concentrated in his thoughts and had great continuity of reflection.
In everything he was patient and enduring.
These are some of the grounds of his wonderful success.
Not only were nature, man, and principle suggestive to Mr. Lincoln
, not only had he accurate and exact perceptions, but he was causative; his mind, apparently with an automatic movement, ran back behind facts, principles, and all things to their origin and first cause — to that point where forces act at once as effect and cause.
He would stop in the street and analyze a machine.
He would whittle a thing to a point, and then count the numberless inclined planes and their pitch making the point.
Mastering and defining this, he would then cut that point back and get a broad transverse section of his pine-stick, and peel and define that.
Clocks, omnibuses, language, paddle-wheels, and idioms never escaped his observation and analysis.
Before he could form an idea of anything, before he would express his opinion on a subject, he must know its origin and history in substance and quality, in magnitude and gravity.
He must know it inside and outside, upside and downside.
He searched and comprehended his own mind and nature thoroughly, as I have often heard him say. He must analyze a sensation, an idea, and run back in its history to its origin, and purpose.
He was remorseless in his analysis of facts and principles.
When all these exhaustive processes had been gone through with he could form an idea and