CSP's estimation of his own mental powers. He speaks of having heard "the most extravagant estimates placed upon my mental powers." ". . . my principal deficiency, which is that my brain is small. This renders me incapable of thoroughly grasping together any considerable number of details and one consequence is that I do not readily pass from one subject, or occupation of thought, to another whence my persistency." Linguistic expression is not natural to CSP, who claims never to think in words, but always in some kind of diagram. His difficulties with foreign languages. "In college, I received the most humiliating marks for my themes.... My amicable teacher Professor Francis James Child . . . thought I took no pains. But I did." CSP attributes his awkwardness of linguistic expression to his left-handedness, noting that he once wrote with facility right-handed. To grasp what abstract thought is about requires more than reading about doing something - it requires actually doing it. The "literary" habit - CSP's term for it - is ruinous.
Autobiographical references, Child Francis j., Logic (modal see Modality), Meaning
pp. 1-27, plus fragments
(Meaning Preface to the Book)