The treatise commences the examination of the senses with the Sight, and closes with the Touch, which is somewhat contrary to Aristotle’s estimate of their relative importance; for he has shewn that the Touch is the first, as it is the most universal of all the senses, as well as essential to animal existence. Thus, this sense is to sentient creatures what nutrition is to other beings; for as without Touch there can be no animal, so without nutrition there can be no life. Descartes, more in accordance with Aristotle’s teaching, begins with the Touch, and then proceeds to the Taste, Smell, Hearing and Sight; and so Grant makes “all the other senses to be but modifications of the Touch.” Cuvier, however, reverses this it may be general order, and treats of the special senses before the Touch. It may be well to observe, that the senses as well as their modes of excitation, had been
- Outlines of Comp. Anat. s. vi.