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Art. 26. Some Inquiry into the Constitutional Character of the Queens
Consort of England. '8vo. pp. 51. 29. 6d. Ridgway, 1814.
A pamphlet that might boast of more finished style and more art. ful reasoning, than this Inquiry exhibits, has often fallen into our bands : but we have rarely met with one which contained a more clear, full, and honest statement of a very important question. The author contrives to stand on the best terms with his readers; no man will suspect him of playing the courtier; while, on the other hand, he steers equally clear of faction, and we are satisfied that it is the public interest which he has in view. Although the question which he pursues is raised by certain notorious disputes of the day, he conducts it in a candid and dispassionate manner : clearly shewing that, in the case of a demise of the sovereign, the constitution and the public weal indispensibly require that the new King and Queen should be crowned at the usual time, and in the usual manner. He contends that the precedent of deferring the Queen's curoration, in the reign of Henry VII. was a flagrant violation of the constitution, while the ultimate adoption of the ceremony proves its obligé tory nature; and he successfully controverts the doctrine that the mcnarch has no adviser in his domestic concerns, Equally forcible are the observations by which he shews that a Queen-consort is legaily and constitutionally, except in criminal transactions, a single woman; and he explains several usages of the constitution, which would otherwise be anomalous, by shewing that they refer to this doctrine.
It is also maintained that the coronation of a Queen-consort is a recognition, by the people, of the right of her children to succeed to the crown. Without going the length of laying this down as a legal proposition, we admit the usual effect of the ceremony to be, in this respect, as great as it is represented by the author; and we fully agree with him in thinking that a departure from the usual mode of observing it should not, on any account, be allowed. Art. 27. Recueil de Décrets, Ordonnances, &c. ; i.e. A Collection
of Decrees, Orders, Treaties of Peace, Manifestoes, Proclamations, Speeches, &c. &c. of Napoleon Bonaparte, and of the Members of the French Government, from November 1799 to the Year 1812 inclusive. Extracted from the Moniteur, by Lewis Goldsmith, Notary. 8vo. 4 Vols. London. 1813.
No person, we believe, will rejoice more than Mr. Goldsmith that the reign of Napoleon has ceased, since the publication of these papers respecting his government; and though an equal interest in them will not now prevail, they will remain curious and valuable documents for consultation. Mr. G. before furnished us with a similar repo. sitory; which he has continued to the year 1812, and promises to resume, to the end, as it will now be, of the imperial sway. No comments are added by the editor to the papers themselves : which, as he observes, exhibit to the reader the system of French government with respect to legislation, interior administration, exterior po. licy, and the internal and external police which it exercises in France and in foreign states.'-- A copious Index is very properly subjoinecho
RELIGIOU S. Art. 28. Letters to the Rev. John Pye Smith, D.D. on the Sacrifice
of Christ; occasioned by his Sermon, preached March 11. 1813, before the Patrons and Students of the Protestant Dissenting Academy at Homerton. By W. J. Fox.. 8vo. 25. 6d. Johnson and Co.
Though calm inquiry and amicable discussion were virtues little cultivated by our old theologians, we are pleased to observe therr coming into fashion with our modern religious disputants; who argue with more civility, and restrain if they do not quite suppress all feelings of irritation. On the strange doctrine of Satisfaction, we wished to hear two sensible friends fairly dispute ; because such an amica cellatio would soon shew how far it was or was not tenable. If Dr. Smith has not voluntarily undertaken to enter the lists of controversy with Mr. Fox, the latter, while he coniments on the sermon of the former, treats him with great respect, and addresses him in these letters as one who is high in his esteem. So far, Mr. Fox cannot be suspected of any design of which Dr. Smith can disapprove ; and the mode which he adopts, in replying to certain passages in the sermon, is calculated to do justice to the subject, by bringing into full view the insuperable difficulties which press on the commonly received doctrines of the transfer of guilt, and of satisfaction made io Divine Justice, by this process.
Mr. Fox, having been educated by Dr. Smith in the principles of Calvinism, enjoyed ample opportunities for thoroughly understanding it; and many prejudices must have been encountered, and much must he have examined and reflected, before he could have brought himself to reject it. We consider these letters, therefore, as of no little value in the controversy to which they relate. They prove the writer to have a good mind as well as a good understanding; and it appears to us that his arguments cannot be easily overturned. As the figuratire language of Scripture, respecting sacrifices and atonements, is liable to be mistaken, it would be of great service to consider this matter, in the first instance, purely by the light of reason; because, if the doctrine asserted be impossible in the nature of things, or involves an absurdity, those portions of Scripture which are adduced in its favour must be misunderstood. Several passages in Mr. Fox's letters tend to this point. After having followed the preacher through the texts by which he would prove the satisfaction of Divine Justice by the death and sacrifice of Christ, Mr. F. states the inconsistencies connected with the doctrine of Satisfaction;' and, in his fourth letter, he · observes to Dr. Smith that
« The first contradiction which offers itself to notice is that, on · your system, God pardons and punishes the very same offence. Christ has borne the guilt and punishment of believers, and yet they are said to be forgiven. A debt is only once payable : a crime only once punishable. Let the principle of substitution be admitted ; still the sinner cannot be required to suffer both in his surety and his own person. - If another for him has discharged the debt, sustained the curse, he need not implore his deliverance of the mercy of God, but
of vice and virtue.
may demand it from his justice. When a man tells me that God has forgiven his sins, and in the same breath that Christ endured, in his stead, the punishment of those sins, he makes two assertions, either of which may perhaps be correct, but which cannot both be true.'
We recommend the whole of this pamphlet to the consideration of the theological reader. We have not leisure regularly to follow the writer through each of his seven letters, but, as a farther specimen of the clearness of his conceptions, we shall quote his remarks on the transferable nature of vice and virtue.
• Your system also supposes the transferable nature of guilt and innocence.' “ Jesus Christ voluntarily sustained the guilt and punishment of sin." (P. 28.) “ The active obedience of the Lord Christ is freely and graciously imputed to the pardoned sinner." (P. 56.) These assertions are alike opposed to reason and Scripture. In no place is Christ called guilty, nor are his sufferings ever termed a punishment. Nowhere is it said that the righteousness of Christ becomes the righteousness of those who believe in him. How can it possibly be indifferent to a lawgiver whether the transgressor suffer in his own person, or by a substitute? The desire of an innocent person to stand in the place of a guilty one does not make him deserving of punishment, nor can his suffering answer the object of punishment, whether we suppose that object to be the reformation of the indivi. dual, or the well-being of society,
In the miscellaneous remarks, Mr. Fox calls Dr. Smith to task for an unguarded expression or two: but, in conclusion, he speaks in the handsomest terms of his late tutor, and bears the fullest testimony to his amiable and candid spirit. Art. 29. Two Discourses designed for the Use of Servants, wherein
their Duties are explained and enforced by Precepts and Examples drawn from the Holy Bible. 8vo. 15. Spence.
Why is not the author's name prefixed to this useful and much. wanted publication ? No class of the community stands in more need of a serious lecture than servants; and we were pleased to see two discourses addressed to their attention, which are very plain, and constructed on a judicious plan: the preacher having brought toge ther, in one view, all the parts of Scripture which describe the situa. tion and enforce the duties of servants. The doctrines here incula cated are compressed into the following passages :
• That the different ranks and employments of men are ap. pointed by God: that He, with infinite wisdom, goodness, and power, places each of us in that situation, which is most cal. culated to promote our eternal salvation; that it is consequently our duty to be therewith content: that the true happiness of man consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he pos. sesseth, but in the favour of God: that this favour is to be obtained equally by high and low, rich and poor, if we fear God and keep his commandments.
. That the peculiar duties of servants are honesty, sobriety, fidelity, watchfulness, patience, diligence, and a constant desire to please their masters, and to promote their interest and happiness by every means in their power: that the pious discharge of these duties will not fail to secure to them the love and esteem of their masters, and of all good men, and the favour and blessing of God; peace and tranquillity at the hour of death, and a never-fading crown of glory in the world to come.'
It appears, from a short preface, that the horrid murder of Mr. and Mrs. Bonar by their man-servant led the preacher to the composition and publication of these discourses ; which, we hope, will not only be read to servants, but read and considered by thein.
CORRESPONDENCE. In replying to Mr. Rootsey's communication, on the subject of his New Notation of Music, reviewed in our Number for May last, we shall begin with the concluding paragraph of it, and assure Mr. R. that we have no interest whatever in the old notation, or any other part of the subject ; nor any attachment to it which does not arise from a fair opinion of its sufficiency for the purpose to which it is applied. When Mr. R. puts to us the propositions with which he closes his letter, it escaped him, perhaps, to observe that he begs the whole question. If his plan does not offer some substantial advantages, it is not of much consequence that by it music can be printed cheaper than it is at present; and, as to the greater facility of learning, that is a point which, as we stated, we can only concede to a certain extent: because, if simple melody, or even plain counterpoint, can be read more easily in the new mode of notation, (which we do not admit,) we still think that this will never be the case with music of a more complicated description.
With respect to one of our reasons for preferring the old notation, riz, because it presents the notes in the relation of high and low, we grant that those terms cannot be applied to the notes i precisely the same sense as they are to the staff; their use with reference to the former is metaphorical : but so it is when we speak of high and low numbers in arithmetic, of a high wind, of high life, of low company,
and in many other instances. They are in fact generally applied to - subjects admitting of gradation ; and, in the present case, it does not strike us that any good is gained by substituting the terms shrill and grave, the latter of which is also metaphorical, and the former (to our apprehension at least) very unappropriate: since few people would consent to apply the term shrill to the beautiful liquid tones of the upper part of the voices of Mrs. Billington and Madame Catalani * · * This reminds us of Guido's lines,
.. Cæterum tonantis vocis
Si ludent acumina,
Aut vocalis asina."
“At shrillness is he only aim,
And still more loud and deep the lay
Let any terms whatever be used, we think it is an advantage to have a notation which, by its effect on the eye, awakens the ideas of those terms; and into that proposition the whole of this part of the subject resolves itself,
Mír. Rootsey conceives that the use of the terms high and low has arisen from the notation, and not the notation from the terms. This seems to us to be of no importance to the argument : but, with respect to the fact which he states, that the contrivers of the notation placed those notes which were previously called high at the bottom of the staff, and those at the top which had been previously called low,' it is quite new to us, if it be meant to say that the ascending scale of tones was ever expressed by a descending scale of notation. It appears to us to be more material that the modern notation was introduced to supersede that which was previously in use; and which consisted of alphabetical letters bearing different denominations, but which was found inconvenient (just as we should have supposed that it would) when the science of music began to extend itself beyond the Canto Fermo of the monks. The invention has been commonly ascribed, but probably on insufficient grounds, to Guido, the monk of Arezzo ; and its early adoption and subsequent continued use appear to us strong, though not conclusive, proofs in favour of its utility. That it would admit of improvement, we are ready to grant ; indeed, the reduction of the lines of the staff to five, instead of the Italian staff which had ten lines, is an instance in point; though in that particular, we think, the improvement could not be carried farther; and we had rather, on the score of utility merely, see something done to effect as great an improvement with the least possible change, than be carried back quite to first principles, in order to accomplish an entire change of our practice. With a view to its philosophical accuracy as well as its ingenuity, Mr. Rootsey's plan seemed to us to deserve the favourable report which we gave of it in those respects; and we feel sure that his candour will excuse our differing from him as to its other advantages.
We have to apologize to our readers for this long replication, which we must yet extend farther in order to give Mr. Rootsey an opportunity of explaining himself as to the mode of expressing the value of notes, on which subject an error of the press (as it appears) misled us in reviewing his work, — He says:
“ I was exceedingly sorry to find that I was misunderstood upon the subject of the value of notes in a bar, because I ground my principal claio to attention upon the precision of my method. An unfortunate error of the press appears to have occasioned chis misunderstanding. In the passage cited by you the time is triple, and the measure consists of four notes, which should have been arranged into three times, and omitting the parenthesis they should have stood thus, n m hm; in my copy, the two first of these notes are joined instead of being separated, and in yours the two last are separated instead of being joined. It may be proper for nie to observe that always, in writing music, before I put the parenthesis, I take care to have the times of the measure properly separated, and I afterwards insert them so that they may not render the times of the measure inconspicuous; but, in prinung, the too great curvature of the types used for a