11 December 2013

The Last Resource of Ignorance

Paul Ponder, Noctes Atticae, or Reveries in a Garret; Containing Short, and Chiefly Original, Observations on Men and Books, Vol II (Bath: Richard Cruttwell, 1825), pp. 194-195:
A little wit, with a convenient share of ill-nature, will enable a man to be satirical; but it requires a good deal of sense to praise worthy objects, as in such there is a great quantity of matter of the best sort, and they require commensurate abilities and judgement to give them their share and kind of encomium. The last resource of ignorance is a sneer, when the person is conscious he can give no answer; and herein the intended satire falls on the feeble attempt to be satirical. 
Found via Laudator Temporis Acti.