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Egoism   Listen
noun
Egoism  n.  
1.
(Philos.) The doctrine of certain extreme adherents or disciples of Descartes and Johann Gottlieb Fichte, which finds all the elements of knowledge in the ego and the relations which it implies or provides for.
2.
Excessive love and thought of self; the habit of regarding one's self as the center of every interest; selfishness; opposed to altruism.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Egoism" Quotes from Famous Books



... region the dead have entered. My mind at that time was filled with a mingled conceit, amounting at moments almost to an intoxication, and a desire for knowledge. I reveled in my power when preaching, but was haunted by genuine doubts as to truth. My egoism longed to make an utter slave of Chichester (I nearly always lusted to push my influence to its limit). But my desire to know made me conceive the pushing of it in a direction, in this instance, which would perhaps gratify a less unworthy desire than that merely ...
— The Dweller on the Threshold • Robert Smythe Hichens

... dark, half-smiling eyes enticed him, inspired an unquenchable thirst. And his was one of those natures which, encountering spiritual difficulty, at once jib off, seek anodynes, try to bandage wounded egoism with excess—a spoiled child, with the desperations and the inherent pathos, the something repulsive and the something lovable that belong to all such. Having wished for this moon, and got her, he now did not know what to do with her, kept ...
— Forsyte Saga • John Galsworthy

... you I had not that love to give; not—as you have so unjustly hinted—because I had given it to another man, but because I was then incapable of love. I had no thought of any one beyond myself. I was miserably ignorant and egoistic. It was in ignorance and egoism that I took the position of your wife, but I think from the first that I have tried, as I could, to fulfil its obligations. I have tried to be and to appear what you would wish. And I am not unmindful of the honor and distinction ...
— A Manifest Destiny • Julia Magruder

... measure of the justice democracy threatened to deal to itself. Without demanding absolutism I do desire a predominant democratic character in our national enterprises, rather than a confused muddle or struggle of interests where nothing really emerges except the egoism of those who struggle. ...
— National Being - Some Thoughts on an Irish Polity • (A.E.)George William Russell

... veil of old rose hung above the mountain tops. Hand in hand they watched the rising sun pierce through it and flood the crotches of the hills with God's splendid canvases. It was a part of love's egoism that all this glory of the young day seemed an accompaniment to the song of joy that pulsed ...
— The Highgrader • William MacLeod Raine

... man to whom she has given herself. Was any of this scorn lacking in the book? Oh, no! and you cannot deny it, for the book is under your eyes. Rodolphe, who has shown himself so vile, gives to her a last proof of egoism and cowardice. She has said to him: "Take me! Carry me away! I am stifling; I can no longer breathe in my husband's house, to which I have brought shame and misfortune." He hesitates; she insists. Finally, he promises, and the next day ...
— The Public vs. M. Gustave Flaubert • Various

... back with an imperceptible shrug. He was disappointed but not surprised: there was in Hyde a vein of hard selfishness— not a weakness, for the egoism which openly says "I will consult my own convenience first" is too scornful of public opinion to be called weak, but an acquired defensive quality on which argument would have been thrown away. Val's arm dropped inert, he was tired, not in body alone, but by the strain of ...
— Nightfall • Anthony Pryde

... loathing for life, an illuminated contempt for men and women, had long ago taken possession of him. This philosophic attitude was the product of his egoism. He felt himself the center of life and it became his nature to revolt against all evidences of life that existed outside himself. In this manner he grew to hate, or rather to feel an impotent disgust ...
— Fantazius Mallare - A Mysterious Oath • Ben Hecht

... keenness of his ecclesiastical training, guessed the intensity of the evil produced by Luna. But for the moment his egoism was stronger than his reflection. Let them talk—what did it matter? It was only a little ebullition of pride in those people, nothing more. All words and wind in the head. Meanwhile they had better not ...
— The Shadow of the Cathedral • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... present, the spirit of the time, angel of the dawn who is neither night nor day; they found him seated on a lime sack filled with bones, clad in the mantle of egoism, and shivering in terrible cold. The anguish of death entered into the soul at the sight of that specter, half mummy and half fetus; they approached it as the traveler who is shown at Strasburg the daughter of an old count of Sarvenden, embalmed in her bride's dress: that childish skeleton ...
— The Confession of a Child of The Century • Alfred de Musset

... than he cared in his bohemian days when he was readier to give than to take. He loved his friends blindly. He did not hate his enemies, he despised them. He had all the manly virtues, courage, generosity, modesty. Yes, modesty; for egoism such as he had was not foolish pride. His egotism was only his own force asserting itself. His friendship was almost foolish. He praised too generously. He was inclined to help everybody he could and I am sure that he never assailed anyone ...
— Volume 12 of Brann The Iconoclast • William Cowper Brann

... of the lunch with the Duvidney ladies. He desired to be alone, to question himself fasting, to sound the deed he had done; for he had struck on a suspicion of selfishness in it: and though Love must needs be an egoism, Love is no warrant for the doing of a hurt to the creature beloved. Thoughts upon Skepsey and the tale of his Matilda Pridden's labours in poor neighbourhoods, to which he had been inattentive during the journey down to the sea, invaded him; they were persistent. He was a worthy man, having within ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... the favour of our middle classes, those who best represent their rather narrow ideas, their somewhat prescribed views, their rather superficial scepticism, and their at times somewhat excessive egoism, display profound alarm at this new power which they see growing; and to combat the disorder in men's minds they are addressing despairing appeals to those moral forces of the Church for which they formerly professed ...
— The Crowd • Gustave le Bon

... psychic and subconscious tendencies were anti-idealistic. And apart from this divergence of congenital tendencies Mr. Darrow and Prof. Foster had a great deal in common. They both loved argument. They both doted upon seizing an idea and energizing it with their egoism. They ...
— A Thousand and One Afternoons in Chicago • Ben Hecht

... who knew him to say whether they ever knew any other man so free from this great human infirmity as Tennyson. The way in which his simplicity of nature would manifest itself was, in some instances, most remarkable. Though, of course, he had his share of that egoism of the artist without which imaginative genius may become sterile, it seemed impossible for him to realize what a transcendent position he took among contemporary writers all over the world. “Poets,” he once said ...
— Old Familiar Faces • Theodore Watts-Dunton

... the habit of making life a consecutive series of absorbing preoccupations are numerous. The practice narrows the sphere of one's interests and activities, tends to introspective egoism, and robs the present of much of its savour. But, now and again, it has its compensations. Save for a single week-end of rather pensive moping, the end of my love affair changed the colour of my outlook but very little indeed. Its place was promptly ...
— The Record of Nicholas Freydon - An Autobiography • A. J. (Alec John) Dawson

... for, as Emerson says: "In the woods we return to reason and faith. Then I feel that nothing can befall me in life—no disgrace, no calamity (leaving me my eyes)—which Nature cannot repair. Standing on the bare ground—my head bathed by the blithe air and uplifted into infinite space—all mean egoism vanishes. . . . I am the lover of uncontained and ...
— The Drama of the Forests - Romance and Adventure • Arthur Heming

... the object did not inspire in us a more lively gratitude than those which we spread over all mankind, we should probably experience few preferences, and extend few preferences to others, and in that case egoism would grow to its ...
— Diderot and the Encyclopaedists - Volume II. • John Morley

... by means of formulae, and casts them, without further trouble, into duly lettered pigeon-holes, the Evangelical curate might seem to be doing simply what all other men like to do—carrying out objects which were identified not only with his theory, which is but a kind of secondary egoism, but also with the primary egoism of his feelings. Opposition may become sweet to a man when he has christened it persecution: a self-obtrusive, over-hasty reformer complacently disclaiming all merit, while his friends call him a martyr, ...
— Scenes of Clerical Life • George Eliot

... shutting out things is all very well, but it has one simple corollary—that from everything that we shut out we are ourselves shut out. When we shut our door on the wind, it would be equally true to say that the wind shuts its door on us. Whatever virtues a triumphant egoism really leads to, no one can reasonably pretend that it leads to knowledge. Turning a beggar from the door may be right enough, but pretending to know all the stories the beggar might have narrated is pure nonsense; and this is practically the claim of the egoism which thinks that self-assertion ...
— The Defendant • G.K. Chesterton

... also, is her intense egoism and her abundant self-assertion under all circumstances. It often seemed to us as if for her the world revolved, with passing show, around a pivot from which she regarded it as existing only for what it meant ...
— Pathology of Lying, Etc. • William and Mary Healy

... ancient priests of sacrifice sought to read the future in the hearts of men, he had found nothing in the entrails of his chimera. Scorning a sentiment so wholly personal: "Glory," said he, "is but beatified egoism." ...
— Louis Lambert • Honore de Balzac

... with this "not marble nor the gilded monuments" theme, the sixteenth century would quite eclipse the nineteenth or twentieth. But the egoism of our writers goes much further than this parental satisfaction in their offspring. It seems to have needed the intense individualism of Rousseau's philosophy, and of German idealism, especially the conception of "irony," or the ...
— The Poet's Poet • Elizabeth Atkins

... less introspective egoism would not have bestowed a thought at such a moment on the possibility of the Vicomte, M. de Comaing, or anyone else appearing on the scene. But Frederick had been too many times the dupe of these very glances to compromise himself by a ...
— Sentimental Education, Volume II - The History of a Young Man • Gustave Flaubert

... consider the poor little butterflies as creatures of a different species from their wives and daughters—a species provided by a material Providence, who supplies their other appetites. The poor little butterflies are glad, for a short time, to put up with stupidity and egoism for the sake of a temporary relief from sordid discomfort and gloom. Of course, I am not speaking of the women who, without economic pressure, lead an illicit life. There are a few of these women who are more than able to protect themselves, and occasionally ...
— Women Workers in Seven Professions • Edith J. Morley

... the wisdom of others on the essential question. Strange, is it not? But quite a common experience, I believe. Besides, I don't actually care twopence what any other philosopher has replied to my question. In this, each man must be his own philosopher. There is an instinct in the profound egoism of human nature which prevents us from accepting such ready-made answers. What is it to us what Plato thought? Nothing. And thus the question remains ever new, and ever unanswered, and ever of dramatic interest. The singular, the highly singular thing is—and here I arrive ...
— Mental Efficiency - And Other Hints to Men and Women • Arnold Bennett

... three factors against which the old General has had to fight all his life long—against well-meaning hesitation, against hard-hearted egoism, and against the idle indifference born of ignorance. And these three streams that have flowed against him in every part of the world have not been able to hold him back. To those who think he has only become an important man, and to those who measure a man's worth by the outer honours ...
— The Authoritative Life of General William Booth • George Scott Railton

... Mammy Antonia managed to live in the solitude of the palace, isolated from public gaze, like castaways. The offerings in money were continually becoming more belated. The payes, with that rustic egoism which shuns misfortune, became indolent in fulfilling his obligations. He knew that the nominal possessor of the estate was not the real owner of Son Febrer, and frequently, on arriving at the city with his gifts, he changed his route and left them at the houses of his creditors, ...
— The Dead Command - From the Spanish Los Muertos Mandan • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... then, that all is ended; it seems that, with the cessation of the worship and mystification of humanity by itself, the theological problem is for ever put aside. The gods have gone: there is nothing left for man but to grow weary and die in his egoism. What frightful solitude extends around me, and forces its way to the bottom of my soul! My exaltation resembles annihilation; and, since I made myself a God, I seem but a shadow. It is possible that I am still ...
— The Philosophy of Misery • Joseph-Pierre Proudhon

... "The Wrecker" are inspired by his sojourn in French Bohemia; his journeys are recorded in "Travels with a Donkey" and "An Inland Voyage"; while his South Sea sketches, which appeared in periodicals, deal with his Oceanic adventures. He was the most autobiographical of authors, with an egoism nearly as complete, and to us as delightful, as the egoism of Montaigne. Thus, the proper sources of information about the author of "Kidnapped" ...
— Adventures among Books • Andrew Lang

... above all from spontaneity—it is an improvisation. Friendship, on the contrary, is, so to say, built up. It is a sentiment that progresses with circumspection. It is the egoism of the mind, whilst love is ...
— Bohemians of the Latin Quarter • Henry Murger

... is of error in the book is the result of egoism; whatever of truth and love is the work of Him who has brought me up out of the marshes and lowlands, and caused me to drink at the crystal fountains of the ...
— A California Girl • Edward Eldridge

... animal which is not conscious of a self, these appetites will neither be selfish nor unselfish in the sense in which we apply these terms to man. Where there is no ego there can be no alter-ego, and therefore neither egoism nor altruism. The idea of the self as a permanent unity to which all the different tendencies are referred, and the rise in consequence of a new desire of pleasure, distinct from the desires of particular objects, are essential to egoism. The idea ...
— The Contemporary Review, Volume 36, September 1879 • Various

... must not talk about bread and cheese, for that is talking shop; we must not talk about death, for that is depressing; we must not talk about birth, for that is indelicate. It cannot last. Something must break this strange indifference, this strange dreamy egoism, this strange loneliness of millions in a crowd. Something must break it. Why should it not be you and I? Can you do ...
— The Napoleon of Notting Hill • Gilbert K. Chesterton

... earned it by labour, by intensity, insensibility to fatigue, the "roughing it" of the mind. He did not want to rough it. Nor was he greatly talented. But he was just sharp enough to see, as he believed, a short and perhaps easy way to a thing that his conceit desired and that his egoism felt it could love. Being only a boy, he had never, till this time, deliberately looked on life as anything. Now he set himself, in his, at first, youthful way, to look on it as burlesque—to see it in ...
— The Folly Of Eustace - 1896 • Robert S. Hichens

... quite recently this portrait's features had been well-nigh extinguished under the accumulated soot and tarnish of many decades, but Eben had revered them with that veneration of ancestor-worship which is an egoism overflowing the boundaries of a single generation. Lately Conscience had had the picture restored and now the renovated forebear, almost jaunty in his refurbishing, looked down on his descendant and the descendant's ...
— The Tyranny of Weakness • Charles Neville Buck

... beautiful. The story ended with the lonely and terrible surrender of her religion. He was profoundly interested. Once or twice he was appalled. Did he take this woman, he must assume responsibility for every part of her. She was so wholly without egoism that she would give herself up without reservation and expect him to guide her. That would be all very well with the ordinary woman; but with a nature of high ideals, and possibly of transcendent passions,—was he equal to the task? But in his present mood ...
— The Californians • Gertrude Franklin Horn Atherton

... unmistakably as the most extravagant of objective superstitions. In brief, what he saw in Christian ethics, under all the poetry and all the fine show of altruism and all the theoretical benefits therein, was a democratic effort to curb the egoism of the strong—a conspiracy of the chandala against the free functioning of their superiors, nay, against the free progress of mankind. This theory is the thing he exposes in "The Antichrist," bringing to the business his amazingly ...
— The Antichrist • F. W. Nietzsche

... take into his arms this dusky, brown-cheeked sweetheart of his, became aware that he did not want her to let his arguments persuade her. The fierce, tender egoism of her love filled him ...
— The Sheriff's Son • William MacLeod Raine

... when it is not impaired by disease, is, in the main, dominated by a boundless egoism. Let us first consider those whose wills are impaired by disease. Among drunkards and the degenerate generally the power of sustained volition is often as good as gone. Nothing can be more pitiful or hopeless ...
— Crime and Its Causes • William Douglas Morrison

... unwilling to part from her son, and yet aware that a young man of the viscount's age required the full exercise of his liberty, had chosen this habitation for Albert. There were not lacking, however, evidences of what we may call the intelligent egoism of a youth who is charmed with the indolent, careless life of an only son, and who lives as it were in a gilded cage. By means of the two windows looking into the street, Albert could see all that passed; ...
— The Count of Monte Cristo • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... had gone Hermione remained at first where she was. But Gaspare had effectually changed her mood, had driven away what she chose to call her egoism, had concentrated all her thoughts on Vere. He had never before spoken like this about the child. It was a sudden waking up on his part to the fact that Vere ...
— A Spirit in Prison • Robert Hichens

... fields. Berlin, at its strongest, will never be anything but a whirlpool, which seeks its own centre, and is sucked down. It would only narrow all the rest of Europe, as it has already narrowed all the rest of Germany. There is a spirit of diseased egoism, which at last makes all things spin upon one pin-point in the brain. It is a spirit expressed more often in the slangs than in the tongues of men. The English call it a fad. I do not know what the Italians call it; the ...
— The Appetite of Tyranny - Including Letters to an Old Garibaldian • G.K. Chesterton

... that if our intellectual classes are attracted to the land and yearn for a farm, it's a good thing. But these farms are just the same as six feet of earth. To retreat from town, from the struggle, from the bustle of life, to retreat and bury oneself in one's farm—it's not life, it's egoism, laziness, it's monasticism of a sort, but monasticism without good works. A man does not need six feet of earth or a farm, but the whole globe, all nature, where he can have room to display all the qualities and peculiarities of ...
— The Wife and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... myself, "Onward!" because I have studied, more than you give me credit for, the geography of the great summits of humanity, which you tell me are so cold. Did you not say that Goethe and Byron were the colossi of egoism and poetry? Ah, my friend, there you shared a mistake into which superficial minds are apt to fall; but in you perhaps it came from generosity, false modesty, or the desire to escape from me. Vulgar minds may mistake the effect ...
— Modeste Mignon • Honore de Balzac

... one reason why we are seldom able to comfort our neighbours with our words is that our goodwill gets adulterated, in spite of ourselves, before it can pass our lips. We can send black puddings and pettitoes without giving them a flavour of our own egoism; but language is a stream that is almost sure to smack of a mingled soil. There was a fair proportion of kindness in Raveloe; but it was often of a beery and bungling sort, and took the shape least allied ...
— Silas Marner - The Weaver of Raveloe • George Eliot

... pardon, old man. It isn't that at all. The truth is"—and his voice broke—"I have lied to myself and to the world these many years. Much of it hasn't been my fault, but I must pay the price just the same. I am blind. That has led me to a sort of clamorous egoism which carried me on and on until I came to feel that I was really doing something. At last, I know that I am a narrow human parasite, worthless, utterly worthless. A blind, clinging, grasping, vagrant beast, fed upon the mercy ...
— Claire - The Blind Love of a Blind Hero, By a Blind Author • Leslie Burton Blades

... social of all Socialists; and I pity the Socialist state that tries to manage him. This anarchism of his is not a question of thinking for himself; every decent man thinks for himself; it would be highly immodest to think for anybody else. Nor is it any instinctive licence or egoism; as I have said before, he is a man of peculiarly acute public conscience. The unmanageable part of him, the fact that he cannot be conceived as part of a crowd or as really and invisibly helping a ...
— George Bernard Shaw • Gilbert K. Chesterton

... with something bordering on relief. Here was, at least, a step which he thought blameless; here was a way out of his troubles. He sat down to write to Seraphina; and his anger blazed. The tale of his forbearances mounted, in his eyes, to something monstrous; still more monstrous, the coldness, egoism, and cruelty that had required and thus requited them. The pen which he had taken shook in his hand. He was amazed to find his resignation fled, but it was gone beyond his recall. In a few white-hot words, he bade adieu, dubbing desperation by the name of love, and calling his wrath forgiveness; ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 7 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... picture of the brilliant Court at which she was for long the most lustrous ornament. It is only by stray touches, a casual remark, a chance phrase, that we, as it were, gauge her temperament in all its wiliness, its egoism, its love of supremacy, and its shallow worldly wisdom. Yet it could have been no ordinary woman that held the handsome Louis so long her captive. The fair Marquise was more than a mere leader of wit and ...
— Marguerite de Navarre - Memoirs of Marguerite de Valois Queen of Navarre • Marguerite de Navarre

... arrangement had been contrived by the hypocrite, Adhemar Meydieux. He did not mistake the Count's infatuation for his goddaughter. A marriage of such wealth and aristocratic connections flattered his foolish egoism, and he was sworn to attempt everything that would bring about ...
— The Idol of Paris • Sarah Bernhardt

... time it was of no great antiquity; for, but a very few years back, Henry had been a miniature tyrant too, and ruled it over his kingdom of six sisters with all the hideous egoism of a pampered "son and heir." Although in the very middle class of society into which Henry Mesurier was born, the dignity of eldest son is one but very contingently connected with tangible inheritance, it is none the ...
— Young Lives • Richard Le Gallienne

... has been for a generation in a comatose state in the matter of social ideas. It is high time that our college women should stand solid against the blind superstition, whose mother is fear and whose father is egoism, that women can not be ...
— The History of Woman Suffrage, Volume V • Ida Husted Harper

... and enterprises which in themselves are ethically {213} unjustifiable, and to which the only answer could be, "Thou thoughtest that I was altogether such an one as thyself"; prayers which carry the spirit of egoism, of competition, of bargaining even into our relations with the Most High; prayers of an imprecatory character such as meet and shock us in some of the psalms. How could these and their like possibly be granted by a just and ...
— Problems of Immanence - Studies Critical and Constructive • J. Warschauer

... could afford to have them, and he considered it a duty as well as a glorious privilege to pour his individuality into a new being. It was Nature's way from a true and healthy egoism towards altruism. But she travelled on another road and made jackets for the babies of strangers. Was that a better, a nobler thing to do? It stood for so much, and yet was nothing but fear of the burden of motherhood, and it was cheaper and less fatiguing to sit in the corner of a comfortable ...
— Married • August Strindberg

... sovereign; but they went heartily with Pitt in pronouncing the exercise of the right of taxation in the case of the American colonists to be thoroughly impolitic and inexpedient. No practical difference, therefore, existed upon the important question of the hour. But Pitt's prodigious egoism, stimulated by the mischievous counsels of men of the stamp of Lord Shelburne, prevented the fusion of the only two sections of the Whig party that were at once able, enlightened and disinterested enough to carry on the government efficiently, to check the arbitrary ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 4, Part 4 - "Bulgaria" to "Calgary" • Various

... are not in much danger of servitude to tradition in literature to-day. We no longer imitate the ancients; we only imitate each other. On the whole, we wish there was rather more sense of the tradition in contemporary writing. The danger of arbitrary egoism is quite as great as the danger of classicism. Luckily, Young, in stating the case against the classicists, has at the same time stated perfectly the case for familiarity with the classics. "It is," he declares, "but a sort of noble contagion, from a general familiarity with their ...
— The Art of Letters • Robert Lynd

... was one of Banneker's elements of strength, which subsequently won for him his unique place, that he was always too much interested in estimating the man to whom he was talking, to consider even what the other might think of him. It was at once a form of egoism, and the total negation of egotism. It made him the least self-conscious of human beings. And old Horace Vanney, pompous, vain, the most self-conscious of his genus, felt, though he could not analyze, the ...
— Success - A Novel • Samuel Hopkins Adams

... of what was going on. His ferocious egoism, his unbounded ambition was even now calculating what advantages to himself might accrue from this idea of the new religion and of the National fete, what personal ...
— The Elusive Pimpernel • Baroness Emmuska Orczy

... when she wound her wonderful hair round her throat and drew it tighter and tighter, and had cried out to the beloved mother she had never known. But her inborn, her cultivated, her almost invincible egoism, had not even then been scattered by the bitter helplessness ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... been a little hard on him about Rose, Tanqueray thought. It was as if she accused him, or rather his genius, of a monstrous egoism. Surely that only meant that it was indomitably sound and sane. A reckless sanity it had, a soundness capable of any risks. There never was any man who so defied the forces of dissolution, who had so profound an instinct ...
— The Creators - A Comedy • May Sinclair

... individuality, we cannot do better than regard man in his several mundane relations, supposing that either of these might become the central, actuating focus of his being—his "ruling love," as Swedenborg would call it—displacing his mere egoism, or self-love, thrusting that more to the circumference, and identifying him, so to speak, with that circle of interests to which all his energies and affections relate. Outside this substituted Ego we are to suppose that he has no conscience, no desire, ...
— Five Years Of Theosophy • Various

... seeming contradiction is, however, not altogether difficult. It is to be found partly in the fact that religion, like morality, being counter to those laws which govern the physical world and the animal man,—to the law of egoism and competition and struggle for existence; to the law that "might is right,"—tends from the very nature of the case towards decay and disintegration. The movement of material progress is in some sense a downhill movement. No doubt it evokes much seeming virtue, such as is necessary ...
— The Faith of the Millions (2nd series) • George Tyrrell

... sincerely spent between the Temple and the Vineyard, between devotion and honest labour, producing to one man of all mankind some positive good, is not to be compared with the life which oscillates continuously between egoism and vanity, quackery and cowardice, selfishness and pretence, and which never rises, do what it may, above ...
— The Book of Khalid • Ameen Rihani

... to the grandeur of our hero? Who ever defended, in a war so terrible, a cause so important to the future of the world? Who has striven so hard, suffered so much, so often passed through death? To prove himself equal to his high mission, he has had to rid himself of all egoism, renounce lucre and vain honors, sacrifice family joys; many times he has known the worst extremes of weariness, thirst, hunger and cold; he equals and surpasses in austerity the severest of monks; he practices an obedience and humility that monasteries and Thebaides know nothing ...
— World's War Events, Volume III • Various

... sensations, arrive at a thousand judgments, and make a thousand responses to things about us. In that hour we may experience joy, sorrow, love, hate, envy, malice, sympathy, kindliness, courage, cowardice, pettiness, magnanimity, egoism, altruism, cruelty, mercy—a list, in fact, that reaches on almost interminably. If we only had a spiritual cyclometer attached to us, when the clock strikes ten we should have an interesting moment in noting the record. Only in some such way may each one of us gain a ...
— The Reconstructed School • Francis B. Pearson

... less admirable. In this respect the sovereign husband resembles the Sovereign State. The Sovereign State, as it has survived from Renaissance days in our modern world, may be made up of admirable people, yet as a State they are forced into an attitude of helpless egoism which nowadays fails to commend itself to the outside world, and the tendency of scientific jurists to-day is to deal very critically with the old conception of the Sovereign State. It is so with the husband in the home. He was thrust by ancient tradition into a position ...
— Little Essays of Love and Virtue • Havelock Ellis

... would free yourself from the coils of an intense and selfish egoism that fetter you to the petty cares and trials of your individual existence,—if you would endeavor to forget for a season the woes of Mrs. Gerome, and expend a little more sympathy on the sorrows of others,—if you would resolve ...
— Vashti - or, Until Death Us Do Part • Augusta J. Evans Wilson

... reactions of the individual, necessarily produced by rubbing up again the external world; reactions which become persistent forms of experience that are approximately as self-evident as the libido itself. The degree of egoism which is active in the elementary tendencies must, according to the experience of psychoanalysis, be considered very great. For this purpose I have selected in what follows an excessively egotistical expression for the "titanic" aspect, the retrospective form, of the tendencies; and this ...
— Hidden Symbolism of Alchemy and the Occult Arts • Herbert Silberer

... political activity. He wished everything, but resolved on nothing. At that time his college chums asked him for money for a common cause. He knew what that common cause was, and at the time took no interest in it whatever, but from a feeling of fellowship and egoism gave the money, that it might not be thought that he was afraid. Those who took the money were arrested; a note was found from which it was learned that the money had been given by Kryltzoff. He was arrested, taken to the police station, ...
— The Awakening - The Resurrection • Leo Nikoleyevich Tolstoy

... him into trying to reconstruct the whole story, and especially to imagine how the victims must have felt at the moment of being hurled into the air. There was a charm and a satisfaction in this for him which held him intent on the picture a long time; with all his egoism, he belonged to the numerous class who find more to think about in other people's fate, especially when it is strikingly ...
— The German Classics of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries - Masterpieces of German Literature Vol. 19 • Various

... it the almost monstrous denial and mockery of desire. He could not see it, as he had seen Nora Viveash's mouth, curved forward, eager, shedding flame at the brim, giving itself to lips that longed for it. Philippa's mouth was a flower that opened only at the touch, the thrill of her own gorgeous egoism. He read in it the triumph of Philippa over the flesh and blood of her race. She had nothing in her of the dead. That was the wonder of her. The passion of the dead had built up her body to the semblance and the promise of their own delight; their desire, ...
— The Return of the Prodigal • May Sinclair

... circumstances to be a social concern, and narrows into a personal affair between an individual and his Maker, in which the issue at stake is but his private salvation. Religion in this shape is quite consistent with the most selfish and contracted egoism, and identifies the votary as little in feeling with the rest of his kind ...
— Considerations on Representative Government • John Stuart Mill

... and in the finer air of the New World, of the reaction begun by the German philosophers, and passed along by later French and English thinkers, of man against circumstance, of spirit against form, of the present against the past. What splendid affirmation, what inspiring audacity, what glorious egoism, what generous brag, what sacred impiety! There is an eclat about his words, and a brave challenging of immense odds, that is like an army with banners. It stirs the blood like a bugle-call: beauty, bravery, and a sacred cause,—the ...
— Birds and Poets • John Burroughs

... child masquerading in the garments of a somewhat audacious woman of the world, and he told himself that if she could be placed amidst more favourable surroundings, her natural character would shine forth triumphantly. Moreover, he was by no means free from egoism. He had enough vanity to experience some shadow of gratification, and even though the other candidate was no one more estimable than Colonel Faversham, there was, perhaps, a grain of satisfaction in the knowledge that he might have ...
— Enter Bridget • Thomas Cobb

... the duty of the soul to constantly lend counsel, courage, help, advice, and strength to the creature, and we are conscious of the voice of the soul, which without any sound yet makes itself inwardly heard, calling to the selfishness, the egoism of the creature, urging the higher part of it to come higher and the animal in it to become pure and to subdue itself, saying to it, "Lie down and be quiet, or thou wilt bring disaster to us both." ...
— The Romance of the Soul • Lilian Staveley

... about stamps. It was a subject which Rolfe was always willing to discuss. Crewe declared that he was an ignorant outsider as far as stamps were concerned, but he professed to have a respectful admiration for those who immersed themselves in such a fascinating subject. Rolfe, with the fervid egoism of the collector, talked about stamps for half an hour without recalling that his visitor must have come ...
— The Hampstead Mystery • John R. Watson

... comprehended how far behind she really was in this warfare between egotism and egoism. She began to understand that the first expressed stubbornness and selfishness which eventually would result in unhappiness for all concerned; while egoism meant exactly what Polly was trying to demonstrate for herself—that upright fearless stand for Truth, and the sacrifice of everything that interfered with the perfect working out of the ...
— Polly and Eleanor • Lillian Elizabeth Roy

... vignette was over in a flash, but Annie fell back from the window with all the egoism in her dulled nature torn awake. A more normal mother, of a more refined type, might have thought what she had seen meant nothing but a rude flirtation; Annie's blood told her differently. If she had merely ...
— Secret Bread • F. Tennyson Jesse

... picture of that youth which we see—youth reduced to ineffectiveness by fatalism and by the egoism of the lyric nature which longs to gain dramatic freedom, but cannot achieve it. It is one of a series of portraits, wonderfully traced psychological studies of the Russian dreamers and incompatibles of last mid-century, of which the most ...
— Virgin Soil • Ivan S. Turgenev

... teach an orphaned girl to know that a love which hallows and which blesses, can reach her from the grave in which your cold brutality buried the only being I ever loved! She shall know her mother, from my lips, and not wither in the gray hell of your egoism. I have searched the world over, and ...
— A Fascinating Traitor • Richard Henry Savage

... composed, when one comes to analyse it, of two chemical elements; of what might be called aesthetic egoism and of what we know as philosophic scepticism. Let us deal with the former of these ...
— Suspended Judgments - Essays on Books and Sensations • John Cowper Powys

... thought-force in a potential state, just as the seed of a plant contains in it the life force and the power of growth. According to Vedanta, the subtle body consists of Antahkaranam, that is, the internal organ or the mind substance with its various modifications, mind, intellect, egoism, memory, the five instruments of perception: the powers of seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting and touching; the five instruments of action, such as the powers of seizing, moving, speaking, evacuating, and generating, and the five Pranas. Prana ...
— Reincarnation • Swami Abhedananda

... thus employ themselves, and the fashion of their employment may be reasonably deduced from observation of individuals. The ego even of a modest man will be somewhat rampant; the ego of a conceited one would, barring its capability for infinite expansion, swell up and bust. But this riot of egoism has as little relation to the Fine Art of Lying in Bed as a movie play has to the fine art of the drama. The true artist may take fair advantage of his nice state of unreason to defy time and space, but he will respect essential verities. He will treat his ego like the child it is; and, taking ...
— The Perfect Gentleman • Ralph Bergengren

... sometimes actually a virtue in his comedy. Certainly, from the time of Aristophanes onwards, comedy has again and again been a vehicle of opinions as well as a branch of natural history. But it is not always a virtue. Thus in The Doctors Dilemma, when Dubedat is dying, his self-defence and his egoism are for the most part admirably true both to human nature and to Mr. Shaw's view of the human nature of artists. But when he goes on with his last breath to utter his artistic creed: "I believe in Michael Angelo, Velasquez, and Rembrandt; ...
— Old and New Masters • Robert Lynd

... same way these pseudo philosophers have attacked the Christian religion, 'tearing the soul of Christ into silly strips labelled altruism and egoism. They are alike puzzled by His insane magnificance and His ...
— Gilbert Keith Chesterton • Patrick Braybrooke

... attributes were modified by the sentiment and romance she inherited from her Teutonic ancestors; or from Madame de Castries, the fragile and brilliant coquette. Mentally and physically there was a certain massiveness in Madame Hanska which was absent in her rivals. She was characterised by an egoism and self-assertiveness unknown to the "dilecta"; while, on the other hand, her principles were too strong to allow her to use a man as her plaything, as Madame de Castries had no scruple in doing. Side by side with her tendency ...
— Honore de Balzac, His Life and Writings • Mary F. Sandars

... all that we need to know of indignant honesty and the false fervour of sanctimonious animalism, so in the person of Sir Willoughby Patterne has Mr. Meredith succeeded in expressing the qualities of egoism as the egoist appears in his relations with women and in his conception and exercise of the passion of love. Between the means of the two men there is not, nor can be, any sort of comparison. Moliere is brief, exquisite, lucid: classic in his union of ease and strength, of purity and sufficiency, ...
— Views and Reviews - Essays in appreciation • William Ernest Henley

... only two poets in English literature who thus stand out of the tradition, who are without ancestors, Donne and Browning. Each seems to have certain qualities almost greater than the qualities of the greatest; and yet in each some precipitation of arrogant egoism remains in the crucible, in which the draught has all but ...
— Figures of Several Centuries • Arthur Symons

... more feminine passions might indeed flare up in Olga Ivanovna's heart with abnormal and painful violence... but she had not the cold pride, nor the intense strength of will, nor the self-centred egoism, without which any passion passes ...
— The Jew And Other Stories • Ivan Turgenev

... Quatorze? Lucien's mother and sister had concentrated all their tenderness on him, David was his devoted friend; he was accustomed to see the three making every effort for him in secret, and consequently he had all the faults of a spoiled eldest son. The noble is eaten up with the egoism which their unselfishness was fostering in Lucien; and Mme. de Bargeton was doing her best to develop the same fault by inciting him to forget all that he owed to his sister, and mother, and David. ...
— Lost Illusions • Honore De Balzac

... could talk, when permitted, by the hour about the reclamation from the sea of the marsh land south of the town, and about the old Roman road which was built on a raised causeway, of which traces remained; but it argued, so thought Miss Mapp, an unprecedented egoism on the part of Major Flint, and an equally unprecedented love of antiquities on the part of Captain Puffin, that they should prosecute their studies (with gas at the present price) till such hours. No; Miss Mapp knew better than that, but she ...
— Miss Mapp • Edward Frederic Benson

... most generous inspirations, and gives a sharp ring to the laughter. Their table-talk was full of bitter irony which turns a jest into a sneer; it told of the exhaustion of souls given over to themselves; of lives with no end in view but the satisfaction of self—of egoism induced by these times of peace in which we live. I can think of nothing like it save a pamphlet against mankind at large which Diderot was afraid to publish, a book that bares man's breast simply to expose the plague-sores upon it. We listened to just such a pamphlet as Rameau's Nephew, ...
— The Firm of Nucingen • Honore de Balzac

... interest, 57. The personal factor negligible in counting interests, 58. The refutation of egoism. The first proposition of egoism, 59. The second proposition of egoism, 61. Impartiality as a part of justice, 63. Justice as imputing finality to the individual, 64. The equality of rational beings as organs of truth, 64. Summary of ...
— The Moral Economy • Ralph Barton Perry

... weary of all that. Leave all to egoism, to ravenous greed of money, of pleasure, of applause:—it is the Gospel of Despair! Man is a Patent-Digester, then: only give him Free Trade, Free digesting-room; and each of us digest what he can come at, leaving the rest to Fate! My unhappy brethren of the ...
— Past and Present - Thomas Carlyle's Collected Works, Vol. XIII. • Thomas Carlyle

... forgotten her existence. It was odd, too, that in all this random converse, not a fact of his past life, and scarce a name, should ever cross his lips. A profound reserve kept watch upon his most unguarded moments. He spoke continually of himself, indeed, but still in enigmas; a veiled prophet of egoism. ...
— Lay Morals • Robert Louis Stevenson

... assumption of resignation, which so closely resembled calmness that it is easy to mistake it. Just as when walking through forest-lands certain soils give forth under our feet a sound which enables us to guess whether they are dense masses of stone or a void; so intense egoism, though hidden under the flowers of politeness, and subterranean caverns eaten out by sorrow sound hollow under the constant touch of familiar life. It was sorrow and not despondency that dwelt in that really great soul. The Count ...
— Honorine • Honore de Balzac

... functions incident to preparing for his day's work. He is just like you or me. He wants his breakfast, he very much wants to know where his boots are, and he has the usually sinister preoccupations about health and finance. Whatever the force of his egoism, he must more or less harmonise his individuality with those of his wife and children. Having laid down the law, or accepted it, he sets forth to his daily duties, just a fraction of a minute late. He arrives at his office, resumes life with his colleagues sympathetic and antipathetic, ...
— The Author's Craft • Arnold Bennett

... me that if my love is deep and pure enough, it will modify my whole life, and of itself, without hindrance from circumstances, appear perfectly in all my actions and relations? This is the old heresy, this is the error of the individualism and egoism which has hindered us so long. Let us meet it ...
— Brook Farm • John Thomas Codman

... indeed, were condemned by the German Government itself, but only after many years, and mainly because they were wasteful. Government representatives have told the Reichstag, as Herr Schleitwein did in 1904, that they must pursue a 'healthy egoism,' and forswear 'humanitarianism and irrational sentimentality.' 'The Hereros must be forced to work, and to work without compensation and for their food only. ... The sentiments of Christianity and philanthropy with which the missionaries work must be repudiated with all energy.' This is ...
— The Expansion of Europe - The Culmination of Modern History • Ramsay Muir

... not an uncritical admirer of the Puritan, although I believe he is more nearly on the side of the angels than is his opposite. I deprecate the smug virtuosity which his kind often favor, I dislike a vinegar morality, and am repelled by the monstrous egoism of the idea that redeeming one's soul is such a serious matter that every moment spared from contemplating the sins of others or the pieties of oneself is ...
— Definitions • Henry Seidel Canby

... herself and can learn nothing from other people. By still stronger reason she owes them no duty of respect or good-will. What is called humanity has no meaning for the German. The mot of William II., "Humanity for me stops at the Vosges," is not merely an instance of national egoism. The German Emperor feels that what is for the present beyond his empire can only acquire value when it ...
— New York Times, Current History, Vol 1, Issue 1 - From the Beginning to March, 1915 With Index • Various

... too apt to confound side issues with the central aim of the battle, Danton was ever ready to urge them to take a juster measure:—'When the edifice is all ablaze, I take little heed of the knaves who are pilfering the household goods; I rush to put out the flames.' When base egoism was compromising a cause more priceless than the personality of any man, it was Danton who made them ashamed by the soul-inspiring exclamation, 'Let my name be blotted out and my memory perish, if only France may be ...
— Critical Miscellanies (Vol. 1 of 3) - Essay 1: Robespierre • John Morley

... confessed that my actual practice in palmistry had been of a merely passive kind—the prompt extension of my palm to any one who would be so good as to "read" it and truckle for a few minutes to my egoism. (I hoped ...
— A. V. Laider • Max Beerbohm

... and in the night I often shed wretched tears. Though I did only what conscience compelled me to do, I suffer all the miseries of remorse. And how can I wish that it should be otherwise? It is better, surely, to be capable of such suffering, than to go one's way in light-hearted egoism. I'm not sure that I don't sometimes encourage despondency. You can understand that? I know you can, dear Bertha, for many a time I have detected the deep feeling which lies beneath your joking way." Passages such as this Bertha ...
— Will Warburton • George Gissing

... N. selfishness &c adj.; self-love, self-indulgence, self-worship, self-interest; egotism, egoism; amour propre [Fr.], &c (vanity) 880; nepotism. worldliness &c adj.; world wisdom. illiberality; meanness &c adj.. time-pleaser, time-server; tuft- hunter, fortune-hunter; jobber, worldling; egotist, egoist, monopolist, nepotist; dog in the manger, charity that begins at home; ...
— Roget's Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases: Body • Roget

... democratic. Everybody admits that one can be civilized and be none of these things: just as one may be "cultured" without being kind. In other words, it is consistent with being civilized to be highly selfish; one need only be rationalized in one's egoism. Indeed, civilization is the incarnation of self-interest. If self-interest, its basic principle, should give way to social interest; if the monopoly of social power should be broken and the power ...
— Is civilization a disease? • Stanton Coit

... between other personalities? Perhaps, for a woman alone in the world, without the power and opportunity that money gives, there was no alternative between letting one's individuality harden into a small dry nucleus of egoism, or diffuse itself thus in the interstices of other lives—and there fell upon Justine the chill thought that just such a future might await her if she missed the liberating ...
— The Fruit of the Tree • Edith Wharton

... even better off without it. What imaginable intelligence could compensate her for the flat blueness of her eyes, the xanthous pallor of her hair, the doll-like pink of her cheeks? What conceivable cunning could do such execution as her stupendous appeal to masculine vanity, sentimentality, egoism? ...
— Damn! - A Book of Calumny • Henry Louis Mencken

... Midas of antiquity, King Midas of the golden touch.... Do not suppose them to entertain hidden but far-reaching designs. They are men of short views. Their aim is to pile up as much wealth as they can, as quickly as possible. In them we see the climax of that anti-social egoism which is the curse of our day. They are merely the most typical figures in an epoch enslaved to money. The intellectuals, the press, the politicians, the very members of the cabinets (preposterous puppets!), have, whether they like it or not, become tools ...
— The Forerunners • Romain Rolland



Words linked to "Egoism" :   theory, trait, moral philosophy, self-interest, ethics, altruism, self-concern, self-centeredness, egoist



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