„He avoids the official "heroes'" cemetery, done in such impeccable taste. Why, he wonders, do the Germans do so much for their dead and so little for the living?“

You Enter Germany (1967); cited from Aufsätze, Kritiken, Reden (Köln: Kiepenheuer & Witsch, 1967) p. 278. Translation: "You are Now Entering Germany", in Leila Vennewitz (trans.) Missing Persons and Other Essays (Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1994) p. 48.

Original

Er meidet die überaus geschmackvollen offiziellen »Helden«friedhöfe. Warum nur, so denkt er, tun die Deutschen so viel für ihre Toten und so wenig für ihre Lebenden?

Übernommen aus Wikiquote. Letzte Aktualisierung 3. Juni 2021. Geschichte
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Heinrich Böll22
deutscher Schriftsteller und Literatur-Nobelpreisträger 1917 - 1985

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„We figured that Lilienthal in five years of time had spent only about five hours in actual gliding through the air. The wonder was not that he had done so little, but that he had accomplished so much.“

—  Wilbur Wright American aviation pioneer 1867 - 1912

Speech to the Western Society of Engineers (18 September 1901); published in the Journal of the Western Society of Engineers (December 1901); republished with revisions by the author for the Annual Report of the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution (1902)
Kontext: Herr Otto Lilienthal seems to have been the first man who really comprehended that balancing was the first instead of the last of the great problems in connection with human flight. He began where others left off, and thus saved the many thousands of dollars that it had theretofore been customary to spend in building and fitting expensive engines to machines which were uncontrollable when tried. He built a pair of wings of a size suitable to sustain his own weight, and made use of gravity as his motor. This motor not only cost him nothing to begin with, but it required no expensive fuel while in operation, and never had to be sent to the shop for repairs. It had one serious drawback, however, in that it always insisted on fixing the conditions under which it would work. These were, that the man should first betake himself and machine to the top of a hill and fly with a downward as well as a forward motion. Unless these conditions were complied with, gravity served no better than a balky horse — it would not work at all...
We figured that Lilienthal in five years of time had spent only about five hours in actual gliding through the air. The wonder was not that he had done so little, but that he had accomplished so much. It would not be considered at all safe for a bicycle rider to attempt to ride through a crowded city street after only five hours’ practice, spread out in bits of ten seconds each over a period of five years; yet Lilienthal with this brief practice was remarkably successful in meeting the fluctuations and eddies of wind gusts. We thought that if some method could be found by which it would be possible to practice by the hour instead of by the second there would be hope of advancing the solution of a very difficult problem.

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„Why did he get himself killed for us?" "Because he was a hero. And that is what heroes do.“

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Kontext: "We irritated him, he told me. Why did he get himself killed for us?" "Because he was a hero. And that is what heroes do. You understand?"

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„Our admiration is so given to dead martyrs that we have little time for living heroes.“

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„When challenged why he had written so little, he fired back: "Moses wrote one book. Then what did he do?"“

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„At the rate of progress since 1800, every American who lived into the year 2000 would know how to control unlimited power. He would think in complexities unimaginable to an earlier mind. He would deal with problems altogether beyond the range of earlier society. To him the nineteenth century would stand on the same plane with the fourth — equally childlike — and he would only wonder how both of them, knowing so little, and so weak in force, should have done so much.“

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