Joseph de Maistre Quote
All grandeur, all power, all subordination to authority rests on the executioner: he is the horror and the bond of human association. Remove this incomprehensible agent from the world and at that very moment order gives way to chaos, thrones topple and society disappears.
The Works of Joseph de Maistre, ed. Jack Lively (1965). The Count, in Les Soirées de Saint-Pétersbourg, "First Dialogue," (1821).