Friday, October 01, 2004

Quid distat inter Scottum et sottum?

I recently heard recounted the tale that Charles the Bald was in the habit of holding drinking competitions with his court philosopher John Scotus Eriugena. It is said that they would sit opposite each other and quaff until one or other yielded to intoxication. Once, the emperor asked 'What seperates a Scot from a sot?' Despite being in his cups, the philosopher quickly replied 'the table'.
One of the great things about the internet is the fact that one can check whether the reparte translates into Latin, and so it does!
Quid distat inter Scottum et sottum?
Tabula tantum!

Even better,this page actually gives a 12th century citation for the anecdote.

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