Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

i.e. they appear universal and necessary; or, of a vessel, which gives its own form to the in other words, they admit of no exception, liquor with which it is filled. Thus, in all and their converse is impossible. Ideas which our knowledge a posteriori, there is something we derive from experience have 110 such cha- a priori derived from our faculty of knowledge. racters. We can suppose, that what we have all the operations of our minds; all the imscen, or felt, or heard once, we may see, feel, pressions which our external and internal senses or hear again ; but we do not perceive any im- receive and retain, are brought into effect by possibility in its being otherwise. For in- the conditions, the forins, which exist in us by stance; a house is on fire in my view : I am the pure ideas a priori, which alone render all certain of this fact; but it affords me no ge- our other knowledge certain. : neral or necessary knowledge. It is altogether Time and space are the two essential forms a posteriori; the materials are furnished by the of the mind : the former for impressions reindividual impression which I have received; ceived by the internal sense ; the second for and that impression might have been very dif- those received by our external senses. Time ferent. But if I take twice two balis, and is necessary in all the immediate (perhaps intulearn to call twice two four, I shall be imme- itive) perceptions of objects; and space in all diately convinced, that any two bodies what- external perceptions. Extension is nothing real ever, when added to any two other bodies, but as the form of our sensations. If extenwill constantly make the sum of bodies four. sion were kuown to us only by experience, it Experience has indeed afforded me the oppor- would then be possible to conceive that there tunity of acquiring this knowledge ; but it has might be sensible objects without space. It is not given it to me ; for how could experience by means of the form space, that we are enabled, prove

to me that this truth will never vary? a priori, to attribute to external objects impeExperience must always be limited ; and, there- netrability, divisibility, mobility, &c.; and it is fore, cannot teach us that which is necessary by means of the form time that we attribute to and universal. It is not experience which dis- any thing duration, succession, simultaneity, percovers to us, that we shall have the surface of manence, &c. Arithmetic is derived from the the whole pyramid by multiplying its base by form of our internal sense ; and geometry from the third part of its height ; or that two pa- that of our external. Our understanding colrallel lines, extended in infinitum, shall never lects the ideas received by the impressions made meet.

on our ergans of sense, confers on these ideas All the truths of pure mathematics are, in unity by a particular force a priori; and thereby, the language of Kant, a priori. Thus, that a forms the representation of each object. Thus, straight line is the shortest of all possible lines a man is successively struck with the impresbetween two fixed points; that the three angles sion of all the parts which form a particular of a triangle are always equal to two right garden. His understanding unites these imangles; that we have the same sum, whether pressions, or the ideas resulting from them; we add five to seven or seven to five; and that and in the unity produced by that unifying act, we have the same remainder when we subtract it acquires the idea of the garden. If the obfive from ten as when we subtract ten from jects which produce the impressions afford also fifteen-are so many propositions, which are the matter of the ideas, then the ideas are emtrue a priori. Pure knowledge a priori, is that pyric ; but if the objects only unfold the forms which is absolutely without any mixture of of the thought, the ideas are a priori. The act experience. Two and two men make fcur men, of the understanding which unites the percepis a truth, of which the knowledge is a priori; tions of the various parts of an object into the but it is not PURE knowledge, because the perception of one whole, is the same with that truth is particular. The ideas of substance, and which unites the attribute with its subject. of cause and effect, are a priori; and when they Judgments are divided into two species ; anaare separated from the objects to which they lytic and synthetic. An analytic judgment is refer (we suppose from this or that particular that in which the attribute is the mere deobject), they form, in the language of Kant, velopement of the subject, and is found by the void ideas (or, in the language of Locke, ab- simple analysis of the perception : as, bodies stract ideas). It is our knowledge a priori, are extended; a triangle has three sides. A i. e. that knowledge which precedes experience synthetical judgment is that where the attribute as to its origin, which renders experience pos- is connected with the subject by a cause (or sible. Our faculty of knowledge has an ef- basis) taken from the faculty of knowledge, fect on our ideas of sensation analogous to that which renders this connection necessary; as, * body is heavy ; wood is combustible ; the three principles of all truth. Kant does not promise angles of a triangle are equal to two right angles. to give even an exposition of these branches of

There are syntheses a priori and a posteriori; knowledge, but merely to examine their origin; and the former being formed by experience, we not to extend them, but to prevent the bad use have the sure means of avoiding deception. It of them, and to guard us against error. He is a problem, however, of the utmost import- denominates this science, transcendental critiance, to discover how synthetic judginents a cism; because he calls all knowledge, of which priori are possible. How comes it, for example, the object is not furnished by the senses, and that we can affirm that all the radii of a circle which concerns the kind and origin of our are equal, and that two parallel lines will never ideas, transcendental knowledge. The Criticism meet? It is by studying the forms of our mind of pure Reason, which gives only the fundathat we discover the possibility of making these mental ideas and maxims a priori, without exaffirmations. In all objects there are things plaining the ideas which are derived from them, which must necessarily be THOUGHT (be sup- can lead, says Kant, to a complete system of plied by thought); as, for example, that there pure knowledge, which ought to be denominis a substance, an accident, a cause, and certain ated transcendental philosophy, of which the Crieffects. The forms of the understanding are, ticism presents the architectonic plan ; i. e. the quantity, quality, relation, modality. Quantity, plan regular and well disposed. The work enKant distinguishes into general, particular, and titled, “ The Critique of pure Reason,” is diindividual ; quality, into affirmation, negation, vided into several parts, or sections, under the infinite ; relation, into categoric, hypothetic, and titles of asthetic transcendental; transcendental disjunctive ; and modality, into problematic, logic; the pure ideas of the understanding; the certain, and necessary. He adds also to these transcendental judgment; the parclogism of pure properties of the four principal forms of the reason ; the ideal iranscendental; the criticism of understanding, a table of categories, or funda- speculative theologies ; the discipline of pure reamental ideas a priori. Quantity, gives unity, son, &c. But to proceed with our abstract of plurality, totality. Quality, gives reality, nega- the system. We know objects only by the tion, limitation. Relation, gives inherence, sub- manner in which they affect us; and as the stance, cause, dependence, community, reciprocity. impressions which they make upon us are only Modality, gives possibility, impossibility, existence, certain apparitions or phenomena, it is impossible nothing, necessity, accident. These categories for us to know what an object is in itself. In can only be applied to experience. When, in consequence of this assertion, some have supthe consideration of an object, we abstract all posed that Kant was an idealist, like Berkley that regards sensation, there remain only the and many others, who have thought that senpure ideas of the understanding, or, the cate- sations are only appearances, and that there is gories, by which a thing is conceived as a thing. no truth but in our reason. But, according to Pure reason is the faculty of tracing our know- him, our understanding, when it considers the ledge a priori, to subject it to principles, to apparitions or phenomena, acknowledges the trace it from its necessary conditions, till it be existence of the objects in themselves, inasentirely without condition, and in complete much as they serve for the bases of those apunity. This pure reason has certain funda. paritions ; though we know nothing of their mental rules, after which the necessary con- reality, and though we can have no certitude nection of our ideas is taken for the determina- but in experience. When we apply the fornis tion of the objects in themselves : an illusion of our understanding, such as unity, totality, which we cannot avoid, even when we are ac- substance, casuality, existence, to certain ideas quainted with it. We can conclude from what which have no object in space and time, we we know to what we do not know; and we make a fallacious and arbitrary application. give an objective reality, to those conclusions All these forms can bear only on sensible obfrom an appearance which leads us on.

jects, and not on the world of things in itself, The writings of Kant are multifarious; but of which we can THINK, but which we can it is in his work entitled “ The Critique of never know. Beyond things sensible, we can pure Reason, that he has chiefly expounded only have opinions, or a belief of our reason. his system. This work is a treatise on a sci- The motives to consider a proposition as ence, of which Kant's scholars consider him true, are either objective, i. e. taken from an to be the founder, and which has for its objects external object, so that every man shall be the natural forces, the limits of our reason, as obliged to acknowledge them; and then there the source of our pure knowledge a priori, the is a truth evident, and susceptible of demonstra. VOL. VI.

C

tion, and it may be said that we are convinced; pearance. They resolve themselves into a bias or the motives are subjective, i. e. they exist of our reason to suppose an infinite intelligence only in the mind of him who judges, and he as the author of all that is possible ; but from is persuaded. TRUTH, then, consists in the this bias it does not follow that there really is agreement of our notions with the objects, in such an author. To say, that whatever exists such a manner as that all men are obliged to must have a cause, is indeed a maxim a priori ; form the same judgment. BELIEF consists in but it is a maxim applicable only to experience; holding a thing for true in a subjective manner, for one knows not how to subject to the laws in consequence of a persuasion which is en- of our perceptions that which is absolutely intirely personal, and has not its basis in an dependent of them. It is as if we were to object submitted to experience. There is a say, that whatever exists in experience must belief of doctrinë, of which Kant gives, as an have an experience; but the world, taken as example, this assertion : “ There are inhabit- a whole, is without experience as well as it's

ants in the planets." We must acknowledge, cause. It is much better to draw the proof of : he adds, that the ordinary mode of teaching the existence of God from morality, than to

the existence of God belongs to the belief of weaken it by such reasoning. This proof is doctrine, and that it is the same with the in- relative. It is impossible to know that God mortality of the soul. The belief of doctrine has exists; but we can comprehend how it is posin itself something staggering ; but it is not sible to act morally on the supposition of the the same with moral belief. In moral belief existence (although incomprehensible) of an there is something neçessary; it is, says Kant, intelligent Creator : an existence which PRACthat I should obey the law of morality in all TICAL REASON forces THEORETICAL REASON its parts.

The end is strongly established ; to adopt. This proof not only persuades, but and I can perceive only one condition, by even acts on the CONVICTION, in proportion as means of which this end may be in accord with the motives of our actions are conformable to all the other ends, i. e. that there is a God. I the law of morality. Religion ought to be the am certain that no man knows any other con- means of virtue, and not its object. Man has dition which can conduct to the same unity of not in himself the idea of religion, as he has end under the moral law; which law is a law that of virtue. The latter has its principle in of my reason. I will consequently believe the mind; it exists in itself, and not as the certainly the existence of God, and a future life; means of happiness; and it may be taught because this persuasion renders immoveable my without the idea of a God, for the pure law moral principles : principles which I cannot of morality is a priori. He who does good by reject without rendering myself contemptible inclination, does not act morally. The conin my own eyes. I wish for happiness, but I verse of the principle of morality is to make do not wish for it without morality; and as it personal happiness the basis of the will. There depends on nature, I cannot wish it with this

are compassionate minds which feel an internal condition, except by believing that nature de- pleasure in communicating joy around them, pends on a Being who causes this connection and who thus enjoy the satisfaction of others; between morality and happiness. This suppo- but their actions, however just, however good, șition is founded on the want (or necessity) of have no moral merit, and may be compared to my reason, and not on my duty. We have, other inclinations; to that of honour, for exhowever, no certainty, says Kant, in our know- ample, which, while it meets with that which ledge of God, because certainty cannot exist is just and useful, is worthy of praise and enexcept it is founded on an object of experience, couragement, but not of any high degree of The philosopher acknowledges, that pure reason esteem. According to Kant, we ought not is too weak to prove the existence of a Being even to do good, either for the pleasure which beyond the reach of our senses. The necessity we feel in doing it, or in order to be happy, of believing in God is therefore only subjective, or to render others happy; for any one of these although necessary and general for all those additions (perhaps motives) would be empyric, beings who conform to their duty. This is not and injure the purity of our morals. We knowledge, but only a belief of reason, which ought to act after the maxims derived a priori supplies the place of a knowledge which is from the faculty of knowledge, which carry impossible.

with them the idea of necessity, and are inThe proofs of natural theology, according to dependent of all experience ; after the maxims our philosopher, taken from the order and which, it is to be wished, could be erected beauty of the universe, are proofs only in ads into GENERAL LAWS for all beings endowed with reason.” For further information relative years of the sixteenth century. We are furto the critical philosophy, the English reader nished with no other particulars relative to his may consult F. A. Nitsch's “ General and in- life, than that he was held in high estimation troductory View of Professor Kant's Principles for his abilities as a philosopher, theologian, and concerning Man, the World, and the Deity, philologist, and much admired as a preacher. &c. ;” and Dr. Willich's “ Elements of the By the Protestants in Hungary his memory is critical Philosophy, containing a concise Ac- revered, on account of his having translated the count of its Origin and Tendency, a View of Bible from the original Hebrew into their naall the Works published by its Founder, &c.” tive language. This performance is warmly Monthly Magaz. May 1805. English Encycl. commended in some poems by George Thurius, Encycl. Britan.-M.

inserted in John Philip Pareus's Deliciæ Poeta KARNKOWSKI, STANISLAUS, (Lat. Carn- arum Hungarorum; and, if we may conclude covius), a Polish writer and statesman, was from its reception by the public, without any born in 1525. He became bishop of Uladis- exaggeration. It was published at Hanover in law about 1563; and upon the death of Sigis. 1608, in 4to.; and during the same year at mond Augustus, king of Poland, in 1572, he Frankfort, in 8vo., revised and corrected by promoted the election of Henry of Valois, and, Albert Molnar. This improved edition was on his reception, made an eloquent harangue reprinted at Oppenheim in 1612, in 8vo.; and to him in the name of the states. After the ab- has since that time undergone repeated imdication of this prince, Karnkowski nominated pressions at different places, and in particular Anne, the sister of the late Sigismond, queen at Nuremberg in 1704, in 4to. Moreri.-M. of Poland, and crowned her husband, Stephen KAUNITZ, WENZEL ANTONY, prince of Battori, upon the refusal of the primate to per- the holy Roman empire, count of Rietberg, form this office. For his reward he was made knight of the Golden Fleece, the royal order of coadjutor to the archbishop of Gnesna, and in St. Stephen, &c., was born in Vienna in 1711. 1581 he succeeded to that see and to the Being the fifth son of nineteen children, he was primacy. On the death of king Stephen, he destined for the church; but as the greater part sat as president of the directory during the of his brothers had either died a natural death interregnum, and opposed the election, made or fallen in the army, he quitted the ecclesiastic by a party, of Maximilian, archduke of Austria. profession to enter into the service of the state, He placed the crown upon the head of Sigis- in which his ancestors had made a considerable mond III. prince of Sweden, who was acknow- figure. He laid the foundation of his studies ledged by the kingdom. The primate, in 1590, at Vienna; in 1737 was made a counsellor of joined a party who were in opposition to the state, and two years after, imperial comgreat-chancellor, Zamoisky, and convoked an missioner at the diet of Ratisbon. As the emextraordinary assembly at Kiow, in which he peror, Charles VI., died the year following, endeavoured to cancel the ordonances of the and as his commission thereby ceased, he relast general diet. This step rendered him un- tired to his estates in Moravia; but he did not popular, and he found himself obliged to be re- 1 ong remain unemployed, being appointed, in conciled to the chancellor. He died in 1603, the year 1742, minister plenipotentiary to the at the age of seventy-eight, and was interred in court of Sardinia, which had entered into a the Jesuit's college at Kalish, which he had new alliance with Austria. This treaty was founded. He established seminaries for edu- brought to a conclusion by Kaunitz; and the cation both at Uladislaw and Gnesna, and favourable specimen of his talents which he occupied himself with success in the reform gave on this occasion induced the court to of his clergy. The works of this prelate are confer upon him offices of more importance. “ Historia Interregni Polonici,” being a rela- On the marriage of the archduke Charles of Lortionof the affairs of the interiegnum succeeding rain with the arch-duchess Mary Ann, governthe abdication of Henry of Valois: “De ess general of the Netherlands, in 1744, KauJure Provinciarum, Terrarum, Civitatumque nitz was appointed to a place of honour during Prussize:” “ Epistolae Illustrium Virorum Libr. the ceremony; and at the same time made III..” this collection of letters is very rare, and minister for the kingdoms of Hungary and is said to contain many important particulars Bohemia, in the room of count Konigsegge. relative to the history of Poland, from 1564 to In the month of October he went to Brussels, 1577. Moreri. -A.

to undertake the chief management of public KAROLI, JASPER, a Hungarian Calvinist affairs, which at that time required a man of divine, who flourished within the last twenty talents, as the king of France had already declared war, and the Netherlands were the first confidence of the empress Mary Theresa, and part of the emperor's dominions exposed to the afterwards of Joseph II., Leopold II., and attack of the French army. In February, 1745, Francis II. His great age, during the latter he was appointed minister plenipotentiary; but part of his life, prevented him from taking any in 1746, the French having taken possession of share in public business; and therefore he lived great part of the Netherlands, he repaired to in a kind of philosophical retirement, amusing Aix-la-Chapelle; and, on account of his bad himself chiefly with riding, which was his health, repeated a request to the empress for favourite exercise, and in which he was very leave to resign, which he at length obtained. expert. He died on the 27th of June, 1794, He, however, soon again made his appearance in the eighty-fourth year of his age, with the on the political theatre; when the preliminaries consciousness of having discharged his duty, to of peace were signed at Aix-la-Chapelle, in the best of his ability, for the good of his country. 1748. On this occasion he acquired, by his Gallerie interessanter Personen, von K. A. Schiller. talents for negotiation, and the open and noble --J. conduct which he displayed amidst those little KEATING, GEOFFREY, an Irish historian, manæuvres which are so often honoured with was a native of Tipperary, and flourished in the the name of political sagacity, the respect of all earlier part of the seventeenth century. He the ministers then present. When the peace was educated to the priesthood in the Roman of Aix-la-Chapelle was concluded, the empress catholic church; and having received at a Mary Theresa, as a mark of her satisfaction, foreign university the degree of D.D., returned conferred on him the order of the Golden Fleece, to his native country, and became a celebrated and appointed him envoy to Paris, where he re- preacher. Being extremely well versed in the sided till the end of the year 1752, esteemed and ancient Irish language, he undertook to collect respected by the court and the whole nation. all the remains of the early history and antiquiDuring his residence at Paris he laid the found. ties of the island, and form them into a regular ation of that alliance between France and narrative. This he drew up in the Irish lanAustria, which took place some time after. guage, and finished about the time of the acCount Uhlfeld having requested leave to resign cession of Charles I. to the throne. Few his office as chancellor of state, Kaunitz was histories embrace a longer period of time; for appointed his successor, and consequently re- it commences from the first planting of Ireland called from Paris about the end of the year after the deluge, and goes on without interrup1752; but at the same time was ordered to tion to the seventeenth year of king Henry II. return to Brussels, to bring to an end, if possi- It states the year of the world in which the posble, the negotiations in regard to the barriers, terity of Gathelus and Scota settled in the island, which had been carried on a whole year with- and gives an account of the lives and reigns of out success. In 1752 he accordingly repaired one hundred and seventy-four kings of the to Brussels, and had some conferences with Milesian race. This work remained in manucount Bentinck, plenipotentiary of the states- script in the original language, till it was transgeneral; but the negotiations went on very lated into English by Dermot O'Connor, andslowly, and it was a considerable time before published at London in 1723, folio. A new they were brought to a complete termination. edition, with splendid plates of the arms of the On his return to Vienna, in 1753, Kaunitz principal Irish families, was printed in 1738. entered into the office of chancellor of state, in Several copies of the original are to be found in addition to that of supreme dictator of the affairs the public libraries of Great Britain and Ireland. of the Netherlands and of Lombardy, with the It is needless to observe, that great part of a work rank of minister of state, which he retained till of such pretensions must be founded on fable; his death. In the year 1764 he was raised to and it has accordingly been generally considered the dignity of prince of the empire, with descent as little better than a mass of idle fiction. It to his heirs male. The most important service has been alleged in defence of the veracity of performed by Kaunitz as a minister was the Keating himself, that he has given his extratreaty of alliance between France and Austria, ordinary relations merely as fables, and not as concluded in 1756, which put an end to that true history; and that he only supposes real hostility which had prevailed for several centu- facts to be disguised under them. This writer ries between these two countries. After that probably died between 1640 and 1650. Nicola period he had the sole management of all the fo- son's Hist. Library. Moreri.-A. reign affairs; possessed great influence in regard KEBLE, Joseph, a law-writer of meritorious to those of the interior, and enjoyed the unlimited industry, was the son of Richard Keble, esq.

« AnteriorContinuar »