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Emerson on Aristocracy ☼

Consider how representative of the many are the actions of the few in any case. It often helps to consider.

The essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson often judges the many by his impressons of the few: He philosophises, which fairly often means: "I lack solid back-up evidence far and wide. I might still be right, you know."

Below are selected quotations and fragments from Emerson's Essay "Aristocracy". As hinted at already, his views from the 19th century may not have been representative for all the British, for he met only a few of them.


Prostitutes taken from the theatres, were made duchesses, their bastards dukes and earls.

They belong, with wigs, powder, and scarlet coats, to an earlier age.

In general, all that is required of them is to sit securely, to preside at public meetings . . .


Sources and other Emerson literature

Symbols, brackets, signs and text icons explained: (1) Text markers(2) Digesting.

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