Doctor Kearney, who formerly, with so much reputation, delivered lectures in this place on the history of Rome, observed to me once, that he was not an optimist, but an "agathist"; that he believed that every thing tended to good, but did not think himself competent to determine what was absolutely the best. The distinction is important, and seems to be fatal to the system of Optimism. [George Miller, "Lectures on the Philosophy of Modern History," Dublin, 1816]
But the effect on the agathist ladies was something very much more severe.
The agathist and Kallikagathist parties were practically won.
"I protest it is not decent," sniffed a widow of agathist views and a damaged reputation.
The more the agathist ladies looked at her, the more absurd and bunchy did they feel.
The Queen-mother was of course surrounded by agathist ladies.
Kallist violence and agathist weakness were there in glaring contrast.
Still, whatever might be the artistic verdict, politically it was an immense success, and agathist spirits ran high.
"Then it is an agathist nomination," said the ladies, prepared to make up their minds accordingly.
Gentlemen and ladies of both parties, whether Kallist or agathist, seemed to want to talk of nothing else.