Monday, December 06, 2004


Letters to Dead Authors

Among Andrew Lang's Letters to Dead Authors (1886) are letters to Herodotus, Theocritus, Horace, Lucian, and Eusebius. Here's a sample, from the letter to Lucian:
Ah, Lucian, we have need of you, of your sense and of your mockery! Here, where faith is sick and superstition is waking afresh; where gods come rarely, and spectres appear at five shillings an interview; where science is popular, and philosophy cries aloud in the market-place, and clamour does duty for government, and Thais and Lais are names of power -- here, Lucian, is room and scope for you.
Lucian redivivus could start with mockery of our modern Lais, "Princess" Diana.

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