HOME

Portal Site for Russellian



The Conquest of Happiness, 1930, by Bertrand Russell (full text)
On Education, especially in early childhood, 1926 (full text)
Marriage and Morals, 1929 (full text)
Bertrand Russell's American Essays, v.1 (full text)
The Aurobiography of Bertrand Russell (full text, excluding correspondences)

e-texts of Bertrand Russell's writings

Power, 1938,
by Bertrand Russell

Chapter I: The Impulse to Power

Between man and other animals there are various differences, some intellectual, some emotional. One of the chief emotional differences is that some human desires, unlike those of animals, are essentially boundless and incapable of complete satisfaction. The boa constrictor, when he has had his meal, sleeps until appetite revives ; if other animals do not do likewise, it is because their meals are less adequate or because they fear enemies. The activities of animals, with few exceptions, are inspired by the primary needs of survival and reproduction, and do not exceed what these needs make imperative.

With men, the matter is different. A large proportion of the human race, it is true, is obliged to work so hard in obtaining necessaries that little energy is left over for other purposes; but those whose livelihood is assured do not, on that account, cease to be active. Xerxes had no lack of food or raiment or wives at the time when he embarked upon the Athenian expedition. Newton was certain of material comfort from the moment when he became a Fellow of Trinity, but it was after this that he wrote the Principia. St, Francis and Ignatius Loyola had no need to found Orders to escape from want. These were eminent men, but the same characteristic, in varying degrees, is to be found in all but a small exceptionally sluggish minority. Mrs. A, who is quite sure of her husband's success in business, and has no fear of the workhouse, likes to be better dressed than Mrs. B, although she could escape the danger of pneumonia at much less expense. Both she and Mr. A are pleased if he is knighted or elected to Parliament. In day-dreams there is no limit to imagined triumphs, and if they are regarded as possible, efforts will be made to achieve them.

Imagination is the goad that forces human beings into restless exertion after their primary needs have been satisfied. Most of us have known very few moments when we could have said:
If it were now to die
"Twere now to be most happy, for I fear
My soul hath her content so absolute
That not another comfort like to this
Succeeds in unknown fate.
Imagination is the goad that forces human beings into restless exertion alter their primary needs have been satisfied. Most of us have known very few moments when we could have said:
If it were now to die
"Twere now to be most happy, for I fear
My soul hath her content so absolute
That not another comfort like to this
Succeeds in unknown fate.
And in our rare moments of perfect happiness, it is natural, like Othello, to wish for death, since we know that contentment cannot last. What we need for lasting happiness is impossible for human beings : only God can have complete bliss, for His is "the kingdoms and the power and the glory. '' Earthly kingdoms are limited by other kingdoms; earthly power is cut short by death; earthly glory, though we build pyramids or be "married to immortal verse," fades with the passing of centuries. To those who have but little of power and glory, it may seem that a little more would satisfy them, but in this they are mistaken : these desires are insatiable and infinite, and only in the infinitude of God could they find repose.

While animals are content with existence and reproduction, men desire also to expand, and their desires in this respect are limited only by what imagination suggests as possible. Every man would like to be God, if it were possible ; some few find it difficult to admit the impossibility. These are the men framed after the model of Milton's Satan, combining, like him, nobility with impiety. By "impiety" I mean something not dependent upon theological beliefs: I mean refusal to admit the limitations of individual human power. This Titanic combination of nobility with impiety is most notable in the great conquerors, but some element of it is to be found in all men. It is this that makes social co-operation difficult, for each of us would like to conceive of it after the pattern of the co-operation between God and His worshippers, with ourself in the place of God. Hence competition, the need of compromise and government, the impulse to rebellion, with instability and periodic violence. And hence the need of morality to restrain anarchic self-assertion.

Of the infinite desires of man, the chief are the desires for power and glory. These are not identical, though closely allied : the Prime Minister has more power than glory, the King has more glory than power. As a rule, however, the easiest way to obtain glory is to obtain power; this is especially the case as regards the men who are active in relation to public events.The desire for glory, therefore, prompts, in the main, the same actions as are prompted by the desire for power, and the two motives may, for most practical purposes, be regarded as one.

The orthodox economists, as well as Marx, who in this respect agreed with them, were mistaken in supposing that economic self-interest could be taken as the fundamental motive in the social sciences. The desire for commodities, when separated from power and glory, is finite, and can be fully satisfied by a moderate competence. The really expensive desires are not dictated by a love of material comfort. Such commodities as a legislature rendered subservient by corruption, or a private picture gallery of Old Masters selected by experts, are sought for the sake of power or glory, not as affording comfortable places in which to sit. When a moderate degree of comfort is assured, both individuals and communities will pursue power rather than wealth : they may seek wealth as a means to power, or they may forgo an increase of wealth in order to secure an increase of power, but in the former case as in the latter their fundamental motive is not economic. This error in orthodox and Marxist economics is not merely theoretical, but is of the greatest practical importance, and has caused some of the principal events of recent times to be misunderstood. It is only by realizing that love of power is the cause of the activities that are important in social affairs that history, whether ancient or modern, can be rightly interpreted.

In the course of this book I shall be concerned to prove that the fundamental concept in social science is Power, in the same sense in which Energy is the fundamental concept in physics. Like energy, power has many forms, such as wealth, armaments, ,civil authority, influence on opinion. No one of these can be regarded as subordinate to any other, and there is no one form from which the others are derivative. The attempt to treat one form of power, say wealth, in isolation, can only be partially successful, just as the study of one form of energy will be defective at certain points, unless other forms are taken into account. Wealth may result from military power or from influence over opinion, just as either of these may result from wealth. The laws of social dynamics are laws which can only be stated in terms of power, not in terms of this or that form of power. In former times, military power was isolated, with the consequence that victory or defeat appeared to depend upon the accidental qualities of commanders. In our day, it is common to treat economic power as the source from which all other kinds are derived; this, I shall contend, is just as great an error as that of the purely military historians whom it has caused to seem out of date. Again, there are those who regard propaganda as the fundamental form of power. This is by no means a new opinion; it is embodied in such traditional sayings as magma est veritas et prevalebit and "the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church." It has about the same measure of truth and falsehood as the military view or the economic view. Propaganda, if it can create an almost unanimous opinion, can generate an irresistible power; but those who have military or economic control can, if they choose, use it for the purpose of propaganda. To revert to the analogy of physics: power, like energy, must be regarded as continually passing from any one of its forms into any other, and it should be the business of social science to seek the laws of such transformations. The attempt to isolate any one form of power, more especially, in our day, the economic form, has been, and still is, a source of errors of great practical importance.

There are many ways in which different societies differ in relation to power. They differ, to begin with, in the degree of power possessed by individuals or organizations ; it is obvious, for example, that, owing to increase of organization, the State has more power now than in former times. They differ, again, as regards the kind of organization that is most influential : a military despotism, a theocracy, a plutocracy, are very dissimilar types. They differ, thirdly, through diversity in the ways of acquiring power : hereditary kingship produces one kind of eminent man, the qualities required of a great ecclesiastic produce another kind, democracy produces a third kind, and war a fourth.

Where no social institution, such as aristocracy or hereditary monarchy, exists to limit the number of men to whom power is possible, those who most desire power are, broadly speaking, those most likely to acquire it. It follows that, in a social system in which power is open to all, the posts which confer power will, as a rule, be occupied by men who differ from the average in being exceptionally power-loving. Love of power, though one of the strongest of human motives, is very unevenly distributed, and is limited by various other motives, such as love of ease, love of pleasure, and sometimes love of approval. It is disguised, among the more timid, as an impulse of submission to leadership, which increases the scope of the power-impulses of bold men. Those whose love of power is not strong are unlikely to have much influence on the course of events. The men who cause social changes are, as a rule, men who strongly desire to do so. Love of power, therefore, is a characteristic of the men who are causally important. We should, of course, be mistaken if we regarded it as the sole human motive, but this mistake would not lead us so much astray as might be expected in the search for causal laws in social science, since love of power is the chief motive producing the changes which social science has to study.

The laws of social dynamics are -- so I shall contend -- only capable of being stated in terms of power in its various forms. In order to discover these laws, it is necessary first to classify the forms of power, and then to review various important historical examples of the ways in which organizations and individuals have acquired control over men's lives. I shall have, throughout, the twofold purpose of suggesting what I believe to be a more adequate analysis of social changes in general than that which has been taught by economists, and of making the present and the probable near future more intelligible than it can be to those whose imaginations are dominated by the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Those centuries were in many ways exceptional, and we seem to be now returning, in a number of respects. to forms of life and thought which were prevalent in earlier ages. To understand our own time and its needs, history, both ancient and mediaeval, is indispensable, for only so can we arrive at a form of possible progress not unduly dominated by the axioms of the nineteenth century.

Chapter II: Leaders and followers

The Power impulse has two forms: explicit, in leaders; implicit, in their followers. When men willingly follow a leader, they do so with a view to the acquisition of power by the group which he commands, and they feel that his triumphs are theirs. Most men do not feel in themselves the competence required for leading their group to victory, and therefore seek out a captain who appears to possess the courage and sagacity necessary for the achievement of supremacy. Even in religion this impulse appears. Nietzsche accused Christianity of inculcating a slave-morality, but ultimate triumph was always the goal. "Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth." Or as a well-known hymn more explicitly states it :
The Son of God goes forth to war,
A kingly crown to gain.
His blood-red banner streams afar.
Who follows in His train?

Who best can drink his cup of woe,
Triumphant over pain,
Who patient bears his cross below,
He follows in His train.
If this is a slave-morality, then every soldier of fortune who endures the rigours of a campaign, and every rank-and-file politician who works hard at electioneering, is to be accounted a slave. But in fact, in every genuinely cooperative enterprise, the follower is psychologically no more a slave than the leader.

It is this that makes endurable the inequalities of power which organization makes inevitable, and which tend to increase rather than diminish as society grows more organic.

Inequality in the distribution of power has always existed in human communities, as far back as our knowledge extends. This is due partly to external necessity, partly to causes which are to be found in human nature. Most collective enterprises are only possible if they are directed by some governing body. If a house is to be built, some one must decide on the plans; if trains are to run on a railway, the time-table cannot be left to the caprices of engine-drivers; if a new road is to be constructed, some one must decide where it is to go. Even a democratically elected government is still a government, and therefore, on grounds that have nothing to do with psychology, there must, if collective enterprises are to succeed, be some men who give orders and others who obey them. But the fact that this is possible, and still more the fact that the actual inequalities of power exceed what is made necessary by technical causes, can only be explained in terms of individual psychology and physiology. Some men's characters lead them always to command, others always to obey ; between these extremes lie the mass of average human beings, who like to command in some situations, but in other prefer to be subject to a leader.

Adler, in his book on Understanding Human Nature, distinguishes a submissive type and an imperious type. "The servile individual," he says, "lives by the rules and laws of others, and this type seeks out a servile position almost compulsively." On the other hand, he continues, the imperious type, which asks : "How can I be superior to everyone?" is found whenever a director is needed, and rises to the top in revolutions. Adler regards both types as undesirable, at any rate in their extreme forms, and he considers both as products of education. "The greatest disadvantage of an authoritative education," he says, "lies in the fact that it gives the child an ideal of power, and shows him the pleasures which are connected with the possession of power." Authoritative education, we may add, produces the slave type as well as the despotic type, since it leads to the feeling that the only possible relation between two human beings who co-operate is that in which one issues orders and the other obeys them.

Love of power, in various limited forms, is almost universal, but in its absolute form it is rare. A woman who enjoys power in the management of her house is likely to shrink from the sort of political power enjoyed by a Prime Minister; Abraham Lincoln, on the contrary, while not afraid to govern the United States, could not face civil war in the home. Perhaps Napoleon, if the Bellerophon had suffered shipwreck, would have tamely obeyed the orders of British officers as to escaping in boats. Men like power so long as they believe in their own competence to handle the business in question, but when they know themselves incompetent they prefer to follow a leader.

The impulse of submission, which is just as real and just as common as the impulse to command, has its roots in fear. The most unruly gang of children ever imagined will become completely amenable to the orders of a competent adult in an alarming situation, such as a fire; when the War came, the Pankhursts made their peace with Lloyd George. Whenever there is acute danger, the impulse of most people is to seek out Authority and submit to it; at such moments, few would dream of revolution. When war breaks out, people have similar feelings towards the Government.

Organizations may or may not be designed for the purpose of meeting dangers. Economic organizations in some cases, such as coal mines, involve dangers, but these are incidental, and if they were eliminated the organizations would flourish all the better. In general, meeting dangers is no part of the essential purpose of economic organizations, or of governmental organizations concerned with internal affairs. But life-boats and fire-brigades, like armies and navies, are constructed for the purpose of meeting dangers. In a certain less immediate sense, this is also true of religious bodies, which exist in part to allay the metaphysical fears that are buried deep in our nature. If anyone feels inclined to question this, let him think of such hymns as :
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in thee;
or
Jesu, lover of my soul,
Let me to thy bosom fly,
While the gathering waters roll,
While the tempest still is high.
In submission to the Divine Will there is a sense of ultimate safety, which has led to religious abasement in many monarchs who could not submit to any merely earthly being. All submissiveness is rooted in fear, whether - the leader to whom we submit be human or divine.

It has become a commonplace that aggressiveness also often has its roots in fear. I am inclined to think that this theory has been pushed too far. It is true of a certain kind of aggressiveness, for instance, that of D. H. Lawrence. But I greatly doubt whether the men who become pirate chiefs are those who are filled with retrospective terror of their fathers, or whether Napoleon, at Austerlitz, really felt that he was getting even with Madame Mere. I know nothing of the mother of Attila, but I rather suspect that she spoilt the little darling, who subsequently found the world irritating because it sometimes resisted his whims. The type of aggressiveness that is the outcome of timidity is not, I think, that which inspires great leaders; the great leaders, I should say, have an exceptional self-confidence which is not only on the surface, but penetrates deep into the subconscious.

The self-confidence necessary to a leader may be caused in various ways. Historically, one of the commonest has been a hereditary position of command. Read, for example, the speeches of queen Elizabeth in moments of crisis: you will see the monarch over-riding the woman, convincing her, and through her the nation, that she knows what must be done, as no mere commoner can hope to do. In her case, the interests of the nation and the sovereign were in harmony; that is why she was "Good queen Bess." She could even praise her father without arousing indignation. There is no doubt that the habit of command makes it easier to bear responsibilities and to take quick decisions. A clan which follows its hereditary chief probably does better than if it chose its chief by lot. On the other hand, a body like the mediaeval church, which chose its chief on account of conspicuous merits, and usually after he had had considerable experience of important administrative posts, secured, on the average, considerably better results than were secured, in the same period, in hereditary monarchies.

Some of the ablest leaders known to history have arisen in revolutionary situations. Let us consider, for a moment, the qualities which brought success to Cromwell, Napoleon, and Lenin. All three, in difficult times, dominated their respective countries, and secured the willing service of able men who were not by nature submissive. All three had boundless courage and self-confidence, combined with what their colleagues considered sound judgment at difficult moments. Of the three, however, Cromwell and Lenin belonged to one type, and Napoleon to another. Cromwell and Lenin were men of profound religious faith, believing themselves to be the appointed ministers of a non-human purpose. Their power-impulses thus seemed to themselves indubitably righteous, and they cared little for those rewards of power -- such as luxury and ease -- which could not be harmonized with their identification with the cosmic purpose. This is specially true of Lenin, for Cromwell, in his last years, was conscious of falling into sin. Nevertheless, in both cases it was the combination of faith with great ability that gave them courage, and enabled them to inspire their followers with confidence in their leadership.

Napoleon, as opposed to Cromwell and Lenin, is the supreme example of the soldier of fortune. The Revolution suited him, since it made his opportunity, but otherwise he was indifferent to it. Though he gratified French patriotism and depended upon it, France, like the Revolution, was to him merely an opportunity; he had even, in his youth, toyed with the idea of fighting for Corsica against France. His success was due, not so much to any exceptional qualities of character, as to his technical skill in war: when other men would have been defeated, he was victorious. At crucial moments, such as the 18 Brumaire and Marengo, he depended upon others for success; but he had the spectacular gifts that enabled him to annex the achievements of his coadjutors. The French army was full of ambitious young men ; it was Napoleon's cleverness, not his psychology, that gave him the power to succeed where the others failed. His belief in his star, which finally led to his downfall, was the effect of his victories, not their cause.

To come to our own day, Hitler must be classed, psychologically, with Cromwell and Lenin, Mussolini with Napoleon.

The soldier of fortune, or pirate chief, is a type of more importance in history than is thought by "scientific" historians. Sometimes, like Napoleon, he succeeds in making himself the leader of bodies of men who have purposes that are in part impersonal: the French revolutionary armies conceived of themselves as the liberators of Europe, and were so regarded in Italy as well as by many in Western Germany, but Napoleon himself never brought any more liberation than seemed useful for his own career. Very often there is no pretence of impersonal aims. Alexander may have set to work to hellenize the East, but it is doubtful whether his Macedonians were much interested in this aspect of his campaigns. Roman generals, during the last hundred years of the Republic, were mainly out for cash, and secured their soldier's loyalty by distributions of land and treasure. Cecil Rhodes professed a mystical belief in the British Empire, but the belief yielded good dividends, and the troopers whom he engaged for the conquest of Matabeleland were offered nakedly pecuniary inducements. Organized greed, with little or no disguise, has played a very large part in the world's wars.

The ordinary quiet citizen, we said, is led largely by fear when he submits to a leader. But this can hardly be true of a gang of pirates, unless no more peaceable profession was open to them. When once the leader's authority is established, he may inspire fear in mutinous individuals ; but until he is a leader, and is recognized as such by the majority, he is not in a position to inspire fear. To acquire the position of leader, he must excel in the qualities that confer authority : self-confidence, quick decision, and skill in deciding upon the right measures. Leadership is relative : Caesar could make Antony obey him, but no one else could. Most people feel that politics is difficult, and that they had better follow a leader-- they feel this instinctively and unconsciously, as dogs do with their masters. If this were not the case, collective political action would scarcely be possible.

Thus love of power, as a motive, is limited by timidity, which also limits the desire for self-direction. Since power enables us to realize more of our desires than would otherwise be possible, and since it secures deference from others, it is natural to desire power except in so far as timidity interferes. This sort of timidity is lessened by the habit of responsibility, and accordingly responsibilities tend to increase the desire for power. Experience of cruelty and unfriendliness may operate in either direction: with those who are easily frightened it produces the wish to escape observation, while bolder spirits are stimulated to seek positions in which they can inflict cruelties rather than suffer them.

After anarchy, the natural first step is despotism, because this is facilitated by the instinctive mechanisms of domination and submission; this has been illustrated in the family, in the State, and in business. Equal co-operation is much more difficult than despotism, and much less in line with instinct. When men attempt equal co-operation, it is natural for each to strive for complete mastery, since the submissive impulses are not brought into play. It is almost necessary that all the parties concerned should acknowledge a common loyalty to something outside all of them. In China, family businesses often succeed because of Confucian loyalty to the family ; but impersonal joint-stock companies are apt to prove unworkable, because no one has any compelling motive for honesty towards the other shareholders. Where there is government by deliberation, there must, for success, be a general respect for the law, or for the nation, or for some principle which all parties respect. The Society of Friends, when any doubtful matter has to be decided, do not take a vote and abide by the majority: they discuss until they arrive at "the sense of the meeting," which used to be regarded as prompted by the Holy Spirit. In their case we are concerned with an unusually homogeneous community, but without some degree of homogeneity government by discussion is unworkable.

A sense of solidarity sufficient to make government by discussion possible can be generated without much difficulty in a family, such as the Fuggers or Rothschilds, in a small religious body such as the quakers, in a barbarous tribe, or in a nation at war or in danger of war. But outside pressure is all but indispensable : the members of a group hang together for fear of hanging separately. A common peril is much the easiest way of producing homogeneity. This, however, affords no solution of the problem of power in the world as a whole. We wish to prevent the perils-- e.g. war --which at present cause cohesion, but we do not wish to destroy social co-operation. This problem is difficult psychologically as well as politically, and if we may judge by analogy, it is likely to be solved, if at all, by an initial despotism of some one nation. Free co-operation among nations, accustomed as they are to the liberum veto, is as difficult as among the Polish aristocracy before the partition. Extinction, in this case as in that, is likely to be thought preferable to common sense. Mankind need government, but in regions where anarchy has prevailed they will, at first, submit only to despotism. We must therefore seek first to secure government, even though despotic, and only when government has become habitual can we hope successfully to make it democratic. "Absolute power is useful in building the organization. More slow, but equally sure, is the development of social pressure demanding that the power shall be used for the benefit of all concerned. This pressure, constant in ecclesiastical and political history, is already making its appearance in the economic field." (note: Berle and Means, The Modern Corporation and Private Property, p. 353. They are speaking of industrial corporations.)

I have spoken hitherto of those who command and those who obey, but there is a third type, namely, those who withdraw. There are men who have the courage to refuse submission without having the imperiousness that causes the wish to command. Such men do not fit readily into the social structure and in one way or another they seek a refuge where they can enjoy a more or less solitary freedom. At times, men with this temperament have been of great historical importance ; the early Christians and the American pioneers represent two species of the genus. Sometimes the refuge is mental; sometimes physical; sometimes it demands the complete solitude of a hermitage; sometimes the social solitude of a monastery. Among mental refugees are those who belong to obscure sects, those whose interests are absorbed by innocent fads, and those who occupy themselves with recondite and unimportant forms of erudition. Among physical refugees are men who seek the frontier of civilization, and such explorers as Bates, the "naturalist on the Amazon," Who lived happily for fifteen years without other society than the Indians. Something of the hermit's temper is an essential element in many forms of excellence, since it enables men to resist the lure of popularity, to pursue important work in spite of general indifference or hostility, and to arrive at opinions which are opposed to prevalent errors.

Of those who withdraw, some are not genuinely indifferent to power, but only unable to obtain it by the usual methods. Such men may become saints or heresiarchs, founders of monastic orders or of new schools in art or literature. They attach to themselves as disciples people who combine a love of submission with an impulse to revolt ; the latter prevents orthodoxy, while the former leads to uncritical adoption of the new tenets. Tolstoy and his followers illustrate this pattern. The genuine solitary is quite different. A perfect example of his type is the melancholy Jacques, who shares exile with the good Duke because it is exile, and afterwards remains in the forest with the bad Duke rather than return to Court. Many American pioneers, after suffering long hardship and privation, sold their farms and moved further West as soon as civilization caught up with them. For men of this temperament, the world affords fewer and fewer opportunities. Some drift into crime, some into a morose and anti-social philosophy. Too much contact with their fellow-men produces misanthropy, which, when solitude is unattainable, turns naturally towards violence.

Among the timid, organization is promoted, not only by submission to a leader, but by the reassurance which is felt in being one of a crowd who all feel alike. In an enthusiastic public meeting with whose purpose one is in sympathy, there is a sense of exaltation, combined with warmth and safety: the emotion which is shared grows more and more intense until it crowds out all other feelings except an exultant sense of power produced by the multiplication of the ego. Collective excitement is a delicious intoxication, in which sanity, humanity, and even self-preservation are easily forgotten, and in which atrocious massacres and heroic martyrdom are equally possible. This kind of intoxication, like others, is hard to resist when its delights have once been experienced, but leads in the end to apathy and weariness, and to the need for a stronger and stronger stimulus if the former fervour is to be reproduced.

Although a leader is not essential to this emotion, which can be produced by music, and by some exciting event which is seen by a crowd, the words of an orator are the easiest and most usual method of inducing it. The pleasure of collective excitement is, therefore, an important element in the power of leaders. The leader need not share in the feelings which he arouses; he may say to himself, like Shakespeare's Antony :
Now let it work: mischief, thou art afoot,
Take thou what course thou wilt!
But the leader is hardly likely to be successful unless he enjoys his power over his followers. He will therefore be led to a preference for the kind of situation, and the kind of mob, that makes his success easy. The best situation is one in which there is a danger sufficiently serious to make men feel brave in combating it, but not so terrifying as to make fear predominant -- such a situation, for example, as the outbreak of war against an enemy who is thought formidable but not invincible. A skilful orator, when he wishes to stimulate warlike feeling, produces in his audience two layers of belief: a superficial layer, in which the power of the enemy is magnified so as to make great courage seem necessary, and a deeper layer, in which there is a firm conviction of victory. Both are embodied in such a slogan as "right will prevail over might."

The kind of mob that the orator will desire is one more given to emotion than to reflection, one filled with fears and consequent hatreds, one impatient of slow and gradual methods, and at once exasperated and hopeful. The orator, if he is not a complete cynic, will acquire a set of beliefs that justify his activities. He will think that feeling is a better guide than reason, that our opinions should be formed with the blood rather than the brain, that the best elements in human life are collective rather than individual. If he controls education, he will make it consist of an alternation of drill and collective intoxication, while knowledge and judgment will be left to the cold devotees of inhuman science.

Power-loving individuals, however, are not all of the orator type. There are men of quite a different kind, whose love of power has been fed by control over mechanism. Take, for example, Bruno Mussolini's account of his exploits from the air in the Abyssinian war:

"We had to set fire to the wooded hills, to the fields and little villages.... It was all most diverting. ... The bombs hardly touched the earth before they burst out into white smoke and an enormous flame and the dry grass began to burn. I thought of the animals: God, how they ran ... After the bombracks were emptied I began throwing bombs by hand.... It was most amusing: a big Zariba surrounded by tall trees was not easy to hit. I had to aim carefully at the straw roof and only succeeded at the third shot. The wretches who were inside, seeing their roof burning, jumped out and ran off like mad.

"Surrounded by a circle of fire about five thousand Abyssinians came to a sticky end. It was like hell."

While the orator needs much intuitive psychology for his success, the aviator of Bruno Mussolini's type can get his pleasure with no more psychology than is involved in knowing that it is unpleasant to burn to death. The orator is an ancient type; the man whose power is based on mechanism is modern. Not wholly: read, for example, how Carthaginian elephants were used, at the end of the first Punic War, to trample mutinous mercenaries to death, where the psychology, though not the science, is the same as Bruno Mussolini's. (note: Diodorus Siculus, Bk. XXV (fragment). See Flaubert's Salammbo.) But speaking comparatively, mechanical power is more characteristic of our age than of any previous time.

The psychology of the oligarch who depends upon mechanical power is not, as yet, anywhere fully developed. It is, however, an imminent possibility, and quantitatively, though not qualitatively, quite new. It would now be feasible for a technically trained oligarchy, by controlling aeroplanes, navies, power stations, motor transport, and so on, to establish a dictatorship demanding almost no conciliation of subjects. The empire of Laputa was maintained by its power of interposing itself between the sun and a rebellious province ; something almost equally drastic would be possible for a union of scientific technologists. They could starve a recalcitrant region, and deprive it of light and heat and electrical power after encouraging dependence on these sources of comfort; they could flood it with poison gas or with bacteria. Resistance would be utterly hopeless. And the men in control, having been trained on mechanism, would view human material as they had learnt to view their own machines, as something unfeeling governed by laws which the manipulator can operate to his advantage. Such a regime would be characterized by a cold inhumanity surpassing anything known in previous tyrannies. '

Power over men, not power over matter, is my theme in this book; but it is possible to establish a technicological (= technological) power over men which is based upon power over matter. Those who have the habit of controlling powerful mechanisms, and through this control have acquired power over human beings, may be expected to have an imaginative outlook towards their subjects which will be completely different from that of men who depend upon persuasion, however dishonest. Most of us have, at some time, wantonly disturbed an ants' nest, and watched with mild amusement the scurrying confusion that resulted. Looking down from the top of a sky-scraper on the traffic of New York, the human beings below cease to seem human, and acquire a faint absurdity. If one were armed, like Jove, with a thunderbolt, there would be a temptation to hurl it into the crowd, from the same motive as in the case of the ants' nest. This was evidently Bruno Mussolini's feeling, as he looked down upon the Abyssinians from his aeroplane. Imagine a scientific government which, from fear of assassination, lives always in aeroplanes, except for occasional descents on to landing stages on the summits of high towers or rafts on the sea. Is it likely that such a government will have any profound concern for the happiness of its subjects? Is it not, on the contrary, practically certain that it will view them, when all goes well, in the impersonal manner in which it views its machines, but that, when anything happens to suggest that after all they are not machines, it will feel the cold rage of men whose axioms are questioned by underlings, and will exterminate resistance in whatever manner involves least trouble?

All this, the reader may think, is mere unnecessary nightmare. I wish I could share this view. Mechanical power, I am convinced, tends to generate a new mentality, which makes it more important than in any former age to find ways of controlling governments. Democracy may have become more difficult owing to technical developments, but it has also become more important. The man who has vast mechanical power at his command is likely, if uncontrolled, to feel himself a god --not a Christian God of Love, but a pagan Thor or Vulcan.

Leopardi describes what volcanic action has achieved on the slopes of Vesuvius :
These lands that now are strewn
With sterilizing cinders, and embossed
With lava frozen to stone,
That echoes to the lonely pilgrim's foot;
Where nestling in the sun the snake lies coiled,
And where in some cleft
In cavernous rocks the rabbit hurries home--
Here once were happy farms,
And tilth, and yellowing harvests. and the sound
Of lowing herds; here too
Gardens and palaces:
Retreats dear to the leisure
Of powerful lords ; and here were famous towns,
which the implacable mountain, thundering forth
Molten streams from its fiery mouth, destroyed
With all their habitants. Now all around
Lies crushed 'neath one vast ruin.(note:)

【I questi campi cosparsi
Di ceneri infeconde, e ricoperti
Dall' impietrata lava,
Che Sotto i passi al peregrin risona ;
Dove s'annida e si contorce al sole
La serpe, e dove al noto
Cavernoso covil torna il coniglio ;
Fur liete ville e colti,
E biondeggiàr di spiche, e risonaro
Di muggito d'-enti ;
Fur giardini e palagi,
Agli ozi de' potenti
Gradito ospizio, e fur cittià famose,
Che coi torrenti suoi l' altero monte
Dall' ignea bocca fulminando oppresse
Con gli abitanti insieme. Or tutto intorno
Una ruina involve.
(note: I owe the above translation to the kindness of my fiiend, Mr. R. C. Trevelyan.】
These results can now be achieved by men. They have been achieved at Guernica; perhaps before long they will be achieved where as yet London stands. What good is to be expected of an oligarchy which will have climbed to dominion through such destruction? And if it were Berlin and Rome, not London and Paris, that were destroyed by the thunderbolts of the new gods, could any humanity survive in the destroyers after such a deed? Would not those who had human feelings to begin with be driven mad by suppressed pity, and become even worse than those who had no need of suppressing their compassion?

In former days, men sold themselves to the Devil to acquire magical powers. Now-a-days (Nowadays) they acquire these powers from science, and find themselves compelled to become devils. There is no hope for the world unless power can be tamed, and brought into the service, not of this or that group of fanatical tyrants, but of the whole human race, white and yellow and black, fascist and communist and democrat; for science has made it inevitable that all must live or all must die.

Chapter III: The Forms of Power

Power may be defined as the production of intended effects. It is thus a quandtative concept: given two men with similar desires, if one achieves all the desires that the other achieves, and also others, he has no more power than the other. But there is no exact means of comparing the power of two men of whom one can achieve one group of desires, and another another ; e.g. given two artists of whom each wishes to paint good pictures and become rich, and of whom one succeeds in painting good pictures and the other in becoming rich, there is no way of estimating which has the more power. Nevertheless, it is easy to say, roughly, that A has more power than B, if A achieves many intended effects and B only a few.

There are various ways of classifying the forms of power, each of which has its utility. In the first place, there is power over human beings and power over dead matter or non-human forms of life. I shall be concerned mainly with power over human beings, but it will be necessary to remember that the chief cause of change in the modern world is the increased power over matter that we owe to science. Power over human beings may be classified by the manner of influencing individuals, or by the type of organization involved. An individual may be influenced: A. By direct physical power over his body, e.g. when he is imprisoned or killed; B. By rewards and punishments as inducements, e.g. in giving or withholding employment; C. By influence on opinion, i.e. propaganda in its broadest sense. Under this last head I should include the opportunity for creating desired habits in others, e.g. by military drill, the only difference being that in such cases action follows without any such mental intermediary as could be called opinion.

These forms of power are most nakedly and simply displayed in our dealings with animals, where disguises and pretences are not thought necessary. When a pig with a rope round its middle is hoisted squealing into a ship, it is subject to direct physical power over its body. On the other hand, when the proverbial donkey follows the proverbial carrot, we induce him to act as we wish by persuading him that it is to his interest to do so. Intermediate between these two cases is that of performing animals, in whom habits have been formed by rewards and punishments ; also, in a different way, that of sheep induced to embark on a ship, when the leader has to be dragged across the gangway by force, and the rest then follow willingly.
All these forms of power are exemplified among human beings.
The case of the pig illustrates military and police power.
The donkey with the carrot typifies the power of propaganda.
Performing animals show the power of"education."

The sheep following their unwilling leader are illustrative of party politics, whenever, as is usual, a revered leader is in bondage to a clique or to party bosses.

Let us apply these Aesopian analogies to the rise of Hitler. The carrot was the Nazi programme (involving, e.g" the abolition of interest) ; the donkey was the lower middle class. The sheep and their leader were the Social Democrats and Hindenburg. The pigs (only so far as their misfortunes are concerned (misspeling: con-concerned) were the victims in concentration camps, and the performing animals are the millions who make the Nazi salute. The most important organizations are approximately distinguishable by the kind of power that they exert. The army and the police exercise coercive power over the body; economic organizations, in the main, use rewards and puunishments as incentives and deterrents; schools, churches, and political parties aim at influencing opinion. But these distinctions are not very clear-cut, since every organization uses other forms of power in addition to the one which is most characteristic.

The power of the Law will illustrate these complexities. The ultimate power of the Law is the coercive power of the State. It is the characteristic of civilized communities that direct physical coercion is (with some limitations) the prerogative of the State, and the Law is a set of rules according to which the State exercises this prerogative in dealing with its own citizens. But the Law uses punishment, not only for the purpose of making undesired actions physically impossible, but also as an inducement; a fine, for example, does not make an action impossible, but only unattractive. Moreover --and this is a much more important matter-- the Law is almost powerless when it is not supported by public sentiment, as might be seen in the United States during prohibition, or in Ireland in the '80's, when moonlighters had the sympathy of a majority of the population. Law, therefore, as an effective force, depends upon opinion and sentiment even more than upon the powers of the police. The degree of feeling in favour of Law is one of the most important characteristics of a community.

This brings us to a very necessary distinction, between traditional power and newly acquired power. Traditional power has on its side the force of habit; it does not have to justify itself at every moment, nor to prove continually that no opposition is strong enough to overthrow it. Moreover it is almost invariably associated with religious or quasi-religious beliefs purporting to show that resistance is wicked. It can, accordingly, rely upon public opinion to a much greater degree than is possible for revolutionary or usurped power. This has two more or less opposite consequences : on the one hand, traditional power, since it feels secure, is not on the look-out for traitors, and is likely to avoid much active political tyranny ; on the other hand, where ancient institutions persist, the injustices to which holders of power are always prone have the sanction of immemorial custom, and can therefore be more glaring than would be possible under a new form of governmeht which hoped to win popular support. The reign of terror in France illustrates the revolutionary kind of tyranny, the corvee the traditional kind.

Power not based on tradition or assent I call "naked" power. Its characteristics differ greatly from those of traditional power. And where traditional power persists, the character of the regime depends, to an almost unlimited extent, upon its feeling of security or insecurity.

Naked power is usually military, and may take the form either of internal tyranny or of foreign conquest. Its importance, especially in the latter form, is very great indeed -- greater, I think, than many modern "scientific" historians are willing to admit. Alexander the Great and Julius Caesar altered the whole course of history by their battles. But for the former, the Gospels would not have been written in Greek, and Christianity could not have been preached throughout the Roman Empire. But for the latter, the French would not speak a language derived from Latin, and the Catholic Church could scarcely have existed. The military superiority of the white man to the American Indian is an even more undeniable example of the power of the sword. Conquest by force of arms has had more to do with the spread of civilization than any other single agency. Nevertheless, military power is, in most cases, based upon some other form of power, such as wealth, or technical knowledge, or fanaticism. I do not suggest that this is always the case; for example, in the War of the Spanish Succession Marlborough's genius was essential to the result. But this is to be regarded as an exception to the general rule.

The distinction between traditional, revolutionary, and naked power is psychological. I do not call power traditional merely because it has ancient forms: it must also command respect which is partly due to custom. As this respect decays, traditional power gradually passes over into naked power. The process was to be seen in Russia in the gradual growth of the revolutionary movement up to the moment of its victory in 19I7.

I call power revolutionary when it depends upon a large group united by a new creed, programme, or sentiment, such as Protestantism, Communism, or desire for national independence. I call power naked when it results merely from the power-loving impulses of individuals or groups, and wins from its subjects only submission through fear, not active co-operation. It will be seen that the nakedness of power is a matter of degree. In a democratic country, the power of the government is not naked in relation to opposing political parties, but is naked in relation to a convinced anarchist. Similarly, where persecution exists, the power of the Church is naked in relation to heretics, but not in relation to orthodox sinners.

Another division of our subject is between the power of organizations and the power of individuals. The way in which an organization acquires power is one thing, and the way in which an individual acquires power within an organization is quite another. The two are, of course, interrelated : if you wish to be Prime Minister, you must acquire power in your Party, and your Party must acquire power in the nation. But if you had lived before the decay of the hereditary principle, you would have had to be the heir of a king in order to acquire political control of a nation ; this would, however, not have enabled you to conquer other nations, for which you would have needed qualities that kings' sons often lack. In the present age, a similar situation still exists in the economic sphere, where the plutocracy is largely hereditary. Consider the two hundred plutocratic families in France against whom French Socialists agitate. But dynasties among the plutocracy have not the same degree of permanence as they formerly had on thrones, because they have failed to cause the widespread acceptance of the doctrine of Divine Right. No one thinks it impious for a rising financial magnate to impoverish one who is the son of his father, provided it is done according to the rules and without introducing subversive innovations.

Different types of organization bring different types of individuals to the top, and so do different states of society. An age appears in history through its prominent individuals, and derives its apparent character from the character of these men. As the qualities required for achieving prominence change, so the prominent men change. It is to be presumed that there were men like Lenin in the twelfth century, and that there are men like Richard Cœur de Lion at the present time; but history does not know of them. Let us consider for a moment the kinds of individuals produced by different types of power.

Hereditary power has given rise to our notion of a "gentleman." This is a somewhat degenerate form of a conception which has a long history, from magic properties of chiefs, through the divinity of kings, to knightly chivalry and the blue-blooded aristocrat. The qualities which are admired, where power is hereditary, are such as result from leisure and unquestioned superiority. Where power is aristocratic rather than monarchical, the best manners include courteous behaviour towards equals as an addition to bland self-assertion in dealing with inferiors. But whatever the prevalent conception of manners may be, it is only where power is (or lately was) hereditary that men will be judged by their manners. The bourgeois gentilhomme is only laughable when he intrudes into a society of men and women who have never had anything better to do than study social niceties. What survives in the way of admiration of the "gentleman" depends upon inherited wealth, and must rapidly disappear if economic as well as political power ceases to pass from father to son.

Hereditary power has given rise to our notion of a "gentleman." This is a somewhat degenerate form of a conception which has a long history, from magic properties of chiefs, through the divinity of kings, to knightly chivalry and the blue-blooded aristocrat. The qualities which are admired, where power is hereditary, are such as result from leisure and unquestioned superiority. Where power is aristocratic rather than monarchical, the best manners include courteous behaviour towards equals as an addition to bland self-assertion in dealing with inferiors. But whatever the prevalent conception of manners may be, it is only where power is (or lately was) hereditary that men will be judged by their manners. The bourgeois gentilhomme is only laughable when he intrudes into a society of men and women who have never had anything better to do than study social niceties. What survives in the way of admiration of the "gentleman" depends upon inherited wealth, and must rapidly disappear if economic as well as political power ceases to pass from father to son.

The intellectual, as we know him, is a spiritual descendant of the priest ; but the spread of education has robbed him of power. The power of the intellectual depends upon superstition : reverence for a traditional incantation or a sacred book. Of these, something survives in English-speaking countries, as is seen in the English attitude to the Coronation Service and the American reverence for the Constitution ; accordingly, the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Supreme Court Judges sill have some of the traditional power of learned men. But this is only a pale ghost of the power of Egyptian priests or Chinese Confucian scholars.

While the typical virtue of the gentleman is honour, that of the man who achieves power through learning is wisdom. To gain a reputation for wisdom a man must seem to have a store of recondite knowledge, a mastery over his passions, and a long experience of the ways of men. Age alone is thought to give something of these qualities; hence "presbyter," "seigneur," "alderman," and "elder" are terms of respect. A Chinese beggar addresses passersby as "great old sire." But where the power of wise men is organized, there is a corporation of priests or literati, among whom all wisdom is held to be concentrated. The sage is a very different type of character from the knightly warrior, and produces, where he rules, a very different society. China and Japan illustrate the contrast.

We have already noted the curious fact that, although knowledge plays a larger part in civilization now than at any former time, there has not been any corresponding growth of power among those who possess the new knowledge. Although the electrician and the telephone man do strange things that minister to our comfort (or discomfort), we do not regard them as medicine-men, or imagine that they can cause thunderstorms if we annoy them. The reason for this is that scientific knowledge, though difficult, is not mysterious, but open to all who care to take the necessary trouble. The modern intellectual, therefore, inspires no awe, but remains a mere employee; except in a few cases, such as the Archbishop of Canterbury, he has failed to inherit the glamour which gave power to his predecessors.

The truth is that the respect accorded to men of learning was never bestowed for genuine knowledge, but for the supposed possession of magical powers. Science, in giving some real acquaintance with natural processes, has destroyed the belief in magic, and therefore the respect for the intellectual. Thus it has come about that, while men of science are the fundamental cause of the features which distinguish our time from former ages, and have, through their discoveries and inventions, an immeasurable influence upon the course of events, they have not, as individuals, as great a reputation for wisdom as may be enjoyed in India by a naked fakir or in Melanesia by a medicine-man. The intellectuals, finding their prestige slipping from them as a result of their own activities, become dissatisfied with the modern world. Those in whom the dissatisfaction is least take to Communism; those in whom it goes deeper shut themselves up in their ivory tower.

The growth of large economic organizations has produced a new type of powerful individual: the "executive," as he is called in America. The typical "executive" impresses others as a man of rapid decisions, quick insight into character, and iron will ; he must have a firm jaw, tightly closed lips, and a habit of brief and incisive speech. He must be able to inspire respect in equals, and confidence in subordinates who are by no means nonentities. He must combine the qualities of a great general and a great diplomatist: ruthlessness in battle, but a capacity for skilful concession in negotiation. It is by such qualities that men acquire control of important economic organizations.

Political power, in a democracy, tends to belong to men of a type which differs considerably from the three that we have considered hitherto. A politician, if he is to succeed, must be able to win the confidence of his machine, and then to arouse some degree of enthusiasm in a majority of the electorate. The qualities required for these two stages on the road to power are by no means identical, and many men possess the one without the other. Candidates for the Presidency in the United States are not infrequently men who cannot stir the imagination of the general public, though they possess the art of ingratiating themselves with party managers. Such men are, as a rule, defeated, but the party managers do not foresee their defeat. Sometimes, however, the machine is able to secure the victory of a man without "magnetism" ; in such cases, it dominates him after his election, and he never achieves real power. Sometimes, on the contrary, a man is able to create his own machine; Napoleon III, Mussolini, and Hitler are examples of this. More commonly, a really successful politician, though he uses an already existing machine, is able ultimately to dominate it and make it subservient to his will.

The qualities which make a successful politician in a democracy vary according to the character of the times ; they are not the same in quiet times as they are during war or revolution. In quiet times, a man may succeed by giving an impression of solidity and sound judgment, but in times of excitement something more is needed. At such times, it is necessary to be an impressive speaker--not necessarily eloquent in the conventional sense, for Robespierre and Lenin were not eloquent, but determined, passionate, and bold. The passion may be cold and controlled, but must exist and be felt. In excited times, a politician needs no power of reasoning, no apprehension of impersonal facts, and no shred of wisdom. What he must have is the capacity of persuading the multitude that what they passionately desire is attainable, and that he, through his ruthless determination, is the man to attain it.

The most successful democratic politicians are those who succeed in abolishing democracy and becoming dictators. This, of course, is only possible in certain circumstances ; no one could have achieved it in nineteenth-century England. But when it is possible, it requires only a high degree of the same qualities as are required by democratic politicians in general, at any rate in excited times. Lenin, Mussolini, and Hitler owed their rise to democracy.

When once a dictatorship has been established, the qualities by which a man succeeds a dead dictator are totally different from those by which the dictatorship was originally created. Wire-pulling, intrigue, and Court favour are the most important methods when heredity is discarded. For this reason, a dictatorship is sure to change its character very considerably after the death of its founder. And since the qualities by which a man succeeds to a dictatorship are less generally impressive than those by which the regime was created, there is a likelihood of instability, palace revolutions, and ultimate reversion to some different system. It is hoped, however, that modern methods of propaganda may successfully counteract this tendency, by creating popularity for the Head of the State without the need for any display of popular qualities on his part. How far such methods can succeed it is as yet impossible to say.

There is one form of the power of individuals which we have not yet considered, namely, power behind the scenes: the power of courtiers, intriguers, spies, and wire-pullers. In every large organization, where the men in control have considerable power, there are other less prominent men (or women) who acquire influence over the leaders by personal methods. Wire-pullers and party bosses belong to the same type, though their technique is different. They put their friends, quietly, into key positions, and so, in time, control the organization. In a dictatorship which is not hereditary, such men may hope to succeed to the dictator when he dies ; but in general they prefer not to take the front of the stage. They are men who love power more than glory; often they are socially timid. Sometimes, like eunuchs in Oriental monarchies, or kings' mistresses elsewhere, they are, for one reason or another, debarred from titular leadership. Their influence is greatest where nominal power is hereditary, and least where it is the reward of personal skill and energy. Such men, however, even in the most modern forms of government, inevitably have considerable power in those departments which average men consider mysterious. Of these the most important, in our time, are currency and foreign policy. In the time of the Kaiser William II, Baron Holstein (permanent Head of the German Foreign Office) had immense power, although he made no public appearances. How great is the power of the permanent officials in the British Foreign Office at the present day, it is impossible for us to know ; the necessary documents may become known to our children. The qualities required for power behind the scenes are very different from those required for all other kinds, and as a rule, though not always, they are undesirable qualities. A system which accords much power to the courtier or the wire-puller is, therefore, in general not a system likely to promote the general welfare.

Chapter IV: Priestly Power

In this chapter and the next I propose to consider the two forms of traditional power which have had most importance in past times, namely, priestly and kingly authority. Both are now somewhat in eclipse, and, although it would be rash to assume that neither will revive, their decline, whether permanent or temporary, makes it possible to study both institutions with a completeness which is not attainable where still vigorous forms of power are concerned.

Priests and kings, though in a rudimentary form, exist among the most primitive societies known to anthropologists. Sometimes one person combines the functions of both. This occurs not only among savages, but in highly civilized States. Augustus, in Rome, was Pontifex Maximus, and in the provinces was a god. The Caliph was the head of the Mohammedan religion as well as of the State. The Mikado, at the present day, has a similar position in the Shinto religion. There has been a strong tendency for kings to lose their secular functions owing to their sacredness, and thus to develop into priests. Nevertheless, at most times and places, the distinction between priest and king has been obvious and definite.

The most primitive form of priest is the medicine-man, whose powers are of two kinds, which anthropologists distinguish as religious and magical. Religious powers depend upon the assistance of superhuman beings, while magical powers are supposed to be natural. For our purposes, however, this distinction is not important. What is important is that the medicine-man, whether by magic or by religion, is thought to be able to do good or harm to other people, and that his powers are not shared by all and sundry. A certain amount of magic, it is thought, may be practised by the laity, but the medicine-man's magic is stronger. When a man falls ill or meets with an accident, it is usually due to the malevolent magic of an enemy, but the medicine-man knows of ways by which the evil spell can be removed. Thus in Duke of York Island the medicine-man, after discovering by divination the source of the patient's illness, takes a packet of lime and recites a magical formula :
Lime of exorcism. I banish the octopus; I banish the teo snake; I banish the spirit of the Ingiet (a secret Society) ; I banish the crab; I banish the water snake; I banish the balivo snake; I banish the python; I banish the kaia dog. Lime of exorcism. I banish the slimy fluid ; I banish the kete creeping plant; I banish To Pilana; I banish To Wuwu-Tawur; I banish Tumbal. One has sunk them right down deep in the sea. Vapour shall arise to hold them afar; clouds shall arise to hold them afar; darkness shall reign to hold them afar; they shall betake themselves to the depths of the sea. (note: Rivers, Medicine, Magic, and Religion, p. 16)
It must not be supposed that this formula is usually ineffective. Savages are much more subject to suggestion than civilized men, and therefore their diseases can very often be both caused and cured by this agency.

In most parts of Melanesia, according to Rivers, the man who cures diseases is the sorcerer or priest. There is not apparently, in these regions, a very clear differentiation between medicine-men and others, and some of the simpler remedies may be used by anyone. But
Those who combine the practice of medicine with that of magical or religious rites usually acquire their art by a special process, either of initiation or instruction, and in Melanesia such knowledge has always to be purchased. The most complete instruction in any branch of medico-magical or medico-religious art is of no avail to the pupil unless money has passed from himself to his instructor. (note: Rivers, Medicine, Magic, and Religion, p. 44)
From such beginnings it is easy to imagine the development of a definite priestly caste, with a monopoly of the more important magical and religious powers, and consequently with great authority over the community. In Egypt and Babylonia their power proved itself greater than that of the king when the two came into conflict. They defeated the "atheist" Pharaoh Ikhnaton,(note: or Akhnaton) and they seem to have treacherously helped Cyrus to conquer Babylon because their native king showed a tendency to anti-clericalism.

Greece and Rome were peculiar in antiquity owing to their almost complete freedom from priestly power. In Greece, such religious power as existed was chiefly concentrated in the oracles, especially Delphi, where the Pythoness was supposed to fall into a trance and give answers inspired by Apollo. It was, however, well known by the time of Herodotus that the oracle could be bribed. Both Herodotus and Aristotle relate that the Alcmaeonidae, an important Athenian family exiled by Peisistratus (died 527 B.C.) , corruptly procured the support of Delphi against his sons. What Herodotus says is curious: the Alcmaeonidae, he tells us,
"if we may believe the Athenians, persuaded the Pythoness by a bribe to tell the Spartans, whenever any of them came to consult the oracle, either on their own private affairs or on the business of the State, that they must free Athens (from the tyranny of the Peisistratidae). So the Lasedaemonians, when they found no answer ever returned to them but this, sent at last Anchimolius, the son of Aster--a man of note among their citizens--at the head of an army against Athens, with orders to drive out the Peisistratidae, albeit they were bound to them by the closest ties of friendship. For they esteemed the things of heaven more highly than the things of men."(note: Bk. V, Ch. 63. Rawlinson's translation.)
Though Anchimolius was defeated, a subsequent larger expedition was successful, the Alcmaeonidae and the other exiles recovered power, and Athens again enjoyed what was called "freedom."

There are several remarkable features in this narrative. Herodotus is a pious man, completely devoid of cynicism, and he thinks well of the Spartans for listening to the oracle. But he prefers Athens to Sparta, and in Athenian affairs he is against the Peisistratidae. Nevertheless it is the Athenians whom he cites as authorities for the bribery, and no punishment befell the successful party or the Pythoness for their impiety. (note: Herodotus gives another instance of corruption of the Pythoness, Bk. VI, Ch. 66.) The Alcmaeonidae were still prominent in the days of Herodotus ; in fact the most famous of them was his contemporary Pericles.

Aristotle, in his book on the Constitution of Athens, represents the transaction in an even more discreditable light. The temple at Delphi had been destroyed by fire in 548 B.C., and funds for the purpose of rebuilding it were collected throughout Greece by the Alcmaeonidae. They--so Aristotle avers--used part of the funds to bribe the Pythoness, and made the expenditure of the rest conditional on the overthrow of Hippias, son of Peisistratus, by which means Apollo was won over to their side.

In spite of such scandals, control of the oracle at Delphi remained a matter of such political importance as to be the cause of a serious war, called, on account of its connection with religion, the "Sacred" War. But in the long run the open recognition of the fact that the oracle was open to political control must have encouraged the spread of free thought, which ultimately made it possible for the Romans, without incurring the odium of sacrilege, to rob Greek temples of most of their wealth and all of their authority. It is the fate of most religious institutions, sooner or later, to be used by bold men for secular purposes, and thereby to forfeit the reverence upon which their power depends. In the Graeco-Roman world this happened more smoothly and with less upheaval than elsewhere, because religion had never the same strength as in Asia and Africa and mediaeval Europe. The only country analogous to Greece and Rome in this respect is China.

Hitherto we have been concerned only with religions which have come down from immemorial antiquity, without any known historical origin. But these have been superseded, almost everywhere, by religions derived from founders ; the only important exceptions are Shinto and Brahmanism. The origins of the older religions, as of those found by anthropologists among present-day savages, are completely obscure. Among the most primitive savages, as we have seen, there is not a clearly differentiated priestly caste ; it would seem that, at first, priestly functions are a prerogative of the older men, and presumably especially of such as produce an impression of wisdom, or sometimes of pre-eminence in malignant magic.(note: Rivers, Social Organization, p. 167)

With advancing civilization, in most countries, priests become increasingly separate from the rest of the population and increasingly powerful. But as the guardians of an ancient tradition they are conservative, and as possessors of wealth and power they tend to become hostile or indifferent to personal religion. Sooner or later, their whole system is over-thrown by the followers of a revolutionary prophet. Buddha, Christ, and Mohammed are the historically most important examples. The power of their followers was at first revolutionary, and only gradually became traditional. In the process they usually absorbed much of the old tradition which they had nominally overthrown.

Both religious and secular innovators --at any rate those who have had most lasting success- have appealed, as far as they could, to tradition, and -- have done whatever lay in their power to minimize the elements of novelty in their system. The usual plan is to invent a more or less fictitious past and pretend to be restoring its institutions. In 2 Kings xxii we are told how the priests "found" the Book of the Law, and the King caused a "return" to observance of its precepts. The New Testament appealed to the authority of the Prophets ; the Anabaptists appealed to the New Testament; the English Puritans, in secular matters, appealed to the supposed institutions of England before the Conquest. The Japanese, in A.D. 645, "restored" the power of the Mikado; in I868, they "restored" the constitution of A.D. 645. A whole series of rebels, throughout the Middle Ages and down to the 18 Brumaire, "restored" the republican institutions of Rome. Napoleon "restored" the empire of Charlemagne, but this was felt to be a trifle too theatrical, and failed to impress even that rhetorically minded age. These are only a few illustrations, selected at random, of the respect which even the greatest innovators have shown for the power of tradition.

The most powerful and important of all priestly organizations known to history has been the Catholic Church. I am concerned in this chapter with the power of priests only in so far as it is traditional; I will not, therefore, at present, consider the early period when the power of the Church was revolutionary. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the Church had the good fortune to represent two traditions : in addition to that of Christianity, it also embodied that of Rome. The Barbarians had the power of the sword, but the Church had a higher level of civilization and education, a consistent impersonal purpose, the means of appealing to religious hopes and superstitious fears, and, above all, the sole organization that extended throughout Western Europe. The Greek Church, which had to deal with the comparatively stable empires of Constantinople and Moscow, became completely subordinate to the State; but in the West the struggle continued, with varying fortunes, until the Reformation, and to this day is not ended in Germany and Mexico and Spain.

For the first six centuries after the Barbarian invasion the Western Church was unable to contend on equal terms with the turbulent and passionate Germanic kings and barons who ruled in England and France, in North Italy and in Christian Spain. For this there were several reasons. Justinian's conquests in Italy had for a time made the Papacy a Byzantine institution, and had greatly diminished its influence in the West. The higher clergy were drawn, with few exceptions, from the feudal aristocracies, with whom they felt more at one than with a distant and alien Pope whose interferences were resented. The lower clergy were ignorant and mostly married, with the result that they were more anxious to transmit their benefices to their sons than to fight the battles of the Church. Travel was so difficult that Roman authority could not be exerted in distant kingdoms. The first effective government over a large area was not that of the Pope, but that of Charlemagne, whom all his contemporaries regarded as unquestionably the Pope's superior.

After the year 1000, when it was found that the expected end of the world had not taken place, there was a rapid advance in civilization. Contact with the Moors in Spain and Sicily hastened the rise of the scholastic philosophy. The Normans, after being for centuries a mere piratical scourge, acquired, in France and Sicily, whatever the contemporary world had to teach, and became a force for order and religion instead of for disorder ; moreover they found papal authority useful for the purpose of legitimizing their conquests. By them, for the first time, ecclesiastical England was brought completely under the dominion of Rome. Meanwhile, both the Emperor and the King of France were having the greatest difficulty in controlling their vassals. It was in these circumstances that the statesmanship and ruthless energy of Gregory VII (Hildebrand) inaugurated the increase of the papal power which continued throughout the next two centuries. As this period affords the supreme example of priestly power, I shall consider it in some detail.

The great days of the Papacy, which begin with the accession of Gregory VII (1073) , extend to Clement V's establishment of the Papacy at Avignon (1306). Its victories during this period were won by what are called "spiritual" weapons, i.e., by superstition, not by force of arms. Throughout the whole period, the Popes were outwardly at the mercy of the Roman mob, led by the turbulent nobles of the City--for, whatever the rest of Christendom might think, Rome never had any reverence for its Pontiff. The great Hildebrand himself died in exile; yet he acquired and transmitted the power to humble even the greatest monarchs. Canossa, though its immediate political consequences were convenient for the Emperor Henry IV, became a symbol for subsequent ages. Bismarck, during the Kulturkampf, said "we will not go to Canossa" ; but he boasted prematurely. Henry IV, who had been excommunicated, needed absolution to further his schemes, and Gregory, though he could not refuse absolution to a penitent, exacted humiliation as the price of reconciliation with the Church. As politicians, men might rail against the Pope, but only heretics questioned the power of the keys, and heresy was not countenanced even by the Emperor Frederick II at the height of his struggle with the Papacy.

Gregory VII's pontificate was the culmination of an important period of ecclesiastical reform. Until his day, the Emperor had been definitely above the Pope, and had claimed, not infrequently, a decisive voice in his election. Henry III, father of Henry IV, had deposed Gregory VI for simony, and had made a German Pope, Clement II. Yet Henry Ill was not in conflict with the Church; on the contrary, he was a saintly man, allied with all the most zealous ecclesiastics of his time. The reform movement which he supported, and which Gregory VII carried to triumph, was directed essentially against the tendency of the Church to become infected with feudalism. Kings and nobles appointed Archbishops and Bishops, who themselves, as a rule, belonged to the feudal aristocracy, and took a very secular view of their own position. In the Empire, the greatest men under the Emperor had been originally officials, who held their lands in virtue of their official position ; but by the end of the eleventh century they had become hereditary nobles, whose possessions passed by inheritance. There was a danger of something similar in the Church, particularly in the lower ranks of the secular clergy. The reforming party in the Church attacked the cognate evils of simony and "concubinage" (as they called the marriage of priests). In their campaign they showed zeal, courage devotion, and much worldly wisdom; by their holiness they secured the support of the laity, and by their eloquence they won over assemblies originally hostile. At Milan in 1058, for example, St. Peter Damian summoned the clergy to obedience to the reforming decrees of Rome ; at first he provoked so much anger that his life was in danger, but at last he prevailed, and it was found that every single priest among the Milanese, from the Archbishop downward, had been guilty of simony. All confessed, and promised obedience for the future ; on these terms, they were not dispossessed, but it was made clear that future offences would be punished without mercy.

Clerical celibacy was one of Hildebrand's preoccupations; in enforcing it, he enlisted the laity, who were frequently guilty of gross cruelty towards priests and their wives. The campaign was not, of course, completely successful --to this day it has not succeeded in Spain- -but one of its main objects was achieved by the decree that sons of priests could not be ordained, which prevented the local priesthood from becoming hereditary.

One of the most important triumphs of the reform movement was the fixing of the method of Papal election by the decree of 1059. Before this decree, the Emperor and the Roman populace had certain ill-defined rights, which made schisms and disputed elections frequent. The new decree succeeded --though not immediately and not without a struggle-- in confining the right of election to the Cardinals.

This reform movement, which filled the latter half of the eleventh century, succeeded, to a great extent, in separating Abbots, Bishops, and Archbishops from the feudal nobility, and in giving the Pope a voice in their appointment--for when he had been given no voice he could usually find a taint of simony. It impressed the laity, and greatly increased their reverence for the Church. When it succeeded in imposing celibacy, it made priests more markedly separate from the rest of the world, and no doubt stimulated their power impulses, as asceticism does in most cases. It inspired leading ecclesiastics with moral enthusiasm for a cause in which every one believed except those who profited by the traditional corruption, and as the chief means of furthering this cause it involved a great increase of Papal power.

Power dependent upon propaganda usually demands, as in this case, exceptional courage and self-sacrifice at the start; but when respect has been won by these qualities, they can be discarded, and the respect can be used as a means to worldly advancement. Then, in time, the respect decays, and the advantages which it had secured are lost. Sometimes the process takes a few years, sometimes thousands of years, but in essence it is always the same.

Gregory VII was no pacifist. His favourite text was: "Cursed be the man that keepeth back his sword from blood." But he explained this as prohibiting keeping back the word of preaching from carnal men, which shows the justice of his views on the power of propaganda.

Nicolas Breakspear, the only Englishman who ever occupied the Papal Chair (1154-1159), shows the theological power of the Pope in a somewhat different connection. Arnold of Brescia, a pupil of Abelard, preached the doctrine that "clerks who have estates, bishops who hold fiefs, monks who possess property, cannot be saved." This doctrine, of course, was not orthodox. St. Bernard said of him. "A man who neither eats nor drinks, he only, like the Devil, hungers and thirsts for the blood of souls." St. Bernard none the less admitted his exemplary piety, which made him a useful ally for the Romans in their conflict with the Pope and Cardinals, whom, in the year 1143, they had succeeded in driving into exile. He supported the revived Roman Republic, which sought moral sanction in his doctrine. But Adrian IV (Breakspear), taking advantage of the murder of a Cardinal, placed Rome under an interdict during Holy Week. As Good Friday approached, theological terrors seized upon the senate, which made abject submission. By the help of the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa, Arnold was captured; he was hanged, his body was burnt, and his ashes were thrown into the Tiber. Thus it wast proved that priests have a right to be rich. The pope, to reward the Emperor, crowned him in St. Peter's. The Emperor's troops had been useful, but not so useful as the Catholic Faith, to which, much more than to secular support, the Church owed both its power and its wealth.

The doctrines of Arnold of Brescia were such as to reconcile Pope and Emperor to each other ; for each recognized that both were necessary to the established order. But when Arnold was disposed of, the inevitable quarrel soon broke out afresh. In the long war that ensued, the Pope had a new ally, namely the Lombard League. The cities of Lombardy, especially Milan, were rich and commercial ; they were at that time in the forefront of economic development, a fact which is commemorated for Englishmen in the name "Lombard Street." The Emperor stood for feudalism, to which bourgeois capitalism was already hostile. Although the Church prohibited "usury," the Pope was a borrower, and found the capital of North Italian bankers so useful that theological rigour had to be softened. The conflict of Barbarossa with the Papacy, which lasted for about twenty years, ended in a draw, and it was chiefly owing to the Lombard Cities that the Emperor was not victorious.

In the long contest between the Papacy and the Emperor Frederick II, the ultimate victory of the Pope was due, in the main, to two causes: the opposition of the commercially minded cities of North Italy, Tuscany as well as Lombardy, to the feudal system, and the pious enthusiasm aroused by the Franciscans. St. Francis preached apostolic poverty and universal love; but within a few years of his death his followers were acting as recruiting sergeants in a fierce war to defend the property of the Church. The Emperor was defeated largely because he was unable to clothe his cause in a garb of piety or morality.

At the same time, the war measures adopted by the Popes during this struggle made many men critical of the Papacy on moral grounds. Of Innocent IV, the Pope with whom Frederick was contending at the time of his death, the Cambridge Medieval History (Vol. VI, p. I76) says:
"His conception of the Papacy was more secular than any other Pope's before him. He viewed his weakness as political and his remedies were political. He used his spiritual powers constantly to raise money, buy friends, injure foes, and by his unscrupulousness he roused a disrespectful hostility to the Papacy everywhere. His dispensations were a scandal. In contempt of his spiritual duties and of local rights, he used the endowments of the Church as papal revenue and means of political rewards : there would be four papal nominees waiting one after another for a benefice. Bad appointments were a natural consequence of such a system ; and, further, legates chosen for war and diplomacy would more likely than not be thoroughly worldly in character.... Of the loss of prestige and spiritual influence occasioned by him Innocent was unconscious. He had good intentions, but not good principles. Endowed with courage, with invincible resolution, with astuteness, his cold equanimity was seldom shaken by disaster or good-fortune, and he patiently pursued his ends with a cunning faithlessness which lowered the standards of the Church. His influence on events was enormous. He wrecked the Empire; he started the Papacy on its decline; he moulded the destinies of Italy."

The death of Innocent IV produced no change in papal policy. His successor Urban IV carried on the struggle, with complete success, against Frederick's son Manfred, and won the support of the still rising capitalism of Italy, wherever it was wavering, by an interesting use of his authority in matters of morals, which affords a classic example of the transformation of propaganda power into economic power. Most of the bankers, owing to their large transactions in collecting the papal revenue, were already on the side of the Pope, but in some cities, for instance Siena, Ghibelline feeling was so strong that the bankers, at first, sided with Manfred. Wherever this happened, the Pope informed the Banks' debtors that it was their Christian duty not to pay their debts, a pronouncement which the debtors readily accepted as authoritative. Siena, as a result, lost the English trade. Throughout Italy, the bankers who escaped ruin were compelled by this papal manoeuvre to become Guelphs. (note: Cf. Cambridge Mcdieval History, Vo1. VII, p. I82.)

But such means, though they could win the political support of the bankers, could hardly increase their respect for the Pope's claims to divine authority.

The whole of the period from the fall of the Western Empire to the end of the sixteenth century may be viewed as a contest between two traditions : that of imperial Rome, and that of Teutonic aristocracy, the former embodied in the Church, the latter in the State. The Holy Roman Emperors made an attempt to annex the tradition of imperial Rome, but failed. They themselves, with the exception of Frederick II, were too ignorant to understand the Roman tradition, while the political institution of feudalism, with which they were familiar, was Germanic. The language of educated men --including those who served the Emperors-- was pedantically derived from antiquity; law was Roman, philosophy was Greek, but the customs which were Teutonic in origin were not such as could be mentioned in polite speech. There was the same sort of difficulty as a classical scholar of the present day would find in describing in Latin the processes of modern industry. It was not until the Reformation and the adoption of modern languages in place of Latin that the Teutonic element in the civilization of Western Europe found adequate literary and intellectual expression.

After the fall of the Hohenstaufen, the Church seemed, for a few decades, to have re-established the rule of Italy over the Western world. Judged by money standards, this rule was at least as firm as in the days of the Antonines -- the revenue that flowed from England and Germany to Rome far exceeded what the Roman legions had been able to extract. But it was extorted by means of the reverence felt for the Papacy, not by force of arms.

As soon as the Popes moved to Avignon, however, they began to lose the respect which they had won during the three preceding centuries. This was due not only to their complete subservience to the King of France, but also to their participation in vast atrocities, such as the Suppression of the Templars. King Philip IV, being in financial difficulties, coveted the lands of this order. It was decided to accuse them, quite groundlessly, of heresy. With the help of the Pope, those who were in France were seized, tortured until they confessed that they had paid homage to Satan and spat upon the crucifix, etc., and then burnt in large numbers, while the King disposed of their property, not without pickings for the Pope. Such deeds began the moral degeneration of the Papacy.

The Great Schism made it still more difficult to reverence the Pope, since no one knew which of the claimants was the legitimate one, and each claimant anathematized the other. Throughout the Great Schism, each of the two rivals showed an unedifying tenacity of power, extending to repudiation of the most solemn oaths. In various countries, the State and the local Church, in unison, withdrew obedience from both Popes. At length it became clear that only a general council could end the trouble. The Council of Pisa, misguidedly, merely created a third Pope without successfully getting rid of the other two, although it pronounced their deposition as heretics; the Council of Constance at last succeeded in removing all three and restoring unity. But the struggle had destroyed the traditional reverence for the Papacy. At the end of this period of confusion, it had become possible for Wyclif to say of the Papacy :
"To get rid of such a demon would not harm the Church, but would be useful to it; in working for his destruction, the Church would be working solicitously for the cause of God."
The fifteenth-century Papacy, while it suited Italy, was too worldly and secular, as well as too openly immoral, to satisfy the piety of Northern countries. At last, in Teutonic countries, the moral revolt became strong enough to allow free play to economic motives : there was a general refusal to pay tribute to Rome, and princes and nobles seized the lands of the Church. But this would not have been possible without the doctrinal revolt of Protestantism, which could never have taken place but for the Great Schism and the scandals of the Renaissance Papacy. If the moral force of the Church had not been weakened from within, its assailants could not have had moral force on their side, and would have been defeated as Frederick II was defeated.

It is interesting in this connection to observe what Machiavelli has to say on the subject of ecclesiastical principalities in Chapter XI of The Prince :
"It only remains now to speak of ecclesiastical principalities, touching which all difficulties are prior to getting possession, because they are acquired either by capacity or good fortune, and they can be held without either ; for they are sustained by the ancient ordinances of religion, which are so all-powerful, and of such a character, that the principalities may be held no matter how their princes behave and live. These princes alone have states and do not defend them, they have subjects and do not rule them; and the states, though unguarded, are not taken from them, and the subjects, though not ruled, do not care, and they have neither the desire nor the ability to alienate themselves. Such principalities only are secure and happy. But being upheld by powers to which the human mind cannot reach, I shall speak no more of them, because, being exalted and maintained by God, it would be the act of a presumptuous and rash man to discuss them."
These words were written during the pontificate of Leo X, which was that in which the Reformation began. To pious Germans, it gradually became impossible to believe that the ruthless nepotism of Alexander VI, or the financial rapacity of Leo, could be "exalted and maintained by God." Luther, a "presumptuous and rash man," was quite willing to enter upon the discussion of the papal power, from which Machiavelli shrank. And as soon as there existed moral and theological support for opposition to the Church, motives of self-interest caused the opposition to spread with great rapidity. Since the power of the Church had been based upon the power of the keys, it was natural that opposition should be associated with a new doctrine of Justification. Luther's theology made it possible for lay princes to despoil the Church without fear of damnation and without incurring moral condemnation from their own subjects.

While economic motives contributed greatly to the spread of the Reformation, they are obviously not sufficient to account for it, since they had been operative for centuries. Many Emperors tried to resist the Pope ; so did sovereigns elsewhere, e.g. Henry II and King John in England. But their attempts were thought wicked, and therefore failed. It was only after the Papacy had, for a long time, so abused its traditional powers as to cause a moral revolt, that successful resistance became possible.

The rise and decline of papal power are worthy of study by anyone who wishes to understand the winning of power by propaganda. It is not enough to say that men were superstitious and believed in the power of the keys. Throughout the Middle Ages there were heresies, which would have spread, as Protestantism spread, if the Popes had not, on the whole, deserved respect. And without heresy secular rulers made vigorous attempts to keep the Church in subordination to the State. which failed in the West though they succeeded in the East. For this there were various reasons.
First: the Papacy was not hereditary, and was therefore not troubled with long minorities, as secular kingdoms were. A man could not easily rise to eminence in the Church except by piety, learning, or statesmanship ; consequently most Popes were men considerably above the average in one or more respects. Secular sovereigns might happen to be able, but were often quite the reverse ; moreover they had not the training in controlling their passions that ecclesiastics had. Repeatedly, kings got into difficulties from desire for divorce, which, being a matter for the Church, placed them at the mercy of the Pope. Sometimes they tried Henry VIII's way of dealing with this difficulty, but their subjects were shocked, their vassals were liberated from their oath of allegiance, and in the end they had to submit or fall.
Another great strength of the Papacy was its impersonal continuity. In the contest with Frederick II, it is astonishing how little difference is made by the death of a Pope. There was a body of doctrine, and a tradition of statecraft, to which kings could oppose nothing equally solid. It was only with the rise of nationalism that secular governments acquired any comparable continuity or tenacity of purpose.

In the eleventh, twelfth, and thirteenth centuries, kings, as a rule, were ignorant, while most Popes were both learned and well-informed. Moreover kings were bound up with the feudal system, which was cumbrous, in constant danger of anarchy, and hostile to the newer economic forces. On the whole, during those centuries, the Church represented a higher civilization than that represented by the State.
But by far the greatest strength of the Church was the moral respect which it inspired. It inherited, as a kind of moral capital, the glory of the persecutions in ancient times. Its victories, as we have seen, were associated with the enforcement of celibacy, and the mediaeval mind found celibacy very impressive. Very many ecclesiastics, including not a few Popes, suffered great hardships rather than yield on a point of principle. It was clear to ordinary men that, in a world of uncontrolled rapacity, licentiousness, and self-seeking, eminent dignitaries of the Church not infrequently lived for impersonal aims, to which they willingly subordinated their private fortune. In successive centuries, men of impressive holiness -- Hildebrand, St. Bernard, St. Francis-- dazzled public opinion, and prevented the moral discredit that would otherwise have come from the misdeeds of others.

But to an organization which has ideal ends, and therefore an excuse for love of power, a reputation for superior virtue is dangerous, and is sure, in the long run, to produce a superiority only in unscrupulous ruthlessness. The Church preached contempt for the things of this world, and in doing so acquired dominion over monarchs. The Friars took a vow of poverty, which so impressed the world that it increased the already enormous wealth of the Church. St. Francis, by preaching brotherly love, generated the enthusiasm required for the victorious prosecution of a long and atrocious war. In the end, the Renaissance Church lost all the moral purpose to which it owed its wealth and power, and the shock of the Reformation was necessary to produce regeneration.

All this is inevitable whenever superior virtue is used as a means of winning tyrannical power for an organization.

Except when due to foreign conquest, the collapse of traditional power is always the result of its abuse by men who believe, as Machiavelli believed, that its hold on men's minds is too firm to be shaken even by the grossest crimes.

In the United States at the present day, the reverence which the Greeks gave to oracles and the Middle Ages to the Pope is given to the Supreme Court. Those who have studied the working of the American Constitution know that the Supreme Court is part of the forces engaged in the protection of the plutocracy. But of the men who know this, some are on the side of the plutocracy, and therefore do nothing to weaken the traditional reverence for the Supreme Court, while others are discredited in the eyes of ordinary quiet citizens by being said to be subversive and Bolshevik. A considerable further career of obvious partisanship will be necessary before a Luther will be able to attack successfully the authority of the official interpreters of the Constitution.

Theological power is much less affected by defeat in war than secular power. It is true that Russia and Turkey, after the Great War, suffered a theological as well as a political revolution, but in both countries the traditional religion was very intimately connected with the State. The most important instance of theological survival in spite of defeat in war is the victory of the Church over the Barbarians in the fifth century. St. Augustine, in the City of God, which was inspired by the sack of Rome, explained that temporal power was not what was promised to the true believer, and was therefore not to be expected as the result of orthodoxy. The surviving pagans within the Empire argued that Rome was vanquished as a punishment for abandoning the gods, but in spite of the plausibility of this contention it failed to win any general support; among the invaders, the superior civilization of the vanquished prevailed, and the victors adopted the Christian faith. Thus through the medium of the Church the influence of Rome survived among the Barbarians, of whom none before Hitler succeeded in shaking off the tradition of ancient culture.

Chapter V: Kingly Power

The Origin of kings, like that of priests, is prehistoric, and the early stages in the evolution of kingship can only be conjectured from what still exists among the most backward savages. When the institution is fully developed, but has not yet begun to decline, the king is a man who leads his tribe or nation in war, who decides when to make war and when to make peace; often, though not always, he makes the laws and controls the administration of justice. His title to the throne is usually in a greater or less degree hereditary. He is, moreover, a sacred person : if not himself a god, he is at least the Lord's anointed.

But kingship of this sort presupposes a long evolution of government, and a community much more highly organized than those of savages. Even the savage chief, as most Europeans imagine him, is not to be found in really primitive societies. The man whom we regard as a chief may have only religious and ceremonial functions to perform; sometimes, like the Lord Mayor, he is only expected to give banquets. Sometimes he declares war, but takes no part in the fighting, because he is too sacred. Sometimes his mana is such that no subject may look upon him ; this effectually prevents him from taking much part in public business. He cannot make the laws, since they are decided by custom; he is not needed for their administration, since, in a small community, punishment can be spontaneously administered by neighbours. Some savage communities have two chiefs, one secular and one religious, like the Shogun and the Mikado in old Japan-not like the Emperor and the Pope, since the religious chief has, as a rule, only ceremonial power. among primitive savages generally, so much is decided by custom, and so little by formal government, that the prominent men whom Europeans call chiefs have only faint beginnings of kingly power. (note: 0n this subject, see Rivers. Social Organization.)

Migration and foreign invasion are powerful forces in the destruction of custom, and therefore in creating the need of government. At the lowest level of civilization at which there are rulers worthy to be called kings, the royal family is sometimes of alien origin, and has won respect, initially, by some definite superiority. But whether this is a common or uncommon stage in the evolution of monarchy is a controversial question among anthropologists.

It is clear that war must have played a great part in increasing the power of kings, since in war the need of a unified command is obvious. To make the monarchy hereditary is the easiest way of avoiding the evils of a disputed succession; even if the king has the power of appointing his successor, he is pretty sure to choose one of his family. But dynasties do not last for ever, and every royal family begins with a usurper or foreign conqueror. Usually religion legitimizes the new family by means of some traditional ceremony. Priestly power profits by these occasions, since it comes to be an essential support of the royal prestige. "No Bishop, no King," said Charles I, and the analogue of this maxim has been true in all ages in which kings have existed. The position of king appears to ambitious people such a desirable one that only powerful religious sanctions will make them renounce the hope of acquiring it themselves.

Whatever may have been the stages by which the primitive chief developed into the historical king, the process was already completed in Egypt and Babylonia at the earliest period of which records exist. The Great Pyramid is considered to have been built before 3000 B.C., and its construction would only have been possible for a monarch possessed of immense power over his subjects. Babylonia, at this period, had a number of kings, none having a territory comparable to that of Egypt; but they were very completely rulers in their respective areas. Before the end of the third millennium B.C. we reach the great king Hammurabi (2123-2081 B.C.), who did all the things that a king should do. He is best known by his code of laws, which was given to him by the sun-god, and shows that he succeeded in achieving what mediaeval monarchs never could do, namely, subordinating ecclesiastical to civil courts. But he was also distinguished as a soldier and as an engineer. Patriotic poets sang the praises of his conquests:
For all time he his mighty strength hath shown,
The mighty warrior, Hammurabi, king,
Who smote the foe, a very storm in battle.
Sweeping the lands of foemen, bringing war to nought,
Giving rebellion surcease, and destroying,
Like dolls of clay, malignants, hath laid open
The steeps of the impenetrable hills.

He recorded himself his exploits in irrigation : "When Anu and Enlil [a god and goddess] gave me the lands of Sumer and Akkad to rule, and entrusted their sceptre to me, I dug the canal Hammurabi-the-abundance-of-the-people which bringeth water for the lands of Sumer and Akkad. The scattered people of Sumer and Akkad I gathered, with pasturage and watering I provided them; I pastured them with plenty and abundance, and settled them in peaceful dwellings."

Kingship as an institution had reached its utmost limits of development in Egypt at the time of the Great Pyramid and in Babylonia at the time of Hammurabi. Later kings have had larger territories, but none have had more complete rule over their kingdoms. The power of Egyptian and Babylonian kings was ended only by foreign conquest, not by internal rebellion. They could not, it is true, afford to quarrel with the priesthood, since the submission of their subjects depended upon the religious significance of the monarchy ; but except in this respect their authority was unlimited.

The Greeks, in most cities, got rid of their kings, as political rulers, at or before the beginning of the historical period. The Roman kings are prehistoric, and the Romans retained, throughout their history, an unconquerable aversion to the name of king. The Roman Emperor, in the West, was never a monarch in the full sense of the word. His origin was extra-legal, and he depended always upon the army. To civilians, he might declare himself a god, but to the soldiers he remained merely a general who gave, or did not give, adequate donatives. Except occasionally for short periods, the Empire was not hereditary. The real power was always the army, and the Emperor was merely its nominee for the time being.

The Barbarian invasion reintroduced monarchy, but with a difference. The new kings were the chiefs of Germanic tribes, and their power was not absolute, but depended always upon the co-operation of some Council of Elders or kindred body. When a Germanic tribe conquered a Roman province, its chief became king, but his most important companions became nobles with a certain measure of independence. Hence arose the feudal system, which left all the monarchs of Western Europe at the mercy of turbulent Barons.

Monarchy consequently remained weak until it had got the better of both the Church and the feudal nobility. The causes of the weakening of the Church we have already considered. The nobility was worsted in the struggle with the king, in England and France, because it was an obstacle to orderly government. In Germany its leaders developed into petty kings, with the result that Germany was at the mercy of France. In Poland, aristocratic anarchy continued until the partition. In England and France, after the Hundred Years War and the Wars of the Roses, ordinary citizens were compelled to put their faith in a strong king. Edward IV became victorious by the help of the City of London, from which he even chose his queen. Louis XI, the enemy of the feudal aristocracy, was the friend of the higher bourgeoisie, who helped him against the nobles while he helped them against the artisans. "He ruled like a great capitalist," is the official verdict of the Encyclopedia Britannica.

The renaissance monarchies had one great advantage, as compared with earlier kings in their conflicts with the Church, namely that education was no longer a monopoly of ecclesiastics. The help of lay lawyers was invaluable in the establishment of the new monarchy. The new monarchies, in England, France, and spain, were above the Church and above the aristocracy. Their power depended upon the support of two growing forces, nationalism and commerce : so long as they were felt to be useful to these two, they were strong, but when they failed in these respects there was revolution. The Tudors were faultless in both respects, but the Stuarts hampered trade by monopolies granted to courtiers, and allowed England to be dragged at the chariot wheels of spain first, and then France. The French monarchy favoured commerce and enhanced national power until the end of Colbert's regime. After that time, the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, a series of increasingly disastrous wars, crushing taxation, and the exemption of clergy and nobles from financial burdens, turned both commerce and nationalism against the king, and in the end brought about the Revolution. Spain was deflected by the conquest of the New World; but the Spanish New World itself, when it rebelled, did so chiefly in order to be able to trade with England and the United States.

Commerce, though it supported kings against feudal anarchy, has always been republican when it has felt sufficiently strong. It was so in antiquity, in the North Italian and Hanseatic cities of the Middle Ages, and in Holland during its greatest days. The alliance between kings and commerce was therefore an uneasy one. Kings appealed to "divine right," and sought, as far as possible, to make their power traditional and quasi-religious. In this they were partially successful: the execution of Charles I was felt to be an impiety, not merely an ordinary crime. In France, St. Louis was erected into a legendary figure, some of whose piety descended as a cloak even to Louis XV, who was still "the most Christian King." Having created a new Court aristocracy, kings tended to prefer it to the bourgeoisie. In England, the higher aristocracy and the bourgeoisie combined, and installed a king with a merely parliamentary title, who had none of the old magic properties of majesty: George I, for instance, could not cure the king's evil, though Queen Anne could. In France, the king won over the aristocracy, and his and their heads fell together under the guillotine.

The alliance of commerce and nationalism, which began with the Lombard League in the time of Frederick Barbarossa, gradually spread over Europe, achieving its last and briefest triumph in the Russian February Revolution. Wherever it won power, it turned against hereditary power based on land, at first in alliance with the monarchy, and then in opposition to it. In the end, kings everywhere disappeared or were reduced to figure-heads. Now, at last, nationalism and commerce have parted company; in. Italy, Germany, and Russia it is nationalism that has triumphed. The Liberal movement, begun in Milan in the twelfth century, has run its course.

Traditional power, when not destroyed from without, runs, almost always, through a certain development. Emboldened by the respect which it inspires, it becomes careless as regards the general approval, which it believes that it cannot ever lose. By sloth, folly, or cruelty it gradually forces men to become sceptical of its claims to divine authority. Since these claims have no better source than habit, criticism, once aroused, easily disposes of them. Some new creed, useful to the rebels, takes the place of the old one; or sometimes, as in the case of Haiti when it won freedom from the French, mere chaos succeeds. As a rule, a long period of very flagrant misgovernment is necessary before mental rebellion becomes widespread; and in many cases the rebels succeed in transferring to themselves part or the whole of the old authority. So Augustus absorbed into himself the traditional dignity of the Senate; Protestants retained the reverence for the Bible, while rejecting reverence for the Catholic Church; the British Parliament gradually acquired the power of the king, without destroying the respect for monarchy.

Chapter VI: Naked Power,

As the beliefs and habits which have upheld traditional power decay, it gradually gives way either to power based upon some new belief, or to "naked" power, i.e. to the kind that involves no acquiescence on the part of the subject. Such is the power of the butcher over the sheep, of an invading army over a vanquished nation, and of the police over detected conspirators. The power of the Catholic Church over Catholics is traditional, but its power over heretics who are persecuted is naked. The power of the State over loyal citizens is traditional, but its power over rebels is naked. Organizations that have a long career of power pass, as a rule, through three phases : first, that of fanatical but not traditional belief, leading to conquest; then, that of general acquiescence in the new power, which rapidly becomes traditional ; and finally that in which power, being now used against those who reject tradition, has again become naked. The character of an organization changes very greatly as it passes through these stages.

The power conferred by military conquest often ceases, after a longer or shorter period of time, to be merely military. All the provinces conquered by the Romans, except Judea, soon became loyal subjects of the Empire, and ceased to feel any desire for independence. In Asia and Africa the Christian countries conquered by the Mohammedans submitted with little reluctance to their new rulers. Wales gradually acquiesced in English rule, though Ireland did not. After the Albigensian heretics had been overcome by military force, their descendants submitted inwardly as well as outwardly to the authority of the Church. The Norman Conquest produced, in England, a royal family which, after a time, was thought to possess a Divine Right to the throne. Military conquest is stable only when it is followed by psychological conquest, but the cases in which this has occurred are very numerous.

Naked power, in the internal government of a community not lately submitted to foreign conquest, arises in two different sets of circumstances : first, where two or more fanatical creeds are contending for mastery; secondly, where all traditional beliefs have decayed, without being succeeded by new ones, so that there are no limitations to personal ambition. The former kind of case is not pure, since the adherents of the dominant creed are not subject to naked power. I shall consider it in the next chapter, under the head of revolutionary power. For the present I shall confine myself to the second kind of case.
The definition of naked power is psychological, and a government may be naked in relation to some of its subjects but not in relation to others. The most complete examples known to me, apart from foreign conquest, are the later Greek tyrannies and some of the States of Renaissance Italy.

Greek history affords, as in a laboratory, a large number of small-scale experiments of great interest to the student of political power. The hereditary kingship of the Homeric age came to an end before the beginning of historical records, and was succeeded by a hereditary aristocracy. At the point where reliable history of Greek cities begins, there was a contest between aristocracy and tyranny. Except in Sparta, tyranny was everywhere victorious for a time, but was succeeded either by democracy or by a restoration of aristocracy, sometimes in the form of plutocracy. This first age of tyranny covered the greater part of the seventh and sixth centuries B.C. It was not an age of naked power, as was the later period with which I shall be specially concerned; Nevertheless, it prepared the way for the lawlessness and violence of later times.

The word "tyrant" did not, originally, imply any bad qualities in the ruler, but only an absence of legal or traditional title. Many of the early tyrants governed wisely, and with the consent of the majority of their subjects. Their only implacable enemies, as a rule, were the aristocrats. Most of the early tyrants were very rich men, who bought their way to power, and maintained themselves more by economic than by military means. They are to be compared rather with the Medici than with the dictators of our day.

The first age of tyranny was that in which coinage first came into use, and this had the same kind of effect in increasing the power of rich men as credit and paper money have had in recent times. It has been maintained (See P. N. Ure, The Origin of Tyranny)--with what truth I am not competent to judge--that the introduction of currency was connected with the rise of tyranny; certainly the possession of silver mines was a help to any man who aimed at becoming a tyrant. The use of money, when it is new, profoundly disturbs ancient customs, as may be seen in the parts of Africa which have not been long under European control. In the seventh and sixth centuries B.C., the effect was to increase the power of commerce, and to diminish that of territorial aristocracies. Until the Persians acquired Asia Minor, wars in the Greek world were few and unimportant, and not much of the work of production was performed by slaves. The circumstances were ideal for economic power, which weakened the hold of tradition in much the same way as industrialism did in the nineteenth century.

So long as it was possible for everybody to be prosperous, the weakening of tradition did more good than harm. It led, among the Greeks, to the most rapid advance in civilization that has ever occurred --with the possible exception of the last four centuries. The freedom of Greek art and science and philosophy is that of a prosperous age unhampered by superstition. But the social structure had not the toughness required to resist misfortune, and individuals had not the moral standards necessary for the avoidance of disastrous crimes when virtue could no longer bring success. A long series of wars diminished the free population and increased the number of slaves. Greece proper finally fell under the dominion of Macedonia, while Hellenic Sicily, in spite of increasingly violent revolutions, civil wars, and tyrannies, continued to struggle against the power of Carthage, and then of Rome. The Syracusan tyrannies deserve our attention, both because they afford one of the most perfect examples of naked power, and because they influenced Plato, who quarrelled with the elder Dionysius and endeavoured to make a pupil of the younger. The views of later Greeks, and of all subsequent ages, on Greek tyrants in general, were largely influenced by the unfortunate contacts of the philosophers with Dionysius the elder and his successors in Syracusan misgovernment.

"The machinery of fraud," says Grote, "whereby the people were to be cheated into a temporary submission, as a prelude to the machinery of force whereby such submission was to be perpetuated against their consent -- was the stock in trade of Grecian usurpers." How far the earlier tyrannies were perpetuated without popular consent may be doubted, but of the later tyrannies, which were military rather than economic, this is certainly true. Take, for example, Grote's description, based on Diodorus, of the crucial moment in the rise of Dionysius the elder. The arms of Syracuse had suffered defeat and disgrace under a more or less democratic regime, and Dionysius, the chosen leader of the champions of vigorous war, was demanding the punishment of the defeated generals.
"Amidst the silence and disquietude which reigned in the Syracusan assembly, Dionysius was the first who rose to address them. He enlarged upon a topic suitable alike to the temper of his auditors and to his own views. He vehemently denounced the generals as having betrayed the security of Syracuse to the Carthaginians--and as the persons to whom the ruin of Agrigentum, together with the impending peril of every man around, was owing. He set forth their misdeeds, real and alleged, not merely with fulness and acrimony, but with a ferocious violence outstripping all the limits of legitimate debate, and intended to bring upon them a lawless murder, like the death of the generals recently at Agrigentum. 'There they sit, the Traitors! Do not wait for legal trial or verdict, but lay hands upon them at once, and inflict upon them summary justice.' Such a brutal exhortation ... was an offence against law as well as against parliamentary order. The presiding magistrates reproved Dionysius as a disturber of order, and fined him, as they were empowered by law. But his partisans were loud in his support. Philistus not only paid down the fine for him on the spot, but publicly proclaimed that he would go on for the whole day paying all similar fines which might be imposed -- and incited Dionysius to persist in such language as he thought proper. That which had begun as illegality, was now aggravated into open defiance of the law. Yet so enfeebled was the authority of the magistrates, and so vehement the cry against them, in the actual position of the city, that they were unable either to punish or repress the speaker. Dionysius pursued his harangue in a tone yet more inflamatory, not only accusing the generals of having corruptly betrayed Agrigentum, but also denouncing the conspicuous and wealthy citizens generally, as oligarchs who had tyrannical sway -- who treated the many with scorn, and made their own profit out of the misfortunes of the city. Syracuse (he contended) could never be saved, unless men of a totally different character were invested with authority; men, not chosen from wealth or station, but of humble birth, belonging to the people by position, and kind in their deportment from consciousness of their own weakness. (Note: History of Greece, ch. LXXXI.)
And so he became tyrant; but history does not relate any consequent advantage to the poor and humble. True, he confiscated the estates of the rich, but it was to his bodyguard that he gave them. His popularity soon waned, but not his power. A few pages further on we find Grote saying:
"Feeling more than ever that his dominion was repugnant to the Syracusans, and rested only on naked force, he thus surrounded himself with precautions probably stronger than any other Grecian despot had ever accumulated."
Greek history is peculiar in the fact that, except in sparta, the influence of tradition was extraordinarily weak in Greece ; moreover there was almost no political morality. Herodotus states that no spartan could resist a bribe. Throughout Greece, it was useless to object to a politician on the ground that he took bribes from the King of Persia, because his opponents also did so if they became sufficiently powerful to be worth buying. The result was a universal scramble for personal power, conducted by corruption, street fighting, and assassination. In this business, the friends of Socrates and Plato were among the most unscrupulous. The final outcome, as might have been foreseen, was subjugation by foreign Powers.

It used to be customary to lament the loss of Greek independence, and to think of the Greeks as all Solons and Socrateses. How little reason there was to deplore the victory of Rome may be seen from the history of Hellenic Sicily. I know no better illustration of naked power than the career of Agathocles, a contemporary of Alexander the Great, who lived from 361 to 289 B.C. (361B.C. to 289 B.C.), and was tyrant of Syracuse during the last twenty-eight years of his life.

Syracuse was the largest of Greek cities, perhaps the largest city in the Mediterranean. Its only rival was Carthage, with which there was always war except for a short time after a serious defeat of either party. The other Greek cities in Sicily sided sometimes with Syracuse, sometimes with Carthage, according to the turns of party politics. In every city, the rich favoured oligarchy and the poor favoured democracy ; when the partisans of democracy were victorious, their leader usually succeeded in making himself a tyrant. Many of the beaten party became exiles, and joined the armies of those cities in which their party was in power. But the bulk of the armed forces consisted of mercenaries, largely non-Hellenic.

Agathocles was a man of humble origin, the son of a potter. (Note: What follows rests on the authority of Diodorus Siculus. Some modern authorities say that he was biased, and that Agathocles was an admirable ruler. But it is difficult to believe that Diodorus is not correct as to the main facts.) Owing to his beauty he became the favourite of a rich Syracusan named Demas, who left him all his money, and whose widow he married. Having distinguished himself in war, he was thought to be aspiring to the tyranny; he was accordingly exiled, and orders were given that he should be murdered on his journey. But he, having foreseen this, changed clothes with a poor man, who was murdered in error by the hired assassins. He then raised an army in the interior of Sicily, which so terrified the Syracusans that they made a treaty with him: he was readmitted, and swore in the temple of Ceres that he would do nothing to the prejudice of the democracy.

The government of Syracuse at this time seems to have been a mixture of democracy and oligarchy. There was a council of six hundred, consisting of the richest men. Agathocles espoused the cause of the poor against these oligarchs. In the course of a conference with forty of them, he roused the soldiers and had all the forty murdered, saying there was a plot against him. He then led the army into the city, telling them to plunder all the six hundred ; they did so, and massacred citizens who came out of their houses to see what was happening; in the end, large numbers were murdered for booty. As Diodorus says: "Nay, there was no safety even to them that fled to the temples under the shelter of the gods; but piety towards the gods was crushed and borne down by the cruelty of men: and these things Greeks against Greeks in their own country, and kindred against kindred in a time of peace, without any regard either to the laws of nature, or leagues, or reverence to the gods, dared thus audaciously to commit: upon which account not only friends, but even enemies themselves, and every sober man, could not but pity the miserable condition of these distressed people."

Those of Agathocles's party spent the day-time slaughtering the men, and at nightfall turned their attention to the women.

After two days' massacre, Agathocles brought forth the prisoners and killed all but his friend Dinocrates. He then called the assembly, accused the oligarchs, and said he would purge the city of all friends of monarchy, and himself would live a private life. So he stripped off his uniform and dressed in mufti. But those who had robbed under his leadership wanted him in power, and he was voted sole general. "Many of the poorer sort, of those that were in debt, were much pleased with this revolution," for Agathocles promised remission of debts and sharing out of lands to the poor. Then he was mild for a time.

In war, Agathocles was resourceful and brave, but rash. There came a moment when it seemed as if the Carthaginians must be completely victorious; they were besieging Syracuse, and their navy occupied the harbour. But Agathocles, with a large army, sailed to Africa, where he burnt his ships to prevent them from falling into the hands of the Carthaginians. For fear of revolt in his absence, he took children as hostages; and after a time his brother, who was representing him in Syracuse, exiled eight thousand political opponents, whom the Carthaginians befriended. In Africa he was at first amazingly successful ; he captured Tunis; and besieged Carthage, where the government became alarmed, and set to work to propitiate Moloch. It was found that aristocrats whose children ought to have been sacrificed to the god had been in the habit of purchasing poor children as substitutes; the practice was now sternly repressed, since Moloch was known to be more gratified by the sacrifice of aristocratic children. After this reform the fortunes of the Carthaginians began to mend.

Agathocles, feeling the need of reinforcements, sent envoys to Cyrene, which was at that time held, under Ptolemy, by Ophelas, one of Alexander's captains. The envoys were instructed to say that, with the help of Ophelas, Carthage could be destroyed; that Agathocles wished only to be secure in Sicily, and had no African ambitions ; and that all their joint conquests in Africa should be the share of Ophelas. Tempted by these offers, Ophelas marched across the desert with his army, and after great hardship effected a junction with Agathocles. Agathocles thereupon murdered him, and pointed out to his army that their only hope of safety was to take service under the murderer of their late commander.

He then besieged Utica, where, arriving unexpectedly, he captured three hundred prisoners in the fields; these he bound to the front of his siege engines, so that the Uticans, to defend themselves, had to kill their own people. Although successful in this enterprise, his position was difficult, the more so as he had reason to fear that his son Archagathus was stirring up disaffection in the army. So he fled secretly back to Sicily, and the army, in fury at his desertion, murdered both Archagathus and his other son. This so enraged him that he killed every man, woman, and child in Syracuse that was related to any soldier in the mutinous army.

His power in Sicily, for some time, survived all these vicissitudes. He took Aegesta, killed all the poorer males in that city, and tortured the rich till they revealed where their wealth was concealed. The young women and children he sold as slaves to the Bruttii on the mainland. His home life, I regret to say, was not altogether happy. His wife had an affair with his son, one of his two grandsons murdered the other, and then induced a servant of the old tyrant to poison grandpapa's toothpick. The last act of Agathocles, when he saw he must die, was to summon the senate and demand vengeance on his grandson. But his gums, owing to the poison, became so sore that he could not speak. The citizens rose, he was hurried onto his funeral pyre before he was dead, his goods were confiscated, and we are told that democracy was restored.

Renaissance Italy presents a very close parallel to ancient Greece, but the confusion is even greater. There were oligarchical commercial republics, tyrannies, after the Greek model, principalities of feudal origin, and, in addition, the States of the Church. The Pope, except in Italy, commanded reverence, but his sons did not, and Cesare Borgia had to rely upon naked power.

Cesare Borgia and his father Alexander VI are important, not only on their own account, but as having inspired Machiavelli. One incident in their career, with Creighton's comments, will serve to illustrate their age. The Colonna and Orsini had been the bane of the Popes for centuries ; the Colonna had already fallen, but the Orsini remained. Alexander VI made a treaty with them, and invited their chief, Cardinal Orsini, to the Vatican, on hearing that Cesare had captured two important Orsini by treachery. Cardinal Orsini was arrested as soon as he came into the Pope's presence; his mother paid the Pope two thousand ducats for the privilege of sending him food, and his mistress presented His Holiness with a costly pearl which he had coveted. Nevertheless Cardinal Orsini died in prison -- of poisoned wine given by the orders of Alexander VI, it was said. Creighton's comments on this occurrence (note : History of the Papacy, Vol. V, p. 42) illustrate the character of a regime of naked power :
"It is amazing that this treacherous deed should have awakened no remonstrances, and should have been so completely successful ; but in the artificial politics of Italy everything depended on the skill of the players of the game. The condottieri represented only themselves, and when they were removed by any means, however treacherous, nothing remained. There was no party, no interest, which was outraged by the fall of the Orsini and Vitellozzo. The armies of the condottieri were formidable so long as they followed their generals; when the generals were removed, the soldiers dispersed and entered into other engagements. . . . Most men admired Cesare's consummate coolness in the matter.... No outrage was done to current morality. ... Most men in Italy accepted as sufficient Cesare's remark to Machiavelli: 'It is well to beguile those who have shown themselves masters of treachery.' Cesare's conduct was judged by its success."
In Renaissance Italy, as in ancient Greece, a very high level of civilization was combined with a very low level of morals : both ages exhibit the greatest heights of genius and the greatest depths of scoundrelism, and in both the scoundrels and the men of genius are by no means antagonistic to each other. Leonardo erected fortifications for Cesare Borgia; some of the pupils of Socrates were among the worst of the thirty tyrants; Plato's disciples were mixed up in shameful doings in Syracuse, and Aristotle married a tyrant's niece. In both ages, after art, literature, and murder had flourished side by side for about a hundred and fifty years, all were extinguished together by less civilized but more cohesive nations from the West and North. In both cases the loss of political independence involved not only cultural decay, but loss of commericial supremacy and catastrophic impoverishment.

Periods of naked power are usually brief. They end, as a rule, in one or other of three ways. The first is foreign conquest, as in the cases of Greece and Italy which we have already considered. The second is the establishment of a stable dictatorship, which soon becomes traditional; of this the most notable instance is the empire of Augustus, after the period of civil wars from Marius to the defeat of Antony. The third is the rise of a new religion, using the word in its widest sense. Of this, an obvious instance is the way in which Mohammed united the previously warring tribes of Arabia. The reign of naked force in international relations after the Great War might have been ended by the adoption of communism throughout Europe, if Russia had had an exportable surplus of food.

Where power is naked, not only internationally, but in the internal government of single States, the methods of acquiring power are far more ruthless than they are elsewhere. This subject has been treated, once for all, by Machiavelli. Take, for example, his laudatory account of Cesare Borgia's measures to protect himself in case of the death of Alexander VI:
"He decided to act in four ways. Firstly, by exterminating the families of those lords whom he had despoiled, so as to take away that pretext from the pope. secondly, by winning to himself all the gentlemen of Rome, so as to be able to curb the Pope with their aid. Thirdly, by converting the college more to himself. Fourthly, by acquiring so much power before the Pope should die that he could by his own measures resist the first shock. Of these four things, at the death of Alexander, he had accomplished three. For he had killed as many of the dispossessed lords as he could lay hands on, and few had escaped," etc.
The second, third, and fourth of these methods might be employed at any time, but the first would shock public opinion in a period of orderly government. A British Prime Minister could not hope to consolidate his position by murdering the Leader of the Opposition. But where power is naked such moral restraints become inoperative.

Power is naked when its subjects respect it solely because it is power, and not for any other reason. Thus a form of power which has been traditional becomes naked as soon as the tradition ceases to be accepted. It follows that periods of free thought and vigorous criticism tend to develop into periods of naked power. So it was in Greece, and so it was in Renaissance Italy. The theory appropriate to naked power has been stated by Plato in the first book of the Republic, through the mouth of Thrasymachus, who gets annoyed with Socrates for his amiable attempts to find an ethical definition of justice. "My doctrine is," says Thrasymachus, "that justice is simply the interest of the stronger." He proceeds :
"Each government has its laws framed to suit its own interests ; a democracy making democratical laws; an autocrat despotic laws, and so on. Now by this procedure these governments have pronounced that what is for the interest of themselves is just for their subjects; and whoever deviates from this, is chastised by them as guilty of illegality and injustice. Therefore, my good sir, my meaning is, that in all cities the same thing, namely, the interest of the established government, is just. And superior strength I presume is to be found on the side of the government. So that the conclusion of right reasoning is that the same thing, namely, the interest of the stronger, is everywhere just."
Whenever this view is generally accepted, rulers cease to be subject to moral restraints, since what they do in order to retain power is not felt to be shocking except to those who suffer directly. Rebels, equally, are only restrained by the fear of failure ; if they can succeed by ruthless means, they need not be afraid that this ruthlessness will make them unpopular.

The doctrine of Thrasymachus, where it is generally accepted, makes the existence of an orderly community entirely dependent upon the direct physical force at the disposal of the government. It thus makes a military tyranny inevitable. Other forms of government can only be stable where there is some wide-spread belief which inspires respect for the existing distribution of power. Beliefs which have been successful in this respect have usually been such as cannot stand against intellectual criticism. Power has at various times been limited, with general consent, to royal families, to aristocrats, to rich men, to men as opposed to women, and to white men as opposed to those with other pigmentations. But the spread of intelligence among subjects has caused them to reject such limitations, and the holders of power have been obliged either to yield or to rely upon naked force. If orderly government is to command general consent, some way must be found of persuading a majority of mankind to agree upon some doctrine other than that of Thrasymachus.

I postpone to a later chapter the consideration of methods of winning general consent to a form of government otherwise than by superstition, but a few preliminary remarks will be appropriate at this stage. In the first place, the problem is not essentially insoluble, since it has been solved in the United States. (It can hardly be said to have been solved in Great Britain, since respect for the Crown has been an essential element in British stability.) In the second place, the advantages of orderly government must be generally realized; this will usually involve the existence of opportunities for energetic men to become rich or powerful by constitutional means. Where some class containing individuals of energy and ability is debarred from desirable careers, there is an element of instability which is likely to lead to rebellion sooner or later. In the third place, there will be need of some social convention deliberately adopted in the interests of order, and not so flagrantly unjust as to arouse widespread opposition. Such a convention, if successful for a time, will soon become traditional, and will have all the strength that belongs to traditional power.

Rousseau's "Social Contract," to a modern reader, does not seem very revolutionary, and it is difficult to see why it was so shocking to governments. The chief reason is, I think, that it sought to base governmental power upon a convention adopted on rational grounds, and not upon superstitious reverence for monarchs. The effect of Rousseau's doctrines upon the world shows the difficulty of causing men to agree upon some non-superstitious basis for government. Perhaps this is not possible when superstition is swept away very suddenly: some practice in voluntary co-operation is necessary as a preliminary training. The great difficulty is that respect for law is essential to social order, but is impossible under a traditional regime which no longer commands assent, and is necessarily disregarded in a revolution. But although the problem is difficult it must be solved if the existence of orderly communities is to be compatible with the free exercise of intelligence.

Rousseau's "Social Contract," to a modern reader, does not seem very revolutionary, and it is difficult to see why it was so shocking to governments. The chief reason is, I think, that it sought to base governmental power upon a convention adopted on rational grounds, and not upon superstitious reverence for monarchs. The effect of Rousseau's doctrines upon the world shows the difficulty of causing men to agree upon some non-superstitious basis for government. Perhaps this is not possible when superstition is swept away very suddenly: some practice in voluntary co-operation is necessary as a preliminary training. The great difficulty is that respect for law is essential to social order, but is impossible under a traditional regime which no longer commands assent, and is necessarily disregarded in a revolution. But although the problem is difficult it must be solved if the existence of orderly communities is to be compatible with the free exercise of intelligence.

I have spoken hitherto of political power, but in the economic sphere naked power is at least equally important. Marx regarded all economic relations, except in the socialist community of the future, as entirely governed by naked power. Per contra, the late Élie Halévy, the historian of Benthamism, once maintained that, broadly speaking, what a man is paid for his work is what he himself believes it to be worth. I am sure this is not true of authors: I have always found, in my own case, that the more I thought a book was worth, the less I was paid for it. And if successful business men really believe that their work is worth what it brings in, they must be even stupider than they seem. None the less, there is an element of truth in Halevy's theory. In a stable community, there must be no considerable class with a burning sense of injustice; it is therefore to be supposed that, where there is no great economic discontent, most men do not feel themselves grossly underpaid. In undeveloped communities, in which a man's livelihood depends upon status rather than upon contract, he will, as a rule, consider that whatever is customary is just. But even then Halévy's formula inverts cause and effect : the custom is the cause of man's feeling as to what is just, and not vice versa. In this case, economic power is traditional; it only become naked when old customs are upset, or, for some reason, become objects of criticism.

In the infancy of industrialism, there were no customs to regulate the wages that should be paid, and the employees were not yet organized. Consequently the relation of employer and employed was one of naked power, within the limits allowed by the State; and at first these limits were very wide. The orthodox economists had taught that the wages of unskilled labour must always tend to fall to subsistence level, but they had not realized that this depended upon the exclusion of wage-earners from political power and from the benefits of combination. Marx saw that the question was one of power, but I think he underestimated political as compared with economic power. Trade unions, which immeasurably increase the bargaining power of wage-earners, can be suppressed if wage-earners have no share in political power ; a series of legal decisions would have crippled them in England but for the fact that, from 1868 onward, urban working men had votes. Given trade union organization, wages are no longer determined by naked power, but by bargaining, as in the purchase and sale of commodities.

The part played by naked power in economics is much greater than it was thought to be before the influence of Marx had become operative. In certain cases, this is obvious. The booty extracted by a highwayman from his victim, or by a conqueror from a vanquished nation, is obviously a matter of naked power. So is slavery, when the slave does not acquiesce from long habit. A payment is extorted by naked power, if it has to be made in spite of the indignation of the person making it. Such indignation exists in two classes of cases : where the payment is not customary, and where, owing to a change of outlook, what is customary has come to be thought unjust. Formerly, a man had complete control of the property of his wife, but the feminist movement caused a revolt against this custom, which led to a change in the law. Formerly, employers had no liability for accidents to their employees ; here, also, sentiment changed, and brought about an alteration in the law. Examples of this kind are innumerable.

A wage-earner who is a Socialist may feel it unjust that his income is less than that of his employer; in that case, it is naked power that compels him to acquiesce. The old system of economic inequality is traditional, and does not, in itself, rouse indignation, except in those who are in revolt against the tradition. Thus every increase of socialistic opinion makes the power of the capitalist more naked; the case is analogous to that of heresy and the power of the Catholic Church. There are, as we have seen, certain evils that are inherent in naked power, as opposed to power which wins acquiescence ; consequently every increase in socialist opinion tends to make the power of capitalists more harmful, except in so far as the ruthlessness of its exercise may be mitigated by fear. Given a community completely on the Marxist pattern, in which all wage-earners were convinced socialists and all others were equally convinced upholders of the capitalist system, the victorious party, whichever it might be, would have no escape from the exercise of naked force towards its opponents. This situation, which Marx prophesied, would be a very grave one. The propaganda of his disciples, in so far as it is successful, is tending to bring it about.

A wage-earner who is a Socialist may feel it unjust that his income is less than that of his employer; in that case, it is naked power that compels him to acquiesce. The old system of economic inequality is traditional, and does not, in itself, rouse indignation, except in those who are in revolt against the tradition. Thus every increase of socialistic opinion makes the power of the capitalist more naked; the case is analogous to that of heresy and the power of the Catholic Church. There are, as we have seen, certain evils that are inherent in naked power, as opposed to power which wins acquiescence ; consequently every increase in socialist opinion tends to make the power of capitalists more harmful, except in so far as the ruthlessness of its exercise may be mitigated by fear. Given a community completely on the Marxist pattern, in which all wage-earners were convinced socialists and all others were equally convinced upholders of the capitalist system, the victorious party, whichever it might be, would have no escape from the exercise of naked force towards its opponents. This situation, which Marx prophesied, would be a very grave one. The propaganda of his disciples, in so far as it is successful, is tending to bring it about.

Most of the great abominations in human history are connected with naked power--not only those associated with war, but others equally terrible if less spectacular. Slavery and the slave trade, the exploitation of the Congo, the horrors of early industrialism, cruelty to children, judicial torture, the criminal law, prisons, workhouses, religious persecution, the atrocious treatment of the Jews, the merciless frivolities of despots, the unbelievable iniquity of the treatment of political opponents in Germany and Russia at the present day--all these are examples of the use of naked power against defenceless victims. Many forms of unjust power which are deeply rooted in tradition must at one time have been naked. Christian wives, for many centuries, obeyed their husbands because St. Paul said they should; but the story of Jason and Medea illustrates the difficulties that men must have had before St. Paul's doctrine was generally accepted by women.

There must be power, either that of governments, or that of anarchic adventurers. There must even be naked power, so long as there are rebels against governments, or even ordinary criminals. But if human life is to be, for the mass of mankind, anything better than a dull misery punctuated with moments of sharp horror, there must be as little naked power as possible. The exercise of power, if it is to be something better than the infliction of wanton torture, must be hedged round by safeguards of law and custom, permitted only after due deliberation, and entrusted to men who are closely supervised in the interests of those who are subjected to them.

I do not pretend that this is easy. It involves, for one thing, the elimination of war, for all war is an exercise of naked power. It involves a world free from those intolerable oppressions that give rise to rebellions. It involves the raising of the standard of life throughout the world, and particularly in India, China, and Japan, to at least the level which had been reached in the United States before the depression. It involves some institution analogous to the Roman tribunes, not for the people as a whole, but for every section that is liable to oppression, such as minorities and criminals. It involves, above all, a watchful public opinion, with opportunities of ascertaining the facts. It is useless to trust in the virtue of some individual or set of individuals. The philosopher king was dismissed long ago as an idle dream, but the philosopher party, though equally fallacious, is hailed as a great discovery. No real solution of the problem of power is to be found in irresponsible government by a minority, or in any other short cut. But the further discussion of this matter must be left for a later chapter.

Chapter VII: Revolutionary Power

A traditional system, we observed, may break up in two different ways. It may happen that the creeds and mental habits upon which the old regime was based give way to mere scepticism; in that case, social cohesion can only be preserved by the exercise of naked power. Or it may happen that a new creed, involving new mental habits, acquires an increasing hold over men, and at last becomes strong enough to substitute a government in harmony with the new convictions in place of the one which is felt to have become obsolete. In this case the new revolutionary power has characteristics which are different both from traditional and from naked power. It is true that, if the revolution is successful, the system which it establishes soon becomes traditional ; it is true, also, that the revolutionary struggle, if it is severe and prolonged, often degenerates into a struggle for naked power. Nevertheless, the adherents of a new creed are psychologically very different from ambitious adventurers, and their effects are apt to be both more important and more permanent.

I shall illustrate revolutionary power by considering four examples :

(I) Early Christianity; (II) The Reformation ; (III) The French Revolution and Nationalism ; (IV) Socialism and the Russian Revolution.

I. Early Christianity.

I am concerned with Christianity only as it affected power and social organization, not, except incidentally, on the side of personal religion. Christianity was, in its earliest days, entirely unpolitical. The best representatives of the primitive tradition in our time are the Christadelphians, who believe the end of the world to be imminent, and refuse to have any part or lot in secular affairs. This attitude, however, is only possible to a small sect. As the number of Christians increased and the Church grew more powerful, it was inevitable that a desire to influence the State should grow up. Diocletian's persecution must have very much strengthened this desire. The motives of Constantine's conversion remain more or less obscure, but it is evident that they were mainly political, which implies that the Church had become politically influential. The difference between the teachings of the Church and the traditional doctrines of the Roman State was so vast that the revolution which took place at the time of Constantine must be reckoned the most important in known history.

In relation to power, the most important of Christian doctrines was: "We ought to obey God rather than man." This was a precept to which nothing analogous had previously existed, except among the Jews. There were, it is true, religious duties, but they did not conflict with duty to the State except among Jews and Christians. Pagans were willing to acquiesce in the cult of the Emperor, even when they regarded his claim to divinity as wholly devoid of metaphysical truth. To the Christians, on the contrary, metaphysical truth was of the utmost moment: they believed that if they performed an act of worship to any but the one true God they incurred the risk of damnation, to which martyrdom was preferable as the lesser evil.

The principle that we ought to obey God rather than man has been interpreted by Christians in two different ways. God's commands may be conveyed to the individual conscience either directly, or indirectly through the medium of the Church. No one except Henry VIII and Hegel has ever held, until our own day, that they could be conveyed through the medium of the State. Christian teaching has thus involved a weakening of the State, either in favour of the right of private judgment, or in favour of the Church. The former, theoretically, involves anarchy ; the latter involves two authorities, Church and State, with no clear principle according to which their spheres are to be delimited. Which are the things that are Caesar's and which are the things that are God's? To a Christian it is surely natural to say that all things are God's. The claims of the Church, therefore, are likely to be such as the State will find intolerable. The conflict between the Church and the State has never been theoretically resolved, and continues down to the present day in such matters as education.

It might have been supposed that the conversion of Constantine would lead to harmony between Church and State. This, however, was not the case. The first Christian Emperors were Arians, and the period of orthodox Emperors in the West was very brief, owing to the incursions of the Arian Goths and Vandals. Later, when the adherence of the Eastern Emperors to the Catholic Faith had become unquestionable, Egypt was monophysite and much of Western Asia was Nestorian. The heretics in these countries welcomed the followers of the Prophet, as being less persecuting than the Byzantine government. As against the Christian State, the Church was everywhere victorious in these many contests; only the new religion of Islam gave the State power to dominate the Church.

The nature of the conflict between the Church and the Arian Empire of the late fourth century is illustrated by the struggle between the Empress Justina and Saint Ambrose, Archbishop of Milan, in the year 385. Her son Valentinian was a minor, and she was acting as regent; both were Arians. Being in Milan during Holy Week, the Empress
"was persuaded, that a Roman emperor might claim, in his own dominions, the public exercise of his religion; and she proposed to the Archbishop, as a moderate and reasonable concession, that he should resign the use of a single church, either in the city or suburbs of Milan. But the conduct of Ambrose was governed by very different principles. The palaces of the earth might indeed belong to Caesar ; but the church were the houses of God ; and, within the limits of his diocese, he himself, as the lawful successor of the apostles, was the only minister of God. The privileges of Christianity, temporal as well as spiritual, were confined to the true believers ; and the mind of Ambrose was satisfied, that his own theological opinions were the standard of truth and orthodoxy. The archbishop, who refused to hold any conference, or negotiation, with the instruments of Satan, declared, with modest firmness, his resolution to die a martyr, rather than yield to the impious sacrilege." (Gibbon, Ch. XXVII)
It soon appeared, however, that he had no need to fear martyrdom. When he was summoned before the Council, he was followed by a vast and angry mob of supporters, who threatened to invade the palace and perhaps kill the Empress and her son. The Gothic mercenaries, though Arian, hesitated to act against so holy a man, and to avoid revolution the Empress was obliged to give way. "The mother of Valentinian could never forgive the triumph of Ambrose; and the royal youth uttered a passionate exclamation, that his own servants were ready to betray him into the hands of an insolent priest" (ibid.).

In the following year (386) the Empress again attempted to overcome the Saint. An edict of banishment was pronounced against him. But he took refuge in the cathedral, where he was supported, day and night, by the faithful and the recipients of ecclesiastical charity. To keep them awake, he "introduced into the church of Milan the useful institution of a loud and regular psalmody." The zeal of his followers was further reinforced by miracles, and in the end "the feeble sovereign of Italy found himself unable to contend with the favourite of heaven."

Such contests, of which there were many, established the independent power of the Church. Its victory was due partly to almsgiving, partly to organization, but mainly to the fact that no vigorous creed or sentiment was opposed to it. While Rome was conquering, a Roman could feel strongly about the glory of the State, because it gratified his imperial pride; but in the fourth century this sentiment had been long extinct. Enthusiasm for the State, force comparable with religion, revived only the rise of nationalism in modern times.

Every successful revolution shakes authority and makes social cohesion more difficult. So it was with the revolution that gave power to the Church. Not only did it greatly weaken the State, but it set the pattern for subsequent revolutions. Moreover the individualism, which had been an important element of Christian teaching in its early days, remained as a dangerous source of both theological and secular rebellion. The individual conscience, when it could not accept the verdict of the Church, was able to find support in the Gospels for a refusal to submit. Heresy might be annoying to the Church, but was not, as such, contrary to the spirit of primitive Christianity.

This difficulty is inherent in every authority that owes its origin to revolution. It must maintain that the original revolution was justified, and it cannot, logically, contend that all subsequent revolutions must be wicked*. The anarchic fire in Christianity remained alive, though deeply buried, throughout the Middle Ages; at the Reformation, it suddenly shot up into a great conflagration.
(* Note: The attempt to do so sometimes has strange results. The young in Russia at the present day are carefully sheltered from laudatory accounts of the revolutionarv movement in Tsarist days. The Letter of an Old Bolshevik (George Allen a Unwin, Ltd.), after telling of a supposed plot by some students to murder Stalin, continues.. "From the accused students, threads were drawn to professors of political science and party history. It is easy to find pages in any lectures on the history of the Russian revolutionary movement highly conducive nowadays to the cultivation of critical attitudes in respect to the Government, and young hotheads always like to buttress their conclusions concerning the present by citing facts which they have been taught in school to regard as officially established. All Agranov had to do was to pick the professors who, in his opinion, were to be regarded as fellow conspirators. This was how the first batch of defendants in the trial of the sixteen was recruited."

II. The Reformation.

From the point of view of power, the Reformation has two aspects that concern us: on the one hand, its theological anarchism weakened the Church; on the other hand, by weakening the Church it strengthened the State. The Reformation was chiefly important as the partial destruction of a great international organization, which had repeatedly proved itself stronger than any secular government. Luther, in order to succeed against the Church and the extremists, was obliged to rely upon the support of secular princes*; the Lutheran Church never, until the time of Hitler, showed any disloyalty to governments that were not Catholic. The peasants' revolt gave Luther another reason for preaching submission to princes. The Church, as an independent power, practically ceased to exist in Lutheran countries, and became part of the machinery for preaching submission to the secular government.

*"The Peasants' War," says Tawney in Religion and the Rise of Capitalism, "with its touching appeal to the Gospel and its frightful catastrophe, not only terrified Luther into his outburst: 'Whoso (= whosoever) can, strike, smite, strangle, or stab, secretly or publicly ... such wonderful times are these that a prince can better merit Heaven with bloodshed than another with prayer'; it also helped to stamp on Lutheranism an almost servile reliance on the secular authorities." A few pages later, he quotes another saying of Luther's.. "No one need think that the world can be ruled without blood. The civil sword shall and must be red and bloody." Tawney's comment is as follows: "Thus the axe takes the place of the stake, and authority, expelled from the altar, finds a new and securer home upon the throne. The maintenance of Christian morality is to be transferred from the discredited ecclesiastical authorities to the hands of the State. Sceptical as to the existence of unicorns and salamanders, the age of Machiavelli and Henry VIII found food for its credulity in the worship of that rare monster, the God-fearing Prince." Some such credulity is characteristic of revolutionary epochs.)

In England, Henry VIII took the matter in hand with characteristic vigour and ruthlessness. By declaring himself Head of the Church of England, he set to work to make religion secular and national. He had no wish that the religion of England should be part of the universal religion of Christendom ; he wished English religion to minister to his glory rather than to the glory of God. By means of subservient Parliaments, he could alter dogmas as he chose; and he had no difficulty in executing those who disliked his alterations. The dissolution of the monasteries brought him revenue, which enabled him easily to destroy such Catholic insurrections as the Pilgrimage of Grace. Gunpowder and the Wars of the Roses had weakened the old feudal aristocracy, whose heads he cut off whenever he felt so disposed. Wolsey, who relied upon the ancient power of the Church, fell ; Cromwell and Crammer were Henry's subservient tools. Henry was a pioneer, who first showed the world what, in the eclipse of the Church, the power of the State could be.

The work of Henry VIII might not have been permanent, but for the fact that, under Elizabeth, a form of nationalism associated with Protestantism became at once necessary and lucrative. Self-preservation demanded the defeat of Catholic Spain, and took the pleasant form of capturing Spanish treasureships. After that time, the only danger to the Anglican Church was from the Left, not from the Right. But the attack from the Left was defeated, and was succeeded by
Good King Charles's golden days,
When loyalty no harm meant.
The Vicar of Bray illustrates the defeat of the Church by the State in Protestant countries. So long as religious toleration was not thought possible, Erastianism was the only available substitute for the authority of the Pope and General Councils.

Erastianism, however, could never be satisfactory to men in whom personal religion was strong. There was something grotesque in asking men to submit to the authority of Parliament on such questions as the existence of Purgatory. The Independents rejected the State and the Church equally as theological authorities, and claimed the right of private judgment, with the corollary of religious toleration. This point of view readily associated itself with revolt against secular despotism. If each individual had a right to his own theological opinions, had he not, perhaps, other rights as well? Were there not assignable limits to what governments might legitimately do to private citizens? Hence the doctrine of the Rights of Man, carried across the Atlantic by the defeated followers of Cromwell, embodied by Jefferson in the American Constitution, and brought back to Europe by the French Revolution.

III. The French Reuolution and Nationalism.

The Western world, from the Reformation until 1848, was undergoing a continuous upheaval which may be called the Rights-of-Man Revolution. In I848, this movement began to transform itself into nationalism east of the Rhine. In France, the association had existed since 1792, and in England from the beginning; in America, it had existed since 1776. The nationalist aspect of the movement has gradually overpowered the Rights-of-Man aspect, but this latter was at first the more important.

It is customary in our day to pour scorn on the Rights of Man, as a piece of shallow eighteenth-century rhetoric. It is true that, philosophically considered, the doctrine is indefensible ; but historically and pragmatically it was useful, and we enjoy many freedoms which it helped to win. A Benthamite, to whom the abstract conception of "rights" is inadmissible, can state what is, for practical purposes, the same doctrine in the following terms :br>
"The general happiness is increased if a certain sphere is defined within which each individual is to be free to act as he chooses, without the interference of any external authority."
The administration of justice was also a matter that interested the advocates of the Rights of Man; they held that no man should be deprived of life or liberty without due process of law. This is an opinion which, whether true or false, involves no philosophical absurdity.

It is obvious that the doctrine is, in origin and sentiment, anti-governmental. The subject of a despotic government holds that he should be free to choose his religion as he pleases, to exercise his business in all lawful ways without bureaucratic interference, to marry where he loves, and to rebel against an alien domination. Where governmental decisions are necessary, they should - so the advocate of the Rights of Man contends - be the decisions of a majority or of their representatives, not of an arbitrary and merely traditional authority such as that of kings and priests. These views gradually prevailed throughout the civilized world, and produced the peculiar mentality of Liberalism, which retains even when in power a certain suspicion of governmental action.

Individualism has obvious logical and historical relations to Protestantism, which asserted its doctrines in the theological sphere, although it often abandoned them when it acquired power. Through Protestantism, there is a connection with early Christianity, and with its hostility to the pagan State. There is also a deeper connection with Christianity, owing to its concern with the individual soul. According to Christian ethics, no State necessity can justify the authorities in compelling a man to perform a sinful action. The Church holds that a marriage is null if either party is subject to compulsion. Even in persecution the theory is still individualistic: the purpose is to lead the individual heretic to recantation and repentance, rather than to effect a benefit to the community. Kant's principle, that each man is an end in himself, is derived from Christian teaching. In the Catholic Church, a long career of power had somewhat obscured the individualism of early Christianity; but Protestantism, especially in its more extreme forms, revived it, and applied it to the theory of government.

When a revolutionary and a traditional creed fight for mastery, as happened in the French Revolution, the power of the victors over the vanquished is naked power. The revolutionary and Napoleonic armies exhibited a combination of the propagandist force of a new creed with naked power on a larger scale than had been seen before in Europe, and the effect upon the imagination of the Continent has lasted to the present day. Traditional power everywhere was challenged by the Jacobins, but it was Napoleon's armies that made the challenge effective. Napoleon's enemies fought in defence of ancient abuses, and established a reactionary system when they were at last victorious. Under their dull repression his violence and extortion were forgotten; the deadness of the Great Peace made war seem splendid and bayonets the harbingers of freedom. A Byronic cult of violence grew up during the years of the Holy Alliance, and gradually moulded men's daily thoughts. All this is traceable to the naked power of Napoleon, and its connection with the emancipating war-cries of the Revolution. Hitler and Mussolini, no less than Stalin, owe their success to Robespierre and Napoleon.

Revolutionary power, as the case of Napoleon shows, is very apt to degenerate into naked power. The clash of rival fanaticisms, whether in foreign conquest, in religious persecution, or in the class war, is distinguished, it is true, from naked power by the fact that it is a group, not an individual, that seeks power, and that it seeks it, not for its own sake, but for the sake of its creed. But since power is its means, and in a long conflict the end is apt to be forgotten, there is a tendency, especially if the struggle is long and severe, for fanaticism to become gradually transformed into the mere pursuit of victory. The difference between revolutionary and naked power is therefore often less than it seems to be at first sight. In Latin America, the revolt against Spain was led, at first, by Liberals and democrats, but ended, in most cases, in the establishment of a series of unstable military dictatorships separated by mutinies. Only where the revolutionary faith is strong and widespread, and victory is not too long delayed, can the habit of co-operation survive the shock involved in revolution, and enable the new government to rest upon consent rather than upon mere military force. A government without psychological authority must be a tyranny.

IV. The Russian Revolution.

Of the importance of the Russian Revolution in the history of the world, it is as yet too soon to judge; we can only speak, as yet, of some of its aspects. Like early Christianity, it preaches doctrines which are international and even anti-national; like Islam, but unlike Christianity, it is essentially political. The only part of its creed, however, which, so far, has proved effective, is the challenge to Liberalism. Until November 1917, Liberalism had only been combated by reactionaries ; Marxists, like other progressives, advocated democracy, free speech, free press, and the rest of the Liberal political apparatus. The Soviet Government, when it seized power, reverted to the teaching of the Catholic Church in its great days: that it is the business of Authority to propagate Truth, both by positive teaching and by the suppression of all rival doctrines. This involved, of course, the establishment of an undemocratic dictatorship, depending for its stability upon the Red Army. What was new was the amalgamation of political and economic power, which made possible an enormous increase of governmental control.

The international part of Communist doctrine has proved ineffective, but the rejection of Liberalism has had an extraordinary success. From the Rhine to the Pacific Ocean, all its chief doctrines are rejected almost everywhere; Italy first, and then Germany, adopted the political technique of the Bolsheviks ; even in the countries that remain democratic, the Liberal faith has lost its fervour. Liberals hold, for example, that when public buildings are destroyed by incendiaries, an attempt should be made by the police and the law-courts to discover the actual culprits; but the modern-minded man holds, like Nero, that the guilt should be attributed, by means of manufactured evidence, to whatever party he personally dislikes. As regards such matters as free speech, he holds, like St. Ambrose, that there sould be freedom for his own party, but not for any other.

The result of such doctrines is to transform all power, first, into revolutionary power, and then, by inevitable gradations, into naked power. This danger is imminent; but as to the means of averting it I shall say no more until a later stage.

The decay of Liberalism has many causes, both technical and psychological. They are to be found in the technique of war, in the technique of production, in the increased facilities for propaganda, and in nationalism, which is itself an outcome of Liberal doctrines. All these causes, especially where the State has economic as well as political power, have immensely increased the power of governments. The problems of our time, as regards the relation of the individual to the State, are new problems, which Locke and Montesquieu will not enable us to solve. A modern community, just as much as those of the eighteenth century, requires, if it is to remain happy and prosperous, a sphere for individual initiative, but this sphere must be defined afresh, and safeguarded by new methods.

Chapter VII: Economic Power

Economic power, unlike military power, is not primary, but derivative. Within one State, it depends on law; in international dealings it is only on minor issues that it depends on law, but when large issues are involved it depends upon war or the threat of war. It has been customary to accept economic power without analysis, and this has led, in modern times, to an undue emphasis upon economics, as opposed to war and propaganda, in the causal interpretation of history.

Apart from the economic power of labour, all other economic power, in its ultimate analysis, consists in being able to decide, by the use of armed force if necessary, who shall be allowed to stand upon a given piece of land and to put things into it and take things from it. In some cases this is obvious. The oil of Southern Persia belongs to the Anglo Persian Oil Company, because the British Government has decreed that no one else shall have access to it, and has hitherto been strong enough to enforce its will; but if Great Britain were defeated in a serious war, the ownership would probably change. Rhodesian goldfields belong to certain rich men because the British democracy thought it worth while to make these men rich by going to war with Lobengula. The oil of the United States belongs to certain companies because they have a legal title to it, and the armed forces of the United States are prepared to enforce the law; the Indians, to whom the oil regions originally belonged, have no legal title, because they were defeated in war. The iron ore of Lorraine belongs to the citizens of France or Germany according to which has been victor in the most recent war between those two countries. And so on.

But the same analysis applies in less obvious cases. Why must a tenant farmer pay rent for his farm, and why can he sell his crop? He must pay rent because the land "belongs" to the landowner. The landowner owns the land because he has acquired it by purchase or inheritance from some one else. Pursuing the history of his title backwards, we come ultimately to some man who acquired the land by force -- either the arbitrary power of a king exercised in favour of some courtier, or a large-scale conquest such as those of the Saxons and Normans. In the intervals between such acts of violence, the power of the State is used to insure that ownership shall pass according to law. And ownership of land is power to decide who shall be permitted to be on the land. For this permission the farmer pays rent, and in virtue of it he can sell his crop.

The power of the industrialist is of the same sort; it rests, in the last analysis, upon the lock-out, that is to say, upon the fact that the owner of a factory can call upon the forces of the State to prevent unauthorized persons from entering it. In certain states of public opinion, the State may be reluctant to do the bidding of the owner in this respect; the consequence is that stay-in strikes become possible. As soon as they are tolerated by the State, ownership ceases to be vested wholly in the employer, and begins to be shared, in some degree, with the employees.

Credit is more abstract than other kinds of economic power, but is not essentially different; it depends upon the legal right to transfer a surplus of consumable commodities from those who have produced them to others who are engaged in work which is not immediately productive. In the case of a private person or corporation which borrows money, the obligations can be enforced by law, but in the case of a government the ultimate sanction is the military power of other governments. This sanction may fail, as in Russia after the Revolution ; when it fails, the borrower simply acquires the property of the lender. For example, it is the Soviet Government, not the pre-war shareholders, that has power to decide who shall have access to the Lena goldfields.

Thus the economic power of private persons depends upon the decision of their government to employ its armed forces, if necessary, in accordance with a set of rules as to who shall be allowed access to land; while the economic power of governments depends in part upon their armed forces, and in part upon the respect of other governments for treaties and international law.

The connection of economic power with government is to some extent reciprocal; that is to say, a group of men may, by combination, acquire military power, and, having acquired it, may possess economic power. The ultimate acquisition of economic power may, in fact, be their original motive in combining. Consider, for example, the semi-anarchic conditions prevailing in a gold-rush such as that in California in 1849, Or in Victoria a few years later. A man who possessed gold which he had acquired legally on his own holding could not be said to possess economic power until he had lodged his gold in a bank. Until then, he was liable to be robbed and murdered. In a state of complete anarchy, involving a war of all against all, gold would be useless except to a man so quick and sure with his revolver as to be able to defend himself against every assailant; and even to him, it could only be a pleasant object to contemplate, since he could satisfy his needs by the threat of murder, without having to make any payment. Such a state of affairs would necessarily be unstable, except possibly in a very sparse food-gathering population. Agriculture is impossible unless there are means of preventing trespass and the theft of crops. It is obvious that an anarchic community composed of more or less civilized individuals, like the men in a gold rush, will soon evolve a government of some kind, such as a committee of Vigilantes. Energetic men will combine to prevent others from plundering them ; if there is no outside authority to interfere, they may also plunder others, but they will do so with moderation, for fear of killing the goose that lays the golden eggs. They may, for example, sell protection in return for a percentage of a man's earnings. This is called income tax. As soon as there are rules determining the giving of protection, the reign of military force is disguised as the reign of law, and anarchy has ceased to exist. But the ultimate basis of law and of economic relations is still the military power of the Vigilantes.

The historical development has, of course, been different from this, because it has been gradual, and not dependent, as a rule, upon men accustomed to more civilized institutions than those under which they were living at the moment. None the less, something very much of the above sort occurs whenever there is foreign conquest, particularly if the conquerors are a small minority; and ownership of land can usually be traced back to some such conquest. In international economic relations, we have not yet reached the stage represented by the first formation of the committee of Vigilantes: the stronger nations, individually, each still extract money from the weaker by the threat of death. This is illustrated by recent British dealings with Mexico in the matter of oi1, or rather would be but for the Monroe Doctrine. A more forcible illustration was the Reparation Clauses of the Versailles Treaty. But in the internal economic systems of civilized countries the legal foundations are complex. The wealth of the Church depends upon tradition ; wage-earners have profited to some extent by trade unionism and by political action ; wives and children have rights which are based upon the moral sentiments of the community. But whatever the economic rules made by the State may be, military power in the b background is essential to their enforcement.

In the case of private persons, the rules made by the State constitute the relevant part of the Law. This part of the Law, like every other, is only effective when it is supported by public opinion. Public opinion, in accordance with the eighth commandment, reprobates theft, and defines "theft" as taking property in a manner condemned by the law. Thus the economic power of private persons rests ultimately on opinion, namely on the moral condemnation of theft, together with the sentiment which allows theft to be defined by the law. Where this sentiment is weak or non-existent, property is endangered; Stalin, for instance, began his career as a virtuous bandit practising his vocation in the interests of communism. We have seen how the power of the Pope to release men from the moral obligation of the eighth corhmandment enabled him to control the Italian bankers in the thirteenth century.

Economic power within a State, although ultimately derived from law and public opinion, easily acquires a certain independence. It can influence law by corruption and public opinion by propaganda. It can put politicians under obligations which interfere with their freedom. It can threaten to cause a financial crisis. But there are very definite limits to what it can achieve. Caesar was helped to power by his creditors, who saw no hope of repayment except through his success; but when he had succeeded he was powerful enough to defy them. Charles V borrowed from the Fuggers the money required to buy the position of Emperor, but when he had become Emperor he snapped his fingers at them and they lost what they had lent (* see note). The City of London, in our own day, has had a similar experience in helping German recovery ; and so has Thyssen in helping to put Hitler into power.
(note: The Fuggers never could resist a Habsburg borrower. They lent money, not only to Charles V, but to the Emperor Maximilian before him, and to his Spanish descendants after him. The Introduction to the Fugger News Letters says: "At least four million ducats had been borrowed from the Fuggers by the Spanish kings and never repaid, and it is not exaggeration if the losses accruing from their business transactions with the Hapsburgs (Habsburgs) in the west and east are estimated at eight million florins.... But for them (the Fuggers) the Reformation in Germany would probably have triumphed without opposition. The most capable members of this House strove for a century, but nothing remained to their innumerable heirs but an inordinately costly pile of parchments and heavily mortgaged landed property.)

Let us consider, for a moment, the power of the plutocracy in a democratic country. It has been unable to introduce Asiatic labour in California or Australia, except in early days in small numbers. It has been unable to destroy trade unionism. It has been unable, especially in Great Britain, to avoid heavy taxation of the rich. And it has been unable to prevent socialist propaganda. Per contra, it can prevent governments composed of Socialists from introducing Socialism, and if they are obstinate it can bring about their downfall by engineering a crisis and by propaganda. If these means were to fail, it could stir up a civil war to prevent the establishment of Socialism. That is to say, where the issue is simple and public opinion is definite, the plutocracy is powerless ; but where public opinion is undecided, or baffled by the complexity of the issue, the plutocracy can secure a desired political result.

The power of trade unions is the converse of the power of the rich. Trade unions can keep out coloured labour, prevent their own extinction, secure heavy death duties and income tax, and preserve freedom for their own propaganda. But they have failed hitherto to bring about Socialism, or to keep in power governments which they liked but which a majority of the nation distrusted. Thus the power of economic organizations to influence political decisions in a democracy is limited by public opinion, which, on many important issues, refuses to be swayed even by very intensive propaganda. Democracy, where it exists, has more reality than many opponents of capitalism are willing to admit.

Although economic power, in so far as it is regulated by law, ultimately depends upon ownership of land, it is not the nominal landowners who have the greatest share of it in a modern community. In feudal times, the men who owned the land had the power ; they could deal with wages by such measures as the Statute of Labourers, and with the nascent power of credit by pogroms. But where industrialism has developed, credit has become stronger than nominal ownership of land. Landowners borrow, wisely or unwisely, and in doing so become dependent upon the banks. This is a commonplace, and usually regarded as entirely a consequence of changes in the technique of production. In fact, however, as may be seen from its having happened in India, where agricultural technique is not modern, it is quite as much a result of the power and determination of the State to enforce the law. Where Law is not all-powerful, money-lenders are, at intervals, murdered by their debtors, who at the same time burn all documents giving evidence of indebtedness. Everybody connected with the land, from prince to peasant, has been addicted to borrowing ever since there first were willing lenders ; but it is only where Law is respected and enforced that the borrower has to go on paying interest until he is ruined. Where that happens, the economic power derived from landed property passes from the borrower to the lender. And in a modern community the lender is usually a bank.

In a modern large corporation, ownership and power are by no means necessarily combined. This matter, as it affects the United States, is authoritatively dealt with in a very important book, The Modern Corporation and Private Property, by Berle and Means (1932). They contend that, although ownership is centrifugal, economic power is centripetal ; by a very careful and exhaustive investigation they arrive at the conclusion that two thousand individuals control half the industry of the United States (p. 33). They regard the modern executive as analogous to the kings and Popes of former times ; in their opinion, more is to be learnt as to his motives by studying such men as Alexander the Great than by considering him as the successor of the tradesmen who appear in the pages of Adam Smith. The concentration of power in these vast economic organizations is analogous -so they argue- to that in the mediaeval Church or in the National State, and is such as to enable corporations to compete with States on equal terms.

It is easy to see how this concentration has come about. The ordinary shareholder in a railway company, for example, has no voice in the management of the railway; he may, in theory, have about as much as the average voter at a Parliamentary election has in the management of the country, but in practice he has even less than this. The economic power of the railway is in the hands of a very few men ; in America, it has usually been in the hands of one man. In every developed country, the bulk of the economic power belongs to a small body of individuals. Sometimes these men are private capitalists, as in America, France, and Great Britain; sometimes they are politicians, as in Germany, Italy and Russia. The latter system arises where economic and political power have coalesced. The tendency for economic power to become concentrated in few hands is a commonplace, but this tendency applies to power in general, not only to economic power. A system in which economic and political power have coalesced is at a later stage of development than one in which they are separate, just as a Steel Trust belongs to a later stage than a number of competing small steel manufacturers. But I do not wish, as yet, to discuss the totalitarian State.

The possession of economic power may lead to the possession of military or propaganda power, but the opposite process is just as apt to occur. Under primitive conditions, military power is usually the source of other kinds, in so far as the relations between diffrerent countries are concerned. Alexander was not as rich as the Persians, and the Romans were not as rich as the Carthaginians ; but by victory in war the conquerors, in each case, made themselves richer than their enemies. The Mohammedans, at the beginning of their career of conquest, were very much poorer than the Byzantines, and the Teutonic invaders were poorer than the Western Empire. In all these cases, military power was the source of economic power. But within the Arab nation, the military and economic power of the Prophet and his family was derived from propaganda; so was the power and wealth of the Church in the West.

There are a number of instances of States which have acquired military power because of their economic strength. In antiquity, the Greek maritime cities and Carthage are the most notable examples ; in the Middle Ages, the Italian republics; and in modern times, first Holland and then England. In all these instances, with the partial exception of England after the industrial revolution, economic power was based upon commerce, not upon the ownership of raw materials. Certain cities or States acquired a partial monopoly of commerce through a combination of skill with geographical advantages. (The latter alone were not sufficient, as may be seen in the decline of Spain during the seventeenth century.) The wealth obtained by commerce was spent, in part, on the hire of mercenaries, and was thus made into a means of obtaining military power. This method had, however, the drawback that it involved a constant danger of mutiny or large-scale treachery ; for this reason, Machiavelli disapproves of it, and advises armies composed of citizens. The advice would be sound in the case of a large country enriched by commerce, but in the case of a Greek City State or a small Italian Republic it was useless. Economic power based on commerce can only be stable when it belongs to a large community, or to one which is much more civilized than its neighbours.

Commerce, however, has lost its importance. Owing to improvement in the means of communication, geographical situation is less important than it used to be; and owing to imperialism, the important States have less need of external trade than they formerly had. The important form of economic power, in international relations, is now the possession of raw materials and food; and the most important raw materials are those required in war. Thus military and economic power have become scarcely distinguishable. Take oil, for example: a country cannot fight without oil, and cannot own oil fields unless it is able to fight. Either condition may fail : the oil of Persia was useless to the Persians because they had no adequate armies, and the armed forces of Germany will be useless to the Germans unless they can obtain oil. A similar state of affairs exists in regard to food: a powerful war-machine requires an immense diversion of national energies from food production, and therefore depends upon military control of large fertile areas.

Economic and military power have never, in the past, been so closely interconnected as they are at present. No nation can be powerful without developed industrialism and access to raw materials and food. Per contra, it is by means of military power that nations acquire access to such raw materials as are not obtainable on their own territory. The Germans, during the War, acquired by conquest the oil of Rumania and the harvest of the Ukraine and States which derive raw materials from the tropics hold their colonies by their military strength or by that of their allies.

The part played by propaganda in national power has increased with the spread of education. A nation cannot succeed in modern war unless most people are willing to suffer hardship and many people are willing to die. In order to produce this willingness, the rulers have to persuade their subjects that the war is about something important -so important, in fact, as to be worthy of martyrdom. Propaganda was a large part of the cause of the Allied victory in the War, and almost the sole cause of the Soviet victory in the years 1918 to 1920. It is obvious that the same causes which are leading to a coalescence of military and economic power are also tending towards a unification of both with propaganda power. There is, in fact, a general tendency towards the combination of all forms of power in a single organization, which must necessarily be the State. Unless counteracting forces come into play, the distinction between different kinds of power will soon be of only historical interest.

At this point, we must consider a view which Marxism has made familiar, namely that capitalism tends to generate a war of classes which will ultimately dominate all other forms of conflict. It is not by any means easy to interpret Marx, but he seems to have thought that, in times of peace, all economic power belongs to landowners and capitalists, who will exploit their control to the uttermost, thereby stirring the proletariat to revolt. The proletariat, being the vast majority, will win in war as soon as they are united, and will institute a system in which the economic power derived from land and capital will be transferred to the community as a whole. Whether or not this theory is exactly that of Marx, it is, broadly, that of present-day communists, and therefore deserves to be examined.

The view that all economic power belongs to landowners and capitalists is one which, though roughly true, and though I have hitherto assumed it, has important limitations. Landowners and capitalists are helpless without labour, and strikes, when they are sufficiently determined and widespread, can secure for labour a share of economic power. But the possibilities of the strike are such a familiar theme that I shall say no more about them.

The second question that arises is : Will capitalists, in fact, exploit their control to the uttermost? Where they are prudent, they do not do so, for fear of just such consequences as Marx foresaw. If they allow the workers some share in prosperity they may prevent them from becoming revolutionary ; of this the most notable example is in the United States, where the skilled workers are on the whole Conservative.

The assumption that the proletariat are the majority is very questionable. It is definitely untrue in agricultural countries where peasant proprietorship prevails. And in countries where there is much settled wealth, many men who, from an economic point of view, are proletarians, are politically on the side of the rich, because their employment depends upon the demand for luxuries. A class-war, if it occurs, is therefore by no means certain to be won by the proletariat.

Finally, most people, at a crisis, feel more loyalty to their nation than to their class. This may not always be the case, but there is as yet no sign of any change since 1914, when almost all nominal internationalists became patriotic and bellicose. The class-war, therefore, though it remains a possibility of the distant future, is hardly to be expected while the danger of nationalist wars remain as great as it is at present.

It may be said that the present civil war in Spain, and its repercussion in other countries, prove that the class-war is now dominant over nationalist considerations. I do not think, however, that the course of events bears out this view. Germany and Italy have nationalistic grounds for siding with Franco; England and France have nationalistic grounds for opposing him. It is true that British opposition to Franco has been much less, hitherto, than it would have been if British interests alone had determined the action of our Government, because Conservatives naturally sympathize with him. Nevertheless, as soon as such matters as Moroccan ore or naval control of the Mediterranean are in question, British interests override political sympathies. The grouping of the Great Powers is again what it was before 1914, in spite of the Russian Revolution. Liberals disliked the Tsar, and Conservatives dislike Stalin ; but neither Sir A. Grey nor the present Government could permit such matters of taste to interfere with the pursuit of British interests.

To sum up what has been said in this chapter: the economic power of a military unit (which may be composed of several independent States) depends upon (a) its capacity to defend its own territory, (b) its ability to threaten the territory of others, (c) its possession of raw materials, food, and industrial skill, (d) its power of supplying goods and services needed by other military units. In all this, military and economic factors are inextricably mingled ; for example, Japan, by purely military means, has acquired in China raw materials which are essential to great military strength, and in like manner England and France have acquired oil in the Near East, but both would have been impossible without a considerable degree of previous industrial development. The importance of economic factors in war steadily increases as war becomes more mechanized and scientific, but it is not safe to assume that the side with superior economic resources must necessarily be victorious. The importance of propaganda in generating national feeling has increased as much as that of economic factors.

In the internal economic relations of a single State, the law sets limits to what can be done in the way of extracting wealth from others. An individual or a group must possess a complete or partial monopoly of something desired by others. Monopolies can be created by law ; for example, patents, copyrights, and ownership of land. They can also be created by combination, as in the cases of trusts and trade unions. Apart from what private individuals or groups can extract by bargaining, the State retains the right to take by force whatever it considers necessary. And influential private groups can induce the State to use this right, as well as the power of making war, in a manner which is advantageous to themselves though not necessarily to the nation as a whole; they can also cause the law to be such as is convenient to themselves, e.g. by allowing combinations of employers but not of wage-earners. Thus the actual degree of economic power possessed by an individual or group depends upon military strength and influence through propaganda quite as much as upon the factors usually considered in economics. Economics as a separate science is unrealistic, and misleading if taken as a guide in practice. It is one element -- a very important element, it is true -- in a wider study, the science of power.

Chapter IX: Power Over Opinion

It is easy to make out a case for the view that opinion is omnipotent, and that all other forms of power are derived from it. Armies are useless unless the soldiers believe in the cause for which they are fighting, or, in the case of mercenaries, have confidence in the ability of their commander to lead them to victory. Law is impotent unless it is generally respected. Economic institutions depend upon respect for the law ; consider, for example, what would happen to banking if the average citizen had no objection to forgery. Religious opinion has often proved itself more powerful than the State. If, in any country, a large majority were in favour of Socialism, Capitalism would become unworkable. On such grounds it might be said that opinion is the ultimate power in social affairs.

But this would be only a half-truth, since it ignores the forces which cause opinion. While it is true that opinion is an essential element in military force, it is equally true that military force may generate opinion. Almost every European country has, at this moment, the religion which was that of its government in the late sixteenth century, and this must be attributed mainly to the control of persecution and propaganda by means of the armed forces in the several countries. It is traditional to regard opinion as due to mental causes, but this is only true of the immediate causes : in the background, there is usually force in the service of some creed.

Per contra, a creed never has force at its command to begin with, and the first steps in the production of a wide-spread opinion must be taken by means of persuasion alone.

We have thus a kind of see-saw: first, pure persuasion leading to the conversion of a minority ; then force exerted to secure that the rest of the community shall be exposed to the right propaganda ; and finally a genuine belief on the part of the great majority, which makes the use of force again unnecessary. Some bodies of opinion never get beyond the first stage, some reach the second and then fail, others are successful in all three. The Society of Friends has never got beyond persuation. The other nonconformists acquired the forces of the State in the time of Cromwell, but failed in their propaganda after they had seized power. The Catholic Church, after three centuries of persuasion, captured the State in the time of Constantine, and then, by force, established a system of propaganda which converted almost all the pagans and enabled Chrisitianity to survive the Barbarian invasion. The Marxist creed has reached the second stage, if not the third, in Russia, but elsewhere is still in the first stage.

There are, however, some important instances of influence on opinion without the aid of force at any stage. Of these the most notable is the rise of science. At the present day, science, in civilized countries, is encouraged by the State, but in its early days this was not the case. Galileo was made to recant, Newton was estopped by being made Master of the Mint, Lavoisier was guillotined on the ground that "la Republique n'a pas besoin de savants." Nevertheless these men, and a few others like them, were the creators of the modern world; their effect upon social life has been greater than that of any other men known to history, not excluding Christ and Aristotle. The only other man whose innuence was of comparable importance was Pythagoras, and his existence is doubtful.

It is customary now-a-days to decry Reason as a force in human affairs, yet the rise of science is an overwhelming argument on the other side. The men of science proved to intelligent laymen that a certain kind of intellectual outlook ministers to military prowess and to wealth; these ends were so ardently desired that the new intellectual outlook overcame that of the Middle Ages, in spite of the force of tradition and the revenues of the Church and the sentiments associated with Catholic theology. The world ceased to believe that Joshua caused the sun to stand still, because Copernican astronomy was useful in navigation ; it abandoned Aristotle's physics, because Galileo's theory of falling bodies made it possible to calculate the trajectory of a cannon-ball ; it rejected the story of the flood, because geology is useful in mining; and so on. It is now generally recognized that science is indispensable both in war and in peace-time industry, and that, without science, a nation can be neither rich nor powerful.
All this effect on opinion has been achieved by science merely through appeal to fact : what science had to say in the way of general theories might be questionable, but its results in the way of techniquie wer patent to all. Science gave the white man the mastery of the world, which he has begun to lose only since the Japanese acquired his technique.

From this example, something may be learnt as to the power of Reason in general. In the case of science, Reason prevailed over prejudice because it provided means of realizing existing purposes, and because the proof that it did so was overwhelming. Those who maintain that Reason has no power in human affairs overlook these two conditions. If, in the name of Reason, you summon a man to alter his fundamental purposes -- to pursue, say, the general happiness rather than his own power -- you will fail, and you will deserve to fail, since Reason alone cannot determine the ends of life. And you will fail equally if you attack deep-seated prejudices while your argument is still open to question, or is so difficult that only men of science can see its force. But if you can prove, by evidence which is convincing to every sane man who takes the trouble to examine it, that you possess a means of facilitating the satisfaction of existing desires, you may hope, with a certain degree of confidence, that men will ultimately believe what you say. This, of course, involves the proviso that the existing desires which you can satisfy are those of men who have power or are capable of acquiring it.

So much for the power of Reason in human affairs. I come now to another form of un-forceful persuasion, namely that of the founders of religions. Here the process, reduced to its bare formula, is this: if a certain proposition is true, I shall be able to realize my desires ; therefore I wish this proposition to be true; therefore, unless I have exceptional intellectual self-control, I believe it to be true. Orthodoxy and a virtuous life, I am told, will enable me to go to heaven when I die; there is pleasure in believing this, and therefore I shall probably believe it if it is forcibly presented to me. The cause of belief, here, is not, as in science, the evidence of fact, but the pleasant feelings derived from belief, together with sufficient vigour of assertion in the environment to make the belief seem not incredible.

The power of advertisement comes under the same head. It is pleasant to believe in so-and-so's pills, since it gives you hope of better health; it is possible to believe in them, if you find their excellence very frequently and emphatically asserted. Nonrational propaganda, like the rational sort, must appeal to existing desires, but it substitutes iteration for the appeal to fact.

The opposition between a rational and an irrational appeal is, in practice, less clear-cut than in the above analysis. Usually there is some rational evidence, though not enough to be conclusive ; the irrationality consists in attaching too much weight to it. Belief, when it is not simply traditional, is a product of several factors: desire, evidence, and iteration. When either the desire or the evidence is nil, there will be no belief; when there is no outside assertion, belief will only arise in exceptional characters, such as founders of religions, scientific discoverers, and lunatics. To produce a mass belief, of the sort that is socially important, all three elements must exist in some degree; but if one element is increased while another is diminished, the resulting amount of belief may be unchanged. More propaganda is necessary to cause acceptance of a belief for which there is little evidence than of one for which the evidence is strong, if both are equally satisfactory to desire; and so on.

It is through the potency of iteration that the holders of power acquire their capacity of influencing belief. Official propaganda has old and new forms. The Church has a technique which is in many ways admirable, but was developed before the days of printing, and is therefore less effective than it used to be. The State has employed certain methods for many centuries : the King's head on coins; coronations and jubilees; the spectacular aspects of the army and navy, and so on. But these are far less potent than the more modern methods : education, the press, the cinema, the radio, etc. These are employed to the utmost in totalitarian States, but it is too soon to judge of their success.

I said that propaganda must appeal to desire, and this may be confirmed by the failure of State propaganda when opposed to national feeling, as in large parts of Austria-Hungary before the War, in Ireland until 1922, and in India down to the present time. Propaganda is only successful when it is in harmony with something in the patient: his desire for an immortal soul, for health, for the greatness of his nation, or what not. Where there is no such fundamental reason for acquiescence, the assertions of authority are viewed with cynical scepticism. One of the advantages of democracy, from the governmental point of view, is that it makes the average citizen easier to deceive, since he regards the government as his government. Opposition to a war which is not swiftly successful arises much less readily in a democracy than under any other form of constitution. In a democracy, a majority can only turn against the government by first admitting to themselves that they were mistaken in formerly thinking well of their chosen leaders, which is difficult and unpleasant.

Systematic propaganda, on a large scale, is at present, in democratic countries, divided between the Churches, business advertisers, political parties, the plutocracy, and the State. In the main, all these forces work on the same side, with the exception of political parties in opposition, and even they, if they have any hope of office, are unlikely to oppose the fundamentals of State propaganda. In the totalitarian countries, the State is virtually the sole propagandist. But in spite of all the power of modern propaganda, I do not believe that the official view would be widely accepted in the event of defeat in war. This situation suddenly gives to a government the kind of impotence that belongs to alien governments opposed by nationalist feeling ; and the more the expectation of victory has been used to stimulate warlike ardour, the greater will be the reaction when it is found that victory is unobtainable. It is therefore to be expected that the next war, like the last, will end with a crop of revolution, which will be more fierce than those of 1917 and 1918 because the war will have been more destructive, It is to be hoped that rulers realize the risk they will run of being put to death by the mob, which is at least as great as the risk that soldiers will run of death at the hands of the enemy.

It is easy to overestimate the power of official propaganda, especially when there is no competition. In so far as it devotes itself to causing belief in false propositions of which time will prove the falsity, it is in as bad a position as the Aristotelians in their opposition to Galileo. Given two opposing groups of States, each of which endeavours to instil the certainty of victory in war, one side, if not both, must experience a dramatic refutation of official statements. When all opposing propaganda is forbidden, rulers are likely to think that they can cause anything to be believed, and so to become over-weening and careless. Lies need competition if they are to retain their vigour.

Power over opinion, like all other forms of power, tends to coalescence and concentration, leading logically to a State monopoly. But even apart from war it would be rash to assume that a State monopoly of proppaganda must make a government invulnerable. In the long run, those who possess the power are likely to become too flagrantly indifferent to the interests of the common man, as the Popes were in the time of Luther. Sooner or later, some new Luther will challenge the authority of the State, and, like his predecessor, be so quickly successful that it will be impossible to suppress him. This will happen because the rulers will believe that it cannot happen. But whether the change will be for the better it is impossible to foresee.

The effect of organization and unification, in the matter of propaganda as in other matters, is to delay revolution, but to make it more violent when it comes. When only one doctrine is officially allowed, men get no practice in thinking or in weighing alternatives ; only a great wave of passionate revolt can dethrone orthodoxy; and in order to make the opposition sufficiently whole-hearted and violent to achieve success, it will seem necessary to deny even what was true in governmental dogma. The only thing that will not be denied will be the importance of immediately establishing some orthodoxy, since this will be considered necessary for victory. From a rationalist standpoint, therefore, the likelihood of revolution in a totalitarian State is not necessarily a ground for rejoicing. What is more to be desired is a gradual increase in the sense of security, leading to a lessening of zeal, and giving an opening for laziness-the greatest of all virtues in the ruler of a totalitarian State, with the sole exception of non-existence.

Chapter X: Creeds as Sources of Power

Chapter X: Creeds as Sources of Power, n.1

The power of a community depends not only upon its numbers and its economic resources and its technical capacity, but also upon its beliefs. A fanatical creed, held by all the members of a community, often greatly increases its power; sometimes, however, it diminishes it. As fanatical creeds are much more in the fashion than they were during the nineteenth century, the question of their effect on power is one of great practical importance. One of the arguments against democracy is that a nation of united fanatics has more chance of success in war than a nation containing a large proportion of sane men. Let us examine this argument in the light of history.

It should be observed, to begin with, that the cases in which fanaticism has led to success are naturally better known than those in which it has led to failure, since the cases of failure have remained comparatively obscure. Thus a too rapid survey is apt to be misleading; but if we are aware of this possible source of error, it is not difficult to avoid.

The classic example of power through fanaticism is the rise of Islam. Mohammed added nothing to the knowledge or to the material resources of the Arabs, and yet, within a few years of his death, they had acquired a large empire by defeating their most powerful neighbours. Undoubtedly, the religion founded by the Prophet was an essential element in the success of his nation. At the very end of his life, he declared war on the Byzantine Empire. "The Moslems were discouraged : they alleged the want of money, or horses, or provisions: the season of harvest, and the intolerable heat of the summer: 'Hell is much hotter,' said the indignant prophet. He disdained to compel their service; but on his return he admonished the most guilty, by an excommunication of fifty days" (Gibbon, Chap. L).

Fanaticism, while Mohammed lived, and for a few years after his death, united the Arab nation, gave it confidence in battle, and promoted courage by the promise of Paradise to those who fell fighting the infidel.

But although fanaticism inspired the first attempts of the Arabs, it was to other causes that they owed their prolonged career of victory. The Byzantine and Persian Empires were both weakened by long and indecisive wars; and Roman armies, at all times, were weak against cavalry. The Arab horsemen were incredibly mobile, and were inured to hardships which their more luxurious neighbours found intolerable. These circumstances were essential to the first successes of the Muslim.

Very soon -- sooner than in the beginning of any other great religion-- fanaticism was dethroned from the government. Ali, the Prophet's son-in-law, kept alive the original enthusiasm among a section of the faithful, but he was defeated in civil war, and finally assassinated. He was succeeded in the Caliphate by the family of Ommiyah, who had been Mohammed's bitterest opponents, and had never yielded more than a political assent to his religion.
"The persecutors of Mahomet usurped the inheritance of his children ; and the champions of idolatry became the supreme heads of his religion and empire. The opposition of Abu Sophian (note: Father of the new Caliph Moawiyah) had been fierce and obstinate ; his conversion was tardy and reluctant; his new faith was fortified by necessity and interest ; he served, he fought, perhaps he believed; and the sins of the time of ignorance were expiated by the recent merits of the family of Ommiyah" (Gibbon, ibid).
From that moment onwards, for a long time, the Caliphate was distinguished by free-thinking latitudinarianism, while the Christians remained fanatical. From the first, the Mohammedans showed themselves tolerant in their dealings with conquered Christians, and to this toleration -- which was in strong contrast to the persecuting zeal of the Catholic Church -- the ease of their conquest and the stability of their Empire were mainly due.

Another case of the apparent success of fanaticism is the victory of the Independents under Cromwell. But it may be questioned how much fanaticism had to do with Cromwell's achievements. In the contest with the King, Parliament won mainly because it held London and the Eastern Counties; both its man-power and its economic resources far exceeded those of the King. The Presbyterians -- as always happens with the moderates in a revolution -- were gradually thrust aside because they did not wholeheartedly desire victory. Cromwell himself, when he had achieved power, turned out to be a practical politician, anxious to make the best of a difficult situation; but he could not ignore the fanaticism of his followers, which was so unpopular as to lead, in the end, to the complete downfall of his party. It cannot be said that, in the long run, fanaticism did anything more to bring success to the English Independents than to their predeccessors the Anabaptists of Munster.

On a larger scale, the history of the French Revolution is analogous to that of the Commonwealth in England : fanaticism, victory, despotism, collapse, and reaction. Even in these two most favourable instances, the success of the fanatics was short-lived.

The cases in which fanaticism has brought nothing but disaster are much more numerous than those in which it has brought even temporary success. It ruined Jerusalem in the time of Titus, and Constantinople in 1453, when the West was rebuffed on account of the minute doctrinal differences between the Eastern and Western Churches. It brought about the decay of Spain, first through the expulsion of the Jews and Moors, and then by causing rebellion in the Netherlands and the long exhaustion of the Wars of Religion. On the other hand, the most successful nations, throughout modern times, have been those least addicted to the persecution of heretics.

Nevertheless, there is now a wide-spread belief that doctrinal uniformity is essential to national strength. This view is held and acted upon, with the utmost rigour, in Germany and Russia, and with slightly less severity in Italy and Japan. Many opponents of Fascism in France and Great Britain are inclined to concede that freedom of thought is a source of military weakness. Let us therefore examine this question once more, in a more abstract and analytic fashion.

The question I am asking is not the broad one: Should freedom of thought be encouraged, or at least tolerated? I am asking a narrower question : To what extent is a uniform creed, whether spontaneous or imposed by authority, a source of power? And to what extent, on the other hand, is freedom of thought a source of power?

When a British military expedition invaded Tibet in 1905, the Tibetans at first advanced boldly, because the Lamas had given them magic charms against bullets. When they nevertheless had casualties, the Lamas observed that the bullets were nickel-pointed, and explained that their charms were only effective against lead. After this, the Tibetan armies showed less valour. When Bela Kun and Kurt Eisner made Communist revolutions, they were confident that Dialectical Materialism was fighting for them. I forget what explanation of their failure was offered by the Lamas of the Comintern. In these two instances, uniformity of creed did not lead to victory.

To arrive at the truth in this matter, it is necessary to find a compromise between two opposite truisms. The first of these is: men who agree in their beliefs can co-operate more whole-heartedly than men who disagree. The second is: men whose beliefs are in accordance with fact are more likely to succeed than men whose beliefs are mistaken. Let us examine each of these truisrhs.

That agreement is a help in co-operation is obvious. In the civil war in Spain, co-operation has been difficult between anarchists, communists, and Basque nationalists, though all equally desired the defeat of Franco. In the same manner, though in a less degree, on the other side, co-operation has been difficult between Carlists and modern-style Fascists. There is need of agreement as to immediate ends, and also of a certain temperamental congeniality; but where these exist, great differences of opinion may become harmless. Sir William Napier, the historian of the Peninsular War, admired Napoleon and disliked Wellington ; his book shows that he considered the defeat of Napoleon regrettable. But his sentiment of caste and his feeling of military duty overrode such purely intellectual convictions, and he fought the French as competently as if he had been a high Tory. In like manner, should the occasion arise, British Tories of the present day will fight Hitler just as vigorously as they would if they did not admire him.

The uniformity which is needed to give power to a nation, a religion, or a party, is a uniformity in practice, dedpending upon sentiment and habit. Where this exists, intellectual conviction can be ignored. It exists in Great Britain at the present day, but it did not exist until after 1745. It did not exist in France in 1792, Or in Russia during the Great War and the subsequent civil war. It does not exist in Spain at this moment. It is not difficult for a government to concede freedom of thought when it can rely upon loyalty in action; but when it cannot, the matter is more difficult. It is obvious that freedom of propaganda is impossible during a civil war ; and when there is an imminent danger of civil war, the argument for restricting propaganda is only slightly less overwhelming. In dangerous situations, therefore, there is a strong case for an imposed uniformity.

Let us now take up our second truism: that it is advantageous to have beliefs which are in accordance with fact. So far as direct advantages are concerned, this is only true of a limited class of beliefs: first, technical matters, such as the properties of high explosives and poison gases; secondly, matters concerning the relative strengths of the opposing forces. Even as regards these matters, it may be said, only those who decide policy and military operations need have correct views: it is desirable that the populace should feel sure of victory, and should underrate the dangers of attack from the air. Only the government, the military chiefs, and their technical staffs need know the facts; among all others, blind confidence and blind obedience are what is most to be desired.

If human affairs were as calculable as chess, and politicians and generals as clever as good chess players, there might be some truth in this view. The advantages of successful war are doubtful, but the disadvantages of unsuccessful war are certain. If, therefore, the supermen at the head of affairs could foresee who was going to win, there would be no wars. But in fact there are wars, and in every war the government on one side, if not on both, must have miscalculated its chances. For this there are many reasons : of pride and vanity, of ignorance, and of contagious excitement. When the populace is kept ignorantly confident, its confidence and its bellicose sentiment may easily be communicated to the rulers, who can hardly attach the same weight to unpleasant facts which they know but conceal as to the pleasant facts that are being proclaimed in every newspaper and in every conversation. Hysteria and megalomania are catching, and governments have no immunity.


Under Construction
(end of text)