Unfold the shining secrets that only Midas and Morgan and Maecenas knew

from F. Scott Fitzgerald – The Great Gatsby (Chapter I) on Rap Genius

Meaning

The Secrets of the Upper Class
Midas, Morgan, and Maecenas were powerful men who were tremendously successful in their economic and financial endeavors. During their lifespans, they amassed an unparalleled amount of wealth, and many others sought to replicate their success.

Midas was a prominent figure in Greek Mythology and was the King of Phyria. His special power was turning everything he touched into gold.

J.P Morgan was a financer during the progressive era and regarded as one of the most succesful financers in US history.

Gaius Clinius Maecenas was a Roman statesmen and patron of Horace and Virgi from 70-8 BC.

Nick becomes engrossed in his economic studies to uncover ways to be wealthy and successful using “secrets” rather than strenuous work that he may not benefit from. In the context of the novel, the upper class seem to operate in an unspoken, seemingly “magical” way. They have acquired their wealth by understanding the implicit rules of decorum and making social connections that can help them rise to the top. At first, Nick thinks that uncovering these secrets is key to becoming successful like men such as Midas, Morgan, and Maecenas. However, his experience in East Egg and West Egg leads him to discover that there isn’t a magical fix that can make one successful. Being successful becomes a cut-throat, brutal game and is anything but “shining”.

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