“To arrive at a provisional assessment of a writer’s worth it is not necessary to know what or upon what he has thought…it is sufficient in the first instance to know how he has thought. Now an exact impression of this how of his thinking, of its essential nature and prevailing quality, is provided by his style. For this reveals the formal nature of all a man’s thoughts, which must always remain the same no matter what or upon what he thinks.”
‘On Books and Writing’, Parerga and Paralipomena (1851), trans. R. J. Hollingdale (1970).