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lit them in oil; and thesident a
The monks received us with civility, and we remained with them more than an hour in their extraordinary habitation. The buildings are spread irregularly over the whole summit of the rock, enclosing two or three small areas : they liave no splendour, either external or internal, and exhibit but the appearances of wretchedness and decay. Nevertheless the monks conducted us through every one of their dark and dilapidated rooms, and seemed to require a tribute of admiration, which, though little due to the objects for which it is sought, might conscientiously be given to the magnificent natural scenery around and beneath their monastery.'
The two terrestrial visitants were led to each edge of the platform of this seclusion from the earth ; some of the eatable products of which earth, however, they saw drawn up by the same pulley which had brought themselves there. And they made a hasty repast of rice cooked in oil; a Turkish dish
composed of flour, eggs, and oil; bread, and thin wine.' There were only five monks, with a few attendants, resident at that time in the monastery; all of them miserable,' says Dr. H. in their exterior, and with conceptions as narrow and confined as the rocks on which they live. They were quite ignorant of the age of the foundation of their edifice, and appeared to possess no books of the smallest value. Their almost inaccessible situation has not availed them against the Albanian soldiers, who have often plundered the village and valleys below, where lies their little property, and whence their supplies are furnished, and sometimes compelled an admission for the same purpose into the monasteries themselves.
At Larissa, the Author was handsomely entertained, and carefully consulted by Veli Pasha, and delighted with the society of Velara, a deeply learned and eminently intelligentand philosophic Greek physician. Voder promise of returning to Larissa, he made an excursion to the north as far as Salonica. After the final adieu to Veli Pasha, and the hospitable and intelligent Greek society at Larissa, he traversed the more interesting tracts of Greece, from Thermopylæ to Athens, and thence through the Peloponnesus to Patras, whence he departed for another short residence in Albania, of which he surveyed several tracts which he had not approached before.
The length of time we were detained by the extraordinary personage who commands that country, has reduced us to come to this hasty and abrupt conclusion of a journal which is writter with equal spirit throughout, and of which the latter portion describes many scenes and objects of very great captivation. It is at the same time true that many of the most interesting parts of the topography of Greece are latterly become very familiar to the English public.
Dr. Holland is a very vigilant and accurate observer, a very intelligent judge of whatever he observes, and an exceedingly clear describer and relater. This clearness, combined with the learning which he frequently, but unostentatiously, turns to good account, makes it very pleasing to accompany him through those fascinating tracts where we might perhaps have been gratified by a little more of the poetic in the tone of the observer's sentiments.
Besides a neat map, there are twelve engravings, most of them finished and elegant.
Art. V. Memoirs of the Life and Doctrines of the late John Hunter,
Esq. Founder of the Hunterian Museum at the Royal College of Surgeons in London. By Joseph Adams, M.D. Author of Observations on Morbid Poisons, &c. 8vo. pp. 284. Price 12s. Callow, London. 1817. THERE are some few favoured individuals, who have ac
I quired a celebrity of character and a perpetuity of fame, that amount in some degree to an identification of their names with the particular branch of intellectual pursuit to which their names are attached. It is with a feeling of this kind, that we speak of Homer in regard to poetry, of Hippocrates to medicine, and of Shakspeare to the drama; and now, in pathological surgery, the name of Hunter is announced under somewhat of the same impression.
And this very celebrity is an unquestionable test of superior merit; nor do we err in regarding with more than ordinary deference, whatever proceeds from men upon whom general consent has conferred so high an award. We ought to be careful, however, in all cases, and more especially where practical science is concerned, to prevent our discernment of worth from being dazzled by the splendour of a name, and our judgement on pretensions, from being warped by verba-magistri authority.
An opportunity has already been furnished us of intinzating, in reference to a professed disciple and admirer of Mr. Hunter, that he has discovered more in his master than his master
knew.'* And there are but few, we imagine, who will not agree with us, that the present eulogist of that distinguished individual, carries his admiration to an extravagant extent, when he asserts that
In proportion as we have since improved in our knowledge of nature, we see the force of, because we understand, what Mr. Hunter taught. In other words, when we make a discovery in pathology, we only learn what we have overlooked in his writings, or forgotten in his lectures."
Much allowance may however be granted for a favourite pupil and biographer; and works like the present may be of great service to the canse of science; for besides the immediate gra
* See our Review of Mr. Abernethy's Introductory Lectures.
tification they afford, as memoirs of eminent men, they are calculated to encourage industry, and to lead the student into the proper channels of inquiry. It should be mentioned too, that Dr. Adams, though an ardent admirer of the subject of these Memoirs, and sufficiently desirous to palliate his faults, has con trived to intermix with his history some reflections, which, if even in some measure chargeable with the imputation of common-place, are not without great value in their connexion with the details into which he enters respecting the circumstances of Mr. Hunter's life.
It is too cominon with historians of real, as with dramatic inventors of fictitious character, to represent the failings of men of genius, in such colours as almost to convert them into virtues; and it is quite an ordinary thing to talk of the incompatibility of orderly habits with brilliant talents, insomuch that many would-be geniuses, have actually invested themselves with the eccentricities of others, to which they had no natural bias, fearing to walk in the paths of sobertiess and propriety, lest they should be reproached with dulness and stupidity. Dr. A. in exposing this prevalent notion, and establishing the assumption that greatness of mental powers is not inconsistent with every thing that is otherwise praiseworthy, has performed an acceptable service to the cause of truth and sobriety.'
Another particular circumstance in the work before us, we must take notice of, as it so much accords with our own notions on the same subject, and indeed harinonizes with some sug: gestions which we have ventured to advance on another öccasion, namely, that it is the duty of individuals, as it will be found their happiness, to exert themselves to resist the irruptions of pettishness, and not to give way to rufflings of mind under the false subterfuge of peculiarity of temper. It is worthy notice, that Mr. Hunter was invariably affected by trifling causes of irritation ; nay, his life seems to have been curtailed by them; while things of much greater moment, made comparatively but little impression upon his irritable frame.
This is in unison with what is often witnessed in life gabut we see no way of accounting for the fact, unless it be that a larger measure of resisting power is called into exercise in one case than in the other. The very exercise of the faculty of resistance, in either case, proves, however, its subordination to the will; and why not therefore exert it on small, as well as on great occasions, since so much is to be gained by the contest? More than a double share of responsibility, in reference to this particular, attaches itself to the individual who professes to be under the guidance of Christian principles; but, even independently of these higher motives and paramount duties, it is for men who value their peace and comfort, to be constantly on their guard against VOL. VII. N.S.
the vulgar, but erroneous notion of a total irresistibility of natural temper.
Before we proceed to an analysis of the work before us, it may not be out of place to say one or two words further, on the just claim of Mr. Hunter, to the very extraordinary celebrity wbichhe has gained. It was by stamping a new impression upon the science to which he devoted himself, that he be. came so conspicuously pre-eminent above his predecessors and contemporaries. He brought, not only an ardent, but an independent mind, into the investigation of physiological science. He considered all that had been done before him, as nothing, unless it appeared to him to have the warrant of truth, as well as the support of authority. He discarded loose analogies, and studied the laws of living existence in the phenomena of living bodies. Thus, the master-principles of action in the animate machine, viz. secretion, absorption, assimilation, and consequent nutrition and growth, assumed in his hands, a character of absolute novelty; and the student who wishes to obtain a correct notion of these vital principles, cannot be too assiduous in his attention to Mr. Hunter's remarks. We are not sure, however, whatever Dr. Adams and Mr. Abernethy may say to the contrary, whether Mr. H. does not, in his sympathetic expositions of the animal economy, tend to mislead by confusing final with efficient causes ; or, in other words, by gratuitous assumptions of the intentions of nature, which really mean nothing when they are employed to explain the laws of nature. This error cannot indeed operate so mischievously as it did in former times, when nominal were taken universally for real essences, or when physiology was a kind of poetry. It nevertheless ought to be carefully discarded from philosophical works ; and it is especially reprehensible when it pervades the writings of men, whose talents and acquirements necessarily procure for them a sort of intellectual submission from the generality of mankind.
We make these remarks with the same deference for the sentiments of the present biographer of Mr. H., which we expressed for those of his former advocate; and we think that both Mr. Abernethy and Dr. Adams are themselves living proofs, that Mr. Hunter left behind him much to be discovered and reasoned upon, by those who should succeed to his labours. They may say they owe all to Mr. Hunter ; but others must, and will think differently. We now proceed to the business more immediately before us.
• Mr. Hunter, we are told, was descended from an antient fa. mily: it is worth remarking, that many of our illustrious families derive their names from offices which were likely to bring their ancestors most about the royal person. Hence the Butlers and Stewards; and it is not improbable that the first of the race from
whom the name of Hunter, is derived might have been an attendant upon a royal sportsman. The armorial bearings of the family seem to confirm this conjecture. But whatever may be the antiquity of Mr. Hunter's family, future historians will scarcely take the trouble of tracing it further back than the eighteenth century.'
The father of John Hunter was descended from the Hunters of Hunters-town, an old family in Ayrshire; his mother was a daughter of a r. Paul, a 'very respectable man, and the ' treasurer of Glasgow.' Joho was the youngest of ten children. William, the eldest brother, became, as it is well known, a very eminent physician, and teacher of anatomy. Dr. Adams transcribes a letter from old Mr. Hunter to his son William, respecting the direction of his course in life, which places the parent in a very interesting point of view; and had he lived longer, it is most probable that John would not have remained without those advantages of academical education in his early years, the want of which he so sensibly felt during the remainder of his life. Ten years after his birth, his mother was left a widow; and as he was now the only son left at home, maternal ndulgence became highly detrimental to him, Of his two sisters, one died a few years after her marriage with Mr. Bucliana), and it does not appear that she left any issue. The other was the mother of three children, two of whom have obtained in their respective departments, a very considerable share of public approbation. On the merits of Dr. Baillie, and his sister, the celebrated authoress, Dr. A. expresses himself in the following terms.
These two relatives of John Hunter, as authors, and consequently as public characters, we may be permitted to notice. There is perhaps not a work which, in so small a space, contains so much valuable information as the “ Morbid Anatomy ;" por a work of which we may so truly affirm, that, though replete with references and authorities, there is not a line that can give pain to a reader of any description. But what shall we say of that elegant compilation of engravings published as illustrations of the same work ? a collection which must have been suggested by the purest intentions. It could scarcely be expected that so heavy an expence would be repaid by the sale ; and among the numerous contributors, the author or compiler's name seems almost concealed.' ** The interesting dramatic pieces of Joanna, speak a mind well stored, well directed, adorned with simplicity and crowned with festivity. This subject might be er larged, were it not indelicate to dwell on living characters, and unnecessary for those lo whom it would be most interesting. It is, however, not altogether unworthy of remark, that this pre-eminence of talent is more frequently a fam mily, than an hereditary endowment! We have lately seen two brothers, one at the head of the English, the other of the Scottish