Page images
PDF
EPUB

signed his crown, and is succeeded by his son., and immediate augmentation of his army, as The King of Hanover has, also, at the call of well on account of the excited state of Poland his subjects, granted considerable concessions. as of the proceedings in the other parts of The Emperor of Russia has ordered a large | Europe.

CRITICAL NOTICES.

A Summer in Scotland. By JACOB ABBOTT. | If we suppose now, which may not be far from

With Engravings. New York: Harper the truth, that such a weight would descend and Brothers. 1848.

with a motion of about one mile an hour, the

body would be five hours proceeding to its final Notwithstanding this somewhat unpromising

place of repose. What a march to the grave is title, Mr. ABBOTT has here given the public a

this! Five hours ! alone, unattended, unthought

of, passing steadily on, away from all light and very fresh and interesting narrative of a last

life ; passing, without even a pause, the limit summer's journey. He is a clear writer,

where the last ray of the sun becomes extinct, and sketches vivid pictures of scenery and sa and where the last trace of life forever fails! lient peculiarities of character, in a natural, And what a tomb to come to at last! what si. manly, unaffected style. His fault, or not to lence! what darkness! what desolation ! what call it by that name, since it oftener gives in eternal and motionless rest! At such a depth it dividuality to his writing than it obtrudes itself would seem that almost absolutely nothing could disagreeably, is his dry minuteness of explana ever transpire ; and a human body, seeking there tion, and his too evident consciousness that

its last home, must find one so entirely its own, everything he does or thinks shall be exactly

that probably for ages past and for ages to come, righi-a little touch of pedantry, which his turn

there will have been nothing but its own intru

sion to disturb the death-like repose.” of mind and long experience in teaching and writing on teaching have naturally forced upon

This brings to mind the lines of Lycidas :him. Though this is less apparent in the present book than in others, yet it is still sufficient

" Ay me! whilst thee the shores and sounding ly so to be characteristic and often amusing.

seas Who but Mr. Abbott, for example, would think Wash far away, where'er thy bones are hurl'd, of entertaining us with the following reflections Whether beyond the stormy Hebrides, after witnessing a burial at sea ?

Where thou, perhaps, under the whelming tide

Visit'st the bottom of the monstrous world—". “ It is a common opinion, though undoubtedly a mistaken one, that heavy bodies, sinking at

But we should also remember that when a sea, go down only to a certain depth, when they good man dies, he is not dead. find the water in such a condition, owing to the superincumbent pressure, that it sustains them “ Sunk tho' he be beneath the wat’ry floor; . from any further sinking; and that there each | So sinks the day.star in the ocean bed, one finding its own proper level, floats about for. And yet anon repairs his drooping head, ever. It is true, indeed, that the pressure of the And tricks his beams, and with new-spangled water is enormously increased at great depths ;

ore, but its power of floating heavy bodies depends Flames in the forehead of the morning sky !” upon its density, not upon its pressure. If wa. ter could be compressed itself into very much Mr. Abbott's description generally has much narrower dimensions than it naturally occupies in common with Basil Hall's, though the Capat the surface, so that a large bulk of it could be tain is the more easy. Both have a similar made to occupy a small space, its weight and its passion for explanation and demonstration and buoyant powers would, in that case, be very much a similar want of confidence in the reader's increased. It would become like mercury, and i

acuteness ; yet neither is ever dull. The acit would then be able to float iron, lead, stones, counts of York Cathedral, Edinburgh, Holyin fact, all other bodies lighter than itself. But

rood, Staffa and Iona, and the Newcastle Col. no such effect can be produced upon it. * * « There can be no doubt, therefore, that the

lieries, in this volume, are very entertaining. loaded coffin, in such a case as this, continues

The following observations are just and the descent commenced by its first solemn plunge, timely; they deserve to be widely circulated, as till it reaches the bottom. The average depth embodying the general sentiment of intelligent of the ocean has been ascertained to be five miles. | Americans :

“One of these impressions is, that there is a tion is regarded by thinking men in America as general wish in America that England should be constituting a far less important point of distinc. revolutionized, and a republic founded on the tion between that government and ours than ruins of the monarchy. I think it the duty of would at first be supposed. The prerogative of every American gentleman travelling in Europe the crown is coming to be, in fact it has already to endeavor to remove this impression by stating, become, little else than a name. It is the funcwhat is undoubtedly the fact, that all intelligent tion of requesting, in form, the party to take and well-informed Americans wish well to Eng. / power, which Parliament makes dominant in land and to the English Constitution as it now fact. It is, in a word, public sentiment which stands ; of course, including such gradual im. appoints the head of the administration, in Eng. provements and progress as it is all the time land as well as in America ; the difference being, making to adapt itself to the advancement of civ. that in England it is a part, and in America the ilization, and to the changing spirit of the age. whole of the community whose voice is heard in Such advances are not modifications of the Eng. / forming this public sentiment. It is the existlish Constitution, they are only the working out ence of other features altogether in the British of an essential function of the Constitution it- system which constitutes the real ground of disself; for a capacity to follow and adapt itself to tinction between the political conditions of the the progress of the times, has always been a re two countries." markable feature of this most remarkable bond of union, and is as essential a part of it as the provisions for maintaining the prerogatives of the crown. With this understanding, Americans wish well to the English Constitution as it is.

| The Four Gospels and Acts of the Apostles, in They desire no sudden or violent changes in Eng.

Greek, with English Notes, Critical, Philo lish society, and no interruption to the vast op.

logical and Exegetical; Maps, Inderes, etc., erations of English industry. I do not think together with the Epistles and Apocalypse. Te they wish for any diminution of the extent of whole forming the complete Text of the Nero English power. Wherever this power extends, Testament. For the use of Schools, Colleges, in whatever quarter of the globe, there travellers and Ecclesiastical Seminaries. By Rev. J. can go with safety-there letters can penetrate, A. SPENCER, A.M. New York: Harper & and merchandise be sent and sold. It is true

Brothers. 1847. that pride and ambition have, no doubt, powerfully influenced English statesmen in many of their measures; and English conquest, like all

Dr. Spencer having " witnessed with deep other conquest, has often been characterized by

regret the gradual and almost entire disuse of injustice and cruelty. All political action, as

the Greek Testament as a part of liberal educathe world goes at present, is sadly tainted with tion,” rightly judged " that some effort should selfishness and sin; and English administrations be made to re-introduce the New Testament in undoubtedly share the common characters of hu- | the original into seminaries of sound learning manity. But still, after all, there has probaby throughout the country." One obvious step to this been no government since the world began that was the providing of a suitable school edition, would have exercised the vast powers with

which, strange to say, did not exist. Our own which the British government has been clothed,

experience abundantly verifies Dr. S.'s assertion in a manner more liberal and just, both in respect to her own subjects and to foreign nations, than

that nothing is to be found among the English she has exhibited during the last quarter of a

and Continental issues of the proper dimencentury, and is exhibiting at the present time.

sions. This is the more remarkable, as the The enormous magnitude of the power she

Greek Testament is very much read in the wields, and the extent to which its regulating | English schools and universities, and that, too. effects are felt throughout the world, exert a vast | by a not very advanced class of students; and influence on the extension and security of com. there are several good English editions of some merce, and, consequently, on the welfare and of the Gospels separately, and some very good physical comforts of the human race. In fact, it ones of the Acts alone. It was suggested to Dr. must be so. The English mind is in advance of Spencer by Prof. Anthon, whose pupil be had all other mind in the Old World ; they who ex

been, that he should prepare an edition himself; ercise it are superior to all others on that stage ;

and we do not think the Professor has any and if we, on this side of the Atlantic, can claim

reason to be ashamed of his pupil or to repent anything like an equality with them, it is only because we are English ourselves, as well as

of his suggestion. The volume contains about they.

800 pages, two-thirds of which is occupied by " Americans accordingly wish well to Eng. | the part commented upon. The notes, without land. It is true, they are pleased to witness the being superabundant or otiose, are in general advances which the English Constitution is mak sufficiently explicit. We extract two as specing, especially as they tend in the same direction | imens, one on Acts ii. 3:in which society is advancing in America. We might even desire to accelerate this advance a

dianepi fóuevas, dispertita, divided, dis. little in some things. But there is no desire to see a violent revolution, which should aim attributed to each person. Comp. Heb. ii. 4: making England democratic in form. In fact, ynão cau Wosi Tugós, i. e. the flame appeared in the monarchical element in the English Constitu- | ihe pyramidal or pointed form like tongues. The Hebrew idiom speaks of the fire licking up fore they were submitted to the writers. It what it consumes.Exádios. This verb seems to was, however, left to their option to assign to have no nominative : it is variously supplied. each of them either the real or a fictitious Bloomfeld gives εκάθισε (scil. εχάστη των name, and to arrange the series in any order gawao@v) Šošva Éxao Tov aútūv, with the they pleased." sense, and there were seen, as it were, tongues

It is quite curious to see how these six of fire distributing themselves, and settling upon

sketches have been applied to three different them, one on each.'”

stories. The effect on the fancy in reading

them consecutively is almost ludicrously perPerhaps hardly stress enough is laid here on plexing. We have to take the entire imagery the error of our received version, which trans of one story and suddenly transpose and apply lates dicus pilónevas as if it were oxusóusvár it to another, entirely disconnected and differor diaoxiaouevas, “ cloven.”

ent. The idea might be productive of still more amusing incongruities by having a few

more sketches, of life, rather than of scenery, "SELOld a povedregous, much devoted to relig.

and a larger number of writers. The same ious things,' more than others, on which the

scenery might thus be made to apply to tragedy Athenians prided themselves. The word is susceptible of both a good and a bad sense; the for

and comedy ; one illustration could give an mer is here to be preferred. St. Paul never could

“affecting narrative," another a “ thrilling have begun his address in the offensive manner

sketch," another a “tale of fashionable life," _ in which the English version leads one to sup.

in short, if a little care were used in getting up pose that he did. His object was to conciliate, the sketches, there is no end to the variety of not harshly reprehend; hence he says, “Ye incident that might be strung upon them. It men of Athens, I perceive that you are exceed- should be suggested to some publisher to issue ingly devoted to the worship of the deities ;' | a dozen sketches at once and advertise for wriwhich remark they would receive as a high com ters, offering to take the twenty best and most pliment to themselves and to their city."

diverse that should be written in a given time,

and publish them, with the sketches, in a volWe have but one fault to find with this edi

ume. tion. The root of almost every irregularly

But these tales have great merit, aside from inflected verb is given, after the manner of a

the ingenuity of their construction. They are clavis. It may be said that the work will fall

thoughtfully and elegantly written, and bear into the hands of many who need such assist

the impress of pure, refined, and elevated minds. ance, but we are thoroughly convinced that

They are somewhat didactic, and are evidently any one who intends to read Greek at all,

the productions of deeply religious spirits; yet must begin by learning his verbs, regular and

neither the moral purpose nor the piety is so irregular. Any delay upon this in the outset

obtrusive in them as to make them unreadable, will prove a great saving in the end.

or bring them under the head of “instructive" or “religious” stories. They are pleasant reading for quiet parlors and sober families.

The Skelches. Three Tales: 1. Waller Lorimer; 2. The Emblems of Life ; 3. The Lost Inheritance. By the authors of “ Amy Her- | An Mustrated History of the Hat, from the bert,” « The Old Man's Home,” and “ Hawk Earliest Days to the Present Time. J. N. stone." New York: D. Appleton & Co. Genin, 214 Broadway. 1848. 1848.

This is a capital treatise. It goes fully into These three tales are not unworthy the dis- the subject, irons it out with the iron of learntinguished reputation of their writers. The ing, brushes up its nap with the camel's hair of chance thought which gave rise to them was a fancy, and leaves it implanted on the reader's fortunate one, and the stories bear witness to understanding with the firm-seated solidity of a its having been carried out in the manner good fit. Though not divided into heads, it is stated in the preface: “This little volume had by no means a shapeless mass, torn and fractured its origin in the following circumstance. It with rents, or crushed with ominous dents; on was suggested as a Christmas amusement, that the contrary, it has the uniform glossy texture one of a party should draw a series of sketches, without, and cleanly arrangement within, which the rest should severally interweave into which are marks of excellence in books as some short story or description. The original well as in hats. The mass of information it plan has been faithfully adhered to: the en- affords, is truly surprising. It begins, as all gravings, therefore, are not illustrations of the histories ought to do, with the remotest antiletter-press, but the letter-press of the engrav- quity, and after carrying round the bat through ings. The sketches themselves are in fact the various epochs of time, and chiefly of Eng. views of actual scenes, and were finished be- / lish history, leaves it finally at "its ultimate degree of excellence”-i. e. the present spring | manner. In our social and political condition fashion, we suppose. Some of its speculations it should be borne in mind that pure innovations are no less ingenious than just. “In the mel. are not, though for argument's sake it be adancholy fate which befell that fair-haired youthmitted they are with hats, necessarily adrances Absalom, the Scriptures afford a striking in- towards perfection. They are forms and states stance of the danger of not wearing a covering based on reason, knowledge, character, experiupon the head. If Absalom had worn a hat, it ence, and hence those elements must concer is very certain that his hair could not have in the changes, or else there will be no real caught in the branches of the oak tree. It is progress. not likely that he rode out bareheaded; but it Some people at the present day seem to is probable that in the skirmish with Joab his hat think that governments are like bats; that we fell off, and was thus the cause of his death.” may change the block as often as we please,

This reminds us of some modern medical and it will be sure to be for the better. They treatises, which begin with showing from the even go beyond the hatters; for whereas those Psalms particular diseases with which King worthy members of society are content to David was afflicted. Our author, who gene- allow our headgear to remain stationary six rally writes very well, appears to have made a months at a time, these would have states live slight slip in the last clause of the above; for | forever in a condition of pure democratica! how Absalom's hat, because it fell off, could revolutionary bloody flux-progressing infibecome the cause of his death, it is not easy to nitely, pell-mell, everywhere." discover

There is great probability that the hats worn We are very far from cottoning, also, to the by social reformers of this order do not in following opinions :

every instance conceal the largest possible

amount of medullary substance. “ Stubbes belonged to that very virtuous class of writers, not wholly extinct even now, that rail against the fashions of men's apparel, as though there were intrinsic good or evil in the shape and

CORRECTIONS.—There is an error in Grie color of a coat; who judge of a man's morals by | wold's “ Prose Writers of America," which atthe pattern of his vest, and regard the texture of tributes to R. H. Dana an article on Moore, his pantaloons as a test of religious principles. written by Prof. E. T. Channing of Harvard It is time that the philosophy of fashion were University. We devote a paragraph to the better understood, but the plan of this little book correction of it, because the mistake was fol. prevents an expression of our opinions on this | lowed in an article on Mr. Dana in this Review important subject. The latest fashion is always

for March, 1847. Prof. Channing's article the best, because it is of necessity an improve

was on “Lalla Rookh," and appeared in the ment on the one which it supplants; therefore, to rajl at an existing fashion is simply to rail at

N. A. Review for Nov., 1817, vol. vi. improvement. If a fashion were perfect, it would

Another sentence in the article on Mr. be permanent; but no fashion ever can be perfect, Dana, would seem to make him the author of a because man being endowed with the capacity of review of Brown, which appeared in the N. A. improvement, he can never arrive at a point be. Review, vol. ix., and was also written by Prof. yond which he cannot advance. Progress is the Channing. A review of Brown, by Mr. Dana, law of our nature, and progress implies infinity. appeared in the U. S. Review for Aug., 1827– The possibilities of human improvement have not been dreamed of. A conservative, unim If these reviews were of merely ordinary proving people, like the Chinese, never change

merit, it would be superfluously nice to give their fashions, because they make no progress,

even a sentence to settling questions of their or at least their progress is so slow, that it is not perceptible. There is no such thing as stability

parentage ; but they are thoughtful and elabowith nations.”

rate essays, and by no means destined to a transitory fame. Only a small edition (fire

hundred copies) of the N. A. Review was isTo this it might be replied that the changes sued previous to and during the editorship of in the shape of hats are not always improve Prof. Channing, who was assisted by Mr. Dana, ments, since old fashions come round again so and copies are, now scarce. To our young often. Therefore we may be allowed to rail readers and writers, many of the best essays at existing fashions if we please. But grant those gentlemen are, necessarily, as entirely ing that every change in hats is an improve unknown as if they had never written them, ment, these changes are ones of simple form, They owe it to us, to the "rising generation, not based on reason, or taste, but wholly as well as to their own reputations, to give us arbitrary, and beyond our control; the hatters collected editions of their works; and we feel make these for us twice every year, for which very confident that in respectfully urging the we are taxed nine dollars per annum. But request that they would do so, we speak in ac. that progress which is the law of our nature | cordance with the wishes of our whole literary does not, in most other matters, operate in this public.

Pational Loan Fund Life Assurance Society

of London. .

A SAVINGS BANK FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE WIDOW AND THE ORPHAN."

EMPOWERED BY ACT OF PARLIAMENT. CAPITAL £500,000 OR $2,500,000. BESIDE A RESERVE TUND (FROM SURPLUS PREMIUMS) OF ABOUT 185,000 DOLLARS.

(Part of the Capital is invested in the United States.) T. LAMIE MURRAY, Esq., George street, Hanover-square, Chairman of the Court of

Directors in London.

UNITED STATES BOARD OF LOCAL DIRECTORS.

" CHIET OFFICE FOR AMERICA, 74 Wall-st., N. Y. Jacob Harvey, Esq., Chairman, John J. Palmer, Esq., Jonathan Goodhue, Esq., Jas. Boorman, Esq., Geo. Barclay, Esq., Samuel S. Howland, Esq., Gorham A. Worth, Esq.' Samuel M. Fox, Esq., Wm. Van Hook, Esq., and C. Edward Habicht, Esq.

EDWARD T. RICHARDSON, Esq., GENERAL ACCOUNTANT. Pamphlets, Blank Forms, Tables of Rates, Lists of Agents, &c., &c., can be obtained at the Chief Office, "4 Wall Street, or from either of the Agents throughout the United States, and British North American Colonies.

J. LEANDER STARR, General Agent for the United States, and B. N. A. Colonies.

NAUTILUS (MUTUAL) LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY.

Office No. 58 Wall Street. This Company recently organized, upon the improved and deservedly popular principle of mutual assurance, will confine its business exclusively to Insurance on Lives..

It commences with a capital of $50,000, which will be continually augmenting as its business increases. The rates of premium correspond with those of other American Companies.

One of the peculiar advantages attending insurance with this company is, that all the assured share annually in its profits, and are interested in its success; for its charter provides “that each and every member shall be annually credited with his proportional share of the amount of premiums earned, after deducting losses and expenses. But in no case shall his share of loss ex: ceed the amount of such premium.” These earned premiums or profits will be safely invested by the company, constituting a permanent fund, annually augmenting for the benefit and security of all parties interested.

The Rates of Insurance on One Hundred Dollars, on a Single Life, for One Year.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Pe sons may effect insurance on their own lives or the lives of others:

A man may effect insurance on his own life in the name of his wife for her benefit, and paya. ble to her and in case of her death previous to the death of her husband, payable to her children for their use, and to their guardian if under age. LEWIS BENTON, Secretary.

J. D. P. OGDEN, President. PLINT FREEMAN, Actuary.

A. M. MERCHANT, Vice President. ALEXANDER HAMILTON, Jun., Attorney.

Medical Examiners.- George Wilkes, M.D., 28 Laight street, Cornelius R. Bogert, M. D., 6 St. Mark's Place.

« PreviousContinue »