Here is yet another of my favourite quotes from Mattheson’s Der vollkommene Capellmeister:
“Others, who think they know much more about [The Origin of Song] and who maintain no small reputation to this day, seem yet more wrong to me than the previous ones: since they, with Lucretious as their leader, made the unthinking bird the inventor of divine music. Hence, one of these may write that the first inventors of vocal music had been monkeys, because they aped this art from birds; in this however, in my opinion, the good man really acts quite apish. For anyone who has nothing sensible to say has no cause to abuse.”
Hehe, I can just imagine the conversations Mattheson and Darwin would have had if they’d ever met.