A Norseman’s views of Britain and the British

By Aasmund Olavsson Vinje

Genre:
Culture
First published in:
1863

About this book

Excerpt:

No doubt a good breed or race has always played an im- portant part in the history of mankind. The kings of the different tribes of Goths always claimed to be descendants of Odin. It was the same in Greece with Hercules, and it is so even now in England with the Conqueror. This taste for pedigree, ancient and modern, is the same thing couched in other words. It is a question of race. It matters little whether Odin was the son of a god or not. To descend from him was not the less to be of a good breed, which was accordingly reckoned as something sublime and awe- inspiring. There mingles a good deal of this feeling in the present rage for being of ‘ good family.’ People may not go quite the length of calling a good family something godlike, but there is, at all events, the haze of a halo around it.