Letter to the Editor

Nothing without Christianity

Sir: Simon Haines, writing about Western civilisation (November 2017) exhibits what many would regard as a fundamental error of historical perspective. The subject itself is inherently historical—Western civilisation cannot be defined except in the light of its history—and so demands an optically accurate lens to view it through. The lens being offered is that of the classics. Haines traces the foundations of Western civilisation back to Homer, Pericles, Justinian and Virgil. This is the perspective of the old nineteenth-century classicist. It is part of an enterprise that seeks to track Western civilisation from ancient times through the Renaissance and the…

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