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it did not contain so many cities, and because being more rarely visited, these were less known. Another fact still more conclusive, is that several cities in both the Indian peninsulas and in Taprobane or Ceylon, bore Greek appellations, either originally imposed, or translations of the native names. These must have been factories, or places where considerable bodies of foreigners stationed themselves with more or less permanence for purposes of trade.
In this trade the Indian merchants also took an active part. That portion of it which extended beyond Hindostan to Farther India, the Indian Archipelago, and Canton, was almost exclusively conducted by them. They also participated in the trade to the westward. Settlements of Indian traders are known to have existed on the coasts of Arabia and Ethiopia, and on the island of Socotra or Dioscorides, whose name is perhaps Sanscrit. Many of them established themselves in Egypt, and they were emulous of a share of the trade between Alexandria and Western ports. They are particularly spoken of as visiting Lacedemonia.
Cornelius Nepos relates an incident, which can hardly be explained on any other hypothesis than their vigorous participation in the overland trade likewise. He says that when Metellus Celer was proconsul of Gaul, B. C. 60, some Indians were sent to him by the king of the Suevi, who had been engaged in trade but had been driven by storms and adverse winds completely out of their course. Now unless we suppose that they had entirely circumnavigated the continent of Africa, the only other alternative would seem to be that they were pursuing their avocation upon the route across the Caspian and Black Seas, and were driven by stress of weather to the northern shores of the latter, where they fell into the hands of the Suevi and were dealt with in the manner already mentioned.
The competition among the native princes for the trade with Rome, and their desire to obtain a full share of its benefits, may also be inferred from the repeated embassies sent from India to the Roman emperors, doubtless with this view. Thus we read of one from a king by the name of Poros, to the emperor Augustus; another from a king in Ceylon to Claudius ;
a third from a king on the Malabar coast to Antoninus Pius, and a fourth was sent to the emperor Julian.
The effects of this increased intercourse upon the west, on one hand, and upon India on the other, are yet to be considered. No assimilation of Rome and India is to be expected. They were too remote, and too unlike, and the proportion of actual traders to the entire population of either country was too small for us to look for such a result.
It may be said, however, to have accelerated the fall of Rome, by tending to increase and pamper its luxury, by enormously enriching one class, the merchants, at the expense of the rest, and by the prodigious drain of the precious metals which, as has already been stated, it occasioned.
Its intellectual results were, however, of greater importance than its political consequences. The mind of the west received a powerful impulse on the one hand, from the vast additions now made to the knowledge previously possessed of the world and of natural phenomena, and on the other, from contact with the strange and striking forms of Hindoo thought and life. The personal observations of Alexander's generals, or the notes of subsequent merchants and travellers, furnished the data by which Eratosthenes, Hipparchus, Strabo, and Ptolemy, not only reached surprisingly accurate conclusions respecting these hitherto unvisited lands, but were greatly aided in working out the problem of the form and dimensions of the habitable earth and of the globe itself. They furnished the data likewise from which Pliny drew largely in composing his Natural History, that encyclopedia, as it has been well called, of the knowledge of the ancients. And even the errors, into which the ancient geographers were betrayed by these authorities, had an important connection with the greatest discovery of modern times. The imperfections in the mode of reckoning distance in marches and voyages made it impossible for the most careful to attain strict accuracy. But the itineraries, which were then the principal sources of information, did not even aim at the precision demanded by science. When the distance was extended to hundreds or thousands of miles, the margin of possible error became necessarily very great. In latitude, these errors were capable of at least partial correction by the statements made
respecting climate and productions, or the length of the longest day, or the direction of the shadow at noon, or the proportion between the shadow on the dial-plate, and the gnomon by which it was cast, whence the polar altitude might be readily calculated. But in computing the longitude no correction of this sort was possible for even the gravest errors, and the more remote the place the more considerable the error becomes. Thus Ptolemy gives the latitude of Cabul within 24 minutes of the truth, but the longitude which he assigns to it is 28 degrees in excess. At Madura the error of longitude is 30 degrees, and at Canton 46. The limit of the eastern continent was thus conceived to lie far beyond its actual position, and the task which Columbus proposed to accomplish by his western voyage was to that extent reduced.
Some of the doctrines of the Gnostics and the Neoplatonists were plainly borrowed from or modified by those of the Indian philosophy. This influence is apparent in the philosophical tenets of. Plotinus, and Porphyry, as well as in the Gnostic ideas of emanation and the demiurgos, of the evil inherent in matter, the virtue of asceticism, obtaining direct communion with God by the mortification of the senses and profound meditation, and thus attaining to miraculous powers, the division of men into the three classes of πνευματικοι, ψυχικου and Shexol, etc.; while monachism, celibacy, the veneration of relics, bells, rosaries, the tonsure, and the like, betray a Buddhist origin.
On the other hand, the Hindus learned their astronomy from the west, and seem to have been subjected to some influences from the Christian church. Some peculiarities were introduced into the worship of Krishna, and some modifications made of the conceptions previously entertained of him, which seem to have been derived from the worship of Christ. There are also some strange approximations to the ideas of a personal supreme God, and the sovereign efficacy of faith in him, which seem as if they must have been borrowed from a Christian
ART. IV.-An Examination of Mr. J. S. Mill's Philosophy:
Being a Defence of Fundamental Truth. By JAMES McCoss, LL.D. New York: Robert Carter & Brothers. 1866.
DR. McCosh has established a high rank for himself as a judicious, sound, and able writer on metaphysics and cognate questions relative to "fundamental truth.” The freedom, sometimes amounting to diffuseness, of his style increases the popularity and influence of his philosophical writings. He seldom fails to detect the real issue between truth and error, and to do good service on the side of the former. Beyond any other considerable living author he has seized upon and exposed the false and dangerous theories propounded by the different philosophers and schools which exercise the greatest power over modern thought, and are working the direst havoc among the young thinkers of Europe and America. His great mission is, indeed, the “ defence of fundamental truth” against assaults of sceptics, destructives, and the unintentional betrayals of mistaken friends. And nobly does he fulfil it. He shows that judicial mind in regard to philosophical questions which preserves its balance between contending parties, and rarely fails to seize and maintain the truth, sifting it clear of intermingled fallacies and sophisms. Among all the philosophical writers of the present time, none lays so firmly the foundations which underlie all truth, natural and revealed, and without which, all belief in substance, cause, or reality of any sort, must totter and fall.
It was therefore eminently fit that Dr. McCosh should bring to the test of a rigid examination the principles so industriously and ably propagated by one of the mightiest of modern destructive writers, John Stuart Mill. Such a work greatly needed to be done, and our author was the man to do it. This volume is important, not merely in reference to the views of Mr. Mill, but of the whole school of writers, past and present, British and continental, he so ably represents. Not only so. Mr. Mill's most significant and recent exposition of his views is presented in his review of Sir William Hamilton's Metaphysics. Thus Dr. McCosh in reviewing the former, continually deals
with the doctrines of the latter, the strongest representative of the contrary side, not to say extreme, in philosophy, which the century has produced in Britain. A searching examination of Mill's philosophical discussions becomes therefore really a survey of the two great currents of philosophical opinion in that country and our own at the present time. We invite the attention of our readers to a few of the salient points of our author's latest work.
1. The grand feature of Mill's system appears in his doctrine of sensations. To these he reduces all the operations of mind, and of course all that we know of mind or matter, or being. He says, “a feeling and a state of consciousness are, in the language of philosophy, equivalent expressions; everything is a feeling of which the mind is conscious; everything which it feels, or, in other words, which form a part of its own sentient existence." “Feeling, in the proper sense of the term, is a genus of which Sensation, Emotion, and Thought, are the subordinate species.” The mind he analyzes into a mere “thread of consciousness," a "series of feelings which is conscious of itself as past and future.” He says, “the belief I entertain that my mind exists, when it is not feeling, nor thinking, nor conscious of its own existence, resolves itself into a belief of a Permanent Possibility of these states.” But these states or exercises have already, as we have seen, been resolved into feelings or sensations. In endless forms he teaches us that “matter may be defined a permanent possibility of sensations.” Matter, mind, and all exercises of mind, in short, the universe, the omne scibile, are therefore resolved into sensations and possibilities of sensation. This is the only residuum of reality left to us by the alembic of Mr. Mill's philosophy. It involves the identity of Mind and Matter, and becomes indifferently Sensationalism, Materialism, Idealism, Nihilism, according to the standpoint from which it is viewed.
Thus, if we view sensation as an exercise or modification of mind, then all things are mere mental modifications or possibilities thereof. This is Idealism, or mere Egoism, or Infinite Subjectivity. But if sensation be an affection of matter, then all things are reducible to affections of matter or possibilities thereof, and Materialism ensues. And whether sensation be an
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