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Excerpt from Funeral Oration on the Death of Joseph Scaliger: Delivered in the Hall of Theology of the University of Leyden, Immediately After the Obsequies, 25 January, 1609; Translated Into English for the First Time, From the First Edition, Ex Officina Plantiniana Raphelengii, 1608
That all created things perish, and that there is nothing immortal in the world, save the power of mind and the works of the understanding, are the particular lessons of this day. To earth, to earth we have committed Joseph Scaliger’s poor emaciated body, the narrow house in which that great spirit, prince of letters, tarried sixty-eight years as a distinguished guest: in which he produced so many splendid works, so many divine monuments, so many writings that shall ever live with all posterity. Though by this death I feel myself so broken in spirit and maimed, that if voice by tears, mind by very anguish oppressed become dumb, I believe that I deserve all men’s indulgence: yet I fear lest some great and honorable men, who in all lands are wont to employ the name of Scaliger, not as that of a learned man, but as the appellation of learning itself, may accuse me of unadulterated rashness and presumption. Their charge I neither reject, nor am able to evade: so far from it, that I perceive I have no defence left against them, except piety.
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