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from whose directive as well as operative influence, no he is asked, Is this the effect of skill? shall so suddenly imaginable effect or event can be exempted; (in which and irresistibly captivate him into an assent that it is, that case it will no more be necessary, that every creature that he cannot think otherwise. Nay, if a thousand men were is observed steadily to work towards an end, should itself asked the same question, they would as undoubtedly say design and know it, than that an artificer's tools should the same thing; and then, since there is a reason for this know what he is doing with them; but if they do not, it is judgment, what can be devised to be the reason, but that plain he must;) and surely it lies upon them who so ex- there are so manifest characters and evidences of skill in cept, to prove in this case what they say, and not be so the composure, as are not attributable to any thing else? precarious as to beg or think us so easy, as to grant so Now here I would further demand, Is there any thing in much, only because they have thought fit to say it, or this reason, yea, or no? Doth it signify any thing, or is would fain have it so. That is, that this or that strange it of any value to the purpose for which it is alleged ? event happened without any designing cause.
Surely, it is of very great, inasmuch as, when it is conIV. But, however, I would demand of such as make sidered, it leaves it not in a man's power to think any this exception, whether they think there be any effect at thing else; and what can be said more potently and effiall, to which a designing cause was necessary, or which caciously to demonstrate? But now, if this reason signify they will judge impossible to have been otherwise pro- any thing, it signifies thus much; that wheresoever there duced, than hy the direction and contrivance of wisdom are equal characters, and evidences of skill, (at least and counsel ?' I little doubt but there are thousands of where there are equal,) a skilful agent must be acknowthings, laboured and wrought by the hand of man, con- ledged. And so it will (in spite of cavil) conclude unicerning which they would presently, upon first sight, pro-versally, and abstractedly from what we can suppose disnounce they were the effects of skill, and not of chance; tinctly signified by the terms of art, and nature, that whatyea, if they only considered their frame and shape, though soever effect hath such or equal characters of skill upon they yet understood not their use and end. They would it, did proceed from a skilful cause. That is, that if this surely think (at least) some effects or other sufficient to effect be said to be from a skilful cause, as such, (viz. as argue to us à designing cause. And would they but so having manifest characters of skill upon it,) then, every berly consider and resolve what characters or footsteps of such effect, (viz. that hath equally manifest characters of wisdom and design might be reckoned sufficient to put us skill upon it,) must be, with equal reason, concluded to out of doubt, would they not, upon comparing, be brought be from a skilful cause. to acknowledge there are no where any more conspicuous We will acknowledge skill to act, and wit to contrive, and manifest, than in the things daily in view, that go or very distinguishable things, and in reference to some works, dinarily, with us, under the name of the works of nature ? (as the making some curious automaton, or self-moving Whence it is plainly consequent, that what men com- engine,) are commonly lodged in divers subjects; that is, monly call universal nature, if they would be content no the contrivance exercises the wit and invention of one, longer to lurk in the darkness of an obscure and uninter- and the making, the manual dexterity and skill of others: preted word, they must confess is nothing else but com- but the manifest characters of both will be seen in the efmon providence, that is, the universal power which is every fect. That is, the curious elaborateness of each several where active in the world, in conjunction with the uner- part shows the latter; and the order and dependence of ring wisdom which guides and moderates all its exertions parts, and their conspiracy to one common end, the former. and operations; or the wisdom which directs and governs Each betokens design; or at least the smith or carpenter that power. Otherwise, when they see cause to acknow- must be understood to design his own part, that is, to do ledge that such an exact order and disposition of parts, in as he was directed: both together, do plainly bespeak an very neat and elegant compositions, doth plainly argue agent, that knew what he did ; and that the thing was not wisdom and skill in the contrivance; only they will dis- done by chance, or was not the casual product of only tinguish, and say, It is so in the effects of art, but not of being busy at random, or making a careless stir, withnature. What is this, but to deny in particular what out aiming at any thing. And this, no man that is in they granted in general ? to make what they have said his wits, would, úpon sight of the whole frame, more signify nothing
more than if they had said, Šuch exqui- doubt to assent unto, than that two and two make four. site order of parts is the effect of wisdom, where it is the And he would certainly be thought mad, that should proeffect of wisdom, but it is not the effect of wisdom, where fess to think that only by some one's making a blustering it is not the effect of wisdom ? and to trifle, instead of stir among several small fragments of brass, iron, and giving a reason why things are so and so ? And whence wood, these parts happened to be thus curiously formed, take they their advantage for this trifling, or do hope to and came together into this frame, of their own accord. hide their folly in it, but that they think, while what is Or lest this should be thought to intimate too rude a ! meant by art is known, what is meant by nature cannot representation of their conceit, who think this world to have be known? But if it be not known, how can they tell but fallen into this frame and order, wherein it is, by the agitheir distinguishing members are co-incident, and run into tation of the moving parts, or particles of matter, without one? Yea, and if they would allow the thing itself to the direction of a wise mover; and that we may also speak, and the effect to confess and dictate the name of make the case as plain as is possible to the most ordinary its own cause, how plain is it that they do run into one, capacity, we will suppose (for instance) that one who had and that the expression imports no impropriety which we never before seen a watch, or any thing of that sort, hath somewhere find in Cicero; The art of nature; or rather, now this little engine first offered to his view; can we that nature is nothing else but divine art, at least in as doubt, but he would upon the mere sight of its figure, near an analogy as there can be, between any things di- structure, and the very curious workmanship which we vine and human. For, that this matter (even the thing will suppose appearing in it, presently acknowledge the itself, waving for the present the consideration of names) artificer's hand? But if he were also made to understand may be a little more narrowly discussed and searched the use and purpose for which it serves, and it were disinto, let some curious piece of workmanship be offered to tinctly shown him how each thing contributes, and all things such a sceptic's view, the making whereof he did not see, in this little fabric concurto this purpose, the exact measurnor of any thing like it; and we will suppose him not told ing and dividing of time by minutes, hours, and months, that this was made by the hand of any man, nor that he he would certainly both confess and praise the great ingehath any thing to guide his judgment about the way of its nuity of the first inventor. But now is a by-stander, bebecoming what it is, but only his own view of the thing holding him in this admiration, would undertake to show itself; and yet he shall presently, without hesitation, pro- a profounder reach and strain of wit, and should say. Sır, nounce, This was the effect of much skill. I would here you are mistaken concerning the composition of this so inquire, Why do you so pronounce ? Or, What is the rea- much admired piece; it was not made or designed
the son of this your judgment ? Surely he would not say he hand or skill of any one; there were only an innumerable hath no reason at all for this so confident and unwavering company of little atoms or very small bodies, much too determination; for then he would not be determined, but small to be perceived by your sense, that were busily frisk, speak by chance, and be indifferent to say that, or any ing and plying to and fro about the place of its nativity; and thing else. Somewhat or other there must be, that, when I by a strange chance (or a stranger fate, and the necessary
laws of that motion which they were unavoidably put into, frame of things, having so great advantages beyond the by a certain boisterous, undesigning mover) they fell most of mankind besides to contemplate and adore the together into this small bulk, so as to compose it into this great Author and Lord of all, is one of the greatest wonFery shape and figure, and with this same number and ders that comes under our notice; and might tempt even order of parts which you now behold: one squadron of a sober mind to prefer vulgar and popular ignorance, bethese busy particles (little thinking what they were about) fore their learned, philosophical deliration. agreeing to make up one wheel, and another some other, VI. Though yet, indeed, not their philosophy by which in that proportion which you see': others of them also they would be distinguished from the common sort, but falling, and becoming fixed in so happy a posture and what they have in common with them, ought in justice to situation, as to describe the several figures by which the bear the blame. For it is not evident, how much soever they little moving fingers point out the hour of the day, and reckon themselves exalted above the vulgar sort, that their day of the month : and all conspired to fall together, each miserable shifting in this matter proceeds only from what into its own place, in so lucky a juncture, as that the re- is most meanly so; i. e. their labouring under the most gular motion failed not to ensue which we see is now vulgar and meanest diseases of the mind, disregard of observed in it,-what man is either so wise or so foolish what is common, and an aptness to place more in the (for it is hard to determine whether the excess or defect strangeness of new, unexpected, and surprising events, should best qualify him to be of this faith) as to be capable than in things unspeakably more considerable, that are of of being made believe this piece of natural history ? And every day's observation? Than which nothing argues a if one should give this account of the production of such a more abject, unphilosophical temper. trifle, would he not be thought in jest? But if he persist, For let us būt suppose (what no man can pretend is and solemnly profess that thus he takes it to have been more impossible, and what any man must confess is less would he not be thought in good earnest mad? And let considerable, than what our eyes daily see) that in some but any sober person judge whether we have not unspeak- part of the air near this earth, and within such limits as ably more manifest madness to contend against in such as that the whole scene might be conveniently beheld at one suppose this world, and the bodies of living creatures, to view, there should suddenly appear a little globe of pure have fallen into this frame and orderly disposition of parts flaming light resembling that of the sun; and suppose it wherein they are, without the direction of a wise and de- fixed as a centre to another body, or moving about that signing cause ? And whether there be not an incomparably other as its centre, (as this or that hypothesis best pleases greater number of most wild and arbitrary suppositions in us,) which we could plainly perceive to be a proportiontheir fiction than in this? Besides the innumerable sup- ably-little earth, beautified with little trees and woods, posed repetitions of the same strange chances all the world flowery fields, and flowing rivulets with larger lakes into over; even as numberless, not only as productions, but as which these discharge themselves; and suppose we the the changes that continually happen to all the things pro- other planets all of proportionable bigness to the narrow duced. And if the concourse of atoms could make this limits assigned them, placed at their due distances, and world, why not (for it is but little to mention such a thing playing about this supposed earth or sun, so as to measure as this) a porch, or a temple, or a house, or a city, (as their shorter and soon absolved days, months, and years, Tully speaks in the before-recited place,) which were less or two, twelve, or thirty years, according to their supposed operose and much more easy performances ?
lesser circuits ;-would they not presently, and with great V. It is not to be supposed that all should be astrono- amazement, confess an intelligent contriver and maker of mers, anatomists, or natural philosophers, that shall read this whole frame, above a Posidonius or any mortal? And these lines; and therefore it is intended not to insist upon have we not in the present frame of things a demonstration particulars, and to make as little use as is possible of terms of wisdom and counsel, as far exceeding that which is now that would only be agreeable to that supposition. But supposed, as the making some toy or bauble to please a surely such general, easy reflections on the frame of the child is less an argument of wisdom than the contrivance universe, and the order of parts in the bodies of all sorts of somewhat that is of apparent and universal use ? Or, if of living creatures, as the meanest ordinary understanding we could suppose this present state of things to have but is capable of, would soon discover incomparably greater newly begun, and ourselves pre-existent, so that we could evidence of wisdom and design in the contrivance of these, take notice of the very passing of things out of horrid conthan in that of a watch or a clock. And if there were any fusion into the comely order they are now in, would not whose understandings are but of that size and measure as this put the matter out of doubt? And that this state had to suppose that the whole frame of the heavens serves to once a beginning needs not be proved over again. But no other purpose than to be of some such use as that, to us might what would yesterday have been the effect of wismortals here on earth; if they would but allow themselves dom, better have been brought about by chance five or six leisure to think and consider, might discern the most con- thousand years, or any longer time ago? It speaks not vincing and amazing discoveries of wise contrivance and want of evidence in the thing, but want of consideration, design (as well as of vastest might and power) in disposing and of exercising our understandings, if what were nero things into so apt a subserviency to that meaner end. I would not only convince but astonish, and what is old, of And that so exact a knowledge is had thereby of times the same importance, doth not so much as convince ? and seasons, days and years, as that the simplest idiot in VII. And let them that understand any thing of the coma country may be able to tell you, when the light of the position of a human body (or indeed of any living creature) sun is withdrawn from his eyes, at what time it will return, but bethink themselves whether there be not equal contriand when it will look in at such a window, and when at vance at least, appearing in the composure of that admirthe other; and by what degrees his days and nights shall able fabric, as of any the most admired machine or engine either increase or be diminished; and what proportion of devised and made by human wit and skill. If we pitch time he shall have for his labours in this season of the upon any thing of known and common use, as suppose year, and what in that; without the least suspicion or fear again a clock or watch, which is no sooner seen than it is that it shall ever fall out otherwise.
acknowledged (as hath been said) the effect of a designing But that some in later days whose more enlarged minds cause; will we not confess as much of the body of a man? have by diligent search and artificial helps, got clearer Yea, what comparison is there, when in the structure of notices (even than most of the more learned of former some one single member, as a hand, a foot, an eye, or ear, times) concerning the true frame and vastness of the uni- there appears upon a diligent search, unspeakably greater verse, the matter, nature, and condition of the heavenly curiosity, whether we consider the variety of parts, their bodies, their situation, order, and laws of motion; and the exquisite figuration, or their apt disposition to the distinct great probability of their serving to nobler purposes, than uses and ends these members serve for, than is to be seen the greater part of learned men have ever dreamed of be- in any clock or watch ? Concerning which uses of the sevefore; that, I say, any of these should have chosen it for the ral parts in man's body, Galen, so largely discoursing in employment of their great intellects, to devise ways of ex- seventeen books, inserts on the by, this epiphonema, upon cluding intellectual power from the contrivance of this the mention of 'one particular instance of our most wise
b Lid. 3. De usu part. ex Lacun. Epit.
Maker's provident care; "Unto whom (saith he) I com- the curious and apt texture of the eye, can think it was not pose these commentaries,” (meaning his present work of made on purpose to see with, and the ear, upon the like unfolding the useful figuration of the human body,)“ as view, for hearing, when so many things must concur that certain hymns, or songs of praise, esteeming true piety these actions might be performed by these organs, and are more to consist in this, that I first may know, and then found to do so ? Or who can think that the sundry little declare to others, his wisdom, power, providence, and engines belonging to the eye were not made with design to goodness, than in sacrificing to him many hecatombs: and move it upwards, downwards, to this side or that, or whirl in the ignorance whereof there is greatest impiety, rather it about as there should be occasion ; without which in. than in abstaining from sacrifice. Nor” (as he adds in struments and their appendages, no such motion could the close of that excellent work)" is the most perfect natu- have been ? Who, that is not stupidly perverse, can think ral artifice to be seen in man only; but you may find the that the sundry inward parts (which it would require a like industrious design and wisdom of the Author, in any volume distinctly to speak of, and but to mention them living creature which you shall please to dissect: and by and their uses would too unproportionably swell this part how much the less it is, so much the greater admiration of this discourse) were not made purposely by a designing shall it raise in you; which those artists show, that describe Agent, for the ends they so aptly and constantly serve for? some great thing (contractedly) in a very small space: as The want of some one among divers whereof, or but a little that person (saith he) who lately engraved Phaeton carried misplacing, or if things had been but a little otherwise than in his chariot with his four horses upon a little ring-a they are, had inferred an impossibility that such a creature most incredible sight! But there is nothing in matters of as man could have subsisted, or been propagated upon the this nature, more strange than in the structure of the leg face of the earth. As what if there had not been such a of a flea.” How much more might it be said of all its in- receptacle prepared as the stomach is, and so formed, and ward parts ! “Therefore (as he adds) the greatest com- placed as it is, to receive and digest necessary nutriment? modity of such a work accrues not to physicians, but to Had not the whole frame of man besides been in vain ? them who are studious of nature, viz. the knowledge of Or what if the passage from it downward had not been our Maker's perfection, and that (as he had said a little somewhat a little way ascending, so as to detain a conveabove) it establishes the principle of the most perfect theo- nient time what is received, but that what was taken in logy, which theology.(saith he) is much more excellent than were suddenly transmitted? It is evident the whole all medicine."
structure had been ruined as soon as made. What (to inIt were too great an undertaking, and beyond the de- stance in what seems so small a matter) if that little cover signed limits of this discourse, (though it would be to ex- had been wanting at the entrance of that passage through cellent purpose, if it could be done without amusing terms, which we breathe; (the depression whereof by the weight and in that easy, familiar way as to be capable of common of what we eat or drink, shuts it and prevents meat and use,) to pursue and trace distinctly the prints and footsteps drink from going down that way ;) had not unavoidable of the admirable wisdom which appears in the structure suffocation ensued? And who can number the instances and frame of this outer temple. For even our bodies them that might be given besides ? Now when there is a concurselves are said to be the temples of the Holy Ghost, 1 Cor. rence of so many things absolutely necessary, (concerning vi. 19. And to dwell a while in the contemplation and which the common saying is as applicable, more frequently discovery of those numerous instances of most apparent, wont to be applied to matters of morality, “Goodness is ungainsayable sagacity and providence which offer them from the concurrence of all causes ; evil from any defect,") selves to view in every
part and particle of this fabric; how each so aptly and opportunely serving its own proper use, most commodiously all things are ordered in it! With and all one common end, certainly to say that so manifold, how strangely cautious circumspection and foresight, not so regular, and stated a subserviency to that end, and the only destructive, but even (perpetually) vexatious and end itself, were undesigned, and things casually fell out afflicting, incongruities are avoided and provided against, thus, is to say we know or care not what. to pose ourselves upon the sundry obvious questions that We will only, before we close this consideration, conmight be put for the evincing of such provident foresight. cerning the mere frame of a human body,(which hath been As for instance, how comes it to pass that the several parts so hastily and superficially proposed,) offer a supposition which we find to be double in our bodies, are not single which is no more strange (excluding the vulgar notion by only? Is this altogether by chance ? That there are two which nothing is strange, but what is not common) than eyes, ears, nostrils, hands, feet, &c. what a miserable, the thing itself, as it actually is; viz. That the whole shiftless creature had man been, if there had only been more external covering of the body of a man were made, allowed him one foot ? a seeing, hearing, talking, un- instead of skin and flesh, of some very transparent submoving statue. That the hand is divided into fingers ? stance, flexible, but clear as very crystal; through which, those so conveniently situate, one in so fitly opposite a and the other more inward (and as transparent) integuposture to the rest ?
ments or enfoldings, we could plainly perceive the situation And what if some one pair or other of these parts had and order of all the internal parts, and how they each of been universally wanting? The hands, the feet, the eyes, them perform their distinct offices : if we could discern the the ears. How great a misery had it inferred upon man- continual motion of the blood, how it is conveyed by its kind! and is it only a casualiy that it is not so ? That proper conduits, from its first source and fountain, partly the back-bone is composed of so many joints, (twenty-four, | downwards to the lower entrails, (if rather it ascend not besides those of that which is the basis and sustainer of the from thence, as at least what afterwards becomes blood whole,) and is not all of a piece, by which stooping, or any doth,) partly upwards, to its admirable elaboratory, the motion of the head or neck, diverse from that of the whole heart; where it is refined and furnished with fresh vital body, had been altogether impossible; that there is such spirits, and so transmitted thence by the distinct vessels variety and curiosity in the ways of joining the bones to prepared for this purpose: could we perceive the curious gether in that, and other parts of the body; that in some contrivance of those little doors, by which it is let in and parts, they are joined by mere adherence of one to another, out, on this side and on that; the order and course of its either with or without an intervening medium, and both circulation, its most commodious distribution by two social these ways, so diversely; that others are fastened together channels, or conduit-pipes, that every where accompany by proper jointing, so as to suit and be accompanied with one another throughout the body: could we discern the motion, either more obscure or more manifest, and this, curious artifice of the brain, its ways of purgation; and either by a deeper or more superficial insertion of one bone were it possible to pry into the secret chambers and recep into another, or by a mutual insertion, and that so different tacles of the less or more pure spirits there ; perceive their ways; and that all these should be exactly accommodated manifold conveyances, and the rare texture of that net, to the several parts and uses to which they belong and commonly called the wonderful one : could we behold the serve :—was all this without design? Who, that views veins, arteries, and nerves, all of them arising from their c Sub. fin. l. 17. d Bartholin. Riolanus.
with ; as Campanella in that rapturous discourse of his Atheismus triumphae How foolish to think that art intended an end in making a window f Non prodest cibus neque corpori accedit, qui statim sumptus emittitur. to see through, and that nature intended none in making an eye to see Seneca (on another occasion.)
proper and distinct originals! and their orderly dispersion now supposed, if he had thought it fit. He hath done
with some, it proceeds from design, with what doth certainly so, though in the lowest their supine and drowsy ignorance, and that they little degree, it were sufficient to evince our present purpose. know or think what prints and footsteps of a Deity they For if one such instance as this would bring the matter no carry about them, in their bone and flesh, in every part and higher than to a bare equality, that would at least argue a vein and limb. With others, (as if too much learning had maker of nian's body, as wise, and as properly designing, made them mad, or an excess of light had struck them into as the artificer of any such slighter piece of workmanship, mopish blindness,) these things are so well known and seen, that may yet, certainly, be concluded the effect of skill and so common and obvious, that they are the less regarded. design. And then, enough might be said, from other And because they can give a very punctual account that instances, to manifest him unspeakably superior. And things are so, they think it, now, not worth the considerthat the matter would be brought, at least, to an equality, ing, how they come to be so. They can trace all these hidden upon the supposition now made, there can be no doubt, if paths and footsteps, and therefore all seems very easy, and any one be jndge that hath not abjured his understanding they give over wondering. As they that would detract and his eyes together. And what then, if we lay aside that from Columbus's acquists of glory by the discovery he had supposition, (which only somewhat gratifies fancy and made of America, i by pretending the achievement was imagination,) doth that alter the case? Or is there the less easy; whom he ingeniously rebuked, by challenging them of wisdom and contrivance expressed in this work of form- to make an egg stand erect, alone, upon a plain table; ing man's body, only for that it is not so easily and sud- which when none of them could do, he only by a gentle denly obvious to our sight? Then we might with the bruising of one end of it makes it stand on the table withsame reason say, concerning some curious piece of carved out other support, and then tells them this was more easy work, that is thought fit to be kept locked up in a cabinet, than his voyage to America, now they had seen it done; when we see it, that there was admirable workmanship before, they knew not how to go about it
. Some may shown in doing it; but as soon as it is again shut up in think the contrivance of the body of a man, or other animal, its repository, that there was none at all. Inasmuch as we easy, now they know it; but had they been to project such speak of the objective characters of wisdom and design, a model without a pattern, or any thing leading thereto, that are in the thing itself, (though they must some way how miserable a loss had they been at! How easy a conor other come under our notice, otherwise we can be capa- fession had been drawn from them of the finger of God, ble of arguing nothing from them, yet,) since we have suf- and how silent a submission to his just triumph over their ficient assurance that ere really are such characters in the and all human wit, when the most admired performances structure of the body of man as have been mentioned, and in this kind, by any mortal, have been only faint and ina thousand more than have been thought necessary to be finitely distant'imitations of the works of God! As is to mentioned here; it is plain that the greater or less facility be seen in the so much celebrated exploits of Posidonius, of finding them out, so that we be at a certainty that they Regiomontanus, and others of this sort. are, (whether by the slower and more gradual search of IX. And now if any should be either so incurably blind our own eyes, or by relying upon the testimony of such as as not to perceive, or so perversely wilful as not to acknowhave purchased themselves that satisfaction by their own ledge an appearance of wisdom in the frame and figuration labour and diligence,) is merely accidental to the thing of the body of an animal (peculiarly of man) more than itself we are discoursing of; and neither adds to, nor de- equal to what appears in any the most exquisite piece of tracts from, the rational evidence of the present argument. human artifice, and which no wit of man can ever fully Or if it do either, the more abstruse paths of divine wis- imitate; although, as hath been said, an acknowledged dom in this, as in other things, do rather recommend it the equality would suffice to evince a wise maker thereof, yet more to our adoration and reverence, than if every thing because it is the existence of God we are now speaking of, were obvious, and lay open to the first glance of a more and that it is therefore not enough to evince, but to magcareless eye. The things which we are sure (or may be, nify, the wisdom we would ascribe to him; we shall pass if we do not shut our eyes) the wise Maker of this world from the parts and frame, to the consideration of the more hath done, do sufficiently serve to assure us that he could principal powers and functions of terrestrial creatures ; have done this also; that is, have made every thing in the ascending from such as agree to the less perfect orders of frame and shape of our bodies conspicuous in the way but these, to those of the more perfect, viz. of man himself
h Parker Tentam. Physico-Theol.
i Archbishop Abbot's Geog.
And surely to have been the Author of faculties that shall by them) as do exceed not our understanding only, but our enable to such functions, will evidence a wisdom that wonder. defies our imitation, and will dismay the attempt of it. And what shall we say of spontaneous motion, wherewith
We begin with that of growth. Many sorts of rare en we find also creatures endowed that are so mean and gines we acknowledge contrived by the wit of man, but despicable in our eyes, (as well as ourselves,) that is, that who hath ever made one that could grow, or that had in it so silly a thing as a fly, a gnat, &c. should have a power a self-improving power ! A tree, an herb, a pile of grass, in it to move itself, or stop its own motion, at its own may upon this account challenge all the world to make pleasure? How far have all attempted imitations in this such a thing. That is, to implant the power of growing kind fallen short of this perfection?' And how much more into any thing to which it doth not natively belong, or to excellent a thing is the smallest and most contemptible make a thing to which it doth.
insect, than the most admired machine we ever heard or By what art would they make a seed? And which way read of; (as Archytas Tarentinus's dove, so anciently celewould they inspire it with a seminal form? And they that brated; or more lately, Regiomontanus's fly, or his eagle, think this whole globe of the earth was compacted by the or any the like;) not only as having this peculiar power, casual (or fatal) coalition of particles of matter, by what above any thing of this sort
, but as having the sundry other magic would they conjure
so many to come together as pervers, besides, meeting in it, whereof these are wholly should make one clod We vainly hunt with a lingering | destitute ? mind after miracles;. if we did not more vainly mean by And should we go on to instance further in the several them nothing else but novelties, we are compassed about powers of sensation, both external and internal, the various with such. And the greatest miracle is, that we see them instincts, appetitions, passions, sympathies, antipathies, not. You with whom the daily productions of nature (as the powers of memory, (and we might add, of speech,) that you call it) are so cheap, see if you can do the like. Try we find the inferior orders of creatures either generally furyour skill' upon a rose. Yea, but you must have pre- nished with, or some of them, as to this last, disposed unto, existent matter? But can you ever prove the Maker of the How should we even over-do the present business; and world had so, or even defend the possibility of uncreated too needlessly insult over human wit, (which we must matter? And suppose they had the free grant of all the suppose to have already yielded the cause,) in challenging matter between the crown of their head and the moon, it to produce and offer to view a hearing, seeing engine, could they tell what to do with it, or how to manage it, that can imagine, talk, is capable of hunger, thirst, of desire, so as to make it yield them one single flower, that they anger, fear, grief, &c. as its own creature, concerning which might glory in, as their own production ?
may glory and say, I have done this į And what mortal man, that hath reason enough about Is it so admirable a performance, and so ungainsayable him to be serious, and to think awhile, would not even be an evidence of skill and wisdom, with much labour and amazed at the miracle of nutrition? Or that there are things long travail of mind, a busy, restless agitation of working in the world capable of nourishment? Or who would thoughts, the often renewal of frustrated attempts, the attempt an imitation here, or not despair to perform any varying of defeated trials; this way and that at length to thing like it? That is, to make any nourishable thing. hit upon, and by much pains, and with a slow, gradual Are we not here infinitely out-done ?' Do not we see our progress, by the use of who can tell how many sundry selves compassed about with wonders, and are we not sorts of instruments or tools, managed by more (possibly) ourselves such, in that we see, and are creatures, from all than a few bands, by long hewing, hammering, turning, whose parts there is a continual defluxion, and yet that filing, to compose one only single machine of such a frame receive a constant gradual supply and renovation, by which and structure, as that by the frequent reinforcement of a they are continued in the same state? As the bush burn skilful hand, it may be capable of some (and that, othering, but not consumed. It is easy to give an artificial wise, but a very short-lived) motion ? And is it no arguframe to a thing that shall gradually decay and waste till ment, or effect of wisdom, so easily and certainly, without it quite be gone, and disappear. You can raise a structure labour, error, or disappointment, to frame both so infinite of snow, that would soon do that. But can your manual a variety of kinds, and so innumerable individuals of every skill compose a thing that, like our bodies, shall be con- such kind of living creatures, that cannot only, with the tinually melting away, and be continually repaired, through greatest facility, move themselves with so many sorts of so long a tract of time? Nay, but you can tell how it is motion, downwards, upwards, to and fro, this way or that, done;
you know in what method, and by what instruments, with a progressive or circular, a swifter or a slower, motion, food is received, concocted, separated, and so much as at their own pleasure; but can also grow, propagate, see, must serye for nourishment, turned into chyle, and that hear, desire, joy, &c. ? Is this no work of wisdom, but into blood, first grosser, and then more refined, and that only blind either fate or chance? Of how strangely, perdistributed into all parts for this purpose. Yea, and what verse and odd a complexion is that understanding, (if yet then? Therefore you are as wise as your Maker. Could it may be called an understanding,) that can make this you have made such a thing as the stomach, a liver, a judgment ! heart, a vein, an artery? Or are you so very sure what ihe X. And they think they have found out a rare knack, digestive quality is? Or if you are, and know what things and that gives a great relief to their diseased minds, who best serve to maintain, to repair, or strengthen it; who im- have learned to call the bodies of living creatures, (even planted that quality ? both where it is so immediately the human not excepted,) by way of diminution, machines, useful, or in the other things you would use for the service or a sort of automatous engines. of that? Or how, if such things had not been prepared to But how little cause there is to hug or be fond of this your hand, would you have devised to persuade the par- fancy, would plainly appear, if, first, we would allow ourticles of matter into so useful and happy'a conjuncture, as selves leisure to examine with how small pretence this ap that such a quality might result? Or, (to speak more suit- pellation is so placed and applied: and, next, if it be ably to the most,) how, if you had not been shown the applied rightly, to how little purpose it is alleged; or that way, would you have thought it were to be done, or which it signifies nothing to the exclusion of divine 'wisdom way would you have gone to work, to turn meat and drink from the formation of them. into flesh and blood ?
And for the first, because we know not a better, let it Nor is propagation of their own kind, by the creatures be considered how defective and unsatisfying the account that have that faculty implanted in them, less admirable, is, which the greatk and justly admired master in this or more possible to be imitated by any human device. faculty gives, how divers of those things, which he would Such productions, stay in their first descent. Who can, have to be so, are performed only in the mechanical by his own contrivance, find out a way of making any way. thing that can produce another like itself. What machine For though his ingenuity must be acknowledged, in his did ever man invent, that had this power? And the ways modest exception of some noble operations belonging to and means by which it is done, are such (though he that ourselves from coming under those rigid necessitating laws, can do all things well knew how to compass his ends yet certainly, to the severe inquiry of one not partially
addicted to the sentiments of so great a wit, because they k Dos Cartes de passionibus animæ, part 1. atque alibi.
were his, it would appear there are great defects, and many