PAST AGES WERE FULL OF IDIOTS.

It used to be considered of poor literary quality, but a mass of recent writing (most notably in the Budé edition and commentary on the poem in 18 volumes) has demonstrated that it shows consummate literary skill, even if its distinctly baroque extravagance is for a modern reader a taste that has to be acquired.”

This is from the Wikipedia article on Nonnus of Panopolis, referring to his Dionysiaca, the longest epic surviving from antiquity. It is typical of the use of the word demonstrated in current academic writing about literature, a use that implies “case closed, no further argument necessary, objectively correct conclusion reached.” Past ages incorrectly assessed the literary quality of this work, but our own age has demolished their aesthetic judgment with science.

All right, but…

If you ask Dr. Boli to decide whose critical judgment is more likely to be objectively correct—a classicist of the nineteenth century whose taste may be a bit conventional, or a classicist of the twenty-first century who believes that consummate literary skill can be demonstrated like a proof from Apollonius—you will not be at all surprised by his decision.