Früher war alles besser?

Die Leser alter Bücher wissen, dass seit der Antike die Alten den Jungen ausrichten, früher sei doch alles viel besser gewesen. Eine sehr lesenswerte Reflexion dieses Themas findet sich bereits in Castigliones Book of the Courtier (1528):

I have many times asked myself, not without wonder, the source of a certain error which, since it is committed by all the old without exception, can be believed to be proper and natural to man: namely, that they nearly all praise the past and blame the present, revile our actions and behaviour and everything which they themselves did not do when they were young, and affirm, too, that every good custom and way of life, every virtue and, in short, all things imaginable are always going from bad to worse.
And truly it seams against all reason and a cause for asthonishment that maturity of age, which, with its long experience, in all other respects usually perfects a man’s judgement, in this matter corrupts it so much that he does not realize that, if the world were always growing worse and if the fathers were generally better than their sons, we would long since have become so rotten that no further deterioration would be possible.

[S. 107]

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