What is noble?

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The care of external detail, in so far as this care distinguishes us, isolates us, and prevents us from being confounded with others.

In language, clothing, dress, that appearance of frivolity whose stoic hardness and perfect self-control are used to defend themselves from any indiscreet curiosity.

– The slowness of the gesture and the look. There are not too many precious things; They come and naturally tend towards the man of high value. We will hardly admire.

– To endure poverty and embarrassment – and illness. To abandon happiness to the great number, that happiness which is peace of the soul, virtue, comfort, anglo-angelic mercantilism to the Spencer.

– To avoid mediocre honors, to distrust anyone who is ready to praise us; For he who praises thinks he understands what he praises.

– To doubt profoundly that hearts can communicate; Our solitude does not result from a choice, it is a fact.

The conviction of having duties only to his equals; Knowing that others can behave at will; That only his peers can hope for justice, far from being able to count on it.

– The aptitude for leisure, the profound conviction that any profession, without dishonoring us positively, makes us fall. No assiduity, in the bourgeois sense of the word, although we know how to honor and assert this assiduity; Not to resemble those artists who keep chuckling like chickens giggle, lay eggs, then giggle again.

– We will protect artists and poets because they are more noble beings than those who are content with a few practical abilities, just simply “productive” men; Do not let us confuse them.

– The taste of forms; The protection afforded to all that is formal, the conviction that politeness is one of the great virtues; The mistrust of all forms of carelessness, including freedom of the press and thought, which allow the mind to take comfort, to behave in a rustic and to stretch.

– The taste of women, considered as a variety of beings may be smaller, but more refined and lighter. What a joy to meet creatures who never have anything but dance and madness and adornment in their heads! They have always been the delight of all tense, virile and profound souls who bear the burden of heavy responsibilities.

– The predilection for princes and priests, because they maintain the belief in a diversity of human values.

– Know how to be silent; But not a word on it if we are listened to.

– To endure long enmities; Lack of conciliatory mood. The vigorous races, as long as they are still rich and overflowing with strength, have the courage to see things as they are: tragic.

– The disgust of demagogy, of the “lights”, of the “bonhomie”, of the trivial familiarity. Constantly contend the majority, not in words, but in deeds.

“We shall not much estimate the good men, who seem to us like beasts of the flock; We know that among the worst, wicked, and hardest men there lies an invaluable golden nugget, an essence of goodness which prevails over all the souls of milk souls.

– Feeling always “in representation”. We do not think that a man of our kind is judged by his vices or his follies. We know that we are difficult to know, and that we have every reason to conceal ourselves under appearances.

Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche


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