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glo-American nephew or niece.--Come, come, don't monopolize
-You have made your election for the new world--put me, my dear boy, in a way to enjoy the old one.” Vol. iii. P. 9.
That George Delimont, who had sufficient philosophy to follow his own feelings and opinions in defiance of those of the world, should almost beggar himself to supply the wants of his brother, an unprincipled man of fashion, is surely very inconsistent. The real distresses of a friend or relative might have been made to furnish motives strong enough for such conduct, and Delmont might have been so compelled to impoverish himself by good and just feelings; but it is a childith and criminal weakness in him to rifque his little fortune and happi. ness merely to afford a temporary resource to a profligate. The Cecilia and Camilla of Mrs, d'Arblay distress themselves by a fimilar conduct; but the conduct which accords with the timidity of their sex, is ridiculous in a man accuftomed to think justly, and to act with manly decision.
We observe another fault in the story, and it is a fault prominent in some of the other novels of this lady. Being herfelf a sufferer by law, perhaps by professional chicanery and injustice, she has again introduced diftreffes from the prolific source of law; and her lawyers are again described as equally contemptible and wicked. We are sorry that Mrs. Sinith should degrade her productions by perfonal satire ; for such, the preface informs us, this is.
I have made these drawings' (the fays) a little like people of that fort whom I have seen, certain that nothing I could imagine would be so correct, when legal collusion and professional oppression were to be reprefented.' These drawings we must consider as caricatures ; and most readers, we believe, will wish with us that the authoress had written less under the influence of resentment.
Mrs. Smith declares against the conclusion that she thinks either like Glenmorris or Armitage, or any other of her personages ;' and those who think differently will, we hope, consider, that, as she cannot hold the opinions of all her heroes, her private sentiments may as probably be those of the Banished Man as those of the Young Philosopher. Yet, we think, she has argued too well for the philofopher to expect candour from the advocates for existing abuses.
Some of the op.ions of Glenmorris are observable in the following extract.
" If I have those I love with me," said Glenmorris, ac is not every part of the globe equally my country? And has not this, which you are pleated to call my native land, thrown me from her borom when I might have served her ? Did the leave ine any choice between imprifonment and flight? Now, averse from the means by which political power and induence can be obtained, and
without a fortune to live but in continual pecuniary difficulties, 'why should I ask an asylum of this haughty mother country for my declining days ? If such things were done in the green leaf, what shall be done in the dry ?”.
“ Have a care my good friend,” said Armitage, when he was once talking in this manner, “ have a care, lest you yield in all this to a false pride, to a pride utterly unworthy of a mind like your's. You feel yourself out of your place in England, because you have not power, or great afluence (which in fact is power); but is not that a sensation a little bordering on the sentiment,
6 Better to reign in hell than serve in heaven." “ No," replied Glenmorris, " I have no desire to reign any where; but I do not love to be in a country where I am made to pay very dear for advantages which exist not but in idea. I do not love to live where I see a frightful contrast between luxury and wretchedness; where I must daily witness injustice I cannot repress, and misery. I cannot relieve. In America, you say, I must abandon society, and starve my understanding. I deny it, however. The great book of nature is open before me, and poor must be his taste who cannot find in it a more noble ftudy than that of sophis. ticated minds, which we call fociety here, where at every step we take something appears to shock or disgust us; where all greatness of character seems loft; and where, if we desire to study human nature unadulterated by inhuman prejudices, ive act nearly as the painter would do, who should turn from the study of the exquifitely simple Grecian statue to debauch his eyes with ihe spectacle of court figures in hoops and perriwigs. In this country, my dear Armitage, as you know very well, we do not value," le vrai beer,”! which being translated, seems to me to mean, " the great fimple ;' no, we appreciate moral excellence by success, by fortune, which gives fashion, and imputes perfection (a temporary one indeed, but which still answers all their purposes) to the mere puppets of a season. I will not talk to you about politics, because you are among the moderates and quietists ; you endure all things, you hope all things, you believe all things. Now I, who do not love enduring much, who have little to hope, and .
“ And who believe nothing," interrupted Armitage.
“ Oh! pardon me,” rejoined Glenmorris, “ I believe a vast deal; but we will not talk of that; not that we should differ in the great principles of our actions, and all the rest is mere verbal wrangling, a difference in terms rather than things. While you can be tolerably happy yourself, my dear friend, in this country, or believe that you can do good to its people, it is very fit you Thould stay; for me who, footh to say, am not happy in it mytelf, and despair of being of any use in promoting, beyond a very narrow circle indeed, the happiness of others, the neceffity of my remaining is by no means so evident. You agree with me, that true
philanthropy does not consist in loving John, and Thomas, and George, and James, because they are our brothers, our cousins, our neighbours, our countrymen, but in benevolence to the whole human race; if that be true, let me ask you whether I can be thoroughly contented here, where I see that the miseries inflicted by the social compact greatly exceed the happiness derived from it ; where I observe an artificial polish, glaring but fallacious on one fide, and on the other real and bitter wretchedness; where for a great part of the year my ears are every week shocked by the cries of hawkers, informing who has been dragged to execution; and where, to come directly home, it is at the mercy of any rascal, to whom I have given an opportunity of cheating me of ten pounds, to swear a debt against me, and carry me to the abodes of horror, where the malefactor groans in irons, the debtor languishes in de. spair. Is or is not this picture true? and if it be, can I love to live irf such a country only because I drew my first breath in a remote corner of it? No, dear Armitage, if Delmont will not fail me, if he will let me for a little while at least have my Medora in my adopted country, if, notwithstanding his advantages here, he has, as I believe, manliness enough to say,
All countries that the eye of heaven visits,
Are to a wise man homes and happy havens, we will once more cross the Atlantic, and I will try to teach him, that wherever a thinking man enjoys the most uninterrupted domes. tic felicity, and sees his species the molt content; that is his country." Vol. iv. P. 390.
Some few pieces of poetry are inserted in these volumes. We shall extract one, which will not derogate from the fame of the writer.
• The fairest flowers are gone! -for tempests fell,
Vol. iii, P. 52
Miscellaneous Sketches: or, Hints for Essays. By Arthur
Browne, Esq. Fellow of Trinity College, Dublin. 2 Vols. 8vo. 75. Robinsons. 1798.
UNDER this modest title we have found a considerable portion of good sense and just criticism. Temperate in bis opinions, the author neither approves of hasty innovations, nor gives his fanction to old abuses: he advances his fentiments upon every subject with moderation, and supports them with ability. On some of the more important essays we shall offer some reinarks.
Mr. Browne replies to the arguments of Adam Smith, Gibbon, and Vicesimus Knox, against a college education ; but he argues from the discipline of Dublin, and little of what he has advanced can be applied to our English universities. We thould be happy to enumerate, among the benefits of college education, 'habits of study, regular division of time, habits of discipline and obedience, of early rising, of early retirement in the evening, diligence, labour, virtuous emulation, and such like.'
We should be happy also to discover the advantage derivable from the fimplicity and uniformity of college commons, in abstracting the youth from the luxury of his domestic board;' and to dwell upon the more obvious advantages, the private instruction of the tutor and the public lecture by the professor:' but we know what are the habits acquired at an English university; and there would be little inerit in irony so obvious. The great question, and we believe Mr. Browne will agree with us in esteeming it the most important, is, whether the morals of our youth are likely to be improved or corrupted at these seminaries.
The association of so many young men, in the most critical stage of life, must necessarily produce evils which cannot be overbalanced by the possibility of virtuous emulation. In the multitude of students there will be fewer of those who should be iinitated than of those of an opposite description. Young men, as they regard only the present, are more frequently seduced into vice than schooled by its consequences. The contagion of vice is more rapid than the influence of virtue.
The question, whether the world will ever relapse into barbarism, is, we think, decided hastily and erroneously.
• My own opinion' (fays Mr. Browne) always has been, that the present state of illumination and refinement will be succeeded by second darkness and Cimmerian night, equally gloomy with the cloud raised by the crush of the Roman empire. The reply of those to whom the idea was suggested uniformly has been, impossible; the art of printing renders such fears groundless. I answer
the art of printing itself may become exclusively the engine of wickedness, of vice, of folly, of irreligion. If the fashion or madness of the times should produce a relifh for corrupted food, we may be filled with writings to fatiety; yet swallow nothing but poison ; what infinite' mischief has the press produced in our own days ? In France the vehicle of every crime, it has been made the easy propagator of blafphemy, of massacre, of anarchy. Whether it hall finally be a blessing or a curse must depend on the taste of mankind, and if that tafte be vitiated, and feeds upon venom,
the more it consumes the sooner will we perish. Vol. i. P. 48.
The reason why my opinion has been thought improbable or impoflible is this, that as it is said, no instance has occurred of a nation reducing itself to barbarism ; Rome was over-run by barbarous but foreign swarms. I will not reply merely to the fact by saying, that Rome had before that period made fuch retrograde way to anti-civilization, but I will add also, that the world is young; we have seen perhaps little of the possible extravagancies of human nature and their wild effects : France in its wild deliriums has asto. mited the world; they may be outdone by some more outrageous fever, which may finally end in the extinction of light and life. Human nature, insolent and presuming in its own strength, fpurning the aids of divine revelation, and even of ancient learning, may relapse after convulsions into letfargy, and till the imposibility, of suci events be proved by some better argument than the invention of printing, I Mall ever, from the data afforded by the history, of modern times believe their probability. The age of pretended self-sufficient reafon will become the age of absurdity ; irreligion will subvert all government, and anarchy lead to barbarism.
51. Much evil undoubtedly has ensued-and much, it is to be feared, will ensue—from the industrious dissemination of principles false in themselves, and dangerous in their consequences. But all error must be transitory; and truth, however calumniated, howeyer perfecuted, must ultionately be victoriouş. This, which experience and reason render probable, has been made certain by revelation. From the earliest periods, the state of mankind has been improving, though flowly, and at times almost imperceptibly. Rome indeed, in its glory, presents to us a magnificent spectacle, hitherto unpaTalleled : but, beyond the boundaries of the empire, the nations were barbarous and unenlightened, yet sufficiently advarked from the favage state to be numerous and formidable. When there barbarians had overthrown the Roman empire, prepared for ruin by its own corruptions, a melancholy period followed, during which mankind appear to have relapsed into ignorance. This however was not the case. The barbarians
Vol. i. P.