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Aug 4

The Book of Man by Wiliam J. Bennett

Posted on Saturday, August 4, 2012 in Uncategorized

The Book of Man by William J. Bennett

Let’s Bring Back Heroes

“Men are called to be heroes in ways both big and small in every area of their lives, all the areas we cover in this book—war, work, and play; civic life, family life, and prayer life. What follows is a piece I wrote more than forty years ago and one whose message serves as a foundation for the pieces to follow. Whether we take up the sword, the plow, the ball, the gavel, our children, or our Bibles, we must always do it like the men we are called to be.”

There are many movements throughout this anthology. From the list below you can see that there are many, many thought-provoking pieces to treasure and triumph, to grapple and growl with depending on your perspective in the piece.

My favorite, the one that touched me the most was one of the final essays included, this one by Bennett himself.

“Clarence E. Glover was a man: a father, husband, neighbor, and friend. From family to work, to faith, to service to polis and country, and even to hobbies and leisure, Clarence Glover lived as a man should.

He was well off and well known in his community—not fabulously rich or famous—but he lived a life that every man can and ought. From the prosaic prose of his obituary to the eloquence of his funeral sermon, this selection captures Clarence Glover’s entire journey through life, from birth to death.

One story in particular is evidence of the type of man Clarence Glover was. On the bed where Clarence slept beside Dorothy, his wife of thirty-nine years, was a white tapestry bedspread. As he went to his knees every night and in times of need, Clarence rested his arms in the same spot on the bedspread. Over the course of many years, the bedspread was worn down from the pressure of his arms in prayer. When Clarence died suddenly at age sixty-four, his daughters, Elayne and Diane, and his son, Elliott, found great comfort in praying in their father’s “place” on that bedspread. Now ninety-two, Dorothy has never parted with that bed covering.

Clarence E. Glover was my father-in-law.”

Clarence E. Glover was the kind of man I would have admired.  Now that Bennett has extolled these virtues of this man — his father-in-law and his daughter the author married — I like The Book of Man and the book’s author alike.

If your journey is to discover perspective on what a man was, is and could become this book and the varied writings inside will be a wonderful piece of that journey.


Profile: Donovan Campbell
Saint Crispin’s Day Speech by William Shakespeare
Response to the Archbishop of Canterbury by Colin Powell
“Character of the Happy Warrior” by William Wordsworth
“The Campaigns of Alexander the Great” by Alexander the Great, told by Arrian, the Roman historian
Profile: Joshua Marcellino
“Concord Hymn” by Ralph Waldo Emerson
“This Was Their Finest Hour” by Winston Churchill
David and Goliath: 1 Samuel 17:1–58
Profile: Rick Rescorla
Funeral Oration by Pericles
“Before Action” by W. N. Hodgson
“Battle Is a Joyous Thing” by Jean de Brueil
The Navy SEAL Creed
Profile: Nathan Bruckenthal
From “Bivouac of the Dead” by Theodore O’Hara
Profile: Red Falvey
“Be Ye the Avengers of Noble Blood” by William the Conqueror
Profile: Alvin York
Remarks on the Fortieth Anniversary of D-Day by Ronald Reagan
From The Apology by Plato
From “The Soldier’s Faith” by Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.
“Of Man” by Thomas Hobbes
“The Charge of the Light Brigade” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson
“We Shall Fight on the Beaches” by Winston Churchill
Ares: Greek God of War by Homer
Profile: John Leone
From Beowulf by an unknown Saxon poet, translated by Francis B. Gummere
“In Flanders Fields” by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae
Horatius at the Bridge by Livy
“Duty, Honor, Country” by General Douglas MacArthur
War Sonnets by Rupert Brooke
Profile: Audie Murphy


Profile: Terry Toussaint
“Work” by Eliza Cook
“The Plough Boy” by Kate Douglas Wiggin and Nora Archibald Smith
“How Do You Tackle Your Work?” by Edgar A. Guest
The Gift of God: Ecclesiastes 3:10–15
From Two Years Before the Mast by Richard Henry Dana
The Parable of the Talents: Matthew 25:14–30 (also in Luke 19:12–28)
“The Strenuous Life” by Theodore Roosevelt
“The Work Is What Counts” by Theodore Roosevelt
“No Man Is Happy If He Does Not Work” by Theodore Roosevelt
Saving Time by Seneca
Profile: Incwell
From Works and Days by Hesiod
From The Sea Wolf by Jack London
Profile: Coach Ken
A Humorist’s Confession by Mark Twain
“Psalm of Life” by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
The Spiritual Value of Work by Mark Judge
From The Future of the American Negro by Booker T. Washington
From Up From Slavery by Booker T. Washington
From The Way to Wealth by Benjamin Franklin
Charmides by Plato
Profile: George Gershwin
Chuck Yeager Breaks the Sound Barrier from American Patriot’s Almanac by William J. Bennett and John T. Cribb
From Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville
Profile: Michel Faulkner
Selections from Middlemarch by George Eliot
The Four Chaplains of World War II from American Patriot’s Almanac by William J. Bennett and John T. Cribb
From Paradise Lost by John Milton
From True Tales of Arctic Heroism in the New World by Adolphus Washington Greely
“Men Wanted for Hazardous Journey”
Inaugural Address at Edinburgh University by Thomas Carlyle
On the Elevation of the Laboring Classes by William Ellery Channing
Profile: David Aikman
Emerson on Labor by Ralph Waldo Emerson
Some Fruits of Solitude by William Penn
Selections from Meditations by Marcus Aurelius
Pensées by Blaise Pascal


Profile: “Pistol” Pete Maravich
“Do You Fear the Wind?” by Hamlin Garland
“It Is a Pleasant Day” by Peter Parley
“The Answer” by Grantland Rice
“Playing the Game” by Anonymous
From “The Quitter” by Robert W. Service
Profile: Eddie Aikau
From “The American Boy” by Theodore Roosevelt
A President and His Leisure by Theodore Roosevelt
Coin Collecting by The Numismatist
Coney Island by The Century Illustrated Monthly Magazine
A Nation’s Pastime by A. G. Spalding
“Leisure” by William Henry Davies
On Gardening by Francis Bacon
Finding Troy by Heinrich Schliemann
A Father to His Son, Upon Leaving for College by John D. Swain
Tragedy on K2
Abe Lincoln Wrestles Jack Armstrong by John G. Nicolay and John Hay
From War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
The Traffic Guard by Christopher Beach
The Art of Fencing by Louis and Regis Senac
A Day at the Ancient Olympic Games by Anacharsis of Scythia
Learning Languages for Fun by Benjamin Franklin
From “An Autumn Effect” by Robert Louis Stevenson
Filling Days and Finding Relaxation by Pliny the Younger
Angler Grover Cleveland by A. M. Stoddart
Profile: Milan High School and the 1954 Indiana State Championship
Leo Tolstoy the Chess Player by Edward Winter
Profile: Cal Ripken Jr., the Iron Man of Baseball
In Defense of Sports by William J. Bennett
Buster Douglas Defeats Mike Tyson, Tokyo, 1990
The National Game by Charles A. Peverelly
Practice Makes Perfect
Profile: Aaron Rodgers
Little Bob’s First Bass by Will H. Dilg
Hunting the Grisly by Theodore Roosevelt
1980 U.S. Ice Hockey Team Miracle on Ice
On Leisure by Seneca
The Thrilla in Manila
Prepared for a Rain by Will H. Dilg
Profile: Mario Andretti
Piers Paul Read’s Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors by William J. Bennett


“Not Yours to Give” by David Crockett
Profile: Zuhdi Jasser
The Athenian Oath
A Politician and a Hero by Richard J. Hinton
From Politics by Aristotle
“A Nation’s Strength” by Ralph Waldo Emerson
Profile: A Navy SEAL
“Of the Beginning of Political Societies” by John Locke
Profile: Dave Pereda
National Greatness by Pericles
“Love of Country” by Sir Walter Scott
From De Officiis (On Duties) by Marcus Tullius Cicero
“Power Tends to Corrupt” by Lord Acton
Lectures and Miscellanies by Henry James
From A Man and His Money by Harvey Reeves Calkins
From “Acres of Diamonds” by Russell Conwell
The Duties of Citizenship by William Jennings Bryan
From The Royal Art by William Jennings Bryan
The Ethics of Politics by Bishop Charles B. Galloway
“Duties of American Citizenship” by Theodore Roosevelt
Profiles of Law Enforcement
Reflections on the Revolution of France by Edmund Burke
Civil and Political Association by Alexis de Tocqueville
The Political Duties of Christian Men and Ministers by Rev. J. S. Smart
From “The Capacity for Greatness” by Theodore Roosevelt
Profile: Álvaro Uribe Vélez
Good Citizenship by Grover Cleveland
Good Citizenship Dependent Upon Great Citizens by William Jewett Tucker
Cato the Younger by Plutarch
Taking Command by George Washington
From Arthur James Balfour by Bernard Alderson
From Foundations of the Republic by Calvin Coolidge
Duty by Horatio Kitchener
Profile: Jaime Escalante
A Story of Civic Improvement by Benjamin Franklin
The Story of Cincinnatus by James Baldwin
Compromise by Henry Clay Sr.
Five Keys to Democratic Statesmanship by Paul Johnson
“Hello, Freedom Man” by Ronald Reagan
Choosing Just Men by Noah Webster
Heroes of Science by Albert Ross Vail and Emily McClellan Vail
“To Defend and Enjoy His Own” by Daniel Webster
Profile: Marco Rubio
Profile: Ray Sorensen and the Freedom Rock
What You Can Do for Your Country by John F. Kennedy
In Harm’s Way for Others by George P. Little
Irrationally Patriotic by G. K. Chesterton
Abraham Lincoln’s Lyceum Address


Profile: Chris Scott
“When You Are Old” by W. B. Yeats
“Down by the Salley Gardens” by W. B. Yeats
Robert E. Lee by Orison Swett Marden
“Love Among the Ruins” by Robert Browning
Duff Cooper’s Letter to Diana, His Future Wife
Leo Tolstoy’s Letter to His Fiancée, Valeria Arsenev
“A Father’s Gift to His Son on His Becoming an Apprentice” by Anonymous
Advice to Boys by Rev. Lewis Johnston
Profile: Nolan Ryan
From She Stoops to Conquer by Oliver Goldsmith
Excerpt from Bleak House by Charles Dickens
Two Poems by Robert Browning
From Don Juan by Lord Byron
Penelope by Homer
Telemachus by Homer
George Washington to Martha
Pierre Curie by Marie Curie
“Annabel Lee” by Edgar Allan Poe
Antony and Cleopatra by John Dryden
Abraham Lincoln and Grace Bedell
Marcus Cato by Plutarch
The Influence of a Father by John Stuart Mill
The Farmer and His Sons by Aesop
Things to Tell Your Children or Grandchildren by Charles Sykes
Fatherhood by Ronald Reagan
The Best Things in Life by Theodore Roosevelt
Teddy Roosevelt with His Children by Ernest Ruse
Jonathan Edwards with His Children by S. E. Dwight
“On My First Sonne” by Ben Jonson
“A Boy of Much Promise” by Calvin Coolidge
“Bone of My Bones”: Genesis 2:19–24
Finding a Good Wife: Proverbs 31:10–31
From Sketches of Young Couples by Charles Dickens
What Is Love? by George Eliot
True and False Manliness by James Freeman Clarke
From Canal Boy to President by Horatio Alger
Thomas Carlyle’s Advice to Young Men by Thomas Carlyle
Are You Well Bred? by The American Magazine
Profile: David Gelernter
Courtship and Matrimony by Robert Morris
From Self-Control, Its Kingship and Majesty by William George Jordan
A Father’s Legacy by Homer, translated by Samuel Butler
“A Manly Boy” by Andrew Sloan Draper
From The Marriage Guide for Young Men by George W. Hudson
Letter to a Sickly Child by Sydney Smith
Response to a Fan Letter of Sorts by Charles Dickens
A Father’s Prayer by Douglas MacArthur
“Only a Dad” by Edgar A. Guest
Letter to a Bereaved Husband by Samuel Johnson
Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Letter to His Daughter
Profile: “A Shau Valley”
Thomas Jefferson’s Letter to Thomas Jefferson Smith
Dr. Johnson and His Father
Profile: Bill Phillips


The Our Father (or the Lord’s Prayer)
The Glory Be
A Child’s Grace
“We Thank Thee” by Rebecca Weston
Profile: Os Guinness
“Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep”
Tuning the Soul by Robert Murray M’Cheyne
Unspoken Prayer by Anonymous
“May I Know Thee More Clearly” by Saint Richard
Harry S. Truman’s Daily Prayer
“On Self-Improvement” by Lord Robert Baden Powell of Gilwell
Matins (Morning Prayer) by Robert Herrick
A Prayer for Guidance by George Washington
A Prayer for Peace by Abraham Lincoln
A Prayer in Dark Times by Franklin D. Roosevelt
A Prayer of Gratitude by John F. Kennedy
A Prayer for a Meaningful Life by Jimmy Carter
A Prayer for Healing by Ronald Reagan
A Prayer to Help Others by George H. W. Bush
A Prayer for the Departed by George W. Bush
“The Examined Life” by Plato
Aids to Reflection by Samuel Taylor Coleridge
“A Student’s Prayer” by Saint Thomas Aquinas
“That Which . . . Had Been Long Looked For” by George Müller
An Instrument of Peace by Saint Francis of Assisi
Profile: Saint Damien de Veuster
Call to Prayer by General Robert E. Lee
Times That Try Men’s Souls by Thomas Paine
“Forms of Prayer at Sea” by William Wordsworth
“The Pilgrim Fathers” by William Wordsworth
The Amidah
A Soldier’s Prayer
Thanksgiving Proclamation by George Washington
“My God Shall Raise Me Up” by Sir Walter Raleigh
From The Power of Prayer by Samuel Prime
“Matins” by George Herbert
Eulogy for Abraham Lincoln by Matthew Simpson
“In Prayer” edited by Arthur Bennett
Prayer and the Individual Life by Henry B. F. MacFarland
Four Thoughts on Prayer by Saint Augustine of Hippo
From Confessions by Saint Augustine of Hippo
Prayer of Saint Benedict
Homily 6 on Prayer by Saint John Chrysostom
“Universal Prayer” by Alexander Pope
National Day of Prayer by Abraham Lincoln
A Prayer Under the Pressure of Violent Anguish by Robert Burns
Begin the Day with Prayer by Edward McKendree Bounds
From “Praying Men Are God’s Mightiest Leaders” by Edward McKendree Bounds
“A Prayer in Darkness” by G. K. Chesterton
Address at the Episcopal National Cathedral by Rev. Billy Graham
“Let My Thoughts Abide in Thee” by Robert Louis Stevenson
New Year’s Prayer by Samuel Johnson
Resolutions by Samuel Johnson
The Martyrdom of Polycarp of Smyrna
“The Upward Look” by Boethius
“Prayer of Columbus” by Walt Whitman
Litany of Humility by Rafael Cardinal Merry del Val
Praying in Faith by Martin Luther
What a Great Gift We have in Prayer by Martin Luther
A Prayer for a Good Death by Thomas More
Prayer Found in the Heart by C. H. Spurgeon
The Anima Christi
Agnus Dei

Man: At the End
Funeral Meditation


Disclosure: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 […] “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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