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which necessarily absorbs funds, amply sufficient for the instruction of the whole body of the deaf and dumb, in educating a small proportion of these unfortunate objects; and which, by extending and perpetuating the delusion already prevalent, that their instrụction requires the application of some mysterious science, is productive of the still more mischievous effect, of consigning those who are unsuccessful in applying for admittance into this asylum, to the misery of hopeless ignorance. The sums now lavished on two hundred pupils at this establishment, would amply provide for the instruction of twenty times that number in ordinary schools.
The doctors' now engaged in educating the deaf and dumb will, probably, oppose the modification of the system here recommended; as this extension of the plan must diminish, very considerably, the value and importance of their craft. Our appeal to them is, therefore, made with much hesitation and doubt. To obtain their concurrence in the alterations which we propose, we feel that two very formidable obstacles to any improvement must be removed. --A sense of duty must first triumph over the suggestions of interest and prejudice. But to the managers and governors of onr great national establishments to the active and benevolent characters, whose zeal in the diffusion of knowledge has rendered them conspicuous, we appeal with the confident anticipation of a favourable result. And at the head of the public and private seminaries, scattered throughout the kingdom, will be found individuals whose benevolence will prompt them to make an attempt which their ingenuity and perseverance cannot fail to render successful.
Writers upon this subject have, generally, represented deafness as a greater and more irremediable calamity than blindness. But we need only close our eyes, to be convinced that such a notion has no foundation in reason; nor is it supported by experience.
There are no ideas, except that of sound, which the deaf and duinb may not acquire with as much correctness and precision as those who hear. The ear, however useful as the instrument of commu. nication, has less to do with the direct acquisition of ideas than any of the other organs of sense; and in promoting this end there is none so instrumental as the eye. What idea can a blind person form, for instance, of a cloud or of a castle? of a mill or a mountain? The impression which these and other material objects make upon the blind must, at all times, be indistinct, and not infrequently erroneous. One glance of the eye will give to the deaf and dumb truer conceptions of such objects, than the most laboured and minute oral descriptions can ever impart to the blind.
It may be further observed, that there are but few active, and perhaps not many sedentary occupations, in which the blind may
be successfully engaged. With the exception, however, of the very few arts which require the immediate use of hearing, there is none in which the deaf and dumb may not be employed with as much satisfaction to themselves and advantage to the public, as the most ingenious and industrious of those who both see and hear. .
The following extract from a letter written by Mr. Chippendale of Winwick, will likewise show that the deaf and dumb are not even excluded from the pleasures arising from music.
Some years back, probably five or six, a young gentleman of the name of Arrowsmith, a member of the Royal Academy at Somerset House, came down into this county, and resided some months at Winnington, in the exercise of his profession as a miniature and portrait painter. He was quite deaf, so as to be entirely dumb. He had been taught to write, and wrote an elegant hand, in which he was enabled to express his own ideas with facility; he was also able to read and understand the ideas of others expressed in writing. It will scarcely be credited that a person thus circumstanced should be fond of music; but this was the fact in the case of Mr. Arrowsmith. He was at a gentle man's glee club, of which I was president at that time, and, as the glees were sung, he would place himself near some article of wooden furniture, or a partition, door or window shutter, and would fix the extreme end of his finger nails, which he kept rather long, upon the edge of some projecting part of the wood, and there remain until the piece under performance was finished, all the while expressing, by the most significant gestures, the pleasure he experienced from the perception of musical sounds. He was not so much pleased with a solo, as with a pretty full clash of harmony; and if the music was not very good, or, I should rather say, if it was not correctly executed, he would show no sensation of pleasure. But the most extraordinary circumstance in this case is, that he was most evidently delighted with those passages in which the composer displayed his science in modulating the different keys. When such passages happened to be executed with precision, he could scarcely repress the emotions of pleasure which he received, within any bounds, for the delight he evinced seemed to border on extacy.
"This was expressed most remarkably at our club, when the glee was sung with which we often conclude; it is by Stevens, and begins with the words “ Ye spotted snakes," from Shakspeare's Midsummer Night's Dream. In the second stanza, on the words, “ Weaving spiders come not here," there is some modulation of the kind above alluded to, and here Mr. Arrowsmith would be in raptures, such as would not be exceeded by any one who was in immediate possession of the sense of hearing.
It is highly expedient that every deaf and dumb child should be subjected to the careful examination of some practitioner of undoubted skill and experience, for the purpose of ascertaining the nature and seat of this defect. Where deafness proceeds from a
defect in the auditory nerve, it must be evident, that no effort of art can succeed in removing it: but where it arises from the malconformation or the obstruction of the internal structure of the ear, it is then frequently within the reach of skill and ingenuity. The pupils admitted into the eleemosynary asylum in the Kent Road, are, we doubt not, thoroughly examined by the eminent surgeons connected with that establishment; but we cannot help entertaining some hopes that many cases of deafness may exist among the poor, in distant situations, which might be remedied by professional skill.
At the hazard of being thought tedious, we have thus endeavoured to call the attention of our readers to a subject, which we consider of no ordinary importance; and if our sentiments on this question be not erroneous, we feel confident, that the good sense of the public will rescue the deaf and dumb from the schemes and systems of quacks and projectors. The supposition that their instruction requires the aid and application of a mysterious art, acts like some predictions that are the cause of their own accomplishment. To point out, therefore, the practicability of instructing them in ordinary schools, or even in private families, must be the first step towards freeing the public mind from a delusion which has been upheld and propagated with no common industry. As long as the relatives and connexions of the deaf and dumb are impressed with a belief, that they can be educated only in public institutions, established for that purpose, no private effort to impart instruction to them will ever be made. But let them be once persuaded that the obstacles which, apparently, impede the conveyance of information, may be overcome by a little patience and perseverance, and their feelings of commiseration and affection will soon render them eager and expert in removing or in alleviating a misfortune which fills them with regret.
Art. VII.-Mémoires du Duc de. Lauzun. Octavo, pp. 400.
publication. While its scandal was confined to its original language, we gladly left to the Freneh critics the exposure of its fraud, and the chastisement of its indecency; but we see that a translation is advertised, and we hasten to warn our readers against it.
A genuine and impartial life of the Duke de Biron (called, during his grandfather's life, the Duc de Lauzun) might be amusing, and would certainly be instructive. After having by his follies and his vices disgraced his family, degraded his rank, and insulted the DD
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VOL. XXVI. NO. LII.
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laws of his country, this hopeful personage turned patriot, and meta kindred spirit in the infamous Egalité. We need not add that this roué of the old court became a radical reformer, and laboured in the revolutionary vineyard with a zeal worthy, and just worthy, of such a patron and of such a cause. He had served a little and obscurely in America ;---but to have fought against a king was sufficient to entitle him to the honours of the republican armies, and he was accordingly, ou the overthrow of the French monarchy, employed in the North, and in La Vendée; but' citizen Biron was as bad a soldier as he was a subject,- he was unsuccessful every where; in the field he was baffled by the Vendeans, and in the council undermined by the Jacobins; and, after a campaign of a few months in La Vendée, recalled, to suffer at the age of forty-six, in the Place de la Révolution, a death which may be called unjust, because he was not guilty of the love of royalty, of which he was accused; but in another view he eminently deserved his fate--for he perished by the tyranny, which he bad himself helped to establish : he died not merely unregretted, but almost unnoticed; his youth had been profligate,-his manhood was base,—and his end was contemptible. An useful lesson might, we repeat—be derived from an authentic account of such a life. But there is every reason to believe, that the volume before us is an infamous forgery, in which some anonymous author assumes the mask of the Duke of Biron to give a history of the intrigues and gallantries of his youth. This is done with the grossest impudence; and the names of ladies at full length, without disguise, and with details only fit for the history of a brothel, are prostituted to the vanity of this supposed Duc de Lauzun. We will not extend the mischief we reprobate by mentioning any of the names : but we have taken the supererogatory pains of ascertaining, by a comparison of dates as well as other circumstances, that a large proportion, at least, of the facts alleged are absolutely false.
In scandal, as in the misfortunes of others, such is the infirmity of our nature, we regret to say, there is too often something qui ne nous déplait pas;' but in the scandal of the Mémoires de Lauzun’ we can honestly assure our readers, that the most depraved appetite will find no amusement,—they are as dull as they are profligate; and like wet straw, or Lady Morgan's Italy,' stifle the flame which they are designed to kindle.
At the first hasty perusal of the work, we were struck, even on the internal evidence, with a conviction of its being a forgery. We then, as we have said, took the trouble of trying its veracity by some external proof, and the result increased our suspicion. M. de Biron may have written Memoirs, and they would probably, judging from his character, be vain and indiscreet; but badly as
we think of him, both as a public and a private man, we cannot persuade ourselves that he could have been guilty of such an atrocity as is now published under his name. Our disbelief has been fortified by what has passed in France on this subject. M. Salgues, a respectable man of letters, has very properly stated, in the public prints, some curious circumstances which had come to his knowledge, and which tend to expose this fraud :
A great literary scandal has occurred. The Memoirs of the Duc de Lauzun are publicly sold in defiance of all morality, and of all decency towards the most respectable persons and families.
Under Buonaparte's government this publication was attempted in vain. Buisson, a bookseller, had purchased a copy, made by an almost illiterate hand. He consulted me about it. I answered that an honest man would degrade himself by publishing such a work.'
'I do not know how the government of the day got hold of the manuscript, but it happened to be again referred to me as censor; and I declared that I never would approve the publication of so infamous a libel. M. Lacretelle was, on my refusal, consulted, and made, I believe, the same answer. In the mean time, the Duc of Rovigo, (M. Savary, Minister of Police,) having heard that the manuscript was in circulation, sent for Buisson, and said that he wished to purchase it. M. Buisson delivered the manuscript to the minister, who gave him a receipt for it, and directed a friend to treat about the price; but this - never was arranged, and Buisson died without getting either his money
or his manuscript. . In 1818, having heard that it was about to be printed, I communi. cated to M. Hue all the details of this odious intrigue, and the im. pression did not take place.
• How has this manuscript, if it be the same, got out of the hands of the Duc of Rovigo ? Of course he only wanted to buy it in order to prevent the publication. From whom has the present publisher received it? These are questions which require some explanation.
* Finally, the manuscript which I saw was a rough copy, which seemed to me to have been altered and falsified, and the style was so much below that of a gentleman, that I could not but suspect the whole to be a fabrication.'
To this M. Savary (who still, we observe, calls himself the Duke of Rovigo) replies by a letter curious, as our readers will see, for more reasons than one.
What M. Salgues says is quite true : I became (je me suis rendu) the proprietor of the manuscript, and I was informed that the genuine Memoirs of M. de Lauzun were in the possession of a person incapable of making a bad use of them. I looked upon the manuscript in question as the production of a vicious inind, and I did not therefore think fit to give the dangerous example of compensating the fabricator of such a production.' We pause here a moment to admire the scrupulous morality of DD 2