Front Page Titles (by Subject) LETTER XXXI. - The Works of Vicesimus Knox, vol. 5
LETTER XXXI. - Vicesimus Knox, The Works of Vicesimus Knox, vol. 5 
The Works of Vicesimus Knox, D.D. with a Biographical Preface. In Seven Volumes (London: J. Mawman, 1824). Vol. 5.
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- To the Right Honourable Charles James Fox.
- Personal Nobility Or , Letters to a Young Noble Man
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- The Spirit of Despotism.
- Section I.: Introductory.
- Section II. Oriental Manners, and the Ideas Imbibed In Youth, Both In the West and East Indies, Favourable to the Spirit of Despotism.
- Section III. Certain Circumstances In Education Which Promote the Spirit of Despotism.
- Section IV. Corruption of Manners Has a Natural Tendency to Promote the Spirit of Despotism.
- Section V. An Abhorrence of Despotism and an Ardent Love of Liberty Perfectly Consistent With Order and Tranquillity; and the Natural Consequence of Well-informed Understandings and Benevolent Dispositions.
- Section VI. On the Venality of the Press Under the Influence of the Despotic Spirit, and Its Effects In Diffusing That Spirit.
- Section VII. The Fashionable Invectives Against Philosophy and Reason, a Proof of the Spirit of Despotism.
- Section VIII. Of Loyalty, and Certain Mistaken Ideas of It.
- Section IX. On Taking Advantage of Popular Commotions, Accidental Excesses, and Foreign Revolutions, to Extend Prerogative and Power, and Encroach On the Liberties of the People.
- Section X. When Human Life Is Held Cheap, It Is a Symptom of a Prevailing Spirit of Despotism.
- Section XI. Indifference of the Middle and Lower Classes of the People to Public Affairs, Highly Favourable to the Encroachments of the Tory Principle, and Therefore to the Spirit of Despotism.
- Section XII. The Despotic Spirit Is Inclined to Discourage Commerce, As Unfavourable to Its Purposes.
- Section XIII. The Spirit of Despotism Displaying Itself In Private Life, and Proceeding Thence to Avail Itself of the Church and the Military.
- Section XIV. The Despotic Spirit Inclined to Avail Itself of Spies, Informers, False Witnesses, Pretended Conspiracies, and Self-interested Associations Affecting Patriotism.
- Section XV. The Manners of Tory Courtiers, and of Those Who Ape Them, As People of Fashion, Inconsistent With Manliness, Truth, and Honesty; and Their Prevalence Injurious to a Free Constitution, and the Happiness of Human Nature.
- Section XVI. The Spirit of Truth, Liberty, and Virtue, Public As Well As Private, Chiefly to Be Found In the Middle Ranks of the People.
- Section XVII. On Debauching the Minds of the Rising Generation and a Whole People, By Giving Them Military Notions In a Frée and Commercial Country.
- Section XVII. Levity, Effeminacy, Ignorance, and Want of Principle In Private Life, Inimical to All Public Virtue, and Favourable to the Spirit of Despotism.
- Section XIX. Certain Passages In Dr. Brown’s “estimate” Which Deserve the Serious Consideration of All Who Would Oppose the Subversion of a Free Constitution By Corruption of Manners and Principles, and By Undue Influence.
- Section XX. On Several Subjects Suggested By Lord Melcombe’s Diary; Particularly the Practice of Bartering the Cure of Souls For the Corruption of Parliament.
- Section XXI. On Choosing Rich Men, Without Parts, Spirit, Or Liberality, As Representatives In the National Council.
- Section XXII. Of the Despotic Influence of Great Merchants Over Their Subalterns, of Customers Over Their Tradesmen, and Rich Trading Companies Over Their Various Dependents, In Compelling Them to Vote For Court Candidates For Seats In Parliment, Merely T
- Section XXIII. Of the Pageantry of Life; That It Originates In the Spirit of Despotism; and Contributes to It, Without Advancing Private Any More Than Public Felicity.
- Section XXIV. Insolence of the Higher Orders to the Middle Ranks and the Poor; With Their Affected Condescension, In Certain Circumstances, to the Lowest of the People.
- Section XXV. Of a Natural Aristocracy.
- Section XXVI. The Excessive Love of Distinction and Power Which Prevails Wherever the Spirit of Despotism Exists, Deadens Some of the Finest Feelings of the Heart, and Counteracts the Laws of Nature.
- Section XXVII. On the Opinion That the People Are Annihilated Or Absorbed In Parliament; That the Voice of the People Is No Where to Be Heard But In Parliament; and On Similar Doctrines, Tending to Depreciate the People.
- Section XXVIII. The Fashionable Contempt Thrown On Mr. Locke, and His Writings In Favour of Liberty; and On Other Authors and Books Espousing the Same Cause.
- Section XXIX. Of the Despotism of Influence; While the Forms of a Free Constitution Are Preserved.
- Section XXX. The Spirit of Despotism Delights In War Or Systematic Murder.
- Section XXXI. On the Idea That We Have Arrived At Perfection In Politics, Though All Other Sciences Are In a Progressive State.
- Section XXXII. On Political Ethics; Their Chief Object Is to Throw Power Into the Hands of the Worst Part of Mankind, and to Render Government an Institution Calculated to Enrich and Aggrandize a Few, At the Expense of the Liberty, Property, and Lives of
- Section XXXIII. On Trafficking With the Cure of Souls, (cura Animarum,) For the Purposes of Political, I. E. Moral, Corruption.
- Section XXXIV. Of Mr. Hume’s Idea, That Absolute Monarchy Is the Easiest Death, the True Euthanasia of the British Constitution.
- Section XXXV. The Permission of Lawyers By Profession, Aspiring to Honours In the Gift of the Crown, to Have the Greatest Influence In the Legislature, a Circumstance Unfavourable to Liberty.
- Section XXXVI. Poverty, When Not Extreme, Favourable to All Virtue, Public and Private, and Consequently to the Happiness of Human Nature; and Enormous Riches, Without Virtue, the General Bane.
- Section XXXVII. On the Natural Tendency of Making Judges and Crown Lawyers, Peers; of Translating Bishops and Annexing Preferments to Bishoprics, In, What Is Called Commendam.
- Section XXXVIII. That All Opposition to the Spirit of Despotism Should Be Conducted With the Most Scrupulous Regard to the Existing Laws, and to the Preservation of Public Peace and Good Order.
- Section XXXIX. The Christian Religion Favourable to Civil Liberty, and Likewise to Equality Rightly Understood.
- Section Xl. the Pride Which Produces the Spirit of Despotism Conspicuous Even On the Tombstone. It Might Be Treated With Total Neglect, If It Did Not Tend to the Oppression of the Poor, and to Bloodshed and Plunder.
- Section Xli.: Conclusion.
- Antipolemus; Or, the Plea of Reason, Religion, and Humanity, Against War. a Fragment; Translated From the Latin of Erasmus.
- Preface. By the Translator.
- Antipolemus; Or, the Plea of Reason, Religion, and Humanity, Against War.
I return to our literary correspondence. But I beseech you to interrupt me, when any thing occurs which you think necessary to consider as conducive to the ornament of that illustrious character, a nobleman in a free country.
You desired me, in the last conversation we had, to give you some directions for the formation of your classical library. I admire the beautiful room which you have allotted to this purpose. The aspect, which is north, I approve, as you will not be incommoded by the sun in the summer, and you can always make it warm enough in winter. The prospect of the fine lawn from the bow-window, with the deer frequently feeding upon it, and the weeping birches, magnificent oaks, and deeply verdant beeches, are objects which you must always contemplate with serene pleasure; a state of mind highly favourable to study.
I wish you to divide your Latin classical library into four principal compartments. You do not affect to have a very large or very curious collection of books. You very sensibly wish to have a library for use, rather than ostentation.
Let the first compartment be entitled, “AuctoresLinguÆLatinÆ Ætatis aureÆ.” And here place the works of Cicero complete; Plautus, Terence, Corpus Poetarum, Lucretius, Cæsar, Cornelius Nepos, Catullus, Tibullus and Propertius, Varro, Virgil, Horace, Sallust, Livy, Justin, Cato, Columella, Rei Rustici Scriptores, Vitruvius, and Ovid.
As to the editions, as new ones are frequently coming out, consult your very respectable booksellers, Messrs. Egertons, or Robson, or Payne, or White, and they will inform you with judgment and fidelity. Harwood on the Classics, though not without mistakes and improprieties, will be useful to you as a directory; especially with the additional assistance of the most eminent booksellers of London. I do not wish you to be a mere book-collector. Get your information of the best editions as easily and as soon as you can, and acquiesce in them. Your Lordship's business is to read the contents, and not to dwell on title pages and dates. Others may perform that ministerial office, unless, from a love of books, you should take delight in the research, as an innocent amusement of your leisure.
The second compartment is to be marked with the title “Ætatis argenteÆ;” and must contain Curtius, Velleius Paterculus, Valerius Maximus, Cornelius Celsus, Dictys Cretensis, Phædrus, Seneca Rhetor, and Seneca Philosophus, Senecæ Tragediæ, Persius, Lucan, Petronius, Manilius and Gratius.
The third compartment includes the authors Ætatis ÆneÆ, some of whom deserve a better denomination; particularly the excellent Quintilian, Juvenal, Plinius Major, Plinius Minor, Suetonius, Tacitus, Florus, Statius, Valerius Flaccus, Martialis, and Silius Italicus.
The fourth compartment is of a still lower character and comprehends the authors Ætatis ferreÆ; A. Gellius, Apuleius, Tertullianus, Arnobius, Minutius Felix, Vegetius et Frontinus, Lactantius Censorinus, Aurelius Victor, Symmachi Epistolæ, Macrobius, Ausonius, Prudentius, Claudianus, Calphurnius et Numerianus, Ammianus Marcellinus, Apicius, Martianus Capella, Julius Fermicus, and Boethius; and conclude with Historiæ Augustæ Scriptores. So much for your Latin classical library. I shall resume the subject of your library in my next letter.
I am, &c.