An Essay Concerning Human Understanding Book III. - Of Words

An Essay Concerning Human Understanding Book III. - Of Words

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1882 edition. Excerpt: ... is visible, has no natural Connection with those other Ideas, that make up the complex one, named Mnrder. They have their Union and Combination only from the Understanding which unites them under one Name: But uniting them without any Rule, or Pattern, it cannot be but that the Signification of the Name, that stands for such voluntary Collections, should be often various in the Minds of different Men, who have scarce any standing Rule to regulate themselves, and their Notions by, in such arbitrary Ideas. 8. 'Tis true, common Usr, that is the Rule of Propriety, may be supposed here to Pmpfidy not afford some aid, to settle the Significa-a szqfident tion of Language; and it cannot be Remedy. denied, but that in some Measure it does. Common use regulates t/ze meaning of Words pretty well for common Conversation; but no Body having an Authority to establish the precise Signification of Words, nor determine to what Ideas any one shall annex them, common Use is not sufficient to adjust them to Philosophical Discourses; there being scarce any Name, of any very complex Idea (to say nothing of others, ) which, in common Use, has not a great Latitude, and which keeping within the-Bounds of Propriety, may'not be made the Sign of far different ideas. Besides, the Rule and Measure of Propriety it self being no where established, it is often matter of Dispute, whether this or that way of using a Word, be Propriety of Speech, or no. From all which, it is evident, that the Names of such kind of very complex Ideas, are naturally liable to this Imperfection, to be of doubtful and uncertain Signification; and even in Men, that have a Mind to understand one another, do not always stand for the same Idea in Speaker and Hearer. Tho' more

Product details

  • Paperback | 76 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 4mm | 154g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236984617
  • 9781236984616