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= ROOT|Philosophy|1600-1699|locke-concerning-111.txt =

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                            END OF CIVIL GOVERNMENT

                                 by John Locke

                              Chapter I

                          Of Political Power

  1. It having been shown in the foregoing discourse:*

  * An Essay Concerning Certain False Principles.

  Firstly. That Adam had not, either by natural right of fatherhood or
by positive donation from God, any such authority over his children,
nor dominion over the world, as is pretended.

  Secondly. That if he had, his heirs yet had no right to it.

  Thirdly. That if his heirs had, there being no law of Nature nor
positive law of God that determines which is the right heir in all
cases that may arise, the right of succession, and consequently of
bearing rule, could not have been certainly determined.

  Fourthly. That if even that had been determined, yet the knowledge
of which is the eldest line of Adam's posterity being so long since
utterly lost, that in the races of mankind and families of the
world, there remains not to one above another the least pretence to be
the eldest house, and to have the right of inheritance.

  All these promises having, as I think, been clearly made out, it
is impossible that the rulers now on earth should make any benefit, or
derive any the least shadow of authority from that which is held to be
the fountain of all power, "Adam's private dominion and paternal
jurisdiction"; so that he that will not give just occasion to think
that all government in the world is the product only of force and
violence, and that men live together by no other rules but that of
beasts, where the strongest carries it, and so lay a foundation for
perpetual disorder and mischief, tumult, sedition, and rebellion
(things that the followers of that hypothesis so loudly cry out
against), must of necessity find out another rise of government,
another original of political power, and another way of designing
and knowing the persons that have it than what Sir Robert Filmer
hath taught us.

  2. To this purpose, I think it may not be amiss to set down what I
take to be political power. That the power of a magistrate over a
subject may be distinguished from that of a father over his
children, a master over his servant, a husband over his wife, and a
lord over his slave. All which distinct powers happening sometimes
together in the same man, if he be considered under these different
relations, it may help us to distinguish these powers one from
another, and show the difference betwixt a ruler of a commonwealth,
a father of a family, and a captain of a galley.

  3. Political power, then, I take to be a right of making laws,
with penalties of death, and consequently all less penalties for the
regulating and preserving of property, and of employing the force of
the community in the execution of such laws, and in the defence of the
commonwealth from foreign injury, and all this only for the public

                              Chapter II

                        Of the State of Nature

  4. To understand political power aright, and derive it from its
original, we must consider what estate all men are naturally in, and
that is, a state of perfect freedom to order their actions, and
dispose of their possessions and persons as they think fit, within the
bounds of the law of Nature, without asking leave or depending upon
the will of any other man.

  A state also of equality, wherein all the power and jurisdiction
is reciprocal, no one having more than another, there being nothing
more evident than that creatures of the same species and rank,
promiscuously born to all the same advantages of Nature, and the use
of the same faculties, should also be equal one amongst another,
without subordination or subjection, unless the lord and master of
them all should, by any manifest declaration of his will, set one
above another, and confer on him, by an evident and clear appointment,
an undoubted right to dominion and sovereignty.

  5. This equality of men by Nature, the judicious Hooker looks upon
as so evident in itself, and beyond all question, that he makes it the
foundation of that obligation to mutual love amongst men on which he
builds the duties they owe one another, and from whence he derives the
great maxims of justice and charity. His words are:

  "The like natural inducement hath brought men to know that it is
no less their duty to love others than themselves, for seeing those
things which are equal, must needs all have one measure; if I cannot
but wish to receive good, even as much at every man's hands, as any
man can wish unto his own soul, how should I look to have any part
of my desire herein satisfied, unless myself be careful to satisfy the

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