Most men, even the most accomplished, are of limited faculties; every one sets a value on certain qualities in himself and others: these alone he is willing to favor, these alone will he have cultivated.
A man’s name is not like a mantle, which merely hangs about him, and which one perchance may safely twitch and pull, but a perfectly fitting garment, which like the skin has grown over and over him, at which one cannot rake and scrape without injuring the man himself.
We cannot too soon convince ourselves how easily we may be dispensed with in the world. What important personages we imagine ourselves to be! We think that we alone are the life of the circle in which we move; in our absence, we fancy that life, existence, breath will come to a general pause, and, alas, the gap which we leave is scarcely perceptible, so quickly is it filled again; nay, it is often the place, if not of something better, at least for something more agreeable.