Talk:Samuel Wilberforce

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Vanity Fair Huxley?[edit]

The caricature represented in the article as "A cartoon image representing Wilberforce during the Huxley-Wilberforce debate that was published in Vanity Fair" is almost certainly a caricature not of Wilberforce, but of Huxley: compare the face of the caricature to the photograph of Thomas Huxley on the Wikipedia page for Huxley. Thet resemblance is close. The humor of the drawing apparently depended on dressing up Huxley in the robes of his opponent, Bishop Wilberforce.

Someone with access to the original drawing in context, or with other definite historical knowledge of this question, should review this point. If the caricature does depict Huxley, not Wilberforce, then it should be removed from the Wilberforce page. -- —Preceding unsigned comment added by Larry Gilman (talkcontribs) 13 July 2007

Do an image search for Samuel Wilberforce or Wilberforce Vanity and you'll see this image is identified as Wilberforce in several places, including the UK National Portrait Gallery. You'll also find other Wilberforce images which better resemble the cartoon, which exaggerates his jowls and hair style. Similar searches find a different Huxley caricature from Vanity Fair. -- SEWilco (talk) 05:47, 27 December 2007 (UTC)


Ape or Monkey?[edit]

In this article it is said that Wilberforce questions wether Huxley's mother or father was descended from a monkey. However in the Wiki article the word Ape is used rather than Monkey. someone needs to find out wether it is an Ape or Monkey. Persiancowboy 23:34, 16 June 2008 (UTC)

Interesting question, that is hard to find the answer of, but Google inclines slightly towards "ape":
Google: "Samuel Wilberforce" "descent from an ape" grandfather ~ c:a 1,640 as of 11:06, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Google: "Samuel Wilberforce" "descent from a monkey" grandfather ~ c:a 789 as of 11:06, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Personally I would prefer ape for my grandfather and grandmother, although Spider monkeys are generally cool. ... said: Rursus (bork²) 11:06, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Link philosophy?[edit]

This is a non-rhetorical thought. This text:

Bishop's manner was "unctuous, oleaginous, saponaceous".

Now observe the link: it links to a chemical process producing soap... Now, does such a link add to the sentence? No! (?) Preferrably a link to metaphorical usage of the words "oleaginous" and "saponaceous" would be advantageous, but probably such articles don't exist... Instead maybe links to Wiktionary, that actually may describe such usages of these words? ... said: Rursus (bork²) 10:00, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

The link does at least explain wehre the soapiness of "Soapy Sam" comes from. Perhaps the link should be to wiktionary, rather than the Wikipedia article. Unctuous and oleaginous are it least, if not in day-to-day usage, the sort of word you might come across over in a (decent) newspaper, saponaceous is far rarer, and seems to need some sort of explanantion. David Underdown (talk) 11:46, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Hmmm ... yes for unctuous and oleaginous, but if soapy/saponaceous is to refer to an item whose qualities (metaphorically) is similar to bishop Sam, then a straight link to soap is to be preferred to saponification, since I believe the essential metaphoric quality is a. slippery, not hydrolysis of an ester, where the manual grip is compared to kind of a "verbal grip" (by argumentation), meaning that it was hard to get such a verbal grip because of the bishop having the same qualities as a verbal piece of soap? Otherwise maybe a Wiktionary link? Other opinions? ... said: Rursus (bork²) 15:36, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
It's a great quote, but I've understood that the nickname was in currency before that. As one website says, because of the bishop's "slipperiness in ecclesiastical arguments".... I'd definitely keep the quotation, but link it to soap instead. Agendum (talk) 15:51, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
I agree to keeping it!! Even if I liked the guy, which I don't – being a Lutheran Evolutionist – the nickname "Soapy Sam" should be kept, because someone called him that. The question is whether "saponaceous" should be linked to soap, to saponification, or to Wiktionary:saponaceous. ... said: Rursus (bork²) 16:08, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
The wiktionary link may be best, though there is a school of thought that says you shouldn't link in verbatim quotes, though we could always do something like "...saponaceous [that is soapy]" David Underdown (talk) 16:19, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
I'm inclined to agree. I'll just take a look at policies and similar discussions. The one main objection should be the risk of having links from every word to the wiktionary. Not maybe a case as regarding "saponaceous", but the reader is expected to be fairly proficient in English. ... I think. ... said: Rursus (bork²) 17:13, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Wikipedia:Linking#What generally should be linked explains to us that linking is relevant for "saponaceous" (which I believe none will object to) if it is a rare word, and since it is not in my English-Swedish dictionary, we may safely assume so, and Wiktionary is a quite acceptable source according to same policy. I'll implement it in a minute! ... said: Rursus (bork²) 17:47, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Darwin on the Slippery grounds[edit]

I went looking for things I had read in Omni magazine about Soapy Sam. One, that he was called 'Slippery Sam' in the US. Also an account of what transpired between Darwin and Wilberforce that gave dignity to them both, which showed Sam's comments on Darwin's theories as being received with a measured and even appreciative tone, Darwin noting that Samuel had pointed out the very parts of Darwin's theory that Darwin himself had felt most weak.
Instead I found this: Upon hearing the news that Wilberforce had died after sustaining a head injury falling from a horse, Huxley acerbically responded that at last the bishop’s brain had come into contact with reality.
Oh well. Anarchangel (talk) 17:32, 6 September 2009 (UTC)