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tions on the occasion, which not long afterwards terminated in his death.
Warburton did justice to the virtue and genius of Berkeley, but was infected with the notion, which has been so generally current, that his philosophical system was visionary. In a letter to a friend, * he remarks of him,“ he is, indeed, a great man, and the only visionary, I ever knew, that was.” Such estimates are rashly adopted, and inconsiderately received. They soon become traditionary, and by being handed from one person to another, acquire the authority of indisputable axioms. This indolent acquiescence saves, it is true, a world of inquiry, and is admirably suited to the superficial thinking of an age, when so much more is said and written, than is known, of the literature or philosophy of the last century. It is quite enough, therefore, for those who think by rote or fashion, that Berkeley held the non-existence of matter. The tenet strikes vulgar and unlearned apprehensions, as a palpable absurdity, and is immediately classed with those abuses of reason and aberrations of genius, so common both in letters and philosophy. Johnson himself was not exempt from the common prejudice against the supposed theory of Berkeley. His summary refutation of it, by striking his foot with great force against a stone, and exclaiming, I refute it thus," is recorded by Boswell. But he did not refute it, nor did he precisely understand Berkeley's argument. The bishop never denied all that Johnson proved, namely, the sensation of solidity. He admitted that we had those sensations or ideas, which are commonly called sensible qualities, such as solidity, extension, &c. &c.; and he only denied the existence of that matter, or inert senseless substance, in which they are supposed to reside. Johnson's argument, if it deserves the name, was founded on the erroneous assumption, that solidity is matter. With equal justice might it be said, that when Jack Lizard, on his return from Oxford, with his smattering of philosophy, pinched his sister's lap-dogs, to prove that they could not feel it, -the Aristotelian philosophy was confuted, when the animals howled under the operation ;for neither Aristotle, nor the schoolmen, ever maintained the opinion which Addison ridicules, that lap-dogs, when pinched, could not feel the pain. • However inadequate Berkeley's tenet may be to solve the problem, to which he applied it, it is by no means deserving of contemptuous treatment. He first advanced it in his Principles of Human Knowledge, a truly original and masterly work, in which, by several distinct gradations of proof, he arrives at
* Letters from a late eminent Prelate, &c. &c. &c. London, 1809.
what he calls the non-existence of matter. But this proposi-, tion, to be understvod, must not be nakedly stated. Berkeley held, that what are vulgarly considered to be sensible objects, are only ideas created in the mind by the immediate power of the Deity, who, by a constant adherence to this mode of agency, has established that which we will call a law of nature. These ideas are the shadows or images of things, and were termed “species,”“ forms,” “ phantasms,” by the ancients; subsequently, by Des Cartes, “ ideas ;” and by Hume, “ impressions.” Nor is Berkeley's a merely sceptical theory, for he ascribes ideas to the perpetual interventions of the Deity. He is, therefore, somewhat unfairly classed, by Hume *, with the sceptics of the ancient academy, and with Bayle amongst modern philosophers. Berkeley, in his theory, intended nothing more than the refutation of the doctrine of general or abstract ideas, concluding, with Aristotle and others, that the sensible qualities of objects, such as hard, soft, hot, cold, '&c. are merely secondary, and do not exist in the objects themselves, but are perceptions of the mind, underived from any archetype or model. From secondary qualities, he followed up his reasonings to those primary ones of extension and solidity, which are acquired from the sense of sight and feeling; for if all the qualities perceived by the senses be not in the object, but in the mind, the same conclusion must extend to all those ideas, which are wholly dependent on the sensible ideas, or the ideas of secondary qualities. “Nothing,” says Hume, who borrowed his argument from Berkeley, “can save us from this conclusion, but the asserting that the ideas of those primary qualities are attained by abstraction ; an opinion, which, if we examine it accurately, we shall find to be unintelligible, and even absurd. An extension, that is neither tangible nor visible, cannot possibly be perceived. And a tangible or visible extension, which is neither hard nor soft, black nor white, is equally beyond the reach of human conception. Let any man try to conceive a triangle, in general, which is neither Isosceles nor Scalenum, nor has any particular length or proportion of sides; and he will soon perceive the absurdity of all the scholastic notions with regard to abstraction and general ideas."
But Berkeley, whilst he annibilated matter by bereaving it of all its intelligible qualities, both primary and secondary, did not acquiesce in the scepticism of Hume, nor was satisfied, like that dialectician, with terminating all his reasonings in a certain, unknown, inexplicable something, as the
* See note N. to Hume's Essay on the Academical, or Sceptical Philosophy.
case of our perception. H: referred what we commonly callet neis the living and immertmte coersticos of the Supreme Benr, whic, 5v the constinct of his intervention, hus estzbüshet ne peut en perminent les cé mere. In truth. diere an be die icuoc that is cos o sensible quides vere taken hem dhe Iristice in caricsccit; ud it will be so I nere evident. T W THE Ł Tisser sin i cele Erztat Sate iscicie at ut bosccov. Reza Boss, 2
me, biv, screto en Tmes I TETA, than to us retums ad mu ne ISICS s PILISTEO] Ticine. v II TSIT & Sr Kamelin Pret's Dan
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OUZITIES. THE ENET Rt., Ouvre. Til ITTIT Sam the fire mm wuur k an u Dom STILI TIL EI merz i Ere there! And whaT QUI SET PIT IUTE ES TIL SEIDET vist fire vuitang S tema! We have 1. Erledre but the sease, to stick dette un Dr the sutstane ZE MUS ET than oneN** Temat seems to be à maturid istuin beveel the lasāms tant of Berkelet, as to the non-constance of a material WT., and the opinions of listutde, BTDET ETE developed in the passare which we are about to cite um mis MAIDH USZCL, and who sew him, we th , to have been aware of the aimrande distinsdion of Des Cats 'a distinction, u ortenZtET, D recorrized br Berkeler , between the primary and sensible quel ties of matter. * Tu var bus TE TEELLDÓTTO SIND. WE TE RIDIMAI 16 sims Dv YOLE VOELSTE Tak TOUTE ET I E TE TOUSLESVE TE Th mobinson, advaror du ya dr LMT 45 ETT SWT on, na srta T. TTECO TEZ την αισθησιν, ί αναγκη παστερος είναι της αισθήσεις τα γαι αειτους του κινoiMETE Duos Tours & Ti mã si SYETA. TEK D ina TXTE DUTE, Dubai nito." lib.it.c. 5. - Probably it is true, that the things inmediately perceived, as well as the perceptions themselves, do not realy exist; but, that the subjects, which cause the perceptions, should not exist, is impossible. For perception doth not exist of itself; but there is something besides perception, which must necessarily precede it. For the mover of any thing must naturallr precede the motion which it causes ; nor is this the less true, though it be objected, that these two are relative to each other."
Enough, we think, has been said, to shew, that, if Berkeley erred, be erred with many of the soundest philosophers of the ancient and modern schools. For, thongh we have pointed
* The Philosophical Touchstone, by Alexander Ross.
out' an important distinction between several opinions of Aristotle and Berkeley, it is certain, that the Stagyrite contended that our senses could not perceive any material object itself, but only its.“ species,” as wax receives the impression of a seal, but not the seal itself. These images he called “ sensible species,” being objects only of the sensible part of the mind; but, by various internal processes, they are so refined and spiritualised, that they become objects of memory and imagination, and, lastly, of pure intellection (EVTEREXELAI). They are then called “phantasms,” and intelligible species. But Berkeley concurred not only with Aristotle, but with Des Cartes, Locke, and Hume, in considering every object, whether of sense, memory, imagination, or reasoning, as originating in the mind only, an hypothesis thus modified by Reid. “ External objects,” he says, “ make impressions on our senses, which are followed by correspondent sensations; and these are again followed by perceptions of the existence and qualities of the bodies which produced the impression. But all the steps of this process are alike incomprehensible, and the consideration of them can throw no light upon the manner in which we acquire our knowledge of the existence or qualities of bodies. For ourselves, we venture no opinion, either upon Berkeley's theory, or upon those of the philosophers whom we have enumerated. We must be allowed, however, to confess, that the hypothesis of Mallebranche, that our knowledge of the material world is only occasional and intermediate, displays a more comprehensive and correct conception of the subject, than the Bishop's. .
Tar-water rose into general esteem as a medicine soon after Berkeley's book made its appearance. Its virtue as a tonic will probably be admitted at present; but it was at that time considered by many persons, and our author was the most ; zealous amongst them, not merely as a cure for almost every: disorder incident to the human frame, but as a sure conservative of health, and a guard against infection and old age. With what good faith he had convinced himself, and laboured to convince others, of its universal efficacy, will be seen in the few words with which he introduces his subject.
“ Siris : a Chain of Philosophical Reflexions and Inquiries, 8c.
“ For Introduction to the following piece, I assure the reader, that nothing could, in my present situation, have induced me to be at the pains of writing it, but a firm belief that it would prove a valuable present to the public. What entertainment soever the reasoning or notional part may afford the mind, I will venture to say, the other part seemeth so surely calculated to do good to the body, that both
must be gainers. For, if the lute be not well tuned, the musician fails of his harmony. And, in our present state, the operations of the mind so far depend on the right tone, or good condition, of its instrument, that any thing which greatly contributes to preserve or recover the health of the body, is well worth the attention of the mind. These considerations have moved me to communicate to the public the salutary virtues of tar-water; to which I thought myself indispensably obliged, by the duty every man owes to mankind. And, as effects are linked with their causes, my thoughts on this low but useful theme led to farther inquiries, and those on to others remote, perhaps, and speculative, but, I hope, not altogether useless or unentertaining.”
The infusion so strongly recommended by the Bishop of Cloyne, is made by a gallon of cold water, poured on a quart of tar, and stirred and mixed thoroughly with a ladle for three or four minutes. The vessel is to stand forty-eight hours, for the tar to subside: the clear water is then poured off, and kept covered for use. It seems first to have been used medicinally in our American colonies; and Berkeley was, probably, induced, by that circumstance, to try it in his own neighbourhood, in Ireland, when the small-pox raged there with great violence. “ All those,” says he,“ who took it; either escaped the distemper altogether, or had it very favourably.” The small-pox being a disease attended with purulent ulcers, he inferred that it would be useful in other foulnesses of the blood, and tried it with uniform success, in several cases of cutaneous eruptions, ulcerations of the bowels and lungs, pleurisies, peripneumonies, erysipelatous fevers, and even anasarca. In reply to the objection, that tar being in its nature sulphuric, and therefore inflammatory, could not be safely applied in inflammatory cases, he remarks, that all balsams contain a volatile salt, and that water is a menstruum, which dissolves all sorts of salts, and draws them from their subjects. Tar-water being a balsam, its volatile salt is extracted by water, with dissolving its resinous parts, whose proper menstruum is spirit of wine. Tarwater, therefore, is not impregnated with resin, and is a safe and cooling febrifuge.
“ The folly of man rateth things by their scarceness, but Providence hath made the most useful things most common. Among those liquid oily extracts from trees and shrubs, which are termed balsams, aad valued for medicinal virtues, tar may hold its place as a most valuable balsam. Its fragrancy sheweth, that it is possessed of active qualities, and its oiliness that it is fitted to retain them. This excellent balsam may be purchased for a penny a pound; whereas the balsam of Judæa, when most plenty, was sold, on the very spot that produced it, for double its weight in silver, if we may credit Pliny; who also informs us, that the best balsam of Judæa flowed only from the bark