Quotation by Thomas Carlyle

We were wise indeed, could we discern truly the signs of our own time; and by knowledge of its wants and advantages, wisely adjust our own position in it. Let us, instead of gazing idly into the obscure distance, look calmly around us, for a little, on the perplexed scene where we stand. Perhaps, on a more serious inspection, something of its perplexity will disappear, some of its distinctive characters and deeper tendencies more clearly reveal themselves; whereby our own relations to it, our own true aims and endeavours in it, may also become clearer.
Thomas Carlyle (1795–1881), Scottish essayist, historian. Critical and Miscellaneous Essays (1839-1857). Signs of the Times, first published in Edinburgh Review, no. 98 (1829).
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