1826 – 1877
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Who was Walter Bagehot?
- An element of exaggeration clings to the popular judgment: great vices are made greater, great virtues greater also; interesting incidents are made more interesting, softer legends more soft.
- A schoolmaster should have an atmosphere of awe, and walk wonderingly, as if he was amazed at being himself.
- Under a Presidential government, a nation has, except at the electing moment, no influence; it has not the ballot-box before it; its virtue is gone, and it must wait till its instant of despotism again returns.
- War both needs and generates certain virtues; not the highest, but what may be called the preliminary virtues, as valor, veracity, the spirit of obedience, the habit of discipline. Any of these, and of others like them, when possessed by a nation, and no matter how generated, will give them a military advantage, and make them more likely to stay in the race of nations.
- A severe though not unfriendly critic of our institutions said that the cure for admiring the House of Lords was to go and look at it.
- Men who do not make advances to women are apt to become victims to women who make advances to them.
- Progress would not have been the rarity it is if the early food had not been the late poison.
- The most intellectual of men are moved quite as much by the circumstances which they are used to as by their own will. The active voluntary part of a man is very small, and if it were not economized by a sleepy kind of habit, its results would be null.
- The best reason why Monarchy is a strong government is, that it is an intelligible government. The mass of mankind understand it, and they hardly anywhere in the world understand any other.
- The whole history of civilization is strewn with creeds and institutions which were invaluable at first, and deadly afterwards.
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