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Beyond Good and Evil by Friedrich Nietzsche

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understanding of its victims:--a repeated proof that "instinct" is
the most intelligent of all kinds of intelligence which have
hitherto been discovered. In short, you psychologists, study the
philosophy of the "rule" in its struggle with the "exception":
there you have a spectacle fit for Gods and godlike malignity! Or,
in plainer words, practise vivisection on "good people," on the
"homo bonae voluntatis," ON YOURSELVES!

219. The practice of judging and condemning morally, is the
favourite revenge of the intellectually shallow on those who are
less so, it is also a kind of indemnity for their being badly
endowed by nature, and finally, it is an opportunity for
acquiring spirit and BECOMING subtle--malice spiritualises. They
are glad in their inmost heart that there is a standard according
to which those who are over-endowed with intellectual goods and
privileges, are equal to them, they contend for the "equality of
all before God," and almost NEED the belief in God for this
purpose. It is among them that the most powerful antagonists of
atheism are found. If any one were to say to them "A lofty
spirituality is beyond all comparison with the honesty and
respectability of a merely moral man"--it would make them
furious, I shall take care not to say so. I would rather flatter
them with my theory that lofty spirituality itself exists only as
the ultimate product of moral qualities, that it is a synthesis
of all qualities attributed to the "merely moral" man, after they
have been acquired singly through long training and practice,
perhaps during a whole series of generations, that lofty
spirituality is precisely the spiritualising of justice, and the
beneficent severity which knows that it is authorized to maintain
GRADATIONS OF RANK in the world, even among things--and not only
among men.

220. Now that the praise of the "disinterested person" is so
popular one must--probably not without some danger--get an idea
of WHAT people actually take an interest in, and what are the
things generally which fundamentally and profoundly concern
ordinary men--including the cultured, even the learned, and
perhaps philosophers also, if appearances do not deceive. The
fact thereby becomes obvious that the greater part of what
interests and charms higher natures, and more refined and
fastidious tastes, seems absolutely "uninteresting" to the
average man--if, notwithstanding, he perceive devotion to these
interests, he calls it desinteresse, and wonders how it is
possible to act "disinterestedly." There have been philosophers
who could give this popular astonishment a seductive and
mystical, other-worldly expression (perhaps because they did not
know the higher nature by experience?), instead of stating the
naked and candidly reasonable truth that "disinterested" action
is very interesting and "interested" action, provided that. . .
"And love?"--What! Even an action for love's sake shall be
"unegoistic"? But you fools--! "And the praise of the self-
sacrificer?"--But whoever has really offered sacrifice knows that
he wanted and obtained something for it--perhaps something from
himself for something from himself; that he relinquished here in
order to have more there, perhaps in general to be more, or even
feel himself "more." But this is a realm of questions and answers
in which a more fastidious spirit does not like to stay: for here
truth has to stifle her yawns so much when she is obliged to
answer. And after all, truth is a woman; one must not use force
with her.

221. "It sometimes happens," said a moralistic pedant and trifle-
retailer, "that I honour and respect an unselfish man: not,
however, because he is unselfish, but because I think he has a
right to be useful to another man at his own expense. In short,
the question is always who HE is, and who THE OTHER is. For
instance, in a person created and destined for command, self-
denial and modest retirement, instead of being virtues, would be
the waste of virtues: so it seems to me. Every system of
unegoistic morality which takes itself unconditionally and
appeals to every one, not only sins against good taste, but is
also an incentive to sins of omission, an ADDITIONAL seduction
under the mask of philanthropy--and precisely a seduction and
injury to the higher, rarer, and more privileged types of men.
Moral systems must be compelled first of all to bow before the
GRADATIONS OF RANK; their presumption must be driven home to
their conscience--until they thoroughly understand at last that
it is IMMORAL to say that 'what is right for one is proper for
another.'"--So said my moralistic pedant and bonhomme. Did he
perhaps deserve to be laughed at when he thus exhorted systems of
morals to practise morality? But one should not be too much in
the right if one wishes to have the laughers on ONE'S OWN side; a
grain of wrong pertains even to good taste.

222. Wherever sympathy (fellow-suffering) is preached nowadays--
and, if I gather rightly, no other religion is any longer
preached--let the psychologist have his ears open through all the
vanity, through all the noise which is natural to these preachers
(as to all preachers), he will hear a hoarse, groaning, genuine
note of SELF-CONTEMPT. It belongs to the overshadowing and
uglifying of Europe, which has been on the increase for a century
(the first symptoms of which are already specified documentarily
in a thoughtful letter of Galiani to Madame d'Epinay)--IF IT IS
NOT REALLY THE CAUSE THEREOF! The man of "modern ideas," the
conceited ape, is excessively dissatisfied with himself-this is
perfectly certain. He suffers, and his vanity wants him only "to
suffer with his fellows."

223. The hybrid European--a tolerably ugly plebeian, taken all in
all--absolutely requires a costume: he needs history as a
storeroom of costumes. To be sure, he notices that none of the
costumes fit him properly--he changes and changes. Let us look at
the nineteenth century with respect to these hasty preferences
and changes in its masquerades of style, and also with respect to
its moments of desperation on account of "nothing suiting" us. It
is in vain to get ourselves up as romantic, or classical, or
Christian, or Florentine, or barocco, or "national," in moribus
et artibus: it does not "clothe us"! But the "spirit," especially
the "historical spirit," profits even by this desperation: once
and again a new sample of the past or of the foreign is tested,
put on, taken off, packed up, and above all studied--we are the
first studious age in puncto of "costumes," I mean as concerns
morals, articles of belief, artistic tastes, and religions; we
are prepared as no other age has ever been for a carnival in the
grand style, for the most spiritual festival--laughter and
arrogance, for the transcendental height of supreme folly and
Aristophanic ridicule of the world. Perhaps we are still
discovering the domain of our invention just here, the domain
where even we can still be original, probably as parodists of the
world's history and as God's Merry-Andrews,--perhaps, though
nothing else of the present have a future, our laughter itself
may have a future!

224. The historical sense (or the capacity for divining quickly
the order of rank of the valuations according to which a people,
a community, or an individual has lived, the "divining instinct"
for the relationships of these valuations, for the relation of
the authority of the valuations to the authority of the operating
forces),--this historical sense, which we Europeans claim as our
specialty, has come to us in the train of the enchanting and mad
semi-barbarity into which Europe has been plunged by the
democratic mingling of classes and races--it is only the
nineteenth century that has recognized this faculty as its sixth
sense. Owing to this mingling, the past of every form and mode of
life, and of cultures which were formerly closely contiguous and
superimposed on one another, flows forth into us "modern souls";
our instincts now run back in all directions, we ourselves are a
kind of chaos: in the end, as we have said, the spirit perceives
its advantage therein. By means of our semi-barbarity in body and
in desire, we have secret access everywhere, such as a noble age
never had; we have access above all to the labyrinth of imperfect
civilizations, and to every form of semi-barbarity that has at
any time existed on earth; and in so far as the most considerable
part of human civilization hitherto has just been semi-barbarity,
the "historical sense" implies almost the sense and instinct for
everything, the taste and tongue for everything: whereby it
immediately proves itself to be an IGNOBLE sense. For instance,
we enjoy Homer once more: it is perhaps our happiest acquisition
that we know how to appreciate Homer, whom men of distinguished
culture (as the French of the seventeenth century, like Saint-
Evremond, who reproached him for his ESPRIT VASTE, and even
Voltaire, the last echo of the century) cannot and could not so
easily appropriate--whom they scarcely permitted themselves to
enjoy. The very decided Yea and Nay of their palate, their
promptly ready disgust, their hesitating reluctance with regard
to everything strange, their horror of the bad taste even of
lively curiosity, and in general the averseness of every
distinguished and self-sufficing culture to avow a new desire, a
dissatisfaction with its own condition, or an admiration of what
is strange: all this determines and disposes them unfavourably
even towards the best things of the world which are not their
property or could not become their prey--and no faculty is more
unintelligible to such men than just this historical sense, with
its truckling, plebeian curiosity. The case is not different with
Shakespeare, that marvelous Spanish-Moorish-Saxon synthesis of
taste, over whom an ancient Athenian of the circle of Eschylus
would have half-killed himself with laughter or irritation: but
we--accept precisely this wild motleyness, this medley of the
most delicate, the most coarse, and the most artificial, with a
secret confidence and cordiality; we enjoy it as a refinement of
art reserved expressly for us, and allow ourselves to be as
little disturbed by the repulsive fumes and the proximity of the
English populace in which Shakespeare's art and taste lives, as
perhaps on the Chiaja of Naples, where, with all our senses
awake, we go our way, enchanted and voluntarily, in spite of the
drain-odour of the lower quarters of the town. That as men of the
"historical sense" we have our virtues, is not to be disputed:--
we are unpretentious, unselfish, modest, brave, habituated to
self-control and self-renunciation, very grateful, very patient,
very complaisant--but with all this we are perhaps not very
"tasteful." Let us finally confess it, that what is most
difficult for us men of the "historical sense" to grasp, feel,
taste, and love, what finds us fundamentally prejudiced and
almost hostile, is precisely the perfection and ultimate maturity
in every culture and art, the essentially noble in works and men,
their moment of smooth sea and halcyon self-sufficiency, the
goldenness and coldness which all things show that have perfected
themselves. Perhaps our great virtue of the historical sense is
in necessary contrast to GOOD taste, at least to the very bad
taste; and we can only evoke in ourselves imperfectly,
hesitatingly, and with compulsion the small, short, and happy
godsends and glorifications of human life as they shine here and
there: those moments and marvelous experiences when a great power
has voluntarily come to a halt before the boundless and
infinite,--when a super-abundance of refined delight has been
enjoyed by a sudden checking and petrifying, by standing firmly
and planting oneself fixedly on still trembling ground.
PROPORTIONATENESS is strange to us, let us confess it to
ourselves; our itching is really the itching for the infinite,
the immeasurable. Like the rider on his forward panting horse, we
let the reins fall before the infinite, we modern men, we semi-
barbarians--and are only in OUR highest bliss when we--ARE IN

225. Whether it be hedonism, pessimism, utilitarianism, or
eudaemonism, all those modes of thinking which measure the worth
of things according to PLEASURE and PAIN, that is, according to
accompanying circumstances and secondary considerations, are
plausible modes of thought and naivetes, which every one
conscious of CREATIVE powers and an artist's conscience will look
down upon with scorn, though not without sympathy. Sympathy for
you!--to be sure, that is not sympathy as you understand it: it
is not sympathy for social "distress," for "society" with its
sick and misfortuned, for the hereditarily vicious and defective
who lie on the ground around us; still less is it sympathy for
the grumbling, vexed, revolutionary slave-classes who strive
after power--they call it "freedom." OUR sympathy is a loftier
and further-sighted sympathy:--we see how MAN dwarfs himself, how
YOU dwarf him! and there are moments when we view YOUR sympathy
with an indescribable anguish, when we resist it,--when we regard
your seriousness as more dangerous than any kind of levity. You
want, if possible--and there is not a more foolish "if possible"
--TO DO AWAY WITH SUFFERING; and we?--it really seems that WE
would rather have it increased and made worse than it has ever
been! Well-being, as you understand it--is certainly not a goal;
it seems to us an END; a condition which at once renders man
ludicrous and contemptible--and makes his destruction DESIRABLE!
The discipline of suffering, of GREAT suffering--know ye not that
it is only THIS discipline that has produced all the elevations
of humanity hitherto? The tension of soul in misfortune which
communicates to it its energy, its shuddering in view of rack and
ruin, its inventiveness and bravery in undergoing, enduring,
interpreting, and exploiting misfortune, and whatever depth,
mystery, disguise, spirit, artifice, or greatness has been
bestowed upon the soul--has it not been bestowed through
suffering, through the discipline of great suffering? In man
CREATURE and CREATOR are united: in man there is not only matter,
shred, excess, clay, mire, folly, chaos; but there is also the
creator, the sculptor, the hardness of the hammer, the divinity
of the spectator, and the seventh day--do ye understand this
contrast? And that YOUR sympathy for the "creature in man"
applies to that which has to be fashioned, bruised, forged,
stretched, roasted, annealed, refined--to that which must
necessarily SUFFER, and IS MEANT to suffer? And our sympathy--do
ye not understand what our REVERSE sympathy applies to, when it
resists your sympathy as the worst of all pampering and
enervation?--So it is sympathy AGAINST sympathy!--But to repeat
it once more, there are higher problems than the problems of
pleasure and pain and sympathy; and all systems of philosophy
which deal only with these are naivetes.

226. WE IMMORALISTS.-This world with which WE are concerned, in
which we have to fear and love, this almost invisible, inaudible
world of delicate command and delicate obedience, a world of
"almost" in every respect, captious, insidious, sharp, and
tender--yes, it is well protected from clumsy spectators and
familiar curiosity! We are woven into a strong net and garment of
duties, and CANNOT disengage ourselves--precisely here, we are
"men of duty," even we! Occasionally, it is true, we dance in our
"chains" and betwixt our "swords"; it is none the less true that
more often we gnash our teeth under the circumstances, and are
impatient at the secret hardship of our lot. But do what we will,
fools and appearances say of us: "These are men WITHOUT duty,"--
we have always fools and appearances against us!

227. Honesty, granting that it is the virtue of which we cannot
rid ourselves, we free spirits--well, we will labour at it with
all our perversity and love, and not tire of "perfecting"
ourselves in OUR virtue, which alone remains: may its glance some
day overspread like a gilded, blue, mocking twilight this aging
civilization with its dull gloomy seriousness! And if,
nevertheless, our honesty should one day grow weary, and sigh,
and stretch its limbs, and find us too hard, and would fain have
it pleasanter, easier, and gentler, like an agreeable vice, let
us remain HARD, we latest Stoics, and let us send to its help
whatever devilry we have in us:--our disgust at the clumsy and
undefined, our "NITIMUR IN VETITUM," our love of adventure, our
sharpened and fastidious curiosity, our most subtle, disguised,
intellectual Will to Power and universal conquest, which rambles
and roves avidiously around all the realms of the future--let us
go with all our "devils" to the help of our "God"! It is probable
that people will misunderstand and mistake us on that account:
what does it matter! They will say: "Their 'honesty'--that is
their devilry, and nothing else!" What does it matter! And even
if they were right--have not all Gods hitherto been such
sanctified, re-baptized devils? And after all, what do we know of
ourselves? And what the spirit that leads us wants TO BE CALLED?
(It is a question of names.) And how many spirits we harbour? Our
honesty, we free spirits--let us be careful lest it become our
vanity, our ornament and ostentation, our limitation, our
stupidity! Every virtue inclines to stupidity, every stupidity to
virtue; "stupid to the point of sanctity," they say in Russia,--
let us be careful lest out of pure honesty we eventually become
saints and bores! Is not life a hundred times too short for us--
to bore ourselves? One would have to believe in eternal life in
order to . . .

228. I hope to be forgiven for discovering that all moral
philosophy hitherto has been tedious and has belonged to the
soporific appliances--and that "virtue," in my opinion, has been
MORE injured by the TEDIOUSNESS of its advocates than by anything
else; at the same time, however, I would not wish to overlook
their general usefulness. It is desirable that as few people as
possible should reflect upon morals, and consequently it is very
desirable that morals should not some day become interesting! But
let us not be afraid! Things still remain today as they have
always been: I see no one in Europe who has (or DISCLOSES) an
idea of the fact that philosophizing concerning morals might be
conducted in a dangerous, captious, and ensnaring manner--that
CALAMITY might be involved therein. Observe, for example, the
indefatigable, inevitable English utilitarians: how ponderously
and respectably they stalk on, stalk along (a Homeric metaphor
expresses it better) in the footsteps of Bentham, just as he had
already stalked in the footsteps of the respectable Helvetius!
(no, he was not a dangerous man, Helvetius, CE SENATEUR
POCOCURANTE, to use an expression of Galiani). No new thought,
nothing of the nature of a finer turning or better expression of
an old thought, not even a proper history of what has been
previously thought on the subject: an IMPOSSIBLE literature,
taking it all in all, unless one knows how to leaven it with some
mischief. In effect, the old English vice called CANT, which is
MORAL TARTUFFISM, has insinuated itself also into these moralists
(whom one must certainly read with an eye to their motives if one
MUST read them), concealed this time under the new form of the
scientific spirit; moreover, there is not absent from them a
secret struggle with the pangs of conscience, from which a race
of former Puritans must naturally suffer, in all their scientific
tinkering with morals. (Is not a moralist the opposite of a
Puritan? That is to say, as a thinker who regards morality as
questionable, as worthy of interrogation, in short, as a problem?
Is moralizing not-immoral?) In the end, they all want English
morality to be recognized as authoritative, inasmuch as mankind,
or the "general utility," or "the happiness of the greatest
number,"--no! the happiness of ENGLAND, will be best served
thereby. They would like, by all means, to convince themselves
that the striving after English happiness, I mean after COMFORT
and FASHION (and in the highest instance, a seat in Parliament),
is at the same time the true path of virtue; in fact, that in so
far as there has been virtue in the world hitherto, it has just
consisted in such striving. Not one of those ponderous,
conscience-stricken herding-animals (who undertake to advocate
the cause of egoism as conducive to the general welfare) wants to
have any knowledge or inkling of the facts that the "general
welfare" is no ideal, no goal, no notion that can be at all
grasped, but is only a nostrum,--that what is fair to one MAY NOT
at all be fair to another, that the requirement of one morality
for all is really a detriment to higher men, in short, that there
is a DISTINCTION OF RANK between man and man, and consequently
between morality and morality. They are an unassuming and
fundamentally mediocre species of men, these utilitarian
Englishmen, and, as already remarked, in so far as they are
tedious, one cannot think highly enough of their utility. One
ought even to ENCOURAGE them, as has been partially attempted in
the following rhymes:--

Hail, ye worthies, barrow-wheeling,
"Longer--better," aye revealing,

Stiffer aye in head and knee;
Unenraptured, never jesting,
Mediocre everlasting,


229. In these later ages, which may be proud of their humanity,
there still remains so much fear, so much SUPERSTITION of the
fear, of the "cruel wild beast," the mastering of which
constitutes the very pride of these humaner ages--that even
obvious truths, as if by the agreement of centuries, have long
remained unuttered, because they have the appearance of helping
the finally slain wild beast back to life again. I perhaps risk
something when I allow such a truth to escape; let others capture
it again and give it so much "milk of pious sentiment"
[FOOTNOTE: An expression from Schiller's William Tell, Act IV,
Scene 3.] to drink, that it will lie down quiet and forgotten, in
its old corner.--One ought to learn anew about cruelty, and open
one's eyes; one ought at last to learn impatience, in order that
such immodest gross errors--as, for instance, have been fostered
by ancient and modern philosophers with regard to tragedy--may no
longer wander about virtuously and boldly. Almost everything that
we call "higher culture" is based upon the spiritualising and
intensifying of CRUELTY--this is my thesis; the "wild beast" has
not been slain at all, it lives, it flourishes, it has only been--
transfigured. That which constitutes the painful delight of
tragedy is cruelty; that which operates agreeably in so-called
tragic sympathy, and at the basis even of everything sublime, up
to the highest and most delicate thrills of metaphysics, obtains
its sweetness solely from the intermingled ingredient of cruelty.
What the Roman enjoys in the arena, the Christian in the
ecstasies of the cross, the Spaniard at the sight of the faggot
and stake, or of the bull-fight, the present-day Japanese who
presses his way to the tragedy, the workman of the Parisian
suburbs who has a homesickness for bloody revolutions, the
Wagnerienne who, with unhinged will, "undergoes" the performance
of "Tristan and Isolde"--what all these enjoy, and strive with
mysterious ardour to drink in, is the philtre of the great Circe
"cruelty." Here, to be sure, we must put aside entirely the
blundering psychology of former times, which could only teach
with regard to cruelty that it originated at the sight of the
suffering of OTHERS: there is an abundant, super-abundant
enjoyment even in one's own suffering, in causing one's own
suffering--and wherever man has allowed himself to be persuaded
to self-denial in the RELIGIOUS sense, or to self-mutilation, as
among the Phoenicians and ascetics, or in general, to
desensualisation, decarnalisation, and contrition, to Puritanical
repentance-spasms, to vivisection of conscience and to Pascal-
like SACRIFIZIA DELL' INTELLETO, he is secretly allured and
impelled forwards by his cruelty, by the dangerous thrill of
cruelty TOWARDS HIMSELF.--Finally, let us consider that even the
seeker of knowledge operates as an artist and glorifier of
cruelty, in that he compels his spirit to perceive AGAINST its
own inclination, and often enough against the wishes of his
heart:--he forces it to say Nay, where he would like to affirm,
love, and adore; indeed, every instance of taking a thing
profoundly and fundamentally, is a violation, an intentional
injuring of the fundamental will of the spirit, which
instinctively aims at appearance and superficiality,--even in
every desire for knowledge there is a drop of cruelty.

230. Perhaps what I have said here about a "fundamental will of
the spirit" may not be understood without further details; I may
be allowed a word of explanation.--That imperious something which
is popularly called "the spirit," wishes to be master internally
and externally, and to feel itself master; it has the will of a
multiplicity for a simplicity, a binding, taming, imperious, and
essentially ruling will. Its requirements and capacities here,
are the same as those assigned by physiologists to everything
that lives, grows, and multiplies. The power of the spirit to
appropriate foreign elements reveals itself in a strong tendency
to assimilate the new to the old, to simplify the manifold, to
overlook or repudiate the absolutely contradictory; just as it
arbitrarily re-underlines, makes prominent, and falsifies for
itself certain traits and lines in the foreign elements, in every
portion of the "outside world." Its object thereby is the
incorporation of new "experiences," the assortment of new things
in the old arrangements--in short, growth; or more properly, the
FEELING of growth, the feeling of increased power--is its object.
This same will has at its service an apparently opposed impulse
of the spirit, a suddenly adopted preference of ignorance, of
arbitrary shutting out, a closing of windows, an inner denial of
this or that, a prohibition to approach, a sort of defensive
attitude against much that is knowable, a contentment with
obscurity, with the shutting-in horizon, an acceptance and
approval of ignorance: as that which is all necessary according
to the degree of its appropriating power, its "digestive power,"
to speak figuratively (and in fact "the spirit" resembles a
stomach more than anything else). Here also belong an occasional
propensity of the spirit to let itself be deceived (perhaps with
a waggish suspicion that it is NOT so and so, but is only allowed
to pass as such), a delight in uncertainty and ambiguity, an
exulting enjoyment of arbitrary, out-of-the-way narrowness and
mystery, of the too-near, of the foreground, of the magnified,
the diminished, the misshapen, the beautified--an enjoyment of
the arbitrariness of all these manifestations of power. Finally,
in this connection, there is the not unscrupulous readiness of
the spirit to deceive other spirits and dissemble before them--
the constant pressing and straining of a creating, shaping,
changeable power: the spirit enjoys therein its craftiness and
its variety of disguises, it enjoys also its feeling of security
therein--it is precisely by its Protean arts that it is best
protected and concealed!--COUNTER TO this propensity for
appearance, for simplification, for a disguise, for a cloak, in
short, for an outside--for every outside is a cloak--there
operates the sublime tendency of the man of knowledge, which
takes, and INSISTS on taking things profoundly, variously, and
thoroughly; as a kind of cruelty of the intellectual conscience
and taste, which every courageous thinker will acknowledge in
himself, provided, as it ought to be, that he has sharpened and
hardened his eye sufficiently long for introspection, and is
accustomed to severe discipline and even severe words. He will
say: "There is something cruel in the tendency of my spirit": let
the virtuous and amiable try to convince him that it is not so!
In fact, it would sound nicer, if, instead of our cruelty,
perhaps our "extravagant honesty" were talked about, whispered
about, and glorified--we free, VERY free spirits--and some day
perhaps SUCH will actually be our--posthumous glory! Meanwhile--
for there is plenty of time until then--we should be least
inclined to deck ourselves out in such florid and fringed moral
verbiage; our whole former work has just made us sick of this
taste and its sprightly exuberance. They are beautiful,
glistening, jingling, festive words: honesty, love of truth, love
of wisdom, sacrifice for knowledge, heroism of the truthful--
there is something in them that makes one's heart swell with
pride. But we anchorites and marmots have long ago persuaded
ourselves in all the secrecy of an anchorite's conscience, that
this worthy parade of verbiage also belongs to the old false
adornment, frippery, and gold-dust of unconscious human vanity,
and that even under such flattering colour and repainting, the
terrible original text HOMO NATURA must again be recognized. In
effect, to translate man back again into nature; to master the
many vain and visionary interpretations and subordinate meanings
which have hitherto been scratched and daubed over the eternal
original text, HOMO NATURA; to bring it about that man shall
henceforth stand before man as he now, hardened by the discipline
of science, stands before the OTHER forms of nature, with
fearless Oedipus-eyes, and stopped Ulysses-ears, deaf to the
enticements of old metaphysical bird-catchers, who have piped to
him far too long: "Thou art more! thou art higher! thou hast a
different origin!"--this may be a strange and foolish task, but
that it is a TASK, who can deny! Why did we choose it, this
foolish task? Or, to put the question differently: "Why knowledge
at all?" Every one will ask us about this. And thus pressed, we,
who have asked ourselves the question a hundred times, have not
found and cannot find any better answer. . . .

231. Learning alters us, it does what all nourishment does that
does not merely "conserve"--as the physiologist knows. But at the
bottom of our souls, quite "down below," there is certainly
something unteachable, a granite of spiritual fate, of
predetermined decision and answer to predetermined, chosen
questions. In each cardinal problem there speaks an unchangeable
"I am this"; a thinker cannot learn anew about man and woman, for
instance, but can only learn fully--he can only follow to the end
what is "fixed" about them in himself. Occasionally we find
certain solutions of problems which make strong beliefs for us;
perhaps they are henceforth called "convictions." Later on--one
sees in them only footsteps to self-knowledge, guide-posts to the
problem which we ourselves ARE--or more correctly to the great
stupidity which we embody, our spiritual fate, the UNTEACHABLE in
us, quite "down below."--In view of this liberal compliment which
I have just paid myself, permission will perhaps be more readily
allowed me to utter some truths about "woman as she is," provided
that it is known at the outset how literally they are merely--MY

232. Woman wishes to be independent, and therefore she begins to
enlighten men about "woman as she is"--THIS is one of the worst
developments of the general UGLIFYING of Europe. For what must
these clumsy attempts of feminine scientificality and self-
exposure bring to light! Woman has so much cause for shame; in
woman there is so much pedantry, superficiality,
schoolmasterliness, petty presumption, unbridledness, and
indiscretion concealed--study only woman's behaviour towards
children!--which has really been best restrained and dominated
hitherto by the FEAR of man. Alas, if ever the "eternally tedious
in woman"--she has plenty of it!--is allowed to venture forth! if
she begins radically and on principle to unlearn her wisdom and
art-of charming, of playing, of frightening away sorrow, of
alleviating and taking easily; if she forgets her delicate
aptitude for agreeable desires! Female voices are already raised,
which, by Saint Aristophanes! make one afraid:--with medical
explicitness it is stated in a threatening manner what woman
first and last REQUIRES from man. Is it not in the very worst
taste that woman thus sets herself up to be scientific?
Enlightenment hitherto has fortunately been men's affair, men's
gift-we remained therewith "among ourselves"; and in the end, in
view of all that women write about "woman," we may well have
considerable doubt as to whether woman really DESIRES
enlightenment about herself--and CAN desire it. If woman does not
thereby seek a new ORNAMENT for herself--I believe ornamentation
belongs to the eternally feminine?--why, then, she wishes to make
herself feared: perhaps she thereby wishes to get the mastery.
But she does not want truth--what does woman care for truth? From
the very first, nothing is more foreign, more repugnant, or more
hostile to woman than truth--her great art is falsehood, her
chief concern is appearance and beauty. Let us confess it, we
men: we honour and love this very art and this very instinct in
woman: we who have the hard task, and for our recreation gladly
seek the company of beings under whose hands, glances, and
delicate follies, our seriousness, our gravity, and profundity
appear almost like follies to us. Finally, I ask the question:
Did a woman herself ever acknowledge profundity in a woman's
mind, or justice in a woman's heart? And is it not true that on
the whole "woman" has hitherto been most despised by woman
herself, and not at all by us?--We men desire that woman should
not continue to compromise herself by enlightening us; just as it
was man's care and the consideration for woman, when the church
decreed: mulier taceat in ecclesia. It was to the benefit of
woman when Napoleon gave the too eloquent Madame de Stael to
understand: mulier taceat in politicis!--and in my opinion, he is
a true friend of woman who calls out to women today: mulier
taceat de mulierel.

233. It betrays corruption of the instincts--apart from the fact
that it betrays bad taste--when a woman refers to Madame Roland,
or Madame de Stael, or Monsieur George Sand, as though something
were proved thereby in favour of "woman as she is." Among men,
these are the three comical women as they are--nothing more!--and
just the best involuntary counter-arguments against feminine
emancipation and autonomy.

234. Stupidity in the kitchen; woman as cook; the terrible
thoughtlessness with which the feeding of the family and the
master of the house is managed! Woman does not understand what
food means, and she insists on being cook! If woman had been a
thinking creature, she should certainly, as cook for thousands of
years, have discovered the most important physiological facts,
and should likewise have got possession of the healing art!
Through bad female cooks--through the entire lack of reason in
the kitchen--the development of mankind has been longest retarded
and most interfered with: even today matters are very little
better. A word to High School girls.

235. There are turns and casts of fancy, there are sentences,
little handfuls of words, in which a whole culture, a whole
society suddenly crystallises itself. Among these is the
incidental remark of Madame de Lambert to her son: "MON AMI, NE
PLAISIR"--the motherliest and wisest remark, by the way, that was
ever addressed to a son.

236. I have no doubt that every noble woman will oppose what
Dante and Goethe believed about woman--the former when he sang,
"ELLA GUARDAVA SUSO, ED IO IN LEI," and the latter when he
interpreted it, "the eternally feminine draws us ALOFT"; for THIS
is just what she believes of the eternally masculine.



How the longest ennui flees, When a man comes to our knees!

Age, alas! and science staid, Furnish even weak virtue aid.

Sombre garb and silence meet: Dress for every dame--discreet.

Whom I thank when in my bliss? God!--and my good tailoress!

Young, a flower-decked cavern home; Old, a dragon thence doth

Noble title, leg that's fine, Man as well: Oh, were HE mine!

Speech in brief and sense in mass--Slippery for the jenny-ass!

237A. Woman has hitherto been treated by men like birds, which,
losing their way, have come down among them from an elevation: as
something delicate, fragile, wild, strange, sweet, and animating-
-but as something also which must be cooped up to prevent it
flying away.

238. To be mistaken in the fundamental problem of "man and
woman," to deny here the profoundest antagonism and the necessity
for an eternally hostile tension, to dream here perhaps of equal
rights, equal training, equal claims and obligations: that is a
TYPICAL sign of shallow-mindedness; and a thinker who has proved
himself shallow at this dangerous spot--shallow in instinct!--may
generally be regarded as suspicious, nay more, as betrayed, as
discovered; he will probably prove too "short" for all
fundamental questions of life, future as well as present, and
will be unable to descend into ANY of the depths. On the other
hand, a man who has depth of spirit as well as of desires, and
has also the depth of benevolence which is capable of severity
and harshness, and easily confounded with them, can only think of
woman as ORIENTALS do: he must conceive of her as a possession,
as confinable property, as a being predestined for service and
accomplishing her mission therein--he must take his stand in this
matter upon the immense rationality of Asia, upon the superiority
of the instinct of Asia, as the Greeks did formerly; those best
heirs and scholars of Asia--who, as is well known, with their
INCREASING culture and amplitude of power, from Homer to the time
of Pericles, became gradually STRICTER towards woman, in short,
more Oriental. HOW necessary, HOW logical, even HOW humanely
desirable this was, let us consider for ourselves!

239. The weaker sex has in no previous age been treated with so
much respect by men as at present--this belongs to the tendency
and fundamental taste of democracy, in the same way as
disrespectfulness to old age--what wonder is it that abuse should
be immediately made of this respect? They want more, they learn
to make claims, the tribute of respect is at last felt to be
well-nigh galling; rivalry for rights, indeed actual strife
itself, would be preferred: in a word, woman is losing modesty.
And let us immediately add that she is also losing taste. She is
unlearning to FEAR man: but the woman who "unlearns to fear"
sacrifices her most womanly instincts. That woman should venture
forward when the fear-inspiring quality in man--or more
definitely, the MAN in man--is no longer either desired or fully
developed, is reasonable enough and also intelligible enough;
what is more difficult to understand is that precisely thereby--
woman deteriorates. This is what is happening nowadays: let us
not deceive ourselves about it! Wherever the industrial spirit
has triumphed over the military and aristocratic spirit, woman
strives for the economic and legal independence of a clerk:
"woman as clerkess" is inscribed on the portal of the modern
society which is in course of formation. While she thus
appropriates new rights, aspires to be "master," and inscribes
"progress" of woman on her flags and banners, the very opposite
realises itself with terrible obviousness: WOMAN RETROGRADES.
Since the French Revolution the influence of woman in Europe has
DECLINED in proportion as she has increased her rights and
claims; and the "emancipation of woman," insofar as it is desired
and demanded by women themselves (and not only by masculine
shallow-pates), thus proves to be a remarkable symptom of the
increased weakening and deadening of the most womanly instincts.
There is STUPIDITY in this movement, an almost masculine
stupidity, of which a well-reared woman--who is always a sensible
woman--might be heartily ashamed. To lose the intuition as to the
ground upon which she can most surely achieve victory; to neglect
exercise in the use of her proper weapons; to let-herself-go
before man, perhaps even "to the book," where formerly she kept
herself in control and in refined, artful humility; to neutralize
with her virtuous audacity man's faith in a VEILED, fundamentally
different ideal in woman, something eternally, necessarily
feminine; to emphatically and loquaciously dissuade man from the
idea that woman must be preserved, cared for, protected, and
indulged, like some delicate, strangely wild, and often pleasant
domestic animal; the clumsy and indignant collection of
everything of the nature of servitude and bondage which the
position of woman in the hitherto existing order of society has
entailed and still entails (as though slavery were a counter-
argument, and not rather a condition of every higher culture, of
every elevation of culture):--what does all this betoken, if not
a disintegration of womanly instincts, a defeminising? Certainly,
there are enough of idiotic friends and corrupters of woman among
the learned asses of the masculine sex, who advise woman to
defeminize herself in this manner, and to imitate all the
stupidities from which "man" in Europe, European "manliness,"
suffers,--who would like to lower woman to "general culture,"
indeed even to newspaper reading and meddling with politics. Here
and there they wish even to make women into free spirits and
literary workers: as though a woman without piety would not be
something perfectly obnoxious or ludicrous to a profound and
godless man;--almost everywhere her nerves are being ruined by
the most morbid and dangerous kind of music (our latest German
music), and she is daily being made more hysterical and more
incapable of fulfilling her first and last function, that of
bearing robust children. They wish to "cultivate" her in general
still more, and intend, as they say, to make the "weaker sex"
STRONG by culture: as if history did not teach in the most
emphatic manner that the "cultivating" of mankind and his
weakening--that is to say, the weakening, dissipating, and
languishing of his FORCE OF WILL--have always kept pace with one
another, and that the most powerful and influential women in the
world (and lastly, the mother of Napoleon) had just to thank
their force of will--and not their schoolmasters--for their
power and ascendancy over men. That which inspires respect in
woman, and often enough fear also, is her NATURE, which is more
"natural" than that of man, her genuine, carnivora-like, cunning
flexibility, her tiger-claws beneath the glove, her NAIVETE in
egoism, her untrainableness and innate wildness, the
incomprehensibleness, extent, and deviation of her desires and
virtues. That which, in spite of fear, excites one's sympathy for
the dangerous and beautiful cat, "woman," is that she seems more
afflicted, more vulnerable, more necessitous of love, and more
condemned to disillusionment than any other creature. Fear and
sympathy it is with these feelings that man has hitherto stood in
the presence of woman, always with one foot already in tragedy,
which rends while it delights--What? And all that is now to be at
an end? And the DISENCHANTMENT of woman is in progress? The
tediousness of woman is slowly evolving? Oh Europe! Europe! We
know the horned animal which was always most attractive to thee,
from which danger is ever again threatening thee! Thy old fable
might once more become "history"--an immense stupidity might once
again overmaster thee and carry thee away! And no God concealed
beneath it--no! only an "idea," a "modern idea"!



240. I HEARD, once again for the first time, Richard Wagner's
overture to the Mastersinger: it is a piece of magnificent,
gorgeous, heavy, latter-day art, which has the pride to
presuppose two centuries of music as still living, in order that
it may be understood:--it is an honour to Germans that such a
pride did not miscalculate! What flavours and forces, what
seasons and climes do we not find mingled in it! It impresses us
at one time as ancient, at another time as foreign, bitter, and
too modern, it is as arbitrary as it is pompously traditional, it
is not infrequently roguish, still oftener rough and coarse--it
has fire and courage, and at the same time the loose, dun-
coloured skin of fruits which ripen too late. It flows broad and
full: and suddenly there is a moment of inexplicable hesitation,
like a gap that opens between cause and effect, an oppression
that makes us dream, almost a nightmare; but already it broadens
and widens anew, the old stream of delight-the most manifold
delight,--of old and new happiness; including ESPECIALLY the joy
of the artist in himself, which he refuses to conceal, his
astonished, happy cognizance of his mastery of the expedients
here employed, the new, newly acquired, imperfectly tested
expedients of art which he apparently betrays to us. All in all,
however, no beauty, no South, nothing of the delicate southern
clearness of the sky, nothing of grace, no dance, hardly a will
to logic; a certain clumsiness even, which is also emphasized, as
though the artist wished to say to us: "It is part of my
intention"; a cumbersome drapery, something arbitrarily barbaric
and ceremonious, a flirring of learned and venerable conceits and
witticisms; something German in the best and worst sense of the
word, something in the German style, manifold, formless, and
inexhaustible; a certain German potency and super-plenitude of
soul, which is not afraid to hide itself under the RAFFINEMENTS
of decadence--which, perhaps, feels itself most at ease there; a
real, genuine token of the German soul, which is at the same time
young and aged, too ripe and yet still too rich in futurity. This
kind of music expresses best what I think of the Germans: they
belong to the day before yesterday and the day after tomorrow--

241. We "good Europeans," we also have hours when we allow
ourselves a warm-hearted patriotism, a plunge and relapse into
old loves and narrow views--I have just given an example of it--
hours of national excitement, of patriotic anguish, and all other
sorts of old-fashioned floods of sentiment. Duller spirits may
perhaps only get done with what confines its operations in us to
hours and plays itself out in hours--in a considerable time: some
in half a year, others in half a lifetime, according to the speed
and strength with which they digest and "change their material."
Indeed, I could think of sluggish, hesitating races, which even
in our rapidly moving Europe, would require half a century ere
they could surmount such atavistic attacks of patriotism and
soil-attachment, and return once more to reason, that is to say,
to "good Europeanism." And while digressing on this possibility,
I happen to become an ear-witness of a conversation between two
old patriots--they were evidently both hard of hearing and
consequently spoke all the louder. "HE has as much, and knows as
much, philosophy as a peasant or a corps-student," said the one--
"he is still innocent. But what does that matter nowadays! It is
the age of the masses: they lie on their belly before everything
that is massive. And so also in politicis. A statesman who rears
up for them a new Tower of Babel, some monstrosity of empire and
power, they call 'great'--what does it matter that we more
prudent and conservative ones do not meanwhile give up the old
belief that it is only the great thought that gives greatness to
an action or affair. Supposing a statesman were to bring his
people into the position of being obliged henceforth to practise
'high politics,' for which they were by nature badly endowed and
prepared, so that they would have to sacrifice their old and
reliable virtues, out of love to a new and doubtful mediocrity;--
supposing a statesman were to condemn his people generally to
'practise politics,' when they have hitherto had something better
to do and think about, and when in the depths of their souls they
have been unable to free themselves from a prudent loathing of
the restlessness, emptiness, and noisy wranglings of the
essentially politics-practising nations;--supposing such a
statesman were to stimulate the slumbering passions and avidities
of his people, were to make a stigma out of their former
diffidence and delight in aloofness, an offence out of their
exoticism and hidden permanency, were to depreciate their most
radical proclivities, subvert their consciences, make their minds
narrow, and their tastes 'national'--what! a statesman who should
do all this, which his people would have to do penance for
throughout their whole future, if they had a future, such a
statesman would be GREAT, would he?"--"Undoubtedly!" replied the
other old patriot vehemently, "otherwise he COULD NOT have done
it! It was mad perhaps to wish such a thing! But perhaps
everything great has been just as mad at its commencement!"--
"Misuse of words!" cried his interlocutor, contradictorily--
"strong! strong! Strong and mad! NOT great!"--The old men had
obviously become heated as they thus shouted their "truths" in
each other's faces, but I, in my happiness and apartness,
considered how soon a stronger one may become master of the
strong, and also that there is a compensation for the
intellectual superficialising of a nation--namely, in the
deepening of another.

242. Whether we call it "civilization," or "humanising," or
"progress," which now distinguishes the European, whether we call
it simply, without praise or blame, by the political formula the
DEMOCRATIC movement in Europe--behind all the moral and political
foregrounds pointed to by such formulas, an immense PHYSIOLOGICAL
PROCESS goes on, which is ever extending the process of the
assimilation of Europeans, their increasing detachment from the
conditions under which, climatically and hereditarily, united
races originate, their increasing independence of every definite
milieu, that for centuries would fain inscribe itself with equal
demands on soul and body,--that is to say, the slow emergence of
an essentially SUPER-NATIONAL and nomadic species of man, who
possesses, physiologically speaking, a maximum of the art and
power of adaptation as his typical distinction. This process of
the EVOLVING EUROPEAN, which can be retarded in its TEMPO by
great relapses, but will perhaps just gain and grow thereby in
vehemence and depth--the still-raging storm and stress of
"national sentiment" pertains to it, and also the anarchism which
is appearing at present--this process will probably arrive at
results on which its naive propagators and panegyrists, the
apostles of "modern ideas," would least care to reckon. The same
new conditions under which on an average a levelling and
mediocrising of man will take place--a useful, industrious,
variously serviceable, and clever gregarious man--are in the
highest degree suitable to give rise to exceptional men of the
most dangerous and attractive qualities. For, while the capacity
for adaptation, which is every day trying changing conditions,
and begins a new work with every generation, almost with every
decade, makes the POWERFULNESS of the type impossible; while the
collective impression of such future Europeans will probably be
that of numerous, talkative, weak-willed, and very handy workmen
who REQUIRE a master, a commander, as they require their daily
bread; while, therefore, the democratising of Europe will tend to
the production of a type prepared for SLAVERY in the most subtle
sense of the term: the STRONG man will necessarily in individual
and exceptional cases, become stronger and richer than he has
perhaps ever been before--owing to the unprejudicedness of his
schooling, owing to the immense variety of practice, art, and
disguise. I meant to say that the democratising of Europe is at
the same time an involuntary arrangement for the rearing of
TYRANTS--taking the word in all its meanings, even in its most
spiritual sense.

243. I hear with pleasure that our sun is moving rapidly towards
the constellation Hercules: and I hope that the men on this earth
will do like the sun. And we foremost, we good Europeans!

244. There was a time when it was customary to call Germans
"deep" by way of distinction; but now that the most successful
type of new Germanism is covetous of quite other honours, and
perhaps misses "smartness" in all that has depth, it is almost
opportune and patriotic to doubt whether we did not formerly
deceive ourselves with that commendation: in short, whether
German depth is not at bottom something different and worse--and
something from which, thank God, we are on the point of
successfully ridding ourselves. Let us try, then, to relearn with
regard to German depth; the only thing necessary for the purpose
is a little vivisection of the German soul.--The German soul is
above all manifold, varied in its source, aggregated and super-
imposed, rather than actually built: this is owing to its origin.
A German who would embolden himself to assert: "Two souls, alas,
dwell in my breast," would make a bad guess at the truth, or,
more correctly, he would come far short of the truth about the
number of souls. As a people made up of the most extraordinary
mixing and mingling of races, perhaps even with a preponderance
of the pre-Aryan element as the "people of the centre" in every
sense of the term, the Germans are more intangible, more ample,
more contradictory, more unknown, more incalculable, more
surprising, and even more terrifying than other peoples are to
themselves:--they escape DEFINITION, and are thereby alone the
despair of the French. It IS characteristic of the Germans that
the question: "What is German?" never dies out among them.
Kotzebue certainly knew his Germans well enough: "We are known,"
they cried jubilantly to him--but Sand also thought he knew them.
Jean Paul knew what he was doing when he declared himself
incensed at Fichte's lying but patriotic flatteries and
exaggerations,--but it is probable that Goethe thought
differently about Germans from Jean Paul, even though he
acknowledged him to be right with regard to Fichte. It is a
question what Goethe really thought about the Germans?--But about
many things around him he never spoke explicitly, and all his
life he knew how to keep an astute silence--probably he had good
reason for it. It is certain that it was not the "Wars of
Independence" that made him look up more joyfully, any more than
it was the French Revolution,--the event on account of which he
RECONSTRUCTED his "Faust," and indeed the whole problem of "man,"
was the appearance of Napoleon. There are words of Goethe in
which he condemns with impatient severity, as from a foreign
land, that which Germans take a pride in, he once defined the
famous German turn of mind as "Indulgence towards its own and
others' weaknesses." Was he wrong? it is characteristic of
Germans that one is seldom entirely wrong about them. The German
soul has passages and galleries in it, there are caves, hiding-
places, and dungeons therein, its disorder has much of the charm
of the mysterious, the German is well acquainted with the bypaths
to chaos. And as everything loves its symbol, so the German loves
the clouds and all that is obscure, evolving, crepuscular, damp,
and shrouded, it seems to him that everything uncertain,
undeveloped, self-displacing, and growing is "deep". The German
himself does not EXIST, he is BECOMING, he is "developing
himself". "Development" is therefore the essentially German
discovery and hit in the great domain of philosophical formulas,--
a ruling idea, which, together with German beer and German music,
is labouring to Germanise all Europe. Foreigners are astonished
and attracted by the riddles which the conflicting nature at the
basis of the German soul propounds to them (riddles which Hegel
systematised and Richard Wagner has in the end set to music).
"Good-natured and spiteful"--such a juxtaposition, preposterous in
the case of every other people, is unfortunately only too often
justified in Germany one has only to live for a while among
Swabians to know this! The clumsiness of the German scholar and
his social distastefulness agree alarmingly well with his physical
rope-dancing and nimble boldness, of which all the Gods have
learnt to be afraid. If any one wishes to see the "German soul"
demonstrated ad oculos, let him only look at German taste, at
German arts and manners what boorish indifference to "taste"! How
the noblest and the commonest stand there in juxtaposition! How
disorderly and how rich is the whole constitution of this soul!
The German DRAGS at his soul, he drags at everything he
experiences. He digests his events badly; he never gets "done"
with them; and German depth is often only a difficult, hesitating
"digestion." And just as all chronic invalids, all dyspeptics like
what is convenient, so the German loves "frankness" and "honesty";
it is so CONVENIENT to be frank and honest!--This confidingness,
this complaisance, this showing-the-cards of German HONESTY, is
probably the most dangerous and most successful disguise which the
German is up to nowadays: it is his proper Mephistophelean art;
with this he can "still achieve much"! The German lets himself go,
and thereby gazes with faithful, blue, empty German eyes--and
other countries immediately confound him with his
dressing-gown!--I meant to say that, let "German depth" be what it
will--among ourselves alone we perhaps take the liberty to laugh
at it--we shall do well to continue henceforth to honour its
appearance and good name, and not barter away too cheaply our old
reputation as a people of depth for Prussian "smartness," and
Berlin wit and sand. It is wise for a people to pose, and LET
itself be regarded, as profound, clumsy, good-natured, honest, and
foolish: it might even be--profound to do so! Finally, we should
do honour to our name--we are not called the "TIUSCHE VOLK"
(deceptive people) for nothing. . . .

245. The "good old" time is past, it sang itself out in Mozart--
how happy are WE that his ROCOCO still speaks to us, that his
"good company," his tender enthusiasm, his childish delight in
the Chinese and its flourishes, his courtesy of heart, his
longing for the elegant, the amorous, the tripping, the tearful,
and his belief in the South, can still appeal to SOMETHING LEFT
in us! Ah, some time or other it will be over with it!--but who
can doubt that it will be over still sooner with the intelligence
and taste for Beethoven! For he was only the last echo of a break
and transition in style, and NOT, like Mozart, the last echo of a
great European taste which had existed for centuries. Beethoven
is the intermediate event between an old mellow soul that is
constantly breaking down, and a future over-young soul that is
always COMING; there is spread over his music the twilight of
eternal loss and eternal extravagant hope,--the same light in
which Europe was bathed when it dreamed with Rousseau, when it
danced round the Tree of Liberty of the Revolution, and finally
almost fell down in adoration before Napoleon. But how rapidly
does THIS very sentiment now pale, how difficult nowadays is even
the APPREHENSION of this sentiment, how strangely does the
language of Rousseau, Schiller, Shelley, and Byron sound to our
ear, in whom COLLECTIVELY the same fate of Europe was able to
SPEAK, which knew how to SING in Beethoven!--Whatever German
music came afterwards, belongs to Romanticism, that is to say, to
a movement which, historically considered, was still shorter,
more fleeting, and more superficial than that great interlude,
the transition of Europe from Rousseau to Napoleon, and to the
rise of democracy. Weber--but what do WE care nowadays for
"Freischutz" and "Oberon"! Or Marschner's "Hans Heiling" and
"Vampyre"! Or even Wagner's "Tannhauser"! That is extinct,
although not yet forgotten music. This whole music of
Romanticism, besides, was not noble enough, was not musical
enough, to maintain its position anywhere but in the theatre and
before the masses; from the beginning it was second-rate music,
which was little thought of by genuine musicians. It was
different with Felix Mendelssohn, that halcyon master, who, on
account of his lighter, purer, happier soul, quickly acquired
admiration, and was equally quickly forgotten: as the beautiful
EPISODE of German music. But with regard to Robert Schumann, who
took things seriously, and has been taken seriously from the
first--he was the last that founded a school,--do we not now
regard it as a satisfaction, a relief, a deliverance, that this
very Romanticism of Schumann's has been surmounted? Schumann,
fleeing into the "Saxon Switzerland" of his soul, with a half
Werther-like, half Jean-Paul-like nature (assuredly not like
Beethoven! assuredly not like Byron!)--his MANFRED music is a
mistake and a misunderstanding to the extent of injustice;
Schumann, with his taste, which was fundamentally a PETTY taste
(that is to say, a dangerous propensity--doubly dangerous among
Germans--for quiet lyricism and intoxication of the feelings),
going constantly apart, timidly withdrawing and retiring, a noble
weakling who revelled in nothing but anonymous joy and sorrow,
from the beginning a sort of girl and NOLI ME TANGERE--this
Schumann was already merely a GERMAN event in music, and no
longer a European event, as Beethoven had been, as in a still
greater degree Mozart had been; with Schumann German music was
threatened with its greatest danger, that of LOSING THE VOICE FOR
THE SOUL OF EUROPE and sinking into a merely national affair.

246. What a torture are books written in German to a reader who
has a THIRD ear! How indignantly he stands beside the slowly
turning swamp of sounds without tune and rhythms without dance,
which Germans call a "book"! And even the German who READS books!
How lazily, how reluctantly, how badly he reads! How many Germans
know, and consider it obligatory to know, that there is ART in
every good sentence--art which must be divined, if the sentence
is to be understood! If there is a misunderstanding about its
TEMPO, for instance, the sentence itself is misunderstood! That
one must not be doubtful about the rhythm-determining syllables,
that one should feel the breaking of the too-rigid symmetry as
intentional and as a charm, that one should lend a fine and
patient ear to every STACCATO and every RUBATO, that one should
divine the sense in the sequence of the vowels and diphthongs,
and how delicately and richly they can be tinted and retinted in
the order of their arrangement--who among book-reading Germans is
complaisant enough to recognize such duties and requirements, and
to listen to so much art and intention in language? After all,
one just "has no ear for it"; and so the most marked contrasts of
style are not heard, and the most delicate artistry is as it were
SQUANDERED on the deaf.--These were my thoughts when I noticed
how clumsily and unintuitively two masters in the art of prose-
writing have been confounded: one, whose words drop down
hesitatingly and coldly, as from the roof of a damp cave--he
counts on their dull sound and echo; and another who manipulates
his language like a flexible sword, and from his arm down into
his toes feels the dangerous bliss of the quivering, over-sharp
blade, which wishes to bite, hiss, and cut.

247. How little the German style has to do with harmony and with
the ear, is shown by the fact that precisely our good musicians
themselves write badly. The German does not read aloud, he does
not read for the ear, but only with his eyes; he has put his ears
away in the drawer for the time. In antiquity when a man read--
which was seldom enough--he read something to himself, and in a
loud voice; they were surprised when any one read silently, and
sought secretly the reason of it. In a loud voice: that is to
say, with all the swellings, inflections, and variations of key
and changes of TEMPO, in which the ancient PUBLIC world took
delight. The laws of the written style were then the same as
those of the spoken style; and these laws depended partly on the
surprising development and refined requirements of the ear and
larynx; partly on the strength, endurance, and power of the
ancient lungs. In the ancient sense, a period is above all a
physiological whole, inasmuch as it is comprised in one breath.
Such periods as occur in Demosthenes and Cicero, swelling twice
and sinking twice, and all in one breath, were pleasures to the
men of ANTIQUITY, who knew by their own schooling how to
appreciate the virtue therein, the rareness and the difficulty in
the deliverance of such a period;--WE have really no right to the
BIG period, we modern men, who are short of breath in every
sense! Those ancients, indeed, were all of them dilettanti in
speaking, consequently connoisseurs, consequently critics--they
thus brought their orators to the highest pitch; in the same
manner as in the last century, when all Italian ladies and
gentlemen knew how to sing, the virtuosoship of song (and with it
also the art of melody) reached its elevation. In Germany,
however (until quite recently when a kind of platform eloquence
began shyly and awkwardly enough to flutter its young wings),
there was properly speaking only one kind of public and
APPROXIMATELY artistical discourse--that delivered from the
pulpit. The preacher was the only one in Germany who knew the
weight of a syllable or a word, in what manner a sentence
strikes, springs, rushes, flows, and comes to a close; he alone
had a conscience in his ears, often enough a bad conscience: for
reasons are not lacking why proficiency in oratory should be
especially seldom attained by a German, or almost always too
late. The masterpiece of German prose is therefore with good
reason the masterpiece of its greatest preacher: the BIBLE has
hitherto been the best German book. Compared with Luther's Bible,
almost everything else is merely "literature"--something which
has not grown in Germany, and therefore has not taken and does
not take root in German hearts, as the Bible has done.

248. There are two kinds of geniuses: one which above all
engenders and seeks to engender, and another which willingly lets
itself be fructified and brings forth. And similarly, among the
gifted nations, there are those on whom the woman's problem of
pregnancy has devolved, and the secret task of forming, maturing,
and perfecting--the Greeks, for instance, were a nation of this
kind, and so are the French; and others which have to fructify
and become the cause of new modes of life--like the Jews, the
Romans, and, in all modesty be it asked: like the Germans?--
nations tortured and enraptured by unknown fevers and
irresistibly forced out of themselves, amorous and longing for
foreign races (for such as "let themselves be fructified"), and
withal imperious, like everything conscious of being full of
generative force, and consequently empowered "by the grace of
God." These two kinds of geniuses seek each other like man and
woman; but they also misunderstand each other--like man and

249. Every nation has its own "Tartuffery," and calls that its
virtue.--One does not know--cannot know, the best that is in one.

250. What Europe owes to the Jews?--Many things, good and bad,
and above all one thing of the nature both of the best and the
worst: the grand style in morality, the fearfulness and majesty
of infinite demands, of infinite significations, the whole
Romanticism and sublimity of moral questionableness--and
consequently just the most attractive, ensnaring, and exquisite
element in those iridescences and allurements to life, in the
aftersheen of which the sky of our European culture, its evening
sky, now glows--perhaps glows out. For this, we artists among the
spectators and philosophers, are--grateful to the Jews.

251. It must be taken into the bargain, if various clouds and
disturbances--in short, slight attacks of stupidity--pass over
the spirit of a people that suffers and WANTS to suffer from
national nervous fever and political ambition: for instance,
among present-day Germans there is alternately the anti-French
folly, the anti-Semitic folly, the anti-Polish folly, the
Christian-romantic folly, the Wagnerian folly, the Teutonic
folly, the Prussian folly (just look at those poor historians,
the Sybels and Treitschkes, and their closely bandaged heads),
and whatever else these little obscurations of the German spirit
and conscience may be called. May it be forgiven me that I, too,
when on a short daring sojourn on very infected ground, did not
remain wholly exempt from the disease, but like every one else,
began to entertain thoughts about matters which did not concern
me--the first symptom of political infection. About the Jews, for
instance, listen to the following:--I have never yet met a German
who was favourably inclined to the Jews; and however decided the
repudiation of actual anti-Semitism may be on the part of all
prudent and political men, this prudence and policy is not
perhaps directed against the nature of the sentiment itself, but
only against its dangerous excess, and especially against the
distasteful and infamous expression of this excess of sentiment;
--on this point we must not deceive ourselves. That Germany has
amply SUFFICIENT Jews, that the German stomach, the German blood,
has difficulty (and will long have difficulty) in disposing only
of this quantity of "Jew"--as the Italian, the Frenchman, and the
Englishman have done by means of a stronger digestion:--that is
the unmistakable declaration and language of a general instinct,
to which one must listen and according to which one must act.
"Let no more Jews come in! And shut the doors, especially towards
the East (also towards Austria)!"--thus commands the instinct of
a people whose nature is still feeble and uncertain, so that it
could be easily wiped out, easily extinguished, by a stronger
race. The Jews, however, are beyond all doubt the strongest,
toughest, and purest race at present living in Europe, they know
how to succeed even under the worst conditions (in fact better
than under favourable ones), by means of virtues of some sort,
which one would like nowadays to label as vices--owing above all
to a resolute faith which does not need to be ashamed before
"modern ideas", they alter only, WHEN they do alter, in the same
way that the Russian Empire makes its conquest--as an empire that
has plenty of time and is not of yesterday--namely, according to
the principle, "as slowly as possible"! A thinker who has the
future of Europe at heart, will, in all his perspectives
concerning the future, calculate upon the Jews, as he will
calculate upon the Russians, as above all the surest and
likeliest factors in the great play and battle of forces. That
which is at present called a "nation" in Europe, and is really
rather a RES FACTA than NATA (indeed, sometimes confusingly
similar to a RES FICTA ET PICTA), is in every case something
evolving, young, easily displaced, and not yet a race, much less
such a race AERE PERENNUS, as the Jews are such "nations" should
most carefully avoid all hotheaded rivalry and hostility! It is
certain that the Jews, if they desired--or if they were driven to
it, as the anti-Semites seem to wish--COULD now have the
ascendancy, nay, literally the supremacy, over Europe, that they
are NOT working and planning for that end is equally certain.
Meanwhile, they rather wish and desire, even somewhat
importunely, to be insorbed and absorbed by Europe, they long to
be finally settled, authorized, and respected somewhere, and wish
to put an end to the nomadic life, to the "wandering Jew",--and
one should certainly take account of this impulse and tendency,
and MAKE ADVANCES to it (it possibly betokens a mitigation of the
Jewish instincts) for which purpose it would perhaps be useful
and fair to banish the anti-Semitic bawlers out of the country.
One should make advances with all prudence, and with selection,
pretty much as the English nobility do It stands to reason that
the more powerful and strongly marked types of new Germanism
could enter into relation with the Jews with the least
hesitation, for instance, the nobleman officer from the Prussian
border it would be interesting in many ways to see whether the
genius for money and patience (and especially some intellect and
intellectuality--sadly lacking in the place referred to) could
not in addition be annexed and trained to the hereditary art of
commanding and obeying--for both of which the country in question
has now a classic reputation But here it is expedient to break
off my festal discourse and my sprightly Teutonomania for I have
already reached my SERIOUS TOPIC, the "European problem," as I
understand it, the rearing of a new ruling caste for Europe.

252. They are not a philosophical race--the English: Bacon
represents an ATTACK on the philosophical spirit generally,
Hobbes, Hume, and Locke, an abasement, and a depreciation of the
idea of a "philosopher" for more than a century. It was AGAINST
Hume that Kant uprose and raised himself; it was Locke of whom
Schelling RIGHTLY said, "JE MEPRISE LOCKE"; in the struggle
against the English mechanical stultification of the world, Hegel
and Schopenhauer (along with Goethe) were of one accord; the two
hostile brother-geniuses in philosophy, who pushed in different
directions towards the opposite poles of German thought, and
thereby wronged each other as only brothers will do.--What is
lacking in England, and has always been lacking, that half-actor
and rhetorician knew well enough, the absurd muddle-head,
Carlyle, who sought to conceal under passionate grimaces what he
knew about himself: namely, what was LACKING in Carlyle--real
POWER of intellect, real DEPTH of intellectual perception, in
short, philosophy. It is characteristic of such an
unphilosophical race to hold on firmly to Christianity--they NEED
its discipline for "moralizing" and humanizing. The Englishman,
more gloomy, sensual, headstrong, and brutal than the German--is
for that very reason, as the baser of the two, also the most
pious: he has all the MORE NEED of Christianity. To finer
nostrils, this English Christianity itself has still a
characteristic English taint of spleen and alcoholic excess, for
which, owing to good reasons, it is used as an antidote--the
finer poison to neutralize the coarser: a finer form of poisoning
is in fact a step in advance with coarse-mannered people, a step
towards spiritualization. The English coarseness and rustic
demureness is still most satisfactorily disguised by Christian
pantomime, and by praying and psalm-singing (or, more correctly,
it is thereby explained and differently expressed); and for the
herd of drunkards and rakes who formerly learned moral grunting
under the influence of Methodism (and more recently as the
"Salvation Army"), a penitential fit may really be the relatively
highest manifestation of "humanity" to which they can be
elevated: so much may reasonably be admitted. That, however,
which offends even in the humanest Englishman is his lack of
music, to speak figuratively (and also literally): he has neither
rhythm nor dance in the movements of his soul and body; indeed,
not even the desire for rhythm and dance, for "music." Listen to
him speaking; look at the most beautiful Englishwoman WALKING--in
no country on earth are there more beautiful doves and swans;
finally, listen to them singing! But I ask too much . . .

253. There are truths which are best recognized by mediocre
minds, because they are best adapted for them, there are truths
which only possess charms and seductive power for mediocre
spirits:--one is pushed to this probably unpleasant conclusion,
now that the influence of respectable but mediocre Englishmen--I
may mention Darwin, John Stuart Mill, and Herbert Spencer--begins
to gain the ascendancy in the middle-class region of European
taste. Indeed, who could doubt that it is a useful thing for SUCH
minds to have the ascendancy for a time? It would be an error to
consider the highly developed and independently soaring minds as
specially qualified for determining and collecting many little
common facts, and deducing conclusions from them; as exceptions,
they are rather from the first in no very favourable position
towards those who are "the rules." After all, they have more to
do than merely to perceive:--in effect, they have to BE something
new, they have to SIGNIFY something new, they have to REPRESENT
new values! The gulf between knowledge and capacity is perhaps
greater, and also more mysterious, than one thinks: the capable
man in the grand style, the creator, will possibly have to be an
ignorant person;--while on the other hand, for scientific
discoveries like those of Darwin, a certain narrowness, aridity,
and industrious carefulness (in short, something English) may not
be unfavourable for arriving at them.--Finally, let it not be
forgotten that the English, with their profound mediocrity,
brought about once before a general depression of European

What is called "modern ideas," or "the ideas of the eighteenth
century," or "French ideas"--that, consequently, against which
the GERMAN mind rose up with profound disgust--is of English
origin, there is no doubt about it. The French were only the apes
and actors of these ideas, their best soldiers, and likewise,
alas! their first and profoundest VICTIMS; for owing to the
diabolical Anglomania of "modern ideas," the AME FRANCAIS has in
the end become so thin and emaciated, that at present one recalls
its sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, its profound, passionate
strength, its inventive excellency, almost with disbelief. One
must, however, maintain this verdict of historical justice in a
determined manner, and defend it against present prejudices and
appearances: the European NOBLESSE--of sentiment, taste, and
manners, taking the word in every high sense--is the work and
invention of FRANCE; the European ignobleness, the plebeianism of
modern ideas--is ENGLAND'S work and invention.

254. Even at present France is still the seat of the most
intellectual and refined culture of Europe, it is still the high
school of taste; but one must know how to find this "France of
taste." He who belongs to it keeps himself well concealed:--they
may be a small number in whom it lives and is embodied, besides
perhaps being men who do not stand upon the strongest legs, in
part fatalists, hypochondriacs, invalids, in part persons over-
indulged, over-refined, such as have the AMBITION to conceal

They have all something in common: they keep their ears closed in
presence of the delirious folly and noisy spouting of the
democratic BOURGEOIS. In fact, a besotted and brutalized France
at present sprawls in the foreground--it recently celebrated a
veritable orgy of bad taste, and at the same time of self-
admiration, at the funeral of Victor Hugo. There is also
something else common to them: a predilection to resist
intellectual Germanizing--and a still greater inability to do so!
In this France of intellect, which is also a France of pessimism,
Schopenhauer has perhaps become more at home, and more indigenous
than he has ever been in Germany; not to speak of Heinrich Heine,
who has long ago been re-incarnated in the more refined and
fastidious lyrists of Paris; or of Hegel, who at present, in the
form of Taine--the FIRST of living historians--exercises an
almost tyrannical influence. As regards Richard Wagner, however,
the more French music learns to adapt itself to the actual needs
of the AME MODERNE, the more will it "Wagnerite"; one can safely
predict that beforehand,--it is already taking place
sufficiently! There are, however, three things which the French
can still boast of with pride as their heritage and possession,
and as indelible tokens of their ancient intellectual superiority
in Europe, in spite of all voluntary or involuntary Germanizing
and vulgarizing of taste. FIRSTLY, the capacity for artistic
emotion, for devotion to "form," for which the expression, L'ART
POUR L'ART, along with numerous others, has been invented:--such
capacity has not been lacking in France for three centuries; and
owing to its reverence for the "small number," it has again and
again made a sort of chamber music of literature possible, which
is sought for in vain elsewhere in Europe.--The SECOND thing
whereby the French can lay claim to a superiority over Europe is
their ancient, many-sided, MORALISTIC culture, owing to which one
finds on an average, even in the petty ROMANCIERS of the
newspapers and chance BOULEVARDIERS DE PARIS, a psychological
sensitiveness and curiosity, of which, for example, one has no
conception (to say nothing of the thing itself!) in Germany. The
Germans lack a couple of centuries of the moralistic work
requisite thereto, which, as we have said, France has not
grudged: those who call the Germans "naive" on that account give
them commendation for a defect. (As the opposite of the German
inexperience and innocence IN VOLUPTATE PSYCHOLOGICA, which is
not too remotely associated with the tediousness of German
intercourse,--and as the most successful expression of genuine
French curiosity and inventive talent in this domain of delicate
thrills, Henri Beyle may be noted; that remarkable anticipatory
and forerunning man, who, with a Napoleonic TEMPO, traversed HIS
Europe, in fact, several centuries of the European soul, as a
surveyor and discoverer thereof:--it has required two generations
to OVERTAKE him one way or other, to divine long afterwards some
of the riddles that perplexed and enraptured him--this strange
Epicurean and man of interrogation, the last great psychologist
of France).--There is yet a THIRD claim to superiority: in the
French character there is a successful half-way synthesis of the
North and South, which makes them comprehend many things, and
enjoins upon them other things, which an Englishman can never
comprehend. Their temperament, turned alternately to and from the
South, in which from time to time the Provencal and Ligurian
blood froths over, preserves them from the dreadful, northern
grey-in-grey, from sunless conceptual-spectrism and from poverty
of blood--our GERMAN infirmity of taste, for the excessive
prevalence of which at the present moment, blood and iron, that
is to say "high politics," has with great resolution been
prescribed (according to a dangerous healing art, which bids me
wait and wait, but not yet hope).--There is also still in France
a pre-understanding and ready welcome for those rarer and rarely
gratified men, who are too comprehensive to find satisfaction in
any kind of fatherlandism, and know how to love the South when in
the North and the North when in the South--the born Midlanders,
the "good Europeans." For them BIZET has made music, this latest
genius, who has seen a new beauty and seduction,--who has
discovered a piece of the SOUTH IN MUSIC.

255. I hold that many precautions should be taken against German
music. Suppose a person loves the South as I love it--as a great
school of recovery for the most spiritual and the most sensuous
ills, as a boundless solar profusion and effulgence which
o'erspreads a sovereign existence believing in itself--well, such
a person will learn to be somewhat on his guard against German
music, because, in injuring his taste anew, it will also injure
his health anew. Such a Southerner, a Southerner not by origin
but by BELIEF, if he should dream of the future of music, must
also dream of it being freed from the influence of the North; and
must have in his ears the prelude to a deeper, mightier, and
perhaps more perverse and mysterious music, a super-German music,
which does not fade, pale, and die away, as all German music
does, at the sight of the blue, wanton sea and the Mediterranean
clearness of sky--a super-European music, which holds its own
even in presence of the brown sunsets of the desert, whose soul
is akin to the palm-tree, and can be at home and can roam with
big, beautiful, lonely beasts of prey . . . I could imagine a music
of which the rarest charm would be that it knew nothing more of
good and evil; only that here and there perhaps some sailor's
home-sickness, some golden shadows and tender weaknesses might
sweep lightly over it; an art which, from the far distance, would
see the colours of a sinking and almost incomprehensible MORAL
world fleeing towards it, and would be hospitable enough and
profound enough to receive such belated fugitives.

256. Owing to the morbid estrangement which the nationality-craze
has induced and still induces among the nations of Europe, owing
also to the short-sighted and hasty-handed politicians, who with
the help of this craze, are at present in power, and do not
suspect to what extent the disintegrating policy they pursue must
necessarily be only an interlude policy--owing to all this and
much else that is altogether unmentionable at present, the most
unmistakable signs that EUROPE WISHES TO BE ONE, are now
overlooked, or arbitrarily and falsely misinterpreted. With all
the more profound and large-minded men of this century, the real
general tendency of the mysterious labour of their souls was to
prepare the way for that new SYNTHESIS, and tentatively to
anticipate the European of the future; only in their simulations,
or in their weaker moments, in old age perhaps, did they belong
to the "fatherlands"--they only rested from themselves when they
became "patriots." I think of such men as Napoleon, Goethe,
Beethoven, Stendhal, Heinrich Heine, Schopenhauer: it must not be
taken amiss if I also count Richard Wagner among them, about whom
one must not let oneself be deceived by his own misunderstandings
(geniuses like him have seldom the right to understand
themselves), still less, of course, by the unseemly noise with
which he is now resisted and opposed in France: the fact remains,
nevertheless, that Richard Wagner and the LATER FRENCH
ROMANTICISM of the forties, are most closely and intimately
related to one another. They are akin, fundamentally akin, in all
the heights and depths of their requirements; it is Europe, the
ONE Europe, whose soul presses urgently and longingly, outwards
and upwards, in their multifarious and boisterous art--whither?
into a new light? towards a new sun? But who would attempt to
express accurately what all these masters of new modes of speech
could not express distinctly? It is certain that the same storm
and stress tormented them, that they SOUGHT in the same manner,
these last great seekers! All of them steeped in literature to
their eyes and ears--the first artists of universal literary
culture--for the most part even themselves writers, poets,
intermediaries and blenders of the arts and the senses (Wagner,
as musician is reckoned among painters, as poet among musicians,
as artist generally among actors); all of them fanatics for
EXPRESSION "at any cost"--I specially mention Delacroix, the
nearest related to Wagner; all of them great discoverers in the
realm of the sublime, also of the loathsome and dreadful, still
greater discoverers in effect, in display, in the art of the
show-shop; all of them talented far beyond their genius, out and
out VIRTUOSI, with mysterious accesses to all that seduces,
allures, constrains, and upsets; born enemies of logic and of the
straight line, hankering after the strange, the exotic, the
monstrous, the crooked, and the self-contradictory; as men,
Tantaluses of the will, plebeian parvenus, who knew themselves to
be incapable of a noble TEMPO or of a LENTO in life and action--
think of Balzac, for instance,--unrestrained workers, almost
destroying themselves by work; antinomians and rebels in manners,
ambitious and insatiable, without equilibrium and enjoyment; all
of them finally shattering and sinking down at the Christian
cross (and with right and reason, for who of them would have been
sufficiently profound and sufficiently original for an ANTI-
CHRISTIAN philosophy?);--on the whole, a boldly daring,
splendidly overbearing, high-flying, and aloft-up-dragging class
of higher men, who had first to teach their century-and it is the
century of the MASSES--the conception "higher man." . . . Let the
German friends of Richard Wagner advise together as to whether
there is anything purely German in the Wagnerian art, or whether
its distinction does not consist precisely in coming from SUPER-
GERMAN sources and impulses: in which connection it may not be
underrated how indispensable Paris was to the development of his
type, which the strength of his instincts made him long to visit
at the most decisive time--and how the whole style of his
proceedings, of his self-apostolate, could only perfect itself in
sight of the French socialistic original. On a more subtle
comparison it will perhaps be found, to the honour of Richard
Wagner's German nature, that he has acted in everything with more
strength, daring, severity, and elevation than a nineteenth-
century Frenchman could have done--owing to the circumstance that
we Germans are as yet nearer to barbarism than the French;--
perhaps even the most remarkable creation of Richard Wagner is
not only at present, but for ever inaccessible, incomprehensible,
and inimitable to the whole latter-day Latin race: the figure of
Siegfried, that VERY FREE man, who is probably far too free, too
hard, too cheerful, too healthy, too ANTI-CATHOLIC for the taste
of old and mellow civilized nations. He may even have been a sin
against Romanticism, this anti-Latin Siegfried: well, Wagner
atoned amply for this sin in his old sad days, when--anticipating
a taste which has meanwhile passed into politics--he began, with
the religious vehemence peculiar to him, to preach, at least, THE
WAY TO ROME, if not to walk therein.--That these last words may
not be misunderstood, I will call to my aid a few powerful
rhymes, which will even betray to less delicate ears what I mean
--what I mean COUNTER TO the "last Wagner" and his Parsifal music:--

--Is this our mode?--From German heart came this vexed ululating?
From German body, this self-lacerating? Is ours this priestly
hand-dilation, This incense-fuming exaltation? Is ours this
faltering, falling, shambling, This quite uncertain ding-dong-
dangling? This sly nun-ogling, Ave-hour-bell ringing, This wholly
false enraptured heaven-o'erspringing?--Is this our mode?--Think
well!--ye still wait for admission--For what ye hear is ROME--



257. EVERY elevation of the type "man," has hitherto been the
work of an aristocratic society and so it will always be--a
society believing in a long scale of gradations of rank and
differences of worth among human beings, and requiring slavery in
some form or other. Without the PATHOS OF DISTANCE, such as grows
out of the incarnated difference of classes, out of the constant
out-looking and down-looking of the ruling caste on subordinates
and instruments, and out of their equally constant practice of
obeying and commanding, of keeping down and keeping at a
distance--that other more mysterious pathos could never have
arisen, the longing for an ever new widening of distance within
the soul itself, the formation of ever higher, rarer, further,
more extended, more comprehensive states, in short, just the
elevation of the type "man," the continued "self-surmounting of
man," to use a moral formula in a supermoral sense. To be sure,
one must not resign oneself to any humanitarian illusions about
the history of the origin of an aristocratic society (that is to
say, of the preliminary condition for the elevation of the type
"man"): the truth is hard. Let us acknowledge unprejudicedly how
every higher civilization hitherto has ORIGINATED! Men with a
still natural nature, barbarians in every terrible sense of the
word, men of prey, still in possession of unbroken strength of
will and desire for power, threw themselves upon weaker, more
moral, more peaceful races (perhaps trading or cattle-rearing
communities), or upon old mellow civilizations in which the final
vital force was flickering out in brilliant fireworks of wit and
depravity. At the commencement, the noble caste was always the
barbarian caste: their superiority did not consist first of all
in their physical, but in their psychical power--they were more
COMPLETE men (which at every point also implies the same as "more
complete beasts").

258. Corruption--as the indication that anarchy threatens to
break out among the instincts, and that the foundation of the
emotions, called "life," is convulsed--is something radically
different according to the organization in which it manifests
itself. When, for instance, an aristocracy like that of France at
the beginning of the Revolution, flung away its privileges with
sublime disgust and sacrificed itself to an excess of its moral
sentiments, it was corruption:--it was really only the closing
act of the corruption which had existed for centuries, by virtue
of which that aristocracy had abdicated step by step its lordly
prerogatives and lowered itself to a FUNCTION of royalty (in the
end even to its decoration and parade-dress). The essential
thing, however, in a good and healthy aristocracy is that it
should not regard itself as a function either of the kingship or
the commonwealth, but as the SIGNIFICANCE and highest
justification thereof--that it should therefore accept with a
good conscience the sacrifice of a legion of individuals, who,
FOR ITS SAKE, must be suppressed and reduced to imperfect men, to
slaves and instruments. Its fundamental belief must be precisely
that society is NOT allowed to exist for its own sake, but only
as a foundation and scaffolding, by means of which a select class
of beings may be able to elevate themselves to their higher
duties, and in general to a higher EXISTENCE: like those sun-
seeking climbing plants in Java--they are called Sipo Matador,--
which encircle an oak so long and so often with their arms, until
at last, high above it, but supported by it, they can unfold
their tops in the open light, and exhibit their happiness.

259. To refrain mutually from injury, from violence, from
exploitation, and put one's will on a par with that of others:
this may result in a certain rough sense in good conduct among
individuals when the necessary conditions are given (namely, the
actual similarity of the individuals in amount of force and
degree of worth, and their co-relation within one organization).
As soon, however, as one wished to take this principle more
generally, and if possible even as the FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLE OF
SOCIETY, it would immediately disclose what it really is--namely,
a Will to the DENIAL of life, a principle of dissolution and
decay. Here one must think profoundly to the very basis and
resist all sentimental weakness: life itself is ESSENTIALLY
appropriation, injury, conquest of the strange and weak,
suppression, severity, obtrusion of peculiar forms,
incorporation, and at the least, putting it mildest,
exploitation;--but why should one for ever use precisely these
words on which for ages a disparaging purpose has been stamped?
Even the organization within which, as was previously supposed,
the individuals treat each other as equal--it takes place in
every healthy aristocracy--must itself, if it be a living and not
a dying organization, do all that towards other bodies, which the
individuals within it refrain from doing to each other it will
have to be the incarnated Will to Power, it will endeavour to
grow, to gain ground, attract to itself and acquire ascendancy--
not owing to any morality or immorality, but because it LIVES,
and because life IS precisely Will to Power. On no point,
however, is the ordinary consciousness of Europeans more
unwilling to be corrected than on this matter, people now rave
everywhere, even under the guise of science, about coming
conditions of society in which "the exploiting character" is to
be absent--that sounds to my ears as if they promised to invent a
mode of life which should refrain from all organic functions.
"Exploitation" does not belong to a depraved, or imperfect and
primitive society it belongs to the nature of the living being as
a primary organic function, it is a consequence of the intrinsic
Will to Power, which is precisely the Will to Life--Granting that
as a theory this is a novelty--as a reality it is the FUNDAMENTAL
FACT of all history let us be so far honest towards ourselves!

260. In a tour through the many finer and coarser moralities
which have hitherto prevailed or still prevail on the earth, I
found certain traits recurring regularly together, and connected
with one another, until finally two primary types revealed
themselves to me, and a radical distinction was brought to light.
There is MASTER-MORALITY and SLAVE-MORALITY,--I would at once
add, however, that in all higher and mixed civilizations, there
are also attempts at the reconciliation of the two moralities,
but one finds still oftener the confusion and mutual
misunderstanding of them, indeed sometimes their close
juxtaposition--even in the same man, within one soul. The
distinctions of moral values have either originated in a ruling
caste, pleasantly conscious of being different from the ruled--or
among the ruled class, the slaves and dependents of all sorts. In
the first case, when it is the rulers who determine the
conception "good," it is the exalted, proud disposition which is
regarded as the distinguishing feature, and that which determines
the order of rank. The noble type of man separates from himself
the beings in whom the opposite of this exalted, proud
disposition displays itself he despises them. Let it at once be
noted that in this first kind of morality the antithesis "good"
and "bad" means practically the same as "noble" and
"despicable",--the antithesis "good" and "EVIL" is of a different
origin. The cowardly, the timid, the insignificant, and those
thinking merely of narrow utility are despised; moreover, also,
the distrustful, with their constrained glances, the self-
abasing, the dog-like kind of men who let themselves be abused,
the mendicant flatterers, and above all the liars:--it is a
fundamental belief of all aristocrats that the common people are
untruthful. "We truthful ones"--the nobility in ancient Greece
called themselves. It is obvious that everywhere the designations
of moral value were at first applied to MEN; and were only
derivatively and at a later period applied to ACTIONS; it is a
gross mistake, therefore, when historians of morals start with
questions like, "Why have sympathetic actions been praised?" The
noble type of man regards HIMSELF as a determiner of values; he
does not require to be approved of; he passes the judgment: "What
is injurious to me is injurious in itself;" he knows that it is he
himself only who confers honour on things; he is a CREATOR OF
VALUES. He honours whatever he recognizes in himself: such
morality equals self-glorification. In the foreground there is
the feeling of plenitude, of power, which seeks to overflow, the
happiness of high tension, the consciousness of a wealth which
would fain give and bestow:--the noble man also helps the
unfortunate, but not--or scarcely--out of pity, but rather from
an impulse generated by the super-abundance of power. The noble
man honours in himself the powerful one, him also who has power
over himself, who knows how to speak and how to keep silence, who
takes pleasure in subjecting himself to severity and hardness,
and has reverence for all that is severe and hard. "Wotan placed
a hard heart in my breast," says an old Scandinavian Saga: it is
thus rightly expressed from the soul of a proud Viking. Such a
type of man is even proud of not being made for sympathy; the
hero of the Saga therefore adds warningly: "He who has not a hard
heart when young, will never have one." The noble and brave who
think thus are the furthest removed from the morality which sees
precisely in sympathy, or in acting for the good of others, or in
DESINTERESSEMENT, the characteristic of the moral; faith in
oneself, pride in oneself, a radical enmity and irony towards
"selflessness," belong as definitely to noble morality, as do a
careless scorn and precaution in presence of sympathy and the
"warm heart."--It is the powerful who KNOW how to honour, it is
their art, their domain for invention. The profound reverence for
age and for tradition--all law rests on this double reverence,--
the belief and prejudice in favour of ancestors and unfavourable
to newcomers, is typical in the morality of the powerful; and if,
reversely, men of "modern ideas" believe almost instinctively in
"progress" and the "future," and are more and more lacking in
respect for old age, the ignoble origin of these "ideas" has
complacently betrayed itself thereby. A morality of the ruling
class, however, is more especially foreign and irritating to
present-day taste in the sternness of its principle that one has
duties only to one's equals; that one may act towards beings of a
lower rank, towards all that is foreign, just as seems good to
one, or "as the heart desires," and in any case "beyond good and
evil": it is here that sympathy and similar sentiments can have a
place. The ability and obligation to exercise prolonged gratitude
and prolonged revenge--both only within the circle of equals,--
artfulness in retaliation, RAFFINEMENT of the idea in friendship,
a certain necessity to have enemies (as outlets for the emotions
of envy, quarrelsomeness, arrogance--in fact, in order to be a
good FRIEND): all these are typical characteristics of the noble
morality, which, as has been pointed out, is not the morality of
"modern ideas," and is therefore at present difficult to realize,
and also to unearth and disclose.--It is otherwise with the
second type of morality, SLAVE-MORALITY. Supposing that the
abused, the oppressed, the suffering, the unemancipated, the
weary, and those uncertain of themselves should moralize, what
will be the common element in their moral estimates? Probably a
pessimistic suspicion with regard to the entire situation of man
will find expression, perhaps a condemnation of man, together
with his situation. The slave has an unfavourable eye for the
virtues of the powerful; he has a skepticism and distrust, a
REFINEMENT of distrust of everything "good" that is there
honoured--he would fain persuade himself that the very happiness
there is not genuine. On the other hand, THOSE qualities which
serve to alleviate the existence of sufferers are brought into
prominence and flooded with light; it is here that sympathy, the
kind, helping hand, the warm heart, patience, diligence,
humility, and friendliness attain to honour; for here these are
the most useful qualities, and almost the only means of
supporting the burden of existence. Slave-morality is essentially
the morality of utility. Here is the seat of the origin of the
famous antithesis "good" and "evil":--power and dangerousness are
assumed to reside in the evil, a certain dreadfulness, subtlety,
and strength, which do not admit of being despised. According to
slave-morality, therefore, the "evil" man arouses fear; according
to master-morality, it is precisely the "good" man who arouses
fear and seeks to arouse it, while the bad man is regarded as the
despicable being. The contrast attains its maximum when, in
accordance with the logical consequences of slave-morality, a
shade of depreciation--it may be slight and well-intentioned--at
last attaches itself to the "good" man of this morality; because,
according to the servile mode of thought, the good man must in
any case be the SAFE man: he is good-natured, easily deceived,
perhaps a little stupid, un bonhomme. Everywhere that slave-
morality gains the ascendancy, language shows a tendency to
approximate the significations of the words "good" and "stupid."-
-A last fundamental difference: the desire for FREEDOM, the
instinct for happiness and the refinements of the feeling of
liberty belong as necessarily to slave-morals and morality, as
artifice and enthusiasm in reverence and devotion are the regular
symptoms of an aristocratic mode of thinking and estimating.--
Hence we can understand without further detail why love AS A
PASSION--it is our European specialty--must absolutely be of
noble origin; as is well known, its invention is due to the
Provencal poet-cavaliers, those brilliant, ingenious men of the
"gai saber," to whom Europe owes so much, and almost owes itself.

261. Vanity is one of the things which are perhaps most difficult
for a noble man to understand: he will be tempted to deny it,
where another kind of man thinks he sees it self-evidently. The
problem for him is to represent to his mind beings who seek to
arouse a good opinion of themselves which they themselves do not
possess--and consequently also do not "deserve,"--and who yet
BELIEVE in this good opinion afterwards. This seems to him on the
one hand such bad taste and so self-disrespectful, and on the
other hand so grotesquely unreasonable, that he would like to
consider vanity an exception, and is doubtful about it in most
cases when it is spoken of. He will say, for instance: "I may be
mistaken about my value, and on the other hand may nevertheless
demand that my value should be acknowledged by others precisely
as I rate it:--that, however, is not vanity (but self-conceit,
or, in most cases, that which is called 'humility,' and also
'modesty')." Or he will even say: "For many reasons I can delight
in the good opinion of others, perhaps because I love and honour
them, and rejoice in all their joys, perhaps also because their
good opinion endorses and strengthens my belief in my own good
opinion, perhaps because the good opinion of others, even in
cases where I do not share it, is useful to me, or gives promise
of usefulness:--all this, however, is not vanity." The man of
noble character must first bring it home forcibly to his mind,
especially with the aid of history, that, from time immemorial,
in all social strata in any way dependent, the ordinary man WAS
only that which he PASSED FOR:--not being at all accustomed to
fix values, he did not assign even to himself any other value
than that which his master assigned to him (it is the peculiar
RIGHT OF MASTERS to create values). It may be looked upon as the
result of an extraordinary atavism, that the ordinary man, even
at present, is still always WAITING for an opinion about himself,
and then instinctively submitting himself to it; yet by no means
only to a "good" opinion, but also to a bad and unjust one
(think, for instance, of the greater part of the self-
appreciations and self-depreciations which believing women learn
from their confessors, and which in general the believing
Christian learns from his Church). In fact, conformably to the
slow rise of the democratic social order (and its cause, the
blending of the blood of masters and slaves), the originally
noble and rare impulse of the masters to assign a value to
themselves and to "think well" of themselves, will now be more
and more encouraged and extended; but it has at all times an
older, ampler, and more radically ingrained propensity opposed to
it--and in the phenomenon of "vanity" this older propensity
overmasters the younger. The vain person rejoices over EVERY good
opinion which he hears about himself (quite apart from the point
of view of its usefulness, and equally regardless of its truth or
falsehood), just as he suffers from every bad opinion: for he
subjects himself to both, he feels himself subjected to both, by
that oldest instinct of subjection which breaks forth in him.--It
is "the slave" in the vain man's blood, the remains of the
slave's craftiness--and how much of the "slave" is still left in
woman, for instance!--which seeks to SEDUCE to good opinions of
itself; it is the slave, too, who immediately afterwards falls
prostrate himself before these opinions, as though he had not
called them forth.--And to repeat it again: vanity is an atavism.

262. A SPECIES originates, and a type becomes established and
strong in the long struggle with essentially constant
UNFAVOURABLE conditions. On the other hand, it is known by the
experience of breeders that species which receive super-abundant
nourishment, and in general a surplus of protection and care,
immediately tend in the most marked way to develop variations,
and are fertile in prodigies and monstrosities (also in monstrous
vices). Now look at an aristocratic commonwealth, say an ancient
Greek polis, or Venice, as a voluntary or involuntary contrivance
for the purpose of REARING human beings; there are there men
beside one another, thrown upon their own resources, who want to
make their species prevail, chiefly because they MUST prevail, or
else run the terrible danger of being exterminated. The favour,
the super-abundance, the protection are there lacking under which
variations are fostered; the species needs itself as species, as
something which, precisely by virtue of its hardness, its
uniformity, and simplicity of structure, can in general prevail
and make itself permanent in constant struggle with its
neighbours, or with rebellious or rebellion-threatening vassals.
The most varied experience teaches it what are the qualities to
which it principally owes the fact that it still exists, in spite
of all Gods and men, and has hitherto been victorious: these
qualities it calls virtues, and these virtues alone it develops
to maturity. It does so with severity, indeed it desires
severity; every aristocratic morality is intolerant in the
education of youth, in the control of women, in the marriage
customs, in the relations of old and young, in the penal laws
(which have an eye only for the degenerating): it counts
intolerance itself among the virtues, under the name of
"justice." A type with few, but very marked features, a species
of severe, warlike, wisely silent, reserved, and reticent men
(and as such, with the most delicate sensibility for the charm
and nuances of society) is thus established, unaffected by the
vicissitudes of generations; the constant struggle with uniform
UNFAVOURABLE conditions is, as already remarked, the cause of a
type becoming stable and hard. Finally, however, a happy state of
things results, the enormous tension is relaxed; there are
perhaps no more enemies among the neighbouring peoples, and the
means of life, even of the enjoyment of life, are present in
superabundance. With one stroke the bond and constraint of the
old discipline severs: it is no longer regarded as necessary, as
a condition of existence--if it would continue, it can only do so
as a form of LUXURY, as an archaizing TASTE. Variations, whether
they be deviations (into the higher, finer, and rarer), or
deteriorations and monstrosities, appear suddenly on the scene in
the greatest exuberance and splendour; the individual dares to be
individual and detach himself. At this turning-point of history
there manifest themselves, side by side, and often mixed and
entangled together, a magnificent, manifold, virgin-forest-like
up-growth and up-striving, a kind of TROPICAL TEMPO in the
rivalry of growth, and an extraordinary decay and self-
destruction, owing to the savagely opposing and seemingly
exploding egoisms, which strive with one another "for sun and
light," and can no longer assign any limit, restraint, or
forbearance for themselves by means of the hitherto existing
morality. It was this morality itself which piled up the strength
so enormously, which bent the bow in so threatening a manner:--it
is now "out of date," it is getting "out of date." The dangerous
and disquieting point has been reached when the greater, more
manifold, more comprehensive life IS LIVED BEYOND the old
morality; the "individual" stands out, and is obliged to have
recourse to his own law-giving, his own arts and artifices for
self-preservation, self-elevation, and self-deliverance. Nothing
but new "Whys," nothing but new "Hows," no common formulas any
longer, misunderstanding and disregard in league with each other,
decay, deterioration, and the loftiest desires frightfully
entangled, the genius of the race overflowing from all the
cornucopias of good and bad, a portentous simultaneousness of
Spring and Autumn, full of new charms and mysteries peculiar to
the fresh, still inexhausted, still unwearied corruption. Danger
is again present, the mother of morality, great danger; this time
shifted into the individual, into the neighbour and friend, into
the street, into their own child, into their own heart, into all
the most personal and secret recesses of their desires and
volitions. What will the moral philosophers who appear at this
time have to preach? They discover, these sharp onlookers and
loafers, that the end is quickly approaching, that everything
around them decays and produces decay, that nothing will endure
until the day after tomorrow, except one species of man, the
incurably MEDIOCRE. The mediocre alone have a prospect of
continuing and propagating themselves--they will be the men of
the future, the sole survivors; "be like them! become mediocre!"
is now the only morality which has still a significance, which
still obtains a hearing.--But it is difficult to preach this
morality of mediocrity! it can never avow what it is and what it
desires! it has to talk of moderation and dignity and duty and
brotherly love--it will have difficulty IN CONCEALING ITS IRONY!

263. There is an INSTINCT FOR RANK, which more than anything else
is already the sign of a HIGH rank; there is a DELIGHT in the
NUANCES of reverence which leads one to infer noble origin and
habits. The refinement, goodness, and loftiness of a soul are put
to a perilous test when something passes by that is of the
highest rank, but is not yet protected by the awe of authority
from obtrusive touches and incivilities: something that goes its
way like a living touchstone, undistinguished, undiscovered, and
tentative, perhaps voluntarily veiled and disguised. He whose
task and practice it is to investigate souls, will avail himself
of many varieties of this very art to determine the ultimate
value of a soul, the unalterable, innate order of rank to which
it belongs: he will test it by its INSTINCT FOR REVERENCE.
DIFFERENCE ENGENDRE HAINE: the vulgarity of many a nature spurts
up suddenly like dirty water, when any holy vessel, any jewel
from closed shrines, any book bearing the marks of great destiny,
is brought before it; while on the other hand, there is an
involuntary silence, a hesitation of the eye, a cessation of all
gestures, by which it is indicated that a soul FEELS the nearness
of what is worthiest of respect. The way in which, on the whole,
the reverence for the BIBLE has hitherto been maintained in
Europe, is perhaps the best example of discipline and refinement
of manners which Europe owes to Christianity: books of such
profoundness and supreme significance require for their
protection an external tyranny of authority, in order to acquire
the PERIOD of thousands of years which is necessary to exhaust
and unriddle them. Much has been achieved when the sentiment has
been at last instilled into the masses (the shallow-pates and the
boobies of every kind) that they are not allowed to touch
everything, that there are holy experiences before which they
must take off their shoes and keep away the unclean hand--it is
almost their highest advance towards humanity. On the contrary,
in the so-called cultured classes, the believers in "modern
ideas," nothing is perhaps so repulsive as their lack of shame,
the easy insolence of eye and hand with which they touch, taste,
and finger everything; and it is possible that even yet there is
more RELATIVE nobility of taste, and more tact for reverence
among the people, among the lower classes of the people,
especially among peasants, than among the newspaper-reading
DEMIMONDE of intellect, the cultured class.

264. It cannot be effaced from a man's soul what his ancestors
have preferably and most constantly done: whether they were
perhaps diligent economizers attached to a desk and a cash-box,
modest and citizen-like in their desires, modest also in their
virtues; or whether they were accustomed to commanding from
morning till night, fond of rude pleasures and probably of still
ruder duties and responsibilities; or whether, finally, at one
time or another, they have sacrificed old privileges of birth and
possession, in order to live wholly for their faith--for their
"God,"--as men of an inexorable and sensitive conscience, which
blushes at every compromise. It is quite impossible for a man NOT
to have the qualities and predilections of his parents and
ancestors in his constitution, whatever appearances may suggest
to the contrary. This is the problem of race. Granted that one
knows something of the parents, it is admissible to draw a
conclusion about the child: any kind of offensive incontinence,
any kind of sordid envy, or of clumsy self-vaunting--the three
things which together have constituted the genuine plebeian type
in all times--such must pass over to the child, as surely as bad
blood; and with the help of the best education and culture one
will only succeed in DECEIVING with regard to such heredity.--And
what else does education and culture try to do nowadays! In our
very democratic, or rather, very plebeian age, "education" and
"culture" MUST be essentially the art of deceiving--deceiving
with regard to origin, with regard to the inherited plebeianism
in body and soul. An educator who nowadays preached truthfulness
above everything else, and called out constantly to his pupils:
"Be true! Be natural! Show yourselves as you are!"--even such a
virtuous and sincere ass would learn in a short time to have
recourse to the FURCA of Horace, NATURAM EXPELLERE: with what
results? "Plebeianism" USQUE RECURRET. [FOOTNOTE: Horace's
"Epistles," I. x. 24.]

265. At the risk of displeasing innocent ears, I submit that
egoism belongs to the essence of a noble soul, I mean the
unalterable belief that to a being such as "we," other beings
must naturally be in subjection, and have to sacrifice
themselves. The noble soul accepts the fact of his egoism without
question, and also without consciousness of harshness,
constraint, or arbitrariness therein, but rather as something
that may have its basis in the primary law of things:--if he
sought a designation for it he would say: "It is justice itself."
He acknowledges under certain circumstances, which made him
hesitate at first, that there are other equally privileged ones;
as soon as he has settled this question of rank, he moves among
those equals and equally privileged ones with the same assurance,
as regards modesty and delicate respect, which he enjoys in
intercourse with himself--in accordance with an innate heavenly
mechanism which all the stars understand. It is an ADDITIONAL
instance of his egoism, this artfulness and self-limitation in
intercourse with his equals--every star is a similar egoist; he
honours HIMSELF in them, and in the rights which he concedes to
them, he has no doubt that the exchange of honours and rights, as

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