Thus many of Livy's inconsistencies are due to his having pieced together two versions, each of which gave a differently coloured account of the same event.
Much of Shaftesbury's career, increasingly so as it came near its close, is incapable of defence; but it has escaped most of his critics that his life up to the Restoration, apparently full of inconsistencies, was evidently guided by one leading principle, the determination to uphold the supremacy of parliament, a principle which, however obscured by self-interest, appears also to have underlain his whole political career.
It is a consistent policy of harbouring inconsistencies in the same mind.
These inconsistencies are best explained by the hypothesis that our author was drawing upon a literary fixed tradition.
That there are many inconsistencies and signs of carelessness in his work has been proved in detail by Langen.