The art of conversing with men by Adolph Knigge (1799) - PDF ebook

Practical philosophy of social life; or The art of conversing with men.

The art of conversing with men by Adolph Knigge

A  greater part of the subsequent pages is the result of the observations and experience of Baron  Knigge, a Nobleman whose talents are justly respected in Germany, where he acted a conspicuous part in the republic of letters, and on the stage of the great world. 

His active temper urged him with irresistible impetuosity to render .his abilities and scientific knowledge useful to mankind; but being persecuted in the very beginning of his public career, by the heavy blows of adverse fate, beset by numerous enemies whom his independent spirit and the superiority of his mental accomplishments had provoked,' frequently misguided by his too easy confidence in the rectitude of men, precipitated by his fiery enthusiasm for truth and the happiness of his brethren, and an implacable enemy to despotism and intolerance, he failed in all his plans to secure a post in which he could have exerted his talents and the benevolence of his heart for the benefit of his fellow-citizens.


 I recommend to my readers rather oblige everyone than to accept the assistance of others, this does not contradict the assertion that prudence requires we should not do too much for others. I would advise you, in general, to be obliging, but not to obtrude your services upon others, nor to be the friend and confidant of everyone. 

Be strict, punctual, regular, assiduous and diligent in your calling. Keep your papers, keys and everything in such an order as to be able to find every individual article in the dark. Bestow still more rigid care upon the property of others which is entrusted to you. Never lend books to others which you have borrowed. If any be lent to you, send or carry them back in proper time, and do not give your friends or servants the trouble to fetch them.

 Everyone is glad to be connected and to transact business with a person upon whose punctuality in words and deeds we can rely. Appear punctually at the place to which you have promised to come, though you should be the only one that is so regular

  • Author: Adolph Knigge 
  • Publication dateL1799
  • Volume 1

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