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distinguish man, he will not acknowledge to be his equals in such faculties. There is nothing, it seems, worthy of being compared with man, but divinity! If speech be considered as the power of articulating at will different sounds, have not all animals this faculty ?
Do not those animals who experience the necessity of procuring to themselves a shelter from the inclemency of the air, partake also this art with man ? Nature, which has made nothing in vain, has refused this art to animals who have received at their birth a convenient clothing appropriate to their constitu. tion, to their temperament, and to the climate where they are intended to live and die : those, however, whose blood possesses a sufficient degree of fluidity to preserve the play of their organs from being in. commoded by the impression of exterior air or whose exclusive habitation supercedes the necessity of lodging and clothing, have not this art. Man seems destined to inhabit all places, to be exposed to all exterior impressions; and the necessity of protecting himself from them is, without doubt, an imperfection which places him below some animals.
The art most essential, of procuring food, is inherited by all animals : in this respect man is the most silly and inexpert. In a savage state, he knows only how to kill and destroy; for if he finds it necessary to fight, he often proves the weakest in the combat, and requires long experience in order to enable him, by art, to make himself master of his prey, which often escapes him. In a state of civilization, how many men die of hunger; and with what trouble and care, with how many inquietudes, toils, and mortifications do others purchase an unwhosesome meal ? Every animal, except man, makes choice of his food, with prompt sagacity and readiness, while this image of God is incapable of distinguishing that which is not baneful and unwholesome, till after he has analyzed and experimented much, or not till he has brought on himself infirmities, diseases, and torments, which contribute to shorten the natural term of his exis. tence.
Man, in his inventions to procure the indulgencies of life, has often produced a vicious routine of vol. untary evils and remedies ill applied. His greatest fault is that of being accustomed to consider the exterior air as an inconvenience, the laws of nature as a burden, and the order which she has established as a bad arrangement, which he must rectify. That this parallel might be carried much farther, makes me blush that I am a man; altho' it is coup. ted a title of vast import.
Man says of himself, “I am the only animal cap. able of conceiving ideas." But of what value is the possession of ideas if they be not weighed and compared? Do not those animals which man has termed irrational possess judgment ? and is not their judgment less liable to err, and often more wise, if not more reasonable than that of man? Examples would produce prolixity; but when we observe fidelity in animals which we call brutes (an expression used to signify a being precisely the contrary to it's true meaning); when we follow their con. duct as it relates to our's towards them ; we shall be obliged to confess that it is almost always more consequent, more conformable to their interest, and more analogous to circumstances than our's: that, in fine, they judge, they reason, and frequently think more sensibly than we. They have indubitably the facul. ty of expressing their thoughts, and of communicat. ing them to each other; but not from one kind to another, as from them to us. A bird might justly treat us as brutes, because, we imitate their wbist. ling, as a parrot pronounces some of our words ; for we comprehend their meaning as little as they do the signification of our odd expressions.
It is certain that the great mass of mankind, even in these refined times, pass through life without any rational acquirements. Their minds groveling, and possessing no arts, not even those most essential to life. Their most serious employment is reading works of imagination; some do not read any thing; and some were never taught to read.
In the present depraved state of mankind, the very worst of inferior animals are but feeble shadows of the degeneracy and corruption which prevails among themselves. “Shew me,” says the Rev. John Hildrop, “any one species of animal more ridiculous, more contemptible, more pernicious, more detestible, than are to be found among the silly, the vicious, the wicked part of mankind. Are apes and monkies more ridiculous or mischievous creatures than some who are to be found in the most polite assemblies? Is a poor dog with four legs, who acts agreeably to his nature, half so despicable a creature as a sad dog with two, who with high preten. sions to reason, virtue, and honour, is every day guilty of crimes for which his brother brute would be doomed to hanging ? Is a swine that wallows in the mire half so contemptible an animal as a drunkard or a sot, who wallows in the filth and dirt of their own intemperance? What is the rage of ty. gers, the fierceness of lions, the cruelty of wolves and bears, the treachery of cats and monkies, and the cunning of foxes, when compared with the cruelty, the treachery, the barbarity of mankind ? The wolf and the tyger, that worry a few innocent sheep, purely to satisfy hunger, are harmless ani. mals when opposed to the rage and fury of conquerors, the barbarity and cruelty of tyrants and oppressors, who uninjured, upprovoked, lay whole countries waste, turn the most beautiful cities into heaps of ruins, and sweep the face of the earth before them like an inundation or devouring fire. Their motives are to gratify insatiable avarice and ambition, to ex. tend conquest, to raise an empty fame and a fabric of vanity on the ruins of humanity, virtue, and true honour.”
" The monkeys, apes, and baboons of the island of Borneo," says Capt Beckman, "are of many different shapes, but the most remarkable are those called Orang Outangs. These grow up to be six feet high; they walk upright, have longer arms than men; tolerably good faces, handsomer I am sure, than some hottentots that I have seen ; large teeth, no tails, nor hair, but on those parts where it grows on human bodies. They are very nimble footed and exceedingly strong. They throw great stones, sticks and billets at those persons who offend them. The natives believe that they were formerly men but me. tamorphosed into beasts for their blasphemy. I boughtone out of curiosity for six spanish dollars; it lived with me seven months and then died of a flux. He was a great thief and liked strong liquors ; for if our backs were turned, he would be at the punch. bowl, and would open the brandy-case, and replace it carefully. He slept, lying at length, with one hand under his head. If I was angry with him, he would sigh, sob, and cry, till he found that I was reconcil. ed to him; and tho' he was but about twelve months old when he died, yet he was stronger than any man." Voyage to Borneo, in 1718, p. 37.
Doctor Tyson relates of his pigmy that “once it was made drunk with punch, but afterwards it would never drink above one cup, and refused to take more than what he found agreed with him. Anato. my, &c. p. 10. After he was taken and a little used to wear clothes, he was fond of them; and what he could not put on himself he would bring in his hands to some of the company for assistance. He laid in a bed with his head upon a pillow and drew the clothes over him like one of the human species.
The Quran-Outang, has a capacity far superior to other wild animals. Suppose a man born deaf, dumb and blind, as some are ; they can, therefore, according to Mr. Locke, acquire no ideas. They are inferior then, in regard to understandiog or soul, to this animal. And will you make a superior soul mortal, when an inferior is immortal? Where, then, can you draw the line for immortality? If you say that the Quran-Outang is immortal, must you not say that the baboon is immortal? If you say that the baboon is immortal, must you not say that the common monkey is immortal also ? This argument tends to prove that the souls of the meanest insect is immortal as well as others. If it should be asked can this kind of argumentation be of any service? I answer that it can. It may teach us to treat the lower order of animals with greater humanity than we do. This would be of much more service than aiming to assimulate the human nature to the divine. Man does not need such reasoning to increase his pride. He rather needs arguments to prove that his nature resembles that of the brutes, in order to induce