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superior knowledge and appeals primarily to the co-operative judgment of others. Referring, however, as it usually does, not to permanent arrangements which call for general rules, but to mere passing events which need only momentary steerage and skill, the wisdom which directs is more practical and its rule less absolute than that which prescribes. It dwells in the open tableland of commonsense, and in respect of the director and directed, as well as of the occasion for direction, is essentially a business-like and worka-day type. In a definite case before him, the experienced director points the way to be taken. He to whom the direction is given is likely to comprehend, appreciate, and follow. And finally, the occasion, though belonging to the circumstances of everyday life, is one which requires somewhat detailed instructions. Otherwise there would be no cause for alluding to the superior knowledge of the director, and appealing to the intelligence of the directed. In its proper use, direct is confined to occasions too complicated or too new to be mastered by the one directed without guidance. A bare order is of no use if he to whom it is addressed is unequal to the task. "Wisdom is profitable to direct' (Eccles. X. 10). And, with express reference to the explanation which follows, “I'll first direct my men what they shall do with the basket' (Shakespeare, 'Merry Wives,' iv. 2); and · We'll direct her how 'tis best to bear it' (Shakespeare, ' All's Well,' iii. 7).
When used by a person of consequence,“ direct' approximates command. So closely, indeed, that in cases of this nature 'direct' often stands for command,' and might be entirely merged in the overpowering tendency of imperiousness did it not retain a milder tone from being originally meant to guide the mind. If a gardener directs his assistant to prune the trees, it is difficult to decide to what extent the direction is intended to teach or else to command. The decision depends upon the amount of gardening knowledge possessed by the assistant. If the assistant already know his work, then command is sufficient; if not, it must be
supplemented by instruction. But if the secretary of some minister is directed by Lord A. to request you to accord him the pleasure of an early interview,' he clearly refers not to any didactic instruction, but to a laconic order, politely designated by his superior as a 'direction.'
Where the director and the directed are equals, the rational guidance conveyed in the word exercises an influence to which we seem to be obliged to submit. In reply to my inquiry the gentleman directed me to take the second turning to the left and then proceed due south. Of course I follow his directions. He knows his way about town. I don't.
The purpose of the direction depends upon the changing relations between the director and the directed. When it comes from one in a superior position, he may have his. own interest in view; or if he be a government official, that of the public service. If a man directs his equal, the advantage of either may be the motive; and in the same way, if a moral or immoral purpose be specified, the connection is no hindrance to the use of the word. To all these distinctions our vocable is utterly indifferent, offering itself as it does with equal readiness as an appropriate instrument and means to any end. It is a rational word which prefers instruction to command, and conviction to compulsion. But its skill in dealing with men exceeds its zeal to serve a good cause. For purpose or aim it cares nothing.
Appoint' gives detailed directions, accentuating the rational end and the fitting means. Its authority is derived from passing or permanent social superiority. It claims no particular dignity, or virtue, or intelligence which, however, by the context may be infused into the word. As regards the somewhat peremptory tone assumed
by it, this is moderated and kept within reasonable limits by the implied pursuit of some judicious plan and the presumption of suitable directions given for its execution. Sufficiently active for all purposes of direction and sway, the element of arbitrary power contained in the term is kept within bounds by the reflection incidental to its prudent use. Through reason combating caprice the level of the word has been gradually raised, and lifted from out of the foaming ocean of command to the terra firma of expediency and sense. The progress of this moral elevation admits of being historically traced. Whilst 'I appoint that you shall do a thing' was a familiar form of speech in the olden times (cf. Shakespeare, 'Merry Wives,' iv. 6; 2 Sam. xv. 15), the gradual introduction into the meaning of a more reasoning element has sufficiently advanced to-day to cause a man to be “appointed” not so much in the sense of command as by way of selection Selection, an act of the reasoning faculties, has become at least equally potent in the word as command, which is a mere self-assertion of the will.
Pushing on resolutely into the realm of the reasonable, from the judicious starting-point of "select and direct," the word has reached still higher ground, where it may be seen to pass for “determine conjointly and agree." From this acceptation the notion of command has been altogether expelled by judgment and deliberation. There is a lesson conveyed in the history of the eventful verb.
It is interesting to compare 'appoint' with direct.' ' Direct,' even in these liberalising days, is kept in the sphere of command by the superior knowledge it assumes. Appoint,' on the other hand, which in the olden days confidently undertook to manage affairs without caring to claim any particular experience or sagacity, thanks to the emancipating influence of civilisation, has had to acquiesce latterly in arrangements based upon insight and sanctioned by compromise.
In another feature 'appoint' and 'direct' are closely related terms. Both are essentially temperate. 'Appoint,' for the reasons just stated, and direct' on account of the judiciousness inherent in it, have long been purged of whatever harshness there might have been originally lurking in them. Hence they have become qualified for reception into modern official language, which habitually represents government authority as resting on both reason and expediency.
A word including the whole scale of demand, which extends successively from 'beg' to 'wish,' from 'wish'to ' require,' and from 'require' to 'command.'
The fundamental note distinctly heard through all these chromatic modulations is an urgent desire expecting fulfilment. Confidence in the fulfilment of a wish expressed, which we find strong in the word, has caused its meaning to incline gradually more to the side of command, and less and less to that of supplication. So late as in Shakespeare's time, telling Lady Macbeth to pray to God, King Duncan expresses himself in these terms: 'I teach you how you shall bid God.' Blended with persuasion and advice, a somewhat more urgent form of request is found in 'Much Ado about Nothing' (iii. I), when the servant is to desire her mistress to hide in the shade and to listen: ‘Bid her steal into the pleached bower.' A passage in the Book of Numbers (xiv. 10) marks a further advance in intensity, where the Jews, in passionate excitement, require their leaders to let them stone the spies who had been sent out into Canaan: 'All the congregation bade stone them with stones.' Here we still have a request addressed to a superior, but assuming an authoritative character by its tumultuous delivery and the threatened rebellion. In the further stages which the meaning of the word has to traverse, the demand becomes ever more emphatic, until it reaches command confident of ready obedience. A passage in Shakespeare's
Richard III.' (ii. I) shows the transition to a harsher tone: 'Bid me kill myself and I'll do it.' Obedience being spontaneously offered, in this case to neglect the command were still possible. A similar proffer of obedience is implied as a proper and necessary thing in Peter's speech, Matt. xiv. 28, 'Lord, if it be thou, bid me come to thee on the water.' Going still further, and actually expressing a sense of the duty of obedience, the elders say to Jehu (2 Kings x. 5), We are thy servants, and will do all thou shalt bid us. The last traces of the old meaning disappear when God Himself commands and requires absolute submission: 'And Joshua did unto them as the Lord bade him’ (Josh. xi. 9).
A certain use of bid' unites the greater part of these meanings, and is specially indicative of its varying sense. * Bid' is said with a peculiar emphatic, half-threatening accent when something is urgently desired which the speaker fancies the other is inclined to refuse. Here its defective title to any sort of hest is vigorously supported by passion, causing the angry demand of the illegitimate bid' to reach almost to the quiet force of the conscious and lawful command. But yet an element of uncertainty is introduced by the implied refusal of the other party, which countervailing the intensified demand, makes the sense of the word relapse into even vaguer obscurity than that which ordinarily encompasses it. In point of fact, the inner sense of the word is shrouded in such inveterate ambiguity, that any attempt to strengthen it by the emphasis of passion at once raises a doubt as to whether compliance will be accorded : Drink, servant monster, when I bid thee' (Shakespeare, Tempest,' iii. 2).
The three last examples mark the points upon which the meaning of the word most frequently turns. With