Facta Ficta

vitam impendere vero

Nietzsche thinking



The Greek artists, the tragedians for example, poetized in order to conquer; their whole art cannot be thought of apart from contest: Hesiod’s good Eris, ambition, gave their genius its wings. Now this ambition demands above all that their work should preserve the highest excellence in their own eyes, as they understand excellence, that is to say, without reference to a dominating taste or the general opinion as to what constitutes excellence in a work of art; and thus Aeschylus and Euripides were for a long time unsuccessful until they had finally educated judges of art who assessed their work according to the standards they themselves laid down. It is thus they aspire to victory over their competitors as they understand victory, a victory before their own seat of judgment, they want actually to be more excellent; then they exact agreement from others as to their own assessment of themselves and confirmation of their own judgment. To aspire to honor here means: “to make oneself superior and to wish this superiority to be publicly acknowledged." If the former is lacking and the latter nonetheless still demanded, one speaks of vanity. If the latter is lacking and its absence not regretted, one speaks of pride.