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disresnrding the genera] impressions of mobility, and determining every individual question upon a rigorous estimate of the utility it might appear to involve, would be, to give an additional force to the causes by which our judgments are most apt to be perverted, and iTiiirely to abrogate the authority of those Gênerai rules by which alone men are comraunly enabled to judge of their own conduct with any tolerable impartiality. If we were :o dismiss altogether from our consideration those authoritative maxims, which have been wnrtioned by the general approbation of mankind, and to regulate our conduct entirely by i view of the good and the evil that promises to be the consequence of every particular iciion, there is reason to fear, not only that inclination might occasionally slip a false weight into the scale, but that many of the most important consequences of our actions might be overlooked. Those actions are bad, according to Mr. Bentham, that produce more evil than good: But actions are performed by individuals; and all the good may be to the individual, and all the evil to the community. There are innumerable cases, in which the idvantages to be gained, by the commission of a crime are incalculably greater (looking only to this -world) than the evils to which it may expose the criminal. This holds in almost every instance where unlawful passions may be gratified with very little risk of detection. A mere calculation of utilities would never prevent such actions; and the truth undoubtedly is. that the greater part of men an; only withheld from committing them by those general impressions of morality, which :t is the object of Mr. Bentham's system to supersede. Even admitting, what might well be denied, that, in all cases, the utility of the individual is inseparably connected with that of society, it will not be disputed, at least, that this connection is of a nature not very striking or obvious, and that it may frequently be overlooked by an individual deliberating on the consequences of his projected actions. It is in aid of this oversight, of this omission, "! this partiality, that we refer to the Gênerai rate of morality; rules, which have been suggested by a larger observation, and a longer eiperience, than any individual can dream of prt'tPiiding to, and which have been accommodated, by the joint action of our sympathies with delinquents and with sufferers, to the »ctual condition of human fortitude and infirmity. If they be founded on utility, it is rm an utility that cannot always be discovered; ind that can never be correctly estimated, in deliberating upon a particular measure, or with a view to a specific course of conduct: It is on an utility that does not discover itself till it is accumulated; and only becomes apparent after a large collection of examples hare been embodied in proof of it. Such summaries of utility, such records of uniform observation, we conceive to be the General rules of Morality, by which, and by which »tone, legislators or individuals can be safely directed in determining on the propriety of any course of conduct. They are observa

tions taken in the calm, by which we must be guided in the darkness and the terror of the tempest ; they are beacons and strongholds erected in the day of peace, round w hich we must rally, and to which we must betake ourselves, in the hour of contest and alarm.

For these reasons, and for others wrucn our limits will not now permit us to hint at, we are of opinion, that the old established morality of mankind ought upon no account to give place to a bold and rigid investigation into the utility of any particular act, or any course of action that may be made the subject of deliberation; and that the safest anil the shortest way to the good which we all desire, is the beaten highway of morality, which was formed at first by the experience of good and of evil.

But our objections do not apply merely to the foundation of Mr. Bentham's new system of morality: We think the plan and execution of the superstructure itself defective in many particulars. Even if we could be persuaded that it would be wiser in general to follow the dictates of utility than the impressions of moral duty, we should still say that the system contained in these volumes does noteñable us to adopt that substitute: and that it really presents us with no means of measuring or comparing utilities. After perusing M. Dumont's eloquent observations on the incalculable benefits which his author's discoveries were to confer on the science of legislation, and on the genius and good fortune by which he had been enabled to reduce morality to the precision of a science, by fixing a precise standard for the good and evil of our lives, we proceeded with the perusal of Mr. Bentham's endless tables arid divisions, with a mixture of impatience, expectation, and disappointment. Now that we have finished our task, the latter sentiment alone remains; for we perceive very clearly that M. Dumont's Zealand partiality have imposed upon his natural sagacity, and that Mr. Bentham has just left the science of morality in the same imperfect condition in which it was left by his predecessors. The whole of Mr. Bentham's catalogues and distinctions tend merely to point out the Number of the causes that produce our happiness от misery, but by no means to ascertain their relative Magnitude or force; and the only effect of their introduction into the science of morality seems to be, to embarrass a popular subject with a technical nomenclature, and to perplex familiar truths with an unnecessary intricacy of arrangement.

Of the justice of this remark any one may satisfy himself, by turning back to the tables and classifications which we have exhibited in the former part of this analysis, and trying if he can find there any rules for estimating the comparative value of pleasures and pains, that are not perfectly familiar to the most uninstrocted of the species. In the table of simple pleasures, for instance, what satisfaction can it afford to find the pleasure of riches set down as a distinct genus from the pleasure of power, and the pleasure of the senses— unless some scale were annexed by which the respective value of these several pleasures might be ascertained! If a man is balancing between the pain of privation and the pain of shame, how is he relieved by merely finding these arranged under separate titles 1 or, in either case, will it give him any information, to be told that the value of a pain or pleasure depends upon its intensity, its duration, or its certainty Î If a legislator is desirous to learn what degree of punishment is suitable to a particular offence, will he be greatly edified to read that the same punishment may be more or less severe according to the temperament, the intelligence, the rank, or the fortune of the delinquent; and that the circumstances that influence sensibility, though commonly reckoned to be only nine, may fairly be set down at fifteen t Is there any thing, in short, in this whole book, that realises the triumphant Introduction of the editor, or that can enable us in any one instance to decide upon the relative magnitude of an evil, otherwise than by a reference to the common feelings of mankind? It is Irue, we are perfectly persuaded, that by the help of these feelings, we can form a pretty correct judgment in most cases that occur; but Mr. Bentham is not persuaded of this ; and insists upon our renouncing all faith in so incorrect a standard, while he promises to furnish us with another that is liable to no sort of inaccuracy. This promise we do not think he has in any degree fulfilled; because he has given us no rule by which the intensity of any pain or pleasure can be determined; and furnished us with no instrument by which we may take the altitude of enjoyment, or fathom the depths of pain. It is no apology for having made this promise, that its fulfilment -was evidently impossible.

In multiplying these distinctions and divisions which form the basis of his system, Mr. Bentham appears to us to bear less resemblance to a philosopher of the present times, than to one of the old scholastic doctors, who substituted classification for reasoning, and looked upon the ten categories as the most useful of all human inventions. Their distinctions were generally real, as well as his, and could not have been made without the misapplication of much labour and ingenuity: But it is now generally admitted that they are of no use whatever, either for the promotion of truth, or the detection of error; and that they only serve to point out differences that cannot be overlooked, or need not be remembered. There are many differences and many points of resemblance in all actions, and in all substances, that are absolutely indifferent in any serious reasoning that may be entered into with regard to them; and though much industry and much acuteness maybe displayed in finding them out, the discovery is just as unprofitable to science, as the enumeration of the adverbs in the creed, or the dissyllables in the decalogue, would be to theology. The «rreater number of Mr. Bentham's distinctions, however, are liable to objection, because they state, uncieran intricate and technical arrangement, those facts and circumstances only that

are necessarily familiar to all mankind, and cannot possibly be forgotten on any оссаяса where it is of importance to remember them. If bad laws have been enacted, it certainly ¿ not from having forgotten that the gooa •:•: society is the ultimate object of all law, uthat it is absurd to repress one evil by the creation of a greater. Legislators have ИА bewildered themselves in tne choice of mrx.í. but they have never so grossly mistaken the ends of their institution, as to need to be reminded of these obvious and elemeiiür, truths.

If there be any part of Mr. Bentham's classification that might be supposed to anist m in appreciating the comparative value <; pleasures and pains, it must certainly be Ls enumeration of the circumstances that anVi the sensibility of individuals. Eren if iei» table were to fulfil all that it promise*, bowever, it would still leave the system rcirámentally deficient, as it does not enable ш а compare the relative amount of anv two fissures or pains, to individuals in tht sam •:.:• cumstances. In its particular applicator. however, it is truly no less defective: f« though we are told that temperament, intelligence, &c. should vary the degree of ршшЬment or reward, we are not told to what eiv :. or in what proportions, it should be varied by these circumstances. Till this be done, however, it is evident that the elements ot .V: Bentham's moral arilhmetic have no detenunate value; and that it would be pertrf-т impossible to work any practical problem ¡j legislation by the help of them. It is scarct> necessary to add, that even if this were '<••-• complished. and the cognisance of all ihe* particulars distinctly enjoined by the law Ik only effect would be, to introduce a puer. .5 ana fantastic complexity into our system-: jurisprudence, and to encumber judicial procedure with a multitude of frivolous or impracticable observances. The circumstance in consideration of which Mr. Bentham wou. I have the laws vary the punishment, are » numerous and so indefinite, that it wonld inquire a vast deal more labour to акегм their existence in any particular case, than :•> establish the principal offence. The first л Temperament; and in a case of flagging ** suppose Mr. Bentham would remit a few lashes to a sanguine and irritable delinquen;. and lay a few additional stripes on a |tilo.matic or pituitous one. Bat how is the ¡чт.perament to be given in evidence? or are ¡1 judges to aggravate or alleviate a puniihmetii upon a mere inspection of the prisoner'.* complexion. Another circumstance that slimiU affect the pain, is the offender's firmnf» ^ mind ; and another his strength of nnderetanii; ing. How is a court to take cognisance • these qualities? or in what degree are they:1 affect their proceedings? If we are to a !ra:: such considerations into our law at all. ¡И ought to be carried a great deal farther than Mr. Bentham has indicated ; and it should « expressed in the statutes, what alienation ot punishment should be awarded to a culpn: on account of his wife's pregnancy, of ta»

colour of hie children's hair. We cannot help thinkingthat theundistinguishinggrossness of our actual practice is better than such foppery. We fix a punishment which is calculated for tie common, average condition of those to whom it is to be applied: and, in almost all caws, we leave with the judge a discretionary power of accommodating it to any peculiarities that may seem to require an exception. After all, this is the most plausible part of Mr. Benton's arrangements.

In what he has said of the false notions which legislators have frequently followed in preference to the polar light or utility, we think we discover a good deal of inaccuracy, and some little want of candour. Mr. Bentham must certainly be conscious that no one erer pretended that the -mere antiquity of a law was a sufficient reason for retaining it, in ipite of its evident inutility: But when the utility of parting with it is doubtful, its antiqnity may fairly be urged as affording a preramption m its favour, and as a reason for being cautious at least in the removal of what must be incorporated with so many other institutions. We plead the antiquity of our Constitution as an additional reason for not yielding it up to innovators: but nobody ever thought, we believe, of advancing this plea in ropport of the statutes against Witchcraft. In the «me way, we think, there is more wit than reason in ascribing the errors of many legislators to their being misled by a metaphor. The metaphor, we are inclined to think, has Ancrai]y arisen from the principle or practice to which Mr. Bentham would give effect independent of it. The law of England respects the sanctity of a free citizen's dwelling so much, as to yield it some privilege ; and there/wf an Enghshman'shouse is called his Castle. The piety or superstition of some nations has determined that a criminal cannot be arrested in i place of worship. This is the whole fact: the usage is neither explained nor convicted "i absurdity, by saying that such people call a church the House of God. If it were the bouse of God, does Mr. Bentham conceive that it ought to be a sanctuary for criminals? In what is said of the Fictions of law, there if ranch of the same misapprehension. Men neither are, nor ever were, misguided by Ihese fictions ; but the fictions are merely certain quaint and striking methods of expressing » rale that has been adopted in an apprehension of its utility. To deter men fiom committing treason, their offspring is associated to a certain extent in their punishment. The motive and object of this law is plain enough; and calling the effect "Corruption of blood," *¡H neither aggravate nor hide its injustice. When it is said that the heir is the same perwn with, the deceased, it is but a pithy way of intimating that he is bound in all the obligations, and entitled to all the rights of his predecessor. That the King never dies, is 'i;dy another phrase for expressing that the office is never vacant; and that he is every »here, ie tree, if it be lawful to say that a person can act by deputy. In all these oband in many that are scattered

through the subsequent part of his book. Mr. Bentham seems to forget that there is such a. thing as common sense in the world; and to take it for granted, that if there be an opening in the letter of the law for folly, misapprehension, or abuse, its ministers will eagerly lake advantage of it, arid throw the whole frame of society into disorder and wretchedness. A very slight observation of the actual business of life might have taught him. that expediency may, for the most part, be readily and certainly discovered by those who are interested in finding it; and that in a certain stage of civilisation there is generated such a quantity of intelligence and good sense, as to disarm absurd institutions of their power to do mischief, and to administer defective laws into a system of practical equity. This indeed is the grand corrective which remedies all the errors of legislators, and retrenches all that is pernicious in prejudice. It makes us independent of technical systems, and indifferent to speculative irregularities; and he who could increase its quantity, or confirm its power¡ would do more service to mankind than all the philosophers that ever speculated on the means of their reformation.

In the following chapter we meet with a perplexity which, though very ingeniously produced, appears to us to be wholly gratuitous. Mr. Bentham for a long time can see no distinction between Civil and Criminal jurisprudence; and insists upon it, that rights and crimes necessarily and virtually imply each other. If I have a right to get your horse, it is only because it would be a crime for you to keep him from me; and if it be a crime for me to take your horse, it is only because you have a right to keep him. This we think is very pretty reasoning: But the distinction between the civil and the criminal law is not the less substantial and apparent. The civil law is that which directs and enjoins—the criminal law is that which Punishes. This is enough for the legislator; and for those who are to obey him. It is a curious inquiry. no doubt, how far all rights may be considered as the counterpart of crimes; and whether every regulation of the civil code necessarily implies a delict in the event of its violation. On this head there is room for a good deal of speculation; but in our opinion Mr. Bentham pushes the principle much too far. There seems to be nothing gained, for instance, either in the way of clearness or consistency, by arranging under the head of criminal law, those cases of refusal to fulfil contracts, or to perform obligations, for which no other punishment is or ought to be provided, but a compulsory fulfilment or performance. This is merely following out the injunction of the civil code, and cannot, either in law or in logic, be correctly regarded as a punishment. The . proper practical test of a crime, is where, over ¡ and above the restitution of the violated right (where that is possible), the violator is subjected to a direct pain, in order to deter from the repetition of such offences.

In passing to the code of criminal law, Mi. Bentham does not forget the necessity of classifying and dividing, Delicts, according to him, are either, 1. Private, or against one or a few individ uals; 2. Reflective, or against the delinquent himself; 3. Semipublic, or against some particular class or description of persons; and, finally, Public, or against the whole community. Private delicts, again, relate either to the person, the property, the reputation or the condition; and they are distributed into complex and simple, principal and accessory, positive and negative, &c. &c. The chief evil of a crime is the alarm which it excites in the community; and the degree of this alarm, Mr. Bentham assumes, depends upon eight circumstances, the particular situation of the delinquent, his motives, his notoriety, his character, the difficulties or facilities of the attempt, &c. But here again, we see no sense in the enumeration; the plain fact being, that the alarm is increased by every thing which renders it probable that such acts may be frequently repeated. In one case, and one of considerable atrocity, there is no alarm at all; because the only beings who can be affected by it, are incapable of fear or suspicion—this is the case of infanticide: and Mr. Bentham ingeniously observes, that it is probably owing to this circumstance that the laws of many nations have been so extremely indifferent on that subject. In modern Europe, however, he conceives that they are barbarously severe. In the case of certain crimes against the community, such as misgovernment of all kinds, the danger again is always infinitely greater than the alarm. The remedies which law has provided against the mischief of crimes, Mr. Bentham says, are of four orders; preventive—repressive—compensatory—or simply penal. Upon the subject of compensation or satisfaction, Mr. Bentham is most copious and most original; and under the title of satisfaction in honour, he presents us with a very calm, acute, and judicious inquiry into the effects of duelling; which he represents as the only remedy which the impolicy or impotence of our legislators has left for such offences. We do not think, however, that the same good sense prevails in what he subjoins, as to the means that might be employed to punish insults and attacks upon the honour of individuals. According to the enormity of the offence,

he is for making the delinquent pronounce a discourse of humiliation, either standing, or on his knees, before the offended party, and clothed in emblematical robes, with a mask of a characteristic nature on his head, &c. There possibly may be countries where such contrivances might answer; but, with us, they would not only be ineffectual, but ridiculous. In the choice of punishments, Mr. Bentham wishes legislators to recollect, that punishment is itself an evil; and that it consists of five parts;–the evil of restraint—the evil of suffering—the evil of apprehension—the evil of groundless persecution—and the evils that extend to the innocent connections of the delinquent. For these reasons, he is anxious that no punishment should be inflicted without a real cause, or without being likely to influence the will; or where other remedies might have been employed; or in cases where the crime produces less evil than the punishment. These admonitions are all very proper, and, we dare say, sincere; but we cannot think that they are in any way recommended by their novelty. In the section upon the indirect means of preventing crimes, there is a great deal of genius and strong reasoning; though there are manythings set down in too rash and peremptory a manner, and some that are supported with a degree of flippancy not very suitable to the occasion. The five main sources of offence he thinks are, want of occupation, the angry passions, the passion of the sexes, the love .."intoxication, and the love of gain; As society advances, all these lose a goos deal of their mischievous tendency, excepting the last; against which, of course, the legislature should be more vigilant than ever. In the gradual predominance of the avaricious passions over all the rest, however, Mr. Ben: tham sees many topics of consolation; and concludes this part of his work with declaring, that it should be the great object of the criminal law to reduce all offences to that species which can be completely atoned for and repaired by payment of a sum of money. It is a part of his system, which we have so; gotten to mention, that persons so injured should in all cases be entitled to reparation out of the public purse.

(Januarp, 1804.) Account of the Life and Writings of Thomas Reid, D. D. F.R.S., Edinburgh, late Professor of

Moral Philosophy in the University of Glasgow. By Dugald STEwART,

R.S. Edinburgh:

Read at different Meetings of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. 8vo. pp. 225. Edinburgh

and London: 1803.

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ni correct observation, and the admirable selfcommand by which he has confined himself lo tile clear statement of the facts he has collected: But then Mr. Stewart immediately follows up this observation with a warm encomium on the inductive philosophy of Lord Hacon. and a copious and eloquent exposition of the vast advantage that may be expected from applying to the science of Mind those sound rules of experimental philosophy that have undoubtedly guided us to all the splendid improvements in modern physics. From t¡10 time indeed that Mr. Hume published his treatise of human nature, down to the latest {peculations of Condorcet and Mr. Stewart himself, we have observed this to be a favourite topic with all metaphysical writers; and that those who have differed in almost every tiling else, have agreed in magnifying the importance of such inquiries, and in predicting the approach of some striking improvement in the manner of conducting them.

Now. in these speculations we cannot help suspecting that those philosophers have been misled in a considerable degree by a false analogy ; and that their zeal for the promotion of their favourite studies has led them to form expectations somewhat sanguine and extravagant, both as to their substantial utility and a? to the possibility of their ultimate improvement, la reality, it does not appear to us that any great advancement in the knowledge of the operations of mind is to be expected from any improvement in the plan of investigation; or that the condition of mankind is Ukely to derive any great benefit from the cultivation of this interesting but abstracted


Inductive philosophy, or that which proceeds upon me careful observation of facts, may be applied to two different classes of phenomena. The first are those that can be made the subject of proper Experiment: where the substances are actually in our power, and the judgment and artifice of the mquirer can be effectually employed to arrange and combine them in such a way as to disclose their most hidden properties and relation?. The other class of phenomena are thoee that occur in substances that are placed altogether beyond our reach; the order and succession of which we are generally unable to control; and ae to which we can do little more than collect and record the laws by which they appear to be governed. Those substances are not the subject of Experiment, but of Observation; and the knowledge we may obtain, by carefully watching their variations, is of a kind that does not directly increase the power which we might otherwise have had over them. It seems evident, however, that it is principally in the former of thi-se departments, or the strict experimental philosophy, that those splendid improvements have been made, which have erected so vast atrophy to the prospective genius of Bacon. Tht.- astronomy of Sir Isaac Newton is no exception to this general remark: All that mere Uhscrcalion could do to determine the movements of the heavenly bodies, had been ac

complished by the star-gazers who preceded him; and the law of gravitation, which he afterwards applied to the planetary system, was first calculated and ascertained by experiments performed upon substances which were entirely at his disposal.

It will scarcely be denied, either, that it is almost exclusively lo this department of proper Experiment, that Lord Bacon has directed the attention of his followeis. His fundamental maxim is, that knowledge is power; and the great problem which he constantly aims at resolving is, in what manner the nature of any substance or quality may, by experiment, be so detected and ascertained as to enable us to manage it at our pleasure. The greater part of the Novum Oreanvm accordingly is taken up with rules and examples for contriving and conducting experiments; and the chief advantage which he seems to have expected from the progress of those inquiries, appears to be centered in the enlargement of man's dominion over the material universe which he inhabits. To the mere Observer, therefore, his laws of philosophising, except where they are prohibitory laws, have but little application ; and to such an inquirer, the rewards of his philosophy scarcely appear to have been promised. It is evident indeed that no direct utility can result from the most accurate observation of occurrences which we cannot control ; and that for the uses to which such observations may afterwards be turned, we are indebted not so much to the observer, as to the person who discovered the application. It also appears to be pretty evident that in the art of observation itself, no very great or fundamental improvement can be expected. Vigilance and attention are all that can ever be required in an observer; and though a talent for methodical arrangement may facilitate to others the study of the fact» that have been collected, it does not appear how our actual knowledge of those facts can be increased by any new method of describing them. Facts that we are unable to modify or direct, in short, can only be the objects of observation; and observation can only inform us that they exist, and that their succession appears to be governed by certain general laws.

In the proper Experimental philosophy, every acquisition of knowledge is an increase of power; because the knowledge is necessarily derived from some intentional disposition of materials which we may always command in the same manner. In the philosophy of observation, it is merely a gratification of our curiosity. By experiment, too. we generally acquire a pretty correct knowledge of the causes of the phenomena we produce: as we ourselves have distributed and arranged the circumstances upon which they depend; while, in matters of mere observation, the assignment of causes must always be in a good degree conjectural, inasmuch as we have no means of separating the preceding phenomena, or deciding otherwise than by analogy, to which of them the succeeding event is to be attributed.

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