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singles out part of one and part of another; and makes successive trials, if need be, until the want is satisfied.

Throughout the whole wide-ranging operation of adapting old forms of words to new meanings, this is essentially the process pursued. When all the elements requisite for a new combination are at hand, a volition alone is needed to make the selection and adaptation suited to the end in view. When there is not a sufficiency of forms within reach of the present recollection, the processes of intellectual recovery must be plied to bring up others, until the desired combination is attained. A voluntary effort is quite equal to the task of cutting down and making up, choosing and rejecting, sorting and re-sorting; the feeling of the end to be served is the criterion to judge by, and when this is satisfied, the volition ceases, the stimulus being no longer present. In all difficult operations for purposes or ends, the rule of 'trial and error' is the grand and final resort.

It would thus appear, that the first condition of verbal combinations for the expression of meaning, is a sufficient abundance of already formed combinations to choose from; in other words, the effect depends on the previous acquisitions, and on the associating forces whereby old forms are revived for the new occasion. If a complex meaning has to be expressed, every part of this meaning will revive, by contiguity and similarity, some former idea of an identical or like nature, and the language therewith associated; and out of the mixed assemblage of foregone phrases, the volition must combine a whole into the requisite unity, by trial and error. The more abundant and choice the material supplied from the past by the forces of intellectual recovery, the better will be the combination that it is possible for the mind to form by the selecting effort.

4. Let us next advert to some of the higher conditions that have to be attended to in making verbal combinations. Besides conveying a meaning, certain grammatical forms have to be observed; likewise, there are rhetorical properties or rules of good taste; a certain melody or cadence is sought to be



imparted; and, in poetic composition, the other qualities have to be attained under the restrictions of metre and rhyme. As a matter of course, the more numerous the requirements, the more difficult it is to satisfy them all; but the mode of proceeding is not altered in any essential point. When there are four or five different conditions to satisfy, the range of choice must be so much the wider. It is not enough that I can combine one form of words sufficient to express a certain meaning; I must be able from my verbal resources, recovered from the past, to construct several forms all equally good as regards meaning, so that I may be able to choose the one that satisfies the other conditions as well. In fact, the mind must possess, not one way of bringing out a certain effect, but a plurality of ways, and, out of this plurality, we fix upon the form that yields some second effect also desired. If a third effect is wanted, there must be a power of altering the combination already made, without losing those already gained; and for this end, we must be able to command a choice of equivalent phrases, in the room of those that are discordant as regards the new end. Thus it is that we must have a plurality of ways of expressing any given meaning, a plurality of forms of the same grammatical construction, a plurality of forms of the same rhetorical propriety, and a great variety of sequences observing the same cadence. Through such opulence of synonyms, we, at last, light upon a combination that satisfies all the requirements of the case. The refusal to combine in any instance can be met only by bringing forward new varieties of phrase, sometimes by the bond of meaning, at other times by the bond of grammar, of taste, or cadence. The more richly stored the mind is on any one of those particulars; that is, the greater the number of words associated with meanings, with

Southey's lines on the Fall of Lodore are an instance to show that a word-artist is a person that can bring up for any occasion a large variety of names for the same thing. It is by means of this abundance of past and recoverable phraseology, that the elaborate constructions of high composition are at all possible. The number of words that pass across the mind in forming a single couplet, may be a hundred times those actually made use of.

melodious cadences, and so forth, the more surely will that one condition be observed, whatever may become of the rest. If the tendency has been to lay up stores of expressions adapted to the conveyance of meaning, there will be no difficulty in matching a new meaning, although there may be a difficulty in getting the language to comply with the other requisities. If, on the other hand, through a great susceptibility to cadence, and by the mind being very much versed in melodious forms of speech, these forms be ready to occur in great abundance on all occasions, the flow of speech will be sure to be musical, but there will be no security for the fulfilment of the remaining conditions; and it may happen that both sense and grammar are neglected. Still, out of the abundance of choice presented by this acquisition, a patient mind may seize upon forms that shall not be devoid of any of the other important attributes. Or, if the first suggestion of the wording of a sentence is governed by associations with meaning, it will be easy for such a mind to make substitutions and alterations to meet the rhetorical condition.


5. We next proceed to exemplify constructiveness among our feelings and ideas.

Movement gives rise, as has been seen, to a variety of conscious states; some emotional, as the states of exercise and repose, and others with an almost exclusively intellectual character, as the feelings of pressure, space, and form. I shall here take a few examples of the second kind.

Having acquired a discriminative sensibility corresponding to some one resistance or pressure, we are enabled to construct the feeling of another differing in degree. I possess in my hand, after much practice, the engrained impression, say, of a pound weight; and I am commanded to construct, conceive, or imagine, the impression corresponding to three pounds. For this end, I must endeavour to fuse the two notions of one pound and of a triple, being formerly very


familiar with both in their separation; the notion of tripleness being derived from my experience of the fact in quantities of various kinds. By keeping my attention very much bent upon the two elements in question, I may succeed in conjuring up an impression compounded of both, and corresponding more or less to the actual feeling of a three-pound weight in my hand.

We are not unfrequently called upon to make efforts implying this sort of adaptation. If I have been accustomed to jump a ditch three feet wide, I can easily increase the notion for an effort of five feet. So in throwing objects to hit a mark; in which case, the constructiveness is first operated upon the pre-conceived idea of the action, before passing to the action itself.

The same power of changing degree may be put forth in reference to size and form. Having acquired the arm-sensibility to a sweep of one foot, we can construct a feeling corresponding to the sweep of two feet, or half a foot. We can also change a given area from one form to another. By fixing the mind upon the form of a circle, and the area of a square pane of glass, we can construct the conception of a round piece whose diameter is the side of the square.

The demand for certain Architectural proportions in buildings supposes an effort of the constructive faculty, applied to the muscular feelings of weight and resistance. By moving and lifting pieces of stone of small size, we acquire a certain estimate of the inertia and gravity of the material; an estimate that we extend constructively to large blocks, which we cannot directly manipulate. By multiplying known feelings of muscular expenditure, we conceive, perhaps inadequately, the weight of a solid stone lintel; and by similarly multiplying our experiences, on the small scale, of the tenacity of stone, wood, or iron, to resist pressure,―we pronounce upon the sufficiency of two props, of stone, of wood, or of iron, to sustain that lintel. Such is our feeling of Architectural fitness, or of the beautiful in support.

The emotional feelings of movement present a somewhat

different case. Under the two next heads, I shall adduce examples of emotional constructiveness in general.


6. Beginning with Organic sensibility, we might cite instances of constructiveness, in the endeavour to conceive pains or hurts of a different kind from any we have experienced. We can, as usual, make the change of degree; and, if the new state is either a combination, or a disjunction, of two already familiar to us, we may hope to succeed in evoking it.

The agreeable and joyous states of organic sensibility are very various. Each one of us has experience of some of them and, starting from these, we may be made to conceive others, if the description, that is, the method of compounding the known into the known, be clearly given. I may never have experienced the ecstasy of intoxication by opium, but if I have felt a number of states whose combination would amount to this effect, and if these are pointed out to me, I can, by an effort, recall and fuse them into one whole, so as to construct the feeling in question. This is by no means an easy undertaking to the generality of people; and the reason is, that the strong organic feelings are not readily recoverable at all times in their entire fulness. Some one leading element of the combination sought would require to be present in the reality, and then it might be possible to bring up others, and to form a new conception, by introducing the requisite modifications. But, on the other hand, this method has disadvantages; it is not easy to modify a strong and present reality by mere ideas; it would be more practicable to modify a mere recollection, which is itself ideal. The nonintellectual nature of the organic feelings, rendering them stubborn to recall, however powerful they be in the actual, is the great obstacle to our easily conceiving non-experienced varieties of them. A person may have enjoyed the pleasures of eating, in a sufficient number of forms to possess all the elements necessary for conceiving the most luxurious feast

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