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Observable in Children.       §6. He that attentively considers the state of a Child, at his first
coming into the World, will have little reason to think him stored
with plenty of Ideas, that are to be the matter of his future Know-
ledge. ’Tis by degrees he comes to be furnished with them: And
though the Ideas of obvious and familiar qualities, imprint them-
selves, before the Memory begins to keep a Register of Time and
Order, yet ’tis often so late, before some unusual qualities come in
the way, that there are few Men that cannot recollect the beginning
of their acquaintance with them: And if it were worth while, no
doubt a Child might be so ordered, as to have but a very few, even
of the ordinary Ideas, till he were grown up to a Man. But all that
are born into the World being surrounded with Bodies, that per-
petually and diversly affect them, variety of Ideas, whether care be
taken about it or no, are imprinted on the Minds of Children. Light,
and Colours, are busie at hand every where, when the Eye is but
— 107 —
open; Sounds, and some tangible Qualities fail not to solicite their
proper Senses, and force an entrance to the Mind; but yet, I think,
it will be granted easily, That if a Child were kept in a place, where
he never saw any other but Black and White, till he were a Man, he
would have no more Ideas of Scarlet or Green, than he that from his
Childhood never tasted an Oyster, or a Pine-Apple, has of those
particular Relishes.
Locke Hum II, 1, §6, pp. 106-107