BAIN, ALEXANDER, writer on mental philosophy. was b. at Aberdeen in 1818. He entered Marischal college and university in 1836, andgraduatedin 1840. From 1841 to 1844, he assisted the professor of moral philosophy in )larischal college, and in 1811 15. taught the class of natural philosophy. In the winter of 1845-40, he lectured on natural philosophy in the Andersoman university, Glasgow. In 1847, he became assistant-secre tary to the metropolitan sanitary committee, and was thence transferred to the same office in the general board of health, which office he resigned in 1850. From 1857 to 1862, and from 1861 to 1869, lie was examiner in logic and moral philosophy in the uni versity of London. For several years he acted as examiner in mental philosophy at the India civil service examinations. In 1860, he became professor of logic in the university of Aberdeen.
Mr. B. began as a writer in 1810, by contributing to the Westminster Renew. He also contributed a considerable number of treatises to the publications of W. and R. Chambers, especially in the educational depailment; among them was an edition of the Moral Philosophy of Pa?ey, with Dissertations and Notes (1852). In 1855, he brought out The Senses and the Intellect, and in 1859, The Emotions and the Will, completing a system of the human mind. In 1861, appeared The Study of Character, including an Examina tion of Phrenology. In 1863, he published an English Grammar, and in 1866, a _Ifantiad of English Composition and Rhetoric. In 1868 appeared his Mental and Moral Science, a
Compendium of Psychology, and Ethics; in 1870. Logic, Deductive and Inductive; in 1872, A Higher English Grammar; in 1874, Companion to the Higher English Grammar, In 1872, he acted with prof. Robertson in preparing for publication Mr. Grote's posthumous treatise on Aristotle; and, in 1873, edited, with a critical introduction, Grote's minor .works. In 1873, he brought out a work on the Relation of Mind and Body.
As a thinker and writer, B. is remarkable for the subtlety and minuteness of his analysis, and the clearness of his exposition. He belongs decidedly to the empirical or experimental school of philosophy, in opposition to the a priori, or transcendental. His chief work, The Senses and the Intellect, together with 2 he Emotions and the Will, is the most complete systematic exposition of the phenomena of the human mind in the English or perhaps in any language. B.'s psychology is based on physiology, after the manner of Hartley's; but instead of considering the human organism as capable only of receiving impressions and of acting in response thereto, he finds in it it power of originat ing active impulses (sec SPONTANEITY), and thus obviates many of the defects alleged by a priori philosophers to inhere in the system of sensationalism, as hitherto exhibited.