The Grecian History from the Earliest State...

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Book Details

Author  Oliver Goldsmith
Publisher  Forgotten Books
Publication Date   June 25, 2012
ISBN 
Pages  318

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Of the earliest state of Greece uj O! The first notices ehave of every country are fabulous .and uncertain. A mong an unenlightened people every imposi ture blikely to take place, for ignorance is the parent of creduJD I hy. Nothing, therefore, which the Greeks have transmitted to us concerning their earliest state can be relied on. 2. Poets were the first who began te record the actions of Vmeir countrymen, and it is a part of their art to strike, the imagination even at the expense of probability. For this reason, in the earliest accounts of Greece, we are presented with the machinations of ods and demi-gods, the adventures of heroes and giants, the ravages of monsters and dragons, and all the potency of charms and enchantments. Man, plain historical i man, seems to have no share in. the picture, and while tlie reader Jwanders through the most delightful scenes the imagination can Voflfer, he is scarce once presented with the actions of such a being as himself. f3. It would be vaih, therefore, and beside the present purpose, to give a historical air to accounts which were never meant to be transmitted as true. Some writers, indeed, have laboriously unj dertaken to separate the truth from the fable, and to give us an Cunbroken narrative fi-om the first dawning of tradition to the, CJ display of undoubted history 5they have levelled down all rny J5 tbology to their own apprehensions: every fa)le is made to look 3with an air of probability. Instead of a golden fleece, Jason 5goes in pursuit of a great treasure 5instead of destroying a chimte ra, Bellerophon reclaims a mountain; instead of a hydra,.H er Jz cides overcomes a robber. M.
(Typographical errors above are due to OCR software and don't occur in the book.)

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