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First edition of what Roger Robinson in his Beattie Correspondence edition for Thoemmes Press called Beattie's "best prose work". It is notable for his 'Theory of Language' (pp. 231-502), by far the longest and most important dissertation in the volume. Five years later the same publishers reprinted it separately. The Bavarian State Library's copy of the 1788 edition was digitized in 2010 as a Google eBook, and has so far received one 'reader's review': "This book has one main recurring spelling mistake, it is in some words which start with 's' or contain 's', it is replaced with 'f', for example 'supposed' is spelled 'fuppofed'. I haven't read the whole, I've skimmed through most of the book" (we have not made this up!). 'A constant concern in Beattie's philosophy is the fitness of language as the expression of human thought. The Theory of Language (1783) falls into two parts. Part one deals with the origins and the nature of human speech considered as man’s privilege and a gift of God. Following in Locke’s footsteps, Beattie explains that language is a system of artificial signs determined by conventions (phonetic, semantic and alphabetic). The Epicurean theory of the origins of language is refuted in favour of the traditional Christian approach. Part two of the treatise is devoted to the principles of universal grammar. Beattie distinguishes two categories of words, nouns and attributives, to which two other subclasses are added: interjections; and connectives and articles. Beattie’s classification of words is borrowed from James Harris's Hermes (1751). To a large extent, The Theory of Language also echoes the preoccupations of the Grammaire générale et raisonnée of Port-Royal in the seventeenth century. In either case, grammar is studied from a twofold point of view: first the linguistic sign is presented as a system of phonetic sounds translated into the visible signs of the alphabet. The second aspect is that of signification' (Dictionary of Eighteenth-Century British Philosophers, Thoemmes Press, 1999). Chuo III, 28. PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: 4to, with the half title, x, [vi], 655 pp., contemporary tree calf, upper joint cracked but cords holding, spine ruled gilt in compartments with red morocco label, internally nice and clean, round armorial bookplate of Montagu George Knight of Chawton, a very good copy. N° de ref. de la librería
Título: Dissertations Moral and Critical. On Memory ...
Condición del libro: Very Good
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