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intellect of the speculator. Malebranche saw all things in God, Locke saw all things in himself. Nay, he went all but the length of seeing the whole universe in his five corporeal senses ; and the majority of his disciples in more recent times have boldly leaped across the slight barrier which kept their master back from that great discovery. But, while there will continue to be in many minds this dissent from the general spirit of Locke's philosophy, and also from much in his conclusions, the Essay on Human Understanding will, nevertheless, always be recognized as not only an illustrious monument of the penetration, ingenuity, and other high mental powers and resources of its author, but as a fundamental book in modern metaphysics. It is, as has been remarked, the first comprehensive survey that had been attempted of the whole mind and its faculties; and the very conception of such a design argued an intellect of no common reach, originality, and boldness. It will remain also of very considerable value as an extensive register of facts, and a storehouse of acute and often suggestive observations on psychological phenomena, whatever may be the fate of the views propounded in it as aspiring to constitute a metaphysical system. Further, it is not to be denied that this work has exercised a powerful influence upon the course of philosophical inquiry and opinion ever since its appearance. At first, in particular, it did good service in putting finally to the rout some fantastic notions and methods that still lingered in the schools; it was the loudest and most comprehensive proclamation that had yet been made of the liberation of philosophy from the dominion of authority; but Locke's was a mind stronger and better furnished for the work of pulling down than of building up: he had enough of clear-sightedness and independence of mental character for the one; whatever endowments of a different kind he possessed, he had too little imagination, or creative power, for the other. Besides, the very passionless character of his mind would have unfitted him for going far into the philosophy of our complex nature, in which the passions are the revealers and teachers of all the deepest truths, and alone afford us any intimation of many things which, even with the aid of their lurid light, we discern but as fearful and unfathomable mysteries. What would Shakspeare's understanding of the philosophy of human nature have been, if he had had no more imagination and passion in his own nature than Locke?
WRITERS ON POLITICAL ECONOMY.
AMONG Locke's writings are two treatises, the one entitled Considerations on the Lowering of Interest and Raising the Value of Money, published in 1691, the other entitled Further Considerations on Raising the Value of Money, published in 1695. Some of the most important questions in what is now called Political Economy had been discussed in England in a popular fashion before the end of the sixteenth century; but it was only since the Revolution that attempts had been made to settle the general principles of the science of wealth or to give it a systematic form. Sir William Petty, Sir Josiah Child, and Mr. Thomas Mun had all written upon the subject of money before Locke, and both his publications and theirs contain many sound and valuable observations; but by far the most remarkable work belonging to this early era of the science is Sir Dudley North’s Discourses on Trade, principally directed to the cases of Interest, Coinage, Clipping, and Increase of Money, published in the same year with Locke's first tract, and with reference to the same matter, the general recoinage of the silver currency, which was about this time first proposed by the government, and was accomplished five years afterwards. Sir Dudley's pamphlet was in opposition to a material point of the plan actually adopted, by which the loss arising from the clipped money was thrown upon the public, and the publication is supposed to have been suppressed; but a few years ago a distinguished living political economist (Mr. M'Culloch) was fortunate enough to recover a copy, then supposed to be the only one in existence. Its leading principle is simply, that gold and silver differ commercially in no respect whatever from other commodities; and on this basis the author has reared a theory entirely unvitiated by the ancient and almost universally received errors and prejudices of his day, and, so far as it goes, as perfect as the subject admits of. A more voluminous writer on commerce and finance in this and the next reign was Dr. Charles Davenant (son of Sir William, the poet), whose works, however, are more valuable for the mere facts they record than for any light they throw on the principles of economical science. Davenant, who held the office of Inspector-General
1 In his Literature of Political Economy, 8vo, Lond. 1845, p. 43, Mr. M'Culloch informs us that he has since met with two other copies of the original edition.
of Exports and Imports, was a laborious examiner of documents and accounts, and a sensible man withal, but rather dull, it must be allowed, notwithstanding his poetical descent.
BOYLE AND BENTLEY CONTROVERSY.
In taking leave of the seventeenth century, we must not omit noticing the memorable contest of wit and learning which arose, in the reign of William, out of the publication of an edition of the Greek Epistles attributed to Phalaris, the tyrant of Agrigentum, in Sicily, famous for his brazen bull, by the Honorable Charles Boyle (afterwards Earl of Orrery). In the preface to his book, which was published in the beginning of the year 1695, Boyle, who was then an undergraduate of Christ Church, Oxford, animadverted with some severity upon a piece of discourtesy which he conceived he had met with from Dr. Bentley, then keeper of the King's Library, in regard to the loan of a manuscript of the Epistles there preserved. After an interval of two
After an interval of two years, Bentley published, in an appendix to the second edition of his friend William Wotton's Reflections on Ancient and Modern Learning, an elaborate exposition of his reasons for holding the compositions printed by Boyle, and ranked by him with the most precious remains of the remotest antiquity, to be a comparatively modern forgery; and at the same time took an opportunity both of replying to the charge brought against him by Boyle (from which he apparently clears himself), and of criticizing the late edition of the Epistles with great asperity, and with all the power of his vast erudition and unrivalled acumen. This, the first edition of Bentley's celebrated Dissertation on Phalaris, is now, in truth, universally considered to have established the spuriousness of the Epistles conclusively and unanswerably. An answer, however, was produced to it in the following year (1698), under the title of Dr. Bentley's Dissertations on the Epistles of Phalaris and the Fables of Æsop examined; to which Boyle's name was prefixed, but which is believed to have been chiefly the composition of his tutor, the celebrated Dr. Francis Atterbury, afterwards Bishop of Rochester, whose very considerable attainments in classical scholarship were
enlivened and decorated by the finest spirit of wit and humor. Some others of the most distinguished among the Oxford men also contributed their blows or missiles; so that the cause of the old Sicilian tyrant against the denier and derider of his literary pretensions
may be said to have been taken up and defended by the whole force and fury of the university. The laugh was turned for the moment against Bentley by this attack, which was for the most part a fierce personal invective; but he set at least the original question at rest, and effectually put down the pretensions of his assailants to cope with him in the field of learning and criticism, by a second and enlarged edition of his Dissertation, which he brought forth after about another year's interval. To this a reply was threatened, but none was ever made. Bentley's performance was in every way a masterpiece. ** Professedly controversial," observes a late writer, “it embodies a mass of accurate information relative to historical facts, antiquities, chronology, and philology, such as we may safely say has rarely been collected in the same space; and the reader cannot fail to admire the ingenuity with which things apparently trifling, or foreign to the point in question, are made effective in illustrating or proving the author's views. Nothing shows so well how thoroughly digested and familiar was the vast stock of reading which Bentley possessed. The banter and ridicule of his opponents are returned with interest, and the reader is reconciled to what might seem to savor too much of arrogance and the bitterness of controversy by a sense of the strong provocation given to the author.”1 We may add a few words from Mr. Hallam's notice of this controversy : " It was the first great literary war that had been waged in England; and, like that of Troy, it has still the prerogative of being remembered after the Epistles of Phalaris are as much buried as the walls of Troyı itself. Both combatants were skilful in wielding the sword: the arms of Boyle, in Swift's language, were given him by all the gods ; 2 but 1 Article on Bentley, in Penny Cyclopædia, iv. 250.
Upon this assertion of Swift's, Boyle's son, John Earl of Orrery, remarks, with a filial or family partiality that is excusable enough :-“I shall not dispute about the gift of the armour; but thus far I will venture to observe, that the gods never bestowed celestial armour except upon heroes whose courage and superior strength distinguished them from the rest of mankind; whose merits and abilities were already conspicuous; and who could wield, though young, the sword of Mars, and adorn it with all the virtues of Minerva." - Remarks on the Life and Writings of Dr. Swift, 5th edition, p. 228. Charles Boyle was in truth a person of respectable talent; but, although in after-life he wrote a comedy (As You Find It), and
his antagonist stood forward in no such figurative strength, — master of a learning to which nothing parallel had been known in England, and that directed by an understanding prompt, discriminating, not idly sceptical, but still farther removed from trust in authority, sagacious in perceiving corruptions of language, and ingenious, at the least, in removing them, with a style rapid, concise, amusing, and superior to Boyle in that which he had most to boast, a sarcastic wit.” 1 The Battle of the Books, here alluded to, the production of the afterwards renowned Jonathan Swift, did not, howe ever, appear till the year 1704. In fact the dispute about the authenticity of the Epistles of Phalaris had formed all along only a branch of a larger controversy, which was kept up for some years after the question of Phalaris had been set at rest and abandoned on all hands. It was Swift's relation and patron, Sir William Temple, who had first called attention to the Epistles by a passage in one of his Essays, in which he endeavored to maintain the superiority of the ancients over the moderns in all kinds of learning and knowledge, the physical and experimental sciences themselves not excepted. It was in answer to Temple's Essay, which was itself a reply to Perrault's Parallèle des Anciens et Modernes, published at Paris in 1687, that Wotton wrote his Reflections, the first edition of which appeared in 1694, and expressed therein an opinion unfavorable to the antiquity of the Epistles, which Temple had both eulogized in warm terms and cited as of unquestionable authenticity. This argument between Temple as the championgeneral of the ancients, and Wotton of the moderns, which produced a great many more publications from both, and from their respective partisans, is the main subject of the Battle of the Books, which was probably the last blow struck in the pen-and-ink war, and at any rate is the last that is now remembered.2
some other trifles, his wit does not appear to have ripened with his years, and nothing that he produced ever excited any attention except his college publication in the Phalaris controversy.
1 Lit. of Eur. iv. 10.
2 Most readers will remember Lord Macaulay's brilliant sketch of this controversy in his Essay on Sir William Temple, Edin. Rev. for Oct. 1838.