…on a Classical moment in “History”

As a Classicist, I read and re-read History admitting a full spectrum of emotions, epiphanies and indeed — even on some occasions — unease, as I find myself in the inconvenient position of being confronted with the reality of History’s (with a capital haitch) perceived…place.

Then there are the purely exquisite moments; such as these, which speak to the origination of those things which History (with the same capital haitch) reads:

“There is, at the surface an infinite variety of things; at the centre, there is simplicity and unity of cause.”

— Ralph Waldo Emerson, History

This wondrously Classical thread exists where Emerson cites Greek Genius and designates this singular circumstance, in this instance, to civil history, literature, architecture and sculpture. In the same way as one may apply a reference to serenity as a manifestation of Frank Costanza (a shout out here to the lovely Gerri!), the Greeks invoked this unity of cause — this one thing — to corporealise these multitudinous things, which were emblematic of them.

If we prospect beneath a thing to decipher a thing in all its forms, we begin to understand that one man can consummate and command myriad arts and acts in disparate ways.

“Yet do these external experiences proceed from the natural mind.”

— Ralph Waldo Emerson, History

So long as our voices and talents emanate from truth, goodness and purity — in essence, our natural minds — they will be undiluted; for this is what impels talent and renders it special; lest it is merely unruly notes or scrawl…


Ironically: a Roman garden fresco in an offering which touches upon Greek accomplishment!

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