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HISTORICAL OBSERVATIONS on DANCING: Illustrative of the
Frontispiece to this Volume, representing the Muse TerPSICHORE,
Hail, lovelieft art! that canst all hearts insnare,
Thinking, fo Dancing may be the question : for it has been juftly called the Art of Gesture. Logic observed, that the imitative arts are teaches us so to order and arrange our the province of genius alone, and no thoughts, as to give them perspicuity art can with more propriety be called and propriety of connection; and by imitative than Dancing. It is a coDancing we are taught to direct our pying of those ideas of gracefulness motions in such a manner, as to give and harmony which we borrow from them gracefulness, harmony, and ease. nature; and in this, as in the other But the Art of Dancing is even more imitative arts, the closest imitation of necessary to gesticulation, than the Art graceful nature is the happiest execuof Logic is to thinking. To think tion. But it may then be asked, if elegantly and fublimely is the effect of Dancing be nothing more than copygenius alone, and the art of thinking ing the native beauties of motion, clearly and justly may be acquired by why is not nature left to itfelf? 'The habit and observation ; but it is to be reason is, that art has borroived variquestioned whether an elegant and ous graces from various forms ; and graceful carriage was ever obtained in this, as in other cases, by comwithout the aid of Dancing.' Me- . bination, has reduced them to chanical, however, as this art may systematic science.
Hence, with her sister arts, shall Dancing count of its being a religious cere. claim
mony, that this pious philosopher apAn equal right to universal fame;
plied himself to it; but, however this And Isaac's rigadoon thall live as long, As Raphael's painting, or as Virgil's
may be, it is a proof of the great Song
esteem in which dancing was held in JENYNS.
the most enlightened age of Greece.
The people of Crete and Sparta went Could any art or science derive im- to the attack dancing. On the other portance from its antiquity, Dancing hand, Cicero reproaches Galbinius, might stand in the firit rank for this a consular man, with having danced. claim. The accounts of it run almost Tiberius expelled the dancers from as high as any thing we find upon Rome; and Domitian excluded feauthentic record. Nothing particu- veral members from the senate, for lar, indeed, concerning this art, has having danced : but the acts of these descended to us, except the tracts of imperial despots may be considered Athenæus and Lucian: but Plato and rather as the suggestions of caprice Xenophon have made honourable and folly than as the dictates of wismention of it.
dom and virtue. Dancing has been in use among all Whether Dancing owed its origin nations, both civilized and barbarous; to military or religious ceremonies, although held in elteem among some, will admit of a dispute, in which great and in contempt among others. Of erudition might be displayed on both itself, no doubt, Dancing is harmless. fides of the question, and nothing de• There is a time,' says the Preacher, termined. It seems to have been a 'to mourn, and a time to dance * ;' natural consequence of the invention and sometimes it is even made an act of music ; for it has been observed, of religion. Thus David danced be- that the Indian savages, upon hearing fore the ark, to honour God, and ex- the sound of any musical instrument, press the greatness of his joy for its could not forbear throwing themselves return into the city of Sion f. The into antic postures and capers, rapid daughters of Shiloh are said to have or flow, according to the time of the danced in a yearly feast before the music. Thus, as Dancing was oriLord I. The pfalmift, moreover, ex- ginally the effect of music, it continued horts men to praise the Lord with to accompany that art, on all occamusic and the dance || ; and we find fions, whether in religious ceremomany references to this practice in the nies, festivals, or public rejoicings on religious folemnities of the Jews. the acquisition of victory. From them it passed to the Egyptians, Dancing, applied to harmonize the and afterward to the Greeks and Ro- motions of the body, to teach an easy mans, with whom it was a principal gesture, and a graceful attitude, is part of the worship of their falfe gods. highly useful. A dancing-master, in It was afterward adopted in many this respect, should have the genius pagan nations; and Christians, in of a statuary, and know exactly the popish countries, celebrated certain proper attitude of every sentiment and festivals, particularly those of the Sa- pasion. The poet we have already crament, and the passion of our Lord, quoted, considers it as heightening, with dancing. Socrates learned to and rendering irresistible, the attracdance, at an advanced time of life, of tions of the fair. Aspasia : it is no wonder, therefore, that such honourable mention is made Hail, loveliest art! that can'st all hearts of dancing, by his disciples Plato and insnare, Xenophon. It was probably on ac- And make the fairest still appear more fair.
* Ecclef. iii. 4. + 2 Sam. vi. 14, 16. I Judges xxi. 19, 21. # Pfalm cxlix. 3. cl. 4.
Beauty can little execution do,
New glories o'er her form each moment Unless the borrows half her arms from rise, you :
And all the goddess opens to his eyes. Few, like Pygmalion, doat on lifeless
charms, Or care to clasp a statue in their arms :
And from this enchanting art he But breasts of flint mult melt with fierce ingeniously deduces a serious moral :
desire, When art and motion wake the sleeping
In every Country-Dance a serious A Venus drawn by great Apelles' hand,
Turn’d for reflection, can a moral find. May for a while our wond’ring eyes com- In Hunt-the-Squirrel thus the nymph we månd,
view, But still, tho’ form‘d with all the pow'rs Seeks when we fly, but flies when we purThe lifeless piece can never warm the Thus in round-dances where our partners heart ;
change, So a fair nymph, perhaps, may please the And unconfin'd from fair to fair we eye,
range, While all her beauteous limbs unactive As soon as one from his own consort lie,
flies, But when her charms are in the dance dif- Another seizes on the lovely prize; play'd,
A while the fav’rite youth enjoys her Then ev'ry heart adores the lovely maid :
charms, This sets her beauty in the faireít light,
Till the next comer steals her from his And shews each grace in full perfection
New ones succeed, the last is still her Then, as she turns around, from ev'ry
How true an emblem of th' inconstant Like porcupines, the sends a piercing fair! dart;
Where can philosophers, and sages In vain, alas ! the fond spectator tries
wise, To fhun the pleasing dangers of her eyes, Who read the curious volumes of the For, Parthian like, ihe wounds as lire
A model more exact than dancing name With flowing curls, and ivory neck re- of the creation's universal frame? clin'd:
Where worlds unnumber'd o'er th' ætheWhether her steps the Minuet's mazes trace,
In a bright regular confusion stray ; Or the flow Louvre's more majestic pace,
Now here, now there they whirl along the Whether the Rigadoon employs her care,
sky, Or sprightly Jigg displays the nimble Now near approach, and now far distant
fair, At every step new beauties we explore,
Now meet in the same order they begun, And worship now, what we admir'd' be
And then the great celestial dance is fore :
done. So when Æneas in the Tyrian grove
Where can the Mor’list find a juster Fair Venus met, the charming queen of
Of the vain labours, and the life of man? The beautecus goddess, while unmov'd 'A while thro' justling crowds we toil, and The stood,
sweat, Seem'd some fair nymph, the guardian of And eagerly pursue we know not what ; the wood;
Then when our trifling short-liv'd race is But when the mov'd, at once her heavenly
Quite tir'd sit down, just where we first And graceful step confess bright Beauty's
OBSERVATIONS on the Heat of Bels: By John HUNTER, Esq.
[From Philosophical Transactions, Part I, for 1792. ] BEE Stare, perhaps, the only, ina fociety, to keep itself warm in cold itself, and were therefore intended fumption of heat may be greater than to have a tolerably well-regulated the power of forming it; when that warmth, without which, of course, is the case, we become sensible of it, they are very uncomfortable, and soon and then take on such actions as are die; and which makes not only a either instinctive, such as arise napart of their internal economy re- turally out of the impression, or as 1pecting the individual, but a part of reason, custom, or habit direct. Many their external, or common economy, animals, upon the impression of cold, and is therefore necefiary to be known. coil themselves up in their own fur, The heat of bees is afcertainable by bringing all their extremities into the the thermometer, and I shall give the centre, or hollow of the belly ; birds result of experiments made at two dif- bring their feet under the belly, and ferent seasons of the year.
thrust their bill between their wing July 18th, at ten in the evening, and body; many, if not all, go to wind northerly, thermoineter at 54°, the warmest places, either from inin the open air, I introduced it into ftinctive principle, or habit: but the the top of a hive fuil of bees, and in bees have no other mode but forming less than five minutes it role to 82o. clusters, and the larger the better. As I let it stand ail night; at five in the they are easily affected by cold, their morning it was down at 79°; at nine instinctive principle respecting cold is the same morning, it had risen to 83°, very strong, as likewise with regard and at one o'clock to 84o ; and at to wet. I have seen a swarm hangnine in the evening it was down to ing out at the door of a hive, ready 789
to take flight, and then return; a December 30th, air at 35o, bees at chill has come on, of which I was 730
not sensible, and in a few minutes the Althongh bees support a heat nearly whole has gone back into the hive; equal to that of a quadruped, yet their and by the cold increasing, I have at external covering is not different from length perceived the cause of their rethat of infects which do not; there is turn. If rain is coming on, we obno difference between their coat and serve them returning home in great a common dy's or walp's, nor are they quantities, and hardly any abroad. fatter, all which makes them bad re- The eggs of bees require this heat as tainers of heat ; therefore they are much as themselves, nor will the chilly; and in a cold too severe for maggot live in a cold of 60° or 70°, them to be comfortable in, they make nor even their chrysalis. This warmth up for their want of fize singly, and keeps the wax so soft, as to allow get into clusters. A single bee has so them to model it with ease. In glass little power of keeping itself warm, hives, or those that have windows of that it presently becomes nunbed, and glass in them, we often find a dew on almost motionless; a common night the inside of the glass, especially when in summer will produce this effect: the glass is colder than the air within : a cold capable of producing such ef- whether this is perspiration from the fects kills them soon, by which means bées, both from their external furface valt numbers die; therefore a com- and lungs, or evaporation from the mon bee is obliged to feed and live in honey, I cannot say.