He was both a strategic thinker and capable of detailed execution.
Gibbon has criticized it with the utmost frankness, not to say severity; but, after every abatement, it is unquestionably a surprising effort for a mind so young, and contains many thoughts which would not have disgraced a thinker or a scholar of much maturer age.
It shows, though in rather a diffuse and declamatory form, that application of wide historical knowledge, keen philosophical perception, and genuine eloquence to a practical purpose which was the great characteristic of Mirabeau, both as a political thinker and as a statesman.
He took other men's labour as his due, and impressed their words, of which he had suggested the underlying ideas, with the stamp of his own individuality; his collaborators themselves did not complain - they were but too glad to be of help in the great work of controlling and forwarding the French Revolution through its greatest thinker and orator.
The thinker who sees man confronted by the infinite non-moral forces presumed by natural pantheism inevitably predominating over the finite powers of men may appear to the modern Christian theologian or to the evolutionist as a hopeless pessimist, and yet may himself have concluded that, though the future holds out no prospect save that of annihilation, man may yet by prudence and care enjoy a considerable measure of happiness.
Oncken, to take the extreme of condemnation, looks upon him as a bad physiocrat and a confused thinker, while Leon Say considers that he was the founder of modern political economy, and that "though he failed in the 18th century he triumphed in the 1 9th."
Bacon, it is now said, was not appreciated by his age because he was in advance of it; he is no schoolman, but a modern thinker, whose conceptions of science are more just and clear than are even those of his more celebrated namesake.'
A more plausible theory is that the author is an honest thinker, a keen observer and critic of life, who sees that the world is full of miseries and unsolved problems, regards as futile the attempts of his time to demonstrate an ethically active future life, and, recognizing a divine author of all, holds that the only wise course for men is to abandon the attempt to get full satisfaction out of the struggle for pleasure, riches and wisdom, and to content themselves with making the best of what they have.
"In history and in science, as well as in theology, he is before all things the Christian thinker and student."
There is a monument (restored in 1887) to Giordano Bruno, the free-thinker, who was born at Nola in 1548.
Lassalle did not lay claim to any special originality as a socialistic thinker, nor did he publish any systematic statement of his views.
But Lucretius, if less original as a thinker, was probably a much greater poet than Empedocles.
But the chief value of Lucretius as a thinker lies in his firm grasp of speculative ideas, and in his application of them to the interpretation of human life and nature.
The life of Martineau was so essentially the life of the thinker, and was so typical of the century in which he lived and the society within which he moved, that he can be better understood through his spoken mind than through his outward history.
The 19th century had no more reverent thinker than Martineau; the awe of the Eternal was the very atmosphere that he breathed, and he looked at man with the compassion of one whose thoughts were full of God.
The situation was saved by a newspaper whicl from the outset of its career obeyed the best canons of journalism - Born in 1882, the fiji Shimpo (Times) enjoyed the immense advan tage of having its policy controlled by one of the greatest thinker of modern Japan, Fukuzawa Yukichi.
Though a libertine and a free-thinker, he had championed the most bigoted and tyrannical high-church measures.
He was a great thinker and a great doer, and with Washington he helped to make our country free.