But in time the majority renounced these vulgar errors
, and espoused the true side of the question.
So that the greatest advantage I derived from the study consisted in this, that, observing many things which, however extravagant and ridiculous to our apprehension, are yet by common consent received and approved by other great nations, I learned to entertain too decided a belief in regard to nothing of the truth of which I had been persuaded merely by example and custom; and thus I gradually extricated myself from many errors
powerful enough to darken our natural intelligence, and incapacitate us in great measure from listening to reason.
I submit to you, my fellow-citizens, these considerations, in full confidence that the good sense which has so often marked your decisions will allow them their due weight and effect; and that you will never suffer difficulties, however formidable in appearance, or however fashionable the error
on which they may be founded, to drive you into the gloomy and perilous scene into which the advocates for disunion would conduct you.
I defended my errors; and in my appeal to the purity of innocence, I left nothing unsaid that could touch a noble and generous nature.
There still remains to me the proud humility of repentance; I will find some sphere of life where I can expiate the errors to which you, the mediator between Heaven and me, have shown no mercy.
I have not attempted to conceal any of my errors; they have been great, though others have erred as I have erred.
(absolute continuity) and thereby corrects the inevitable error
which the human mind cannot avoid when it deals with separate elements of motion instead of examining continuous motion.
A few months ago I was at the old home, and I read that book again, after not looking at it for more than thirty years; and I read it with amazement at its prevailing artistic vulgarity, its prevailing aesthetic error
shot here and there with gleams of light, and of the truth that Reade himself was always dimly groping for.
If my poor Flatland friend retained the vigour of mind which he enjoyed when he began to compose these Memoirs, I should not now need to represent him in this preface, in which he desires, firstly, to return his thanks to his readers and critics in Spaceland, whose appreciation has, with unexpected celerity, required a second edition of his work; secondly, to apologize for certain errors and misprints (for which, however, he is not entirely responsible); and, thirdly, to explain one or two misconceptions.
Points, Lines, Squares, Cubes, Extra-Cubes -- we are all liable to the same errors, all alike the Slaves of our respective Dimensional prejudices, as one of your Spaceland poets has said,'One touch of Nature makes all worlds akin'."
Yet though there is a great difference between our manners, customs, civil government, and those of the Abyssins, there is yet a much greater in points of faith; for so many errors have been introduced and ingrafted into their religion, by their ignorance, their separation from the Catholic Church, and their intercourse with Jews, Pagans, and Mohammedans, that their present religion is nothing but a kind of confused miscellany of Jewish and Mohammedan superstitions, with which they have corrupted those remnants of Christianity which they still retain.
God, who often makes calamities subservient to His will, permitted this very affliction to be the cause of the conversion of many of the natives, who might have otherwise died in their errors; for part of the country being ruined by the grasshoppers that year in which we arrived at Abyssinia, many, who were forced to leave their habitations, and seek the necessaries of life in other places, came to that part of the land where some of our missionaries were preaching, and laid hold on that mercy which God seemed to have appointed for others.