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the public, form an experiment, whose success, we trust, we beg to know, was any formal attempt made to rebut or in this, will authorize the trial in other instances, It is controvert its statements ? When the advocates for Preswell known that there is still a large unpublished part of byterianism had recourse to argument, in support of tbeir the Wodrow MSS., which may throw no small addi- polity, there was no lack of replies on the part of their op
ponents. In covenanting times, we find a Maxwell and a tional light on a most important period of national his- Baillie in close combat togetber; and, immediately after the tory, and would be a very desirable Supplement to the Revolution settlement, we find the learning and acuteness of work before us.
Forrester, and Rule, and Jameson, and Anderson, met in Of the History itself, as the most minute, and, we battle array by the respectable talents and literature of Bishop scruple not to say, on the whole, the most impartial ac- Sage and Dr Monro; and never was the Episcopal and count of the times which it so vividly illustrates, it is Presbyterian controversy managed on both sides with greater
ability. Whence, then, is it, that when the unpretending probably unnecessary to be particular in our commenda- historian comes forth with his two overwhelming folios of tion. Its character has been long established, not only facts and documents illustrative of the sufferings of the among those who might be deemed favourable to any pe- Church of Scotland under the Episcopal ascendency, po culiar sentiments ascribed to the author, but with many pen was drawn to vindicate the good old cause, and to etwho differ from them on such points, as, at least, a pre- fort was made to prove an alibi for the panel at the bar ? cious depository of historical information. That a book Reasoning for Presbyterianism might be met by counter of so much importance should have been suffered to reasonings for Episcopacy, and the records of a distant an
tiquity might admit of varied interpretations; but facts,' as go entirely out of print, can be accounted for only by the Wodrow says, ' are stubborn things, and will not easily be fashionable prevalence of lighter literature, giving little set out of the way.'”—Prel. Diss. pp. vi., vii. hope of success in the republication of it; a discouragement in such cases, which we would wish to believe is Were there nothing to recommend Wodrow's History, rapidly giving way to a more enlightened judgment on the however, except the mass of important information which art of the“ reading public.”
is to be found in it, we could not hesitate in admitting One great recommendation of such historical works as it to be of standard value. It is a most particular dethat of Wodrow, is the fair field which they allow to the lineation of events, to which a merely local interest has formation of opinion. More general sketches may be been too often attached,—closely connected as they were useful in the preliminary study of any particular period, with, at that time, the general interests of the two king. but in these the bias of the writer's mind is almost always doms, and the succeeding destiny of Great Britain ; and, too prominent a feature,—and the events recorded do not to every Scotchman in particular, it is a proud testimocommonly escape the modifying influence of his own par- nial of the firm and vigorous resistance of his forefathers tialities, but are so accommodated as to instil them im- no matter how they may have erred in minor points, under perceptibly into the minds of his readers. It is other many disadvantages, and some temptations to a compro wise, however, where the principal characteristic of the mising submission—against the encroachments of arbinarrative is its minute reference to, and citation of, its trary power on the rights of conscience and the political authorities. The whole evidence is laid before us; it is privileges of the subject. That some of these men were the facts themselves with which we are employed, not fierce and rash, both in their opinions and measures, is well the opinions already formed by others respecting them; known and universally allowed; though, in branding and whatever, therefore, be the views of the author him them as turbulent and seditious, it were but candour to self, we are in less danger of being misled by him. “ Our remember the merciless persecution which helped to make public records,” says Wodrow, in his preface to the first them so. Indeed, to identify their characters with their volume," the registers of the privy council, and justi- cause, or their sentiments with those of the great majority ciary, are the great fund of which this history is formed; engaged in it, is not more an unjust than it is a ridicua great part of it consists of extracts from these, and I lous mistake; and that cause was at first the defence of have omitted nothing which might give light to the state much that was dear,—while afterwards it became the preof the Church of Scotland at that period; though in per- servation of all that was valuable in public safety and do using or making extracts out of ten or twelve large vo- mestic peace. That it is no small debt of gratitude lumes, several things may have escaped me.”_“ It is a which, under Providence, we owe to the men whom susingular feature," says Dr Burns, Prel. Diss. p. 8, “in perficial judges of human character regard as the “ fanaMr Wodrow as a historian, that he has not only given us tics” of those days, is a trite observation ; but “let eren his own narrative of events, but likewise the original do- its triteness recommend its truth!" We speak in no uncuments whence that narrative has been drawn. With authorized language, when we talk of the lofty-ininded the opinions of a historian, we have, properly speaking, heroism,—the meek and Christian spirit,—the highly nothing to do, and every reader is at perfect liberty to ac- creditable learning,—and even the calm good sense, or cord with the sentiments wbich Wodrow has expressed, many amongst them; and whatever were the merits of or to differ from them entirely, as he pleases." We are the contest in other respects, they were engaged in a not overlooking the accusation brought by some against struggle for the continuance of a form of ecclesiastical poWodrow, of “disingenuousness.” Even if he were dis-lity from which the happiest effects had previously been de. ingenuous,—and if it be disingenuous to have an opinion of rived on the mural character and habits of the people, and one's own, upon a most important subject, he is certainly which had gained their attachment, as much by the close liable to the imputation,—even if he were disingenuous, and constant application of gospel truth which it mainwe repeat, that the nature of his work diminishes the tained, as by any association of its peculiarities with the personal influence, as it were, of the writer over the history or the rights of their country. reader. On this subject, however, let us quote the fol.
The plan of Wodrow's History is certainly very open lowing paragraph, from Dr Burns's vigorous, and, we to merely critical objections, but well adapted to gratify think, successful, defence of Wodrow from the imputa- the interest commonly felt in a graphic and minute action :
count of facts, more than in a regular and comparatively “ The statements of our historian were not questioned at abstract narrative. It is almost unique, in the familiar the time of their first publication. We do not deny that a air which is imparted to events, usually less interesting deep sensation was excited by the work, and that a spirit of in dry detail, or too much idealized in their adaptation to violent hostility was roused, and that there was every wish professedly fictitious writings. The effect of the work felt and expressed to have its testimony set aside. Nor do before us reminds us much of that of old Froissart, though we deny that the author was rudely assailed with pasquinades and threats of personal violence, while the friendly many may smile at the comparison. There is in both, reception which his Majesty (George the First) and the however, we think, a similar unaffected life in description, members of the royal family gave to the book, galled exceed- and a felicitous touching of character, which gleams more ingly the still sanguine adherents of the old dynasty. But pleasingly through simple and straightforward expres
sions. Wodrow blends, throughout, the general occur- will own him for an equal,- beauty will smile upon him rences of the period with the most particular domestic as a friend, and humbler aspirants will gaze with fond circumstances, as it were, of the people. Names, dates, and respectful admiration on the individual who has so places, &c., even in comparatively trilling matters, are successfully studied the Art of Tying the Cravat. But given with scrupulous exactness. The manners and ha- behold the reverse of the picture! Suppose that the unbits of the country are developed, not in colder disquisi- happy wretch is but an ignorant pretender to a knowledge tion, but in living pictures of individuals ; and, while even of the proper mode of covering that part of the person inferior characters are thus made almost personally known which separates the shoulders from the china being to us, the more important actors in that eventful day pass who disgraces his laundress by the most barbarous use of before us in an equally vivid and dramatic individuality. her well-ironed and folded neckcloths, starched with that We seem to have seen and known the crafty Sharpe, the degree of nicety, that a single grain more or less would tyrannical Lauderdale, the fierce Dalzell, and the stern have made the elasticity too great or the suppleness too Claverhouse ; and there is, in such respects, more unpre- little ;—suppose this Yahoo, with a white cravat tied tending power in many of these pages than the general round his neck like a rope, somewhat after the fashion reader might at first anticipate. The quiet gravity-we most in vogue among the poorer class of divinity students, might say, the elderly respectability--of a style peculiarly were to enter a drawing-room! What man on earth clear, is not unfrequently varied by a solemn pathos, or a would not turn away from him in disgust ? The very generous indignation, wbich seldom fails in its appeal, poodle would snap at his heels; and the large tortoiseand adds no small interest to the details of the “humble shell cat upon the hearth-rug would elevate her back into pastor of Eastwood ;" and if the reader turn to any of the form of an arch, bristle up her tail like a brush, and the more marked events narrated—the rising at Pent- spit at him with sentiments of manifest indignation. land,—the account of Guthrie's trial and death,—the Ladies would shrink from the contamination of his ap" ery, ' Havoc,' and let slip,” &c. of the Highland host, for proach, and the dearest friend he had in the world would instance--he will find abundant evidence of a combina- cut him dead upon the spot. He might, perhaps, be a tion of candour in judgment, with a warm and often elo- man of genius; but what is the value of genius to a per-quent spirit of sympathy and honourable feeling, which son ignorant of the Art of Tying the Cravat ? cannot but enhance the work with all who can estimate Let us enquire for a moment into the history of the such qualities.
Cravat, and the influence it has always held over society The arrangement by which the documents, acts of par- in general. “ L'art de mettre sa cravate," says a French liament, &c. have been taken from the separate appendix philosopher (Montesquieu, we think), “ est à l'homme du of the old edition, and thrown into the form of notes in monde ce que l'art de donner à diner est à l'homme d'etat.” this, is in every way a decided improvement; and we It is believed that the Germans have the merit of inventcannot, at the same time, but bear testimony to the ex- ing the Cravat, which was first used in the year 1636, tensive information and acuteness which Dr Burns has by a regiment of Croats then in their service. Croat, displayed in the notes added by him throughout these vo- being pronounced Cro-at, was easily corrupted into cravat. lumes. He has contributed also a memoir of the author, The Greeks and Romans usually wore their neck free and some specimens of his correspondence, in which the and uncovered, although in winter they sometimes wrapcharacter of the man, and the singularly strong sense he ped a comforter round their throats, which they called a possessed, are very apparent; and the preliminary disser- focalium, from fauces. Augustus Cæsar, who was partation, to which we have already referred, is well worthy ticularly liable to catch cold, continually used a focalium an attentive perusal, both as an eloquent and as an in- or sudarium. Even now, it is only some of the European structive composition.
nations who use Cravats. Throughout all the East the We shall take more particular notice of this History throat is invariably kept uncovered, and a white and wellwhen its publication is completed. At present, we cor- turned neck is looked upon as a great beauty, being me. dially recommend to the encouragement of the public a taphorically compared to a tower of ivory. In France, work which we are persuaded has an equal claim to be for a long period, the ruff, stiffened and curled in single onsidered national with many of far less general interest or double rows, was the favourite ornament of the neck ; and loftier pretensions.
but when Louis XIII. introduced the fasbion of wear. ing the hair in long ringlets upon the shoulders, the ruff
was necessarily abandoned. In 1660, when a regiment The Art of Tying the Cravat, demonstrated in Lessons, of Croats arrived in France, their singular tour de cou with erplanatory Plates. Forming a Pocket Manual. attracted particular attention. It was made of muslin By H. Le Blanc, Esq. Third Edition. London.
or silk, and the ends, arranged en rosette, hung gracefully Effingham Wilson. 1829.
on the breast. The cro-at (now cravat) became the pasWe have reviewed a good number of books in our day, sion ; and the throat, which had hitherto been comparabut we never reviewed one in whose contents we felt so tively free, lost its liberty for ever. Many varieties were intensely interested as that which now lies before us. All introduced; but a fine starched linen cloth acquired the subjects, hiding their diminished heads, sink into insig- ascendency over all other, and retains it to this day. nificance the moment that the Art of Tying the Cravat Abuses crept in, however, for the fancy of the élégans ran engrosses the mind. It is an art without the knowledge wanton on the subject of pieces of muslin, stiffeners, colof which all others are useless. It is the very keystone lars, and stocks. At one time it was fashionable to wear to polite society; it is the open sesame to the highest such a quantity of bandaging round the neck, that shot honours both in church and state. Look at any indi- has been known to lodge in it with perfect impunity to vidual making his entrée into a drawing-room where there the wearer, and few sabre cuts could find their way is a circle in the slightest degree distinguished for taste through. Stocks are a variety of the Cravat species which and elegance. Is it his coat, bis waistcoat, his shirt, his are now very general. Collars were the avant-couriers inexpressibles, his silk stocking, or his shoe, to which the of stocks, and were sometimes worn by the Egyptians glass of the critic, or the soft eye of beauty, is principally and Greeks, made of the richest metals, and ornamentdirected ? No! it is to none of these. It is the Cravated with precious stones. The modern stock is a less that instantaneously stamps the character of its wearer. costly article. It carries with it a stiff and artificial If it be put on with a recherché air,-if its folds be cor- air ; but this is rather in its favour as a part of the miTect, and its set comme il faut,—then he may defy fate. litary costume. It has other advantages, too; it forms Even though his coat should not be of the very last cut, no wrinkle, and is very simple
, making but one turn and his waistcoat buttoned a whole button too high, stil round the neck, and being fastened behind by a buckle or he will carry every thing before him. The man of fashion clasp. Stocks have very generally superseded the Cravat
in the army; and, considering that they have been lately butlers;—the Cravate à la Bergami, and the Cravate de much improved, being now usually made of whalebone, Bal, where there is no knot at all, the ends being brought thinned at the edges, with a border of white leather which forward, crossed on the breast, and then fastened to the entirely prevents any unpleasant scratching of the chin, braces ;—the Cravate Mathématique, grave and severe, we confess we are rather partial to them. But the Cravat where the ends descend obliquely, and form two acute still possesses paramount claims upon our attention. Of angles in crossing ;—the Cravate à l'Irelandaise, upon the late years, a black silk Cravat has come into great favour, same principle as the preceding, but somewhat more airy; and, with a white or light-coloured waistcoat especially, it -the Cravate à la Gastronome, which is a narrow neckhas a manly and agreeable effect. Bonaparte commonly cloth without starch, fastened very slightly, so that in wore a black silk Cravat, and in it he fought at Lodi, Ma- cases of incipient suffocation it may be removed at a morengo, and Austerlitz. It is somewhat remarkable, how- ment's notice ;—the Cravate de Chasse, or à la Diane, ever,
that at Waterloo he wore a white neckcloth, although which is worn only on the hunting field, and ought to the day previous he appeared in his black Cravat. Some be deep green ; – the Cravate en Coquille, the tie of persons have attempted to introduce coloured silk Cravats, which resembles a shell, and is very pleasing, though a but, much to the honour of this country, the attempt has little finical ;—the Cravate Romantique, à la Fidélité, d failed. A Cravat of red silk in particular, can be worn la Talma, à l'Italienne, à la Russe, together with the only by a Manchester tailor.
Cravate Jésuitique et Diplomatique, are interesting, and Such is a very brief abstract of the rise and progress of may all be studied in this delightful “ Pocket Manual.” Cravats ; if they are ever destined to lose the place they In concluding these observations, which are meant to at present hold in society, we fervently trust that some rouse, if possible, the attention of a slumbering public to Gibbon may appear, to furnish us with a narrative of a subject, the vast importance of whicb the common herd their decline and fall. But though all this knowledge is of mankind are too apt to overlook, we cannot help revaluable, it is only preliminary to the great Art of Tying the flecting with feelings of the most painful kind on the very Cravat. Hic labor, hoc opus. The first tie—the parent small number of persons who are able to tie their Cravats of all the others, the most important, and by far the in any thing like a Brummellian or Petershamic style. most deeply interesting—is the Næud Gordien, or Gordian We have poets, statesmen, and orators,we have men knot. Alexander the Great would have given half his distinguished for their virtues and talents; but how few empire to have understood it ;-Brummell was a prouder, have we by whom the intricacies of the Næud Gordien a happier, and a greater man, when he first accomplished have been unravelled, or the scientific arrangements of it. The mode of forming this Naud Gordien is the most the Cravate Mathématique are understood! In other important problem that can be offered to the student of words, how few perfect gentlemen does one meet with at the Cravat. He who is perfectly conversant with the an ordinary soirée ! Our young men study fencing and theory and practice of this tie, may truly boast that he cigar-smoking, billiards and the Sporting Magazine; but possesses the key to all the others, and that he has been how rarely do they attend with a serious and wholesome elevated from the rank of a mere man to that of a gentle earnestness to the Tying of their Cravats ! In this respect
ay, every inch a gentleman ;" for nothing vulgar we strongly suspect that the greater part of Scotland is can lurk in the character of him whose refinement of little better than a moral desert; and it is only at one or taste, delicacy of mind, and neatness of hand, enable him two of the most fashionable parties in Edinburgh, that a gracefully to tie the ends of his Cravat into the Næud Gor. Cravat is met with worn in a manner at all calculated to dien. It is no easy task ; and we seriously advise those gladden the heart of that mighty master in the Tying Art, who are not initiated into the mysteries of this delight- Henry Le Blanc, Esq., or even to impart a ray of pleaful science, to make their first essays on a moderate-sized sure to us, the far-off followers of his footsteps. We call block. We can confidently assure them, that with toler- upon our readers, if they value their necks, to show a able perseverance they will be enabled to pursue their greater regard for their Cravats
. They may rest assured studies with pleasure and advantage, and in a more pro- that a well-tied Cravat is better than the most flattering fitable manner-on themselves. For all the details of the letter of introduction, or most prepossessing expression of practice that is necessary, which need not occupy more countenance. An elegant Næud Gordien has been known time than a couple of hours a-day, we have much plea- to secure for its possessor £5000 a-year, and a handsome sure in referring our readers to the excellent and most woman into the bargain. Let it not be viewed as a light distinct instructions of our respected friend Henry Le or triling matter ; a Cravat comme il faut is synonymous Blanc, Esq.
with happiness, and they who know the difference beAfter the Næud Gordien come a host of others, all of tween neck and nothing, will at once perceive that the which ought to be known for the sake of variety, and “ march of intellect" means little more than a due apthat the tie may be made to suit the occasion on which preciation of the value of the Cravat, and as near an ap it is worn. There is the Cravate à la Orientale, when proach as possible to perfection, or to Henry Le Blanc, in the neckcloth is worn in the shape of a turban, and the art of Tying it. the ends form a crescent ;-the Cravate à l'Americaine, which is simple, but not much to our taste, and the prevailing colours are detestable, being sea-green, striped Medicine no Mystery, being a brief outline of the Principles blue, or red and white ;—the Cravate Collier de Cheval, in which, after making the Næud Gordien, the ends are
of Medical Science, designed as an Introduction to their carried round and fastened behind; a style much admired
General Study as a Branch of a Liberal Education. by ladies' maids and milliners, but in our opinion essen
By John Morrison, M.D. and A.B. Trin. Coll. Dub
lin. London. Hurst, Chance, & Co. 1829. tially vulgar, unless when used out of doors ;-the Cra. vate Sentimentale, in which a rosette is fastened at the We suspect that every professed mystery must in this top immediately under the chin, and which ought to be enlightened age be the harbinger either of most deplorable worn only by dapper apprentices, who write “sweet ignorance, or of most abominable imposition, and we things” on the Sundays, or by Robert Montgomery, the care not, therefore, how soon the threshold of every author of “ 'The Omnipresence of the Deity," a young temple of science
be relieved from embarrassing difficulman much puffed by Mr William Jerdan ;--the Cravate ties and absurdities, and rendered accessible to the humà la Byron, very free and dégagée, but submitted to by blest denizen, in search of knowledge. We denounce the noble poet, only when accommodating himself to the empirics of all denominations and orders, from the time bienséances of society ;-the Cravate en Cascade, where when the
druidical priests pretended to restore health to the linen is brought down over the breast something like the sick by muttering mystic syllables at the shrine of a jet d'eau, and is a style in great vogue among valets and Esculapius, down to that of the fire-loving, phosphorus
THE NERVOUS SYSTEM.
eating, burning-oil devourer, Mons. Chabert, who, it is cur cases is a blessing, wbich can alone reconcile them to rently reported, at the present moment imposes most suc- the most heart-rending affliction. cessfully on the credulity of innumerable wonder-loving Dr Morrison's work, entitled “Medicine no Mystery,” Londonians, even at the west end of that unwieldy metro- will be read with interest by scientific, or well-educated, polis! We never believed in the authenticity of Ireland's non-professional persons. His views are too general to “ Vortigern and Rowena ;” never put our trust in the pro- be of advantage to the mere medical student or to practiductions of Mrs Shipton; never placed any reliance on the tioners, as they will find, in general elementary works, prophecies of the Belfast Almanack; never perilled our for the information which is here presented in a popular tune in Carrol's or Pidding's celebrated lotteries ; and, form. The work is divided into two parts, the first of finally, never under any circumstances reposed faith in Bu- | which treats of the animal system in a state of health ; chan's Domestic Medicine. In our swaddling clothes we may the second of the animal system in a state of disease. A have swallowed some of Dalby's Carminative, but the re- single quotation will be sufficient to give an idea of the collection of the same hath escaped us; and since we have style in which it is written, and the author's method of arrived at the age of manhood, and speared salmon in the treating the several subjects be discusses. We choose one Tweed, we hold even Hunt's “ Family Pills” in abomi- extract from the chapter on dation, and are sorely tempted to blaspheme against * Solomon's Balm of Gilead !"
“ The brain and spinal marrow form the origin and main Young well observed, in his gloomy“ Night Thoughts,” | trunk of the nervous system. The nerves of four of the that “men think all men mortal but themselves ;” and senses (sight, hearing, smell, and taste) originate immedithis, to a very considerable extent, is true : yet, since we ately from the brain, the position of those senses being, in have ascended the Aristarchian chair, we have thought it
all animals by whom they are possessed, in the head. The befitting to ponder more deeply with ourselves, and know and the nerves constituting it are filaments derived from
seat of the fifth sense is the general surface of the body; the full catalogue of the afflictions to which our “mortal the nerves of sensation distributed throughout the frame. flesh is heir.” We think it proper, therefore, for the good The nerves which supply the internal organs which perof the commonwealth, and especially for the bodily wel- form the vital functious, form, as I have said, a separate fare of the inhabitants of Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Aber- system; it is called the sympathetic, or Ganglionic system. deen, to introduce notices of medical books occasionally The nerves which serve for motion, and those which conin our columns, that we may warn our readers what stitute the general sensation of the body, proceed from the Scylla and Charybdis they may avoid, and how they may spinal marrow in thirty pairs, and are distributed, the for
mer to all the muscles of the body, which are the immediate pass safely, securely, and happily, through the Hygeian organs of motion, and the latter to all the sentient parts of road of a long and happy life. We are not like certain the frame. The Ganglionic nerves have their origin all managers of theatres, who, in taking leave of their friends along the front part of the spine on each side, and arise and patrons, wish them “health and happiness until the from small bodies like glands, called ganglions, which are house re-opens next season. Our affections can endure connected by filaments with the nerves of motion and senno such periodical limits or intermissions. They may, sation proceeding from the spinal marrow. This very gelike the waters of the Nile, occasionally overflow their neral description must serve here for that of the Nervous
System, as to its structure. So intimately connected is the continents; but we can never cease to entertain a sort of due supply of nervous influence with the healthy actions of parental regard for the health, happiness, and prosperity, every organ and part, that whenever the former is by any of the contributors, subscribers, and readers of the Edin- means suspended or diminished, the actions of the organ, burgh Literary Journal. We can assure our fair readers whose supply of nervous power is affected, either cease alespecially, that this to us is a subject of the deepest solici- together, or are vitiated and deteriorated, in proportion to tude. We sympathize with every cold, tremble for every the nerves that supply the diaphragm (the principal organ
the extent of the nervous affection. For example: When headach, and are on the verge of desperation when we
in respiration) are divided, respiration ceases, and death enfancy any of them may have a twinge of the toothach.
When the nerves supplying the stomach are divided, But on this subject we begin to grow pathetic. How for- digestion ceases, and the food previously eaten is found tunate, therefore, that a work has come under review like
some hours after in an undigested state. that before us, and that we can at last console ourselves forms its peculiar action by means of its nervous supply. with the pleasing reflection, that Medicine has indeed be- When a sudden shock is given to the whole nervous system come“ po mystery." A great revolution has been, and is by fright, that system is thrown into a state of collapse, still, taking place in medical science. Physicians have tural powers again. The most striking effect of this state
or diminished action, preparatory to the recovery of its nanot only laid aside their well-powdered wigs, their starched is the apparent cessation of the action of the heart and pulse rufles, and gold-headed canes, but with these have disposed during the swoon; the other phenomena attending this of all that mystical mannerism which, in a less enlightened state cannot be understood until we shall have considered age, may have imposed on the superficial observation of the peculiar functions of the heart itself, and the organs conthe patient. Society is now in so enlightened a state, nected with it, which form the sanguineous or circulating that few attempts to conceal ignorance, by “ outward system.”—Pp. 2-5. pomp and circumstance,” will be long successful; and
As a general knowledge of the most important funcmedical men, we apprehend, frequently find it necessary
tions of the human body is essential to every well-edu. to explain, to the anxious relatives round a sick bed, the cated man, we have no hesitation in recommending, for cause of certain symptoms, the nature of the danger that the attainment of that object, the work of Dr Morrison. may be impending, and the views with which certain remedies are administered. Such communications, to well
MISCELLANEOUS LITERATURE. educated and intelligent people, are calculated to increase, rather than diminish, confidence in the practitioner ; and
THE IMPORTANCE OF THE GERMAN LANGUAGE, as the art of medicine is not to be acquired by a few
AND REASONS FOR ITS MORE GENERAL CULTIaphorisms, not to be gathered from books, but must de
VATION IN THIS COUNTRY. pend exclusively on experience, the physician never need
(A Communication from Gottingen.) apprehend danger to his temporal interests, by communieating freely to an enquiring mind the principles on which The German is a language to which neither the Scotch he proceeds. There may, it is true, be some cases of slow, nor English pay that attention which it undoubtedly delingering, and fatal disease, the prognosis of which need serves. Since my arrival in Germany I have been more not be rudely announced ; for, where the Promethean vul- struck with our neglect of this useful language than I had ture of sickness is to prey for months upon its victim, ever been in Scotland; for here, English is as common there is no humanity in at once shutting out all hopes a study as French is with us. Hamburg, where all rom the surviving relatives, whose ignorance in many merchants of any respectability speak our language, may
The heart per
be called a half English town. Of course, it is no good their own superiority in this respect, have had recourse school for one who would learn to speak German. Even to the miserable shift of turning that which is properly here, in Göttingen, our countrymen will find opportuni- a subject of praise, into an object of ridicule, by misreties enough of speaking English, if they do not wish to presenting the Germans as mere laborious drudges in libe at the trouble of acquiring the language of the country. terature, well calculated to compile lexicons of words, Though Russell had taught me that English was much plants, or stones, but utterly destitute of that fire of studied in Germany, I certainly did not expect to find genius which produces the poet and the fine writer. For it so generally known as it seems to be here. Of the such a charge there has long ceased to be any foundaProfessors of the Göttingen University, there are few, if tion. The works of Göethe, Schiller, Wieland, Herder, any, who do not understand English ; I mean in so far Lessing, and a hundred others, will not fear comparison as to consult with facility the productions of our press, with the best productions of English, French, or Italian which relate to their respective sciences; and not a few literature. I may safely take it for granted, therefore, speak it with great fluency and accuracy. The study of that the German language contains literary treasures our language is no less favourite and common among the worthy the attention of those with whom such treasures students. In the circle of my acquaintance here (already are in estimation ; and I shall now endeavour to recompretty considerable) most have studied English a little, mend it to the notice of my countrymen on considera many can read it with ease, and not a few speak it with tions drawn from the nature of the language itself, ina readiness and accuracy, which, to those who have never dependently of the literature of which it is the medium. been in England, must have cost much pains and study. The German language, then, deserves our attention To suppose a Göttingen student who had not soared to principally on account of its near connexion and relationthe heights of tragic feeling with Shakspeare, and heart- ship with our own. The present languages of Europe, ily sympathized with all Sir Walter Scott's well-depicted numerous as they at first sight appear to be, are all rescenes of English and Scottish life, would be to brand ducible to three original tongues—the Latin, the Sclavohim as utterly a stranger to literature in general. They nic, and the Teutonic. The Sclavonic is the language of whom want of opportunity or inclination have debarred Russia, and of some parts of Germany. Latin prevails from consulting these authors in the original, never fail in the greater number of European languagesit forms to make acquaintance with them by means of transla- the principal part of the Italian, French, Spanish, and tions, which are to be found everywhere, both good and Portuguese ; and, along with the German, it forms the cheap. Cheap I may truly say. Sir Walter's works present English language. This prevalence of the Latin are published at Stuttgard, at four-pence per volume. arose, very naturally, from the extension of the Roman For this price I bought Ivanhoe, at Hamburg, complete empire. Thus it has happened that in France, Spain, in five volumes.
and Portugal, the polished and cultivated language of the If, then, the Germans are such admirers of our litera- conquerors has almost entirely extirpated the languages of ture, why are we so backward to return the compliment ? the original inhabitants. Germany was at once too reIf some unlucky German should stumble on our coasts, mote from the seat of Roman power, and possessed too how improbable that he would meet with an Englishman warlike inhabitants, to be exposed to the same danger who could communicate a thought to him in his native from the Roman power, as those nations whom we have tongue! When a German student pays a visit to our uni- just mentioned. Accordingly this country, with its versities, is it very likely that Göethe or Schiller will northern neighbours, Denmark, Holland, Sweden, and meet his eyes, arrayed on the shelves of the Scottish Norway, has retained its original tongue, without any Burchen? I question much if he would find the Ger- further intermixture with the Latin, than what the uniman classics very abundant even in the extensive libraries versal use of this language, in matters of religion and law of our greatest literati. While translations of our clas- during the middle ages, rendered unavoidable. England sics are here to be found in abundance, even in the com- has, in respect of language, been exposed to more changes mon circulating libraries, where with us is the good than any other nation in Europe. The original language of and complete translation to be found of those brilliant the Britons, our ancestors before the invasion of the Rowriters who have adorned the German literature? The mans, has no connexion either with the Latin or the fact cannot be disputed ; and I again ask, why is it so ? Teutonic, but is rather allied to the Eastern tongues. It It cannot be that the German literature is held unworthy kept its ground against the Roman power, but not so of the trouble necessary to be employed in acquiring the against the Saxon, before which it fled, and sought for language ; for we study French and Italian commonly itself an asylum in the mountainous recesses of Wales and enough, though these languages are keys to nothing half Scotland. There, as well as in Ireland, it remains to the so valuable as the German can unlock.
present day. But in the greater and more important part A more book-making people than the Germans cannot of the British isles, the language introduced by the Angloeasily be named, and these books are not generally (as Saxons, a people from the north of Germany, prevailed some suppose) the flimsy effusions of a wild imagination, universally. The dominion of the Saxons was destined but the solid and elaborate productions of a more labori- to yield to that of the Normans, who, in the eleventh cenous and painstaking set of authors than any other coun- tury, treated the Saxons as the Saxons had formerly try in Europe can boast of. Diligence and perseverance, treated the Britons. And now a great change took place united with the greatest zeal in the pursuit, and an un- in our language ; Norman French became the language divided attention to their respective provinces, have pro- of the court, and of all who aimed at court favour, or cured to the German literati a character, before which wished to be thought in any degree refined and polished their French and even English brethren must yield. In in manners. For this reason, we had well-nigh lost our Botany, for instance, Mineralogy, and other branches of old Saxon language. But it had taken too deep a root, Natural History, they have made great advances; and to allow itself to be altogether extirpated by foreign inif in these departments we can oppose to a Wildenow a fluence. For many years, while the court and the po Smith, or to a Werner a Hutton, in the field of Philo- lished of the land used the new language, the Old Saxon logy and Biblical Criticism, the different universities was retained, in its unmixed purity, by the peasants and of Germany can boast of such a constellation of bright other descendants of the original Saxons. From the innames, that before them all our literati must hide their Auence of these causes, which the Author of Waverley bas diminished heads. Every Scotch grammarian and di- rendered so familiar to us, by the romance of Ivanhoe, vine will confess, that the greater number of those books many ages passed before one common language was spoken which assist him in unfolding the meaning of ancient in England. At last, however, as the distinction between authors emanate from Germany. So incontrovertible is Normans and Saxons wore away, their languages also this fact, that many among the English, unable to assert were incorporated, and from their union was the present