Thomas Hobbes and the Political Philosophy of Glory

By Gabriella Slomp | Go to book overview

Chapter 4
Glory: Parallels and Intersections

Introduction

Aubrey reports that Hobbes's 'contemplation was much more than his reading. He was wont to say that if he had read as much as other men, he should have known no more than other men.' ( Brief Lives, 157). Although Skinner is probably correct in not taking Hobbes's boasting too seriously, nevertheless the fact remains that Hobbes attached importance not so much to his erudition, but rather to the independence of his thought. Whereas, for example, Bacon in the Essays openly relies on the wisdom of past masters to support his views, nowhere in his works Hobbes follows this practice. His interpretation of human psychology is presented as the result of first-hand observation and of independent reflection, unaffected by the received wisdom of mankind. This approach makes the search for the sources of Hobbesian glory extremely difficult and never conclusive.

Even so it is important to try to locate Hobbes's concept of glory defined in Chapter 2 on the map of the history of political thought with the aim to trace its origins and hence assess its originality. In this chapter I shall first review the most important sources of Hobbesian glory as highlighted in the literature, and secondly I shall concentrate on the text that in my view provides the deepest insight into Hobbes's concept of glory, namely Thucydides' History. My contention is that although in the works of Aristotle, Plato, Tacitus, Cicero, Augustine, Machiavelli, Castiglione, and Bacon (to name but a few), there are indeed some elements that find an echo in Hobbesian glory, it is only in Thucydides that we find in clear and unambiguous terms both a psychological analysis of human nature and an assessment of the political implications of ambition that mirror closely Hobbes's own argument.


4.1 The Sources of Hobbesian Glory

Hobbes's concept of glory is, of course, far from being completely original. It can be argued that there are some interesting similarities between Hobbes's glory and Aristotle's honour, aristocratic virtue,

-45-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Thomas Hobbes and the Political Philosophy of Glory
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 194

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.