A System of Logic

John Stuart Mill



Section 3

Preface to the Eighth Edition

In the subsequent editions, the attempt to improve the work by additions and corrections, suggested by criticism or by thought, has been continued. The additions and corrections in the present (eighth) edition, which are not very considerable, are chiefly such as have been suggested by Professor Bain's Logic, a book of great merit and value. Mr. Bain's view of the science is essentially the same with that taken in the present treatise, the differences of opinion being few and unimportant compared with the agreements; and he has not only enriched the exposition by many applications and illustrative details, but has appended to it a minute and very valuable discussion of the logical principles specially applicable to each of the sciences; a task for which the encyclopedical character of his knowledge peculiarly qualified him. I have in several instances made use of his exposition to improve my own, by adopting, and occasionally by controverting, matter contained in his treatise.

The longest of the additions belongs to the chapter on Causation, and is a discussion of the question, how far, if at all, the ordinary mode of stating the law of Cause and Effect requires modification to adapt it to the new doctrine of the Conservation of Force: a point still more fully and elaborately treated in Mr. Bain's work.

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