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EDINBURGH LITERARY MISCELLANY,
For M A Y 1813.
Description of GILSTON HOUSE. death of Dr Murray, I beg leave to GILSTON HOUSE is situated on
be considered as a candidate for the the rising ground immediately Chair. I am, above Largo Bay in Fifeshire. It was
MY LORD, built a few years ago by Colonel
Your Lordship's Dewar, the present' proprietor, who
Most obedient humble Servant, has greatly improved and beautified
(Signed) WM. PRICE. a considerable property in this dis- To the Right Honourable the trict. The House stands in a most
Lord Provost of Edinburgh. S commanding situation, and enjoys an uncommonly fine prospect of the Frith Letter, Professor THOMAS BROWN 10 of Forth, and the Lothians.
the LORD PROVOST. 79 Prince's Street, May 17th 1813.
MY LORD, Letters on the Subject of the Election
I little thought, that almost imme. of a PROFESSOR of Hebrew and diately after addressing to your LordORIENTAL Languages in the Uni. ship a letter from one candidate for versity of EDINBURGH.
the vacant chair, with the testimonials that accompanied it, I should so
soon have the pleasure of introducing Letter, Mr W. PRICE to the LORD to your Lordship another candidate, Provost.
of qualifications so transcendent as Merriman Lodge, near Worcester,
those of Mr Price. May 11th, 1813.
His wonderful acquirements in MY LORD,
Oriental Literature, and his great FINDING the Professorship of Ori- merits in every respect, which were
ental Languages is become vacant such as to obtain for him a distin in the University of Edinburgh, by guished and most confidential situathe great loss it has sustained in the tion in the late embassy to Persia, are,
I believe, already known to your It is not many months, my Lord, Lordship and the Council; and I since I had the honour of recommend. therefore regret the less, that the ing Dr Murray as a candidate for very short interval left to him, after the Chair, which his own death has hearing of the vacancy and the day now unfortunately once more made of the intended election, has not al. vacant. It was no slight happiness lowed him an opportunity of procu- to me to enjoy his friendship; and, in ring testimonials from any of his em- the sorrow which I feel for the loss inent friends. But the narrative pub- of my illustrious colleague, it will be lished by the Bishop of St David's
some consolation to me, if I shall may, I conceive, supersede all neces- have contributed, through the patronsity of these. It would indeed be age of your Lordship and Council
, to gratifying to every one who wishes procure for him a successor worthy of well to Oriental Literature, if there prosecuting that noble career, from were another candidate on the field, which he was so soon snatched away. who could procure evidence of equal To have recommended two such can. attainments, and to whom therefore didates as Dr Murray and Mr Price, we might look with equal expectation is one of the proudest distinctions of for the future.
my life, second only to the noble saIn the letter, which inclosed that tisfaction, which many members of now transmitted by me to your Lord the present Council may feel, of hav. ship, Mr Price has favoured me with ing given, as patrons, two such Proa short notice of the different places fessors to the University. at which he had an opportunity of
I have the honour to be, &c. making any observations, in his ex. pedition with the embassy ; and as (Signed) THOMAS Brown, the perusal of it may be gratifying to To the Right Honourable your Lordship and the Council, I Lord Provost. have great pleasure in enclosing an extract.
Your Lordship cannot fail to be Extract, Letter, Mr W. Price to Dr struck with one passage, which shews THOMAS BROWN, dated Worcester, the importance of a residence in Per.
11th May 1813. sia, for acquiring the genuine language of the country, so different His Excellency Sir Gore Ousley, from what is spoken as Persic in Bart. being appointed Ambassador Hindostan ; and as the kingdom of Extraordinary to the Court of Persia, Persia is likely to be soon open to our proposed to me, if I had any
inclinacommerce, I need not remark hou tion, to visit that country, as important to all those who are to vi- favourable opportunity might never sit it, must be the advantage, which occur than the one which was about the lessons of such a teacher as Mr to take place. I soon decided, and Price, would afford them, of acquiring prepared for the voyage, in capacity a correct knowledge of the language of Acting Secretary of Embassy. We as spoken in the country. For the sailed from Spithead the 18th July truth of Mr Price's remark on this 1810, on board H. M. ship Lion.subject, I have the additional autho- 29. Touched at Madeira.–Sept. 14. rity of my ingenious and accomplish- Anchored at Rio Janeiro.-Dec. 19. ed friend Mr Jukes, who was sever Landed at Pointe de Gallo in Cey. years in Persia, attached to our differ- lon.—29. Touched at Cochin.-Jan. ent embassies, and who speaks the lan- 12. 1811. Arrived at Bombay. guage like a native.
March 1. Reached Bashcher, one of
the chief ports in the Persian Gulf. the depredations of the Kurds.-25. There we were encamped on a sandy Arrived at the city of Arzeroom.plain, near the town, till the 27th, Aug. 11. Arrived at Jocat, where when we commenced our march, great numbers were dying of the which, great part of the way, was plague, which had spread itself geneover stupendous mountains, as far as ral between this and Constantinople. Shiraz, which we reached on the 8th -21. Arrived at Tossia.--27. At April, and remained there till the 9th Boli.-Sept. 2. Arrived at ConstanJuly, when we continued our journey tinople, where we were entertained Lowards the Persian capital. – 11. by his Excellency Mr Liston till Arrived at Persepolis, where we spent the 14th, when we embarked on board some days among these noble ruins, of a Greek vessel, and, crossing the and arrived at Ispahan on the 19th, sea of Marmor, landed the next day where we continued till the 21st Oc- at Maly, and, proceeding over land, tober, when we proceeded on our arrived at Smyrna on the 21st, where way, and arrived at Tehran the seat we remained at the English consul's of government, on the 9th of No. (Mr Weir) till the 27th, when we vember. We were conducted to a embarked on board H. M. ship Salhouse belonging to Ammin Addow. sette.—28. Touched at Scio.-Oct. lah, one of the ministers, till another 5. Passed Malta.-9. Sardinia.-10. was prepared for us, belonging to Touched at Mahon.-12. Arrived the King. Thus having effected the at the fleet off Toulon.-21. Landed chief objects I had in view, which at Alicant.-31. Touched at Tetuan. were, to take sketches of every thing – Nov. 1. Anchored at Gibraltar.-remarkable ; to make myself acquain- 16. Landed at Portsmouth. ted with the manners, customs, reli This Sir, will account for my not gious ceremonies, dialects, &c. &c. having made any translations of conof the fire-worshippers, or ancient Per. sequence since my departure from sians, as well as those of the wander. England : it is true, I have a few ing tribes and the regular Persians, works by me in M.S. which I transI obtained leave of Sir Gore, after lated some years ago; and of which, the conclusion of the definitive treaty, probably, on looking over them, I to accompany it to England.-May should now discover some passages 25, 1812. The embassy left Tehran, which would strike me in a different and arrived at Tebriz the 19th June, sense, since ny becoming more famiwhere we remained sill the 1st July, liar with the manners of the people ; when Sir William Ouseley and my- the allusions to which are generally self, after taking leave of Sir Gore, found the most difficult part of the set out with the treaty, on our way Oriental Languages. In short, the to England, bringing with us horses Persians may be said to use two lanand other presents from the King of guages, a written language, and a col. Persia for the Prince Regent. - 11. loquial one; the latter differing very Arrived at Erivan, situated near the much from the former. Sir William foot of Mount Ararat, where we pas- Jones has treated very ably on the sed a few days at the Governor's, made Persian, according to the old standsome stay at Euch Eclesia, Nakhshi. ard; but there is not a work in existvan, and other places renowned in an ence, (that I ever heard of,) which cient history, and arrived at Kars on can assist a person in the modern the 18th.-After a few days stay Persian, either in idiomatic phrases, here, the Pasha supplied us with a even pronunciation. A
person guard to conduct us through some ex who has been taught Persian in India, tensive forests, and to secure us against on entering Persia, is either not un
THE CALEDONIAN MERCURY.
derstood at all, or is ridiculed for his to European commerce, an object of barbarous pronunciation; and yet a far more general importance :-and native of Persia, going to India, can how many are there, who may not be be always understood by the Indians able to go through the long and exwho speak Persian.
pensive education of the College at
Hertford, who, under an able teacher LETTER ADDRESSED TO THE EDITOR OF here, might acquire, at much less exSir,
pence, the same knowledge of lanAs there have been few contests, guages, and enjoy at the same time in our city, in which the public took the benefit of all that liberal educaso deep an interest, as in that which tion which our University affords. seated Dr Murray in the Chair of But even though these most importOriental Languages, there have been ant advantages, that might arise from few events, that have excited the presence in this city of an able general sorrow, than the melancholy teacher of the living languages of the termination of his short but illustrious East, were to be wholly laid out of career. Though the very brief period, view, and though that language alone however, during which his health al were to be considered, to which the lowed him to discharge his academic attention of our future divines is duties, did not comprehend even a especially directed, can any lover of single session, he yet lived long enough our Church, or of Christianity itself, to shew the importance of eminent regard it as of little moment, whether talents in the Chair which he filled ; an adequate provision be made, not -and, though the zeal which he for teaching the mere elements of kindled may fade, when there is no Hebrew, but for diffusing the love, longer a genius like his own to keep and with the love, the intimate and the flame alive, it has been at least a critical knowledge, of that venerable proof, that, by a genius like his, such language. Under such a teacher as a zeal may be kindled and preserved; Dr Murray, there could be no doubt, and that, to continue to diffuse the that a new race of divines would soon knowledge of Oriental Languages have freed the Church from a reand Literature, nothing more is ne- proach, under which, with all its cessary than a series of able Profes- very great merits in other respects, it sors, to whom their pupils may look has too long laboured—the reproach with reverence, and share the euthusic of almost universal ignorance of the asm which their teachers feel. language, in which the greater part
The Professor of Oriental Lan. of that sacred volume was written, guages is no longer to be considered which it is the principal office of our as a mere teacher of Hebrew. A professional theologians to explain. wide field is about to open to him But Dr Murray is now lost to us : and a field which, for a long period, and it is almost too much to hope must continually become wider and that a philological genius can be wider; connecting, in some degree, found, worthy of being his successor. with the talents ebat may fill his Such was my own feeling ; and sach Chair, the commercial and other too, I am convinced, was the feeling general relations of a large portion of of every one, who lamented the loss the British empire. The probable which the public suffered in his death. opening of a freer communication It was with no slight pleasure, there. with the East, cannot fail to render fore, that I first perused the two letthe acquisition of the languages of ters, of which I now request your inIndia, Persia, and the other countries sertion. They are copied from a of a world which is still almost new tract published in the year 1809, by
an eminent prelate, the Bishop of St answering to the description given by David's, with the laudable view of re. Linnæus of his Trichiurus lepturus, or commending the study of those lan- the Gymnogaster. The fish had been guages, which belong to the depart- dead some time, and the lower jaw had ment of the vacant professorship. dropt off. The next specimen was The narrative, contained in them, more than four times the size of the will not be less interesting to your former, measuring about thirteen feet readers, when they learn, that the ob- in length. The people were so much scure linguist, whose passion and surprized at finding an eel-shaped aniwhose struggles for knowledge, with mal of such magnitude, that they so few advantages to aid him, and so yoked a cart, and carried the fish to many difficulties to overcome, are Fochabers, for the inspection of the there pictured in so lively a manner, Duke of Gordon. The sides, where is no longer obscure that the reputa- deepest, did not measure one foot ; tion of his talents obtained for him and the greatest thickness was two the friendship of the most eminent inches and a half ; so that the body Orientalists in our island, and a con- had a very compressed appearance. fidential situation with the Ambassa. The head was shattered ;
but the dor to Persia, Sir Gore Ousley—the fish had been very lately alive, being Fery honourable situation, as I have quite fresh. A cut of it was boiled been informed, of first interpreter to at the Castle, and found to taste very the Embassy-and that he returned like the wolf-fish. Descriptions of to Europe a few months ago, with these fishes, we understand, were all the accesions of Oriental know- drawn up by Mr James Hoy at Gordon ledge, which a mind like his, in such Castle, and transmitted to the Linfavourable circumstances, could not nean Society, in whose Transactions, fail to acquire.
no doubt, they will appear. It seems (To be continued.)
not unlikely that the last mentioned, or large fish, may prove to be a new
species of Trichiurus. The mere difMonthly Memoranda in Natural His. ference in size is not indeed to be
taken as characteristic ; tho' it would tory.
be rather an odd circumstance to find May. THE wet and cold weather, a fish which has been generally de
which, in this place, never scribed by naturalists as little more fails to result from continued easterly than three feet long, of the extraurwind, prevailed during the first part of dinary length of thirteen feet. There the month; and vegetation was not were, however, some other marks of much farther advanced than in the be- distinction, such as the sides being ginning of April. After the 20th, the stripped with dark-coloured longituwind blew from the west, and sud- dinal bars, the bristles at the tail bedenly produced fine summer weather. ing indistinct, &c.; but the import
Trichuiri. Two very rare fishes ant specific characters depending on pretty evidently of the genus Trich, the head and the teeth cannot be asiurus of Linnæus, have of late been certained till another specimen occur. cast ashore at Port Gordon in Aber- The gymnogaster is considered as deenshire. The first specimen was a native of the large rivers of South about three feet long, of a silvery America. It is possible that a few white colour, ibe tail ending in three wanderers may occasionally get into or four soft spines or bristles (whence the Gulf Stream, and, by the influibe name is derived,) and in generalence of this great current, be induced