He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much, who has enjoyed the trust of good women, and the respect of intellectual men and the love of little children, who has filled his niche and accomplished his task, and who has left the world better than he found it whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul, who has never lacked appreciation of earth’s beauty or failed to express it, who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had, whose life was an inspiration, and whose memory is a benediction.

Elisabeth-Anne "Bessie" Anderson Stanley (1879–1952) American poet
“Success” (1904)

The essay (though often presented in stanzas) was written for a poetry contest to answer the question "What is success?" in 100 words or less. It (especially the first 13 words) is often misattributed to Robert Louis Stevenson, Ralph Waldo Emerson, or Elbert Hubbard (the latter probably because the essay appeared in an advertisment in his series of books Little Journeys to the Homes of Great Lovers (e.g.). More information here.
Added on 27-Feb-15 | Last updated 27-Feb-15
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