Misquotation is, in fact, the pride and privilege of the learned. A widely- read man never quotes accurately, for the rather obvious reason that he has read too widely.
Hmm, I had to read this a few times for it to sink in...I guess I am more tired than I thought.
I see what this is saying, that being widely read with all of the knowledge in their head it is easy to misquote, but I don't really agree that a widely read person has a privilege to do such a thing. To me a learned person knows the quotes inside and out and it is not their privilege to misquote, to me it is an obligation to properly quote someone if you are going to the trouble to quote them at all. Just because a person is widely read does not give them license to get something wrong or inaccurate. Misquoting something can completely change the meaning of the quote in the first place.