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SAVILL AND EDWARDS, PRINTERS, CHANDOS STREET,
§ 1 Nature and scope of the treatise explained
2 Utility of such a treatise
3 Advantages of a scientific method of reasoning
4 Purposes of a method of politics .
On the Province of Politics.
§ 1 Extent of the term politics .
2 Origin of political government
3 Man is alone a political animal
4 Peculiarities of man's nature, as compared with the other ani-
mals, which enable him to form a political government .
5 Limits of capacity for progressive improvement in animals-
6 Human society consists of numerous communities, each of a
limited size .
7 Conditions of a nation
8 Manner in which a nation is perpetuated; meaning of a gene-
9 The subjects included in politics ; distinction between political
and social science examined
On the Division of Politics into Departments.
§ 1 Four departments of politics distinguished
2 Registration of political facts .
· P. 54
$ 3 Positive or descriptive politics
4 Speculative politics
5 Political maxims
6 Nature and objects of the preceding classification .
7 Review of political writings, with reference to the above four
classes ; first, period of antiquity.
8 Second period—from the revival of letters to the end of the
9 Third eriod—from the beginning of the 18th century
Unconnected character of political writings ; want of a common
standard of reference, and of a common method of treat-
On the Technical Language of Politics.
SI Nature of technical terms in politics
Their formation from common words
3 The scientific meaning of a technical term ought to approxi.
mate to its popular meaning ·
4 Its scientific meaning ought to be so defined as to admit of the
formation of true propositions
5 Technical terms ought to be used with an unvarying signi-
6 Tendency of popular usage to untechnicalize technical terms
7 The connexion of politics with popular interests and feelings
operates in the same direction
8 Distinction between terminology and nomenclature in politics 97
9 Titles of offices do not form classes with common properties 101
10 Difficulty of rendering titles of offices, and other political
terms, from one language into another
General comparison of technical terms in politics and physics 107
Upon the Methods of Observation in Politics.
Nature of the facts which are the subjects of observation in
Observation may be assisted or unassisted ; the latter alone
used in politics
§ 3 Unassisted observation may be intentional or unintentional;
these two sorts distinguished
4 Three departments of political observation distinguished-
I. Historical. Characteristics of history.
5 Narration essential to history; definition of a narrative ;
difference between narration and description
6 Analogy between political history and other sorts of
history; difference between historical and physical facts 120
7 II. Scientific department of political observation divided into
positive and speculative. Observation in positive politics 123
8 Observation in speculative politics
9 III. Observation in practical politics
10 Nature and progress of statistical observation
II Progress of historical observation and registration
12 Summary of the preceding results; comparison with obser-
vation in medicine
13 Causes of error in political observation compared with similar
causes in physics
14 Difficulty of observation in politics, produced by the obscurity
of human motives
On the Applicability of the Method of Experiment
$ 1 Many questions in politics requiring solution by a decisive
method . .
Experiments in physics are of two sorts-viz., experiments of
science and experiments of art; their difference explained 153
3 Purpose and limits of scientific experiment in physics
4 Scientific experiment is inapplicable to man . .
5 Circumstances in human nature which compensate for the im-
possibility of applying the experimental method to man 165
6 The experimental method would be no security against false
facts in politics ; torture—a species of experiment
7 Men in society voluntarily change their positions, and thus pro-
vide a substitute for experiment
8 Extraordinary national events serve the purpose of scientific
9 Practical experiments are of perpetual use in politics .
§ 10 Practical experiments in politics, compared with similar expe.
riments in other branches of practice.
Practical experiments in politics often serve the purpose of
scientific experiments, and establish general truths
Politics is an experimental science, if practical experiments are
included; but politics is not an experimental science, if
scientific experiments are alone meant
13 Results of the chapter .
Upon the Treatment of Political History.
§ 1 Truth essential to history ; rules of historical evidence. 181
Nature of testimonies on which the cotemporary and subse-
quent historians rely.
3 Both classes of historians must rely on the evidence of original
4 Hearsay evidence defined ; its defects .
5 Causes of the inferiority of hearsay to original evidence . 188
6 Hearsay evidence is excluded in courts of justice ; reasons of
the exclusion ; inquiry how far these reasons apply to his-
7 Perpetuation of historical evidence in writing ; historical evi-
dence is not weakened by lapse of time, so long as an accu-
rate written record of it is preserved ..
8 Conditions for the perpetuation of written evidence; preserva-
tion of originals
Preservation by copies
Causes of unfaithful tradition of written evidence; careless
transcription and intentional falsification
Provided that the proper conditions are fulfilled, written his-
torical evidence may be rendered perpetual .
Historical evidence, in order to be credible, ought to be written
down contemporaneously with the events; infidelity of
13 Causes of departure from truth in history; personal interest,
variety, love of the marvellous, party spirit, dislike of
labour, desire of enlivening the narrative
14 Perversion of historical truth for didactic purposes
15 Also by the introduction of imaginary speeches
16 And by the suggestion of conjectural motives