Locke's Essay on the Human Understanding

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Page 31 - For wit lying most in the assemblage of ideas, and putting those together with quickness and variety, wherein can be found any resemblance or congruity, thereby to make up pleasant pictures and agreeable visions in the fancy...
Page xxv - Let us then suppose the mind to be, as we say, white paper, void of all characters, without any ideas; how comes it to be furnished? Whence comes it by that vast store, which the busy and boundless fancy of man has painted on it with an almost endless variety? Whence has it all the materials of reason and knowledge? To this I answer, in one word, from EXPERIENCE; in that all our knowledge is founded, and from that it ultimately derives itself.
Page 25 - Thus the ideas, as well as children, of our youth often die before us ; and our minds represent to us those tombs to which we are approaching ; where though the brass and marble remain, yet the inscriptions are effaced by time, and the imagery moulders away. The pictures drawn in our minds are laid in fading colours ; and if not sometimes refreshed, vanish and disappear.
Page 9 - Secondly, such qualities which in truth are nothing in the objects themselves but powers to produce various sensations in us by their primary qualities, ie by the bulk, figure, texture, and motion of their insensible parts, as colours, sounds, tastes, etc.
Page xxxii - When the understanding is once stored with these simple ideas, it has the power to repeat, compare, and unite them, even to an almost infinite variety, and so can make at pleasure new complex ideas. But it is not in the power of the most exalted wit, or enlarged understanding, by any quickness or variety of thought, to invent or frame one new simple idea in the mind, not taken in by the ways before mentioned: nor can any force of the understanding destroy those that are there.
Page xxiv - It being that term which, I think, serves best to stand for whatsoever is the object of the understanding when a man thinks: I have used it to express whatever is meant by phantasm, notion, species, or whatever it is which the mind can be employed about in thinking; and I could not avoid frequently using it.
Page 17 - Suppose a man born blind, and now adult, and taught by his touch to distinguish between a cube, and a sphere of the same metal, and nighly of the same bigness, so as to tell, when he felt one and...
Page 126 - I doubt not, but if we could trace them to their sources, we should find, in all languages, the names, which stand for things that fall not under our senses, to have had their first rise from sensible ideas.
Page xx - I can give any account of the ways whereby our understandings come to attain those notions of things we have, and can set down any measures of the certainty of our knowledge, or the grounds of those persuasions which are to be found amongst men...
Page xxxi - In this part the understanding is merely passive ; and whether or no it will have these beginnings, and, as it were, materials of knowledge, is not in its own power. For the objects of our senses do, many of them, obtrude their particular ideas upon our minds, whether we will or no: and the operations of our minds will not let us be without, at least, some obscure notions of them.

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