A blog dedicated to providing quotes by and posts relating to one of the most influential (and quotable!) authors of the twentieth century, G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936). If you do not know much about GKC, I suggest visiting the webpage of the American Chesterton Society as well as this wonderful Chesterton Facebook Page by a fellow Chestertonian

I also have created a list detailing examples of the influence of Chesterton if you are interested, that I work on from time to time.

(Moreover, for a list of short GKC quotes, I have created one here, citing the sources)

"...Stevenson had found that the secret of life lies in laughter and humility."

-Heretics (1905)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

"Philanthropy, as far as I can see, is rapidly becoming the recognisable mark of a wicked man."

"Gifts of the Millionare"

The above is a link to an online article from the July 20, 1909 edition (archived obviously) of the Otautau Standard and Wallace County Chronicle, but it had originally appeared in the May 29, 1909 edition of the Illustrated London News (named in the Ignatius Press collection of such articles in GKC's collected works: "Whitewashing the Philanthropists") Here is how it begins:

Philanthropy, as far as I can see, is rapidly becoming the recognisable mark of a wicked man. We have often sneered at the superstition and cowardice of the medieval barons who thought that giving lands to the Church would wipe out the memory of their raids or robberies; but modern capitalists seem to have exactly the same notion; with this not unimportant addition, that in the case of the capitalists the memory of the robberies is really wiped out. This, after all, seems to be the chief difference between the monks who took land and gave pardons and the charity organisers who take money and give praise: the difference is that the monks wrote down in their books and chronicles, "Received three hundred acres from a bad baron"; whereas the modern experts and editors record the three hundred acres and call him a good baron.
(go to the link for the rest of the article):


grubbybest said...

Thank you, Mike, for the Chesterton quote about philanthropists. Patrick Keefe uses the quote to introduce his book "Empire of Pain", about the Sackler (Perdue Pharma) fortune.

Mike said...

Thanks for letting me know! I was not aware of that.