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In answer to this, our author, in his thirteenth chapter, obferves, that this variety of elocution, which Dr. Browne affects to deduce from the difference of languages, prevailed at different periods, among those who spoke the very same language. He takes a short review of the gradual progress of eloquence among the Athenians and Romans, the only two people who acquired the reputation of it in the antient world, in order to Thew, how faulty or imperfect modes of elocution are necessarily. corrected and improved by experience and judgment; and that reason and good sense have always prevailed over fashion, however genezally adopted and established.

The most antient speakers of Athens, we are informed by Cicero, were pompous in their diction, fententious, concise, and somewhat obscure. Their liveliness and vanity, our author says, hurried them into general conclusions from their own observation and experience: their quickness of conception produced and warranted conciseness; and the obscurity which arose from thence, seems to have been increased from that boldness of figure which they still retained from their state of rudeness, and which oftentimes gave an ænigmatical appearance to their language and observations.

These antient orators, we are told, with a kind of rude untutored violence, applied themselves to rouse, to terrify and inflame, till the gradual refinement of their hearers taught them to guard againlt this dangerous power: and obliged the orators to reduce their eloquence within stricter bounds. Thus it became the next care of this people to give their style a greater elegance and neatness; to prune the luxuriance of the antient diction; to render it more open and explicit, and to range it into such well-adjusted periods, as might relieve the voice, and coine with due force and pleasure to the ear. And thus plainness, neatness, elegance and harmony, became the distinguishing character of Attic eloquence.

And this, continues our author, we should readily pronounce the most perfect mode, if mankind could be always influenced by the mere force of instruction conveyed with ease and grace. But these were found too feeble instruments for operating on public affemblies; and genius, observation, and good sense conspired to produce another necesary alteration in the eloquence of Athens, which rendered it more powerful, and more the object of wonder and delight. Demofthenes had the glory of uniting the grandeur, pathos, and impetuosity of the antient speakers, with the clearness, elegance, and simplicity of their immediate successors; ornament with propriety; correctness with elevation. He found the happy art of harmonizing the

period, period, without enervating the language, and without the appearance of studied refinement.

His animated warmth was. justly proportioned to the importance of his subject; the boldness of his figures to the majesty of his sentiments. This union of great qualities has ever been regarded as forming the most perfeet species of Grecian eloquence. If it be afferted, that this is an arbitrary and fantastical determination, and that this species hath no real superiority over any of those modes which preceded or fucceeded it: we must appeal to the effects. Can pomp or brevity of style, can elegance or neatness, or harmony of language, can any one or more of these qualities prove equally effectual, not only in informing the understanding, but in reconciling the affections, and influencing the will? Powerful conviction, elevation of sentiment, and a flame of generous passion, are the greatest and noblest effects produced by any species of human eloquence : and the eloquence best fitted to produce them, must be of the greatest and noblest kind: must have a fuperiority something more than nominal or local.'

The Doctor goes on to observe, that, when the Romans first began to attend to elocution, they might have copied from the very best models in Greece; and yet they did not attain to their greatest perfection, he says, but by a gradual progress and improvement, fimilar to that of Athens.

There prevailed in the days of the elder Cato, what Cicero calls, unctior quædam ac splendidior consuetudo loquendi. This fulness and magnificence of expression was rude and undirected; yet vehement and impetuous.- Æmilius Lepidus had the honour of first introducing the lenitas Græcorum, verborum comprehenfio, et artifex ftylus.-Antonius and Crassus are compared by Cicero to Demosthenes and Hyperides ; yet seem, from his defcription, (de claris oratoribus, l. 37, 38, 39.) to have been more indebted for their fame, to art and exercise, than to any extraordinary elevation of genius. The style of the former, though not elegant or correct, was forcible and harmonious, his action graceful and affecting; and these, together with promptness and memory, are the qualities to which his influence is principally ascribed. The abilities of Crassus were chiefly confined to explaining and instructing. Their immediate fucceffors studied the Attic eloquence, and imitated it even to a degree of ridiculous affectation : till Cæfar taught them a more judicious application of this mode to their own language. Hortenfius indeed adopted somewhat of the Asiatic manner; but Atticism, or what was so deemed, fill continued most generally fashionable, till the great master arose, and gave life and energy to the Roman eloquence, by such a union of great qualities as obtained the palm in Greece.

Thus

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Thus these two people gradually advanced by the same steps, to the fame point of excellence. At Athens, our author says, this was the pure result of good sense and observation which corrected or improved established fashions. At Rome, the effect was partly produced by an imitation of Grecian models. But these models were not imitated merely because they were Grecian, because they had been admired by others, or had once been fashionable in the country of eloquence. Nor were former or present fashions ever regarded as the standard of eloquence. Even in the periods of refinement, the great Roman Speakers formed higher ideas of this accomplishment than had ever been suggested by their own observation. It was the laying of Antonius the orator, - difertos se vidisse multos, eloquentem omnino neminem. And Cicero thus addresses himself to his friend,

- Investigemus hunc igitur, Brute, fi polumus, quem nunquam vidit Antonius, aut qui omnino nullus unquam fuit.

«These Romans then, continues the Doctor, ftudied and admired the same general excellencies of speech which had been ftudied and admired in Greece, but not blindly or implicitly, but with a just regard to their own national character, their own occasions, and the temper of their hearers. They discovered the imperfections both of their co-temporaries and their predecessors, whether in Greece or Rome, through all the mists which prejudice or falhion could oppose to their penetration. They were not, then, entirely guided by imitation, as, in general, they pursued the same means of influencing their hearers; and as the same means are still approved by all polished and lettered nations, as most fit and proper, it follows, that this fitness and propriety cannot be merely nominal and local.'

After giving, in the fourteenth, a summary view of what is contained in the preceding chapters, our Author proceeds, in the three remaining ones, to an important part of his Lordship’s disquisition, viz. his character of an inspired language.—The enemies of our faith, as well as some imprudent friends, have sometimes asserted, that an inspired language should be a language of perfect eloquence. With regard to this proposition, his LordThip affirms on the contrary, that rudeness and barbarousness form the character of an inspired language : and that, supposing the style of the New Testament to abound in every fault that can possibly deform a language, this is one certain mark of its divine original. The arguments brought by his Lordship in support of this

bold assertion are as follow :-Language, fays he, confifts of two parts : 1. Single terms, which are arbitrary. 2. Phrases and idioms, which arise infenfibly from the manners, customs, and tempers of those to whom the language is verna

cular

cular. When illiterate men would acquire the knowledge of a foreign tongue, they make it at first their only study to treasure up in their memory the fignification of the terms: and when they come to talk or write in the speech thus acquired, their language is full of their own native idioms. If we suppose this foreign tongue to be instantaneously infused, the effect must be the same. Divine inspiration can only convey the terms and single words of one language corresponding to those of another. For, an impression of phraseology or idiom, requires a previous one of the tempers, fashions and opinions of the people to whom ihe language is native, upon the ininds of them to whom it is im. parted. But this would be a waste of miracles without sufficient cause. For, the terms of one language adapted to the idiom of another, abundantly serve the purpose of giving clear intelligence; Doll.of Grace, Ch. 8. p. 42, 43, 44.

There are some things affumed here, our Author observes, as evident and incontellible, which yet may be controverted without any breach of candor. The bishop tells us, that in order to convey clear intelligence to a foreigner, nothing more is necessary, than to use the words of his language, adapted to the idiom of our own.'

< But shall we always find, fay's our author, correspondent words in his language? It is a point well known to philologers and critics, that every language hath not only its own idiom, but also many terms peculiar to itself. It is equally well known, and generally acknowledged, that the real purport of almost every sentence, in every language, is not to be learned from the signification of detached words, and their grammatical congruity, even where their signification may be expressed by corresponding words in another language. 'Cicero writes thus to Cato.- Quem ego currum aut quam lauream cum tua laudatis ne conferam?--Adapt English words to this phraseology, and say whether the sentiment will be conveyed to a mere unlettered English reader.

Instead, therefore, of accep:ing that proof of the divine inspiration of the apostolical writings, the utn cft rudeness and barbarousness of Ityle, which the most exaggera ed accounts can represent;' a proof deduced froin principles at least precarious and controvertible, if not ab olutely erroneous; a proof which these writings do not need, and which, if rejected, cannot in the least impair their authority; it lems more prudent, our Author justly observes, to confine ourselves to a proposition, which admits of the clearest evidence ;-that all the rudeness of style which the most accurate criiic can discover in the writings of Rev. Aug. 1764. K

the

the New Testament, affords neither proof nor presumption, tliat the authors were not divinely inspired.

What the Doctor advances in support of this proposition is candid and sensible. He concludes his Dissertation with some very pertinent observations on the eloquence of the apostle Paul. His fpeech before the Roman governor, we are told, had powers and excellencies, compared with which, purity, politeness, and elegance, are less than nothing. It displayed that character which God hath plainly impressed upon the word, whether preached or written by his inspired teachers, “It is lively and mighty in operation, and sharper than any two-edged sword, and entereth thorough, even unto the dividing afunder of the foul and spirit, and of the joints and the marrow, and is a difcerner of the thoughts, and intents of the heart. Heb. 4. 21.

< He who cannot feel this wonderful power, says the Doctor, in the apostolical writings, is fit for the piddling employment of culling rhetorical flowers, weighing words, and rounding periods. He may call this literature; but while the picus Chriftian pities his folly, the critic of true taste and fenfibility must defpile his mean notions of perfect eloquence.'

To conclude our account of this Differtation, we cannot help faying, that the author of it appears to have the advantage of his learned opponent, not only in point of argument, but in regard to his manner of writing, which is candid, liberal, and manly, and thews not only the fcholar, but the gentleman. Few of his observations, indeed, are new; but he appears, throughout, to be mafter of his subject; discovers nothing of a dictatorial spirit; but delivers his sentiments with a becoming modefty, and deference to the opinions of others, which are fure marks of good sense and sound judgment.

R

The History of the Life of Regirald Pole. Part I. By Thomas

Philips. 4to. 105. 6d. few'd. Payne, &c.

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RITICS have been often ridiculed for an affectation of

extraordinary fagacity, in endeavouring to discover latent meanings, which never were within the view of the authors thems-lves. Perhaps in the course of our animadversions on the work before Us, we may fall under this predicament. But be that as i

may, we are not afraid to premise, that we more than fufpect this Biographer to have had some other defign than that of placing Cardinal Pole's History in a true, distinct, and con

spicuous

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