MORE than twenty other writings of Lucian offer contributions necessary for an estimate both of his defects and of his versatile interest in the "passing show" -- the human comedy. He was neither a master intelligence like Aristotle -- expert in several of the many subjects to which he addressed himself -- nor was he a mere polymath like Pliny the Elder or Aelian. In spite of his jaunty treatment of philosophy and exact science, Lucian at least takes cognizance of the chief components of contemporary life and with his mordant wit etches the portraiture of a great century. This is not mere caricature.
Under this rubric might be included the majority of the dialogues cited above to illustrate specific objectives of Lucian's satire. Some of the best dialogues, however, fall outside of the