Wednesday, 24 October 2012

A wonderful Ruskin quotation about the English

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John Ruskin, lecturing at Oxford in 1869, said these great words:
‘There is a destiny now possible to us—the highest ever set before a nation to be accepted or refused. We are still undegenerate in race; a race mingled of the best northern blood. We are not yet dissolute in temper, but still have the firmness to govern, and the grace to obey. We have been taught a religion of pure mercy, which we must either now betray, or learn to defend by fulfilling. And we are rich in an inheritance of honour, bequeathed to us through a thousand years of noble history, which it should be our daily thirst to increase with splendid avarice, so that Englishmen, if it be a sin to covet honour, should be the most offending souls alive.’


How many of these things are true of us today? 

Certainly we are pretty dissolute, our Northern blood is much less pure and our race is never spoken about in polite society. Instead of being taught a religion of pure mercy, our children are taught comparative religion from the earliest age, along with relativism and the secular religion of human rights. We are good at governing still but do we have the grace to obey? Yes, when it comes to obeying foreigners, but not perhaps less so when it comes to following orders from those placed over us in our own country.

3 comments:

  1. I think very true. I was talking to my dad actually about a month ago about how the British really changed the world by bringing together two aspects of humanity that had never really been together before: individualism and the rule of law. Individualistic societies had existed long before the Anglosaxons, and may even have been more common in the past especially in the Middle East and Africa where many individualistic societies have actually disappeared, but they had always been slave to the more vengeful and angry ways of individualism. There had been rule of law long before the British, but always governing calcified collectivist societies with little ability to invent or grow. The British brought together the drive to grow and progress with the rule of law to not fall backwards once you do.

    "How many of these things are true of us today? Certainly we are pretty dissolute, our Northern blood is much less pure and our race is never spoken about in polite society. Instead of being taught a religion of pure mercy, our children are taught comparative religion from the earliest age, along with relativism and the secular religion of human rights. We are good at governing still but do we have the grace to obey? Yes, when it comes to obeying foreigners, but not perhaps less so when it comes to following orders from those placed over us in our own country."

    All, really, the product of self-hate.

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  2. "...the best northern blood..."

    SO WHAT?

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  3. "Wherever the Hellenic and Ionian race has been kept pure, we see men of a considerable height, broad and upright in build, well-knit, white of skin and pale; the flesh is moderately firm, the limbs straight, with graceful hands and feet. The head is of a medium size, and moves very easily; the neck is strong, the hair golden-brown and soft, gently curled; the face is rectangular, with thin lips, a straight nose, and liquid eyes: dark blue, fierce, and full of light; for of all nations the Greek has the fairest eyes."

    Adamantius Judæus, Physiognomonica, II.32

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