Page images

the feeling of Tallwpos, and the judgment of Lanpos, their copiousness, and their fancy, we are in danger of whom Ďr. Parr might be happy to say, that they of being suffocated by a redundance which abhors all have profundity without obscurity-perspicuity with ! discrimination ; which compares till it perplexes, and out prolixity-ornament without glare terseness with illustrates till it confounds. out barrenness-penetration without subtlety-com To the Oases of Tillotson, Sherlock, and Atterbury, prehensiveness without digression—and a great num we must wade through a barren page, in which the ber of other things without a great number of other weary Christian can descry nothing all around him things.

but a dreary expanse of trite sentiments and languia In spite of 32 pages of very close printing, in de words. sence of the University of Oxford, is it, or is it not The great object of modern sermons is to hazard true, that very many of its Professors enjoy ample nothing their characteristicis, decent debility salaries, without reading any lectures at all? The which alike guards their authors from ludicrous character of particular colleges will certainly vary errors, and precludes them from striking beauties. with the character of their governors; but the Uni. Every man of sense, in taking up an English sermon, versity

of Oxford so far differs from Dr. Parr in the expects to find it a tedious essay, full of common commendation bestowed upon its state of public edu. place morality; and if the fulfilment of such expectaration, that they have, since the publication of his tions be meritorious, the clergy have certainly the book, we believe, and forty years after Mr. Gibbon's merit of not disappointing their readers. Yet it is residence, completely abolished their very ludicrous curious to consider, how a body of men so well eduand disgraceful exercises for degrees, and have sub-cated, and so magnificently endowed as the English stituted in their place a system of exertion, and a clergy, 'should distinguish themselves so little in a scale of academical honours, calculated (we are wil. species of composition to which it is their peculiar ing to hope) to produce the happiest effects. duty, as well as their ordinary habit, to attend. To

We were very sorry, in reading Dr. Parr's note on solve this difficulty, it should be remembered, that he Universities, to meet with the following pas- the eloquence of the Bar and of the Senate force age:

themselves into notice, power, and wealth-that the I would it become me tamely and silently to acquiesce a bad advocate, is the loss of his cause--that a prime

penalty which an individual client pays for choosing in the strictures of this formidable accuser upon a seminary minister must infallibly suffer in the estimation of the must not be dissembled," before the usual time, and, in public, who neglects to conciliate the eloquent men, truth, had been almost compelled to leave it not by the and trusts the defence of his measures to those who want of proper education, for I had arrived at the first have not adequate talents for that purpose : whereas, place in the first form of Harrow School, when I was not the only evil which accrues from the promotion of a quite fourteen -not by the want of useful tutors, for mine clergyman to the pulpit, which he has no ability to were eminently able, and to me had been uniformly kind fill as he ought, is the fatigue of the audience, and the not by the want of ambition, for I had begun to look up discredit of that species of public instruction; an evil the want of attachment to the place, for I regarded it then, so general, that no individual patron would think of as I continue to regard it now, with the fondest and most sacrificing to it his particular interest. The clergy unfeigned affection—but by another want, which it were are generally appointed to their situations by thoso unnecessary to name, and for the supply of which, after who have no interest that they should please the ausome hesitation, I determined to provide by patient toil and dience before whom they speak; while the very reresolute self-denial, when I had not completed my twen- verse is the case in the eloquence of the Bar, and of tieth year. I ceased, therefore, to reside, with an aching Parliament. We by no means would be understood heart: I looked back with mingled feelings of regret and humiliation to advantages of which I could no longer par- to say, that the clergy should owe their promotion take, and honours to which I could no longer aspire.' principally to their eloquence, or that eloquence ever

could, consistently with the constitution of the Eng. To those who know the truly honourable and relish Church, be made out a common cause of prefer. spectable character of Dr. Parr, the vast extent of his ment. In pointing out the total want of connection learning, and the unadulterated benevolence of his between the privilege of preaching, and the power of nature, such an account cannot but be very affecting, preaching well, we are giving no opinion as to whether in spité of the bad taste in which it is communicated. it might or might not be remedied, but merely statHow painful to reflect, that a truly devout and atten. ing a fact. Pulpit discourses have insensibly dwin. tive minister, a strenuous defender of the church dled from speaking to reading; a practice, of itself, establishment, and by far the most learned man of sufficient to stifle every germ of eloquence. It is only his day, should

be permitted to languish on a little by the fresh feelings of the heart, that mankind can paltry curacy in Warwickshire ?

be very powerfully affected. What can be more lu

dicrous, than an orator delivering stale indignation, -Dii meliora, &c. &c.*

and fervour of a week old; turning over whole pages of violent passions, written out in German text; read. ing the tropes and apostrophes into which he is hur

ried by the ardour of his mind; and so affected at a DR. RENNEL. (EDINBURGH REVIEW, 1802.)

preconcerted line, and page, that he is unable to pro.

ceed any farther! Discourses on Various Subjects. By Thomas Rennel, D. D. The prejudices of the English nation have proceed. Master of the Temple. Rivington, London. ed a good deal from their hatred to the French; and

because that country is the native soil of elegance, We have no modern sermons in the English lan. animation, and grace, a certain patriotic solidity, and guage that can be considered as very eloquent. loyal awkwardness, have become the characteristics The merits of Blair (by far the most popular writer of this; so that an adventurous preacher is afraid of of sermons within the last century) are plain good violating the ancient tranquillity of the pulpit; and sense, a happy application of scriptural quotation, the audience are commonly apt to consider the man and a clear harmonious style, richly tinged with scrip- who tires them less than usual, as a trifier, or a char. tural language. He generally leaves his readers latan. pleased with his judgment, and his observations on Of British education, the study of eloquence makes human conduct, without ever rising so high as to little or no part. Thé exterior graces of a speaker touch the great passions, or kindle any enthusiasm in are despised; and debating societies (admirable in. favour of virtue. For eloquence, we must ascend as stitutions, under proper regulations) would hardly be high as the days of Barrow and Jeremy Taylor: and tolerated' either at Oxford or Cambridge. It is comeven there, while we are delighted wită their energy, monly answered to any animadversions upon the elo.

quence of the English pulpit, that a clergyman is to The courtly phrase was, that Dr. Part was not a pro-recommend himself

, noi by his eloquence, but by the ducible man, The same phrase was used for the neglect purity of his life, and the soundness of his doctrine ; of Paley,

an objection good enough, if any connection could be

pointed out between eloquence, heresy, and dissipa. Jealousy, rage, and revenge, exist among gamesters in their tion: but, if it is possible for a man to live well, worst and most frantic excesses, and end frequently in conpreach well, and teach well, at the same time, such sequences of the most atrocious violence and outrage. By of these good qualities, are dúller than the dulness can oppose. From what source are we to trace a very large objections, resting upon a supposed incompatibility perpetual

agitation the malignant passions spurn and over they defend.

number of those murders, sanctioned or palliated indeed by The clergy are apt to shelter themselves under the custom, but which stand at the tribunal of God precisely plea, that subjects so exhausted are utterly incapable upon the same grounds with

every other species of murder? of novelty; and, in the very strictest sense of the From the gaming-table, from the nocturnal receptacles of word novelty, meaning that which was never said be distraction and frenzy, the duellist rushes with his hand fore, at any time, or in any place, this may be truc

lifted up against his brother's life!-Those who are as yet enough, or the first principles of morals; but the however calm their natural temperament, however meek

on the threshold of these habits should be warned, that modes of expanding, illustrating, and entorcing a par. and placable their disposition, yet that, by the events which ticular theme are capable of infinite variety; and, if every moment arise, they stand exposed to the ungovernathey were not, this might be a good reason for preach. ble fury of themselves and others. In the midst of fraud, ing commonplace sermons, but is a very bad one for protected by menace on the one hand, and on the other, of publishing them.

despair; irritated by a recollection of the meanness of the We had great hopes, that Dr. Rennel's Sermons remediless ruin has been inflicted; in the midst of these

artifices and the baseness of the hands by which utter and would have proved an exception to the character we feelings of horror and distraction it is, that the voice of have given of sermons in general; and we have read brethren's blood “crieth unto God from the ground"-"and through his present volume with a conviction rather now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her that he has misapplied, than that he wants, talents for mouth to receive thy brother's blood from thy hand." Not pulpit eloquence. The subjects of his sermons, four-only THOU who actually sheddest that blood, but THOU teen in number, are, 1. The consequences of the vice who art the artificer of death--thou who administerest in. of gaming: 2. On old age: 3. Benevolence exclusive them-improvest the skill in them-sharpenest the propen

centives to these habits who disseminatest the practice of ly an evangelical virtue: 4. The services rendered to sity to them at the hands will it be required, surely, at the English nation by the Church of England, a mo- the tribunal of God in the next world, and perhaps, in most tive for liberality to ihe orphan children of indigent instances, in his distributive and awful dispensations toministers : 5. On the grounds and regulations of na. wards thee and thine here on earth.' tional joy: 6. On the connection of the duties of love. ing the brotherhood, fearing God, and honouring the first serinon, we are sorry so soon to change our eulo

Having paid this tribute of praise to Dr. Rennel's King : 7. On the guilt of blood-thirstiness: 8..on gium into censure, and to blame him for having selectatonement : 9. A visitation sermon: 10. Great Brited for publication so many sermons touching directly ain's naval strength, and insular situation, a cause of and indirectly upon the French Revolution. We con. gratitude to Almighty God: 11. Ignorance productive fess ourselves long since wearied with this kind of disof atheism, anarchy, and superstition : 12, 13, 14. On courses, bespattered with blood and brains, and ring, the sting of death, the strength of sin, and the victory ing eternal changes upon atheism, cannibalism, and over them both by Jesus Christ. Dr. Rennel's first sermon, upon the consequences of lution there can be but one opinion ; but the subject is

apostasy. Upon the enormities of the French Revo. gaming, is admirable for its strength of language, its not fit for the pulpit. The public are disgusted with sound good sense, and the vigour with which it com- it ta saiety; and we can never help remembering, that bats that detestable vice. From this sermon, we shall, this politico-orthodox rage in the mouth of a preacher with great pleasure, make an extract of some length. may be profitable as well as sincere. Upon such sub

• Farther to this sordid habit the gamester joins a disposi- jects as the murder of the Queen of France, and the tion to FRAUD, and that of the meanest cast. To those who great events of these days, it is not possible to endure soberly and fairly appreciate the real nature of hunan ac- the draggling and the daubing of such a ponderous tions, nothing appears more inconsistent than that societies limner as Dr. Rennel, after the etherial touches of Mr. of men, who have incorporated themselves for the express Burke. In events so truly horrid in themselves, the purpose of gaming, should disclaim fraud or indirection, or field is so easy for a declaimer, that we set little value ciates whose crimes would reflect disgrace on them. Surely upon the declamation ; and the mind, on such occathis, to a con iderate mind, is as solemn and refined a ban- sions, so easily outruns ordinary description, that we ter as can well be exhibited: for when we take into view are apt to feel more, before a mediocre oration begins, the vast latitude allowed by the most upright gamesters, than it even aims at inspiring. when we reflect that, according to their precious casuistry We are surprised that Dr. Rennel, from among the every advantage may be legitimately taken of the young, great number of subjects which he must have disthe unwary, and the inebriated,

which superior coolness; cussed in the pulpit (the interest in which must be skill, address, and activity can supply, we must look upon pretences to honesty as a most shameless aggravation of permanent and universal) should have published such their crimes. Even if it were possible that, in his own prac- an empty and frivolous sermon as that upon the victotices, a man might be a PAIR GAMESTER, yet, for the result of ry of Lord Nelson ; a sermon good enough for the gar. deeply accountable to God, his country, and his conscience. The Porcupine, or the True Briton, may pass

for elo. the extended frauds committed by his fellows, he stands rulity of joy, when the phrases, and the exultation of tions of men, a large majority of whom subsist by fraud; quence or sense; but utterly unworthy of the works of to habits calculated to poison the source and principle of all a man who aims at a place among the great teachers integrity, he gives efficacy, countenance, and concurrence of morality and religion. Even his virtues he suffers to be subsidiary to the cause of Dr. Rennel is apt to put on the appearance of a holy vice. He sees with calmness, depredation committed daily bully, an evangelical swaggerer, as if he could carry and hourly in his company, perhaps under his very roof. his point against infidelity by big words and strong Yet men of this description declaim (so desperately deceit- abuse, and kick and cuff men into Christians. It is a tul is the heart of man) against the very knaves they cherish and protect, and whom, perhaps, with some poor soph- very easy thing to talk about the shallow impost. istical refuge for

a worn-out conscience, they even imitate, ures, and the silly ignorant sophisms of Voltaire, Rous. To such, let the Scripture speak with emphatical decision- seau, Condorcet, D'Alembert, and Volney, and to say When thou savest a thief, then thou consentedst with him.' that Hume is not worth answering. This affectation

of contempt will not do. While these pernicious wriThe reader will easily observe, in this quotation, a ters have power to allure from the Church great num. command of language, and a power of style, very su- bers of proselytes, it is better to study them diligent. perior to what is met with in the great mass of ser. ly, and to reply to them satisfactorily, than to veil inmons. We shall make one more extract.

solence, want of power, or want of industry, by a pre. • But in addition to fraud, and all its train of crimes, pro- sering Christians to suppose that such writers are

tended contempt; which may leave infidels and was into the composition of a gamester: a most ungovernable abused, because they are feared ; and not answered, TEROCITY OF DISPOSITION, however for a time disguised and because they are unanswerable. While every body, latent, is invariably the result of his system of conduct. I was abusing and despising Mr. Godwin, and while Mr.1

Godwin was, among a certain description of under This passage, at first, struck us to be untrue ; and standings, increasing every day in popularity, Mr. Mal. we could not immediately recollect the afflictions Dr. thus took the trouble of refuting him; and we hear | Rennel alluded to, till it occurred to us, that he must no more of Mr. Godwin. We recommend this exam- undoubtedly mean the eight hundred and fifty actions ple to the consideration of Dr. Rennel, who seems to which, in the course of eighteen months, have been think it more useful and pleasant, to rail than to fight. brought against the clergy for non-residence.

After the world has returned to its sober senses upon Upon the danger to be apprehended from Roman the merits of the ancient philosophy, it is amusing Catholics in this country, Dr. Rennel is laughable. enough to see a few bad heads bawling for the restora. We should as soon dream that the wars of York and tion of exploded errors and past infatuation. We have Lancaster would break out afresh, as that the Pro. some dozen of plethoric phrases about Aristotle, who testant religion in England has any thing to apprehend is, in the estimation of the Doctor, et res et sutor bo from the machinations of Catholics. To such #scheme nus, and every thing else ; and to the neglect of whose as that of Catholic emancipation, which has for its works he seems to attribute every moral and physical object to restore their natural rights to three or four evil under which the world has groaned for the last millions of men, and to allay the fury of religious century. Dr. Rennel's admiration of the ancients is hatred, Dr. Rennel is, as might be expected, a very so great, that he considers the works of Homer to be strenuous antagonist. Tine, which lifts up the veil the region and depository of natural law and natural of political mystery, will inform us if the Doctor has religion. Now, if, by natural religion, is meant the taken that side of the question which may be as lucrawill of God collected from his works, and the necessi- tive to himself as it is inimical to human happiness, ty man is under of obeying it, it is rather extraordi- and repugnant to enlightened policy. nary that Homer should be so good a natural theolo of Dr. Rennel's talents as a reasoner, we certainly gian, when the divinities he has painted are certainly have formed no very high opinion. Unless dogmatí. a more drunken, quarrelsome, adulterous, intriguing, cal assertion, and the practice (but too common among lascivious set of beings, than are to be met with in the theological writers) of taking the thing to be proved, most profligate court in Europe. There is, every now for part of the proof, can be considered as evidence of a and then, some plain coarse morality in Homer; but logical understanding, the specimens of argument Dr. the most bloody revenge, and the most savage cruelty Rennel has afforded us are very insignificant. For in warfare, the ravishing of women, and the sale of putting obvious truths into vehement language ; for men, &c. &c. &c. are circumstances which the old expanding and adorning moral instruction ; this gen. bard seems to relate as the ordinary events of his tleman certainly possesses considerable talents : and times, without ever dreaming that there could be much if he will moderate his insolence, steer clear of theo. harm in them; and if it be urged that Homer took his logical metaphysics, and consider rather those great ideas of right and wrong from a barbarous age, that is laws of Christian practice, which must interest man. just saying, in other words, that Homer had very im- kind through all ages, than the petty questions which perfect ideas of natural law.

are important to the Chancellor of the Exchequer for Having exhausted all his powers of eulogium upon the time being, he may live beyond his own days, and the times that are gone, Dr. Rennel indemifies himself become a star of the ihird or fourth magnitude in the by the very novel practice of declaiming against the English Church. present age. It is an evil age an adulterous age-an ignorant age--an apostate age-and a foppish age. Of the propriety of the last epithet, our readers may per. haps be more convinced, by calling to mind a class of JOHN BOWLES. (EDINBURGH REVIEW, 1802.) fops not unusually designated by that epithet-men clothed in profound black, with large canes, and Reflections at the conclusion of the War: Being a sequel to strange amorphous hats--of big speech, and impera

Reflections on the Political and Moral State of Society at tive presence-talkers about Plato-great affecters of

the Close of the Eighteenth Century. The Third Edi

tion, with Additions. By John Bowles, Esq. senility-despisers of women, and all the graces of life-fierce foes to common sense-abusive of the If this piece be, as Mr. Bowles asserts,* the death. living, and approving no one who has not been dead warrant of the liberty and power of Great Britain, we for at least a century. Such fops, as vain, and as shal. will venture to assert, that it is also the death-warrant low as their fraternity in Bond Street, differ from these of Mr. Bowles's literary reputation ; and that the only as Gorgonius differed from Rufillus.

people of this island, if they verify his predictions, In the ninth Discourse (p. 226,) we read of St. Paul, and cease to read his books, whatever they may lose that he had an heroic zeal, directed, rather than in political greatness, will evince no small improve. bounded, by the nicest and most profound humility:' ment in critical acumen. There is a political, as well This is intended for a fine piece of writing ; but it is as a bodily hypochondriasis ; and there are empirics withoupt meaning : for, if words have any limits, it is always on the watch to make their prey, either of the a contradiction in terms to say of the same person, at one or of the other. Dr. Solomon, Dr. 'Brodum, and the same time, that he is nicely discreet, and heroi. Mr. Bowles, have all commanded their share of the cally zealous ; or that he is profoundly humble, and public attention : but the two former gentlemen con. imperatively dignified : and if Dr. Rennel means that tinue to flourish with undiminished splendour ; while St. Paul displayed these qualities at different times, the patients of the latter are fast dwindling away, and then could not any one of them direct or soften the bis drugs falling into disuse and contempt. other.

The truth is, if Mr. Bowles had begun his literary Sermons are so seldom examined with any consi- career at a period when superior discrimination, and derable degree of critical vigilance, that we are apt to profound thought, not vulgar violence, and the eternal discover in them sometimes a great laxity of asser- repetition of rabble-rousing words, were necessary to tion : such as the following :

literary reputation, he would never have emerged

from that obscurity to which he will soon return. Labour to be undergone, afflictions to be borne, contra- The intemperate passions of the public, not his own dictions to be endured, danger to be braved, interest to be talents, have given him some temporary reputation ; despised in the best and most flourishing ages of the church, and now, when men hope and fear with less eagerness are the perpetual badges of far the greater part of those who than they have been lately accustomed to do, Mr. take up their cross and follow Christ.'

Bowles will be compelled to descend from that mo.

derate eminence, where no man of real genius would * I cannot read the name of Malthus without adding my ever have condescended to remain. tribute of affection for the memory of one of the best men The pamphlet is written in the genuine spirit of the that ever lived. He loved philosophical truth more than any man I ever knew,-was full of practical wisdom, -and * It is impossible to conceive the mischievous power of never indulged in contemptuous fe@lings against his inferi- the corrupt alarmists of those days, and the despotic man. ors in understanding.

ner in which they exercised their authority. They were | Page 318.

fair objects for the Edinburgh Review.

Windham and Burke School; though Mr. Bowles can. trample on every nation which co-operates with the not be called a servile copyist of either of these gen. Divine intention. tlemen, as he has rejected the logic of the one,

and In the 60th page, Mr. Bowles explains what is the eloquence of the other, and imitated them only in meant by Jacobinism; and, as a concluding proof of their headstrong violence, and exaggerated abuse. the justice with which the character is drawn, triThere are some men who continue to astonish and umphantly quotes the case of a certain R. Mountain, please the world, even in the support of a bad cause. who was tried for damning all kings and all govern They are mighty in their fallacies, and beautiful in ments upon earth; for, adds R. Mountain, 'I am a their errors. Mr. Bowles sees only one half of the Jacobin. No one can more thoroughly detest and precedent; and thinks, in order to be famous, that he despise that restless spirit of political innovation, has nothing to do but to be in the wrong.

which, we suppose, is meant by the name of Jaco. War, eternal war, till the wrongs of Europe are binism, than we ourselves do; but we were highly avenged, and the Bourbons restored, is the master- amused with this proof, ab ebriis sutoribus, of the principle of Mr. Bowles's political opinions, and the prostration of Europe, the last hour of human felicity, object for which he declaims through the whole of the perdition of man, discovered in the crapulous eructhe present pamphlet.

tations of a drunken cobler. The first apprehensions which Mr. Bowles seems to This species of evidence might certainly have esentertain, are of the boundless ambition and perfidious caped a common observer: but this is not all; there character of the First Consul, and of that military are other proofs of treason and sedition, equally despotism he has established, which is not only im- remote, sagacious and profound. Many good subjects pelled by the love of conquest, but interested, for its are not very much pleased with the idea of the Whig own preservation, to desire the overthrow of other Club dining together ; but Mr. Bowles has the merit of states. Yet the author informs us, immediately after, first calling the public attention to the alarming practhat the life of Buonaparte is exposed to more dangers tice of singing after dinner at these political meetings. than that of any other individual in Europe who is He speaks with a proper horror of tavern dinners, not actually in the last stage of an incurable disease ; and that his death, whenever it happens, must involve where wine serves only to intame disloyalty--where toasts

---where conviviality is made a stimulus to disaffectionthe dissolution of that machine of government, of are converted into a vehicle of sedition--and where the which he must be considered not only as the sole di- powers of harmony are called forth in the cause of Discord rector, but the main spring. Confusion of thought, by those hireling singers, who are equally ready to invoke we are told, is one of the truest indications of terror the Divine favour on the head of their King, or to strain and the panic of this alarmist is so very great, that their venal throats in chanting the triumphs of his bitterhe cannot listen to the consolation which he himself est enemies.' affords : for it appears, upon summing up these perils, All complaint is futile, which is not followed up that we are in the utmosi danger of being destroyed with appopriate remedies. If Parliament, or Catarrh, by a despot, whose system of government, as dread. not save us, Dignum and Sedgwick will quaver away fúl as himself, cannot survive him, and who, in all the King, shake down the House of Lords, and warble human probability, will be shot or hanged, before he us into all the horrors of republican government. can execute any one of his projects against us. When, in addition to these dangers, we reflect also

We have a good deal of flourishing in the beginning upon those with which our national happiness is me. of the pamphlet, about the effect of the moral sense naced, by the present thinness of ladies' petticoats upon the stability of governments; that is, as Mr. (p. 78), temerity may hope our salvation, but how can Bowles explains it, the power which all old governo reason promise it? ments derive from the opinion entertained by the One solitary gleam of comfort, indeed beams upon people of the justice of their rights. If this sense of us in reading the solemn devotion of this modern Cur. ancient right be (as is here confidently asserted) tius to the cause of his King and countrystrong enough ultimately to restore the Bourbons, why are we to fight for that which will be done with My attachment to the British monarchy, and to the out any fighting at all? And, if it be strong enough reigning family, is rooted in my heart's core."--My anxito restore, why was it weak enough to render restora- cty for the British throne, pending the dangers to which, in tion necessary?

common with every other throne, it has lately been ex

posed, has embittered my choicest comforts. And I must To notice every singular train of reasoning into solemnly vow, before Almighty God, to devote myself, to which Mr. Bowles falls, is not possible and in the the end of my days, to the maintenance of that throne. copious choice of evils, we shall, from feelings of mercy, take the least.

Whether this patriotism be original, or whether it be It must not be forgotten, he observes, that those copied from the Upholsterer in Foote's Farces, who sits rights of government,

which, because they are ancient, up whole nights watching over the British constitution, are recognized by the moral sense as lawful, are the we shall not stop to inquire ; when the practical effect only ones which are compatible with civil 'liberty of sentiments is good, we would not diminish their governors and the govemed, are determinable by life to the service of his King and country, and So that all questions of right and wrong, between the merits by investigating their origin. We seriously

commend in Mr. Bowles this future dedication of his chronology alone. Every political institution is favourable to liberty, not according to its spirit, but in pro- consider it as a virtual promise that he will write ne portion to the antiquity of its date ; and the slaves of more in their defence. No wise or govd man has ever: Great Britain are groaning under the trial by jury, thought of either,

but with admiration and respect. while the freemen of Asia exult in the bold privilege That they should be exposed to that ridicule, by the transmitted to them by their fathers, of being tram forward imbecility of friendshis, from which they pled to death by elephants.

appear to be protected by intrinsic worth, is so painful In the eighth page, Mr. Bowles thinks that France,

a consideration, that the very thought of it, we are if she remains without a king, will conquer all Europe ; persuaded, will induce Mr. Bowles to desist from and, in the nineteenth page, all the miseries of France writing on political subjects. are stated to be a judgment of heaven for their cruelty to their king: and in the 33d page, they are discovered to proceed from the perfidy of the same king to this country in the American contest. So that cer DR. LANGFORD. (EDINBURGH REVIEW, 1802.) tain misfortunes proceed from the maltreatment of a person, who had himself occasioned these identical Anniversary Sermon of the Royal Humane Society. By W inisfortunes before he was maltreated; and while

Langford, D. D. Printed for F. and C. Rivington. Providence is compelling the French, by every species An accident, which happened to the gentleman g. of affliction, to resume monarchical government, they gaged in reviewing this sermon proves, in the mst are to acquire such extraordinary vigour, froin not striking manner, the importance of this charityfor acting as Providence would wish, that they are to restoring to liso persons in whom the vital power is

suspended. He was discovered, with Dr. Langford's | interfere, it would be presumptuous and impious to discourse lying open before him, in a state of the most pronounce the purposes for which he interferes; and profound sleep, from which he could not, by any ihen adds, that it has pleased God, within these few means, be awakened for a great great length of time. years, to give us a most awful lesson of the vanity of By attending, however, to the rules prescribed by the agriculture and importation without piety, and that he Humane Society, flinging in the sinoke of tobacco, has proved this to the conviction of every thinking applying hot flannels, and carefully removing the dis- mind. course itself to a great distance, the critic was restored * Though he interpose not (says Mr. Nares) by posito his disconsolate brothers.

tive miracle, he influences by means unknown to all The only account he couid give of himself was, that but hiinselt, and directs the winds, the rain, and the he remembers reading on, regularly, till he came to glorious beams of heaven to execute his judgment, or the following pathetic description of a drowned trades. fulfil his merciful designs.-Now, either the wind, the man, beyond which he recollects nothing.

rain, and the beams, are here represented to act as But to the individual himself, as a man, let us add the they do in the ordinary course of nature, or they are interruption to all the temporal business in which his inte not. If they are, how can their operations be consid. rest was engaged. To him indeed now apparently lost, the ered as a judgment on sins ? and if they are not, what world is as nothing; but it seldom happens, that man can are their extraordinary operations, but positive mira. live for himself alone: society parcels out its concerns in cles? So that the Archdeacon, after denying that any various connections; and froin one head issue waters body knows when, how, and why the Creator works & which run down in many channels. The spring being sud- miracle, proceeds to specify the time, instrument, and denly cut off, what confusion must follow in the streams object of a miraculous scarcity; and then, assuring us which have flowed from its source? It may be, that all the expectations reasonably raised of approach prosperi

that the elements were employed to execute the judg. ty, to those who have embarked in the same occupation, ments of Providence, denies that this is any proof of a may at once disappear; and the important interchange of positive miracle. commercial faith be broken off, before it could be brought Having given us this specimen of his talents for to any advantageous conclusion.'

theological metaphysics, Mr. Nares commences his This extract will suffice for the style of the sermon. attack upon the farmers ; accuses them of cruelty and The charity itself is above all praise.

avarice; raises the old cry ot' monoply; and expresses some doubts, in a note, whether the better way would not be, to subject their granaries to the control of an

excise man; and to levy heavy penalties upon those,

in whose possession corn, beyond a certain quantity tó ARCHDEACON NARES. (EDINBURGH REVIEW, be fixed by law, should be found.-This style of rea1802.)

soning is pardonable enough in those who argue from

the belly rather than the brains; but in a well fed, and A Thanksgiving for Plenty, and Warning against Avance. I well educated clergyman, who has never been disturb

A Sermon. By the Reverend Robert Nares, Archdeacon ed by hunger from the free exercise of cultivated don: Printed for the Author, and sold by Rivingtons, talents, it merits the severest reprehension. The far. St. Paul's Churchyard.

mer has it not in his power to raise the price of com;

he never has fixed and never can fix it. He is unques. For the swarm of ephemeral sermons which issue tionably justified in receiving any price he can obtain : from the press,

we are principally indebted to the vani- for it happens very beautifully, that the effect of his ty of popular preachers, who are puffed up by female efforts to better his fortune, is as beneficial to the pub. praises into a belief, that what may be delivered, with lic, as if their motive had not been selfish. The poor are great propriety, in a chapel full of visitors and friends, not to be supported, in time of famine, by abatement is fit for the deliberate attention of the public, who of price on the part of the farmer, but by the subscripcannot be influenced by the decency of a clergyman's tion of residentiary canons, archdeacons, and all men private life, flattered by the sedulous politeness of his rich in public or private property; and to these submanners, or misled by the fallacious circumstances of scriptions the farmer should contribute according to voice and action. A clergyman cannot be always con- the amount of his fortune. To insist that he should sidered as reprehensible for preaching an indifferent take a less price when he can obtain a greater, is to sermon ; because, to the active piety, and correct life, insist upon laying on that order of men the whole burwhich the profession requires, many an excellent man den of supporting the poor; a convenient system may not unite talents for that species of composition ; enough in the eyes of a rich ecclesiastic; and objec but every man who prints, imagines he gives to the tionable only, because it is impracticable, pernicious, orld something which they had not before, either in

and unjust.* matter or style; that he has brought forth new truths,

The question of the com trade has divided society or adorned old ones; and when, in lieu of novelty and into two parts--those who have any talents for reason. ornament, we can discover nothing but trite imbecility, ing, and those who have not. We owe an apology to the law must take its course, and the delinquent suffer our readers, for taking any notice of errors that have that mortification from which vanity can rarely be ex. been so frequently, and so unanswerably exposed; but pected to escape, when it chooses dulness for the mini- when they are echoed from the bench and the pulpit, ster of its gratifications. The learned author, after observing that a large some degree of importance to the silliest and most

the dignity of the teacher may perhaps communicate army praying would be a much finer spectacle than a

extravagant doctrines. large army fighting, and after entertaining us with the

No reasoning can be more radically erroneous than old anecdote of Xerxes, and the flood of tears, proceeds that upon which the whole of Mr. Nares's sermon is to express his sentiments on the late scarcity, and the founded. The most benevolent, the most Christian, present abundance : then, stating the manner in which and the most profitable conduct the farmer can pure the Jews were governed by the inmediate interference sue, is, to sell' his commodities for the highest price of God, and informing us, ihat other people expect not, he can possibly obtain. This advice, we think, is nor are taught to look for, miraculous interference, to not in any great danger of being rejected: we wish punish or reward them, he proceeds to talk of the visi- we were equally sure of success in counselling the tation of Providence, for the purposes of trial, warn- Reverend Mr. Nares to attend, in future, to practical, ing, and correction, as if it were a truth of which he rather than theoretical questions about provisions. had never doubted. Still, however, he contends, though the Deity does * If it is pleasant to notice the intellectual growth of an

individual, it is still more pleasant to see the public grow• To this exceedingly foolish man, the first years of ing wiser.' This absurdity of attributing the high price of Etonian Education were intrusted. How is it possible to corn to the combinations of farmers, was the common noninfiict a greater inisfortune on a country, than to fill up sense talked in the days of my youth. I remember when such an office with such an officer?

ten judges out of twelve laid down this doctrine in their

charges to the various grand juries on the circuits, The | This was another gentleman of the alarmist tribes lowest attorney's clerk is now better instructed

« PreviousContinue »