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A fact from A Song to David appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page in the Did you know? column on 13 June 2008, and was viewed approximately 935 times (disclaimer)(check views). The text of the entry was as follows: "Did you know
"an attempt to bridge poetry written by humans and Biblical poetry." This is very odd, as if the Psalms, etc were not written by humans. --Wetman (talk) 19:56, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
They weren't - see Revelation. I can quote Guest directly if you would like, but 18th century Biblical theory believed that the Bible was not written by man but comes directly from God. Ottava Rima (talk) 19:59, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
I clarified the phrase with a wikilink in the text. Ottava Rima (talk) 20:03, 11 June 2008 (UTC)
In order to show how user:MSJapan's is academically inaccurate: "There is no public record explicitly connecting Christopher Smart with Freemasonry. There does exist a poem attributed to "Brother C. Smart, A.M," published in a volume called A Defence of Freemasonry, in the mid-1760s, but it is of course possible that another C. Smart was the author of that work. The most suggestive evidence is therefore a line from the definitively attributed Jubilate Agno, which was written contemporaneously with the Song: "For I am the Lord's builder and free and accepted MASON in CHRIST JESUS" (B109). At a mnimum, this line establishes that Smart had Freemasonry on his mind. A close analysis of the Song to David reveals that he was familiar with symbols from all three of the craft degrees, and undoubtedly the best source for such detailed knowledge would have been personal experience." p. 404
Rose, John. "All the Crumbling Edifices Must Come Down: Decoding Christopher Smart's Song to David." Philological Quarterly 84, 4 (Fall 2005): 403-24.
Had you bothered to read any farther than the one sentence you found to support your position, you would see that the very next sentence reads: "But there were certainly other potential sources, for example the extremely popular expose Masonry Dissected by Samuel Prichard, published in 1730. This pamphlet ran through three editions in eleven days and remained readily available in London for over a century. It was also reputed to be one of the means by which the still young practice of speculative Freemasonry became standardized in Britain and abroad. In other words, Smart would have read it whether he were a Freemason or not." (Rose 404)
My emphasis, but a pretty good reason not to take things out of context. Properly researching an article is not a matter of finding the one sentence out of 4000 that makes your point, but rather discovering through reading critically what the scholar's position on the matter is. MSJapan (talk) 02:14, 20 June 2008 (UTC)
If you noticed, he mocked the denials of it before giving enough justification that even those who denied that Smart was a Freemason could still accept the Masonic interpretation. My summary of what he stated was exactly right. Ottava Rima (talk) 02:22, 20 June 2008 (UTC)
No he didn't. You're reading too much into things; you want it to say that Smart was a Freemason, so that's what it says. Scholars don't "mock"; Rose is stating a simple possibility. The whole article is about his use of symbolism, not where he got it from. MSJapan (talk) 02:30, 20 June 2008 (UTC)
If you think that John was not mocking in that article, then you either do not understand how to read critical works, or you just don't know the guy. Fortunately, I have both on my side. The quote at the bottom, "Upon this basis alone one is justified in pursuing the question of Masonic symbolism in the Song to David" proves my assertion that the analysis was there in case people like you came along trying to claim he was otherwise, so that the discussion would not be about Smart's Masonry, but devoted to the 16 pages of analysis on Masonic imagery. Ottava Rima (talk) 02:39, 20 June 2008 (UTC)
Whether he was mocking or not, it is a violation of WP:OR to go any further than the source himself explicitly states. If you can find other sources which clearly state he was "mocking", fine, that can be put in. Otherwise, the source's words would have to be the guide here, not any individual editor's interpretation of them. John Carter (talk) 19:43, 21 June 2008 (UTC)