ys, nor will the shadow of an impressive name make me a whit more learned ... but we must put on the lion's skin to prove our ability to those who judge a man by his title and not by his books, which in truth they do not understand."
Although Erasmus despised degree-hunting, it is well known that he felt the power of Italy. He was tempted to remain in Rome for ever, by reason of the company he found there. "What a sky and fields, what libraries and pleasant walks and sweet confabulation with the learned ..." he exclaims, in afterwards recalling that paradise of scholars. There was, for instance, the Cardinal Grimani, who begged Erasmus to share his life ... and books. And there was Aldus Manutius. We get a glimpse of the Venetian printing-house when Aldus and Erasmus worked together: Erasmus sitting writing regardless of the noise of printers, while Aldus breathlessly reads proof, admiring every word. "We were so busy," says Erasmus, "we scarce had time to scratch our ears."
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