Front Page Titles (by Subject) Inaugural Oration - Logic, Metaphysics, and the Natural Sociability of Mankind
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
Search this Title:
Inaugural Oration - Francis Hutcheson, Logic, Metaphysics, and the Natural Sociability of Mankind 
Logic, Metaphysics, and the Natural Sociability of Mankind, ed. James Moore and Michael Silverthorne, texts translated from the Latin by Michael Silverthorne, introduction by James Moore (Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2006).
About Liberty Fund:
Liberty Fund, Inc. is a private, educational foundation established to encourage the study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.
The copyright to this edition, in both print and electronic forms, is held by Liberty Fund, Inc.
Fair use statement:
This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.
At the University Press
After I had devoted six years in this university to the study of humane letters and philosophy,1 private considerations and duties called me away from this very pleasant place to Ireland, where I was involved in laborious and tedious business and had very little leisure for good letters or the cultivation of the mind.2 It was therefore with no little joy that I learned that the university which had been my alma mater had after thirteen years proposed to restore me, its former student, to freedom;3 and that the distinguished governors and professors, who once were as revered by me as parents, had now elected me to be their colleague.4 Mindful of my former parents,5 I was able to leave without too much sorrow my beloved native land,
For my heart longed to return to Scotland, venerable mother of brave and learned men, which has not grown feeble in our time, whose fertility will never be impaired by age.
I expected that I would be quite delighted (as indeed I am) to see again the very places where, happy, cheerful, and free of care, I once passed my days, the very buildings, the gardens, the fields, and the river banks where we used to lie. But beyond all this, there rose before my mind the image of the university itself, of the learned and grave discourses delivered in this very auditorium and in the private classrooms of the professors. How I rejoice to see these places again, where I imbibed the first elements of the inquiry after truth; where I had my first taste of the immortal sublimities of Homer and Virgil, of the charm, the felicity and dexterity, the humor and wit of Xenophon and Horace, of Aristophanes and Terence; likewise the abundant grace and dignity of Cicero in every branch of philosophy and his eloquent and vigorous contention in pleading.7 Here I first sought the nature and causes of virtue, and made my first attempts to trace those eternal relationships of numbers and figures on which this stupendous fabric of the universe rests; and beyond this, the nature, the power, the wisdom, and the goodness of the eternal God himself, by whose power, intelligence, and design all things are governed.8 It was here too that all these things settled deeply in my mind and developed there, after they had been often weighed in gentle, friendly converse or in free and modest debate among friends and companions, as we walked in the gardens of the university or in the lovely countryside around the city, which the Glotta9 washes with its gentle stream. As I recalled all these things, my departure for Scotland seemed happy and cheerful and full of joy.
One thing only troubled me, and still it causes me concern, that I might be found unworthy of the college of grave and learned men by whose votes I have been elected to be a professor, that I might be unequal to the task they have assigned to me and bring discredit on their generous judgment. Though I still have this fear, I will freely confess that if there is any talent in me (and I feel how little it is), or if I have found a way of teaching true philosophy that is anchored in the study and discipline of the most excellent arts which I have never neglected at any time of my life, it is this university which seems to me to have the right to claim the fruit of my labors. For it was she who first led me to undertake and enter into the path of these studies; by her encouragement and instruction I have been formed, from her I have received what little I have that may allow me to be of use to the student body. Since this is what the university is now requiring of me, I have not allowed this fear of mine to deter me from coming here as a professor, and would not give a cowardly refusal to play my part in this task.10
Gentlemen, any scholar taking up a position of this kind is accustomed to give a public discourse. His topic is normally the origin, progress, dignity, and utility of his discipline. I too would have said something of this kind, if a number of learned men had not recently anticipated me in dealing with this whole subject.11 It has seemed to me better, therefore, on this occasion to attempt a rather more careful consideration of human nature, and to inquire whether the seeds of perhaps all the virtues, or at least inducements to every kind of virtue, are found in our nature. This certainly was the view of the best of the ancients, who described virtue as the best and most perfect life in accordance with nature.12 It is also quite clear that I do not need to dwell on the dignity and utility of moral science, since it cannot be denied that whatever in life is good, lovable, or attractive, whatever makes a man useful and dear to his country, companions, friends, and even to himself, arises almost entirely from his moral character; it is hardly at all to be attributed to strength of body, to good health, or to material resources or wealth. Certainly there are more than enough who abound in the latter, yet are thoroughly disagreeable, sour, mean, and querulous, objects of shame to their friends and companions and even to themselves. And if jurists have received praise for books on praedial servitudes, or on the law of walls and runoff water,13 and if the work of medical writers on secretions14 has not been without reward or honor, then it is certainly not unworthy of a wise man to conduct inquiries on human morals, on the governance of all the passions and affections and on the tenor and order of life as a whole, and to inquire what may be the best and most perfect education in words and actions.
As we enter on our view of human nature, we shall not attempt the whole of the subject, which would be too long a task; instead we will discuss those parts of the human mind which make us sociable (sociabilis ). Though many recent writers15 have taken the position that sociability (sociabilitas) is the source of nearly all our duties, they do not seem to have sufficiently addressed the general question of what those things are which are properly to be called natural to man, or the particular question of what the sociality (socialitas) of our nature consists in, or, finally, with what part of our nature we are rendered apt and inclined to society, whether it be society without human government or civil society. While these questions have remained inadequately addressed, a whole battery of cavils and absurdities has been brought against them by certain writers,16 who seem to vaunt and pride themselves on depicting human nature in the worst and most disgraceful light.
First, therefore, I will inquire what are the qualities which can rightly be said to be natural to man so far as concerns moral character; and then I will inquire how far human society, whether it be civil society or society without government, can be included among things natural.
Since we are conducting an inquiry about qualities which are natural to any kind of thing, or which come about naturally, it seems that one must first remark that any man to whom any natural thing or any artificial construction and all its parts are known, can easily discern for what end that design or construction, whether of nature or of art, is intended. And he can with equal ease distinguish between those things which happen to this natural entity by accident or by external force, and those things which are found in it by deliberate design in accordance with the nature of the thing. This distinction can be made on two grounds: first, if the construction which he is contemplating is whole and complete, he surveys all that is achieved by that design, and rightly infers that the device was constructed in order to accomplish precisely that. For no one, when he observes any structure in its integrity, whether of natural or of artificial objects, has any doubts about the ends for which each is naturally fitted. The eyes are surely designed for seeing, the teeth for chewing, buildings to live in, and ships for sailing. Secondly, even when the structure of a thing is not quite whole but faulty or disarranged by some accident, yet if all the parts remain, however worn, decayed, or disjointed, the spectator who is skilled in these things is not prevented from discerning for what end they were intended, the natural constitution of the parts that are missing, and the aim and use of all of them.17 For who, when he looks at a house, though it be ruinous, does not know that it was intended for habitation, to protect men from hardship from the weather? Further, who does not know how to distinguish what happens in accordance with the nature and fabric of the structure of which we are speaking from effects which result from some defect or depreciation? We see, for example, gaps and holes in the roofs of houses and the rain coming in, as a result of which human beings are assailed by the cold and contract illnesses; sometimes we see roofs falling in, walls collapsing, and poor unsuspecting men buried in a mass of rubble. But who will infer from these things that all this happened because of the structure itself, or that the builder intended these insidious assaults on human lives? Who does not know that these things happened by chance or carelessness, without intention, and from faults which are to be ascribed to the weakness of the material? The only thing which we can truly infer is that the builder either was not able or for some reason did not want the structure to be longer lasting. But our judgment about the end and proper use of the work itself is not changed.
And besides, once the true use of a device has become clear, if subsequently certain things seem, at first sight, to be contrary to its acknowledged end, one should not immediately have doubts about the general purpose of the contrivance until one has made a fuller investigation. It may be that the very parts which seemed contrary to the general purpose may serve this purpose by some other means, or be necessary to it in some other way. Or there may be certain other parts of the structure which remedy these apparent defects or mitigate their bad effects. So, in buildings, open windows might seem to be naturally fitted to let in shower and storm, until we see the panes of glass which can be easily lowered and admit all the light and heat but keep out the blustery gales.
Therefore you would not say that everything that happens to a thing is natural however it happens, even if it happens to each and every object of that kind, provided there is nothing in the structure of the object that was designed to bring about precisely that effect. Or, as I would not want to argue about a word, I would call some things, in order to distinguish them, natural, because of their weakness. These are things which are the way they are because God, the maker of all things, did not wish them to be stronger or more enduring than they are. The weakness of our nature appears to have been willed by the good and great God in the excellent wisdom of his counsel; yet all our innate desires strive against that weakness and declare that such weakness is not the end of our duties, much less the goal which nature has set for our actions.18
I would say first of all, therefore, that those things are natural to man for which God has given our nature not only a natural desire but also the ability to obtain them. For a desire implanted by nature is perhaps the only conceivable faculty of an active nature that would allow us to distinguish between natural states or actions and their contraries; particularly if united with that desire is a sense, equally innate, which makes the actions or results sought agreeable and pleasant. But man is an intelligent animal, sagacious and endowed with memory, full of reason and counsel; an animal too, which not only can keep in view what is present, but also sees consequences and causes. He therefore desires not only things for which nature has implanted in him an immediate desire or which excite pleasure of themselves, but any number of other things which assist him in obtaining objects that are pleasing to the senses. Hence many things are said to be naturally desired which do not immediately give any pleasure at all, provided only that they are seen as useful or as a means to secure what is agreeable. Hence natural things are divided into those which are desired immediately and for themselves and those which we pursue for the sake of other things, or into primary and secondary natural things.19
Besides, there are many natural things of both kinds (that is, things which we desire for themselves and things which we desire for the sake of other things) for which we do not have a particularly powerful desire; our desire for them may be easily checked and overcome by other equally natural desires. Thus there are many people who have a natural inclination to love music, geometry, poetry, and other arts taken by themselves; however, other appetites in them are so much more powerful that they quite overwhelm and bury that love. In a similar way, aversion from work and a taste for pleasures often get the better of an ambition to get rich. By contrast, there are other natural desires which are so vigorous and backed by such powerful forces of nature that they cannot be overcome except by other natural desires. The former kind I would call natural, but not necessary; examples of the latter, found in virtually all human beings, I would say, are appetite for food, love of offspring, and the like.
Natural desires, then, I think I have sufficiently explained. It remains for me to add this caution that the term “state of nature” (status naturalis) also suffers from a serious ambiguity. I will not dwell on the utter abuse of words by which the state of nature is not only opposed to the civil state, but is also supposed to exclude all those things that are procured by human strength, diligence, or sagacity, and therefore prevents the exercise not only of our natural forces but also of some of our natural desires. In this usage, so long as he preserves his natural state, man is depicted (may God forgive the thought!) as a mute and naked animal, poor, solitary, nasty, dirty, rude, ignorant, timid, rapacious, aggressive, unsociable, incapable of giving or attracting love.20
Great father of the gods, may it please you to punish inhuman tyrants in just this way!21
I will not dwell, I say, on this abuse of words, which is an insult to our nature, and blasphemy toward the great and good God, the father of men, besides being despicable as philosophy. For it, long since, not only Hobbes but Pufendorf himself have paid the penalty at the hands of such distinguished men as Titius, Barbeyrac, Cumberland, Carmichael, and above all the most ingenious Earl of Shaftesbury.22
If we care at all about the use of words, “state of nature” should certainly denote either that condition of men which most encourages them to exercise all their natural aptitudes and desires, or that most perfect state to which men can rise by the intelligent use of all their forces and faculties, a state which seems to be recommended by the innate desire for supreme happiness and by whatever kindly and social (communes ) affections are natural to man.23 Hence state of nature will signify either the common condition of mankind or the most perfect condition which they can attain by the resources implanted in their nature. And certainly this most perfect state rightly takes the name of natural. For though certain parts of our nature, certain desires, carry us into many vices in the corrupt state of things in which we find ourselves, yet when we contemplate the whole fabric of human nature, disordered and corrupt though it be, and the different parts of our human nature, in particular the social and kindly (communes et benignos ) affections and that moral sense which we may also call natural conscience,24 we see clearly that vices are not natural to our nature; we see the faculties which ought to moderate and govern the lower desires. Therefore, though the strength and power of this sense or conscience may be so diminished that it is unable often to govern the lower desires, yet we see that by its own nature it is naturally fit to rule. Clearly it is the ruling principle25 to which all things were made subject, and rightly so, in the integral state of our nature. Nor indeed can the true fabric of our nature as God disposed it be restored until conscience, seated on this its proper throne, crushes the bodily desires beneath its feet. And the Reformed theologians agree with all these doctrines, very rightly pointing to the original fabric and construction of our nature as it once was.26 And though in popular language they sometimes call our fallen and corrupt state natural, so as to distinguish it from the state which was superimposed from above by divine grace, they do not deny thereby that the original fabric of our nature was, by the divine art and plan, designed for every virtue, for all honest and illustrious things. And evident signs of this design and workmanship are preserved, they acknowledge, in the very ruins of its fabric.
We are therefore right to call that state which is most highly cultivated the natural state of the human race. But we must then ask what name we are to give to its opposite, the state which is not yet cultivated? Insofar as a condition which cannot last for long deserves the name of state, it is entirely appropriate to call it an uncultivated state, where our natural abilities have never been exercised. In things not endowed with intelligence, in an inanimate object, it is right to oppose the natural and uncultivated state to the state which has been cultivated by human art. And among men one may aptly distinguish the natural state from that artificial state which has been produced not by force of natural ability or human desire but by external force, by the cunning of men, by grievous and extraordinary need, or by any scheme which is clever and astute beyond normal human foresight. But an animal endowed with reason, which is always eager to learn something new and has a mind fitted to acquiring and practicing skills, in no way forsakes his natural state, but in every way follows his own nature and God his father and guide, when he forges and refines a variety of skills, when he seeks and offers help in a spirit of mutual affection, and with confidence in his fellowman preserves himself and the human race.
Since, then, we argue that political writers should unlearn the use of these words (natural state ), what is that state to be called which is opposed to the civil state? This we can surely gather from those writers who thought it axiomatic that “Any right granted to a ruler is subtracted from primitive liberty.”27 That state, therefore, which is opposed to the civil state is best called a state of liberty from human government. We might seem to be lingering too long over these words, if there were not very serious matters contained in them.
I come now to what I had particularly in mind for my oration: and that is, to determine in what sense social life is natural to man, whether in the state of liberty or in the civil state; and first about sociability in the state of liberty.
Now, this warning would hardly have had to be given, if certain men had not gone astray in this matter. For in no philosopher does our natural sociability signify that “men desire the company of other men for its own sake, or that it is agreeable in itself for a man to pass his time in a crowd.”28 This is precisely what is desired for itself (perhaps by some instinct) by the other animals and, primarily, by those animals that live continuously in herds, although, so far as we are permitted to see, they have no common need, nor do they make a deliberate decision to protect themselves from dangers by means of their united strength. And it may be that this kind of herding together is desirable in itself for men, even though they very often congregate for other reasons; for example, they come together for mutual aid and assistance, or for common tasks or commerce; or when one, with kindly intention, seeks to care for and benefit others, or with crafty design, attempts to procure for himself fame, glory, power, or pleasure. The truth, however, which moral writers teach is that the natural sociability of man lies in the fact that “provided that all the forces and parts of man’s nature are taken into view, he is inclined and naturally fitted to lead a harmless life, to give mutual assistance, to protect and preserve others; and therefore he is equally naturally fitted for everything that is obviously conducive to these things.”29 And perhaps this has not been denied, and could not be denied, by anyone, even by Hobbes himself, who, of course, teaches that one may see by a very easy reasoning that peace and a harmless life are to every man’s great advantage.
But the question about which there is substantial controversy is this: in what sense is this social life natural to man? Is it the case that all our benevolence toward the mass of mankind, that desires to protect whole peoples and do all that can be done for them, has its origin in each man’s want, weakness, and indigence? Is it so that there may be others from whom each man may obtain what he wants for himself, so that by doing and receiving favors, he may get from another what he cannot get by himself? Or on the other hand, does benevolence arise from nature, and are we disposed to beneficence by nature, and not because we expect a favor in return or calculate the advantage our benevolence will obtain for us?
Pufendorf and most recent writers teach the doctrine of human nature which had been that of the Epicureans,30 that is, that self-love ( philautia ) alone, or the desire of each man for his own private pleasure or advantage, is the spring of all actions, and they derive from it all the affections of the heart, even those that seem most kindly. Despite this, they insist that social life is natural to man on the ground that such is the nature of external things and such the nature of men, that we need the help of others to avoid almost all the human evils and to obtain almost all the external pleasures or advantages which human life affords. And we need others to such an extent that we are not able even to live, let alone to live well, without the company and help of others. They also teach that there is a resourcefulness in men, and abilities of mind and body, by which they can mutually help or hinder one another. Whence by an easy reasoning it is inferred that it is of the greatest advantage to each and every man so to conduct his life that he may procure for himself the help and assistance of others, and not provoke others to inflict harm on him. And since this cannot be achieved except by abstaining from all injury to others, and by helping them to the extent of one’s ability, so far as the state of our affairs permits, they conclude that living in this way will be of the greatest benefit to each man; and this is what social life consists in. In fact Pufendorf ascends a little higher. He takes the position that knowledge of the great and good God and of the duty which he requires of us is easy for man; and that clear indications of this are given by the very constitution of our nature as creatures who desire happiness which can only be obtained in social life.31 And hence it is clear that God has fashioned us for social life, and all the duties of this life are taught by divine law, sanctioned by rewards and punishments, and whatever is contrary to that law is forbidden. According to this view of Pufendorf ’s, although social life does not seem to be natural to man immediately and for itself, nevertheless it would be right to consider it as natural in a secondary sense and certainly as necessary. This whole position has been richly illustrated by him, and many profound observations have been added by the illustrious Richard Cumberland.32 And indeed these writers have demonstrated correctly, perceptively, and copiously that social life is natural in this secondary sense. Without social life, such is the indigence of our nature, such the malignancy of external forces, that the human condition would be most miserable; yet by means of society our life can become safe, agreeable, happy, and in all respects desirable.
What Pufendorf taught is indeed true, but he omitted many of the most important observations that may be made on this subject. If one does not look into the matter more deeply, one will conclude that men were driven into society merely by external advantage and dread of external evils, contrary to the nature of their hearts, contrary to all their natural desires and affections; in the same way in which hunger, thirst, and the fear of cold often compel men to endure heavy labors from which our nature shrinks. But the fact is that there are many desires directly implanted by nature which do not seek either pleasure or physical advantage but things more sublime which themselves depend upon the company of others. These sublimer pleasures are prompted by no external sense, nor can any way be imagined how they can be experienced outside society; particular instances of these are the pleasures of praise and honor. God gave us mind and sense, by whose help we see something beautiful, fitting, and honorable in intentions, words, and actions, whether our own or those of others; hence we bestow praise and favor upon those who have deserved well of the human race, and such is the character of all men that scarcely anything gives a man more happiness than to be praised and honored even though he expects no other profit from it. And by some wonderful provision of nature it happens that, though there is no small joy in the mere investigation of truth, yet that joy is immensely increased when there is another to whom one may communicate one’s findings. And here I call as particularly suitable witnesses those happy souls, those lofty hearts, who
Furthermore, by some wonderful sympathy34 of nature, there are few or no pleasures, even physical pleasures, which are not augmented by association with others. There is no happy or cheerful frame of mind which does not demand to be shared and spread among others. Certainly, there is scarcely anything (and I could omit “scarcely”) agreeable, joyful, happy, cheerful, or delightful, which does not boil up and bubble over from the human heart, and long to be poured out among others. Nor is there anything more cheering for a man than to share his happiness with others.35 And therefore, though they claim that it is his own pleasure or advantage that each man seeks, yet such is the nature of certain pleasures, including the greatest of them, and of most of our desires, that they prompt us to seek social life by themselves almost without any reasoning; and by themselves they make the duties of social life agreeable and delightful. All these things the ancients seem to have discerned, nor does the illustrious Richard Cumberland altogether neglect them.36 But they have been most eloquently celebrated by the illustrious Earl of Shaftesbury, noble both by his family and by his genius, however correctly he has been criticized by theologians in other matters.37 And I see nothing which can be said to the contrary.
Yes, and they have a higher teaching. For human nature is not sociable only in this secondary sense for the sake merely of our own advantage or pleasure, whatever it may be, but is in itself immediately and primarily kind, unselfish, and sociable without regard to its advantage or pleasure. And this is the rich explication they give of it. They declare their conviction that very many feelings and passions implanted in man by nature are kindly and unselfish and first and last look directly to the felicity of others. Such is the structure of the human mind, that when certain images (species) of things come before it, certain affections arise under the sole guidance of nature, without any art or deliberation, indeed without any previous command of the will. For just as a desire for private pleasure or advantage, a desire which is usually attributed to self-love, asserts itself as soon as a prospect of getting it arises, in the same way when images of other men and their fortune come to our attention, they excite public and unselfish feelings, even though there is no prospect of private advantage. For example, when the idea of a sentient nature tortured with serious pain is put before the mind, it excites commiseration and a simple desire to take away the pain. In the same way, the idea of a fortunate, happy, cheerful nature equally excites shared and social joy; and the continuance of that state is desired for itself. Nor is this concern for the condition of others only seen when they are present and before our external senses (in which case perhaps powerful reactions or emotions are visible) but whenever, in a quiet moment, we call up an image of others by reading histories or the narratives of travelers, or even when from the stories of drama we receive a certain image of human nature, even in the remotest nations or centuries where no advantage of our own is involved, with what heartfelt concern do we follow the fortunes of entire countries or honorable individuals? With what horror do we avert our minds from the major ills of human life, miserable slavery, the arrogant devastations of conquerors, the cruelties of tyrants; and with what warmth of heart do we pray with the ancient choruses
But it is not the general kinship of human nature and the universal affection which embraces however feebly the whole human race which we should take note of, to illustrate our sociability. For most of the ties between human beings are narrower, and because of them some persons become far dearer to us than others. The appetite for procreation, and a certain special care for offspring, is common to all living creatures; and in desiring marriage itself men dwell not only upon those things which are sought also by the animals, but particularly seek out a good character in the spouse, many virtues, and above all a gentle, amiable, and kind disposition. And they cherish their offspring with the tenderest possible benevolence and concern. Hence arises the love of brothers and cousins, manifest always unless disrupted by wrongs, rivalry, or conflict of interest. Likewise most of those who are not bound by any tie of blood are commended to our love and more immediate benevolence by habitual association, familiarity, exchange of good offices, and collaboration in things serious or frivolous; and nothing binds closer than virtue itself. This is the origin of friendship and companionship, which indeed each man seeks for himself. This benevolent concern for the fortunes of friends, associates, and neighbors often endures apart from any consideration of advantage.
In addition, these writers39 take the view that a sense of what is decent (decorum ) and honorable (honestum) is natural to man; it is this sense which prompts us to esteem everything that is kindly, faithful, gentle, friendly; it is also the reason why we love men endowed with these virtues with a particularly intense love and goodwill. And when kindnesses are lavished upon us or upon those who are closely bound to us in affection, gratitude rises in our hearts; we feel a most tender love for those who have done us good; and we desire to return the favor. And because nothing can be more pleasing or more welcome to all men of lofty spirit than a mind that is conscious of its own integrity and of [other men’s] approval and esteem, our benevolence expands and diffuses itself on all sides. We no longer take into account, in a mean and lowly spirit, those losses in external things caused by friendship or benevolence; all of that we hold not worth a straw, when right and integrity stand before our eyes. The kindly disposition of our hearts acquires new strength from this and is confirmed by use. Our zeal to deserve the praise of others in all good works burns more brightly. Those who enjoy these benefits, nay, all who see them, praise and commend them and desire to return them in kind. Hence too (though this is rarely in mind in the course of the action) humane and benevolent services of this kind, which are most welcome in themselves, are almost always attended by the greatest advantage to everyone.
The arguments which demonstrate this more amiable description of our nature I will perhaps publish more fully in another place.40 Here I would simply like to suggest that each man must descend into himself and examine himself, to see and to feel whether he does not recognize many people as dear to him for themselves alone apart from any advantage to himself, such as his offspring, parents, friends, relatives, fellow citizens.41 Or does he not find in himself an anxious concern for the condition of others, when he reads either tragedy or history, where no advantage to himself can be detected?42 What if God said to a man, “You are to die forthwith undisturbed by any sensation of pain or fear, and your soul will not survive your body, for so I have willed who can do all things.43 Know, then, that whatever you ask with your last breath to be done for others, that I will be sure to effect for you. But no one will have or return gratitude to you however many good things you bestow by means of your prayer, nor will anyone detest or curse you if you invoke evils on them. Nor hereafter will you receive happiness or sorrow from the fortunes of others, since you will not feel anything more, for you will not be. In this state of things are all human things utterly foreign to you and indifferent? Your offspring, friends, fellow-citizens, I will make happy for you, or miserable, as you ask. They will flourish in virtue, health, friendship, wealth, and honor, or they will live wretchedly in vices, sickness, hatred, envy, poverty, infamy, shame, and slavery.” Would all these things be indifferent to any man on earth? Nay, how many would not demand, in the very moment of death, for all those whom he holds dear, the very same things, with the very same passion of mind and the very same strength of will, as he had asked for them at any time previously, although all consideration of his own advantage would now be removed? There are, therefore, in man benevolent feelings which desire the happiness of others primarily and often uniquely.
Despite these considerations someone might perhaps ask: why do we say that a social life, that is, an innocent and kindly life, is more natural to man than a grasping, contentious, cruel, and savage life? For there are many appetites which seem to be natural, to wit, self-love, anger, and the desire for vengeance, which often incite men to inflict injuries on each other. How many things are done in lust, greed, wickedness, and crime! How many struggles for riches! How many intellectual disputes among the learned, which are a fertile source of unjust and arrogant actions! How many different abuses would men inflict on one another if they were not restrained from wrongdoing by the civil government! All these vices arise from natural desires: are they therefore to be called natural?
To break the force of this objection, many learned men have rightly observed that many of the secondary desires and passions of the mind which particularly disturb our lives have been either introduced or massively increased by the civil state, whereas there was scarcely any occasion for their exercise in the state of unrestrained liberty. Such are greed and ambition and certain imperious and oppressive superstitions which encourage men to do evil. The remedies for these evils which arise from civil union are to be sought from civil government.44 But I will not spend time on this response; it will not perhaps give satisfaction to all. It would perhaps be more acceptable to address one who was insisting on such arguments in the following way. Grant that men were created by the great and good God for the social life of which we speak. Will you not also at the same time admit that it is absolutely necessary that all these desires which have regard to private interest, even anger, were put into men by God himself when he was creating men for social life? One must not therefore conclude from these desires that men have not been equipped by nature for social life. Or would anyone say that the fabric of our nature is absurd and self-contradictory? Or that we are as naturally suited to vices as to virtues? Perish the thought that we should attribute to God a work so vain! Of course we have desires which seek satisfaction in private pleasure and advantage; we have equally, as I hope I have sufficiently shown, more creditable desires which make us sociable. Conflict often arises between these two, and desire prompts one way, and intellect the other. But he who has truly seen into himself and has experienced the whole of himself will find there is a part of his nature which is equipped to remedy these ills, and to reconcile these warring passions to peace. Certainly that divine providence45 which is often called nature has not dealt malignantly with us. For God has given us understanding and discernment, and we may easily see that by a social and friendly life we can most effectively obtain and preserve all our pleasures, even private and sensual pleasures. Reason also instructs us that a modest and temperate enjoyment of pleasure which is not disruptive of human society is most advantageous and at the same time most agreeable. On the other hand, nothing will convince us that the endless accumulation of useful objects, or continuous soft and delicate sensual pleasures, for whose sake other people are hurt or honorable duties put aside, are necessary to any man for either a pleasant or a secure life. It certainly needs no long or laborious chain of reasoning to prove this. God gave us a sense of the fitting and the beautiful; associated with this sense, as moderator of all the grosser pleasures, is shame; he also gave the keen spur of praise. The effect of all these is to make life social and kindly, and to make all the duties which are honorable and beneficial to others most advantageous and at the same time most pleasant for the agent himself, and to make even the innate self-love of our nature in no way contrary to our common and benevolent affections.
There is a point of the highest importance which I think should be made here: to obtain a man’s goodwill, it is not necessarily required that we should first have had an exchange of services with him.46 Rather, we are favorably disposed to any harmless person, even if he has not commended himself to us by doing us some service. We are also favorably disposed to the most remote nations; we weep for their disasters, even though we only hear of them. By contrast, anger or any kind of malevolence can be excited only by a conflict of interests, rivalry, jealousy, or by some thought of previous injury or cruelty. This seems to demonstrate that benevolence is directly and in itself natural, but malevolence is only secondarily so, and often results from ignorance or accident.
Nor should we hold any part of our nature responsible for that laziness and inertia in controlling emotions and passions which takes possession of men’s minds, or for the excessive inclination to the pleasures of the senses which throws all things into confusion. It is indisputable, to be sure, that our nature is fallen, weakened, and corrupt in very many ways. But who does not easily perceive the natural order of the human mind? Who does not know what parts of it are naturally fit to rule even though they have been expelled from their position of power? To whom does it ever occur that natural conscience, that sense of the beautiful and the fitting, all the more noble affections, and that power of the mind itself which we call reason are only handmaidens of what are commonly called the sensual pleasures, are no more than the procurers of pleasure? On the contrary, we surely see that conscience and the sense of right, by whose side human reason sits as permanent counselor, is intended by nature to rule, and the bodily desires are born to serve.
Our adversaries are wonderfully ingenious and twist themselves into the six hundred shapes of Proteus to escape these conclusions. All these social inclinations, they say, are due to the daily care of parents and magistrates: students repeat by rote the clever indoctrination given them by the civil rulers. It is to this, they say, that one must attribute this human sociability and all those affections which either give an appearance of benevolence or actually are so.47 Naturally, when we have been conditioned by the fear of punishment and years of habit to an external friendliness of manner, to politeness and affability, we believe that these manners are natural to us, just as someone from the lower classes accepts his vernacular speech as natural to him. And indeed it seems we must freely grant to our adversaries that all external duties and external civility can be achieved by respect for the laws and by the care of magistrates; for a calculation of simple advantage reaches this far and can effect this. But can the hope of advantage, can education or long habit also invent new internal affections and senses of things contrary to the structure of our nature? By education it can easily be brought about that we embrace the true for the false, and believe by false judgment that things that are particularly useless are useful. By long use too, perhaps the very organs of the body will be so changed that what at first was unpleasant becomes pleasant. Perhaps too we may believe things to be unpleasant before we take the risk of trying them, then after the risk is taken, receive the opposite sensation. In these matters, indeed,
Is there anything that pleases or displeases that you would not think could be changed?48
But all these things happen in accordance with the very senses previously implanted by nature; no new sense of things arises, no new affections. Nor do these things appear to us under a different image from those which the senses implanted by nature allow us to perceive. By what art, I ask, or management could one commend to a blind man a piece of clothing or an ornament on the ground of its lovely color? If one had no other way of distinguishing good from evil than by calculating his own pleasure or advantage, then it is unlikely that any thing or event would be desirable unless it appeared to him in the image of his own pleasure or advantage. But in fact, we see that men think many actions honest, praiseworthy, pleasing, and good where no advantage of their own is indicated. We see anxious concern for others, and ready goodwill, even though the prospect of private advantage is totally absent.
I do not know how it happened, but since the famous Locke and other writers49 demonstrated to the satisfaction of many, among them men both illustrious and honorable, that there are no ideas of things in the human mind from the very beginning, no conceptions of things, no judgments whether theoretical or practical (which alone they are determined to call innate), these men have virtually abandoned investigation into natural ideas, apprehensions, judgments, and the natural sense of anything whatever.50 But the ancients, without exception, said that all the ideas, apprehensions, and judgments which we form about things under the guidance of nature at whatever stage this may occur, or which are received by any of the faculties of our nature more or less necessarily and universally, are innate. And certainly an investigation of these natural judgments, perceptions, and appearances of things offered by nature would be far more useful than to waste time on what is perceived or not perceived in that tiny little animal which eventually turns into a man, or by a few unfortunate men, born in some ill-favored corner of the earth to lead a hard and uncivilized life, ignorant of every art and of the human condition. Why would you tell a shipbuilder who was seeking material for the royal fleet what those tiny oak shoots are like which are put out by the acorn in the first or second year, in which of course for his purpose there is neither suitable height nor hardness, strength nor firmness? or to what purpose would you tell him what those oak shrubs are like which spring up in sterile soil or cling to craggy cliffs in the crevices of the rocks? There are many natural abilities in every species of thing, many senses and appetites in animals, and many devices of nature which are not apparent from the start. Nay, some will never become visible if due opportunity is lacking, or some condition required by nature is absent. Who has ever observed a desire for marriage among children playing with knucklebones and nuts? Yet what is more natural to every kind of animal than the union for procreation? Who will express anger when he has received no impression of injury, or love when there is no one to love? We see great, sheer, overhanging rocks clinging to mountains, finely balanced yet standing firm. Is there not in these, one may ask, an innate weight? When the moss is removed, when that firm cohesion is taken away, immediately we see a precipitous fall. Let them cease, then, to object that there are no innate ideas, and that passions or desires cannot be conceived without previous ideas. For this would just as well prove that all private passions and desires were not natural, since there would be no innate ideas of any private pleasure or advantage in the sense in which recent writers talk of a thing being innate.
Others have another objection: men are not desirous of the company of men as such; otherwise all would be equally desired who are equally men. As if anyone had denied that the bonds of nature are closer between some people than others. But they proceed: in every association between men, each man seeks his own advantage or pleasure or glory. If they meet in the marketplaces for trade, each one seeks his own profit; if they meet at banquets for mental stimulation, each seeks laughter for himself, in which, of course, he affirms his own superiority over those at whom he laughs, or carps at those who are absent, or boasts about himself and his affairs. And when conversation arises about serious matters, how many are there who do not think themselves superior and seek to make a reputation and claim the first place for wisdom, thus giving rise to squabbles and feuds? And those who have less confidence in themselves nonetheless desire to learn a little something from which their reputation may be made in the future.51 To all these objections a reply is readily available. It often happens that good men meet together who are cultivated, witty, and kindly, among whom there is no expectation either of profit or reputation, no eagerness to brag of themselves or deride others or criticize them. And when they discuss serious matters in friendly conversation, each expresses his opinion freely and with humor, and asks others’ advice, not seeking glory or the first place for wisdom. And though we confess that it is quite rare for men to meet without each expecting some advantage or pleasure, what will our adversaries make of that? Who ever denied that the private affections were implanted in man by nature? What if we also grant them that private affections are quite often stronger than public and social affections? Will they conclude from this that no affections are truly benevolent? From the fact that some bodies are heavier than others it could just as well be concluded that there are many bodies without weight. Moreover, if a man can pursue two objectives at the same time by the same means, how will anyone show that he was not aiming at one of the two objectives? And of course it is probable that men very seldom get together without any friendly and social feeling at all, whether in private associations or in states. If indeed benevolence were foreign to human nature, and equally foreign was that confident expectation of mutual benevolence, candid and free of suspicion, which is almost always the companion of a kindly character, then ambitious men, of the sort that are accustomed to assume political office, would not find the common people so easy and so tractable as to commit to their trust themselves and all their fortunes.
Finally, and most importantly: when men are said to be seeking profit, or their own advantage, they are surely quite often serving their offspring and family from the most benevolent motives and the most tender love. And indeed, by far the larger part of all the cares and worries of life is taken up by parental love and by our sense of duty toward parents, friends, or country. What grave, what continual worries arise from these affections? How intense are party passions in a country even among those who do not presume even covertly to seek for themselves honors or magistracies or salaried offices. With willing hearts they support the party which seems to them better and more beneficial to the country, not thinking at all of their own interest.
But they still insist: if the society of men is not sought for the sake of advantage or pleasure, why do we desire the company of the learned, the elegant, the affable, the liberal, the powerful and honored, if it is not that from them something advantageous, agreeable, or even honorable may come our way? And, they say, we avoid the ignorant, the gloomy, the sour, the boastful, the stingy, and the infamous.52 As if we could be benevolent or have kind and sociable dispositions only toward those whom we would wish to choose as companions and intimates! As if, indeed, anyone had said that no other desire is implanted in the mind but that for society. Or as if there were no disagreeable and vexatious elements in the character of certain people which would deter us from taking men like that as our companions. Or, finally, as if there were no virtues in others, either natural or cultivated by art, which would render them more apt for friendship and better company.
I hope therefore, gentlemen, that I have made out an adequate case for my primary thesis that social life (in the state unrestrained by government) is natural to man for its own sake. Elsewhere perhaps I shall give an account of what seem to have been the most probable origin and causes of civil society.53 But from what I have said, the divine benevolence toward the human race which we should always recall with gratitude and adore is made manifest by the very fabric of man. For with such art and care, such deliberate ingenuity, has the most beneficent father of all things made us and equipped us for all things noble and good and indeed for everything that is most happy and delightful. Nor when we exhort men to live a good life, harmless, temperate, friendly, and beneficent, should anyone think that there is laid upon him anything sour, vexatious, repulsive, or sorrowful, which nature shuns. For in fact this is the only way by which nature herself directs us to the things we most desire, namely, security, tranquillity, felicity, and, I might even say, pure pleasure, untroubled by repentance or pangs of remorse. Go forward, then, in virtue, beloved young men, the hope of this generation and the glory, I trust, of the generation to come. Take nature and God as your guide, apply your minds to liberal studies, and lay down a varied store of useful knowledge which you may bring forth one day in all honorable, temperate, modest, and courageous service to our country and the human race. And even at this time, with hope and courage, take to yourselves the joyous sense of a mind conscious of its own integrity, the true dignity of life, the esteem [of others], the most honorable kind of fame, and the highest pleasures of life.
This book is set in Adobe Garamond, a modern adaptation by Robert Slimbach of the typeface originally cut around 1540 by the French typographer and printer Claude Garamond. The Garamond face, with its small lowercase height and restrained contrast between thick and thin strokes, is a classic “old-style” face and has long been one of the most influential and widely used typefaces.
Printed on paper that is acid-free and meets the requirements of the American National Standard for Permanence of Paper for Printed Library Materials, z39.48-1992. (archival)
Book design by Louise O Farrell
Typography by Apex Publishing, LLC
Printed and bound by Worzalla Publishing Company
Stevens Point, Wisconsin
[1 ]Hutcheson registered as a student at the University of Glasgow in 1711 (Munimenta Alme Universitatis Glasguensis, bk. 3, p. 196) in the fourth or final year of the undergraduate curriculum (the natural philosophy year) in the class of John Loudon. He remained at the university for six more years as a student of divinity.
[2 ]Hutcheson was the master of a dissenting academy in Dublin through the 1720s. It is indicative of the modest disposition he sought to cultivate on his return to Glasgow in 1730 (see Wodrow, Analecta, IV, p. 167) that he should have described his years in Dublin as intellectually unproductive; the works for which he was and remains best known, his two Inquiries, Essay, and Illustrations, were published in those years.
[3 ]Metaphor from the manumission of a slave.
[4 ]Hutcheson was elected Professor of Moral Philosophy on 19 December 1729 in a closely contested election, described by W. R. Scott, Francis Hutcheson, pp. 54-56. He was formally admitted to the university as Professor of Moral Philosophy at a meeting of the faculty on 3 November 1730: GUA 26647 fol. 22.
[5 ]Virgil, Aeneid, 5, 39, in Aeneid, vol. I, p. 474.
[6 ]Ibid., 3, 96, and 5, 801, in Aeneid, vol. I, p. 378.
[7 ]William Leechman, in his “Account of the Life, Writings and Character of the Author,” prefaced to Hutcheson’s A System of Moral Philosophy (1755), p. iii, records that while he was a student of natural philosophy, Hutcheson “at the same time renewed his study of the Latin and Greek languages.”
[8 ]Leechman, “Account,” pp. iv-vi, also reports the youthful Hutcheson’s exchange with Samuel Clarke on the eternal relations of things and their relevance for natural theology. See also pp. 152-61 (A Synopsis of Metaphysics, Part III, chap. 1).
[9 ]The River Clyde. See also James Arbuckle, Glotta, A Poem, and M. A. Stewart, “James Arbuckle,” Thoemmes Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century British Philosophers.
[10 ]The pressures which the Church and the University might impose upon a man of heterodox theological views, such as Hutcheson’s, had been amply demonstrated in the trials of John Simpson, Hutcheson’s former professor of divinity. See H. M. B. Reid, The Divinity Professors in the University of Glasgow, 1640-1903, chap. 6, and Anne Skoczylas, Mr. Simpson’s Knotty Case.
[11 ]Samuel Pufendorf, “On the Origin and Progress of the Discipline of Natural Jurisprudence” (“De Origine et Progressu Disciplinae Juris Naturalis”), in Specimen Controversiarum; Gottlieb Gerhard Titius, “On the Character and Context of the Discipline of Morals” (“De Habitu et Contextu Disciplinarum Moralis”), in Observationes in Samuelis L. B. de Pufendorf De Officio Hominis et Civis; Jean Barbeyrac, Inaugural lecture on the dignity and utility of the law and history (Oratio inauguralis de dignitate et utilitate Juris ac Historiarum); Gershom Carmichael, “On Moral Philosophy, or the Science of Natural Jurisprudence” (praefatio in Samuelis Pufendorfii De Officio Hominis et Civis), in Natural Rights on the Threshold of the Scottish Enlightenment. For discussion of these histories of morality, see T. J. Hochstrasser, Natural Law Theories in the Early Enlightenment.
[12 ]The Stoic idea of virtue as expressed by Cicero, De Finibus Bonorum et Malorum, IV, XIV, pp. 339-43, and in The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (in the translation by Hutcheson and James Moor), pp. 176n and 265-66n.
[13 ]A servitude is a right over the property of someone else. Praedial servitudes refers to rural servitudes; the others mentioned are urban servitudes. Both are treated by Justinian in Institutes, III, 3. For a discussion of servitudes in Roman and Scottish law, see chap. 7 of A History of Private Law in Scotland, ed. Kenneth Reid and Reinhard Zimmermann.
[14 ]George Cheyne, A New Theory of Acute and Slow continu’d Fevers; wherein … the Manner and Laws of Secretion … are mechanically explained.
[15 ]It will be clear from what follows that Hutcheson had in mind recent editions of the writings of the early modern natural jurists, such as Hugo Grotius, The Rights of War and Peace (De Jure Belli ac Pacis), Prolegomena, sec. 7; Samuel Pufendorf, Of the Law of Nature and Nations, bk. 2, chap. 3, sec. 15; Richard Cumberland, A Treatise of the Laws of Nature, chap. 2, sec. 22, pp. 136-43.
[16 ]Thomas Hobbes, On the Citizen, Leviathan; Bernard Mandeville, The Fable of the Bees; Archibald Campbell, Arete-logia: Or, an Inquiry into the Origin of Moral Virtue. Mandeville and Campbell appear to have been very much in Hutcheson’s mind as he composed his response to selfish moralists; see p. 206 ff.
[17 ]See the argument from design and the analogy between the constitution of human nature and the construction of a house in Cicero, De Natura Deorum, 2.17.
[18 ]Hutcheson’s position, that “all our innate desires strive against that weakness,” would have been perceived to be heterodox or, more specifically, Pelagian by strict Reformed or Presbyterian theologians. Compare Heppe, Reformed Dogmatics, p. 308.
[19 ]See Hutcheson’s An Essay on the Nature and Conduct of the Passions and Affections (1728) for a more extended account of natural desires.
[20 ]Hobbes, Leviathan, chap. 13.
[21 ]Persius, Satires, III, 35-36, Juvenal and Persius, p. 76: Persius prays to the gods to punish tyrants, the most evil of men, by making them conscious, by their wicked passions, of the virtue they have irretrievably lost.
[22 ]See references to the writings of Titius, Barbeyrac, Cumberland, and Carmichael in notes 12 and 16, above; also Shaftesbury, “Sensus Communis,” in Characteristics of Men, Manners, Opinions, Times, pp. 42-45.
[23 ]Shaftesbury, “Letters to Ainsworth,” in Several letters written by a noble lord to a young man at the university.
[24 ]Compare Joseph Butler, Sermons.
[25 ]Hutcheson used the Greek term to hegemonikon. See Cicero, De Natura Deorum, II, xi, pp. 150-51: “I use the term ‘ruling principle’ as the equivalent of the Greek hegemonikon, meaning that part of anything which must and ought to have supremacy in a thing of that sort.”
[26 ]Heppe, Reformed Dogmatics, 232-38: “In its original state the nature of man was the perfect image of God in creaturely form. …” Heppe goes on to cite Petrus van Mastricht, Johannes Marck, and others. See also Thomas Boston, Human Nature in Its Fourfold State, I, 1, on the state of innocence; chap. 1: “Man’s Original Righteousness,” p. 37 ff.
[27 ]Pufendorf, On the Duty of Man and Citizen, II, 5, p. 132: “In becoming a citizen, a man loses his natural liberty and subjects himself to an authority. …”; Locke, Two Treatises of Government, II, 4, 22, p. 301: “The Natural Liberty of Man is to be free from any Superior Power on Earth, and not to be under the will or Legislative Authority of Man. …” Hutcheson employed the construction “the state of natural liberty,” in preference to “the state of nature,” in A Short Introduction to Moral Philosophy, II, chap. 4, p. 139 ff., and in A System of Moral Philosophy, vol. 1, bk. 2, chap. 4, p. 283.
[28 ]Mandeville, “A Search into the Nature of Society,” in The Fable of the Bees, vol. 1, pp. 340-41.
[29 ]Pufendorf, Of the Law of Nature and Nations, II, III, IV, pp. 136-39; On the Duty of Man and Citizen, I, 3, p. 35.
[30 ]Pufendorf, Of the Law of Nature and Nations, II, III, X, p. 130, citing Gassendi on Epicurus, and pp. 135-36.
[31 ]Pufendorf, Of the Law of Nature and Nations, II, III, XIX, p. 141 ff., and On the Duty of Man and Citizen, I, 3-4, p. 36 ff.
[32 ]Cumberland, A Treatise of the Laws of Nature.
[33 ]Ovid, Fasti, I, ll. 305-6, p. 22.
[34 ]“Contagio”: Cicero’s translation of sympatheia in De Divinatione (On Divination ), 2, 14, 33, in Cicero, De Senectute, De Amicitia, De Divinatione, p. 406.
[35 ]Cicero, De Amicitia (On Friendship ), 6.22, in Cicero, De Senectute, De Amicitia, De Divinatione, p. 130.
[36 ]Cumberland, A Treatise of the Laws of Nature.
[37 ]Shaftesbury, “Sensus Communis,” pt. 3, sec. 2, pp. 51-53, and “The Moralists,” pt. 2, sec. 4, pp. 283-88, in Characteristics; and Isabel Rivers, Reason, Grace and Sentiment, vol. 2, for discussion of Shaftesbury on the higher pleasures of social life and on his differences with theologians.
[38 ]Horace, The Art of Poetry, 201, in Satires, Epistles, and Ars Poetica, p. 466: one of the rules that Horace prescribes for a chorus in a tragedy is that they “pray and beseech the gods that fortune may return to the wretched and desert the proud.”
[39 ]Shaftesbury, Cumberland, Cicero, and others.
[40 ]It may have been Hutcheson’s intention in 1730 to expand upon the theme of natural sociability in A System of Moral Philosophy, which was composed in the 1730s but published posthumously in 1755. In the event, Hutcheson also found it necessary to take into account the weaknesses and imperfections in human nature. See James Moore, “Hutcheson’s Theodicy: The Argument and the Contexts of A System of Moral Philosophy.”
[41 ]In the concluding paragraphs of this lecture, Hutcheson appears to have been responding to his critics, principally to Archibald Campbell (Arete-logia; Or, an Enquiry into the Original of Moral Virtue), who maintained that Hutcheson’s various attempts to illustrate benevolence and disinterested affection could be reduced to self-love and desire for esteem. Campbell’s argument that parental affection derives from self-love (from recognition that children are parts of oneself ) appears on pp. 240-50. See also John Clarke, “The Foundation of Morality in Theory and Practice Considered,” in British Moralists, vol. 2, pp. 229-30 and 245-46; and Luigi Turco, “Sympathy and Moral Sense,” pp. 82-89.
[42 ]Campbell, Arete-logia, pp. 266-67, proposed that “we either secretly convey ourselves to that Part of the World, where he immediately acted, or we change the Scene of his Actions to those Places where we are.” See also Clarke, “Foundation,” pp. 229-30.
[43 ]Campbell claimed that he could not conceive how any man of understanding could be ignorant of future rewards and punishments in an afterlife, Arete-logia, pp. 293-96. “We are all the Off-spring or Productions of the Deity. …” p. 305. See also Clarke, “Foundation,” p. 228.
[44 ]Barbeyrac, in Pufendorf, Of the Law of Nature and Nations, II, II, II, nn. 6-16, p. 105; Carmichael, Natural Rights, p. 127.
[45 ]Hutcheson employs the Stoic term pronoia in Greek.
[46 ]Compare Campbell, Arete-logia, pp. 310-12.
[47 ]Mandeville, “An Enquiry into the Origin of Moral Virtue,” in The Fable of the Bees, I, pp. 41-57.
[48 ]Horace, Epistles, 3.1.101, in Satires, Epistles, and Ars Poetica, p. 404.
[49 ]John Locke, Essay, I; Jean Le Clerc, Pneumatologia seu de Spiritibus, chap. 5, “On the Nature of Ideas, and Whether They Are Innate?”; Mandeville, The Fable of the Bees, II, 149, 168. See John W. Yolton, John Locke and the Way of Ideas, chap. 2.
[50 ]Hutcheson’s defense of innate ideas in this paragraph underlines the importance of such ideas for logic, as he understood it. See A Compend of Logic, passim, and the introduction, p. xii.
[51 ]Hobbes, On the Citizen, 1, 2; Mandeville, “A Search into the Nature of Society,” in The Fable of the Bees, I, 337 ff.; Campbell, Arete-logia, pp. 315-16.
[52 ]Campbell, Arete-logia, p. 316: “How comes it to pass, that we enter into a more close and intimate Correspondence, with this Man rather than with that? … I see, that in his Choice of Friends, he overlooks the Clown of no Education, … he pitches upon one or more as his Bosom-Companions, and leaves all the Rest excluded from this Intimacy.” Mandeville, “A Search into the Nature of Society,” in The Fable of the Bees, I, p. 340.
[53 ]Hutcheson’s account of the origin and causes of civil society is found in A Short Introduction to Moral Philosophy, bk. 3, chap. 4, and in A System of Moral Philosophy, bk. 3, chap. 4.