By Bernard Mandeville
Read or Download An Enquiry into the Origin of Honour, and the Usefulness of Christianity in War [with accents] PDF
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Additional info for An Enquiry into the Origin of Honour, and the Usefulness of Christianity in War [with accents]
Cleo. I shall always bear the highest Esteem for Men of strict Honour and real Virtue, and will never ridicule what is approved of by Custom, and the Consent of several Ages has render'd valuable; but no Title or Dignity, no Name or Distinction can be so honourable, or so eminent, that a serious Enquirer may not have Leave to trace it to the Bottom. I have acknowledged, that the Word Honour, in its first and genuine Sense, is as ancient as the oldest Language in the World. As to my Conjecture concerning the same Word, as it signifies a Principle which Men act from, I leave it entirely to your Judgment: But whatever the Origin may be of either, it is certain, that whatever the Words Honour and Honourable are join'd with, added or applied to, there is plain Design in them of pleasing and gratifying those it concerns, on Account of the Passion of Self-liking, and a palpable Tendency to humour, approve of, or encrease the good Opinion Man has of himself: As you'll find, on the Contrary, that in the Words Dishonour Shame, Ignominy, and whatever is dishonourable, there is an Intention, or Something imply'd, to displease and mortify those it concerns, on Account of that same Passion of Self-liking, and an Endeavour to lessen, contradict or destroy Self-Esteem, which is that good Opinion which Man has of himself from Nature.
The Multitude in all Countries ascribe to the Deities they worship the same Passions which they feel themselves; and knowing how well pleas'd they are with Every body that is on their Side, and will take their Part, they expect their Reward from Heaven, which they seem to defend; and on that Score they think with Delight on the Losses and Calamities which they make others suffer; whether Churchmen fight with _Presbyterians_, Papists with _Protestants_, or Mahometans with Christians of any Sort.
Hor. Besides Canonizations keep up the Reputation of the Roman Catholick Faith; for the new Saints, that are made from Time to Time, are always fresh Witnesses, that Miracles are not ceas'd, and consequently that the Church of Rome continues to be the same Church which Christ and his Apostles first establish'd. Cleo. You are in the Right; and whilst we consider and give Credit to those Pretences, the Design must seem to be religious; and every Roman Catholick, who is firm in his Belief; is obliged to think, that whatever Cost is bestow'd upon Canonizations, no Money could be laid out better.