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another, till it has become associated with an indefinite number, and has acquired the power of calling up an indefinite number of those ideas indifferently. What happens? It does call up an indefinite number of the ideas of individuals, as often as it occurs; and calling them up in close connexion, it forms them into a species of complex idea.

There can be no difficulty in admitting that association does form the ideas of an indefinite number of individuals into one complex idea; because it is an acknowledged fact. Have we not the idea of an army? And is not that precisely the ideas of an indefinite number of men formed into one idea? Have we not the idea of a wood, or a forest; and is not that the idea of an indefinite number of trees formed into one idea? These are instances of the concretion of synchronous ideas. Of the concretion of successive ideas indefinite in number, the idea of a concert is one instance, the idea of a discourse is another, the idea of the life of a man is another, the idea of a year, or of a century, is another, and so on. The idea, which is marked by the term " race of man," is complex in both ways, for it is not only the idea of the present generation, but of all successive generations.

It is also a fact, that when an idea becomes to a certain degree complex, from the multiplicity of the ideas it comprehends, it is of necessity indis

tinct. Thus the idea of a figure of one thousand sides is incurably indistinct; the idea of an army is also indistinct; the idea of a forest, or the idea of a mob. And one of the uses of language, is, to enable us, by distinct marks, to speak with distinctness of those combinations of ideas, which, in themselves, are too numerous for distinctness. Thus, by our marks of numbers, we can speak, with the most perfect precision, of a figure not only of a thousand, but of ten thousand sides, and deduce its peculiar properties; though it is as impossible, by the idea, as by the sensations, to distinguish one of a thousand, from one of a thousand and one, sides.

Thus, when the word man calls up the ideas of an indefinite number of individuals, not only of all those to whom I have individually given the name, but of all those to whom I have in imagination given it or imagine it will ever be given, and forms all those ideas into one, it is evidently a very complex idea, and, therefore, indistinct; and this indistinctness has, doubtless, been the main cause of the mystery, which has appeared to belong to it. That this, however, is the process, is an inevitable result of the laws of association.

It thus appears, that the word, man, is not a word having a very simple idea, as was the opinion of the Realists; nor a word having no idea at all, as was that of the Nominalists; but a

word calling up an indefinite number of ideas, by the irresistible laws of association, and forming them into one very complex, and indistinct, but not therefore unintelligble, idea.

It is thus to be seen, that appellatives, or general names, are significant, in two modes. We have frequently had occasion to recur to the mode in which the simple ideas of sensation are associated or concreted, so as to form what we call the complex ideas of objects. Thus, I have the complex ideas of this pen, this desk, this room, this man, this handwriting. The simple ideas, so concreted into a complex idea in the case of each individual, are one thing signified by each appellative; and this complex idea of the individual, concreted with another, and another of the same kind, and so on without end, is the other of the things which are signified by it. Thus, the word rose, signifies, first of all, a certain odour, a certain colour, a certain shape, a certain consistence, so associated as to form one idea, that of the individual; next, it signifies this individual associated with another, and another, and another, and so on; in other words, it signifies the class.

The complexity of the idea, in the latter of the two cases, is distinguished by a peculiarity from that of the former. In applying the name to the odour, and colour, and so on, of the rose, concreted into one idea, the name is not the name of each of the sensations taken singly, only of all

taken together. In applying the name to rose, and rose, and rose, without end, the name is at once a name of each of the individuals, and also the name of the complex association which is formed of them. This too, is itself a peculiar association. It is not the association of a name with a number of particulars clustered together as one; but the association of a name with each of an indefinite number of particulars, and all those particulars associated back again with the


This peculiarity may require a little further explanation. It is well known, that between an idea, and the name which stands for it, there is a double association. The name calls up the idea in close association, and the idea calls up the name in equally close association; and this they have a tendency to do in a series of repetitions; the name bringing up the idea, the idea the name, and then the name the idea again, and so on, for any number of times. This is, in great part, the way in which language is learned, as we observe by the repetitions to which children are prone. And this, indeed, is what, in many cases, we mean when we speak of dwelling upon an idea. It is a familiar observation, that no idea dwells in the mind, or can; for it has innumerable associations, and whatever association occurs, of course, dis-. places that by which it is introduced. But if the idea which thus displaces it, again calls it up, and

these two go on calling up one another, that which is the more interesting of the two appears to be that which alone is occupying the attention. This alternation is frequent between the name and the idea.

Now, then, let the word, man, be supposed, first of all, the name of an individual; it becomes associated with the idea of the individual, and acquires the power of calling up that idea. Let us next suppose it applied to one other individual, and no more: it becomes associated with this other idea; and it now has the power of calling up either. The following is, then, a very natural train:-1, The name occurs; 2, the name suggests the idea of one of the individuals; 3, that idea suggests the name back again; 4, the name suggests the idea of the second individual. All this may pass, and, after sufficient repetition, does pass, with the rapidity of lightning. Suppose, now, that the name is associated, with the ideas not of two individuals, but of many; the same train may go on; the name exciting the idea of one individual, that idea the name, the name another individual, and so on, to an indefinite extent; all in that small portion of time of which the mind takes no account. The combination thus formed stands in need of a name. And the name, man, while it is the name of every individual included in the process, is also the

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