Documents for Science and Sentiment (The Enlightenment)
The reason produced for condemning the opinion that the earth moves and the sun stands still in many places in the Bible one may read that the sun moves and the earth stands still. Since the Bible cannot err; it follows as a necessary consequence that anyone takes a erroneous and heretical position who maintains that the sun is inherently motionless and the earth movable.
. . .[T]hese things in no way concern the primary purpose of the sacred writings, which is the service of God and the salvation of souls - matters infinitely beyond the comprehension of the common people.
This being granted, I think that in discussions of physical problems we ought to begin not from the authority of scriptural passages but from
senseexperiences and necessary demonstrations; for the holy Bible and the phenomena of nature proceed alike from the divine Word the former as the dictate of the Holy Ghost and the latter as the observant executrix of God's commands. It is necessary for the Bible, in order to be accommodated to the understanding of every man, to speak many things which appear to differ from the absolute truth so far as the bare meaning of the words is concerned. But Nature, on the other hand, is inexorable and immutable; she never transgresses the laws imposed upon her, or cares a whit whether her abstruse reasons and methods of operation are understandable to men. . . .
From these things it follows as a necessary consequence that, since the Holy Ghost did not intend to teach us whether heaven moves or stands still, whether its shape is spherical or like a discus or extended in a plane, nor whether the earth is located at its center or off to one side, then so much the less was it intended to settle for us any other conclusion of the same kind. And the motion or rest of the earth and the sun is so closely linked with the things just named, that without a determination of the one, neither side can be taken in the other matters. Now if the Holy Spirit has purposely neglected to teach us propositions of this sort as irrelevant to the highest goal (that is, to our salvation), how can anyone affirm that it is obligatory to take sides on them, that one belief is required by faith, while the other side is erroneous? Can an opinion be heretical and yet have no concern with the salvation of souls? Can the Holy Ghost be asserted not to have intended teaching us something that does concern our salvation? I would say here something that was heard from an ecclesiastic of the most eminent degree: "That the intention of the Holy Ghost is to teach us how one goes to heaven. not how heaven goes."
Question: Why does Galileo think it's OK for his finding to contradict the Bible?
Man was born free, but everywhere he is in chains. This man believes that he is the master of others, and still he is more of a slave than they are. How did that transformation take place? I don't know. How may the restraints on man become legitimate? I do believe I can answer that question. . . .
This question might be rephrased: "How is a method of associating to be found which will defend and protect-using the power of all-the person and property of each member and still enable each member of the group to obey only himself and to remain as free as before?" This is the fundamental problem; the social contract offers a solution to it. . . .
The social contract's terms, when they are well understood, can be reduced to a single stipulation: the individual member alienates himself totally to the whole community together with all his rights. This is first because conditions will be the same for everyone when each individual gives himself totally, and secondly, because no one will be tempted to make that condition of shared equality worse for other men. . . .
So that the social pact will not become meaningless words, it tacitly includes this commitment, which alone gives power to the others: Whoever refuses to obey the general will shall be forced to obey it by the whole body politic, which means nothing else but that he will be forced to be free. This condition is indeed the one which by dedicating each citizen to the fatherland gives him a guarantee against being personally dependent on other individuals. It is the condition which all political machinery depends on and which alone makes political undertakings legitimate. Without it, political actions become absurd, tyrannical, and subject to the most outrageous abuses. . . .
The first and most important conclusion from the principles we have established thus far is that the general will alone may direct the forces of the State to achieve the goal for which it was founded, the common good.... Sovereignty is indivisible ... and is inalienable.... A will is general or it is not: it is that of the whole body of the people or only of one faction. In the first instance, putting the will into words and force is an act of sovereignty: the will becomes law. In the second instance, it is only a particular will or an administrative action; at the very most it is a decree. . . .
It follows from the above that the general will is always in the right and inclines toward the public good, but it does not follow that the deliberations of the people
always have the same rectitude. People always desire what is good, but they do not always see what is good. You can never corrupt the people, but you can often fool them, and that is the only time that the people appear to will something bad....
If, assuming that the people were sufficiently informed as they made decisions and that the citizens did not communicate with each other, the general will would always be resolved from a great number of small differences, and the deliberation would always be good. But when blocs are formed, associations of parts at the expense of the whole, the will of each of these associations will be general as far as its members are concerned but particular as far as the State is concerned. Then we may say that there are no longer so many voters as there are men present but as many as there are associations. The differences will become less numerous and will yield less general results. Finally, when one of these associations becomes so strong that it dominates the others, you no longer have the sum of minor differences as a result but rather one single [unresolved] difference, with the result that there no longer is a general will, and the view that prevails is nothing but one particular view....
Question: What is the general will, and how can it be used to govern?
The hero of this novel engages in numerous amorous misadventures. This section involves the sister, named Bridget, of Mr. Allworthy, who helps raise Jones.
CONTAINING MANY RULES, AND SOME EXAMPLES, CONCERNING FALLING IN LOVE; DESCRIPTIONS OF BEAUTY, AND OTHER MORE PRUDENTIAL INDUCEMENTS TO MATRIMONY
It hath been observed by wise men or women, I forget which, that all persons are doomed to be in love once in their lives. No particular season is, as I remember, assigned for this; but the age at which Miss Bridget was arrived seems to me as proper a period as any to be fixed on for this purpose; it often indeed happens much earlier, but when it doth not, I have observed, it seldom or never fails about this time. Moreover, we may remark that at this season love is of a more serious and steady nature than what sometimes shows itself in the younger parts of life. The love of girls is uncertain, capricious, and so foolish that we cannot always discover what the young lady would be at; nay, it may almost be doubted whether she always knows this herself.
Now, we are never at a loss to discern this in women about forty; for as such grave, serious, and experienced ladies well know their own meaning, so it is always very easy for a man of the least sagacity to discover it with the utmost certainty.
Miss Bridget is an example of all these observations. She had not been many times in the captain's company before she was seized with this passion. Nor did she go pining and moping about the house like a puny foolish girl, ignorant of her distemper: she felt, she knew, and she enjoyed the pleasing sensation, of which, as she was certain it was, not only innocent but laudable, she was neither afraid nor ashamed.
And to say the truth, there is in all points great difference between the reasonable passion which women at this age conceive towards men and the idle and childish liking of a girl to a boy, which is often fixed on the outside only, and on things of little value and no duration:- as on cherry cheeks, small lily-white hands, sloe-black eyes, flowing locks, downy chins, dapper shades, nay, sometimes on charms more worthless than these, and less the party's own: such are the outward ornaments of the person, and for which men are beholden to the tailor, the lace-man, the periwig maker, the hatter, and the milliner, and not to Nature. Such a passion girls may well be ashamed, as they generally are, to own either to themselves or to others.
The love of Miss Bridget was of another kind. The captain owed nothing to any of these fop-makers in his dress, nor was his person much more beholden to Nature. Both his dress and person were such as, had they appeared in an assembly or a drawing-room, would have been the contempt and ridicule of all the fine ladies there. The former of these was indeed neat, but plain, coarse, ill-fancied, and out of fashion. As for the latter, we have expressly described it above. So far was the skin on his cheeks from being cherrycoloured that you could not discern what the natural colour of his cheeks was, they being totally overgrown by a black beard, which ascended to his eyes. His shape and limbs were indeed exactly proportioned, but so large that they denoted the strength rather of a ploughman than any other. His shoulders were broad beyond all size, and the calves of his legs larger than those of a common chairman. In short, his whole person wanted all that elegance and beauty which is the very reverse of clumsy strength, and which so agreeably sets off most of our fine gentlemen; being partly owing to the high blood of their ancestors, viz., blood made of rich sauces and generous wines, and partly to an early town education.
Though Miss Bridget was a woman of the greatest delicacy of taste, yet such were the charms of the captain's conversation that she totally overlooked the defects of his person. She imagined, and perhaps very wisely, that she should enjoy more agreeable minutes with the captain than with a much prettier fellow; and forewent the consideration of pleasing her eyes in order to procure herself much more solid satisfaction.
The captain no sooner perceived the passion of Miss Bridget, in which discovery he was very quick-sighted, than he faithfully returned it. The lady no more than her lover was remarkable for beauty. I would attempt to draw her picture, but that is done already by a more able master, Mr. Hogarth himself, to whom she sat many years ago, and hath been lately exhibited by that gentleman in his print of a winter's morning, of which she was no improper emblem, and may be seen walking (for walk she doth in the print) to Covent Garden church, with a starved footboy behind carrying her prayer-book.
The captain likewise very wisely preferred the more solid enjoyments he expected with this lady to the fleeting charms of person. He was one of those wise men who regard beauty in the other sex as a very worthless and superficial qualification; or, to speak more truly, who rather choose to possess every convenience of life with an ugly woman than a handsome one without any of those conveniences. And having a very good appetite, and but little nicety, he fancied he should play his part very well at the matrimonial banquet without the sauce of beauty.
To deal plainly with the reader, the captain, ever since his arrival, at least from the moment his brother had proposed the match to him, long before he had discovered any flattering symptoms in Miss Bridget, had been greatly enamoured; that is to say, of Mr. Allworthy's house and gardens and of his lands, tenements, and hereditaments; of all which the captain was so passionately fond that he would most probably have contracted marriage with them had he been obliged to have taken the witch of Endor into the bargain.
Question: What does this passage tell you about the perception of women and marriage in the 18th century?
Hardcastle is talking to his daughter.
HARDCASTLE: Blessings on my pretty innocence! Dressed out as usual, my Kate. Goodness! what a quantity of superiluous silk hast thou got about thee, girl! I could never teach the fools of this age that the indigent world could be clothed out of the trimmings of the vain.
Miss HARDCASTLE. You know our agreement, sir. You allow me the morning to receive and pay visits, and to dress in my own manner; and in the evening, I put on my housewife's dress to please you.
HARDCASTLE. Well, remember I insist on the terms of our agreement; and, by the bye, I believe I shall have occasion to try your obedience this very evening.
MISS HARDCASTLE. I protest, sir, I don't comprehend your meaning.
HARDCASTLE. Then, to be plain with you, Kate, I expect the young gentleman I have chosen to be your husband from town this very day. I have his father's letter, in which he informs me his son is set out, and that he intends to follow himself shortly after.
MISS HARDCASTLE. Indeed! I wish I had known something of this before. Bless me, how shall I behave? It's a thousand to one I shan't like him, our meeting will be so formal, and so like a thing of business, that I shall find no room for friendship or esteem.
HARDCASTLE. Depend upon it, child, I'll never control your choice; but Mr. Marlow, whom I have pitched upon, is the son of my old friend, Sir Charles Marlow, of whom you have heard me talk so often. The younger gentleman has been bred a scholar, and is designed for an employment in the service of his country. I am told he's a man of an excellent understanding.
MISS HARDCASTLE. Is he?
HARDCASTLE. Very generous.
MISS HARDCASTLE. I believe I shall like him.
HARDCASTLE. Young and brave.
MISS HARDCASTLE. I'm sure I shall like him.
HARDCASTLE. And very handsome.
MISS HARDCASTLE. My dear papa, say no more (kissing his hand), he's mine, I'll have him.
HARDCASTLE. And to crown all, Kate, he's one of the most bashful and reserved young fellows in all the world.
MISS HARDCASTLE. Eh! you have frozen me to death again. That word reserved has undone all the rest of his accomplishments. A reserved lover, it is said, always makes a suspicious husband.
HARDCASTLE. On the contrary, modesty seldom resides in a breast that is not enriched with nobler virtues. It was the very feature in his character that first struck me.
MISS HARDCASTLE. He must have more striking features to catch me, I promise you. However, if he is so young, so handsome, and so everything as you mention, I believe he'll do still. I think I'll have him.
HARDCASTLE. Ay, Kate, but there is still an obstacle. It's more than an even wager, he may not have you.
MISS HARDCASTLE. My dear papa, why will you mortify one so? Well, if he refuses, instead of breaking my heart at his indifference, I'll only break my glass for its flattery, set my cap to some newer fashion, and look out for some less difficult admirer.
HARDCASTLE. Bravely resolved. In the meantime I'll go prepare the servants for his reception; as we seldom see company, they want as much training as a company of recruits the first day's muster. (Exit)
MISS HARDCASTLE. (Aside) Lud, this news of papa's puts me all in a flutter. Young, handsome; these he put last, but I put them foremost. Sensible, good-natured; I like all that. but then, reserved and sheepish; that's much against him. Yet can't he be cured of his timidity by being taught to be proud of his wife? Yes, and can't Ibut I vow I'm disposing of the husband, before I have secured the lover.
Question: What does this passage indicate about the nature of love and comedy in the 18th century?