Adam Smith's Simplified Theory of Moral Sentiments, Part 4, Chapter 1: The Extensive Influence of the Beauty From Utility

Chapter 1: The Extensive Influence of the Beauty From Utility

1Utility is one of the principal sources of beauty.

2 David Hume has recently answered most deeply, clearly, eloquently, and elegantly why utility pleases.

3But no one has noticed that this fitness should often be more valued than its intended purpose.

4 When a person finds the chairs all standing in the middle of his bedroom, he is angry with his servant.

5 In the same way, a watch that falls behind more than two minutes in a day, is despised by one curious in watches.

6How many people ruin themselves by spending money on trinkets of frivolous utility?

Jew's-box or Tefillin on the head
Jew's-box or Tefillin on the head

7 This influence on our conduct is not confined to such frivolous objects.

8 The poor man's son, whom heaven's anger has imbued with ambition, admires the condition of the rich.

9 In time of sickness or low spirits, this spiteful philosophy is familiar to every man.

10It is good that nature imposes on us in this manner.

11 Those institutions which promote the public welfare are frequently recommended by:

When a patriot exerts to improve the public police, his conduct does not always arise from pure sympathy with the happiness of those who will benefit of it.


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Next: Chapter 2: Morality of Utility