Confederate Portraits

Confederate Portraits

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Confederate Portraits

Confederate Portraits

Read FREE!

Excerpt

What has impressed me most in revising these portraits is their lack of finality. Nous sommes des êtres mobiles et nous jugeons des êtres mobiles. No two men will take the same view of another man. Traits which seem most significant to some, to others seem negligible. Some will overlook a little vice for a great virtue, while to others the little vice makes even the great virtue an object of suspicion.

Again, one may seize justly, yet be led away in the presentation. It is difficult to give various qualities their exact proportion and emphasis. One may stress a marked trait too strongly and so make it too marked and spoil that balance which is everywhere essential to the truth of nature. One may establish one's portrait in a tone which is not perfectly suited to the temper of the subject. Thus, the portraits here given of Johnston and of Stuart are keyed quite differently. I cannot see the two men otherwise. But others may feel that I have struck a false note in one case, or in the other, or in both.

This difficulty, or impossibility, of attaining anything final may make psychography seem a useless and unprofitable trt. Such it would be, if finality were its object. It is not. The psychographer does not attempt to say the complete and permanent word about any of his subjects. He knows that such an attempt would be in-

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