Nietzsche’s comment in II.102, that “philology presupposes a noble faith,” prompts me to wonder what would happen in a culture (Nietzsche’s or our own) in which that noble faith is dying?

What sustains our confidence that “there is no lack of those rare human beings… who really know how to use such valuable books,” those good readers “who always ‘will come’ but are never there”?

I am edging toward some notion of hope, as a precondition for philology, and for civilized culture in general.