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lift up their heads and flourish. + Ease and plenty are the great cherishers of knowledge; and as most of the despotic governments of the world have neither of them, they are naturally overrun with ignorance and barbarity.' The seeds of curiosity scattered abroad by the Essay of Mr Locke, who had recalled the busy and the lettered to those inquiries from which they had been scared by the odious opinions and haughty dogmatism of Hobbes, began thus early, in the minds of ingenious men, to produce the fruits of a liberal philosophy on government, as well as of elegant speculation concerning literature and
Among the Divines who appeared at this era, it is impossible to pass over in silence the name of Barrow, whose theological works (adorned throughout by classical erudition, and by a vigorous though unpolished eloquence), exhibit in every page marks of the same inventive genius which, in Mathematics, has secured to him a rank second alone to that of Newton. As a writer he is equally distinguished by the redundancy of his matter, and by the pregnant brevity of his expression; but what more peculiarly characterizes his manner, is a certain air of powerful and of conscious facility in the execution of whatever he undertakes.' Disc. 69.
We quote this equally discriminating and beautiful passage, not for the unnecessary purpose of praise; nor assuredly with any view to dispute it; nor for the sake of vindicating Barrow from a contradiction imputed to him by Mr Stewart in the subsequent page, between two passages, in cne of which he represents inordinate self-love " as the parent of most vices, while in the other he allows, that a self-love working for what is finally beneficial, will be allowed by common sense,' which, we must fairly own, appears to us to be no contradiction at all, but a just statement of two equally important and perfectly reconeileable truths. But we take the occasion supplied by this quotation, to express our wonder that we should find no mention of another English Divine, who seems to us by his genius, by the singularities of his ethical writings, and by the vicissitudes of his reputation, to deserve a place in the history of moral philosophy. We advert to Jeremy Taylor, who, though he survived the Restoration, belonged to an older school than Barrow. Of unbounded fame in his own time, his devotional writings, which often possess unparalleled beauty, preserved their popu larity for more than a century. But in the age of calm and cool Philosophy which prevailed among English Divines, we scarcely find more than one or two notices of his name among the writings
This strain of thinking, not insisted upon by others, in the time of Addison, is even so far from having become commonplace that we find it in the Discourse before us.' p. 25.
of the learned; and it is only within the last twenty years that he has again become known to many general readers. Two of his works give him a more peculiar claim to the attention of the historian of morals. Probably the last English Divine who used the scholastic forms, and was deeply imbued with the metaphysics and theology of the schools, he is the only celebrated Englishman (perhaps the only celebrated Protestant of so late a period) who composed a system of Casuistry. Notwithstanding the disadvantages of the form, there are few treatises on morals which (if due allowance be made for obsolete modes of speaking, still more than of thinking) are more sober, more practical, and more liberal. Of the numerous learned authorities with which he has sprinkled his margin, the names are now scarcely known to the curious inquirer. He seems to survey the learning of a former world. The Discourse on the Liberty of Prophesying is memorable-as the first treatise professedly written in defence of Toleration in this country, if not in Europe. Like most Divines who have been venerated after their death, he obtained the name of a Heretic for his charity, which evidently extended, though he durst not avow it, even to Roman Catholics themselves. * These two works with his Discourse on Friendship, though they do not contain his most splendid passages, are the most uniformly reasonable, and the most judiciously composed, of his writings. It is, perhaps, peculiar to him, that to the acuteness and subtlety of a Schoolman, he added the feeling and fancy of a poet. Had he lived out of the Schools, and looked at Man and Nature instead of Scholastic Treatises, it seems that he would have wanted no poetical power but the art of versification. As Gray called Froissart Herodotus without his Style,' perhaps we may venture to
* At the conclusion of the Liberty of Prophesying, is a Jewish story, told in the manner of a Chapter of Genesis, in which God is represented as rebuking Abraham for having driven an idolater out of his tent. This story, Taylor says, is somewhere to be found in the Jewish writers. Till the original be discovered, in some Rabbi. nical legend, we may ascribe the beauty of the imitation, if not the invention of the incidents, to Taylor himself. Franklin gave the same story, with some slight variations, to Lord Kaimes, who published it in his Sketches of the History of Man. But the words of Lord Kaimes do not imply that Franklin gave it as his own, though a charge of plagiarism has been grounded on the coincidence. He probably had never read Taylor. He perhaps found the story without an author's name, in some newspaper or magazine, and sent it as a curiosity to Kaimes. A man so rich as Franklin, had no temptation to steal.
say that Taylor was Fenelon without his Taste. They had the same tender heart, and flowery imagination; the same tolerant spirit; the same proneness to mystical devotion; and, though in an unequal degree, the same disposition to an ascetic morality, of which the austerities almost become amiable, when they are joined to unusual gentleness and humility. Taylor, in his writings, wanted only the great art of rejection to make the parallel more perfect. In his Devotions alone, where his sensibility is restrained, and his fancy overawed by the subject, he is of unequalled excellence. In general, his taste is more impure, his composition more irregular, his Popular Discourses more pedantic and scholastic than those of his great predecessors of Elizabeth's age-of Hooker, of Raleigh, and of Bacon. All those great men, placed near the sources of our written language, in those rare and short intervals when they resist the allurements of Latin phraseology and arrangement, have a freshness of expression, a choice of picturesque and significant words, very difficult to be attained, after the separate language of books has been long formed. The profuse imagery of Taylor, and his tender sentiments, are sure to catch the eye of the most cursory reader. A careful perusal will also discover, in many quiet and modest passages, chiefly of his argumentative and merely ethical works, an easy and soft flow of native English, not unworthy of the age which produced the prose of Cowley, who, like Taylor, was tender and fertile; but who, happily for his fame, in his prose, and in some of his verse, showed a taste less fatally indulgent to the vices of his genius.
The following Note, which was omitted in its proper place, refers to the sentence about HAKEWILL, in p. 223.
The third edition of Hakewill in 1635, though it has a chapter on Anatomy, makes no mention of the circulation of the blood, which Harvey had made known to all Europe, by his publication at Frankfort in 1628, and had publicly announced in his Lectures on Anatomy, at the Hall of the College of Physicians, at least as early as 1619. One of the Archdeacon's arguments against the decay of our species, is the story of one John de Temporibus, who lived 360 years! In his time, the ancient doctrine of a Millennium had begun to assume a reasonable form, in which state it gradually blended with the philosophical hopes of human improvement. From his account, it appears, that Aquinas was rather blamed for sticking • too much than too little to human reason. A curious report by a Protestant divine, of the opinion entertained in the seventeenth century about a schoolman of the thirteenth!
ART. X. Reflections on the Progressive Decline of the British Empire, and on the Necessity of Public Reform. By H. SCHULTES. 8vo. London, 1816.
Liberty, Civil and Religious. By a Friend to Both. 8vo. London, 1815.
Ir is a very constant practice with the advocates of existing abuses, to accuse those who would correct them, of political fanaticism;-and to this charge he is in an especial manner liable, who shows any jealousy of encroachments upon the constitution. To what danger, it is asked, are the liberties of the people exposed? Who thinks of attacking them? Is it to be supposed that any minister will ever be bold enough to raise taxes by the army, or suffer a year to pass without calling Parliament together? or that he will rely upon a military force to obtain the sanction of the two Houses to his measures? Are there not, besides, (the argument proceeds, in the nature of a compensation or set-off) the courts of justice always open, where the subject may be secure of protection for his liberty, where royal influence is effectually excluded, and open violence never was used, even in the worst of times, by the most audacious ministers of tyranny or of usurpation? Besides, it is added, let the whole constituted authorities be ever so much inclined towards submission, through corruption or through fear, the publick opinion will always keep them right: -the press is free; the people speak their minds openly; the Parliament is virtually under their controul: And, finally, the members of that body, as well as of the army, being taken from among the classes of the community which have the principal interest in preserving the purity of the system, the people never can be enslaved, till they chuse to engage in a plot against their own liberties. Upon these grounds, the alarms excited by any particular measure in the minds of constitutional men, are treated with infinite contempt; they are termed vain, imaginary, or affected panics: Whoever mentions them, is set down at once as ei ther factious or foolish, that is, an impostor or an enthusiast. All men of sound practical sense, we are told, know better than to regard such bugbears; and, whatever may be attempted or effected against any one branch of the Constitution, those sound men bid us look at all that is left untouched, and say whether he must not be a furious lover of freedom, who does not admit that we have still liberty enough.
We regard the prevalence of this kind of reasoning (if the word may be so applied) as beyond all comparison the worst symptom
of the times, and of the most fatal augury for the rights and the prosperity of the country. It evinces a degeneracy of political virtue and courage truly humiliating; it arises from the most sordid views, or the most effeminate habits; and as its existence a century, or even half a century ago, would have brought Eng land to the state of slavery in which the rest of Europe is now hardly struggling, so its continuance for any length of time bids fair to naturalize amongst us, even now, the worst abuses of foreign despotisms. The topics to which those weak or corrupt declaimers against the true spirit of the constitution appeal, are the more dangerous, because they wear the guise of plain matter of fact as opposed to theory; of moderation as contrasted with exaggeration; of something rational and solid instead of something fantastic and even ridiculous. Thus they easily enlist on their side that class whose influence is always so much be yond their numerical strength, the dealers in ridicule,-the lovers of satire and merriment, rather than truth,—a class composed of lazy, squeamish, effeminate spirits,-peculiarly formidable in a soft and luxurious age,-exercising an unbounded dominion over the frivolous and the timid, and almost ruling over what is termed SOCIETY,' by the same fear of a laugh, to which, for their punishment, they are themselves absolutely enslaved. We consider it as a most sacred duty, to stand forward at the present moment, in defiance of all this noise-this declamation and derision-and to show how rational and solid the fears are, which the friends of their country entertain for its liberties in these times. It is the more necessary for us to do something of this sort, since views of foreign policy, and the recent dangers from that quarter, have lulled some of the stoutest advocates of the people, and set those against us that should be ours.' They have leagued themselves, though we trust but for a season, with the enemies of liberty, or the cold-blooded sycophants of a Court, who have not even feeling enough to hate, but are only indifferent to the rights of their fellow subjects-thetrue foundation of the glory of their country.
It is an unfortunate thing, that the alarms excited by the French revolution should for a while have silenced Mr Burke and those who agreed with him, upon all other constitutional questions except those immediately springing out of that great event. Their minds were filled with the contemplation of what they regarded as the paramount danger; and they could not stop to look at any other. Hence they were sometimes led to use expressions, casually indeed, and hastily, which were greedily caught up by the herd of vulgar politicians, whose interests, as well as what they call their principles, bind them to the defence of every abuse, and the ridicule and reprobation of all who plant