"The minds of men were gradually reduced to the same level, the fire of genius was extinguished. The name of Poet was almost forgotten; that of Orator was usurped by the sophists. A cloud of critics, of compilers, of commentators, darkened the face of learning, and the decline of genius was soon followed by the corruption of taste. This diminutive stature of mankind was daily sinking below the old standard."
- Edward Gibbon,
"The Decline And Fall of The Roman Empire"