Early in the 20th century, Ernest Crosby assembled a "birthday book" of quotations, containing readings for every day of the year, on the right of man to the earth, selected from upwards of 180 of the leading authors of the world, including the Bible, Plato, Aristotle, Plutarch, Virgil, Horace, Seneca, Josephus, Dante, Spinoza, Voltaire, Rousseau, Montesquieu, Hugo, Zola, Schiller, Goethe, Humboldt, Kane, Shakespeare, Milton, Scott, Byron, Shelley, Southey, Tennyson, Swinburne, Blackstone, Adam Smith, Ricardo, Mill, Carlyle, Froude, Herbert Spencer, Ruskin, Gladstone, Bright, Dickens, George Eliot, Emerson, Lowell, Jefferson, Franklin and Mark Twain.
Here's his preface:
Most people believe that our present system of private property in land is not only necessary and final, but even to a certain degree sacred and inviolable. And yet it is clear that every man born into the world has a just claim to an equal share of its raw material, and that the paying of rent, by one man to another, for the privilege of remaining on the globe, savors of comic opera. It is for the purpose of showing that the leading men of all nations and ages have questioned the right of monopoly in land, and have had a more or less clear conception of the injustice of it, that I have brought together the quotations contained in this calendar. It has surprised me, as I have no doubt it will surprise the reader, to find how long and persistently an ideal of justice in the distribution of the earth among its inhabitants has haunted the minds of the greatest thinkers. Surely, in the face of such an array of names, we shall not lay ourselves open to the charge of rashness if we decide to rise above our prejudices and examine for ourselves the question of the natural relation of every human being to the planet to which he is confined. For those who are already convinced of the necessity of reform in this matter the calendar may serve as an arsenal of arguments and authorities, and it is for them that I have provided an index of subjects.
I'll post each day's quotes, and you can read the entire collection (to date) by clicking on "Earth for All" at left. Some are fairly pedestrian, some quite extraordinary.
And after the calendar was published, there were an additional month's worth of quotes, published in The Single Tax Review, which I'll post eventually.
Consider that this was published at just about the same time that Lizzie Magie's board game "The Landlord's Game" was beginning to be played (around 1902). It was designed to teach the same ideas, and to show that there was nothing new or peculiar about them.
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