BLTC Press Titles

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The Diplomatic Background of the War

Charles Seymour

Letters on the Aesthetical Education of Man

Friedrich Schiller

The Souls of Black Folk

W. E. B. DuBois

Theory of Colours

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

God and personality

by Clement Charles Julian Webb


Lastly, I wish to acknowledge the manifold help which I have received from my wife in the work of preparing the Lectures alike for delivery and for publication.

A correspondent of an Aberdeen journal which did me the honour of printing very full reports of my Lectures quoted as a comment upon them and upon Gifford Lectures generally the famous lines beginning 'Myself, when young, did eagerly frequent.' I may perhaps take occasion here to say that it never occurred to me that such discussions as these could be other than 'about it and about' or could, under the most favourable circumstances, be of service in the way of religion to any one except by assisting towards the expression or defence of a religious experience of which the hearer or reader was already in possession.

I am greatly indebted to my friend and former pupil, Professor Loveday, for his kindness in reading the proofs of this book and for making a number of valuable suggestions for its improvement.




The Subject Proposed 17

Our subject to be Personality and especially the place
to be assigned to it in our conception of God. Individu-
ality, but not Personality, has already been treated by
Gifford Lecturers. The distinction illustrated by the
difference of view between Lotze and Mr. Bosanquet, the
former attributing Personality, the latter denying Person-
ality but attributing Individuality to the Absolute. Per-
sonality in God to be discussed before Personality in
man. This order of treatment defended on grounds
historical and philosophical. The problem of Person-
ality indicated by Dr. Merz as that to which we are invited
by the course taken by the history of thought during the
last half-century. Embarrassment alike of the scientific
and the philosophical movements of this period in the
presence of this problem ; which has also been raised for
many in an acute manner by the present war. The fact
that the history of the notion of Personality will compel
us to deal with the theological doctrines of Christianity
suggests a digression on the attitude to be adopted in
these Lectures towards those doctrines. Programme
of the following Lectures.


History Of The Notion Of Personality In General . 35

Persona in classical Latin. The modern meaning of the
word Person is conditioned by its theological use as equi-
valent to inrvaraiTiQ. Original meaning of vtroaratrit-
Substantia, though probably at first intended as a trans- -


lation of it, comes to be used render ovnia. History of the philosophical use of viroaraaiq and its relation to ovaia and vTroKci/xevov. Difference in meaning between ovaia and viroaraaiQ utilized in the formulation of the Christian doctrine of the Trinity. Substantia being already appropriated to represent ovaia in Latin, another word was required to correspond with vTroaraait and was found, probably by Tertullian, in persona; of which ,n-poawirov, in its theological use, seems to be a translation. The words persona and viroaraats, as applied to the distinctions recognized by Christian theology within the Godhead, supplement one another, each suggesting something which the other fails to suggest. The philosophical use of Person begins in its theological use and is expressed in the definition of Boethius, Persona est naturae rationabilis individua substantia. The attribution to the Absolute of Personality by Lotze, and of Individuality, but not of Personality, by Mr. Bosanquet, is partly explained by the adherence of the latter to the juridical associations of the word Person, which for Lotze do not determine its meaning. The history of the notion of Personality after the time of Boethius marked by the stress laid successively on incommunicability (among the Schoolmen), on self-consciousness (since Descartes), and on will (since Kant), as characteristics of Personality.

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