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I set not with the hope of becoming personally acquainted with them or even with the object of interviewing them. Since they might die at any moment. The traveler can get their altitude from but Baedeker and their appearance from photographs. [vii] sufficient . but chiefly to satisfy myself that they really existed. I determined not to delay longer. and then out to see them . So I prepared a list of twelve men who seemed to me most worth knowing.PREFACE A FEW years living self ago it occurred to me that there were some on the same planet and at the same time as myinteresting people whom I had never seen and did not or I know so much about as I should. One does not go to Switzerland to find out how high the Alps are or how they look. if he is to talk about them with any sense of self-confidence he must have come within It is hailing distance of the mountains themselves.

seemed to me to have a definite philosophy of life. my part is merely to act as the host at a reception who introduces his guests and then leaves them to follow up such acquaintanceMy aim is exposition ships as seem profitable. philosopher. rather than criticism. Elie Metchnikoff. Henri Poincare. those who had a message for their own times of sufficient importance and distinctiveness to merit It is public attention. it Although I have not thought necessary absolutely to suppress I trust this has not prevented my own opinions. The men I selected for study were those who. viii ] Ernst Haeckel." In a word. Wilhelm [ Ostwald. Henri Bergson. . whether they called themselves philosophers or not. so that a reader who had not had sketches to the opportunity to range over the complete works of a dozen authors might find which of them was best adapted to serve him as "guide. my purpose in these show the trend and importance of these diverse theories. and friend. me from giving a fair and sufficiently sympathetic presentation of each man's views in turn. "Twelve Major Prophets of ToMaurice day" consisted of the following names list My of the : Maeterlinck.PREFACE to say that I got close enough to the Alps I had chosen to be able to vouch for their actuality.

Gilbert Keith Chesterton. authors of novels.PREFACE George Bernard Shaw. but found that had chosen four from England. SLOSSON fix] . Four of the of science. F. dramas. C. one of these twelve were professors of philosophy four were men a mathematician. Russia. and Rudolf Eucken. two from France. or sketches The twelve appeared in Independent during the last few years. . John Dewey. Herbert George Wells. EDWIN E. Schiller. and four The were men of essays. one a physician. three from Germany. but they have been considerably extended for book publication. and the United States of America. letters. S. I had I not taken I nationality into consideration. one a chemist . The first six named above were published in the volume "Major Prophets of To-day. one a zoologist." The other six are given in the following pages. and one each from Belgium.


... .... S. G.... SCHILLER V VI JOHN DEWEY RUDOLF EUCKEN . ... K.129 . .. . WELLS G..CONTENTS CHAPTER PREFACE I GEORGE BERNARD SHAW .. .. CHESTERTON F. . ... ...190 234 276 xi] . .. .. . . 56 III IV C. ... PACK vii I II H.


... S.. Frontispiece Page 98 G. . C. "174 "196 " 252 John Dewey Rudolf Eucken . G. Wells . K.." 290 xiii] . Chesterton F. .. .LIST OF PORTRAITS George Bernard Shaw H. .... Schiller . .

way of doing it. SHAW. G. . is to undertake to tell the public what a writer has already told them himTo write a book about a is about himself who has written books an impertinence which only an irresistThe unpardonable ible charm of manner can carry off. and the commonest. B. and tell it worse or tell it wrong.

commerce. but I never study any period but the present. S. was broken that point ? to be taken in the up again. cuts time in two The continuity of human progress in letters.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS CHAPTER I GEORGE BERNARD SHAW DRAMATIC CRITIC OF LIFE I out of am a journalist. off at philosophy. and as a dramatist I have no clue to any historical or other personage save that part of him which is also myself. I deal with all periods.. G. B. arts. everything. like a knife. proud of it." that nothing that literature. Everything seen . deliberately cutting my works all that is not journalism. . convinced is not journalism will live long as be of any use whilst it does live. science. 1914. in "The Sanity of Art. or . reis who knows when Nothing [I] world can main quite the same as before. The man who writes about himself and his own time is the only man who writes about all people and about all time. . AUGUST 4.

SIX in a MAJOR PROPHETS All our old ideas. It will have to be revised and the histories rewritten. are The true prophets becoming distinguishable from the false. which Nietzsche looked for. has come to pass sooner than he expected. as mountains seem from a departing train to rearrange themselves according to their true height.. even the new light. invisible date or P. just as after an earthquake one overhauls the china closet. B. be mark them A. all "The values". It will. for they will in- by their style of thought and language bear an delible line of though with reference to this demarcation. Among those who have taken the test and stand . are already beginning to look back We upon the antebellum days as a closed period. however. and those who were conspicuous in it are being seen in an historical perspective such as the lapse of a generation of or- dinary times is needed to produce. Some reputa- tions are shrinking. most ancient and most reverenced. others are rising. will have to be taken out and looked over to see how many of them remain transvaluation of intact and useful. but all books will be classified as antebellum or not postbellum necessary to literature. B. although the results of this reestimation are is not likely to be what not merely that the geographies he anticipated.

GEORGE BERNARD SHAW higher than before is George Bernard Shaw. Whether he will write better plays than before remains to be seen. Few of the writers have as little to take back on account war as Shaw. finds it The philosophy of this. who impossible to keep to his Christian principle of nonresistance arena. although few have expressed decided such opinions in such extreme language on " so many topics. Perhaps he will write no more of any kind. and advice which the world ignored would better have been heeded. Warnings which the world took of their fantastic guise for jokes because now turn out too terribly real. farce of "Androcles first of Shaw's fable is and the Lion" now for the time being realized. whereas before we feared lest we might be merely fascinated by their glitter. is summed up by Ferrovius. For instance. his most frivolous and serious play. But those he has written will be regarded with more respect because we can see their essential truth. The natural man rises in when brought into the him and he slays [3] . a converted giant of the Ursus type. Kipling's The Bear that Walks Like a Man" makes queer readto give Russia to prevent her ing now that England is fighting what then she was ready to fight But the full significance getting.

. His speeches. yet he was never so disliked which is saying a great deal. He will come when Mars and I are dust. once so sought after by the most dignified journals. are not reported or even announced. The Christian God is not yet. More countrymen agree with what he used to preach to them than ever before. the god of war. Shaw's opinions one but all England is changed. The to-day British press has boycotted him. The great cataclysm does not seem to have changed iota. turned from him to serve the Christian God but to-day the Christian God forsook me. London tells mine just back from me that he saw chalked on the sidefriend of A [4] . Caesar. of his and so he appears in a different light. saying : In my youth I worshiped Mars. who thereupon offers him a post in the Pretorian Guards which he had formerly refused. His letters. not the God that will be. and Mars overcame me and took back his own. now as he is no longer appear except in The New Statesman. The I fallen and victorious Ferrovius accepts. Consequently those who wish to hear him have to resort to the advertising expedients of the era before printing. be they never so witty and timely. but meanwhile I must serve the gods that are. Until then I accept service in the Guard.SIX six MAJOR PROPHETS single-handed. gladiators This delights the emperor.

dead and done for. he found it packed with an enthusiastic crowd gathered to hear Shaw discuss the questions of the day. He would be "in the right with two or three". lowers increased in fact. his tender heart yearns (5\ . boycotted. Going there. weekly meetings The audience Shaw is at his invitation asked him many questions. he was. Reporters who were sent to see him hounded off the platform witnessed an ovation instead. not only that Shaw would rather be right than Prime Minister. thrives disapproval. addressing in one of the largest halls in London. but not of a hostile character. disgraced. repudiated. When Shaw sees a lonely mistreated kitten or a lonely mistreated theory. The anti-Shavian press said that he had to keep to his house. that he was afraid to stir abroad for fear of a mob. if his fol- much beyond feel the poet's minimum. he would rather be leader of the Opposition than Prime Minister. as when we were reading things like we since have learned.walk a notice of a meeting to be addressed by Shaw in some out-of-the-way hall. that his career was over. that he was exploded. At the very time this. which on unpopularity or at least on public is not quite the same It thing. he would begin to uneasy and suspect that he was wrong.

he has dared to commend the Puritans. This injected with some vigor into the veins of may thought may not effect a cure. and the "Dramatic Opinions and Essays". It is no wonder Shaw is England.SIX over it. His oppo- [6] . and. practically alone among modern radicals and art lovers. pedantry." than to "I told you Nothing irritating say and does so". seeing that there is his habit of another side to a question and calling attention to it at inconvenient times that makes him so irritating to the public. and now when a young reader opens for the first time "The Quintessence of Ibsenism". appeared their The iconoclastic views which in he expressed as dramatic and musical critic the nineties have been vindicated by events. he wonders only why Shaw should get so excited about such conventional and undisputed things. but always excites It is a feverish state in the organism. and he can say it oftener than is "the most hated man in more anybody else. collection of "The Perfect Wagnerite". Shaw's brain secretes automatically the particular antitoxin needed to counteract whatever disease be epidemic in the community at the time. MAJOR PROPHETS all For instance. unless it is Doctor Dillon. when he as his set started sneering at "natural rights" as eighteenth-century champion.

In that pamphlet he presented the case for to the in the way much more convincing American mind than many that came to us the Allies in a early days of the war. and so he did not rest his case on the specious and patriotic pleas that passed muster at that time with the British public. while others advanced at that time have been weakened. but might have been certainly was sensible." But this is almost the only thing produced in England during the of the its weeks it war that reads replies well now. that a letter written may best be met by quoting from by him to a friend in Vienna early in 1915. it Doubtless called was not tactful. is The language been trans- evidently not pure Shavian. Shaw was arguing before a neutral and international jury. and his arguments have been strengthened by the course of events. It has [7] . "Commonfirst War. That was because he had thought out things in advance and so did not have to make up his mind in a hurry with the great probability of making it up wrong. Shaw kept his head level when others lost theirs. see Compare with numerous it and which seems absurd. As for the charge of pro-Germanism. it treasonable.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW nents tried to intern him in Coventry as a pro- German on account sense about the of his pamphlet.

The Germans would not respect me. I am not what is called a proGerman. 1914. not to stand by my people. Every. were such a time as this.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS and thence retranslated lated into Austrian-German into British journalese. As regards myself. when all thoughts of culture have vanished. But The war brings us also. Militarism has just now compelled me to pay a thousand pounds war taxation in order that some "brave little Servian" may be facilitated in cutting your throat or. But he has never been opposed to preparedness or to the use of force. It is good to have a giant's strength and it is not at all tyrannous to use it like a giant provided you are a decent sort of giant. London coster can stick his bayonet deeper into the stomach of Richard Strauss than Richard Strauss would care to do to him. or to buy some beautiful picture in Vienna for our National Gallery. I am not an anti-German. I at Shaw has always condemned of the type of militarism because mind it engenders in officers and men. although I would gladly pay twice that sum to save your life. that a Russian mujik may cleave your skull in twain. note the date. In the London Daily News of January I I. all on to the same plane of savagery. What on earth is strength for but to be used and will any reasonable man tell me that we are using our strength now to any purpose ? like courage civilians) [8] . he said : (like most constitutionally timid and the active use of strength for the salvation of the world.

If we are asked how we are to decide which nation that the herself is really the aggressor we can reply that we shall take our choice. but that we will take a hand in the war anyhow. On [9] . seven months before the storm burst. or when the problem is unsolvable we shall toss up. but as we now know from the White Paper this same opinion was held by the governments of both France and Russia. Of course Shaw may have been wrong in supposing that an open announcement of Great Britain's determination to enter the war would have deterred Germany. Have like.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW Let us get the value of our money in strength and influence instead of casting every new cannon in an ecstasy of terror and then being afraid to aim it at anybody. he not only anticipated the war. as much character-building civil war as you but there must be no sowing of dragon's teeth like the Franco-Prussian War. but said that it might be averted. International warfare is an unmitigated nuisance. At that time. By politely announcing that war between France and Germany would be so inconvenient to England latter country is prepared to pledge to defend either country if attacked by the other. England can put a stop to such a crime single-handed easily enough if she can keep her knees from knocking together in her present militarist fashion.

for Germany would at once modify her attitude. there would be no war.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS July 30 the President of France said to the British Ambassador at Paris that His Majesty's Government announced that England would come to the aid of France in the event of a conflict between France and Germany as a result of the present differences between Austria and Servia. but her attitude was decided by ours. the Russian Foreign Minister. own country before the to increase it. and we would in the end be dragged into war. If And on grad that July 25. that gives the same advice to the United States that he gave to his is. its armament and not be afraid to use In a recent letter to the American Intercollegiate Socialist he said : I should strenuously recommend the United States to build thirty-two new dreadnoughts instead of sixteen. If we took our stand firmly with France and Russia. and to spend two billion dollars on its armament program instead of one. rivers of blood would flow. a good deal of it having been in the past scattered over the continental [10] . M. Sazonof. If we failed her now. This would cost only a fraction of the money you are wasting every year in demoralizing luxury. there would be no war. Shaw now war. said to the British Ambassador at Petro- He did not believe that Germany really wanted war.

" play that is expounded the theory on which President Wilson based his policy." "What on earth is the true faith of an Armorer?" he answers: To for give arms to all men who offer an honest price them. the munition-maker." replies: But Undershaft. it will need a very big club for the purpose. that is. or And when you don't come in here. with Zeppelins on the same scale. without respect of persons or principles. In] .GEORGE BERNARD SHAW countries which are now using what they saved out of it to slaughter one another. In "Major Barbara" Cusins abandons the teach- ing of Greek to take up the manufacture of munitions because he has the courage "to make war on war. You must keep the Cusins asks: true faith of an Armorer. and refuse them to foreigners and criminals. until the nations see the suicidal folly of staking everything in the last instance on the ordeal of battle. to undertake the policing of the world. none of that. If the United States wishes to stop war as an institution. were an American statesman I should tell the country flatly that it should maintain a Pacific navy capable of resisting an attack from Japan and an Atlantic navy capable of resisting an attack from England. no other advice will be honest advice. and so forth. a proporIf I And tionate land equipment of siege guns. Lady Britomart tells Cusins: "You must simply It is in this sell is cannons and weapons to people whose cause right and just. "No.

nobody can fairly hold is mere them. and my conscience God's conscience then also I share his responsibility for the world . to all sorts and conditions. not his sycophants and apologists.. my responsible But if I am a part of God.. lunacy." Shaw continues Campbell. if my eyes . all nationalities. to black man. all causes and all I will take an order from a good man crimes. Shaw delivered some years ago in the City Temple at the invitation of the Reverend R. to burglar and policeman. I "A will of which am a part. are God's eyes. to Nihilist and Tsar. and wo is me if the world conscience goes wrong ! [12] . prefer preaching and shirking to buying my weapons and fighting the rascals. In this same conversation of his theology. J. Here he argued that God created hubeings to be "his helpers and servers. don't blame me. actions are God's for . If you good people as cheerfully as from a bad one. I can make cannons I cannot make courage and conviction. man : If me my . my hands God's hands. And what drives this place?" Un- dershaft answers. all follies. drives you. enigmatically. . You do not drive this place. . Shaw also gives a hint : when Cusins says to Undershaft "You have no it power." This doctrine of an immanent God working through nature and man to higher things was developed more definitely in an address which Mr. white man and yellow man. all faiths.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS to aristocrat and republican.

" When Blake asks of the tiger. I tempt to-day eats and drinks what was eaten and drunk by the peasants of ten thousand years ago and the house he lives in has not altered as much in a thousand centuries as the fashion of a But when he goes lady's bonnet in a score of weeks. he carries a marvel of mechanism that all 1 Published by Brentano's. out to slay. part of the work of that something better. whose abominable cruelties. but in the arts of death he outdoes Nature herself. now out my earlier attempt. and produces by chemistry and machinery The peasant . pestilence and famine. it was the best I could devise at the time but that I have evolved something better. stupidities and follies have utterly disappointed me. In the unactable 1 third act is of his "Man and of Superman". remem- I tell you that in the arts of life Man invests noth- ing. Man. is to kill . And in due time I hope to evolve Superman. Don Juan and the Devil. the Devil who is speaking : this theology put into the mouths It is. two most unpromising preachers. the slaughter of plague. 1904. "Did he conceives who made the lamb make thee?" Shaw : the Life-Force as replying Yes. who will in his turn kill out and supersede Man. ber. to wit. .GEORGE BERNARD SHAW This position enables him to explain evil on evolutionary principles as "the Method of Trial and Error. Here is found one of the most eloquent arraignments of war in all literature.

more ruthlessly. the blowpipe of his fathers far behind. [Hi . His heart is in his weapons. the earthquake. the arrow. pieces as they fly. and leaves the javelin.. . . the chronicle concludes. Man measures his force by his In the old chronicles you destructiveness. and are told that these showed the power and majesty of God . and the littleness of the vanquished. I have seen his cotton factories and the like. bungling locomotives and tedious bicycles they are toys compared to the Maxim gun. and that something was Man. more ingeniously destructive was needed . the tempest were too spasmodic in their action the tiger and the crocodile were too easily satiated and not cruel enough . whilst the strongest ministers dare not spend an extra penny in the pound against the poverty and pestilence in The plague. . and the littleness of Man.SIX lets loose at MAJOR PROPHETS the touch of his finger all the hidden molecular energies. . Over such battles the people run about the streets yelling with delight. . read of earthquakes and pestilences. I know his clumsy typewriters and .. Nowadays the chronicles In a battle two bodies of men describe battles. There is nothing in Man's industrial machinery but his greed and sloth. the submarine torpedo boat. when the others chase the fugitives on horseback and cut them to And this. shoot at one another with bullets and explosive shells until one body runs away. with machinery that a greedy dog could have invented if it had wanted money instead of food. the inventor of the rack. thing more constantly. the stake. . and egg their Governments on to spend hundreds of millions of money in the slaughter. shows the greatness and majesty of empires. In the arts of peace Man is a bungler. . the famine. somewhich they themselves daily walk.

Think of what it would cost to be Mitchener invaded by Germany and forced to pay an indemnity of five down twelve. 1 which was deemed so dangerous to both Britain and Germany that the its censors of both countries agreed in prohibiting production on the stage. might be taken by the public as referring to certain well-known statesmen. [IS] . 1909. Since the British censor seemed to fear that the principal characters. "Press Cuttings". . Shaw offered to change the names to "Bones" and was never was "Johnson. to easy say that . . but lay hundred 1 millions. yes . "Bals- quith" and "Mitchener". ." But even that concession would not satisfy the censor's scruples. .GEORGE BERNARD SHAW the gallows and the executioner of the sword and above all. Three years before the war Shaw wrote a little satirical skit. and all the other isms by which even those clever enough to be humanely disposed are persuaded to become the most destructive of all destroyers. of justice. since there then no censorship of literature. Balsquith think of what theyll cost. patriotism. though. Mitchener --Then you must it's Oh. duty. gun . Published by Brentano's. Here is a bit of the dialogue : Balsquith The Germans have laid down four more Dreadnoughts. it was published as a book. so the play publicly put on the stage.

not to be shot. and that the command of the sea belongs by nature to England. Mitchener nothing else you will. what can I do ? Mitchener Balsquith Shoot them down. Say what Balsquith. you spend your lives in an ecstasy of terror of imaginary invasions. Balsquith But if they wont recognize it. I have thought of the last ten years. Bals! A A [16] . man. After why should the Germans invade us ? Mitchener a Why Well. but that con- sideration is what we call cowardice in the army. But dash it all. a rifle into a German he drops just as you surely as a rabbit does. shouldnt ? they ? What of else have their army to do What else are they building invading navy for ? Balsquith we never think Germany. you can. we do. Yes. Yes. Mitchener Excuse me. and until they get a stern lesson. Mitchener very sensible precaution. rifle Suppose he shoots got Mitchener if but fire you down. they never will recognize. I cant shoot them down.SIX Balsquith MAJOR PROPHETS all. Balsquith . Why. I like to hear you military Oh. the Germans have never recfor ognized. the plain fact that the interests of the British Empire are paramount. a rabbit hasnt Balsquith a and a German has. I don't believe you ever go to bed without looking under it for a burglar. You dont realize it . soldier always assumes that he is going to shoot. come Balsquith people talking of cowardice.

that in these days of aeroplanes and Zeppelin airships.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW I always take it. continually present to their minds ? Would you have our English slumbers broken in this way ? Are we also to live without security ? Yes. or a vehicle to run over him. Balsquith is essential Monaco. just as the streets of London will be safe when there is no longer a man in her streets to be run over. And What consequently a frightful Monaco thing ! How enjoys do in- the inhabitants sleep with the possibility of vasion. Balsquith. And if it comes to fighting. no The absolute command of the sea to the security of the principality of But Monaco isnt going to get it. I never look under my bed for a burglar. the question of the moon is becoming one of the greatest importance. Anyhow dont you Balsquith taunt me with cowardice. Jingo civilian. Mitchener Let me tell you. date. Theres no such thing as seBalsquith in world and there never can be as long the curity as men are mortal. - Mitchener security. Mitchener a These are the romantic ravings of Balsquith. Im quite willing to fight without being quith. Neither have I. three to one. At least deny that the absolute command of the sea tial to youll not is essen- our security. When ask for are you military chaps security you crying for the moon. of bombardment. Im not always looking under the nation's bed for an invader. And in consequence Ive never been burgled. Can you as an Englishman tamely contem[17] . It will be reached at no very distant . England will be secure when England is dead.

freedom from prejudice of race or class. when the papers were discussing what sort of a monument should commemorate Edith Cavell. On the side we must reckon lucidity. humanitarian aspiration word the Aufkldrung. love of dis- cussion and openness to new ideas. and at the It is same time making the nation truly democratic. snobbish and inefficient. eyed logic. credit clear- unashamed common sense. Shaw that recently.inadequate appreciation of historic in- stitutions and popular sentiments. contempt [18] for . On the debit side some items must unhappily be listed also docin a : trinaire intellectualism.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS plate the possibility of having to live under a German moon ? The British flag must be planted there at all hazards. . limits of one's inability to see either the own doctrines or the point in other people's. The play ends with versal the establishment of uni- military training and equal suffrage. the age of Swift and Voltaire and Doctor Johnson. he interjected characteristic of the unwelcome suggestion that the country could honor her best by enfranchising her sex. thus doing away with a militarism that was both timorous and tyrannical. incisive wit. There is ever something in Bernard Shaw that suggests the eighteenth century.

is The mordant wit of the two Irishmen Englishmen. wit is akin to Puritanism . The man who sees inconand a Catholic. should put : Shaw Chesterton = different thing Swift : Dickens. His instincts upon all social . most closely akin to Dickens. Chesterton is not so eupeptic as Chesterton. He says of Shaw : He is not a humorist. and incapacity famous saeva For all Shaw seems his simple diet to have inherited the indignatio of his great countryman. to the perfect and painful consciousness of the final fact in the universe. which But pure is only the negative side of mysticism. Very briefly. Swift. but a great wit. the desire to see truth face to face even if it slay us. the man who sees consistency in things is a wit and a Calvinist. Humor is akin to agnosticism. logical issue a very from the genial humor of the two Chesterton as usual makes a theo- out of it. for poetry. intolerance for science. almost as great as Voltaire. the relationship I sympathetic appreciations of I may be permitted to express the it : of four in a mathematical formula.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW romance. sistency in things is a humorist However this may be. the constant effort to keep the soul at its highest pressure and speed. the high impatience with irrelevant sentiment or obstructive symbol. Bernard Shaw exhibits all that is purest in the Puritan . as may he is be seen from his If Dickens's works.

it a Puritan is prejudice. and extremists of various views with acquainted. But along with what was inspiring and direct in Puritanism. sense. prudishness. The Puritans in- sisted that marriage was a purely civil contract to [20] . anarchists.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS customs and questions are Puritan. asceticism. was So it was. as the his jokes are not non- The main of reason why the assumption and ascription the term "Puritan" to Shaw was thought absurd was because of the prevalent misconception of what sort of were. but. Of all the socialists. His favorite author is Bunyan. divorce. free speech. Bernard Shaw has inherited also some of the things that were cumberIf ever Shaw exhibits a some and traditional. people the Puritans The word in its common acceptance implies orthodoxy. antagonism on so many Milton's pamphlets in favor of republicanism. world has found out since. conventionality. and new theology were as scandalous to the seventeenth century as Shaw's "Revolutionist's Handbook" to the nineteenth. Now the real Puritan was a revolutionary of the most radical type. prejudice When Shaw in the preface of his "Plays for Puriit tans" declared himself "a Puritan in art" regarded as one of his jokes. there to his is whom I am not one who lives in conventional as points did the contemporaries Puritan in his day.

only perPilgrim formed by Fathers priests and The who had a dozen children and two or three wives apiece are not to consecutive. . while Shaw is almost Buddhistic in his is tender-heartedness. either in their food. Consider for instance not mean dogmatism. his attitude toward the established institutions and moral codes of his time. Roman and Anglican. and they even forbade ministers to perform the ceremony. are different from those of the Puritans. or their theology. for example. were not averse to blood. he has not read their literature. himself. indeed quite the opposite on some The Puritans. hold the contrary theory. conclusions is No. of course be classed as ascetics and if any one thinks them prudish. their politics.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW be made and annulled by the State. content himself with the attitude: "For the [21] life of me I can't see . of modern who hold no convictions to have the courage But he does not. and even in his faults. Androcles his caricature of But still we may say that Shaw is puri- tanical in his type of mind. Of course Shaw's opinions points. for instance. while Catholics. rite. I do That he comes and to emphatic much to his credit differentiates him from the colloidal-minded mass writers of. his intolerance. that marriage is a religious indissoluble.

his views. thee has two eyes and of brains and so a right to thine it opinion. Warren to Undershaft and Larry Doyle. you means of the are an Idealist." my To which we might : unique vocabulary return an answer Quaker sort the usual number "Friend. He must add you say there is : "There's nothing to him and or if is. butcherly Scott. nor even a Bah. which in liar. I again the gentle reply should come: be not an Humbug." Wells and Shaw are quite commonly bracketed [22] ." ines. sentimental.SIX what you MAJOR PROPHETS find to admire in that absurd. But it need not follow that because thee does in nowise sees not a merit in a writer that exist. I may be right or I may be wrong. romantic. weak-minded. you are deceiving me In either case what wickeder yourself. Every one of Shaw's early heroes and herofrom the Unsocial Socialist and the daughter of Mrs. admires himself or herself immensely for saying to upholder of every supposedly current morality : "Bah! Humbug! Hypocrite!" To which "Friend." He would be quite justified in expressing his opinion thus-wise. nor yet an Hypocrite. but lift if thee call me an Idealist yet again. A man may differ from thee and yet be sincere in although this fact be dreamed not in thy philosophy. I will this brick and cast at thee. it lo.

figure even for a Socialist. Socialist. beyond and contemptible sentimental revolutionists. and he sists Shaw may often any given moment in- upon the fullest conformity on the part of his If would-be followers. socialists. an intellectual anarchist. but this is not the are is tie. Fabian Socialism. Wells has gone further yet in his self-isolation by leaving the Fabian movement. Shaw always has "doots o' Jamie's orthodoxy. These couplike Scylla lings are often absurd but rarely arbitrary. for. But the unlikeness them between the two men to their lies in the motive driving respective hermitages. Some likeness of thought or mood or some contrast of viewpoint usually accounts for if not justifies such Wells and Shaw are both literary mesalliances. as the English aristocrat said: real likeness is "We all socialists now. Marx- ian Socialism. and the Royal Bloodsweating Chesterbelloc of Holy Writ. State Socialism are [23] . Tennyson and Browning. but at it is almost brutally clear and detailed." The that each although a political not to say eccentric.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW and Charybdis. change his point of view. iron they fall a step short of his boundary they are mere if Philistines and bour- geois. Shaw is an isolated. Dickens and Thackeray." But they go a step they are inefficient Wells seeks a Socialism without boundaries.

Finding no true inclusive." Undershaft. merely succeeding in founding a new sect and a new dialect. defects which militate against own. and.SIX all MAJOR PROPHETS all- too narrow and dogmatic for his taste as he has time and time again. I believe. had ever come mental Of course vision I is this illusion of possessing perfect hold at this common to everybody. Shaw has two popularity . universe-wide Socialism he erects his said own banner for the nations to rally to and as a result suffers the universal fate of those who try to found Churches of Humanity and World Languages." says his same things that shock other people. He as himself ascribes his inability to see the to his sight same others being abnormally normal. "only one true morality for every man. but never by the ity. absolutely them I correct. but not every man has the same moralShaw is easily shocked. All the opinions moment are. that a priori the chances are against my . his first. that is. he is too conventional. his conventions are peculiarly his "There is. though I must admit. second. seeing how often [24] have erred in the past. otherwise I should change instanter. said they were the The oculist who examined them only pair of absolutely correct eyes he across.

Probably Shaw is not more inconsistent than any [25] . "My way to tell the truth. is a mystic. not an uncommon thing to see in this so-called age of science. that he often succeeds. and this is not a persuasive way By temperament Shaw science compels intellectualism.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW being altogether right now. His of reasoning is often the reductio ad absurdum his own theories. those are many and who have torn away the first and the second all the more likely to be deceived in mistaking the third for the naked truth." But when he strains his eyes to see something clearly he sees only that one thing. By following consisinstead of several as he tently one line of logic should mode of he gets tangled up in illogicalities." says his Father Keegan in "John Bull's Other Island. There is no doubting Shaw's intent to undeceive of joking is the world or his willingness to undeceive himself. But what Shaw means is by his normality of vision confidence in one's own not merely common orthodoxy. but has reference to his fanatical efforts to tear of life away has all I the illusions and see things as they are. of argumentation. but his con- him to is assume the method of cold an artist in the He disguise of a scientist. Isis do not think veils.

in con- tagonism. presented to it is some monstrous parathe reader and rouses his anseems. and the reader the dose first is so relieved at not having to swallow presented to him that he willingly Shaw has not takes more than he otherwise would. quite innocuous and acceptable. Shaw's argument first. "The [26] . The only there are possible Shavian Shaw. Shaw an at irritating all way. and he defends it on the ground that. two ways there are writers thought and writers does both. This is intentional. "If you don't say a thing in who provoke who provoke thinkers. admirers but few fol- Consequently he has lowers." In short pulling it. Shaw and first got the ear of the public by he does not is know how it is to let go. the judicial mind and does not want to have. many They is can't keep up. you may just as well not say it since nobody will trouble themselves about anything that does not trouble them. but he is franker in expressing the point of of agile mind who view he holds at the time. a wedge. dox.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS is man capable of seeing in succession different sides of a thing. As somebody has remarked of saying a thing. then gradually qualified and whittled it down. so that trast to its first form. but driven in blunt end A is startling statement. or wittily diverted.

or inconsistent. When they read what he has to about actually say marriage in "Misalliance". science. This makes Shaw an exasperating person for some belongs people to read and causes them to set him as frivolous down stance.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW way get to get at the merits of a case. Put George Bernard Shaw's collection of opinions is Perhaps no single view of his is quite unique. Or they find out that he is a vegetarian. He no type and has founded no school." this on your bookmark when you read Shaw. and classify him as some nonconformist minister of a pallid and overconscientious type. Shaw can believes in eugenics natural "Good!" They find "now we Doctor's classify him. but to the combination certainly is." "The Dilemma" and and him a rabid antivivisectionist filled with a profound contempt for modern medicine in general. a teetotaler. and a Puritan. they constitu- rush to the opposite conclusion that he tionally an unconstitutional rebel with a fondness [27] . They find. for infrom "The Revolutionist's Handbook" that and the importance of people read say. about popular religion in and salvation by is money and gunpowder "Major Barbara". but to argued with reckless bias for and against. original." he says "is not to listen to a fool it who imagines himself impartial.

and a vegetarian. and the conservatives by both." Reading "The Conversion Bosnet" they discover that he is a devout Theist.) his "Impossibilities He of offended half the radicals Anarchism" and the other by his "Illusions of Socialism".SIX MAJOR PROPHETS "Fanny's of Blanco for aimless violence such as appears in First Play. will But those who take the trouble to compare these apparent antinomies will find that the contradictions are not so great as they seem from their paradoxical and partisan form. a young. putting last what was most calculated to shock the British [28] . Ibsenite. When Shaw atheist. in and a disbeliever (Preface to the very existence of progress. Reading the preface to "Androcles" they find him a higher critic. these heresies being arranged in crescendo fashion. He a appears as an disillusioned ultramodernist. But when it comes to children (see "Misalliance") there cannot be too much a laissez faire. and that Shaw has preserved his intellectual consistency to a remarkable degree. he announced himself as an an anarchist. "Man by half and Superman". first burst into London. red-haired Irishman. As a Fabian pamphleteer he is in favor of abolishing all individual property of a productive sort and has no use for laissez faire. universal cynic.

they have as it is. for Socialism in theory at at the opposite pole from anarchy. would pass muster in many a pulpit In fact. Mr. from orthodox anarchism. In a recent letter to me. but he has drifted far is. gives an interesting account of " " one of these addresses. 1 and adds : greatest and surest successes as a public speaker have been on religious subjects to religious l Mr. cordial reception he always received Shaw refers to the when Reverend Reginald Campbell invited him to occupy the pulpit of City Temple. expressed in less provocative language. Whether he has ever violated his vegetarian faith by eating a beefsteak on the sly I do not know." pamphlet on "The As for his atheism he seems to have left that still if farther behind. Now when we look back over his career we find that he has not been any more successful in sticking to his youthful heresy than others are in sticking to their youthful orthodoxy. in his life of Shaw. of his selling Illu- copies of an early sions of Socialism. 1913. for his present theological views. in Once when Shaw was talking Socialism Hyde Park. that on Christian Economics at the City My Temple in McCabe. least. But Shaw is too much of a Christian still to suit [2 9 ] . McCabe.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW public. he was much annoyed by the anar- chists who circulated through the crowd. to-day.

though how much Shaw had to do with it personally I do not know. and any reasonably good preacher can easily leave the best political are still spellbinder behind. that he was the 1 See for instance Shaw's book on ".SIX audiences . and most of us do. however. But what is chiefly dis- him as a reformer trating through shams do to power of penefundamental realities his and his ability to 1 original constructive thinking. But to point out just "what's wrong with the world" and to suggest a practical line of improvement is not so easy. We now know. MAJOR PROPHETS this is but the common experience of all more concerned about speakers. He Utopian vision of tinguishes his own. Trading The Common Sense of Municipal based upon his experience as Vestryman and Borough " Councillor. largely the Law is a fine piece of con- This Minority Report was work of the Fabian Society. Shaw as a Socialist differs from others who bear that name. He is too intense an individualist to puts no faith in Marx as the prophet of the millennium. The Minority Report on the reform of the Poor structive statesmanship. The Fabian Society has done more than set off fireworks and stir up mud. and he has no be a good party man. [30] . All of us can find fault with the existing order of things. People religion than anything else.

that society was rapidly becoming communistic through the efforts of those who were most : opposed to communism tell as a theory Most in this people will you that communism is known country only as a visionary project advocated a handful of amiable cranks. That the established government has no more right to call itself the State than the smoke of London has to call itself the weather. and that the sexes should henceforth enjoy equal political rights. That men no longer need special political privileges to protect them against women. up . of the "Opinions in this Here are a few set forth Held by the Fabians" : famous tract That since competition among producers admittedly secures to the public the most satisfactory products. in which he pointed out what was not so clear in 1888 as it is to-day. along the common embankment. Then they will by stroll across a common bridge. cluding the orthodox Marxians. That no branch of industry should be carried on at a profit by the central administration. the state should compete with all its might in every department of production. by the light of the common street lamp shining alike on the just and the unjust.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW author of Fabian Tract startled Number 2 of 1884 that in- the conservative classes of England. Shaw also wrote Fabian Tract Number 45 on "The Impossibilities of Anarchism".

and which also must begin with deductive is what may be called the democratizademocracy. for the difficulty is that society is as yet only half removed from chaos) by men of the type produced by popular election under existing circumstances likely to be achieved before the reconstruction. democracy will demand that only such men should be presented to its choice [32] . unless democracy is to be discarded in a reaction of disgust such as killed it in ancient Athens. and its extension from mere negative and very uncertain check on tyranny to a No experienced Fabian positive organizing force. seems to for in the final one of the most important. they will be handily bludgeoned by a common policeman and hauled off to the common gaol. tion of constructed.SIX the MAJOR PROPHETS street and into the common Trafalgar on the smallest hint that communism where Square is to be tolerated for an instant in a civilized country. The fact that a hawker cannot ply his trade without a license whilst a man may sit in Parliament without any relevant qualifications is a typical and significant anomaly which will certainly not be removed by allowing everybody to be a hawker at will. the appendix to Pease's "History of the Fabian Society". paragraphs he points out clearly a is me democracy that and altogether unremedied : defect in our rarely recognized Another subject which has hardly yet been touched. Sooner or later. believes that society can be reconstructed (or rather treatment. common Shaw's latest contribution to Fabian literature.

is his comment on what he calls "a wise and timely article. "And There Shall Be No More Kings". the world has the to demand that monindeed the duty right tion of republicanism versus archies shall at least be subject to superannuation as well as to constitutional limitation. Without qualified rulers a Socialist State is imand it must not be forgotten (though the possible as . lest a fail genuinely democratic society will to secure able and qualified leaders. penned on the margin of the clipping in his careful handwriting.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW have proved themselves qualified for more serious and disinterested work than "stoking up" election meetings to momentary and foolish excitement. in The institutions like aristocracy Independent of March 22. that lies at the bottom of the prevalent distrust of popular many persons to cling government and causes to antiquated and irrational and even monarchy. 1915. Shaw a copy of an editorial entitled." This war raises in an acute form the whole ques- German dynasticism. l33l . I sent Mr. and the following. more or less clearly felt. reminder is as old as Plato) that the qualified men may be very reluctant men instead of very ambitious ones. After the mischief done by Franz Josef's second childhood as displayed in his launching the fortyeight-hour ultimatum to Serbia before the Kaiser could return from Stockholm. It is this doubt.

It is undoubtedly inconvenient that the head of the state should be selected at short intervals but it does not follow that he (or she) should be an unqualified person or hold office for life or be a member of a dynasty. Perhaps the reader will think that I am just rather too presumptuous in professing to know what are Shaw means and believes. So the advantage of a should explain that personal have with acquaintance or at least say without boasting without lying that at one period of his life I was nearer to him than any other human being. it would involve making them republics for if they were kingdoms their thrones would be occupied by cousins of the Hohenzollerns. who was childish when he was not under restraint as an admitted lunatic. and making . Serbia include Bosnia and Herzegovina. restaurants. of Bohemia. Hapsburgs and Romanoffs. B. The I Shaw. it and the period was confined to the time [34] took to . Poland and Hungary. C. makes him so strong that George III. even in a jealously limited monarchy like the British.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS All recent historical research has shown that the position of a king. may distance between us of those was in fact the diameter of one round tables in the A. I may add that if the policy of dismembering the Central Empires by making separate national states . was uncontrollable by the strongest body of statesmen the eighteenth century produced. is seriously put forward. I when most people I puzzled by him. strengthening the German hegemony instead of restraining it.

The Fabian in Society was indirectly the fruit of one of the seeds which Thomas Davidson scattered many lands. occasion was a recess in a Fabian Society I did not suppose that anything could conference. sprung up along his pathIn the Adirondacks he founded the Glenmore In the Jewish quarter of societies that School of Philosophy. and I wished that either he or a vegetarian. The shut off Socialists in the midst of debate. But although Fabian he eschews the weed. track this peripatetic philosopher through seed. New York and ing. British institution. both being paid for by him. as you can Johnny Apple- by the way. and smoking did not seem to be in accordance with tactics. The theme of discussion was the House of Lords. You can life. is City another of his schools still thrives enthused with something of his zeal for learncircle of earnest The young men and women [35] . But while they were iconoclasts as to one ished. I resorted to thorough Fletchering for the purpose of prolonging the interview. which the Fabians unanimously agreed ought to be abol- though no two of them agreed on the substitute. I had been a smoker. they rendered homage to another by stopping to take tea in the midst of a lovely scrap.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW consume a penny bun and a cup of tea.

in his posthumous volume of "Memories and Studies. says Browning. See also Knight's " in their inception were Memorials of Thomas Davidson : the Wandering Scholar" and James' delightful sketch. one to face the world with. the Fellowship of the New Life. There was in his occasional remarks no trace of the caustic He and dogmatic tone which one gets from his writings. Yet Davidson himself was neither a 1 spiritualist nor a Socialist. Every creature. At the Fabian Society one sees Shaw in his elelike ment. as one of the 'Pease. gives an interesting account of these diverse movements which closely allied. One Boasts two soul-sides. "The KnightErrant of the Intellectual Life". to show a woman when he loves her. and to her he turns a different face than to the outside watched him during the afternoon preceding and following the brief period of personal contact of which I have been bragging I I As was struck by the tact and kindliness which he showed in the course of the discussion. and the Fabian Society. the moon. in his "History of the Fabian Society". has been not so much the "shining light" or "presiding genius" of the society.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS whom he gathered about him in London were the founders of the Society for Psychical Research." [36] . Shaw's own true love. Society is The Fabian world.

To give us a vote would be to permit the violation of the fundamental principle of democracy that people should never be governed better than they want to you had a government of saints and phiFor inlosophers the people would be miserable. under discussion The question was. stance. Now if I and Mr. Various in order to secure the election when Shaw took the floor in defense of like this. as genuine democracy. If l37l . when such as important. plans were proposed of the fittest. I His argument ran remember it : Our idea is that any 670 people is as good as any other for governing. just as any twelve chosen by chance on the jury have our lives and property in their hands. but like all superior persons now I have to convince other people because I cannot compel them. be. Sydney Webb here were sent to the House of Commons it should be with unlimited opportunity to talk but not to vote. No elected body can possibly be representative. I would want to stop all smoking and meat-eating and liquor drinking. This was shortly questions were regarded Lords. as I have that of the reconstruction of the make way for the said. He had for twenty-seven years served on the in Executive Committee of the society when he resigned to 1911 younger generation.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW "wheel horses". House of before the war. and devoted himself diligently to the detailed and inconspicuous work of the organization.

samples of the commonalty picked at random and compelled to serve. so posterity can have a vocal version Otherwise his personality of his plays and prefaces. was once a fiery red. His hair into gray. and symof a broad row way they read in cold type. cross Between brows there are three perpendicular wrinkles. These remarks. His face is but he looks not in the least Mephistophelian as [38] . The House of Lords is more representative than the House of Commons. Their function is to explain where the shoe pinches. like jurymen. Shaw is tall and uses his eyeglasses for gesticulat- ing as an orchestra leader uses a baton.SIX because no MAJOR PROPHETS cause a man in the House of Commons is there because he has uncommon abilities. delivered of white in a musical pathetic voice with frequent flashes teeth. but as an exceptional one. and these should be only when they have satisfied a very high standard of qualification. high or low. and fretful type. will sounded very different from the I do hope the phono- be perfected before Shaw dies or his voice goes cracked. but not of the long and pointed. but is now tempered his His eyes are light blue. be- Representatives ought to be. But the shoe must be made by skilled legislators and statesmen. man is elected as a normal man. and should sit without votes though with unlimited powers of explanation eligible and criticism. graph stands little chance of being understood.

1856. and he Carolina a is fortunate in having in Professor Henderson of the University of North biographer of the Boswell kind probably the best kind there is. Shaw has not been reticent in talking about himself in various books and prefaces. July His father was an Irish gentleman. including Shaw. me to give biographical details at any length. His mother was a musician. 25. Other lives of Shaw are mentioned in the appendix of this chapter. it not necessary in this chapter. as any one needs Chesterton's book on Shaw is an imrather than a portrait. giving pressionistic sketch the author an opportunity of saying "what's wrong with the world". Shaw owed talent own of moderate music. Protestant. his and was to her that Mr. for these are easily accessible. Shaw was is not so black as he It is is painted by himself and others. improvident sale dealer in corn. and remarkable knowledge When he went to London at the age of l39l . all and respectable. a whole- retail it with a profound contempt for tradesmen. 1911. In short.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW the caricaturists represent him. His big volume contains as to the time much about Shaw's it life and words up to know. was published. as in the case of of some for of my "Twelve Major Prophets To-day". George Bernard Shaw was born in Dublin.

reward was to live just long enough to read a review of one of these silly novels written in an obscure I threw friend of own. I think. myself. and literary am- mother practically supported the family by teaching music there. far better worth having than a nice pension from a dutiful son struggling slavishly for his parents' bread in some sordid trade. because their rhythm sticks to me. prefiguring as a considerable author. My . journal me to by a personal some extent my His only schooling was at Dublin. His father's old age. my mother into it. his his autobiographical I fragments : did not throw myself into the struggle for life. alphabet. MAJOR PROPHETS musical with artistic. especially in the preface to "Misalliance. His opinion of the sort of education he got he has expressed in several places. . I have never yet seen a Latin inscription on a tomb that I could translate throughout. Of Greek I can decipher perhaps the greater part of the Greek In short I am. that this is a handsome reward. as to classical education.SIX twenty. this day. . though I can still decline a Latin noun and repeat some of the old paradigms in the old meaningless way. [40] . and this is confirmed by the school records which place him near the bottom of his class. where he says he learned little." school made only the thinnest pretence of To teaching anything but Greek and Latin. I was not a staff to my I hung on to his coat tails. As Shaw says in one of bitions.

yet they are out of making very decent citizens most unpromising material. police. Instead. phemous habit of treating love and maternity as obscene jokes. and the policemen have In America clubs have been given to the school-teachers are not allowed to and the canes taken away from the teachers. veals an even they make it all the more re- Kipling in "Stalky and Company" more detestable state of affairs than Dickens does of "Dotheboys Hall. cowardice. The New York deliver even a casual box on the ear or a friendly shaking. I can read French as easily and under pressure of necessity. evasion. and when they attempt to eulogize shocking. . and all the blackguard's shifts by which the coward intimidates other cowards." Shaw takes the American view of it and condemns with horror the "flagellomania" of the British schoolmaster. Why is it that British authors give us such hor- rible pictures of their school days ? They usually look back upon them it as a unprofitable period of their most unpleasant and lives. I was taught lying.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW another Shakespeare. a blas. hopelessness. derision. dirty stories. dishonorable submission to tyranny. I can as English turn to account some scraps of German and a little operatic Italian but these three were never taught at school. have weapons. and the police[41] . is It curious to observe that in Great Britain the school- masters none.

for instance. then trying to recover his health at Saranac Lake in the Adirondacks. The first novel he wrote. "Immaturity". [42] . This would have given him an acquaintance with the aims and methods of modern science and freed him from such prejudice in as he displayed. has never been printed." Shaw's early efforts at authorship did not meet with encouragement.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS men's clubs are mostly used on the immigrants who have been trained in the flagellant schools of Europe. he earned six pounds in nine years by his pen. and five of those came from writing a patent medicine advertisement. and "Love Among the Artists" have since been reprinted from the short-lived Socialist periodicals in which they originally appeared. at first rejected by the book publishers. Four of them. "Cashel Byron's Profession". William Archer sent these novels to Robert Louis Stevenson. "The Doctor's Dilemma" and "The Philanderer. Stevenson's letters refer to them as "blooming gaseous folly". "The Irrational Knot". If we may take his word for it. "horrid fun". "The Unsocial Socialist". It is doubtless a good thing that Shaw did not go through Oxford. all He wrote five novels in five years. "a fever dream of the most feverish". but he should have had a course in biology under Huxley such as Wells had.

Archer. For fully nine years I had to sponge shamelessly . July 28. God knows my is A plan to relieve struggling authors and secure the earlier recognition of genius by means of an endowment fund and a system of substantial prizes Sinclair. way of 1 Printed in The Independent. let him go his path if he is thirty. Galsworthy. "The Jungle". I myself seem an exof a man who achieved ample literary eminence without assistance but as a matter of fact certain remnants of family property made all the difference.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW "I say. who wrote to a number asking their opinion of the scheme. he had best be told that he is a ro. [431 . who responded were Philpotts. mantic and pursue romance with perhaps he knows softened. my God. Shaw is below five and twenty. part of what Shaw said about it because of quote bio- its graphical interest : There is only one serious and effective helping young men of the kind in view. was once proposed by Upton author of of authors. Wells. Nothing else seems to me to be really hopeful. De Morgan. and Shaw. I 1 London. his eyes ! opened brain . 1910." it . and that is by providing everybody with enough leisure in the intervals of well-paid and not excessive work to enable them to write books in their spare time and pay for the printing of them. what women!" "If Mr. Among those Bennett.

SIX on MAJOR PROPHETS my father and mother. I was just the father had been a rich man. [44] . : . and as the publishers' readers by whose advice they were rejected included Lord Morley and George Meredith. that I was a young man with more cleverness than was good for me and that what I needed was snubbing and not encouraging. William Morris. "The Earthly Paradise". of course. Unfortunately. I have seen both their verdicts and I can assure Sinclair that I produced on both of them exactly the impression that is inevitably produced in every such case that is. which. long after the publication of . it cannot be said that I was in any worse hands than those of any committee likely to be appointed. in the case of the highest poetry. man whom Yet All I had to show was five big novels which nobody would publish. when he was at the height of his fame as a poet. is out of the question anyhow as a means of livelihood. however. they might have come to my rescue. No doubt there are talents which are not aggressive and do not but these are precisely the smell of brimstone talents which are marketable. except. but even at that we only squeezed through because my mother's grandIn fact. told me that his income from his poems was about a hundred a year and I happen to know that Robert Browning threatened to leave the country because the . for the life of me I cannot see how any committee in the world could have given me a farthing. had only had to consider how to help a struggling talent without reference to commercial consideration. his popular poem. for Upton wants to establish his fund. Of course Sinclair may say to this that if Morley and Meredith. in- stead of having to advise a publisher as to the prospects of a business speculation.

His "The Philanderer" accept it. Poetry is thus frankly a matter of endowment. "Candida" was not presented in London till 1904. dealing with tainted money. Of the seven that followed only one could be called a decided success on its first presentation in London. with attractively written stage directions and argumentative prefaces. Shaw's plays were popular [451 America when they . But in book form. "Mrs. Shaw's first essays in the field where he was to attain his greatest success were as discouraging as his novel writing. but for the rest I think a writer's chance of being helped by the fund would be in inverse ratio to his qualifications as conceived by Upton Sinclair. was published before a theater would His third play. was prohibited by the censor. nearly ten It was with "Candida" years after it was written. His first play. that Arnold Daly introduced Shaw to the theater- going public of America. shocked but efforts at did not attract the public. Warren's Profession". "Widower's Houses". and for the last few years there have often been three at the Shaw in plays running same time in New York. they found a host of readers who wanted to see them in the theater.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW Income Tax Commissioners assessed him with a modest but wholly imaginary income on the strength of his reputation.

the I His "Pygmalion" rather heard had -premiere in theater in Vienna instead of London. here in Eng- In spite of the fact that the play depends variations in English dialects. and Scandinavia. Shaw honored is in fact an internationalist. Japan than in his own country." The pated reason why Shaw's prefaces read so well and his plays is go better on the stage than would be antici- because they are composed by ear. it months before Mrs. or since it is a phonetic instead of a spectacular play.SIX were tabooed MAJOR PROPHETS or pooh-poohed its in England. much more Russia. it upon was given better in the German than America. it. Theater of Irvsix New York. realize that [46] . Germany. It must be interesting to see in "You Never Can on the Tokyo Tell" or "Man and Superman" says: stage. France. at the Deutsches ing Place. in the English. Patrick Campbell gave lish. The Kobe Herald "He appeals to the Japanese of progressive ideas because he prefers potatoes. that is. Hofburgsaw it. Since reading aloud has gone out of fashion. Ireland. in March. cabbages and beans to porterhouse steak and lamb chops. 1914. Consequently one has to read them by eye only. there has arisen a generation of young writers who do not language is intended to be spoken.

p. the changes in pronunciation.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW switching off for the time the internal auditory apparatus so as to avoid their discords and dull rhythm. Naturally he resents the established spelling of English which preserves the form of words while allowing the words themselves print. [471 . 326." Refuse to teach the Board School legions your pronunciation. which is the next best thing to dictating to a phonograph. . 'For Shaw's opinions on phonetics see "Pygmalion". ." "I can't read this any more ! Shaw is a musician. 1 as and has used lisher much is of it in his works as his pub- would permit. and Henderson's biography. . namely. The point he makes in the : following passage undeniably proving true All that the conventional spelling has done is to conceal the one change that a phonetic spelling might have checked . and they will force theirs on you by mere force of numbers. He uses shorthand in and he writes musical prose. composing. to decay. thus sacrificing speech to He has often argued for phonetic spelling. including the waves of debasement that produced the half-rural cockney of Sam Weller and the modern metropolitan cockney of Drink- water in "Captain Brassbound's Conversion. "Captain Brassbound's Conversion". And serve you right. A little girl who was trying to read to herself a story by one of our pyrotechnic authors : suddenly threw down the magazine with the cry It dazzles my ears.

He rejects the resurrecr tion but accepts the communism. 1916. [483 . has not yet been discovered. have discussed at length the question why such an unmusical people "Androcles and the should have good music in the Salvation Army. 1 The 125-page Lion" the is preface to devoted to a rereading of the Gospels and life a rewriting of the of Christ. too. So. every birth is an experiment in a Great Research which is being conducted by the Life Force to discover that formula. Deutscher Wille. defense of the Salvation in Army music in the 1905 proved that he knew more about music than those who sneered at the Army London Standard bands. Until it is. He believes in the Life Force and Its Superman as others do in God and His mensch. who of are now fond of analyz- ing the English character. The Germans. February.SIX Shaw's MAJOR PROPHETS of treatment the Salvation Army in "Major Barbara" showed that he knew more about religion his than some of his churchly critics. Messiah. Shaw interprets New Testament like a higher critic but applies it like an early Christian. ci-devant The Just Made Perfect. 1 Von unmusikalischen England und seiner musikalischen Heilsarmee. belongs to another genus Shaw's Superman obviously from Nietzsche's Ueber- He says in the preface to "Misalliance": The precise formula for the Superman.

being kindly men and no pessimists. injustice drives The sight of suffering and him mad. George Bernard Shaw is not to be ignored. in the world he How TO READ SHAW It does not matter much which of Shaw's books you read first. for after reading it. left. without much regard to whom and no regard at all as to who hits him. have put a kind heart into Schopenhauer's about it. but Shaw was writing about the Life Force long before Bergson wrote his "Creative Evolution. but far from omnipotent creator. you will probably read all the others that you can If I must be more specific in get your hands on.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW This eugenical and well meaning. If a cruel is satirist through excess of sympathy. that "the strongest man then who stands most alone"." If there was any borrowing both borrowed from Schopenhauer. slashing right he hits is. If I were to sum up Shaw in two words it would be that his distinguishing characteristics are courage and kind-heartedness. bears a strong resemblance to Bergson's Elan vital. Ibsen is right. and then he runs amuck. But Shaw and Bergson. and "Androcles and the Lion" will give you an idea [49] . I would suggest that "Major Barbara". recommending a book to begin on. He and like Swift. whichever it is. "Man and Superman". ruthless Will.

1894 (triangle). 1905 (burlesque extravaganza). "Caesar and Cleopatra". Napoleon in "The Devil's an unconventional aspect). Perdicaris. "Widowers' Houses". "Passion. anti-militarism). the woman . scene. "Arms and the Man". 1896 (American revolu- tion). 1904 (Irish and Engtemperament contrasted. "Captain Brassbound's Conversion". 1898 (Egypt Anglicized). Disciple". containing Handbook" and "John Bull's lish "The Revolutionist's interlude on heaven and hell). "The Man of Destiny". 1894 (Serbian and Bulgarian war. Warren's Profession". 1895 (farce comedy. what Shaw is like then. "Man and Superman". or separately. or argument of the play and its preface.SIX of MAJOR PROPHETS . 1892 (tainted money). et aL). All Shaw's works are published by Brentano's. 1893 (Ibsenites and esthetes). "The Philanderer". 1893 (prostitution). 1902 (His novel: "Cashel Byron's Profession" put into blank verse "because it is easier to write than prose"). 1899 (Morocco . [50] . 1903 (romance topsyturvey marriage by conquest on the part of Bashville or . 1895 (one act. the most popular of Shaw's plays on the stage). "You Never Can Tell". New York. "The Admirable Constancy Unrewarded". Other Island". "Mrs. if you are interested. three plays in one volume. "Candida". you can pick out others from the following chronological list in which I have indicated by a few words the theme. Home Rule ques- tion). Poison and Petrification ". Raisuli.

1906 (satire on medical professor and attack on vivisection). lion from Oz. 1905 (parody on "Candida"). 1910 (showing how Shakespeare got his phrases). with a postscript proving that you never can tell how a Shaw play will come out). 1905 tion manufacture. disquisition on the canon of the New Testament and the possibility of living Christianity). "Misalliance". 1913 (phonetics and class prejudice. Doctor's Dilemma". "Androcles and the Lion". "The Showing-up of Blanco Bosnet". 1909 ("a debate in one sitting".GEORGE BERNARD SHAW "Major Barbara". (Brentano's. 1908 (absurdities of marriage laws). "Three Plays by Brieux". contain "Damaged Goods" and other plays in which the French playwright attacks social . . Husband". censor). "Fanny's First Play". "Getting Married". "Great Catherine". 1911 (satire of dramatic critics and middle-class morality). "Press Cuttings". temperament). 1911 (early Christians. "Pygmalion". 1913 (boisterous farce of Catherine II contrast of Russian and British . "The Dark Lady of the Sonnets". "The Music Cure". used as curtain raiser for Chesterton's "Magic". He Lied to her "How "The (Salvation Army and muniproblem of poverty). 1912 (philandering again). 1911. 1909 (Wild West psychology of conversion prohibited by . "Overruled". 1909 (anti-militarism). 1914 (Marconi scandal. unpublished). preface on parents and children).

April 16. The chief and authorized biography is "George Bernard Shaw: His Life and mon : [52] . Shaw's fugitive contributions to journalism are too numerous and scattered to be cited here. retain a permanent value. 1895. which championed two unpopular causes. produced by the London Stage Society and the former also in New York. Of Shaw's critical work we have in book form "The Perfect Wagnerite". Unsocial Socialist". "Love Among the Artists". four "An early novels "Cashel Byron's Profession". attacking Nordau's theory of the degeneracy of artists and two volumes of "Dramatic Opinions and Essays". (New York Times. which. and Mr. less interest and "The Irrational Knot" are of his plays. and "The Quintessence of Ibsen".SIX MAJOR PROPHETS evils as vigorously so wittily as Shaw. Shaw's . Two and outspokenly though not They are translated by Mrs. 1908. "The Sanity of Art". "The Inca of Peru- salem" and "Augustus does his Bit". 1890. than His socialism has found expression in "The ComSense of Municipal Trading" and "Fabian Essays in Socialism". "The German Case Against Germany" 1913). 1916). "The Case for Equality" (Metropolitan. More has been written about Shaw's personality than about all the rest of my "Twelve Major Prophets" put together. but I will mention a few of them that are of special interest "The Case Against Chesterton" (Metropolitan. 1916). Bernard Shaw. although reviews of current plays of the nineties. are ascribed to Shaw though unacknowledged by him. and numerous other tracts and articles as well as most of his plays and prefaces. farcical plays of the war. Shaw provides a preface).

1916). Burton. Scott Joseph : . L. French. an exposition of Shavianism. 1915). "Bernard Shaw: An Epitaph" by John Palmer (London: Richards. "Bernard Shaw: A Critical Study" by Percival P.) It contains a full bibliography up to its date and some twenty portraits as well as : much inaccessible and unpublished material. 1909). "Harlequin or Patriot" Mr. 1909). Latest of all the is "Bernard Shaw: The Man and Mask" by Richard plays in of the Drama League November. 1911. : Be- sides this we have "George Bernard Shaw: A Critical Study" by McCabe (London Paul. R. 1907) and "The Innocence of Bernard Shaw" by D. yet gives him more credit than many of his admirers. and Kidd. found Biographical data and criticism are also to be in Archibald Henderson's "European Dram- atists" (Stewart and Kidd) and his "Interpreters of Life and the Modern Spirit" (Kennerley) . to praise him. Scott-James's "Personality in Literature" which also contains sketches of Wells and Chesterl53l . 1915). 1914). by Renee M. Deacon (John Lane. Mead. Chesterton (John Lane. A. "George Bernard Shaw: His Plays" by H.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW Work" by Professor Archibald Henderson of the (Cincinnati Stewart University of North Carolina. "George Bernard Shaw" by G. "Bernard Shaw" by Holbrook Jackson (Jacobs. a study of his chronological order by the ex-president of America (Henry Holt. (Doran. not (Century). 1914). K. "Bernard Shaw as Artist-Philosopher". Mencken (Luce. Palmer comes to bury Shaw. Ford Madox HuefFer's "Memories and Impressions". Trubner. Howe (Dodd. 1910).

1913). Jackson in The Idler. B. K. Musician" by Florence Boylston Pelo in The Bookman. Bernard Shaw's Philosophy" by A. Huneker's "Iconoclasts" (Scribner. 1915. G. 1916. Personal reminiscences by Frank Harris in Pearson's. Hale's "Dramatists of To-day" (Holt. 1911). Hamon. 1913). 1916. 1910. "Shaw in Portrait and Caricature" by H. The Independent. "Bernard Shaw. who has translated many of Shaw's plays into French. New York. A. Augustine F. and "Bernard Shaw et son ceuvre" by Professor Cestre of the University of Bordeaux (Mercure de France. Hertory man Bernstein's "With Master Minds" (Universal Series Co. has published the lectures he gave on them at the Sorbonne in the e siecle" (Paris Figuiere. p. E. with tort Chilton in a sharp re- by Shaw. March and April. J. 1912). Controversies of Shaw with Hilaire Belloc and G. 1908. volume "Le Moliere du 1913) which has been translated "The Twentieth "The Haymarket Theater". "Shavian Religion" by the Rev. 1916). Gavan Duffy in The Century. and a separate chapter of it as "The Technique of Bernard Shaw's Plays" (London: Daniel. "George Bernard Shaw" by D. K. E. Rogers in Hibbert Journal. 1912). 87. Lord in Catholic World..SIX MAJOR PROPHETS ton (London: Seeker. 1915). "Bernard Shaw et la guerre" by Christabel Pankhurst in La Revue. Chesterton in The Witness. 1906. "Mr. March 8. 1905). Cyril Maude's Pease's "Hisof the Fabian Society" (London. The following articles on Shaw are noteworthy for one reason or another : "Shaw Contra Mundum" by C. 908. vol. "The Philosophy of Shaw" by Archibald Henderson in New [54] . Edward XX : Century Moliere" (Stokes. 1916. 1916. March. P.

1913). a la Wells. Maharajah Sri Singh Bahadar. which the awakened and disThe third act is in the illusionized Shaw joins. chief of whom are the Lady Wells and the Lord Keir-Hardie. for of course India outvoted England as soon as universal suffrage was introduced into the British Empire. finding himself in the Shaw Memorial Hall in the custody of the Most Noble Order of Hereditary Fabians. Superman Found Out" (Houghton In Act I The Sleeper Wakes. "Die Quintessenz des Shawismus" by Helena Richter (Leipzig. The Found ingenious Allen Upward has written a futur: istic satire on Shaw the in the form of a play "Paradise or Mifflin. p.GEORGE BERNARD SHAW vol. "Bernard Shaw" by Julius Bab (Berlin: Fischer). [551 . 227. Cabinet of H. two hundred years hence. Atlantic. The second act is set in the Headquarters of the AntiShavian League. 103. 1915). V. M.

We faith for what surpasses the imagination. we can foresee growing knowledge. There is no shock. But it is out of our twilight. what and gives us It is this world will be like when We are creatures of the know ourselves. no but then there is no shock epoch-making incident at a cloudy daybreak. possible to believe that all the past is but the beginning of a beginning.CHAPTER H. G. there is no need for us to see. [56] . and that all that is and has been is but the twilight of the dawn. And what we can see and imagine gives us a measure day. It is possible to believe that all that the human mind has ever accomplished is but the dream before the awakening. race and lineage that minds will spring that will reach back to us in our littleness to know us better than we that will reach forward fearlessly comprehend this future that defeats our eyes. "Here it commences. and to the day has fully come. and presently a deliberate improvement of the blood and character of the race. At no point can we say." But insensibly we are in the If we care to look. cannot see. growing order. II WELLS SCIENTIFIC FUTURIST We are in the beginning of the greatest change that humanity has ever undergone. last minute was night and this is morning. now.

" In thus presenting various solutions to the world problem Wells is not inconsistent. He has fore- many futures for us. beings who are now latent in our thoughts and hidden in our loins. and shall laugh and reach out their hands amid the stars. even though we use the word "prophet" sense as one told who narrowest and most ordinary foretells the future. the Sleeper suffocated on a blazing or being crushed under the tyranny of an omnipotent trust as in "When Wakes" -if none of these please us." or an instantaneous ameliora- tion of In the Days of the Comet. WELLS All this world is heavy with the promise of greater and a day will come. one day in the unending succession of days.H. shall stand upon this earth as one stands upon a footstool. effi- then we have the option of a businesslike and cient organization of society under the domination of the engineer as in "Anticipations". Every com- human nature as " [57] . or being world as in "The Star". or a socialistic state in under the beneficent sway of the Samurai as "A Modern Utopia. Is Wells also among in its the prophets ? Surely. some utterly abhorrent. and none with better right. when beings. things. "The Discovery of the Future" (1902). we shudder at the thought of humanity on a freezing world fighting a losing battle with gigantic crustaceans as in "The Time Machine". If others more or less attractive. G.



plicated equation has several roots,








by and then, taking them one at a time, what would be the effect if the other
not act.

scientist begins

disentangling the forces involved
forces did

So Wells


applying the



to sociology

nothing intervenes to divert it, says the hydraulic engineer, the water of this mountain stream will develop such a momentum

and deal

when he attempts with them singly.

to isolate social forces

on reaching the



no limitations are placed

upon the consolidation of capital, says Mr. Wells, we may have a handful of directors ruling the world,

depicted in "When the Sleeper Wakes." In its power to forecast the future science finds


validation and justification.


this alone


conclusions and demonstrates



In fact, the sole object of science




Ostwald and Poincare make




of the scientific



directed forward and

he has no use for history except as by which to draw a curve that he
the future.


him data


project into

therefore, not a chance direction

of his fancy that so


of Wells's books, both

romances and

studies, deal with the future.

the natural result of his scientific training, which


H. G.


not only led him to a rich unworked field of fictional motives, but made him consider the problems of

from a novel and very illuminative point of
gave definite expression to this philosophy a remarkable address on "The Discovery of the



Future", delivered at the Royal Institution of London, January 24, 1902. Here he shows that there

a growing tendency in

modern times

to shift the

center of gravity from the past to the future and
to determine the moral value of an act

sequences rather than by its relation to dent. The justification of a war, for instance,
either be

by its consome prece-



reference to the past or to the future


is, it


be based either upon some supposi-

titious claim

sumed advantage

and violated treaty, or upon the asto one or both parties. This

that in the moral evaluation of an act

be taken into consideration, has been popularly ascribed to the Jesuits, but since they have repeatedly and indignantly denied that it
results should

ever formed part of their teaching,

it is

it is

whether they could claim
ing fashionable.


now when


At any

rate, it is interesting to

note that Wells gave very clear expression to this

pragmatic principle

five years before the publication

"Pragmatism" by James.



hope that Mr. Wells

work out

in detail his

theory of prevision as a motive for morality. We cannot have too many such motives, and it is quite possible that this factor has not been fully recog-

our ethical systems, though I have no doubt that, as is usually the case with discoveries, especially in ethics, the theory is not quite so novel



seems to him.

In the meantime,



call his attention to

two weak points
in this lecture.

he has sketched
of the


argument, as He gives as an

two ways of looking at a problem example the old question of whether a bad promise is better
broken or kept.






mind" would regard the "creative mind"

view of future consequences should be disregarded. But I would suggest that,

would say that

as he defines



overriding of im-

mediate and personal considerations out of regard
to something to be attained in the future", the

one who viewed the act most clearly
of the future

in the light

would keep the promise even at the cost of some suffering to himself and others rather
than bring the lack of confidence which results from a violated oath.


also point out that the followers of

are not to be classed so positively with those

dogma who


H. G.








based on the hope of heaven and the

fear of hell




too numerous a class to

be ignored


truly guided




of the future as are those


are working for the

prosperity of the years hence.

"Beyond-Man" some thousand

Jonathan Edwards's
It reads




I. Resolved, That I will do whatsoever I think to be most to God's glory and my own good, profit and without any consideration pleasure, ON THE WHOLE of the time, whether now, or never so many myriads to do whatever I think to be my duty, of ages hence and most for the good and advantage of mankind in whatever difficulties I meet with, how general


many and how

great soever.

highest morality

attained, in



the class which Mr. Wells despises



disregard neither causes nor effects, but

consider every act in the light of both the past and
the future.


this reason


are grateful to


Wells for the light he
his efforts in scientific

giving us on the future


prophecy. Wells defines two divergent types of mind by the relative importance they attach to things past
or things to come.

The former type he



or submissive mind,

"because the business,


he of

the practice and the training of a lawyer dispose

him toward
refer to the



men must most


law made, the right established, the precedent set, and most consistently ignore or con-


the thing that


only seeking to establish


In opposition to this is "the legislative, creative, organizing, masterful type", which is perpetually attacking and altering the established
order of things;

constructive and "interprets

the present and gives value to this or that entirely in relation to things designed or foreseen." The use of the term "legislative" for this latter type is confusing, at least to an American, because unfortunately most of our legislators are lawyers and

have minds of the





"Scientific" would be a better term than "legislative",

because most of our real revolutions in

thought and industry originate in the laboratory. In his "Modern Utopia" Wells introduces a

more complete
Poietic, that

classification of


into (i) the


the creative and original genius,

often erratic or abnormal


the Kinetic, that

the efficient, energetic, "business



(3) the Dull, "the people who never seem to learn thoroughly or hear distinctly or think clearly",



the Base, those deficient in moral sense.


H. G.

of Wells, the Poietic



two categories


Kinetic, correspond roughly to Ostwald's

Romanmen. 1






upon Wells's point of view and
temperaments because

classification of

seems to




gives the clue to his literary work.

voluminous and remarkably varied, yet through all its forms can be traced certain simple leading




unable to

resist the


tion to formulate his favorite




The reaction

of society against a disturbing force.

This certainly


the basic idea of


of his

work and most

of the best of



early and he has repeated

in endless variations


disturbing force


be an individual

of the creative or poietic type,

an overpowering
organization or a





material change in the conditions of



be, the natural inertia of society causes

to resist the foreign influence, to enforce compliance

upon the aberrant individual, or


meet the new




readjustment as possible.

Usually the social organism

successful in over-

powering the intruder or


and on the whole

we must .admit that


advantageous, even
p. 232.


"Major Prophets


[6 3

SIX though it MAJOR PROPHETS sacrifice sometimes does involve the of genius and the retardation of progress. and he could not carry anything in his hands or eat in public. of course. as broken glass becomes invisible He in water. A artistic expression to the same theme is "The Country of the Blind. It is condition would be to the individual. in what situation would he be ? people. to would be naked. how demoralizing such a confer. by a thought of the advantages which personal invisibility would one of the most valued of fairy gifts. But perhaps only Wells has thought of the disadvantages of invisibility. and yet how powerless he would be against the mass of ordinary Assuming that a man had discovered a invisible by altering the refractive become way power of his body. probably. Certainly no one is good enough or wise enough to be trusted with irresponsible power. dogs. So the invisible his man who will is starts to rob and murder at own sweet soon run down by more boys. If it were winter cold he would leave tracks and would catch and sneeze." man tumbled into an isolated valley of given in A young the Andes [64] ." all We have been struck. This is the lesson of "The Invisible Man. and villagers as ignomini- ously as any common thief.

His talk about "seeing" the natives held to be the ravings of a madman and his clumsiness in their dark houses as proof of defective senses. the comparative [6 5 ] . citizen of him. before he is of his hallucinations a simple surgical operation. The stranger thought of the "In the country of the blind the oneeyed man is king". it like the true mathematician. the removal of the two irritable bodies protuberant from his brain. No matter how the story ends. The theme of these parables.H. him to normality. The exceptional man is beaten. he must either conform to the community or leave it. as He was much is at a disadvantage in a is community where everything man in adapted to the sightless as a blind ours. will restore the blind surgeons. G. but allowed to marry her he must be cured . finds his satisfaction in correctly stating a problem. say and make a sane and useful entreaties of his lady love are The added to the coercion of public opinion to induce him to consent. He falls in love with a girl. The true novelist and dramatist. not in working out. but when he tried to demonstrate his superiority he found it impossible. WELLS many generations ago the first where lived a community which had through some hereditary disease lost power of proverb. sight.

type not rare either in history or fiction. where a statesman at the height of his public usefulness is overthrown and banished because he had suc- cumbed code. a mustache with ends he twisted up. but it is. unpromising looking individual. unfortunately. the vulnerable heel of Achilles. little man and had This eyes of a hot brown. for instance. too. however exceptionally endowed. against the coercive force of environ- ment. becomes sud- denly possessed of the power to make anything [66] . very erect red hair. Indeed this may be called the common plot of tragedy from the time when it began to be written. "The New Machiavelli". for example. to selfish passion is and violated the moral the the a Parnell for this model original popularly supposed to be character rather more than Machiavelli. the little defect of character or ability that precipitates the catastrophe." and he was a blatant skeptic. Wells has developed at length in in his novels.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS powerlessness of the individual. In Wells's hands this motive takes most fantastic forms. Could r Work Miracles " . and freckles. " McW hirter Fotheringay "The Man Who his name was George not the sort of name by any means to lead to any expectation of miracles "he was a and he was clerk at Gomshott's" . There was.

Fotheringay lived in Church and since Mr. It brings him and others into all sorts of trouble. a few unconquerable spirits plan the life that mankind must lead under these terrible conditions. is he perhaps knew him personally.H. Wells lives in the same street Row. but octopuscreatures as far above mankind in intellect and command of machinery as we are above the animals. men and women must take to sewers and such like hiding places and wage incessant warfare against overwhelming odds. but they are relieved from [6 7 ] . who are not in the least like those of Du like Maurier or Professor Flournoy. Mr. Nietzsche. G." They feed on human blood and. if humanity is not to perish or become as sheep to these invaders. and only his renunciation of it saves the world from destruction. happen that he wills. In a passage that is to me the most gripping of anything Wells has written. WELLS this but he finds the use of mysterious gift by no means to his advantage. In "The War of Worlds" the earth invaded by Martians. of supermen surpassing the imagination of They stride over the earth in machines impregnable armor and devastate town and country with searchlights projecting rays more destructive than those of radium and much like Bulwer-Lytton's "vril.

Mr. by "The Sea-Lady". men.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS it the necessity of putting interposition of into execution ally in by the form an unexpected the of the most minute of creatures. might be supposed to dominate them. Wells has said that by the sea-lady he meant to symbolize "love as a disturbing passion". where. life. Wells's angel does not is fit into the dis- parish and everybody relieved when he illustrated appears. The men from Mars. but. the ant-like inhabitants of the moon conquer the earthly invaders. are annihilated by one of them. being naturally larger than the lunar people. the reaction of convenis tional society toward the unusual. not being immune to terrestrial diseases. on the contrary." It may be taken to [68] . instead of an angel from the sky. In "The Wonderful Visit" a curate goes out hunting for rare birds and shoots an angel on the wing. we have a mermaid from the ocean brought into the circle of a summer resort. the microbe. tions are reversed in for The formula remains the same although condi"The First Men in the Moon". But the heavenly visitant does not play the Jerome's "The Passing of the Third Floor Back" and transform the character of role of the angel in all he meets. the same theme as "The New Machiavelli. The same idea.

not mind when he wrote. "The Food of the Gods" children is a case in point. Such questions may well be left to the future biographer in it who will take an in- terest Really tracing out the genesis of his thought. G. The what was put into it. If in the of "Anticipations" he more likely had in mind If efficiency or "scientific management. It is not an author's business to explain it what his works mean. makes no difference to the reader. or half a as well." when he was a member of the Fabian Society it doubtless stood for Socialism. for the is essential thing to note that the reaction of society [69] . We are at liberty to disregard if Mr. of course. for seems a bit it. WELLS dozen other things mean that. Wells's In fact interpretation we like. officious attempt How and impertinent little would there be if him to the left of great literature of the world it were reduced to in what the author literally and consciously had value of any work of art depends upon what may be got out of it. These who are fed on " boom-food" (presumably an extract from the pituitary body of the brain) and grow to gianthood may be taken to represent any new transforming conceived in it force.H. If the story was Wells's earlier days he may have days meant by the power of science.

but I have little doubt that the psycholiterature I have little logical substance of it existed in fact. He would enlarge on the subtle modernity . p. the government attempted to segregate them. K. 85. considered Jack a narrow and parochial person who wished to frustrate a great forward movement of the life-force. finding no compromise possible.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS is toward any unprecedented factor race the same. gigantic was growing up aroused at first a certain sen- sational interest. That in various parts of the country a new and down. he would point out the happened elementary maxim which declares them to be better than one. [70] . 1 "Heretics". but meant its overthrow. determined to exterminate them. Chesterton. by G. realized that the giants could not be adapted to the existing social structure. doubt that the giant whom Jack killed did regard It is likely enough that he himself as the Superman. and there could be no doubt as to the issue. If (as not infrequently was the case) he to have two heads. but this soon died People became accustomed to seeing the giant boys and Later as it was girls and even set them at work. been done before in giant. I think. Chesterton says * : "The Food of the Gods" is the tale of "Jack the Giant-Killer" told from the point of view of the This has not. and at length. This brings about a duel to the death between the and limit little race and the big.

self with promptitude. of the principle of one man one head. WELLS of such an equipment. he is Being a man of a determinist but not a If All his prophecies are conditional. a giant who was any good to us. giant What were the giant's religious views . scientific fatalist. G. and the former will be master." If the engineer and business manager get control we shall have the . and one man one conscience. of the enduring human Nothing could better illustrate the difference in standpoint between Chesterton and Wells than The sympathies of Wells are undoubtedly with the giants. the gulf between industrial and parasitic classes keeps on widening there will eventually be two races. this is the lesson of "The Time Machine. was his heart in the right place ? Jack had sometimes to cut him up with a sword in order to find out. or to correct him- But Jack was the champion standards. what his views on politics and the duties of the citizen ? Was he fond of children or fond of them only in a dark and sinister sense ? To use a fine phrase for emotional sanity. fident of their ultimate triumph. All he wished to know was whether he was a good that is. whether the giant was a particularly gigantic giant. training. with the new forces that aim to transform the world. though he is not always conthis. of the single head and the single heart and the single Jack was quite unimpressed by the question of eye.H. enabling a giant to look at a subject from two points of view.

" If shall have the Great State. by H. the swishing across the . earth of a comet's tail. Century Company. between allurements and warnings. which is a little gem tone. G. and the history is told by a man is more foreign to us than the Martian.SIX well MAJOR PROPHETS we "Anticipations. citizen for he a of the new civilization that followed the "Great Change. Wells. in its "The Star". so the in two stories their common now he writes for a purresemble each other only theme. cidedly benefited. of ordered prosperity Socialism prevails His stories of the future are about equally divided between optimistic and pessimistic prophecy." been effected in A wonderful transformation had its our atmosphere by mingling "In the Days of the Comet". Wells for pleasure was writing pose. "In the Days of the Comet" 1 he uses again the mechanism of the most artistic of his earlier short stories. In the former tale the in event was viewed by a to his man Mars who reported little life fellow scientists that the earth was damaged. for the destruction of all on it was too insignificant an event to be noticed at that In the present book the earth was dedistance. way without a superfluous word or a false But those were the days when Mr. New York: The [72] .

indeed. none at would work well enough under these conditions. . The inert nitrogen of the air had been changed to some life-giving. for conceding. or. Mr. at the outset.H. Wells's l73l . because any social machinery. As an argument it for Socialism weak one. WELLS with the cometary gases. it would be unfair to the author to infer that this was nitrous oxid. all. that you will away the case by main objection of the have to change human gives nature before Socialism becomes possible. for correlative truths. It would also be unnecessary. and that individuals are influence the character of institutions. The difficulty is to devise any changes that will make it work better with people as they are. nobody denies. social institutions influence the character of individuals. G. Of course. the conservative." Under its influence the inhabitants of the earth perceive the evils of our present regime and realize that they are mostly avoidable if everybody had good intentions it is and good a very sense. That better people than we would be able to make for That themselves better ways of living. if all men were well-meaning and wise Socialism would be practical. clarifying. more familiarly known as "laughing gas. but it is difficult most people to keep them collectivist conversion both in mind. and stimulating gas .

he would probably class all the evils of of our daily life. That war [74] also an example of . silliness. But long ago it was said that against stupidity even the gods fight in vain. But. while the former purely hypothetical. even by relatives. will and it remains to be seen whether Socialists succeed better. Wells and a scientist civilization under stupidity. and wastefulness is an artist by nature and by training. Mr. There are several things owned by our neighbors. but to assist making it come about by acting on readers as a dose of the "green gas" and opening our eyes to the vulgarity. the object of the book is not to in show how Socialism can come about.SIX by a "green gas" MAJOR PROPHETS is much the same thing as individinfluence. ualist conversion by religious but we know is of instances of the latter. burnings". In fact. which we should like to cast upon the bonfire flames. ugliness and stupidity worry him more than wickedness and injustice. squalor. attractive pages of the book to me are that describe "the festival of the rubbish The most those though Wells does not improve upon Washington Irving' s treatment of the same theme. of course. But we are afraid to light the lest the neighbors should burn up some is of our treasures.

the deadly weapons years later Wells's Eight worst forebodings came to pass. Ox's Experi- ment". to stop a we do not understand. The is young English workingman who infuriated tells the story against the young aristocrat who had [75] . G. we agree. in their but no "green gas" came to clear the But the particular passion that Wells is would sweep away by the breath of his comet one which. maintenance of morality. but just altogether until the rest of the world comes to our opinion. it seemed incredible to them that they should have sought other for such trivial and to kill each Jules remote causes. and as soon as they are out of the con- taminated atmosphere they look at in bewilderment hands. in Verne has a similar scene "Dr. that is. but soon as the eyes of the combatants and the "statesmen" who had instigated it were opened. WELLS how to prevent human it stupidity. air of hate. and their anger quenched. in many were engaged when as bombarding each other the renovating comet struck the earth. is necessary to the jealousy. in the opinion of most people. but in that case the gas acts in the opposite way to excite the sluggish inhabitants of a peaceful Flemish village to make war against the neighboring village.H. It takes two The fleets of England and Gerquarrel.

for thinking that. Wells is quite right in supposing that a sudden release of the vast stores of energy hidden in the atom would find civilization [76] . wrote a romance of the atom. describing the Great War months before it happened. is whether we wish it or not. Then seduced his sweetheart and he is content to share her affections with his former and they all lived together happily ever after. Wells would be the We to exploit this new territory annexed to human knowledge. also first might have known that H. In his works on Socialism Wells gives his reasons rival.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS is pursuing them with a revolver when the "Great Change" comes. Our sleepy earth has been caught napping by every great change that has thus far reached humanity. G. and that only under ism. the Socialfor in- family disintegrating. for he has always kept an eye on scientific progress even while seemingly engrossed in So he British politics and marriage problems. We might have known that the as soon as science discovered new world inside the atom the story-writer would follow close behind. "The World Set Free". can better relations be established. which will insure a support sufficient dependence to both men and women. and probably Mr.

Wells has the tion of alertest literary imagina- any modern writer. Wells to throw overentirely board the conventional novel plot make vivid a hero of the cosmic energies.H. anarchy and in a general social But while the "war l77l the air" meant the . the significance of the new physics has not escaped him as it has the com- mon plots run of novelists intently searching for good and neglecting entirely the rich ore awaiting any writer who happened to have an elementary knowledge of modern science. Many short stories and one or two novels have introduced more or less accurate accounts of radium as a side-show to a love story or an incident in a detective tale. appalling power for destruction and attack in the hands of every nation. it But and required the boldness of Mr. resulting collapse of credit. together with complete incapacity for defense by any nation. and intellectual results of the new energies in industry as it was for the effects of the great industrial revolu- which followed the introduction of steam power not much more than a century ago. "The World Air" in its Set Free" resembles "The War in the account of world-wide war. tion But Mr. political. debacle. G. as WELLS economic. panic. nations armed with novel weapons and forces. unprepared for the social. the starvation.

and a successful reorganization of society in which the forces which had been used by nations and empires to conquer each other are directed to the task of subduing nature to human the aims. artistic decora- tion.. hinted at rather than described. Wells from the numerous other Utopias that. has given the inhabitants of this Utopia an advantage over all previous Utopias. the in the present book peace. "The World discovery. They have energy at their command air. in short. the foundation of a world under a provisional government. and scientific research. whereas the world states of "Anticipations". whole world becomes a is and everybody life free to devote his life to gardening. the could be brought about by nothing more than taking the author's advice on politics. Like the reconstructed world of "In the Days of Comet" the future state is very faintly depicted. Country becomes [78] . the leisure class. and social customs.SIX end of MAJOR PROPHETS war with "atomic bombs" state results in a general treaty of civilization. almost as freely accessible as water or and so the labor question is annihilated. "A Days of the Comet". law. economics. Set Free" depends upon scientific A new hypothesis." of It differs in "The World Set Mr. in Free. "In etc. Modern Utopia".

" said the King. and less arithmetical neither my family nor your emancipated people. a WELLS agriculturist constant delight. [79] . "is the new king of the world. "is that sovereignty resides with the people. G. was and sensible . A scrap of between the conversation President of the United States and King Egbert. tentious professions cease to be an honorable em- The "Con- ployment for men." "Our view." of the World. proportional representa- with an equal vote .H. man and woman and those he wishes recalled callable . fifty . will "Science. The Parliament simple which came into existence after the atomic explosions of 1950. new representatives elected every five years tion ." "No. It is some." the King cried presently. a representative re- him. each voter putting election for life subject to recall of those he wishes elected his ballot the names on every . by But as many votes as the quota that elected political much the in this machinery does not count for most modern of Utopias. lawyer follows the warrior into extinction. "the sovereign is a being more subtle than that. The shrinks to less than one per cent of the population. "the young king of the illustrate the point of most venerable kingdom view : in Europe"." said the President.

But naturally carolinum in war. The new aires of all of us the discovery of . A few bombs of this radioactive of it element dropped from aeroplanes demolish Paris and Berlin and throw the world into a chaos of [80] . carolinum. and of its since. It is the mind of the race. incidentally. also discovered on paper a few years ago. seventeen days. The agency which effects this transformation is how to release the internal energy of the atom. This exhaustless supply of energy being utilized in maone gold. It is that which has brought us here.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS thing that floats about us and above us and through It is that common impersonal will and sense of necessity of which science is the best understood and most typical aspect. Wells. disintegrating is according to Mr. chinery sets free the laborer and swells the of the of the army unemployed by-products . finds speedy employment soil A bomb of it buried in the half becomes a exploding every perpetual volcano. which has bowed us all to its demands. which we now know exists." us. an element that Professor Baskerville element. is decomposition the financial systems of the world go to smash. Since wealth is essentially nothing but energy this means that we have within reach enough to make multi-milliona tantalizing thought. although we do not know how to get at it.

surroundings. The value terest. Every scrap of solid matter in the . with its its flashlight visions. where decay is still so slow as to escape our finest measurements. and its confusion. which Wells's characteristic style. Unfortunately we have to depend either that of the present or of upon the sunshine. WELLS tumultuous phrases. Radium gives out its . lies in romance. its shifting points of view. aside from its inthe emphatic way in which it teaches of this is the lesson that civilization primarily a matter of is the utilization of natural energy and in horse measurable power. its air as at the temperature of a little always keeping itself hotter than be. energy without haste or rest. G. however Wells hot these may If only we could but get at this let source of ex- haustless energy : say what that would mean Not only should we have a source of power so potent that a man might carry in his hand the energy to light a city for a year. just as fast at the temperature of liquid liquid iron. is particularly adapted to depict. alternations of general- ization and detail.H. fight a fleet of battleships or drive one of our giant liners across the Atlantic but we should also have a clue that would enable us at last to quicken the process of disintegration in all the other elements. ure-house of the carboniferous era the we have no key to the treasatom. [81] .

a flare on the crest of the volcano. He knew it then only as a strange thing utterly beyond his control. we discover suddenly the possibility of an entirely new civilization. Man will step from the pinnacle of this civilization to the beginning of the next. and with which Nature supplies us still so grudgingly. first discovery that lifted man above the brute. The energy we need for our very existence. This led him to a realization of the importance of In "Mankind eugenics long before the fad came in. is in reality locked up in inconceivable cannot pick that lock quantities all about us. So it is that we know radio-activity This this is the dawn of a new day in to-day. at present. MAJOR PROPHETS world would become an available reservoir of con- would mean a change in human conditions can only compare to the discovery of fire. that perpetual struggle to live on the bare surplus of Nature's energies will cease to be the lot of Man." [82] . apparent that our ever-increasing needs cannot be borne indefinitely by our present sources of energy. 1 The World Set Free. At the climax of that civilization which had its beginning in the hammered flint and the fire-stick of the savage. all appraising things by what shall come out of them. but Then that perpetual struggle for existence.SIX centrated force. We stand to-day toward radio-activity exactly as our ancestor stood toward fire before he had learnt It that that I make it. 1 We Wells is a futurist in the true sense of the word. human living. a red destruction that poured through the forest. just when it is becoming to .

G. or state. "Anticipations" he suggested as future possibilities inventions and practices that were then familiar to us in this counSo. try. but there [8 3 ] . world on scientific he excited same popular interest that any guess at coming events arouses. too.H. he doesn't look sharp he will find himself an his- torian instead. Wells shows a characHe condemns certain obvious teristic timidity. but in several respects legislation in America has already gone beyond what he ten years ago considered possible. it But when dysgenic measures. comes to practical measures for securing these advantages. If in his It is hard for a man nowadays to be a prophet. as it conduces more or less to wholesome and hopeful births and according to the qualitative and quantitative advance due to its influence toward a higher and ampler standard of life. prophet and G. Wells in his in 1902 essayed the role of entitled "Anticipations" volume the tried to forecast the future of the principles. in WELLS civili- the Making" he formulated his test of : zation in these words human enterprise. Any collective is party. to be judged as a whole and completely. When H. such as the action of school boards in imposing celibacy upon women teachers. institution.

pub- . of warfare between military and civilian His discussion of the new forms and the inadequacy of the old methods of management and training is full of warnings which it were well for his country to have heeded. reading. 1915. . and the abolition the parts of a nation. and we that Wells's chief mistake lay in putting his forecast . for instance. The first column is quoted from "Anticipations". see were few who took him seriously. "Anticipations" makes very Much of it has already come too far ahead is interesting to pass. in The chapter on war the development of trench warfare. when he . published fifteen years ago. says that he very probably before 1950 a successful aeroplane will have soared and come home safe and sound. the substitution of the of machine gun distinction for the rifle. "inclined to believe that "Anticipations" shows astonishing power of prescience in what he says of the use of the submarine and armored automobile.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS Now. This is shown if we compare that feeling passage in which he describes a future British army setting out to meet a scientifically organized foe with an actual battle on the Artois field as seen from the German side. The second column is taken from Kellermann's picture of the battle of Loos. September [84] 22." . however.

their mothers have mingled respect we saw for the gentlefolk with the simple doctrines of their faith. "The Tunnel". their first lesson on entering the army was the salute. for he has won battles in the old time. Bernard Kellermann. And the column looks at him lovingly with its countless boys' faces. They made 1915 seem to see. his spurs and his sword riding along on his obsolete horse. called Hill 70). chose for them lie hotly English artillery come riding in the up open quite broad of day under the naked heavens ! These bat- teries carried bridge materials with them for the crossing of trenches and natural obstacles. him and his class. A hail of shells that churned up the ground was supposed to smooth the way for the storming columns. almost as if he were symbolic. the altogether too elderly the essay with absolutely new. THE PROPHECY. and the boys' eyes are infinitely trustful. It was something really un- general with his epaulettes and decorations. the gray old general the general who learned his art of war away in the vanished nineteenth century. Above all things he is a gentleman. advancing toward our in dense masses. I 1902 THE FULFILLMENT. G. positions eight lines deep in echelon from Loos. dealing with a submarine passage to Europe. one of the most brilliant of the younger writers of Germany. by the side of his heard of! Our staff officers stood and regarded it their mouths open in astonishment. will believe in him to the They have been brought their schools to believe up in in At the same time. It was observed. absolutely antactics tactics tiquated which are no longer recognized in this war. is well known in America through his novel. They end. or some such unqualified person. The on their young brows. that the fore English were doomed column. his uniform that has still its historical value. lished in the Continental WELLS Times of Berlin. The "smart" helmets His Majesty. shortly benoon. and English general we caught describes this action as one ] [8 5 . to the east of Loos (there is a bit of rising ground there scarcely noticeable as you drive over it in a wagon.H.

Tramp. But there was more to come. one or two English cavalry regiments were visible Dragoons of the Guard. tramp. They carried commands of their that concerns the realities of life. at least only harmlessly veneered with the thinnest sham of training or knowledge. wounds and disease. with admirable bravoure. of They know nothing what they are going to meet. if not untainted. the very cream of the crop." obsolete. a stranger even in habits of speech and thought. which had come limping along fifty years behind the times ! Generals in our day grow obsolete as rapidly as inventions and sciences. should have been consigned to relay stations by the English. hunger. they go. out the ties. ignorant of how to get food. In the distance. The war has taught us that the blood of nations. religion and the rate-payer and the rights of the parent working through the instrumentality of the best club in the world have kept their souls and minds. they march. as ill-taught as they are in all quarrel beside by men unseen. Those old celebof theirs. And The English troops carried out their attack with a splendid gesture. badly armed. to be killed in some avoidable who will an absolute them. ! hardship. how mortars. is to be entrusted only to the freshest. carelessly- was especially "sportThere can be no doubt its sighted guns.SIX over their their MAJOR PROPHETS slope shoulders that ing. nothing of what they will have to do. share-holding class a slightly taller sort of boy. the most gifted of military spirits. rities staggering under their orders. Eight lines of infantry ? Artillery driving across the open ? Cavalry in the background ? It was really unbelievable It was the plan of a veritable pitched battle from a forgotten age. stranger to them. trustful to and marching pitiful. telephones and ma- [86] . and death. rejoicing patriotically in the nation that has thus sent them forth. boys never be men. tramp. doing what they have been told to do. badly clothed. about dashing quality. badly led. the masterly idea of a senile brain. and at any rate to be shot with them fairly and squarely. incapable of doing anything they have not been told to do. Tramp. the incalculably precious blood. They were young and they bore no orders on their uniforms. celebrated and senile authoricarried them out with a in this day of blind courage how to get water. on the level plain. marches the subthe son of the schoolaltern burking. the most elastic.

I cannot foresee what such a force will even attempt to do against modern weapons. nothing they can do. play cricket rather nicely. whenever they come against a sanely organized there is machine-guns. cover their line of retreat and force them into wholesale surrenders. Fresh reserves came running up and were mown down in the cross-fire of our machine-guns. and avoid talking "shop. Nothing can happen but the needless and most wasteful and pitiful killing of these in this vision that poor lads. The English knights and baronets had not reckoned with this. and his doomed column march by. believe in his gentility. The regiments of cavalry that were waiting in the The batteries There is army. ready to come dashing through. got salvoes of the heaviest shells their faces. as As magnificent was pitiful their bearing. haunts my mind. They too came within the zone of the machine-guns. attack broke to pieces in front of our wire entanglements." WELLS chine-guns. ten steps. carefully trained under a clerical headmaster to use a crib. look all right whatever happens. G. Those riding batteries came to a miserable end. A prodigious number of their dead before our lay trenches. had made 800 finished And the and crudest things will have to happen. It will be more like herding sheep than actual Yet the bitterest fighting. and our heavy mortars. and to keep fever down strength up. notified by telephone. who make up the infantry battalions. even so was the collapse of their onslaught. That the pitched battle. full in The scattered. and fifteen At a conservative [8 7 . got hold of them so swiftly and so thoroughly. thousands and thousands of poor boys will be smashed in all sorts of We prisoners. four officers. ] among them a colo- majors. that they were not even given time to unlimber.H. Before the eightfold storming columns had been able to make under rifles. the main mass of all the European armies of to-day. invisible marksmen with their supporting guns will shatter their masses. nel. pick them off individually. cannon. nowhere they can come in. they came fire our combined So the gentlemanly old the polished drover general to the shambles rides. were lying in wait and they obeyed the telephone. ignorant of his practical equality with the men beside him. background. and drew back without having drawn a blade from the scabbard.

Czolbe in 1875 brought forward the theory (see Miiller. November. Wilson and G. 106). Lewis. 1912. apart from a small local success. first hit with "The Time Maidea written under high pressure of the within a fortnight by keeping at his desk almost continuously from nine in the morning to eleven at night. in them. Our or- dinary Euclidean or three dimensional space would thus be a crosssection at a time. dreadful ways and given over to every conceivable form of avoidable hardship and painful disease before the obvious fact that war is no longer a business for half-trained lads the losses of the English in this single section of the division. He could not. may be fixed in dead and wounded as at uniform. it into their ether and to new theory make mass certain Lorentz. that.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS estimate. will get its practical 1 recognition. XVII. dependent on velocity.) Heinrich Relativity". least pleasure and old men. for all his prophetic powers. it had been a disastrous job for the Britishers. in Proceedings of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Archiv fur systematische Philosophie. N. but an exhaustive demand upon very carefully educated adults for the most strenuous best that is Never before has it been so clearly proved that war is not a sport for a dozen or two of 3 privileged dilettantes." From Kellermann's account of It the Battle of Loos. (See "The Time-Space Manifold of by Edwin B. Wells made his chine". Einstein and Minkowski have incorporated of relativity which threatens to abolish the a variable. It is based upon the theory that time of 3 is a fourth dimension 1 2 space. have foreseen the important part it was to play in scientific thought and metaphysical speculation in the 8 coming century. p.000. and Lotze discusses it in his [88] . at any rate. and by a suitable From Wells's "Anticipations. led by parson-bred sixth-form boys and men of in It was clear 20. would be interesting to learn where Wells happened to get hold of the idea that time is the fourth dimension of reality and how much he knew then of the history of the conception.

Being a First Selection from the Literary Remains of George Boon.) [89] . Professor Pitkin of Columbia criticizes Wells's time-machine from the metaphysical standpoint in "Time and Pure Activity" (Journal Philosophy.H. partly in prospect. and The Last Trump. Prepared for Publication with an Ambiguous Introduction by H. as please." (Doran. invention one WELLS back and forth along that line. So not surprising that the book l which purports to have been written by one "George Boon" and compiled by one "Reginald Bliss" shows Wellsian "Microcosmos. Appropriate to the Times." "The New Machia- velli". The Mind of the Race. Wells. by Reginald Bliss. Psychology and Vol. of a masked ball is that it enables people to do and say what they effect. ^'Boon. He uses it still in may travel his novels. though some readers are dizzied by The charm it. pro- ducing thereby a remarkable effect of the perpetual contemporaneity of existence. and "The Passionate Friends". ii." Bergson's philosophy is based upon the distinction he draws between psychological duration and the physical treatment of time as a kind of space. flying back and forth most mystifying manner. in "Tono-Bungay. in short to reveal themselves because their faces are concealed. G. G. Scientific Methods. 1915. No. Having once got his seat in his time-machine Wells has never abandoned it. 19). The Wild Asses of the Devil. in the telling the story partly in retrospect. Anonymity has the same "Currer Bell" to it is many a name from "Fiona McLeod" attests.

His mind is quick to change. is an instance of in this this.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS characteristics more pronounced than any of the volumes of which H. He is liable to be disconcerted by a sudden vision of an opposing view. The framework of "The Modern Utopia" times hard to speaking. Wells is fond of putting a story inside of a story. For one thing Wells obviously likes to start things better than to finish them. Wells owns authorship. but he hates to develop them. too. Sometimes in the middle of a sentence he will be seized with a He delights in doubt of what he [90] is saying. are confusing." Then. He is apt to run out of breath before he and he gets his some other kind of wind. much taking such snapshots. like the Arabian Nights. "I wish I had this thing off my hands so I could get at that new idea of mine. G. It is someis tell where we are or who Wells is inimitable in his ability to sketch a char- acter in a few swift strokes. to borrow a cinema phrase. and it often happens that the "flash-backs". and being . second wind it is likely to be In most of his books except the short stories the reader feels that the author is saying to himself. if comes to the end of a novel. but he does not care for the character afterward.

and other incongruous faults or combinations of style and thought. Boon. at the World Conference on the Mind of the Race. his track like a hunted fox within the compass of a single volume. First Mr. He has given big and little. who then introduces Mr. Perhaps the best of these is an imaginary conversation between Henry James and . me the honor of a seat on a special committee of S. The volume ever he is illustrated by the author who- may be but the best caricatures are not the graphic but the verbal ones with their amusing parodies of style. given to mixing realistic description with is Finally. a famous author deceased. call like. Now all these peculiarities. He is recondite symbolism. Bliss. them merits as you are to be found intensified in "Boon" Etc. Wells raries. fond of satirizing his contempoincluding his best friends and his former selves. WELLS an honest man. the scientific measurement of literary greatness. and tells how they together invented Mr.H. Wells introduces Mr. Hallery. desultory argumentation with extraneous personalities. he leaves it in air rather than finish He may double on it after he has lost confidence. G. who introduces a host of living writers. Section devoted to Poiometry. known and unknown.

he expresses great contempt Bergson and his "Pragmatism for Ladies." for "ignor- not long ago. he was contemptuous of "Doctor ing Bergson and fulminating a preposterous insular Pragmatism." Much of the volume was manifestly written [92] in . Boon used to declare that every night Dodd looked under his bed for the Deity. saying suspiciously: "Here." But Quiller [Schiller] of Oxford.SIX George Moore. anonymity is that Wells can contradict himself with even more freedom than of usual. in "Marriage". a militant agnostic. although recognize is : Dodd is a leading member of the Rationalist Press Association. and a dear compact man. Here's the MAJOR PROPHETS in which both gentlemen pursue entirely independent trains of thought. as though. having been at great cost and pains to banish God from the Universe. sketch of "Dodd. He has constituted himself a sort of alert customs officer of a materialistic age. one of those Middle Victorians who go about with a preoccupied. caulking air. they were resolved not to permit Him back on any terms whatever. for One advantage For instance. and slept with a large revolver under his pillow for fear of a revelation." We we do not know who Dodd him. now. what's this rapping under the table here?" and examining every proposition to see that the Creator wasn't being smuggled back under some specious new generalization.

WELLS the calm days before the war. and followed his mind through all l93l . He is. No! War There are many different Wellses. does not like of himselves. We shall it. that the Wild Asses are the instruments of Providence kicking better than we know ? It is all evil. civilization will have to begin all over again. but we shall be dead beat in doing Boon. so to speak. Probably all nobody likes all of them. almost apologetic. The Wild Asses of the Devil are loose and there is no What is the good of pretending restraining them.H. and looks back upon the author with a curious wonder as to how he came to hold such opinions and express them in such a way." beat says them. and he rejects all suggestions that it may be a good thing in the end : is just the killing of things and the of And when it is all over. Those of us who have grown up with him. They will have to begin lower down and against a heavier load and the days of our jesting are done. G. Evil. "It is like a dying man strangling a robber in his death grip. but the fragment entitled "The Wild Asses of the Devil" expresses in fantastic guise his and the world's confusion and despair at the catastrophe which has overwhelmed the human race. then smashing things. ferring to In writing a preface or otherwise re- an earlier work he after the manner of Maeterlinck.

a sense of humor. trained under Huxley in biology at the University of London. stand him better. When he began to write I was ready to read and to admire the skill with which he utilized for literary purposes the wealth of material to be found in the laboratory. my age. But Wells. He could handle technicalities with a far defter touch than Verne and almost rivaled Poe in the evocation of tery. Wells is just about I believe. a keen appreciation of the whimsicalities of human nature. We were in the laboratory together and breathed the same atmosphere. clumsily but with great Poe had done marvels in the short story with such scanty science as he had at his command. in the art of writing. had to all this new knowledge draw upon. although five thousand miles apart. rich vein. As he became more experienced marketing manu[94] he seems to have regretted this youthful . emotions of horror and mysBesides this he possessed what both these authors lacked. or rather of scripts. Jules Verne had worked the same success. Mr.SIX its MAJOR PROPHETS in their natural order metamorphoses can under- than those of the younger generation who begin with the current serial and read his works backward. So he was enabled to throw off in the early nineties a swift succession of short stories astonishingly varied in style and theme.

of Dream for "Doctor Moreau Explains. Italian was in the back room of a restaurant in New York. I believe. "The Star" that first atwas "The Sea-Lady" who It introduced me to him little personally. appeared 1895. first "The Island of Dr. so I will always hold that nothing Wells has done since can equal it. WELLS Many of prodigality of bright ideas. them he later worked over on lurgist goes a more extensive scale as the metal- process extracts back to a mine and with an improved more gold from the tailings and dump than the miner got out of the ore originally. served in large part two later "When the Sleeper Wakes" and 'The tracted New Machiavelli." "The Armageddon". January. brief sketch. as a in the Saturday Review. It me to Wells. Moreau". G. vivid and swift as a landvolumes. Certainly was not improved by expanding it to "In the Days of the Comet. "The Star" was the first of these I came across. scape under a flash of lightning. as I have said. one of those sixty-cent table d'hotes where rich soup and huge haystacks of spaghetti serve to conceal the meagerness of the other five courses. [95] ." The germ of that creepy tale of advanced vivisection.H." It was. clipping it for my scrap book from Harper's Weekly. First loves in literature make an it indelible impression.

Mr. rather short. as I One evening some all came late to the dinner. I judged from his accent Then I was introduced to him introduction as "The man who knows revenge for all your works by heart. Wells. and others of less definable types. partly because the outcome of such a combination of diverse factors was highly probten years lematical. but disagreeing agreeably as to where the fulcrum could be placed and what power should move the the lever. a quiet. is because he is such a bore. but concentrated their attention upon a guest. We called ourselves "X Club". and was let off from any [96] . tired eyes. I noticed that the members were not talking at once.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS Here foregathered for years a group of Socialists. partly perhaps in emulation of the cele- brated London X. unassuming individual. Wells appeared to take the introduction and began to examine me on the subject. "Beware the man of one book". The reason. and a pessimistic mustache a Londoner. alike in holding the belief that the world could be moved and ought to be. as usual. with a sun- browned face. sup- pose." ing This disconcert- was their my I too frequent quotation in debate. "Did you ever read 'The Sea-Lady'?" I happily literally was able to say I had. ago. Mr. near-Socialists. for the old saying.

smoke permitting. "The Future America". On the other side of the [97] . Shaw. for he said that he had never met but two persons before who admitted having I am glad he did not ask me what read the book. the ward by improvising a drama star role being taken by his wife. a dozen young entertained. Then we turned criticized his the tables on Mr. it it meant. this time a jolly evening at his home. WELLS further questions. for while I had an opinion on the subject. G. and." Five years later I had another glimpse of Mr. Wells. the Surrey hills beyond. whom I had seen a few days before marching in the great suffrage procession. he expressed disappointment at not finding in Washington any "such mentally vigorous in discussion centers as the New York X Club. London from Mr. which the suggestion of Mr. afterfor the occasion. all of which he took very good- naturedly and was apparently not displeased thereby. might not have agreed with his. Wells's home in differs having a view and a park.H. he bought at by playing on the pianola. the shipping in the most London houses Thames. The back windows look over all the sea of houses. since in the book about his trip. where he kept his guests. Wells and for the rest of the evening asked him questions and views . first men and women.

"Kipps". though we have sponds. which serves Mr. Kent. to be devoted to that conspicuous feature of modern life. his love of outdoor life Joseph Wells. who was a professional cricketer and the son of the head gardener of Lord de Lisle at Penhurst Castle. Wells for his long walks. the first. Polly".SIX MAJOR PROPHETS house five minutes' walk uphill brings one to Hampstead Heath. and his childhood impressions of his mother's kitchen and his father's garden and shop he has described in "First and Last Things" " and in "Tono-Bungay. in our language. as in again and again. the patent medicine. for example. But to untangle the [93] autobiographical threads from the purely fictional . Mr. In this novel. Herbert George Wells was born in Bromley. as we would ant say. and "The Wheels Chance". a drug clerk. Wells perhaps got from his father. 1866. in Kent. he has utilized his brief experience as a chemist's apprentice. always with bitter- of "Mr. September 21. for he recurs to ness. perhaps. the largest of London's public places. attempt was made to train Next an unsuccessful him as a draper's assist- a dry goods clerk. or. fortunately nothing that exactly correhumiliations of this The hardships and it experience seem to have cut deep into his soul. His mother was the daughter of an innkeeper at Midhurst.



too dogmatic and strait-laced for him. the first to mar picture by admitting a rebel. G. but as is sible substitute. but even the Fabians. mental or physical. like he vibrates continually an electrified pith ball. coward- incompetency. blind. dirt. Wells is a Socialist. antagonistic individYet we uality. l99l .H. inconvenience of households. Set between these antipathetic poles. has a horror of waste. cruelty. vagueness of mind. a spirit that continually denies. in WELLS some future Wells's novels would be to cheat candidate for a Ph. He skeptical of cosmos. But yet his ineradicable realization of the concrete will not allow him to escape from these disagreeables by taking refuge in such artificial paradises as Fourier's phalanx or Morris' idyllic anarchism. war. and which we live. perfected civilization logical. The interesting point to observe ment and training have combined inefficient state of society in is that tempera- to give him on and on and posa the one hand a hatred of this muddled. a permanently irreconcilable. usually suggested detests chaos. the other a distrust of the orderly. dissipation of energy. He ice. yet he finds not merely the Marxians. in English literature of his thesis. is. and all friction. His "Modern Utopia" the perfection of its I think. D.

SIX know that if MAJOR PROPHETS is a Utopia to come on earth it must have room for such. Wells saying as Socialist could not seeing and that there Liberals. ignore tints and were intermediate help shades. He professes to view religion rationalistically. make a leader in any popular has the zeal of the reformer. Wells would never movement. many things about the As a Liberal he must admit that the likable Tories have the advantage in several respects. but he has his doubts. an himself lest he may be wrong. Your true party man must be quite color blind. He In the midst of his most eloquent passages he stops. [100] . and. yet there are outbursts of true mysticism to be found in his books. intense desire to prove with an equally intense fear coupled He right has what James defined as the scientific tempera- ment. He has the courage of his convictions. shakes his head. and adds a few words. passages which prove that he has experienced the emotion of personal religion more clearly than many a church member. what's worse. runs in a row of dots. he admits them. hinting at another point of view. but it does not extend much beyond putting them into print. He must see the world in black and white must .

A curious conception was. and announced that they had established the order. discipline . by came to Wells young men and women. selected from the inspiring literature of in spending at least a week of every year in solitude absolute spiritual the wilderness of as a sort of retreat and restorative it self-reliance. a combination of St. he would inaugurate his "Modern Utopia" or any other of his visions. and expected him to become their leader. an order of voluntary noblemen wearing . ruling the republic. if he were given autocratic power. submitting to . of Fourier and of Bacon's Salomon's House. Puritanism and Bushido. At least he has hitherto re- sisted all efforts to induce effect. the ruling caste. instead of which Wells gave priggishness them a lecture on the sin of and sent them about their business. a distinctive dress having a bible of their all own ages . him to carry them into For instance. One day inspired a group of ardent this ideal. Francis. WELLS I doubt whether. G. Plato's philosophers and Cecil Rhodes's secret order of millionaires ruling the world. or at least to give them his blessing. they had be- come Samurai.H. lioi] . one of the most original and esting features of his inter- "Modern Utopia" was a peculiar the Samurai.



have no doubt he was right about

nor does his

disapproval of this premature attempt to incorporate the Samurai in London prove that there was

not something worth while in the idea.
that Wells




knew what


work was

in the

and proposed to
other Utopians

stick to


differing therein


Edward Bellamy, who because

fantastic romance,

"Looking Backward", happened
in trying to

to strike


spent the rest of his



means of

clubs, papers,

who wasted

by and parties; Dr. Hertzka, substance in efforts to found a real


Freeland on the steppes of Kilimanjaro, Africa. Perhaps the matter with Wells is simply that he

cannot can find



proper Wells has


Perhaps I sympathy with any


orthodox Tory

regnant to-day. The in his view simply a man without

The orthodox





sentimentalist substituting democratic phrases for





touching Wells at some points, repels him by his



military expenditure




The Socialist or Labor Party man narrow and totally unimpressed with appallingly the need for intelligence to rule the State. In
race prejudice.


H. G.

the hero hovers distressof

"The New Machiavelli"
fully over the entire


politics, finding

as little rest for his soul as

Noah's dove on the

from the ark found

for its feet.

Once and once

only has Wells's ideal found even partial embodi-

ment, and that was

in the best

days of the


Empire. There was the Great State


the familiar capital

a world




the world was

known and


There was a universal lanThere was freedom and

guage, exact and lucid.

security of travel, at least as great as in those




True, Wells



approved of slavery.


so did the Stoics of the

Empire disapprove of slavery, at least in theory. Their ideal was a universal citizenship. In the later Empire every freeman in the Roman Empire was called a citizen. There was tolerance, not only of
but of manners, such as the narrow and parochial States of Western Europe which succeeded


have never known


within a hundred





devotion to the

State a cult.

There were the


examples of

duty and discipline and scientific warfare, and yet a few thousands of troops sufficed to police and guard
a whole civilized, wealthy, complex world state.




But most important
Based on

was the

Roman Law.

logical principles

divested of superstitious


irrational taboos

universal and in

the main equitable; raised above the Empire and

immediacies of politics till it seemed the voice of nature itself; flexible and changing, but by growth rather than whim, it was the intellecthe


tual fabric of the Empire.

It so

happened that a

despotic Emperor wielded the power of state, but still it was the State and not the mere person of the Emperor that was really reverenced. It was certainly not the


or the artist that was divine in

Nero, but the





decadent and

Byzantine days traces of the old ideal remained, and " it was not Charles Richard Henry Etcetera, by the

Grace of God King of Anyland, Duke of Somewherelse, Knight of the Golden Spur, Most Reverend

Lord of the Free

Cities of

Lower Ruritania"

in the


(and modern) style, but "Senatus

Populusque Romani" and "Res


medieval Papacy was as universal in structure, but was obscurantist in basis, and left behind it as a
legacy the


of the crusades

and the monas-

and great cathedrals as its monuments. The Roman Empire was rationalist in basis, and left




aqueducts, baths,


H. G.




a romantic and rather likes than other-

wise the whimsical eccentricities of

modern national

institutions. But Wells, though he loves to play with science, takes statecraft as seriously as Marcus Aurelius, and, like him, he is a citizen of the Great

The "Modern Utopia" Cosmopolis. might have grown out of the actual Roman Empire had the right turnings been taken from that time to




no other state or


would have formed

its basis.


significance of Wells's

advocacy of Socialism
to the

in the fact that it

addressed to the middle

He might be called "The Apostle Genteels." He took part for a time in the

sive socialistic


lines distinct

campaign led by the Fabian Society from but parallel to the Marxian




The orthodox Marxian

use for middle-class people.





become extinct so shortly that

no use

trying to convert them.


takes no more interest
in the

them than missionaries do



be ground


nether millstones


between the upper and trusts and the unions.

Such individuals who survive

be able to do so

only by becoming retainers of the capitalists, and as




such will be engulfed with them in the revolutionary cataclysm which will end the present era.


a firm faith in this theory,

it is

no wonder

that he often manifests annoyance at the slowness
of the bourgeoisie in carrying out the part assigned


in the



Marxian program. They do not disenough, nor do they show any eagerness

to take sides either with the proletariat or with the


the contrary, they view both with

a certain distrust and antipathy, and maintain a

curious confidence in their ability to

manage both

factions in the future as they have in the past.
short, they are not a negligible quantity,

but hold

the balance of power, at least for the present, and

can retard or accelerate the progress of Socialism to a considerable though an indefinite extent.
Obviously, if the middle class as a whole is to be converted to Socialism, it must be by different








The Manifesto



them, because they have more to lose than their "chains." There must be something more alluring than a universal competency and a steady job to
arouse them to the need of radical changes.






emulation and

ambition rather than hatred and despair.

A man


H. G.


not inclined to vote millionaires out of existence

so long as he cherishes a secret hope of becoming


They do not

see the proletarian papers


would be repelled by them

they did.


form that middle-class

propaganda should take presents several novel and interesting points, but the most conspicuous is his
discussion of the effect of Socialism on family re-

and honesty in bringing that question into the open is in commendable contrast with the tendency of most advocates of Sociallations.



ism to conceal or minimize the fact that any such profound rearrangement of economic relations as is
involved in Socialism must inevitably affect the family, because the economic factor in this institu-

undeniably great, although how great is a matter of dispute. Wells boldly attempts to convert a prejudice into

it is

an argument by appealing to the very classes which, generally supposed, would be repelled by the bare

mention of the subject, to save the family from

impending disintegration by adopting Socialism.

That Wells
of the family


right in thinking that the


a serious one at the present time
statistics collected

shown by the
for the

by Sidney


Fabian Society.



hundred and twenty families reporting in one category. So much other of his conclusion statisticians have deduced. but a direct proof Mr. by any refusal or postponement of marriage. in fact. The average is number and a of children in such limited families one only one third what it was In about sixty per cent of twenty-five years ago. the cases "the poverty of the parents in relation to their standard of comfort" was a cause in the limi- tation of the family. apparently. half. Webb went farther and obtained by the circulation of several hun- dred question blanks The results are among middle-class families. or by any of the effects of "urbanization" or physical deterioration of sections of the community. The statistical evidence points. sex or marital condition of the population. Out of a total of one startling. a large majority of the population.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS That the decline in the birthrate which is depriving England and Wales of at least one-fifth of every year's normal crop of babies is not accounted for by any alteration in the age. This shows how important a factor the increased expense of raising children has become in well-to-do [108] . unmistakably to the existence of a volitional regulation of the marriage state that is now ubiquitous throughout England and Wales among. there were only seven in which the number of children was not intentionally which is limited.

WELLS is and unless the population of the future to be recruited very largely by the improvident. families.H. Wells suggested a differential in- come ment tax. going quite Here he as ex- tremely in radical. Doctor Galton advocated the endowgifted of parents. therefore never could believe in a static state. G. it points toward some form of state encouragement of the production of well- born children. socialistic or other. because the world cannot be divided up into distinct things of convenient size for handling. and debased. ignorant. each done up in a neat package as far and plainly is labeled as formal logic requires. The war has brought Some of this question out of the realm of speculative con- troversy into that of practical necessity. what passes for and he saw clearly that much sound philosophical reasoning is fallacious. Bergson the his anti-intellectualism though attacking subject in a very different way. the remedies proposed now make ten the measures timid suggested by Wells years before seem and conservative. His early training in dynamical physics and evolutionary biology furnished him with the scientific modern the point of view when he entered upon old He of battlegrounds of sociology and metaphysics. He denies the [109] .

second. and that ality classification. third. and published in Mind. can work only by disregarding individuas and treating uniques in this similar objects respect or that. 51." [HP] . 1891." we need to say this true. July. in Book I of "First an appendix to "A Modern and Last Things. second. and. He brings of three charges : against it our Instrument Knowledge identically first." "Of thing true. No. definition. third. in Fortnightly Review. that the sort of reasoning which is that it valid for one level of at another. and. in a paper read to the Oxford Philosophical Society in He an article. and as Utopia". human thought may not work alike. may therefore lead to an erroneous conclusion to a concrete case. No two things are exactly and when we and try to define a class of varied objects we get a term which represents none of them exactly Or. but it is everynot quite What the artist long ago taught us. the scientist has 1 come to be: has given three statements of his views on this point First. can only deal freely with negative terms by treating them as though they were positive. "Rediscovery of the Unique". when brought back again as Wells puts it in his laboratory language: "The forceps of our minds are clumsy forceps and crush the truth a little in taking hold of is it.SIX categories. and. that there are no lines in nature. XIII. MAJOR PROPHETS possibility 1 the of number.

what is rarer. the race incidents. such attacks from without the ram- parts as Wells's essay and from within as F. WELLS and perhaps too. G. the sense of continuity in time. but. logical fore false. But it is funny to see this ancient weapon of scholasticism brought out to ward off the attacks of modernism. as Wells in says. a defense of logic This is by Mr. by Philip E. "Formal Logic. implying as it does that itself is quite true. [HI] . p. 835. that either they are psychoin which case they are irrelevant to logic or they are false. Schiller's big volume. Wells". G." Wells has not only the sense of continuity in space. and people amused themselves. Wells on logic we may it seems to me. C. B. X. Bergson and Mr. logic when was a novelty. lieve. Jourdain amusingly illustrated in in which he says 1 : these strictures of Mr. like boys learning to lasso. they are.H. the drama and This is not any sort of poetical "Logic. H. in tripping each other up with it. M. This sort of thing might have passed as a good joke in the days of Epimenides. the Cretan. and is there- To reply. however. implies its own falsehood. in that stage of infantile intelligence that can- not count above two. S. Thus the principle that "no truth is quite true". is "The race we are the 1 flows through us. see it time the logicians will come to At present. Jourdain in Hibbert Journal.

All his longer novels are largely concerned with [H2] . those of puritanical temperament who wanted those of profligate it left out altogether and read of temperament who wanted to amorous adventure with no unpleasant His sociological works. is a desperate sincerity about the that seems always to be struggling to express himself with more exactness than language allows. Wells would believe. in than he really believes do not think that he takes delight less shocking the bourgeoisie as rather. on permanent monogamy as the he prophesied that the future would show greater toleration toward other forms of marital relationship. thus offending both sides. is agree with other people than disagree. he put it into his novels as a disturbing element." There I like." His later novels have come under the ban of the British public libraries because. while insisting ideal. I Shaw does." "We man are episodes in an experience greater than ourselves. conceiving sex as a disturbing element in life. to say neither He more nor I at the time. aroused less criticism than the frank portrayal of existing conditions in his novels. nonconformist. in facts obtruded. He not a congenital and inveterate But he insists always on "paint- ing the thing as he sees it. which.SIX statement: it is MAJOR PROPHETS a statement of fact.

of Columbia. the in the art of in spending it. whose chief fault is a constitutional inability to keep her accounts straight. the Traffords. the problem of marital WELLS but the only one of them is life that comes near to a solution riage. are exceptionally decent people for characters is a modern novel. She spends money with excellent taste. Consequently Trafford has to lay aside his researches in molecular physics to work out a successful process for synthetic rubber easy to a man of his ability. Mr. The heroine is a charming specimen of the modern young woman. educated at "Oxbridge". as to the normal division of labor between husband and wife. just for the sake . G. but rather because of the cares and complications that come from family life and financial prosperity. and if their marriage not a success it is not on account of any interference from a third party. regarding these duties getting absorbed in men business and the women buying things that they do not want. Wells apparently adopts the theory formulated by Professor Devine. that nobody needs. that men should be experts in the art of getting money and women experts Where both parties fail is as ends in themselves.H. but without regard to her husband's bank balance." that entitled "Marin The couple in this case.

The following passage would apply to New York as well as London : London. They range in size and importance from campaigns on a Plessingtonian scale to sober little . public health. His conservatives nor radicals. novel but genteel modifications of medical or religious practice. but none of curing the women. and common progress features in abundant meetings. domestic arts. Apparently Mr. the swamping of life by restless activity and futile efforts at reform. duodecimal arithmetic. either as a whole or in such typical sections as the indigent invalid or the indigent aged. produce any tangible results in the world. They direct themselves at the most various ends the poor. is always full of Movements. Premature attempts at realization. according spares neither to our author. Essentially they are absorbents of superfluous feminine energy. these are the ailments of the satire modern world. the gratuitous advertisement of Shakespeare (that neglected poet). Wells has hope of curing the men. the woman's cause. anti-vivisection. the demand for immediate results. proportional representation. the prevention of animal food. of course. the young. the disregard of purely scientific research. and organiFew are expensive and still fewer zation generally.SIX of MAJOR PROPHETS buying. and the liberation of the drama. the politer aspects of socialism. garden sub: urbs. the encouragement of aeronautics. officials. They have a common flavor of and revolutionary purpose. dress reform. universal military service. that favorite butt.

1912. In bad weather. 1 accomplish a cure. upon which one placed one's bicycle (properly equipped with a cyclometer) in such a way that it could be mounted and ridden without any sensible forward movement whatever. moral activities without undue disturbance of the normal routines of life. justifying thing about life is the effort and not the goal. In the days when everybody was bicycling an ingenious mechanism called Hacker's home bicycle used to be advertised. [115) . Wells resorts to a curious 1 To "Marriage. he could descend comfortably at home again and examine the cyclometer to see how far he had been. or at least to obtain a diagnosis of the evil. intellectual WELLS Beckingham things that arrange to meet and die quietly before the second assembly. our world would be standing on its head and everything would be extremely unfamiliar and disconcertBut. or when the state of the roads made cycling abroad disagreeable. G. and few Movements involve any real and imhalf yearly They passioned struggle to get to the ostensible object. Hacker's home bicycle was a stand bearing small rubber wheels. In exactly the same way the ordinary London Movement gives scope for the restless and progressive impulse in human nature without the risk of personal entanglements or any inconvenient disturbance of the milieu. If Heaven by some miracle suddenly gave every Movement in London all it professed to want. Hacker's home bicycle could be placed in front of an open window and intellectual and ridden furiously for any length of time. Whenever the rider tired.H. Mr. the ing. as Mr. Roosevelt once remarked. exist as an occupation they exercise the ." Duffield and Company.

or. a Freu- dian emergence of fundamental feelings. heart which Trafford experiences unlike The change is what Christians call not altogether conversion. for Trafford his wife go into the wilds of Labrador together. and wild beasts they learned how to found their love respect. indeed. His line of argument. finds expression in fragmentary sentences muttered in the delirium of fever. starvation. [116] . "How sweet is solitude. where he laid down as one of the rules of his new order of Samurai that a man who aspired to be a leader of men should for a week every year go off into the desert and live absolutely alone. An exhalation. without books or other distractions to keep him from thinking. and in their fight with cold. they found it. But in "Marriage" Mr.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS expedient which he suggested first in his "Modern Utopia". as in the following passage : "Of course." he said it about or somebody said. "I said it this collective mind being mixed with other things. and Wells improves upon this plan." as the Irishman said. upon mutual comprehension and of their and made of marriage a true union. "when you have your sweetheart with you. develop- ment of thought." So. more properly speaking. It's something arising out of life not the common stuff of life.

not what I am. . and for another expression in art. "This flame that arises out of life. . G. . . if I do. The other Christians won't like me . This passage from "Marriage" showed that Wells's in 1912 thought was entering upon a new phase. ! . just . so far do I achieve salvation. Queer how one comes drifting back to these images. That's a That's a very get point. struggling upward in spite of and by means of inert matter and recalcitrant humanity. . ." . important point. It would indeed be queer to find Wells not only among the prophets. . .H. Just as far as I give myself purely to knowledge. that redeems life from purposeless triviality. . to making feeling and thought clear in mind and words. ." He seemed to be working toward some sort of belief in God. . I saying ? . What was to. . Provided he does it in the He has to do it in the spirit. . a Bergsonian God. Let me hold of that. and. isn't life. Perhaps I shall die a Christian yet. Salvation reach up what I my . but among the Christian prophets. WELLS It's like the little tongues of fire that came at Pentecost. an*d for another nursing lepers. It's what I desire shall pervade me. . . to the understanding and expression of the realities and relations of life. considerably in advance of that revealed in his "First and Last Things. as he intimates. spirit. . "I wonder is salvation the same for every one? Perhaps for one man salvation is research and thought. some of the other Christians would not like it.

subscribe against. 1907.SIX Wells's MAJOR PROPHETS of catholicity sympathy recognizes no has an abhorrence for race limitations of race. cruelty and abomination than any other sort of error in the world. and his article on "Race Prejudice". chapter xii of in "The Future in America". talk against. He of every kind. it is the worst single thing in write deliberately life now. none at all. than Race Prejudice. 1 In his article on "Race Prejudice" he puts it foremost among the evils of the age but even his "anticipations" could not conceive of such an insensate revival of racial animosity between civilized nations as the Great War has. of Color". It justifies and holds together more baseness. I am conno worse one vinced myself that there is no more evil thing in this I present world than Race Prejudice. I am convinced they can find no better one that is to say. and therein lies one's hope for mankind. and if any one wants a credit- Knight errantry human able dragon to write against. The Independent of February [118] . study against.brought about : is as much a part of a wholesome being as falling in love or self-assertion. I believe cheats even and disreputable people of all sorts is ready to put in a little time and effort in dragonslaying now and then. work against. Nearly every I've detected the tendency in old one. Through its body runs 1 See "The Tragedy 14. The greatest blot he found upon American civilization was our ill treat- prejudice ment of the negro.

and desolates wide It is a monster begotten of natural instincts regions. to what end ? To serve the spirit and the purpose that has been breathed into our lives. jealousy all the darkest poisons of the human soul. the growth of toleration and exten- sion of cooperation. We . fragmentary. . the and the advancement of toward tionist. are here. that it devours youth. It is the step we fight for and not ourselves.H. of "The Food new race of supermen. are what will lead is his ideal. Through us and . who are no more than one step upward from their littleness. Brothers. It is this much like the dragons of old. And it his ideal that of an evolu- the opportunity for continuous growth. WELLS the black blood of coarse lust. and intellectual confusion. holds beautiful people in shame and servitude. science. in the Gods. suspicion. inestimable The and abolition of hatred between castes and classes countries. spoils life. each in our his own dispersed modern manner doing share." in the speech of one of the giants. We fight not for ourselves for we are but the momentary hands and eyes of the Life of the World. to his fellows as they are about to give battle to the community : of ordinary people determined to destroy them It is not that we would oust the little people from the world in order that we. . may hold their world forever. G. to be fought against by and persecution and all men of good intent. of He has exprest best. improvement of education. perhaps.

The author concerned with another aspect of the war. And they in their turn might yield to the ants and vermin. growth will conquer through us. To grow at last into the fellowship and understanding ! of God. the first half light. amusing after the is manner of Wells's earlier romances the other half darkened by the war cloud and is written with more emotional power than he has hitherto shown.SIX through the MAJOR PROPHETS folk the Spirit looks and learns. having put no greater right to live than they. else indeed we might our throats to the little people's knife. out of these shadows and darknesses. birth and act it must pass . The Great War has inspired or at least instigated many works in of fiction already. my Brothers And then still greater. into The book is divided two parts . upon the is psychology of the Englishman. To grow according to the will of God To grow out of these cracks and crannies. To grow and again to grow. is Britling Sees It Through. is my opinion. This earth is no resting place is no playing place. That is the law of the spirit forevermore. whether we live or die. into Greater. Wells's "Mr. greater. little From to still us by word and greater lives. he said. To-morrow. growth that goes on forever." It does not deal much with chiefly its effect the fight- ing at the front. speaking greatness and the light this earth We ! ! with slow deliberation. fight not for ourselves but for growth. but the best of these. carefree and . [120] .

Britling is himself. in general. Wells' we may be sure that the changing moods not only of the are recognizable as rate author but of every thinking Englishman as the enormity.H. "And Now War Ends". Britling writes a pamphlet. the awfulness. Wells brings in an American. ." about races and empires and social order and political institutions and gardens and automobiles and the future of India and China and esthetics and America and the education of mankind . we inevitably is Knowing Wells's habit of introducing autobio- graphical details into his surmise that Mr. certainly Wells's repertory of And to make the resemblance closer Mr." reads like This ideas. G. the all-pervasiveness of the war became slowly realized in the course of many months. Mr. As a contrast to his typical Englishman Mr. handled with more skill than British writers usually show in dealing [121] . . Wells wrote "The War That Will End War. WELLS romances. Britling a writer whom "lots of people found interesting and stimulating. At any book reveals the Mr. And all that sort of thing." Several shortly after the of the characters neighbors. war began just as Mr. and a few found seriously exas" He had ideas in the utmost profusion perating.

and he had had to restrain himself from affecting a marked accent and accosting some passerby with the question. The delight of his Mr.SIX with MAJOR PROPHETS psychology. tourist in England has felt this He also by Mr. Every American temptation. words he would no more have used in America than he could have used a bowie knife. He wanted to be just exactly what he supposed an Englishman would expect him to be. Direck spoke a very good and careful English indeed. the smallest thing in rivers he had ever seen. "Say! But is this little wet ditch here the Historical River Thames ?" In America. England is Mr. Wells to his has the experience ascribed American of finding that Eng- land on closer acquaintance is not so antiquated as When asked what his impression of she looks. Mr. Direck at the recognition of the scenes and American customs he had known from history and novels is well presented : The Thames. When people asked him questions he wanted to say "Yep" or "Sure". had been too good to be true. when he sallied out to see it. it must be explained. Direck answers : That it looks and feels more like the traditional Old England than any one could possibly have be[122] . but he now found the utmost difficulty in controlling his impulse to use a high-pitched nasal drone and indulge in dry Americanisms and poker metaphors upon all occasions. But he had a sense of role.

not the war. but finally these : are resolved into one common chord and he writes . traits drawn from Professor Ostwald apparently. hatred. meanness.H. WELLS is and that in reality it less like the traditional Old England than any one would ever possibly have I thought when I lookea out of the imagined. Wells before. To complete there is this study of national psychology in the family circle at first. train this morning that I had come to the England I find that it is not even the of Washington Irving. Humphry Ward. Heinrich affected He by is not caricatured but we and suspect that like Mr. lieved. the American. Herr is British expectations appears more German than he is. England of Mrs. love. The book reechoes all the passions of the war. but ends upon a clear religious tone such as has been heard but faintly in any work of Mr. despair. his mind is torn by conflicting emotions. for nobody can yet see so far as that. heroism. What Mr. G. selfishness. sacrifice. Direck. When he down rich. also a German a tutor whose hobbies are Ido and internationalism and a universal index. but he sees through the doubt and turmoil of his own mind and finds Britling sees through is internal peace in the midst of warfare. stoicism and mad wrath. who sits to write a letter to the parents of Heinlike his own son had fallen in France. courage.

SIX Religion is MAJOR PROPHETS until a the first thing and the last thing. these wily politicians and artful lawyers. his partial loyalties. Of course I must write about Him. the inevitable King. the intolerant Imperialist of "Anticipations". this bloodstained rubbish of the ancient world. he works to no end. he begins at no beginning. He man may have his friendships. I must tell all my world of Him. the genial . God. is the stern moralist of "The Sleeper Awakes". G. the detached and exquisite artist of "Thirty Strange Stories" and "Tales of Space and Time". Wells is his diFor a person of any intellectual consistency it is impossible thoroughly to appreciate him in He certain moods without disliking him in others. Only with God. have thrust Our sons paper us God. and pass will presently shrivel into a flame. TO READ WELLS and conciliatory sociologist of "New Worlds for Old". these war makers and op. pressors. and life falls into place only with God. who fights through men against Blind Force and Night and Non-Existence who is the end. the sympathetic if somewhat [124] curious thing about H. the King who is present whenever just men foregather. his But all these things fall into place scraps of honor. these men who claim and grab and trick and compel. like shown How The versity. these puny kings and tawdry emperors. the subtle anti-moralist of "The New Machiavelli" and "Ann Veronica". who is the meaning. . . and has found God and been found by God. . He is the only King. And before the coming of the true King.

1913). with the collaboration of fourteen other authors (1911. as I have said. G. "Socialism and the Great State". February 6. expressed It is most symbolically in many of his stories. 1902. "The War That Will End War" (1915). first published in Nature. "What " Is Coming ?" (1916. kind in the Utopia" (1906." and transcendentalist of in addition he of the chronicles seriously with his boys and takes interest in is "The Food Unless one it (and superhuman). is alien to everything human impossible to escape being interested in at least some of these. the vague philosopher at large of "First and Last "Mr. Harper). Scribner). Macmillan). France and (1903. Polly" and "The Wheels Gods". Harper). Scribner). and later in A "A New York. Italy. (1904. Harper). Confully explained in "First and Last Things: fession of Faith and a Rule of Life" (Putnam). Harper). 1902. and " in the two essays previously referred to. "Social Forces in England and America" (1914. Wells's philosophy is. the Jules-Vernish romancer of "The War of Worlds" and "The First Men in the Moon". Scepticism of the Instrument" (in Modern Utopia") and "The Discovery of the Future". the imaginative rationalist of "A Modern Utopia". the scientific Chance". and in the "Report of the Smithsonian Institution". "The Future in Making" "A Modern America" [125] . "Floor Games" fugitive essays on modern warfare and "The Misery of Boots. Macmillan). His sociological studies comprise the following volumes: "Anticipations" (1901.H. "New Worlds for Old" (1908. cynical WELLS shop-keeping classes of of portrayer of the Things". published in England under the title "An Englishman Looks at the World" (Cassell). "Manbook form (Huebsch.

"The Stolen Bacillus and Other Incidents" (1895. "The Sea-Lady" (1902) "The First Men in the Moon" (1901). "The Food of the Gods" (1904. "The Island of Dr. "The Macmillan). Doubleday). (1915. "Twelve Stories and a Dream" (1903. Macmillan). rewritten (1911) as "The Sleeper Awakes" (Nelson. "Tales of Time and Space" (1899. in part overlapping: "Thirty Strange Stories" (1898. and "God the Invisible King" (1917. "Armageddon" and "The Country of the Blind") are published in a sumptuous edition with Coburn's photographic illustrations by Mitchell Kennerley ("The Door in the Wall and Other Stories". Lewisham" (1900. His romances include: "The Time Machine" (1895. (1910. London). "In the Days of the Comet" (1906. "The History of Mr. Doran). "The War Worlds" (1898. "The World Set Free" of the Man" (1914. Harper). His novels fall naturally into two classes those of a lighter and humorous character : : first Wheels of Chance" (1896. "The Planner Story and Others" (1897. Eight of the best of his short stories (including "The Star". "Bealby" etc. Century). Mr. (1915. Harper). Moreau" (1896. "Boon" His longer and more serious novels are: [126] "Ann . Macmillan). Holt). Scribner). Duffield). Harper). Macmillan). Polly" Duffield). "When the Sleeper Wakes" (1899. Harper). "Kipps" Scribner). Scribner). "The War in the Air" (1908. "The Invisible (1897. Stokes). "The Wonderful Visit" (1895). 1911). "Love and (1906.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS Britain at War" (1917. Macmillan). Macmillan). Macmillan). Macmillan). His short stones have been collected in several different volumes.

July. Duffield). "Select Conversations with an Uncle" (1895. but we have "The H. "The Wife of Sir Isaac Harmon" (1914. Jourdain in Hibbert Journal. like Stevenson. G. and "H. Harper). devoted much attention to devising floor games for children and has published two books upon it " " " " Floor Games and Little Wars (Small. "The Research Magnificent" (1915. 32 (1910). a lively and appreciative critique. 71. p. E. Holt). Harper). [127] . P. D. "Marriage" (Duffield). "The Passionate Friends" (1913. and contain- Wells still of ing a list of his writings to date. 10. "Wells and Bergson" by P. Kennerley). "Wells and his Point of in American Magazine. in Catholic View" World. Saalfield) and "Certain Personal Matters" (1897).H. "Tono-Bungay" (1908. Duffield). Macmillan). Wells. To these we must add some early works a : "Textbook on Biology" in two volumes (1892) and two volumes of essays. vol. Beresford (1915. 835.'s Magazine (1912). "Mr. Wells" by Van Wyck Brooks (1915. 91 (four articles. WELLS New Machiavelli" Veronica" (1909. equally interesting. World awaits his Boswell. p. still briefer. Of magazine articles and critiques the following have for one reason or another special interest "Les Idees de Wells sur 1'Humanite future" by Charles Duguet in Revue des Idees. An autobiographical sketch was written for the Russian edition of his works (1909) and published in T. "The (1910. : "Wells" by Chesterton vol. Maynard) : . G. B. 1908. Macmillan). 1910). 1912. Macmillan). A Biography and a Critical Estimate of his Work" by J. vol. G. He has. Britling Sees It Through" (1916.

but I must not omit the two articles on Socialism which he contributed to The Independent. 1908). Wells et la Pensee contemporaine" by Rene Leguy in Mercure de France (1912). August 13. G. 1906. and an article on "The Nature of Love" (The Independent. [128] . Wells to current magazines and newspapers are too numerous to enumerate. October 25 and November 3. The contributions of Mr.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS "H.

and if so would be worth talking about [129] In answer . Ches- the greatest prophet of our It generation. and he the authentic voice of that English soul which is wrestling with the Teutonic soul for the soul of the world. because he deals with the soul. failure to salute the prophet is emphasized by our failure to perceive that complete. a bigger man than Maeterlinck or Bergson. Arnold Bennett. prophet is a of genius with a spiritual message for his age. K. 1916. Wells or Mr. He is as great as Tolstoy or Ibsen. James Douglas in the Observer. III CHESTERTON KNIGHT ERRANT OF ORTHODOXY The terton central truth to be uttered about is Mr. now CAN a journalist it have a philosophy of ? life. They deal with man as a social animal. seem set these to him beside rash may great prophets. As a prophet he is larger in every way than Mr.CHAPTER G. He is the soul of England. The spiritual message delivered by Mr. He deals He is with it is is man Our as a spiritual being. that he is but time man ton will ratify my rashness. though we know it not. Chesteris A mightier than any other sounding in our ears. whereas they deal with the soul's environment. Shaw or Mr.

We think that for a landlady considering a lodger. about the time when the weary old world Chapter XIX of the second volume of his history and had turned over the page in hopes of finding something new and exciting in Chapter had finished XX and found it. but still more important to know his philosophy. Perhaps the most heretical journalists. We think that for a general about to fight an enemy. it is important to know the enemy's numbers. Like am many other things in Chesterton's works this does not sound so heretical now as when it was written. but still more important to know the enemy's philosophy. the whole body of Chesterton's works. I shall and To second passage of his book on "Heretics" was that which begins : But I there are some people. anything else affects them. We think the question is not whether the theory of the cosmos affects matters.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS I shall quote Chesterton to the effect that everybody has a philosophy. Chesterton's countrymen then were keeping careful count of Germany's soldiers . but whether. as Exhibit B. nevertheless and one of them who think that the most practical and important thing about a man is still his view of the universe. it is important to know his income. in the long run. even generals to the first question prove the affirmative of the present.

out they began with feverish haste to translate and study Treitschke. Chesterton dead set against anything of the kind. and. Bernhardi. Shaw came from the most pronounced Protestant stock. tarian Shaw is is a vege- and . Shaw the earlier rationalistic. Nietzsche. the Ulster kind. Chesterton stands for the later all this. But as soon as the war broke and ships. socialistic revolt against the conven- tions of society. though of the Anglican rather than the a Roman variety. and traditionalism. and any other books which might throw light upon the German Weltanschauung^ but which in the leisurely days of peace they had no time to read. is Chesterton a Catholic. K.G. English is Shaw is a suffragist. conservative reaction to for ecclesiasticism. though he could hardly be accounted orthodox. Chesterton quite the opposite old he champions the public house as a good institution. he has constructed a sort of religion for himself. CHESTERTON but they were contentedly ignorant of German philosophy. and a [131] . It is convenient to compare Shaw and Chesterton because they are antithetic in temperament and opinion and represent two opposite currents stands for of modern thought. champion of orthodoxy. teetotaler. nationalism. as we can see from his introduction to "Androcles and the Lion".

customs. how is to be witty though so extreme that it But his orthodoxy seems heterodoxy to most of us. But this is in respect to that really small minority of professional writers.SIX defender of all MAJOR PROPHETS it forms of ritualism and medievalism. As Wesley determined that the devil had no right to all the pretty music. Shaw is always showing how absurd and illogical are the soundest axioms and the most unquestioned platitudes. Chesterton has discovered orthodox. his business to find a logical Chesterton makes basis for popular traditions. Actually he has the backing of the great inarticulate immobile mass of the people. and agitators who set the fashions for the Zeitgeist. so Chesterton determined that the iconoclasts should not monopo- . . Chesterton discovers new discovers Shaw new unreasons Chesterton appears in the capacity of permanent minority leader. whether of orthodox conservative or orthodox revolutionary thought. reasons in things in things. accounts for his success in making Perhaps that it sound para- doxical. and superstitions which have always been regarded as purely irrational and arbitrary even by those who liked them and defended them as poetic and conforming to a deeper reality than that of reason. speakers.

" It was absurd to say that Waterloo was won on Eton cricket fields.G. the laymen the expert. CHESTERTON His orginality consists platitudes into in the cleverness. But it might have fairly been said that Waterloo was won on the village green. he can sing better. Chesterton must be the bravest man alive. ideal to be impracti- impracticable he doubtless would retort was the essence of an it cable. would be confounded with dull He always champions the opinion of the against many against that of the few. But even he finds it necessary to promulgate his truisms in the disguise of sensational novelties. -"Heretics. otherwise reality. in his books on Watts that "there is only one thing that requires real courage to say and that is a truism". [133] . literature. He can put the most unquestioned axiom in a way If he is right in what he says to shock the world. lize all K. for his genius turning epigrams. Chesterton's ideal is a complete democracy. and art. religion. is but democracy in If you sport. not politics merely democracy say this that it in science. Once men sang together round a table in chorus now one man sings alone. for the absurd reason that . where clumsy boys played a very clumsy cricket. If scientific civilization goes on (which is most improbable) only one man will laugh because he can laugh better than the rest.

" obvious that tradition is only democracy extended through time. I am for It is on the basis of democracy that he defends : religion That Christianity the is identical with : democracy is hardest of gospels there is nothing that so strikes men with fear as that they are all sons of God. but I am for German till I all will resist German Grimm's Fairy Tales but if there is such a thing as Grimm's Law. is strictly appealing to aristocracy. He is appealing to the superiority lated some German 1 "The Crimes of England". its ef- ficiency. for instance.SIX .. all higher criticism. The man who quotes historian against the tradition of the Catholic Church. [134] . die.. And it is a bad sign in a nation when such things are done very well. MAJOR PROPHETS It is a good sign in a nation when such things It shows that all the people are are done badly." On its this the war. "I workingmen's insurance. as ground he hated Germany even before a nation ruled by experts. He denounced its governmental and the like. doing them. It is trusting to a consensus of common human voices rather than to some isoor arbitrary record. I would break it if I knew what it was. 98. fantasy." l earnestness . for it shows that only a few experts and eccentrics are doing them and that "All Things the nation is merely looking on. p. It is "Twelve Types. Considered.

. . It is the democracy of the dead. It is quite easy to see why a legend is treated and ought to be treated more respectfully than a book of The legend is generally made by the history. Democracy tells us not to neglect a good man's opinion. even if he is our father. mission government Chesterton has the true artist's love for the individual outlines I Mohammedan and the concrete. there is no reason why we should disregard it when we are dealing with history or fable. If we attach great importance to the opinion of ordinary men in great unanimity when dealing with daily matters. He will halt in a stern chase or in the height of an to describe a sunset with the argument most chromatic lanstudied art guage at his command. CHESTERTON of one expert against the awful authority of a mob. who are sane. He delights He thinks in in clear pictures." . Tradition means giving votes to the most obscure of all classes our ancestors. K. The book is generally written by the one man in the village who is mad. have never seen any of his painting. . majority of people in a village. Tradition may be defined as an extension of the franchise. even if he is our groom tradition asks us not to neglect a good man's opinion... and bright colors. He at the [135] . but he must have the color sense strongly developed. : I expect some time to find Chesterton defending it is the Trinity on the ground that more democratic than monotheism. a sort of comextended to the universe. "Orthodoxy.G.

of whether the ironical tone can be sustained through a whole volume without When the question of illustration arose Chesterton sent out for a bundle of wrapping paper. All the little variations and accidental peculiarities that 1 make a type into a person in the great novels For specimens of his sketches see "Chesterton as an Artist" by Joseph B. it For the understanding of Chesterton's romances is necessary to remember that the more nonthey seem. Gilder in The Bookman. for Chesterton's stories are singularly devoid of individuals. the more sense they have in This is because when he gets blinded by a sensical them. one of the cleverest pieces of irony to but it raises the question a decline of interest. and in the course of one evening drew all of the portraits in the book as well as a lot that were not used. "The Great Enquiry". and although he was soon switched off into journalism he still reverts to the He has supplied the illustrapencil on occasion. big idea he sees men as concepts walking. and "Emmanuel Burden. a satire on imperialistic tions to three of Belloc's books.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS Slade School in London. "The Green Overcoat". He is He admires Dickens but never imitates him." The last. l financiering. too much of a Platonist to be a good novelist. [136] . is be found in all literature.

Chesterton's "Manalive". K. but then neither of them has any character outside of the Idea that made them what they farther yet are. Manalive comes tainly is closer is to being real.G. This is carried by the introduction of an incredibly consistent whom Tolstoyan and a Nietzschean beside Nietzsche would seem all too human. He an cer- alive. Innocent [137] . "The Ball and the Cross" Mac Ian is simply the archetype of the Catholic Romanticist and Turnbull of the Revolutionary Rationalist. according to his that it is a very sensible thing after temperament all. Thus is the whole book balanced and matched like old- fashioned wall paper or an Italian garden. In his romances his method is essentially the same. Each drawn falls in love with a girl of the opposite type. its" is "All habits are bad hab- the text of G. Neither of them ever does anything out of character. is first In his essays Mr. Nobody could act crazier than Mr. he is ideal. K. Chesterton's superman. as delightful to his admirers which proved tasteful and dis- to his antipathists as any of his former productions. but he not a man. to scale. CHESTERTON In of the world are lacking. Chesterton's method to set down something that sounds like a wild absurdity and then to argue the reader into the admission cheerful or indignant.

must be continually seeking new investments. you may violate the conventions which. he acts upon it by letting go what he most He goes round delights in that he may recapture it. cated. amply duck's certifi- him nor is water off a back. but in the end he is proved. confessed to. by a long legal process.SIX Smith MAJOR PROPHETS volume. out to be quite as burglary. and morality. The economic law all of dimin- ishing returns applies to and to escape So Manalive it we our habitual pleasures. ments. his series in strict amorous adventures are conducted with accord monogamous By getting outside of himself he can gain the joy of coveting his own possessions. what is more. off and like kidnaping. He is accused in the first chapters of this of about as many crimes as the hero of Jokai's tale. Smith's theory that you keep the command. is distinguished from ordinary men [138] . the world in search of his of own home. "The Death's Head". but he turns guiltless. being the reverse of the ordinary rule of procedure. and. He had evidently read Schopenhauer's theory that the only happiness is the pursuit of happiness. bigamy. to be the only really sane man of the lot. Neither prison asylum if can hold Manalive. slip Charges of murder. gets him into all sorts of misunderstandings.

Though she never spoke she always looked as if she might speak any minute. All that the doctors say is disproved. For she was one of those women who at bottom regard all men as equally mad. breaks out and runs around and discovers the in the most novel and wonderful things most com- monplace environment. alive" as we have little . .G. of being shallow and standing eternity. it in We have it in "Man"The Man Who Was ThursAs usual he day" and "The stops every rest Ball and the Cross. All that the parsons say is unproved. wild animals of some When men We . utterly separate species. in that CHESTERTON He he has legs that he uses. With our weak if spirits we should grow we were not kept young by old in death. Here are a few when they make rules. and is full by the simple process still. Perhaps this is the definition of a very companion. Mr. Chesterton is as fond of a chase as a fox hunter or a kinetoscope man. are weary they fall into anarchy . He is not rooted. but are gay and vigorous they invariably are never free until some institution frees us and liberty cannot exist until it is declared by authority. The academic mind of light reflects infinity. K. That's the only difference between science and religion there's ever been or ever will be." while and paints a cloudscape to all our eyes and along he enlivens the way by : epigrams and inverted proverbs.

an armed camp. in one. but the symbolism is not to be interpreted in the usual Freudian way. nothing the children of chaos. according to Freud. it is symbolic." The detective. The author The only books "A to and It swift is transformations it cannot be matched. when he argues for the moral value of the detective story in the following fashion: "By dealing with the unsleeping sentinels essays. who stands alone and fear- [140] .SIX MAJOR PROPHETS us. The most Chesterton's fantastic and therefore characteristic is of romances "The Man Who Was are able Thursday" which the French to entitle more concisely calls it Nomme Jeudi. as nurses cut the Providence has to cut immortality into lengths for bread and butter into fingers. a motion-picture all and a system of theology. and Andreyev's "Masked Ball". he says. StrindGeorge berg's "Dream Plays". it tends to remind us that we a chaotic world. for Chesterton is clean-minded. farciare cality. all a detective story. it is. chase. making and that the criminals. who guard war upon the outposts live in of society. and with it compare Macdonald's "Lilith". Nightmare". The clue to it is to be found in his earliest book of "The Defendant". but for wild imagining. Like dreams. are but traitors within our gates. grotesquerie.

the irreconcilable rebel. One of the anarchists turns out to be genuine. and the criminals conservatism. the Eternal Anarchist. the seven orders of created things. is Chesterton son's Brahma: "If the red slayer thinks he slays. they another as friends and allies through one recognize It reminds one of Emerall their strange strife. In Opsome ways Chesterton's conception [141] . surrounding him represent cosmic But in "The Man Who Was Thursday" each one by of the six detectives. the spirit that continually denies. Finally seated upon seven of course. believes himself to be fighting single-handed for law and order against a criminal conspiracy to destroy civilization. and the seven angels of heaven. The seven pseudo-anarchists go through all sorts of perilous and absurd adventures in the course of which they are metamorphosed successively into the seven days of the week. robed in state. the seven days of creation. blazoned it with heraldic devices." is But Chesterton it too much of a Manichean to let go at that. the only real one in the world. CHESTERTON fists amid the knives and and poetic of a thieves' kitchen. the leader of His Majesty's position. separately commissioned the mysterious head of the secret police to enter the inner circle of seven anarchists. less is K.G. since thrones. the original figure.

like D'Annunzio. was a man who would have done wonders with the cinematograph if it had only [142] . and know My and cold to give scope to his pictorial imagination. blasphemous. comprehensible I and a Yet three people a child in know it a man. and Chesterton of the things he thought of or saw while composing but could not put into words. Drawing and writing are too slow world. Blake. own opinion is that it shows that Chesterton has not yet found the true medium for the expression of his genius. and conthe sider one of the most wonderful books it almost by heart.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS "Anathema" Dostoievsky "Brothers Karamazarov. in- in his biography of Chesterton as tiresome. too. "The Man Who Was Thursday" affects readers To some it seems ridiculous to others variously. . dismisses it Julius West. a "The Man Who Was Thursday" would make magnificent scenario as could then add all it it stands." Chesto have] a curious affinity to I of the devil reminds one of Andreyev's or perhaps rather of the Satan introduces into his terton's whom mind seems the Russian. though so far as ings remember his writ- show no evidence of being influenced by Rus- sian literature. woman. take to the screen. He should. usually sympathetic.

CHESTERTON Chesterton. of Blake. . the Odyssey because all life is a journey. is given in his "Defense of Nonsense". it is actually too obvious for human speech. K. Nonsense and faith (strange as the conjunction may seem) are the two supreme symbolic assertions of the truth that to draw out the soul of things with a syllogism is as impossible as to draw out Leviathan with a hook. the primoralphabetical dial pivot on which the whole modern problem turns ? shall How cannot be done in long rationalistic words they convey by their very sound the suggestion of something subtle. One must try to think of something in the way of a plain street metaphor or an obvious For the thing is not too hard for human analogy. 1 in the See also "The Divine Detective" in "A Miscellany of Men. Every great gorical universe. Chesterton at the beginning of his career wrote "A Defense of Detective Stories" 1 and he has since shown that he knows how to write them. . in his sketch been invented sooner. explains his difficulties of expression by word and picture : we manage to state in an obvious and manner the ultimate query." [143] . the Book of Job because all life is a riddle. even absurd symbolism. . is literature has always been alle- allegorical of some view of the whole The Iliad is only great because all life a battle. speech It : : Chesterton's theory of the use of symbolism.G.

piles up paradoxical impossiand then by some simple expedient resolves that them into apparent reasonableness. artist As an But while Turkey is all very well at a distance. Chesterton's method in as in these stories essays . to have the best of intentions. "Thursday". In "The Flying Inn" we have a story of Mohammedan influence not only in Europe but in . Innocence of Father Brown". Chesterton has always been attracted by the Orient.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS "The Club of collections entitled "The Wisdom Queer Trades". It in own ingenuity adds to the whether he has would be interesting to know mind the solution when he lays is out the plot or whether he tangler against a not playing a game with skill as a disen- himself like jackstraws. pitting his muddle of his own making. and its unfamiliar habits of thought. its cruel colors. and "The of Father Brown. The author's obvious enjoyment of his reader's delight. with its mystical fanaticisms." But they are different from ordinary detective stories not merely because a mild-mannered priest takes the place of Sherlock Holmes but more because they frequently have nothing to do with crime and all parties turn out. whatever their actions. is much he the same as he employs in his bilities. Turkey in Europe is to him a distinct and horrible menace. is.

The champions of the crescent are Misysra Am- mon. Misysra. So far we have a straight Chesterton novel. But Chesterton really seems uncertain that is he aimed to write a prose novel at all. [1451 . CHESTERTON England itself. K. a symbolic theme variegated by satires on modern life. the Prophet of the Moon. an athletic Irishman who champions the cause of the cross. and Lord Ivywood. who is as fertile with impossible theories as with plausible arguments to support them. plentifully interspersed with verses. an eccentric nobleman. keepers sends one of them adrift country carrying his inn-sign throughout the with him and accom- panied by Captain Dalroy. maintains that England is Mois hammedan at heart and proves it in a hundred ways from the contempt with which the pig popularly spoken of to the absence of any "idola- trous" animal or vegetable forms in modern cubist Lord Ivywood's persecution of the innpainting. as Chesterton has similarly related the struggle of the Ball and the Cross in his book of that name. for the book serious. This novel is an allegory of the war between the sacred symbol of the cross and the sacred symbol of the crescent.G. a fanatic against the liquor traffic as the embodiment of Christian custom as opposed to Moslem.

but we get a beautiful rainbow of the story of his country the result prejudices. he has as much warrant to philosophize as Carlyle or Taine or any other literary historian. and. Chesterton has wished that he might be induced to follow the example of Charles Dickens and write a Child's History of England. K. militant. We do not get the white sunlight of impartiality. Chesterton has history. in good meter and in bad. Rarely if ever has Chesterton written with such care for his facts. ironical. and mystical insight." It is due to him to say that the unhistorical character of the work is caused rather by partisan emphasis than by any inaccuracy of detail. When to a literary ward genius undertakes of wayand record interpret is man almost always worth while. personal opinions. [146] . the novel takes on the not unpleasant appearance of a Chesterton anthology of songs. still to write us a complete English but he has dealt faithfully with about a century and a half of it in "The Crimes of England. But one does tend to get the impression from the book that only Prussians had ever incurred the scriptural curse on him who removes his neighbor's landmark. as for his transcendental interpretation of them. till Everybody who likes G.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS comic.

The large volume of "Criticisms and Apprecia[1471 . as befits the great hour. in the repression of Ireland. and England's guilt summed been de- up in the phrase that English politics has voted ever since the time of Frederick the Great to "the belittlement of France and the gross exaggeration of Germany. writes not only seriously. so far as Chesterton shows bias pro-British. and concludes his book with a vivid of and moving description of the Battle of the Marne which has in it a world of eloquence and no "cleverness" at all. but soberly. it is pro-French or pro-Irish rather than really believes that the He war is an epic struggle between the old soul of Christendom. in the Napoleonic struggles. incarnated sinister in most and clearly the Catholic nations. CHESTERTON of For the "crimes England" are really is the crimes of Prussia. and a blast of forests materialism from the wastes In this belief he Brandenburg." Chesterton denounces the part played by his country in the wars of Frederick the Great. in tolerating Bismarck's schemes of aggrandizement. K. only to bring into darker relief the wickedness of the state which used England throughout all these years as a catspaw. Yet the indictment of England as Prussia's accomplice is delivered in very sharp terms .G.

[148] . His comparison of Dickens not quite fair. Thackeray has become classical but Dickens has done more he has remained modern. when we watched anxiously to see whether Dickens was fading from the modern world. because they form not only a brilliant but because they it is show that which possible to write prefaces to the classics will increase the desire to read the book in- stead of dampening one's ardor at the start with a mass of dry and and environment. and with great relief we begin to realize that it is the modern world that is fading. they are well worth bringing together in this piece of literary interpretation. and Thackeray. all that Victorian universe in which he seemed all that is itself vulgar breaking up like a cloud-land. Although not so important a piece of work as Chesterton's biography of Dickens. has at least suffi- cient point to suggest thought. We have watched a little longer. an enthusiasm for his subject times in which we if importance of his message for the live.SIX tions of MAJOR PROPHETS is Dickens" composed of his prefaces to the separate books of Dickens. and a belief in the trivial details of the author's life Chesterton has the first requisite of a good introducer. way. There was a painful moment (somewhere about the eighties) . All that universe of ranks and respectabilities in comparison with which Dickens was called a caricaturist. And remain like things only the caricatures of Dickens carved in stone. .

a circle of their own. his fiction. however. Yet no one can unignores this derstand Chesterton fully for his thought. [H9] . his poems are but little known to readers of his prose. So while the essays and romances of Gilbert Keith Chesterton reach thousands of readers week by week through the journals. although they have. expressed who his verse.G. I fancy. is through medium. from most moralists in that he is never prosy and never directs his preachments at obsolete evils Chesterton and deceased sinners. Prose and poetry are such widely sundered fields that a reputation made in one does not carry over into the other. CHESTERTON medium is is But whether editorial. or always a moralist. When Scott dropped poetry to take up novel writing he found it expedient to leave his name behind. K. or but lightly esteemed what the other most admired. and are bought with avidity in volume form. differing. of Hardy or of Meredith sing peans of praise to their favorite author in strophe and antistrophe until on descending from the general to the particular they discover that one was extolling the poet and the other the novelist and that each had never read. When Kipling passed in the reverse direction from prose to poetry he had to cultivate It is very amusing to hear two lovers a new clientele. criticism.

was described by one rebel against who knew "a conservative the conventions of the unconventional. as uncritically The stories of Alfred he accepts and handles as freely as Tennyson did those of Arthur. the difference between the past century and the present one.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS seen from another angle and so gains solidity to the view. 1900. has taken one of England's legendary heroes as the theme of an epic by which to express his philosophy of life and his message to his age." We may assume that it was largely through her influence that New York. by John Lane Co. like Tennyson. the contrast between a faintly hopeful agnosticism and a robustious affirmation of faith. These he transmutes into poetry in "The Ballad of the White Horse. 1911." l In the beautiful dedication to his wife he gives her credit for having opened his eyes to the Christian significance of the wars of Alfred against the Danes. [ISO] . in a way. In his "Alarms and Discursions" he has told us in prose of the impressions visit to the made upon him by his Vale of the White Horse and Ethandune.. but the poems resultant show not merely the difference between the authors. 'Published. whom he married in her then as Miss Frances Blogg. but also. Chesterton.

Black thorn on Ethandune ? thought " I will go with you. brought the cross to me. 'mid volcanic tints of night Walked where they fought the unknown fight And And saw black And I trees on the battle-height." are. We know he saw athwart the wreck The sign that hangs about your neck. Therefore bring these rimes to you. K. star. CHESTERTON he was converted from youthful atheism to extremest orthodoxy. Since on you flaming without flaw I saw the sign that Guthrum saw When he let break his ships of awe. . As man with God has gone. by one light only We look from Alfred's eyes. I can quote only a few stanzas from this dedication although such fragments are distressing to those gravating to those who know who do not. And laid peace upon the sea.G. Where One more than Melchizedek Is dead and never dies. I Who Do you remember when we went Under a dragon moon. And wander with a wandering The wandering heart of things that The fiery cross of love and war That like your self goes on. the whole and ag- Lady.

that where King Alfred as a fugitive is in the forest set to mind the cakes and gets to musing. Carrying the firelight on your face Beyond the loneliest star. hard to carry the ballad meter through a volume without its growing monotonous.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS O go you onward. the Up As on inhuman steeps of space a staircase go in grace. but. like his prose. as we children used to be told. not. at three passages. flying home to me. should be taken in small doses. A Up through an empty house of stars Being what heart you are. real zest in When I want blood letting and the enjoyment of hand to hand combat I should turn to Percy's Reliques. particularly in the most exciting parts. "The Ballad of the White Horse" contains some wearisome stretches. volume of the " Ballad " opens My easiest. Your face. Past purpled forest and pearled foam. God's winged pavilion free to roam. the fights. It is whole Chesterton's poetry. about how to beat the Danes. about the Christian view of [152] . as it The first is has opened oftenest. or to Homer. where you are Shall honor and laughter be. that is a wandering home. according to the Chestertonian version.

and rise after the morn. the labor question. On The Man upon hands and knees. awake and does and sees But Heaven has done and gone. what shall become of such And well in is may God Cast Is not with the serving-folk His dreadful lot : He And And too a servant not He forgot ? For was not God my gardener : silent like a slave That opened oaks on the uplands Or thicket in graveyard grave ? And was not God my armorer. the yawning trees. K. before the day. And the Lord has gone away. All sleepy suns have shone . bent woman leaves the hut Alfred wonders as she. primordial slumber torn But all things living later born Sleep on. They stretch stiff arms. CHESTERTON As the old. That sealed my skull as a helmet And ribs for hauberk made ? For God is a great servant .G. beasts blink is [153] . All patient and unpaid. And rose From some things half sprung from sleeping.

But some



the world.

Crowned, with





a great beard curled, like a good giant,

That, laboring,

Wherefore was God
Slain as a serf




And And

He had of prince and peer, love He had and made good cheer Of them that, like this woman here, Go powerfully in pain.

But whether Alfred pondered problems
labor the cakes got burnt just the same.

war or
to Al-



turn to the page where

men come

on the island of Athelney and beg him to beruler of all England.

come the

This gives Chesterton

a chance to expound his anti-imperialism.

And Alfred in the orchard, Among apples green and


With the little book in his bosom, Looked at green leaves and said



philosophies shall


This word alone


a sage feels too small for a fool too large for it.


"Asia and

imperial plains

Are all too little for a fool But for one man whose eyes can


G. K.



too large a land to rule.


island of Athelney

island like a little book, Full of a hundred tales, Like the gilt page the good monks pen That is all smaller than a wren,


Yet hath high towers, meteors and men, And suns and spouting whales.


land having a light in it, In a river dark and fast,

isle with utter clearness lit, Because a saint has stood in it,



flowers are flowers indeed trees are trees at last."
clear the




weeds from the White Horse

that had ages before been cut upon the chalk bluff,
Alfred has a vision of the day

when the




when a new and less manly kind the Danes shall overrun England

be again overgrown and forgotten and of heathen than


know that weeds
Faster than



in it


can burn

And though

they scatter now and go, In some far century, sad and slow,

have a vision, and I know The heathen shall return.

They shall not come with war-ships, They shall not waste with brands,


But books be


their eating,


ink be on their hands.

dear sun dwarfed of dreadful suns, Like fiercer flowers on stalk,



little like

a pea,

In high heaven's towering forestry These be the small weeds ye shall see Crawl, covering the chalk.

and the cruel



Of curse in bone and kin, By weird and weakness winning,
Accursed from the beginning,

By detail of the And denial of


the sin


By thought a crawling ruin, By life a leaping mire, By a broken heart in the breast

of the world, the end of the world's desire

By God and man dishonored, By death and life made vain, Know ye the old barbarian,
The barbarian come


great talk of trend and tide, destiny, Hail that undying heathen That is sadder than the sea.

And wisdom and

In this specification of "the marks of the Beast"

we may


Chesterton's antipathies







commercialism, Darwinism, imperialism,

cosmopolitanism, pacifism, and Socialism. He is haunted by the same nightmare as Samuel Butler, that the day may come when machines will master
the world and

men be merely

their slaves.


he looks to a revolution
only worse.

the French Revois




the Eton

boys who, after a debate over
passed a


unanimous resolution disapproving of the

approving of their methods. The socialists say we must have a revoChesterton would say, lution, peaceful if possible.

aim of the


"we must have a The guillotine, he

revolution, bloody



says somewhere, had many sins to answer for, but, at least, there was nothing evolutionary about it. And he makes the English people



be we shall


the last as



Our wrath come

after Russia's

wrath and our wrath

be the worst.
Like Hilaire Belloc and other Neo-Catholics, he manages somehow to combine an admiration for the

French Revolution with a devotion to Catholicism.


are ardent advocates of

standing the very explicit

democracy notwithcondemnations of popular




government by the Popes. They are more inclined toward syndicalism than Socialism and place their
hopes in the peasant proprietorship instead of in the
nationalized trust.

an interesting novelty


the labor problem, for

cuts across the old classifica-




it will

have a chance to develop




in France, the Sillon of

The similar movement Marc Sangnier, was crushed

out by a papal encyclical in 1912. Chesterton might be called an English Sillonist, and in a literal


recall his essay

on The Furrows



Chesterton sometimes praises the achievements of modern science and industry, but al-

and Discursions."


as ingenious toys.



convinced that man-

kind in the mass will never take the city seriously. When the rest of the world was looking for the

advent of cosmopolitanism and the reign of peace, the earth lapped in universal law and all the local
idiosyncrasies ironed out, wherein all obstacles to

freedom of movement had been crushed out and one


a tourist ticket to

Timbuktu with the

along the route, Chesterton set his bugle to his lips and blew a fanfare of audacious challenge to the spirit of the times in the

same accommodation

form of a nonsensical romance, "The Napoleon of Netting Hill." In this he carries particularism

G. K.


up London again into warring wards, each with its own banner and livery, its The book is inscribed, as gilds and folk ways.
to an extreme, breaking

we might

expect, to his friend, Hilaire Belloc,


quote part of the dedication as

sums up the

message of the volume and

strangely prophetic

For every tiny town or place

God made the stars especially Babies look up with owlish face And see them tangled in a tree ; You saw a moon from Sussex Downs, A Sussex moon, untraveled still. I saw a moon that was the town's,



lamp on Campden


Heaven is everywhere at home, The big blue cap that always fits, And so it is (be calm they come

goal at last, my wandering wits), So it is with the heroic thing This shall not end for the world's end, And though the sullen engines swing,


Be you not much




This did not end by Nelson's urn Where an immortal England sits Nor where your tall young men in turn Drank death like wine at Austerlitz. And when the pedants bade us mark What cold mechanic happenings Must come; our souls said in the dark, "Belike; but there are likelier things."


at a time was commonly thought that the last of the wars had been fought and the nations might disarm. when such scientists that self-sacrifice Metchnikoff were saying and heroism of the fighting sort as were antiquated virtues for which the peaceful and sanitary world of the future would have little use. " Whether we Co. when the socialists becoming laid opportunists their and the anarchists had aside bombs . in Poems " (John Lane New York). hoping for a social revolution. [160] .SIX MAJOR PROPHETS levels Likelier across these flats afar. I fear. These sulky smooth and free. 1 Remember when it this was written in 1904. He was seems looking and. like it or Republished. Chesterton was wrong about the nature of the catastrophe. 1913. it now less improbable than did But the Great War has given an irresistible impulse to the movement toward particularism as against 1 cosmopolitanism. for henceforth the Hague Court would were hold sway. and that has not yet come it although then. The drums shall crash a waltz of war And Death shall dance with Liberty Likelier the barricades shall flare ! Slaughter below and smoke above. And death and hate and hell declare That men have found a thing to love..

[161! . before there will be the freedom of trade. in the cultivation of local industries. perhaps more than one generation. in pageantry and community celethe interest in town history and in the struggle to reestablish disappearing languages." This tendency manifested itself in a variety of ways . and characteristically entitled "The Crimes the primitive of England". since he wrote 1 volume. and every country will hereafter strive to secure economic independence by developing its own recentury.G. has been New York. K. by John Lane Co. like Gaelic. Published. 1916. Czech. in brations.. 1 little we can see that it is that he most admires ciency of the peasant kingdom of Montenegro and the machine-like effithat he most abhors. this German empire Montenegro. intercourse. not. and Ruthenian. From Chesterton's latest book devoted to the crimes of Germany. the revival of folk dances and his- toric costumes. sources. CHESTERTON the tide has turned in the it we must admit that other direction and that will be many years. Even before the local toward the sort of war there was a tendency differentiation of which Chesterton gave a fantastic forecast in "The Napoleon of Netting Hill. and migration that prevailed at the beginning of the twentieth Even England has abandoned free trade.

SIX MAJOR PROPHETS tide of war. but probably Chesterton has faith to believe that it will reappear This faith like Ararat when the waters subside. for he first entered the lists of public life to break a lance in defense of the Boers at a time when it was most unpopular if not dangerous to say a word in their favor. overwhelmed by the poem. published some ten years afterward. rare in our pockets the mark of the mint : [162] . And Chesterton has a better right to appear now as the champion of small nationalities than some other English authors we could name. Though it fall down like a tree. "The March of the Black Mountain". refers to these youthful He De- days in his "Song of I feat". Though the crooked swords overcome it the Crooked Moon ride free. written during the Balkan war which he expressed in the Montenegro initiated : by a single-handed attack upon the Turk But men shall remember the Mountain. When the Mountain comes to Mahomet It has more life than he. : quote part of one stanza I dream And of the days when work was scrappy. They shall see the sign of the Mountain Faith cast into the sea .

For so they conquered and so we scattered. which -is a hundred years old. But the poem. both because he wrote cause he repudiated " it. When I was twenty and odd years old. so he explains in his preface : Anglo-Saxon I have come to see that our hopes of brotherhood with America are the same in kind as our hopes of brotherhood with any other of the great independent nations of Christendom. 2 Anglo-Saxon Alliance" he had lost faith in such ethnic generalities as the race. [I6 3 ] . is at least fifty years older than the Anglo-Saxon race. K. When the Devil rode and his dogs smelt gold. CHESTERTON When we were angry and poor and happy. New York). when he included the poem on "The volume.G. When mongrel men that the market classes. "The Wild Knight" (Dutton & " Co. it and be- has an especial interest is now when American sympathy with England 1 stronger * From Poems (John Lane). But in a by 1905. And proud of seeing our names in print. And the peace of a harmless folk was shattered.. Had slimy hands on England's rod And sword in hand upon Afric's passes Her last Republic cried to God 1 ! One of his youthful dreams was to see a reunion of the United States and would come about in England which he imagined some great foreign war. And a very small study of history was sufficient to show me that the American nation.

Seas shall be red as sunsets. In change. Its roots . take hold on hell No peace or praise can heal it. The moon as blood above. the hate of kindred. And the earth is full of hatred. Under the whole world's scorn. But a stranger heals it well. And kings' bones float as foam. and there is talk of joining England in this bloodiest of all wars. He thinks in . is That not This people tells its love. till the last link breaks Not till the night is blackest. By blood and death and darkness The Saxon peace is sworn That all our fruit be gathered. The night our son comes home. Deep grows In some respects we should expect Chesterton to go better in verse than in prose. ******* That runs through Saxon lands. When the sun is black in heaven. The blood of Hengist wakes. the traditional hostility has been largely swept away.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS than ever before. And all our race take hands. And heaven be dark with vultures. eclipse and peril. And the sea be a Saxon river . This the weird of a world-old folk.

yet at other times he takes delight in sub- jecting himself to the most rigid of models. "the easiest because it is the most restricted. we happen upon curious cadences that linger in the memory like the chant of some strange ritual." the Although Chesterton often seems to disregard canons of versification from carelessness or caprice. He is too indolent or too indifferent to hunt for the best possible word or rime. vivid. the queer rhythms." He [165] . On the other hand. all through his verse. and colorful. Consequently we find in his verse many a perfect line. for is instance. which. and never a perfect poem. such as the repetialliteration. fantastic. and the superabundance of tropes. the the un- qualified assertion of half truths. poetry is and Chesterton does not like to a painstaking art. take pains. the old French ballade. are by tradition permissible in poetry and so arouse no resentment. K. tion of the same words. as. CHESTERTON metaphors and pictures.G. His ballads abound like haunt one rhythms that those of Lanier's "Ballad of the Trees in unconventional and the Master. rarely a perfect But scattered stanza. The peculiarities of his prose style that grate upon the taste of some readers. the verbal tricks. he says. even in the most nonsensical.



shows us how he constructs one
a Strange


Ballade of




strange town into which

he was shunted by the accident of taking the wrong tramcar one rainy day while "fooling about Flanders" was Lierre, an unknown and uninteresting way station then, but now one of the famous places
of world history, for

stood for days the shock of



attack on Antwerp.

While waiting

next car to take

him away Chesterton

on the back of an envelope with an aniline pencil a poem which begins in nonsense but ends with as good an expression of his creed as he has

given anywhere




he and more than wise

wondering eyes and clean This world through all the gray disguise Of sleep and custom in between.
sees with


Yes we may pass the heavenly screen, But shall we know when we are there ? Who know not what these dead stones mean,


lovely city of Lierre.


so fond of the ballade that I


For the benefit of quote one specimen complete. those who have taken no interest in versification



attention to the technical difficulties of




In Tremendous Trifles ", 1909 (Dodd, " Poems " Qohn Lane).

Mead &





G. K.

It conall

the form of the ballade that he has chosen.
sists of

three octaves and a quatrain

ending in

the same refrain and using only two rimes.




used in the


and third




quatrain and in the second and fourth of the

second quatrain. The second rime is used in the second and fourth lines of the first quatrain and
in the first

and third of the second quatrain.
or Venvoi







dressed to a prince or other royal personage.

Chesterton hates princes his apostrophe to the prince in this ballade is not in the usual sycophantic style.


garden, people say,

gallows in


new and neat and adequately

noose on in a knowing way As one that knots his necktie for a ball But just as all the neighbors on the wall Are drawing a long breath to shout "Hurray!" The strangest whim has seized me After all I think I will not hang myself to-day.
I tie the
. .




the time I get my pay sword is hanging in the hall see a little cloud all pink and grey Perhaps the rector's mother will not call fancy that I heard from Mr. Gall That mushrooms could be cooked another way never read the works of Juvenal I think I will not hang myself to-day.

My uncle's




The world will have another washing day The decadents decay; the pedants pall; And H. G. Wells has found that children play, And Bernard Shaw discovered that they squall


Rationalists are growing rational And through thick woods one finds a stream astray, So secret that the very sky seems small


I will

not hang myself to-day.

Prince, I can hear the trumpet of Germinal, The tumbrils toiling up the terrible way ;

Even to-day your

royal head




I will

not hang myself to-day.

Those who
in the


with more or



will appreciate Chesterton's verses

Shakespeare Tercentenary celebration about a similar

commemoration decreed by the calendar.

Lord Lilac thought

rather rotten

That Shakespeare should be quite forgotten, And therefore got on a Committee With several chaps out of the city,
Shorter and Sir Herbert Tree, Lord Rothschild and Lord Rosebery, And F. C. G. and Comyns Carr, Two dukes and a dramatic star, Also a clergyman now dead



while the vain world careless sped Unheeding the heroic name


G. K.



souls most fed with Shakespeare's flame sat unconquered in a ring,

Remembering him


Lord Lilac did not long remain, Lord Lilac did not come again,

He softly lit a cigarette And sought some other social


some other knots or

People were doing cultured things,

Miss Zwilt's

The The


men who

Humane Vivarium paint on gum

exquisite Gorilla Girl.




sometimes in the giddy whirl (Not being really bad at heart), Remembered Shakespeare with a start But not with that grand constancy Of Clement Shorter, Herbert Tree, Lord Rosebery, and Comyns Carr




the other names there are stuck like limpets to the spot,

Lest they forgot,


they forgot.

Lord Lilac was of slighter stuff Lord Lilac had had quite enough. 1
Chesterton's poetic versatility range




from the fact that he has written a drinking song that is used as a whisky advertisement and a devotional song that has been incorporated into the


The former may be found in "The Flying Inn", the latter in the "English Hymnal",
From " Poems " (John Lane).

[I6 9


also in

The hymn


as follows, omitting,








to the tune of


O God

of earth

Bow down and

hear our cry,

Our earthly rulers falter, Our people drift and die.

The walls of gold entomb us, The swords of scorn divide, Take not thy thunder from us But take away our pride.

From all that terror teaches, From lies of tongue and pen, From all the easy speeches
That comfort


sale and profanation Of honor and the sword, From sleep and from damnation Deliver us, good Lord


and more sensible some people who say that they people than you would suppose like "Quoodle" the best of Chesterton's poetry. Since there is no accounting for taste and some of







may have

taste, I


also quote this


1 It has always been a puzzle to me why congregations have to be warned against singing the third stanza of any hymn. I never could see that it was any worse than the rest, but I assume the clergy know

best about



G. K.



They haven't got no noses, The fallen sons of Eve. Even the smell of roses
Is not what they supposes, But more than mind discloses, And more than men believe.

They haven't got no noses, They cannot even tell


door and darkness closes

The park old Gluck encloses, Where even the Law of Moses


steal a smell.

The brilliant smell of water, The brave smell of a stone, The smell of dew and thunder, And old bones buried under
Are things

which they blunder


err, if left

The wind from winter forests, The scent of scentless flowers, The breath of bride's adorning The smell of snare and warning, The smell of Sunday morning, God gave to us for ours.

And Quoodle

here discloses

All things that

Quoodle can


They haven't got no

sought his themes in the classics anything to the music of his lines. And goodness only knowses The Noselessness of Man. The version in "The a trifle different. He cultivated the unconventional and introduced the most unpoetic and uncouth words. Whitman was the father or the grandfather of the vers-librists. when he was about sixteen. Swinburne. We should then naturally expect Chesterton's verse to be original. and democrats. At any rate these were the poets who most influenced Chesterton when in his teens of life he began to write poetry. One very interesting instance of and sacrificed poem that he wrote at school. he has borin the Swinburnian meter. It is an Ave Maria That is. . this is found in a rowed the weapon of the atheist and used 1 it in deFlying I Inn " quote from The is New Witness. 1 According to Mendelism new species are most apt to come from the crossing of diverse forms. since they were both pagans but in form they are antipodes. The early poetry of Chesterton shows traces of both influences. since it is the result of a cross between Whitman and Swinburne. In philosophy Whitman and Swinburne were not so far apart. on the other hand.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS They haven't got no noses.

seventeenth year he went Paul's school. generations a After ages of wrangle and dogma." His first contribution to the outside press was a Socialist [173] . of which he was chairman. prayer to thy feet. prize was known Milton Prize and the it subject assigned to the pupils competing for was Francis Xavier. at the Paul's school in the Junior Debating Club. K. poems a lot of bad poem it was !" as the The St. who may not believe. A soliloquy of Danton on the shows how scaffold. we worship. written at the age of sixteen. a for one of these what a got prize Golly. The poem begins Hail Mary ! Thou up shall rise blest among to greet. and the monthly periodical of the society. as he says. come with Where We Gabriel's red plumes are a wind in the lanes of thy lilies at eve pray. contains many essays and poems signed "G. From to St. "I did no his twelfth to his work but wrote bad poetry which fortunately I perished with the almost equally bad exercises. The Debater. early began his fascination for the French lution. where. women I . K. C. Revo- His fondness for discussion was cultivated St. who have done with the churches . fense of Catholicism CHESTERTON a trick that he has been : playing ever since.G.

Chesterton was born don. for he draws as readily His first book was a volume of jingles as he writes. for his father was a liberal in politics and religion and attended Bedford Chapel where the Reverend Stopford Brooke was preaching what was then called "the new theology. Chesterton soon passed from sketching through art criticism to journalism. Seven Little Daughters." G." Although educated as an artist. Lon- nothing in his heredity or early training to account for his conservative and 29.SIX poem appearing later MAJOR PROPHETS in The Clarion. G. "The Wonderful Story of Dunder van Haeden and His father. Old Gentlemen. for his Edward Chesterton. in Kensington. K." Lit- His propensity for dropping into nonsense rhymes and sketches may be ascribed to heredity. After leaving St. 1874. was responsible for a slim volume of child verse and drawings. but a few years he was busy trying to puncture the balloon of Socialism with his sharp-pointed pen. Paul's he studied art at the Slade School in London and has illustrated half a dozen books with cartoons. and sketches entitled erature and Art for "Gray-Beards at Play. though a respectable real estate agent by profession. is May There High Church tendencies. K. He began by writing pro-Boer articles [174] .



1175] . Drink.G. The originality of his thought and the vigor of his style attracted public attention. an amazing output considering that there is hardly a dull page in it. a Liberal weekly. K. As of anonymous biographer says semi-Tolstoyan : "Thousands peaceful non- conformists have for years been compelled to listen every Saturday morning to a fiery apostle preaching consistently the praise of three things which seem to them most obviously the sign-manuals of Hell War." But more recently his antagonism to "cocoa" Cadbury became so great as to extended symbolically to the politics as well as to the beverage of break incongruous alliance and he has found in his brother's weekly The New Witness a more this congenial although a smaller audience. and Catholicism. which is under entirely Bedifferent management from The Daily News. sides these and frequent contributions to other periodicals on both sides of the Atlantic. and The Daily News took him over to write a weekly article in spite of the fact that he differed in opinion from the editors and readers on his certain points. He has also contributed for Illustrated many years a weekly page to The London News. he stories manages to turn out a well as volume or two of every year as poetry and criticism. for CHESTERTON The Speaker.

an inspired writer. but not all equally worth reading. but and is there are so many paste diamonds among them of equal brilliancy that the half of the world which does not like Chesterton takes it for granted that they are all paste. Producing under such pressure or at the compulsion of filling a certain least under number of columns every week with witty comment on current events Chesterton's inevitably tends to careless writing. work is all equally readable. His display of gems of thought is hardly to be matched by any other show window. carrying on a lively conversation at the same time. but he goes on writing quite as brilliantly after the inis He spiration has given out. They may even quote [176] Chester- . around to As press his clubs day draws near runners are sent and other London haunts to tell him that the editor must have his article immediOnce caught Chesterton surrenders goodately. Fleet Street men tell me that it is hard to get his copy on time. just as a man writing in the dark goes on after his fountain pen has run dry only making meaningless scratches on the paper. naturedly and taking any paper handy will dash off his essay.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS To keep it up so long and steadily must be a strain upon one of his easy-going temperament.

don. CHESTERTON "All is is ton in support of their view for he says: gold that glitters for the glitter the gold. get too close to too big them. K. I on the porch of a little He impressed me Billy Sunday impressed Symes. considering his antip- athy for Disraeli and his race. I don't know what they It call it in England. Arriving at Beaconsfield walked up the hill to where little I by the tea-time train I saw a big man sitting house. Overroads. and he promptly was of much the same mind when to I went to England. was on [177] a little triangular lot ." When Africa. on his return from was given a dinner by the journalists of London. ex-President Roosevelt. the Sunday of "The Man Who Was Thursday. Sunday. chose Chesterton. for Chesterton. Disraeli I This a little way out of Lon- town of Beaconsfield from which title. but quite a different personage. but not being in a position summon him near the to my side I sought is him out in his home. a should The house was what we bungalow. fit Mr. should say.G. he was asked by the committee on arrangements whom he would like to have placed by his I side to talk with during the meal." Great are apt to shrink as do not mean men to when you not. Chesterton did his call He was environment. took his uncomfortable quarters.

Epigrams. Besides they were not so completely [178] lost as I feared. nervous as a jeweler I who sees a lady break her necklace. like a like smile. paradoxes. are no uninteresting subjects. fell from his lips in such profusion that I.SIX set MAJOR PROPHETS with trees half his height and a rustic arbor patiently awaiting vines. characterizations. punctuating I never met a It is no trouble to interview him." any its all idea you please as unexpectedly as a rabbit from lair. Chesterton broke a leg on that arbor. and his talks in a deep-toned. metaphors. its and he will after it in a second and follow it turns and windings until he runs is down. But he mind wasting clever things on me. . man who "There talked more easily or more interestingly. His mind as agile as a movie actor. down on did not my wanted him to stop while I got knees and picked them up. anecdotes. for there were so many more where those came from. who knew felt as the market value of such verbal gems. two of them gray. remarks with an engaging chuckle. Mr. I suppose he must have tripped over it croquet wicket. Afterward I saw in the paper that Mr." he says. Chesterton has a big head covered with curly He is gifted with a Taftlocks. Start "there are only uninterested persons. puns. wheezy voice.

p. and he them with equal Unfortunately he Chesterton has written a book wit. about Shaw. Chesterton don't make did and attempt to please him by telling Johnson. Perhaps he would not like it any better to be told that the resemblance Chesterton is was more psychical than physical. Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc are not two persons. I CHESTERTON them a few recognized some of weeks later in his causerif page of The Illustrated London News. ton says: speaking of Coburn's portrait of Chester"He is our Quinbus Flestrin. doubtless the most dog- matic died. but one mytho1 "Tremendous Trifles". a bit" in that in him how much he reminds you of Doctor He admitted to me that he had "paged role. but so far Shaw has shown no position to return the compliment. the young a large Man It Mountain. dis- expresses has no Boswell. is abounding gigantically cherubic person. K. "The judge from what he says 1 Mystery of a Pageant" he does not re- but I gard his selection for the part as altogether com- plimentary to his personal appearance. K." Shaw's theory that G. man England has seen since Doctor Johnson He has equally violent prejudices.G. [179] . in Shaw. 317. But when you the mistake that visit I Mr.

eugenics. Esperanto. him from seeing He is like the who had cat and was room. simplified spelling. and a life of that hopeful and his humble wonder that men the possession of a call romance. like is him into curious inconsistencies.SIX logical MAJOR PROPHETS monster to be known as "The Chester- belloc. pragmatism. a really state. for universal an enthusiast manhood is But any mention of woman suffrage waving a [180] . vaccination. equal suffrage. he suffrage. divorce. into his false. these and a score His inability to see any good in of other modern movements brings For instance. peace official sanitation. and workingmen's insurance. all of which some of the rest of us look upon with favor. upset whenever aelurophobia came into the So whenever one of these phobias comes mind Chesterton loses his poise and sings Some of the things : for which he has a particular abhorrence are cocoa. public schools. latitudinarianism. movement. large scale production. colonies. prohibition. organized charity." Chesterton's ideals are large and generous and very solid democratic : A divinely ordered church. is But usefulness as a moral philosopher impaired by number tenor a of blind spots or in- veterate prejudices that prevent clearly. Lloyd George. vivisection.

7. 5. is as brutal and untrue as anything Nietzsche or Strind- three berg has said. religion is "If Christianity makes a man happy while his legs are being eaten off by a lion. CHESTERTON His statement that red coat before an Irish bull. 6. K. yet his whole system of apologetics based upon the pragmatic argument. still attached to me and walking down the street ?" for Chesterton's class his In order to make due allowance list like this and race prejudices while reading venient to keep a works. it is : con- as a bookmark TABLE OF CHESTERTON'S AFFECTIONS AND AVERSIONS CLASSES He likes most: I. Domestic women Artisans and laborers Priests and soldiers Poets and adventurers Shopkeepers (hereabouts fixed) is a great gulf [181] . and fraternity. Children Peasants 4. 3. In his essay on William James he says "pragmatism is is bosh". there are things which women can never understand. equality.G. might it not make me happy while my legs are true because it works. liberty. 2.

Landlords Millionaires Multimillionaires He dislikes most 13. but by the time he came to publish it in his first volume. introduced into British journalism a foreign element from which it had formerly free. been the political anti-Semitism which has been the cause of so Russia. and Germany. 6. 12. Irish 2. The conceited professional classes (the intellectuals) 11. Germans Cosmopolites In his youth Chesterton wrote a poem in defense of Dreyfus.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS 8. Business and professional poli- men 9. much [182] disturbance in France. French English Russians 3. Since then he has. RACES He likes most : 1. in connection with his brother Cecil and Mr. Belloc. "The Wild Knight". 5. Almost every number of . Turks Jews He dislikes most 7. he had so changed his opinion that he makes a partial apology for it in the preface. Criminals ticians) (including 10. 8. "To A Certain Nation". 4.

[I8 3 ] . 1 and that what party politics had done was to turn Balfour from the analysis of the doubtful to the defense of the dubious and Morley from writing on compromise to practicing it. The CHESTERTON edited New in Witness. by far Cecil Chesterton. for this the time when there is a chance to do something. director of the Marconi Company.G. their is muckraking. It greatly to be hoped that The New Witness group may get rid of their race prejudice and cut down on necessary. "I think the cabinet minister 1 In Chesterton's book on Shaw. And again. E. politicians. Smith. K. the British Party system against which they so long clamored without effect has now broken is down under in sight to stress of the war. take its place. nothing G. Chesterton was but there quite right when he England is "the party system of an enormous and most efficient machine said that for preventing political conflicts". For in- stance. The prosecution significantly was conducted hundred and costs by Sir is Edward Carson and F. contains sneers at Jewish financiers and and five 1912 he went dollars so that he was fined for defamatory libel of Godfrey Isaacs. though often never nice. which. K. and bring forward the conis structive part of their program.

Man or both. I propose the much more lurid and desperate experiment that we should make them public. of learning or destroy the hedge of property. but rather to make it work not to shut up the churches." mere obstructionist and reactionary guage as the following I : Chesterton protests against being regarded as a in such lan- do not propose (like some of my revolutionary we should abolish the public schools. has always believed in a paradise." is headed "To be sung a long time ago He has not yet favored us with a blueprint of his ideal state. Valhalla. I do not wish to make Parliament stop working." [I8 4 ] ." "What's Wrong with the World. Utopia. Utopia. . We have very detailed descriptions of Atlantis. so we 1 are left to surmise what he likes from 1 "Miscellany of Men. but the tense of the verb is indeterminable. but he has never been certain whether to look for it in the past or the future. and the like. but only to make some rude effort to make universities 2 fairly universal and property decently proper. Chesterton is equally uncertain as to whether to look forward or backward for his His "Christmas Song for Three Gilds" or hence. the Golden Age.SIX should be taken a MAJOR PROPHETS little less 1 seriously and the cabinet maker a little more. but rather to open them not to put out the lamp friends) that .

jolly. wealthy without financiers.G." Among contemporary communities I should say that the mujiks of the Russian mir come the nearest to complying with his specifications. [185] . freehold farmers village and inn gild craftsmen. We may infer that his ideal would be a self-governing community domestic. art-loving. patriotic. knowledge. Chesterton seems to obey a negative magnetism and orients himself by his antipathies. He believes with governed without politicians. leisurely. healthy without doctors. Of the made-to-order presume that of William Morris's "News from Nowhere" would suit him better than the Socialists for whom it was written. K. beer-drinking. shown any disposition to leave London and take to the steppes in order to live the simple life in these communities although he has not. church. of equally well-to-do. religious. Walsh in calling the thirteenth "the greatest of all ideal centuries. clustered about all the and They would be of one race and creed. CHESTERTON what he the very plain indications he has given us of does not like. Belloc that the nearest historical approach to this was Western Europe about 1200-1500. to my of pure democracy. He probably would agree with Doctor James J. women Utopias vote I in But perhaps this is because the mir. pork-eating.

Chesterton expresses much the same philosophy of life in essays. the Carlylean doctrine of wonder. How Read whatever sequence is TO READ CHESTERTON is is no order important. The heading to a l-M] . for there and not been writing. the Wordsworthian and Tolstoyan doctrine of the majesty of the untutored man. the Browningesque standard of optimism. but he never can think up a title broad enough to cover the variety of topics he treats. borrow the words of the Forum W.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS Chesterton in a sentence. and poems and there has been little change in his opinions or style in the sixteen years he has handiest. Nowhere has he given a complete and orderly presentation of his views. stories. whatever his vagaries and harlequinries. latent in all objects. the Dickensian faith in the worth and wisdom of the feeble-minded. About once a year he gathers up a sheaf of his contributions to the press and puts them out under as general and indefinite a title as he can think up. He is a born journalist and prefers to fire at a moving target. the Emersonian doctrine of the spirituality preaches A man who mantic Christianity. article of I To sum up Firkins : must O. affects us as a man with whom. an impassioned and roand who adds to that the Jeffersonian doctrine of democracy. it would be wholesome and inspiriting to live.

or penny dreadfuls. and "What's Wrong With the World" (1910. Since the war began he has published "The Barbarism of Berlin" (1914). Dodd). both published by John Lane Company. Lane). and "The Crimes of England" (1916. and "Poems" (1915. Lane). "The Appetite of Tyranny" (1910. Dodd). Dodd). Mead & Company). pub. To this we should add his first work. K. and when his brother. One is apt to find his deepest philosophy tucked away in some corner of a discourse on cheese or mumming . Dodd). Lane) conthe rest of his poetry except what still files. Dodd). He is like a sub- by Dodd. "The Ballad of the White Horse" (1911. CHESTERTON its chapter gives no clue to the theme or importance. "The Defendant" (1901. marine when he goes under you never can tell where he will come out. "Alarms and Discursions" lished briefer.G. Lane) contains his epic of King Alfred. Dutton). which may be tains all remains buried in "the [187] . enlisted as a private in October. His youthful poetry is in "The Wild Knight and Other Poems" (1900. as I say. he assumed the editorship of that lively journal. "A Miscellany of Men" (1912. Somewhat more varied." Of these I must mention "The Wife of Flanders". "Tremendous Trifles" (1909. In The New Witness he has been running a weekly page under the head of "At the Sign of the World's End". Consequently. His views on religion and society are expounded most thoroughly in "Orthodoxy" (1908). it does not matter much which volume you pick up they are equally brilliant and inconsequential. and trivial in topic are "All Things Considered" (1908. including "Letters to an Old Garibaldian" (1915. 1916. "Heretics" (1905). Cecil Chesterton.

Of Dickens he has written most and best in the prefaces to Everyman's Library " and Criticism of edition (collected in Appreciations " : ture" (1913. Lane). Holt) is not quite so interesting because he does not have room to ramble. Of his allegorical fantasias I have discussed at found A Dickens describes the conflict between a religious fanatic and an equally intolerant atheist. although sometimes he uses his author merely as a point of departure. Dodd). Lane) deals with domesticity. Lane) is a defense of the In "Napoleon of Netting Hill" public house. Home University Library. Harper). Browning" forms an admirable volume of the English Men of Letters series (1908. mostly written as prefaces to standard reprints. Besides Charles Dickens A Critical ". first romance. Current Opinion. His "George Bernard Shaw" (1910. "Manalive" (1912. and "The Flying Inn" (1915. he preaches parohis (1908. Lane). Dutton) and Study" (1906.some length "The Man Who Was Thursday" "The Ball and the Cross" (1910. or Living Age of 1914. Macmillan). makes delightful reading. but it is valuable as bringing into close contrast these repreHis "Robert sentatives of opposing points of view. which was a success on the London and New York stage. His detective or rather mystery stories are "The Club of Queer Trades" (1905. Lane). Lane) in the Literary Digest. (1908. [188] . Dodd). Lane) is not much of a biography. "Magic: Fantastic Comedy" (1913. His "Victorian Age in Litera. His literary criticism. Chesterton has written one play. "The Innocence of Father Brown" (1911. and "The Wisdom of Father Brown" (1914. chialism. Putnam).

Gilder (Bookman. by B. 205). reprinted with other interviews in Herts's "Depreciations" " Chesterton wrote on Shall the United (1915.. Dutton). with sixteen portraits from childhood up. November 7. One published anonymously in 1908 gives the best account of his early life the other by Julius West (1916. or another criticism 597). Wells. 117). and 1911). K. "Chesterton as an Artist" by Joseph B. "The are the excellent piece of Firkins in The Forum (vol. His picturesque personality and peculiar views have supplied innumerable journalists with material for articles. among which may be mentioned "Five Types" (1911. 44. 468. see also vol. a sketch by Henry Murray. reason p. "Samuel Johnson" (1903. "G. May. Dutton) "William Blake" (1910. Dodd) gives the most complete criticism of his work up to date. Dodd). "Carlyle" (1902 and 1904) and "R. contains some of Chesterton's sketches . discusses " Chesterton and Belloc. January 12. States Fight ?" in The Independent. 34. vol. C. by O. Holt). with a bibliography. in his "Social Forces in England and America" (p. L. Russell Herts in The Independent. 39. 1910. Defender of the Discarded". (vol. Specially noteworthy for one . CHESTERTON many biographical sketches : these he has written and critiques. is containing his sketches. and the pocket volume of "Wit and Wisdom of Chesterton" (1911. 707). The : Forum harsh and unsympathetic. p. 1912. "Varied Types" (1902. F. Stevenson" (Pott). Boni). Dodd) will afford plenty of food for thought for any . "A Visit to G. There are two biographies of Chesterton. in the London Bookman. p. one. K. 48. 1916. Chesterton is eminently quotable. [189] . W. Watts" (1902.G. p.

though a pragmatist cpistemology a materialist in metaphysics. because by the time it knows something about them they have ceased to be the greatest. I felt as relieved in Schiller says that "Professor is Santayana. S. I was as delighted sciously talking prose 1 my as life M." [190] . I started to find out what it meant and that led me on I a long chase. happened upon the word was printed. IV C. rather inapproI upon the slip cover of Santayana's "Life of Reason. Jourdain when he was told that he had been unconall his life. I The farther I went the more interested covered that became. priately. A DOZEN years ago as it 1 "pragmatism"." Being a queer looking word and unknown to me. SCHILLER. F. for I soon dis- had been a pragmatist all without knowing it. S.CHAPTER F. SCHILLER A BRITISH PRAGMATIST The world knows nothing of its greatest men. C.

even men of standing in in this I philosophical circles. had got my training as a journalist through the study of chemistry. that is. But when I heard of the pragmatists that I was no longer alone in the world. So when I went to writing about other things. as C. I law. SCHILLER for Huxley when he invented "agnostic" as a tag I himself. such as the habit of using words like "catalysis" and "parachlorbenzamidine" in casual conversation. history. I to find them wherever they in ran down Dewey the Adirondacks . were others. for I had come by my pragmatism honestly enough. way and who were not ashamed to own got their names and started might be. amused people it have to drop began to fear that I should as I had other evidences of my buried past. religion. it I knew There seemed. like. and the my I brains in the persisted in the valuation of all acts by their consequences instead of their causes and in the validation of all truths by or practicality instead of precedent. ethics. politics. this But when I found how way I of thinking shocked. and in science the prag- matic mode of thinking is universal and unquestioned.F. annoyed. S. whose minds ran it. naturally used same way as in science.

SIX and Bergson in a Paris flat. I could not guarantee that. I in Poincare I unearthed James I heard in a Columbia lecture in a room I . 1 Some who have read or tried to read 2 what I said about Bergson and Poincare have complained that I used too many big words. " 1 " Major Prophets of To-day. Company. First Series. of course. but I had no hesitation about complying with his request. Confucius syllable. but fortunately before I had bought I my steamer ticket or learned Chinese discovered that he had been dead for three centuries. and [192] . 1914. Chicago. Since I am obliged to use the word "pragmatism" more than once in this book 1 I may forestall criticism by putting here now my The Philosophy of Wang Yang-ming is through the translation of Doctor Henke Company. I was thinking of caught going to China to see Wang Yang-ming. Brown. MAJOR PROPHETS the Alps. wrote his immortal works in words of one and I would not be beaten by a Chinaman. 1916). Schiller an Oxford quad. and one man wrote me to say that if I would define pragmatism in words of one syllable perhaps he I might understand what was talking about. Boston. accessible in English. Even Herbert Spencer once condescended to translate his famous definition of evolution into Anglo-Saxon. Ostwald in found Saxon village . (Open Court Publishing Little.

Prove all things try to do what is right. and what keeps us from stray paths that turn out wrong in the end. and hold fast to that which is good. If there It means naught to us if it. what gives us joy and strength. when we cannot tell what odds it makes in is just a guide to life. it must have some truth least in part. The need for thought first comes when man asks "Why?" or "Which?" so that he may know what to do to gain his end. so the chain will hold. what helps us. If a A creed We man would know what that we make truth for our own use. what makes us see all things clear and straight. S. matism of it. SCHILLER MONOSYLLABIC DEFINITION OF PRAGMATISM The one way to find out if a thing is true is to try it and see how it works. differ and that the opponents of pragstill more widely in their conception says that the most serious drawis Schiller in the that "it condemns every exponent of pragmatism to consume at least half an back name hour of Schiller his limited time in explaining the word. or not." the himself employs term is "humanism" disturbing to instead which being less novel less [193] . a means to an end. Man has to act. If it works well for a long time and for all folks. what ties up fact to fact. In this way he asks the world what it means to him. Thought is a tool. C. then it has no sense. If it works wrong it is false. else why should we think it ? The truth is what is good for us. The will to have faith in a thing oft makes the faith come true. But the reader should be warned that no two pragmatists can be got to agree upon any definition of pragmatism. Out of the facts so come by is made a law. So it can be said in a it is we hold to must live to learn. The mind as it thinks makes such facts as it can to best serve its use. and so he must think. is right he must Then he can find out. what shows us how to act. What we think must be of use to us in some way. and this law in turn serves as a rule to guide way one's acts.F. at no way to test it.

Peirce who invented the term "pragmatism" and William James who popularized it are both dead. matism is (6) a systematic protest against all ignoring of the purposiveness of actual knowing. and it was at this in the act of is A man psychological moment that I caught Doctor Schiller first 1 Of course any one who wants to find out at matism is will not bother with what I say but hand what pragWilliam will turn to James's "Pragmatism" or invest fifty cents in the briefer and more comprehensive survey of the movement in D. 1 stand for is of thought. the word finds few defenders. which implies. the spirit of the Renaissance." A definition of pragmatism that is anything but monosyllabic told of a college may be found in the chapter on Dewey. (3) that (2) that the "truth" of an assertion depends on its application the meaning of a rule lies in its application (4) that ultimately all meanPraging depends on purpose. namely. S. Since C. Murray's primer of "Pragmatism. . Schiller's own " definition is to be found in his "Studies in Humanism : Pragmatism is the doctrine (i) that truths are logical values.SIX the conventional MAJOR PROPHETS mind but on the other hand has the serious disadvantage of having been applied to a very different thing. untaristic metaphysic. although the mode of reasoning all fields it tried to obviously permeating many other things pragmatism seems likely to conquer the world incognito. Like dismounting from a bicycle temporarily incapacitated from the effective use of either mode of locomotion. The story is woman who was asked what Professor James's lecture on pragmatism was going to be about and replied that she thought it had something to do with the royal succession in Austria. . a vol. and it is (7) a conscious application to epistemology (or logic) of a teleological psychology. ultimately. (5) that all mental life is purposive. L.

was revolutionary [195] . at the gate of I C. close-cut and springy. Schiller wears the pointed beard that was the distinguishing mark of the radical of the nineties. S. But I suppose it would be against the Oxford customs to adopt the Greek method in teaching Greek philosophy. I wondered why he did not take his students out of the in old gloomy lecture room and walk with them as he did with me. SCHILLER Otherwise Corpus Christ! College. At any rate when Mr. his I as alert and agile He usually spends summers mountain climbing in the Alps. which is more than you can say of many authors. Schiller's lecture on logic I found ventional in form as it I it went to as conin spirit.F. He talks best while motion. though suppose he has suspended this pastime during the last three years while the Tyrolean Alps are being used for other purposes than tourism. a real peripatetic philosopher. but wears un-Shakespearean glasses. Curious turf it was. up and trees down the lawn between the and the ivy-clad walls of the college garden. for he physically as he is mentally. He is as interesting to converse with as he is to read. is might have missed him. I never felt anything like it under my feet except an asphalt pavement on a hot summer day. He has a Shakespearean-shaped forehead. Mr.

The lecture was delivered slowly. to the college even I suppose it is somebody's perquisite to supply such things as quills and snuff if nobody uses them. If Mr. with frequent repetiIt was tions. mimeograph. clause by clause. The students. and necessarily withnor even the out feeling. "inverted commas". The English leave out the punctuation marks in legal documents where they are needed and put them into lectures where they do not belong. really a brilliant lecture as I discovered afterwards when I read over my notes. An Ameri- can college president told me that he thought there was more graft at Oxford than anywhere else in the world. "Italics". for the lecturer dictated even the punctuation marks. These were furnished with inkwells and quill pens. as he went along "colon". and were writing awkwardly on long boards. but at the time it sounded : as dull as proof-reading. in short black gowns. although the students sensibly used fountain pens. so every word could be taken down. Schiller had remained in America he would at a time. now be lecturing to one or two hundred [196] . were seated uncomfortably on benches carved with the names of many generations. etc.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS printing had never One would have thought that been invented.



of many whom doubtless had no special interest in logic or in Schiller's views of logic and who took his lectures simply because they were required for examination. his men and women A man in Schiller's position disciples chiefly through his must gain books. S. The American visitor to Oxford meets a double mystery is : how it is that Oxford accomplishes so much with more with a poor that American their and antiquated plant and how it universities do not accomplish modern and convenient plants. I could not after which they could be forgotten. or with the College de France.F. One hates to conclude that plumbing and ventila- [I97l . where Bergson had attracted an even larger and equally cosmopolitan audience. SCHILLER all largely teachers who had come from parts of the country expressly to hear his ideas and who would in turn transmit them to their students. and for a is man of Schiller's attractive personality this a great disadvantage. C. but to have its effect the spoken word must be widely heard. where Eucken's eloquence held gathered from five continents. room and modern yet satisfying to the esthetic fiery historic taste. But in that room there were only these fifteen boys. help contrasting this scene with the big lecture at Jena. Print can never take the place of "the spoken word".

They somehow manage to ings that a make themselves comfortable in buildNew York tenement house inspector regarded as who is never unduly particular would order torn down. ' any Oxford is the favorite resort of American tourists the most satisfactory of all because of it is the sights Great Britain.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS But if tion are incompatible with high thinking. They have shown the adaptability of hermit crabs in fitting themselves into their awkward environment. The Tower of London it. the economical utilization of antiquated buildings and [198] . Our common feeling in regard to was best expressed by a lady being personally conducted through one of the college quadrangles when a student stuck tourist his who was head out of a dormer window. "Oh. my! Are these ruins inhabited?" was her delighted excla- mation. in Oxford is an antiquity it action. Spencer is right in defining life as the power of adaptation to environment. and Stratford-on-Avon do not compare with are as disappointing as They But an extinct volcano. That is a characteristic trait of the English. They work contentedly strike in under conditions that would cause a well-regulated union. the Oxford dons are most alive of any human beings.

The English keep King and make use of him for spectacular and advertising purposes.Sc. D. Ferdinand Canning Scott Schiller. M. Fellow and Senior Tutor of Corpus Christi College.F. It is a church where one may worship and hear sermons of decidedly modernistic tone.A. when they made up off. and since public opinion does not allow headmasters to keep racehorses they indulge their sporting instincts boys for the Blue Ribbon. that puzzles and fascinates every American visitor. even war and education. Oxford is Cluny and Sorbonne in one. like the Paris Pantheon. the Balliol Scholarships. The French. institutions. These boys by backing their are then given daily doses of classical verse competi- [199] . cut his head their which was a waste. even though what it does is wrong. a curious combination of old and new.. Westminster Abbey is not a mere mausoleum. their minds that they did not need a King any longer. While at Rugby he showed decided symptoms of intelligence. progress and reaction. so he was picked as a probable winner in the scholastic race and put in training for all the classical scholarships. Oxford to give for once his full name and titles -was born in 1864. C. The British turn things into sport. SCHILLER of The House Lords actually does something. useful and superfluous. S..

if and examinations as an evil to be eliminated becomes a pragmatist to condemn a system that works so well as the British. prizes as demoralizing. MAJOR PROPHETS same reason that jockeys are I infer for the fed on gin. T. The American I universities in the days of their pristine purity I mean by that of course.SIX tion ." [ Most of the 200] . This gave him three hundred and fifty dollars for five years as well as four dollars in Exhibitions hundred and fifty from Rugby. H. possible. But it also meant that he had sold himself to run in harness for another four years at Balliol and was obliged to master a philosophy which he already felt to be a fraud. and examinations. he did it so well that he got a Major Exhibition. set and it seemed to the tutors good pedagogy to their pupils to begin the study of philosophy with Green's "Prolegomena to Ethics. system built The British upon competitions. when was a student regarded competition as vicious. whatever theoretical objections may occur. state prizes. Green had died just before Schiller came up and had been sainted for the greater glory of Balliol. it ill But Much as Schiller detested making verses in a dead language. It is curious to see how widely is educators differ as to the fundamental principles of their business.

but it. which was supposed somehow and therefore fit to be concordant with or at least allied to the theological Trinity.F. and Hegel. Schiller spent as instructor and at the end of that period [201] . SCHILLER this boys confronted with abstruse it introduction came to the conclusion that was wonderful. because the tutors generally were not fond of reading German. that they had no curiously came same premise. They knew still less of science and apparently did not suspect that Darwin and his evolution might prove to have some bearing upon philosophy. head for metaphysics because Schiller they could not see any sense in very to the opposite conclusion from the Orthodox Oxford was at that time under the sway of the great philosophic Trinity of Plato. Schiller took his First Classes at Oxford. food for the souls of innocent young men. although he was given to asking awkward questions and was known to be reading "out of bounds. C." One of his examiners complained that he used such queer terms in his papers. The third person of the philosophic Trinity was kept much in the dark. The years 1893-1897 at Cornell University. "solipsism" and "epistemol- ogy" for instance. S. Aristotle.

"Riddles of the Sphinx". But probably the details. The cause I bare fact is interesting enough. in his and who carried pocket a call to teach philosoin phy ophy at a leading college of Oxford. possibly benever thought it best to inquire of any of the few who were in the room at the time. One is. that being fortified by the his crinkle of the above mentioned over heart and knowing that an American degree would have no value in England. that a young man who had written one of the most brilliant volumes of the times on metaphysics.D.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS an amusing incident occurred. in philos! Anybody who is curious can pick up half a this dozen inconsistent versions of famous episode letter on almost any campus. so it is better to re- [202] . if one knew them. was flunked Cornell on his oral examination for Ph. Schiller did not take the examination seriously and neglected the necessary cramming. is Another version of the story his that he turned tables upon first examiners by bringing into action for the time the pragmatic arguments so much to their discomfiture and bewilderment that he was penalized for these foul blows. though what it was and how it came about I don't know. would prove to be quite commonplace compared with either of these versions or the more picturesque legends that are in circulation.

good material all for some one who wants to investigate the psychology of students and examiners. [203] ." this book would never In 1897 Schiller was called back to England to become tutor in Corpus Christi College. dear friend. S. SCHILLER file it main in ignorance and in the envelope with such cases as John Henry Newman.F. It was a case of love at first sight and of lifelong devotion. F. The chief benefit that Schiller got out of his American sojourn was an acquaintance with William James. who got only a Third Class . Schiller dedicated his "Human- ism" "To ophers. and the like. Grant who was graduated in the lower half of his class. be- longed rather to the pre-Hegelian Oxford generation of the Mill-British-empiricism school of thought. the humanest of philosWilliam James. who failed in drawing. Here then he has for twenty years lived the quiet. Gustave Dore. H. C. The presi- dent of that college. Mendel who was never allowed to graduate at Vienna. and he was so much struck by the lucidity of Schiller's "Riddles of the Sphinx" that he called him from Cornell to Oxford. He liked things to be made intelligible. the late Thomas Fowler. Darwin who was called a stupid student. without whose example my and unfailing encouragement have been written. Bradley. who got a Second .

but with [204] . Some have transplanted tutors and they are growing.SIX sheltered. 1901. But one Oxford custom has not yet been introduced into our universities. the fessors time to think. of a periodical which in looks resembled one of the regular numbers of that staid blue-covered review of philosophy. his single combats with Mr. MAJOR PROPHETS contemplative life of the Oxford don. Mind. and his ascent of the bleak heights of speculative philosophy. In the British ations are golf. etc." "Who's Who" Mr. Bradley. dean or put on the committee which cures him. where the Absolute is supposed to dwell in solitude. varied only by such daring adventures as his hunt for the hidden fallacies of formal logic. custom of giving the proIn Oxford all the men have In America in time to think and some of them do. But in one edition of that handy volume autobiography it is of contemporary stated that his chief recreation is "editing Mind!" Thus was revealed the secret of the mysterious appearance at Christmas. Schiller's recreordinarily put down as "mountaineering. Some have transplanted ivy and it is growing. Our American universities are putting up some very fair imitations of Oxford architecture now. if a man shows is a tendency to a become absorbed thought he made of accredited high schools.

in six volumes. S. the Absolute. The advertisements were likewise Dictionary of Oxford Mythology." We hedonists. Discomforts detest when they grip us. jokes extra. whom they have from time to time been attached consignment of assorted Weltanschauungen just received from Germany" phonograms of all the lectures. for armchair study. would be useful on examination time by students of "Philosophy Four.F. SCHILLER The frontispiece is most startling contents." is This followed by an by article on "The Place of Humour in the Absolute. Badley". infinite self-absorbed Brahma : Was dreaming the World-Panorama [205] . "The Critique Cant". The history of philosophy in fifty-one limericks. H. a "Portrait of Its Immanence. Snark". by I. and the like. etc. with colored cinematofine . containing a complete account of the unusual "A stories told in the Common Rooms and the men to " . "A graphs of the most famous professors in action. covering all systems from Thales to Nietzsche. "More Riddles from Worse Sphinxes". of Pure Rot. So wealth we adore. "A Commentary on the F. C. said Aristippus. The moment live for And The take what the rich 'Arries tip us.

'tis better to "To A Found living exceedingly At Hegel he cursed.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS He And Till at length he groaned and he snored. but at Oxford the students are deficient in journalistic enterprise. And poured As will His grievances nursed. which surreptitiously circulates about Columbia University. so the duty of keeping things cheerful According to its devolves upon their betters. "The Joysome History of Education". has so far as I know never been disclosed to the public. This pestilent phraser. The author of a similar jeu d' esprit. sour. the troglodyte was soon tracked to his cave. dock 'em. multiply beings". pessimist. And ran out to bloodily block 'em. Mind! reads much like the Junior Annual of an American college. be seen from the above. forth his wrath by the hour. grew bored. and broke up the Drama. cover Mind! was "edited by a Troglodyte" but as there was only one philosopher in England who would have the cheek to do it and who could parody the style and expose the weak points of the regular contributors to Mind." So he seized on his razor. [206] . said Occam. woke up. " Is needless. great Schopenhauer.

methodological fictions. (3) (4) methodological assumptions. Bologna. SCHILLER Mind! But humor Schiller has not been able to confine his to that uniquity. He is. as the following passage shows : When we map out the whole region of Truthclaim or Formal Truth. accepting any statement that claimed to be true and devoting themselves to the study of its logical implications. As 1 Schiller puts it: Address on "Error" before the Congresso Internazionale di Filosofia. C. so far as I know. 1911. a personality. but would neglect his first and second. we find that it contains (i) lies. in But the pragmatist in is more interested assertion its finding out how and what way an it comes to be claim after 1 called true it and how makes good has been asserted. He is a keen debater and does not follow the ordinary but frequently disconcerts his antagonists by parrying their thrusts with a pun or rules of fencing. the first philosopher to find room for jokes in his formal philosophy. (6) validated truths. S. Most philosophers in fact would not only ignore his eighth category. (7) axioms. He allows it to creep into his contributions to Min^-without-the- exclamation-point and other serious journals.F. [207] . (2) errors. (5) postulates. and (8) jokes.

if it is true enough for the purpose in hand. between Truth and Error. and renders thwarts. at least relatively. "to-morrow". Both can vary in importance. But neither is absolute. Either may develop out of the history other. but if necessary Thus the demand [208] I can specify the for absolute exact- . The dyslogistic. shows. way of valuing a cognitive situation. as Truth and Error therefore are continuous. and can attain (or fail of) their purpose to a greater or a less degree. And conversely. An answer to a question is in general called true. The "truths" of one generation become the "errors" of the next. which the new "truths" are continuously transforming. "error" for what What then is Error. ultimately one in value." It follows also that (as every examiner who marks a paper knows) Truth and Error admit of quantitative differences. The "true" way of conceiving an object or judging a situation is simply the way most valuable for our purpose the "false" way is one which is. "truth" is the proper term for what satisfies. and both are rooted in the same problems of knowing. thereis fore. It is a true answer to the question "when do you leave?" to reply train I go by. when it has achieved more valuable and efficient modes of interpreting and manipulating the apparent "facts". difference . a human purpose in cognitive activity. But this does not preclude a greater exactitude if (for a different purpose) it should be required. what is now scouted as "error" may hereafter become the fruitful parent of a long progeny of "truths.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS common them to all sorts of Truth and species of a common genus ? Nothing but their psychological side. "Truth" is a eulogistic. which are ultimately problems of living. "error" a worthless.

" said the professor of geometry. Scientific truths are infinitely perfectible. SCHILLER is both humanly unnecessary and scientifically unmeaning. otherwise why should we bother to think ? Even our most abstract and general theorems have a hidden Hinterland of sub- conscious motives. all an element of personal desire. The four" abstract statement that is always incomplete." 1 " Studies in Humanism. nor of pleasures and pains. I'm afraid I can't. Now A human enters into factor. No one wants to know the height of a mountain in millimeters. limitations. and conditions. 2 1 I find the following incident reported of a Boston school which would indicate that the philosophy of William James is influencing the younger generation in his home city "Well. We "two and two make need to know to applied.F. and admit that any truth is "absolute" enough so soon as it is equal to the demands made upon it. Indeed a degree of accuracy higher than the situation demands would be irrational. while none must ever be so absolute as to become incorrigible and incapable of further growth. because his methods would not measure fine enough. nor of water." said render several of them highly probable." Waldo hopefully. "can you prove any : of to-day's theorems ?" "No. S. "but I can [209] . but never ness absolute. Waldo. he could not ascertain it. C. our thinking. 1 if philosophers are wise. they will accept this sort of truth. of drops what "twos" and "fours" the dictum is It would not be true of lions and lambs. sir. and if he did.

" He finds in the present war most unpleasant confirmation of his theory that thought is subordinate to action and never free from human volitional influence If 1 : of actual only philosophers could be got to face the facts life. "Every thought". indeed. and consciously or unconsciously making it "true" with a fervor rarely bestowed even by the most ardent philosophers on the most self-evident truths ? No improbability. he says." Mind. could any of them fail to observe the enormous object-lesson in the truth of pragmatism which the world has been exhibiting in the present crisis? Everywhere the "truths" believed in are relative to the nationality and sympathies of their It is. interest of philosophy. no absurdity. no atrocity has been too great to win credence. and the uniformity of human nature has been signally attested by the way in 1 "Realism. Pragmatism and William James. will to believe should have been needed to illustrate the pragmatic nature of truth. 1915. but who will dispute that for months say 999 persons out of orgy of the 1000 have been believing what they please. it Hence the endeavor called to light was very properly Human- Schiller conceives every thought as some one's experiment for which he is responsible. [210] . and with it is suppressed the human to drag ism.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS This suppressed context of thought is of course largely personal. lamentable that such an believers. "is an act and even the most 'theoretical' assertions are made to gratify a an interest.

These form the reigning truths. C. 1913. But it seemed clear that "true" was the term appropriated by language to the success. But they never form a closed oligarchy or an immutable system. therefore. nor be attained by way of human science. S.F. 534. were led. to examine how in fact belief in the accepted "truths" grew up. at which it seems that certain truth-claims have received confirmation enough to make them pragmatically certain. I will quote in condensed form with Miss what Schiller l says in his discussion Stebbing : It is an inevitable corollary of the belief in absolute truth that absolute truth cannot find lodgment in human mind. Thus. Merit can force its way into their ranks. vol. Of course both "success" and "truth" are relative terms. and inefficiency entails degradation. [2U] . SCHILLER which the same stories (mutatis mutandis) have been credited on both sides. alike in the individual's experience and in social opinion at any time. as false was to failure. All "truths" remain (preferred) truth-claims and retain an infinite appetite for assimilating further confirmation. p. of such experiments. Absolute "success" is found as little as absolute "truth" and for the same reason. and that whether it did or not depended on its consequences. 22. But there does come a point. Since the controversy over pragmatism hinges on this theory of truth. found that every thought was essentially a personal experiment that might succeed or fail. though their position is (psychologically) unchal- We We 1 Mind.

SIX lenged. H. For goes classical authority for his Humanism Schiller : "Man back to the famous dictum of Protagoras In Plato's is the measure of all things. 1915. Bradley. and "Gods and Priests" in "Studies in Humanism". Schiller's most serious work so far is his destruc- tive criticism of the Aristotelian logic. but Schiller appeals to posterity against this decision. Bradley has come to say 1 "I agree that any idea which in any way 'works' has in some degree truth". and there is no sense in calling anything true but the progress of knowledge for any other reason may nevertheless supersede them at the next step. and "Useless Knowledge" and "Plato or "New " Protagoras in "Humanism. Bradley's Philosophy" in Mind. 1 Since my "Essays on Truth and Reality" by F." [212] ." "Dialogues". So it can not be said that because they work they are absolutely true. and since Mr. They are called true because they work. and he has written several supplemental dialogues of his own to prove that Protagoras was 2 really in the right. See Schiller's Developments of Mr. Protagoras is represented as having been argued quite out of court by Socrates. 2 See "Protagoras the Humanist". MAJOR PROPHETS it is never (logically) unchallenged. Since Schiller indignantly repudiates the formula often ascribed to pragmatism that "All that works is true". . it would seem that these old antagonists are really not so far apart in their opinions as their words would indicate.

Schiller brings out. 23. need." 1 [213] . SCHILLER to an abrupt end as soon as own study I of logic came had secured a passing mark on Jevons. C. 398. Mr. but will instead quote from the review of the volume by Professor Dewey Schiller's of Columbia. It is difficult to see how even the most hardened devotee of a purely theoretical intellectualism can lay down the book without such questions haunting him. the volume (a large octavo of about four hundred pages) is an unrelenting. . I. .F. wholesome sense of the realities of actual thinking pervades the whole book. p. vol. 558. S. The Independent. and use. frankly recognize the indispensableness of such volitional and emotional factors. . See for instance Mind. In substance. in case after case. . I think. with a cumulative effect which is fairly deadly. I shall not attempt to express an opinion upon the value of "Formal Logic". that at the crucial point each formal dis. and instead of pretending to a logic that excludes them. it supplies the background against which the criticisms of formal doctrine are projected. Schiller's "Formal Logic" gave rise to much controversy. . Why not. aim. chapter by chapter. dogged pursuit of the traditional logic. 1 A vital and escapes Schiller's demolishing hand. section by section. a single distinction of the official textbooks tinction is saved from complete meaninglessness only by an unacknowledged and surreptitious appeal to some matter of context. Not a single doctrine. then. One critic " called it a sympathetic appreciation of all known logical fallacies. nor. build up a logic that corresponds to human intellectual endeavor and achievement.

to a decision which is always somewhat arbitrary and subject to the risk of later revision. and experiments. while formal logic professes an all-inclusive ideal. is excluded mental conception of concrete thought because it goes with selection." By this was meant a form of words so fool-proof that it could not be misapplied. is a volun- tary and hence arbitrary act. hypotheses." this I it in a From : quote the passage in which he shows that the syllogism cannot lead unerringly to new truth The peculiar aim of logic hitherto has been to discover a form of "valid inference. Finally. which is aroused by doubts and questions. but at my request Mr. with its creed of absolute certitude. since it declines to consider the material Relevance a fundaapplication of its premises. abhors the very mention of adventure and risk. with selection of the part that is useful. and so is shut out from a doctrine that acknowledges only what is purely theoretical. Much of the criticism of is "Formal Logic" contoo technical for any tained in this large volume save professionals to follow. and proceeds by guesses.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS While traditional logic has much to say about truth. the truth it talks about is mere formal consistency. Schiller was kind enough to write an article for The Independent putting the main points of form "understanded of the common people. moreover. Selection. and that the use of it would absolutely guarantee the soundness of the conclusion if only the reasoning had been fortunate [214] . formal logic. the life blood of actual human thinking.

In the syllogism it was supposed that such a form had been From all swans are white and this bird is a found. SCHILLER enough to start from true premises. and no bird.F. C. if so. desperately. how does he know that his "law" applies to the "case"? that the "case" is such as he takes it to be? that he has picked out the right "law" to deal if it is still . must not its assertor have already seen this swan and know that it is white ? Or. For he then had no right to assert his "minor premise". swan it was to follow inevitably that this bird is white. this bird is a swan. To justify the "major premise" "all swans are white". nothing new or nothing known. and applied to the particular case in the minor premise. Or will he. Yet logicians also had soon to note that even formally there was something wrong about this sylloIt seemed to "prove" what was either gistic form. his reasoning caught in the old dilemma. if he knew not it was white. what is he to do ? Will he say his major premise was a definition. is he not risking an assertion about some "swans" on the strength of what he knows about others ? And what right had he thus to argue from the known to the unknown? Can an "inference" be "valid" if involves a risk ? therefore black swans arrive from Australia to upset his dogmatizing. shall be called a "swan" it When cannot pass his color-test ? If so. however swan-like. say "in both of these interpretations the syllogistic form is but kindly understand it as asserting a fatuous law of nature which is immutable. and the course of nature would eternally conform to the prophetic demonstrations of logic. S. [215] ." But. if he did not know this. that he either "proves" nothing new or begs the question in another way.

p. for over two thousand years would be the most stupendous fact in education. and then its premises cannot be 1 certainly true. If it is to be instructive. of saving "valid inference". Some is having in mind how little attention paid to formal logic in American schools. and strongly still the object Oxford entrenched and : heavily subsidized as Schiller says in the passage doctrine. of so interpreting the syllogism that it is both formally valid and humanly instructive. [216] . expressed the opinion that Schiller was wasting his powder on dead game. is he not renouncing his ideal of reaching fool-proof certainty ? There seems to be no way. And if he runs that risk. But however in little it may it is be used in reasoning. 375. have critics.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS with the case and formulated is it correctly ? If it quite certain that the "law" applies to the "case". it can only enlighten human ignorance. were it not surpassed by the still more surprising fact that during all this time no one has arisen to call it nonsense through and through. and that every would-be improvement 1 That the same "Logic versus Life" in The Independent. therefore. he runs the risk that the case of which he is trying to predict the behavior may be so exceptional as to break or modify his law. his conclusion proves nothing new. vol. in perfect verbal conshould have been taught and examined on tinuity. 73. formal logic is of formal reverence everywhere. if it is not.

but he regards immortality as an ethical postulate. necessary to the conceptions of a moral universe. [2I 7 ] . . or stumbled into error when it tried to move. Schiller has interested himself in psychical research as a possible way of proving personal immortality. ever since the composition of the "Organon"." The Secret Doctrine in which this is taught has never been divulged there are print. . In the University of Oxford alone three philosophy professors. but examiners know that passages in the ordinary Oxford Logic in Lecture which must have been copied down by two hundred generations of students ever since the twelfth century.F. For Aristotle is still very heavily endowed. for if we reject it "we should be plunged in that unfathomable abyss where SceptiThe is latter part of this topic. at an annual cost of over 50. twenty-eight litera humaniores . Like James and Bergson and unlike Dewey. and about 460 classical scholars and exhibitioners are paid. to believe that the theory of thought has stood still. S. 1 He does not seem from his published work to have yet obtained any satisfactory experimental evidence of a future life. "Humanism" and of "Riddles of the Sphinx" devoted to Schiller succeeded Bergson as President of the Society for Psychical Research in 1914.000. tutors. SCHILLER has been countered by the retort that it was "not The great mass of logicians have in Aristotle." always been true to their salt. and that all modern science may be read into and out of the obscurities of the "Posterior Analytics. C.

where his keen last wit and power of analysis are doing good service. 1 aims to See Schiller's article on this in The Independent of September 15. few years Schiller has entered a the eugenics movement. eugenically directed. social reform. Quarterly Review. This unconventional opinion was confirmed many years later when the Society for Psychical Research con- ducted a questionnaire on the subject and found that of the many thousand persons interrogated a large proportion did not regard a future life as of practical importance to them. may lead to decadence. 1904. unless may lead to the growth of the In a very remarkable article published shortly before the outbreak of the alleviate. * [218] . 1913. 76. such as pity and sympathy. or in Fortnightly Review. p.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS cism fraternizes with Pessimism and they hug their miseries in chaos undisguised. 1 Within the new field. vol. 430. In his review of Nietzsche's work 2 he recognizes that Nietzsche is not without reason when he asserts that the moral qualities he dislikes. evils it for. it as is Schiller elsewhere shows." But in his earliest work "Riddles of the Sphinx" he expressed the opinion that nowadays few people took a real interest in the question of immortality and that it had little influence upon conduct.

socialists. SCHILLER he foretold the collapse of European civilization and suggested that the Japanese or Chinese. I can see no reason why one should not prognosticate for both of them a rosier future and a more assured continuance than for our European societies. whether individualists. S. If the ancestor-worship of the animist can be developed into the descendant-worship of the eugenist. 1914. the birth-rate per marriage has in a generation sunk from four and a half to two. in that "our Hellenistic political philosophy exhibits the marks of senile dementia and progressive paranoia. through the greater importance they attach to the war. C.F. [219] . not only in the upper classes but also in the middle classes and in the best parts of the working classes. 1 family. or militarists. society is now so ordered that in every generation it sheds one-half of the classes it itself values most highly. might be found more worthy of preeminence. In other words. and is now only half the size required to keep up the numbers in those classes. he says. called these latter yield to the pressure of those. whose families still average more 1 "Eugenics and Politics" in The Hibbert Journal. and supplies their places with the offspring of the feeble-minded and casuallabourer classes. tempt if The danger all to European culture lies." The evidence goes to show that throughout the most valuable part of the nation. January. who them to destruction.

The Great War which he could not foresee has immeasurably accelerated the degenerative process which he foretold. The barbarians alone could furnish the men to run the empire. however in- adequate the examination system. The death roll of university students and graduates. who cannot curtail luxuries like the rich. manner they eliminate the middle class. the empire had to take from without its borders the men it needed to conduct its military and civil administration. What seriously aggravates the evil is the whole trend of social legislation. therefore. by further postponing the age of marriage.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS than seven. of our present methods of improving social conditions And this in a twofold is to deteriorate the race. representing. which bears very hardly on the middle classes. who had no chance of rising. mainly due to an unscientific system of taxation which crushed the middle class and left no breed: ing ground for ability and ambition between the millionaire nobles. They meet the extra expense. a selected class [220] . therefore. and further reducing their output of children. Consequently. and the pauperised masses. and the money is raised by taxation. It is perfectly possible. to tax the middle classes out of existence. and will not lower their standard of comfort. and consequently the barbarians inevitably came to overrun the empire. Social reform costs money. a exhibits great object-lesson in the decline History This appears to have been of the Roman empire. One of the chief effects. therefore. it has been done. Indeed. and they promote the survival of the unfit and defective. who had nothing to rise to.

the selfand the dull were left to the last or not taken at all. the ish. while the energetic. slackers.F. incompetent. whence the name. of S. the weaklings. A ing decline in the birth-rate. self-sacrificing. Besides this the burden of taxation resting upon the middle classes that Schiller thought unbearable in 1914 has been multiplied and will act as a deterrent to large families more strongly than ever Royal Commission has been appointed to consider methods for checking the alarmin the future. SCHILLER intellectual ability. all drilling for the impending conflict and who were eligible enlisted at the first Raising an in army by appeals to patriotism as was done England means sending to the front to bear the brunt of battle longest those who are most and intelligent. C. One serious anti-eugenic agency which Schiller strikes It fails to mention but which is an outsider as very celibate. When I visited Oxford a few years before the war the students were already practically call. Labanism. all was formerly the custom to require Oxford fellows to remain Later they were allowed to marry after serving seven years. but the antiquated [221! or- . is of young men superior probably higher than in any other class. Recently this prohibition social has been removed.

hope and charity. any measures to be eugeni- must apply to the young. 1 "Practical Eugenics in Education. perhaps. As Schiller points out.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS this ganization of the colleges acts as a practical deterrent of marriage." In all the professions (except. and promotions its which unfortunately is not so inefficient as occasional mistakes might lead us to think the university prevents those whom it deems to have the brightest minds from transmitting their mental endowments to posterity. Since Oxford has been in existence for about eight hundred years it must have had a considerable influence on the reduction of British genius. cally effective The youthful genius is too often forced to give up having a family or compelled to support it on faith. hysteresis. that of the actress) the young are underpaid. The rewards bestowed upon ability are not only frequently misapplied but they are invariably too long delayed. tion Schiller 1 To this defect in our civiliza- has given the apt name of "social . The devil could not have devised a more ingenious scheme for the promotion of mediocrity. and established It would be eugenically reputations are overpaid." [222 ] . competitions. So by elaborate and expensive system of examination.

C. Now to the individual this system brings compensation. and does not permanently benefit the race. etc. ambitious and rising members of the professional classes unduly sterile. longevity. From does not sciously this passage fall it will be seen that Schiller fallacy of classes into the common unconof our assuming that the upper present social system necessarily consist of superior individuals. postponement of marriage. But he does overlooked. it must accelerate the elimination of fitness in the racial stock. So it as a social order rendered relatively rigid long almost impossible for ability to rise from the ranks. overwork. and even no longer capable of doing. reservoirs of ability could accumulate unseen in the [223! .F. this delay in recompensing merit. lay stress upon some: thing often more justified as society that this assumption is becomes more democratic Precisely in proportion as a society improves the opportunities of the able to rise. SCHILLER Yet the existing preferable to do the opposite. It renders the capable. and is eventually raised to the status of a "grand old man" whom ancient institutions delight to honour. owing to compulsory celibacy. by dint of sheer is But eugenically this social hysteresis. Thus a large proportion of the ability which rises to the top of the social ladder lasts only for one generation. practice is largely due to unintentional stupidity. and failure to discover ability soon enough. because he continues to be rewarded for work he has done long ago. S. if he lives long enough. has a fatal effect.

not a law that regard it. and must men as in the other sources of their wealth and welfare. Now it is doubtless true that the primary need of society is to find persons capable of conducting its affairs ably. it will the professional and well-to-do classes fail to contribute their share it to the future population.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS : lower social strata. for in hereditable ability they were not the more just much above regime that in the average. 1 qualities husband their resources in That is to say. and burst forth in times of need. and incapacitated from retrieving the waste of ability in the upper layers of society. man can repeal however he may dis- So 1 it happens that civilized societies tend "Practical Eugenics in Education." [224] . the more surely are these strata kept drained. as in the French Revolution but the more successfully a carri'ere ouverte aux talents is instituted. be disastrous if cation and advancement are extended to the gifted of all classes. But in we are trying to introduce. and that a social order which does not allow ability to rise is therefore bad but nations cannot with impunity so order themselves as to eliminate the very : they most admire and desire. it did not matter much if in former times the nobility did tend to die out in a few generations. especially when the opportunities for higher eduAmerica. for reversal of the means a continuous This method of the survival of the fittest is by which evolution has been accomplished.

but greater than our own. and has not yet raised the makers of new truths to a par with the custodians of time-honoured revelations ? Our example. the on "Na- injurious effects of the present distribution of honors and emoluments he exposes tional Self-Selection" : in his article not nonsense to say that the Archbishop of is paid 15. fiz. because the persons fitted to perform the latter's functions are twenty times as common as those suited to the former's ? Is not the real reason plainly that the former is the beneficiary of a long social development which has liberally endowed the Church. The injustice. S. however.. not less. and what is more important. C.F. J. As Schiller says The inventor of the wheel or even of a new mode of chipping flints may well have been as great a genius as the human race has produced.000 a year and Prof. SCHILLER human race to die at the top and the makes little : or no progress in native ability. and society could do little to mitigate its horrors and to protect its inefficient members. while the social appreciation of the value of science is only just beginning. draws attention to a very general fact. and it accords well with this that the early paleolithic races seem to have possessed a cranial capacity. For in the dim red dawn of man the fool-killing apparatus of nature was terribly effective. that the social position of various functions is very Is it Canterbury [225] . Thomson seven or eight hundred. J.

for exbelieve that mere descent from ample. is not good for a society that a cricketer or a prizefighter or a dancer should be esteemed and rewarded more highly than the man who discovers a cure for malaria or cancer. April. many of us. we should promote our actual When we want really to defend the fighting men. we point to its sagacity in gauging the will of the people and to the economic value of its attractiveness for foreign heiresses. which are constantly exalting the position of the caterers to individual pleasures above It the consolidators of man's permanent welfare. nor even now The humanistic view earliest of metaphysics Schiller ex- presses in the preface to the 1910 edition of his work "Riddles 1 of the Sphinx. salaries do not really prove twenty times as valuable to genius. And it must induce a greater feeling of responsibility about the popular valuations and transvaluations of functions. or thrice as precious so. really an illiterate medieval baron attests sufficient merit to entitle a man to a hereditary seat in the House of Lords ? If we continued to value fighting qualities as highly as of yore. [226] .SIX MAJOR PROPHETS valuations which have largely the product of past persisted from mere habit." Eugenics Review. 1 that men now think How Hence their present that an Archbishop is a nation as a scientific as a Premier. Hence one of the chief needs of a society which desires to reconstitute itself on eugenical principles is a thorough revision of social status. House of Lords. 1910. It must bring the social position of various services into closer agreement with their present value.

F. of religion The pragmatic demand for God is. ever This exactly. first. and second. "soon country". out in 1912. imported from Germany. of "Humanism" and "Studies in Humanism". as "a human moral principle of help and justice". and the "metaphysical craving" often so strong in the young is nothing but the desire to tell the universe what one thinks of it. as "an aid to the intellectual else. SCHILLER Practically a system of metaphysics. for the puranti-religious after its demise in its native pose of counteracting science. which revised editions were brought The Schiller doctrine known as Absolute Idealism was. with whatpretensions to pure thought and absolute rationality it may start is always in the end one man's personal vision about the universe. describes the "Riddles of the tells Sphinx" the uni- In it the youthful Schiller of it verse what he thinks and it is told well. the developof ments of But the abstract conception no value to the Absolute or anything in his opinion. is. Of course. S. comprehension of the universe". the tale may be worth telling if told well. C. but the meta- [227] . explains. But his thoughts have changed in the twenty-five years since this volume was published so that even in its revised form it does not so well express his views as do his later volumes.

for it is too impersonal to help anybody and too general to explain anything. 431. Beauchamp" But he admits that it is "a little startling at first to think of the Absolute as morbidly dissociated or even as downright mad"." " Riddles of the Sphinx. Schiller suggests that it is an analogous case to the dissociation of that celebrated Boston lady "Miss into several secondary personalities.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS physical Absolute satisfies neither of these cravings. like Doctor Morton Prince. [228] . Many years before he had said 2 of a Deity absorbed in perfect. there especially since in the case of the is Ab- solute no outsider. and eternal bliss is a blasphemy upon unchanging the Divine energy which might be permitted to the heathen ignorance of Aristotle." p. In his chapter on "Absolutism and the Dissocia- he generously offers his aid to the idealistic monists who have difficulty in contion of Personality" 1 ceiving how the One became the Many and why the individualistic minds included in the Universal Mind should be so antagonistic. A theology which denies that the imperfection of the world must be reflected in the 1 1 The conception In "Studies in Humanism. to put the parts together again. but which should be abhorred by all who have learnt the lesson of the Crucifixion.

The conception of a struggling and self-developing God which Schiller adduced from Christian principles is remarkably like that to 1 which Bergson to religion was led by other lines of reasoning. of the world and of our own selves. See also "Science and Religion" in "Riddles of the Sphinx". Fortunately the Greek embodied (mainly) in the "Athanasian" metaphysic Christianity 1 To-day 1 See "Creative Evolution" and Chapter II of " also Wells and Shaw in this volume. "Major Prophets of In "Studies in Humanism" and Hibbert Journal.F. C. The value is of the pragmatic method by Schiller in his article on "Faith. [229] . where he shows that even the most rigorous scientific reasoning involves the discussed element of is faith. way by which anything can be works. new edition. by He says is : an essentially human and thoroughly pragmatic religion. S. . SCHILLER sorrows of the Deity simply shows itself blind to the deepest and truest meaning of the figure of Him that was "a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief" and deaf to the gospel of Divine sympathy with the world. that is. 1906. based upon the intellectualistic speculations of Greek philosophers. hampered throughout its history and at times almost strangled by an alien theology. and on the other hand that it is faith devoid of value unless verified in the only verified. January. 2 and Reason Religion". Thus the world-process is the process of the redemption alike of God.

de- mands constant confirmation consequences. e. e. to as a practice prayer merely piece of spiritual hygiene. start with a firm belief in the But unless it engenders a reality of its object. The pragmatic criterion of truth. It believed to be true." you without any testing at meaningless all It eliminates as theories that make no of all beliefs difference It whether they are believed or disbelieved. we must hold fast to the principle that the truest religion is that which issues in and fosters the best life. of faith and works.g. impossible. It insists by their upon the unity of theory This point was and practice. It means acts "You shall and shall back your beliefs with your not assert the truth of whatever suits all. that all truths must work. which by identifying God with "the One" have aimed at eliminating the human elements from the Christian religion.. As against all such attempts. [230] .SIX creed tional is . The practice need not. of course. is not a lax one as its opponents assert but the most stringent that can be applied.g. however. MAJOR PROPHETS its too obscure to have ever been really funcchief mischief has always been to give theological support to "philosophic" criticisms. it must be believed is in.. and in order to get the strengthening which is said to result from the practice. by Schiller in his address before the PanChurch Anglican Congress of 1908 plainly put : For any theory to work.

" Lastly. become Hence.. Psychology and ScienWhere the conflict rages most fiercely tific Methods. Either one may serve as an introduction to the author. though it may remain to be determined what is the objective fact corresponding to the postulate.e. it will C. If it is not. nothing that could afford any satisfaction to any religious emotion. new edition 1912) are both collections of papers presenting various phases of Schiller's philosophy. . Logic" (1912) is too technical for any but well prepared students. i. SCHILLER inefficacious. All Schiller's works are published by The Macmillan Company. real belief.F. new edition 1912) and "Studies in Humanism" (1907. How TO READ SCHILLER "Humanism" (1903. though also revised (1910). "Riddles of the Sphinx" (1891). "Formal represents an earlier mode of thought. the whole religious attitude would be futile. reader who loves a fight and does not faint at the sight of inkshed will find what he wants in almost any volume of the Oxford Mind or the Columbia Journal of Philosophy. to conceive of Pragmatism as ultimately sanctioning an "act-as-if" attitude of religious make-believe is it is to confound it with the a misapprehension discredited and ineffectual dualism of Kant's antithesis of practical and theoretic "reason. there Schiller will be seen in the midst of the com- The [23 1 1 . If there were no "God". S. it must contain essential truth. it should be noted that any theory which works must evoke some response from the objective nature of things.

"The Philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche" (Quarterly Review. and Mind. vol. vol. 1904). Presidential Address (Proceedings Society chical Research. 430). vol. 4. p. 183). 62). Aristotelian Society. "Oxford of the Workingman" ary. 1913). 70. 1913). Febru- "Cosmopolitan Oxford" (Fortnightly. Desire a Future Life" (Independent. 1914-1915). 60). "Psychical Research" (Fortnightly. Rational Conception of Truth" (Proceedings (Fortnightly.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS batants. September 15. June. but the following articles at least must be mentioned : "Do Men "The Desire Immortality?" (Fortnightly. p. 1915). p. Bradley' s Philosophy" (Mind. "Plato" (Quarterly Review. 1913. 1909). thrusting in all directions at the weak To enumerate all of his points in their armor. 1910). "Present Phase of Idealistic Philosophy" (Mind. 83. 1906). 1914). No. Psychology and Scientific Methods. "Choice" "The 1908-1909). 1902). "War Prophecies" (Journal Society Psychical Research. 204. 20. "Criticism of Perry's Realism" (Mind. 1915)"New Developments of Mr. 1916). p. and "Infallibility" (Hibbert Journal. vol. "Pluralism" (Proceedings of Aristotelian Society. for 76. for Psy- Miss Beauchamp (Journal Philosophy. p. Discussions of pragmatism (Mind. May. controversial and fugitive writings would be impossible here. January and October. [232] .

22. p. "Der Pragmatismus von James und Doctor Werner Bloch (1913). 82). but I also add the following references : may may "Vital Lies" by Vernon Lee (John Lane Company. 1910). " Logic versus Life" (Independent. 1911). 23. January.F. Criticism of Schiller and other pragmatists be found in the controversies referred to. "Error" (IV Congresso internazionale Bologna. 1911). of Truths and Their Criterion" di filosofia. Schiller. April. April. 88). 21. April. No. No. "Our . No. 21. vol. vol. "British Exponents of Pragmatism" by Professor M'Gilvary (Hibbert Journal. "The Working of Truths" (Mind. vol. Pragmatism. 1909). 1908). vol. (Mind. and William James" (Mind. "National Self-Selection" (Eugenics Review. April. vol. Critic Criticized" (Eugenics Review. "Relevance" (Mind. 73. SCHILLER "Realism. I9I5)- of Protagoras" (Mind. S. 395. "Aristotle's Refutation of the Aristotelian Logic" "The Humanism (Mind. 84). pp. "The Working I. C. 558)." by [233] . 375). Pragmatism" (Quarterly Review.

Arbor. a secluded classroom where the most modest man imaginable was seated and talking in a low voice for an hour or two a day.CHAPTER V JOHN DEWEY TEACHER OF TEACHERS IF some historian should construct an intellectual weather map of the United States he little would find that in the eighties the arrows that show which way the wind blows were pointing in toward in the nineties Ann toward Chicago. Michigan. [234! . John Dewey had moved from one place to the It might be a long time before the psychometeorologist would trace these thought currents spreading over the continent back to their origin. and in the nineteen hundreds toward New York City. indicating that at these points there was a rising current of thought. John Dewey is not famous like W. J. Illinois. And if he went so far as to investigate the cause of these local upheavals of the academic atmosphere he would discover that other.

were not content to sit down quietly and own minds surely as good as anybut went about body's watching the behavior of children. This has because his influence has been indirect. and crazy folks and spent their search their [235] . yet I distinctly felt the vibrations. animals. the second about pedagogy. it seemed. That was in the University of Kansas when the psychology class was put in charge of a young man named Templin just back from his Wanderjahr in Germany.JOHN DEWEY Bryan or Charlie Chaplin. Weber. This study had hitherto belonged ex officio to the Chancellor of the university who put the finishing touch on the seniors' brains with aid of McCosh. But the queer looking brown book stamped "PsyJohn Dewey" that was put into our chology hands in 1887 relegated the Princeton philosopher to the footnotes and instead told about Helmholtz. He is not even known by name to most of the millions whose thought he is is guiding and whose characters he is forming. He in inspired individuals and instigated reforms edu- cational methods which have reached the remotest schoolhouses of the land. cyclones The first of the Dewey about psychology. and the third about philosophy. Wundt and a lot of other foreigners who. I was a thousand miles away from the first storm revolved center.

of an "experimental school" The very idea was disconcerting. as should be remembered. the time. three years before the epoch-making work of logical James and before any permanent psycholaboratory had been opened in the United In taking States. His "Psychology" appeared. sug- [236] .SIX time in a MAJOR PROPHETS the idea ! measuring the speed of thought and dissecting brains. But the commotion started by Dewey's "Psychology" was a tempest in an inkpot compared with the cyclone that swept over the country when he Uniit began to put far his theories into practice at the I versity of Chicago in 1894. inspired. This young laboratory man Michigan made bold to claim psychology as a natural science instead of a minor branch of metain and he did the best he could to prove it with such meager materials as were available at physics. fascinated. heard echoes of as west as Wyoming. Although Dewey thought he had thrown overboard all metaphysics it is evident that he was then carrying quite a cargo of it unconsciously. The teachers who went to the summer session of the University of Chicago came back shocked. or appalled. down again my battered brown copy of Dewey's "Psychology" I am surprised to find how trite and old-fashioned some of it sounds. according to their temperaments.

way. "He lets the children talk and run around and help one another with their lessons!" and all the teachers looked at each other with a wild surmise silent on the school- room platform. As a matter of fact.JOHN DEWEY gesting that the poor children were being subjected to some sort of vivisection or what was worse implying that the established educational methods were all wrong. that Could it be that there was a better this task on which they were wearing out less their nerves. but the idea was that if children had a sufficient variety of activities pro- vided they would like what they did and their activities could be so arranged as to result in getting [237! . were spending their time in keeping the children from doing what they wanted to do and in making them do what they did not want to do." whispered the teachers to their stay-at-home colleagues. "He lets the children do whatever they want to do. the children neither studied nor did what they pleased. was no harmful to the children than to themselves like to see " ? I'd John Dewey try to manage my sixty. who." remarks the presiding teacher as she suppresses a little girl on the front seat with a smile and a big boy on the back seat with a tap of her pencil. trying to reduce to rigidity for five hours a roomful of wriggling children. like themselves.

that the main idea was The common assumption was to have the children do and study what they liked a complete missing of the intellectual idea or philosophy of the school. and that the practical with consecutive problems arising occupations afford in connection the means for a development of interest in scientific problems for their own sake. which was an attempt to work out the theory that knowledge. The social grouping of children. but also social activity. and the attempt to get cooperative group work. These same notions of the central place of intelligence in action and the social nature of intelligence are fundamental in Dewey's " Ethics.SIX knowledge and MAJOR PROPHETS in forming good habits of thought. but because of the conception that human intelligence developed under in other social conditions and for social purposes words. type is stated in one of his more recent works [238] : . was always just as not only theoretical important a phase as individual freedom on moral grounds. is an offshoot of activities. with respect to both sense observation and general principles." The of the real distinguishing characteristic of schools Dewey a new not absence of discipline but This is most clearly ideal of discipline. "mind" has developed not only with respect to activity having purpose.

but necessary as preparation for a more or less remote future. and drill is conceived after the mechanical analogy of is . is not mental discipline. whether it be called Its aim discipline or not. many a teacher is misled into supposing that he is developing mental force and efficiency by methods which in fact restrict and deaden intellectual activity. a cause. Discipline. . Discipline is positive and constructive. by unremitting blows. or is imaged after the analogy of the mechanical routine by which raw recruits are trained to a soldierly bearing and habits that are naturally wholly foreign to their possessors. mind Any mind is in truth a result rather than . driving. Discipline is then generally identified with drill . p. and result are not habits of thinking but uniform external habits of action. is as a frequently regarded as something negative painfully disagreeable forcing of mind away from channels congenial to it into channels of constraint. Discipline represents original native endowment turned through gradual exercise into effective power. however. and which tend to create mechanical routine. not merely for the [239] .JOHN DEWEY Discipline of disciplined in a subject in which independent intellectual initiative and control have been achieved. a process grievous at the time. Training of this latter sort. - "How We Think". But even more revolutionary than Dewey's schools as rejec- tion of the strict discipline then prevailing in the was his introduction of industrial training an integral part of education. 63. a foreign substance into a resistant material. By failing to ask what he means by discipline. or mental passivity and servility.

SIX MAJOR PROPHETS purpose of giving the pupils greater manual skill. and the constitution of the old days social organism. and he refused to join in the pretense that they could be profitably "revived" by the various esthetic and socialist movements of the William Morris and Ruskin type. and [240] . and if the factory had come the worker is not to become a factory machine himself he must receive in school such a broad and diversified training as will work he does. make him realize the significance of the Or as Dewey said in "School and Society" in 1899: We training." by "book But Dewey faced frankly the fact that the house- hold arts and handicrafts had passed away for keeps. ^School was then a place where this very effective form of tion could be supplemented home educalearning. He recognized that the machine and to stay. still less with the object of improving their chances of getting a job or of making them more efficient but chiefly because it is only through participation in industry that one can get an understanding of the meaning of science for the benefit of the employer. In the in the when most industries were carried on household or the neighborhood children learned them by observation and participation. art sometimes hear the introduction of manual and science into the elementary.

It is an education dominated almost enIt tirely by the medieval conception of learning. not as distinct studies. It is our present education which is highly specialized. then it all the rage. The point to this objection would be ludicrous if it were not often so effective as to make it tragic. instead of a place set apart in which to learn lessons. as agencies for bringing home to the child some of the primal necessities of community life. and as ways in which these needs have been met by the growing insight and ingenuity of man in short as instrumen. sewing and cooking. our desire to learn. as types of processes by which society keeps itself going. must conceive of work in wood and metal. His method was as Dewey said different ing" as from the ordinary kind of "manual trainhay-making is from dumb-bell exercise. to produce. talities [241] . has and would. We through which the school itself shall be made a genuine form of active community life. is something which appeals for the most part simply to the intellectual aspect of our natures. to create. liberal culture. to accumulate information. Mere "manual failed. of weaving.JOHN DEWEY even into the secondary. not to our impulses and tendencies to make. to do. one-sided and narrow. as methods of living and learning. whether in the form of utility or art. We must conceive of them in their social significance. as training". because of its fictitious adventitious character. schools deprecated on the ground that they tend toward the production of that they detract from our present specialists of system generous. and to get control of the symbols of learning.

And the history they thus learnt was the history of menting and the human race. all others. like since been carried to an extreme. spun into into cloth on machines of their own making and vising. have known teachers of mathematics who would not [242] . not the history of some chosen has people. This recapitulation theory. are hardly less repugnant to the modern mind. repeating a verbal version of history. if So careful are they to avoid anachronism that a boy should by any accident behave like a Christian before he reached the grade corresponding to A. carded.D. 28 he would be likely to get a bad mark for I it. Acting on the idea that children normally pass through the stages as same European it civilization some teachers seem to the chrono- to think logical necessary to keep them So they cultivate a pseudosavagery for a year or two. They it picked the cotton from the thread and wove it boll. too.SIX So MAJOR PROPHETS problems retracing for themselves the Dewey set the children to solving the of primitive man and steps in the evolution of industrial processes. for the most part of their own de- This gave opportunity for personal experi- taught them history by repeating not history. So. then make them pagans and later teach the ideals of the age of chivalry which curriculum.

Their aim was to utilize instead of to . in 1915. revised and enlarged. the interest in inquiry. [243] . The volume which Professor Dewey " explained what he was trying to do and why. supplemented talks 1 The University of Chicago Press published a second edition of "School and Society". the interest in construction and the interest in in artistic expression. by a sists Man Too Busy to Write One. But such extravagances find no countenance in Dewey's writings or until the the examples he cites. 1 It might well have borne the same title as Benjamin Tucker's volume on anarchism: "Instead of a Book. School and Society". In the laboratory school of the University of Chicago Professor and Mrs.JOHN DEWEY allow their pupils to take a short cut to the answer by way of algebra unless it was in the algebra class and teachers of chemistry who would not permit the word "atom" to be mentioned in classroom term was half through." It con- of the stenographic reports of three informal by Professor Dewey to the parents of his pupils and the friends of his school. was first published in 1899 and has been reprinted almost every year up to the present. suppress the fourfold impulses of childhood the interest in conversation. Dewey had for several years a free hand in developing and trying out their theories.

Professor Merriam of Missouri. Wirt of Gary. and who is now employed in remodeling some of the schools of New have York City. Rousseau and the credit Dewey school He gives the for the practice to Mr. acteristic of But it is char- no claim in Dewey's self-effacement that he makes and there is no hint anywhere the volume that many of the methods described for priority. Valentine of Indianapolis. Indiana. Mr. very largely to Dewey. owes his inspiration and ideas. 2 Doctor Georg Kerschensteiner who founded the famous "workhis indebtedness to shop schools" of Munich also acknowledges Dewey. 2 The Gary in system 1 differs from the trade schools that the "Schools of To-morrow". first were devised and tried out in the at Chicago nearly credit for the theory to twenty years ago." How of far the seed 1 was sown is shown by "Schools To-morrow". which tells of a dozen places where the ideas that were so novel and startling in the nineties are in practical operation. Wirt who organized the school system of the steel city of Gary. Mr. by John Dewey and Evelyn Dewey (Dutton).SIX by some MAJOR PROPHETS Yet it fugitive papers. [244] . 1915. and others. Johnson of Fairhope. has an influence of its comparable to no other unless perhaps modern book size Herbert Spencer's tract on "Edu- cation. as I heard him say. Mrs.

an engineering school. writing. [HSl . marketing. furniture. pottery. Arithmetic. something all day long. and geography come in necessarily and naturally this in connection with their regime the pupils make better progress in the traditional subjects than those who devote their whole time to books. Under divert them from higher education is shown by the fact that one third of all the pupils who have left the are Gary schools in the eight years of their existence now in the state university. and both. millinery. bookbinding and bookkeeping. and laundry.JOHN DEWEY industries are used for their educative value. remarkable record for a population mostly composed of foreign-born steel All the schoolrooms are in use for mill laborers. Their tasks are artificial. gardening. history. bolic or imitative. and for the girls. The sym- pupils are shifted around from one shop to another three times a year. cooking. sewing. designing. iron castings. so the "peak load" is avoided and a great economy effected. a or a business college. and printboys for the ing. making school laying concrete. The grounds and buildings also serve as community centers and the last trace of the ancient feud between "town and gown" has been wiped out. but from the for fifth grade up real constructive work. That it does not work.

[2 46] . in his written to confute Sir Henry Maine "Popular Government". He sounded the note of his philosophy thirty years ago 1 in a paper on "The Ethics of Democracy". in Dewey's opinion. 1 No. insecure. although he has broken away from the Hegelian mode of thought he then used. I of Series 2 of Philosophical Papers of the University of Michigan. and he has never faltered in his allegiance to the high ideal he there set forth. that they come a step nearer toward giving the type of training necessary to prepare citizens In this new book. 1887. argued that democracy was an historical accident and the most fragile. Dewey objects to his mechanical and mathe- matical conception of democratic government and sets forth a very different conception as the following : quotations will show The majority have a right to "rule" because their majority is not the mere sign of a surplus in numbers.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS The chief advantage which these "schools of tomorrow" have over those of the past is. then. The paper was who. ing toward the ideal he promulgated at the beginning of his career when he entered Michigan as the the faculty of the University of youngest man ever appointed to a professorship in that institution. he is workfor democracy. and unprogressive form of government.

A vote is not the impersonal counting of one. The aristocratic idea implies that the mass of men are to be inserted by wisdom. or. thrust by force. It holds that the spirit of permanent and abiding worth.. and that the choice to develop it must proceed from that individual. the same fact the fact of the possession by society of a unified and articulate will. From this central position of democracy result the other notes of democracy. it is a manifestation of some tendency of the social organism through a member of that organism. if necessary. The democratic formula that government derives its powers from the consent of the governed means that in democracy the governors and the governed are not of two classes. but in so doing gives them for the first time articulation and generality.JOHN DEWEY but is the manifestation of the purpose of the social organism. . .. It means that in every individual there lives an infinite and universal possibility that of being a king or priest. Democracy means that final reality. . personality is the first and personality indwells in every individual. but two aspects of : . liberty. . into their proper positions in the social organism. fraternity words to catch a mob. Government is to the state what language is to the thought it not only communicates the purposes of the state. and that in every human individual there lies personality. .. words which are not mere equality. . . but symbols of the highest ethical idea which humanity has yet reached the idea that personality is the one thing of . Aristocracy is blasphemy against : personality..

. Who would then have thought that five years later all parties would be committed to equal suffrage and four presidential candidates would be bidding against one another for the privilege of giving the women the vote ! Education for democracy is the burden of Dewey's message to the world.. the crucial expression of modern life. A democracy in of wealth I is a necessity. Democracy is an absurdity where faith in the individual as individual is impossible . . not so much an addition to the scientific and in- dustrial tendencies as it is the perception of their social or spiritual meaning. [248] . at least in academic circles." Twenty-five years later saw Professor Dewey giving a public demonstration of his faith in democracy when I found him marching with a small body of men at the tail end of a suffrage procession while the crowds that lined Fifth Avenue jeered and hissed at us.. not an adjustment and application of individual tendencies. Dewey was not afraid to say that: it is not in reality what trial as well as civil "Democracy name until it is indusand political.SIX Even begun is MAJOR PROPHETS days when socialism had hardly in those to be whispered. and this faith is impossible where intelligence is regarded as a cosmic power. . Democracy is estimable only through the changed conception of intelligence that forms modern . and I must give one more quotation on this point : is Democracy.

and they must be allowed to develop active qualities of initiative. p. [249] . But in a democracy they interfere with the successful conduct If we train our of society and government. p. 301. The old theory of education has been most pun- "Mr. before the abuses and failures will disappear.JOHN DEWEY science.. " It don't matter much what you study Hennessy gently put by : so long as you don't like it. regardless of where they lead. . and of want. "School and Society". to do things simply because they are told to. the saloon-keeper of Archey Road. we are putting an almost insurmountable obstacle in the way of overcoming the present defects of our system and of establishing the truth of democratic ideals. independence. Dooley". Children in school must be allowed freedom so that they will know what its use means when they become the controlling body. and fail to give them confidence to act and think for themselves. where there is one head to plan and care for the lives and institutions of the people. that forms modern industry. It is essentially a changed psychology. in one of his monologues with Mr. to the careful performance of imposed tasks because they are imposed. 304. is suited to an autocratic These are the traits needed in a state society." Professor Dewey * takes almost the opposite ground when he says : "Interest ought to be the basis for selection because 1 "Schools of To-morrow". children to take orders. and resourcefulness.. The conventional type of education which trains children in docility and obedience.

SIX MAJOR PROPHETS children are interested in the things they need to learn. marks. does not schools things are the pupils interesting. There is no motive for doing dishonest acts. that holds out the promise of resulting in something to their own interests. School . Work that appeals to pupils as worth while. the solution will give him an immediate sense of accom: plishment and satisfied curiosity." This. mean that in the new "made easy". on the contrary work harder because things are made of the material is not in any way interest a standard of selection. the only end recognized. But the of which pupil presented with a problem. the Dooley versus the Dewey system. involves just as much persistence and concentration as the work that is given by the sternest advocate of disciplinary drill. for rewards. ." We have then two fundamentally different theories of training. so that he has to be kept at the task by means of offering artificial ends. [250] . . The latter requires the pupil to strive for ends which he cannot see. and promotions. will bend all his powers to the work the end itself will furnish the stimulus necessary to carry him through the drudgSince the children are no longer working ery. and Society. since the result shows whether the child has " done the work. the temptation to cheat is reduced to a minimum. as he shows. The range limited by making and by isolating him in an atmosphere where his mind and senses are not being constantly besieged by the call of life which appeals so strongly to him.

DEWEY They way up from the beginning of the primary to the end of the all 1 are now on trial in some degree the One is authoritarian. contrasting Harvard and West Point. and in practice we find each more or less unconsciously borrowing methods from the others. 1908. in the other activity. and studies will be found at different points along the line connecting the two extremes. the other libertarian. That Dewey is proved by the extent to which his 'See the admirable article in Atlantic Monthly of November. in the other voluntary Obviously neither could be carried to an exclusive extreme. . Doubtless the optima for different temperaments. One cultivates obedience. ceptivity." [2 5 I] . the other initiative. "The College of Freedom and the College of Discipline. by President Pritchett of the Carnegie Foundation. In one the impelling motive is duty in the other In one the attitude of the student is redesire. How far one may safely go in either direction is to be deter- mined by the pragmatic at present it is test of experiment. . though recently a strong counter- current of militarism has set a true prophet is in. college. But is safe to say that the tide of reform running in the direction Dewey pointed out a quarter of a century before. ages. . One strives for uniformity the other diversity. In one there is compulsory coordination cooperation.

The third period in Dewey's life began with his appointment to the chair of philosophy at Columbia University in 1905. one technical and the other popular. because he has an aversion to the spiritualistic tendencies of the two men who are usually classed with him as the leaders of the pragmatic of movement James Harvard and Schiller of Oxford. the theory of instrumentalism." [252] This is intended pri- . The ordinary skimming reader will find the "Essays in Experimental Logic" rather hard sledding." But Dewey is reluctant to call himself a pragmatist. is now to be found in two recent volumes. partly because of his constitutional dislike to wearing a tag of any kind. so he will be relieved to find that it has been translated by little the author into ordinary English in the entitled volume "How We Think. partly. on the left was then perceived that he belonged or radical wing of that movement to which James applied Peirce's name of "pragmatism. I surmise.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS ideas are being carried out in these "schools of to- morrow" that are already in existence to-day. This relieved him of the burden of responsibility for the conduct of the laboratory school at Chicago and enabled his him to concentrate thought upon It the fundamental problems of knowledge. Dewey's doctrine of cognition.



But Dewey as a professed experimentalist could not consistently adopt this cautious method. no cloistered morality but a doctrine reduced from practical life and referable to the same authorHis is ity for the validification of its influences. though in reality most of their time has to be taken up with the imparting of information. The "Ethics" of John Dewey and James H.JOHN DEWEY marily for teachers whose business is supposed to be that of teaching their youngsters how to think. Tufts (1908) not only a practical textbook admirably clear in expounding the conflicting theories is and eminently fair in criticizing them. An interesting instance of the practical application of [253] ." Moral philosophers are generally disposed to keep their carefully constructed systems of ethics under a glass bell jar rather than risk the hard knocks they must receive if taken into the street and marketplace. but it would be useful to any reader for broadening the mind and pointing the proper problems. Professor way of approach to modern Tawney of the University of it American Journal no more convincing "Probably of Sociology says: effort to construct a system of moral philosophy Cincinnati in reviewing for the by a strictly scientific method has ever been carried out.

and per contra that measures condemned as recourse to mere violence may. the only question which can be raised about the justification of force is that of comparative efficiency and economy in its use. under the given circumstances. there is always a possibility that what passes as a legitimate use of force may be so wasteful as to be really a use of violence . can intelligent utilization of energy. Secondly.SIX his principles is MAJOR PROPHETS found in his essay on "Force and the Coercion. 26. antecedents or a priori principles be appealed to as more than presumptive The point at issue is concrete utilization of means for ends. p. since the attainment of ends requires the use of means. so quote instead own summary of his conclusions First. : In this essay Dewey inclines to the view that "all political questions are simply questions of the extension and restriction of exercise of power on 1 International Journal of Ethics. Fourthly. 359-367. Thirdly. law is essentially a formulation of the use of force. [254] . what is justly objected to as violence or undue coercion is a reliance upon wasteful and destructive means of accomplishing results. represent an In no case. improper for On such me to his a delicate question paraphrase his argument. vol." l Here he discusses chiefly ques- tion of the allowability of the use of force government is as in war or by a class as in a all by a strike and would be I : repudiates the Tolstoyan view that use of force it wrong.

The proper use of force is. although they otherwise remain the same. the doctrine that the state rests upon or is common will seems to turn out but a piece of phraseology to justify the uses actually made of force. "the acute question of social philosophy in the world to-day".JOHN DEWEY the part of specific groups in the community". Such Germanic doctrine of the power of the State could be used to justify worse things than the Ger- man Government has ever done. and says further that: "With a few notable exceptions. and "a generation which has beheld the most stupendous manifestation of force in all [55l ." I trust that Dewey is one of "the few notable exceptions". and it is perhaps a realization of this that has led Dewey latterly to look with more favor upon the use of force by the minority. for the quotations from his paper on the "Ethics of Democracy" which I have given on a previous page show that Dewey in his earlier years went as far as Fichte in his later years toward and a bare majority at identifying government that with the a common will of the social organism. in Dewey's opinion. Practices of coercion and constraint which would tolerable if become in- frankly labelled Force seem to become the laudable when baptized with name of Will.

If the end is something else. assisted at discussions between those who were Tolstoyans and well. 1 The New Republic. Unable to conceive the task of sically. with other wearied souls. with all the weaknesses which appertain to everything that is primarily anti-anything. Violence and possibilities of the Law" 1 he discusses the in the following peace movement fashion : At various times of my life I have. those who weren't. To be interested in the means which alone secure of intellectual demoralization. 1916. irrespective of its use as a means of getting results. to force intrin- which has rendered the peace movement so largely an anti-movement. January 22. In reply to the agitated protests of the former against war and the police and penal measures. or maintaining a certain emotion unimpaired. It is ends and to have contempt for them is the last stage hostility to force as force. the only question which persons can discuss with one another concerns the most effective use of force in gaining ends in specific situations. a hearty fisticuff may be or child. the means of realizing it. [2 5 6] . If one's end is the saving of one's soul immaculate. doubtless force should be used to inhibit natural muscular reactions.SIX history is MAJOR PROPHETS not going to be content unless it has found some answer to the question. I have listened to the time-honored queries about what you should do when the criminal attacked your friend I have rarely heard it stated that since one cannot even walk the street without using force. What is intolerable is that men should condemn or eulogize force at large." In an article on "Force.

permit. not metaphysically conceived. Speaking of the mental revolution that has been effected by the advance of science he says : Whether the consequent revolution in moral philosophy be termed pragmatism or be given the happier title of the applied and experimental habit of mind is of little account. . when the objective facts which bring conflicts in their train are acknowledged. . [2571 . pacifists have had little recourse save to decry evil emotions and evil-minded And no league to men as the causes of war. What is of moment is that intelligence has descended from its lonely isolation at the remote edge of things. Theory may therefore become responsible to the practices that have generated it. whence it operated as unmoved mover and ultimate good. enforce peace will fare prosperously save as it is the natural accompaniment of a constructive adjustment of the concrete interests which are already at work. to take its seat in the moving affairs of men. . . and social life be cherished in behalf of ture. the good be connected with na- but with nature naturally. .JOHN DEWEY organizing the existing forces so they their may achieve greatest efficiency. Dewey's primary purpose has always been the development of a type of ethical thinking and a method of school training suited to the democratic and industrial society of modern America. and when intelligence is used to devise mechanisms which will afford to the forces at work all the satisfaction that conditions . The passage of force under law occurs only when all the cards are on the table.

It is better to view pragmatism quite vaguely as part and parcel of a general movement of intellectual reconstruction. ethically. . after this fashion. . absolute end. psychologisck [2 5 8] . For otherwise we seem to have no recourse save to define pragmatism as does our 1 To in the original get the full force of this portentous definition one must read it : Gewiss ist der Pragmatismus erkenntniss-theoretisch Voluntarismus. Dewey. own immediate In the preface to the "Influence of Darwin" he quotes a German definition of pragmatism . agnosticism. l : Epistemologically. . metaphysisch Agnosticismus. in the pigeon-holes of a filing cabinet. voluntarism. . cosmologically. p. 55. ethisch Meliorismus auf Gnindlage des Bentham-Millschen Utilitarismus. who that a nice dislikes to wear even one tag and new clean one naturally resents having : these five old ones tied to him. so he says It may be that pragmatism will turn out to be all of this formidable array. naturphilosophisch Energismus. not on the ground of remote connections with a cosmic reason and "Influence of Darwin". nominalism psychologically. meliorism on the basis of the Bentham-Mill-utilitarianism. For whatever else pragmatism is or is not. Nominalismus.SIX its its MAJOR PROPHETS possibilities. but even should it the one who thus defines it has hardly come within earshot of it. the pragmatic spirit is primarily a revolt against that habit of mind which disposes of anything whatever even so humble an affair as a new method in philosophy by tucking it away. energism metaphysically.

Teacher. And if. in escaping that alternative. as I believe. if I understand you aright. terrible of intellectualism has revealed that the chief objection of absolutists to the pragmatic doctrine of the personal (or "sub- Catechism Concerning Truth on Philosophy and Other Essays. What you say calls to mind something of Chesterton's that I read recently: "I agree with the pragmatists that apparent objective truth is not the whole matter. My son. is to evade a proper demand for testing the human mind and all its works. or. how have we furthered our understand- German author ing of pragmatism ? In one of his Socratic dialogues * Dewey brings in at the close Chesterton's flip refutation of prag- matism : Pupil. to regard it as a fixed rival system making like claim to completeness and finality. pragmatist." 1 " A " in " The Influence of Darwin l*59l ." You would say. I am glad to leave the last word This enfant with you. that to fall back upon the necessity of the "human mind" to believe in certain absolute truths. But I say that one of those necessities precisely is a belief in matism first is a matter of human of human needs is Pragneeds and one of the to be something more than a objective truth. one of the marked traits of the pragmatic movement is just the surrender of every such claim.JOHN DEWEY in terms of the very past systems against which it is a reaction . that there is an authoritative need to believe the things that are necessary to the human mind.

[260] . on the contrary.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS jective") factor in belief is that the pragmatist has spilled the personal milk in the absolutist's coconut. said which having nothLaw. follow after the and Nietzsche. It is curious to see are now holding how many up Germany as a different classes horrible example of the dangers of the theories they oppose. Hegel. "That may be practically as dangerous as matter-of-fact political absolutism history testifies." This is no new notion cooked up philosophical absolutism for the occasion. The and Fichte to Absolute Idealists ascribe the bad conduct of Ger- many to her desertion of Kant. Hegel. holds and Fichte responsible for it all. Kant. ing particular to say. like so many of them. The orthodox she is believe that through higher suffering Germany got into trouble The classicists say that criticism. In speaking of Kant's denudation of Pure Reason of all concrete attributes he said : Reason became a mere voice. of Haeckel new gods or no gods But Dewey. in general. from an overdose of science. but one which on Ethics at Columbia Dewey of the plainly stated six years before the outbreak war in his address University. The Anglican Catholics blame Luther for the war and look upon the prospective triumph of the Allies as the final destruction of Protestantism in the world. Duty.

65. German thinkers have come to declare all progress as the unfolding of national life and to declare impossible the construction of constitutions such as we have in the New World. p. German Luther who saved for mankind principle of spiritual freedom against Latin then Kant and Fichte.JOHN DEWEY leaving to the existing social order of the Prussia of Frederick the Great the congenial task of declaring just what was obligatory in the concrete. 1915. and thereby to estabthe rule of freedom and science in humanity as 1 Published as "German Philosophy and Politics" (Holt). [26l] . lish recognition of the principle. After the war began he expanded this idea in his McNair lina. who wrought externalism. out the principle into a final philosophy of science. the German nation organized in order to win the world to a the . the The premises of the historic syllogism are plain. Dewey traces the intellectual process by which the German : people have reached the very startling opinions they now hold as to their mission in the world as follows First. morals and the State as conclusion. Influence of Darwin ". The marriage of freedom and authority was thus celebrated with the understanding that sentimental the former and practical control primacy went to " to the latter. 1 lectures at the University of North Caro- Because Germany has developed continuously without any decided break with its past like the French Revolution or the transplanting of Europeans to America.

without hope of future restoration. tainly we cannot deny the existence of that feeling among Americans. But it has been instructed by a long line of philosophers that it is the business of ideal right to gather might to itself in order that it may cease to be merely ideal..SIX a whole." : "There is no middle ground If you sink. differs markedly is being used in England and the In fact every nation has other allied countries. The State represents exactly this incarnation of ideal law and right in effective might. to that of the most this making Nation the re- generator and restorer of the world.. sort of language as the same sense of its historic divine mission and Cer- unique importance to the world's civilization. so sinks humanity entire with you. Germany In the grosser sense of the words." This sounds very much in like what we hear present in Germany Empire ideal to-day. has not held that might makes right. hundred years ago Fichte in his "Addresses to the German Nation" roused his countrymen to make a stand against A Napoleon and fulfill their mission to "elevate the glorious of all German name peoples. To quote again from Fichte is : "While cosmopolitanism the dominant will that the purpose of the existence of humanity be actually [262! . MAJOR PROPHETS . although the German some respects from the It is also the same State that Fichte foresaw.

and [263] . "The present situation preof the whole racial sents the spectacle of the breakdown political. The movement of God in history is thus particularly manifest in those changes by which unique place passes from one nation to another. it makes a fatal mixture. philosophy Nationalism. History is the movement. the logical outcome of the a priori and absolutist metaphysics which has prevailed in This fallacious line of Europe during the last century. but when the Fichtean idea of a particular State as the incarnation of the divine will combined with the Hegelian idea of progress through conflict. He of says. patriotism is the will that this end be first realized in the particular nation to which we ourselves belong. Only one nation at a time can be the latest and hence the fullest realization of God. and for which he would substitute the method of intelligent experimentation. the march of God on earth through time." This might seem a harmless and indeed inspiring conception of patriotism. argument is. War is the signally visible occurrence of such a flight of the divine spirit in its onward movement. as Dewey is shows : Philosophical justification of war follows inevitably from a philosophy of history composed in nationalistic terms. and that this achievement thence spread over the entire race. in Dewey's opinion.JOHN DEWEY realized in humanity.

584) a criticism appearing in The New Republic (vol. p. 1915. geographical and national limits. but I fear that ac- has become more powerful. calm. clear. and popular without being shallow" and he further says : Professor Dewey was assuredly the ideal person For though he had made to handle the subject. pervading. S. the Anglo-Saxon world has a monopoly of the prag1 "German Philosophy and Politics" is sympathetically reviewed by Professor Santayana in the Journal of Philosophy. [264] . The same Journal reprints (vol. Schiller of Oxford calls Dewey's entirely "German Philosophy and Politics" "an admirable book. p.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS human intercourse irrespective cultural. cogent." When we see the appalling results to which the doctrine of Nationalism has led. and England in his article "On Understanding the Mind of Germany". 117. Atlantic. France. a deep and sympathetic study of German philosophy. Professor Dewey's reply is published with it. p. 234) by Professor Hocking of Harvard. IV. See also Dewey's admirable analysis of the national psychology of Germany. we may indeed regard it with Dewey tually as a logical it breakdown. Methods for November 25. 1 Doctor F. vol. 251. racial." and he urges as a substitute the promotion of "the efficacy of of class. C. he had in the end turned away from it to become a leader in the movement which is most antithetical to the traditionally German type of It must not indeed be alleged that philosophizing. and firmly fixed than ever through the psychological and economic experiences of the war. who thinks that the fault of the Germans is being too pragmatic. Psychology and Scientific XII.

ciples. Occasionally he wakes up to the fact that the students in the back seats are having difficulty in hearing him. and then he comes down with explosive stress on the next word. sentence. 1 cality of the national bent. There is and it takes some time to realize that he is. He talks along in a casual sort of way with a low and un- eventful voice and his eyes mostly directed toward the bare desk or out of the window. His lectures are punctuated by pauses but not in a way to facilitate Sometimes in the midst of a their comprehension. and it was a perception of this that so infuriated our germanized professors who prided themselves on their superiority to the vulgar practi. 1916.JOHN DEWEY matic habit of mind for all men have to act and pragmatism is only the theoretic apprehension of the attitude which imposes itself on every agent everywhere. a preposition as like as not. [265] . his train of thought will be shunted off on to 1 Mind. But it is probably right to regard this habit of mind as characteristically congenial to AngloSaxon life. perhaps between an adjective and its noun. A stranger who drops into one of Professor Dewey's classes is at first apt to be puzzled to account for the extent of his influence and the devotion of his dis- nothing in his manner of delivery to indicate that he is saying anything of importance. April.

and several thousands of orderly schoolma'ams have felt their hands itch to jerk it tie is straight. His eyes are black and keen. and one can catch a twinkle in them if the lids do not drop too quick. and he is so anxious to avoid a mis- understanding that he sometimes fails to insure an understanding. His long straight black hair. Dewey. Talking has never become a reflex action with speaks. but his drooping mustaches. as it always does eventually. When he misses the right word he does not pick any one at hand and go on but stops talking until he finds the one he wants. The difficulty of utterance in his lectures.SIX another line. being twenty years younger. is now getting gray. the same long lean face and neck and nose. In profile Professor Dewey looks something like Robert Louis Stevenson. He has to think before he Few professors and almost no instructors are bothered that way. results from overconscientiousness. like the tortuous style of his technical writ- ings. From the front one would take him to be a Kentucky colonel disguised in spectacles. MAJOR PROPHETS class has to sit patiently at it and the the junction station until comes back. parted in the middle. His drawling careless tone and hesitant disguise the boldness of his thought manner quite [266] . His neck- usually awry. are still dark.

since the other's death. Questions never disconcert him. and the more he he talks. gives this pen sketch of Professor Dewey Nothing is more symbolic of Professor Dewey's democratic attitude towards life than the disintegrated array of his published writings. I prospective public. these are the burial-places of much of . is no place for the psychology of His deprestige. . Professor Dewey's thought is inaccessible because he has always carried his simplicity of manner. Pamphlets and reports of obscure educational societies school journals. futuristic philosophy. heckled the better One dolph of his former students at Columbia. . Where the neatly uniform works of William James are to be found in every public library. limited to the pedant few. [267] . with such universally important things to say on almost every social and intellectual activity of the day. was ever published in forms more ingeniously contrived to thwart the interest of the man.JOHN DEWEY and the from the logical class order of its wording. is the most significant thinker in America. 1915. university monographs. March 13. his dread of show or self-advertisement. you must hunt long and far for the best things of the man who. this intensely alive. mocracy seems almost to take that extreme form of refusing to bring one's self or one's ideas to the 1 The New Republic . however inis opportune. l : Ran- Bourne. No think. and philosophical journals. . almost to the In all his psychology there point of extravagance. S.

All my forefathers earned an I honest living as farmers. coopers. is all blemish. A Knowing that every biographer is expected to show that the subject of his sketch got his peculiar talents by honest inheritance. His sentences. suggests that he has almost studied the technique of protective It will do you no good to hear him coloration. I wrote to Professor Dewey to inquire what there was in his genealogy to account for his becoming a philosopher. lecture-room he seems positively to efface himself. The whole business of impressing yourself on other people. has simply never come into his ultra-democratic mind. flowing and exact and lucid when read. particularly on my father's side.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS On the college campus or in the attention of others. lecture. My free from ancestry. he seems almost to feel shame that he has seen the implications of democracy more clearly than anybody else in the great would-be democratic society about him. was absolutely the first one in seven generations to fall from grace. of his clothes. wheelwrights. you will find strung in long festoons of obscurity between pauses for the awaited right word. prophet dressed in the clothes of a professor of logic. and so been forced into the unwelcome task of teaching it. of his voice. The uncertainty of his silver-gray hair and drooping mustache. of getting yourself over to the people who want to and ought to have you. is His ancestry discouraging to those who would find an explanation for all things in heredity. In the last few years atavism has [268] .

John Dewey went to the State University in his native town and received his A. and Lucina His elder brother. in Burlington. (Rich) Dewey. 20. degree at twenty. Think while of the courage and enterprise of a tion busy posiand when the war was barely over started a Journal of Speculative Philosophy and founded a Philosophical Society and produced a series of translations of Hegel. B. W. Harris. It would be estimate the influence of Doctor Harris in raising the standards [269] . but then superintendent of schools in St. Louis. Being then uncertain whether sophical studies his liking for philo- was sufficient to be taken as a call to that calling he applied to the one man in America most competent and willing to decide such a question.JOHN DEWEY set in and I have raised enough vegetables and for fruit really to pay my own keep. 1859. T. Davis Rich Dewey. John Dewey was born October A. S. is professor of economics and statistics in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the author of the Special Report on Employees and Wages in the I2th Census as well as of many other works on finance and industry. afterward United States Commissioner for Education. the son of Archibald Vermont. Fichte. man who filling this and other German metahard to physicians.

In 1888 he went as to the University of Minnesota Professor of Philosophy but was called back to Michigan at the end of one year. Dewey was choice for the chair of philosopher. So. who has been ever since an effective collaborator in his educational and social work. Michigan. Morris and followed him to the University of Michi- gan as Instructor in Philosophy after receiving his Ph.SIX of MAJOR PROPHETS in arousing American schools and an interest in problems. When young Dewey sent him a brief article with a request for personal advice he returned so encouraging a reply that Dewey intellectual decided to devote himself to philosophy. Here he studied under George S. the first American university to make graduate and research work its main object. During the ten Plaisance he radical ideas of years Dewey spent on the Midway had the opportunity to try out the [270] . When the President Harper went through the country picking up brilliant and promising young men for his new University of Chicago.D. at Johns Hopkins in 1884. one of the old type of scholarly gentleman. after a year spent at home reading under the direction of Professor Torrey of the University of Vermont. Two years later he married Alice Chipman of Fenton. to Johns Dewey went Hopkins University.

first time in human history an individual achievement and not a class possession. where he has I since remained. 1 The New Republic. . nothing remains save to produce one. July i. The title of his latest volume. of many ed- One of the latest these is the formation of the Association of first University Professors. "Democracy and philosophy article l he puts his Education". gives the keynote of and the aim of his life. Our culture must be consonant with realistic science and with machine industry. In 1904 Dewey to Columbia University. 1916. . . That America has not yet so justified itself is too obvious Since we can neither beg for even lament. . . It is for education to bring the light of science and the power of work to the aid of every For in a soul that it may discover its quality. . of which he was the president.. individual democratic would society every spiritually Culture would then be for the realize distinction. Besides his classwork he has always been active though rarely conspicuous in ucational and social movements.JOHN DEWEY education of which was called have spoken. called culture. nor borrow a culture without betraying both it and ourselves. In a recent it in these I words : am one of those who think that the only test and justification of any form of political and economic society is its contribution to art and science to what may roundly be . [271] . instead of a refuge from them..

sity of Chicago Press. The nearest thing to a short cut to Dewey's phi- losophy that he has given us is "How We Think" (Heath. by making a complete collection of Dewey's works will earn his degree.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS TO READ How DEWEY As has been said previously. His epoch-making work. first edition 1899. has by no means lost its value although much that was prophecy then is now fulfilled. and with this the reader may well "Essays in Experimental Logic" (Univerbegin. "The School and So- ciety" (University of Chicago Press. twenty-five years hence who undertakes to get a Ph. second edition 1915). contained in the chapter "What Pragmatism Means". besides [272] . 1910). Most readers will be more interested in the fulfillments as described in "Schools of To- morrow" (Dutton. though his ideas have interfused the schools of the country through the teachers he has trained and the educational books he has written. r reader seeking an answer to that question. The main principles of Dewey's philosophy. have never been printed in a complete and systematic form. and speedy oblivion The graduate student of for his contribution. This contains. 1916) requires for its complete comprehension some knowledge of current contro- But the review of James's "Pragmatism". Dewey's writings are scattered far and wide in various periodicals and educational series. 1915). He has never been able to say "no" to any struggling journal of socialism or school reform that begged him for an article although it meant no pay. w ill be of interest to any versies in philosophy. imparted viva voce to successive generations of students. little influence.D.

Evelyn Dewey. 1910) contains. Professor Moore of Chicago who reviews : volume in the International Journal of Ethics "The thinking world has (1916. Dewey's "Psychology" (Harper. philosophy. p. The " " which he wrote in collaboration with ProEthics empiricism." The volume clumsily entitled "The Influence of Darwin on Philosophy and Other Essays in Contemporary Thought" (Holt. besides the anniversary address which gives it its title. this "Democracy and Education" (Macmillan. and society. several chapters by Professor Dewey on the theory and aims of the educational move- ment they represent. it is the most important of Professor Dewey's productions thus far. "immediate Politics" discussed in the preceding pages. ten essays chiefly concerned with the exposition and defense of Dewey's form of pragmatism. Of the general significance of this volume it is perhaps enough to say that. in the reviewer's opinion." (Holt. 1915) "German Philosophy and is I have previously mentioned (Holt. 1916). practical applications of Dewey's philosophy to current educational and public questions may best be found in the brief and popular articles that fessor Tufts The [273] . 1886) has largely lost its interest through the rapid advance of the science and the altered viewpoint of the author. the reviewer will also say that it would be difficult to overstate its import and value for all students of education. 1908). In defiance of possible imputations of chauvinism. 547) says of it long since learned to expect from Professor Dewey matters of prime importance. A more complete and system- atic exposition of the principles of education under modern conditions is to be found in his most recent book.JOHN DEWEY the description of the new schools by his daughter.

p. 26. George Leib Harrison lectures before the . "Progress" (vol. 1911 (in Old Penn Weekly Review). made : "The Problem of (in Science. vol. 90) dential address to the American Association of . January 29. PresiScience (Popular Monthly. 765) and "Is Nature Good?" (Hibbert "The Existence of the Journal. University of Pennsylvania. 7. "Maeterlinck" (Hibbert Journal. University Professors (Science. 357). The Inter- "Force and Coercion" (vol. 1909. p. Philosophy. the (New York) in Journal of Methods. 75. 1910) Truth". vol. vol. 25. January 28. New York. Psychology and Scientific A volume of eight essays on the pragmatic attitude was published in January 1917 by Henry Holt under the title of "Creative Intelligence. . "Nature and Reason in Law" (vol. "Darwin's Influence upon Philosophy" p. 1915). 9. tributions to logical theory and epistemology appear mostly in the fortnightly organ of the philosophical department of Columbia University. October. Besides the articles to which reference has been in the footnotes of the preceding pages the following writings of Dewey should be mentioned "Science as Subject-matter and as Method". p. p. [2743 . 24. 827) World as a Problem" (Philosophical Review. the vice presidential address of the section on education of the Boston meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. p. "Professional Spirit Among Teachers" (American Teacher. 311).SIX he contributed MAJOR PROPHETS frequently to The New Republic His professional con1915-1916. 359). vol. 1913) national Journal of Ethics published ." The leading " The Need for a Recovery of Philosophy " essay on is by John Dewey. 26.

helm Ostwald. who. (275! . Dewey's social philosophy see the articles by Lester Lee Bernhard of the University of Chicago in Ameri- A May can Journal of Sociology. 1909. "Logical Foundations of The Scientific Treatment of Morality" in the Decennial Publications of the p. criticism of Bergson by Dewey under the title of "Perception and Organic Action" may be found in the Journal of Philosophy. articles University of Chicago. No biography of Dewey has yet been written and none ever will be if he can prevent it. Schneider of Columbia University has prepared a complete bibliography of Dewey's writings. has devoted much attention to educational reforms. November 21. Chicago. as I said in my chapter on him. May. not yet published. "Voluntarism in the Roycean Philosophy" in the Philosophical Review. includes a sketch of Dewey by Franz Ludwig in the series on Moderne Schulreforme in Das Monistische For a criticism of Jahrhundert of 31. H. 1916. W.JOHN DEWEY "History for the Educator" and other appeared in Progressive Journal of Education. 1912. Psychology and ScienProfessor Wiltific Afethods. 25). 1915.

The writer of this notice was constrained to recommend the work for translation to his friend and former pupil by his estimate of the intrinsic value of the treatise and the desire that it might be brought within reach of English readers as eminently suited to the times. he has studied brevity. 1 1 "The Fundamental Concepts Critically of Modern Philosophic Thought. Above all. He can say with assured confidence that there are few books within his knowledge which are better fitted to aid the student who wishes to acquaint himself with the course of superlative and scientific thinking and to form an intelligent estimate of most of the current theories. he seems equally familiar with the controversies of the present. acute and candid criticism. and a clear and solid style. and Historically Considered" by Rudolf Eucken. Professor [2 7 6] . and has mastered the art of expressing in a few words the results of patient research and critical discrimination. While tions To he is at home among the systems of the past.CHAPTER VI RUDOLF EUCKEN APOSTLE OF THE SPIRITUAL LIFE the history of and criticism of these concepand their terminology Professor Eucken has brought thorough and careful reading.

time in person. Appleton. by President Porter was out all Since then in his important works have . the translation instigated of print. fested in corresponding that which is Germany. instead of Yale. president of Yale College. by the author and an introduction by Noah Porter. been brought out England and America to and the mani- periodical indexes record a growing interest in his thought. audience . there was no book for accessible to the English reader.RUDOLF EUCKEN These were the words to a with the which Professor Eucken was introduced in 1880 by one who was years this American public good judge of men and Professor books. [277] . partly to a change in the popular attitude toward the views he presents. the primary qualification of a college president. 1880. prizes their The Nobel intention of have failed to carry out the to founder. when Eucken received the Nobel work of his prize for the greatest of idealistic literature. Thirty-two to later Eucken of came the America of . Professor in Smith College. which was place $100. Translated by M. In 1908.000 or so immediately into the hands of a in Jena. With additions and corrections Stuart Phelps. but under auspices Harvard and the University partly New a York. This time he reached larger owing to his greater fame.

for the laboratory expenses of a metaphysician are but slight. Instead of liberal this. Sully-Prudhomme. Mommsen. now amounting to some $37. in literature. Mistral.000. for example. dent. it does elevate In the case of Eucken the value of this is evi- He did not need the assistance of the Nobel fund in order to prosecute his researches. and Jena is as cheap a place to live as can nowadays be found in civilized lands. but him to a pulpit. possibly as as that conceived by Alfred Nobel. But in so interpreting their Kipling. to men whose reputations have long been established . as well as received a due appreciaThe Nobel prize does not tion of their efforts. the Nobel committees absorb a of moiety of the income expenses" the fund in local "administrative and usually give the residue. mandate the Nobel committees have fulfilled another useful function. man who had made literature. add to the stature of a man. they have at least pointed it out to the world at large.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS a signal contribution to science. and Heyse. much needed If they have not discovered original genius. The men thus distinguished as having contributed to human progress have extended their influence over their contemporaries. The award [278] . or peace. Bjornson.

of course. and are being extensively translated into other languages. in the Hibbtrt Journal. or even brilliancy of style. He temporaries. [279] . rent philosophical writings of the present day in him that he 1 Germany. in his later years. add to his reputa- tion in philosophical circles.RUDOLF EUCKEN of the prize did not. so to it cannot be a matter of indifference is. The question what kind : of a scientist the philosopher should imitate the chemist lives. necessary to pretend to assume. This growing popularity is all the more noteworthy since it is not attained by any novelty of form. gaining a wider that his works are the most widely curaudience. in short. has a message which he believes of vital importance to his conis he a preacher. He repudiates entirely the aloof. July. disinterested spectator attitude which philosophers in general have thought it is. 1 Eucken never ligious Life So says Professor Heinrich Weinel in an interesting article on "Reand Thought in Germany To-day". 1909. impartial. who transforms the world in which he or the meteorologist who merely records the atmospheric currents without attempting to guide them ? Eucken is not only a teacher. but Eucken does not believe that the influence of a philosopher should be confined to philosophical circles.

and he has been on the : [280] . Eucken always writes style. it has been Eucken's lot to have been closely associated. as did Schopenhauer and Nietzsche. He has none of the freshness of phraseology and wealth of novel illustrations which attract to James and Bergson their wide circle of admirers.SIX tries MAJOR PROPHETS by shocking the reader to stimulate thought with audacious paradoxes. Very curiously. Ostwald and Haeckel. and saying as little as possible about the tares and brambles that he finds with it. gleaning good grain wherever he goes. even of the dead. losopher A He never lived. He indulges in no polemics with his contemporaries. with the two men whose views are at Basel with Nietzsche most antagonistic to his and at Jena with Haeckel. on the faculties of small universities. in a serious and methodical elaborating his line of thought as he goes with exactness and just proportion expressing along . never introducing personalities. In his historical works he passes through all fields of thought. as do Shaw and Chesterton. himself in general and abstract terms. rarely mak- ing use of imagery or concrete illustrations. sweeter-tempered phispeaks no evil. like He does not. make use of the direct into literature and concrete mode of expression which has been introduced by modern science.

of in a passion what he the felt at University Basel Professor Eucken often served with Nietzsche on the examining com- mittee of candidates for the doctorate in classical philology. if the student ap- peared to be getting the worst of it in the verbal contest.RUDOLF EUCKEN best of terms with both of them. interested in was particularly what Professor Eucken told me of I Nietzsche. On such occasions. believing he should not be held responsible for of his devotees. he could contain himself no longer and would break in with leading questions: "I suppose you mean so-andyou not believe this or that?" until he got the student to say just about what he should have said in the first place. brutality. and when At his feelings were hurt he wrote down the moment. Nietzsche would be observed to become more and more nervous until. larity. but too shy and sensitive to be popular. Professor Eucken does so?" or "Do not regard the widespread influence of Nietzsche as altogether evil. his strong individual- [281] . whose personality and philosophy were in such violent contradiction. all the vagaries and extravagances The reason of Nietzsche's popuis according to Eucken. was in reality a most tender-hearted man. this This advocate of ruthless scorner of sympathy and compassion. finally.

This sounded strange to the American. we were to judge of the character of the people by the most conspicuous of its achievements in art and literature. MAJOR PROPHETS Democracy. Germany pictorial art hideousness of to-day. accustomed to have Germany referred to as the most regimented of nations. of serious works on religion shows if a revival of interest in spiritual affairs. 1 1910. his own in- seat. as seen by the tourist. is a land of spotted faces. we should say that modern Germany In drama and ficis hopelessly decadent and corrupt. his upon having The German own house. spotted literature. would indicate a sound physical constitution and a healthful growth. In and viciousness are depicted by means of strange and violent methods. are pronounced will for the Germans. sale The immense and philosophy Yet. the amazing prosperity. described in the following pages. the demand for territorial expansion. a wild confusion of swirling The increase of population. But modern Germany cross-currents. tion Gallic license is allied with Gothic coarseness. the checking of emigration. his own opinion. was made in [282] . the extension of commerce. 1 and spotted My visit to Jena. is a land of incongruities and contradictions.SIX ism . painting. in spite of governmental control and the Social individualists sist in character.

Here. but would strike out new ways for itself.RUDOLF EUCKEN In the gruities of little university town of Jena the incon- modern Germany in are curiously conspicu- ous. is A student likely to miss his seven o'clock life ture on the spiritual o'clock Wednesday lecbecause he sat up till two corps drinking compulsory beer with his brothers in the middle of the marketplace. Schelling. he will eccentric. monument. for shows that we is are in the presence of a living art which not content to keep to the safe and beaten paths. the barbarous cus- toms of the past have the strongest hold. much that is displeasing and it but that in itself is encouraging. [283] and public building. Schiller. new and ingenious solutions of problems as old as . leader the Enlightenment. Fichte. the Humboldts. And he may cut out his eight o'clock Saturday lecture be- cause he has an imperative engagement to cut off the nose or the ear of a fellow student at the Mensurort of Dollnitz. and Wieland. Hegel. Among the nobler manifestations of the spirit of new Germany find the tourist is likely to take most interest in the architecture. In city and country unexpected forms and colors delight the eye on villa. Novalis. indeed. this In this historic stronghold of Protestantism. the home of Goethe.

but the rival. utilizing the old to give him inspiraA tion. equipped hygienic. well ventilated. At Oxford the newer buildings either clash violently with their elders or imitate them so closely as to be almost equally in- convenient and ings built uncomfortable. Here the problem of harmonization was particularly difficult. of the master builders of the past.SIX man. has made no sacrifices to the spirit of antiquity. commodious. but a tower of the ancient ducal castle was actually to be incorporated. but not permitting it to hamper him. Theodor Fischer. erected on the three hundred and fiftieth anniversary of the university in 1908. Yet the architect. not so much as some single buildings in our leading universities. MAJOR PROPHETS architect is The modern German not the imitator. not only must the new buildings fit into the picture of old Jena. but are up to date. . steam heated. striking example of this is the new university build- ings of Jena. The whole group cost only three hundred and seventyfive thousand dollars. The Jena build- look as though they might well have been by Kurfurst Johann Friedrich der Grossmiitige in 1558. He knows how to harmonize the old with the new. yet I know of none more satisfactory from both the utilitarian and the esthetic point of view.

put where belongs. who used as a model for the middle figure the youngest son of Professor Eucken.RUDOLF EUCKEN with electric lights and clocks. beneath. strictly plastic It is and polychromatic. a grown man on one ing out his torch to a young man. in The adornment. on either side of which are gigantic paintings emblematic of the transside hold- mission of culture. As we we see opposite the portal to the Aula. four Egyptian-like figures representing the four faculties. That of is Philosophie. of a Rodin bust of With the possible exception Minerva in the vestibule. I I did not see any "objects of art" that carried off without tearing could have down the building. Auditorium Number I. it is structural. the enter lecture room very appropriately nearest to of Professor Eucken. and electric vacuum cleaners. and. the largest classroom [285] . that he light his torch may by it. with solemn and inscrutable face. On the stone of the north fafade are roughly chiseled the Ephesian Diana in the gable. The most important is picture at the Jena University the Auszug deutscher Studenten im Jahre 1815 by Hodler. There are no superfluous statues stuck around niches and on pedestals. the university hall of state.

below green floor the The slants down to a plain pine desk is and a small blackboard. shuffling Promptly on the hour a vigorous [286] and stamping of feet announces the arrival of the pro- . but not so good as the American individual seats. the real patron of the University. rays agreeably.SIX of the MAJOR PROPHETS is new building. not there. The students may seat themselves wher- ever they choose. and masculine resentment at the intrusion of women has quite died out. for segregated. assigned to Eucken. On the wall a mosaic portrait of the late Pro- fessor Abbe. long benches with are better a fixed desk and book rack in front. than those found in English universities. side of the light and the diffuse walls room. cards and even the desks are scrawled with auto- matic writing and sketches by the inattentive hands of students. Some seventy students I count. The seats. affixing a card with name and These hour if they want to hold a particular place. and among them about a dozen women. and we find it already about half filled. for a prosperous optician is of much more use to a modern university than a needy Gross-Herzog. although it is not yet seven o'clock in the morning. There are plenty of windows along one white above. but scattered here and Jena is coeducational now.

When I complain of it they reply coldly: the "One can never shout and tell afraid truth. a full pressed down. professor always gives good measure. Nor do the German professors necessary to adopt the low voice. as America. in versities.RUDOLF EUCKEN fessor. he sits down. take him for a revivalist. In fact I find. being often inaudible adopted and never impressive to the back seats. if You would not be wrong you is He His voice rings out loud tremendously in earnest. But not for long. He springs to his feet and throws himself forward on the reading-desk in the effort to really reach his audience. no period of preliminary meditation on what he shall say often in find air it and of casual conversation at the end. who begins with " Mein' Herren und as his first foot steps upon the platform. He clasps his hands [287] . when he thinks of it. Damen" A German hourful. indifferent and hesitating utterance regarded at Oxford and Harvard as the mark of the gentleman and the scholar. Ocdid. shaken together. You might and clear. that I am tempted to lay down the law that the younger the this pitch instructor the poorer the voice. and running over. casionally." But Eucken is evidently not that being heard will impair his veracity. that so many of our younger roaming about our unimen have and tempo.

luckily for most of them. He theories. the first religious philosopher. Few philosophers do. Labor is not merely activity . Through labor and love we is attain our true selves. must bring this Christian power into modern life. would partake of its divine purpose. it has a purpose strife . it is directed against and striving we must reach By opposition. True ability is moral ability.SIX to his breast as MAJOR PROPHETS his and then throws arms out wide. the theme of as always. it. We must utilize the force of faith . And here he quotes Plotinus. The fulfilling of duty inner freedom. the reality of the spiritual life. is We lives do not need It be told that Activism in his his philosophy. We must work with the world movement if we spiritual life. for whom he has as high regard as have Maeterlinck and Bergson. though to seize the Geistesleben with which his is heart istic overflowing and spread it far over a material- and indifferent generation. thus giving true happiness. his shows movements. is "Happiness" spiritual life is the subject of this lecture. The The he says. The unrest and stress of the present day are the signs of a new spiritual [288] . the reality of "the spiritual life" Who can doubt after he has seen Eucken to ? It shines in his face. goes out from within and transforms the world.

Eucken added "Mankind is his culture. for to him a theory of life is more important than a theory of the cosmos. but set off handsomely his pink cheeks and his still unspectacled. Professor Eucken was then sixty-seven years old. but it is to deepen and enrich saying.RUDOLF EUCKEN birth." a Lebensanschauung rather than a Weltanschauung that he teaches. On study is a photograph of Michael [289] . A second lecture followed immedi- on "Pessimism and Optimism". His hair and beard are pure bright blue eyes white. and would have been Carnegied in if he were from seven to an American university. Of no value in themselves. that I give them merely to prove I got something out of the lecture. And when he one wall of his leaves the lecture room he does not it leave his work. but goes to more of at home. These are merely a few fragmentary thoughts that I gathered in that memorable hour. delivered with the same vigor and listened to with the same interest. is not to afford intellectual gratification. instead of giving lectures nine. ately. for I never understood spoken German until I heard Eucken. But even a deaf man would have found it profitable to be there. To the fine old his German It is "A man is more than more than work". The function of philosophy or esthetic life.

with a pen. Professor Eucken re- turned good for evil by inviting me to dinner in the evening. but he answers all letters promptly and carefully. Between these is the desk of the man who brought together highest aspirations of Greek and Christian culture a table stacked high . writing his replies in the old-fashioned all visitors way. The extension of the influence of Professor Eucken [290] . a professor from Tokyo. His correspondence is now voluminous. has the with papers and manuscripts. from the Sistine Chapel. a don from Oxford.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS Angelo's "Creation". while around the table I saw a young Boer from the Transvaal. and representatives of I don't know how many other nationalities. and on the opposite a cast of a section of the Parthenon frieze. tracted by the charm and this accounts in large part for his devoted following in all parts of the world. After granting me an interview which took the heart out of his afternoon. Even those who are repelled receives and will talk of his by the severity of his literary style are atof his personality. when I found that the lady on my right was from Nebraska and the one on my left from Switzerland. He philosophy to a single auditor with the same unwearied enthusiasm as to an audience.



1874 was called to the University of Jena.RUDOLF EUCKEN wife. called Her success in manag- ing what might be an international salon of ability to converse philosophy in is facilitated by her many languages. Kirche. Born in Aurich. She is not only wife. On account of the generous hospitality extended to students and strangers by last the Eucken household a removal was made year to a new villa in the suburbs. East Friesland. Kueche und Kinder. be translated into English as " kirk. philosophy of . 1846. ordered course of the typical German professor. kitchen [291] . Professor Eucken's wife and daughter came with him on his visit to America." I suppose. His has been undramatic the even. in 1 These must. then for . where he has ever three years in the University of Basel. January 5. and at Berlin under Trendelenburg taught for four years in a gymnasium. self through this hearty hospitality is due largely to his Frau Eucken has happily not confined herto the duties which the Kaiser prescribes as 1 woman's only sphere. he studied at Gottingen under Lotze. Eucken's life life is dramatic. but artist and musician as well. made even more uneventful by reason of his mastery of the gentle art of not making enemies. mother and housekeeper. and kids.

view that concepnot life tions by concep"that destinies human are not decided and tions". 1878. later in a title he was ready to outline his own guiding theory volume bearing the of characteristically for Germanic "A Prolegomena the Investigation of the Unity of the Spiritual Life in the Consciousness standpoint of the unique significance of the spiritual life he then reviewed the whole history of the evolution of this and Acts of Mankind. either of individuals or of masses of individuals. by mere opinions and whims. of the spiritual life. "to afford historical confirmation of the life. in spite of calls to larger institutions. namely. in this His purpose work. methodical. logical develop- ment of thought. he laid the foundations in the study of the concepts of philosophy which attracted Seven years the attention of President Porter. as he explains." From philosophy from Plato to Nietzsche. without leaps or backslidings. known in English as "The Problem of Human Life"." [292] . life has been as uneventful as external a continuous. but rather that they with a spiritual aim and purport. His inner aspects . was. and that for man a new world are ruled are determined by by spiritual necessities dawns. in First.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS its since remained. transcending the merely natural domain the world.

each one wiping clean the slate before he began to write. Eucken sees an aim and purpose in philosophic thought. Yet the very [293] we . then. but rather as a into a higher method by which humanity may grow sphere of existence. and the rapid succession of volumes which have since his come from pen are concerned with the moral and intellecdifficulties tual which nowadays impede of natural science religious progress. The development of and especially fact that the theory of evolution have led to the identification man with nature.RUDOLF EUCKEN The sentences quoted are alone enough to is show that Eucken's "history of philosophy" different a very thing is from what usually goes by that name. The vital need of the day. is to awaken the present indifferent and busy generation to a realization of the supreme im- portance of spiritual things and to the necessity of bringing the Christian religion into vital connection with modern thought. that the chronicling of the speculations of successive generations of metaphysicians. He does not regard it as a mere amuse- ment or as an intellectual exercise. close of the nineteenth cen- This energies is the task to which Eucken devoted his when by the tury he had fully matured his views.

1 "Life's Basis and Life's Ideal". 118. consistency . spiritual arise which are fundamentally different from physical self-preservation. they speak to us require with a tone of command and absolute obedience. A transcendence of of nature nature is consideration of all the in the process of thought. From time impulses to time in the course of history.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS have come to know that we belong to nature shows that we are more than nature. A already accomplished and . "They force human activity into particular channels . follows its own course and makes absolute demands. Neither the interests of individuals nor those of whole classes prevail against them . facts leads us to the result that a life consisting solely intelligence involves an intolerable inform and content are sharply separated from each other thought is strong enough to disturb the sense of satisfaction with nature. something emerges particular form unconcerned with the weal and the woe of man. every a consideration of utility vanishes before their inner necessity. [294] . but is too weak to construct a new world in opposition to it." Religious . and must suffer therefrom an increasing pain without 1 being able to change this state in any way. movements show in life it in which. Life is in a state of painful uncertainty and man is a Prometheus bound in that he must experience all the constraint and meaninglessness of the life of nature. p.

The spiritual life is not the product of a gradual development from the life of nature. nor are his moral standards determined by is society. all inner This line of clusion that a arises new thought leads Eucken to the conlife distinct from that of nature in our soul. Eucken steers carefully between the position of Buddhism. but has an independent origin and evolves new powers and man. The all individual is able in the light of his own conscience to approve and value something which around him reject. We in the spiritual life a universal life must recognize which transcends The of shared by him and raises him to itself. This opposition of in- dividuals to the condition of things in the social environment has been the main source of progress in matters of morality. and conversely to condemn and reject something which all around him esteem and respect. philosophical treatment of history ought first to trace the liberation of . In discussing the question of how man attains the spiritual life. all life from the mere human the inner elevation of our being to a more than human. is standards. that each man must work out his own salvation without any aid from [295] .RUDOLF EUCKEN Man not altogether the creature of his environment.

remain at This leads to the distinctive form of Eucken's philosophy of like life. man it . the change cannot possibly merely It spiritual happen to activity . as merely human power cannot lead the whole to new heights. it needs his must be taken up by his own own decision and acceptance. This is Pragmatism view of in its rejection of the life mere intellec- tualistic in basing truth more spontaneous and en's objection to essential activity. is more inclined to shape the world and life in accordance with human conditions and needs than to invest spiritual activity with an independence [296] . At the same time. known and as Activism. where we are concerned with a life that is independent. and the extreme Calvinistic position. life Only through the height to which ceaseless activity can it has attained. that man Or is purely passive and altogether undeserving.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS above. and of which the activity is conscious and selfdetermined. which has recently made so much headway among English-speaking peoples and beyond them. there is a revelation of the spiritual world . to quote his is own words : necessary to acknowledge that in all the movement which appears in the domain of man. is upon a But Euck- Pragmatism stated in the follow- ing language : Pragmatism. in all development of the spiritual life the communication of the new world must precede the activity of man.

RUDOLF EUCKEN and apply its standards to the whole content of human life. but in the soul of the individual. all elevating his spiritual nature is above environment. in relation to these. But such a person guarded against the arrogance of a superman by realizing that this superiority is not due to personal merit. testing and sifting of the It will be seen that Eucken does not fall in with the tendency of the times to subordinate the individual to society. religion has always been concerned with winning a new world and a new humanity. it differs may be called a form of mysticism. opposite. not in the "social consciousness". Eucken but its Activism. but decidedly from the older It is not in some important respects. as Eucken recognizes. The spiritual life springs up. Here Eucken shows a striking similarity to Bergson. The Geistesleben might be regarded as a to intensest higher development or manifestation of the elan [297] . does Quietism. the infinite enters the individual him and creative activity. This. but solely to the presence of the spiritual world. At its highest. on the conand rouses trary. not with the achievement of something within the old world and for the old humanity. not regard the individual as seeking a peaceful mysticism haven by absorption into the infinite .

the French philosopher starting from the standpoint of mathematical physics and Spencerian evolution. show that their common principle harmony with the spirit of the age.SIX vital. and the German from academic metaphysics and Christian theology. so characteristically modern and realm of novel as anything can be in the speculation. Eucken and Bergson met University in 1912. emphasizing as he does the individualistic origin of religious inspiration and realizing as he does the injury done to the Christian cause by clinging to antiquated formulas and medieval conceptions. Such a coincidence. this It curious that as view. But here again his moderation and sanity [298] . would be inclined to undervalue ecclesiastical institutions and to advocate too violent a break with historic Christianity. MAJOR PROPHETS Both involve the conception of an upward impulse acting at individual points which thus become centers is of spontaneous vital activity. It for the first time at Columbia might be feared that Eucken. as well as the reception which the of teachings in is Bergson and Eucken have received many in lands. metaphysical should have a simultaneously and independently been made fundamental doctrine by two philosophers so unlike in temperament and training.

of satisfying the severe requirements of modern thought and feeling. not primarily a mere theory concerndivine such a theory can. falls into the error of thinking " that a new " religion can be made to order to suit He the times. But not to be accomplished by merely elimwhatever the modern mind finds objectioninating this is able. further developments of reality. weld each of these inwardly of living energy. and have subsequently proved themselves strong enough to attract large portions of mankind. in a in which they came victoriously to birth. [299] . however. He finds in historic Christianity all the essentials of a permanent and universal religion. great religion is A human and organizations word. He agrees entirely with his colleague Haeckel in for re- condemning the union of Church and State. capable. Eucken because its the Church thereby hampered in freedom of development. He cannot be called orthodox from the standpoint of the established Lutheran Church.RUDOLF EUCKEN are manifest. never. ing things of course. which have convulsed the age movements. Haeckel because the Church ceives thereby is artificial support . be quite easily put together with a little it discloses ultimate revelations of the ingenuity spiritual life. when properly understood and presented. but opposite reasons. or even the needs of any one person.

[300] . This chasm is no doubt greater in Germany. but how immense is the distance which separates procedure such as this from the creative effort which urges its sure way forward.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS together. where the Catholic and Protestant churches are State institutions and identified our own with reactionary elements. where there is fortunately no Church. than it is in country. from the synthesis which embraces all men's lives and exercises an elemental compulsion upon them. Yet no one has recognized more life clearly the alienation of the Church from the cultural and the practical of the day. will soon find out how little the isolated individual can do in matters of this kind. He who would cut himself off from this great stream of experience. inward as well as outward. all equally free to adapt themselves to changing conditions and to prove themselves useful to society 1 in their own "Christianity and the New Idealism". It is easy to find fault with what tradition hands down. 1 Eucken's clairvoyant faith sees through the present anti-religious atmosphere the dawning of a new era in which the spiritual life shall again be dominant. but many churches. In such upheavals of the life of the people there is opened a rich mine of fact which becomes the property of all men. 146. p. no less easy to draw up vague views of one's own. and set an invisible world before it as the main basis of life. and includes valuable experiences of humanity as a whole.

as Jesus was willing. to put Since to the pragmatic test. but no compromiser. saying. for instance. 1 "Christianity and the New ! Idealism". 28. He claims for an equal practicality and efficiency. that science innocuous at the least and may somehow do some good. Eucken is conciliatory. we maintain that it is a very poor conception of religion hers. p. He does not solicit for religion a humble place in modern characteristic of life by using arguments like those employed in the it is sale of "patent medicines".RUDOLF EUCKEN way. we need not make any timid closely compromise with certain superficial contemporary movements and content ourselves with a lower degree of certainty. On the contrary. that we can never altogether eliminate the subjective element. which deems any certainty superior to and does not claim for her truth a far more primary certainty than that of the formula 2x2 = 4. he deit mands for a greater certitude. Only a shallow and perverse conception of truth can allow the certainty of the part to exceed the 1 certainty of the whole. it and he is willing. But it must be admitted that our churches not show the originality and diversity life are not availing themselves of this exceptional free- dom and do which is and growth. He meets modern religion upon her own ground. IS 01 . we have found that religion is linked thus with the whole. and that religious truths can never have the certainty of such formulae as 2x2 = 4.

and to express in purer ways the eternal truth that is in her. German it life the war." [302] . 1 . with only a few slight changes in It presents a picture of tense and time references. 1913. and and thought as I saw it shortly before it would be impossible for me to bring up to date now when the British censorship prevents German books and papers from reaching America. through all the stress and toil of human circumstance. and in that case the most violent onslaught cannot shake her rather will it help her in the end. Professor Ernst Haeckel.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS Either religion is merely a product of human wishes and ideas under the sanction of tradition and social convention and then neither art nor might nor cunning can prevent so frail a fabrication from or being whelmed by the advancing spiritual tide else religion is based on facts of a suprahuman order. public statement charging that British greed and egotism 1 "The Truth of Religion. POSTSCRIPT. In the fall of 1914. to discover where her true strength lies. Eucken joined with in his colleague in the university and his opponent in a philosophy. 1917 have thought best to leave the article on Eucken just as I published it in The Independent of FebruI ary 27. I can only add some quotations from Eucken's recent writings to show his attitude to- ward the war.

[303] .RUDOLF EUCKEN had caused the Great War. to the You say that we are a nation militarist and greedy Permit us a few questions with refor conquest. for instance. as become changed from decided it were. 1 In the following spring in Eucken sent an appeal the form of American people eight questions which I quote entire. how do you explain that all in Germany approve of the policy of the parties government and loyally hold together. who live through them than the view of such as observe occurrences weight difficulty from a remote distance Fourth. gard do you explain that in times gone by First. do you explain that education and technical You How 1 Published in The Independent. 1914. Americans who were in Germany at the outbreak of the war in an overwhelming majority sided with us ? Does not the opinion of those who see events quite near carry greater nay. ? believe that the Germans are oppressed and narrowed down by the rule of militarism. opponents to adherents of militarism ? How do you explain the fact that the Third. to that rash statement. Next. and we were numerically in the minority ? Do you really think that we are as stupid as all that? Second. September 28. Germany did not take advantage of the difficulties of her present opponents as. England's How during the Boer war or Russia's difficulty during the Japanese war ? If we had meant conquest should we have chosen the very moment when half the world was against us. overnight. including the Social Democrats ? Yesterday they were our decided Do you believe that the Socialists have opponents.

Have you forgotten that long before the war there was a triple entente which was directed against Germany and that the entente newspapers openly discussed the war plans hatched against Germany and even recommended 1916 as a suitable year for commencing hostilities ? You want to be good Christians and as Seventh. even before the German invasion of Belgium. by interfering with the Servian murder case. --You always discuss war with regard to Belgium. such work for peace among the nations. according to the parliamentary statement made by Foreign Secretary Sir Edward Grey. began the war. France and England only. and that England. which is by far the largest in the whole world ? Russia is a danger to Germany and to the whole of Europe and just now insists on the possession of Constantinople. Have you forgotten Russia. with her one hundred and fifty million inhabitants and her army. [304] . was determined. a neutrality in spirit and not merely in the letter ? Do not you think that a great nation with a glorious past should see the events of the day Eighth. to abandon her neutrality in favor of France ? You generally argue that all Europe was Sixth. Can you reconcile such Christianity with the fact that your country sends huge consignments of arms and ammunition to our opponents and thus intensifies and lengthens the war ? Can you further reconcile that with neutrality.SIX and MAJOR PROPHETS scientific research are so highly developed and universally esteemed in Germany and that for this reason so many Americans come to Germany in order to study sciences and arts ? Fifth. Have you forgotten that Russia. in profound peace and that only the greed of Germany disturbed that peace.

France. as if your country were still a British colony and not an independent empire with its own goals and standards. philosophy is summoned to proclaim the split unity of mankind over against the present the peoples. This endeavor is lacking in Germany's American opponents. That even the antagonisms aroused by the war have not shaken Eucken's faith in the power of and to heal the wounds of hureligion philosophy manity is shown by a recent article on "The Inter- national Character of Modern Philosophy" York. In such a passionstirred age as ours neutrals have the lofty duty to keep out of party strife and to endeavor to be just and impartial to both sides. To be sure. the contributions in the Homiletic Review of New In this he discusses with great impartiality which England. this does not mean that individual philosophers are less earnest to put forward the claims of their own people than the claims of others for they are not mere scholars. 1305] . and Italy have made to philosophy and concludes as follows : After all. Germany. When they see this assaulted and its existence put in peril. it is for them a holy duty to come to the defense of the fatherland if not with the weapons of war. they are also living men and citizens of their own nation. at least to do their best with the weapons of the among .RUDOLF EUCKEN with its own eyes and that such independence of thought is the highest test of true liberty ? But you contemplate present history more or less through English spectacles.

further and much more weighty task is from this to work mightily for the arising for philosophy the lack of inner unity of human life and endeavor such a unity has contributed not a little to whet the Only when we are antagonisms of the nations. 1 1 "The International Character of Modern Philosophy. That is the stamp of a small and vengeful disposition he who aims to depreciate others to whom great thanks are due dishonors himself." Homiletic Review. but never forget the task and aim of to consider things under the form of philosophy perpetuity. maintaining for humanity in the present a world superior to all the littlenesses of human action. only by means of a dynamic deepening of life and the introduction of new power can we progress in the solution of these problems. April. Not through elegant addresses and articles. . . 1916. that a realm of intellectual creation will retain full recognition beyond the enmities of man. remain true to his own people. the belief is entirely proper that the intellectual gains which are the result of philosophical labor remain unharmed by war. [306] . we have have to that of work to accomplish in common and mankind from the stage of nature to that we have to carry on unitedly intellect a great raise life a fight against the manifold unreason of only by the strengthening and operation of such convictions can the division of humanity into hostile nationalities be successfully withstood. convinced that we belong together essentially. Meanwhile. Let each. that A .SIX MAJOR PROPHETS intellect. Keenest blame is deserved by the attempt to array against each other the intellectual leaders of a people which is for the moment a foe. therefore. or to disparage the entire mental character of the opponent. .

(translated by F. Macmillan). different forms . "The Truth of " (translated by W. expository. argumentative. Pogson. The volumes entitled in their English version "The Meaning and Value of Life" (Gibson trans"The Life of the Spirit" lation. Harper) most suitable for the purpose. Putnam) Religion covers similar ground. R. I should say that the general reader who is his ideas in interested in the relation of philosophy to religion and one who is not interested in that would not care to read Eucken anyway would find "Christianity and the New Idealism" (translated by Lucy Judge Gibson and W. theoretical and practical. I am expected to prescribe a particular book as an introduction to Eucken. Widgery. Tudor Jones.RUDOLF EUCKEN How Eucken little. It is a small volume. Boyce Gibson. while "Life's Basis and Life's Ideals" (translated by Alban G. are intended for the non-philosophical reader. but his point of view has remained throughout his long productive career essentially unchanged. however. Putnam). "Main Currents of Modern Thought A Study of the Spiritual and : [307] . is TO READ EUCKEN not a man of one book. as easy reading as anything of Eucken's. and discusses frankly the present crisis in religious thought and indicates what he believes the churches ought to discard and what they must maintain of their inherited doctrines and forms. He has put forth many large volumes and works historical. L. and is so clearly indicated in all his works that one may be sure of obtaining the fundamental principles of his philosophy from whatever volume he selects. Macmillan). but in a more thorough and theoretical manner. If.

finally coming to "see them linked together as workers in one common task the task of building up a spiritual world within the realm of human life. Truth of Religion). [308] ." Single lectures and articles by Eucken readily accessible in English are: "Religion and Life" (Putnam). 1896. 1907 "Hauptprobleme der Religionsphilosophie der . but is seeking for whatever in them is good and permanent. 1901 "Grundlinien einer neuen Lebensanschauung" (Life's Basis and Life's Ideal). 1878. Scribner) differs decidedly from the ordinary history of philosophy in that the author is not trying to set at odds and overthrow the successive philosophers. (The Problem of Human Life). 1890. R. Denker" "Der Kampf um einen geistigen Lebensinhalt".SIX MAJOR PROPHETS Intellectual Movements of the Present Day" (translated by Meyrick Booth. "Naturalism or Idealism" Nobel Lecture). The titles of Eucken's chief works in German and in the English versions are as follows: "Die Grundbegriffe der Gegenwart" (The Main Currents "Die Einheit des of Modern Thought). Hough and W. : "Can Twenty We Still Be Christians?" (the (Macmillan) . "The Problem of Human Life as Viewed by Great Thinkers from Plato to the Present Time" (translated by Williston S. of proving our existence to be both spiritual and natural. 1888 . 1914). Geisteslebens in Bewusstsein und Tat der Mensch"Die Lebensanschauungen der Grossen heit". Boyce Gibson. and "The Contest for the Spiritual Life" (Putnam) are of a more technical character. of his papers are included in "Collected Essays of Rudolf Eucken (Scribner. "Der Wahrheitsgehalt der Religion" (The . Scribner) . "Back to Religion" (Pilgrim Press).

1908. von Hiigel. p.RUDOLF EUCKEN Gegenwart" (Christianity and the New Idealism). by Baron F. und Leben" (Knowledge Of the numerous books and articles about Eucken which have appeared in Europe. [309] New . Theological St. 1909). 97. Hibbert Journal (vol. : . "Rudolf Eucken's Christenthum". 10. 1912). 1910). Emile Rudolph Eucken". GosThe Nation (vol. the Zeitschrift fur Philosophic "La published a Festschrift devoted to his work. 1911) "Eucken's dramatische Lebensphilosophie". Fite. by Richard Roberts. 660). tiques. 53. by Ludwig von Gerdtell (Verlag von Becker). "Eucken's pel of Activism". p. 95. Contemporary Review (vol. 67). 1909). "Erkennen and Life. January 5. Current Literature (vol. 2. 1905. 71). p. Eine neue idealistische Losung des Lebensproblems". "Einfiihrung in eine Philosophic des Geisteslebens" (The Life of the Spirit). "Religious Philosophy of Eucken". Die Erneuerer des to mention deutschen Idealismus". On Eucken's seventieth birthday. it will be sufficient " Rudolf Eucken. "Eucken and RePaul". by Kurt Kesseler (Bunzlau Kreuschmer. but a few references may be given: "Religious Philosophy of Eucken". 1916. 1907. p. "Eucken's Philosophy of Life". "Sinn und Wert des Lebens" (The Meaning and Value of Life). by Theodor Kappstein (Ber"Rudolf lin-Schoneberg Bucherlag der "Hilfe") Eucken's Werk. by philosophic Boutroux {Academic des Sciences morales et poli: : . 465. Harvard view (vol. de M. by Otto Braun (Zeitschrift fur Philosophic und Philosophische Kritik. by W. It is Eucken unnecessary to give a list of articles about in American magazines because any library that contains the files will have a periodical index. 29). p.

by his students and translators "Rudolf Eucken's Philosophy of Life". and "An Interpretation of Rudolf Eucken's Philosophy".D. 1913). handy volumes known as "The People's Books" (New York: Dodge Publishing Company). International Journal of Ethics (vol. 15). "Eucken: A Philosophy of Life "." London (Unwin. Boyce Gibson (Macmillan). of Jena) has published "Rudolf Eucken: His Philosophy and Influence. Jones. H. by W. by A. Tudor Jones (Putnam). by : R. There are two excellent expositions of Eucken's philosophy in English.SIX MAJOR PROPHETS "Idealism of Rudolf Eucken". A briefer compendium. a series of . has appeared in W. Mellone. Meyrick Booth (Ph. 21. by S. p. J.



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