« PreviousContinue »
injuftice; the notion of any satisfaction to be made to the honour and juftice of the divine law-giver is ridiculed ; and the eficacy of that
which we are taught, and are to teach others, was actually made by • the meritorious atonement offered by the eternal Son of God, is inva.
lidated, by disowning his divinity. Thus our Saviour is deprived of • every thing but an unmeaning name; his disciples of every valuable • hope in and through him; and his religion of every thing which dif• tinguishes it from a good system of ethics.'
That Episcopacy was the primitive form of church government for fiffeen hundred years after the publication of Christianity, the Doctor says, is as certain and known a fact, as that Christianity itself was publilhed and received.--A church without a bithop, we are told, was a case not heard of for fifteen centuries, and an aitempt towards such an ellablishment would have been anathematized by every primitive council.
Our Author employs several pages in explaining the apostle's injunction, to obey them that have the rule over us, Heb. xiii. 17. In what instances this obedience is to be paid, both the reason of the thing, we are told, and the express precepts of scripture, direct us ; namely, in such things as are indifferent in themselves, but are expedient for upholding decency and order in those which are more important. These are the only points in which we can pollibly teft:fy our dutiful submission to those that in the church have rule over us. In mașters of necessary duty, the obedience is paid to God, not to them, and would be binding, if no such ecclefiaftical rulers had been at all appointed. In matters which by the law of God are prohibited, we must not obey any human authority at all; and therefore the only instances in which we can. porfibly obey those whom we are so expresly enjoined to obey, is in those outward ceremonial observances, which were originally indifferent in themselves, but were, fome or other of them, absolutely necessary to support regularity and utility in public worship, and the offices thereto belonging.
• There are, says the Doctor, so many cautions in the apostolical • epistles against divilions and separations, so many exhortations to
peace and unity and unanimity, to a fameness of mind and judgment, “which can never be expected in any other sense than this, of conform• ing to divine authority in essentials, and to human authority in cere•monials ; that it may well seem unaccountable that men of such un• questionable goodness and judgment in other instances, as many of our • dissenting brethren, should not be moved by the force and the piety • of this argument. Till this point is established, vindications of par• tieular ceremonies would be endless and unavailing. It were fruitless • to make concessions, when more might in the same method be dea • manded, till a state of entire anarchy would ensue; and some of our
own members, who approve of the present constitution of our church, • might on the same principle feparate from it, because such conceflions • are made, as others now do, becaus: they are not granted.'
This is sufficient to thew the Doctor's zeal for the honour of our church, which, we doubt not, is very sincere. It is obvious, however, that the mod effectual' method of advancing the honour of the church of England, is to review her whole conflicution, in regard to doctrine, discipline, and worship, and to make fuch alterations, as the candid
and discerning of every denomination have long wished to fee made, and which the genius and spirit of the times, indeed, as well as the in. terests of true religion, render highly expedient and necessary. If this is not done, it is easy to foresee, that the clergy will become more and more disregarded, and religion suffer on account of their indolence and selfishness. It is melancholy, indeed, to observe that, whilft a noble spirit of improvement prevails amongst us, in regard to arts, sciences, trade, coinmerce, in the army, in the navy, &c. nothing of it appears in the church. To what cause or causes this is owing, let others determine.
POETICA L. Art. 14. Juvenile Poems, on several Occasions. By a Gentleman of Oxford. 12mo. 2s, fewed.
Fletcher. It is commonly said by modeft Authors, that they publish at the request of friends. Those would be friends indeed, who fhculd perfuade a bad Writer not to publish. Such' honest dealing, we doubt, is very rare ; and therefore it is the less to be wondered ar, if this Gentleman of Oxford had not the fingular good fortune to meet with an instance of such uncommon friendship. Happy would it have proved, however, for his reputation, if it had been otherwise; and not unfortunate for his Reviewers, who have had the mortification of perusing his juvenile performances: for which, it is feared, his riper years will scarce be able to recompense them. If, therefore, he hath any more verses which have not yet seen the light, we, his most impartial friends, do earnestly requett, that he will permit Mrs. Sulan to light the fire with them.
Art. 15. An Elegy, written in a Quaker's Burial Ground. To
which is added, the Country Quaker. Folio. is. Keith,
In an advertisement prefixed to this poem, the Author reminds us of our promise, “ to call from obscurity the productions of modeft merit, " and, at the same time, to repress the hopes of presumptuous impo“ tence;" - with a modesty not very common, he only hopes to obtain. from us an impartial decision of his merit, or deficiency, as a Writer; and obseries, with great judgment and propriety, that there is, perhaps, little difference between the inflations of impotency, and the effu. $109s' of genius, in point of self discernment. A Writer who can enter-, tain such sentiments as these, may be assured, that we shall, with the utmost candour, give him that estimate of his poetical capacity he de.. fies.----- He appears to postess a competence of imagination ; but we think him somewhat deficient in taste and judginent. His harmony is in general pretty full; but there is a weakness, and sometimes a heavi-. neti, in his meiody. He is more than once, likewise, ungrammaticale. -If he is a young Writer, we would advise him to withhold his pradu&ti ns for some years from the public eye; as there is no doubt but. he will improve both in taste, knowlege and judgment, the native rude principles of which he seems 10 posless.- If he is not young, we would recommend it to him, to quit the poetical road, as few improvements can be made in that art in the decline of life.
Art. 16. A ColleЕtion of Poems from the best Authors ; adapted to
every Age, but particularly designed to form the Taste of Youth. By James Elphinstone. 8vo. 35. 6d. Richardson.
Though there have been good Judges of poetry who never wrote verses, there never was, perhaps, a Pretender to, versification who had any claim to judgment. We have a recent proof of this in the collection before us. Mr. James Elphinstone, who has made several wretched attempts at poetry, has at last taken up with the humble office of a Compiler, for which, however, he appears to be no better qualified than he was for the profession of an Author, as he hath admitted a number of very trifling performances, while he was at liberty to have made choice of much better. He professes to have selected his poems only from the best Authors, and yet he has presumed to rank himself amongst that number, and has inserted in his collection several of his own miserable productions. -Ococus amor sui!
Quid non Mortalia Pettora crgis? Art. 17, The General, a Poem, Most respectfully inscribed to the
Marquis of Granby. By the Author of a Trip to the Moon. 4to. 2 s. 6d. Nicoll.
Mr. Churchil has given us many proofs, that strength of sentiment, and energy of diction, are by no means sufficient to constitute a Poet: the Author of a Trip to the Moon * has convinced us, that vivacity of fancy alone is equally insufficient.-And, indeed, when we reflect, that these powers united,'indispenfibly require the concurrence of the most perfect elegance, fimplicity, and harmony, we cannot wonder at the dissatisfaction we frequently meet with in the perusal of poetical com. politions.
• See Review, vol. XXX. p. 354. Art, 18. Ode to the Earl of Northumberland, on his being appointed
Lord Lieutenant of Ireland; presented on the Birth-Day of Lord Warkroorth, with fome other pieces. By Christopher Smart, A. M. 460. 'Is, Dodsley.
This Ode is conceived in easy numbers, as every lyric performance ought to be : but there is in the later productions of Mr. Smart, a tour of expreflion, which we many times are at a loss to understand; and it often seems to us, that his words, as well as his sentiments, are rather too much under the influence of imagination. For this Ode, however, he merits the thanks of every true Protestant, for he fights with a truely. British spirit againit the Whore of Babylon. The last itanza is really yery pretty :
In pity to our sister isle,
O be thou soon restor'd !
Our love could less afford.
Art. 19. Satirical Trifles, consisting of an Ode written on the firft.
Attack of the Gaut-to Mankind, an Ode—the Farewell, written at Woodcote near Epsom-Epigrams. By B. A. 4to. is. Fletcher, &c.
How vain are our best endeavours to persuade ftupidity to lay down the pen ! The quill fill passes from goose to goose, and sticks more closely 10 iis second than to its first possessor. In the Catalogue of our Review for March last, under the article of a Poem on the Peace, we advised this Scribler, with all imaginable civility, not to print these Trifles, which he had then ihreatened; but he returns us only hatred for our goodwill, and at the end of this collection has mauled us in a most severe and biting epigram, the wit of which consists in calling as old and impotent. We know not why the Author should call these Trifles satirical, unless it he on account of some low and contemptible abuse of the Clergy. But we say no more, as both the poetry and the Poet appear to be equally below the aitention of the public. Art. 20. The Resurrection. Bring the fourth and last Part of the
Meffiah, a Sacred Perm. 4to. 2 s. 6d. Coote.
Mr. Phocion Henly, late Rector of the united Parishes of St. Andreu by the Wardrobe, and St. Anne, Black Friars; and Lecturer of St. Gregory and St. Mary Álagdalen, Old Figh-street, 4to. 6 d. Hood.
A very good man is here very ill pra'fed. Art. 23. The Oxford Sausage; or felcEt poetical Pieces written by
the mojt celebrated Wits of the University of Oxford, Adorned with Cuts, engraved in a new Taite, and designed by the best Masters,
12mo. 25. 6d. Fletcher. The best ingredients of this poetical Sausage, are fo very old, and the reft are fo very insipid, that, on the whole, we think it but an ordinary piece of cookery, Art. 24. The true-born Scot. Inscribed to John Earl of Bute.
4to. Is. Sumpter. The legitimate offspring af Dullness and Impudence,—The dregs of dirty Indigence raving against the penury of Scotland.
Art. 25. The Soldier, a Poem. 4to. Is. 68. Almon. Dull, antiministerial virulence,
Art. 26. The History of the Parliament of Great Britain, from the
Death of Queen Anne, to the Death of King George the firjl. 8vo. 45. Kearsly.
This is a shameful motley compilation, which no more deserves the name of a history, than would a bundle of Gazettes. It is chiefly taken up with the famous Report of the Committee of Secresy, of which Sir Robert Walpole was Chairman, and with the articles of impeachment against Lord Oxford, with other stale tracts, which are in the hands of every man who has applied himself to political reading-And who has not, in this age of Politicians ? In few words, this very scandalous practice of imposing upon the public, by vamping up old publications, without any ingredients to give them an air of novelty, or in any respeď to add to the information or entertainment of the Reader, cannot be sufficiently exposed, nor the Authors of such literary parch-work, too severely reprehended. Art. 27. A Letter to the Peace-maker, 'on the Infraction of the
Peace, by the French and Spaniards. 4to. Is. 6d. Burd.
An hot headed, raving, railing, ir.decent invective against the Peace, The outrageous Author, not only treats the Earl of Bute (as the Peacemaker) with the utmost freedom, but speaks of the Representatives of the people, who gave their fanction to this same Peace, in such familiar terms of disapprobation, that it is well if this Orlando Furioso in politics is not disposed, like another Cromwell, to kick the Right Honourable Gentlemen fairly out of doors! Such a dangerous man ihould be bound over to his good behaviour. Art. 28. A Defence of the Majority in the House of Commons, on
the Question relating to General Warrants. In answer to the Defence of the Minority. , 8vo. 1s. Wilkie.
Though this little piece is penned on the unpopular side of the queltion, yet we cannot refuse to acknowlege its merit : it is written with judgment, moderation, and even with elegance. The Author recriminates against the Champion of the Minority, whom he taxes with equi. vocation and misrepresentation. He particularly charges him with unfairly transcribing the motion, as it was made on the 14th of February, without taking any notice of the amendment which was made on the 17th, the day to which the debate was adjourned. The merits of this dispute depend altogether on the accuracy of the contested transcripts: for which we refer the Reader to the Votes of the House. Art. 29. A Reply to the Counter-Address: Being a Vindication of
a Pamphlet entitled An Address to the Public, on the late Dil mission of a General Officer. 8vo. Is. Nicoll.
Although Mr. Conway be dismissed from his post in the army, he is not yet dismiffed from the notice of the public, which seems to interest it-, self pretty warmly, in respect to the question concerning the rectitude, and the tendency, of that particular act of ministerial selentment. In our last month's Review, page 155, we mentioned the Counter