Henry Adams cytaty

Henry Adams Fotografia
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Henry Adams

Data urodzenia: 16. Luty 1838
Data zgonu: 27. Marzec 1918
Natępne imiona: 亨利·亞當斯, Henry Brooks Adams

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Henry Brooks Adams – amerykański historyk.

Urodzony w Bostonie w jednej z najznamienitszych rodzin kraju , Henry Adams ukończył studia na Harvardzie w 1858 roku, a potem wyruszył w wielką podróż po Europie.

W 1861 roku jego ojciec Charles Francis Adams został mianowany przez Lincolna ambasadorem Stanów Zjednoczonych w Anglii i Henry Adams towarzyszył mu jako prywatny sekretarz.

W 1868 roku powrócił do USA, zamieszkał w Waszyngtonie i rozpoczął pracę dziennikarską.

W 1870 roku został mianowany profesorem historii średniowiecznej na Harvardzie, i zajmował to stanowisko do przejścia na emeryturę w 1877 roku. W latach 1889-1891 opublikował swoje główne dzieło: History of the United States , w 9 tomach.

Wydał też dwie powieści: Democracy została opublikowana anonimowo w 1880 roku i zdobyła natychmiastową popularność. Esther wyszła w 1884 roku pod pseudonimem Frances Snow Compton.

W 1885 jego żona popełniła samobójstwo, odtąd wiele podróżował.

W 1907 roku otrzymał nagrodę Pulitzera za swoją autobiografię The Education of Henry Adams.

Od 1907 roku formułował proste modele analityczne poprzez ekstrapolację szeregów czasowych, wyprzedzając modele Insensona, Hartmana, Holtona czy Putnama.

W 1912 roku po udarze serca został inwalidą. Zmarł w 1918 roku w Waszyngtonie.

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Cytaty Henry Adams

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„The economic needs of a violently centralizing society forced the empire to enlarge its slave-system until the slave-system consumed itself and the empire too, leaving society no resource but further enlargement of its religious system in order to compensate for the losses and horrors of the failure.“

—  Henry Adams
Context: p>The result might have been stated in a mathematical formula as early as the time of Archimedes, six hundred years before Rome fell. The economic needs of a violently centralizing society forced the empire to enlarge its slave-system until the slave-system consumed itself and the empire too, leaving society no resource but further enlargement of its religious system in order to compensate for the losses and horrors of the failure. For a vicious circle, its mathematical completeness approached perfection. The dynamic law of attraction and reaction needed only a Newton to fix it in algebraic form.At last, in 410, Alaric sacked Rome, and the slave-ridden, agricultural, uncommercial Western Empire — the poorer and less Christianized half — went to pieces. </p

„We do not, and never can, know the twelfth-century woman, or, for that matter, any other woman“

—  Henry Adams
Context: Eleanor and her daughter Mary and her granddaughter Blanche knew as well as Saint Bernard did, or Saint Francis, what a brute the emancipated man could be; and as though they foresaw the society of the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries, they used every terror they could invent as well as every tenderness they could invoke, to tame the beasts around them. Their charge was of manners, and to teach manners, they made a school which they called their Court of Love, with a code of law to which they gave the name of "courteous love". The decisions of this Court were recorded, like the decisions of a modern Bench, under the names of the great ladies who made them, and were enforced by the ladies of good society for whose guidance they were made. They are worth reading, and anyone who likes may read them to this day, with considerable scepticism about their genuineness. The doubt is only ignorance. We do not, and never can, know the twelfth-century woman, or, for that matter, any other woman, but we do know the literature she created; we know the art she lived in, and the religion she professed. We can collect from them some idea why the Virgin Mary ruled, and what she was taken to be, by the world which worshipped her.

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„You can read out of it whatever else pleases your youth and confidence; to me, this is all.“

—  Henry Adams
Context: p>Granted a Church, Saint Thomas's Church was the most expressive that man has made, and the great gothic Cathedrals were its most complete expression.Perhaps the best proof of it is their apparent instability. Of all the elaborate symbolism which has been suggested for the gothic Cathedral, the most vital and most perfect may be that the slender nervure, the springing motion of the broken arch, the leap downwards of the flying buttress,— the visible effort to throw off a visible strain,— never let us forget that Faith alone supports it, and that, if Faith fails, Heaven is lost. The equilibrium is visibly delicate beyond the line of safety; danger lurks in every stone. The peril of the heavy tower, of the restless vault, of the vagrant buttress; the uncertainty of logic, the inequalities of the syllogism, the irregularities of the mental mirror,— all these haunting nightmares of the Church are expressed as strongly by the gothic Cathedral as though it had been the cry of human suffering, and as no emotion had ever been expressed before or is likely to find expression again. The delight of its aspirations is flung up to the sky. The pathos of its self-distrust and anguish of doubt, is buried in the earth as its last secret. You can read out of it whatever else pleases your youth and confidence; to me, this is all.</p The closing lines of the book. In a letter to William James (17 February 1908), Adams wrote with customary self-deprecation: "If you will read my Chartres,— the last chapter is the only thing I ever wrote that I almost think good." (J. C. Levinson et al. eds., The Letters of Henry Adams, Volume VI: 1906–1918. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 1988, p. 121)

„The Church alone was universal patron“

—  Henry Adams
Context: The wood-carving, the glass windows, the sculpture, inside and out, were done mostly in workshops on the spot, but besides these fixed objects, precious works of the highest perfection filled the church treasuries. Their money-value was great then; it is greater now. No world's-fair is likely to do better today. After five hundred years of spoliation, these objects fill museums still, and are bought with avidity at every auction [.... ] Royalty and feudality spent their money rather on arms and clothes. The Church alone was universal patron, and the Virgin was the dictator of taste.

„That, two thousand years after Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar, a man like Grant should be called — and should actually and truly be — the highest product of the most advanced evolution, made evolution ludicrous. One must be as commonplace as Grant's own commonplaces to maintain such an absurdity. The progress of evolution from President Washington to President Grant, was alone evidence enough to upset Darwin.“

—  Henry Adams
Context: What worried Adams was not the commonplace; it was, as usual, his own education. Grant fretted and irritated him, like the Terebratula, as a defiance of first principles. He had no right to exist. He should have been extinct for ages. The idea that, as society grew older, it grew one-sided, upset evolution, and made of education a fraud. That, two thousand years after Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar, a man like Grant should be called — and should actually and truly be — the highest product of the most advanced evolution, made evolution ludicrous. One must be as commonplace as Grant's own commonplaces to maintain such an absurdity. The progress of evolution from President Washington to President Grant, was alone evidence enough to upset Darwin.

„Their claim led to singular but unavoidable conclusions, with which society has struggled for seven hundred years, and is still struggling.“

—  Henry Adams
Context: p>Where, then,— in what mysterious cave outside of creation — could Man, and his free-will, and his private world of responsibilities and duties, lie hidden? Unless Man was a free agent in a world of his own beyond constraint, the Church was a fraud, and it helped little to add that the State was another. If God was the sole and immediate cause and support of everything in his creation, God was also the cause of its defects, and could not,— being Justice and Goodness in essence,—hold Man responsible for his own omissions. Still less could the State or Church do it in his name.Whatever truth lies in the charge that the schools discussed futile questions by faulty methods, one cannot decently deny that in this case the question was practical and the method vital. Theist or atheist, monist or anarchist must all admit that society and science are equally interested with theology in deciding whether the Universe is one or many, a harmony or a discord. The Church and State asserted that it was a harmony, and that they were its representatives. They say so still. Their claim led to singular but unavoidable conclusions, with which society has struggled for seven hundred years, and is still struggling.</p

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„Power when wielded by abnormal energy is the most serious of facts“

—  Henry Adams
Context: Power when wielded by abnormal energy is the most serious of facts, and all Roosevelt's friends know that his restless and combative energy was more than abnormal.

„Friendship needs a certain parallelism of life, a community of thought, a rivalry of aim.“

—  Henry Adams
Context: One friend in a lifetime is much; two are many; three are hardly possible. Friendship needs a certain parallelism of life, a community of thought, a rivalry of aim.

„We never despised the world or its opinions, we only failed to find out its existence.“

—  Henry Adams
Context: We never despised the world or its opinions, we only failed to find out its existence. The world, if it exists, feels exactly in the same way towards us, and cares not one straw whether we exist or not. Philosophy has never got beyond this point. There are but two schools: one turns the world onto me; the other turns me onto the world; and the result is the same. The so-called me is a very, very small and foolish puppy-dog, but it is all that exists, and it tries all its life to get a little bigger by enlarging its energies, and getting dollars or getting friends. Letter to Elizabeth Cameron (13 May 1905), in Worthington C. Ford ed., Letters of Henry Adams, Volume 2: 1892–1918 (Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1938), p. 451

„Any schoolboy could see that man as a force must be measured by motion, from a fixed point.“

—  Henry Adams
Context: Any schoolboy could see that man as a force must be measured by motion, from a fixed point. Psychology helped here by suggesting a unit — the point of history when man held the highest idea of himself as a unit in a unified universe. Eight or ten years of study had led Adams to think he might use the century 1150-1250, expressed in Amiens Cathedral and the Works of Thomas Aquinas, as the unit from which he might measure motion down to his own time, without assuming anything as true or untrue, except relation. The movement might be studied at once in philosophy and mechanics. Setting himself to the task, he began a volume which he mentally knew as "Mont-Saint-Michel and Chartres: a Study of Thirteenth-Century Unity." From that point he proposed to fix a position for himself, which he could label: "The Education of Henry Adams: a Study of Twentieth-Century Multiplicity." With the help of these two points of relation, he hoped to project his lines forward and backward indefinitely, subject to correction from any one who should know better. Thereupon, he sailed for home. On the genesis of two of his historical and autobiographical works.

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