the law is more honoured than a high-priest who is not. Among Muhammedans, also, great respect is shown to men of learning. Knowledge, the Prophet said, “ lights the way to Heaven ”—“He dies not who gives life to learning.”—“With knowledge the servant of God rises to the heights of goodness and to a noble position "_" The ink of the scholar is more holy than the blood of the

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martyr." ;

In Christianity the knowledge of truth became a necessary requirement of salvation. But here, as in the East, the truth which alone was valued was religious truth. All knowledge that was not useful to salvation was, indeed, despised, and science was regarded not only as valueless, but as sinful. “ The wisdom of this world is foolishness with God.”5 If it happened that any one gave himself to letters, or lifted up his mind to the contemplation of the heavenly bodies, he passed instantly for a magician or a heretic. So also every mental disposition which is essential to scientific research was for centuries stigmatised as offensive to the Almighty; it was a sin to doubt the opinions which had been instilled in childhood before they had been examined, to notice any objection to those opinions, to resolve to follow the light of evidence wherever it might lead.? Yet we are told, even by highly respectable writers, that the modern world owes its scientific spirit to the extreme importance which Christianity


i Montefiore, Hibbert Lectures on the Religion of the Ancient Hebrews, P 495. Deutsch, Literary Remains, p. 35.

Chapelain, Di la lecture des vieux romans, p. 20.

? Lane, Manners and Customs of the Modern Egyptians, p. 301 59:

* Ameer Ali, Ethics of Islam, pp. 47, 49.

* Gibbon, Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, ii. 185. von Eicken, Geschichte der mittelalterlichen Weltan. schauung, pp. 128-130, 589 599.

si Corinthians, iii. 19. Cf. Lactantius, Divina Institutiones, iii. 3 (Migne, Patrologice cursus, vi. 354 549.); St. Augustine, De Civitate Dei, viii. 10 (Migne, xli. 234).

As late as the middle of the seventeenth century a powerful party was rising in England who said ihat all learning was unfavourable to religion, and that it was sufficient for everyone to be acquainted with his mother-tongue alone (Twells, Life of Pocock, p. 176). The Duke de Saint Simon, who in 1721 and 1722 was the French ambassador in Madrid, states (Mémoires, xxxv. 209) that in Spain science was a crime, and ignorance and stupidity the tues.

1 Lecky, Rationalism in Europe, ji.

87 sq.

assigned to the possession of truth, of the truth. According to M. Réville, “ it was the orthodox intolerance of the Church in the Middle Ages which impressed on Christian society this disposition to seek truth at any price, of which the modern scientific spirit is only the application. The more importance the Church attached to the profession of the truth to the extent even of considering involuntary error as in the highest degree a damnable crime—so much the more the sentiment of the immense value of this truth arose in the general persuasion, along with a resolve to conquer it wherever it was felt not to be possessed. How otherwise,” M. Réville asks, “can we explain that science was not developed and has not been pursued with constancy, except in the midst of Christian societies? "2 This statement is characteristic of the common tendency to attribute to the influence of the Christian religion almost anything good which may be found among Christian nations. But, surely, the patient and impartial search after hidden truth, for the sake of truth, which constitutes the essence of scientific research, is not congenial to, but the very opposite of, that ready acceptance of a revealed truth for the sake of eternal salvation, which was insisted upon by the Church. And what about that singular love of abstract knowledge which flourished in ancient Athens, where Aristotle declared it a sacred duty to prefer truth to everything else, and Socrates sacrificed his life on its altar? It seems that the modern scientific spirit is only a revival and development of a mental disposition which was for ages

a suppressed by the persecuting tendencies of the Church and the extreme contempt for learning displayed by the barbarian invaders and their descendants. Even when they had settled in the countries which they had conquered, the

i Ritchie, Natural Rights, p. 172. Cf. Kuenen, Hibbert Lectures on National Religions and Universal Religions, p. 290.

2 Réville, Prolegomena of the History of Religions, p. 226.

Aristotle, Ethica Nicomachea, i. 6. 1. Prof. Ritchie argues (op. cit. p. 172

sq.) that a devotion to truth as such was in the ancient world known only to a few philosophers. Prof. Fowler is probably more correct in saying (Principles of Morals, ii. 45, 220 sq., ; Progressive Morality, p. 114) that it was more common amongst the Greeks than amongst ourselves.




Teutons would not permit their children to be instructed in any science, for fear lest they should become effeminate and averse from war ;' and long afterwards it was held that a nobleman ought not to know letters, and that to write and read was a shame to gentry.”

The regard for knowledge springs in the first instance from the love of it. As Aristotle said, “all men are by nature desirous of knowledge." But this feeling is not equally strong, nor equally deep, in all. The curiosity of savages, however great it often may be, has chiefly reference to objects or events which immediately concern their welfare or appear to them alarming, or to trifles which attract attention on account of their novelty. If their curiosity were more penetrating, they would no longer remain savages ; an extended desire of knowledge leads to civilisation. But curiosity or love of knowledge, whether in savage or civilised men, is not resolvable merely into views of utility; as Dr. Brown observed, we feel it without reflecting on the pleasure which we are to enjoy or the pain which we are to suffer. When highly developed, it drives men to scientific investigations even though no practical benefits are expected from the results. This devotion to truth for its own sake, pure and disinterested as it is, has a singular tendency to excite regard and admiration in everyone who has come under its influence. From the utilitarian point of view it has been defended on

1 Procopius, De bello Gothorum, i. 4 Murdoch, Ethnological Results 2. Robertson, History of the Reign of of the Point Barrow Expedition,' in Charles V. i. 234. Millingen, op. cit. Ann. Rep. Bur. Ethn. ix. 42 (Eskimo). i. 22 sq. n. +

Krasheninnikoff, History of Kam? Alain Chartier, quoted by Sainte- schatka, p. 177. Anderson, Mandalay Palaye, op. cit. ii. 104. See also De la to Momien, p. 151 (Kakhyens). ForeYoué, Discours politiques et militaires, man, Philippine Islands, p. p. 238 ; Lyttleton, Life of Henry II. (Tagalog natives of the North). Bock, ii. 246 sq. The ignorance of the Head Hunters of Borneo, p. 209 medieval clergy has been somewhat (Dyaks). Forbes, A Naturalist's exaggerated by Robertson (op. cit. pp. Wanderings in the Erstern Archi21, 22, 278 sq.). Even in the dark pelago, p. 320 (natives of Timor-laut). ages it was not a very uncommon thing Dieffenbach, Travels in New Zealand, for the clergy to be able to read and write (Maitland, The Dark Ages, p. 16 5 Dugald Stewart, op. cit. ii. 336. 594.):


Brown, Lectures on the Philosophy of 3 Aristotle, Metaphysica, i. 1. I, p. the Human Mind, lec. 67, p. 451. 980. Cf. Cicero, De officiis, i. 4.

ii. 108.

the ground that, on the whole, every truth is in the long run useful and every error harmful, and that we can never exactly tell in advance what benefits may accrue even from a knowledge which is apparently fruitless

. But it seems that our love of truth is somewhat apt to mislead our moral judgment. When duly reflecting on the matter, we cannot help making a moral distinction between him who pursues his studies merely from an instinctive craving for knowledge, and him who devotes his life to the search of truth from a conviction that he may thereby promote human welfare.




There are many acts, forbearances, and omissions, the offensiveness of which mainly or exclusively springs from men's desire to be respected by their fellow-men and their dislike of being looked down upon.

Foremost among these are attacks upon people's honour and good name. A man's honour may be defined as the moral worth he possesses in the eyes of the society of which he is a member, and it behoves other persons to acknowledge this worth and, especially, not to detract from it by imputing to him, on insufficient grounds, such behaviour as is generally considered degrading. The censure to which he is subject or the contempt in which he is held may no doubt affect his welfare in various ways, but it is chiefly painful as a violation of his personal dignity. Hence the duty of respecting a man's honour is on the whole contained in the more comprehensive obligation of showing deference, in words and deeds, for his feeling of self-regarding pride.

This feeling, or at least the germ of it, is found already in some of the lower animals. Among “highlife " dogs, says Professor Romanes, “wounded sensibilities and loss of esteem are capable of producing much keener suffering than is mere physical pain.” A reproachful word or look from any of his friends made a

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