Page:Popular Works of Johann Gottlieb Fichte (1889) Vol 2.djvu/209

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condition of intermixture, even the descendant of the Normal People—the partaker of their primitive Culture—first became aware of the demand upon him for an entirely new Cultivation, not necessarily included in that primitive Culture;—namely, the cultivation of the power of imparting his Culture to others, and thus creating for himself an extensive field of influence and activity. It does not follow that all such descendants of the Normal People made equal progress in this new art, or were even capable of so doing; but each individual would develop this art in himself as his own character might permit: as little does it follow that those who remained behind in this progress, and could not so easily lay aside their innocence and simplicity, were on that account worse than those who found it easy to enter into the crooked byways of corrupt and depraved Races, or to employ force against them;—but it does follow that the latter, and not the former, would be the Counsellors, Leaders, and Governors, and that with the free consent and good-will of the former, who in such a state of things would not grudge them this privilege, but would willingly retire into silence and obscurity.

An outward circumstance should be mentioned here, which, in our opinion, is of the greatest importance in History—the possession of metals, and the art of their most suitable application:—of metals, I say, and I beg that you will not suppose that I mean gold alone. How the knowledge of these metals first arose, and how they were first brought forth from the bowels of the earth and changed into the new and unexpected forms imposed upon them by art;—with this inquiry, in our opinion, no History need trouble itself; such knowledge undoubtedly existed anterior to all History, and from the very beginning of the world, as a possession of the Normal People; which possession, after the intermixture with Barbarism, the skilful knew how to employ wholly otherwise than the simple. The