Page images
[ocr errors]

kingdom who corresponds so exactly to Appearances of our Lord and Saviour his Majesty's definition of a Divinity Pro Jesus Christ.” 53 pages, 4to. Of this fessor, as Dr. Townson; a gentleman, he dispersed six or eight copies among whose character is universally beloved those in whose judginent" he placed and esteemed, and whose general learn- confidence; but the final publication ing, and particular knowledge in theo

was posthumous. He departed this logy, has been acknowledged in the most

life distinguished manuer by the University of his Biographer, who has related

April 15, 1792, in the presence where the Professorship is now vacant. You will, therefore, I hope, give me an

the circumstances of his pious and opportunity of acquiring credit to myself

, placid departure in a manner that is of promoting theological knowledge, and truly interesting and exemplary; and of giving satisfaction to the publick and concludes with a character of the deto his Majesty, by accepting a situation ceased, admirably drawn, and rich which, by the public testimony of the in those qualities which, we trust, University of Oxford, and by the general will ever endear the men ory of such consent of all who are acquainted with men as Dr. Townson to posterity: you, you are the properest person in

Besides the narrative of his life, which England to fill. I have the honour to be,

we have briefly abridged, Mr. Chur. with the greatest respect, Sir, your most faithful, humble servant; NORTH."

ton has interspersed inuch valuable

biblical criticism, and incidental noThis very handsome offer, how tices of Dr. Townson's friends, &c. ever, Dr. Townson was obliged to The contents of these volumes are, refuse, “as he was now so far in the vol. I, The Discourses on the Four decline of life, that he was very ap- Gospels; to which is subjoined, A Serprehensive, or rather satisfied, that

mon on the Manner of our Saviour's he was not equal to the exertions teaching. But the original part of which a faithful discharge of the du this volume will probabiy first engage ties of that office would require.” the reader's attention, and we may

During the same year, when the venture to say will afford him ample attention of the reading and literary satisfaction. This consists of a Sere world was occupied by the contro mon, intituled, « The Quotations in versy between Dr. Priestley and Dr. the Old Testament considered;" Horsley (then Archdeacon of St. Al. preached before 'the University of ban's) Dr. Townson sent to the Arch- Oxford at St. Mary's, May 31, 1807, deacon some remarks on his oppo- by Mr. Churton; and, as be informs nent's letters, which were printed in us, the result of an enquiry, carethe 'Appendix of Dr. Horsley's Let- fully pursued, at intervals of leisure, ters to Dr. Priestley, published in during the space of five or six years 1784, but without his name, which or more.” It is now pu lished," in he concealed.

humble hope that it may form no iinIn the Northern part of the Dio proper introduction to the Discourses cese of Chester, the Roman Catho- of Dr. Townson on the Gospels, by lics form a considerable body: This shewing that what is there maininduced our Author to turn his mind tained, in the case of the Evangeto examine the claims of the Church lists, was the known and established of Rome, and he accordingly com- practice of Revelation, from the days posed a dissertation on the subject; of the first Prophets that succeeded but, although this work was highly Moses.” Prefixed to this excelleut approved by his friends, and was even Discourse, is an introduction of very transcribed for the press, he deferred considerable length, principally in the publication with his wonted dif- vindication of Dr. Townson from the fiderice ; nor did he at last, when the attack lately made on his work by question was put to him, pronounce the Author of " Discursory Corsidedecisively whether it should or should rations on the Hypothesis of Dr. pot be printed *. In 1784, however, Macknight and others, that St. Luke's he printed part of the work on the Gospel was the first written." In handResurrection, already noticed as be- ling this controversy, Mr. Cburton gun in 1778, under the title of “A displays abilities of which it is cerDiscourse on the Evangelical Histo- tainly not too much to say that they ries of the Resurrection and First place him in the first rank of biblical

* This, however, was done in 1797; scholars ; but, what is perhaps yet and it is now reprinted in these voluipes. more valuable, they exhibit that uni


form candour and calmness of temper, of his pursuits in that country, diwhich, if they do not cnd in convic- rected his particular atiention to the tion, would certaiuly make many laws and commerce of the place; and, controversies end in peace. "It would from the investigation of the former be foreign to our plan to enter upon in their antient and modern state, he the points at issue between Mr. Chur- insensibly became well acquainted ton and Mr. Duuster ; but so far as

with the nature of the Government: the character and learning of Dr. in the same way, considering the comTownson are implicated, we may be meree carried on by the inhabitants allowed to add that, in our opinion, with the rest of the world, he soon he is defended by an advocate whom acquired a knowledge of the producit will not be easy to answer.

tions exported, the regulations of Vol. 11. contains Dr. Townson's trade, and the several bearings of po“ Discourse on the Evangelical His- litical connexions: hence, he adds in tory, from the Interment to the As- his Preface, “ Many important facts, cension of our Lord and Saviour jesus and valuable commercial documents Christ,” first edited by Dr. Loveday and calculations, relative to these inin 1792.-Three " cermons,” 1. On teresting countries, were gradually Religious Meditation ; 2. The His- collecled and arranged." tory of the Rechabites ; 3. The Righ In his travels or excursions to dife teousness and Peace of the Gospel. ferent places within the territories deThese were selected from his MS scribed, Mr. Gray attentively obSermons by Mi, Churton, and for served the customs and manners of reasons stated iu a short preface to the people, as arranged into different them. “Babylon in the Revelation classes of society; "and the natural of. St. John, as signifying the city of beautics of the country, which are Rome, considered with reference to every where conspicuous, were not the ciaims of the Roman Church,” regarded wiih indifference.” The first published in 1797. “ Doubts grand and imposing fornis assumed concerning the Confessional, &c.” by Nature in Canada, are no sooner “ A Defence of these Doubts,” and seen than sentiments of surprize and A Dialogue between Isaac Walion admiration arise. The climate, and and Homologistes ; in which the cha- the surface of the district, abound racter of Bishop Sanderson is de with peculiarities, and the phænofended, &c.”-Such are the contents mena of the winters are extren:ely of these volumes, which, we doubt curious. • These," observes Mr. G. not, will find a place in every theo were investigated with all the at. logical library, and perpetuate a narre tention they seemed to deserve.” On which the scholars of paat tinies were

returning to England, the Author accustomed to mention with respect, found the political relations of the and which the friends of Revelation Northern parts of Europe and the will at all times recollect with grati- United States of America with Great tude.

Britain so unsettled and precarious,

that any part of the world became 4. Letlers from Canada; written during a interesting which could supply those

Residence there in the Years 1806, 1807, articles withheld by those countries. and 1808: shewing the present State of "Such is C nada, and such are our Canada, its Productions, Trade, Com other North American colonies. To mercial Importance, and Political Rela- point out the value of the latter more tions : illustiative of the Laws, the Man- forcibly, there are added in the Apners of the People, and the Peculiarities of the Country and Climate : exhibiting from Nova Scotia and New Bruns

pendix the petitions and memorials also the Commercial Inpuitance of Nova

wick to the British Government, in Scotia, New Brunswick, and Cape Breton; and their increasing Ability, in

which the productions and resources conjunction with Canada, to furnish the

of those countries are stated, and the necessary Supplies of Lumber and Provia line of policy pointed out which they sions to our West India Islands. By imagine mos likely to promote their Hugh Gray. One Volume ; 8vo. Long- welfare.” The Eglish nation, Mr. man and Ch. 1809.

Gray truly observes, knows little of THE Gentleman to whom we are the vasi regions of America where indebted for the “ Letters froin Ca the dominion of their Monarch still nada,” through the peculiar nature exists, and yet this extensive terri


tory offers an ample field for the ex- broken off, or the vessel must have ercise of the talents of the philoso- sunk. pher, the statesman, and the politi Mr. Gray is inclined to attribute cian. To excite the requisite atten- the mortal combats thus produced, tion to so important a subject was, to mere antipathy and mischief on " in a great measure, the object of the part of the lesser combatants : we the present publication."

think, on the contrary, that it arises The weak, cruel, and abortive po. from an instinct of self-preservation, licy of forcing nations to resign al! which prevails throughout animated their commercial pursuits, in order nature ; besides, the whale is so enorthat France or England may be ruined mous, and requires such quantities of with more or less certainty or ra food, that, were their numbers not pidity, lately adopted, is particularly lesseneri, the sea might lose almost and irresistibly demonstrated in the all its tribes of fish.

The manner instances of Denmark, Sweden, Nor-'adopted by these daring assailants is way, Russia, and the United States extremely sagacious, and shews, that of America. Nothing can more de- though man alone is endowed with cidedly contradict the universality of reason, other creatures have a somegenius for governing attributed to thing nearly approaching that noble the present Ruler of France, than his faculty. The sword-fish remains at a own decrees for the blockade of Eng. convenient depth for his operations, land ; and he has found to his cost, below the whale, and darts with all but more to the vassal nations around its force at the huge mass above; the him, that the veriest plodder in trade latter immediately rises to the surface, can outwit him, England will now where the thresher waits, and, raising use her own inexhaustible resources the greater portion of his body out of timber, tar, &c. contained in Ame of the water, the tail is seen in viorica ; and he confesses the above fact lent motion, flapping the back of in every licence granted by him to the whale, who, terrified, escapes supply us with the necessaries we re from his enemy head foremost, but, quire. In returning to the Letters at the same time, striking tremendbefore us from this digression, we ous blows with his own, one of which should be deficient in gratitude did would instantly destroy the fugitive we not return our thanks to Mr. Gray thresher, did he not keep aloof, till for his laudable attempt to frustrate

another wound from his assistant, or one of the designs of our enemies, the want of air, induced the whale aimed at the Navy of Great Britain. to rise agajo. “It is impossible,”

The Author had an opportunity of says Mr: G. "to conceive any thing witnessing a most extraordinary con more desperate than the conflict apfict, which frequently occurs in the peared to be. To see the tremendous river St. Lawrence. The thresher, a animals in contact, part of both raised species of fiat fish about twenty feet high out of the water at the same in length, called by the Canadians time, the black back and immense Un Fleau, whose back is black and head of the whale, contrasted with belly white, assisted by the sword- the long white and black tail of the ' fish, attack the whale, and contrive thresher, in constant action, literally by superior address to elude the ven- threshing the whale most unmerci. geance of their vast adversary, and fully; every blow resounding like at length to kill him. Mr. Gray ilo the noise of a cannon: feeling the lustrates this fact by giving an instance blows, and galled on all sides by creaof the amazing force with which the tures he might well despise, he flouncés sword-fish strikes when exasperated : about, blowing, and making a trethe Pennsylvania Packet was taken mendous noise, dashing the water to into Duck to discover the cause of a a prodigious height, and occasioning leak, in Philadelphia, in 1806, when the a sort of local storm." carpenters found part of the beak of Canada was discovered by Jacques one of these tish had penetrated the cop- Cartier, in the year 1535; and, enper sheathing, splintered a plank, and tering the vast river which penetrates had reached the inner planks or cie- the country on St. Lawrence's day, he ling; fortunately the fish could not honoured it with the name of the disengage the sword, which remained Saint. The etymology of the word


[ocr errors]

Canada is not satisfactorily accounted the close of May, the time when the for by Mr. Gray, who gives a defini- Author first saw the country, vege. tion which, he confesses, appears inore

tation had advanced but very little whimsical than truo. Tradition says towards perfection. The situation the country had been visited by the aud view of Quebec must, judging Spaniards before the French; the from Mr. Gray's description, exceed former finding neither a fertile soil or all other cities on the globe. The favourable climate, nor gold, fre- scenery of the confines of the river is quently exclaimed, in the hearing of extremely grand. On the left point, the Indians, “ Aca nada," signifying, Levi appears with a romantic church here is nothing 66. When the French and scaltered cottages : on the right, visited the country, the Indians, in is the upper point of the island of bopes of getting rid of them, and Orleans : and beyond, the distant supposing them Spaniards, repeated country. "And you are struck," frequently Aca nada, which the says Mr. G. “with the magnificent French not understanding, thought falls of Montmorency. A river called might be the name of the country, the Montınorency, as large as the hence they called it Canuda, You Thames at Richmond, is seen precis may take this definition,” adds Mr. pitating itself in a body over a perG.“ till you can find a better.” One pendicuiar precipice of 246 feet.” It of the peculiarities of this frozen re- is allowed to be one of the finest was gion attracted the Author's attention terfalls in the world. The eye then soon after the ship entered the St. ruus along a cultivated country for Lawrence; and that was, ihe vast about half a dozen miles; and the of smoke which are prospesi is terminated by a ridge of pended over the forests, produced by mountains on the right, and by Cape the consumption of the wood in or Diamond and the plains of Abraham der to clear the land. Many miles of on the left, where you see the city the shores present a dreary aspect, and battlements of Quebec, comand the sigus of population are sel. manding majestically the surrounding dom observable till the passenger coustry.” Every writer on the subreaches the island of Bique, where ject of America, whatever portion of vessels bound for Quebec and Mon- that quarter of the globe he may treal usually take pilots." This place have visited, has observed the vast is the rendezvous for the merchant- scale on which the whole detail of ships, and the frigates appointed for the country is constructed. Mr. G. their convoy

The distance from fully agrees with his brother travelQuebec is 150 miles, and 350 from lers on this head; and declares the Montrcal. The numerous beautiful stamp and impression of originality islands scattered in the stream of the are visible in every direction. The majestic St. Lawrence, and the mag- pigmy operations of man, witb their nitude of the river, now forcibly diminutive marks of civilization, meet struck Mr. Gray, who observes," for the eye; but they have not effaced though it is about 20 miles broad, I the general appearance of one imfound, on tasting some of the wa mense forest, and the mountains, ter at half ebb-tide, that it was per- lakes, rivers, trees, cataracts, and fectly fresh. I really do believe ibat precipices, stand unrivalled. The there is more fresh water thrown original settlers of Canada had many into the ocean from this river than difficulties to encounter, exclusive of from all the rivers in Europe put to the rigour of the climate, as they gether. I have seen many of the were compelled to the alternate falargest of them. A dozen Danubes, tigues of clearing the country and Rhines, Rhones, Taguses, and Thames- fighting its inhabitants; and, when es, would be nothing to twenty miles those were in some degree overcome, of fresh water in breadth, from ten their descendants had to contend with to forty fathoms in depth.”.

new enemies in the infant Provinces The high banks and headlands have of British America. Indeed their Goa very fine effect from the midst of vernment, even after it had taken tlie the river.

Between those and the colony under its immediate protecvast dark mountains at a distance, tion, seems to have paid more atthe house iq villages, and churches, tention to the fur-trade, to exploring mark the line of cultivation ; but at tlie interior of the country, culti

[ocr errors]

gave the

vating the friendship of the Indians, by the Quebec Bill of 1774, the and spreading the Roman Catholic Roman Catholic Clergy are perreligion, thaz to the improvement of mitted to exact tithes of their own the country in agriculture, and the parishioners; but the Protestants or Promotion of the arts, and the do- their lands are not subject to this conînestic pursuits of civil society." tribution for that particular religion;

Mr. Gray pays a handscine compli- the tithes of the latter are paid to ment lo the Missionaries employed in persons appointed by the Governdisseminating their faith, whi, though mient, and the amount is reserved for se disbelieve the doctrines they wam- the support of Protestant Clergymen taia, camuot be denied the merit of actual residents in the Province. The disinterested perseverance in neeiing Governor for the time being is authe most horrid tortures and deaiit, thorised to erect parsonages, and enin performing what they conceived to dow them from this fund: and the be a duty: * Where the intention is proportion of Ecclesiastics was, when good," adds our Author, “praise is hir: Gray wrote, oue Bisliop. and due; and, we may suppose, will have twelve Priests of the Established its reward from Him who knoweth Church, about 200 Roman Catholic the heart."

Priests, and but three Ministers of Quebec was founded by Samuel de the scotch Church. Champlain, in the year 1608; and The Plains of Abraham, remark. never was more judgment demon- able for the battle which sirated, than in his choice of the site. sovereignty of Canada to England, The St. Lawrence suddenly contracis and the death of General Wolfe, exto a mile in breadth opposite the city, tend for a considerable distance to the though the bason, as it is termed, im- South-west of Quebec. These plains taediately below it, is five, and it are ilearly on a level with the fortifiagain expands above the town. The cations, and spread as the distance grand battery of Quebec, composed from tlie city increases, to the breadtha of very heavy orduance, and several of one and lwo miles, deviating but 13-inch mortars, is judiciously placed, little from the level, yet sloping toso as to command the narrowest part wards the river St. Charles on the of the river, which is about 100 feet North, and less on the opposite side. in depth, and affords good anchorage. The bank next the St. Lawrence is The description of the city is concise of great height, and “almost perand satisfactory; and are in- pendicular, and generally covered formed that the shippiny discharge with wood where the slope will admit their cargoes at wharfs built from of it, which is not always the case. low-water mark, close to extensive Notwithstanding the difficulty of asi warehouses ; and that the inhabitants, cent, General Wolfe, with infinite having suffered greatly on acciden- labour, contrived to carry his little tal fires, from the combustible nature army and a few small field-pieces to of their cedar shivgle roo!s, now use the top of the bank, and took his tin plates in many instances, which stand on the Plains of Abraham.** are not only very brilliant, but durable Mr. Gray attri tes the success of the coverings in this dry climate.

British arms after this moment to the In speaking of the religious houses, precipitation of General Montcalm, Mr.G. observes, “I believe I can safely who, instead of concerting a joint say, that no where do the Roman attack with a commander of a French Catholicks and Protestants live on army of 10,000 men, encamped at better terms than here. They go to Beaufort, a few miles from Quebec, each other's marriages, baptisms, and sallied forth, and, taking the whole buriais, without scrupie; nay, they of the contest upon himself, was dea have even been kuown to make use feated and killed. The precise spot of the same church for reiigious wor where our gallant Wolfe fell, and the ship, one party using it in the fore- stone on which his friends laid him, noon, and the other in the afternoon.. are still shewn; but the latter is much There is something truly Christian iu reduced by the frequent attacks made all this ; it evinces a meekness of spi- on its surface for fragiuents to prerit, and a degree of charitable for- serve as relicks.

bearance with one another, which We shail now turn our attention to i really promotes general happiness. those matters which more immediately


[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »