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The Dean of Christchurch alone, already by his Hephæstion, his Stobæus, his Minor Greek Poets, and his other works, we hope speedily by his long-expected Suidas, may compete in industry, as in erudition, with our prolific neighbours. Nor must we omit the opportunity of expressing our high opinion of the most laborious, and perhaps the most valuable, work connected with classical literature, which has, of late days, issued from our press, Mr. Fynes Clinton's Civil and Literary Chronology of Greece We feel that we are venturing on trembling and treacherous ground, when we approach the distinctive merits of some of our more recent scholars. But perhaps we shall not be wrong in attributing this circumscribed range, to which our modern scholars have mostly confined themselves, in a great degree to the influence and example of their acknowledged chief, Porson. In some great qualifications of scholarship, in intuitive acuteness, in a sort of divination of the real sense and the right reading of a corrupt passage; in that conjectural criticism which is more than ingenuity, which bears certainty with it; in laying down the simple principles of language and of metre, that great man and Bentley stand almost alone. But it is curious, in the first place, that they seem to have worked with different instruments. Bentley's memory, according to his own expression, was none of the best; it was the unparalleled perfection of this faculty in Porson, on which his superiority relied. It gave him the complete and instant command of all his stores of erudition; he could bring to bear, at once, on any question, every passage from the whole range of Greek literature which could elucidate it; he could approximate, on the instant, the slightest coincidence in thought or expression, and the accuracy was quite as surprising as the extent of his recollection. In another respect, no two characters could be more opposite than Bentley and Porson: the former, in his immeasurable self-contidence, bold, adventurous, decisive ; the other, cool, sure, and cautious. In his scholarship, (would that he had been under as safe a guidance in all his habits!) Porson was singularly prudent : hence, though Bentley is more splendidly and originally right, Porson is more unerringly so; Bentley's judgments are more numerous, and on a greater variety of points, but all are not of quite equal authority; Porson's are few, but none of them have ever been reversed. Bentley's light was thrown about with greater profusion on many objects; Porson's was centered on a few, but burned more steadily on those. The same prudence kept Porson within the province in which his strength lay, that of philological criticism ; he never ventured on the more debateable ground of the criticism of taste. In their style there was the same difference: the careless copiousness and natural vigour of Bentley was in the strongest contrast to the terseness and neatness of Porson's most finished writing; and the fine irony of the latter, of which we have some few examples, in the character of Gibbon for instance, is the opposite extreme to the coarse vehemence and the broader humour of Bentley's controversial tone.
In some points of character there is a closer analogy between Parr and Bentley, yet at the same time almost as much dissimilarity. Parr's strength lay not so much in critical skill and penetration, as in the metaphysics of language and morals. He would have been more likely to rival the Boyle Lectures, or the Letters of Phileleutherus Lipsiensis, than the Epistle to Mill, or the Dissertation on Phalaris. But both were equally arrogant and overbearing in literature and conversation ; in private, good-natured, and often kind-hearted men. Both were fully possessed with the conviction that a great scholar is the greatest of men.
But the different effect of their self-confidence and haughtiness on their writings is not without interest. The pride of Bentley betrayed him into negligence and haste ; whatever came from him, whatever he condescended to communicate to the world, must be worthy of his high name; he could strike out, while the anxious printer waited for the proofs, notes which would set the world right on the most abstruse points. With Parr, on the other hand, nothing but what was most elaborate could be worthy of coming from so consummate a scholar; his style is swollen, as it were, with the conscious dignity of its master. Parr must not demean himself to the familiar tone of ordinary men. Even in his bitterness Parr abstains from the vulgar tongue, not from mildness of temper or courtesy of manners, but his sarcasms, not to do discredit to his
must be as highly wrought as the rest of his style. Bentley, in the turmoil of war, would use the first weapons that came to his hand. Sometimes he would call his antagonists fools in the strangest, sometimes in the simplest and plainest phrase; his use would ennoble the meanest word. Parr would say the same coarse thing, but always, for dignity's sake, with a sonorous periphrasis ; and, though as vulgar and ill-mannered in thought and feeling, would still be most laboriously polished in expression. It was probably the same proud jealousy of his reputation which prevented Parr from contributing more largely to our instruction and knowledge ; for few, with such powers of understanding, notwithstanding the number and bulk of the volumes to which his works have grown, have added less to the standard stock of our literature.
In Elmsley are we to attribute the same chariness of attempting any great work, to something of constitutional indolence, or to a peculiar fastidiousness of taste, the difficulty of satisfying his own high notions of perfect criticism? This lamented scholar must
not escape the penalty of our regret, that his extensive knowledge, his accurate and tasteful observation, the Attic elegance of his mind, have not left us a nore extensive and enduring monument of his powers than the editions of the few dramas on which his fame must rest. In another respect, indeed, he has left an example which we should be most unjust if we were to pass unnoticed, and which we trust will be of enduring influence; we mean the candour and amenity of his style, which, though by no means devoid of a kind of quiet irony, he was almost the first to introduce into classical controversy.
On the rest of our living scholars we are designedly silent. We shall only express our hope that some of them will yet anticipate and avert the verdict which posterity may be inclined to pass, as having left behind but little to justify their living reputation. At all events, in the Life of Bentley,' Bishop Monk will have an ample plea for arrest of judgment against such a charge: it is a work which not only, from the character of Bentley himself, but from its able and judicious execution, will ever command a prominent place in the library of the scholar ; while the animation, as well as the industry with which the stirring tale of literary and academic feud is related, and the vast fund of literary information on many subjects, which is collected within this single volume, will secure it a lasting interest even with the less learned reader.
ART. VI.-1. Papers relative to the Disease called Cholera
Spasmodica in India, now prevailing in the North of Europe. Printed by Authority of His Majesty's Most Honourable Privy
Council. London, 1831. 2. History of the Epidemic Spasmodic Cholera of Russia. By
Bisset Hawkins, M.D. London, 1831. 3. Report of the Epidemic Cholera as it appeared in the Territo
ries subjected to Fort St. George. Drawn up by order of Government, under the superintendence of the Medical Board. By William Scot, Surgeon and Secretary to the Board.
Madras. 1894. 4. Bombay Reports. 5. Bengal Reports. 6. Die Asiatische Cholera in Russland, in den Jahren 1829-30,
nach Russischen Quellen bearbeitet. Von Dr. J. R. Lichten
städt. Berlin. 1831. 7. R port au Conseil supérieur de Santé, sur le Choléra Morbus
pestilentiel. Par Alex. Moreau de Jonnès, Membre et Rapporteur du Conseil. Paris. 1831.
8. Is the Cholera Spasmodica of India a Contagious Disease ?
The Question considered in a Letter addressed to Sir Henry Halford, Bart. By W. Macmichael, M.D. London. 1831. THE works whose titles are prefixed to this article afford
a complete account of one of the most terrible pestilences which have ever desolated the earth. Among the Indian reports, that drawn up by Mr. Scot is by far the best. M. de Jonnés has taken advantage of his situation as Member and Secretary of the Supreme Council of Health at Paris, to furnish us with a treatise, distinguished no less by the judicious selection of facts, than by the lucid order in which they are arranged. Dr. Bisset Hawkins has drawn up a valuable summary of the history of the disease, to which he has appended, with great accuracy and labour, the original documents on which the narrative is founded. Dr. Lichtenstädt has translated into German the Reports on Cholera, published by the Russian government, but, omitting to connect these with a narrative, has presented us with a book almost unintelligible to ordinary readers, and full of confusion to those who are obliged to dive into it for facts. Dr. Macmichael's valuable little pamphlet should be in everybody's hands; it contains a neat historical exposure of the errors and follies which have ever attended the discussion of the question of contagion.
In the scenes we are about to describe, we have no desire to exaggerate the horrors of a picture already too fearful in itself; neither shall we, on the other hand, studiously avoid touching on those terrible and affecting circumstances which have arisen out of this dispensation of the Almighty. If the history of death and human anguish offers little to allay the alarm now oppressing the public, still an accurate, just, and complete account of the impending evil will limit the imagination to reality, and unburden the mind of all those vague and irrational fears which chain down its faculties, and leave it paralyzed and helpless in the moments of extremest danger.
We have witnessed in our days the birth of a new pestilence, which, in the short space of fourteen years, has desolated the fairest portions of the globe, and swept off at least FIFTY MILLIONS of our race. It has mastered every variety of climate, surmounted every natural barrier, conquered every people. It has not, like the simoom, blasted life, and then passed away; the cholera, like the small-pox or plague, takes root in the soil which it has once possessed. The circumstances under which the individual is attacked are no less appalling than the history of the progress and mortality of the disease. In one man, says an eye-witness, (p. 50, Madras Report,) the prostration of strength was so great that he could hardly move a limb, though he had been but fifteen minutes before in perfect
health hs after
health, and actively employed in his business of a gardener. an instance,' says another, “a Lascar in the service of an officer was seized in the act of packing up his rice, previous to going out to cut grass, close to his master's tent, and being unable to call for assistance, he was observed by another person at a distance from him, picking up small stones and pitching them towards him, for the purpose of attracting his notice. This man died in an hour.' Great debility, extinction of the circulation, and sudden cooling of the body are the three striking characteristics of the Indian cholera ; these, in the majority of cases, are accompanied by ex. hausting evacuations of a peculiar character, intense thirst, cold blue clammy skin, suffused filmy half-closed eyes, cramps of the limbs, extending to the muscles of respiration, and by an unimpaired intellect. It is no wonder that the approach of such a pestilence has struck the deepest terror into every community.
. It was in July and August, 1819,' says Kennedy, that the western coast of India was first visited by this awful scourge. Month after month, during the preceding year, fresh accounts reached us of its progress westwards; and the general alarm and horror were excited to the utmost, when every hope that the disease might terminate, with each change of season, was at last extinct, and its victims were observed to be already falling : then indeed the consternation which pervaded every class of society manifested itself without disguise, and without restraint.
• Those who enjoy the happiness to have escaped personal knowledge of the calamity of a residence in “ the city of the plague,” can with difficulty form an idea of the state of mind of its inhabitants : the first feeling of dismay, the reflux of levity, the agitation and bustle at the commencement, and the immediately following unconcern to all that is going on; the mild workings of charity—the cautious guarded intercourse with others, maintained by selfishness—the active energies, in short, of the good, and the heartless indifference of the bad, are all presented in their several extremes. .... Among the European portion of the society, the precautionary arrangements were at times almost ludicrous. One had notes ready written, addressed to every medical officer within reach, announcing his being attacked ; and these, placed on his desk, were to be forwarded by his servants the instant he should fancy that he felt, or they should see that he exhibited, the symptoms. Another would have a cauldron of water bubbling and boiling day and night, that he might ensure the advantage of an early recourse to the warm-bath; others mulcted themselves of the savoury and stimulating portion of their diet, and shunned the good things of life; and others, with a real hydrophobia, abstained from thin potations, and argued that the constitution needed reinforcement: whilst all furnished themselves with medicines, and not a few kept constantly about their person a quantum suff. of poison