Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

They say, but oh! how false the tale shall prove,
That Hymen blights the fairest Aowers of love;
That oft has his stern influence deform’d,

What truth has nourish'd, and what friendship form'd.' The construction is :-He (Hymen) bas often by his ftern influence deformed what truth had nourished. The expression is not very happy. The third line is particularly reprehensible, the words • has his' making an ugly kind of cacophony : this might easily have been avoided.

• Sweet comfort to my soul she brings,

And promises the kindest things.' The inanity or no-thingness of the second line might serve as an example for Scriblerus himself. The appearance of an anticlimax should be carefully guarded against by the poet who is ambitious of praise.

• Yes, Delia, long as beats this trembling heart,
Those scenes, those hours, shall sweet remembrance bring,

In which as yet had cold regret no part,

But we were gay and cheerful as the spring.' But, as a disjunctive, is in this place improper : for had been better, because it brings with it the neceffary consequence. The lines are feeble and prosaic.

We have selected these few instances from among some others of a similar kind, not with any view of injuring Mr. Beloe as a writer, but entirely from the regard due to his general merit; and that cultivation to which his genius has an unquestionable claim.

TH

Art. XI. Letters written in Holland, in the Months of September

and October 1787. By Thomas Bowdler, Esq. 8vo. 5 s. Boards. Robson. 1788. HESE Letters appear to have been haftily written, and

without any great prospect of awakening attention. “What (says the Author) can you expect from me? A perton unacquainted with tactics is to give an account of military opera. tions; and one unconnected with statesmen is to write of political events. This being the case, I need not claim your indulgence with regard to the imperfections that you will find in my letters.'

The fact is, they contain little more than a recapitulation of what the foreign gazettes have brought us acquainted with; namely, the operations (if operations they must be called) of the Pruffian army against the States of Holland, in consequence of their refusal to give the satisfaction demanded by Frederic Williain for the insult offered to his fister by arresting her on the road to the Hague. The Aushor's description of the conduct of the

cpposing

E 3

opposing Hollander on the arrival of the Prussian troops, will serve as a specimen of his work:

• I do not recollect to have ever heard a more remarkable instance of general panic having seized a nation than that which now takes place in Holland. Niewport and Schonhoven, which from their Situation were capable of a long defence, were abandoned without firing a shot; and the same has been the case with other strong fortreffes. The rapid progress of the Duke's army has been well calculated to increase the terror of the patriots. You will readily conceive that the panic which has seized the patriots must have been very great, when I tell you, that although the Prussians have taken near 400 pieces of cannon, and about 600 prisoners, they do not know of more than eight Dutchmen who have been killed. The truth is, they have every where fled or surrendered. I must however take notice of one circumstance, which has contributed in a great degree to the facility with which the Prussian troops have advanced. I am told, that the friends of the Stadtholder are much more numerous than I imagined; and now, that they find they can be supported, they have exerted themselves in many places, and mewn very plainly that nothing but fear had made them submit to their late govern ors.'

The Reader of the foregoing extract will assuredly smile when he is told, that the writer, in speaking, in another place, of the Duke of Brunswic, talks of the glory he has acquired by the campaign,' of the 'conquest of Holland,' &c. &c. A glory and a conques which we will venture to say his Highness would never think of arrogating to himself, when opposed to such holiday foldiers as those he met with among the patriots, and of which, indeed, their armies were entirely composed *.

But though Mr. Bowdler remarks with too much gravity on the movements of the Duke of Brunswic in the little time that he was at the head of his army, and which Major Scurgeon, pera haps, would likewise have called a campaign : he is nevertheless a fenfible and intelligent man, as may be gathered from several observations in his book; and has, undoubtedly, the merit of having given us an authentic detail of facts, which may prove highly useful to the historian who thall hereafter chuse for his subject, The Troubles in Holland, A. D. 1788.

* It must be remembered, however, that a Dutchman will be va, liant in an honest cause.

Art. XII. A. Jos. Testa, Phil. & M. D. &c. De Vitalibus Pe

riodis Ægrogantium et Sanorum : Seu Elementa dynamicæ Animalis. 8vo. 2 Vols. 10 s. 6 d. Boards, Johnson. 1787.

LTHOUGH the animal economy has ingrossed the atten

tion of several able physicians, few authors have created the subject in its utmost extent. Since the time of Dr. Ruffel, who chiefly confined his thoughts 10 glandular diseases, we da

ROB

A А

not recolleet to have seen a more comprehenfive work than the present.

M. Tefta considers life as compounded of certain series of motions. In a healthy ftate, these motions are imperceptible, because all the actions are temperated and counteracted by proper re-action; but in a diseased state they are more observable, being sometimes accelerated and sometimes retarded. The firft part of this work treats of the regularities, periods, &c. of the motions in diseases; the Author enters particularly into an examination of the writings of Hippocrates on this subject, and strenuously defends those opinions which, through a period of about 2000 years, have never been rationally refuted.

After largely explaining the critical days and the several symptoms by which a perfect crisis may be pronounced, M. Testa treats of the different states or periods of peculiar diseases, confining himself chiefly to fevers. His remarks on this subject appear to be just, perfectly consonant to theory, and confirmed by experience.

He absolutely denies the existence of a material morbific principle, excepting in certain diseases, especially those which are communicated by infection or contagion. What he ada vances on this subject is curious, and well supported, both by argument and observation. He considers, separately, the state of such diseases as depend on, or are caused by, what is usually called the morbific principle, and such as are occafioned by some immediate violence or hurt done to the solids; and points out the causes why, in several diseases, no perfect crifis can be formed.

M. Tefta concludes his first volume with thewing the fimilarity of the symptoms in the same disease observable in different parts of the world ; and that the periods of fevers and other acute diseases, contrary to the opinion of many modern writers, are the same now, in all countries, that they were in the time of Hippo

crates.

The second volume treats of the changes which the healthy body undergoes, in various ftages of life, by different modes of living, -by the vicifitudes of Teasons and climates, by the inAuence of the sun and the moon, by the force of the passions, and whatever else can affect the human body.

We doubt whether the performance before us will be univer. fally well received. The learned phyfician, however, who has made the ancients his study, and who knows the value of their writings, and the juftness of their remarks, will peruse the work with pleasure, and though he may not receive much information from it, he will, nevertheless, be convinced, that a proper basis for a rational system of phyfic can only be laid by means of a thorough acquaintance with the natural phenomena occurring in the animal economy, and that these phenomena have never E4

been

been more attentively observed, or more faithfully recorded, than by the Greek physicians, who generally rejected all hypothesis, and who, contenting themselves with a careful examination of those facts which were presented to them, pursued the properest methods

" rerum cognoscere causas.

THI

[ocr errors]

Art. XIII. Two Sermons : I. An Enquiry, how far the Knowlege

and Manners of the World can with Safety and Propriety be adopted in the Clerical Character. Preached at the Visitation of the Right Reverend the Lord Bishop of Chichester, at Hastings, June 19, 1787. II. The present State of Discipline, Manners, and Learning in our Universities : in which are noticed some Milrepresentations on this Subject in a Work entitled, « The Tak." Preached before the University of Cambridge, Dec. 2, 1787. By J. Lettice, B.D. Vicar of Peasemarch, in Suflex, and late Fel, low of Sidney-Sussex College. 4to. Is. 6d. Cadell, &c. 1788. *HE subjects specified in the title-page of these Sermons, are

treated in a manner which discovers the writer to be posfessed of much good sense and liberality. The firft is a seasonable caution to the younger clergy; the second is an apology for the English Universities, in reply to the censure of a late popular writer.

If the subject of the second discourse were discussed in detail, it would doubtless appear, that there is much room for improvement and correction in our public mode of education; but in the article of discipline perhaps less than is commonly supposed, College life is neceffarily subject to less restriction than domestic; and the present modes of early education are extremely un. favourable to the execution of any plan of rigorous discipline at a later period. On this subject, the Author makes the following judicious remarks:

The docility of childhood, the attention of our earliest years to every object addressed to the senses and even to the understanding, seem to be unnoticed or forgotten by many parents of these days. And hence the wife maxim of, Reverence due to that innocent state, has too generally ceased to be practised. Its merit and importance are perhaps no longer understood : children are now suffered to see every thing that is done, to hear every thing that is said in the promiscuous circles of their parents acquaintance: they are allowed to witness all the unguarded levities of the social hour; the licentious jest and allufive song are much sooner learned than they are meant to be taught; even the juvenile delicacy of the gentler sex is too often not spared on these occasions.- The smile of innocence, thus prematurely furprised, has but too frequently haltened the blush of guilt, and laid the foundation of those enormities, which poison the sweetest charities of life, and bring a black scandal on Christian society, But this is not all.- Some parents, not only careless and inattentive

ta

to these consequences of their own folly, are so cruelly corrupt themselves, that they are pleased with the lively forwardness their offspring sometimes display in the imitation of their own depravities. It is matter of their triumph to see the young novice pledge the cup of intoxication in his turn, nor are they shocked to behold him thus unconsciously anticipating the making head and paralytic step of old age. It were easy to continue this painting; the canvas might soon be filled, did not the time and the place forbid me to dwell upon it. It will be enough to observe, that those persons must needs be well reconciled to their own frailties and deformities, who can delight to see the resemblance of them thus reflected in their children. But though many parents are not to be accused of such madness, we are sorry to say, that, in the higher ranks of life, such is the horror generally entertained of the bashfulness of childhood, that best tint of nature on our species in its bloom, so impatient are they that, above all things, their children hould adopt a smooth and easy commerce with mankind, that the rising race of both sexes are hurried from the nursery, by a surprising transition, into all the gayeties and promiscuous scenes of polished life, and are taught to move without fear or embarrassment, on ground, where the manhood of fimpler times could not stand without circumspection. Thus they become adepts in the science of the world earlier than their better forefathers had commenced their noviciate. Can we wonder, if children thus trained in the way they should not go, thus ripened in practice before the seeds of principle are fown, should prove refractory to their first ferious instructors, and sometimes fill our early seminaries with licentiousness and rebellion ? And shall those parents, to whose indifcretion aloue truth has obliged us to trace the origin of these alarming evils, join our satirift, and be among the first to impute them to neglect of discipline or instruction here! No, we cannot patiently abide this accusation : it has been shewn how little we deserve it. They who come hither thus prematurely schooled in the ways of men, and ignorant of better lore, muit unlearn more than half their less sons, or they will never be acknowledged the legitimate disciples of our inftitutions.'

The evil, of which the preacher here complains, is experienced by every preceptor, both public and privato, and is of such magnitude, as to merit the serious notice of every one, who wilhes the prosperity of the rising generation.

T

ART. XIV. Eight Sermons ; by Percival Stockdale. 8vo. 58. Boards.

Faulder. 1788.
HESE Discourses are composed on the following sub-

jects : I. An Afize Sermion, on Genesis i. 27. 11. A Funeral Sermon, 1 Samuel xx. 3. III. On the Importance of proper Externals in Public Worship, Pral. xxix. 2. IV. and V? On the Congruity of Natural and Revealed Religion, with true Pleasure and Happiness. VI. On the mischievous Character of a curious and bufy Tale-bearer, 1 Peter iv. 15. VII. On the great moral and

religious

« PreviousContinue »