Page images
PDF
EPUB

we cannot help rejoicing at the vast and everlasting gain which one so dear has now obtained. The days of suffering and the 'wearisome nights' are over. The fears, anxieties, dejections, and troubles of that tender spirit, are all healed and gone for ever. That voice, which we have so often heard trembling and broken with excess of feeling, will henceforth be employed only in singing the praise of God amidst the joys of eternity. The heart which, like Eli's, so often 'trembled for the ark of the Lord,' will now, with 'principalities and powers in heavenly places,' be filled with holy and rapturous astonishment at the glorious things which await the church of the Redeemer. The Sabbaths on earth-in which he was so prone to labour beyond his strength, are now exchanged for the rest which remaineth for the people of God, where his servants serve Him, and see his face, and 'grieve and sin no more. To our beloved friend, then, the day of death was better than the day of his birth; and we may well 'comfort one another with these words.'-pp. 156, 157.

· Yes,' he again wrote to bis aunt Addington, there is something of heaven in the belief that a beloved friend is there! Pain, weakness, sorrow, fear, temptation, doubt, sin, death, the second death itself, all sunk to an infinite depth below the blessed dwelling place of those who died in the Lord; and glory such as the imagination of our hearts can never here conceive, their certain portion for ever! The few and evil days' are well exchanged for the Sabbath of eternity. That rest, moreover, remains for all the people of God; for us, therefore, if we are cleaving to the Lord with purpose of heart. So that we are going to those who have been born into immortality, though they cannot return to us. And which were better to bring a blessed spirit down to mortality and sinfulness again; or ourselves to press forward with alacrity and patience, fulfilling our course, and looking for the 'exceeding great reward ? The apostle has answered for us, when he calls the final resuscitation of the saints' a better resurrection’than that which restored their darling children to the Shunamite, and the widow of Sarepta. These, my dear aunt, are 'words' with which we may well comfort one another.' May God who comforteth those that are cast down,' and Christ who came to comfort all that mourn,' and the Holy Spirit whose name is 'the Comforter,' support and bless you more and more, even to the end !--pp. 164, 165.

We cannot conclude this brief notice without adding an expression of our hope that this volume may yet be given to the public. We wish it were in the hands of every student of theology at our colleges.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

Art. VII. 1. Logic: Designed as an Introduction to the Study of Reason.

ing. By John Leechman, A.M. 2nd. Edition, enlarged and

improved. Glasgow : J. Maclehose. pp. 276. 2. Exercises in Logic: Designed for the use of Students in Colleges.

By J. T. Gray, Ph. D. London: Taylor and Walton. pp. 148. MR. Lerchman's unpretending volume contains as large an amount of matter as many a goodly octavo; and the student who makes himself master of its contents will have attained no inconsiderable knowledge of the art and science of logic. The author has not aimed at producing an original work, but rather at presenting the combined and condensed results of the labours of his predecessors. It is intended,' Mr. Leechman tells us, 'as a convenient introduction to this branch of knowledge, and is more particularly suited for those who are entering on the study of mental philosophy. It traces the history of the science of reasoning from the earliest period to the present time; it unfolds its fundamental principles and rules, accompanied with appropriate illustrations: and points out at considerable length, its application to practical purposes.'

A student who wishes for a solid knowledge of the subject will not content himself with any compendium, how excellent soever, but will have recourse to original writers, and make his own compendium. But for those who desire to confine their logical studies to a single volume, we are not aware of any book likely to be more suitable and useful than the volume before us. The necessity for such a work, however, was not sufficiently urgent to disarm criticism, as to the style of its execution; and we are sorry that we cannot award to Mr. Leechman's performance unqualified praise. His attempt to refute the views of the last distinguished writer on logic, -Mr. J. S. Mill, does not appear to us at all successful. In our review of Mr. Mill's great work, we pointed out at some length what we ventured to consider the errors of his theory of syllogism, and also of Archbishop Whateley's. We shall not therefore enter on the subject here, farther than to observe, that in a real syllogism, the con. clusion follows from the premises conjointly, not from either of them alone; and that while Mr. Leechman, or any other logician, persists in regarding as a real syllogism such a train of thought as: 'All men are mortal ; the Duke of Wellington is a man; therefore the Duke of Wellington is mortal:' he will find it very difficult to evade the charge of petitio principii urged by Mr. Mill. And the defective view of the dictum de omni, which brings in the notion of classification, (see p. 81,) is almost sure to lead to the use of such trifling mock-examples. We are much surprized that after studying (as we presume he has done,)

r. Mills Induction Induction

Mr. Mill's elaborate work,' Mr. Leechman should give such an account of Inductiou as that contained in his chapter on the Province of Logic. Induction, we are gravely assured, is not a process of inference, but a 'process of investigation,' by which we do not 'draw conclusions,' but'obtain new facts.': Can any clear-headed man really satisfy himself by such verbal mystification? The very question to be settled, is, whether the process of investigation, by which we obtain new facts,' or, more correctly, infer general propositions from particular ones, be not as truly a process of reasoning as syllogistic deduction. We could not have imagined that the writer of this chapter had ever seen Mr. Mill's volumes.

We must add, that Mr. Leechman's style would admit of improvement. Clearness and accuracy are of the first moment in treating such a subject; and too many of the sentences are wanting in one or both of these qualities. e. g. The categories were given as a complete enumeration of everything that can be expressed without composition and structure.' (p. 44.) It must be evident, that whatever is affirmatively predicated of another must express some relation that it bears to that object.' (p. 45.) Instances might easily be multiplied.

Dr. Gray's little volume is admirably adapted to be used as a class-book, accompanied by the instructions of an able teacher. And this, we presume, is what the author aimed at, rather than a complete treatise. The explanations are very concise, but in general clear and accurate. The examples are numerous and well-chosen. The author expresses, as his guiding principle, the conviction, that a practical skill in logic can only be attained by a practical acquaintance with its rules. In this we fully concur; and we think such a work as this was much wanted. The plan and general execution are excellent; but several minor points appear to us to need revision. The explanation of Contradictories' (pp. 3, 26) seems defective. The positive idea, 'to deserve ill,' is surely not equivalent to the negative one, not to deserve well. The subject of generalizations should, it seems to us, be treated of before speaking of genus and species, and predicables; and a section, or chapter, should be given on classification, indicating the different principles of natural and arbitrary classification. Most books on logic tend to confound the two; whereas it might easily be shown that the observance of this distinction is essential to a sound system of logic. We could wish something said of the relation of subaltern propositions, under which head the mock. syllogisms we before alluded to would be discussed. Indeed, the whole subject of the substitution of propositions merits much more attention than is commonly given to it. In his reference

to induction, Dr. Gray takes the common, and as we cannot but think, incorrect, view. He does not distinguish clearly between the process of induction, and a deductive argument founded on an induction.

We throw out these hints with a view to a second edition, which this useful little volume will doubtless command. We may add, that in that case, the author would do well, we think, to reconsider his solution of the hour-and-minute-hand puzzle. It is most singular that he should think he has succeeded in putting it into a syllogistic form, when his so-called major premiss ends with 'for, ete., etc.' Which 'etc., etc.,' if it stand for anything, must stand for the whole puzzle, only in a general form. The solution adopted by Mr. Mill appears to us the correct one.

[ocr errors]

Art. VIII. Memoirs of the Court of Charles the Second, by Count

Grammont, With numerous Additions and Illustrations, as Edited by Sir Walter Scott. Also the Personal History of Charles, including the King's own Account of his Escape and Preservation after the Battle of Worcester, as dictated to Pepys. And the Boscobel Tracts, Or, Contemporary Narratives of His Majesty's Adventures, from the Murder of his Father to the Restoration. London: Henry G.

Bohn. 1846. Mr. Bohn has done wisely in not including the Memoirs of Count Grammont,' in his 'Standard Library. It would have been better not to have printed the work at all, at least in the cheap and attractive style in which it is here supplied. In form and price, the volume is precisely similar to those of the ! Standard Library,' the only difference being in the colour of the binding. The general circulation of such a work can do no good. It is not a book for the many, and is specially unsuited to the young. The gracefulness of its style, the vivacity of its sketches, and the delusive charm which it throws over the frivo, lities and vices it depicts, renders it one of the worst books in our language, for general use. We could name others more gross in their style, and less reserved in their delineations, which, in our judgment, are comparatively innocuous. The very qualities which attract and please, and on the ground of which Gibbon, by a disreputable oblivion of the moral sense, described these Memoirs as 'a classic work, the delight of every man and woman of taste,' only strengthen our objection to their being put into a wider circulation than their historical value renders expedient. Mr. Bohn was aware of this objection, though not fully apprized of its force, and therefore admits in guarded terms, that it is 'too much embued with the leaven of Charles the Second's days to suit the severer code of the present age.' He has consequently printed it in a separate series under a distinct title, deeming its exclusion somewhat prudish, yet deferring to what he believes to be the expediency of the case. "The publisher feels,' he tells us, that the subscribers to his

Standard Library,' after having been led on by such samples of intentions, as the works of Robert Hall, Roscoe, Schlegel and Sismondi, with the prospect of others of the same sterling character, have a right to count upon his not altering the tone of that series by including anything which may not unhesitatingly be put into the hands of the most fastidious; and they have some evidence of his wish to deserve such confidence by the course now pursued.'

Now we have no disposition to deny the historical value of the work, though we believe this to have been greatly overrated. In this respect the Memoirs have their worth. They reflect the character of the court of Charles II, with more fullness than any other work of the period, shew us the interior of royal life, and prove how much our morality and religion had gained by the Restoration. It is a sad and revolting spectacle which is delineated, wherein all the worst features of our nature have prominence, and the brighter and redeeming ones are rarely visible. The Count himself, a Frenchman by birth and training, was a fitting type of the class; and the scenes he describes were England's disgrace and curse. The divines who speak and preach of the blessed restoration, may read his Memoirs with advantage, but the generality of readers have no occasion for, and can derive no benefit from, the criminal amours and heartless perfidy which they detail. The Memoires de Grammont,' says Mr. Hallam, are known to every body, and are almost unique in their kind, not only for the grace of their style and the vivacity of their pictures, but for the happy ignorance in which the author seems to have lived, that any one of his readers could imagine that there are such things as virtue and principle in the world. In the delirium of thoughtless voluptuousness they resemble some of the memoirs about the end of Louis the Fifteenth's reign, and somewhat later; though I think, even in these, there is generally some effort, here and there, at moral censure, or some affectation of sensibility.* ,

To the historical student the work was already accessible, and the interests of morality and of healthful literature, would have been best consulted by no effort being made to give it more extensive currency. We have been constrained to say thus

• Constitutional Hist. vol. ii. p. 479.

[graphic]
« PreviousContinue »