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CHAPTER VII - George Turnbull, The Principles of Moral and Christian Philosophy. Vol. 1: The Principles of Moral Philosophy 
The Principles of Moral and Christian Philosophy. Vol. 1: The Principles of Moral Philosophy, ed. and with an Introduction by Alexander Broadie (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2005).
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Another class of laws.Man cannot open his eyes to consider the stupendous frame of nature, to contemplate his own make, or indeed any other object which strikes his sense or understanding, without apprehending or conceiving some mighty power that made, upholds and governs all.Those relative to religion. The idea of a creating and sustaining power or principle immediately presents itself to his mind.Man is made for religion as well as for virtue. He cannot escape forming it; so strongly does nature, every thing in nature, bespeak and proclaim it to him.a Hence that idea may be called innate; that is, an intelligible form or conception, which offers itself naturally to the mind as soon as it reflects; an idea the mind cannot avoid if it thinks, but that necessarily occurs to every one. That it is so is plain from universal experience; for no fact is more certain, than that no nation ever was so barbarous, but that it acknowledged a supreme, independent, creating power, the father of the world and of mankind.<204>
He can hardly avoid forming the idea of a supreme power, upon which he absolutely depends.We are necessarily led by the consideration of our own existence, which is felt to be derived and dependent, to perceive our dependence upon the Author of nature. And our moral sense, so soon as we think of a creating principle, naturally disposes us to ascribe the best disposition and temper to such a mind. So are we framed, that every effect leads us to apprehend a cause; and consequently, the existence of the world leads to apprehend an Author of it. And every thing great, regular or proportioned, excites admiration, either towards itself, if we imagine it animated; or, if not animated, towards some apprehended cause. No determination of our mind is more natural than this; no effect more universal: one has indeed better reason to deny the connexion between the sexes to be natural, than to deny a disposition in man to admire the Author of nature, which is a disposition to religion.a
And our moral sense naturally leads us to ascribe not only intelligence, but the love of order and benignity of temper, to the first or original mind.Our sense of natural and moral beauty necessarily leads us to enquire into and admire the order, beauty, grandeur, wise and good oeconomy of the world; and to apprehend that our disposition to understand and love order and goodness cannot but proceed from an Author whose mind is perfect order and goodness. And, indeed, it is as certain as that we have intelligent powers, and a moral sense implanted in us, that our Creator must have intelligence,<205> and benevolent, generous affections towards public good. For if the contrary is supposed, then are we more perfect than our maker; then have we in our nature a better, a more noble disposition than our Author, the contriver and creator of all our moral powers and dispositions, and of all the beauty, order, and good we see and admire. Nay, if the Author of nature has no perception of order, good and beauty, nor no disposition to approve it, then we have an excellent disposition in our frame of which he could not have any idea, and which is therefore blindly and undesignedly implanted in us. This reasoning is not above the reach of any one; it is what every person who thinks at all, is naturally led to by the turn and disposition of the human mind. For how can we avoid saying to ourselves, when we look upon the immense power, wisdom and goodness the creation manifests; when we look into our own minds, and consider our natural delight in analogy, harmonies, general laws, and the good that results from them; that whatever power or excellency, wisdom or order is derived, the Author from whom it comes, must posses such power, intelligence or virtue, in a degree far superior to all his creatures. He who gave us understanding, does he not understand? He who gave us reason, has he not supreme and perfect reason? He who gave us capacity of<206> perceiving order and delighting in it, does he not understand and love order? He who made us so that we must approve truth, veracity, benevolence, greatness of mind, and every virtue, and disapprove the contrary affections, does not he like those virtues, has he not a sense of their excellence? Does he not delight in them? Whence can he have copied the ideas of them but from his own mind? Had he not these excellencies originally in himself, whence could he have formed the notion of them; or whence could he have been moved and determined to give them to us, or to implant them in us? Could he form those, or any dispositions in our natures without having an idea of what he was doing? Or could he have been moved to plant such dispositions in us by a temper quite the reverse of what he was doing? By a temper quite the reverse of all excellency and goodness? We may therefore be no less sure, that our Creator has understanding, reason and benevolence, as well as creating power, in the most perfect, pure, unalloyed, unlimited degree, than we are sure that what we have is derived understanding, reason and benevolence.
Such reasonings are natural to the human mind.Now these reasonings are not only just, but they are natural to the mind: it as naturally tends to form them, as it tends to delight in any object which is adjusted to its frame, but is not an immediate object<207> of sense . And indeed all the opinions of philosophers about chance, mechanical blind operation of matter, or whatever other strange hypotheses, if they are not absurd, (as they plainly are) they are at least subtleties, which lie very remote from the human mind, and to which it can never yield. Religion is therefore as natural to the mind as a moral sense. But, like it, or being but a part of it, it must be improved by culture, by contemplation and exercise. Where there is a moral sense, reflexion must soon lead to apprehend an infinitely good mind, the cause of all things. And where there is a moral sense, an infinitely good mind cannot be apprehended, without the highest love and admiration, without supreme complacency and delight: but the idea must be improved to its perfection, like every other object of contemplation, by due consideration, by carefully examining it, lest any thing contrary to it should be associated and mixed with it on the one hand, or on the other, lest it should be too defective and inadequate, or too weak in its influence upon our minds.
Whence then imposition or false religion.If it is asked, how then it comes that such depraved notions of the Deity, so destructive of morality, and therefore so opposite to a moral sense, have always prevailed in the world? To this I answer, 1. That nothing is more plain from history, than that even<208> amidst the prevalence of superstition and idolatry; all the thinking part of mankind have ever had very just notions of the Deity and religion. What one of the personages in Cicero’s Dialogues about the gods says, was ever the opinion of all philosophers, a few only excepted, who studied and laboured hard to contrive some other uncommon system: Namely, That the doctrine of many gods, unless it be understood allegorically, is glaring nonsense. 2.It took its rise with tyranny, or was promoted by it. It seems plain from history, that superstition crept in gradually by means of various artifices; and not improbably, it took its chief rise from, or was principally promoted by tyranny, as it is said in the book of wisdom.76 It seems to be its cruel invention in order to enslave men more effectually, or to make them more easy dupes to its ambitious aims. It is an art invented or promoted by tyrants and their flattering accomplices who share the prey with them, to instil into the minds of those they would enthral and hold in compleat subjection to their lawless will, a notion of divine right communicated to them from above, to bear absolute sway on earth till they take their places among the gods destined for them. Hence the deification of tyrants and heroes in which idolatry at first consisted, and from whence it most probably took its origin.
But no argument can be brought from thence against a moral sense in our nature.Now, If it is asked how men, notwithstanding their moral sense, came to suffer themselves to be so grosly imposed upon to their disadvantage? May I not reply, 1. That such an imposition being not more repugnant to a moral sense and a benevolent principle, than it is to self-love, or a desire of private good and happiness; no argument can be brought from its taking place against a moral sense, that does not equally militate against the reality of self-love in our nature; the being and power of which principle was never on that or any other account called into doubt. 2. It appears from history, that such hath always been the care of providence to save, guard against, or deliver men from such pernicious errors, so contrary at once to private interest and to moral sense, as far as could be done consistently with making knowledge progressive and dependent on ourselves: That in all ages of the world, there have appeared true philosophers of generous public spirit, who taught true virtue and religion,<211> and boldly opposed corruption, superstition, and all enslaving doctrines about government; such were Pythagoras, Thales, Solon, Lycurgus, Socrates, Plato, Confucius, Zoroaster, and others: and such must Moses, the Jewish prophets, and Jesus Christ be allowed at least to have been. But leaving those with other objections to another place, I shall only add now, that to ask why nature has not prevented all error, all falshood, all imposition, all false opinions and prejudices, all credulity, all wrong associations of ideas and bad habits; is in reality to ask, why nature has not done more than can possibly be done for making us capable of attaining to true knowledge, just ideas and opinions, rational conclusions, improved powers and good habits. For it has been already proved, that we are furnished and qualified for the pursuit of and attainment to knowledge, and for arriving at moral perfection, with all the provision that these ends require in our situation: or with regard to such beings as mankind are and must be, to render the scale of life full and coherent.
Religious contemplation is a very pleasant exercise.I shall therefore proceed to observe on the head of religion, 1. That every exercise of contemplation, admiration, and love towards an all-perfect creator and governor of the world, is in its nature exceeding pleasant and delightful. All beauty is naturally agreeable to our mind, but chiefly moral beauty. And therefore the contemplation of an all-perfect mind, compleatly wise and good, as well as omnipotent and infinitely removed from all imperfection,<212> must greatly raise, transport and exhilerate the mind. This is the necessary consequence of a moral sense.
And highly improving to virtue.2. Such contemplation must be highly assisting to and improving of the virtuous temper. It must strengthen our love of virtue; and redouble our emulation to improve and excel in it. It is indeed nothing but the love of virtue in its highest degree. And how doubly satisfying must the conscience of sincere endeavours to advance in virtue be, when one reflects that it is the way, the only way to be like our Creator, and to recommend ourselves to his favour here or hereafter: That it is imitating him, and acting in concert with him.
But good affections may become too strong or vehement.3. But as every self-affection may be too strong as well as too weak, so may every generous affection be.
This is what Horace means when he says,
The best affections may not only be too weak to gain their ends; but by misguidance, or too great indulgence, they may become too strong and vehement. The love of mankind may thus become romantic.Into what religious admiration is apt to degenerate. And, in like manner, religious contemplation and admiration, tho’, on the one hand, it may be too little exercised in order to our happiness,<213> and the improvement of our temper; yet, on the other hand, it may become too ardent; and thus it may degenerate into such excessive delight in raptorious contemplation, as may render averse to action, the great end of knowledge and of religion. And when one abandons the world to give himself up to religious contemplation, mankind being naturally made for social exercise and communication with one another in many acts of benevolence and friendship, the right ballance of the mind will be lost: action not being duly mixed with contemplation, the imagination will become visionary and romantic. And hence it is, that such persons are apt to imagine an extraordinary commerce and peculiar intimacy with the supreme Being; and to fancy all the thoughts or visions, which present themselves in consequence of their devotional contemplation and admiration, to be special dictates from heaven to their minds.If any other guide is set up in our mind superior to natural reason, and not to be tried by it, our whole frame is unhinged. It is true, good and just sentiments which are thus excited in the mind, as they are in that respect peculiarly the effects of religious acts, they may, in that sense, be said more especially to be from God; but they are not from him in any other way, than as they are the natural fruits of such contemplation and devotion according to the natural frame of our mind: and one cannot be too cautious in guarding against the perswasion of any special communication with the Deity, which pride is so apt, if it is once suffered to enter into the mind, or in the least indulged, to nourish to great extravagance; because in proportion as any other guide is set up in the mind besides reason and moral conscience, in proportion will those our natural guides be abandoned and forsaken by us in favour of that imagined superior one: and thus the<214> whole coherence of the human moral texture will be greatly endangered.
But perhaps there is not so much reason to caution against excesses, into which pious and devout affection may be misguided, as to recommend strongly the pleasure and profitableness to virtue, of devotion rightly governed.The genuine effects of true well moderated devotion, are submission to providence, and activity in doing good. And then certainly it is so when we take frequent pleasure in contemplating the divine perfections; and such contemplation produces, on the one hand, chearful submission to the divine pleasure with respect to all things independent of us, or absolutely external to us, and out of our power, from the perswasion that the divine providence does all for the best in the whole. And when, on the other hand, the contemplation and love of the Deity excite us to action, or to seek with delightful attention and care, opportunities of exerting our benevolence, and of doing all the good we can; from a perswasion that it is only active benevolence which can liken or approve us to that infinitely perfect Being, whose happiness consists in communicating his goodness as extensively as Omnipotence can.
Conclusion.Thus we see, we are made for religion as well as for virtue; and that indeed in our nature, religion and virtue are one and the same thing: it is the same natural disposition of the mind, employed contemplatively in admiring and loving supreme virtue; and actively in imitating that model; or in endeavouring to become more and more conformable to it. And as this is the idea which reason gives us of religion and virtue, so it is the idea christianity gives of it. The sum of religion and virtue according to that doctrine, is to love God, and to love our neighbour; and according to that doctrine these two good dispositions are inseparable: They must go together. He who thinketh he loveth God, and loveth not his neighbour, deceiveth himself, for God is love.79 <215>
[a. ]All the reasoning in this chapter is chiefly taken from Cicero: See de legibus, Lib. I. No. 7. & sequ.—Est igitur, quoniam nihil est ratione melius, eaque & in homine, & in deo; prima homini cum deo rationis societas. Inter quos autem ratio, inter eosdem etiam recta ratio communis est. Quae cum sit lex, lege quoque consociati homines cum diis putandi sumus. Inter quos porrò est communio legis, inter eos communio juris est.—Ut jam universus hic mundus, una civitas communis deorum, atque hominum, existi manda.—Cumque alia quibus cohaerent homines, è mortali genere sumserint, quae fragilia essent, & caduca; animum tamen esse ingeneratum à deo: ex quo verè vel agnatio nobis cum caelestibus.—Itaque ex tot generibus nullum est animal, praeter hominem, quod habeat notitiam aliquam dei: ipsisque in hominibus nulla gens est neque tam immansueta, neque tam fera, quae non, etiam si ignoret, qualem habere deum deceat, tamen habendum sciat. Ex quo efficitur illud, ut is agnoscat Deum, qui, unde ortus sit, quasi recordetur, ac noscat. Jam verò virtus eadem in homine, ac deo est.—Est autem virtus nihil aliud, quàm, in se perfecta, & ad summum perducta natura. Est igitur homini cum deo similitudo. Quod cum ita sit, quae tandem potest esse proprior certiorve cognatio? Quid est enim verius, quam neminem esse oportere tam stulte arrogantem, ut in se rationem, & mentem, putet inesse, in coelo, mundoque non putet? Aut ut ea, quae vix summa ingenii ratione comprehendat, nulla ratione moveri putet? quem vero astrorum ordines, &c. Compare de natura deorum, Lib. II. Et tamen ex ipsa hominum solertia esse aliquam mentem, & eam quidem acriorem, & divinam, existimare debemus. Unde enim hanc homo arripuit? ut ait apud Xenophontem Socrates.—Ut si quis in domum aliquam, aut in gymnasium, aut in forum venerit: cum videat omnium rerum rationem, modum disciplinam, non possit ea sine causa fieri judicare, sed esse aliquem intelligat, qui praesit, & cui pareatur: multo magis in tantis, motionibus, tantisque vicissitudinibus, tam multarum rerum, atque tantarum ordinibus, in quibus nihil umquam immensa, & infinita vetustas mentita sit, statuat necesse est, ab aliqua mente tantos naturae motus gubernari.—Si enim, est aliquid in rerum natura, quod hominis mens, quod ratio, quod vis, quod potestas humana efficere non possit: est certe id, quod illud efficit, homine melius. Atqui res coelestes—Quid vero? tanta rerum consentiens, conspirans, continuata cognatio, quem non coget ea, quae dicuntur a me comprobare?— Haec ita fieri omnibus inter se concinentibus mundi partibus profecto non possent, nisi ea uno divino, & continuato spiritu continerentur.—Talis igitur mens mundi cum sit, ob eamque causam, vel prudentia, vel providentia appellari recte possit, haec potissimum providet, & in his maxime est occupata, primum ut mundus quam aptissimus sit ad permanendum, deinde ut nulla re egeat, maxime autem ut in eo eximia pulchritudo sit, atque omnis ornatus.—Multae autem aliae naturae deorum ex magnis eorum beneficiis, & à Graeciae sapientibus, & a majoribus nostris constitutae, nominataeque sunt. Quidquid enim magnam utilitatem generi afferret humano, id non sine divina bonitate erga homines fieri arbitrabantur. Itaque tum illud, quoderat à deo natum, nomine ipsius dei nuncupabant.—Tum autem res ipsa, in qua vis inest major aliqua, sic appellatur, ut ea ipsa vis nominetur deus.—Alia quoque ex ratione, & quidem physica, magna fluxit multitudo deorum: qui induti specie humana fabulas poetis suppeditaverunt.—Videtisne igitur, ut à physicis rebus, bene, atque utiliter inventis, tracta ratio sit ad commentitios, & fictos deos? quae res genuit falsas opiniones, erroresque turbulentos, & superstitiones paene anileis.—Haec & dicuntur, & creduntur stultissime, & plena sunt futilitatis, summaeque levitatis.—Sed tamen, his fabulis spretis, ac repudiatis, deus pertinens per naturam cujusque rei—Cultus autem deorum est optimus, idemque castissimus, atque sanctissimus, plenissimusque pietatis, ut eos semper pura, integra, incorrupta & mente, & voce veneremur. De natura deorum, Lib. II.—Superstitio fusa per genteis, oppressit omnium fere animos, atque hominum imbecillitatem occupavit.—Nec vero (id enim diligentur intelligi volo) superstitione tollenda religio tollitur.—Esse praestantem aliquam, aeternamque naturam, & eam suspiciendam, admirandamque hominum generi, pulchritudo mundi, ordoque rerum caelestium cogit confiteri. Quamobrem ut religio propaganda etiam est, quae est juncta cum cognitione naturae: sic superstitionis stirpes omnes ejiciendae. De divinat. Lib. II.—Sed sic, Scipio, ut avus hic tuus, ut ego, qui te genui, justitiam cole, & pietatem: quae, cum sit magna in parentibus, & propinquis; tum in patria maxima est: ea vita, via est in caelum, & in hunc coetum eorum, qui jam vixerunt, & corpore laxati illum incolunt locum.—Somn. Scipionis. Etenim cognitio contemplatioque manca naturae, quodam modo, atque inchoata sit, si nulla actio rerum consequatur. Ea autem actio in hominum commodis tuendis maxime cernitur. Pertinet igitur ad societatem generis humani. Ergo haec cognitioni anteponenda est: atque id optimus quisque re ipsa ostendit, & judicat.—Itaque nisi ea virtus, quae constat ex hominibus tuendis, id est, ex societate generis humani, attingat cognitionem rerum, solivaga cognitio, & jejuna videatur. Itemque magnitudo animi, remota communitate, conjunctioneque humana, feritas sit quaedam immanitas. De Offic. Lib. I.—Ergo hoc quidem apparet, nos ad agendum esse natos; actionem autem genera plura.—maximae autem sunt, primum, ut mihi quidem videtur, consideratio, cognitione rerum coelestium, quas a natura occultatas, & latenteis, indagare ratio potest: deinde rerumpub. administratio, aut administrandi, sciendique prudens, temperata, fortis & justa ratio, reliquaeque virtutes, & actiones virtutibus congruentes, quae uno verbo complexi omnia, honesta dicimus: ad quorum etiam cognitionem, & usum jam corroborati, natura ipsa praeeunte deducimur. Omnium enim rerum principia parva sunt, sed suis progressionibus usa augentur, &c. De finibus, Lib. 5. Sed praesto est domina omnium & regina ratio, quae connexa per se, & progressa longius fit perfecta virtus. Haec ut imperet isti parti animi, quae obidire debet, id videndum est viro. Quonam modo? inquies. Velut dominus servo, velut imperator militi. Quae sunt ista arma? contentio, confirmatio, sermo intimus cum ipse secum.—Obversantur species honestae animo. It is reason, good sense, or philosophy, that must preside, in order to preserve the human mind sound, governable, and unfantastical. O vitae dux, virtutis indagatrix. Cic. tusc. quaest. Lib. V. [Cicero, De legibus: “Therefore, since there is nothing better than reason, and since it exists both in man and God, the first common possession of man and God is reason. But those who have reason in common must also have right reason in common. And since right reason is law, we must believe that men have law also in common with the gods. . . . Hence we must now conceive of this whole universe as one commonwealth of which both gods and men are members” (I.vii.23). “For while the other elements of which man consists were derived from what is mortal, and are therefore fragile and perishable, the soul was generated in us by God. Hence we are justified in saying that there is a blood relationship between ourselves and the celestial beings” (I.viii.24). “Therefore among all the varieties of living beings, there is no creature except man which has any knowledge of God, and among men themselves there is no race either so civilised or so savage as not to know that it must believe in a god, even if it does not know in what sort of god it ought to believe. Thus it is clear that man recognises God because, in a way, he remembers and recognises the source from which he sprang. Moreover, virtue exists in God and man alike . . . virtue, however, is nothing else than nature perfected and developed to its highest point; therefore there is a likeness between man and God. As this is true, what relationship could be closer or clearer than this one?” (I.viii.25). “Indeed, what is more true than that no one ought to be so foolishly proud as to think that, though reason and intellect exist in himself, they do not exist in the heavens and the universe, or that those things which can hardly be understood by the highest reasoning powers of the human intellect are guided by no reason at all? In truth, the man that is not driven to gratitude by the orderly courses of the stars, etc.” (II.vii.16). Cicero, De re publica, De legibus, trans. Clinton Walker Keyes, Loeb Classical Library (London: Heinemann; New York: Putnam, 1928). Compare De natura deorum: “Yet even man’s intelligence must lead us to infer the existence of a mind, and that a mind of surpassing ability, and in fact divine. Otherwise, whence did man ‘pick up’ (as Socrates says in Xenophon) the intelligence that he possesses?” (II.vi.18). “When a man goes into a house, a wrestling-school or a public assembly and observes in all that goes on arrangement, regularity and system, he cannot possibly suppose that these things come about without a cause: he realises that there is someone who presides and controls. Far more therefore with the vast movements and phases of the heavenly bodies, and these ordered processes of a multitude of enormous masses of matter, which throughout the countless ages of the infinite past have never in the smallest degree played false, is he compelled to infer that these mighty world-motions are regulated by some mind” (II.iv.15). “If there be something in the world that man’s mind and human reason, strength and power are incapable of producing, that which produces it must necessarily be superior to man; now the heavenly bodies . . .” (II.vi.16). “Again, consider the sympathetic agreement, interconnection and affinity of things: whom will this not compel to approve the truth of what I say? . . . These processes and this musical harmony of all the parts of the world assuredly could not go on were they not maintained in unison by a single divine and all-pervading spirit” (II.vii.19). “Such being the nature of the world-mind, it can therefore be correctly designated as prudence or providence; and this providence is chiefly directed and concentrated upon three objects, namely to secure for the world, first, the structure best fitted for survival; next, absolute completeness; but chiefly, consummate beauty and embellishment of every kind” (II.xxii.58). “Many other divinities however have with good reason been recognised and named both by the wisest men of Greece and by our ancestors from the great benefits that they bestow. For it was thought that whatever confers great utility on the human race must be due to the operation of divine benevolence towards men. Thus sometimes a thing sprung from a god was called by the name of the god himself” (II.xxiii.60). “In other cases some exceptionally potent force is itself designated by a title of divinity” (II.xxiii.61). “Another theory also, and that a scientific one, has been the source of a number of deities, who clad in human form have furnished the poets with legends” (II.xxiv.63). “Do you see therefore how from a true and valuable philosophy of nature has been evolved this imaginary and fanciful pantheon? The perversion has been a fruitful source of false beliefs, crazy errors and superstitions hardly above the level of old wives’ tales. . . . These stories and these beliefs are utterly foolish; they are stuffed with nonsense and absurdity of all sorts” (II.xxviii.70). “But though repudiating these myths with contempt, we shall nevertheless be able to understand the personality and the nature of the divinities pervading the substance of the several elements. . . . But the best and also the purest, holiest and most pious way of worshipping the gods is ever to venerate them with purity, sincerity and innocence both of thought and of speech” (II.xxviii.71). Cicero, De natura deorum, Academica, trans. H. Rackham, Loeb Classical Library (London: Heinemann; New York: Putnam, 1933). De divinatione, II.lxxii.148–49: “superstition, which is widespread among the nations, has taken advantage of human weakness to cast its spell over the mind of almost every man. . . . But I want it distinctly understood that the destruction of superstition does not mean the destruction of religion . . . the celestial order and the beauty of the universe compel me to confess that there is some excellent and eternal being, who deserves the homage and respect of men. Wherefore, just as it is a duty to extend the influence of true religion, which is closely associated with the knowledge of nature, so it is a duty to weed out every root of superstition.” Cicero, Desenectute, De amicitia, De divinatione, trans. William Armstead Falconer, Loeb Classical Library (Cambridge: Harvard University Press; London, Heinemann, 1923).
[a. ]Hutcheson on the Passions. [Francis Hutcheson, An Essay on the Nature and Conduct of the Passions. . . . (1728); ed. Aaron Garrett (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2002), I.vi.3.]
[76. ]Wis. of Sol. 14.
[77. ]Pope, Essay on Man, III.229–68.
[78. ]Horace, Epistles, I.vi.15–16, “Let the wise man bear the name of madman, the just of unjust, should he pursue virtue herself beyond due bounds.” Horace, Satires, Epistles and Ars poetica, trans. H. Rushton Fairclough, Loeb Classical Library (London: Heinemann; New York: Putnam, 1926).
[79. ]This Biblical quote appears to be a paraphrase of 1 John 3.10 and 1 John 4.8.