Download An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (Clarendon Edition by John Locke PDF

By John Locke

The Nidditch version of Locke's Essay is often thought of the authoritative model of the textual content. This in brain, the Nidditch textual content is to be refrained from for the newbie to Locke. this isn't because of any oversights or editorial intrusion that corrupts the paintings. contemplating Nidditch restored the textual content and kept away from the typical editorial tendency to take advantage of paragraph introductions for every part (which Locke did not), atop of no longer having to take care of translation liberties, it stands because the purely scholarly version of the paintings. besides the fact that, since it is restored to its unique nation, one needs to keep in mind that capitalization for any and all (deemed) pertinent phrases or words used to be a standard perform in the course of Locke's time. As such, readers within the twenty first century quite often affiliate a capitalized letter (unless it's a right identify or identify) with a brand new sentence, hence a brand new notion. Having to consistently reorganize one's innovations to comply to Locke's now archaic prose variety (which happens anyplace from one to 6 or extra occasions in a regular sentence) distracts from the general content material of the paintings. As such, the reader might be good suggested to procure one other serious variation of the paintings and use the Nidditch textual content as a reference instrument.

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Extra resources for An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (Clarendon Edition of the Works of John Locke)

Example text

Doubtful expressions, that have scarce any signification, go for clear reasons to those who, being prepossessed, take not the pains to examine even what they themselves say. For, to apply this answer with any tolerable sense to our present purpose, it must signify one 30 John Locke of these two things: either that as soon as men come to the use of reason these supposed native inscriptions come to be known and observed by them; or else, that the use and exercise of men’s reason, assists them in the discovery of these principles, and certainly makes them known to them.

Secondly, that it is an innate truth, known to all men, is also false. For, “Parents preserve your children,” is so far from an innate truth, that it is no truth at all: it being a command, and not a proposition, and so not capable of truth or falsehood. To make it capable of being assented to as true, it must be reduced to some such propo- ideas (which must be all of them innate, if anything as a duty be so) are so far from being innate, that it is not every studious or thinking man, much less every one that is born, in whom they are to be found clear and distinct; and that one of them, which of all others seems most likely to be innate, is not so, (I mean the idea of God,) I think, in the next chapter, will appear very evident to any considering man.

First, that it is not a principle which influences all men’s actions, is what I have proved by the examples before cited: nor need we seek so far as Mingrelia or Peru to find instances of such as neglect, abuse, nay, and destroy their children; or look on it only as the more than brutality of some savage and barbarous nations, when 54 John Locke we remember that it was a familiar and uncondemned practice amongst the Greeks and Romans to expose, without pity or remorse, their innocent infants. Secondly, that it is an innate truth, known to all men, is also false.

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