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have seen every reason to believe. Mr. Vaux brought us into the library, which we were glad to find quite extensive, and to include many of the best standard works. We have certainly no disposition to criticise anything we saw during our visit. Without being unjust, we could find no fault with the manner in which the institution is managed; all we can say a word against is the solitary system, per se. But to us this seems the worst kind of slavery ; if there is any other ineans by which human life can be more embittered, or human suffering aggravated, without instruments of physical torture, we know nothing of it. Therefore, believing that there is as much philanthropy and generosity in Pennsylvania as there is in any other country of equal population, we would earnestly appeal to those who have most influence in the State to have compassion on the wretched female convicts, if not on the male." *
Our estimate of Sing Sing, one of the two great State prisons of New York, which we had also visited, was very different from this. The curious reader can find in the same article from which we have just quoted,+ our descriptions of several instruments of torture then used which we were permitted to examine ; also, a full account of the brutal practice of woman-flogging as given by one of the persons who performed that sort of work. But probably this was “all spite,” because the Provost of Sing Sing“ declined to advertise in, and subscribe for the National Quarterly Review” (!) Be this as it may, it is a singular fact, “if rightly apprehended," that for our “dishonesty” in this case we had the gratification of receiving many letters of thanks from ladies and gentlemen, not generally regarded as admirers of spiteful or dishonest people; and we have had the still greater gratification of learning that, within one year after we had made our criticisms on Sing Sing, all kinds of physical torture, including woman-flogging, had ceased in that institution.
But we may be permitted to give one other illustration, or two, before we close, of our peculiar mode of manifesting our prejudice and spite against Pennsylvanians. Our readers will remember that we rarely issued a number of our journal while Fisk and Gould had charge of the Erie Railroad in which we did not denounce the dishonest, disreputable practices of those persons. Nor have we shrunk from showing that, while Vanderbilt may not be quite as devoid of honesty as Fisk and Gould, his stock of that virtue is exceedingly slender. Indeed, we never could see much difference between the “ Colonel " and the “Commodore,” further than that one vulture may be more cunning, if not less ravenous, than another in seizing and devouring its prey. In commenting on the various performances of these personages from time to time, we have more than once contrasted their conduct with that of such officers of the great Pennsylvania roads as Mr. J. Edgar Thompson and Mr. William H. Gatzmer. Nay, have we not often expressed an earnest wish that our principal roads were managed by men so much superior as the latter are to the former, not only in honesty, integrity, intelligence, and gentlemanly deportment, but in all the relations of life?
* “Prison Discipline, Past and Present."--N. Q. R., No. XIV., Sept., 1868.
| Ib. Pp. 30, 31.
It is, however, but justice to the Philadelphia papers, which made such a fierce onslanght on us in January last-after having for thirteen years invariably treated us so politely and encouragingly--to admit that they were quite right in supposing that it would do us no harm in Philadelphia or elsewhere. We are sincerely proud to say that, for many years, we have had the honor of numbering not a few of the first and best citizens of Philadelphia among our patrons and friends-precisely the class who confessedly occupy the highest rank, both intellectually and socially. And far from having lost any of these, either on account of our “ savage attack” on the University of Pennsylvania, or the storm of newspaper thunder it has brought upon us, incredible though the fact may seem in some quarters, we have gained many new patrons and friends among the same cultivated and honorable class. And what is more, we have no patrons anywhere of a different class; never had. The present number completes the thirteenth year of our journal. In any of the fifty-two quarterly numbers we have issued, who can point out the advertisement of any quack or charlatan, or any advertisement which the most fastidious lady may not read aloud in the drawing room? Even publishers, whose books have a tendency to vitiate the public taste, and who accompany their “editorial copies” with readymade puffs, discovered long since that our pages are not the place for them. The same is true of colleges and universities. The best in America have been advertised by the year in the National Quarterly; the sham colleges or universities—those that love darkness rather than light-never!
It is also true that many of our old friends, nut only in Philadelphia, but throughout Pennsylvania, have letters of ours, which, if so disposed, they might call “begging letters," and publish as such, to show how full of depravity we are! and if they did so, we could neither accuse them of murdering the English language, nor of thrusting themselves into positions for which, as in the case under consideration, they are ludicrously incompetent.
But one word more, before we close, in regard to the defenders of the University of Pennsylvania and its learned Provost. The individual whom we are to consider as more erudite than all the rest has a long dissertation in the Inquirer of January 28, which,“ if rightly apprehended,” is as amusing as a comedy. Not content with annihilating us, he is terribly severe on our friend the German traveller. “ This person," he says, “was guilty of two barefaced, unblushing, and wholly gratuitous fictions. Dr. Sears gives the fictions in full, declares they were fictions, but expects us to receive the subsequent statements of this mendacious Teuton as evidence against the University !” We make a thousand apologies to a “certain anonymous German,” for having been the cause, however unintentionally, of the abuse poured upon himself and his whole race by this learned person ; for what we have quoted is but the smallest part of it. But to those in the secret the most laughable of this gentleman's criticisms is contained in the following sentence :
"Near the beginning of his article we have a quotation from Horace-of which more anon-and he concludes with a bit of Euripides, which he owns he thinks pretty tough.”
Any one who turns to the conclusion of our first window article, will see that we make no allusion to either toughness or brittleness. Those who have any knowledge of Greek need not be informed that it was not because the two lines from
Euripides, alluded to, are "pretty tongh” or difficult to be translated, that we recommended their being “inscribed in legible characters on a conspicuous slab," etc., but because they give very good advice, “if rightly apprehended;" advice notoriously much needed at the University of Pennsylvania. As the distitch from Euripides has, however, evidently proved still more puzzling than our Latin letter, we inform all whom it may concern, that after giving some illustrations of the injury done to whole communities, as well as to individuals, by bombastic speeches and mutual puffery, the Greek poet concludes with the two lines recommended by us as a motto, and the plain English of which is : “It behooves us now to understand, that what we need is not blandishment that charms the ear, but what excites to virtuous deed.” We admit, however, that we were entirely wrong in offering the advice in a Greek dress; we fear that even two years hence, Provost Stillé would make a still sadder jumble of it than his now famous construction, “renunciationem nuntiet." But we trust we shall never be too old to learn, or so short-sighted and vain as not to acknowledge that there are innumerable things of which we are ignorant. Accordingly, in order to make amends, as far as possible, for our blunder in recommending a Greek motto for the University of Pennsyl. vania under its present auspices, we now beg leave, in all humility, to recomiend an English motto, which may be posted up in the “ Provost's Room,” on one of the memorial windows or any other place that may be deemed most suitable for it:
"Ignorance, indeed, so far as it may be resolved into natural ina. bility, is, as to men at least, inculpable, and consequently not the object of scorn, but pity ; but in a governor, it cannot be without the con. junction of the highest impudence; for who bid such a one aspire to teach and to govern? A blind man sitting in the chimney.corner is pardonable enough, but sitting at the helm he is intolerable. If men will be ignorant and illiterate, let them be so in private, and to themselves, and not set their defects in a high place, to make them visible and conspicuous. If owls will not be hooted at, let them keep close within the tree, and not perch upon the upper boughs."'*
* Ignorance in Power. An Essay. By the learned Dr. Robert Smith, Orator of Oxford University, London, 1657.
ART. VI.-1. Considerations on Volcanoes. By G. POULETT
SCROPE. London, 1825. Last Ed. 1871. 2. Considerations Generales sur les Volcans. Par M. J. GIR
ARDIN. Paris, 1831. 3. Théorie Mathématique de la Chaleur. Par M. Poisson.
4to. Paris, 1835-1837. 4. The Eruption of Vesuvius in 1872. By Prof. LUIGI
PALMIERI. With Notes, etc.; by Robert - Mallet, Mem. Inst. C. E., F. R. S., F. G. S., M. R. I. S., etc. With Illustrations. 148 pp. 8vo. London: Asher & Co., 1873.
How wonderful is the phenomenon of existence! We see physical nature around us on all sides, and effects which we attribute to the action of mind. Natural things seem to be naturally divided into three great classes : minerals, which possess neither mind nor life; vegetables, which possess life but not mind; and animals, which possess both life and mind. It is difficult, however, to draw the line of distinction between any two consecutive classes as we have given them, for the lichen, which lives on the apparently naked rock, is scarcely raised above the frost-plant which forms on our window-pane; and the animal sponge, which grows attached to a rock beneath the surface of the ocean, seems to be little more than a vegetable. We may thus see existence rising by almost insensible gradations, from the lifeless mineral to the highest order of mundane intelligence.
Notwithstanding the difficulty which we readily see here, of accounting rationally for the general phenomena to which we have alluded, man, in his ignorance of causes, and even of phenomena in their detail, has authoritatively told us how nothing has changed into something, minerals have been created, and afterwards vegetables and animals. Nay, more than that; he has even told us the exact date when all these great changes took place. Those who base their knowledge on the authority of a word, scarcely stop to consider that for infinite