To begin with, there are many instances of a word, namely all the different occasions when it is employed.
The instances of a word shade off into other movements by imperceptible degrees.
Two instances of walking have the same name because they resemble each other, whereas two instances of Jones have the same name because they are causally connected.
To illustrate what is meant by "understanding" words and sentences, let us take instances of various situations.
In the case of secondary substances, when we speak, for instance, of 'man' or 'animal', our form of speech gives the impression that we are here also indicating that which is individual, but the impression is not strictly true; for a secondary substance is not an individual, but a class with a certain qualification; for it is not one and single as a primary substance is; the words 'man', 'animal', are predicable of more than one subject.
For instance, one particular substance, 'man', cannot be more or less man either than himself at some other time or than some other man.
This becomes evident by reference to particular instances which occur.
Of course there can be no exact parallel between arts so different as architecture and poetic composition: But certainly in the poetry of our day also, though it has been in some instances
powerfully initiative and original, there is great scholarship, a large comparative acquaintance with the poetic methods of earlier workmen, and a very subtle intelligence of their charm.
This point, if it could be cleared up, would be interesting; if, for instance, it could be shown that the greyhound, bloodhound, terrier, spaniel, and bull-dog, which we all know propagate their kind so truly, were the offspring of any single species, then such facts would have great weight in making us doubt about the immutability of the many very closely allied and natural species--for instance, of the many foxes--inhabiting different quarters of the world.
If the several breeds are not varieties, and have not proceeded from the rock-pigeon, they must have descended from at least seven or eight aboriginal stocks; for it is impossible to make the present domestic breeds by the crossing of any lesser number: how, for instance, could a pouter be produced by crossing two breeds unless one of the parent-stocks possessed the characteristic enormous crop?
When, on the one hand, we see domesticated animals and plants, though often weak and sickly, yet breeding quite freely under confinement; and when, on the other hand, we see individuals, though taken young from a state of nature, perfectly tamed, long-lived, and healthy (of which I could give numerous instances), yet having their reproductive system so seriously affected by unperceived causes as to fail in acting, we need not be surprised at this system, when it does act under confinement, acting not quite regularly, and producing offspring not perfectly like their parents or variable.
In monstrosities, the correlations between quite distinct parts are very curious; and many instances are given in Isidore Geoffroy St.