Full text: Wilkins, John: A discovery of a new world

That the Earth may be a Planet. to the Opinion of any Man, as to think what
ever he ſays to be infallible. We muſt la-
bour to find out what things are in them-
ſelves by our own experience, and a through
examination of their natures, not what an-
other ſays of them. And if in ſuch an im-
partial enquiry, we chance to light upon a
new way, and that which is beſides the com-
mon rode, this is neither our fault, nor our
unhappineſs.

58.1.

Alcinous

Not our fault, becauſe it did not ariſe from
Singularity or Affectation. Not our unhap-
pineſs, becauſe it is rather a Priviledge to be
the firſt in finding out ſuch Truths, as are not
diſcernable to every common eye. If No-
velty ſhould always be rejected, neither
would Arts have arrived to that perfection
wherein now we enjoy them, nor could we
ever hope for any future Reformation: Though all Truth be in it ſelf Eternal; yet
in reſpect of Mens Opinions, there is ſcarce
any ſo antient, but had a beginning, and was
once accounted a Novelty; and if for this
reaſon it had been condemned as an errour,
what a general darkneſs and ignorance
would then have been in the World, in com-
pariſon of that light which now abounds; according to that of the Poet:

Quod ſi tam Antiquis Novitas inviſa fuiſſet, Quam nobis, quid nunc eſſet vetus aut quid habe-
Quodlegerent tereretq; viritim publicus uſus? (ret,
If our Forefathers had but hated thus,
All that were new, what had been old to us?

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