Friedrich Nietzsche, Miscellaneous Maxims and opinions (Vermischte Meinungen und Sprüche).

Miscellaneous Maxims and Opinions, the first supplement to Human, All Too Human, first published in 1879.  A second supplement, The Wanderer and his Shadow (Der Wanderer und sein Schatten) followed in 1880.


  Friedrich Nietzsche Full Text EBook  
Previous Section   126. THE OLDER ART AND THE SOUL OF THE PRESENT   Next Section

The Older Art and the Soul of the Present.  Since every art becomes more and more adapted to the expression of spiritual states, of the more lively, delicate, energetic, and passionate states, the later masters, spoilt by these means of expression, do not feel at their ease in the presence of the old-time works of art.  They feel as if the ancients had merely been lacking in the means of making their souls speak clearly, also perhaps in some necessary technical preliminaries.  They think that they must render some assistance in this quarter, for they believe in the similarity or even unity of all souls.  In truth, however, measure, symmetry, a contempt for graciousness and charm, an unconscious severity and morning chilliness, an evasion of passion, as if passion meant the death of art — such are the constituents of sentiment and morality in all old masters, who selected and arranged their means of expression not at random but in a necessary connection with their morality.  Knowing this, are we to deny those that come after the right to animate the older works with their soul?  No, for these works can only survive through our giving them our soul and our blood alone enables them to speak to us.  The real "historic" discourse would talk ghostly speech to ghosts.  We honour the great artists less by that barren timidity that allows every word, every note to remain intact than by energetic endeavours to aid them continually to a new life.  True, if Beethoven were suddenly to come to life and hear one of his works performed with that modern animation and nervous refinement that bring glory to our masters of execution, he would probably be silent for a long while, uncertain whether he should raise his hand to curse or to bless, but perhaps say at last: "Well, well!  That is neither I nor not-I, but a third thing — it seems to me, too, something right, if not just the right thing.  But you must know your selves what to do, as in any case it is you who have to listen.  As our Schiller says, "the living man is right.  So have it your own way, and let me go down again”.  

Friedrich Nietzsche, "Ecce Homo" Ebook

Kindle Version : $1 from Amazon!

PDA, Mobile/Smart phone : $1 from!


All works are unique editions by Lexido of public domain texts provided by kind permission of Project Gutenberg

Wiki Portal Quotes Quotations Frases Citas Citações Citations Zitate Citazioni Cytat цитат Aforismi Aphorism Sözleri Vida Biografia