The God Is In The Details

Here at Wikipedia: The idiom, “God is in the detail” has been attributed to a number of different individuals, most notably to German-born architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1886–1969) by The New York Times in Mies’s 1969 obituary; however, it is generally accepted not to have originated with him. The expression also appears to have been a favorite of German art historian Aby Warburg (1866–1929), though Warburg’s biographer, E. H. Gombrich, is likewise uncertain if it originated with Warburg. An earlier form, “Le bon Dieu est dans le détail” (“the good God is in the detail”) is generally attributed to Gustave Flaubert (1821–1880).[1] Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations lists the saying’s author as anonymous.[3] The phrase is attested in 1965;[4] in 1969, it is referred to as an existing proverb.[5]

About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish thought and philosophical aesthetics.
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5 Responses to The God Is In The Details

  1. Jon Awbrey says:

    I have always understood it as referring to an ambivalent deity (divinity, devil), daimon, or demi-urge harking back to Greek or Manichean sources.

    Details, Details, Details

  2. dmf says:

    how was that heidegger/kabbalah book?

  3. dmf says:

    some of his related papers online and this, not a great interviewer but W is interesting.

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