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PIECES Contained in this COLLECTION.
THE character of Mr. Locke, by Mr. Peter Coste.
The fundamental constitutions of Carolina.
A letter from a person of quality to his friend in the country; giving an account of the debates and resolutions of the house of lords, in April and May 1675, concerning a bill, intitled, "An act to prevent the dangers which may arise from persons disaffected "to the government." Remarks upon some of Mr. Norris's books, wherein he asserts F. Malebranche's opinion of "our seeing all "things in God."
* Elements of natural philosophy.
* Some thoughts concerning reading and study for a gentleman.
A letter to Mr. Oldenburgh, secretary to the Royal So
Letters to Anthony Collins, Esq.
A letter to the Rev. Mr. Richard King.
A letter to *** on Dr. Pococke.
Letters to the Rev. Mr. Richard King.
Rules of a society which met once a week, for their improvement in useful knowledge, and for the promoting of truth and christian charity.
* It has been deemed expedient, in the present edition, to transfer these two articles to the second volume.
CHARA C T ER
MR. PETER COSTE:
A LETTER relating to that CHARACTER, and to the AUTHOR of it.
A LETTER to Mr. *
London, Feb. 4, 1720.
BEING informed, that you design to publish several new pieces of Mr. Locke, I here send you, at the request of some of his friends, the translation of a letter, attempting his character, and containing several passages of his life and conversation; which you are desired to prefix before that collection.
The author of that letter is Mr. Peter Coste, who has translated into French Mr. Locke's Thoughts concerning Education, his Reasonableness of Christianity, and Vindications thereof; with his principal work, the Essay concerning Human Understanding.
Mr. COSTE lived in the same family with Mr. Locke, during the seven last years of that great man's life; whereby he had all possible opportunities to know him.
The letter was written some time after Mr. Locke's death; and appears to be the production of a man in
raptures, and struck with the highest admiration of Mr. Locke's virtue, capacity, and of the excellency of his writings; and under the deepest affliction for the loss of a person, to whom in his life-time he had paid the most profound respect, and for whom he had constantly expressed the greatest esteem, and that even in writings, whereof Mr. Locke did not know him to be the author.
And therefore Mr. Locke's friends judge its publication necessary, not only, as they think it contains a just character of Mr. Locke, as far as it goes; but as it is a proper vindication of him against the said Mr. Coste,who in several writings, and in his common conversation throughout France, Holland, and England, has aspersed and blackened the memory of Mr. Locke, in those very respects, wherein he was his panegyrist before.
For, they conceive, the eulogium contained in the following letter must stand good, till Mr. Coste thinks fit either to deny his own experience, or to confess, that the same things, which he then thought praise-worthy, have since changed their nature. I am,
The CHARACTER of Mr. LOCKE.
In a LETTER to the AUTHOR of the Nouvelles de la Republique des Lettres. By Mr. P. COSTE*.
SIR, London, Dec. 10, 1704. You must have heard of the death of the illustrious Mr. Locke. It is a general loss. For that reason he is lamented by all good men, and all sincere lovers
That letter was printed in the Nouvelles de la Republique des Lettres, for the month of February, 1705, art. II. page 154, with this title, A LETTER of Mr. COSTE to the author of these Nouvelles, written on occasion of the death of Mr. Locke.
of truth, who were acquainted with his character. He was born for the good of mankind. Most of his actions were directed to that end; and I doubt whether, in his time, any man in Europe applied himself more earnestly to that noble design, or executed it with more success.
I will forbear to speak of the valuableness of his works. The general esteem they have attained, and will preserve, as long as good sense and virtue are left in the world; the service they have been of to England in particular, and universally to all that set themselves seriously to the search of truth, and the study of christianity; are their best eulogium. The love of truth is visible in every part of them. This is allowed by all that have read them. For even they, who have not relished some of Mr. Locke's opinions, have done him the justice to confess, that the manner, in which he defends them, shows he advanced nothing that he was not sincerely convinced of himself. This his friends gave him an account of from several hands: "Let them "after this, answered he, object whatever they please "against my works; I shall never be disturbed at it: "for since they grant I advance nothing in them but "what I really believe, I shall always be glad to prefer "truth to any of my opinions, whenever I discover it by myself, or am satisfied that they are not conform"able to it." Happy turn of mind! which, I am fully persuaded, contributed more even than the penetration of that noble genius, to his discovery of those great and useful truths which appear in his works.
But, without dwelling any longer upon considering Mr.Locke in the quality of an author, which often serves only to disguise the real character of the man, I haste to show him to you in particulars much more amiable, and which will give you a higher notion of his merit.
Mr. Locke had a great knowledge of the world, and of the business of it. Prudent without being cunning; he won people's esteem by his probity, and was always safe from the attacks of a false friend, or a sordid flatterer. Averse to all mean complaisance; his wisdom, his experience, his gentle and obliging manners, gained him the respect of his inferiours, the esteem of his