The Education of Henry Adams: an autobiography

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Houghton Mifflin Company, 1918 - Historians - 519 pages
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - tess_schoolmarm - www.librarything.com

This is an autobiography by the grandson of John Q. Adams. Henry Adams, being of a well to family from Boston grew up with all life's opportunities possible. He graduated from Harvard, yet felt the ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - stillatim - LibraryThing

One of the oddest books I've ever read, and am ever likely to read: an autobiography written in the third person, which tells us almost nothing at all about the author/central character, this seems ... Read full review

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Page 33 - Were half the power that fills the world with terror, Were half the wealth bestowed on camps and courts, Given to redeem the human mind from error, There were no need of arsenals or forts: The warrior's name would be a name abhorred!
Page 150 - It appears difficult to make out a stronger case of infringement of the foreign enlistment act, which, if not enforced on this occasion, is little better than a dead letter.
Page 115 - England recognized the belligerency of the Confederacy. This beginning of a new education tore up by the roots nearly all that was left of Harvard College and Germany. He had to learn —the sooner the better —that his ideas were the reverse of truth; that in May, 1861, no one in England — literally no one —doubted that Jefferson Davis had made or would make a nation, and nearly all were glad of it, though not often saying so. They mostly imitated Palmerston who, according to Mr. Gladstone,...
Page 383 - Columbus had stood the world on its head towards 1500; but the nearest approach to the revolution of 1900 was that of 310, when Constantine set up the Cross. The rays that Langley disowned, as well as those which he fathered, were occult, supersensual, irrational; they were a revelation of mysterious energy like that of the Cross; they were what, in terms of mediaeval science, were called immediate modes of the divine substance.
Page 266 - That, two thousand years after Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar, a man like Grant should be called — and should actually and truly be — the highest product of the most advanced evolution, made evolution ludicrous.
Page 9 - The bearing of the two seasons on the education of Henry Adams was no fancy; it was the most decisive force he ever knew; it ran through life, and made the division between its perplexing, warring, irreconcilable problems, irreducible opposites, with growing emphasis to the last year of study. From earliest childhood the boy was accustomed to feel that, for him, life was double.
Page 385 - Branly coherer. On one side, at the Louvre and at Chartres, as he knew by the record of work actually done and still before his eyes, was the highest energy ever known to man, the creator of four-fifths of his noblest art, exercising vastly more attraction over the human mind than all the steam-engines and dynamos ever dreamed of; and yet this energy was unknown to the American mind. An American Virgin would never dare command; an American Venus would never dare exist.
Page 380 - As he grew accustomed to the great gallery of machines, he began to feel the fortyfoot dynamos as a moral force, much as the early Christians felt the Cross. The planet itself seemed less impressive, in its old-fashioned, deliberate, annual or daily revolution, than this huge wheel...
Page 12 - From cradle to grave this problem of running order through chaos, direction through space, discipline through freedom, unity through multiplicity, has always been, and must always be, the task of education, as it is the moral of religion, philosophy, science, art, politics, and economy...
Page 382 - Historians undertake to arrange sequences, — called stories, or histories — assuming in silence a relation of cause and effect. These assumptions, hidden in the depths of dusty libraries, have been astounding, but commonly unconscious and childlike...

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