Read by virtually all educated Europeans and Americans in the 18th century. But not read by you

Read by virtually all educated Europeans and Americans in the 18th century

But not read by you

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  1. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    anons, i do believe we ſhould bring back the “ſ”

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      Yeſ! I agree with you. itſ is much more intereſting.

  2. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    One of these days I'll lie just like Macpherson

  3. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >educated
    >in the 18th century
    lol

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      Shalom

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      Do you think you are superior by being born on an age forward (in relation to time)?

  4. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    I'm still trying to find a nice copy. pls don't bully me
    ;_;

  5. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    First, there was the style: the style of Ossian was not that of a ‘primitive’ poet: it fitted a little too happily into the taste of the momentIt also contained some passages suspiciously similar to passages from Milton and the Bible, among others and although these similarities would afterwards be explained away by Macpherson as being independent observations of ‘Nature, the great original’, this explanation was not judged sufficient by the literary critics, who found the parallels rather too close. Secondly, there were historical objections. Macpherson's Fingal was represented as king of ‘Morven’ in Caledonia in the third century AD, and Ossian, his son, sang his exploits in the ‘Erse’ language in the same century. But what were the Scots, and their ‘Erse’ or Irish language, doing in Caledonia so early? Historically, they only arrived there in the sixth century AD. Before that, the country belonged only to the Picts.All this had been scientifically established by Innes in 1729; and although Innes himself had not expected to be read by Englishmen, it might be assumed that Scotchmen who undertook to judge the question were familiar with his workThen there were internal objections. These were both general and particular. In general, why were the poems so lacking in concrete detail?They seemed never to touch the ground: no one could deduce, from their thin, high-falutin' rhetoric,the economy, the state of civilisation, the morals, even the religious beliefs of the Caledonians–except that their morals were exquisitely refined and their religion happily free, like that of the eighteenth century, from vulgar superstition: the upper air was peopled only by the spirits and ghosts dear to the early romantic writers. How different, in this respect, were the poems of the Ionian Homer, so full of vivid detail and domestic incidents! By avoiding such detail,Ossian did of course escape the charge of vulgarity levelled at Homer by the polite critics of the later eighteenth century, but only to incur the suspicion of forgery.For the critics could not fail to notice that when Ossian did descend to particulars, he was frequently guilty of demonstrable anachronisms: late medieval ideas of knight-errantry, halls, towers, palaces in thirdcentury Scotland. Could that be, the critics asked, why he so seldom risked such a descent? This was the view of Walpole, who referred to the poemss ‘sterility of ideas, the insipid sameness that reigns throughout, and the timidity with which it anxiously avoids every image that might affix it to any specific age, country or religion’. This timidity did not, he thought, bespeak ‘a savage bard’: ‘few barbarous authors write with the fear of criticism before their eyes’;and he added that if one removed from Fingal its essential furniture – ‘the moon,a storm, the troubled ocean,a blasted heath,a single tree,a waterfall, and a ghost’ there was nothing left to anchor it in time or space.

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      James Macpherson could not read the old manuscripts. He could understand and speak Gaelic in its contemporary Highland form; but he was no scholar in the language. It was not he who, in 1760, had taken down the recitations.109 Even for that he had relied on others: on Strathmashie, Morrison or Ewan Macpherson. And before an ancient manuscript he was helpless. A little over a decade later, in 1773 or 1774, he was humiliated by being shown, in the Bodleian Library at Oxford, a fourteenth-century Gaelic manuscript of a dialogue between Ossian and St Patrick, of which, he had to admit, he could not read a word.110 Although he possessed Clanranald's manuscripts, he never referred to their contents. His recoverable references to the Book of the Dean of Lismore are solely to the mutilated and obscure state of the manuscript, written in a peculiar script unknown to all Highlanders. Twice he exhibited – or claimed to have exhibited – his ancient manuscripts; but always he saw to it either that they were not seen, or that their identity was wrapped in protective ambiguity. The inference is clear: he did not himself truly know what was in those manuscripts and was terrified lest a real Gaelic scholar should read them and cause trouble. It was safe to invite a visit of inspection from Dr Johnson, who could not read Gaelic; but when the visitor turned out to be William Shaw, who could, up went the smokescreen.

      Similarly, in 1793, Macpherson was forced to admit the irrelevance of the manuscripts to Ferguson, who knew Gaelic. If we assume that Macpherson had based his Ossian not on the old manuscripts, which he could not read, but on an intermediate Gaelic text, whose relationship to those old manuscripts was unverifiable by him, then his difficulty becomes clear. His Gaelic manuscript containing Fingal was the modern manuscript cooked up imaginatively at Ruthven or Strathmashie, mostly out of a series of contemporary oral recitations. That would convince no one of its authenticity. On the other hand, his genuine old manuscripts – those manuscripts which had been silently accumulated in Badenoch, or fetched with such triumph from the Hebrides – were dynamite. He could have used them to blow up Dr Johnson (who had denied the existence of any ancient Gaelic manuscripts) – but only at the risk of blowing himself up too. The safest course was to lock them away, even to deny their existence. At all costs, they must not be submitted to scholars as the Gaelic originals of Ossian

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        The language was historically studied. The literary forms were discovered. And the verdict of modern scholars on the Gaelic Ossian of 1807 is unanimous. ‘If one solitary line be excepted, not a single stanza of it’ corresponds exactly with any authentic ballad. It keeps none of the rules of prosody in genuine Gaelic poetry: it has ‘no fixed number of syllables, no alliteration, no assonance, no rhyme’. Its language is neither ancient nor correct. In short, it is a freak, isolated from ‘the whole body of traditional Gaelic poetry’; a modern artefact ‘of patent fraudulence’, and the work of a writer who thought not in Gaelic but in English.67 With that conclusion, from which no appeal is possible, all of Sinclair's speculative arguments dissolve. The ‘Gaelic text of Ossian’, so triumphantly produced as the final vindication of Macpherson, is in fact his ultimate condemnation.

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          The poem of Fingal is today totally unreadable. Its story is of inexpressible tedium; its characters are as bloodless as the ghosts who provide its supernatural machinery; and they reiterate only the most highminded sentiments and vapid rhetoric. The context is an unchanging background of bleak crags, twisted oak trees, purple heather, raging storms and misty islands. But to the taste of the later eighteenth century, which had grown weary of Augustan formality, it provided, in instant form, everything that was most desired. It was sublime; it was melancholy; it presented the noblest of noble savages; and its rhythmical prose was a relief from the mechanical regularity of heroic couplets. Pope had put the Greek Homer into a literary straitjacket; but the Celtic Homer was free. He was also superior to the real Homer in every respect in which the real Homer was now being criticised.
          We have seen that the critics had begun to object to the crudities of the Greek poet and his heroes. How vastly superior were the early Scottish Highlanders and their poet! Here were no human sacrifices, no petty thieving, no princesses washing knickers in the river. Indeed there was nothing common, or even concrete, at all. All was high-minded humanity, sensibility, chivalry. As Sheridan put it to Boswell, Ossian surpassed ‘all the poets in the world … he excelled Homer in the Sublime and Virgil in the Pathetic’; his morality was so elevated that Mr and Mrs Sheridan ‘have fixed it as the standard of feeling, made it a thermometer by which they could judge the warmth of everybody's heart’. Finally, these poems marked ‘a great discovery’ in another respect. They were an important contribution to anthropology. Till they had been published ‘we could not imagine that such sentiments of delicacy as well as generosity could have existed in the breasts of rude uncultivated people’.63 Now it was clear that they could: Ossian proved that the Noble Savage was not a myth but reality.

  6. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >unsubstantiated claim

  7. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    I read to the end of Fingal because it was getting very repetitive. I liked the fragments better since they do the same thing in shorter form.

  8. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    You think Goethe felt stupid?

  9. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    have a nice day amerishitter, you have never and will never be European

    • 1 month ago
      Anonymous

      Cope by unsophisticated third worlder

      • 1 month ago
        Anonymous

        >third worlder
        Extremely ironic coming from an androgynous fat creature with no social cohesion. have a nice day like that homosexual who jumped off the twin tower, halfBlack person troony

        • 1 month ago
          Anonymous

          No one knows (or cares) what you are talking about and there is no reason to be so mad, anon. These vague, material hatreds have no place in any developed person; displayed clearly by your need to hide behind the development of others instead of proudly showing off your own development as a person.

  10. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >ancient epic

    People in the past were sure gullible.

  11. 1 month ago
    Anonymous

    >ossiangay is back
    Curious to see if he has learned how not to eat his own foot, not the best start but downright restrained from his past claims. Some of those old threads where hilarious, he took it so far that he could not get people reading it during peak tradlarp days.

    Ossian is ok but Kalevala is better.

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