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A Third Volume (of which the chief materials are already prepared) will comprehend all that I mean to publish under the title of the Philosophy of the Human Mind. The principal subjects allotted for it are Language ; Imitation ; the Varieties of intellectual Character; and the Faculties by which Man is distinguished from the lower animals. The two first of these articles belong, in strict propriety, to this second part of my work; but the size of the volume has prevented me from entering on the consideration of them at present.
The circumstances which have so long delayed the publication of these volumes on the Intellectual Powers, have not operated, in an equal degree, to prevent the prosecution of my inquiries into those principles of Human Nature, to which my attention was, for many years, statedly and forcibly called by my official duty. Much, indeed, still remains to be done in maturing, digesting, and arranging many of the doctrines which I was accustomed to introduce into my lectures ; but if I shall be blessed, for a few years longer, with a moderate share of health and of mental vigour, I do not altogether despair of yet contributing something, in the form of Essays, to fill up the outline which the sanguine imagination of youth encouraged me to conceive, before I had duly measured the magnitude of my undertaking with the time or with the abilities which I could devote to the execution.
The volume which I now publish is more particularly intended for the use of Academical Students; and is offered to them as a guide or assistant, at that important stage of their progress when, the usual course of discipline being completed, an inquisitive mind is naturally led to review its past attainments, and to form plans for its future improvement. In the prosecution of this design, I have not aimed at the establishment of new theories ; far less have I aspired to the invention of any new organ for the discovery of truth. My principal object is to aid my readers in unlearning the scholastic errours, which, in a greater or less degree, still maintain their ground in our most celebrated seats of learning; and by subjecting to free, but, I trust, not sceptical discussion, the more enlightened though discordant systems of modern Logicians, to accustom the understanding to the unfettered exercise of its native capacities. That several of the views opened in the following pages appear to myself original, and of some importance, I will not deny; but the reception these may meet with, I shall regard as a matter of comparative indifference, if my?labours be found useful in training the mind to those habits of reflection on its own operations, which may enable it to superadd to the instructions of the schools, that higher education which no schools can bestow.
CONTENTS OF THE SECOND VOLUME.