« PreviousContinue »
gundy; and while he was seriously employed in all these bagatelles, or was losing his time in the pleasures of the chace, they made themselves, really, the sole masters of the government, and managed despotically all the affairs of the empire.'
Now for our late King :
• GEORGE II. Elector of Hanover, was at this time King of Eng. land. He had virtues, and capacity ; but his passions were quick and lively in the extreme. His ceconomy had the character of avarice. He was firm in his resolutions, capable of application, incapable of pa. cience, violent, and brave; but he governed England with a conftans eye to the interests of his electorate, and was too little master of him. Self to rule a nation whose idol is Liberty.'
We can perceive a likeness in this portrait ; but it is not a Battering, nor even a fair one. The defects come forth in the glaring colours of Fuseli, and the virtues are feebly pronounced. GEORGE was radically an honeft man, true and faithful to every principle of integrity and honour. If he managed parfimoniously his own purse, he never swelled it with the plunder of his neighbours; and if (as all Kings must and ought to do) he rewarded the men who co-operated in the execution of bis plans for the honour and advantage of the nation, he never once attempted to encroach on its liberty or its conftitution. The idol remained unmolefted : but Liberty, Sire, is not an idol, the is a goddess.
ELISABETH FARNESE, Princess of Parma, and Queen of Spain, who acted a part on the political scene, is represented with vivid colours in the following portrait:
Spartan pride, English obftinacy, Italian cunning, and French viyacity, were combined in forming the character of this fingular woman. She went on audaciously to the accomplishment of her projects. Nothing could disconcert her ; nothing could stop her. She could not breathe but on a throne, and she wished to rule the world.'
The characters of the then minifters are not delineated with less judgment and spirit than those of their mafters. Sir RoBERT WALPOLE is only sketched. Cardinal FLEURY is highly finithed, and the tenor of his adminiftration is described in a manner which discovers an extensive knowiege of the French cabinet in his time. The ways and means of these and other Viceroys are fagaciously pointed out by FREDERIC, who was an able minister as well as a great monarch, and kept a fharp look. out on the transactions of the fraternity.
Some famples of the Royal Author's account of the state and characters of the European nations will properly follow the pas. sages we have selected relative to their sovereigns and minifters:
England was in 1740) the moft opulent nation in Europe. Her commerce extended to all parts of the world. Her riches were exceffive, and her resources almost inexhaustible. Yet with all theso advantages, she did not hold that rank among the powers of Europe that seemed to belong to her.' This is attributed to the weak ad. miniftration of Walpole; who knew nothing of foreign affairs, and was principally employed in captivating his master by accumulating Savings in the civil lift, which garnifhed the coffers of Hanover, and secured a majority in the House of Commons. Being once pressed by some ladies to a party of cards, be told them that he had given over whist and Europe to his brother Horace.'
The people, however, got the better of him, and the occasion of their victory was, says the King, a pair of ears which the Spaniards had cut from the head of an English (muggler. His Majesty is very arch and pleasant on the subject of these ears, telling us, that the bloody robe of Cæsar, held up by Mark Anthony to the people, did not produce such a violent and vindictive sensation at Rome, as this pair of ears, exposed to view in the House of Commons, excited at London. The outcries against the Spaniards were violent, and the minister, who was bent on peace, was obliged to enter into a war against his will. This story about the ears is three times repeated in the space of twenty pages ;-the Historian thought, perhaps, that a good story can not be too often told. So says the proverb.
What is said of Holland requires fome correction in one important paffage, which runs thus:
· The Hollanders, as citizens, abhor the StadtholderNip, which they look on as a step toward tyranny; and, as merchants,' they have no politics but their interest.'
Here is a strange miftake!. The very reverse of the proposition is true. From the moment that the sceptre of Spanish despotism was broken by an incensed nation, with that immortal hero at its head, whom all ages will revere, the Stadtholder was regarded as the Man of the Peaple, and the love of the people was the true basis o his influence. His eminent and highly popular office was interwoven, by the union of Utrecht, in the fundamental constitution of the republic. It was defigned as a centre of union to the confederacy, an instrument of activity in certain executive branches of government, and an additional fource of protection to the interests and well being of the people. In a word, it was designed to correct the defects and inconveniences of a form of government purely aristocratical, and being kept distinct from the essential powers of sovereignty, was never suspected of a tendency to despotism, until a lace ambia tious faction attempted to inflame the imaginations of the people with a phantom of liberty, with a view to crush the Sradiholder, and divide the plunder of his prerogatives among them. selves.
After giving a very interesting account of Rusia, the Royal Historian observes, that Peter I. had only time to sketch the out. lines of its commerce.
''Under the Empress Anne, the merchant-fleet of the Ruffians was nothing in comparison with tkofe of the foothein ftatės. Never::: App. REV. Vol. LXXIX. Yу
theless, every thing announces a remarkable increase of population, power, opulence, and commerce, in that empire.'
The national character ascribed to the Ruffians, in the lines that immediately follow, seems so little adapted to produce such a brilliant change, that we are tempted to conjecture, that the predi&tion now mentioned was inserted in this place after the event happened.
• The spirit of the nation is a mixture of diffidence and cunning. The Ruffians are dexterous in imitating, but are quite deftitute of an inventive genius. The nobles are factious; the guards are formidable to their Sovereigns; the people are itapid, selfish, lazy, dronkards, fuperftitious, and miserable.
In justification of the famous partition of Poland, which about seventeen years ago made such a noise in Europe, we may bere refer to the account, given by the Royal Historian, of the government of that republic, and of the character of its inhabitants :
• The kingdom of Poland is a perpetual anarchy. The great families are all divided by feparate and opposite interests. They facrifice the public good to their private and selfish views, and never unite but in the cruel oppression of their subjects, whom they treat rather as beasts of burthen than as human beings. The Poles are vain, haughty in prosperity, abject and cringing in adversity. They will fick at nothing to amass riches, which, when acquired, they lavish with a puerile prodigality. Frivolous, and deftitute of solid judgment, they are always ready to adopt a party with precipitation, and to abandon it without reason or reflection, and by this inconsistency of conduct, they involve themselves in the most diftreffing embarrafsments. They have laws, but they are not respected nor obeyed, for want of coercive justice. The party of the King acquires a temporary weight, when a considerable number of vacant employments are to be filled; but loses ground when he has filled them.-The women are sagacious, and full of political enthusiasm, and are intriguing in affairs of government, while their husbands are getting drunk.'
The sketch of the state of letters, arts, and sciences, is delineated with spirit, elegance, and, generally, with precision; and the reflections on the changes which the power and weight of the several states of Europe had respectively undergone from the year 1640, are not only solid and judicious, but are expressed with fingular beauty, energy, and fimplícity of style. It is one of the finest political portraitures which we have seen.
The second chapter commences with the reasons that engaged the King to enter into a war with the Queen of Hungary after the death of the Emperor Charles. VI. We Thall leave these reifons to th: discuffion of our Readers -of those, more especially, who are learned in the law, which is a bottomless pit. The King laid claim to the Duchy of Bergues ; but as it was not convenient for him to asume it, without the concurrence and
@djudication adjudication of other powers, wbose support he wanted, and could not obtain, he put in a claim to Silesia, as Matthew Stradling versus Stiles did to the Pyed Horses, and supported this claim by marching an army into that country, under many disadvantages, and the threatening aspect of a formidable opposition. Ocher reasons, beside territorial acquisitions, engaged him in this perilous ftep, wbich shew the man. He was animated by several motives to give, at the commencement of his reign, proofs of vigour and resolution that would render his name and pation respected and respectable in Europe. The Pruffians had hitherto little reputation, and their late King was not respected by the European powers, as he deserved to be. Our Royal Author explains this in a manner that does signal justice to his father, and great honour to himself :
• The wise and cautious conduct of the late King was looked on as weakness. He had misunderstandings with the Hanoverians and the Dutch, which he terminated amicably. These instances of moderation led his neighbours to conclude that he might be insulted with impunity. They thought there was more appearance than reality in his military force; that instead of able officers he had fencing-masters, and that instead of valiant soldiers he had only mercenaries, without public spirit. The world, which is superficial and hafty in its judgmenis, gave credit to these notions, and they were generally adopted. The glory to which the late King aspired, more juft (N. B.) than that of conquerors, had for its object the happiness of his country, the discipline of his army, and a wise aconomy and order in the administration of his finances. He avoided war, that he might not lose fight of these excellent and falutary plans of conduct; and thus his reign was rendered peaceable and happy. It was, however, on this account that his character was unjuftly appreciated, and that his allies often treated him with as little respect as his enemies.-- George II. King of England, used to call him his brother the corporal.-His allies formed plans and changed measures without consulting him. His recruiting officers, who, in consequence of the privileges vested in Electors, raised men in the Imperial towns, were thrown into dungeons, and treated as the vileft bandicti: and even a miserable Bishop of Liege refused to admit his envoy to an audience.'
All these, and other confiderations, persuaded the son of this pacific Monarch, that moderation is a virtue which ought not, on account of the corruption of the age, to be always frictly practised by princes and faresmen ; and that, more especially at the beginning of a reign, it is rather expedient to display a spirit of vigour than a spirit of mildness. Accordingly, the Royal Realover marched into Silefi, and, soon after, the fignal of war was given throughout Europe.
ART. XXI. Difpenfatorium Fuldenfe, &c. i. e. The Fulda Difpenfatory, in three
Parts, adapted to the present State of Practice. By FRANCIS ANTONY SCHLERETH, Phil. & Med. Doct. &c. 8vo. Pp. 327. Fulda. 1787
LL Europe seems now employed in improving the prace
tice of physic, by the application of the modern discoveries in chemiftry to pharmacy. Most of the active medicines now in use, are taken from the mineral kingdom, and the preparations of them wholly depend on chemical processes, which, within twenty years, by being better understood, are greatly fimplified: it would therefore be unpardonable in medical chemifts to continue the unscientific, and in many inftances erroneous, methods of preparing or compounding the most material and active medicines, while it is in their power to avail themselves of the improvements, which the labours of BERGMAN, SCHEELE, BLACK, Priestley, and other discoverers, have fuggested.
Doctor SCHLERETH, privy counsellor and chief physician to the Abbot of Fulda *, hath taken on himself the office of compiling a national dispensatory, a work which, in moft European countries, has been performed by colleges or societies of learned men; and we do not hesitate to declare, that the Dispensatorium Fuldense, though the work of an individual, contains more scientific chemistry than any collegiate Pharmacopoeia that we have yet feen. We hope to prove the propriety of this general affertion by the following analyfis.
The Dispensatory is divided into three parts; the first contains the Materia Medica; the second, preparations or compounds which are not liable to be soon spoiled, and which ought to be kept in the thops; and the third, such preparations as are eally made, and which cannot be long kept.
The Materia Medica is in alphabetical order; cach article contists of the officinal name, the synonym of Linné, and the German name; to these are added, the qualities of the fimple, its uses, and, in some cases, especially in active medicines, its dose, and the form of administering it. We shall copy a few articles as a specimen :
« Aloë soccotrina, off. gummi-refina. Aloë perfoliata Linn. variat. B. Feine aloe.
* Fulda, the capital of a district of the same name in the circle of the Upper Rhine, lies about 40 miles south of Cafiel, and jo miles north-eait of Francfort. The abbot is lord of the town and country; a prince of the empire, primate of Germany, and perpetual chancellor to the Empreis. His revenue is about 30,00ol. fterling per ann, and he can raise sooo mea.
« Vim TYA