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disobedienhow he likink he desi imagiu
concerning the genuineness of the Pentateuch, he quotes Milton, on 'Man's first disobedience,' &c. and, out of season, snatches an opportunity to tell us, how he likes the luminous sentences, and flowery periods of Burke,' we think he degrades the solid by the frothy, and speaks to our feelings and imagination, when he should be convincing our reason. The following passage also is very faulty in this respect: in
• The sons of Britain may, in after times, be justly proud that this language of Burke was their native tongue ; and the names of Newton, of Bacon, and of Lucke, 'compatriot with their own :' they may be expected to preserve, with reverential care, their laurels from the blast of calumny, which would wither and destroy them : they will as far as in them lies, never suffer them to be torn from those brows they so justly adorn.'
Upon the whole, we think this little essay no contemptible evidence for the Divine Origin of the Jewish religion, and cert tainly superior to many academic efforts or similar occasions. The writer seems a freshman at the bar of criticism, but we do not despair of his graduating with no dishonour to hiinself, or to his alma maler.
Art. XIII. The Greek-English derivative Dictionary, showing in Eng
lish Characters, the Greek Originals of such Words, in the English Language, as are derived from the Greek: and comprising correct Explanations from the most approved Lexicographers, of the Meaning of each Word. By William Burke. pp. 240. 12mo. Price 4s. 6d. Johnson. 1806.
W e are not disposed to deny, that a work of this nature has
been long wanted; or that Mr. Burke's plan is, on the whole, judicious. Unfortunately, the execution by no means corresponds with the goodness of the design. We shall not cavil about dubious etymologies in general, nor about the author's neglect of conformity and analogy, in the derivations he proposes; but proceed directly to notice several faults, which materially detract froin the merit of the work. . .
The first blemish that struck us, was the introduction of such words as the following: acarpy, barrenness; elench, argument; lychnobite, one that turns the day into night! (properly, who lives by candle light) parergy, something done by the bye; evangely, the gospel; arpagus, a child that dies in the cradle! (we cannot account for this egregious absurdity ;) kenodory, vain: glory; pseudodox, false glory, &c. &c. These, we take upon us to say, are not English, nor Greek, nor anything else, but equally illegitimate and ugly. While the author has admitted these aliens to the rank of English words, he has
shameshamefully excluded many that have been long naturalized, and have obtained the most respectable patronage. The reader will look in vain for such words as the following, many of which are of important and frequent use, and all are genuine and well recommended:: Muse, Oread, Dryad, Nereid, Archangel, Archbishop, Archdeacon, chasm, chart, paper, stereotype, catechist, catechism, diaphanous, (not diaphanic) diagnostic, hectic, dipterous, apterous, &c. hyperbola, parabola, Triad, Iliad, Arcturus, Pleiades, Orion, pneumatic, aeronaut, cryptogamia, craniognomy, oryctology, conchology, entomology; and many more of less common application Words of interior importance in all these classes are allowed a place in this dictionary.
We have also observed several other errors in the course of reference; for instance, autography (instead of autograph) is defined, a handwriting or manuscript-arsenic is derived from aner and nicao, instead of arsen, electricity is derived from clco to draw, instead of elecéron, amber. The most common meaning of onyx, a gem, is omitted, and it is said to be English for the finger nail. The following explanations are worth noticing; Anabaptist, one who holds or practices adult baptism, and rejects infant baptism! If any person could be found, who admitted infant baptism, and repeated it by adult. baptism, he would certainly be an anabaptist : but Mr. B's definition is wholly inapplicable. Monotheism the doctrine of the Unitarians !-very true; and we are happy to add that all 'orthodox Christians of the present day are Unitarians. Phlogiston, a chemical LIQUOR very inflammable; the inflammable part of any substance !
We shall dismiss this well intended and really useful work, by submitting, to those of our readers who need it, the propriety of deferring their purchase till they hear of a new and corrected edition. .
Art. XIV. The Old Testament illustrated : being Explanations of re
markable Facts, and Passages in the Jewish Scriptures, which have .. been objected to by Unbelievers and the proper understanding of
which may be rendered conducive to a further acquaintance with the Christian Dispensation, in a series of Lectures to Young Persons. By
Samuel Parker, 12mo pp. 376. Price 6s. Vidler 1805. ? N O department of literature has been more generally cultivated
of laie than Biblical Science, and the accessions which it has received from the labours of the learned, have been great and important. The volumes of the traveller, the historian, the antiquary, the naturalist, and the poet, have been assiduously explored and made to contribute to the elucidation of the sacred writings. But we are sorry to have observed a pre
-vailing tendency to carry these inquiries too far; to deduce, from ordinary causes, events in which the finger of God is manifest. Explanations of this description may.serve to shew the ingenuity of their author, but they indicate a disposition to lessen our veneration for the Scriptures, to violate the sanctuarv, and to 'rush in where angels fear to tread. Our readers will have occasion to apply these observations in the course of the present article.
The object of the work under review has been to select from the writings of others,.... passages which have a tendency to elucidate various parts of the Old Testament, and to remove, or lessen, the objections of unbelievers." The plan is certainly a good one, but we are of opinion that it might have been better executed. The author has in fact done little or nothing more than publish the contents of his common place book, and we have frequently been not a little surprized at his persevering abstinence from original observtion, where the subject evidently required it. His materials are derived from various sources principally Priestley, Farmer, Geddes, the new edition of Calmet's Dictionary, and Scripture Illustrated, by the Editor of that * work.
As the contents of this book have been long before the public, we make the following extract from the lecture on the Story of Balaam, merely for the purpose of recording our indignant protest against so criminal a prostitution of sacred criticism.
"Dr. Geddes will not allow that there was any miracle in the case." “To me,” says Dr. G.“ There appears nothing so strange in the story of the ass, but the manner of telling it, and that ceases to be wonderful, when we recollect the oriental mode of narrating. Balaam is riding on his ass, on as yet a doubtful errand. The ass startles at something and turns him aside from the way, thrusts her master's leg against a wall, and at length falls down under him. All this he takes for a bad omen, and a sign that his journey is not agreeable to God. God is thence conceived to be angry with him, and an imaginary dialogue ensues between God and Balaam, as had before been supposed to be held between Balaam and his ass."
' Dr. Geddes then remarks, I believe there are few Gentlemen who have not held such dialogues with their horses. I have frequently conversed with mine, and indeed an occurrence once happened to me, not unsimilar to what happened to Balaam.'
We feel ourselves compelled to say that we cannot altogether acquit Mr. Parker of blame on this occasion. These lectures were delivered to young persons, and we are not disposed to approve of presenting such rash and unballowed speculations to young and uninstructed minds; nor does it appear to us that the bad effects which are likely to result from such a mode of instruction, are by any means sufficiently counteracted by the
false: false candour of the following observations, with which Mr. P. concludes the lecture.
“After having given you, my young friends, the sentiments of different writers on this subject, I must leave you to embrace that hypothesis which may after due thought seem to you best supported by solid argument.
'I will however, just remark, that had we not reason to believe that the Jewish dispensation was the dispensation of miracles, and also that Balaam uttered expressions which may be viewed as indicative of a prophetic spirit--we might be inclined to consider Dr. Geddes's interpretation, not only as ingenious, but satisfactory." But allowing that miracles were wrought under the Jewish oeconomy, and that Balaam did predict future events; perhaps there may not be that difficulty in admitting that there was something miraculous in the circumstance referred to. — Whether it was a real or only a visionary transaction may still be a matter of doubt."
This is far from being the only portion of the work which we condemn on siinilar grounds. On the subject of religion, especially in a tutor, we expect serious mature decision, not a plausible indifference, always pernicious, and usually criminal. Friendship would never dictate such a careless tone on a question of prudential, commercial, or hiterary importance.
Art. XV. Strictures on the Abolition of the Slave Trade, addressed
principally to the Christian Church. 8vo. pp. 26. Price ls. Conder,
Williams & Co. 1805. TO the abolition of the slave trade we wish the public mind
to be kept incessantly awake. We therefore deem every benevolent attempt to promote this desirable object, intitled to its share of praise. The writer informs us that these strictures were delivered in the form of a Sermon, on the late fast day; and that they would have appeared in a periodical publication, had not the limits of that work forbidden their insertion. Appearing in their present form before our tribunal, we pronounce ihem the well-meant forcible appeal of a mind suitably alive.to all the serious importance of the subject which they discuss But while the writer acts in his own character by addressing principally the Christian world, and discovers a heart imbued with the genuine principles of the Gospel," he has suffered his zeal to betray him, occasionally, into intemperance. We cannot approve of calling even slave dealers,“ brute beasts." It is io their shame that, being men, they have so far abjured humanity as to display the brutal passions, which treat our fellow men as beasts. But even on such a subject as this, it is not permitted to bring a railing accusation against them. J. S., for thus he subcribes himself, conceives that it is now peculiarly incumbent on Christians to step forward, in their religious capacity, as the
avowed opposers of this gigantic iniquity. He proposes the following modes of resisting it.
1. The prayers of every individual Christian. 2. The pray. ers of every Christian family. 3. The prayers of every devotional assembly. ' 4. The prayers of every Church. 5. A day of Humiliation and Supplication. 5, Church Censures and Excommunication passed upon all Slave dealers and Slave oppress sors.' p. 23.
We conclude with the following remark, which we trust will not be neglected, by those who have the means of applying it. ';
" In every department, society is very corrupt; but after all, murder, a most capital offence, is not (considering our population) very frequent. So guarded is the life of man in this country, that death is certain on cona viction of an offender. No such provision is made for enslaved Africans : a planter may kill his slave without being guilty of murder; the crime i3 . only petty, and often escapes with impunity.
Without charging individuals with the crimes this trade produces, the trade itself is the grand murderer, and therefore ought to be put to death. O my country, erect a scaffold for the execution of this old blood-stained destroyer ; a scaffold so high that his death may be in the face of the whole world." pp. 7, 8.
Art. XVI. Hints to. Young Practitioners in the Study of Landscape
Painting. Illustrated by Ten Engravings intended to shew the different Stages of the Neutral Tint. By J. W. Alston, L. P. To which are added Instructions in the Art of Painting on Velvet. Second Edition,
Svo. pp. 70. Price 7s. 6d. Longman and Co. London, 1806. THIS work is the production of a professional man, who has
combined some of the usual directions for the practice of the art of drawing and the use of colours, &c. into the pamphlet before us. They are very proper to be known, and regarded, especially by beginners. At the same time, we cannot help expressing our wishes, that the theory of the art had been laid a little deeper. The mind should first understand the reasons and causes of effects, to explain which, in a simple manner, is the great use of a master; and after the student has well comprehended what he, proposes to attain, the manner of attaining it will seldom be attended with much difficulty. One reason of this is, that effects are infinitely diversified, whereas written rules are fixed; and young persons cannot be supposed to possess sufficient judgeinent to vary them according to the oco casion.
Perspective should not be postponed to the last, as it is by Mr. A.; this science, with that accurate observation of nature, and of the principles of proportion, keeping, &c. to which it leads, is a necessary acquisition at a much earlier period. Vol. II.