All understanding of facts consists in generalizing concerning them.
Yet it possesses the great and characteristic merit of generalizing the solutions of his predecessors, exhibiting them all as modifications of one principle.
When generalizing the theory of pendulums of Jacob Bernoulli (1654-1705) he discovered a principle of dynamics so simple and general that it reduced the laws of the motions of bodies to that of their equilibrium.
It is likely that man began with particular inference and with particular language; and that, gradually generalizing thought and language, he learnt at last to think and say " all," to infer universally, to induce and deduce, to reason, in short, and raise himself above other animals.
He belongs distinctly to the romantic school; his forte is vivid and picturesque description, the lively presentation of scenes and actions, characters and states of society, not the subtle analysis of motives, the power of detecting the undercurrents or the generalizing faculty.