Historic Doubts Relative to Napoleon Buonaparte ...

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Warren F. Draper, 1874 - Всего страниц: 48

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Стр. 26 - That no testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle, unless the testimony be of such a kind that its falsehood would be more miraculous than the fact which it endeavours to establish.
Стр. 21 - tis true : The elder of them, being put to nurse, "Was by a beggar-woman stol'n away ; And, ignorant of his birth and parentage, Became a bricklayer when he came to age : His son am I ; deny it, if you can.
Стр. 31 - I desire any one to lay his hand upon his heart, and, after a serious consideration, declare, whether he thinks that the falsehood of such a book, supported by such a testimony, would be more extraordinary and miraculous than all the miracles it relates ; which is, however, necessary to make it be received, according to the measures of probability above established.
Стр. 19 - Bonaparte are generally believed, fail in all the most essential points on which the credibility of witnesses depends: first, we have no assurance that they have access to correct information; secondly, they have an apparent interest in propagating falsehood; and, thirdly, they palpably contradict each other in the most important points.
Стр. 14 - We find ourselves in the condition of the Hindoos who are told by their priests that the earth stands on an elephant, and the elephant on a tortoise ; but are left to find out for themselves what the tortoise stands on, or whether it stands on anything at all. So much for our clear knowledge of the means of information possessed by these witnesses ; next for the grounds on which we are to calculate on their veracity. Have they not a manifest interest in circulating the wonderful accounts of Napoleon...
Стр. 26 - When any one tells me that he saw a dead man restored to life, I immediately consider with myself whether it be more probable that this person should either deceive or be deceived, or that the fact which lie relates should really have happened.
Стр. 32 - ... against an English commander, and both times he is totally defeated, at Acre and at Waterloo ; and, to crown all, England finally crushes this tremendous power, which has so long kept the Continent in subjection or in alarm, and to the English he surrenders himself prisoner ! Thoroughly national to be sure ! It may be all very true ; but I would only ask, if a story had been fabricated for the express purpose of amusing the English nation, could it have been contrived more ingeniously...
Стр. 18 - But is it not possible, — is it not indeed perfectly natural, — that the publishers of known falsehood should assume this cautious demeanor, and this abhorrence of exaggeration, in order the more easily to gain credit ? Is it not also very possible, that those who actually believed what they published, may have suspected mere exaggeration, in stories which were entire fictions? Many men have that sort of simplicity, that they think themselves quite secure against being deceived, provided they...
Стр. 25 - And if we would explode any forgery in history, we cannot make use of a more convincing argument than to prove that the actions ascribed to any person are directly contrary to the course of nature, and that no human motives, in such circumstances, could ever induce him to such a conduct.
Стр. 23 - Suppose, for instance, that the fact which the testimony endeavours to establish partakes of the extraordinary and the marvellous ; in that case the evidence resulting from the testimony admits of a diminution, greater or less, in proportion as the fact is more or less unusual.

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