Preface, no date (1580), Thomas Erastus to the Reader (BP.Erastus.1580-03)

From Theatrum Paracelsicum
Author: Thomas Erastus
Recipient: Reader
Type: Preface
Date: no date [1580]
Place: no place
Pages: 6
Language: Latin
Quote as:
Editor: Edited by Julian Paulus
Thomas Erastus, Disputatio de putredine, Basel: Leonhard Ostein for Successors of Johannes Oporinus 1580, p. 9-10 [BP.Erastus.1580-03]
Reprinted in: BP.Erastus.1590-02
Translation: Raw translation see below
Abstract: Erastus addresses the reader, asking for an open-minded examination of his work on decay, which presents a perspective different from prevailing views. He urges readers not to dismiss his arguments without understanding them and emphasizes that truth aligns with facts, not popular opinion. Erastus believes his interpretation of Aristotle's words is genuine and consistent with both Aristotle's writings and observable facts. He challenges the reader to judge the validity of his arguments by comparing them to real-world observations. Erastus asserts that his work aligns with the views of both philosophers and physicians. He clarifies that his intention is not to overshadow others or seek undue praise but to contribute to public knowledge. Before publishing, he consulted with scholars to anticipate potential objections. (generated by Chat-GPT)
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[p. 9] Thomas Erastvs aeqvo et candido lectori S[alvtem] P[lvrimam] D[icit].

Qvod nunc abs te peto, Candide Lector, id te mihi libernter daturum esse persuasißimum habeo. De putredine uidebis nos (si modò hæc nostra inspicere libet) paulò aliter disputantes, quàm ab alijs factum est, quos mihi adhuc audire aut legere contigit. Peto igitur abs te, ne, quæ dicimus, prius damnes, quàm cognoueris: néue ob id falsa esse pronuncies, quia plerisque aliter visum est. Quin potius, vtrum rebus consentanea sint, an non sit, quæ attulimus, attendas oro. Quod si nullo præiudicio præoccupatus facies, facilius & rectius perspicies, num verba rebus, & res uerbis respondeant. Verum enim est, non quod multis aut paucis placuit, aut quod tibi aut mihi visum est, sed quod ipsis rebus congruit. Vtrum autem, quæ de hac re disputamus, in putrescentibus quotidie eueniant, te ipsum, optime Lecotr, Arbitrum & Iudicem constituimus: si modò cum verbis res ipsas comparare volueris. Ad Arist[otelem] quod attinet, nihil affirmare vereor, nos genuinam & veram verborum eius expositionem attulisse, quæ non minus cum uerbis ipsius, quàm cum ipsis rebus consentiat. Sic enim uerbis & sententijs ipsius ex omnibus eius commentarijs nostra confirmauimus, ut non habeamus necesse timere, vt diuersum aut contrarium aliquis probet. Qua- [p. 10] re si & rerum naturæ congruentem, & sententiæ Aristot[elis] conuenientem, & omnium hominum (etiam idiotarum) iudicio consentientem repereris nostram declarationem, non dubito, quin assensu tuo eandem sis probaturus, licet antehac diuersum fortè senseris. Si ad hæc omnia cum Philosophis Medicos stare, concordesq́ue per omnia esse animaduerteris, studium laborq́ue hic noter minus tibi displicebit. Nos sanè ista non disputamus, ut laude sua quenquam frustrari velimus, aut nos anteferri alijs cupiamus: sed hoc solum agimus, vt publicè pro virili nostra prosimus. Quicquid enim tum hic tum alibi facimus aut fecimus, & in posterum quoque facere cogitamus, publicæ vtilitatis causa omne facimus. Cuius rei gratia prius hæc in lucem venire nolui, quàm cum eruditis de ijsdem contulerim, vt quid contra ea adferri poßit, expiscarer. Vale.

English Raw Translation

Generated by ChatGPT-4 on 17 August 2023. Attention: This translation is a machine translation by artificial intelligence. The translation has not been checked and should not be cited without additional human verification.

Thomas Erastus wishes the fair and candid reader abundant greetings.

What I now ask of you, Candid Reader, I am most persuaded that you will willingly grant to me. Concerning decay, you will see us (if you wish to look into our work) arguing somewhat differently than others have done, whom I have so far had the chance to hear or read. Therefore, I ask of you not to condemn what we say before you understand it, nor to pronounce it false because it seems different to many others. Rather, I urge you to consider whether what we have presented is consistent with the facts or not. If you approach this without prejudice, you will more easily and correctly discern whether our words match the facts, and whether the facts match our words. For truth is not what pleases many or few, or what seems right to you or me, but what is in accordance with the facts. As for what we argue about this matter, whether it occurs daily in decaying things, we appoint you, excellent Reader, as the judge and arbiter, provided you wish to compare our words with the facts themselves. Regarding Aristotle, I am not afraid to assert that we have brought forth a genuine and true interpretation of his words, which agrees no less with his own words than with the facts themselves. For we have confirmed our views with his words and opinions from all his commentaries, so that we need not fear that someone might prove something different or contrary. Therefore, if you find our explanation to be consistent with the nature of things, in agreement with Aristotle's opinion, and in accord with the judgment of all people (even the unlearned), I do not doubt that you will approve of it, even if you might have thought differently before. If you notice that our views align with those of philosophers and physicians and that they are in harmony in all respects, then our effort and labor here will not displease you. Indeed, we do not argue these points to deprive anyone of their due praise or to place ourselves above others, but we do this solely to serve the public to the best of our ability. For everything we do, both here and elsewhere, and what we plan to do in the future, we do for the sake of public benefit. For this reason, I did not wish to bring these matters to light before discussing them with the learned, so that I could find out what objections might be raised against them. Farewell.