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Andrew Carnegie
"The Gospel of Wealth"

Excerpts from the Original Electronic Text at the web site of the American Nation, Longman.

An immigrant from Scotland, Andrew Carnegie began his career as a messenger for Western Union Telegraph and a bobbin boy in a textile factory. He gradually worked his way up to the top to become one of the premier industrialists in the United States, owner of Carnegie Steel Company (later to become U.S. Steel when it was sold to J.P. Morgan). In 1889 he published an essay in The North American Review justifiying laissez-faire capitalism and asserting the philanthropic responsibilities of industrialists who profit from the unfettered market economy.

[1] The problem of our age is the proper administration of wealth, that the ties of brotherhood may still bind together the rich and poor in harmonious relationship. The conditions of human life have not only been changed, but revolutionized, within the past few hundred years. In former days there was little difference between the dwelling, dress, food, and environment of the chief and those of his retainers. . . . The contrast between the palace of the millionaire and the cottage of the laborer with us to-day measures the change which has come with civilization.

[2] [T]o-day the world obtains commodities of excellent quality at prices which even the preceding generation would have deemed incredible. In the commercial world similar causes have produced similar results, and the race is benefited thereby. The poor enjoy what the rich could not before afford. What were the luxuries have become the necessaries of life. . . .

 [4] We start, then, with a condition of affairs under which the best interests of the race are promoted, but which inevitably gives wealth to the few. . . . What is the proper mode of administering wealth after the laws upon which civilization is founded have thrown it into the hands of the few? . . .

[5] There are but three modes in which surplus wealth can be disposed of. It can be left to the families of the decedents; or it can be bequeathed for public purposes; or, finally, it can be administered by its possessors during their lives. Under the first and second modes most of the wealth of the world that has reached the few has hitherto been applied. . . .

 [8] This, then, is held to be the duty of the man of wealth: To set an example of modest, unostentatious living, shunning display or extravagance; to provide moderately for the legitimate wants of those dependent upon him; and, after doing so, to consider all surplus revenues which come to him simply as trust funds, which he is called upon to administer, and strictly bound as a matter of duty to administer in the manner which, in his judgment, is best calculated to produce the most beneficial results for the community-the man of wealth thus becoming the mere trustee and agent for his poorer brethren…

[9] In bestowing charity, the main consideration should be to help those who will help themselves; to provide part of the means by which those who desire to improve may do so; to give those who desire to rise the aids by which they may rise; to assist, but rarely or never to do all. Neither the individual nor the race is improved by alms giving. Those worthy of assistance, except in rare cases, seldom require assistance. . . .

 [12] Such, in my opinion, is the true gospel concerning wealth, obedience to which is destined some day to solve the problem of the rich and the poor, and to bring "Peace on earth, among men good will."

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According to Andrew Carnegie’s “The Gospel of Wealth,” 1889 the responsibilities of the wealthy are to…

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The Renaissance

Beginning And Progress Of The Renaissance

Edited By:  R. A. Guisepi

Fourteenth To Sixteenth Century


Not what man knows but what man feels, concerns art.  All else is science.


The Italian Renaissance had placed human beings once more in the center

of life's stage and infused thought and art with humanistic values. In time

the stimulating ideas current in Italy spread to other areas and combined with indigenous developments to produce a French Renaissance, an English Renaissance, and so on.


The term Renaissance, literally means "rebirth" and is the period in European civilization immediately following the Middle Ages, conventionally held to have been characterized by a surge of interest in classical learning and values. The Renaissance also witnessed the discovery and exploration of new continents, the substitution of the Copernican for the Ptolemaic system of astronomy, the decline of the feudal system and the growth of commerce, and the invention or application of such potentially powerful innovations as paper, printing, the mariner's compass, and gunpowder. To the scholars and thinkers of the day, however, it was primarily a time of the revival of classical learning and wisdom after a long period of cultural decline and stagnation.

In Dante, Petrarch, and Boccaccio Italy recovered the consciousness of

intellectual liberty. What we call the Renaissance had not yet arrived; but

their achievement rendered its appearance in due season certain. With Dante

the genius of the modern world dared to stand alone and to create confidently

after its own fashion. With Petrarch the same genius reached forth across the

gulf of darkness, resuming the tradition of a splendid past. With Boccaccio

the same genius proclaimed the beauty of the world, the goodliness of youth,

and strength and love and life, unterrified by hell, unappalled by the shadow

of impending death.

In the work of the Renaissance all the great nations of Europe shared.

But it must never be forgotten that, as a matter of history, the true

Renaissance began in Italy. It was there that the essential qualities which

distinguish the modern from the ancient and the mediaeval world were

developed. Italy created that new spiritual atmosphere of culture and of

intellectual freedom which has been the life-breath of the European races.

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