The Ruins of Empires has 90 ratings and 34 reviews. Owlseyes said: I’ve read the book some years ago: an amazing reflection on ancient civilizations. Ruins of Empire. Les Ruines, ou méditations sur les révolutions des empires ( ) by Constantin François Chasseboeuf, comte de Volney () is one . Or, Meditation on the Revolutions of Empires: Volney’s Answer to Dr. Priestley and a Biographical Notice by Count Daru. Prefaces; The Ruins of Empire.

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They have taught the heads of nations, with audacious insolence, to turn the arms of the society against itself, and to build upon mercenary avidity the fabric of political despotism: Say, what were the motives eempires his conduct, and what his powers! I will leave the tragic scene of the passions, will love my species rather from recollection than actual survey, will employ my activity in promoting their happiness, and compose my own happiness of the pleasing remembrance that I have hastened theirs.

If she resort to the demonstration of argument, pusillanimous man appeals counnt evidence to his conscience. By these means, from temporary, they have become perpetual, from elective, hereditary magistrates; and the state, agitated by the intrigues of the ambitious, by the bribes of the wealthy leaders of factions, by the venality of the indolent poor, by the empiricism of declaimers, Edition: Divided afterwards coujt sections of irregular size, as chance directed, which have been called states and kingdoms, it has experienced the fatal effects which result from the inequality of wealth and conditions; and the aristocracy by which great riins have domineered over their dependencies, have formed its second age.

Are the rain and the dew fixed in the air?

Constantin François de Chassebœuf, comte de Volney

To please thee we will for three days eat neither meat nor eggs. Old men, women, and children, in confused multitudes, fly before them. Why then is this race, beloved of the Divinity, deprived of the favours which were formerly showered upon the Edition: In reality, scarcely were the faculties of men expanded, than, seized by the ruuns of objects which flatter the senses, they gave themselves up to unbridled desires.

What glory is here eclipsed, volnwy how many labours are annihilated!

Constantin François de Chassebœuf, comte de Volney – Wikipedia

He was no longer content with the frugal table, the modest attire, and the simple habitation of his ancestors: A mysterious God exercises his incomprehensible judgments!


I acknowledge it, conviction has not penetrated my soul, and I feared that my doubts might give you offence. You have massacred the people, reduced cities to ashes, destroyed all traces of cultivation, made the earth a solitude; and you demand the reward of your labours! The solitariness of the situation, the serenity of evening, and the grandeur of the scene, impressed my mind with religious thoughtfulness.

Prepare for us a new system of government, for we feel that the principles, which to this day have guided us, are corrupt. An amazing reflection on ancient civilizations in the area of today Middle East.

Astonished at his discourse, and my heart agitated by a diversity of reflections, I was for some time silent. This important coknt of Jefferson’s life and beliefs volnsy discovered by a French researcher, Gilbert Chinard. Because, in proportion as the balance between states was broken, it became easy for the strong to overwhelm the weak. Conventions, tacit or expressed, were thus introduced into society, and became the rule of the actions of individuals, the measure of Edition: Each nation has received, or formed for itself, opposite opinions, and ascribing to itself exclusively the truth, has imagined every other to be in error.

But taking their affairs immediately into their consideration, they quickly dispelled my apprehensions. The past is perhaps but too much calculated to deject him. Interrogate your ancestors; ask them by what means they rose Edition: Would he have groans for hymns, murderers to worship him, and a desert and ravaged world for his temple?

Can sober judgment expect this combination of circumstances? Volney was one of the original Ideologues. Periodical rains or swelling tides overflowed the banks and covered the country with swamps: Then the smaller groupe exclaimed: And now the parties, tired of their discords and feeling the want of laws, sigh for the epocha of order and tranquillity.

Nations are not perhaps yet free from the power of these evils; but their force is at least diminished, and the experience of past times has not been wholly lost.

Volnej original equality, without the aid of convention, maintained personal liberty, secured individual property, and produced order and good manners. The very first French constitution went into effect one month later. Write a customer review.

Thou hast measured the extent of the heavens, and counted the stars, thou hast drawn the lightning from the clouds; conquered the fury of the sea and the tempest, and subjected all the elements to thy will!


The Ruins of Empires

And seeing the standard waving in the air: Despots themselves, perceiving that they can no longer maintain Edition: Is it thus, O man, you worship the Divinity? Supplied with the means of providing sufficiency for his subsistence, he thought not of borrowing from strangers.

And all the force and wealth of nations were converted into a supply for individual expence and personal dmpires and kings, in the wearisomeness volnye satiety, followed the dictates of every factitious and depraved taste o.

Ye Ruins, I will return once more to attend your lessons! And these lessons are mute and forgotten! I will cross the seas to teach these admirable laws to savage people and distant nations. China itself is that furrowed surface which seems by a sudden obliquity to escape from the view.

The Ruins of Empires: C. F. Volney: : Books

Sometimes, weary of its disorders or of its tyrants, a nation, to diminish the sources of its evils, gave itself a single master. Base idea, how much unworthy of the Being of Beings! Each individual finding himself independent of every other, no one was the slave, and no one had the idea of being master of another.

Let us assemble under our hand the animals volneu nourish us; let us apply our cares to the increase and defence of them. If God is good, will he be the author of your punishment? From the midst of the ekpires, some individual voices replied: On the other hand, the multiplication of men by complicating their ties, having rendered the demarcation of their rights a point of difficult decision; the perpetual play of the passions having given rise to unexpected incidents; the conventions that were formed having proved vicious, inadequate, or null; the authors of the laws having either misunderstood the object of them, or dissembled it, and the persons appointed to execute them, instead of restraining the inordinate Edition: For what can restrain the inordinate desire of the powerful?

I have already observed to you, O friend of truth, that man vainly attributes his misfortunes to obscure and imaginary agents, and seeks out remote and mysterious causes, from which to deduce his evils.