— 192 —
Our measure of Time applicable to Duration before Time.       §24. The Mind having once got such a measure of Time, as the
annual Revolution of the Sun, can apply that measure to Duration,
wherein that measure it self did not exist, and with which in the
reality of its being, it had nothing to do: For should one say, That
Abraham was born in the 2712 year of the Julian Period, it is alto-
gether as intelligible, as reckoning from the beginning of the World,
though there were so far back no motion of the Sun, nor any other
motion at all. For though the Julian Period be supposed to begin
several hundred years, before there were really either Days, Nights,
or Years, marked out by any Revolutions of the Sun, yet we reckon
as right, and thereby measure Durations as well, as if really at that
time the Sun had existed, and kept the same ordinary motion it
doth now. The Idea of Duration equal to an annual Revolution of the Sun,
is as easily applicable in our Thoughts to Duration, where no Sun nor
Motion was, as the Idea of a Foot or Yard taken from Bodies here, can
be applied in our Thoughts to Distances, beyond the Confines of
the World, where are no Bodies at all.
Locke Hum II, 14, §24, p. 192