Published by the Center for the Study of The Great Ideas (founded in 1990 by Mortimer J. Adler and Max Weismann)
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Friday, July 21, 2017

Judicious eye pain

Bruce Fudge on translations of the Thousand and One Nights, at The Times Literary Supplement.

"Despite its status as a classic of world literature, the collection has always had its detractors on both moral and aesthetic grounds, regardless of language. References in premodern Arabic are uniformly negative, in the vein of the tenth-century littérateur who disparaged works that only 'provoke wonder without leading to any benefit or knowledge'. When Alexander Pope presented Bishop Atterbury with some volumes, the latter dismissed them as 'the product of some Womans [sic] imagination' and likely to cause a 'judicious eye pain'."

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