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The Reader, we fuppofe, knows that these elements, or mo nades, are neither matter nor fpirit.Pray don't laugh, Gentlemen!-for all this is every whit as clear as certain difquifitions;
and M. COCHIUS's elements have as good a right to a place in philofophy (and more efpecially in the first philofophy) as attraction, repulfion, and cohefion, which attract, repell and unite nothing-We think monades as good as nothing, in all times and places; if there be fuch things as time and place in
After all, we have not met with any metaphyfician that verges towards the gloomy dungeon of fcepticifm with a better grace, than M. COCHIUS; who, if we are not miftaken, is one of the court preachers at Berlin. After deciding upon the principles of the monadian philosophy, feveral knotty questions relative to the properties of duration and pace, numbers and fubftances, after telling us that matter appears extended without being really fo (because, no doubt, it is an illufory image), and that fimple beings (monades) appear to be not extended, and yet really are fo,-after demonftrating that the exiftence of contingent fubftances has neither beginning nor end, because they are the immediate effects of the necessary fuhftance, whofe action is exempt from thefe limits (of beginning and end), after all thisHeadlong from the misty mountain's height,
Deep in the muddy fiream, he plunged to endless night. MEM. IV. Arfalun Bakfchi et Suwudangina, A Tungufian Romance. By M. FORMEY. This is a miltake: it is not by M. Formey; for our academician confeffes, that this romance is a fcrap, taken from the curfory and entertaining voyage of M. Georgi, in different provinces of the Ruffian empire, and that his remarks upon it are a fcrap, from the works of Fontenelle.
MEM. I. Concerning national Tafte, confidered in its influence upon Tranflations. By M. BITAUBE. It is not ecclefiaftical tranflations to deanries, or bishopricks that this Author has in view, but tranflations of books. His defign is to fhew that tafte, which arifes from principles that all mankind have in common, is modified fo as to become national in each country, i. e. acquires peculiarities, which appropriate it to each people. Now this circumftance muft fo far influence a tranflator, as fometimes to prevent his giving faithfully the image or features of the original author, if that author be of another nation, or of an ancient date, unless there be a great resemblance in the taste and manners of the two nations, or the two periods. M. Bitaubé illuftrates this affirmation in two memoirs. His reasonings are often ingenious and upon uncommon and interefting views in the region of polite literature; but his examples are sometimes
ftrained, and chofen with little judgment and tafte. There is, however, a great deal of good claffical reading in these papers, and our Academician's reflexions on the genius of languages are juft and elegant.
MEM. II. Concerning the Philofophy of Hiftory. By M. WEGUELIN: fourth Memoir.-This Memoir is like the preceding, profound, perhaps,—but as it is opaque, we cannot fee through it. Eft iter in tenebris.
MEM. III. Refearches concerning the Origin of Armories, er Coats of Arms. By M. de FRANCHEVILLE. The design of this Memoir (which concludes the volume) is to fhew, that the firft nobles ufed a mark of diftinction, by way of ornament, and as the writer is perfuaded, that the prerogative of nobility, among the ancients, was equal among all the nobles of both fexes, and was tranfmitted from parents to children, as in modern times, he concludes from thence that the diftinctive mark was uniform, unchangeable, conftantly used, and hereditary in each family. It is under thefe characters, that our Academician goes a hunting in the prefent Memoir, after this ancient mark:and when he found it,-what then?
Concerning the Problem of Molyneux. By M. MERIAN: fifth Memoir :-After having refuted, by the theory of Dr. Berkeley, the fundamental propofition of thofe philofophers who affirm, that the man born blind would, on recovering his fight, diftinguifh the globe from the cube, M. MERIAN applies the fame theory to each of their reafonings in particular. The arguments of Condillac and Diderot give him little trouble, as they are founded upon the identity or refemblance of the ideas introduced into the mind by the fenfes of seeing and touching, which identity and resemblance were fhewn to be a groundless fancy, in a preceding memoir.
The argument of Dr. Jurin is treated with more respect, and is difcuffed with the attention it deferves. That ingenious man, confidering the uniformity of the globe, as equally perceivable by fight and touch, concluded from thence that the blind man reftored to fight would diftinguish it from the cube. This fuppofes, fays M. Merian, feveral things, that are not to be admitted without examination. It fuppofes, firft, that the man has been made to comprehend that the objects, which he has before his eyes, are the fame objects that he had before touched.
-Secondly, That the notion of uniformity will present itself to his mind as foon as he fees the globe; and thirdly, That a man who never faw before, knows, nevertheless, and is perfuaded before hand, that what is uniform to the touch must be fo to the fight. But in the first place, fays M. Merian, it has been de
* Vide App. to Rev. Vol. lv. p. 498.
monftrated before, that objects vifible and objects tangible are
Our Academician goes ftill farther: he supposes that the blind man is engaged by an implicit faith, to renounce fo far his understanding and feeling as to believe that what is uniform to one fense, is so to another, and that confequently the tangible uniformity of an object will be perceived by the eye, when it fees that object. What happens then? why the man is led to reafon upon a principle, which taken in a general fenfe, is falfe, not only when applied to the touch compared with the other fenfes, but also when applied to fight itself confronted with touch. A plane illuminated with various colours, or, if you please, a landfcape drawn by a painter, is uniform to the touch, but is certainly not fo to the fight.
Do then fight and touch contradict each other? No, fays our Academician, no more than hearing and smelling do, which have nothing in common, and fight and touch are in the fame cafe. Sight has for its object the rays of light reflected from bodies, with their various refractions, according to the mediums through which they pafs, but touch has for its objects the bodies themfelves. The visible oar is broken in the water, the vifible fteeple is round at a certain diftance, and thefe appearances refult from the invariable laws of optics,-but the tangible oar and steeple are quite other things, and here therefore there is neither competition nor contradiction.
Our Author applies, with fuccefs, the theory of Berkeley to the two arguments of Leibnitz, mentioned in a preceding memoir. The first of these coincides with that of Jurin, already taken notice of, which was drawn from the uniformity of the globe. The fecond, which alone deferved notice, is as follows: The man born blind may learn geometry, and his geometry would be the fame with that of a man born paralytic, who would have no knowledge of figures but by fight. Now thefe two geometries being the fame, touch and fight, would Leibnitz fay, muft neceffarily furnish the fame effential and fundamental idcas, though they did not furnish images and reprefentations belonging in common to the two fenfes. Berkeley would reply: That there is no geometry without fenfible images: abftract extenfion and figure are nothing: befides, tangible extenfion and figure are the peculiar, and indeed the only object of geometry; and thus a man born blind may become a geometrician; but a man deprived of touch, and confined to fight, like the paralytic of Leibnitz, is abfolutely incapable of learning that science, he can know nothing of folids, nor can he make ufe of the rule and compass.
Finally, M. MERIAN puts off the perfonage of Dr. Berkeley, which he had affumed in order to explain his theory, to give it a fair hearing, and to apply it to his purpofe; which he has done, indeed, in a moft acute, judicious, and interefting manner, though we have feen fome weak fides in his application, which we are obliged to pafs over in filence, on account of the enormous length to which this extract has already fwelled. This ingenious Academician promifes us another memoir on this curious fubject, containing fome remarks, which will introduce a theory more recent than any yet mentioned.-We shall expect it with impatience, as we find the metaphyfics of M. Merian, much more luminous and fenfible, than those in which we are going to grope, in a subsequent Memoir.
AR T. VIII.
Hiftoire de l'Academie Royale des Infcriptions et Belles Lettres, &c. History of the Royal Academy of Infcriptions, &c. Together with the Memoirs of Literature taken from the Registers of that Academy, from the Year 1770, to 1772 inclufive. Vol. XXXVIII. 4to, Paris, 1777.
HE hiftorical part of this volume, which comprehend extracts from, or fummaries of, the more voluminous productions of the members of the Academy, confifts of fifteen articles; and the memoirs amount to the fame number. In giving an account of thefe articles, we fhall follow our ufual method.
Refearches concerning the Exercife of Swimming, among the Ancients, and the Advantage they derived from it. There are a great many stories about fwimming in this piece; but they are rather entertaining than inftructive--for all we learn here is, that fwimming is a wholefome exercife-that it may keep people from drowning-that it was practifed univerfally by the ancients, the Perfians excepted,-that it has been abused to the purposes of impudicity, &c.
Hiftorical Inquiries concerning the Nemean Games. The fubject of this piece is curious and interefting, as it may tend to throw fome light upon the genius, character, paffions, and sentiments of a famous people; but it is involved in obfcurity. To remove this, as far as is poffible, M. d'ANSSE DE VILLOISON enquires here into the fituation of the country, where these games were celebrated, the origin of their name,-the perfons who contributed to their eftablishment,-the prizes that were diftributed to the victors, the judges who prefided at them,-the qualities required in the competitors,-the three claffes of agonistic exercifes that were introduced into thefe games, at different times, -the time of their celebration, and entire ceffation,-the relation of the Nemeades to the Olympiades and Pythiades. Such are the principal objects, that are learnedly difcuffed by M. DE VILLOISON.
Obfervations on a Paffage of Strabo, which feems to place between Genoa and Placentia, two other Cities, named DIACUISTA and JELLEIA. By M. de BREQUIGNY.
An Effay, defigned as a Supplement to the Treatife of Henry Stephens, concerning the Conformity between the French Language and the Greek. By M. DACIER: as feeble and hypothetical as the treatife of Henry Stephens.
Critical Refearches concerning the vulgar (or modern) Greek. By M. DE VILLOISON. It is not on the changes that the Greek language has undergone, nor on the various periods of its alte