Fitz Hugh Ludlow: “The Proper Use of Grandfathers”

The true use of ancestors is not slavish; we do not want them for authority, but for solace. If my grandfather could come back, he certainly would be too much of a gentleman to sit down on my hat or put his feet on my piano; and how much less would he crush my convictions or trample on my opinions! {…} What roars of laughter would applaud his recollection of jokes uttered by some playmate of his boyhood. They would seem so droll to us at the distance of a hundred years, though a contemporary might have uttered them without raising a smile on our faces.

– Fitz Hugh Ludlow, “The Proper Use of Grandfathers