Folly of the Apologists

Erasmus’ personified Folly in Praise of Folly is an equal opportunity offender. Having disposed of Philosophers, Scientists, Poets, Rhetoricians, Scholars, Preachers, and Priests, Folly turns to another great class of bloviating asses, the Logicians and Sophists. These are

a generation of men more prattling than an echo and the worst of them able to outchat a hundred of the best picked gossips. And yet their condition would be much better were they only full of words and not so given to scolding that they most obstinately hack and hew one another about a matter of nothing and make such a sputter about terms and words till they have quite lost the sense. And yet they are so happy in the good opinion of themselves that as soon as they are furnished with two or three syllogisms, they dare boldly enter the lists against any man upon any point, as not doubting but to run him down with noise, though the opponent were another Stentor.

Folly says she’s talking about Logicians and Sophists, here, but I can’t help but think that if her speech was aimed at us, she might have instead used the word “Internet Apologists” here.

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One Response to Folly of the Apologists

  1. The Scylding says:

    I’m really enjoying (if that is the right word) your series on Erasmus’ “In praise of Folly”.

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