The great dividing line between books that are made to be read and books that are made to be bought is not the purely modern thing it seems. We can trace it, if we try, back to the first printing-presses.
The audience is the controlling factor in the actor’s life. It is practically infallible, since there is no appeal from its verdict. It is a little like a supreme court composed of irresponsible minors.
There was no escape from the letter-writer who, a hundred or a hundred and twenty-five years ago, captured a coveted correspondent. It would have been as easy to shake off an octopus or a boa-constrictor.
Our belief in education is unbounded, our reverence for it is unfaltering, our loyalty to it is unshaken by reverses. Our passionate desire, not so much to acquire it as to bestow it, is the most animated of American traits.