The Idea of a University

Chapter 7.

Gibbon paints with pleasure what, conformably with the sentiments of a godless intellectualism, was an historical fulfilment of his own idea of moral perfection; Lord Shaftesbury had already drawn out that idea in a theoretical form, in his celebrated collection of Treatises which he has called “Characteristics of men, manners, opinions, views;” and it will be a further illustration of the subject before us, if you will allow me, Gentlemen, to make some extracts from this work.

One of his first attacks is directed against the doctrine of reward and punishment, as if it introduced

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