— 403 —
Words ultimately derived from such as signify sensible Ideas.       §5. It may also lead us a little towards the Original of all our
Notions and Knowledge, if we remark, how great a dependance our
Words have on common sensible Ideas; and how those, which are
made use of to stand for Actions and Notions quite removed from
sense, have their rise from thence, and from obvious sensible Ideas are
transferred to more abstruse significations, and made to stand for Ideas
that come not under the cognizance of our senses; v.g. to Imagine,
Apprehend, Comprehend, Adhere, Conceive, Instill, Disgust, Disturbance,
Tranquillity, etc. are all Words taken from the Operations of sensible
Things, and applied to certain Modes of Thinking. Spirit, in its
primary signification, is Breath; Angel, a Messenger: And I doubt
not, but if we could trace them to their sources, we should find, in
all Languages, the names, which stand for Things that fall not under
our Senses, to have had their first rise from sensible Ideas. By which
we may give some kind of guess, what kind of Notions they were,
and whence derived, which filled their Minds, who were the first
Beginners of Languages; and how Nature, even in the naming of
Things, unawares suggested to Men the Originals and Principles
of all their Knowledge: whilst, to give Names, that might make
known to others any Operations they felt in themselves, or any other
Ideas, that came not under their Senses, they were fain to borrow
Words from ordinary known Ideas of Sensation, by that means to
make others the more easily to conceive those Operations they
experimented in themselves, which made no outward sensible
appearances; and then when they had got known and agreed
Names, to signify those internal Operations of their own Minds,
— 404 —
they were sufficiently furnished to make known by Words, all their
other Ideas; since they could consist of nothing, but either of out-
ward sensible Perceptions, or of the inward Operations of their
Minds about them; we having, as has been proved, no Ideas at all,
but what originally come either from sensible Objects without, or
what we feel within our selves, from the inward Workings of our
own Spirits, which we are conscious to our selves of within.
Locke Hum III, 1, §5, pp. 403-404