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We trust that our readers do not require to be introduced to this valuable compilation-valuable both on account of the intrinsic worth of the treatises re-printed, and of the prefaces and essays by which they are illustrated and enforced. In the former, while we have the names of Owen, Baxter, Beveridge, Butler, Horn, and many others, and in the latter their works illustrated by such writers as Wilberforce,* Wilson, Young, Thompson, and Chalmers, recommendation must be unnecessary, and we draw from it a proof of the reviving good taste of the age, that can turn from the light and showy pages of modern excitement, to the practical enforcements of such men. Sir Matthew Hale's contemplations have been long laid up in that temple where the offering to God is consecrated by his Spirit; and the Essay of Dr. Young touches with the hand of a master, and the feeling of a Christian, on the grand defect of modern education, and the extension of knowledge unsanctified by religious principles. It is, as he argues, inconsistent with the fundamental principles of human education, with the deference due to a Divine revelation and its character, nor less so with the general circumstances in which man is placed. While allowing all the value of information, and descanting eloquently on the present excitement for its universal diffusion, he marks with heavy censure the tendency to inundate Britain with educated scepticism, and he argues, we think most justly, that such education, though it may seem to raise the
standard of morals and to benefit society, neither secures vital loyalty to the constitution, morals to society, nor raises the character in the sight of God; nay, as he strongly observes, the sins of improved intellect are most obnoxious to his severe displeasure, and guilt, positive guilt, is augmented in the change. We wish all supporters of societies and institutions for communicating information without religion would lay this admirable essay to their hearts and consciences. It is eloquent. it is logical, and above all, it is founded on the truest philosophy-Christianity. We look forward with pleasure to its conclusion in a succeeding volume of the series.
The Life and Adventures of Alexander Selkirk, &c..By John Howell. Edinburgh, 1828..p. 196.
We know not any person of equal celebrity of whom so little is known as of Alexander Selkirk, and Mr. Howell's laudable curiosity has not discovered much. He has discovered, seen, and examined his cap, and chair, and flipcan, but these tell no tales, and all we know of the veritable Robinson Crusoe may be confined to a very few words. He was the seventh son of John Selcraig or Selkirk, of the town of Largo in Fifeshire, Scotland, where he was born, in the year 1676. His youth was untoward owing to his mother's indulgence, who conceived great hopes of him, from the circumstance of his order of appearance in the world, but we think Mr. Howell has charged him with joining the Buccaneers, then in full glory, on rather insufficient grounds. In 1703 he engaged in Dampier's second expedition, as sailing-master of the Cinque Ports, commanded by Capt. Pickering. This expedition was eminently unfortunate: Dampier's arbitrary and imprudent conduct, the successive mistakes they made in attacking the enemy both by land and sea, the death of Pickering, and a quarrel with his successor, joined to a remarkable dream, induced Selkirk to remain on Juan Fernandez, a resolution which he accomplished the first opportunity. The account of Selkirk's stay in the Island is interesting; and the advantages, though late, of the
To this eminent person belongs the double distinction of having a place justly due to him among the original Authors and Essay writers. The preface to Witherspoon is by him; and his own admirable and most useful" Practical View of Christianity" is preceded by an Essay written by Daniel Wilson.
early religious Scotch education are interestingly stated. In the year 1708 he was released by Capt. Woods Rogers who engaged him on board his vessel as Mate. Reports of his strange stay were soon circulated. Sir Richard Steele introduces him into the Englishman in high terms, and having turned the proceeds of his voyage, he hastened to Largo to see his friends. Mr. Howell gives an interesting account of his mother's recognition of him in church, and a still more interesting one of the dislike to human society that marked Selkirk's habits. He overcomes them so far as to become acquainted with, fall in love with, and elope with a young woman of the neighbourhood, and nothing more is known of him than that he married again after his first wife's death, and died in 1723, a lieutenant on board his Majesty's ship Weymouth. Mr. Howell vindicates the honesty as well as talent of Daniel Defoe; and in an appendix gives a view of Juan Fernandez, an account of some of Selkirk's shipmates, and copies of a power of attorney made by him, and of his will,
Diversions of Hollycot; or the Mother's Art of Thinking..By the author of Clan-Albin and Elizabeth de Bruce..Edinburgh, p 350 This is a book on the Edgeworth plan, and well calculated to give hints to parents, and furnish pleasant and useful reading for little people of eight or ten years of age. The intention is excellent, the execution lively, and many points of importance in education and the formation of the young mind skilfully and impressively put. The principle of rational reading, or teaching a child to supply important words in a sentence, we think most excellent. We regret that we cannot recommend it entirely, as, to our old-fashioned notions, it forms no part of the beau ideal of a good education, to initiate little children into the mysteries of the ballOther passages of an equally lax character might be pointed out.
My Grandfather's Farm.. Edinburgh 1829. A Tale obviously of the same school as that of the author of "The Lights and Shadows of Scottish Life;" a style we confess we cannot think highly of. The excitement is neither natural nor healthy, and the sensibility is of that morbid and sickly kind that is hostile to strength of intellect and feeling. This little production is of a more cheerful cast, and on the whole one of the best
specimens we have seen of this style. The author may not rank in point of talent with the writer we have alluded to, but we think his little work better calculated to be useful.
Answer to the Second Letter of the Bishop of Bayonne. Dublin, 1827.
We can safely recommend to our controversial and other friends this small volume: It is the reply of a French Protestant Clergyman to the Bishop of Bayonne, and contains a clear, scriptural, and triumphant exposure of Popery. We know not a better manual for the young controversialist. The translation is faithfully and spiritedly executed.
Scenes of War and other Poems..By John Malcolm..Oliver and Boyd Edinburgh, 1828
We have perused this book with pleasure. The Campaign" with which the work opens, is a pleasing descriptive Poem, and exhibits considerable force of imagination. The Battle Eve--the Scene after battle
Dying Soldier and Deserter, are pretty, and their versification pleasing and har monious. The two last mentioned indeed are beautiful and pathetic; so is the Soldier's Funeral. The other Poems are short and also pleasing. Upon the whole, Mr. Malcolm though not a Poet of the first order, is capable, we think, of producing Poetry superior to any thing in the present collection: His Lyric pieces are correct and elegant, and if we find any fault at all with them, it is that they are too short. It would be unfair, however, to criticise them harshly, for they appear to be mere effusions thrown off under the impulse of the moment. On the whole we think if Mr. Malcolm will cultivate bis Poetical talents, that he may,like many others in that sphere, whose first appearances did not promise better, arrive to a degree of reputation much beyond what these pretty little trifles will give him.
The Amulet for 1829....The Christian Present for 1829.
We cannot say that we are partial to the clustering annuals, with exquisite engravings and middling verses, the taste for which has been communicated to us from Germany. We do not think that the love of variety which such publications are calculated to produce and foster bespeaks a healthy mental constitution; and as these compositions are much in the hands of the young, we fear
hat frivolity that may ensue. We have another objection in the destitution of religious principles which seem to be the characteristic of almost all the aunuals we have seen, and which has even influenced the proprietors of one (the Winter's Wreath) that ventured last year to be a little serious, to commit its care this year to a person differing as far as possible from the pious and talented editor of the last. It is unnecessary after this to speak of the mediocre style of composition that is admitted into these publications, which seem to be the very melo-drames of literature, appealing by their embellishments to the eye, rather than by their execution to the understanding, but we must stop frowning, and say that the Amulet is free from the latter objections, and so far as perhaps is consistent with this species of compilation, it partakes of a religious character. The embellishments are elegantly executed, and most of the productions interesting and beautiful, The second work, The Christian Present," is decidedly of a religious cast, but we regret to say, of inferior
execution. The verse is not better than what many school-boy themes exhibit; and the prose presents nothing original or striking. The intention is excellent, the sentiments pious, and for those who do not look for eminent merit in books calculated to instruct, it will be an acceptable present.
The Sacred Harp. Dublin; Leckie, 1828.
A very neat selection of sacred poe. try, convenient for its size, and highly creditable to the taste of the Editor. Many of the pieces have never before appeared in any collection. We regret to perceive, however, that the Editor has taken the liberty of altering some of the poems, either to suit his own peculiar views, or the size of this volume; we would particularize Toplady's beautiful hymn on the Rock of Ages. This practice we censure most unreservedly. It is at the option of an editor to publish or not; it is not at his option to mutilate or misrepresent. The typography of this little work is very creditable.
FOREIGN RELIGIOUS INTELLIGENCE.
Bishop of Calcutta-We regret to hear that his Lordship has been obliged, by serious indisposition, to suspend bis Visitation of the Northern Provinces, on which he had entered; and to proceed, for the recovery of his health, to New-South Wales, which is within the boundaries of his extensive Diocese.
American Bible Society.— The year now closed has been one of signal prosperity to the cause of Bible distribution in America. The number of Auxiliary Societies in that country amounts
to FIVE HUNDRED AND NINETY EIGHT.
The whole number of books printed in the course of the last year, or now in the press, amounts to 118,750. There have been issued from the Depository an aggregate of 134,607 copies, which added to the issues of the preceding years, make a total of 646,275, since the formation of the Society.
"In relation to the above statement of books sent from the Depository, in
the present year, two peculiarities are worthy of remark. The one is, that a proportion usually large has been entire Bibles: the other is, that an unusual number has been disposed of by sale,
Church Miss. Soc.-The Society's Schooner The Herald," built by the Missionaries at Phyea, was unhap pily lost, on the 6th of May, at the mouth of the ShukeanghaRiver.
Kenyon College.-We read with much surprise and sorrow the following notice in the New-York Observer
We regret extremely that Bishop Chase, after all his indefatigable and self-denying efforts to establish this College upon a permanent basis, should find himself compelled to sell his own farm and dwelling, in order to pay the workmen ! We cannot but hope that some noble-minded individual, or individuals, will step forward at this trying moment, and relieve the good Bishop from his embarrassment.
"The farm consists of 150 acres of
good land, about 70 of which are under cultivation. There are on it, two good houses, a large barn, and other convenient buildings. But that which renders it peculiarly desirable to a man of taste, is the beautiful shrubbery, covered with grape vines, which completely embosoms the mansion-house; and three quite extensive orchards, now in full bearing, of the most delicious and well-assorted fruit. Bishop Chase will sell the whole for three thousand dollars.-Gambier, Sept. 16, 1828.
The Sriptures-The population, con cerning which it has been resolved that every family shall be supplied with the Scriptures within a specific time, had increased, at the last dates to 5,977,554. In this number is included the entire population of the following Ten States-New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Connecticut, Virginia, Maryland, Kentucky, New Hampshire, Delaware, and Rhode Island.
French Protestant Societies.-The issues of the Bible Society, for its last year, were 6255 Bibles and 8370 Testaments the total Issues from the beginning have amounted to 91,664 copies: the Expenditure was £2504 15s. 10d. The Expenditure of the Missionary Society, in its last year, was £750: New Auxiliaries, to the number of 30, have joined the Society: some of the Students were soon to proceed on Missions. The Tract Society circulated, in its last year, 172,812 Tracts; being an increase of 23,607 on the issues of the preceding year: the Expenditure amounted to L449 3s. 4d.
Protestantism in Bohemia.-Extract of a letter from the Right Honourable Countess Von Reden of Buckwalda, Silisia, to the Rev. C. J. La Trobe, London :
"Permit me to mention to you, my dear Friend, the case of the Protestants at Hermansciffen, near Aman, in Bohemia, from whom a messenger arrived with me about three weeks ago. He came from the Protestant Minister of that place, who begged, that I would give him Bibles, Testaments and Tracts, for the use of his Protestant congregation. Their number is six hundred and sixty. They have a chapel of weather-boarding
and a miserable dwelling for their Minister, but neither a School-house nor a School-master, being too poor and oppressed by Roman Catholic influence, which has taken away their courage.The Protestant children must therefore attend the Roman Catholic School, till they are thirteen years old, and consequently, according to our (the Lutheran) customs, ready for confirmation. This School is miserably conducted, and one may easily suppose what a baneful influence such an education must have on the minds of the children. Minister is a pious, humble-minded man, entirely devoted to his work.His complaint is not, that he has only 100 dollars or £17 sterling salary, per annum, but that he must despair of ever being able to afford a Schoolhouse and a Protestant master. requests, therefore, is that by charitable donations, he may be enabled to build a School-room, as a second story upon his own dwelling, (instead of the present small wooden garret,) in which he may keep school himself.Bnt I most earnestly wish, that we might be enabled to assist him in building a proper School-house and engaging a regular master.
I therefore mention this to you and hope you will kindly take it to heart and recommend the case to some of your benevolent friends. The English delight in works of charity; they subscribe to the wants of the poor Greeks, the Waldenses, the Heathen and other necessitous persons. May we not hope that a few crumbs from their table might be afforded to the poor Protestants of Hermansciffen, who, under present circumstances, and but for so zealous a Minister, might relapse into total ignorance. The Lord would surely reward those who contribute to so charitable a work and promote his cause in a land of darkness. Notwithstanding all opposition, we hope to get Bibles and Testaments introduced among them. My heart bleeds, when I consider the blindness and ignorance prevailing in that country."
Any donation toward the relief of this poor Protestant congregation, will be most thankfully received by the Rev. C. J. La Trobe, 19 Bartlett's Buildings, Holborn; also by the Rev. Dr. Steinkopff, Savoy; the Rev. C. H. Rudolph, 15 Bishop-street, Dublin, &c., and faithfully transmitted to the benevolent Countess Von Reden.
DOMESTIC RELIGIOUS INTELLIGENCE.
Religious Improvement of Ireland.The following is the Letter to which we referred in page 95. We willingly give insertion to it, although its object has been anticipated by the formation of the Church Home Mission Society.
July 22d, 1828.
MY LORD-As your Lordship expressed a wish to be more fully acquainted with the nature of the plan spoken of this morning respecting the appointment of Preachers for each Diocese in Ireland, I beg to trouble you with the following remarks, assured that they cannot be committed to any one whose knowledge of Ireland and whose Christian wisdom and experience, will be better able to form an opinion as to the practicability and usefulness of the project.
Under the peculiar circumstances of this country, it must be obvious that the ordinary parochial ministry have no sufficient facilities or means of bringing the important truths of Christianity before the Roman Catholic portion of the community. It must also be admitted that the Established Church as ("The Church of England') is "in foro conscientiæ" in charge of all the immortal souls within the British dominions, until they voluntarily withdraw themselves from the guardianship. Again, it is no less true that the Roman Catholics of Ireland, that is, the body of the populace, have never had any opportunity of judging fairly of any point of religious truth -and that under the existing mode of parochial ministration they never can. In order therefore to meet the peculiar circumstances of Ireland, I would suggest the expediency of appointing Preachers in the several Dioceses, who should be appointed either by Committees, by Individuals, or by the Bishops, but in all cases to act under the sanction of the Bishops. Their duty might be, Ist. To preach controversial sermons in the several cities, towns, and populous villages of each Diocese in succession, staying at each place until the course should be ended; their head quarters being at a central place.
2d. To have permission to preach in the pulpits of the surrounding
churches on Sundays and all couvenient times, when admitted by the Rectors, &c., and on such occasions to avoid controversy and have it known that it would not be introduced.
N. B.-On such occasions notice might be given of the course of controversial sermons and of the particular subject in hand.
3d. To attend controversial discussions, if such should be held in the Diocese-and to afford opportunities for correspondence or personal interviews with those who might be disposed to avail themselves of it.
4th. To supply occasionally, the pulpits of those Ministers who should be under the necessity of leaving them on any occasion.
N. B. This could almost always be done by an exchange of duty or some such arrangement, which would enable a Clergyman at a very considerable distance to avail himself of the assistance of the diocesan chaplain, though indirectly-the Chaplain supplying the pulpit of the Clergyman half-way.
The advantages of such an appointment in each Diocese would be, Ist. Relieving the parochial Ministers of the inconvenience and labour of the Romish Controversy.
No man who regards the spiritual interests of immortal beings, and who is acquainted with the anti-scriptural character of the religion of the people of Ireland, cau doubt the necessity of taking some steps to make the people acquainted with both the truth of the Gospel and the errors of their own system. Many parish ministers fully impressed with the importance of this duty, have themselves engaged in the controversy, either from the pulpit or from the Press, and often both; but I have never known one who did not lament the circumstance, and acknowledge that nothing but its absolute necessity could either induce or warrant their resorting to such a course, and many from obvious causes, have been reluctant to engage in it, and these causes, by no means connected with any want of zeal.
The disadvantages of a parish Minister in Ireland engaged in controversy are many :
1st. The peaceful, spiritual charac