,
Zum

and
some

provemen
im-

should
to

live

Phyllis

relics behind,

some

that

influence

the

wish
also

hochsten

to

n.,
.

an

he

establish not

the

And

is about

Dasein

immerfort

zu

to

only dykes
Greek

and

lyreof Euphorion,

signifythat

riihrst ein

of

stillavail

poems

Anmutige Gegend:

regst und

by

air of distinction.

of
professorships

left us, may

Act

give it

commonwealth

museums.
archaeological

i.

it could

needed; any

not

understand

may

Faust, Part

of this

mercy

and sculpture
literature,
history,
may

which

was,

permanent

of

rare

was

sure,

Perhaps in

There

all this,we

obtaining so

be

to

cultivate

and

life and

that

expected

were

and

at

served.

we

Greek

will

the dead

great

Helen

hint

infinite need

an

remember

we

in the

experience,as

symbolic Helen,

expect that

to

reason

such

tion
inspira-

of Gretchen,

real progress.

guardians of

When

to tears.

death

"

of Faust's

mortals

indeed, among

this

and

experience,1 a

best

constitute

to

all

not

pursue

transformations

somehow

him

justwhen, after the

come

had

magic play,had altogether

the

overwhelmed

enraptured and

179

kraftigesBeschliessen
streben.

like

THREE

180

PHILOSOPHICAL

Byron's Isles of Greece,


Goiter

Griechenlands

classical

pieceswill
This

Faust's

is

and

nature

to

of

queen

hand

had

nothing

Homer,

yet taken

accident

that Helen, the

built her

those

an

in

only.For

things,those
with

Helen

Sparta

beauty

ancient

that had

and

of

other
and

not

of

well-bred

speaks,
poets

body

and which
classicist,

of

one

Plato

of mind

was

have

become

men,

shapers of

nor
sentimentality,

activity
; it was

have

and

poets themselves,

of

happiest

would

would

Homer

much

in
perfection

laws, of which

wise

course

Sparta,the type

of

queen

city;he

fascinates the romantic

forced

the

of Greek

understood

the

have

Wagner.

is the

master
a
dvag di/S/Da)*',

poets

idleness

type

been

Hellenic

an

contrastingthem

the

with

do

little

something

was

symbolicallyit

and

generationsand
words

to

to be

would

A Faust
in discipline.
perfection

truly deserved
himself

in

to

over

according to

Sparta;and althoughof

later,and

have

above

ended

her

Spartaof Lycurgus

of Greek

lived

have

the Doric

beauty,should

Helen

erature.
litlift

to

perfectbeauty

be

to

enough

little pedantry.Faust

in order

was

of

would

reason,

Helen
Helen

dream

own

European

not

for

Urn, Die

Goethe's

enrich

to

enthusiasm

and
scholarship
won

of Schiller,and

perfectlife

Grecian

something, but

immense

achieved, of

Keats's

continue

illusion. That

crass

POETS

in

that

inspired

product of

material

product of orderlywar,

and
re-

GOETHE'S

FAUST

gymnastics,and
ligion,

deliberate

The
him

next

trader, a

if such

statesman,

expect

to

"aesthetic

in the

lap
We

should

of absolute

be abolished

beauty.In
moral

or

his state

the worse,

obscured

other words, he

might reallycome
But

find

we

down

nothing

kingdom

because

he

only ideal

of what

he

is that

his

must

and

had

who

in eager

lain

its

search

distinction

who

one

might have

so

that the

and

dwell

of the
must

after

has

never

loved

established

hopes to

and

highestbeauty

within

that

city.

founds

his

something; and

his

sort.

do

ture.
na-

the distinction between

on

for

Helen

understand

"

Faust

secure

for his

they shall alwayshave something to

the will to live,in Faust, is not

by

we

founding it on great renunciations


society,

enlightenedheroisms,

on

moss,

which

expect Faust,

expect him,

the better and

any

"

of mankind

beauty, to

to establish
perfection,

to

gather

and

here, if anywhere, the fruits of

see

should

actuallyfinds

empire-builder;

an

education

We
represented.

self-government.

fortunes

could

rollingstone

should
that

in Faust's

turn

181

subjects
do. Thus

in the least educated

experience.It changes its objectsbecause


the

among

passionsof youth yield to

those

it

of age ;

all the illusions of his life the most

ous
fatu-

is the illusion of progress.


It is characteristic
that when
a

new

of the absolute

it has finished with

romantic

something it must

interest. It beats the bush

spirit
vent
in-

for fresh game;

THREE

182

PHILOSOPHICAL

it is

always on

now

that Helen
the

to

the verge

of

being utterlybored.

like

amiable

an

described, with

might

has
difficile,

the

afford ; but

been

more

Helen's

However,

the

stretches of the flat shore, and


uninhabitable.
those

After
This

others. He
as

he had felt the

The

notion

of

leavingfor
human
1

be

has

Act

n.

prosperous

iv.,

ulation.
pop-

prompting towards

love

this

but

or

beauty.1

his will,of
and

upon

passionfor

Hochgebirg:

fiihle Kraft

Herrschaft
Die

^hat

Da

wagt

Hier

_2 Ibid., Act

v.,

Es

kann

Nicht

kiihnem

Fleiss.

gewinn' ich, Eigentum


1st alles. nichts

ich

kampfen,

Vorhof des
die

der

Spur

in Aeonen

von

Ruhm.

Geist, sich selbst

mein

mocht'

Grosser

zu

zu

iiberfliegen
;
ich besiegen.

dies mocht'

Palasts:
meinen

untergehn.

Erdetagen

the

art,
political

nature

upon

as

Erstaunenswiirdiges soil geraten,


Ich

claim
re-

vision of Holland.

prompting towards

his mark

ish
brack-

thingto

transforming things by

ages

the

see

is as romantic

fascinates him;2
society,

FaiisttPart

fine

plantthere
of Faust's

feels the

can

renderingthem

Greece, Faust

last ambition

his recent

dailycoveringgreat

It would

wastes, to

always

mountain-topto

him, he

its tides

that

denly
impulse sud-

new

has borne

mantle

Ocean, with

and

propose

was

by

so

arises in his breast. From

German

come

entertainments

Faust, who

rendered

splendidadventures.
which

and

nurse,

So

sailles,
pastimes.Frankfort, Leipzig,Paris,Ver-

are

life there

of

is flown, Mephistophelesmust

rescue,

all sorts

POETS

GOETHE'S
and
activity

FAUST

which

power,

livingfor others,
about

it.1 Goethe

prove

this

has

mentators
simple-mindedcom-

some

the

dignifywith

of altruism

name

steady purpose

no

especiallylavish

is

instrument.

in

emperor

which

desperatewar

insurrection.
againsta justifiable
aid

The
the

unteach-

an

triumph of

he is
As

canals

and

dykes

necessary

in details to

for the

reward

built

are

in fief.

by magic ;

that Mephistophelescommands
spirits

build them
that

with

springsup

strange incantations.
is also

the

carryingon

receives the shore marches

rendered, Faust

of

Mephistopheles,
the

various arts of illusion,


secures

and

standard

or

of

the exercise

point.Magic,

able will,is stillFaust's

by

183

dig and

The

commerce

illegitimate:
piracyis involved

in it.
Nor
the

is this all.On

originalbeach,
and

and

some

his

and

mon
his wife, Phile-

man

Baucis, lived before

improvements.On

disturbed

Faust

in his

and

n.

Act

iv.,

im

Befehlen

Ihra 1st die Brust


Doch

with
chapel,
built

newly

partlyby

was

er

palace,partlyby

itsChristian
that he

and
altogether,

befehlen

that

will, es

hohem
darf

'

soil

Willen
kein

voll,

Mensch

tions,
suggeswas

not

something

empfinden.
Seligkeit
von

their

bell which

Hochgebirg:

Wer
Muss

of Faust

advent

partlyby remindinghim

of the country

Faust, Part

the

the hillock,besides

small

its importunatesound,

that diversified

old

an

cottage,there stood

master

sand-dunes

ergriinden.

THREE

184

in it not

existed
old

PHILOSOPHICAL
the

peoplewould
Faust

POETS

product of
that

force,and transferred

to

in

they should
a

better

fit of

be

tience
impa-

evicted

execute

Philemon

fire,and

and

buried

flames, or

Baucis

by

these orders

roughly: the cottage and chapelare

somewhat

The

dwellingelsewhere.

his minions

Mephistophelesand

magical will.

sell out; and

not

orders

his

set

in the

consumed

are

on

in the ruins.

Ml

regretsthis

Faust
inevitable

accident

in the

same

way

soon

the

as

is romantic

life.His

if life could

respect,he

would

that

have

but

missed
and

7^

It is

on

shared

of

have

He
possible.

the

man

had

Euphorion; but
He

misadventures.

the whole, he would

the

gretted
re-

such

would

be

whole

tinguished
ex-

tinue,
con-

some

would
new

ing
regret hav-

not

Otherwise, he would

experienceof mankind,

importantexperienceof

tion
self-accusa-

self-recovery.

impossibleto
have

given

reallyhave

brave

last,doing thingsthat, in

behind
establishing

always

of

obligedto regretthem.

not

obligedto regret: but he


in the pursuit
of some
regreteasily,

interest,and,
been

which

of those

will,though shaken, is not

such

by

it is one

unhappinessofGretchen,

and, presumably,the death

banish

but

developmentsof action

face,and forgetas

must

that the citizens he is

suppose

leaky dykes,so

something to keep
him

unmixed

foreseen

their

that

them

satisfaction
career

they

may

busy, would
if he

in its concrete

could
de-

THREE

186

PHILOSOPHICAL

POETS

The
Meantime, his end is approaching.
that

little

poor

turns
conflagration

into

shapes of

want,

guilt,
care,

and

and

about

him.

is kept off

hover

and

guiltis

But

care

transcended

the

blinds

see

the

old

man

him; while

Faust

"

undaunted, and

orders the

the

that
spirits

has stormed

through the world, he

equalthanks

the buffets and

life or

deserves

man

them
up

of wisdom

He

anew.

againstthe
;

consist in

Faust, Part

has

he

Act

v.,

who

does

dykes

protectthe

Ich bin

nur

Mitternacht
durch

has

of fortune

one

Ein

ich
jed' Geliist ergriff

freedom

Was

nicht geniigte, Hess

Was

mi^fe

Haaren,

ich fahren,

entwischte, liess ich ziehn.

must

indomitable

gerannt :
bei den

dailywin

he has established

die Welt

no

he has thrown

nation
and

;*and

is that

not

againstan
perpetualstriving
n.

are

takingwith

learned

that their health

symbol

him

instead.

says,

rewards

freedom

to

obey

of self-assertion. He

will leave the


sea

the

on

his hand.

him, Faust

upon

is

"

the canals he is

grave

splendidmoments

last word

upon

year

set

to

of his most

the

courage.

intent

has

seem

dig his

feels death

he

When

he

which

of hand, and

gettingout

his wealth,

his heels. Nevertheless,

thoughts are

to

come

death, though he does

diggingto proceed on

building; but

by

is in his hundredth

all his

the work

future, on

death, which

keyhole,breathes

it,follows close upon

not

from

shadowy

his romantic

by

slipsthrough

him, and

He

Want

smoke

GOETHE'S

thought of

foe. The
wholesome

thou

art

mock

challengeand

with

has

and

making

Faust

idealism.

the

any further

of
pleasures

moment.

He

for

has been
He

to

is therefore

again in
soul when

Faust, Part

n.

Act
Solch
Auf
Zum

ein
freiem

"

has

Grosser
Gewimmel
Grund

of the

Vorhof

his

endless

angelsthat

life.

and

tion
salvasently
pre-

receive his

is unflagging
in his

ich sehn,

freiem

so

chance

in which

sense

Volke

diirft' ich sagen

doch, du bist

take

maintained

des Palasts:

mocht
mit

tained,
main-

philosophy.

Whosoever

Augenblicke

Verweile

be

Prologue in Heaven,

the song

v.,

Faust

saved, in the

they say

merelythe

in the
aspiration,

his romantic

in the

in

colonists he has

and
stormy, difficult,

true

is defined

is

lick the dust, and

ever

comfort, without

enthusiasm

of them

succeeded

not

the

he, nor

brought into being,will


the

has

give

to

were

sense

satisfies Faust

that neither

and

last

"

Mephistopheles"

this will to will is to

that

consciousness

"Stay,

eye,

his will to will,his indefinite

surrender
what

in which

words

which

words

Mephistopheles

Since

faction
satis-

has almost, though

Mephistophelesthe victory; but


is new,

that

at his feet.

open

quite,pronounced the

not

to

wager? Faust

the

won

these

surrender

he sinks into the grave


Who

his mind's

before

fair."1 And

so

with

say to this moment,

could almost

prospect opens

fills him

labour

and

187

generationslivingin

many

danger

; he

that

FAUST

schon

stehn.
:

THREE

188

PHILOSOPHICAL

for
striving
does

he

"

on

from

it lie in any

revolution

he

earth. He

is going to teach

boys,who

have
any

the very

to be

had

been

beginning,
"

in his fortunes,as

differently
employed

died too

tion
salva-

in Faust's

improvement

any

in heaven

persons

This

sinful to the end, and

was

were

redeem."1

can

we

unwitting servant

does

nor

hang

not

character,
God's

him

ever,

POETS

if

than

on

life to the souls of young


to have

soon

had

in their

own

experienceof Rathskellers, Gretchens,

Helens, and Walpurgisnachts.2


Teaching(thoughnot
had
subjects)

these

exactlyin
driven

him

magic

to

he had

escaped

outside.

with
Certainly,

in heaven.

him

the

his

regionof

No, Faust
or

Faust, Part

Ibid.

n.

Act

v.,

to

he will throw

his

day

of the window,

forth

to

Den

konnen

in the

Er

sense

final,eternal

strebend
wir

wurden

friih entfernt

Lebechoren;
dieser

wird

uns

hat

gelernt,

lehren.

of

state

has been

sich bemiiht,

erlosen.

Doch

and

life in

taste

Himmel:
immer

Von

be

sake
for-

in his nature

Wer

Wir

will not

restlessness will not


fine

saved

only improvement
1

of adventure

with
some

the clouds.

is not

brought

go

what

suicide,until

to

pupilshe

new

out

pupilsafter him,

windier

his

Faustus'

of it was

great world

Some

celestial school-books

almost

and

his romantic

content;

more

into

Doctor

the weariness

original
profession
; and
had

been

tified
being sanc-

of bliss. The
that he has

FAUST

GOETHE'S
the

passed,at

189

of the

beginning

part, from

second

privateto publicactivities. If,at the end


he expresses a wish to abandon
magic and
man

among

wish

remains

in the

men,

visited Goethe

often

part of wisdom

is the

conditions

rather

it held

were

of the

nature

the sake

of

anything

of

under

natural

vicissitudes

of

an

endless

and

there

be

no

questionof

nor

of

even

endless

an

The

life is

is essential to romantic
The

of what

secret

is to be looked
is serious
an
1

in the

admirable
Faust, Part

n.

Noch

hab'

Konnt
Die

or

"

source

Goethe.

rather

ich mich

ins

Freie

ich

Magie von meinem


Zauberspriicheganz und

war's

the

"

der Miihe

vor

dir ein

pluck.
of Faust
of what

Spinoza

insight,which

nicht
Pfad
gar

goal,

its vitality, it

to romantic

Spinoza,

many;

rection.
diparticular

Mitternacht:

Stiind' ich, Natur,


Da

part of

philosophyof

v.,

be

is serious in the moral

doctrine,
Act

in any

ironyand

for in

ing
attain-

ultimate

an

gekampft
entfernen,

verlernen,

Mann

wert, ein Mensch

allein,
zu

for

conditions,

life would

progress

veering of

It lives spontaneously,

enjoyingor

the

could

But

premeditation,and

than

final. And

vance
ad-

an

naturalism.

is itself romantic.

livingrather

ditions
con-

thought,

constitute
to

bravely,without

natural
the

live. This

will to

transcendentalism

spiritof

that it

evoke

pretend to

that

thought that

life under

accept

to

to live like

long career,

would
steadfastly,

from
the

to

than

of life out

It is

his

during

part,

of real nature,

bosom

Platonic.1

merely

of this

sein.

has
he

THREE

190

calls

PHILOSOPHICAL

perceptionand
when

endowed
is seen

are

conceived

of

of

with

be saved

be. The

led such

it was

blots

blots ; the

have

it

is the

were

been

your

to

is your

true

established
The

be

the

play, in

here; but

Goethe

see
insight,

was
spirit,

man

to

should

man

necessary
creative

and

have

ing
stoppedliv-

process. Your
That

pronounce

destiny
God

and

this sentence
is

worthiness
of

ence
experiin that

saved

are

of God.

should

its

of

after you

the form

under

seen

desire for universal

salvation. Your
under

Faust

perpetualdissatisfaction

servant

conscience

own

of

rightexperience.You
not

Now
eternity.

necessary

felt such

lived well; saved

of

helpfuland

well, but duringthe whole


has

by
relations,and there-

life,in such

trulysatisfactory
; such

thing

all its partsor

moment

that life were

on

contrary,

forth his salvation. God

be the sort

to

passionsof

To
passions.

are

complete biographyof

himself,in his last

Faust

the

its fruits. A

the form

under

seen

ordinary

issues,we

eternitywhen

shows
eternity,

that to have

you

ultimate

in their true

of it. Therefore,

complete biography of Faust,

the form

This
eternity.

mind

cases

together.The

is Caesar

of

but, on
experience,

the form

under

Caesar

is

human

experienceand

conceived

and

in the

memory

from

with

stagesare

the

form

it to deal with

use

we

alienated

not

the

seeingthingsunder

facultyis fundamental

POETS

thereby

eternity.

philosophicdevelopment, ends

added

several

more

details and

GOETHE'S
with

scenes,

FAUST

191

abundance, that love, of symbolic

that

picturesand poeticepigrams which


whole

part.As

second

he does so,
demons
soul

time

same

red

slipout
a

if they touch
to

of

bevy

of love and

roses

element, they

at their

thus

and

it away

this
justifies

Grace

new

form

and

stratagem

for this external


This

the

in time.

the salvation

Ecker-

sort

of

Christian

chanical
me-

trine.
doc-

the intercession
like that

Beatrice, in Dante's

of salvation.

of grace

for the essential

of
eternity,
The

of

of

with

Virgin Mary,

and

determines
really

of the balls of fire,


all stand

condition

intervention

symbol
of

be what

analogy of

Virgin Mary, Lucia,


the

little boys

is needed, besides virtue; and

of Gretchen

and

fightof

and

intervention

accident, by the

case,

soul of Faust

Goethe, in his conversations

mann,

of the

the

The

away.

triumphantly.

this

the issue of the wager

turn

is their familiar

scared

catch

to

saying that

but

the

roses,

his demons,

although fire

bear

Faust;

body, lest the

These
singingits praises.

cannot
fluttering
butterfly

of his little

angels descends, scatteringthe

enabled

leisure,and

fore
be-

being caught.At

scorched

are

It goes without
over

without

Mephistophelesand

balls of fire;and

angelsare

the hero's

aperture of

the

rather

or
expires,

Mephistophelesposts one

at each

should

Faust

characterizes

what

chequered

is,at bottom, only


under
justification,

the

is imperfectand insufficient
and

wilful

life of Faust

is

THREE

192

righteousin

not

is

PHILOSOPHICAL

it

imputed to

of its

any
as

whole

parts;yet righteousness

; divine

sufficient ; speculative
reason
life which,
possible

best

of his

new

wonderful
and

being!The

follies

it not

him.

viewed

justas
purpose

the

and

that isthe
is to

be

game

the game

own

are

crimes

and

and

cepted
ac-

not

der
ren-

of?

poem

of

risingout

insightis

all? This

love, superveningto

imperfectin

time

is,

live,to live

only realize

We
living.

appointedattitude,the

are

its

they

make

be

in time

must

be dissatisfied with

must

we

to

be

To
eternity.

could
of

crown

ball

playour

to

of

if we

"

keep the

Even

deserve

when
there,perfect
imperfection

the form

do, that

at

divine

ought

; we

we

the

What

under
we

fit to

the

must

more

His
eternity.

Faust

was

of its very

because

in

into them,
by falling

higher reason,

save

much

proclaimedto

and
interesting

them, that Faust


the

distance,the dying

in disguise.
Did
blessings

were

his life
Was

faults of Faust

againsthim

counted

not

that to be the

understanding,

himself

envied, and

for

excuse

of Faust

career

as

of failures. If the foretaste

how
satisfaction,

with

Faust

declares

from
fills,

Holland

love accepts it

to humdrum

series of faults and

seems

POETS

But
rolling.

it
"

is the

seek

provemen
im-

ourselves

histrionic pose, that

while

we

satisfac
feel this dis-

and
satisfactory,
perfectly

while

constantlylose it,we

ning
win-

and

are

for God.

this scene,

however, did

not

the
satisfy

pro-

THREE

194

But

that

PHILOSOPHICAL

destinyis

his salvation

not

of his trial. The


end

repeats,with

contrast

view

we

here

seen

and

that

the

says

becomes
of

of

draws

"

life

form

is

of

from

sorrow

and

of

charm

had

of woman,

lovingwhat

image;

an

and

complete;

endless

and

ficient
insuf-

pursuit
The

ideal

exhaust
inessentially
Goethe

calls

symbols

of this

as

stage to stage.

Helen

and

same

point of

eternity)the

feminine,

been

ideaTTGoethe's
greerToldage
last, the

the

only

experiencean

eternal

on

very

sitory,
eternity.Everything tran-

attractive
something infinitely

Gretchen

had

the

and

sweetness

could

he

felt,to the very

not

hope

to

the

possess,

eludes
what, in its ideal perfection,
necessarily

He
possession.

had

reconciled

tears, to this desire without


in ti\eParadiso,liehad
1

between

something actual

in

the

tinuance
con-

at the

fulfilment.
a perfect
speculation

"

it

into

seemed
to

before

the

(thatis,under

what

it is the

chorus

mystic chorus,1

is turned
and

famous

variation,the
interesting

an

have

of time

POETS

Faust, Part

n.

Act

v.,

himself, not

hope, and,

blessed

the hand

Himmel:
Alles
1st

Vergangliche
ein

nur

Das

Gleichnis

Hier

Unzulangliche,
wird's Ereignis ;

Das

Unbeschreibliche,

Hier

gethan ;
Ewig-Weibliche

Das
Zieht

ist es

uns

hinan.

without

like Piccarda
that gave

the

GOETHE'S

of

of another

satisfaction

Faust

kind.

level
philosophical

same

in

renouncing it,he

satisfaction and

one

195

Thus,
happiness.1

the

denied

passionand

FAUST

which

on

dreaming

had

on

the

began,

the

ends

it

found

"

jTheworth of life lies in puris worth


everything
attajnniejQ^thereK)re,

level of romanticism.
not
sjiit,

in

and nothing bringssatisfaction


^trrsuing,

enHless

destinyitself
is the official moral

Such

this moral

now,

is

from

exhausting

poem

contains.

it
experience,in filling
and

the inns he

for. And

Faust

and

than
philosophically,

Da
Und
Dass
Da
Das

to

ter
mind, often bet-

my

first

the last. It shows

Trilogieder Leidenschaft,1823
Mich

ing
shrine he is mak-

of

scene

part, for instance, is better, poetically

second

Cf.

landscape

philosophyor philosophies

are,

the

vistas ;

pilgrimand

the whole

The
philosophy.

its ultimate

the

higher things

of the

the true

incidental

the

of Goethe's
than

path

neither

are

he travels,nor

as

sees

stops at

is far

many

up

deeper and

experienceitself. The

than

he

reveal

of these

some

just

saw

experience;but

for

out, opens

we

which

philosophicideas
is a scheme

Here

we

as

and
afterthought,

only an

the

what

of Faust, and

generalphilosophy.But,

call its

may

this^

save

"

treibt umher
bleibt kein
so
es

das

Rat

Herz

noch

fuhlte sich

als

"

o,

merkt

schlagt und

dass

Doppelgliick der

Sehnen

grenzenlose Thriinen.

erleichtert

lebt und

deeper

unbezwinglich

ein

es

Tone

ewig
wie

behende
mochte

bliebe!
der

;
.

"

Liebe.

schlagen,

THREE

196

PHILOSOPHICAL

for the

sense

it is

realities of nature

with

Spinoza; he

borg, nor

of

philosophy,is

that

is not

without

as

into

This
but

as

us,

obvious
for two
such

much

us

would

reasons:

one

as

The

is the

other

reason

this; for conventional


suppress

important for

conventional
world

is too

our

not

we

might

it would

out

of his

have

not

need

that

have

to be

of science

existed.

insisted

and

and

as

isted
ex-

worlds

on

ledge,
know-

conventional

morality

imposes
"

on

our

only approach to reality.


reverse

or

counterpart of

often

parts of experienceno
us

born,

indeed

not

true

been

undiscoverable

knowledge

knowledge
narrow

is the

seem,

experiencewarrants,

our

is

and

ning
begin-

perceptionand

top-heavy;asserts
than

more

to

in

confused, and

this world, each

notions

our

experience,which

seems

at the

and

thousand

truth

afford, is often
us

attitude
method

back

us

it would

world

exist;but for

now

Sweden-

romantic

transcendental

cumbrous

this
eggshell,
persoiial

may

of the

Had
starting-point.

peeped

not

we

ture
nainterpreting

ourselves,to immediate

inevitable

had

is

dreaming with

they put

is often
to

us

the

primordialwill. That,
and

of the soul,and

convenexperience.They disintegratetion,

our

which
restore

there

great merit

and

poetry,

of

and

talkingequivocalparadoxeswith Hegel.

In fact,the
in

Goethe

sincere.

more

POETS

those

parts

on

itself is reared.

for the

soul,

as

ignoresand
less actual
which
The
well

the

public
as

too

FAUST

GOETHE'S

mythical
labour
is

and

reawakening

good for,

the

starvingshoots.

is

cathartic: it is
to

make

He

has

mind,
follows

who

has

this has

and

be

said,

right.

start

Faust

who

one

he

wisdom;

no

with such

has

nothing is

to be used

has
can

achievement.
have

sophy
philo-

no

nothing
him

is

Faust, and

pecially
es-

philosophies

for this is

reachingconclusions

in

hand
first-

soul. It

say

other
;

son.
pera

everythingin

carryingaway;

top of their transcendentalism

method,

feed

Kant

sympathy

no

mind.

do
Mephistopheles,
on

and

trulyfree,sincere,courageous

is worth

attitude

branches

comparativelyconventional

also, however, that


but

that

dead

as
philosophy,

second-hand

reflection

romantic

afresh and

start

one

philosophyis

critical

it is intended
purgativeand liberating;

us

It follows that

This

double

the

which

off the

cut

to

"

Hence

fabulous.

and

197

only a

that shall

critically
safeguardedand empiricallygrounded.

Such

outlooks, such vistas into nature,

through
liberally

the

this
diversify
fillthis tortuous
has

become

pages
of

career

and

free and

of Faust.

scattered

are

Words

of wisdom

as
folly,
exquisitescenes

overloaded

sincere, but

drama.
it has

The

mind

remained

bewildered.
The

merits
literary

accuratelywith
prologue in
them

; much

its

of Goethe's

correspond

excellences.
philosophical

the theatre Goethe


scenery,

Faust

much

himself

wisdom,

some

In

the

has described

folly,
great

198

THREE

wealth

of incident

the soul of

PHILOSOPHICAL
and

POETS

characterization

poet singingwith

the visions

all

of his life. Here

of nature,

of curious
Goethe

work, says

but
epilogue,
this work
has

(in

here

experiencethat
without

it,and

all

the

is the

goals in

it will be

less the last

part

dominate

determine

to

do

experiencecan

or

collection

less

of what

which
have

we

it,if that whole

had had memory

be
1

Aus

is to

present
re-

prolonged;

or

to
we

do with
may

episodeswe

been

and
larger,

foresight
enough to

happen

to

the beginning.

surveyed would

had

have

lived

the

attribute

include

in
altogether
parts of experiencediffering
the

dently
Evi-

of snatches,and

of it will have

character

Any
the whole

infinite

an

prolongedthe experiencerepresented

more

more

whole.1

it terminates?

of it,more

an

play),"

one

of

sum

conditions
which

of pure

snatches

some

the

draw

we

as

beginning,it

it is not
totality,

is without

poet

sortment
as-

fancies. This

in the

life: it has

no

indeed, should

varied

quatrain intended

is like human

the most

are

grotesque

inserted
ultimately

not

end ; but it has

an

How,

and

lore and

vour
fer-

inwardnes
profundity,

the most

and

behind,

and
sincerity
is

honesty,waywardness;
touchingaccents

; and

kind

to

fail to
if we
other
from

through. To

miscellaneous, to be indefinite,to be unfinished,


dem

Nachlass, Abkiindigung:
Des
Es

Menschen
hat wohl

Allein

Leben
einen

ein Ganzes

1st ein ahnliches

Anfang,
ist

es

Gedicht

hat ein Ende,

nicht.

FAUST

GOETHE'S

is

essential

the

to

life.

romantic

199

May

not

we

that

say

"..

it

essential

is

only

and

only

may

its

immediacy;

is

not

life

objects,

to

be

cannot

conceived

be

progressive

life

can

inalienable

of

any
to

be

Herein

experienced

become

rational

limitations,

its

ideals,

always

wayward

experience.

and

and

that

it

itself,

will

so

its

through
never

its

Herein,

that

the

It

or

verse
uni-

and

nature

fingers.
learn

too,
fix

cannot

believes

blindly
as

slipping

empirical,

in

cal
radi-

romanticism;

infinity.

and

the

see

may
of

richness,

its

as

we

excellence

freedom,

see

may

are

that

that

and

"

truly

trust

from

what

to

unanimities

and

sincerity,

art

in

life,

"

and

we

all

reference

in

ideals,
but

to

is

stinately
ob-

anything

CONCLUSION

IT

them.

discussion

To

in his way,

man's

to

By

have

analysiswe

imagination
poets,

to

and

differ,or what

points of

order

view.

in his Faust,

they

Thus

an

is meant
of the

type

in each

of

of the

how

they

different

that

just seen

guage
lan-

review

common,

to

most

was

will fall into from

episode,before
it

conceived

Lucretius,

and

more

to

totalityin this, for

is the

life,the

Goethe,

that

groundlessness; and

from
episodes,differing

to

each

presents experience in its immediacy,

presents it as

Turn

in

have

we

apparent

be

have

question

from

that

made

icism
crit-

according

of

doctrine

already

they

variety,and

may

the

in every

differ

best. Each

much

were

period

losophi
phi-

meant

best

If it

philosophy embodied

what

see

is the

so

comparison

not

might get

man

his

best, and

him.

is

not

pleasure would

temperament,

three

comparison

is the

none

pleasure a

he knew

of the

and

preferenceis

this

in turn,

familiar

poets

our

personal confession.

relative

of the

of

these

some

comparison

which

express

as

the

By

to

as

best

is the

poet

establish

poets, to

between

way.

after studying
possible,

be

may

the

and

is

no

difference

poet of substance.

as

more

There

come.

there

other

after which

and

The

is

known
is

he

you
no

cede,
re-

sible
pos-

ground.

Lucretius
striking.

ground

is what

THREE

204

he

PHILOSOPHICAL

also the

sees

and

everywhere;

sees

person, but

own

it from

operationsof

of

experiencehave

experiencealso
in

reference
the

the

poet

Goethe

tentative

and

and

we

the cry

Dante,

wisdom

is

on

above

external
what

that. He, too, has

of

view

and,

point of
interests
processes
sort

of salvation.

poet

fundamental,
of the

the

heart, the first

magic

carries

Lucretius
to be

ceases

"

us

or

one

impressionistic

understanding of things,so
to

us

does

dignityand

not

deceive

ledge
peace. Know-

ness.
possibleis the beginningof happi-

however,

impossible.He

from

science,which

hit upon.

possess it in

of what

the

is most

happinessremains
can

have

we

the

of art and

casual. It rests

that what
us,

Our

the limits

poet of life;Lucretius

Dante

of sense,

might

step farther.

and

in

together.

and
physical,

what

notions

shrewdness

hand,

but

evitable
natural,in-

involved
feelings,

ground

is the

Goethe

of nature;

flux

views

self-justifying,
indestructible

gives us

turbid

is

it

upon

experienceis best, what

supreme,

of existence.

comes

him

also
totality,

outside

is what

man

evident

other

is moral, not

poet

lead to

become

in its

from

sense,

The

nature.

the

on

of

round

the

it. Experienceappears

the scientific observer

Experiencefor

without.

Dante,

each

as

as

monotonous

In

by seeingthe ground, he

possible
productsof

in Lucretius, not
in his

POETS

carries

knowledge
has

us

of what

collected

farther than

much

the

is

and
possible

precepts of old

CONCLUSION

205

saints,and

philosophersand

the

patent in societyaround

help has distinguishedthe


wisely indulged in
madness

the second

scope

in the detail

as

less than
is

from

may

those

be

which

it is

makes

only that

not

such

it sketches

in

issue of life,
but that it paints

and

detail of what

the

"

(more

familiar to

is

possible

tragicpoets)of

notion, for instance, of what


while

attainable

or

with
superstition,
that

secure

cheap

that

impossible.

worth

may

by

sin. What

follyand

well,

that

Lucretius'

as

their

and

"

generalthe

what

ambitions

this life from

knowledge preciousis

no

him,

amples
ex-

foster, the first being called virtue and

to

pietyand

recent

more

is very meagre

us,

natural

much

so

animal

No
pleasures.

Lucretius

sees

dom
free-

science
few

love, no

no
no
So, too,
patriotism,
religion.
enterprise,

is forbidden

tively
posi-

and
freedom, friendship,

healthful

and

is

in what

the
onlygeneralities,
"

Dante,
follyof passion,the blightof superstition.

on

the contrary, sees

tense
in-

the various

distinctness ; and
fatal each

is,he

the dream

that leads

of those
what

we

goods

and
so

us

to

men
are

why

men

fall into

stars

how

them,

the sweetness

astray,and

Feeling,even
impossible.
soul of

in

good

it,he feels,in good all its loveliness

variety.Where,
many

also

life with

and
clearly,

ultimatelycall evil,the

must

that attracts

seeingthem

sees

that

of
pitfalls

that

except in Dante,
differ from

other

can

stars

we

in

find

glory;

THREE

206

so

PHILOSOPHICAL

intention;

so

delicacies and

many
of those

master

know

who

thought,and

heroisms?

Dante

by experiencewhat

he
knowing by experience;

is worth

excellences; so

of form, accent,

distinct beauties

is the

for

delightfulhabitations

many

many

POETS

of

is the master

distinction.

Here, then, are


Goethe, with

three

our

poets and

life in its

human

romantically
; Lucretius, with
and
life,

You

what

calls
one

higheranother
feels to

man

of

one

of

good

It is true

their

type

of

dwells

he

bringsup
does

cannot

intellectual

had

we

to

Goethe.

not

But

drop
in

the

with
very
know

him

plane on

of. Not

naturalistic

of

is on
on

Goethe

which

depends

to that level. Now

great deal, in

other

respectto

Lucretius

everything;much

carry this fund


and

the

to

be satisfied with

and
formally,

Lucretius, and

is not

great deal, a

Lucretius

not

rank

Dante
philosophyand imagination,

higherplane than
what

if

what

calls unreal; and

man

should

that taken

higher plane than

poet

important; for

strength smells

be

we

poets

our

two.

is

tery
masspiritual

will,according

stage you

is real and

In the end,

another.
any

at what

of what

sense

man

one

stop

may

to your

and

evil.

and

vision of nature

perfectknowledge

immediacy, treated

life; Dante, with

of the limits of human


of that

their messages

on

there
that

cretius
knowing of it,Lu-

experienceup

level;he

cannot

to the
trans-

CONCLUSION
substance

this abundant

mute

into his poem.

Lucretius
hard

in

that while

So

to

his

by
woven

so

nature,

see

as

it,is a greater feat than merely to live

sees

romantic

exalted

more

of Goethe's

clearer faith ; he has not

higherinsightand
much

207

fashion,and producesa purer and


Goethe's

than

poem

magical medley,

memories,
yet this medley is full of images,passions,
and

wisdom
introspective

have

dreamed

but rises
as

of. The

little of them

in their

their birdlike
knows

he is

quite deaf

multiform

all the

these
natural

more

volume

may

view

which

more

even

fixingthe

the

path

we

being

very

Goethe
natural

sometimes
dull.

and

to Goethe

It
to

is

get

put together out


of nature

afford to lose.

cannot

have

of

ture
na-

that of Lucretius;
materialism

destinyand marking

there

is not

view

efficacious than

But
happiness.
nature

Dante, there

to

clear than

limits of human

Dante's. idea of

is a view

for

Lucretius

completeand

for

to

makes

at first sightto

seem

less

not

sees

to
intricacy,

he

Lucretius

rise from

left behind

Dante

things

sees

of life.

So, too, if we
is much

their

to

overloaded

from

to revert

necessary

vision

not

rises,

little souls. These

discordant, sometimes

at the

; his

rightplaces,but

admirably; with

concert,

could

intellect of Lucretius

comparativelyempty

whole, and

that Lucretius

is

an

illusion here.

genuine; it

of reasoned

is not

cerely
sin-

observation.

interceptedby myths

and

worked

It

THREE

208

PHILOSOPHICAL

POETS

by dialectic. Consequently,he

out

either of the
His
the

moral

the

sky. It

notion

of nature

world,

cast

is

like

inverted

an

know

to

giganticshadow

evil,and

inward

all their forms

and

thing than

know

the

conditions

yet

the

higher philosophyis

in space
safe

not

is wanting or is false. Of
philosophy
but it is not safe
safe practically;
attenuated

an

end, is

to

This

naivetd

nambulism.

hypnotizedby

his moral

are

be

cosmic

verbal

at the

individual

poet, and

and

It
philosophy.

to

an

excess

and

man

of the universe.

the divine
believes

order
in

of history

controlling

soul ;

so

have

escaped the

escapedit.For,

have

we

in the

wonder

that

centre

of romanticism.

his soul

imagery

singsit,from beginning

conceit
thropocentric

which

poetically.

even

delusion

fond

spheres;he

as

lower

is that the intellect has been

always thinking of
of the

time,

it is not

enough, by
curiously

the

chasteningthe

and
to

by

good

m^^jrfJMe

legendaryand

nature

is
and

unmanned,

of humanism;

Dante

reason

and

if the

all
boy-treble,

dosiot

art

The

has been

thin

that

of

course

and

texture

voice

Comedy. The

Divine

upon

especially
good, in

natural

evil,or their real distribution

is

of

is a fargreater
implications

and

There

image

mirage.

to

is

idea

true

no

of its real conditions.

path to happinessor

while

Now,

has

seen,

this

singsis artificial; it is

that he

But

seems

an-

he has not

golden

cage

constructed

in
on

210

THREE

Throw

open

let him

to the young

feel the

stimulus
a

divine

him

the

trace

and
philosophy,

of such

comedy

comedy

in

as

their

is

follies

tions
perpetualresurrec-

Faust.

much

If,under the

day

some

richness

fault will not

it will

as

lie with

and magnificent,
but
inviting

haltinggenius that

pose
com-

surpassingDante's

sublimityand

it in truth, the

which
subject,

this

upon

triumpjisand

he does not

scene,

natural

surpass

of nature
infinity

even
religions

like that of the downcast

"

the

the

of life,
the varietyof
precariousness

planet;let

of art and

POETS

poet

and
civilizations,

purposes,
little

PHILOSOPHICAL

render

cannot

that

the
with

subject

worthily.
Undoubtedly,the
be without
That

have

their

be

hell in it. Those

lightsand

so

displayedwould

and
of

not

music, circled for

that. It would

as

cosmos,

false

so

not

as

with
rollingspheres,

the real life of nature

central

not

its perpetual
dies.
trage-

things.Dante's

mythicalidealism,was

Perhaps in
to

so

shadows

is in the nature

for all its


to

its dark

universe

about

ever

evil may

not

to be

seem

all
hell.

prove
rather

/
a

sort of inevitable

being diminished
known

and

of
is

core

our

could

of them

be

and

no

are

world

educated.

discord

eternal

was

physicsdiscords

only tentative

friction,
capableof

the
as
indefinitely,

the will is better

spheresthere
the

but incidental

In

is better
Dante's

whatever; but

woe.

In the

at

star-dust

everywhere,and harmony

approximate,as

it is in the best

CONCLUSION
at the

earthlylife; but

wish

we

have

to

false,we

which

the

be
three

our

The
impossible.

on

the

as

of

still leave

would
a

libertyto
any
recover

of

sense

form

of

the

an

and

the

the
him

none

sublime

widest

done,

we

He

limbo
;

But

would

to

we
interpretations

offer for

worthless

in

rear

be

at

would
ties
beau-

no

it is

up,

very

like

that has
; whatever

experiencewill

if the

us,

be

art

summon

our

of

potentiality

and

For
prescribed.

thing

leaves
would

of

poetry

; there

leave the enemy

impertinentand

what

survey

Faust, the image of all experience.Unless


been

is

all sorts

Goethe

infinity
beyond.

earlyfreedom

liberatingand

union

superposed one

and
possible

poet, where

that interested

forbidden

gifts

all its extent,

thought,

from

summon

their

comprehensive

be at the foundation.

of worlds

habits

and

senses

would

infinite,
as
experienceis potentially

all sorts

are

in

cretius.
Lu-

to

insightsand
be

insightsmay

represents,should

there

Dante

This
possessed.

Experience

other.

the extent

with

of the

have

mentally
funda-

not

desirable,what

be

union

poets

not

Goethe

from

or
truly philosophical

poet, would

possibilities
may

of nature

revert

would

possibilities

them; but meantime,

vision

must

Obviously,what
constitute

describe

to

nothing sinister,

inexhaustible

happiness.These

of

tempt future poets


if

there is

core

only freedom, innocence,


of all sorts

211

become

experiencewe

work

PHILOSOPHICAL

THREE

212

is no

upon

however

broadly based,

as

With
in

conceive,

to

yet

knowledge, and
partial
soul, or

always
the

goes

remain

are

to

has succeeded

in

place.A poet

who

real

orderingof

an

that of Lucretius
There

are

two

that rational
a

limited

buttress

express

art

should

conditions

for life; it
to

be

and

lays out

in which

give

would

not

must

add

our

adjustsus

it seems

may

come

to

it may

come

to

ness,
industry,science, busilife; it informs
to

ground

about

us

them; it equips us

for the game

play.This preliminarylabour, however,


servile. To

fitting

the basis which

it.Art

of life,or

call

we

the

of

terials
bring ma-

he

Goethe

proceed,on

morality,buttresses
our

sea

and

Dante.

directions

that

of art; he

geniusof

form
particular

it. All

into the

out

workshop

and

civilized arts ;

are

inhuman, would

experience can
a

lar
particu-

pictureall possiblethings,

or

the

artist. To

time
particular

merely swam

the

only to
be

floweringat

unreal, human

or

both

particulargenius,which

some

tried to

and
sensibility,

standing.

civilization.

city,or

proper

man

lay claim only to

can

however,
Poetry and philosophy,

they

of

of reason,

modesty

the

to

to be new,

into the heart

in morals, that

physicsand

authority;

of life to be more,

must

that freedom

construction,

absolute

an

entered

it has not

be what

will any

have

freedom

the indomitable
to

Nor

hand.

longerat

POETS

do it is also to exercise

our

we

need

are

not

faculties;

CONCLUSION
and
as

in that

of the

of

have

we

is involved

might

be

course

congenially.

most

soars

in the

be

tion
direc-

the

and
would

over

come

us

is the
satisfying,
and

poet,like Homer,
He

There

expressingthe
these

manifest

an

and

us

taste

view
form

beautiful,how
cal,
economi-

be

which

that

the direction

For

the world.

the inner;

is for
discipline

The

conquest for the sake

of

outer

the

as

we

move

react

that

own

we

action.
re-

tion,
direc-

practicalarts

shall

life is for the sake of


sake

of freedom,

This
self-possession.

lifeis wonderfully redundant


in it than

art, that

would

we

selects its

in which

in

of it.

principle,
expressed in
nature

poet

for the world

of rational

conditions.

transform

more

how

see

ideal towards

inward

priate;
appro-

It would

wrote.

would
Shakespeare,

second

or

being observant,

clean

improved
have

We

read

we

have

would

remains

by being

or
philosophical
comprehensive

like

he lived,and

but

come
be-

great precisionand justness

of

sincere. The

of business.

as

art

of art. It would

ornate,

make

it would

delightus;

work

of

sense

particular

science, affairs)
politics,
history,

in

by being

not

in

Literature

do.

to

throughout

so

much

tracingthe

then, would

of art,

(which

under

in

free,"

grow

joyfully,sympathetically,
doing artistically,

whatever

of

and

dances

atoms,

extension

which

faculties may

our

imaginationof Lucretius,

the

One

exercise

213

there

and
inner

is,namely, very

consciousness

of those

acts

THREE

214

which

by
Am

PHILOSOPHICAL

the

body adjustsitself to
haben

farbigenAbglanz
has its

sense

which

secret

might

prosody;
soul

well
wo'rking

art

of

playingwell.

To

it decorative, to
them

das

has

of it,and

the

art

our

dreams

and

the

religionof

in Dante, have
be

art, based

never

is time
the

and
liberty

poet

some

continual

presence

it ; he should

at the

dreams

on

we

error.

our
a

it fantastic,

ously
conspicuTo

correct^"
a

new

insight? He

nevertheless.

the world.

He

It

reconstitute
should

experience,and

time

part

moraLcourage.

to

same

know
for

see

appear

of all

of

sort

The
obligatory.

of this double

genius should
pictureof

do not

never

religionand

new

existed, but he is needed

shattered

in the

moral

make

the other

them

past,as

the

it will

by making

fallen into this

establish

to

shall be the

Who
has

on

the

we

our

by making

add

of life and

of art, but

science

the

of art. It is the ultimate,

sort

shall mistake

and

it would

play

To

and

nature

overtones

state ; for if

spoilour

so

of

world.
would

race

play with

artistic sort

we

its

tions
reverbera-

margin

in the

civilized

play with

backward

environment,

each

has

game

tender

so
successfully
practised
long as
a

Leben;

every

own

Life

is a
delightful,

the most

art is in

surroundings.

nucleus
broader, if the sustaining

grow

of

be

its

dreams.

art

make

wir

firmly established

more

were

and

laws, every

and

its

bitrary
arbitraryquality,each language its ar-

euphony
creative

POETS

understand

live
spect
re-

na-

CONCLUSION

the

ture,

have

also

in

task,

this

exhaust

him,
most

But

and

Virgil

high
this

supreme

We

the

poet

them,

the

is

hail

in

poets

raltissimo

honour

this

may

in

contained

task

would

this

needed

Honour

possible

still.

his

possible

may

poeta.

limbo

of

Dante's

we

highest

his

is

poet

should

he

echoes

of

than

among

Quorate

poet,

less

inspiration.

returns

saying:

inspire

nothing

Like

ideal

colours

the

all

can

afar.

from

genius
when

that

poet's

for

and

the

for

sense

and

All

happiness.

experience

that

delicate

passions,

own

of

ground

215

limbo,
salute

the

poet.