« VorigeDoorgaan »
prose itself; and nothing is more certain, than that much of the force as well as grace of arguments or instructions, depends on their conciseness. I was unable to treat this part of my subject more in detail, without becoming dry and tedious; or more poetically, without sacrificing perfpicuity to ornament, without wandring from the precision, or breaking the chain of reasoning: If any man can unite all these without diminution of any of them, I freely confess he wių compass a thing above my capacity:
What is now published, is only to be considered as a general Map of Man, marking out no more than the greater parts, their extent, their limits, and their connection, but leaving the particular to be more fully delineated in the charts which are to follow. Consequently, these Epistles in their progress (if I have health and leisure to make any progress) will be less dry, and more susceptible of poetical ornament. I am here only opening the fountains, and clearing the palsage. To deduce the rivers, to follow them in their course, and to observe their effects," be a talk more agreeable.
ESSAY on MAN,
H. St. John, Lord Bolingbroke.
Of the Nature and State of Man with respect to
OF Man in the abArael.-I. That we can judge only
with regard to our own fyftem, being ignorant of the relations of Systems and things, ver. 17, etc. II. That Man is not to be deemed imperfect, but a Being fuited to bis place and rank in the creation, agricable to the general Order of ibings, and conformable to Ends and Relations to him unknown, ver. 35, etc. III. That it is partly upon his ignorance of future events, and partly upon the hope of a future flate, that all his happiness in the prefent depends, ver. 77, etc. IV. The pride of aiming at more knorledge, and pre
tending to more Perfection, the cause of Mal's error and milery. The impiety of putting bimself in the place of God, and judging of the fitness or unfitness, perfection or imperfection, justice or injustice, of his dispensations, ver. 109, etc. V. The absurdity of conceiting himself the final cause of the creation, or expecting that perfe&tion in the moral world, which , not in the natural, ver. 131, etc.
VI. The unreasonableness of his complaints against Providence, while on the one hand he demands the Perfections of the Angels, and on the other the bodily qualifications of the Brutes ; though, to polless any of the sensitive faculties in a higher degree, would render him miserable, ver. 173, etc. VII. That throughout the whole vifible world, an universal order and gradation in th Jen/ual and mental faculties is observed, which causes a subordination of creatuie to creature, and of all creatures to Man. The gradations of fense, instinct, thought, reflection, reason ; that Reafon alone countervails all the other faculties, ver. 207. VIII. How much further this order and subordination of living creatures may extend, above and below us; were any fart of which broken, not that part only, but the whole connected creation must be destroyed, ver. 233. IX. The extravagance, madness, and pride of such a defire, ver. 250. X. The consequence of all, the abiolute submission due to Providence, both as to our prefent and future ftate. ver. 281, &c. to the end.