Yeats’s Underlinings in Nietzsche (Common, 1901)

1.727. Thomas Common, ed., Nietzsche as Critic, Philosopher, Poet and Prophet, (London: Grant Richards, 1901), pp. 109, 111, 133, 134. BL 12252.e.9

W.B. Yeats’s underlinings in and annotations of Nietzsche.

It is likely that Joyce intended a pun on ‘Lord’, not least because the questions of tenancy and rent are partly at stake here. Yeats’s conflation of Nietzsche with his own growing aristocratism is relevant here. The folowing are some of the passages he underlined and/or annotated in Nietzsche:

It is a bad mistake … when historical moralists start with questions such as — “Why have smpathetic actions been praised?” The noble type of man regards himself as the determiner of worth.

One has only obligations to one’s equals…. One may act towards beings of a lower rank, and towards all that is foreign to one according to discretion, or ‘as the heart desires’ and in any case ‘beyond Good and Evil’.

From section 57 of The Antichrist, ‘The Natural System of Ranks and Castes’:

The arrangement of castes, the highest, the cardinal law, is only the sanction of a natural arrangement, of natural legality of the highest rank.

The highest caste — I call them the fewest — have, as being the perfect caste, the privileges of the fewest: in this connection it belongs to them to represent happiness, beauty and goodness on the earth.

Derived from David S. Thatcher, Nietzsche in England, 1890-1914, (Toronto and Buffalo: University of Toronto Press, 1970), pp. 143-52 [BL X800.70/80].