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THE RESEMBLANCE OF EMOTIONS TO THEIR
THAT many emotions have some resem
1 blance to their causes, is a truth that can be made clear by induction ; though, as far as I know, the observation has not been made by any writer. Motion, in its different circumstances, is productive of feelings that resemble it : sluggish motion, for example, causeth a languid unpleasant feeling ; flow uniform motion, a feeling calm and pleasant; and brisk motion, a lively feeling that rouses the fpirits, and promotes activity. A fall of water through rocks, raises in the mind a tumultuous confused agitation, extremely similar to its cause. When force is exerted with any effort, the spectator feels a similar effort, as of force exerted within his mind. A large object swells in the heart. An elevated object makes the spectator stand erect. ·
Sounds also produce emotions or feelings that resemble them. A found in a low key brings down the mind : such a sound in a full tone hath a certain solemnity, which it communicates to the feeling produced by it. A found in a high key chears the mind by raising it: such a sound in a full tone both elevates and swells the mind.
Again, a wall or pillar that declines from the perpendicular, produceth a painful feeling, as of a tottering and falling within the mind: and a feeling somewhat similar is produced by a tall pillar that stands fo ticklish as to look like falling*. A column with a base looks more firm and stable than upon the naked ground; and for that reason is more agreeable: and though the cylinder is a more beautiful figure, yet the cube for a base is preferred; its angles being extended to a greater distance from the centre than the circumference of a cylinder. This excludes not a different reaa fon, that the base, the shaft, and the capital of a pillar, ought, for the sake of variety, to differ from each other: if the shaft be round, the base and capital ought to be square. Sonu"
A conftrained posture, uneasy to the man him. self, is disagreeable to the spectator'; whence a rule in painting, that the drapery ought not to adhere to the body, but hang loose, that the figures may appear easy and free in their move, ments. The constrained pofture of a French dan. cing master in one of Hogarth's pieces, is for that reason disagreeable; and it is also ridiculous, because the conftraint is assumed as a grace. :
M 2 ' i... The * Sunt enim Tempe faltus tranfitu difficilis : nam præter anguftias per quinque millia, qua exiguum jumento onusto iter et, rupes utrinque ita abfcifsæ sunt, ut despici vix fine vertigine quadam fimul oculorum animique poflit. Titus Livius, lib.44. feat. 6.
The foregoing observation is not confined to emotions or feelings raised by still life: it holds also in what are raised by the qualities, actions, and passions, of a fenfible being. Love inspired by a fine woman assumes her qualities : it is sublime, soft, tender, severe or gay, according to its cause. This is still more remarkable in emotions raised by human actions: it hath already been remarked *, that any signal instance of gratitude, beside procuring efteem for the author, raiseth in the spectator a vague emotion of gratitude, which disposeth him to be grateful; and I now further remark, that this vague emotion hath a strong resemblance to its cause, namely, the paffion that produced the grateful action : courage exerted inspires the reader as well as the spectator with a like emotion of courage, a just action fortifies our love of justice, and a generous action rouses our generosity. In short, with respect to all virtuous actions, it will be found by induction, that they lead us to imitation, by inspiring emotions resembling the passions that produceth these actions. And hence the advantage of choice books and choice company.
Grief as well as joy are infectious: the emo tions they raise in a spectator resemble them perfectly. Fear is equally infectious: and hence in an army, a few taking fright, even without cause,
spread * Part 1. of this chapter, sect. 4.
spread the infection till it becomes an universal panic. Pity is fimilar to its cause; a parting scene between lovers or friends, produceth in the spectator a sort of pity, which is tender like the distress: the anguish of remorse, produceth pity of a harsh kind ; and if the remorse be extreme, the pity hath a mixture of horror. Anger I think is fingular; for even where it is moderate, : and causeth no disgust, it disposes not the spectator to anger in any degree *. Covetousness, cruelty, treachery, and other vicious passions, are so far from raising any emotion similar to them. selves, to incite a spectator to imitation, that they have an opposite effect : they raise abhorrerice, and fortify the spectator in his aversion to such actions. When anger is immoderate, it cannot fail to produce the same effect...
FINAL CAUSES OF THE MORE FREQUENT EMO
TIONS AND PASSIONS.
IT is a law in our nature, that we never act 1 but by the impulse of desire; which in other words is saying, that passion, by the desire incluM 3
* Aristotle, Poet. cap. 18. fe&t. 3. says, that anger rai. seth in the spectator a similar emotion of anger.
ded in it; is what determines the will. Hence in the condu&t of life, it is of the utmott importance, that our passions be directed to proper objects, tend to just and rational ends, and with relation to each other, be duly balanced. The beauty of contrivance, fo conspicuous in the human frame; is not confined to the rational part of our nature, but is visible: over the whole. -Concerning the pallions in particular, however irregular, headstrong, and perverse, in a slight view, they may appear, I hope to demonstrate, that they are by 'nature modelled and tempered with perfect wisdom, for the good of fociety as well as for private good. The subject, treated at large, would be too extensive for the present work : all there is room for are a few general observations upon the sensitive part of our nature, without regarding that strange irregularity of passion discovered in some individuals. Such topical irregularities, if I may use the term, cannot fairly be held an objection to the present theory: we are frequently, it is true, milled by ingrdinate pasfion ; but we are also, and perhaps no less frequently, misled by wrong judgment.
In order to fulfil my engagement, it must be premised, that an agreeable cause produceth always a pleasant emotion; and a disagreeable cause, a painful emotion. This is a general law of nature, which admits not a fingle exception : agreeableness in the cause is indeed so effentially