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new light on the mysterious, and always so obscure, doctrine of initiations.— Paintings have been carefully traced from the originals, and form fourteen plates, of which several are double. The frontispiece and the text are ornamented with interesting inedited monuments, relative to the subjects of the work. To these recommendations, we may add the graphic and typographic Juxury of this splendid work, which is from the press of Didot l’ainé. Thus antiquaries, the lovers of the Fine Arts, and the admirers of splendid editions, will all receive a high gratification in the acquisition of the work of the illustrious Å1illin. CHEMISTRY. Trailè de Chinie Elementaire Théorique et Pratique; par M. L. J. Thena, d, &c. &c. An Elementary Treatise of Theoretical and Practical Chemistry ; by M. Thenard, &c. &.-5 vols, 8vo, 1813 —16. The name alone of such a distinguishcd chemist as M. Thenard, is in itself a guarantee of the excellence of the work; but the course of political events has shed its baneful influence over the whole horizon of literature, and prevented the final publication of M. L.'s work until last winter, though the first volume had appeared in 1813. This is highly disadvantageous to an author remarkable for the observance of the laws of method and precision in his works; but, is the work suffers from being obligod to form a supplement, bringing down the state of knowledge to the publication of the last volume, the consideration is more than counterbalanced by the cheering reflection, that the unconquered spirit of science cannot be subdued; and, that in spite of political action and re-action, revolution, and the exchange of a military tyranny for that of priesthood, the philosopher is but partially distracted from the study of nature and nature's laws. Of all the sciences, that of chemistry makes the most rapid progress; and the best treatise of chemistry has its date like an almanack. As the work of M. Thenard is of an elementary nature, it has suffered less in the respect we allude to than if it had treated of chemistry in its higher forms,
We may make still further discoveries of new chemical agents, and yet simplify many bodies even now supposed simple; but the known properties of the principal natural agents will not admit but of very limited advances, and certainly ñö change, consequently the description of these will long retain its value. Chemical analysis is still in a very imperfect state; but, as it is naturally the last branch the student has to learn, that part has been treated last, and consequently brought down to the present year. To convey an idea of the merit of our author's plan, we will give an outline of the arrangement he has adopted. The first part treats of inorganie bodies, and the laws of cohesion and offinity, slightly; the farther consideration of affinily, he reserves for a more advanced state of the student's knowledge. He next treats of imponderable bodies, and particularly light; the expansion or dilatation of bodies, the nature of the thermometer, the decomposition of bodies by caloric, and their contraction by cold, their specific caloric, and the disserent means by which it is determined, and the sources from which it emanates, which are the sun, or the bodies thal abandon it, either by the effect of compression or combination. . The author's theory would occupy too much space; but we think, had he been acquainted with that published long ago in this Magazine, he would have altered his system, or at leaststrongly doubted its truth and accuracy. He examines light merely in its chemical effects. Electricity and galvanism are treated in a perspicuous manner. He then resumes the consideration of chemical aflinities, and the properties of imponderable fluids, whose actions extend throughout all nature. Ponderable bodies, simple and compound, next occupy his attention, with theirclassification. Oxygen being the most important of ponderable bodies, the author developes its nature and effects at length, from which he passes to combustible bodies; thence to oxides and acids, and their reciprocal action, and the properties of minerals and extraction of metals; he then treats of vegetable and animal matterS. - M. Thenard, in his researches. exa
Retrospect of French Literature.
mines bodies in general under seven points of view— 1. Their principal physical properties. 2. Those of their chemical properties which depend on the rank they occupy. 3. The various states in which they are formed in nature. 4. The manner of obtaining them pure. 5. Their composition. 6. Their uses. 7. A brief history of their discovery, or that of their more remarkable properties. Having proceeded thus far, he leads the student into the theory and practice of analysis, to which he dedicates eight distinct chapters. The first treats of the manipulations common to a great number of analyses—the second of the analyses of gases—the third of combustible bodies—the fourth of burnt substances —the fifth of salts—the sixth of mineral waters—the seventh of organic substances —and the eighth of the mode of discovering to what class a body, intended to be analized, belongs. Having thus given a brief, but careful analysis of the excellent work of M. Thenard, we have only to add, that not only the young student, but even the experienced chemist, may study it with pleasure and profit.
M. MILLIN considers the works of Homer as the encyclopædia of the heroic ages, they alone can inform us of the state of knowledge in his time.—“Homer did not study natural history like the philosophers who succeeded him; it was not become a theoretical science. He observed Nature by a sublime instinct— he loved to describe her in her gayest form—and she almost always presented herself unveiled before him. Every reiga furnished him with pictures and comparisons; and, on examining them closely, we shall frequently find an accuracy that as much astonishes the imagination, as the magic of the style transports it. It is, therefore, Homer alone whom we must invoke to instruct us with any degree of certitude on the state of knowledge in the ages he sung. He alone can give us true details on the history of those ages, on their manners, their customs, and their arts. I will not compare his knowledge with that since acquired on the different subjects he has treated. They are at present more exact and extensive; but is it not prodigious that a single man should have possessed so great a number 2 for I regard the writings of Homer as the encyclopædia of the heroic ages, and the Greeks had the same opinion of them. His geographical notions relative to the countries he had visited were so exact, that, long after him, the ‘Catalogue of the Ships, in the second book of the Iliad, frequently served to terminate differences in Greece. The AEylians were obliged to cede Calydon to the AEtolians, hecause Homer, in his enumeration, had placed this city amongst those which belonged to the latter. The same reason induced the Athenians to give Sestos the inhabitants of Abydos. From a single line of this poet, Solon put the same people in possession of Salamine. The inhabitants of Priene, aad those of Miletus, disputed about the city of Mycale. The authority of Homer, stronger than all other titles, adjudged to the former the object of their contestation.— Homer knew all that was known in his time. It is this extent of knowledge,
M. Millin has rendered an invaluable service to the lovers of Greek, and especially Homeric, literature.—Homer has had the singular misfortune never to have been translated into any language by a man of science. Every person who had atolerable acquaintance with Greek, and possessed the facility of stringing verses, fancied himself equal to the task of translating the writings of Homer, which are as much works of science as poems— Hence the numerous failures and ridiculous versions. Of all our countrymen, perhaps Clarke understood Homer the best; Pope too was well acquainted with the genius of his language; Madame Dacier's translation was wonderful for a lady, but in that circumstance consisted its only merit. Bitaubé has since given a very poetical prose translation,
and almost balances the scale with that
of Le Brun, the joint-consul with Napoleon. M. Millin corrects their various errors, and discovers immense reading in support of his assertions. The bronze of the ancients has long been a matter of dispute; if M. Millin does not exactly settle the point, it will at any rate be difficult to find a more probable theory. To those who love to contemplate the beginning of science, to view it in its infant state, and watch its progress and the care bestowed on it until it becomes gigantic in its form and beautiful in its proportions, will have a rich treat in the work of M. Millin.”
MEDICINE. Dictionnaire des Sciences Medicales.
Dictionary of the Medical Sciences. - Vol. 13, 14, 15. This is a highly important work, but the tremendous bulk which it is likely to assume will render it inaccessible to many, which is the more to be lamented, as its editors and compilers are men of
* It will, in the course of the next winter, make its appearance in English, with additions and corrections communicated by the author to the translator.
M. Guersent gives a description of their
structure and their functions; he consid
ers them generally as concurring to the ascension of the sap, and the nutrition and preservation of the plant, the absorption on the inferior surface, and by aque
ous and gazeous perspiration. The use of leaves, in medicine, is treated at con
siderable length. He divides them into
mucilaginous, endowed with emollient
properties; poisonous, distinguished by
their peculiarly foetid odour; bitter and acid, but not aromatic ; bitter and aro
matic piquant, or sour and aromatic ;
those which contain a white saccharine, and narcotic principle, or a sour and
corrosive principle, and leaves sour and bitter, which do not contain a white sugar. After this careful and scientific
analysis, the author proceeds to shew the various medical properties of each class. —But, fifteen thick volumes in 8vo. and only arrived at the letter Fl
Retrospect of French Literature. fame and the satisfaction of the public,
it ought to have been twice as large. He is a writer who understands his subject well, and can duly appreciate its importance; for he acknowledges, that the physician ought carefully to have studied anatomy, physiology, pathology, &c. &c. Mr. Giraudy is, however, too much a physician of the schools. Hippocrates is his idol; and we are not certain whether he would be quite pleased if a patient were to recover, unless treated secundum artem. As a specimen of our author's manner, we shall give his analysis of a disorder:- First, the indications called by Galen Agendi insinuationes, which he finds must arise from— I. The nature of the disorder. II. The constitution of the patient. III. His relation with the objects around him. Each of these three principal heads of indication furnishes several subdivisions; as, for example—the first, the nature of the disorder: I. The state of the parts affected—d locis affectis. II. The morbid alteration of the vital fluids—d vitio humorum. III. The period of the disorder—d morbi stadio. IV. The causes of the disorder—d •ausá. V. Urgent symptoms—a symptomatibus urgentibus. The second head of indication he divides into— I. The temperament of the patient. II. The sex and age. III. His habits of life, constitutional strength, &c. The third is divided into, Circumfusa applicata ingesta excreta gesta et percepta or non naturals. TRAVELS.
Les Voyages de Sind-bad le Marin, et la
66? finest specimens of oriental printing in existence. Every one is acquainted with the story of Sind-bad the Sailor, but the present version, taken from more
correct manuscripts, is very different
from M. Galland's. The learned translator pays several well-merited and highly flattering compliments to the Rev. Jonathan Scott, on his new translation of the Arabian Nights; and, where he appears to have mistaken a passage, M. L. sets him right, with that urbanity which always marks superior merit.
Lettres ecrites d'Italie in 1812 et 1813, a M. Charles Pictet, &c.
Lettres written from Italy in 1812-13, to M. Charles Pictet, by M. Frederic Lullin de Chateau Vieur. 2 vols. 12mo.
These letters are very interesting, and present some curious details on what was the state of Italy at that period. It is now greatly changed in all the political points of view, and that unfortunately for the worse. The house of Lorraine appears with no advantage in Italy, after the dynasty of Bonaparte.
The learned M. Millin has in the press, his Travels in Italy; if he publish them as he wrote them, they will be a great literary treasure ; but we fear the scissars of the censor.
contain a homage to a man endowed
Historical, Military, Geographical, and
This learned Greek professor possesses great versatility of talents; and those who have seen his immense and erudite edition of Xenophon, would be astonished at the contents of the present work, which does not sin like his grand one on Xenophon, from its bulk: but to what extent will not the spirit of book-making run ? We have seen Stewart publish Sallust in two thick volumes, quarto; and Gail, Xenophon, in six volumes, quarto. The author of “The Bashful Man,” had surely the spirit of prophecy, when he makes him knock down an inkstand in attempting to take down the
wooden edition of Xenophon, in ten volumes, quarto. . . . ." The present work of M. Gail consists of a series of essays, of which the follow-. ing are highly curious :- . . . . ; Observations on Primitive Athens, and on Athens after the Retreat of the Medes, On the First Battle of Mantinea, which no Modern Historian has mentioned, with a Plan of the Battle. : On the Principal Events of the 96th and 98th Olympiads, and on the Battle of Nemea. .* -On the Temples of the Ancients, 28 pages. On the Chariot Course described by AEschylus. - The reader will find many curious learned arguments, with great depth of learning, and in some cases a very refined
taste, in three essays. &
END or THE VOLUME.
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