Reservation, or Restriction

Reservation, Or Restriction in ethics, is the keeping back in the mind; eqmvocation, by a phrase which means one thing to the users and another to those who hear it. It may be distinguished as real and mental.

1. Real restriction takes place when the words used are not true if strictly interpreted, but there is no deviation from truth if the circumstances be considered. One man asks another, Have you dined? and the answer given is, No. The party giving this answer has dined, times without number; but his answer is restricted by the circumstances, as to-day, and in that sense is true.

2. Mental restriction consists in saying so far what is true and to be believed, but adding mentally some qualification which makes it not to be true. A debtor, asked by his creditor for payment of his debt, says, "I will certainly pay you to-morrow," adding to himself, "in part;" whereas the words audibly uttered referred to the whole amount. See Fleming and Krauth, Vocabulary of Philosophical Science, s.v.

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