(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Children's Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "The Note Books Of Samuel Butler"

The Life of the World to Come   367

famous in my own lifetime, I have, no hesitation about which
I should prefer. I will willingly pay the few hundreds of pounds
which the neglect of my works costs me in order to be let
alone and not plagued by the people who would come round
me if I were known. The probability is that I shall remain
after my death as obscure as I am now ; if this be so, the
obscurity will, no doubt, be merited, and if not, my books will
work not only as well without my having been known in my
lifetime but a great deal better ; my follies and blunders will
the better escape notice to the enhancing of the value of any-
thing that may be found in my books. The only two things
I should greatly care about if I had more money are a few
more country outings and a little more varied and better
cooked food. [1882.]

P.S.—I have long since obtained everything that a reason-
able man can wish for, [1895.]

Posthumous Honours

I see Cecil Rhodes has just been saying that he was a
lucky man, inasmuch as such honours as are now being paid
him generally come to a man after his death and not before it.
This is all very well for a politician whose profession immerses
him in public life, but the older I grow the more satisfied
I am that there can be no greater misfortune for a man of
letters or of contemplation than to be recognised in his own
lifetime. Fortunately the greater man he is, and hence the
greater the misfortune he would incur, the less likelihood
there is that he will incur it. [1897.]

Posthumous Recognition

Shall I be remembered after death ? I sometimes think
and hope so. But I trust I may not be found out (if I ever
am found out, and if I ought to be found out at all) before my
death. It would bother me very much and I should be much
happier and better as I am. [1880.]

P.S.—This note I leave unaltered. I am glad to see that
I had so much sense thirteen years ago. What I thought then,
I think now, only with greater commence and confirmation,
[1893-]