— 482 —
Secondly, To co-existing Qualities, which are known but imperfectly.
      §13. Secondly, The simple Ideas that are found to co-exist in Sub-
stances, being that which their Names immediately signify, these,
as united in the several Sorts of Things, are the proper Standards to
which their Names are referred, and by which their Significations
may best be rectified. But neither will these Archetypes so well serve
to this purpose, as to leave these Names without very various and
uncertain significations. Because these simple Ideas that co-exist,
and are united in the same Subject, being very numerous, and
having all an equal right to go into the complex specifick Idea,
which the specifick Name is to stand for, Men, though they pro-
pose to themselves the very same subject to consider yet frame
very different Ideas about it; and so the Name they use for it,
unavoidably comes to have, in several Men, very different signifi-
cations. The simple Qualities which make up the complex Ideas,
being most of them Powers, in relation to Changes, which they are
apt to make in, or receive from other Bodies, are almost infinite.
He that shall but observe, what a great variety of alterations any
one of the baser Metals is apt to receive, from the different appli-
cation only of Fire; and how much a greater number of Changes
any of them will receive in the Hands of a Chymist, by the appli-
cation of other Bodies, will not think it strange, that I count the
— 483 —
Properties of any sort of Bodies not easy to be collected, and com-
pletely known by the ways of enquiry, which our Faculties are
capable of. They being therefore at least so many, that no Man can
know the precise and definite number, they are differently dis-
covered by different Men, according to their various skill, atten-
tion, and ways of handling; who therefore cannot chuse but have
different Ideas of the same Substance, and therefore make the sig-
nification of its common Name very various and uncertain. For the
complex Ideas of Substances, being made up of such simple ones as
are supposed to co-exist in Nature, every one has a right to put into
his complex Idea, those Qualities he has found to be united together.
For though in the Substance Gold, one satisfies himself with Colour
and Weight, yet another thinks Solubility in Aqua Regia, as
necessary to be joined with that Colour in his Idea of Gold, as any
one does its Fusibility; Solubility in Aqua Regia, being a Quality as
constantly join’d with its Colour and Weight, as Fusibility, or any
other; others put in its Ductility or Fixedness, etc. as they have
been taught by Tradition, or Experience. Who of all these, has
establish’d the right signification of the Word Gold? Or who shall
be the Judge to determine? Each has his Standard in Nature, which
he appeals to, and with Reason thinks he has the same right to put
into his complex Idea, signified by the word Gold, those Qualities,
which upon Trial he has found united; as another, who has not so
well examined, has to leave them out; or a third, who has made
other Trials, has to put in others. For the Union in Nature of these
Qualities, being the true Ground of their Union in one complex
Idea, Who can say, one of them has more reason to be put in, or left
out, than another? From whence it will always unavoidably follow,
that the complex Ideas of Substances, in Men using the same Name
for them, will be very various; and so the significations of those
Locke Hum III, 9, §13, pp. 482-483