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and particularly in those regular and equable motions carried on in the heavens, the parts of which, from their perfect fimilarity to each other, are correct measures of the continuous and succeslive quantity called fime, with which they are conceived to co-exist. Time therefore may be defined the perceived number of successive movements; for as number ascertains the greater or lefser quantity of things numbered, so time ascertains the greater or lesser quantity of motion performed. An instant is nota part, but the boundary of time; whose elements are the perceptible intervals bounded by instants. If body, therefore, had a beginning, so must space, motion, and time, which are conceived merely as affections of body, or of each other. If body cannot be supposed infinitely ex
tended, withont supposing a contradi&tion, (for what quantity can · actually exist of which the magnitude cannot be ascertained and
expressed?) so neither can any of its properties; and therefore motion cannot be infinite; nor time, which is conceived solely as the measure of motion, a mere fiction of the fancy, poffeffing no real existence independently of us and our thoughts. The very essence of infinity, again, consists in privation; it is a word denoting not a conception, but the negation of all conception ; so that the errors committed on this subject by the ancients, aud repeated by some modern philofophers, and even some modern mathematicians, proceed from their realizing a non-entity, and assigning a positive archetype, or what they call an idea, to a word, which is merely a sign that no such archetype or idea exists. Body and space cannot be conceived as infinite either in greatness or littleness; and although its adjun&t of motion or time is imagined to be so conceived, this arises from a mere illusion of the fancy, which, not retaining the parts of time first taken, continually adds new parts, but without increasing the whole; Gince the former parts are continually annihilated, as the latter are created. To realise infinity must, in all our reasonings, neceffarily lead to absurdity; thus, to give our author's example, to suppose an infinite progreflion of causes in making and arranging the world, is the same thing as supposing it made or arranged without any cause at all.' Vol. i. P. 119.
The following considerations, as applied to the proof of the existence of God, cannot be too well known.
· Energy, then, as the word denotes, is always 'said in reference to action ; and that is said to exist in energy, which executes its peculiar work, or performs its peculiar function. The state of energy is the most perfect state of existence in which any object can be exhibited ; as a master thinks he has perfected his scholar when he shews bim performing skilfully the proper work of the art in which he was instructed. Though energy always implies action, yet all actions are not energies. The actions of building, carving, healing, learning, refpectively terminate in a house, a ftatue, health, and science. But the actions of thought, of life, and of happiness, (which is a kind of life,) have not any natural limit, bus
may proceed eternally revolving on themselves, perfect without ad. dition, complete in every instant. That things essentially different may be distinguished by different names, Aristotle calls limited actions, motions; the unlimited, energies; observing, that in the scale of being there is a continual ascent from mere powers and can pacities to motions or imperfect energies, properly so called, because terminating in nothing more excellent than themselves. Those operations, which terminate in a certain work, are only perfect in the work or production in which they are fixed and concentrated; as painting in the picture, building in the edifice. But energies not terminating in any work or production, are complete and perfect in themselves. The forıner belong in a certain sense to the work in which they are embodied; the latter can belong only to the energifing principle, which, when unceasingly active, as the first efficient cause was proved necessarily to be, is simple, unmixed, and pure energy.
On such a principle as this, eternally and substantially active, both the heavens and the earth depend. He is the spring of motion, the fountain of life, the source of order and of beauty. All our observations and all our reasonings lead us irrefistibly to this conclusion; for in all the motions or changes of body or matter, there must always be one part acted upon as well as another that acts, otherwise no action, and therefore no motion, could possibly take place.
But when we separate this acting part from the inert mass with which it is united, the same reasoning will still apply to it; it cannot be self-moved wholly, and the part which gives the impulse must always be different from that which receives it. By our divisions and subdivisions without end, we shall therefore never come nearer to a solution than at first setting out, but Mall always be compelled to consider matter as something fit to be moved, changed, or acted upon, but constantly deriving its motion, change, or activity from some foreign cause. The prime mover, then, is necessarily immaterial; and therefore indivisible, immoveable, impassive, and invariable ; ever actuating this visible fyftem, as is plain from the phænomena, according to the best principles both of intellection and volition, which exactly coincide, when traced up to Deity, their ultimate source. The phænomena of the universe are not unconnected and episodical, like an ill-written tragedy; but all of them regulated and adjusted with confummate harmony. The Divinity, who comprehends and directs the whole, is not himself divisible in parts, nor comprehensible by magnitude, since all magnitude may be measured; and what finite magnitude can exert infinite power ? He ever is what he is, existing in energy before time began, fince time is only an affection of motion, of which God is the author. That kind of life which the best and happiest of men lead occasionally, in the unobstructed exercise of their highest powers, belongs eternally to God in a degree that should
excite admiration in proportion as it surpalles con prehenfion.' Vol. i. P. 133.
We now proceed to a consideration of the Ethics and the Politics, of which Dr. Gillies has given a translation. The former treatise is 'as various in its topics as copious in its illustration, and as connected in its parts as any that can be named on the fame fubject, even the admirable work of Cicero not ex-. cepted, though it has not the fame methodical trammels, ór many formalities of division and subdivision. Every book is preceded by an introduction, containing a sort of fyllabus of the general argument, with such apposite remarks as are calculated to illustrate the respective fubjects. As specimens of the Sta : girite's morality, we offer the following extracts. On the pofition, that our habits are voluntary, he argues thus :
Ends are, then, the objects of volition; and the means of attaining thein are the objects of deliberation and preference ; which, being conversant only about such things as are in our own power, the virtues immediately proceeding from them must also be in our own power, and voluntary, as well as the contrary vices. The poet's sentiment therefore is but partially true:
“ None chooses wretchednefs, or spurns delight." • The latter clause cannot be disputed; but the former must be denied, otherwise we must reject the doctrine juft established, that man is the author of his own actions; and that those things, whose principles or causes are in ourselves, are also in our own power. Yet these truths are attested by common sense and universal experience. Criminal actions are punished by law, when not committed either through compulsion or ignorance; in which cases they are pardoned, as not proceeding from ourselves. Praise-worthy actions, on the other hand, are encouraged and honoured; that as men are deterred from vice by the dread of punishunent, they may be excited to virtue by the hope of reward. But were not our conduct voluntary, such persuasives to virtue would be useless and absurd; and there would be no more sense in exhorting a man to his duty, than in persuading him not to feel cold or heat, thirst-or hun. ger. Crimes committed through ignorance are only excusable when the ignorance is involuntary; for when the cause of it lies in ourfelves, it is then juftly punishable; as in that ancient law which indiets a double penalty on crimes done in drunkenness. The ig-, norance of those laws, which all may know if they will, does not excuse the breach of them; and neglect is not pardonable, where attention ought to be bestowed. But perhaps we are incapable of attention. This however is our own fault; since the incapacity has been contracted by our continual carelessness; as the evils of injustice and intemperance are contracted by the daily commision of iniquity, and the daily indulgence in voluptuoufness. For fuch as our actions are, fuch must our habits become; a truth con.
Crit. Rev. Vol. XXIV. Sept. 1798. E
firmed by such universal experience, that to be ignorant of it betrays the groflest stupidity. It is plain therefore that our vices ate voluntary; since we voluntarily do those things which we know inust produce them. But does it depend merely on our own wills to correct aud reforın our bad habits? It certainly does not; neither does it depend on the will of a patient, who has despised the advice of his physician to recover that health which is loft by his own profligacy. When we have thrown a stone, we cannot reftraiit its flight; but it depended entirely on ourselves, whether we should throw it or not. The villain and the voluptuary are therefore voluntarily fuch; because the cause of their turpitude lies solely in themselves. Not only the vices of the mind, but even the imperfections of the body, are just subjects for reproach, when they are not natural, but produced through our own indolence or neglect. We pity blindness, lameness, or deformity, when they proceed from causes independent on those afflicted with them; but they are just objects of reproach, when contracted through drunkenness or any other species of debauchery; and, in the same manner, all vices and imperfections are blaineable which originate in ourselves.' Vol. i. p. 206.
In contrasting the facetiousness of a gentleman with the coarseness and illiberality of a buffoon, Aristotle shows, that, as the teacher of exterior manners, he could have rivaled a late courtly peer on his favourite fubje&ts.
• As life requires repose from serious employment, and this repofe may be enlivened by amusement, there seems to be a virtue relative to the intercourse of men in their hours of relaxation and merriment, regulating both the matter and the manner of their converfation. The strain of this conversation may be inore austere or more ludicrous than it ought, or may flow in that happy medium which is alone consistent with propriety. He who seeks to raise laughter on all occasions indiscriminately, without regard to decency, or to the pain inflicted on the object of his ridicule, is a low and contemptible buffoon : he who is himself totally incapable of exciting mirth, and who is so far from relishing, that he is highly offended with the innocent jests of others, indicates a soughness and favageness of character, unbending hardness, and unsocial austerity; whereas true facetiousness confifts in graceful flexibility of mind and manners, which can affume all Mapes, and which becomes all; for as the habits of the body are known by its motions, so are those of the mind. An immoderate propensity to ridicule being a more prominent and more conspicuous quality than the contrary extreme of sullen and ruftic gravity, and the greater part of mankind being inclined to delight in merriment, without anxiously examining whether it originates in a pure and proper source; buffoonery often passes for facetiousness, although there be the greatest difference between the coarseness of the one and the elegance of the
other; for in & cetiousness, which is the middle and proper habit, an easy pliancy of humour is adorned with a graceful dexterity which skilfully avoids whatever is indecent and illiberal ; never de- .'. bafing the delicate gaiety congenial to the character of well educated citizens, by the smallest approximation to the vile raillery of profligates and flaves. The progress of letters and civility has a powerful influence on the refinement of wit and humour; witness the difference between the ancient and modern comedy. In the former, the most shameful reproaches, expressed in the coarsest language, formed a principal source of the public entertainment; in the latter, the audience are taught chiefly to relish the faint insinua. tion, and the delicate hint: with respect to beauty and gracefulness, the two styles of writing are marked by the strongest differences.'
Vol. i. P. 250.
In the Politics, a work which comprises the most important subjects of governinent, laws, and political economy, Dr. Gillies is more profusé of comment and illustration than he is with regard to the Ethics. In the introduction to the first book, he endeavours to refute some of Locke's maxiins of governments and, by way of appendix to the second, he has reprinted, with additions, his interesting account of the little republic of St. Marino.
As specimens of the dissertation on politics, and of the translation of it, we subjoin the observations on the proper age for marriage, and on limited monarchy.
• According to this system of arrangement, the first care of the legislator ought to conlist in ascertaining the age and qualities of persons fit to be joined in wedlock. Persons so united, ought to descend together into the vale of years; and their powers of producing beings like themselves ought together to co-exift, uniformly to decay, and nearly at the same time to cease: the contrary of which feldom fails to occasion much domestic uneasinels. Respect also should be had to the succession of children, who ought neither to be too remotely diftant, nor too closely to tread on the heels of their parents. When the former takes place, parents can expect to de. rive but little benefit from their children; and when the latter is the case, children will feldom entertain much reverence for their pa. rents, who being nearly their equals in age, will be considered as on a foot of equality in all other respects; and with whom, therefore, they will be often ready to differ in matters of opinion, or to quara rel about matters of interest. It happens most fortunately that all these ends and purposes may be attained and answered by precisely the same means, the coupling parties in wedlock at the proper and seasonable age.
• About the age of seventy, inen commonly cease to be hus. bands; and after the age of fifty, women seldom become niothers. The times of entering into marriage for the different sexes ought to