French Literature in the Eighteenth Century

French Literature in the Eighteenth Century

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1854 edition. Excerpt: ...our criticism, we may say, gentlemen, that the distribution of Montesquieu's work is not the most convenient. Analogous subjects are separated by great distances; some topics are attached to others by the use of the same terms, rather than by the force of the thought. When uniformity is not in the things, it must not be put in the words. We are surprised to find a great number of general observations on criminal legislation, placed in a book which treats of the particular character of legislation in monarchies, then observations of the same sort repeated somewhat farther on under a very different title. See, for example, book xii. on the Liberty of the Citizen. Sometimes the titles of books do not exactly announce their subject. Often chapters have but little connection with one another. We cannot tell whither the author means to conduct his reader, and are sometimes disposed to say, that, embarrassed by a great number of facts, anecdotes, and historical events, which he has collected, he knows not very well to what general idea to refer each of them, and gets out of the difficulty by bringing forward, whether good or bad, a general idea of the fact which he relates. The nature of the work, attention to perspicuity, and perhaps, even the interest in reading it were opposed to the cutting up of the subject, so to speak, into so many small pieces under the name of chapters. There is something contrary to the gravity of the subject, and to the very mode of thinking of Montesquieu--something like mockery in writing what follows: "Chapter xv., Sure methods of preserving the three principles. I shall not be able to make myself rightly understood till the reader has perused the four subsequent chapters." Chapter xvi. Voltaire, sometimes more

Product details

  • Paperback | 186 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 10mm | 340g
  • Miami Fl, United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236526317
  • 9781236526311