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Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Scholarly subtexts

In a footnote on p. 30 of the Cambridge edition of Locke's Two Treatises (indistinctly pictured in the banner image of this blog), panting editor Peter Laslett informs us about a note accompanying a copy of The Fundamental Constitution of the Carolinas in Shaftesbury's library that, "This interesting fragment, in the possession of the present writer...contains two sentences only, highly Harringtonian."

Translation: A scrap of Locke's own writing, used as a bookmark by the Earl of Shaftesbury! All mine! I own it! Booyah! No, you can't look at it! What does it say, you ask? I'm not telling, sucka! It could be a hinge for Locke's entire thought, and you'll never know. Two whole sentences, highly Harringtonian, which I will not be reprinting here, thankyouverymuch.