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given portion of the Scholia and gather the points which the ancient commentators selected for admiration. In the Scholia on Ajax, nothing comes in for so much praise as Sophocles' skill in observing îoos, “characterising”; but the critics commended also, in a great many places, the pathos (περιπαθής, εμπαθές, παθητικόν, πάθος); stagecraft (oixovouía) is another selected merit; and the expressions, προκόπτει η υπόθεσις, συνέχειν Thv úró cow, belong to another class: they refer to the skill with which episodes, dialogues, and all the rest of the machinery are made to subserve the general purpose.
Finally, we come back on M. Arnold : “he saw life steadily and saw it whole." An idealist to the bottom of his nature, he still found the best philosophy was to “keep his place among the living.” Other-worldliness never soured this world for him ; sense of the supernatural did not dry up the natural aptitudes and passions ; death did not spoil life for him, Ionian though he was. He could see the world full of contradiction and not turn cynic. His dramatic eye saw the awful conflict between the law of conscience and the law of the State ; but the humble sweetness of good temper and good sense found a solution for all doubts. He always appealed from the momentary to the
total experience. And he was true to himself in his art. The form in which he set himself to work was a compromise, a coalition of elements which tended to fly apart, only maintained by tact of craftsmanship. And as in his view of life, as in his method as a dramatic poet, so in his use of language : he always leads into the large outlook. Every word must be subordinated to the phrase ; every sentence to the speech, the dialogue, the total expression of the character to be presented; and, lastly, no inorganic ornament, nothing that unduly concentrates the attention which should be equally distributed over the whole, nothing that is not a member or feature of the living body into which the whole work grows. πολλών καλών δει το καλόν τι μωμένα (Fr. 853).
He speaks for a great era : Renan said that if he had three lives, one of the other two should have been devoted to writing the history of the age of Pericles. I wish this volume might be able to convey to an English reader some indication of the message and the voicea worthy message and a true voice.
Note.—References to the Fragments follow the numbering of Nauck's edition of 1856.
SCENE.— Before the gates of the Palace at Thebes. On
the steps are grouped a number of citizens, young and old, in the garb of suppliants; foremost among them a PRIEST.
Enter Edipus from the Palace. @d. Fresh brood of bygone Cadmus, children dear,
What is this posture of your sessions here
will To help you freely. Hard the heart that still
Unmoved such congregation could withstand ! Priest. Nay, (Edipus, high Sovereign of my land,
You see us at your altars, what we are :