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The Theory of Moral Sentiments
Adam Smith
(1759)

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The Theory of Moral Sentiments La teoría de los sentimientos morales
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Since the first publication of THE THEORY OF MORAL SENTIMENTS, which was so long ago as the beginning of the year 1759, several corrections, and a good many illustrations of the doctrines contained in it, have occurred to me. But the various occupations in which the different accidents of my life necessarily involved me, have till now prevented me from revising this work with the care and attention which I always intended. The reader will find the principal alterations which I have made in this New Edition, in the last Chapter of the third Section of Part First; and in the four first Chapters of Part Third. Part Sixth, as it stands in this New Edition, is altogether new. In Part Seventh, I have brought together the greater part of the different passages concerning the Stoical Philosophy, which, in the former Editions, had been scattered about in different parts of the work. I have likewise endeavoured to explain more fully, and examine more distinctly, some of the doctrines of that famous sect. In the fourth and last Section of the same Part, I have thrown together a few additional observations concerning the duty and principle of veracity. There are, besides, in other parts of the work, a few other alterations and corrections of no great moment.

In the last paragraph of the first Edition of the present work, I said, that I should in another discourse endeavour to give an account of the general principles of law and government, and of the different revolutions which they had undergone in the different ages and periods of society; not only in what concerns justice, but in what concerns police, revenue, and arms, and whatever else is the object of law. In the Enquiry concerning the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, I have partly executed this promise; at least so far as concerns police, revenue, and arms. What remains, the theory of jurisprudence, which I have long projected, I have hitherto been hindered from executing, by the same occupations which had till now prevented me from revising the present work. Though my very advanced age leaves me, I acknowledge, very little expectation of ever being able to execute this great work to my own satisfaction; yet, as I have not altogether abandoned the design, and as I wish still to continue under the obligation of doing what I can, I have allowed the paragraph to remain as it was published more than thirty years ago, when I entertained no doubt of being able to execute every thing which it announced.




Desde la primera publicación de la Teoría de los senti- fnientos morales, hace muchos años, a comienzos de 1759,

me han ocurrido muchas correcciones y bastantes

Ejemplos de las doctrinas que contiene. Sin embargo, las diversas ocupaciones en que me he visto necesariamente envuelto por los accidentes de la vida me han impedido hasta ahora revisar el libro con el cuidado y la atención que siempre había pretendido. El lector comprobará que las principales modificaciones que he realizado en esta nueva edición se hallan en el último capítulo de la sección tercera de la parte primera y en los cuatro primeros capí­ tulos de la parte tercera. La parte sexta en esta edición es completamente nueva. En la séptima parte he agrupado la mayoría de los pasajes referidos a la filosofía estoica, que en las ediciones anteriores se hallaban dispersos a lo largo de la obra. He procurado asimismo explicar más en deta­ lle y examinar con más precisión algunas de las doctrinas de esa célebre escuela. En la cuarta y última sección de la misma parte he incluido algunas observaciones adiciona­ les acerca del deber y principio de la veracidad. Asimis­ mo, en otros lugares hay otros cambios y correcciones de no mucha importancia.

En el último párrafo de la primera edición del presente libro declaré que en otro discurso procuraría exponer los principios generales del derecho y el gobierno, y las dife­ rentes revoluciones que han experimentado en las diver­ sas edades y etapas de la sociedad, no sólo en lo concer­ niente a la justicia sino también la administración, las finanzas públicas y la defensa, y todo lo demás que sea objeto del derecho. He cumplido mi compromiso parcial­ mente en la Investigación sobre la naturaleza y las causas de la riqueza de las naciones, en lo referido a la adminis­ tración, las finanzas y la defensa. Queda la teoría de la ju­ risprudencia, un proyecto largamente acariciado y cuya ejecución se ha visto obstruida por las mismas ocupacio­ nes que me han impedido hasta ahora la revisión del pre­ sente libro. Aunque creo que mi muy avanzada edad me hace abrigar pocas esperanzas de completar esta gran obra satisfactoriamente, no he abandonado totalmente el proyecto y deseo continuar aún bajo la obligación de ha­ cer lo que me sea posible; por ello he dejado el párrafo en esta edición tal cual fue escrito hace más de treinta años, cuando no tenía ninguna duda sobre mi capacidad de cumplir todo lo que allí se anunciaba.




  • moment: A moment is a second or a very short time.
  • moment: A moment is a second or a very short time.
  • promise: To promise is to say you will do something for sure.
  • project: A project is a type of work that you do for school ora job.
  • ever: Ever means at any time.
  • several: Several is more than two but not many.
  • concern: Concern is a feeling of worry.
  • expect: If you expect something to happen, you believe it will happen.
  • continue: To continue something is to keep doing it.
  • wise: To be wise is to use experience and intelligence to make good choices.
  • allow: To allow something to happen means to let it happen.
  • announce: To announce something is to make it known.
  • beside: When someone or something is beside you, they are next to you.
  • famous: If someone or something is famous, they are known to many people.
  • theory: A theory is an idea about how something works.
  • prevent: To prevent something is to stop it from happening.
  • still: Still is used when you say that a situation keeps going on.
  • throw: To throw something is to use your hand to make it go through the air.
  • far: If something is far, it is not close.
  • remain: To remain somewhere is to stay there.
  • thin: If someone or something is thin, they are not fat.
  • contain: To contain something is to have it inside.
  • correct: To be correct is to be right.
  • owe: To owe is to have to pay or give back something received from another.
  • exam: An exam is a test.
  • yet: Yet is used to say something has not happened up to now.
  • publish: To publish a book is to get it printed and ready to sell.
  • else: If you talk about something else, you talk about something different.
  • doubt: Doubt is a feeling of not being sure.
  • entertain: To entertain someone is to do something that they enjoy.
  • enter: To enter a place is to go into it.
  • leave: To leave means to go away from someone or something.
  • various: If something is various, there are many types of it.
  • occur: To occur means to happen.
  • advance: To advance is to go forward.
  • course: A course is a class in school.
  • event: An event is something that happens, especially something important.
  • passage: A passage is a long area with walls that goes from one place to another.
  • public: If something is public, it is meant for everyone to use.
  • involve: To involve means to be actively taking part in something.
  • period: A period is an amount of time when something happens.
  • sign: A sign is a notice giving information, directions, a warning, etc.
  • attention: Attention is the notice, thought, or consideration of someone.
  • society: Society is people and the way that they live.
  • examine: To examine something is to look at it carefully.
  • band: A band is a group of people who play music.
  • own: To own something means to have it. That thing belongs to you.
  • knowledge: Knowledge is information that you have about something.
  • different: Different describes someone or something that is not the same as others.


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