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[106] change was made by the French, when he went to Berlin, with the title of ‘Geheinerrath,’ and a salary of 2,500 thalers and no duties, and now lives there, in his old age, in a kind of otium cum dignitate, which is almost singular in the annals of German universities, and which is the envy of his coadjutors and rivals.

As a man of letters and learning, I know of few living for whom I have so great a veneration as for Wolf. In genius he surpasses, perhaps, nearly all the philologists who have lived, and in learning and acuteness is behind very few. A genuine laziness and love of ease, however, have prevented him from publishing much; but what he has published has become a canon,—as his text of Homer, though he gives no notes to support his alterations; his rules of criticism, in his Prolegomena, though not carried out and exemplified; his editions of Herodian, and of the Disp. Tusculanae, etc., etc.,—all things of little compass, but pregnant with important consequences and changes. . . . . His course for Homer was commonly attended by 180 to 200, and I am persuaded that very few professors, in any faculty, have delivered so great a variety of lectures as he has, with such skill, thoroughness, and success. I do not know what more could be desired of him, but that he should have published more, and should not have ceased to instruct.

But the more I admire him as a scholar, the more I dislike him as a man . . . . He has openly quarrelled with most of his friends; he disgraced himself by his political conduct when the French were in Halle; and he has sunk from all respect by his vices in old age . . . . . In intercourse I have found him pleasant, chiefly from his boldness and originality. His remarks on all subjects are striking and often new; he is arrogant and vain, talks much of himself, and repeated to me with ill-concealed satisfaction a remark he had found in the Classical Journal, published in England, that they knew of only two scholars now on the Continent,—Wyttenbach and Wolf. Of his enemies he never spoke, unless it were once of Voss, whose translation of Homer he ridiculed; and, though by a strange accident I walked with him this afternoon to the tomb of Heyne, it seemed to excite in him no feeling but curiosity. To like such a man is impossible; but as a matter of curiosity I must say that, during the last three days, in which I have been often and long with him, he has very much amused me.


Dictated in 1854.

When I was in Gottingen, in 1816, I saw Wolf, the most distinguished Greek scholar of the time. He could also lecture extemporaneously


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