An Essay on the Principle of Population: Or, A View of Its Past and Present Effects on Human Happiness ; with an Inquiry Into Our Prospects Respecting the Future Removal Or Mitigation of the Evils which it Occasions, Volume 2

Front Cover

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 342 - ... that they are themselves the cause of their own poverty; that the means of redress are in their own hands, and in the hands of no other persons whatever; that the society in which they live and the government which presides over it are without any direct power in this respect...
Page 396 - I should propose a regulation to be made, declaring that no child born from any marriage taking place after the expiration of a year from the date of the law, and no illegitimate child born two years from the same date, should ever be entitled to parish assistance.
Page 57 - The effects of the dreadful plague in London, in 1666, were not perceptible 15 or 20 years afterwards. It may even be doubted whether Turkey and Egypt are upon an average much less populous for the plagues which periodically lay them waste. If the number of people which they contain be considerably less now than formerly, it is rather to be attributed to the tyranny and oppression of the governments under which they groan, and the consequent discouragements...
Page 373 - The pressure of distress on the lower classes of people, together with the habit of attributing this distress to their rulers, appears to me to be the rock of defence, the castle, the guardian spirit of despotism. It affords to the tyrant the fatal and unanswerable plea of necessity.
Page 120 - And thus it appears, that a society constituted according to the most beautiful form that imagination can conceive, with benevolence for its moving principle, instead of selflove, and with every evil disposition in all its members corrected by reason...
Page 501 - To the laws of property and marriage, and to the apparently narrow principle of self-interest which prompts each individual to exert himself in bettering his condition, we are indebted for all the noblest exertions of human genius, for everything that distinguishes the civilized from the savage state.
Page 57 - Egypt, and other countries, are by all accounts very soon obliterated ; and the most tremendous convulsions of nature, such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes, if they do not happen so frequently as to drive away the inhabitants or destroy their spirit of industry, have been found to produce but a trifling effect on the average population of any state.
Page 177 - I feel little doubt in my own mind that if the poor laws had never existed, though there might have been a few more instances of very severe distress, yet that the aggregate mass of happiness among the common people would have been much greater than it is at present.
Page 309 - Perhaps there is scarcely a man who has once experienced the genuine delight of virtuous love, however great his intellectual pleasures may have been, that does not look back to the period as the sunny spot in his whole life, where his imagination loves to bask, which he recollects and contemplates with the fondest regrets, and which he would most wish to live over again.
Page 350 - I can easily conceive that this country, with a proper direction of the national industry, might in the course of some centuries contain two or three times its present population, and yet every man in the kingdom be much better fed and clothed than he is at present.

Bibliographic information