Page images
[ocr errors]

exact point; and very soon after, both thighs and legs lose
much of their natural sensibility, and become useless with re-
spect to all the purposes of loco-motion. They have-not, how.
ever, the Aabby feel and unresisting looseness that a paralytic
limb has ; but the joints, particularly of the ancies, have a
considerable stiffness. The accompanying curvature of the
fpine varies in fituation, extent, and degree, being either in the
neck or back, and sometimes, though seldom, in the upper
part of the loins; and comprehending two, three, or more ver-
tebræ. On examining the affected part of the spine after death,
it is found in all the different states from laxity of the ligaments
and sponginess and enlargement of the vertebræ, to manifeft
disease of the former and complete caries of the latter. ,
· The cure of this formidable disorder (which is found to refift
all the general and common remedies) is, according to Mr.
Pott, with considerable certainty effedted, when the case is not
too far gone, by procuring a purulent discharge from the neigh-
bourhood of the curvature in the spine. He candidly acknow-
ledges receiving the first hint of this practice from Dr. Cameron
and Mr. Jeffreys of Worcester, and gives the following method
of performing it most conveniently and effectually. A small
caustic is applied on each side beneath the curvature, big enough,
when the efchar is separated, to contain a large kidney-bean.
Every third or fourth day a little powder of cantharides is
fprinkled on the fores, and the discharge is thus maintained till
the patient perfectly recovers the use of his legs,

We are perfuaded the fimplicity of this method will not be an objection to it in the opinion of any sensible practitioner; and we think the Author has considerably increased the obliga. tions the Public are under to him, by this liberal communication of his success.

The second tract is principally an enlargement on what the writer has already laid down in his former works, particularly in his remarks on compound fractures, concerning the inevitable necefsity of amputation in certain cases, and the danger of dea laying it. He particularly criticises Messrs. Bilguer and Tissot, whoxe doctrines on this subject, to say the truth, are too manifestly irrational to need a formal refutation. As in all Mr. Pott's works, the Reader may even in this short piece meet with fome new and useful observations. His account of an anomalous kind of affection of the leg, requiring amputation, will, probably, afford new information to most of his Readers.

It has its feat in the middle of the calf of the leg, or rather more toward its upper part, under the gastrocnemius and soleus muicles. It begins by a small, hard, deep-seated swelling, fometimes very painful, sometimes but little so, and only hindering the patient's exercises : it does not alter the natural


layinlity of an compounown in his an enla

ghs and


e ufelelt ri

urvature de

f the liga


colour of the skin, at least until it has attained a considerable fize: it enlarges gradually, does not soften as it enlarges, but

continues through the greatest part of it incompressibly hard, can use and when it is got to a large size it seems to contain a Auid ? ancles , t

which may be felt towards the bottom, or resting, as it were,

on the back part of the bones. If an opening be made for the ing either 1

discharge of this fluid, it must be made very deep, and through

a strangely distempered mass. This Auid is generally small in €, Or mik

quantity, and consists of a sanies mixed with grumous blood; ine after 2

the discharge of it produces very little diminution of the tumor,

and in the few cases which I have seen, very high symptoms of 9, to mix irritation and inflammation come on, and advancing with great

rapidity, and most exquisite pain, very foon destroy the patient, found te

either by the fever, which is high and unremitting, or by a rding

mortification of the whole leg.' e cales

On diffe&tion, we are told, the arteria tibialis poftica is

found enlarged and burst, and the posterior part of both tibia dly actes and fibula carious. Nothing but amputation can give the least Dr. Care

chance of safety in this singular and dreadful disease. ring met

Art. VI. Miscellaneous Observations relating to Education, more efpe

cially as it respeas the Conduct of the Mind. To which is added, Anerka an Ellay on a Course of liberal Education for civil and active Life.

By Joseph Prieflley, LL. D. F.R.S. 8vo. 5 s. bound. JohnTainald

N the Preface to these Observations, Dr. Priestley acquaints

his Readers, that, though much has been written about education of late years, yet several of the writers appear to him never to have had much, if any thing, to do in the conduct of it, and to have given but little attention to the real influence of it in life; that it is his fault if he has not formed a better judgment, having had the best opportunities for making observations, in consequence of having been engaged, at different times, in conducting almost every part of education, both in a public and private way.

That he has formed a just judgment, will be very evident to every discerning reader, who has turned his thoughts to the important subject of education, and who is acquainted with the world. His observations, indeed, do no small honour both to his head and his heart, and may be read with fingular advantage by every parent and tutor, who is desirous of making his child or his pupil a happy and useful member of society; as they shew throughout a liberal and enlarged turn of thought, and are admirably calculated to inspire noble and exalted vicws of human life and conduct.

The only thing we regret is, that instead of Miscellaneous Obfervations on Education, the Author has not favoured us with a




fon 1778.


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


Rev. Mar, 1779.

[ocr errors]

regular treatise on the fubject. He appears to us to be perfečtly well qualified for such a task, and we do not see how he could be more usefully or honourably employed. As he apa pears to have a deep sense of the importance of a religious and virtuous education, and has had an extenfive practical acquaintance with the subject, were he to devote his time and attention entirely to it, and publish, from time to time, elementary treatises on those branches of knowledge, which he has studied with fo much care and aceuracy, he would, in our opinion, have a juster title to the most diftinguished honours his country can bestow, than even a CHATHAM, or a KEPPEL.

Before a decisive judgment is formed of the maxims he contends for, he tells us in his preface, that it should more especially be confidered, as a fundamental preliminary, that the chief and proper object of education is not to form a shining and popular character, but an useful one ; and that there are circumAtances in which it may be necessary that a truly great and va. luable man may be the most unpopular of all men.

Shining accomplishments, continues he, are only of secondary confideration, being valuable only in proportion as they come in aid of qualifications that render a man happy in himself, and ufeful to others. To please is, indeed, generally useful, in arder to profit men ; but this, like most other general maxims, admits of many exceptions, such as we see in the history of many truly wise statesmen, but more especially those eminently wise and good men, to whose labours and risques we are indebted for instruction in the important articles of morality and religion, both Heathens and Christians.

· The great end of education, if it correspond to the great end of life, is by no means advancement in the world, but to inculcate such principles, and lead to fuch habits, as will enable men to pass with integrity and real honour through life, and to be inflexibly juit, benevolent, and good, notwithstanding all the temptations to the contrary from the example of the age we live in. To comply with the zorld, and in consequence to be the idol of it, is an easy thing in comparison with this; but then the advantages derived from nobly withitanding the prevailing

vices and errors of the age are infinitely more solid and lasting. This conduct makes a man satisfied with himself, it generally insures the gratitude of a more enlightened pofterity, and, above all, the favour of God, and a happy immortality.

• A man who lives to any purpose, must have one objeff, and have a consistent charakter,

When a man's attention is distracted with a multiplicity of views he never fucceeds in any, or never enjoys the fuccess he may occasionally meet with. But with consistency of character, and uniformity of conduct, success is almoft infallible. Any man, for instance, may be rich, if he will be content to have no other object; but he cannot always get money, and enjoy pleasure ; he cannot always be wealthy, and respected; and leaft of all can he always be rich, and honeft. Also, any man of a common capacity may make himself master of any one branch of knowledge: he may

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]


be an acute grammarian, or critic, a good natural philosopher, an able chymilt, a kilful naturalift, a learned lawyer, or a profound metaphysician; or a man of very distinguished abilities, and great leisure, may, at different times, attend to a variety of things, aed make some figure in each of them; but, in general, one literary porsuit must be sacrificed to another. So also in the arts, a first-raię musician cannot be, at the same time, the first ftatuary, the first painter, or the first player; though there are few whọ may not be with the foremost in some or other of the arts, if their attachment to it be fuch, that they shall give almost their whole time and attention

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

to it.

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]

• In like manner, if a man's great object be the pursuit of truth, and the practice of virtue, he may depend upon success, and will end fure the proper reward of such a conduct; provided he have no other object to divert him from his pursuit, and obftract him in it. But be mult not be disappointed, or chagrined, if, together with virtue and knowledge, and in his endeavours to promote them, he do not get rich, or become popular.

Let us, therefore, be satisfied, if we can make our children good men, and truly valuable members of society, whether the reception they meet with in the world be favourable or unfavourable. If, however, their friends be few, they will be the more cordial, and contribute more to the real enjoyment of life. Indeed, their happiness in all respects will be more in reality, than in appearance ; as that of the world is more in appearance, than in reality; and this exclusive of all respect to any thing in futurity, in comparison of which, however, every thing else is little and insignificant.

I hall be happy if the following obfervations contribute, in any measure, to give parents these just views with respect to the education of their children, or their own conduct in life. They are certainly fundamental, though too apt to be overlooked in both. This must be my apology for suffering myself to be drawn in, insensibly, to say so much in this strain, after what I have advanced to the same general purpose in the work itself.

'Those of my friends who wilh to see the Observations on Human Nature, and the Conduit of the Mind, promised in the preface to my Examination of the Writings of Scotch Defenders of the Do&trine of instinctive Principles of Truth, may form some idea of what they may expect of a practical nature in them, from what they will think of most value in this treatise; and especially Section XII. which was originally written as part of that work, but what it was thought might be more useful in this. I fall continue to collect materials for this work, but the publication will probably be several years hence. Some of the hints I laid before Dr. Hartley himself, more than twenty years ago, and he was pleased to approve of them, and promise me his afittance whenever I should think proper to lay them before the Public.'

The subject of the twelfth section, here mentioned, is, the Importance of early religious Instruction. The Doctor introduces it by observing, that the impression which ideas make upon the mind does not depend upon the definitions of them, but upon


[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

P 2

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

sensations, and a great variety of ideas, that have been associated
with them; and that these associations require time to be formed.
and cemented. The idea of God, he says, may be defined, and
explained to a man of the world, who has hardly ever heard,
and seldom thought of him; but the impression that is made
upon his mind when the name of God is, at any time, men-
tioned to him, cannot be the same with that which will be felt
by a person who has been accustomed to hear and think of God
from his infancy, who has been much conversant in the scrip-
tures, and has lived in a general habit of devotion.

• In the mind of such a person, continues he, the idea of God
must have acquired a thousand associations, which, though they are
infinitely complex, will be felt as one sensation; but, from the na-
ture of the thing, it is impossible that it should ever be fully ex-
plained, or communicated to another. The analysis of such an idea
is far too difficult a problem for any human fagacity; or if the thing
were poflible, the doing of it would not enable a person to commu-
nicate the sensations that entered into it; because the same events in
life would be necessary to it; and without these the same resulting
ideas and impressions cannot be obtained.

• For this reason po two persons can have precisely the same idea of any thing about which they are much conversant: for the minute affociations which enter into it will be different, though they may have a great resemblance; and perhaps there is no object of our thoughts from the impression of which men feel more differently, than the idea of God; though the impression made by it on the minds of persons educated in a similar manner will be nearly the same, so that by using the same words they may communicate what may, with fufficient propriety, be called the same feelings to each other.

« This observation, which appears to me of considerable importance, I Mall endeavour to illuftrate by a case that very much re. sembles it. All persons know what is meant by the term father, and if they were asked, would define it in the same manner ; but the man who has never known a father of his own, or which is nearly the same thing, has had little connection with him, no dependence upon him, or particular obligation to him, will by no means have the same feelings when the word is pronounced to him, with the man who was brought up in a constant uninterrupted intercourse with a father, and has been the object of innumerable endearments and kind offices, and who has likewise frequently felt the effects of paternal correction. Every instance of this nature has an effect, and therefore leaves an impresion upon the mind, which is not wholly loft. For though it soon becomes separately indiscernible, it makes part of an infinitely complex sensation, and is one of the elements of what is called filial affection, or that mixture of love and reverence which is the necessary result of paternal care properly conducted. Now the most transient idea suggested by the word farber will excite in the mind of such a fon a secondary idea, which, though it does not af. fect the definition of the term, is, however, inseparable from it ; and if dwelt upon, it will unfold itself into a most exquisite and in

[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »