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and many things, which had great need of a correcting hand, were left untouched. It would, nevertheless, be either an instance of ingratitude, or a mark of great ignorance, to deny this age the honour of having begun what was afterwards more happily finished, and of having laid the foundations of that striking superiority, which the divines of succeeding ages obtained over those of ancient times.
• Nor did the improvements, which have been now mentioned, as proceeding from the restoration of letters and philosophy, extend only to the method of conveying theological instruction, but purified moreover the science of theology itself. For the true nature, genius, and design of the Christian religion, which even the most learned and pious doctors of antiquity had but imperfectly comprehended, were now unfolded with evidence and precision, and drawn, like truth, from an abyfs in which they had hitherto lain too much concealed. 'Tis true, the influence of error was far from being totally suppressed, and many false and absurd doctrines are still maintained and propagated in the Christian world. But it may, nevertheless, be affirmed, that the Christian societies, whose errors, at this day, are the most numerous and extravagant, have much less absurd and perverse notions of the nature and design of the golpel, and the duties and obligations of those that profefs it, than were entertained by those doctors of antiquity, who ruled the church with an absolute authority, and were considered as the chief oracles of theology. It may farther be observed, that the reformation contributed much to soften and civilize the manners of many nations, who, before that happy period, were sunk in the most savage'stupidity, and carried the most rude and unsociable aspect. It nuft, indeed, be confessed, that a variety of circumstances combined to produce that lenity of character, and that milder temperature of manners, maxims, and actions, that discovered themselves gradually, and increased, from day to day, in the greatest part of the European nations after the period that "Luther rendered so famous. It is, nevertheless, evident, beyond all contradiction, that the disputes concerning religion, and the accurate and rational inquiries into the doctrines and duties of Christianity, to which these disputes gave rise, had a great tendency to eradicate out of the minds of men that ferocity that had been so long nourilhed by the barbarous suggestions of unmanly superstition. It is also certain, that at the very dawn of this happy revolution in the state of Christianity, and even before its salutary effects were manifested in all their extent, pure religion had many sincere and fervent votaries, though they were concealed from public view by the multitudes of fanatics, with which they were surrounded on all sides.'
bwill thew thethriftianity hich have
; It is now time for us to take our leave of this judicious per· formance, from which readers of almost every clais may receive
· both instruction and entertainment. It throws great light on ''the history of the human mind; and those who are conversant : in theological studies will derive peculiar advantages from an at- tentive perusal of it. The view which it gives of the various
causes which, in the different ages of the Christian church, have contributed to corrupt the morals, and pollute the faith of · the gospel, will few them what are the most effectual means of
promoting the cause of Christianity; and the account which is given of the many controversies which have been carried on with the greatest warmth and violence, in former times, about matters of very inconfiderable importance, may not only con
vince them of the unspeakable advantages of candor and mode· ration, but likewise shew them what judgment impartial posterity will probably form of the greatest part of the religious disputes of our own times.
As the generality of our Readers may be supposed to be unacquainted with the character and writings of Dr. Mosheim, what Mr. Maclaine says of him in his preface will not, we hope, be unacceptable :
"The reputation of this great man is very well known. His noble birth seemed to open to his ambition à fair path to civil promotion ; but his zeal for the interests of religion, his infatiable thirst after knowledge, and more especially his predcmia nant taste for sacred literature, induced bim to consecrate his
admirable talents to the service of the church. The German .. universities loaded him with literary honours; the King of
Denmark invited, bim to settle at Copenhagen; the Duke of Brunswick called him from thence to Helmitadt, where he received the marks of distinction due to his eminent abilities. He
filled, with applause, the academical chair of divinity; was ho· noured with the character of ecclefiaitical counsellor to that re
spectable court; and presided over the seminaries of learning in - the dutchy of Wolfembuttle and the principality of Blaken. burg. When the late king formed the design of giving an un
common degree of lustre to the universi'y of Gottingen, by filling
it with men of the first rank in ihe literary world, such as a - Haller, a Gesner, and a Michaelis, Dr. Monheim was deemed :. worthy to appear at the head of that famous seat of learning in
the quality of chancellor: and here be died, universally lamented, in the year 1755, and in the sixty-first year of his age. In depth of judgment, in extent of learning, in the powers of a . noble and masculine eloquence, in purity of taste, and in a laborious application to all the various branches of erudition and philosophy, he had certainly very few fuperiors. His Latin translation of the celebrated Dr. Cudworth's Iniel'iEtual System
genoudy. cxcited intance with large annot
of the Universe, enriched with large annotations, discovered such a profound acquaintance with ancient philosophy and erudition, as justly excited the admiration of the learned world. His ingenious illustrations of the sacred writings, his successful labours in the defence of Christianity, and the light he cast upon the history of religion and philosophy by his uninterrupted researches, appear in a multitude of volumes, which are delervedly placed among the most valuable treasures of sacred and profane literature, and the learned and judicious work, that is here presented to the public, will undoubtedly render his name illustrious in the records of religion and letters.'
Philosophical Transactions, giving fome Account of the present Under
takings, Studies, and Labours, of the Ingenious, in many confiderable Parts of the World. Vol. LIV. For the Year 1764. 4to.
12s. 60. lewed. Davis and Reymers. , TT is the remark of some ingenious writer, that great families :1 and incorporated bodies, will, by their duration and perse
verance, constantly prevail over the contrary efforts of private i persons and detached individuals: especially, says he, if they
observe one general rule or tenour of conduct; for, amidst the · vicissitudes to which human affairs are liable, an opportunity
must neceflarily turn up, one time or other, favourable to their · particular views. It is probably on this principle that the Royal
Society persevere in their resolution, of refusing to take the trouble of rendering the Philosophical Transactions worthy of their imprimatur *. What their views can be, in this perseverance, we must own ourselves at a loss to conjecture. Surely they can. not wait for a more promising æra of hebetation, in hopes to see the whole world involved in that cloud of dullness, which with a more than cimmerian gloom fometimes invelopes Crane-Court ! It is now a considerable time since we remarked that their conduct in this particular was inconsistent with the very ends of their institution; as also the palpable absurdity of the present managers of this body taking upon them to answer for the conduct of those who may possibly be members an hundred years hence! And yet still are we told, that it is an established rule of the society, to which they will always adhere, never to give their opinion, as a body, upon any subject, either of nature or art,
* And yet, unless they do this, we are apprehensive they may in vain endeavour to satisfy the publick, that their usual meetings are continued for the improvement of knowledge, and benefit of mankind, the great ends of their first institution by the royal charters, which they have ever since fieadily pursued.'
that comes before them.' But, if this is to be for ever the case, in what respect is the suffrage of this publication to be preferred to that of a common magazine? The very respectable names, indeed, which we meet with so often in these volumes, afford a sufficient proof of the Society's extensive correspondence; but it is with great regret, we so often see those names pompoully prostituted to the most insignificant purposes. In a word, if the Editors of thefe Transactions do not take care to provide more im. portant materials, we are afraid it will be necessary, for the fatisfaction of our Readers, that we should deviate from our proposed plan in giving an account of this publication, so far, as to refer it, for the future, to our Catalogue. This being the state of the case, we hope our Readers will not impute the finall share of instruction and entertainment they may meet with, in the present article, to the Reviewers, but to the Royal Society.
Papers relative to Physics, NATURAL HISTORY, &c. Art. 1. Account of a Mummy inspected at Londin. By Dr. Hadley.
The mummy here spoken of, is the first article in Dr. Grew's catalogue of the rarities of the Royal Society, and was sent from their museum to the house of Dr. Hadley, in order to undergo an examination with regard to the manner in which such a curious piece of antiquity had been put together. The intention of the gentlemen making this enquiry, being to compare it with the accounts given of these preparations by ancient authors; and to see whether there were any traces left of the softer parts; and, if so, by what means they had been preserved. The examination is curious and particular, but would afford very little entertain, ment to the generality of our Readers. Art. 5. An Attempt to account for the Origin and the Formation of
the extraneous Fallil, commonly called the Belemnite. By Mr. 70- Shua Platt,
Mr. Platt is of opinion with Mr. Brander, who presented a paper on the same subject to the Royal Society, fome years ago, that the Belemnite belongs to the teftaccous part of the animal kingdom, and to the family of the Nautili; which are very commonly found recent in the eastern seas; and in their fossile state are frequently met with among the Belemnites, at Garsington near Oxford. Why may we not therefore expect, favs Mr. Platt, to find a recent Belemnite, as well as a recent Nautilus, if a diligent person were strictly to examine the coasts, where the Nautili are found ?-Such a discovery indeed would serve to put the arguments of our naturalists out of dispute ; which it must be owned, however, as it is, do not want for strength and plausibility.
Art. 6. An Account of a singular Species of Wasp and Locuft. By
Samuel Feiton, Esq. The inseats here described are natives of Jamaica, and art given us as non-descripts. Art. 7. An Account of an American Armadilla. By Dr. Watson,
This species of animals, we are told, hath been seldom, if ever, scen alive in England : nor is there any good figure of this creature in any of the authors who have treated of it; they having taken their drawings from dead animals; which were therefore of course hard, stiff and defective. The animal, of which the figure is now given, is, it leems, alive and in health, in the pošleifion of the Right Hon, the Lord Southwell: to whom it was brought over frim the Mosquito fhore. Its weight is fever pounds, and its fize that of a common cat. It is a male, and hath improved greatly both in appearance and colour, since it hath beer in his Lordship’s pofiffion. It is fed with raw beef and milk, and refuses our grain and fruits. In its own country, according to the accounts of those who treat of it, it burrows in the ground,
To this concise description of the animal, is annexed a welldrawn figure of it, on a large copper-plate. Art. 8. An Account of ihe Quantity of Rain fallen at Mount's-bay
in Cornwall, and of the li cather in that place. By the Rev. Mr. Eoriale.
Thi is doubtless fome amusement, as this writer obferves, in comparing the journal of the weather in one part, with the accounts in the papers of storms, heats and drought, and their ca ntraries, ir another: but, though amusement may be one great end of the common news-papers, something more than mere entertainment should be the end of a learned and philofophical society. Not that we mean to infinuate that atmospherical and meteorological observations are useless ; on the contrary, we with to lec more of these journals kept in different parts of the world, by gentieien as accurate and careful in their obfervations as Mr. Borlate. It is, indeed, only by a comparison of numerous accounts, properly authenticated, that we can ever arrive at any kind of ceriainty respecting the weather. Art. 10. Some Obs:rvations on the Cicada of North-America. Col
lested by Mr. P. Collinson. Ofihis paper, containing a very particular account of the inseci treatod of, we shall beg leave to insert the whole.
in Fernsylvania the Cicada is scen annually, but not in such nuinkers as to be remarkable; but at certain periods, of 14 or 15 years difiance, they come forth in such great swarms, that the people have given them the name of Locusts. About the latter enu of April these Cicadæ come near the furface : this is known, by the hogs routing after them. They creep out of