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CHAP. II. THE LAW OF NATURE,
Its authority--Limits to its authority--Obligations
resulting from the Rights of Nature-Incorrect
CHAP. III. UTILITY,
Obligations resulting from Expediency-Limits to
CHAP. VI. THE IMMEDIATE COMMUNICATION OF
THE WILL OF GOD,
Conscience - Its nature-Its authority-Review of
opinions respecting a moral sense-Bishop Butler
- Lord Bacon-Lord Shaftesbury-Watts-Vol.
taire-Locke--Southey-Adam Smith - Paley -
Rousseau-Milton--Judge Hale-Marcus Antoni.
nus - Epictetus -- Seneca-Paul-That every hu.
man being possesses a moral law-Pagans-Gra.
dations of light - Prophecy - The immediate
communication of the Divine Will perpetual - Of
national vices: Infanticide : Duelling--0f savage
Section I. CONSCIENCE, ITS NATURE AND AUTHORITY, 15
REVIEW OF OPINIONS RESPECTING A MORAL SENSE, 17
THE IMMEDIATE COMMUNICATION OF THE WILL OF Gor, 20
Complexity of Law--Professional Untruths-Den
fences of Legal Practice-Effects of Legal Practice :
Seduction : Theft : Peculation--Pleading--The
III. “ POLITICAL POWER IS RIGHTLY EXERCISED ONLY
WHEN IT SUBSERVES THE WELFARE OF THE COMMU-
Political Liberty the right of a community-Public
CHAP. IV. RELIGIOUS LIBERTY,
Civil disabilities-- Interference of the Magistrate-
Pennsylvania, Toleration -- America - Creeds
Religious Tests—“The Catholic Question."
CHAP. V. CIVIL OBEDIENCE,
Expediency of Obedience-Obligations to Obedience
- Extent of the Duty-Resistance to the Civil Power
--Obedience may be withdrawn-King James-
America-Non-compliance -- Interference of the
Magistrate-Oaths of Allegiance.
CHAP. VI. FORMS OF GOVERNMENT,
Some general principles-Monarchy-- Balance of in.
terests and passions-Changes in a constitution-
Popular government- The world in a state of im-
provement-Character of legislators.
CHAP. VII, POLITICAL INFLUENCE-PARTY-MI.
Influence of the Crown-Effects of influence-In.
congruity of public notions-Patronage- Ameri.
can States-Dependency on the mother country-
Party--- Ministerial Union-"A party man"- The
council board and the senate -- - Resignation of
CHAP. VIII. BRITISH CONSTITUTION,
Influence of the Crown-House of Lords-Candidates
for a peerage-Sudden creation of peers--- The
bench of Bishops--Proxies-- House of Commons
- The wishes of the People-Extension of the
elective franchise-Universal suffrage-Frequent
elections-Modes of election-Annual parliaments
-Qualification of voters and representatives-of
choosing the clergy-Duties of a representative-
Systematic opposition--Placemen and pensioners
CHAP. IX. MORAL LEGISLATION,
Duties of a Ruler-The two objects of moral legis.
lation-- Education of the People-Bible Society-
Lotteries- Public-houses-- Abrogation of bad laus
--Primogeniture-Accumulation of property.
CHAP. X. ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE,
Substitution of justice for law_Court of Chancery
-Of fixed laws—Their inadequacy- They increase
litigation -- Delays --- Expenses -- Informalities
Precedents-- Verdicts - Legal proof-Courts of
arbitration - An extended system of arbitration
Arbitration in criminal trials -- Constitution of
courts of arbitration-Their effects-Some altera.
tions sucrested--Technicalities–Useless Luws.
attack - Preservation of property-Much resis-
CHAP. XII. OF THE PROPER ENDS OF PUNISH.
The three Objects of Punishment:-Reformation
of the Offender :-Example :-Restitution-Pun.
CHAP. XIII. PUNISHMENT OF DEATH,
Quakers in America and Ireland-Colonization of
Pennsylvania, Unconditional reliance on Provi.
dence Recapitulation-General Observations.
The primitive church-Tho established church of
CHAP. XV. THE RELIGIOUS ESTABLISHMENTS OF
ENGLAND AND IRELAND,
The English Church the offspring of the Reforma-
tion, the Church establishment, of Papacy-Alliance
Of the two causes of our deviations from Rectitude—want of Knowledge and want of Virtue—the latter is undoubtedly the more operative. Want of Knowledge is, however, sometimes a cause; nor can this be any subject of wonder when it is recollected in what manner many of our notions of right and wrong are acquired. From infancy, every one is placed in a sort of moral school, in which those with whom he associates, or of whom he hears, are the teachers. That the learner in such a school will often be taught amiss, is plain.-So that we want information respecting our duties. To supply this information is an object of Moral Philosophy, and is attempted in the present work.
When it is considered by what excellences the existing treatises on Moral Philosophy are recommended, there can remain but one reasonable motive for adding yet another-the belief that these treatises have not exhibited the Principles and enforced the Obligations of Morality in all their perfection and purity. Perhaps the frank expression of this belief is not inconsistent with that deference which it becomes every man to feel when he addresses the public; because, not to have entertained such a belief, were to have possessed no reason for writing. The desire of supplying the deficiency, if deficiency there be; of exhibiting a true and authoritative Standard of Rectitude, and of estimating the moral character of human actions by an appeal to that Standard, is the motive which has induced the composition of these Essays.
In the First Essay the writer has attempted to investigate the Principles of Morality. In which term is here included, first, the Ultimate Standard of Right and Wrong ; and, secondly, those Subordinate Rules to which we are authorized to apply for the direction of our conduct in life. In these investigations he has been solicitous to avoid any approach to curious or metaphysical enquiry. He has endeavoured to act upon the advice given by Tindal, the Reformer, to his friend John Frith : “ Pronounce not or define of hid secrets, or things that neither help nor hinder whether it be so or no; but stick you stifly and stubbornly in earnest and necessary things.”
In the Second Essay these Principles of Morality are applied in the determination of various questions of personal and relative duty. In making this application, it has been far from the writer's desire to deliver a system of Morality. Of the unnumbered par