« VorigeDoorgaan »
Strangers to appear in public, and to live near the city-gate, that all their actions may be fufficiently feen; for those who are kept like Slaves feldom entertain any noble thoughts: in fhort, to imitate every thing which the Pertians, and Barbarians do, for they all contribute to support flavery; and to endeavour to know what every one, who is under their power does, and fays; and for this purpose to employ fpies: fuch were those women whom the Syracufians, called Пoraywyides. Hiero also used to fend out lifteners, where-ever there was any meeting or converfation; for the People dare not fpeak with freedom for fear of such persons; and if any one does, there is the less chance of its being concealed; and to endeavour that the whole Community should mutually accufe and come to blows with each other; Friend with Friend, the Commons with the Nobles, and the Rich with each other. It is also advantageous for a Tyranny that all thofe who are under it fhould be oppreffed with poverty, that they may not be able to compofe a guard; and that, being employed in procuring their daily bread, they may have no leisure to conspire against their Tyrants. The Pyramids of Egypt are a proof of this, and the Votive Edifices of the Cypoclidæ, and the Temple of Jupiter Olympus, built by the Pyfiftratida, and the Works of Polycrates at Samos; for all thefe produced one end, the keeping the People poor. It is neceffary alfo to multiply taxes, as at Syracufe; where Dionyfius in the space of five years collected all the private property of his fubjects into his own coffers. A Tyrant alfo fhould endeavour to engage his fubjects in a war, that they may have employment, and continually depend upon their General. A King is preferved by his friends, but a Tyrant is of all perfons the man who can place no confidence in friends, as every one has it in his defire, and these chiefly in their power to destroy him. All these things alfo which are done in an extreme Democracy should be done in a Tyranny, as permitting great licentioufnefs to the Women in the houfe, that they may reveal their husbands fecrets; and fhewing great indulgence to Slaves alfo, for the fame reafon; for Slaves and Women confpire not against Tyrants: but when they are treated with kindness, both of them are abettors of Tyrants, and extreme Democracies alfo ; and the People too in fuch a State defire to be defpotic. For which reason flatterers are in repute in both thefe: the Demagogue in the Democracy, for he is the proper flatterer of the People; among Tyrants, he who will fervilely adapt himself to their humours; for this is the business of flatterers. And for this reafon Tyrants always love the worst of wretches, for they rejoice in being flattered, which no man of a liberal fpirit will fubmit to; for they love the Virtuous, but flatter none. Bad
men too are fit for bad purposes; like to like, as the proverb fays. A Tyrant alfo fhould fhew no favour to a man of Worth or a Freeman; for he should think, that no one deserved to be thought these but himself; for he who fupports his dignity, and is a friend to freedom, encroaches upon the fuperiority, and the defpotifm of the Tyrant: fuch men, therefore, they naturally hate, as destructive to their Government. A Tyrant alfo fhould rather admit Strangers to his table and familiarity, than Citizens, as thefe are his enemies, but the others have no defign against him. Thefe and fuch-like are the fupports of a Tyranny, for it comprehends whatsoever is wicked.'
To this extract we fhall add the following fentences, felected from different parts of the work, with Mr. Ellis's tranflation: Ἡ δέ πολιτική ελευθέρων καὶ A political state is the ἴσων ἀρχή. government of freemen and equals.
Διὰ τὸ τὴν φυσιν ἴσες εἶναι πάνας, ἅμα δὲ και δίκαιον, εἴτε ἀγαθόν είτε φαύλον τὸ ἄρχειν, πάντας αυτε μετέχειν.
Ὅλην δεῖν εὐδαίμονα ποιειν τήν πόλιν τον νομοθέτην.
Ζητέσι δ' όλως οὐ τὸ πατρίου, ἄλλα τ' αγαθον πάντες.
Φανερόν τοίνυν ὡς ἔσαι μὲν πολιτεία, το κοινή συμφέρω σκου towy, ætaι per qplai tuyxxνησιν, ὅσαι κατὰ τὸ ἁπλος διXXIV. "Orai de re rerepov MOVE THY Axestav, uaprrunas wãoni, xai xazixtactic ras caĐây malitian disera gas, n di medis melania tæt Detiga
Nature has made all men equal, and therefore it is juft, be the adminiftration good or bad, that all should partake of it.
The legiflator ought to make all the citizens happy.
All perfons ought to endeavour to follow what is right, not what is established.
It is evident that all those governments which have the common good in view are rightly eftablithed, and fridly just; but those which have in view only the good of the rulers, are all founded on wrong principles, and are widely different from what a government ought to be; for they are tyranny over flaves, whereas a city [ftate] is a community of freemen.
We have feledted thefe paffages, partly that our learned Readers may form tome judgment of the merit of the tranflation, but chiefly to thew that Mr. Locke and his followers might quote Ariftotle, as well as appeal to reafon, in fupport of their unfafhionable doctrines.
ART. II. Dialogues concerning innate Principles. Containing an Examination of Mr. Locke's Doctrine on that Subject. By the Author of "Three Dialogues concerning Liberty *."
8vo. 2 S.
HIS ingenious Writer, to whofe mèrit we have, on a former occafion, borne our teftimony [fee Three Dialogues on Liberty, vol. Iv. p. 218] undertakes, in these Dialogues, to refute Mr. Locke's doctrine concerning innate principles. For this purpose he fets out with obferving, that Mr. Locke has been led to conclude that there are no innate principles, by miftaking certain moral propofitions, perceived as true by the understanding, for the internal fentiments on which thofe propofitions are founded. Nothing, he remarks, can be more obvious, than that the former, confidered merely as propofitions, formed by our rational faculty after a due confideration of things, as all true propofitions must be, are not innate. But in the nature of things there must be principles, which had existence anterior to the formation of the axioms and propofitions which arife from them. These principles bear no resemblance to any propofitions whatfoever. Benevolence is pleafant, and malevolence painful, because there are principles in human nature which render them fo. The truth or falfehood of moral propofitions can only be judged of by appealing to our internal fenfe, which perceives the juft or unjuft, the right or wrong of actions. All created beings have certain principles, neceffarily innate, which conftitute their natures what they are. If it be allowed that ideas are not innate, it will follow that no propofitions can be innate, but not that we have no innate principles; for the moral principles are the foundation of our moral ideas, and must exift prior to them. Prejudice and paffion may diftort men's ideas, and prevent them from clearly difcerning moral truth; but the principles on which they are grounded, have their existence in nature, and must still remain the fame.
Our Author proceeds to obferve, that by principles we are to understand fuch properties, qualities, energies, or laws, as are neceffarily inherent in any being, and conftitute its nature. The general laws by which every kind of being exifts, and is moved and acts, are the general principles of that kind: the particular laws by which every species exifts differently, and is moved and actuated differently, are the particular principles of that species. Very different from thefe, are thofe beginnings of human reafoning, data, axioms, maxims, rules, &c. which are fometimes called principles. These are only inventions of the human mind to affift its progrefs in the fearch of truth. Moral
For the Three Dialogues on Liberty, fee Monthly Review, vol. lv. p. 218 and 258.
maxims, if true, muft be founded on moral principles originally and independently inherent in man: for reasoning could never make a man devoid of innate moral principles perceive the juftice or truth of any moral maxim. Indeed, without fuch principles he could never know any thing at all of moral maxims; for when any fuch are proposed to us, we judge of their truth or falfehood by observing their agreement or difagreement with our innate moral fentiments. Thefe are the same in kind in every man, and the diverfity of men's opinions on moral fubjects arifes from the different degrees of clearness in their dif cernment, or of ftrength in their principles.
It is no objection, our Author remarks, that the ideas and knowledge arifing from them is progreffive. Do we say, that the fenfe of hearing is not innate, because we are not born perfectly accomplished in mufic? Do we infer, that our fight is not innate, because we are not born opticians? -Certainly not. Why, then, fhould we prefame, that our confcience is not innate, because we are not born moral philofophers? If, to the fight, to the hearing, and to the other fenfes, time and experience be allowed neceffary; and if, to adjuft properly the ideas and thoughts they convey to us, understanding, attention, and judgment be wanting; why may we not, as reasonably, allow, the fame time and experience; the fame understanding, attention, and judgment, to be requifite to the nature and proper conduct of our innate moral fenfe?—It seems reasonable, anfwered I.
In the imbecility of infancy, and giddinefs of childhood, continued he, we are but poorly qualified, for making nice obfervations on our fenfations and ideas of any sort: but much lefs on those of the moral kind; because the nature of our condition is, then, íuch as fcarcely, if at all, places us in the cir cumstances of moral agents. In infancy, it is out of the question and in childhood, there are but few calls for the exercise of confcience, which is wifely ordered, for then we have but little judgment to obferve its effects. God has naturally placed us, at thefe times, and much longer, under the care and tuition of parents; clearly indicating thereby, our inexperience and want of capacity to govern ourselves. In fhort, in morals, as in every thing elfe, our knowledge is progreffive: and whoever defires to be a proficient in that icience, will find, that experience, application, and good fenfe, are, at least, as requifite, as they are to the learning of any other inferior art or science. Nor do the nature and circumstances of human life, by any means, require, what Mr. Locke affumes to be neceffary as an evidence of innate moral principles, i. e. that they should be fo born with us, as to be inftantaneously perceptible in the forms of indifputably true propofitions. For though all our faculties
of mind and body, be born with us; yet, as the most perfect ufe, and highest perfection, of any one of them, is not natu-s rally requifite, or useful, in infancy or childhood; God having created both our minds and bodies in a progreffive, and not in a perfect or full grown, ftate; to object against any one of them, as not innate, because it is not born with us, perfect or full-grown; is only to object against it, because it is not, what it was never intended to be: and the fame objection may, as reasonably, be made against the innateness of every part or faculty of a man's body. Your fenfes may be as ftrong, as clear, and as perfect, as ever human fenfes were; your moral fenfe, may be as true, and as juft; and though all be innate, yet is the knowledge acquired by them progreffive; and perfected, if ever perfected, by flow degrees: nor do I fee the leaft reafon for excluding the moral fenfe out of this predicament. For my part, I can perceive nothing in all this, but what is intirely natural,. and quite confonant to the condition and circumftances of humanity."
Such is the fubftance of the Author's reafoning on the fubject of innate principles, the exiflence of which, according to his definition of them, he has, in our opinion, fully established. The whole piece is written with a degree of precifion and correctness, both in thought and expreffion, which will render it highly acceptable to those who are fond of metaphysical disquifitions.
ART. III. The Sadducee: A Poem. Occafioned by feveral Publications, and particularly Difquifitions relating to Matter and Spirit, by Jofeph Priestley, LL. D. F. R. S. 4to. 1 s. Fielding. 1778.
INCE the days of Blackmore-the Father and indeed the Homer of the Bathos-we have met with few proficients in the the true profound, who have excelled the Writer of the prefent Poem. In imitation of our venerable predeceffor, the learned and facetious Martinus Scriblerus, we fhall execute our critical task by selecting certain characteristical specimens; confining ourselves principally to a few of the many paffages in which our Poet exhibiteth the fubject of his poem under various forms or fimilitudes, either in the way of defcription or comparison.
He compares him to Lucifer-We fuppofe he means old Beelzebub himself, with whofe character he makes very free, by fuggefting that he too-the Devil-would have killed his own father:
Like him thou art
Still thou art like him!-Yes, more like him, rather-