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Literature, Conversations on General History, Editor of the fifth and
improved Edition of Adams's Elements of useful Knowledge, &c. &c.
Understanding is a well-spring of life to him that hath it.
Prov. xvi. 22.
FIRST AMERICAN, FROM THE LAST LONDON EDITION.
PUBLISHED BY A. H. MALTBY AND CO.
GRAMMAR, Logic, and Rhetoric are the handmaids . I LITERATURE, SCIENCE and Philosophy. The study of raminar is the study of LANGUAGE, and MEMORY is the facity which it chiefly employs and exercises. But in proecding towards the cultivation of TASTE and GENIUS, the acquisition of SCIENCE, and other ulterior objects of educaLion, the faculties most susceptible of improvement and relineụnent are t! , IMAGINATION and the UNDERSTANDING.
POLITE LITERATURE is addressed to the IMAGINATION ind the UNDERSTANDING in conjunction ; SCIENCE is addressed to the UNDERSTANDING alone.
With the view, therefore, of conducting youth from the mere exercise of memory, in the study of language, towards investigations on the powers of the understanding, in the regions of science, my GRAMMAR of RHETORIC and POLITE LITERATURE professes, by a proper gradation, to occupy the mind for some time, in those agreeable prospects exhibited to the imagination, and in those interesting speculations, also, addressed to the understanding, with which the arts of speaking and writing so amply abound.
But the most successful initiation and discipline into the researches of philosophy, are disquisitions about the objects with which we are familiar, and inquiries into the operations of the human mind, which we every day experience. And Logic has been justly styled the history of the human mind,
inasmuch as it traces the progress of our knowledge, from our first and simple perceptions, through all their different combinations, and all those numerous deductions, that result from variously comparing them one with another. For it is thus, only, that we are let into the frame and contexture of our own minds,--that we learn in what manner we ought to conduct our thoughts, in order to arrive at truth, and avoid error,--that we see how to build one discovery upon another, and by preserving the chain of reasoning uniform and unbroken, to pursue the relations of things through all their labyrinths and windings, and at length exhibit them to the view of the soul with all the advantages of light and conviction.
I, therefore, trust that this GRAMMAR OF LOGIC AND INTELLECTUAL PHILOSOPHY, will be found adequate to initiate youth in that history, and to resolve snch inquiries respecting the operations of their own minds, as they daily experience.
The plan of the volume is briefly as follows :
The First Book is devoted exclusively to the Definition of terms-Preliminary explanations-Enumeration of priniples which are taken for granted-Inquiries into the nature and value of hypotheses The doctrine of analogy-The proper means of knowing the operations of our own minds The difficulty of attending to these operations, with observations which may assist us in overcoming this difficulty, and, finally, A comprehensive division of the powers of the human mind.
The Second Book embraces Elements of Intellectual Philosophy, calculated to instruct youth in a knowledge of those principles to which the development of the mental faculties may be traced, and upon which we rest all our knowledge of legitimate logic. These elements comprise analyses of the faculties, Consciousness-Sensation-Perception--Atten
tion-Conception-Abstraction Association-- Memory-
The Third Book treats on Subjects of collateral Inquiry
The Fourth Book-The Grammar of Logic-unfolds the doctrines of Ideas-Propositions-Sophisms-Reasoning and Syllogism.
The Fifth Book concludes the volume, with a brief sketch of The Philosophy of Human Knowledge, as it is addressed to the MEMORY, the UNDERSTANDING, and the imAGINATION.
The foregoing arrangement was dictated by motives which the following observations pretend to explain.
In a work that treats of Logic and Intellectual Philosophy, and where selection is so imperiously required, there must be an equal necessity that certain fixed and intelligible principles should be pre-established. Nor, in handling subjects that have been controverted, and which, from their very nature, are ever liable to discussion, is there any thing of more consequence than agreement, at the out-set, about the language we use; for, when in philosophical disquisitions, we are once agreed respecting the signification of the words and terms we employ, it is unlikely that we shall differ about their application, provided we continue to use them in the sense which we had already affixed to them: hence the position and division of Book First.
A knowledge of the powers of the human mind, and of the science of Intellectual Philosophy, furnishes the proper basis upon which every other science is grounded, because the human faculties are the instruments by which alone invention in all the sciences can be accomplished.