Page images

In vain : not SÉNSE, but JUDGMENT 'tis miftakes,

And fansy'd Things for real Objects cakes. 480 He, that says NOTHING can be known, o'erthrows

His own Opinion: for he NOTHING knows.
So knows nor that: What need of long Dispute ?
These MAXIMS kill themselves, themselves confute:

But NOTES. the Sense will be plain and easy ciat, nihil fciri, tanquam perHe goes on, that the Poet has ceptum profitetur & cognitum: taught,v.467.non addere opinatus ergo aliquid fciri poteft. Lacanimi, not to add the Judgment tantius, lib. 3. de fálfa sapientiâ, of the Mind : For we are de- cap. 6. And for this Reason ceiv'd in all those Examples, Metrodorus of Chios, in the which he but now enumerated ; Lucullus of Cicero, says, Nego and that too, even tho'we were fcire nos, fciamus ne aliquid an forewarn'd of it : for it is indeed nihil sciamus; ne id ipsum quidifficult, not to add the Opini- dem nescire, aut scire nos nec on and Affent of the Mind to omnino fitne aliquid , an nihil Things imparted to us by the fit: I deny that we know wheSenses.

ther we know any thing, or know 478. Judgment, &c.] Opinatus nothing; nay, that we either Animi, the Opinion of the Mind, know, or not know even this, of which Epicurus, writing to whether any thing be, or nothing Herodotus, gives this Definition, be. But such Men cannot be κίνησις εν ημίν αυτοίς συνημμών | difputed with, who know που felú TIVI CartaSixÑ ÉTI Corñ Alean what is true, what false, what Véxod.

certain, what doubtful, nor what 480. He that, &c.] In these it is to know, or not to know; 10. v. the Poet takes Occasion to

and who glory in their Ignorance. fall upon the modern Aca- But Lucretius overthrows this demicks, of whom Arcefilas Sophism at first attack : For, was Authour, and introduc'd, says he, if you know for certain says Lactantius, an incoherent that Nothing can be known, Kind of Philosophy : for some- you know, at least that you thing must of Neceflity, be know Nothing. Socrates, whom known, otherwise it could not

the ancient Academicks follow'd, be known, that Nothing can be was more wary, and said only: known: For if you know No- This one Thing I know, that I thing at all, then how can you

know nothing. know that Nothing can be 482.

-What need of long known? But if it be known, Dispute ? that Nothing can be known, These Maxims kill themselves, then 'tis false to say, that No themselves confute.] thing can be known. Arcefilas This may perhaps in some meaintroduxit genus philosophiæ fure express the imply'd mean. agusatov, quod Latinè inftabile ing of Lucretius, tho' the Words sive inconftans poffumus dicere.

of the Text be very different ; Ut enim nihil fciendum fit, aliquid scire neceffe eft. Nam fi Hunc igitur contra mittam con

tendere causam, omnino nihil fcias, idipfum nihil sciri posle tolletur. Itaque Qui capite ipfe fuo inftituit vequi velut fententiæ loco pronun

Itigia retro.

[ocr errors]

But grant this might be known, and that he knew; 485 Yet lince he has discover'd nothing true:

Whar Mark, or what Criterion then can show,
Or cell, what ʼtis TO KNOW, or NOT TO KNOW?
Or how could he, what TRUTH,what FALSEHOOD,learn?

How, what was Doubt, what CERTAINTY, discern? 490

From SENSE all TRUTH and CERTAINTY infer
In vain some strive to prove, that SENSE can err:


NO TE S. All the Copies acknowledge, For we must alway give equal, these two Verses : But Lambinus or no Credit at all to the Senses. fufpects them not to be genuine, Therefore we ought to believe and at length reads,

the Senses infallible, and to trust

only to what they represent and Hunc igitur contra quidnam con- lay before us. Now the Antient tendere curem?

Academicks held the Mind to be

the sole Arbiter and Judge of all Faber however is of another Opi- Things : but that the Senses are nion, and says; this Passage is dull and heavy, and cannot very plain and elegant. They throughly perceive the Things who walk on their Hands, with that are subject to them; for their Head prone to the Earth, some are so small, as not to be as moft Mouncebank's Boys do, visible to the Eye, others so can go no otherwise than back-swift, as never to seem the same wards : Which you may easily nor like what they were beapply to explain the Meaning fore. But Epicurus taught of Lucretius. Thus Faber. Ler Keythera d'aubetas e vou ta's ai. us then apply it to that purpose, Jhons, of arou Surópefvor and let his' Meaning be this. Ta's Sienizžou That the Senses There is no disputing with a

are the Criterions of Truth, and Man, who perverts all things as that it is not possible to confute 'tis certain the New Academicks

them. did.

But he, that would establish a 490. From Sense, &c.] In these Criterion, is certain to have the 25. V. he attacks the Antient Aca- Sceptick for his Enemy; and, demicks, and establishes the Sen- what is more uncomfortable, to fes as the fole Arbitratours and be unable to confute him: He Judges of Truth. For, says he, is an Animal uncapable of Conwhatever can correct and confute viction;his Folly may be expos’d: what is false, muft of necessity but to endeavour to bring him be the Criterion of Truth: And to Sense and Reason is as wild a this is done by the Senses only. Defign, But what can correct and confute the Senses? Can Reason? Reason it self intirely depends upon In campum doceat parentem cur

- ut fiquis. A fellum the Senses : Shall one Sense con

rere fræenis. vince and confute another? This can never be ; for each Sense has As would be his, who went to its proper Objects ; nor does it

train an Ass or know what the other Tobey the Bridle, and to run a Senses do : Shall the same Sense

Race. then correct it self? Impossible :




For that, which would convince, which would oppose
The Senses, must be surer far than those :

Now NOTES. Pyrrho would venture on a Jothers “ increase the Number : Precipice, in $pight of his Sen- but one will comprehend them. ses : and 'tho' the more Sober are all, and that is enough to ruine careful of their Lives, yet they every Science in the World. 'Tis are as Proof against Convicti- taken from the Variety of Opions ; a perverse Sort of Crea- nions about the famé Thing : tures, born to contradict, and for there can be no Appeal for a instructed in all the studied Decision, because he that would Methods of Foolery : Scepticism, judge, acts by the fame Faculties according to their own Definiti-that those do, that are at Serife, ori, is, d úropeis d Vidutixú pouro- and fo he, that loses the Cause, poliwr y vos uifiwr its Effect is will be ftill diffatisfy'd, and to Freedom from Affent, and its invert Seneca, Citius inter , HoEnd, Serenity. The Principle ofrologia quam Philofophos convethe Sect is,' warri nóyw rózor "loor nit, Clocks will ree sooner cixe Jouyet this is not propos’d

than Philosophers. This Diffe

rises from the various as a Dogma, for that is an Affent; Tempers of Mens Bodies, the τινί πράγματι των ασ' τας επισή- Dirportions of their Organs, and uas Šutruévwr. nor is it laid Situation of the Object Thus down as fo in it self, and a real Melancholy and Sanguine take Truth; but only in Appearance: different Notices from the fame and therefore Émpiricus prefa- Impreffion, Young and old, ces his Discourse with these sick and Healthy; Drunk and Words, wegelt wr to aceizde Sober do not agree; nor is it vòs TV nexQuoouflar 214 sbalenough to answer, that some of

ws TWS"exova odvics. Ka- these are indispos’d, whilst the Bones abyw. And yet they fol

others are in Order; for fince low their natural Appetite for

that Change is nothing but an their Preservation, seek the good demand a Reason why such and

Alteration of the Humours, they and profitable, and fly the bad such a Disposition should be and hurtful according to Appearance; for they do not deny but more capable of receiving 'Imthat they may be warm and cool, presses from Objects that are aand are capable of Pain and greeable to the Nature of the Pleasure ; yeč none, like a Dogo they observe, that the Complex

Things, than another: Besides, matist, afirms it is asitoexov, ions of Animals are various, and but the autą, pouvorefuor wy ma'los the Texture of their Örgans difdzaszémet co wts adoša'sws. ferent : so that there can not be The Law of their Countrey is the same Refractions in "their the Rule of Just and Right, and Eyes, the same Windings in their the Custom of the Nation de- Ears'; and therefore not the same termines their Religion. Notices from the same Objects :

- This is the face of a Sceptick, And indeed, did the Scepticks as it is drawn by his own Hand proceed no farther than Sensible and fince we find him condemnd Qualities, we must acknowledge to Diffidence, there are some them to be very happy in the Reasons fure of this tīnfettled- Discovery; for 'tis certain, that ness, this ĉTOX". and some pro those are Phantasms alone; and pose ten, others fifteen, and they that think Honey sweet,



[ocr errors]

Now what is more to be believ'd than SENSE? 495

Is false and erring REASON, rais'd from thence ?
Errours in Parent SENSE, can REASON fhow?
Errours, which she from SENSE alone can know?
And thus if Sense be false, chen Reason too is so.

What, can the EARS convince the Eyes? Can those goo Convince the HAND, the PALATE, or the Nose ?

Tell them whene'er they err, whene'er they miss,
And give false Notions? A fond Fancy this!
For each a proper Use, and Power enjoys;

A proper Object ev'ry SENSE imploys.
Sos Thus HEAT, and COLD, and other Qualities

Affect the Touch, while Colours strike the EYES;
Invades another's Right, usurps his Throne;

All live at Peace, contented with their own. 510 Therefore, from what the other Senses (hew,

In vain we feek to prove one Sense untrue ;
Or from it felf.
For still we must an equal Credit give

To each; and all must equally believe.
515 Tis Truth, whate'er the SENSES do declare:
+ Tho' REASON 'can nor rell thee, why a SQUARE
Should feem à perfect Round, when seen from far.

Better NOT E S. and they that think it bitter, Πάς ο λόγG- από των αισθήσεων have equally true Representati- úeru', mãoe je od nois d'aoz ons of the object, because the sir. For all Reafon depends uplittle Parts of Honey act upon on the Senses : but every Sense is both their Organs, according to void of Reason. their Figure. Hence they proceed to deny

499. What, can, &c.] Epicuall first Principles, and so are

rus in Laertius fays, OÚteis so put beyond all Poflibility of Molozevis ou Duos duorogeri Site Conviction ; for ftill demand-ayžou duva) 2 codévelser, ing Proof after Proof, they muft έτε η ανομοιογενής και ανομοιογενή, Feel on to Eternity without Sa-των αυτών κρυλικοί. For tisfation : But this is too long it is not possible, that a sense of a Journey, and too fruitless a the fame Kind should confute a Trouble to pursue, and so we Sense of the like Kind with itself, must take our Leaves of these because of the Equality of their contradiding Animals, who have Strength and Power : Neicher no other Reason to deny the can one of an unlike Kind conclear Light of Science but because fute another of an unlike kind : fome Mens Eyes are too weak to Because the Senses of a different look feddy upon it.

Kind have not the Power nor 495. Rais'd from thence. ) Means to judge of them. Thus too Epicurus in Laertius, l' 515. 'Tis Truth, &c.] But fince



Better assign a false, than this Pretence

Should overthrow the CERTAINTY of SENSE; 520 Question its Truth: rather than thar fhould fall,

On which depends our Safety, Life, our All,
For now, not only Reason is oʻerthrown,
Unless we trust our SENSE, bur Life is gone:

For how can Man avoid the Bad, or choose 525 What's GOOD for Life, unless they follow those

Therefore those pompous Reasons, fome afford
Against our Sense, are empty and absurd,

Bur lastly, as in BUILDING, if the LINE

Be not exact and strait ; the Rule decline; 530 Or Level false, how vain is the Design!

Uneven, an ill-thap'd, and cott'ring Wall
Must rise ; this Part must fink, that Part must fall;
Because the RULES were false thać fashion'd all.

Thus Reason's Rules are falfe, if all commence, 535 And rise from failing, and from erring SENSE.''T

But now, my Muse, how proper OBJECT$ please
The other SENSES, Ging: 'tis told with Ease:

Firft NOTES. we are often deceiv'd by the Sen-, 8. v, he concludes this long Difses; for Example, a square Tow- putation concerning Sight. We eř, seen at a great distance, seems examine all things, says he, by round, what are we co do? Lu- the Truth of the Senses, and crerius answers in these 12. v. therefore if they are erroneous, That 'tis better to have nothing farewell to all Certainty and to do with thofe Problems, nor Knowledge. Nor should we err concern our felves about them : less than a Carpenter, who works Or to assign any Cause of them, by, a falfe Rule, Line, and Le rather than distrust the Certain | vel. ty of the Senses ; on which our 536. But now, &c.] Hitherto Safety, our All, our Life de- he has been arguing of Sight and -pends : For without the Senses of Images. Now to v: 621. he we could not choose nor discern treats of Sound, and of Heargood Things from bad, nor ing, which certainly, next to healthful from hurtful : Nay, Sight, deserves the Preference benor avoid Precipices, Flames, or fore any of the other Senfes other Things of the like nature. fince the Ear; the Instrument of But here the Poet chiefly lathes Hearing, is the Entrance or Inthe Scepticks, of whose Founder, let of Voice and Sound, and Pyrrhö, Diogenes Laertius fays, consequently of Knowledge and Muddy érlega ósro, under our Discipline. Firft therefore in 18716uevo

wr, a rara vpisamis- these 11. v, he teaches, what var, amareas, ei tuzol, axpugre'she, when any Sound reaches the ay xuras, Oro Tota Tang hendir Ears, and, by means of its Bo, τους αιθήσεσιν επιθρίτων.

dy, moves and affects that Sense, $28. But lastly, &c. In thefe which is appointed to perceive it.


[ocr errors]
« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »