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" All the faculties of Burns's mind," said the metaphy- | trio, who, when he had finished his sixth bottle, despatched sician, “were, as far as I could judge, equally vigorous; and a quart of wine at a draught. The simple truth is, that the his predilection for poetry was rather the result of his own standard of sobriety, and of propriety of demeanour and enthusiastic and impassioned temper, than of a genius ex. language, was then much lower than now among all classes clusively adapted to that species of composition. From his of society. Where hard drinking was an habitual vice, it was conversation I should have pronounced him to be fitted to just as likely to lead lords and gentlemen to ribaldry, indeexcel in whatever walk of ambition he had chosen to exert cency, coarseness of language, and allusion to excesses of bis talents." We suspect just as much as this might have another nature, and finally to premature decay, as it was to been said of every true poet.
produce the same results in "an Ayrshire peasant, and Another and a more dangerous fallacy which has obtained tradesmen of Edinburgh, and other such like persons." in the world is, that Burns's unfortunate vices were de- The British 'tradesmen of the present day might, as a pendent on, and indeed part of, his genius. It would be as body, look down upon the coarse tastes, the tone of society, well to say that the vulnerable heel of Achilles was part of the domestic economy, and the habitations of the generality his invulnerability! Had Burns's genius been loftier than of the proud cotemporaries of Robert Burns; for most of it really was, and his education or self-instruction more en- them, we would venture to say, have more real refinement, larged, he would not only have been a better man, but a have more education among themselves and their children, better poet. The strength of mind and the refinement of are better lodged and provided with the comforts of life, than moral taste that would have enabled him to resist the low the “patricians of the north" in the good year 1786. The temptations which almost incessantly surrounded him, would class beneath them, as well as that above them, has, probaalso have given greater vigour and purity to his com- bly, on the whole, had a proportionate share in the general positions.
improvement, and that both may continue to rise and keep We are willing to draw a veil, which perhaps never ought their respective places in the forward march is not less their to have been raised, over the tenderer failings of Burns's interest than it is our wish. early manhood, yet we cannot but express our opinion that We cannot lay down the memoirs of the poet without the transgressions of his after life have never been fairly or noticing those bright parts of his life, when he laboured, in clearly put, and properly compared with the general state of his confined circle, to produce a taste for letters, and to difsociety at the time in which the poet lived.
fuse knowledge. This was, indeed, not a passing whim, These trangressions of Burns were, occasional fits of con- but a constant aim of the poet's; and, on this head, Cunriviality and inebriety (for he never appears to have been a ningham and Lockhart have rendered him justice. When regular drunkard), and occasional flights of rant and ex. a very young man, he established, at Tarbolton, a club for travagance in which grossness of thought as well as of youths of his own humble condition, in which discussion espression is but too prominent.
and debate, on given subjects, were mingled with conviviThe latter defect, according to Mr. Lockhart, “ ought to ality. This club only met once a month, and one of its rules be mainly ascribed to his desire of accommodating himself did not permit any member to spend more than three-pence for the moment to the habits and taste of certain buckish at a sitting in drink. When he was somewhat older, and tradesmen of Edinburgh, and other such like persons ;" but, removed to Mossgiel, he aided in forming a club of a still in our opinion, it is to be ascribed to no such cause, but to be more intellectual character,-for it purchased books, and all considered as a natural result of the first defect, or excess in fines for non-attendance were spent in that way. The memdrinking, a habit which was at the time even more common bers of this society were country lads, chiefly'sons of agriamong Scotch lairds and people of good condition, with whom cultural labourers, who soon had the honest satisfaction of Burns associated much, than among those contemptuously placing a volume of their comrade Burns's inimitable poems persons, of whom, during the latter and the worst part of his . Still later in life, when he was settled at Ellisland, exerlife, Burns saw very little. That drunkenness often ended cising the double functions of a farmer and exciseman, and in coarseness, ribaldry, and, at times, almost in sacrilege encountering the cares of a young and increasing family, he and this too from the mouths of lords, lairds, judges, superintended the formation of a subscription library for advocates, nay, even ministers of the kirk-Mr. Lockhart that parish or district. Mr. Lockhart says, must have known very well; and, as a Scotsman himself, he “ His letters to the booksellers on this subject do him much must have equally well remembered many poetical sallies honour: his choice of authors (which business was naturally from these privileged classes, compared to which many of left to his discretion) being in the highest degree judicious. Burns's were decorous jeux d'esprit. At the time when Such institutions are now common, almost universal indeed, Mr. Lockhart attempted to attach the odium of the poet's in the rural districts of Southern Scotland; but it should corruption to an inferior grade, he must also have remembered certain individuals of a superior order who had the very first, to set the example.".
never be forgotten that Burns was among the first, if not
“ He was so good," says brought down to his own day and generation all the vices Mr. Riddel, “ as to take the whole management of this of another generation ; and from these he might have concern; he was treasurer, librarian, and censor to our little judged of the general state of society in the days of poor society, who will long have a grateful sense of his public Burns. He has not hesitated to quote, in his biography, one spirit and exertions for their improvement and information." of the coarsest couplets the poet ever penned, which signi- If Burns had been living at the present day, he would not fies that he (Burns), among the honours and distinctions he only have rejoiced in the creation of a cheap literature for received from his superiors at Edinburgh, who made him the many, but he would have assisted to create it. His “a lion " for a season, and then dismissed him, counted his mind was too strong to have been “dandled and rocked " having been “drunken" at lawyers' feasts, and worse than into a flippant love of petty pretensions. We had hoped that drunk among “ godly priests." Indeed, Mr. Lockhart, him- Mr. Allan Cunningham, who is proudly remarkable by self, informs us, that the poet partook largely in those winning his way to literary distinction from the humbler tavern scenes of audacious hilarity which then soothed, as exercise of mechanical labour, would not have suffered hima matter of course, the arid labours of the northern noblesse self to be shorn of his strength by the Dalilahs of the small de la robe." At a later period of Burns's life young lawyers clubs, and betrayed into a contempt for diffusive knowand young surgeons, excisemen and supervisors, do not ap- ledge. If the honest and ingenious stone-cutter had not pear to bave had more of his company then the members of been taught to sneer, as he has done in the Athenæum, at the “Caledonian Club," and of the “Dumfries and Galloway Penny Magazines, he would have written a better life of Hunt;" and the greatest debauch he celebrates (in “The Burns; for he would have got the key to that principle upon Whistle") was a contest that took place between such men which his great countryman built his imperishable fame : as Sir Robert Laurie; Ferguson of Craigdarroch, “so famous Burns was the poet of the people. for wit, worth, and law;" and Glenriddel, who, in the words of Allan Cunningham," was an elder, and a ruling one in the kirk,"—the bard being "selected to witness the fray." It is recorded of these orgies, that Glenriddel, after they had THE INDICATOR AND THE COMPANION; BY drunk six bottles of claret a-piece, retired-as day was break
LEIGH HUNT. ing; that Sir Robert did not fall under the table until the
Two volumes, crowa 8v0., price 12s. Colburn, sun had risen, and that then, Burns, who had drunk bottle for bottle, was much inclined to continue the drinking con. We believe it was in 1819 that the Indicator" first aptest with Craigdarroch, the conqueror of the distinguished | peared. It came out in weekly numbers, and was a professed attempt to revive the interest that had been taken, publication were of the same kind
of value with an express more than a century before, in such periodical essays, re- from a foreign money-market. The “ Penny Magazine," commended neither by party politics, nor any other stimulus the “ Saturday Magazine,” and “ Chambers's Edinburgh derived from the topics and passions of the day, but address Journal," are, taking the aggregate of their subscribers, ing themselves to our common humanity in its permanent purchased by a hundred times as many persons as at any tastes and affections. We fear the design was not crowned former period purchased periodical works of the class of the with any very large success. The circulation of the work “ Spectator," or the one before us. was but limited; and the lot of the author was to find at What has brought about this mighty change? and in most “ fit audience, though few.” The papers are now re- what does it consist? It consists in this, that a new world printed for the first time.
of readers has been added to that which formerly existed. But was any preceding periodical of this description ever The new reading public is not made up of the same class of really a popular work, in the true sense of that epithet, dur- persons who constituted what was called the reading public ing its original issue ? Twenty thousand copies are said, by formerly. A vast America, another hemisphere, has arisen Tickell, to have been sold of some numbers of the “ Spec- into light on the intellectual globe. With merely the tator;" but the statement, we may venture to assert, is either natural progress of the country in wealth and mental cultian exaggeration of the wildest kind, or it must be understood vation, we might have counted upon a constant increase of as including the successive editions that were sold of the the readers and the purchasers of books; but, however rapid, work after it had been collected into volumes, as well as its this increase would still have been gradual; it would not first circulation in single papers. To say nothing of the have exhibited a sudden multiplication of tens into thousands. impossibility of printing off at that time anything like such That phenomenon could only have resulted from some proan impression of a daily sheet, we have it on the authority digious extension of the domain of the press. In truth, siteof Steele himself, (see No.555,) that during the four months rature has, for the first time, penetrated to the people, and it lasted after the halfpenny tax was put upon it in August comprehended them within its empire. The course of events 1712, it brought into the Stamp-office only about 201. a has long been preparing the way for this great conquest; week. The average sale, therefore, must have been no more and the immediate means, as usually happens in even the than about 1600 a day. As Steele adds that the tax at first most stupendous revolutions of this world, by which it has reduced the circulation to less than half the number that had been at last mainly effected, have been merely the natural been usually printed before it was laid on, we may infer that results of the preceding movements of society. All the cirthe regular circulation of the paper in the time of its greatest cumstances that have of late years concurred to augment, prosperity did not exceed three thousand, if it even rose to and concentrate, and develop, the importance and influence that amount. The halfpenny tax, too, appears to have of the people, have aided in bringing about a consummation eventually brought down the publication — although the which is the greatest of all recognitions of the popular power. price was raised from a penny to twopence to meet the ap- The unprecedented lowness of their price, while it is, no prehended depression in the sale. The “Tatler," “ Spec- doubt, essential to the extensive circulation of the works we tator,” and “Guardian," possessed extraordinary advantages have mentioned, is to be considered as originally rather the -in the celebrity and eminent ability of the writers—in the consequence than the cause of the great demand by which novelty of their plan-in the absence of any formidable it is accompanied. It is extremely questionable if the same rivalry from the competition of other literary periodical cheapness, though it had been offered to the public a few works. Yet we see what a small circle of readers the most years ago, would have been met as it has actually been. influential of them obtained. Nor is there any reason to We may be quite certain that no reduction of the cost of the believe that subsequent attempts of the same kind were publication would have made the “ Spectator" in its day better supported. We question if either the “ Rambler,” or sell by hundreds of thousands, or even by tens of thousands. the “ Adventurer," or the “ Connoisseur," or the “Observer," And we are far from certain, that even in the year 1819 such ever had a circulation of Afteen hundred. The short period, a paper as the “ Indicator" (which, if we are not mistaken, indeed, during which each of them lasted, proves that no was sold at twopence a number, a somewhat high price one of them was able to command a sale by which it could for the quantity of letter-press) could have commanded live.
anything approaching to the vast circulation of some of the · When the “ Indicator" appeared, the state of things was penny works of the present day, though it had been as scarcely upon the whole more encouraging to such an expe- cheap as they are. riment. The old reading public had, no doubt, considerably In one respect the " Indicator" was more fortunate than extended its bounds since the days of Steele and Addison; the cheaper non-political weekly publications that have sucthat is to say, the elass of persons who then read and pur. ceeded it. The success of the “ Penny Magazine" has chased books had become more numerous. This advantage, called down from sundry authorities, who profess to be inhowever, was, we apprehend, much more than counter-structors of the public, the most severe denouncements of it balanced by the variety of new attractions, in the form of as being published in violation of the law. newspapers, magazines, and reviews, which had also arisen We do not know whether the critics, daily, weekly, or to divide the demand of the larger number of individuals monthly, mean that we should take them for persons defiwho now constituted the natural support of the periodical cient in common sense or in common honesty. They persist press. The fate which the “ Indicator” met with-the in stating the “ Penny Magazine" to be a newspaper. They limited circulation which it was able to attain in the midst are informed that it is no such thing; but they continue to of this busy competition—was only what might have been repeat the calumny. They are asked to point out anything expected; and, without at all opening the question of the in the work in proof of what they say ;-and then one of comparative merits of Mr. Hunt's essays and those of them tells us that he has an impression, forsooth, of having Addison and Steele, we verily believe that the “Spectator" seen articles of news in the publication; but he has no opitself would not have fared a great deal better. In point of portunity of consulting it at the present moment: and fact, the difference of success in favour of the latter publica- another produces, by way of evidence that the Magazine tion was, as we have just shown, extremely inconsiderable. is a newspaper, a notice he had found in it of the most The “ Spectator" did not, any more than the “ Indicator, recent excavations at Pompeii, and a story of an instance of find its way into the hands of more than the minutest canine sagacity that had lately occurred in New South fraction of the publie.
Wales. These excellent censors still persist in calling the Within the last two or three years several periodical sheets, " Penny Magazine" an unstamped newspaper, as before, resembling these two publications, at least in this, that they inveighing against the publisher for violating the law, have owed none of their attraction either to the news or the and against the ministers of the crown, as conniving at the politics of the day, have established a circulation, some cer- fraud. Poor ministers of the crown ! they have trouble tainly full fifty times, some twenty times, as great as was ever enough with the real unstamped newspapers, whose probefore attained by the same description of literature, with one prietors slip through the fingers of the law like eels in mud, or twoexceptions. We put our existing monthly and quarterly without labouring “ to make the newspaper they cannot periodicals out of the question, all of them being organs of find." In the meantime, the public understand the censors party politics just as much as the newspapers themselves; who would give us a new “ Index Expurgatorius." Their and also the weekly literary reviews, clamouring for the school of "Criticism" has been pronounced upon by the public preference against each other, as they are constantly public contempt, and is not likely soon to produce any doing, on the score of the priority of their intelligence, as if pupils that will eclipse its founders in the respectable art of a page from a fashionable novel three days before its regular “ insinuating what they dare not assert, and asserting what
they cannot prove, and proving what is nothing to the book by the brevity of our notice. It is one we love and purpose."
admire more than we could adequately express by many The “ Penny Magazine" has another grave charge to words. The papers of which it consists are a selection from answer. If it does not sin itself, in publishing without a those that originally appeared under the two titles; and we stamp, it is, according to the “ New Monthly Magazine," rejoice that there has been put into the hands of the public the cause of sin in others. It has given birth to all the by this reprint so much intellectual treasure which so little scurrilous, blasphemous, frivolous publications, which, after | deserved to perish or be forgotten. Without making comcareful hunting, may be now bought in several obscure parisons—which the proverb reprobates—we will say that shops in London, and which are totally unknown in the we think there are some of these essays as good as anything country. The answer is a very short one. The necessity of of the kind we know in our own or any other language. the “ Penny Magazine” was suggested by the existence, The book is full of fancies rich and rare, of glances into the previous to its publication in 1832, of various publications of heart of things, of pictures, of poetry, of thoughts new and the worst character, which the people then bought in absence deep, of tenderness, of humour often most quaint and of a better article. The “ Penny Magazine," and works of original; and the moral spirit of the whole is as beautiful a similar description, have driven the ribaldry pretty much as ever breathed from prose or verse.
We differ from out of the market. We subjoin a list of several publications Mr. Hunt in some of the opinions he holds upon important addressed to the popular excitement, now before us, which subjects; but he charms us with his toleration and universal preceded the “ Penny Magazine," (that commencing charity; the cheerfulness and hope, unconquered by many April 1, 1832,) and which are now extinct :
sorrows, with which he looks upon all things; the warmth of Gioranni in London" No. 6, March 24, 1832.
his domestic and social affections; his love of nature; and, * Devil in London"
4, March 24, 1832.
let us add, his love of books. On this last subject there is a “ Modern Times"
1, March 24, 1832.
delightful paper in the “ Indicator "—the eloquent and “ The Patriot"
1, February 4, 1832.
affecting conclusion of which we will here give. He has * Devil's Walk"
1, February 17, 1832.
been enumerating some famous old writers, who were them“ English Figaro"
2, January 28, 1832. selves great lovers of books; after which he proceeds: " Punchinello"
4, February 10, 1832.
“ How pleasant it is to reflect, that all these lovers of “ Critical Figaro"
3, February 4, 1832.
books have themselves become books! What better metaSlap at the Church"
4, February 11, 1832.
morphosis could Pythagoras have desired! How Ovid and " “ Punch in London"
5, February 11, 1832.
Horace exulted in anticipating theirs ! And how the world
have justified their exultation! They had a right to triumph There are other papers, containing news, and discussions over brass and marble. It is the only visible change which on matters in church and state, published weekly without a changes no farther; which generates, and yet is not destamp, which existed before the publication of the “Penny stroyed. Consider : mines themselves are exhausted ; cities Magazine," and which still exist. We shall not advertise perish ; kingdoms are swept away, and man weeps with inthem. They are to be purchased with difficulty even in dignation to think that his own body is not immortal. London--for no decent shopkeeper will sell them; and they are utterly unknown in the country. Their aggregate sale
" Muoiono le città,'muoiono i regni, is scarcely a fiftieth of the aggregate sale of the instructive
E l'uom d'esser mortal par che si sdegni. and harmless weekly publications which the people pur
“ Yet this little body of thought, that lies before me in chase in every part of the United Kingdom. When the the shape of a book, has existed thousands of years; nor, blunderer in the “ New Monthly Magazine” asks" by since the invention of the press, can anything short of an what process the penny · Pioneer can be put down, so universal convulsion of nature, abolish it. To a shape like long as the 'Penny Magazine' shall continue to be circu- this, so small, yet so comprehensive, so slight, yet so lasting, lated," we answer-by the simplest process in the world: so insignificant, yet so venerable, turns the mighty activity the “ Pioneer,” being an unstamped newspaper, is pub- of Homer, and so turning, is enabled to live and warm us lished in defiance of the law, and all concerned in its sale for ever. To a shape like this turns the placid sage of Acaare subject to the penalties of the law;—the “Penny Maga- demus: to a shape like this, the grandeur of Milton, the exzine" no more violates the law in being published without a uberance of Spenser, the pungent elegance of Pope, and the stamp than does the “ New Monthly Magazine.” The same volatility of Prior. In one small room, like the compressed despiser of facts,—the same “ we perfectly well remember" spirits of Milton, can be gathered together authority-asserts that the “ Companion to the Newspaper"
"The assembled souls of all that men held wise.' was originally published weekly. He asserts what is incorrect. May I hope to become the meanest of these existences ? If it had been so published, it would have been illegal. The This is a question which every author, who is a lover of first number of the “ Companion to the Newspaper" ex- books, asks himself some time in his life ; and which must plains that the law demands a stamp upon periodical publi- be pardoned, because it cannot be helped. I know not. I cations of a certain bulk, which discuss any matter in cannot exclaim with the poet, church or state, excepting those which are published at intervals of twenty-eight days,- and that, therefore, the “Com
Oh that my name were numbered among theirs, panion to the Newspaper" will be published monthly. What
Then gladly would I end my mortal days.' can be said for a writer so utterly reckless in his assertions? For my mortal days, few and feeble as the rest of them may simply that his arguments are as contemptible as his facts. be, are of consequence to others. But I should like to reHe calls for the dissolution of the Society - which proclaims main visible in this shape. The little of myself that pleases the principle, and acts upon it, too, most extensively, that myself, I could wish to be accounted worth pleasing others. penny knowledge is essential to the improvement of the I should like to survive so, were it only for the sake of those people.” Why? Because the example of the “ Penny Ma- who love me in private, knowing as I do what a treasure is
At gazine" affords a countenance to the unstamped journals the possession of a friend's mind, when he is no more. which " inculcate the grossest contempt for every principle all events, nothing, while I live and think, can deprive me of religion and morality, and advocate the necessity of of my value for such treasures. I can help the appreciation committing depredations upon every species of property." of them while I last, and love them till I die; and perhaps, Wolsey thought that, since printing could not be put down, if fortune turns her face once more in kindness upon me it were better to set up books against books. The writer in before I go, I may chance, some quiet day, to lay my overthe “ New Monthly Magazine" thinks, that because penny bea ting temples on a book, and so have the death I most blasphemy cannot be put down, it were better to deprive the envy:"-vol. ii. pp. 203-205. people of penny knowledge. Between the exclusive sale of the periodical blasphemy at a penny, and the exclusive sale of the periodical slip-slop at three and sixpence, the people
MISCELLANY OF FACTS. would be happily supplied. We apprehend that government
Education in Spain.—The following statistical account of the state will not bestow the patent for " penny knowledge" upon of education in Spain will be found of interest at this moment, Mr. Carlile, which is recommended by his learned friend of although it goes back as far as 1831, as few changes have taken place the “ New Monthly Magazine."
since that period :-"Spain has twelve Universities—namely, at We have left ourselves room to say only a few words Salamanca, Valladolid, Alcala, Granada, Seville, Saragossa, Santiago. on Mr. Hunt's volumes; but we hope neither he nor our Cervera, Oviedo, Huesca, Toledo, and Orrate. The number of readers in general will measure our appreciation of the students in 1831' amounted to 9,864, of whom 4,207 studied the
THE PRINTING MACHINE; A REVIEW FOR THE MANY.
sciences, 930 theology, 3,552 civil law, 546 canono law, and 629 | dress of the President, Mr. Heywood, the following particulars are medicine. In 56 seminaries and colleges there were at the same drawn. A library, lectures, and elementary schools, were the means period 8,351 students, of whom 2,995 studied theology. In these employed in promoting the usual objects of such institutions. The the course of education is carried up to the higher classes. There library consisted of 2,150 volumes ; and during the year there had are, besides, eight other colleges where tuition is confined to the been 15,843 deliveries of books to 750 subscribers, for home readmiror classes, containing 1,230 pupils, of whom 251 follow the ing. In describing the lectures that had been delivered, the speaker sciences, and the rest are taught only the inferior branches of instruc- mentioned that Dr. Lardner had begun a course on gravitation, tion. The fathers of the Esculapius had likewise in 1831 several mechanics, and the steam engine; but there had been a want of lec. colleges, in which 158 pupils were taught the sciences, and 4,831 tures on political and domestic economy: the kindness of the Lord Latin, and 10,946 children received a rudimental education. There Chancellor had, however, obtained for them a copy of a course of lec. were, moreover, in Spain 774 Latin schools, with 26,275 pupils; tures which had been delivered at the London Mechanics’ Institute. 9,558 other boys' schools, with 356, 520 scholars, and 3,070 girls' Classes in the French language and in Chemistry had been added schools, containing 119,202 scholars, making in all 13,402 schools, during the year to the elementary schools; and a society for attended by 501,997 scholars. It results from the above statement, mutual improvement had been formed among the members, with a that Spain two years ago had 10,682 young men acquiring the view to rational recreation and the acquisition of knowledge by sciences and philosophy in her universities, seminaries, and colleges; social meetings in winter, and outdoor enjoyments in summer. This 3,225 students in theology, in the same establishments ;. 3,552 association consists of 70 members, and the President describes, with students in civil law; 546 students in the canon law, and 629 students much zest, the subjects which had been discussed in conversation during in medicine, at her universities; 31,409 pupils in Latin in' her col- the winter meetings, and among the summer enjoyments mentions a leges and Latin schools ; 368,149 boys receiving rudimental educa- trip to Liverpool, and the kind and fraternal treatment they received tion in the colleges and schools ; and 119,202 girls receiving educa- from the Mechanics’ Institute in that town. The speaker states, that tion in the schools ; making a total of 537,391 young persons and the Directors of the Institution had reformed the management, so that children receiving education. In this number, however, are not henceforward the Directors will be elected from the general body of comprised the students in the colleges of medicine and surgery, nor the members, with no other restrictions than that the
elected a great many young females who receive their education in convents. is to be 21 years of age or upwards, and of two years' standing as a The entire population of Spain, according to M. Balbi, amounts to member; and that an elector must be 18 years of age, and of six 13,900,000 souls.—Galignani's Messenger.
months' standing at the institution. In the course of his very intePrivate Schools in Russia.—The“ St. Petersburgh Journal” contains resting speech, the Chairman adverted to the happy disappointment of an ukase of the Emperor, dated the 4th ult. It decrees that henceforth the common anticipation, that the Association for Mutual Improve no new private schools shall be established either at St. Petersburgh or ment would introduce discord into the institution, and become a low Moscow until the want of them is fully proved, nor in any other of debating club, composed of noisy disputants and ignorant declaimers, the towns of Russia where there are Government scholastic establish- Publications of ihe Record Buard.-By a recent return prepared ments unless the necessity is ascertained. All persons applying to for Parliament, it appears that the publications of the Record Board, open such new private schools must be native or naturalized Russian forming nearly eighty volumes in large folio, have been presented to subjects, remaining also liable to all the previous regulations as to nearly iwo hundred libraries in England and'Wales, including the subsuch institutions. The Minister of Public Instruction is enjoined to scription-libraries in most of our large towns, and about twenty of exercise the strictest vigilance over all private schools, and to make the principal Continental libraries, and to the United States. Copies reports thereon from time to time to the Emperor.
have also occasionally been given to eminent literary men, as Dr. Aërolites.-A heavy shower of aërolites fell lately in Kandahar : Lingard, Dr. Southey, &c. The total value of the works so distributed, owing to the weight of the shower, the roofs of many of the houses taken at the booksellers' prices, is not far short of 40,0001. fell in, and others were perforated. Zulfekar Ali Khan, the son of The New State Paper Office. Our invaluable state papers have Olimala, having (although forbidden by his parents) gone to the oeen transferred to this their new abode, under the superintendence court-yard of their house to gather some of these pebbles, which were of Mr. Lemon, who is understood to be engaged in so classifying them very round and smooth, was killed by the fall of one of those fiery as to render them available to useful inquiries hereafter. There is meteors, which struck him with such violence on the head as to frac- reason to expect that many literary treasures may be brought to light ture his skull into three pieces. The lash which accompanied the in the process of classification. stroke was so vivid, that it dazzled the eyes of those sitting in the balcony of the house. The stone was found to weigh three seers, New PUBLICATIONS,—The following is an abstract of the publica. and many of the stones weighed upwards of two seers. . This pheno- tions of the month, from the 10th of January to the 10th of February, menou was succeeded by so dense a fog, that the rays of the sun as given in Bent's “ Monthly Literary Advertiser:"could not be perceived for the three days that it lasted.-- India Paper.
Novels Hampstead Public Library –We have often seen cause to regret the Voyages and Travels want of Reading Societies in places where the population was amply History and Biography sufficient to maintain a copious library; and we could only attribute Arts and Sciences, Natural History, &c. 11
16 17 it to the fact, that the plan of a popular institution of this kind had Classical Works and Works connected not been exhibited. The readers of the “ Penny Magazine" are
11 12 aware that the principle of “ Libraries for the Many" has been suc. Periodical Volumes cessfully established at Windsor, and we have now the pleasure of Miscellaneous recording what may be done in a field more limited, and with smaller The resolution to establish a Public Library at Hampstead
9 : 6 was taken in February, 1833, and it was at once determined to open it on such terms that all classes might avail themselves of the benefit.
AMERICAN PUBLICATIONS. The following is an abstract of the A room was hired to receive donations of books; handbills were original American works published during the year 1833; together published, inviting subscriptions ; and on the 4th of March, “ the with a list of reprints from foreign works, chiefly English, published Hampstead Public Library" was opened on the following terms:
in the United States, from July 1833, to January 1, 1834:Shareholders, in whom the property is vested, to make a single advance of 11., and to pay 2s. 6d., or 1s. quarterly; quarterly sub
July, 1833, to
Jan. 1, 1834. scribers to pay 2s. 6d., or 1s. at their option; and weekly subscribers
8 ld. To each class was allowed the like privilege of taking out one
13 book at a time.
28 amounting to 100, it was thought desirable to call a general meeting, Law
12 at which the plan of the founders was warmly approved, and the laws were read and confirmed, with some additions. It was resolved
43 to exclude all party works in politics and religion, and the penny sub
Novels (exclusive of Scott's) 19 scription was dropped, as not being required by the state of the neighbourhood. In the last quarter of 1833, 24 new subscribers
Divinity were added, and the library offered to all who had a quarterly shilling to spare, 1,600 carefully selected volumes of sound English litera
Voyages and Travels
Fine Arts ture. The institution owed much of this rapid increase to the liberal
nii donations of friends to general instruction, many of whom, not resi
282 dent in the placo, came forward to assist in the great cause of human improvement.
Manchester Mechanics' Institution.—The general meeting of this The Printing Machine, No. 2, will be published on Saturday, March 15. institution was held on Tuesday the 14th of January, The Lord Chancellor was expected to attend, but was prevented by the lameuted
LONDON :-CHARLES KNIGHT, 22, LUDGATE STREET. death of his brother. Nevertheless, the hall
, capable of containing 1,000 persons, was well filled ; and from the highly interesting ad
Printed by WILLIAM CLOWES, Duke Street, Lambeth.
5 11 3 4 12 13
£. 5 1 15 10
4 7 17
3 19 14
What the PRINTING-Press did for the instruction of the masses in the fifteenth century, the PBINTING-MAChine is doing in the nineteenth. Each represents
an æra in the diffusion of knowledge; and each may be taken as a symbol of the intellectual character of the age of its employment."- Penny Magazine.
CONTENTS OF No. 2.
PAGE 1. Libraries for the Many
25 2. Miss Edgeworth's Helen, a Tale
5. Whewell's Elementary Treatise on Me-
39 & Memoir of Zerah Colburn, the Calculator 30 6. Bubbles from the Brunnens of Nassau 40 4. Life and Poems of the Rev. George Crabbe 34 7. Duppa's Education of the Peasantry 42
8. Archbach's History of the Ommiades (Moors) of Spain.
43 9. Miscellany of Facts
46 10. Notice
LIBRARIES FOR THE MANY."
mulations of knowledge were actually accomplished, and a An Address to the Subscribers to the Windsor and Eton Public nothing but the latter it seems hardly possible that know
high, if not a wide-spread civilization was built up ;-with Library and Reading Room : by Sir J. F. W. Herschell, K. G. H. ledge should not perish faster than it could be collected. MIGHTY as are the benefits mankind have derived from the We shall not dilate upon the immense multiplication of art of printing during the space of nearly four centuries du- the power of books which must have instantly followed the ring which it has been in operation, they probably amount to discovery of the art of multiplying their numbers by the but a small portion of the whole sum of good which in its printing press. It was the mightiest revolution which the ultimate extension it is destined to confer upon our race. history of the world had known—at least if measured as it Literature and books, even before the era of this great in- ought to be, not merely by the tumult and crash of change Tention, were the chief sources from which the moral light which it occasioned at the moment, but by its enduring of the world was drawn. We can hardly conceive a form of operation, and the far reach of its consequences. It might civilization without them. Even while books could only be be said, indeed, to contain within its bosom the seeds of all multiplied by the slow process of transcription by the hand, future revolutions. The wave which it set in motion has although direct communication with them was necessarily been rolling on till now. confined to a few, still their indirect influence was extensive. But that wave has still much farther to roll. Much as The book which was actually read only by a hundred indi- the art of printing has already accomplished, its greatest viduals, yet through these transmitted at least a portion of triumphs, we firmly believe, are yet to come. Even up to its light to many thousands. The first circumscribed im- the present hour its advantages have been principally conpulse, like the wave raised in the water immediately around fined to the few. The great mass of the population even of the spot where the stone falls, was reproduced and spread the most civilized countries still remains to be brought into abroad by all the modes of oral intercourse between man actual contact with the enjoyments and blessings of which and man—by the sermons of the priest—by the addresses of it is the dispenser. They have derived, it is true, and are the popular lecturer, often in those days attended by listen- deriving every day, indirectly, many benefits from books; ing thousands—by the mysteries and moralities of the stage but for all that, their acquaintance with books is really very -by the recitations of wandering minstrels—by popular nearly as scanty as it was when a considerable landed estate songs and ballads-by common conversation. Into all these was the price of a single volume. How many persons are the few books that existed must have sent something of there in this country who are habitual readers, or even who their spirit—of the intellectual wealth of which they were are occasionally wont to take up a book as the amusement of the permanent treasuries. And to a much larger number a leisure hour ? The number is no doubt much greater than it of persons than was even comprehended within the action was even a few years ago; but still it certainly
comprehends of these several processes for the diffusion of thought, must only a small fraction of the entire population. It is of course advantages of many other kinds, also ultimately originating impossible to offer anything more than a rude guess in in books, have extended. Every new scientific truth, bear regard to such a matter ; but taking the men, women, and ing upon any of the arts, every stimulus to industry, every young people above ten years of age, in the United Kingproposal of improvement of any kind, which a book was the dom, to amount in all to about fifteen millions of persons, means of suggesting, or of preserving from forgetfulness, we doubt much if there are so many as fifteen hundred must have set many hands in motion, filled many mouths thousand, or a tenth part of the number, who can be acwith bread, and in an infinity of ways promoted and sus-counted readers in the sense we have just explained. A tained the growth of civilization, far beyond the limits great many more, no doubt, have been taught to read, and reached even by the last and most feeble vibration of the can both read and write, should a special occasion call upon author's appeal to the intellect of mankind. The range and them to show their possession of these accomplishments ; dominion of a useful book that was read at all, must indeed, but we do not believe there are more than the number we in this latter sense, have been at all times universal, or in have stated who generally read each so much as a whole other words, of an extent to which no bounds could be set. volume through in the year. If we were to double the Imperfect for many purposes as was the method of recording fifteen hundred thousand, we should probably include all thought by writing merely, thought was still by this means who even once a week look into a newspaper. Even of the preserved far more perfectly than it otherwise could possibly million and a half of persons in this country whom we have have been. Even a manuscript was an incomparably surer supposed to seek occasional enjoyment in reading, many, it depository of knowledge, and afforded it a much better chance cannot be doubted, are prevented from spending so much of both of diffusion in a correct form, and of transmission to their leisure in that occupation as they would wish by the future ages, than if it had been only committed to the breath absolute want of books. Until this want is supplied, it is of tradition. By means of the former method, large accu- ! impossible that among the labouring classes reading should, Vol. I. [WILLIAM CLOWE, Priuter, Duke Street, Lambeth.]