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There seemed a certainty in degradation

Fishburn and Hughes: A quotation from chapter 103 of T.E. Lawrence's Seven Pillars of Wisdom. The chapter is entitled 'Myself and consists of a self-analysis on the author's thirtieth birthday. Near to fulfilling the ambitions of four years earlier, at the start of his Arab adventure Lawrence feels unworthy of the 'trust' and 'favourable opinion' he enjoys and wonders if all established reputations like his are 'founded on fraud'. He confesses that, though he has always craved to be popular and famous and has been afraid of failure, he has also felt a deep attraction for base behaviour. 'There seemed a certainty in degradation,' he explains: a kind of safety, for no matter how high one could rise there was a limit below which one could not fall. Averroës’ Search