His sermons were not remarkable for eloquence, but a certain solidity and balance of judgment, an absence of partisanship, a sobriety of expression combined with clearness and force of diction, attracted hearers and inspired them with confidence.
The term mysticism is indeed often extended by popular usage and philosophical partisanship to the whole activity of the post-Kantian idealists.
The much-debated Corn Laws, after undergoing various modifications, and proving the fruitful source of business uncertainty, social discontent and angry partisanship, were finally abolished in 1846, although the act was not consummated until three years later.
A strong spirit of partisanship is recognized in more than one of the fragments; and this spirit is thoroughly popular and adverse to the senatorial ascendancy which became more and more confirmed with the progress of the second Punic war.
At the same time, the essence of eclecticism is the refusal to follow blindly one set of formulae and conventions, coupled with a determination to recognize and select from all sources those elements which are good or true in the abstract, or in practical affairs most useful ad hoc. Theoretically, therefore, eclecticism is a perfectly sound method, and the contemptuous significance which the word has acquired is due partly to the fact that many eclectics have been intellectual trimmers, sceptics or dilettanti, and partly to mere partisanship. On the other hand, eclecticism in the sphere of abstract thought is open to this main objection that, in so far as every philosophic system is, at least in theory, an integral whole, the combination of principles from hostile theories must result in an incoherent patchwork.
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