- For Teachers
Hello, I am reading an eassay titled An Argument against Abolishing Christianity by Jonathan Swift. This is a part of first paragraph. I understood every word here but when they were put together, I am lost. Please give me a hand. Thanks in advance.I AM very sensible what a weakness and presumption it is to reason against the general humour and disposition of the world. I remember it was with great justice, and a due regard to the freedom, both of the public and the press, forbidden upon several penalties to write, or discourse, or lay wagers against the — even before it was confirmed by Parliament;
Q1: the general humour and disposition of the world.=? God? What does the general humour of the world refer to?
Q2: Why did Swift say it is a presumption and weakness?
Q3: several penalties =? Is it a guilty for a Christian to argue such a topic?
Anglika, thank you for your answer. I think this article is too difficult for me to read now.
I have to say I think you are right - you may find Lamb's essays more approachable.
However, I would also suggest that you read an entire essay once or twice, making notes of problems, and then ask your questions. Sometimes meanings fall into place when you see the whole of the argument. The other problem with Swift will be that some knowledge of the history of the time is really required to understand references.
Thank you for your kind suggestion. I'd like to learn to creep before my leap. Swift's works have too many hurdles for me.