Southey’s Common-place book Volume 1

Southey's Common-place book Volume 1
Author: unknown
Format: Paperback
Pages: 330
Publisher: RareBooksClub.com (March 6, 2012)

This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1849 Excerpt: … for us to overlook the imbecility of human wisdom, and to extol the printing-pross as defying time. We sometimes consider that the art of printing not only secures the ever-enduring possession of our present stock of worldly learning, but that we have the certain power of adding to that store to an unlimited extent. This is a fallacious assumption, grounded upon error. Mankind can only ‘ darken counsel by words without knowledge;’ and the proud empire of intellect and science may be as easily destroyed, as those temporal dominions which were scattered to the winds of Heaven. ” Let it be granted, that no one conflagration could destroy the myriads of volumes which have become the records of the human mind; yet it does not necessarily follow that the inhabitants of Britain, a thousand, or even a hundred years hence, will be able to profit by the lore of their ancestors. Men may be in possession of tools, and at the same time be utterly unable to use them. The cultivation of the vastly diversified field of human acquirement, depends wholly upon the supply of labourers, and the capability which they have of reaping the harvest. Learning and science are wholly sustained by our artificial and perishable state of society. If, in consequence of a total subversion of our laws and institutions, property should be so divided that, instead of that gradation of ranks which is now established, there should be only a working class, degraded by poverty, debased by infidelity, without wealth to reward learning, or leisure to enjoy enquiry, all the attainments upon which we pride ourselves may ultimately disappear. Those who are now stimulated to study by the hopes of worldly advancement, would fall off; and that class by whom learning is pursued only for its own sake,…

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