Samson_slaying_a_philistineTo Henry Ward Abbot
26 Millmont St.
Roxbury, Massachusetts. Aug 6, ’89

You are not a Philistine: why then do you have the hardness the narrowness and the dogmatism of Philistia in your feelings? It exasperates me because I have always believed you were not really so: that the best in you was the real, and the worst the affectation and accidental dye. You may not influence me in the way of changing my ideas: I am not your disciple or (as you once wrote) your protégé. But you do make me do things I should not do of my own free will, as e.g. show you my verses. When I am with you I almost adopt your notions about my supposed literary rôle: I almost catch your tone. But my real feeling and conviction are quite opposed to that: I know what I want to do, and what I amount to. You think you encourage me, and in one sense you do: but you encourage me to be something worse than what I really am: that is what you do not see, and it disgusts and repels me that you should not see it.

From The Letters of George Santayana:  Book One, [1868]-1909.  Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 2001.
Location of manuscript: Butler Library, Columbia University, New York NY