unhappy parent fell, not so much affected by his fate as by the means to which he owed it.”
Here is an example of the greatest filial impiety, and of the highest parental affection.
The one fulfils our idea of the right
, the other our idea of t/e wrong
. Now, what is this idea of the right (and the wrong in which all are supposed to agree?
We would not ask, with the disciple of Paley
, of Condillac, or of Helvetius
, what the “wild boy, caught years ago in the woods of Hanover
,” would have thought of this case; nor what the savage, without experience and without instruction, cut off in his infancy from all intercourse with his species, would think of it. No: “the savage state offers us humanity in swaddling-clothes, so to speak — the germ of humanity, but not humanity entire.
The true man is the perfect man of his kind: true human nature is human nature arrived at its development.”
We utterly deny that; in order to arrive at the judgment of human nature, we need consult a savage in such circumstances, or indeed to consult a savage at all. And yet we say that even a savage of good mind, who has lived long enough in society to get the idea of the relation of parent and child — such as even savages have — would pronounce the conduct of the one to