Excerpt from The Collected Writings of Thomas De Quincey The volume continues the series of De Quincey's papers specially entitled to the name of Historical Essays and Researches. The difference from the last volume is that, while in the papers placed first in this volume we are still in what is called Ancient History, we shoot suddenly in the others into Modern History, and chiefly into Recent Modern History. Eight of the nine papers are from Blackwood's Magazine; and the dates, &c., are appended to the papers individually. One is from Tait's Magazine. In The Casuistry of Roman Meals De Quincey propounds, and maintains most amusingly, a discovery or paradox of his own, to the effect that there was recognised meal in the Roman day corresponding to our modern breakfast, but only a hasty morning munch of a bit of bread or a few raisins by the side of a wall or anywhere else in the open air, and that this uncomfortable habit, or defect of habit, might be traced into important consequences and ramifications through Roman social life. In The Pagan Oracles he set himself to combat the poetical tradition, so memorably enshrined in a passage in Rabelais, and also in Milton's Ode on the Nativity, - to neither of which, however, does he specially refer, - that at the coming of Christ the Pagan Oracles suddenly ceased, their gods and all their machinery of priests and priestesses having been struck dumb at once by the advent of the real and supreme Divinity. About the Publisher Forgotten Books publishes hundreds of thousands of rare and classic books. Find more at www.forgottenbooks.com This book is a reproduction of an important historical work. Forgotten Books uses state-of-the-art techlogy to digitally reconstruct the work, preserving the original format whilst repairing imperfections present in the aged copy. In rare cases, an imperfection in the original, such as a blemish or missing page, may be replicated in our edition. We do, however, repair the vast majority of imperfections successfully; any imperfections that remain are intentionally left to preserve the state of such historical works.