— 330 —
Identity of Vegetables.       §4. We must therefore consider wherein an Oak differs from a
Mass of Matter, and that seems to me to be in this; that the one is
only the Cohesion of Particles of Matter any how united, the other
such a disposition of them as constitutes the parts of an Oak; and
— 331 —
such an Organization of those parts, as is fit to receive, and distri-
bute nourishment, so as to continue, and frame the Wood, Bark, and
Leaves, etc. of an Oak, in which consists the vegetable Life. That
being then one Plant, which has such an Organization of Parts in
one coherent Body, partaking of one Common Life, it continues to
be the same Plant, as long as it partakes of the same Life, though that
Life be communicated to new Particles of Matter vitally united to
the living Plant, in a like continued Organization, conformable to
that sort of Plants. For this Organization being at any one instant
in any one Collection of Matter, is in that particular concrete
distinguished from all other, and is that individual Life, which
existing constantly from that moment both forwards and back-
wards in the same continuity of insensibly succeeding Parts united
to the living Body of the Plant, it has that Identity, which makes
the same Plant, and all the parts of it, parts of the same Plant,
during all the time that they exist united in that continued Organi-
zation, which is fit to convey that Common Life to all the Parts so
united.
Locke Hum II, 27, §4, pp. 330-331