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A. And what fupply of these wants shall we esteem the meanest, which we can conceive Would it not be something like this ? Had we nothing beyond acorns for food; beyond a rude skin for rainent; or beyond a cavern or hollow tree, to provide us with a dwelling?
B. Indeed, this would be bad enough.
A. And do you not imagine, as far as this, we might each supply ourselves, tho' we lived in woods, mere solitary savages?
B. I think, we might,
A. Suppose then, that our supplies were to be mended for instance, that we were to exchange acorns for bread would our savage character be suf. ficient here? Must we not be a little better disciplined? Would not some art be requifite? - The baker's, for example:
B. - It would,',
A. And previously to the baker's, that of the miller ?
B. It would .
d. And previously to the iniller's," that of the husbandman?
B. It would .
A., Three arts, then appear necesary, even upon the lowest estimation.
B. 'Tis admitted.
A. But a question farther, Can the husbandman work, think you, without his tools? Must he not have his plough, his harrow, his reap-hook, and the like?
B. B. He must.
A. “And must not those other artists too be furnished in the same manner ?
: 3. B. They must.
A. And whence must they be furnished? From their own arts? Or are not the making tools, and the using them, two different occupations ?
B. I believe, they are.
A. You may be convinced by small recollection, Does Agriculture make its own plough, its own harrow? Or does it not apply to other arts, for all necessaries of this kind ? B. It does.
6 A. . Again Does the baker build his own oven; or the miller frame his own mill? * B. It appears no part of their business.
A. What a tribe of Mechanics then are advancing upon us! Smiths, carpenter, masons, mill-wrights - and all these to provide the single necessary of bread. Not less than seven or eight arts, we find, are wanting at the fewest. ::: B. It appears. Co.
A. And what if to the providing a comfortable cottage, and raiment suitable to an industțious hind, we allow a dozen arts inore? It would be easy, by the same reasoning, to prove the number double.
B. I admit the number mentioned.
A. If so, it should seem, that towards a tolerable fupply of the three primary and common necessaries, food, raiment, and a dwelling, not less than twenty arts were, on the lowest account, requisite.
o: B. It appears so.
A. And is one man equal, think you, to the exercise of these twenty arts? If he had even genius, which we can scarce imagine, is it poffible, he should find leisure ?
A. If so, then a solitary, unsocial state can never fupply tolerably the common necessaries of life.
B. It cannot,
A. But what if we pass from the neceslaries of life to the elegancies? To Music, Sculpture, Painting and Poetry? - What if we pass from all arts, whether necessary or elegant, to the large and various tribe of sciences? To Logic, Mathematics, Astronomy, Phy, lics? Can one Man, imagine you, master all this?
B. Absurd, impoflible.
A. And yet in this Cycle of sciences and arts seem includeed all the Comforts, as well as Ornaments of Lise; included all conducive, either to Being, or to Well-Being B. It must be confessed it has the appearance.
What then must be done? In what manner must we be supplied ?.
B. · I know not, unless we make a Distribution
Let one exercise one art; and another a different Let this Man study such a science; and that Man, another - Thus the whole Cycle (as you call it) inay be carried easily into Perfection,
A. 'Tis true, it may; and every Individual, as far as his own art or science, might be supplied completely, and as well as he could wish. But what avails
a supply in a single Instance? What in this case are to become of all his numerous other wants ?
B. · You conceive what I would have said, but partially. My 'ineaning was, that artist trade with artist; each supply where he is deficient, by exchan. ging where he abounds; so that a portion of every thing may be dispersed throughout all.
A. You intend then a State of Commutation and Traffic.
B. I do.
A. If so, I see a new face of things. The fava: ges, with their skins and their caverns, disappear. In their place I behold a fair Community rising. No longer woods, no longer solitude, but all is social, civil, and cultivated.
And can we doubt any, farther, whether society be natural? Is not this evidently the state, which can best supply the primary wants? & Son B. It appeares, so.
A. And did we not agree soine time since, that this state, whatever we found it, would be certainly of all others the most agreeable to our nature ?
' ICLA. And have we not added, since this, to weight of our argument, be passing from the necessary arts to the elegant; froin the elegant, to the sciences ?
B. We have.
A. The more we consider, the more shall we be convinced, that all these, the noblest honours and ornaments of the human mind, without that leisure, that experience, that emulation, that reward, which the social state alone we know is able to provide them, could never have found existence, or been in the least recognized.
B. Indeed I believe not.
A. Let it not be forgot then, in favour of society, that to it we owe, not only the beginning and continuation, but the well-being; and (if I may use the expression) the very elegance, and rationality of existence.
B. It appears evident,
A. And what then — If society be'thus agreeable to our nature, is there nothing, think you, within us, to excite and lead us to it? No impulfe, no preparation of faculties?
B. It would be strange if there should not.
A. "Twoud be a fingular exception, with respect to all other herding species Let us however examine
Pity, benevolence, friendship, love, the general dislike of solitude, and desire of company, are they natural affections, which come of themselves; or are they taught us by art, like Music and Arithmetic ?
B. I should think, they were natural, because in every degree of unen some traces of them may be discovered.
A. And are not the powers and capacities of speech the same? Are not all inen naturaly formed, to exprefs their sentiments by some kind of language?
B. They are.
A. If then these several powers, and dispositions are natural, so should seem to their exercise.
B. Adinit it.
A. And if their exercise, then fo too that state, where alone they can be exercised,
B. Admit it.
Beifp. Samml. 8.30. 1. Auth.