William Whewell - External Quotes
4 Sourced Quotes
According to the technical language of old writers, a thing and its qualities are described as subject and attributes; and thus a man's faculties and acts are attributes of which he is the subject. The mind is the subject in which ideas inhere. Moreover, the man's faculties and acts are employed upon external objects; and from objects all his sensations arise. Hence the part of a man's knowledge which belongs to his own mind, is subjective: that which flows in upon him from the world external to him, is objective.
We unfold out of the Idea of Space the propositions of geometry, which are plainly truths of the most rigorous necessity and universality. But if the idea of space were merely collected from observation of the external world, it could never enable or entitle us to assert such propositions: it could never authorize us to say that not merely some lines, but all lines, not only have, but must have, those properties which geometry teaches. Geometry in every proposition speaks a language which experience never dares to utter; and indeed of which she but half comprehends the meaning.