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A Memoir of Barbara Ewing. By her Husband, Rev. Sydney Smith in defence of it. We can enjoy the Greville Ewing. Glasgow. George Gallie. 1829.
ingenuity of Mr Combe, and a few more of the phreno
logists, and, nevertheless, we can smile to see Phreno. It is with considerable reluctance that we notice this logy knocked on the head by Sir William Hamilton, volume; and, had we not promised to speak of every Mr Jeffrey, or any other worthy antagonist. So we can work of any consequence that issues from the Scottish take up the Westminster Review just as if it were the press, we should certainly have passed it over in silence. Quarterly, and the Quarterly just as if it were the WestWe believe it to have been written with proper inten- minster; and we can be as much pleased with Mr Bowtions ; but we can say little either for the good taste or ring as we are with Mr Lockhart, provided they both delicacy of feeling which led to its publication. The support their own theories and opinions with an equal late Mrs Ewing, in every sense of the word, belonged share of intellectual acumen. to private life, and, we doubt not, possessed virtues The first article in the present Number of the West. which endeared her to her friends, and her domestic minster is an elaborate review of Sir Walter Scott's circle. Why this veil should be drawn aside after her “ Tales of a Grandfather.” The writer enters into a death, and an account of her birth, parentage, and edu- minute investigation of Sir Walter's sentiments regard. cation, habits, and dispositions, be written by her hus. ing the House of Stuart, and endeavours to convict him band, and sold for three-and-sixpence, we confess our. of many inaccuracies and fallacies. This is a point selves at a loss to discover. We do not like this trum. which has been long mooted, and will never be settled peting of the dead ; and far less do we like it, coming to the satisfaction of all parties. There is one objection, from the Reverend Greville Ewing. It seems to us, that however, made to the “ Tales," which we ventured to a widowed husband should feel that there was some. slate some months ago, and which, we are not displeathing too sacred in his grief to have it made a common sed to see, is completely coincided in by the present topic of conversation at every tea-table and gossiping Reviewer. “ An historical work,” he observes, " comvisit. We may be wrong, (for Mr Ewing has more exposed for the instruction of youth, should, above all perience in these matters than we have,) but if a “Me things, be careful to point out what is commendable, moir” of his third wife was to be written, we do not and what reprehensible, in the actions recorded. The think that he was the person who should have done it work, in this respect, falls far short of the character of We pass over the literary and religious merits of the a good instrument of education. Censure and com. volume, though we think there is much to object to in mendation are often not dealt out at all, or are not adethe insinuations and attacks it contains against the Es- quately explicit ; and sympathy is wanting with the intablished Church of Scotland ; and we forbear to en- terests, the characters, and the principles, with which it quire whether it is of much importance for the public is for the good of mankind that every man should symto know that Mrs Ewing “ was blest with a pious nurse, pathize." This, we suspect, is the great and leading who, being a widow, continued with her during the blemish of all Sir Walter's controversial writings, or whole of her childhood,”_or that, when she lived in rather of those writings which should have been controthe vicinity of Auldkirk, “she procured visits from itine- versial, but which are not so. rant and congregational preachers," - or that it was “a The second article is a long one in defence of the mutual comfort to her and her husband that, during Hamiltonian system. That this system, which protheir married life, they were seldom separated, though fesses to do so much, has made so little progress, is one she never grudged his absence when it was occasioned by of the chief arguments against it, and one which speaks calls of evangelical duty,"-or that “ she zealously en. more powerfully than the most laboured disquisition gaged in a sale of ladies' work in Glasgow, in aid of ever written.—The third article is an amusing piece of the funds of the Glasgow City Mission, and superin- gossip and light reading, concerning the Court of Na. tended one of the tables at that sale;" —we pass over poleon, condensed from three or four French works on these things, and content ourselves with res the subject.-The fourth is a political puff of a novel hope, that, if this book turns out a good speculation, called « The Anglo-Irish of the Nineteenth Century,' Mi Ewing will also give to the world the “Memoirs ” and the author is christened by no less a title than the of two other ladies, who must have been equally dear to “ Hibernian Sir Walter Scott.”—The fifth is a short him, and both of whom, no less than the lady to whom essay on Banking, taking the Letters of Malachi Mala. he dedicates the present volume, he is “ soon to meet in growther for its text. We plead guilty to not having a deathless world.”
read it. The sixth is an overhawling of an article in No. XCVI. of the Edinburgh Review, which, it is maintained, under a show of defence, was an invidious
attack on Mr Bentham-the magnus Apollo of the The Westminster Review, No. XX. April 1829. Westminster Review. We shall leave the gentlemen
London. Printed for the Proprietors. Édinburgh. to fight out their own quarrel... The seventh article is a William Tait.
laborious and important one on the abuses existing in The Monthly Magazine, No. XL. April 1829. many of the public offices in which the Public Records London. Whittaker.
of the country are preserved, and an account of the
manner in which those abuses operate to retard histori. This is a good Number of the Westminster Review, cal research, and to impede the course of justice. The as Reviews go, in these degenerate days. Be it recol- eighth article is a flippant and very inconclusive one, lected, that, though steering clear ourselves of all poli- (although the author writes as if he were an oracle of tical bias, we, nevertheless, assume the privilege of ad. the first magnitude,) on the important subject of Dry Rot. miring talent wherever we meet with it from Indus –The ninth is a tolerably unintelligible account of a to the Pole”-no matter under what garb it may ap- very unintelligible book, “The Misfortunes of Elphin.” pear. We think Shiel and O'Connell two of the cle. The tenth is a clever exposure of the absurdities of verest men which the clever country of Ireland has pro- the Disabilities and Privations affecting the Jews in duced ; but we are not on that account prepared to deny England. The remaining articles, all of which are in. that Lord Eldon is a great statesman, or that the author of teresting, are upon the Law of Literary Property
and “ The Breaking-in on the Constitution,” in Blackwood's Patents, the Newspaper Press of London, Poor Magazine, is an able writer. We are perhaps disposed Humphrey's Calendar,—the Expeditions to the North to believe the Hamiltonian system a system of humbug; Pole,-the system of Political Police in France,—and but, at the same time, we should never desire to see a the Case of the Forty-Shilling Freeholders. There is better article in the Edinburgh Review, than that of the thus a great variety of subjects discussed ; and, on the
whole, an exceedingly creditable display of talent in the lated from the Edinburgh prompt-books. On the whole, Twentieth Number of the Westminster Review.
we can safely recommend the work to all those persons The Monthly Magazine is one of the stanchest period. who like to get for a sixpence that for which they would icals in the metropolis for the glorious Constitution of elsewhere pay several shillings. 1688, and has, like old Eldon, battled to the very last gasp
The present Number contains, among other things, a short but bitter attack on the Cabinet, a dozen The Book of Health ; a Compendium of Domestic members of which the Monthly could see “ kicked out," Medicine, deduced from the experience of the most (to use its own words,) without the slightest compunc- eminent modern Practitioners. London. Vizetelly, tion. On poor Peel they are particularly severe ; they Branston, & Co. 1829. say," Our hearts shrink at the mention of the apos. tate. Scorn has no word deep enough for the emotion DR ARMSTRONG has said, that " It would be highly which his very name stirs in us. He is undone ; if he advantageous to the public, and likewise to the best were to live for a thousand years, he can never wash part of the medical profession, if the predispositions and away the name his apostacy has earned to him. The occasions of disease were made a portion of the educa. best thing for him to do, is to fly from public life, and tion of every gentleman.” We are inclined to agree make his peace with Heaven ; for, by his country, he with the Doctor ; and are even disposed to go a step will be called the Apostate during his existence, and it farther, and to think, with the celebrated Howard, that will be the only title on his grave !"
it would, in most cases, be best were every man to be Doctors differ, and so do Magazines and politicians. his own physician. He would commit blunders, to be Mr Peel, we doubt not, is an honourable man, sure, now and then; but he would never have to swal. “ So are they all, all honourable men."
low a whole materia medica, or go through a course of
operations, that make the flesh creep but to think of. As a curious fact connected with this Magazine, we may Here is a plain sensible book, called “ The Book of mention, that the Printers, Publishers, Proprietors, Health,” containing simple remedies for all known disEditors, &c., sent a petition to Parliament against all cases, which any body, with a head larger than a pin, concessions to our Roman Catholic brethren. The may understand at once, and have the immediate satis. Monthly, in its Original Tales and Sketches, comes faction of curing himself, without being a guinea out nearer Blackwood than any other Magazine we know. of pocket. We do not know the price of the Book of Their " Affairs in General” are sometimes very good, Health ;" but it cannot exceed five shillings; and the and the Review department is conducted, on the whole, first time we are afflicted with apoplexy, asthma, catarrh, with spirit and impartiality.
diabetis, dropsy, inflammation, jaundice, palsy, rheu. matism, syncope, typhus, vertigo, or any of the other
"ills that flesh is heir to," we intend trying whether, Huie's British. Drama. Edinburgh. Stirling and with its assistance, we may not save the doctor's fee. If Kenney. 1829.
we die, the Edinburgh Literary Journal must inevi.
tably stop, and the reputation of the “ Book of Health" This is a neat and correct edition, now in the course will be ruined ; but this is a frightful consummation, of being published, of the most popular acted dramas. which we do not anticipate. It was originally projected by the individual whose name it bears, and from whom it was purchased some time since, by Messrs Stirling & Kenney, who rightly calcu- The Library of Entertaining Knowledge. Vol. I. lated upon its speedily superseding other more spurious Part I. The Menageries-Quadrupeds, described editions. They employed, as their editor, Mr Hislop, and drawn from Living Subjects. London. Charles who, till recently, was editor of one of the Edinburgh Knight. April. 1829. weekly newspapers, and whose acquaintance with dramatic matters and judicious criticisms on the stage, well This is another of those cheap and useful works fitted him for the task. Thirteen numbers have already which at present swarm throughout the country. It is made their appearance, and others are to follow in quick published under the superintendence of the Society for succession. To each play are affixed “Remarks " by the diffusion of Useful Knowledge, a very praise wor. the editor-brief, sententious, and spirited_describing thy and excellent institution, ranking among its mere. the character of the play, with a short account of its au-bers Henry Brougham, Lord John Russell, Sir James thor, and of any remarkable incidents which may have Mackintosh, Henry Hallam, Francis Jeffrey, Captain occurred during its representation. An engraved front- Basil Hall, and many other eminent literary and scien. ispiece is also given to each number; but, although this tific characters. The part now before us is very handis a very common practice, it is not one of which we can somely printed, of the size and shape of an elegant pocket at all approve. The frontispiece to a play that is sold volume, which will extend to upwards of four hundred for so low a price as sixpence, must always be of the pages, and will sell for four shillings. It contains a num. most inferior description. So far from bringing any ber of engravings, executed with much spirit and fidelity; particular scene more vividly before us, it merely spoils and the interesting subject to which it relates is treated of the pleasure which our imagination might have enjoyed, in a popular and pleasing style. We understand that two if left to picture for itself the personal appearance of the other volumes are in preparation, one of which is to be characters. In taking up the numbers before us at ran- entitled, “ The Love of Knowledge overcoming the dom, we find that Juliet has a snub nose of the most Difficulties of its Pursuit ; illustrated by Notices of awkward description, that Richard III. is evidently celebrated Persons ;” and the other, “A History and labouring under a severe attack of colic--that Justice Description of Substances used in the Arts." A Part Woodcock is a caricature of the Laird of Cockpen, and is to be published every month ; and if it proceeds as it that Captain Macheath is an uglier and more dissipated. has commenced, we wish the work all success. looking rascal than either Burke or Hare. When we bind the work into volumes, we shall most assuredly The Dublin Juvenile Magazine; or Literary and tear out the embellishments; for we do not choose to have our conceptions of the immortal creations of poetry
Religious Miscellany. No. I. April 1829. Dubthus vulgarised. We may remark, that this is the only
lin. William Curry, Jun. & Co. edition of the theatre that contains our popular national Tuis is a neatly printed, and very engaging-looking dramas, which, we understand, have been carefully col- little work. It is adapted for all classes, but designed more especially for the youthful part of the Irish popu- as friends to philosophy and to religion-we exult in it lation. It combines literary amusement with religious as Scotsmen.' The production of such a work is an era instruction ; and, without being particularly brilliant, is in the history of science, if to use with effect the acpleasing and judícious. Political allusions are avoided, cumulations of previous observers be to imprint great and there is nothing violent or unchristian in the tone of truths in the history of intelligence. This will perhaps its contents. We should think it will meet with a fair be called extravagant praise. At least it is not niggard. share of encouragement, especially in the sister Isle. ly. We avouch it to be disinterested. We proceed to
prove that it is deserved.
The title is, in one sense, a happy and expressive one ; SCIENCE.
but in another, it is not. As a system of Geology simply, it is too sober and excellent to be new, in the sense
ordinarily attached to that term, since it proceeds upon THE FORMATION AND HISTORY OF THE EARTH. known and indubitable data, and not on novel speculaA New System of Geology, in which the Great Revo- and history of the shell of our globe, embracing an
tion. But, as a masterly exposition of the formation lutions of the Earth and Animated Nature, are reconciled at once to Modern Science and Sacred
account of the causes and progress of its revolutions, History. By Andrew Ure, M.D. F.R.S. Professor collateral to geology can afford has been brought, and
to illustrate which, every light which every science of Physics and Lecturer on Chemistry in the Ander collected into a series of mutually reflecting foci, and sonian University. London. Longman & Co. 1829. Pp. 621.
as proceeding from a desire to lay before the world
a view of certain intrinsic sources of change in the conThe principle of curiosity in man is the origin of all stitution of the earth, which seem to have escaped the that he knows beyond the truths of Revelation. And, observation of philosophers, but which appear to be dewhile it could never have discovered these, its judicious ducible from modern physical and geological discovery, exercise builds around his faith ramparts that resist the in. and a wish to lead popular students of philosophy, to sidious encroachments of a scepticism, which assumes that the moral and religious uses of their knowledge, it is, portion of wisdom's attributes, that consists in doubt. indeed, entitled to the credit of the term new, in its ing, without being able to nurture the noblest of its cha- best and truest sense. racteristics_Belief. It thus repels, too, the more painful Fittingly commencing with an introductory review of and pitiable hesitations and fears, which most readily the opinions which have been entertained on the forma. infect minds whose fineness of temperament exposes tion and revolutions of the Earth, from the time that them to the alternations of confidence and despair. the physical cosmogony of Greece consisted of little Curiosity, or a desire to know, is the parent of belief in more than metaphysical speculations, the prelimi. Natural and the builder of the firmest bulwarks nary, coup d'ail rapidly proceeds from the age of the around Revealed Religion. It has soared sunward, sophists to the little less crude speculations of Dr Hutcounted the stars of the firmament.extended to us the ton and his disciples, and at once boldly and distinctly boundaries of creation-calculated the density of other states the author's own creed, founded on results “eli. planets and measured that of our own. The meanest minated from the physical researches of the present vo. thing that crawls examines with its earliest developed lume, displaying the primary developements of the mainstinct, the habitation where it is placed. Man has terial system, and the great revolutions of the earth, in meditated on the structure of his--the Earth-since the such surprising harmony with the master touches of hour that he became, in virtue of his capacity of intelli. the Hebrew prophet, as to constitute
in his opinion-in. gence, its master. The first root he extracted from its contestable evidence of his being endued with a knowsurface, the first grave he dug in its bosom, served to ledge more than human; for he has indicated a style show him the diversified nature of the component parts and sequence of natural phenomena, gainsaid or disof that floor upon which he stood; and the convulsions owned by all human learning, till the profound and nowhich it suffered, unveiled its deeper mysteries, and call. vel investigations of these latter days, have unveiled ed forth his profounder thoughts. What was wonder, is their truth.” Such being his basis of, and animus to innow science ; what was simple observation, is now Geo. vestigation, he fitly remarks, that the rhapsodies of faLOGY. This is the appropriate term which is attached naticism, and the bigoted subjugation of science to certo the study and knowledge of the nature of the earth, tain figurative expressions in Scripture, are alike to be and the revolutions which its crust has undergone. It shunned. Revelation was certainly not imparted to is not easy to magnify the importance, the dignity, or mankind, for the purpose of instructing them in any the striking and engrossing nature of investigations, principles of philosophy, which reason can explore. which have for their aim a right understanding in re. When the phenomena of nature are described, it is al. gard to these objects, involving, as the conclusions de ways in popular language, corresponding to the infor. ducible from them do, considerations of overwhelming mations of sense. Thus the sacred writers, in common moment questions of long-agitated curiosity and col with practical astronomers of every age, speak of the lateral points whose immediate practical utility is only sun and stars as rising, setting, and moving, in the firsecondary to their universal and enduring interest. Some mament, yet neither our astronomers, nor the Scriptures, of the most gigantic minds that have ever adorned the are thereby supposed to pronounce a judgment on the world, have been devoted to their elucidation. The actual motion or repose of these luminaries. In rela. process has been a slow, but, in being so, it has also been tion to geology, such a truly philosophical method of a philosophical one. For nearly the last century, it has investigation is here of recent date, however much men been conducted in the right way: it has been induc- have speculated regarding cosmogony since the earliest tively pursued. Facts and observations have been ac- ages. It can scarcely be traced farther back than the cumulated, till the archives of science are full of truths appearance of Mr Smith's Mineralogical Map of Eng. in relation to it. The time for generalization has at land, and the foundation of the Geological Society of length arrived. The harvest has been for some time London. ready for the sickle. Scattered ears have been gathered, After the eloquent, but necessarily discursive introwhose ripeness may have been too much presumed upon duction, we come to a systematic arrangement of the -but a labourer, armed, and robust, and ready for the most precise kind : the work being separated into three toil, has now descended into the field, and we proceed great divisions, or books the first of which treats of to show how admirably he has achieved his glorious the Primordial World, commencing with the general but gigantic task. We hail the publication of this book forms of matter, light, the atmosphere, and the primi.
tive structure of the terraqueous globe. In it we find light three days prior to the creation of the sun, moon, that matter can assume but three distinct forms—the and stars. When, however, in the progress of research, solid, the liquid, and the gaseous; and these depend we come to discover that Moses has described events in upon the relation between attractive and repulsive their just order of sequence, an order, which reason powers. Intermediate or transitive forms are possible, could never suggest to him, and which has lain conbut not of importance in this enquiry. The attractive cealed till our own days, even from the philosopher, we force is that, which, under various modifications, gives ori- are then forced to conclude, that he was inspired with gin to cohesion, gravitation, &c. Had it reigned alone in knowledge truly divine. “Philosophy," says Frederick the terrestrial system, every thing would have been con- Schlegel, “ when studied superficially, leads to unbelief densed into a motionless mass, in which water and air and atheism; but when properly understood, is sure to would have been as fixed as the solid rock. This, there. produce veneration for God, and to render faith in him fore, is the natural condition into which the attractive par- the ruling principle of our life.” These investigations ticles of matter spontaneously tend to come, and at which are conclusive as to the undulatory theory of light, which they do arrive, unless counteracted by the divellent force, is confirmed by the phenomenon of the dark bands pro. called caloric or heat. Light and heat are the same; duced in the beautiful experiment of the beam of light if light consist in certain vibratory affections of an elas reflected from two mirrors slightly inclined to each other, tic ethereous medium, so must heat. Dr Young be- and which seems of itself to be quite decisive against lieves that they may occur to us in two predicaments, the emission of material particles from luminous bodies, the vibratory or permanent, and the undulatory or trans- for it is impossible that the accumulation and condenient state. Newton was of the same opinion. That heat sation of such particles, or that light added to light, consists in such vibrations, seems to be demonstrated by should produce darkness. Yet such is the fact; for by a fine experiment made long ago, by Sir H. Davy; in an experiment made in Dr Ure's presence at Paris, it which two pieces of ice were converted into water, by was proved, that on causing the fringes produced by the their mutual attrition, in an atmosphere at the freezing interference of two beams reflected from slightly inclined temperature. We may hence understand why both heat mirrors to fall on newly-prepared chloride of silver, and light come to possess analogies with sound. Thus they traced on it equidistant black lines, separated a magnetic steel bar, set a-ringing for some time, will be by white intervals. It was further proved, that the undeprived of its magnetism as perfectly as if it had been equal action of the light at the different points of the heated red hot; and a charged electrical jar may be dis, space where the two beams are united, depends on their charged equally by heat and by causing it to sound like mutual influence ; for, on withdrawing one of the beams, a musical glass. Between heat and light, so intimate a the chloride of silver assumed a uniform dark tint in relationship subsists, that they must be conceived as two the very same space in which lines alternately black modifications of the same fundamental agency. Thus, and white were formed, when the two sunbeams arrived if any substance, even a stone, water, or air, be heated there simultaneously. Thus, then, even the dense forms to a sufficient degree, it becomes luminous.
of matter are pervaded by a luminiferous medium, by These positions are then brought to bear upon the whose undulatory movements the phenomena of light original formation and solidity of the globe; for when are produced. To the creation of this marrellous es. first the calorific energy was made to actuate the body sence, the Divine mandate, Let there be light, seems to of the earth, a mighty change would ensue. The cen. refer. tral mass composed, most probably, of the metallic The next chapter, « On the Atmosphere," assumes bases of the earths and alkalis, as volcanic phenomena tle well-known facts, that its density diminishes with seem to attest, would fuse; the exterior parts would oxi. its distance from the earth, in the ratio of a geometrical dize into the crust of mineral strata, and the outermost to an arithmetical progression, and that its constituent coat of all, the fixed ice, would melt into the movable proportions are, 79 and 21 of azote and oxygen, while
Thus, if a mass of basalt be exposed to a high in a thousand parts, one part of carbonic acid gas may temperature, it will melt into a liquid glass, which, be discovered ; and in relation to these proportions, our quickly cooled, remains a transparent and uniform vi author remarks, that “ were the bulk of oxygen quadru. treous body. Now, if this body be heated again for pled, so that its quantity should equal that of the azote, some time, but so moderately as not even to have its a most noxious air called nitrous gas (deutoxide of azote) substance softened, it will become throughout its whole might result ; a gas which, with an additional charge interior a congeries of regular crystals.
of oxygen, would condense into an ocean of aqua for. The infusion of this quickening energy seems dis- tis, or nitric acid. A slight modification of chemical tinctly indicated by the inspired historian of the earth. affinity would convert even our existing atmosphere “ In the beginning, God created the heaven and the into the most corrosive of liquids ; a result which the earth. And the earth was without form and void ; and Hon. Mr Cavendish many years ago produced, by meredarkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit ly transmitting electric explosions through a small porof God moved upon the face of the waters.” This last tion of common air.” Uniformity of temperament, how. idea, has been, perhaps, more truly rendered by Milton, ever, could alone make this medium everywhere of in the expression, “dove-like sate brooding on the vast equal height, density, and elasticity; but that uniform. abyss, and made it pregnant.". In this sublime con. ity, from the alternation of earth and water on the ception, thus finely paraphrased, may we not, asks the surface of our globe, does not prevail. Hence a perpeauthor, recognise the impregnation of the torpid sphere, tual circulation is maintained ; the colder air in our with elementary fire, that principle of all material acti- hemisphere flowing southward below, and the warmer vity ? That our globe existed for long ages in a chaotic air northward above, and so tending to equalize the aerial state, is ingeniously confuted; and the question is asked, temperature over the globe. “Thus,” Dr Ure concludes, “Why build a mansion in the wilderness of space, long “ we perceive, that the mechanism ordained by Infinite ere tenants are prepared to occupy it?” That it is no Wisdom, to divide the waters which are under the fir. more than 6000 years old is confidently asserted, and mament, from the waters which are above the firmathat it assumed its primordial form within the period ment,' is inferior to none of those refined and beautiful stated in Holy Writ, is ably argued.
adaptations which lie most obvious to human sight, in The second chapter is “ On Light,” and is a mas. the kingdoms of life, or in the starry heavens. But for terpiece of profound investigation ; leading irresisti- this delicate adjustment of conflicting elements, the bly to the conclusion, that had Moses written the re- clouds and concrete vapours would have obscured the cord of creation, from the informations of sense or Egyp- sky, to an indefinite distance, concealing for ever the tian learning, he would not have placed the creation of glorious orbs which circulate in celestial space."
Having treated of the first forms of matter, as ori. the greatest extent and variety of surface to the sea, ginally and as now acted upon by Light and the AT- there the fishes most abound. It is for this reason, that MOSPHERE, we are naturally led to the investigation the great southern ocean is much more sparingly stockof The PRIMEVAL LAND and OCEAN ; and the strict. ed with fish than our northern seas. ly Geological portion of the book, some will infer, only Man was then created, and endowed with that prin. here begins ; but they are as much in error as they would ciple which, we have shown, has led to the confirmation be, were they to suppose that a physician, whose busi- from induction of all that Revelation has told him of ness is with the body of man, was wide of the right track the origin of his earthly habitation, and its glorious of his investigations, in enquiring how external causes garniture and habitants. We must now, however, leave act upon that frame, and regulate the performance of the more flowery path of general observation, and acits funotions.
company our author through some of the invaluable deDr Ure is of opinion so far with Granville Penn, that tails of his profound and laborious work, although we the antediluvian world presented a greater surface of cannot follow him through all the rare and varied lore earth than the present aspect of the globe, but does not, he has brought to bear upon the conclusions which we like him, hold that the proportions were precisely the shall shortly state. Multiplied observations have reverse of the present. They were more nearly equal. shown, that the crust of the earth is composed superfiNow, they are relatively as 100 to 365 nearly ; but the cially, or to a moderate depth, of certain stratiform or ocean was then consequently deeper, and the form of the schistose rocks, which, being devoid of organic remains, earth was a regular spheroid, while it was enveloped in are termed Primitive. Chemical science demonstrates, water, though there are, at this time, considerable irre. that the crust of the earth consists mainly of six subgularities on the surface of the earth, so that the sphe- stances,—silica, or the matter of rock crystal, alumina, or roid which agrees best with the degrees measured in pure clay, iron, lime, magnesia, and potash. Silica, in France, is one having an ellipticity of 1 in 152 ; nearly the crystalline form, is called quartz, and is a large condouble of what may be accounted the mean ellipticity. stituent of the primitive mountains,-- granite, gneiss, These irregularities of shape consist in an unequal mag- and mica-slate. Gneiss and mica-slate are nearly conitude and density of the great mountain wasses and extensive ; they are arranged in planes usually parallel table lands, now standing above the waters.
to each other, the mica-slate being, for the most part, These views, here laid down as a groundwork, are, uppermost. “ But," observes the Doctor, with a felitowards the conclusion of the work, brought to bear city of style, that distinguishes the volume from the with irresistible force upon the consideration of the al. most of scientific works, “ their wide-stretched foli. tered temperature of the modern globe ; but, with the ated planes are seldom or never horizontal, or concenauthor, we proceed to " the properties of water, and tric with the curvature of the earth. They usually lie the creation of organic beings.” Of the first of these he at highly inclined angles, like tables resting on their speaks in a passage of glowing, yet pure and lofty elo. edges, in a nearly vertical position. In very many loquence, which Buffon himself need not have shrunk calities, vast irregular masses of granite are seen rising from owning
up through the schistose fields, as if these had been upIn a similar strain, our author describes the instanta. heaved and dislocated by its protrusion, and were thrown neous appearance of vegetable life on the third creative like mantles round its shoulders and base. We, there. day; and takes that opportunity to put the geological fore, conclude that the primordial earth, as it lay beconclusions at which he aims in a most forcible point neath the circumfused abyss, was at first endowed with of view, deducing his argument from the creation of a concentric coats of gneiss, mica-slate, and clay-slate, and perfect plant, the type and parent of an indefinite series, with partial layers of semi-crystalline lime-stone; that which does not seem to have been made a stumbling at the recorded command of the Almighty, a general block by the Botanical student, as the first arrangement eruption and protrusion of the granitic, syenitic, porof the mineral strata has been by the Geologist. Yet phyritic, and other unstratified rocks, took place, which the cases are strictly parallel.
broke up and elevated the schists into nearly vertical Dr Ure next proceeds to the creation of animals—fishes planes, similar to what now exist, leaving commensuand fowls being classed as the work of the 5th day by rate excavations for the basin of the sea.” Moses, though apparently these two orders of animals Quartz, felspar, and mica, blended in distinguishable have little or nothing in common, and hence some scio- crystalline grains, constitute granite. Quartz, felspar, lists have sneered at the collocation of Moses. But the true and mica, in crystalline scales or spangles, constitute naturalist admires the Scripture classification, because gneiss. The mica-slate formation consists of the minehe perceives many fine analogies in it. Swimming and ral of that name; interspersed with masses of quartz. flying are, in truth, only the same act performed in dif. These form the three great primitive envelopes of the ferent fluids. The effective instruments, organs, and earth. movements, which produce or modify these acts, are si. These primitive rocks, pushed, as now, into visibi. milar, or at least analogous. The atmosphere is the bility in various parts of the world, are then described ocean of the first ; and the sea that of the second. But at length, and with an extent and variety of resources fishes enjoy their domain much more fully than birds ; of information, and skill of arrangement, which make for they can traverse it in every direction-rise to the the detail as delightful as it is instructive ; indeed, we very surface, sink into the abyss, or repose themselves find there ample, but not superfluous evidence úc to in any part of the fluid itself. The regular winds favour prove that granite, porphyry, and syenite, is an erupted or modify the aerial voyages of birds; the currents of rock; the Atlas which has raised on its shoulders the the ocean regulate in like manner the migration of its gigantic ridges of gneiss and mica-schist, that constishoals. The instinct of generation, which can be satis- tute the mountain elevations of the globe ; and that thus, fied only on coasts, constrains fish at each return of by the expansive power of the internal agents already spring, to quit the deep ocean, and approach the shores described, the crust of the earth acquired those irreguThe females arrive first to deposit on the land-banks larities of eminence and depression, that modified the the burden of their spawn or eggs, and the males follow geometrical spheroid around which the waters flowed, to fecundate them. Hence it is obvious, that fishes and gave it that distinction of dry land and sea, which could not have animated the watery abyss, which cir. fitted its surface to become the dwelling-place of organ. cumfused the globe before the distinction of dry land ized beings.” and ocean existed. Thus we find the Mosaic statement We must here stop for the present ; but shall restrictly accordant with one of the most refined discove- sume the consideration of this interesting work next Sa. ries of Natural History. Wherever the land presents turday.