Textual criticism, like most other sciences, is an aristocratic affair, not communicable to all men, nor to most men

the odds are a hundred to one that it is a conjecture which our betters were withheld from making by their superior tact

the most frivolous pretender has learnt to talk superciliously about ‘the old unscientific days’

it [textual criticism] deals with … the frailties and aberrations of the human mind, and of its insubordinate servants, the human fingers

American scholars are mere grammarians and collectors of statistics, and what we call critical scholarship hardly exists there

Vanity, not avarice, is my ruling passion

skimming the first cream off a new-found author is only child’s-play beside gleaning after Bentley over a stubble where Heinsius has reaped

no amount either of grammar or of palaeography will teach a man one scrap of textual criticism

the Germans only behaved to him as he behaved to Bentley

mind which … is empty of reflexion and stuffed with self-complacency