صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

His epithets are of the gaudy or hyperbolical kind. The glorious news-eager hopes and dismal fears-bleeding Rome-divine laws and hallowed customs-merciless war-intense anxiety.

times suspect that he had too frequently con- tutor embraced his pupil close in his arms.--
sulted the French writers. He tells us that Four hundred women were taxed, who have no
Archelaus the Rhodian made a speech to Cassius, doubt been the wives of the best Roman citizens.
and in so saying dropt some tears, and that Cas--Men not born to action are inconsequential in
sius after the reduction of Rhodes was covered government.-Collectitious troops.-The foot by
with glory.-Deiotarus was a keen and happy their violent attack began the fatal break in the
spirit-The ingrate Castor kept his court.
Phasaliac field.-He and his brother, with a
His great delight is to show his universal ac-politic common to other countries, had taken
quaintance with terms of art, with words that opposite sides.
every other polite writer has avoided and de-
spised. When Pompey conquered the pirates,
he destroyed fifteen hundred ships of the line.
The Xanthian parapets were tore down.-Bru-
tus, suspecting that his troops were plundering,
commanded the trumpets to sound to their co-
lours. Most people understood the act of at-
tainder passed by the senate.-The Numidian
troopers were unlikely in their appearance.
The Numidians beat up one quarter after an-
other.-Salvidienus resolved to pass his men
over in boats of leather, and he gave orders for
equipping a sufficient number of that sort of
small craft.-Pompey had light agile frigates,
and fought in a strait where the current and
caverns occasion swirls and a roll.-A sharp
out-look was kept by the admiral.—It is a run
of about fifty Roman miles.-Brutus broke
Lipella in the sight of the army.-Mark Antony
garbled the senate.-He was a brave man, well
qualified for a commodore.

In his choice of phrases he frequently uses words with great solemnity, which every other mouth and pen has appropriated to jocularity and levity. The Rhodians gave up the contest, and in poor plight fled back to Rhodes.-Boys and girls were easily kidnapped.-Deiotarus was a mighty believer of augury.-Deiotarus destroyed his ungracious progeny.-The regularity of the Romans was their mortal aversion. -They desired the consuls to curb such heinous doings. He had such a shrewd invention, that no side of a question came amiss to him.-Brutus found his mistress a coquettish creature.

He sometimes, with most unlucky dexterity, mixes the grand and the burlesque together; the violation of faith, Sir, says Cassius, lies at the door of the Rhodians by reiterated acts of perfidy.—The iron grate fell down, crushed those under it to death, and catched the rest as in a trap.-When the Xanthians heard the military shout, and saw the flame mount, they concluded there would be no mercy. It was now about sun-set, and they had been at hot work since noon.

He has often words or phrases with which our language has hitherto had no knowledge.-One was a heart-friend to the republic.-A deed was expeded.-The Numidians began to reel, and were in hazard of falling into confusion.-The

[ocr errors]

Sometimes the reader is suddenly ravished with a sonorous sentence, of which when the noise is past, the meaning does not long remain. When Brutus set his legions to fill a moat, instead of heavy dragging and slow toil, they set about it with huzzas and racing, as if they had been striving at the Olympic games. They hurled impetuous down the huge trees and stones, and with shouts forced them into the water; so that the work, expected to continue half the campaign, was with rapid toil completed in a few days. Brutus's soldiers fell to the gate with resistless fury, it gave way at last with hideous crash.-This great and good man, doing his duty to his country, received a mortal wound, and glorious fell in the cause of Rome; may his memory be ever dear to all lovers of liberty, learning, and humanity '—This promise ought ever to embalm his memory.-The queen of nations was torn by no foreign invader.— Rome fell a sacrifice to her own sons, and was ravaged by her unnatural offspring all the great men of the state, all the good, all the holy, were openly murdered by the wickedest and worst. Little islands cover the harbour of Brindisi, and form the narrow outlet from the numerous creeks that compose its capacious port. At the appearance of Brutus and Cassius a shout of joy rent the heavens from the surrounding multitudes.

Such are the flowers which may be gathered by every hand in every part of this garden of eloquence. But having thus freely mentioned our Author's faults, it remains that we acknowledge his merit; and confess that this book is the work of a man of letters, that it is full of events displayed with accuracy, and related with vivacity; and though it is sufficiently defective to crush the vanity of its Author, it is sufficiently entertaining to invite readers.*

From the Literary Magazine, vol. I. p. 41. 1756

[ocr errors]



opaque ones whilst he remains unchanged, I do not think more explicable by mere natural causes, but am forced to ascribe it to the counsel and contrivance of a voluntary agent."

The hypothesis of matter evenly disposed through infinite space, seems to labour with such difficulties, as makes it almost a contradic

FROM THE LITERARY MAGAZINE, VOL. 1. p. 89, tory supposition, or a supposition destructive o


Ir will certainly be required, that notice should be taken of a book, however small, written on such a subject, by such an author. Yet I know not whether these Letters will be very satisfactory: for they are answers to inquiries not published; and therefore though they contain many positions of great importance, are, in some parts, imperfect and obscure, by their reference to Dr. Bentley's Letters.

Sir Isaac declares, that what he has done is due to nothing but industry and patient thought; and indeed long consideration is so necessary in such abstruse inquiries, that it is always dangerous to publish the productions of great men, which are not known to have been designed for the press, and of which it is uncertain whether much patience and thought have been bestowed upon them. The principal question of these Letters gives occasion to observe how even the mind of Newton gains ground gradually upon darkness.

"As to your first query," says he, "it seems to me, that if the matter of our sun and planets, and all the matter of the universe, were evenly scattered throughout all the heavens, and every particle had an innate gravity towards all the rest, and the whole space throughout which this matter was scattered was but finite; the matter on the outside of this space would by its gravity tend towards all the matter on the inside, and by consequence fall down into the middle of the whole space, and there compose one great spherical mass. But if the matter was evenly disposed throughout an infinite space, it could never convene into one mass, but some of it would convene into one mass, and some into another, so as to make an infinite number of great masses, scattered at great distances from one to another throughout all that infinite space. And thus might the sun and fixed stars be formed, supposing the matter were of a lucid nature. But how the matter should divide itself into two sorts, and that part of it which is fit to compose a shining body, should fall down into one mass and make a sun, and the rest which is fit to compose an opaque body, should coalesce, not into one great body like the shining matter, but into many little ones; or if the sun at first were an opaque body like the planets, or the planets lucid bodies like the sun, how he alone should be changed into a shining body, whilst all they continue opaque, or all they be changed into

[ocr errors]


Matter evenly disposed through infinite space, is either created or eternal; if it was created, it infers a Creator: if it was eternal, it had been from eternity evenly spread through infinite space; or it had been once coalesced in masses, and afterwards been diffused. Whatever state was first, must have been from eternity, and what had been from eternity could not be changed, but by a cause beginning to act as it had never acted before, that is, by the voluntary act of some external power. If inatter infinitely and evenly diffused was a moment without coalition, it could never coalesce at all by its own power. If matter originally tended to coalesce, it could never be evenly diffused through infinite space. Matter being supposed eternal, there never was a time when it could be diffused before its conglobation, or conglobated before its diffusion.

This Sir Isaac seems by degrees to have understood: for he says, in his second Letter, "The reason why matter evenly scattered through a finite space would convene in the midst, you conceive the same with me; but that there should be a central particle, so accurately placed in the middle, as to be always equally attracted on all sides, and thereby continue without motion, seems to me a supposition fully as hard as to make the sharpest needle stand upright upon its point on a looking-glass. For if the very mathematical centre of the central particle be not accurately in the very mathematical centre of the attractive power of the whole mass, the particle will not be attracted equally on all sides. And much harder is it to suppose all the particles in an infinite space should be so accurately poised one among another, as to stand still in a perfect equilibrium. For I reckon this as hard as to make not one needle only, but an infinite number of them (so many as there are particles in an infinite space) stand accurately poised upon their points. Yet I grant it possible, at least by a divine power; and if they were once to be placed, I agree with you that they would continue in that posture, without motion, for ever, unless put into new motion by the same power. When therefore I said, that matter evenly spread through all space, would convene by its gravity into one or more great masses, I understand it of matter not resting in an accurate poise."

Let not it be thought irreverence to this great name if I observe, that by matter evenly spread through infinite space, he now finds it necessary

to mean matter not evenly spread. Matter not evenly spread will indeed convene, but it will convene as soon as it exists. And, in my opinion, this puzzling question about matter is only how that could be that never could have been, or what a man thinks on when he thinks of nothing.

Turn matter on all sides, make it eternal, or of late production, finite or infinite, there can be no regular system produced but by a voluntary and meaning agent. This the great Newton always asserted, and this he asserts in the third letter: but proves in another manner, in a manner perhaps more happy and conclusive.

"The hypothesis of deriving the frame of the world by mechanical principles from matter evenly spread through the heavens, being inconsistent with my system, I had considered it very little before your letter put me upon it, and therefore trouble you with a line or two more about it, if this comes not too late for your use.

"In my former I represented that the diurnal rotations of the planets could not be derived from gravity, but required a divine arm to impress them. And though gravity might give the planets a motion of descent towards the sun, either directly, or with some little obliquity, yet the transverse motions by which they revolve in their several orbs, required the divine arm to impress them according to the tangents of their orbs. I would now add, that the hypothesis of matter being at first evenly spread through the heavens, is, in my opinion, inconsistent with the hypothesis of innate gravity, without a supernatural power to reconcile them, and therefore it infers a Deity. For if there be innate gravity, it is impossible now for the matter of the earth, and all the planets and stars, to fly up from them, and become evenly spread throughout all the heavens, without a supernatural power; and certainly that which can never be hereafter without a supernatural power, could never be heretofore without the same power."



gave them a short account of this book, with a letter extracted from it, in November, 1756. The author then sent us an injunction to forbear his work till a second edition should appear : this prohibition was rather too magisterial; for an author is no longer the sole master of a book which he has given to the public; yet he has been punctually obeyed; we had no desire to offend him, and if his character may be estimated by his book, he is a man whose failings may well be pardoned for his virtues.

The second edition is now sent into the world, corrected and enlarged, and yielded up by the author to the attacks of criticism. But he shall find in us no malignity of censure. We wish, indeed, that among other corrections he had submitted his pages to the inspection of a grainmarian, that the elegances of one line might not have been disgraced by the improprieties of another; but with us to mean well is a degree of merit which overbalances much greater errors than impurity of style.

We have already given in our collections one of the letters, in which Mr. Hanway endeavours to show, that the consumption of tea is injurious to the interest of our country. We shall now endeavour to follow him regularly through all his observations on this modern luxury; but it can scarcely be candid, not to make a previous declaration, that he is to expect little justice from the author of this extract, a hardened and shameless tea-drinker, who has for twenty years diluted his meals with only the infusion of this fascinating plant, whose kettle has scarcely time to cool, who with tea amuses the evening, with tea solaces the midnight, and with tea welcomes the morning.

He begins by refuting a popular notion, that bohea and green tea are leaves of the same shrub, gathered at different times of the year. He is of opinion that they are produced by different shrubs. The leaves of tea are gathered in dry weather; then dried and curled over the fire in copper pans. The Chinese use little green tea, imagining that it hinders digestion and excites fevers. How it should have either effect is not easily discovered; and if we consider the innumerable prejudices which prevail concern

these opinions of the Chinese vulgar, which experience does not confirm.

From PORTSMOUTH to KINGSTON UPON THAMES, through ing our own plants, we shall very little regard Southampton, Wiltshire, &c. with Miscellaneous Thoughts, moral and religious; in Sixty-four Letters: addressed to Two Ladies of the Party. To which is added, An Essay on Tea, considered as pernicious to Health, obstructing Industry, and impoverishing the Nation with an Account of its Growth, and great Consumption in these Kingdoms; with several Political Reflections; and Thoughts on Public Love: in Thirty-two Letters to Two Ladies. By Mr. H*****.

When the Chinese drink tea they infuse it slightly, and extract only the more volatile parts; but though this seems to require great quantities at a time, yet the author believes, per. haps only because he has an inclination to believe it, that the English and Dutch use more than all the inhabitants of that extensive empire. The Chinese drink it sometimes with acids, seldom with sugar; and this practice our author, who has no intention to find any thing right at OUR readers may perhaps remember that we home, recommends to his countrymen.



dentists, I fancy this essential part of beauty would be much better preserved.

"The women in the United Provinces, who sip tea from morning till night, are also as remarkable for bad teeth. They also look pallid, and many are troubled with certain feminine disorders arising from a relaxed habit. The Portuguese ladies, on the other hand, entertain with sweetmeats, and yet they have very good teeth: but their food in general is more of a farinaceous and vegetable kind than ours. They also drink cold water instead of sipping hot, and

The history of the rise and progress of teadrinking is truly curious. Tea was first imported from Holland by the Earls of Arlington and Ossory, in 1666; from their ladies the women of quality learned its use. Its price was then three pounds a pound, and continued the same to 1707. In 1715, we began to use green tea, and the practice of drinking it descended to the lower class of the people. In 1720, the French began to send it hither by a clandestine commerce. From 1717 to 1726, we imported annually seven hundred thousand pounds. From 1732 to 1742, a million and two hundred thou-never taste any fermented liquors; for these sand pounds were every year brought to London; in some years afterwards three millions; and in 1755, near four millions of pounds, or two thousand tons, in which we are not to reckon that which is surreptitiously introduced, which perhaps is nearly as much. Such quantities are indeed sufficient to alarm us; it is at least worth inquiry to know what are the qualities of such a plant, and what the consequences of such a trade.

He then proceeds to enumerate the mischiefs of tea, and seems willing to charge upon it every mischief that he can find. He begins, however, by questioning the virtues ascribed to it, and denies that the crews of the Chinese ships are preserved in their voyage homewards from the scurvy by tea. About this report I have made some inquiry, and though I cannot find that these crews are wholly exempt from scorbutic maladies, they seem to suffer them less than other mariners in any course of equal length. This I ascribe to the tea, not as possessing any medicinal qualities, but as tempting them to drink more water, to dilute their salt food more copiously, and perhaps to forbear punch, or other strong liquors.

He then proceeds in the pathetic strain, to tell the ladies how, by drinking tea, they injure their health, and what is yet more dear, their beauty.

"To what can we ascribe the numerous complaints which prevail? How many sweet creatures of your sex languish with a weak digestion, low spirits, lassitudes, melancholy, and twenty disorders, which, in spite of the faculty, have yet no names, except the general one of nervous complaints? Let them change their diet, and among other articles, leave off drinking tea, it is more than probable the greatest part of them will be restored to health."

"Hot water is also very hurtful to the teeth. The Chinese do not drink their tea so hot as we do, and yet they have bad teeth. This cannot be ascribed entirely to sugar, for they use very little, as already observed; but we all know that hot or cold things which pain the teeth, destroy them also. If we drank less tea, and used gentle acids for the gums and teeth, particularly sour oranges, though we had a less number of French

reasons the use of sugar does not seem to be at all pernicious to them."

"Men seem to have lost their stature and comeliness, and women their beauty. I am not young, but methinks there is not quite so much beauty in this land as there was. Your very chambermaids have lost their bloom, I suppose by sipping tea. Even the agitations of the passions at cards are not so great enemies to female charms. What Shakspeare ascribes to the concealment of love, is in this age more frequently occasioned by the use of tea.'

[ocr errors]

To raise the fright still higher, he quotes an account of a pig's tail scalded with tea, on which, however, he does not much insist.

Of these dreadful effects, some are perhaps imaginary, and some may have another cause. That there is less beauty in the present race of females, than in those who entered the world with us, all of us are inclined to think on whom beauty has ceased to smile; but our fathers and grandfathers made the same complaint before us; and our posterity will still find beauties irresistibly powerful.

That the diseases commonly called nervous, tremors, fits, habitual depression, and all the maladies which proceed from laxity and debility, are more frequent than in any former time, is, I believe, true, however deplorable. But this new race of evils will not be expelled by the prohibition of tea. This general languor is the effect of general luxury, of general idleness. If it be most to be found among tea-drinkers, the reason is, that tea is one of the stated amusements of the idle and luxurious. The whole mode of life is changed; every kind of voluntary labour, every exercise that strengthened the nerves and hardened the muscles, is fallen into disuse. The inhabitants are crowded together in populous cities, so that no occasion of life requires much motion: every one is near to all that he wants; and the rich and delicate seldom pass from one street to another, but in carriages of pleasure. Yet we eat and drink, or strive to eat and drink, like the hunter and huntresses, the farmers and the housewives of the former generation: and they that pass ten hours in bed, and eight at cards, and the greater part of the other six at the table, are taught to impute to

tea all the diseases which a life unnatural in all matter and astringent vegetable, as it is generally its parts may chance to bring upon them. made of galls and copperas.

Tea, among the greater part of those who use it most, is drunk in no great quantity. As it neither exhilarates the heart, nor stimulates the palate, it is commonly an entertainment merely nominal, a pretence for assembling to prattle, for interrupting business, or diversifying idleness. They who drink one cup, and who drink twenty, are equally punctual in preparing or partaking it; and indeed there are few but discover by their indifference about it, that they are brought together not by the tea, but the tea-table. Three cups make the common quantity, so slightly impregnated, that perhaps they might be tinged with the Athenian cicuta, and produce less effects than these letters charge upon tea.

From Tea the writer digresses to spirituous liquors, about which he will have no controversy with the "Literary Magazine :" we shall therefore insert almost his whole letter, and add to it one testimony, that the mischiefs arising on every side from this compendious mode of drunkenness, are enormous and insupportable; equally to be found among the great and the mean; filling palaces with disquiet and distraction; harder to be borne as it cannot be mentioned; and overwhelming multitudes with incurable diseases and unpitied poverty.

"Though tea and gin have spread their baneful influence over this island and his Majesty's other dominions, yet you may be well as

Our author proceeds to show yet other bad sured, that the governors of the Foundling qualities of this hated leaf.

"Green tea, when made strong even by infusion, is an emetic; nay, I am told it is used as such in China; a decoction of it certainly performs this operation; yet by long use it is drunk by many without such an effect. The infusion also, when it is made strong, and stands long to draw the grosser particles, will convulse the bowels; even in the manner commonly used, it has this effect on some constitutions, as I have already remarked to you from my own experience. "You see I confess my weakness without reserve; but those who are very fond of tea, if their digestion is weak, and they find themselves disordered, they generally ascribe it to any cause except the true one. I am aware that the effect just mentioned is imputed to the hot water; let it be so, and my argument is still good; but who pretends to say it is not partly owing to particular kinds of tea? perhaps such as partake of copperas, which there is cause to apprehend is sometimes the case: if we judge from the manner in which it is said to be cured, together with its ordinary effects, there is some foundation for this opinion. Put a drop of strong tea, either green or bohea, but chiefly the former, on the blade of a knife, though it is not corrosive in the same manner as vitriol, yet there appears to be a corrosive quality in it, very different from that of fruit, which stains the knife."

He afterwards quotes Paulli to prove that tea is a desiccative, and ought not to be used after the fortieth year. I have then long exceeded the limits of permission, but I comfort myself, that all the enemies of tea cannot be in the right. If tea be desiccative, according to Paulli, it cannot weaken the fibres, as our author imagines; if it be emetic, it must constringe the stomach, rather than relax it.

The formidable quality of tinging the knife, it bas in common with acorns, the bark and leaves of oak, and every astringent bark or leaf: the copperas which is given to the tea, is really in the knife. Ink may be made of any ferrugineous

Hospital will exert their utmost skill and vigilance to prevent the children under their care from being poisoned, or enervated by one or the other. This, however, is not the case of workhouses; it is well known, to the shame of those who are charged with the care of them, that gin has been too often permitted to enter their gates; and the debauched appetites of the people who inhabit these houses, has been urged as a reason for it.

"Desperate diseases require desperate remedies if laws are rigidly executed against murderers in the highway, those who provide a draught of gin, which we see is murderous, ought not to be countenanced. I am now informed, that in certain hospitals, where the number of the sick used to be about 5600, in 14 years,

From 1704 to 1718, they increased to 8189; From 1718 to 1734, still augmented to 12,710; And from 1734 to 1749, multiplied to 38,147. "What a dreadful spectre does this exhibit! nor must we wonder, when satisfactory evidence was given before the great council of the nation, that near eight millions of gallons of distilled spirits, at the standard it is commonly reduced to for drinking, was actually consumed annually in drams! the shocking difference in the numbers of the sick, and we may presume of the dead also, was supposed to keep pace with gin: and the most ingenious and unprejudiced physicians ascribed it to this cause. What is to be done under these melancholy circumstances? Shall we still countenance the distillery, for the sake of the revenue; out of tenderness to the few who will suffer by its being abolished; for fear of the madness of the people; or that foreigners will run it in upon us? There can be no evil so great as that we now suffer, except the making the same consumption, and paying for it to foreigners in money, which I hope never will be the case.

"As to the revenue, it certainly may be replaced by taxes upon the necessaries of life, even upon the bread we eat, or, in other words, upon

« السابقةمتابعة »