Page:EB1911 - Volume 22.djvu/123

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109
PoRT—PoRTADowN

Among his most intimate friends was Perry, the editor of the Morning Chronicle; and this friendship was cemented by his marriage with Perry's sister, Mrs Lunan, in November 1796. The marriage was a happy one for the short time it lasted, as Porson became more attentive to times and seasons, and would have been weaned from his habits of drinking; but she sank in a decline a few months after her marriage (April 12, 1797), and he returned to his chambers in the Temple and his old habits. Perry's friendship was of great value to him in many ways; but it induced him to spend too much of his time in writing for the Morning Chronicle; indeed he was even accused of “ giving up to Perry what was meant for mankind, ” and the existence of some of the papers he wrote there can be only deplored. For some months before his death he had appeared to be failing: his memory was not what it had been, and he had some symptoms of intermittent fever; but on the 19th of September 1808 he was seized in the street with a fit of apoplexy, and after partially recovering sank in the 25th of that month at the age of forty-nine. He was buried in Trinity College, close to the statue of Newton, at the opposite end of the chapel to where rest the remains of Bentley.

In learning Porson was superior to Valckenaer, in accuracy to Bentley. It must be remembered that in his day the science of comparative philology had scarcely any existence; even the comparative value of MSS. was scarcely considered in editing an ancient author. With many editors MSS. were treated as of much the same value, whether they were really from the hand of a. trustworthy scribe, or what Bentley calls “ scrub manuscripts, " or “ scoundrel copies.” Thus, if we are to End fault with Porson's way of editing, it is that he does not make sufficient difference between the MSS. he uses, or point out the relative value of the early copies whether in MS. or print. Thus he collates minutely Lascaris's edition of the Medea, mentioning even misprints in the text, rather from its rarity and costliness than from its intrinsic value. And his wonderful quickness at emendation has sometimes led him into error, which greater investigation into MSS. would have avoided; thus, in his note on Eur., Phoem. 1373 an error, perhaps a misprint (re for pe), in the first edition of the scholiast on Sophocles has led him into an emendation of v. 339 of the Trachiniae which clearly will not stand. But his most brilliant emendations, such as some of those on Athenaeus, on the Supplices of Aeschylus, or, to take one single instance, that on Eur. Helen. 751 (ob5' "E)¢vos for cnléév ye; see Maltby's Thesaurus, p. 299), are such as convince the reader of their absolute certainty; and this power was possessed by Porson to a degree no one else has ever attained. N0 doubt his mathematical training had something to do with this; frequently the process may be seen by which the truth has been reached.

A few words are called for on his general character. No one ever more loved truth for its own sake; few have sacrificed more rather than violate their consciences, and this at a time when a high standard in this respect was not common. In spite of his failings, few have had warmer friends; no one more willingly communicated his knowledge and gave help to others; scarcely a book appeared in his time or for some years after his death on the subjects to which he devoted his life without acknowledging assistance from him. And, if it be remembered that his life was a continued struggle against poverty and slight and ill-health, rather than complain that he did little, we should wonder how he accomplished so much.

His library was divided into two parts, one of which was sold by auction; the other, containing the transcript of the Gale Photius, his books with MS. notes, and some letters from foreign scholars, was bought by Trinity College for 1000 guineas. His notebooks were found to contain, in the words of Bishop Blomfield, “ a rich treasure of criticism in every branch of classical literature-everything carefully and correctly written and sometimes rewritten quite fit to meet the public eye, without any diminution or addition." They have been carefully rearranged, and illustrate among other things his extraordinary penmanship and power of minute and accurate writing. Much remains unpublished. J. H. Monk, his successor as Greek professor, and C. J. Blomfield (both afterwards bishops) edited the Adversaria, consisting of the notes on Athenaeus and the Greek poets, and his pr election on Euripides; P. P. Dobree, afterwards Greek professor, the notes on Aristophanes and the lexicon of Photius. Besides these, from other sources, Professor T. Gaisford edited his notes on Pausanias and Suidas, and Mr Kidd collected his scattered reviews. And, when Bishop Burgess attacked his literary character on the score of his Letters to Travis, Professor Turton (afterwards Bishop of Ely) came forward with a vindication. The chief sources for Porson's life will be found in the memoirs in the Gentlemanly Magazine for September and October 1808, and other periodicals of the time (mostly reprinted in Barker's Porsoniana, London, 1852); Dr Young's memoir in former editions of the Ency. Brit. (reprinted ibid. and in his works); Weston's (utterly worthless) Short Account of the late Mr Richard Porson (London, 1808; reissued with a new preface and title-page in ISI4); Dr C1arke's narrative of his last illness and death (London, 1808; reprinted in the Classical Journal); Kidd's, “ Imperfect Outline of the Life of R.P., ” prehxed to his collection of the Tracts and Criticisms; Beloe's Sexagenarian (not trustworthy), vol. i. (London, 1817); Barker's Parriana, vol. ii. (London, 1829); Maltby's “Porsoniana," published by Dyce in the volume of Recollections of the Table-Talk of Samuel Rogers (London, 1856); a life in the Cambridge Essays for 1857 by H. R. Luard; and a lengthy life by ]. S. Watson (London, 1861). See also R. C. Iebb in Dict. Nat. Biog., and J. E. Sandys, History of Classical Scholarship, ii. 424-430 (with copy of portrait by Hoppner; 1908).

The dates of Porson's published works are as follows: Notae in Xenophontis anabasin (1786); Appendix to Toup (1790); Letters to Travis (1790); Aeschylus (1795, 1806); Euripides (1797-1802); collation of the Harleian MS. of the Odyssey (1801); Adversaria (Monk and Blomfield, 1812); Tracts and Criticisrns (Kidd, 1815); Aristophanica (Dobree, 1820); Notae in Pausaniarn (Gaisford, 1820); Photii lexicon (Dobree, 1822); Notae in Suidam (Gaisford, 1834); Correspondence (Luard, edited for the Cambridge Antiquarian Society, 1867). Dr. Turton's vindication appeared in 1827.


PORT. (1) (From the Lat. portus, harbour), a place to which ships may resort for the unloading or taking in of cargo, or for shelter, a harbour, also a town possessing such a harbour, a “ seaport, ” or “seaport town, ” especially one where customhouse officers are stationed. As the name of a dark red Portuguese wine, the word is a shortened form of Oporto, i.e. the port, the chief centre of the wine-shipping trade of Portugal (see WINE). (2) (Through the Fr. porte, from Lat. porta, gate), an entrance or opening, not often used in the- sense of gate, except in such compounds as “ sally port, ” cf. “portcullis, ” and in the derivative “ porter, ” a keeper of adoor or gate, especially of a public building, hotel, college, &c. The most general use of the word is for an opening for the admission of light and air in a ship's side, and formerly in ships of war for an embrasure for cannon, a “ port-hole.” For the application of the word to the left side of a ship, taking the place of the earlier “ larboard, ” and its disputed origin, see STARBOARD AND LARBOARD. (3) (Through the Fr. porter, from Lat. portare, to carry, bear), properly outward bearing or deportment, whence “ portly, ” originally of dignified or majestic bearing, now chiefly used in the sense of stout or corpulent. The verb “ to port ” is only used as a military term “ to port arms, ” i.e. to hold the rifle across and close to the body, the barrel being placed opposite to the left shoulder. Derivatives are “ port-fire ” (Fr. parte-feu), a fuse for firing rockets, &c., and formerly for the discharge of artillery, and “ porter, ” i.e. one who carries a burden, particularly a servant of a railway company, hotel, &c., who carries passengers' luggage to and from a station, &c. The term “ porter ” has been applied, since the 18th century, to a particular form of beer, dark brown or almost black in colour (see BEER and BREWING). The finer kinds of this beer are generally now known as “ stout.” The name is almost certainly due to the fact that it was from the first a favourite drink among the London “ porters, ” the street carriers of goods, luggage, &c., and in early uses the drink is called porter's ale, porter's beer, or porter-beer.


PORT ADELAIDE, a port of Adelaide county, South Australia, 7% ni. by rail N.W. of Adelaide. Pop. of the town and suburbs (1901), 2o, o89. It is situated on an estuary 9 m. from St Vincent Gulf and is the principal shipping port of South Australia. Its wharves, equipped with steam and travelling cranes, and tramways, are 2% m. in extent; it has docks and a. number of patent slips capable of taking up vessels of 300 to 1500 tons. There are also piers at Semaphore and Larg's Bay, on the other side of Lefevre's Peninsula some 2 m. distant, which are- connected with Port Adelaide by rail. The industries comprise silver and copper smelting, brewing, saw milling, rope making, flour milling, sugar-refining and yacht-building. The harbour is protected by two forts known as the Fort Glanville batteries. The suburbs, which are connected with the town by tramways, are Alberton, Queenstown, Yatala, Rosewater and Kingston-on-the-Hill.


PORTADOWN, a market town of county Armagh, Ireland, on the river Bann and the Great Northern railwa 2 ln. Y, S W.S.W. of Belfast. Pop. (1901), 10,0Q2. It is a junction of