Observations on the Nature and Tendency of the Doctrine of by Thomas Brown

By Thomas Brown

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Sample text

Lousy can love and hate, It but the circumstan- and mortified compound emotion resemblance to that which is its bears little great constitu- How different is the passion of the miser, as viewed by himself, by the vulgar, and by ent. the philosophers ly of the ! He is conscious himself on- accuracy of his reasonings on the probabiHties of future poverty, of a love of economy and of temperance, and perhaps justice. To common observers he lover of money. They the passion in mature its is too of only a content themselves with state ; and it would not be easy to convince them, that the most self- 30 denying avarice involves as its essence, or at least originally involved, the love of those very pleasures and accommodations, which are sacrificed to it without the least now apparent re- luctance.

Is in no degree superemi- nent in those qualities, which the devehpement of an abstruse and complicated science pecu- He liarly requires. seize s a first prin ciple, in- deed, with singuSrrapidity ther exhibits than brings it it but, to us, he ra- ; gracefully at different distances, regularly and directly to the best point of vision : and though, the separate in views which he gives us of a subject, we are always struck with the acuteness of his discern- ment, and are often charmed with an ease of language and a pointedness of remark, which, without the levity of humour, have ful graces, still, v»^hen we expositor of a theory, want of strict consider we methodical all its him play- as the are sensible of a arrangement, for which subtlety of thought, and grace of composition, are not able fully to atone.

To But, unless lue suppose the idea ofpoiver have been otherzvise acquired^ what we call 52 fxertion^ is nothing more than the sequence of muscular motion magnetism to desire, as the is sequence of the motion of iron to the approach We of a loadstone. have, in each case, two phenomena, but we have no more as little and we ; we ascribe desire to the loadstone, as suppose the approach of a loadstone to have preceded our muscular motion. we ascribe, not desire^ but stone, we beg If power ^ the question we say that to the load- for power, : which has a relation to future cases, as well as to the present, is something more than the mere and motion, which quence of desire took place in exertion and, ; if se- that is all from one se- quence any inference may be made, as to the recurrence of sequences, much from it may be made the motion of iron, as from the motion of a limb.

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