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  • Saracens In Spain: Battle Of The Guadalete
    one mass The sons of Wittiza readily agreed to Roderic s proposition and collecting all their forces came to meet him and encamped not far from the village of Shakandah on the opposite side of the river and on the south of the palace of Cordova There they remained for some time not daring to enter the capital or to trust Roderic until at last having ascertained the truth of the preparations and seeing the army march out of the city and him with it they entered Cordova united their forces to his and marched with him against the enemy although as will be seen presently they were already planning the treachery which they afterward committed Others say that the sons of Wittiza did not obey the summons sent them by the usurper Roderic on the contrary that they joined Tarik with all their forces When Tarik received the news of the approach of Roderic s army which is said to have amounted to nearly one hundred thousand men provided with all kinds of weapons and military stores he wrote to Musa for assistance saying that he had taken Algesiras a port of Andalusia thus becoming by its possession the master of the passage into that country that he had subdued its districts as far as the bay but that Roderic was now advancing against him with a force which it was not in his power to resist except it was God Almighty s will that it should be so Musa who since Tarik s departure for this expedition had been employed in building ships and had by this time collected a great many sent by them a reinforcement of five thousand Moslems which added to the seven thousand of the first expedition made the whole forces amount to twelve thousand men eager for plunder and anxious for battle Ilyan was also sent with his army and the people of his states to accompany this expedition and to guide it through the passes in the country and gather intelligence for them In the mean while Roderic was drawing nearer to the Moslems with all the forces of the barbarians their lords their knights and their bishops but the hearts of the great people of the kingdom being against him they used to see each other frequently and in their private conversations they uttered their sentiments about Roderic in the following manner This wretch has by force taken possession of the throne to which he is not justly entitled for not only he does not belong to the royal family but he was once one of our meanest menials we do not know how far he may carry his wicked intentions against us There is no doubt but that Tarik s followers do not intend to settle in this country their only wish is to fill their hands with spoil and then return Let us then as soon as the battle is engaged give way and leave the usurper alone to fight the strangers who will soon deliver us from him and when they shall be gone we can place on the throne him who most deserves it In these sentiments all agreed and it was decided that the proposed plan should be put into execution the two sons of Wittiza whom Roderic had appointed to the command of the right and left wings of his army being at the head of the conspiracy in the hope of gaining the throne of their father When the armies drew nearer to each other the princes began to spin the web of their treason and for this purpose a messenger was sent by them to Tarik informing him how Roderic who had been a mere menial and servant to their father had after his death usurped the throne that the princes had by no means relinquished their rights and that they implored protection and security for themselves They offered to desert and pass over to Tarik with the troops under their command on condition that the Arab general would after subduing the whole of Andalusia secure to than all their father s possessions amounting to three thousand valuable and chosen farms the same that received after this the name of Safaya l moluk the royal portion This offer Tarik accepted and having agreed to the conditions on the next day the sons of Wittiza deserted the ranks of the Gothic army in the midst of battle and passed over to Tarik this being no doubt one of the principal causes of the conquest Roderic arrived on the banks of the Guadalete with a formidable army which most historians compute at one hundred thousand cavalry although Ibnu Khaldun makes it amount to forty thousand men only Roderic brought all his treasures and military stores in carts he himself came in a litter placed between two mules having over his head an awning richly set with pearls rubies and emeralds On the approach of this formidable host the Moslems did not lose courage but prepared to meet their adversary Tarik assembled his men comforted them by his words and after rendering the due praises to the Almighty God and returning thanks for what had already been accomplished proceeded to implore his mighty help for the future He then encouraged the Moslems and kindled their enthusiasm with the following address Whither can you fly the enemy is in your front the sea at your back By Allah there is no salvation for you but in your courage and perseverance Consider your situation here you are on this island like so many orphans cast upon the world you will soon be met by a powerful enemy surrounding you on all sides like the infuriated billows of a tempestuous sea and sending against you his countless warriors drowned in steel and provided with every store and description of arms What can you oppose to them You have no other weapons than your swords no provisions but those that

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  • Geographical Basis Of History, Part II
    East Coast to Cape Gardafu for another is on two sides so constituted for the most part as to have a very narrow Coast Tract habitable only in a few isolated spots Next to this towards the interior follows to almost the same extent a girdle of marsh land with the most luxuriant vegetation the especial home of ravenous beasts snakes of all kinds a border tract whose atmosphere is poisonous to Europeans This border constitutes the base of a cincture of high mountains which are only at distant intervals traversed by streams and where they are so in such a way as to form no means of union with the interior for the interruption occurs but seldom below the upper part of the mountain ranges and only in individual narrow channels where are frequently found innavigable waterfalls and torrents crossing each other in wild confusion During the three or three and a half centuries that the Europeans have known this border land and have taken places in it into their possession they have only here and there and that but for a short time passed these mountains and have nowhere settled down beyond them The land surrounded by these mountains is an unknown Upland from which on the other hand the Negroes have seldom made their way through In the sixteenth century occurred at many very distant points outbreaks of terrible hordes which rushed down upon the more peaceful inhabitants of the declivities Whether any internal movement had taken place or if so of what character we do not know What we do know of these hordes is the contrast between their conduct in their wars and forays themselves which exhibited the most reckless inhumanity and disgusting barbarism and the fact that afterwards when their rage was spent in the calm time of peace they shewed themselves mild and well disposed towards the Europeans when they became acquainted with them This holds good of the Fullahs and of the Mandingo tribes who inhabit the mountain terraces of the Senegal and Gambia The second portion of Africa is the river district of the Nile Egypt which was adapted to become a mighty centre of independent civilization and therefore is as isolated and singular in Africa as Africa itself appears in relation to the other parts of the world The northern part of Africa which may be specially called that of the coast territory for Egypt has been frequently driven back on itself by the Mediterranean lies on the Mediterranean and the Atlantic a magnificent territory on which Carthage once lay the site of the modern Morocco Algiers Tunis and Tripoli This part was to be must be attached to Europe the French have lately made a successful effort in this direction like Hither Asia it looks Europe wards Here in their turn have Carthaginians Romans and Byzantines Mussulmen Arabians had their abode and the interests of Europe have always striven to get a footing in it The peculiarly African character is difficult to comprehend for the very reason that in reference to it we must quite give up the principle which naturally accompanies all our ideas the category of Universality In Negro life the characteristic point is the fact that consciousness has not yet attained to the realization of any substantial objective existence as for example God or Law in which the interest of man s volition is involved and in which he realizes his own being This distinction between himself as an individual and the universality of his essential being the African in the uniform undeveloped oneness of his existence has not yet attained so that the Knowledge of an absolute Being an Other and a Higher than his individual self is entirely wanting The Negro as already observed exhibits the natural man in his completely wild and untamed state We must lay aside all thought of reverence and morality all that we call feeling if we would rightly comprehend him there is nothing harmonious with humanity to be found in this type of character The copious and circumstantial accounts of Missionaries completely confirm this and Mahommedanism appears to be the only thing which in any way brings the Negroes within the range of culture The Mahommedans too understand better than the Europeans how to penetrate into the interior of the country The grade of culture which the Negroes occupy may be more nearly appreciated by considering the aspect which Religion presents among them That which forms the basis of religious conceptions is the consciousness on the part of man of a Higher Power even though this is conceived only as a vis naturae in relation to which he feels himself a weaker humbler being Religion begins with the consciousness that there is something higher than man But even Herodotus called the Negroes sorcerers now in Sorcery we have not the idea of a God of a moral faith it exhibits man as the highest power regarding him as alone occupying a position of command over the power of Nature We have here therefore nothing to do with a spiritual adoration of God nor with an empire of Right God thunders but is not on that account recognized as God For the soul of man God must be more than a thunderer whereas among the Negroes this is not the case Although they are necessarily conscious of dependence upon nature for they need the beneficial influence of storm rain cessation of the rainy period and so on yet this does not conduct them to the consciousness of a Higher Power it is they who command the elements and this they call magic The Kings have a class of ministers through whom they command elemental changes and every place possesses such magicians who perform special ceremonies with all sorts of gesticulations dances uproar and shouting and in the midst of this confusion commence their incantations The second element in their religion consists in their giving an outward form to this supernatural power projecting their hidden might into the world of phenomena by means of images What they conceive of as the power in question is therefore nothing really objective having a substantial being and different from themselves but the first thing that comes in their way This taken quite indiscriminately they exalt to the dignity of a Genius it may be an animal a tree a stone or a wooden figure This is their Fetish a word to which the Portuguese first gave currency and which is derived from feitizo magic Here in the Fetish a kind of objective independence as contrasted with the arbitrary fancy of the individual seems to manifest itself but as the objectivity is nothing other than the fancy of the individual projecting itself into space the human individuality remains master of the image it has adopted If any mischance occurs which the Fetish has not averted if rain is suspended if there is a failure in the crops they bind and beat or destroy the Fetish and so get rid of it making another immediately and thus holding it in their own power Such a Fetish has no independence as an object of religious worship still less has it aesthetic independence as a work of art it is merely a creation that expresses the arbitrary choice of its maker and which always remains in his hands In short there is no relation of dependence in this religion There is however one feature that points to something beyond the Worship of the Dead in which their deceased forefathers and ancestors are regarded by them as a power influencing the living Their idea in the matter is that these ancestors exercise vengeance and inflict upon man various injuries exactly in the sense in which this was supposed of witches in the Middle Ages Yet the power of the dead is not held superior to that of the living for the Negroes command the dead and lay spells upon them Thus the power in question remains substantially always in bondage to the living subject Death itself is looked upon by the Negroes as no universal natural law even this they think proceeds from evil disposed magicians In this doctrine is certainly involved the elevation of man over Nature to such a degree that the chance volition of man is superior to the merely natural that he looks upon this as an instrument to which he does not pay the compliment of treating it in a way conditioned by itself but which he commands 1 Footnote 1 Vide Hegel s Vorlesungen uber die Philosophie der Religion I 284 and 289 2nd Ed But from the fact that man is regarded as the Highest it follows that he has no respect for himself for only with the consciousness of a Higher Being does he reach a point of view which inspires him with real reverence For if arbitrary choice is the absolute the only substantial objectivity that is realized the mind cannot in such be conscious of any Universality The Negroes indulge therefore that perfect contempt for humanity which in its bearing on Justice and Morality is the fundamental characteristic of the race They have moreover no knowledge of the immortality of the soul although spectres are supposed to appear The undervaluing of humanity among them reaches an incredible degree of intensity Tyranny is regarded as no wrong and cannibalism is looked upon as quite customary and proper Among us instinct deters from it if we can speak of instinct at all as appertaining to man But with the Negro this is not the case and the devouring of human flesh is altogether consonant with the general principles of the African race to the sensual Negro human flesh is but an object of sense mere flesh At the death of a King hundreds are killed and eaten prisoners are butchered and their flesh sold in the markets the victor is accustomed to eat the heart of his slain foe When magical rites are performed it frequently happens that the sorcerer kills the first that comes in his way and divides his body among the bystanders Another characteristic fact in reference to the Negroes is Slavery Negroes are enslaved by Europeans and sold to America Bad as this may be their lot in their own land is even worse since there a slavery quite as absolute exists for it is the essential principle of slavery that man has not yet attained a consciousness of his freedom and consequently sinks down to a mere Thing an object of no value Among the Negroes moral sentiments are quite weak or more strictly speaking non existent Parents sell their children and conversely children their parents as either has the opportunity Through the pervading influence of slavery all those bonds of moral regard which we cherish towards each other disappear and it does not occur to the Negro mind to expect from others what we are enabled to claim The polygamy of the Negroes has frequently for its object the having many children to be sold every one of them into slavery and very often naive complaints on this score are heard as for instance in the case of a Negro in London who lamented that he was now quite a poor man because he had already sold all his relations In the contempt of humanity displayed by the Negroes it is not so much a despising of death as a want of regard for life that forms the characteristic feature To this want of regard for life must be ascribed the great courage supported by enormous bodily strength exhibited by the Negroes who allow themselves to be shot down by thousands in war with Europeans Life has a value only when it has something valuable as its object Turning our attention in the next place to the category of political constitution we shall see that the entire nature of this race is such as to preclude the existence of any such arrangement The stand point of humanity at this grade is mere sensuous volition with energy of will since universal spiritual laws for example that of the morality of the Family cannot be recognized here Universality exists only as arbitrary subjective choice The political bond can therefore not possess such a character as that free laws should unite the community There is absolutely no bond no restraint upon that arbitrary volition Nothing but external force can hold the State together for a moment A ruler stands at the head for sensuous barbarism can only be restrained by despotic power But since the subjects are of equally violent temper with their master they keep him on the other hand within limits Under the chief there are many other chiefs with whom the former whom we will call the King takes counsel and whose consent he must seek to gain if he wishes to undertake a war or impose a tax In this relation he can exercise more or less authority and by fraud or force can on occasion put this or that chieftain out of the way Besides this the Kings have other specified prerogatives Among the Ashantees the King inherits all the property left by his subjects at their death In other places all unmarried women belong to the King and whoever wishes a wife must buy her from him If the Negroes are discontented with their King they depose and kill him In Dahomey when they are thus displeased the custom is to send parrots eggs to the King as a sign of dissatisfaction with his government Sometimes also a deputation is sent which intimates to him that the burden of government must have been very troublesome to him and that he had better rest a little The King then thanks his subjects goes into his apartments and has himself strangled by the women Tradition alleges that in former times a state composed of women made itself famous by its conquests it was a state at whose head was a woman She is said to have pounded her own son in a mortar to have besmeared herself with the blood and to have had the blood of pounded children constantly at hand She is said to have driven away or put to death all the males and commanded the death of all male children These furies destroyed everything in the neighbourhood and were driven to constant plunderings because they did not cultivate the land Captives in war were taken as husbands pregnant women had to betake themselves outside the encampment and if they had born a son put him out of the way This infamous state the report goes on to say subsequently disappeared Accompanying the King we constantly find in Negro States the executioner whose office is regarded as of the highest consideration and by whose hands the King though he makes use of him for putting suspected persons to death may himself suffer death if the grandees desire it Fanaticism which notwithstanding the yielding disposition of the Negro in other respects can be excited surpasses when roused all belief An English traveller states that when a war is determined on in Ashantee solemn ceremonies precede it among other things the bones of the King s mother are laved with human blood As a prelude to the war the King ordains an onslaught upon his own metropolis as if to excite the due degree of frenzy The King sent word to the English Hutchinson Christian take care and watch well over your family The messenger of death has drawn his sword and will strike the neck of many Ashantees when the drum sounds it is the death signal for multitudes Come to the King if you can and fear nothing for yourself The drum beat and a terrible carnage was begun all who came in the way of the frenzied Negroes in the streets were stabbed On such occasions the King has all whom he suspects killed and the deed then assumes the character of a sacred act Every idea thrown into the mind of the Negro is caught up and realized with the whole energy of his will but this realization involves a wholesale destruction These people continue long at rest but suddenly their passions ferment and then they are quite besides themselves The destruction which is the consequence of their excitement is caused by the fact that it is no positive idea no thought which produces these commotions a physical rather than a spiritual enthusiasm In Dahomey when the King dies the bonds of society are loosed in his palace begins indiscriminate havoc and disorganization All the Dahomey their number is exactly 3333 are massacred and through the whole town plunder and carnage run riot The wives of the King regard this their death as a necessity they go richly attired to meet it The authorities have to hasten to proclaim the new governor simply to put a stop to massacre From these various traits it is manifest that want of self control distinguishes the character of the Negroes This condition is capable of no development or culture and as we see them at this day such have they always been The only essential connection that has existed and continued between the Negroes and the Europeans is that of slavery In this the Negroes see nothing unbecoming them and the English who have done most for abolishing the slave trade and slavery are treated by the Negroes themselves as enemies For it is a point of first importance with the Kings to sell their captured enemies or even their own subjects and viewed in the light of such facts we may conclude slavery to have been the occasion of the increase of human feeling among the Negroes The doctrine which we deduce from this condition of slavery among the Negroes and which constitutes the only side of the question that

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  • HUME
    of Human Nature He was disappointed by its hostile reception and later dismissed it as an immature work that did not accurately reflect his views In spite of this the part on understanding continues to be widely read Hume s more immediately successful Essays Moral and Political was published in 1741 42 after he had returned to Ninewells For a while Hume worked as a tutor In the late 1740s he served as secretary to General James St Clair on military missions in Brittany Vienna and Turin With the publication of Political Discourses in 1752 he began his rise to international fame In 1751 Hume had been appointed keeper of the library of the Faculty of Advocates in Edinburgh Using its historical collection for his research he wrote his spectacularly successful A History of England published in four volumes between 1754 and 1761 For decades this history or a shortened version of it was used as a standard text in English schools Hume served for some years as secretary and then as charge d affaires in the British embassy in Paris He returned to London in 1766 and worked for a while as undersecretary of state In 1769 Hume retired to live with his sister In 1775 he was stricken by an incurable intestinal cancer Upon learning of his illness Hume wrote I now reckon upon a speedy dissolution He coolly added a man of sixty five by dying cuts off only a few years of infirmities Hume died in Edinburgh on Aug 25 1776 Hume s philosophical writings cast doubt on the truth of church supported dogmas Charges of religious heresy permanently barred him from appointment as a professor in Scottish universities Not only did he deny miracles and other religious dogmas but his theory of knowledge seemed to

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  • KANT
    father was a saddle and harness maker He attended school at the Collegium Fredericianum where he studied religion and the Latin classics When he was 16 years old Kant entered the University of Konigsberg He enrolled as a student of theology but soon became more interested in physics and mathematics After leaving college he worked for nine years as a tutor in the homes of wealthy families In 1755 he earned his doctorate at the university and became a lecturer to university students living on the small fees his students paid him He turned down offers from schools that would have taken him elsewhere and finally the University of Konigsberg offered him the position of professor of logic and metaphysics Kant never married and he never traveled farther than 50 miles 80 kilometers from Konigsberg He divided his time among lectures writing and daily walks He was small thin and weak but his ideas were powerful Kant s most famous work was the Critique of Pure Reason published in German in 1781 In it he tried to set up the difference between things of the outside world and actions of the mind He said that things that exist in the world are real but the human mind is needed to give them order and form and to see the relationships between them Only the mind can surround them with space and time The principles of mathematics are part of the space time thoughts supplied by the mind to real things For example we see only one or two walls of a house at any one time The mind gathers up these sense impressions of individual walls and mentally builds a complete house Thus the whole house is being created in the mind while our eyes see only a part of

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  • KIERKEGAARD
    born in Copenhagen on May 5 1813 His prosperous father died in 1838 leaving his two sons an inheritance that freed them from the need to work Soren was able to devote most of his life to study and writing He studied philosophy and theology at the University of Copenhagen Kierkegaard was a prolific writer His subject matter encompassed three basic areas consideration of the function of the individual human life vehement opposition to the philosophy of G W F Hegel whose thought dominated 19th century Europe and a clear delineation of Christianity in opposition to the secularism of the state church of Denmark His major works on the human predicament are Either Or published in 1843 Fear and Trembling 1843 The Concept of Dread 1844 and Stages on Life s Way 1845 His two primary religious philosophical works including the attack on Hegel are Philosophical Fragments 1844 and Concluding Unscientific Postscript to the Philosophical Fragments 1846 The works dealing with Christianity are Edifying Discourses in Divers Spirits 1847 Works of Love 1847 The Sickness unto Death 1849 and Training in Christianity 1850 His last major work Attack upon Christendom 1855 was a strong satirical attack on the Lutheran state

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  • SARTRE
    Ecole Normale Superieure where he met his lifelong companion the writer Simone de Beauvoir Between 1931 and 1945 he taught at several secondary schools in France During the 1930s he began to develop his existentialist philosophy which stressed personal freedom and stated that the individual exists only in relation to other people In 1938 he published his first major work the novel Nausea in which he set these ideas in writing In 1939 Sartre was drafted to serve in World War II He was captured and placed in a prisoner of war camp in 1940 but he escaped the following year and returned to Paris where he became active in the Resistance After the war Sartre became a celebrity His writings began to focus on the necessity for action or doing rather than simply existing This led to an increased commitment to politics In 1945 Sartre cofounded with de Beauvoir a monthly review of politics philosophy and art called Les Temps Modernes In 1952 Sartre allied himself with the French Communist party though he never actually became a member Sartre supported the student uprisings of May 1968 and he protested the United States involvement in Vietnam in the 1960s In

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  • The Battle of Hastings
    both horse and rider would be felled by a single blow So it was at long range as I have said that the enemy s deadly arrow brought him to his death One of the Norman soldiers gashed his thigh with a sword as he lay prostrate for which shameful and cowardly action he was branded with ignominy by William and expelled from the army William too was equally ready to encourage his soldiers by his voice and by his presence and to be the first to rush forward to attack the thickest of the foe He was everywhere fierce and furious he lost three choice horses which were that day killed under him The dauntless spirit and vigor of the intrepid general however still held out Though often called back by the kind remonstrance of his bodyguard he still persisted until approaching night crowned him with complete victory And no doubt the hand of God so protected him that the enemy should draw no blood from his person though they aimed so many javelins at him This was a fatal day to England and melancholy havoc was wrought in our dear country during the change of its lords For it had long before adopted the manners of the Angles which had indeed altered with the times for in the first years of their arrival they were barbarians in their look and manner warlike in their usages heathens in their rites After embracing the faith of Christ by degrees and in process of time in consequence of the peace which they enjoyed they relegated arms to a secondary place and gave their whole attention to religion I am not speaking of the poor the meanness of whose fortune often restrains them from overstepping the bounds of justice I omit too men of ecclesiastical rank whom sometimes respect for their profession and sometimes the fear of shame suffers not to deviate from the true path I speak of princes who from the greatness of their power might have full liberty to indulge in pleasure Some of these in their own country and others at Rome changing their habit obtained a heavenly kingdom and a saintly intercourse Many others during their whole lives devoted themselves in outward appearance to worldly affairs but in order that they might exhaust their treasures on the poor or divide them amongst monasteries What shall I say of the multitudes of bishops hermits and abbots Does not the whole island blaze with such numerous relics of its own people that you can scarcely pass a village of any consequence but you hear the name of some new saint And of how many more has all remembrance perished through the want of records Nevertheless the attention to literature and religion had gradually decreased for several years before the arrival of the Normans The clergy contented with a little confused learning could scarcely stammer out the words of the sacraments and a person who understood grammar was an object

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  • The Venerable Bede
    admirabilis Beda This decree was specially referred to in the petition which Cardinal Wiseman and the English bishops addressed to the Holy See in 1859 praying that Bede might be declared a Doctor of the Church The question had already been debated even before the time of Benedict XIV but it was only on 13 November 1899 that Leo XIII decreed that the feast of Venerable Bede with the title of Doctor Ecclesiae should be celebrated throughout the Church each year on 27 May A local cultus of St Bede had been maintained at York and in the North of England throughout the Middle Ages but his feast was not so generally observed in the South where the Sarum Rite was followed Bede s influence both upon English and foreign scholarship was very great and it would probably have been greater still but for the devastation inflicted upon the Northern monasteries by the inroads of the Danes less than a century after his death In numberless ways but especially in his moderation gentleness and breadth of view Bede stands out from his contemporaries In point of scholarship he was undoubtedly the most learned man of his time A very remarkable trait noticed by Plummer I p xxiii is his sense of literary property an extraordinary thing in that age He himself scrupulously noted in his writings the passages he had borrowed from others and he even begs the copyists of his works to preserve the references a recommendation to which they alas have paid but little attention High however as was the general level of Bede s culture he repeatedly makes it clear that all his studies were subordinated to the interpretation of Scripture In his De Schematibus he says in so many words Holy Scripture is above all other books not only by its authority because it is Divine or by its utility because it leads to eternal life but also by its antiquity and its literary form positione dicendi It is perhaps the highest tribute to Bede s genius that with so uncompromising and evidently sincere a conviction of the inferiority of human learning he should have acquired so much real culture Though Latin was to him a still living tongue and though he does not seem to have consciously looked back to the Augustan Age of Roman Literature as preserving purer models of literary style than the time of Fortunatus or St Augustine still whether through native genius or through contact with the classics he is remarkable for the relative purity of his language as also for his lucidity and sobriety more especially in matters of historical criticism In all these respects he presents a marked contrast to St Aldhelm who approaches more nearly to the Celtic type WRITINGS AND EDITIONS No adequate edition founded upon a careful collation of manuscripts has ever been published of Bede s works as a whole The text printed by Giles in 1884 and reproduced in Migne XC XCIV shows little

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