Advice for Men from the 1850s
"History is a cyclic poem written by Time upon the memories of man." - Percy Bysshe ShelleyBetween 1850 and 1860, an article called "Maxims to Guide a Young Man" became very popular and appeared in many newspapers. The guide stated -
- Keep good company or none.
- Never be idle. If your hands cannot be usefully employed, attend to the cultivation of your mind.
- Always speak the truth.
- Make few promises. Live up to all your engagements.
- Have no very intimate friends.
- Keep your own secrets, if you have any.
- When you speak to a person, look him in the face.
- Good company and conversation are the very sinews of virtue.
- Good character is above all things else.
- Never listen to loose or infidel conversation.
- You had better be poisoned in your blood than in your principles.
- Your character cannot be essentially injured except by your own acts.
- If any one speak evil of you, let your life be so virtuous that none will believe him.
- Always speak and act as in the presence of God.
- Drink no kind of intoxicating liquors.
- Ever live (misfortune excepted) within your income.
- When you retire to bed, think over what you have been doing during the day.
- Never speak lightly of religion.
- Make no haste to be rich, if you would prosper.
- Small and steady gains give competency with tranquillity of mind.
- Never play at any game of chance.
- Avoid temptation, through fear that you may not withstand it.
- Earn your money before you spend it.
- Never run into debt, unless you see a way to get out again.
- Never borrow if you can possibly avoid it.
- Do not marry till you are able to support a wife.
- Never speak evil of any one.
- Be just before you are generous.
- Keep yourself innocent, if you would be happy.
- Save when you are young, to spend when you are old.
- Often think of death, and your accountability to God.
- Read over the above maxims at least once a week.
Related Notes »
"The imagination imitates. It is the critical spirit that creates." - Oscar WildeAll learning is imitation. Creativity too begins from imitation. Imitate. Improve. You'll start becoming more original. (The picture? It's a creative solution to handling CD's when you lose their covers. Start imitating ...)
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