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If you would immediately see through the design of her pretended virtue, affume the air of a man who knows the world ; of those to whom your sister gives the appellation of Liber tines. Affect to disregard both women and their favours; and turn sentiment into ridicule ; be familiar with her, bold, free, forward, and so forth. Follow these directions, and the Syren will foon fall into your net ; but if you do otherwise, depend on it you will be so hampered in hers as not to escape with impunity. Remember that I forewarn you, you will become the jeft of the public, and by this egregious piece of folly, will Jofe a thousand favourable oportunities. Therefore well confider it..
Make a resolution also, in good earnest to throw off the preceptorship of your filter. What! to be eternally under the ferula! And, pray, my good friend, how do you think she is ' to form you for the world ? She who is acquainted only with
the virtues of our grandmothers ! She would make of you a good patriot, a good Chriftian : and what then? You might have the merit of the most celebrated of the old Romans; and what then? would you be the more caressed, the more rewarded, the better entertained, or the more happy. New times, new manners, my friend, is the best of all our old proverbs. The virtue of our times is honour; not indeed that honour, which was coveted by those blustering Knights that ransacked the world, like blockheads, in search of dangerous adventures : but that of a man of gallantry, who does not debase. himself by any act of meanness or cowardice. The antiquated virtue of our forefathers, would appear in all good company like a favage transplanted into a civilized country, where he would frighten every body he met, and every body he met would be affrighted at him. Resign it all to your sister, if she likes it, and to her ridiculous associates ; who, in their solitude, are at least feveral ages behind us. I can enter very well into her cha. racter by the manner of the ball and entertainment you
describe. I'il hold a wager the thought to divert you wonderfully. I'll answer fort these people conceive they divert themselves. As to M. de St. Sever, he is one of those men who pleased with any thing, because they have not talte enough-to be displeased. An honest, downright Marplot, always busy for want of something to do, or through a friendly zeal, that is always in the wrong; in short he is a character truly bure. lesque. I have seen Madam de St. Albin's daughters, mighty. pretty puppets truly! it is a pity they are dumb. Not bút that either might do well enough for a wife, and in that I should for once be of your fifter's opinion, if you thought yourself old enough to marry, įThe-woman whom it is the least necessary
how can you
for us to think agreeable, is one's own wife. By marrying, we espouse the fortune of a woman and set her person at liberty. This is what is generally esteemed a reputable way of observing that Sacrament. Miss' de St. Albin is a young lady of condition, rich, and may be made a wife of without any great inconvenience; but it should not be quite so soon. You have as yet got mistress;
have such narrow notians of things as to take a wife? As to Leonora—but stay, what is it o'clock ? Half an hour past seven! Adieu, my dear friend, I had an appointment at fix; I proposed to be there at feven, and it will presençly be eight. Yours till to-morrow.”
Neither the raillery, however, of his companions, nor the remonftrances of his relations, can prevail on the Marquis to abandon Leonora ; who, in the mean time, practices a variety of schemes, and employs all her' agents, to effect her design upon him. His relations and friends, on the other hand, take every step they can to counteract this artful woman.
M. de Ferval in particular, an active and worthy young man, displays great zeal to prevent the Marquis's ruin.' To this end he bribes the waiting-woman of Leonora, and by that means procures information of every step she is taking, getting into his poffeffion also her letters to a confident, wherein her whole design is discovered. It is, nevertheless, with great difficulty, and at the hazard of his life, that he prevails at length to undeceive the Marquis, when just on the point of being married to this infamous impostor.
: The fucceeding explanation, and the disappointment of our young inamorato, has a fatal effect upon his health ; from which he is long in recovering. During this interval, he becomes acquainted with the amiable sister of his friend de Ferval, to whom he is afterwards-happily married.
Such is the main business of the story, which is rendered extremely interesting throughout, by the various incidents that naturally arise from the subject. The characters are for the most part well supported, and the contrast between the virtuous and vicious part of life, well drawn and very instructive.
Recherches Metaphysiques fur les. Loix du Mouvement *. AMétaphysical Enquiry into the Laws of Motion.' - Berlin, 17640 THE Author of this ingenious investigation M. Rein
Jard, of Berlin ; to whom we have been more than once obliged for his correspondence and civilities. we cannot help
The German original of this work not being eqme to hand, we confider this translation, by Mr. Formey, as equally authentic.
differing with him, however, in regard to many points of his philosophy, as well as his manner of treating them. We lee no neceflity, or use, for modelling this enquiry into an answer to the queftion, “ Whether the laws of motion are contingent or necessary ?” Or, as he states it, in other words, " Whether God Almighty could or could not have made the laws of motion different from what they are?” This method of bringing the Creator, unnecessarily, and often irreverently, into polemical questions, favours strongly of those absurdities in the Scholaltic disputations, that were so disgraceful both to philosophers and divines, on the revival of letters in Europe. For, after all our enquiries, however successful, into the secrets of Nature, the essential attributes of the Creator himself, can never be the subject of scientific investigation. A mere philosopher, who deduces the very Being of a God from the works of Creation, and the apparent laws of nature, can ascribe no other attributes to the Deity, than such as muft necessarily exist in the cause of those effects he perceives. He knows demonstratively that an efficient cause of those effects, or the Author of thole laws which he observes, muft exift; but it is impossible for him thence justly to infer that the Author of those laws, might be the Author of others totally different. A Christian, who derives the existence, and his ideas, of a Supreme Being, from Revelation, may indeed very justly make a distinction between the will and the power of the Deity; but Philosophy ever bewilders itself when it would reduce divine wisdom to the standard of human sagacity. It were to be wished, therefore, that subjects of Divinity and Philosophy were ever considered apart, and that theological tenets never interfered in the decifion of physical disputes. We call them Physical, because, however they may be dignified with a chimerical title of something fuperior to physics, their solution requires only mechanical experiment and mathematical reasoning, which constitute physical science.
Setting, therefore, the metaphysical question, as it is called, aside, we thall consider what our Author has done toward explaining the nature of motion, and its laws.
As to what he hath advanced againft the Newtonians, refpecting the absolute necessity of there being, fome principle of action in matter, it amounts to no more than this : viz. that he entertains a different opinion of the effence of matter from that of the Newtonians.
Again, his refutation of those philofophers, who impute a principle of action to matter, and thence deduce its impenetrability, vis inertiæ, &c. ferves only to show, what is very ge524 A metaphysical Enquiry into the Laws of Motion. nerally known, that such philosophers have had a false idea of a first principle of action.
The only part of his essay worth our animadversion, is his reply to a third sort of Philofophers, who acknowlege a principle of action in matter, on which they found the laws of motion, pretending at the fame time to deduce this force of action from the fimple elements of which matter is composed. In answer to these, he attempts to demonftrate, that such force is not essential to matter in any respect whatever; but that the Creator hath implanted or superadded it to matter, by virtue of his free-will, wisdom, and power. For, says he, it is imposfible to deduce all the laws of motion, or even the principal, from the supposition of an universal moving force. It is poffibie, indeed, that they could not be deduced from our Author's idea of that force, becaufe he does not appear to make any diftinction between a principle of action and a moving body. He does not appear to conceive in what manner a principle of action can exist, unless already invested with, or attached to, fome substance or matter. But it is in this very particular that phyfical action and motion differ; the mechanical action of matter or body is motion, but that action which is essential to the being of matter or body, and by which the elementary bodies are constituted, is not motion. Motion depends on the removal of body or matter from one place to another, but these must: firft exift before they can be removed. The resistance of the moft fimple bodies' in nature to each other, is the immediate effect of that action which constitutes their existence, and the inequality of which in different bodies necessarily generatesmotion, by caufing the resisted body to move on the fide of the leaft resistance. Now we will take upon us to say that the laws of inotion, such of them at least as are fully ascertained, may be all very naturally and mechanically deduced from that one fimple principle of action and reaction, established by Sir Isaac Newton; and by which we not only suppose all material bodies are actuated; but according to which we conceive also that all bodies are generated Matter, or body is as much a phenomenon as motion s both being the effect of the same as * This principle-indeed has-been called in question by philosophers in some repuce, as the Reader may see in the MisceHanics of the Edinburgh Society, but he way there see, also, for it is very evident, that those who doubted of it, did not understand enough of the subject, to make the necessary distinction between physical and mechanical sci tion. Had Sir Isaac Newton spoke of this distinction, they would not bave doubted 'his principle; but he thought perhaps the use of two different words fufficient
tion, and in thousands of cases, not to be distinguifhed froin each other.
It would fadmit of a question if it were possible to resolve it « Whether the actual phenomena of the universe, or the number and disposition of its several parts, were ever contingent or not?” That their fucceffion is as neceffary as the laws by which it is governed, there can be no doubt. But philosophers have fallen into a strange blunder in making a diftinction between the creation of the world, and the government of it, as if they were two designs, the one succeeding the other. Thus, say they, the material universe was firft formed of inactive subftances, and its parts afterwards put into motion, according to certain laws, imposed by the will of the Creator. Is it not much more philosophical to suppose that it was at once formed of such materials, and in such a manner, that the laws by which it is governed Aowed as a necessary consequence of its existence ? At least we think so, and fhall always look upon enquiries of this sort as vague and chimerical, till those who make them can mechanically account for the cohesion of the parts of bo.
For even this is to be mechanically explained.
Lettres Secrettes de Mr. de Voltaire. Publiées par Mr. L. B.
IT T has been objected against the private Letters of many emi
nent Writers, that they were originally intended for the Public; or written, at least, with a fecondary view that they might not disgrace the Author, if by accident they should find their way to the Press. We dare venture to say, that Mr. de Voltaire neither intended these Letters for tise Public eye, nor will think himself obliged to the Editor, for thus exposing the most infignificant and uninteresting correspondence that perhaps ever appeared in the Literary World." The greatest part of these Letters are little more than Epistoiary Memorandums of bufiness; respecting the publication of the Author's works. They are occafionally interspersed indeed with little personal anecdotes, and other matters relative to his literary squabbles with the Abbé des Fontaines, Rousseau and others; all which do him as little honour as the many artifices and indefatigable pains he appears to have taken, to support a reputation which his ta. lents only ought to have secured to him. Unimportant, however, as these Letters are in themselves, and uninteresting as they are