The theories of periodicity, of rhythm, of cycles in history, of recurrent types, morphological stages, or dialectical steps, the notions of historic destiny, continuous progress, or inevitable decline are all variants upon the same philosophical mysticism, the belief that the course of history can be schematized and constructed. The proposition that art history should disregard names is based on the assumption that artistic aims and stylistic trends are altogether the product of an epoch. The employment of the sociological method in the history of art does not necessarily presuppose this extreme form of historical materialism. However, we must allow that in history “freedom” and “necessity” are not simple alternatives that can be readily separated. The greatest danger for art history, and one to which it has been constantly exposed ever since Riegl’s historicism laid the foundation of its modern methodology, is that it should become a mere history of forms and problems.