Ecce Homo Complete Works, Volume Seventeen

By Friedrich Nietzsche

Page 34

I was scarcely four-and-twenty
years of age. In the same way, two years previously, I had one day
become a philologist, in the sense that my _first_ philological work,
my start in every way, was expressly obtained by my master Ritschl for
publication in his _Rheinisches Museum._[4] (Ritschl--and I say it
in all reverence--was the only genial scholar that I have ever met.
He possessed that pleasant kind of depravity which distinguishes us
Thuringians, and which makes even a German sympathetic--even in the
pursuit of truth we prefer to avail ourselves of roundabout ways. In
saying this I do not mean to underestimate in any way my Thuringian
brother, the intelligent Leopold von Ranke....)


You may be wondering why I should actually have related all these
trivial and, according to traditional accounts, insignificant details
to you; such action can but tell against me, more particularly if I
am fated to figure in great causes. To this I reply that these trivial
matters--diet, locality, climate, and one's mode of recreation, the
whole casuistry of; self-love--are inconceivably more important than,
all that which has hitherto been held in high esteem! It is precisely
in this quarter that we must begin to learn afresh. All those things
which mankind has valued with such earnestness heretofore are not even
real; they are mere creations of fancy, or, more strictly speaking,
_lies_ born of the evil instincts of diseased and, in the deepest
sense, noxious natures--all the concepts, "God," "soul," "virtue,"
"sin," "Beyond," "truth," "eternal life." ... But the greatness of
human nature, its "divinity," was sought for in them.... All questions
of politics, of social order, of education, have been falsified, root
and branch, owing to the fact that the most noxious men have been
taken for great men, and that people were taught to despise the small
things, or rather the fundamental things, of life. If I now choose to
compare myself with those creatures who have hitherto been honoured as
the first among men, the difference becomes obvious. I do not reckon
the so-called "first" men even as human beings--for me they are the
excrements of mankind, the products of disease and of the instinct
of revenge: they are so many monsters laden with rottenness, so many
hopeless incurables, who avenge themselves on life.... I wish to be
the opposite of these people: it is my privilege to have the very
sharpest discernment for every sign of healthy instincts. There is no
such thing as a morbid trait in me; even in times of serious illness
I have never grown morbid, and you might seek in vain for a trace

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Text Comparison with Thoughts out of Season, Part I

Page 19
Nietzsche's infatuation we have explained; the consequent idealisation of the object of his infatuation he himself has confessed; we have also pointed certain passages which we believe show beyond a doubt that almost everything to be found in The Case of Wagner and Nietzsche contra Wagner was already subconscious in our author, long before he had begun to feel even a coolness towards his hero: let those who think our interpretation of the said passages is either strained or unjustified turn to the literature to which we have referred and judge for themselves.
Page 26
Nobody, however, is more disliked by him than the man who regards him as a Philistine, and tells him what he is--namely, the barrier in the way of all powerful men and creators, the labyrinth for all who doubt and go astray, the swamp for all the weak.
Page 27
We have our culture, say her sons; for have we not our "classics"? Not only is the foundation there, but the building already stands upon it--we ourselves constitute that building.
Page 46
But, in order to fill the measure of his ingenuous encomiums, Strauss even arrogates to himself the right of commending old Kant: he speaks of the latter's General History of the Heavens of the Year 1755 as of "a work which has always appeared to me not less important than his later Critique of Pure Reason.
Page 57
ahead at such a frantic speed in Germany, that one would almost think the scientific world were a factory, in which every minute wasted meant a fine.
Page 63
Or is "new belief" merely an ironical concession to ordinary parlance? This almost seems to be the case; for here and there he actually allows "new belief" and "newer science" to be interchangeable terms, as for instance on page II, where he asks on which side, whether on that of the ancient orthodoxy or of modern science, "exist more of the obscurities and insufficiencies unavoidable in human speculation.
Page 66
" The spirit of such eulogies, as the above clearly shows, is not quite so subtle in regard to judging of what an author is able to do as in regard to what he wishes.
Page 76
For the rest of the book is entirely lacking in offensiveness --that quality which alone, as we have seen, is productive, and which our classical author has himself reckoned among the positive virtues.
Page 90
Neither the creative nor the militant artist in him was ever diverted from his purpose by learning and culture.
Page 94
In order even to realise how far the attitude of the arts towards life is a sign of their decline, and how far our theatres are a disgrace to those who build and visit them, everything must be learnt over again, and that which is usual and commonplace should be regarded as something unusual and complicated.
Page 95
"Where are.
Page 97
be done to us than to suppose that we are concerned with art alone, as though it were merely a means of healing or stupefying us, which we make use of in order to rid our consciousness of all the misery that still remains in our midst.
Page 105
Formerly financiers were looked down upon with honest scorn, even though they were recognised as needful; for it was generally admitted that every society must have its viscera.
Page 114
These means were ever within his reach: everything that moved him deeply he desired and could also produce; at every stage in his career he understood just as much of his predecessors as he himself was able to create,.
Page 122
But when people tried to follow Wagner's instructions to the letter, they proceeded so clumsily and timidly that they were not incapable of representing the midnight riot in the second act of the Meistersingers by a group of ballet-dancers.
Page 123
It seemed almost as though a people otherwise earnest and reflecting had decided to maintain an attitude of systematic levity only towards its most serious artist, and to make him the privileged recipient of all the vulgarity, thoughtlessness, clumsiness, and malice of which the German nature is capable.
Page 125
children of an artificial ulture would have us believe; but it is in itself a thought: it conveys an idea of the world, but through the medium of a chain of events, actions, and pains.
Page 127
The latter plays upon the feelings by means of words and ideas, and in this respect it is under the dominion of the laws of rhetoric.
Page 132
In this behalf, his inventiveness in small things as in great, his omniscience and industry are such, that at the sight of one of Wagner's scores one is almost led to believe that no real work or effort had ever existed before his time.
Page 141
Wagner has nothing to do with such a hope; he is no Utopian.