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English Pageant 5.33-50
THE object of the following Treatise is to explain
the nature of the formation and conduct of the Understanding, and of the various species of Literature as connected with it, including, as they occur in the course of the subject, characters of the most cele brated writers, ancient and modern. The author has endeavoured to establish his system on a sure basis, that indeed on which the most satisfactory of all sciences is founded; and to combine distinctness of parts with union as a whole. Still, small as the work is, he is far from considering it perfect, particularly in those minor points in which perfection is seldom, if ever, attained. But, in composition which has any pretensions to purity and regularity, there should be nothing wanting, nothing superfluous; no deviation from the straight line, no returning to it; but one part of the subject should naturally result from another, without the aid of artificial connection.
For reasoning, as will hereafter be found stated in its proper place, there is no absolute rule of order, it being remarked, that, "from any one truth all truth may be inferred." In this operation; we may
begin any where; and proposition may be made condition, or condition proposition, at pleasure. Nothing remains, therefore, to be attended to but the juxtaposition of axioms mutually dependant.
It is not, however, enough that, in works purely intellectual, or of an intricate and refined nature every thing is in its proper place. The connection must be pointed out, or those who cannot see it will conclude that there is none.
For this reason, where the connection is not direct and immediate, the author has resorted, although as sparingly as possible, to the common expedient of anticipation and recapitulation, however clumsy; and if it is not now perceived, the fault, he trusts, is not his. At the sametime, he must observe, that this book is not intended for every reader.
The treating of simple subjects no less peculiar to inferior minds, than that of extensive to superior
Some men have too much genius for some subjects
An inferior degree of genius often preferred to a su
Irregularity of thinking not to be taken for genius
Judgment and imagination only different applications of the mind
Difference of subject creates difference of success, and
enables one mind to excel another
Corporeal or mechanical talents, to be distinguished from mental