Page:Essay on Crimes and Punishments (1775).djvu/20

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8
AN ESSAY ON

Let us consult the human heart, and there we shall find the foundation of the sovereign’s right to punish; for no advantage in moral policy can be lasting, which is not founded on the indeliable sentiments of the heart of man. Whatever law deviates from this principle will always meet with a resistance, which will destroy it in the end; for the smallest force, continually applied, will overcome the most violent motion communicated to bodies.

No man ever gave up his liberty, merely for the good of the public. Such a chimera exists only in romances. Every individual wishes, if possible, to be exempt from the compacts, that bind the rest of mankind.

The multiplication of mankind, though slow, being too great for the means, which the earth, in its natural state, offered to satisfy necessities, which every day became more numerous, obliged men to separate again, and form new societies. These naturally opposed the first, and a state of