Erasmus, Utopia, and the Jesuits: Essays on the Outreach of Humanism

By John C. Olin | Go to book overview

is another story and quite beyond the scope of the subject we have been discussing.


IV

My topic has been the bond between Erasmus and Saint Jerome and its significance. I have dealt extensively with the first part of that topic. Let me say in conclusion a few words at least about the second part. What is the significance of it all? For Erasmus, of course, the bond was of the utmost importance. From the outset Jerome was a major influence on him -- an inspiration, a model, an ideal. I am told by a noted classical scholar that Erasmus' own literary style most closely resembles Saint Jerome's. Certainly his humanism does, 61 and so do his scriptural focus and approach and achievement. And the precedent of Jerome was assurance and justification for Erasmus in his own endeavors. We can point also to a broader significance. The affinity between the two great scholars is a classic example of that revival of antiquity -- that return to the sources -- we associate so basically with the Renaissance. The bond is a witness of a "discovery" but also of an assimilation, and this in turn generated intellectual ferment and religious reform. It is part of a larger picture, to be sure, but it is a very characteristic, integral, and important part. And finally, I think, it reveals the variety and richness of the Christian tradition and serves to remind us of its historic potential for personal and cultural renewal.


NOTES
1.
Eugene F. Rice Jr., Saint Jerome in the Renaissance ( Baltimore, 1985), pp. 104-107. On the Fabriano portrait see Federico Zeri , Italian Paintings in the Walters Art Gallery I ( Baltimore, 1976), pp. 189-91 and plate 94.

-22-

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Erasmus, Utopia, and the Jesuits: Essays on the Outreach of Humanism
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • List of Illustrations ix
  • Abbreviations xi
  • Introduction xiii
  • Notes xvii
  • 1 - Erasmus and Saint Jerome: The Close Bond and Its Significance 1
  • Notes 22
  • 2 - Erasmus and His Edition of Saint Hilary 27
  • Notes 34
  • 3 - Erasmus and Aldus Manutius 39
  • Notes 55
  • 4 - Erasmus' Adagia and More's Utopia 57
  • Notes 67
  • 5 - More, Montaigne, and Matthew Arnold: Thoughts on the Utopian Vision 71
  • Notes 83
  • 6 - The Jesuits, Humanism, and History 85
  • Notes 104
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