JACOB BURCKHARDT on the Supposed Moral Superiority of the Present

Jacob Burckhardt, Force and Freedom: Reflections on History (New York: Pantheon, 1964), p. 150:

The arrogant belief in the moral superiority of the present, however, has only developed of late years; it makes no exceptions, even in favor of classical antiquity. The secret mental reservation is that money-making is today easier and safer than ever. Were that menaced, the exaltation it engenders would collapse.

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