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WILLIAM STUBBS Seventeen lectures on the study of medieval and modern history and kindred subjects

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WILLIAM STUBBS
Seventeen lectures on the study of medieval and modern history and kindred subjects
page 244



IX. ON THE CHABACTEBISTIC DIFFEBENCES BETWEEN MEDIEVAL AND MODEBN HISTOBY. (April 15,1880.) I F I were asked for what reason I have, in my teaching in this place, preferred medieval to later modern history, I should answer, because I think that for the training of the judgment, the former furnishes material more readily applicable to educational purposes than the latter. It is further removed from the arena of political controversy, and, whilst it possesses interest quite sufficient to awaken every sentiment that may lawfully affect the judgment, it stirs no emotion that could reasonably be expected to pervert or overbalance it. We find in it heroes and heroines quite heroic enough to justify hero-worship ; we find in it questions of controversy quite sufficiently exciting to divide parties; and points of sufficiently continuing and permanent importance to kindle our zeal in a moderate degree in connexion with the questions and interests of to-day. The rights and wrongs of the political life of modern Europe are rooted in the medieval history of Europe, and we can trace sufficient connexion between the extreme past and the present to give interest to the earliest investigations. So we try to train the judgment by investigating causes, effects, ideas and results, rights and wrongs, in a subject-matter sufficiently akin to modern life to engage lively feeling, and yet sufficiently apart


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