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      No more wounded were taken to the hospitals of Louvain, as it had been decided to send them straight on to Germany for the present; yet there were many wounded men who were being nursed there already, and the doctors had their hands full attending to the wounded who passed the town. Dr. Noyons told me that the previous Sunday a train with 600 wounded had arrived from Northern France, and he and his assistants had been requested "just" to dress the wounds again of some of them. The condition of these unfortunate men must have been awful; not one had a dressing less than eight days old. Most of them had had it on much longer,209 and then these were merely emergency dressings. They were laid on straw in cattle trucks, many of them even in filth, and infection had worsened their condition to a great extent. Dr. Noyons and his colleagues tried to give the poor fellows as much relief as possible, but as a matter of course they could not do very much during a short stay at a station.

      He looked smack at the stewardess, Larry added to himself.It would seem from this singular and touching expression of gratitude that the deathless idealism of Hellas found in Neros gift of a nominal liberty ample compensation for the very real and precious works of art of which she was despoiled on the occasion of his visit to her shores. At first sight, that visit looks like nothing better than a display of triumphant buffoonery on the one side and of servile adulation on the other. But, in reality, it was a turning-point in the history of civilisation, the awakening to new glories of a race in whom life had become, to all outward appearance, extinct. For more than a whole century the seat of intellectual supremacy had been established in Rome; and during the same period Rome herself had turned to the West rather than to the East for renovation and support. Caesars conquests were like the revelation of a new world; and three times over, when the two halves of the divided empire came into collision, the champion who commanded the resources of that world had won. Henceforth it was to her western provinces and to her western frontiers that Rome looked for danger, for aggrandisement, or for renown. In Horaces time, men asked each other what the warlike Cantabrians were planning; and the personal presence of Augustus himself was needed before those unruly Iberians could be subdued. His adopted sons earned their first laurels at the expense of Alpine mountaineers. His later years are filled with German campaigns; and the great disaster of Varus must have riveted attention more closely than any victory to what was passing between the Rhine and the Elbe. Under Claudius, the conquest of Britain opened a new source of interest in the West, and, like Germany before, supplied a new title of triumph to the imperial family. Half the literary talent in Rome, the two Senecas, Lucan, and at a269 later period Martial and Quintilian, came from Spain, as also did Trajan, whose youth fall in this period.

      Oh!Sandy almost screamed the word as the dull, hollow knocks came again.

      Previous to his forty-ninth year, Plotinus wrote nothing. At that age he began to compose short essays on subjects which suggested themselves in the course of his oral teaching. During the next ten years, he produced twenty-one such278 papers, some of them only a page or two in length. At the end of that period, he made the acquaintance of his future editor and biographer, Porphyry, a young student of Semitic extraction, whose original name was Malchus. The two soon became fast friends; and whatever speculative differences at first divided them were quickly removed by an amicable controversy between Porphyry and another disciple named Amelius, which resulted in the unreserved adhesion of the former to the doctrine of their common master.415 The literary activity of Plotinus seems to have been powerfully stimulated by association with the more methodical mind of Porphyry. During the five years416 of their personal intercourse he produced nineteen essays, amounting altogether to three times the bulk of the former series. Eight shorter pieces followed during the period of failing health which preceded his death, Porphyry being at that time absent in Sicily, whither he had retired when suffering from the fit of depression already mentioned.

      page314Still Dick began, and then, looking down the street, he became alert.

      An energy continually advancing through successive gradations, and diminishing as it advancessuch, as we have seen, is the conception of existence offered by Plotinus. We have seen, also, how to explain the genesis of one principle from another without the aid of supernatural volition or of mechanical causation, he is compelled to press into the service every sort of relationship by which two objects can be connected, and to invest it with a dynamical significance which only the phenomena of matter and motion can possess. But what he chiefly relies on for guidance in this tortuous labyrinth of timeless evolution, is the old Greek principle that contraries are generated from one another. And with him, as with the earlier thinkers, all contraries reduce themselves, in the last analysis, to the four great antitheses of the One and the Many, Being and not-Being, the Same and the Other, Rest and Motion. It matters nothing that he should have followed Plato to the extent of co-ordinating five of these terms as supreme archetypal Ideas, immediately resulting from the self-consciousness of Nous, and themselves producing all other forms of existence. They are used, quite independently of that derivation, to explain the connexion of the various323 creative principles with one another. Nous is deduced from its first cause as Being from not-Being, as the Many from the One, as Difference from Identity, and as Motion from Rest.474 To explain the generation of Soul from Nous is a more difficult problem. The One had originally been defined as the antithetical cause of Nous, and therefore the latter could easily be accounted for by simply reversing the analytical process; whereas Nous had not been defined as the cause of Soul, but as the model whence her creative Ideas are derived. Soul, in fact, is not opposed to anything; she is the connecting link between sense and spirit. In this strait, Plotinus seems to think that the antithesis between Rest and Motion is the best fitted to express the nature of her descent from the higher principle; and on one occasion he illustrates the relation of his three divine substances to one another by the famous figure of a central point representing the One, a fixed circle round that point representing the Nous, and outside that, again, a revolving circle representing the Soul.475 Still, the different parts of the system are very awkwardly pieced together at this juncture; for the creative energy of the Nous has already been invoked to account for the Ideas or partial intelligences into which it spontaneously divides; and one does not understand how it can be simultaneously applied to the production of something that is not an Idea at all.


      Such are the closing words of what was possibly Aristotles last work, the clear confession of his monotheistic creed. A monotheistic creed, we have said, but one so unlike all other religions, that its nature has been continually misunderstood. While some have found in it a theology like that of the Jews or of Plato or of modern Europe, others have resolved it into a vague pantheism. Among the latter we are surprised to find Sir A. Grant, a writer to whom the Aristotelian texts must be perfectly familiar both in spirit and in letter. Yet nothing can possibly be more clear and emphatic than the declarations they contain. Pantheism identifies God with the world; Aristotle separates them as pure form from form more or less alloyed with matter. Pantheism denies personality to God; Aristotle gives him unity, spirituality, self-consciousness, and happiness. If these qualities do not collectively involve personality, we should like to know what does. Need we351 remind the accomplished editor of the Nicomachean Ethics how great a place is given in that work to human self-consciousness, to waking active thought as distinguished from mere slumbering faculties or unrealised possibilities of action? And what Aristotle regarded as essential to human perfection, he would regard as still more essential to divine perfection. Finally, the God of pantheism is a general idea; the God of Aristotle is an individual. Sir A. Grant says that he (or it) is the idea of Good.247 We doubt very much whether there is a single passage in the Metaphysics to sanction such an expression. Did it occur, however, that would be no warrant for approximating the Aristotelian to the Platonic theology, in presence of such a distinct declaration as that the First Mover is both conceptually and numerically one,248 coming after repeated repudiations of the Platonic attempt to isolate ideas from the particulars in which they are immersed. Then Sir A. Grant goes on to speak of the desire felt by Nature for God as being itself God,249 and therefore involving a belief in pantheism. Such a notion is not generally called pantheism, but hylozoism, the attribution of life to matter. We have no desire, however, to quarrel about words. The philosopher who believes in the existence of a vague consciousness, a spiritual effort towards something higher diffused through nature, may, if you will, be called a pantheist, but not unless this be the only divinity he recognises. The term is altogether misleading when applied to one who also proclaims the existence of something in his opinion far higher, better and more reala living God, who transcends Nature, and is independent of her, although she is not independent of him.


      I never will, Dick declared.