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of a shadow, of determining, how genius of this republick, like that much belongs to the owner, and of all other republicks, is obnox; how much to the literary thief. ious and peculiarly hostile to spies After the claims of the respective and informers; a class of men parties have been adjusted and who shake the quiet of the realm identified, the world is too much by groundless alarms, and whose fascinated by the golden dreams very subsistence is derived from of avarice to feel wy interest in the number of condemnations they the question, or ever to read a procure. It is therefore proper report of the case. This evil has to apprize the citizens at large, been so long felt and endured in that a number of such have arrived the republick of letters, that the within our borders ; the Titus citizens of that commonwealth Oateses of literature, who have seem now aroused from their found divers plots and conspiralethargy, and disposed to prosecutecies in their own imaginations to final judgment every one so of- only. To drop all metaphor, the fending against the peace and dig- most ordinary coincidence of nity of the state. They raise the thought, or expression amongst hue and cry, and the whole commu- writers, is in our day regarded as nity in mass follow in the pursuit, plagiarism positive, and the priso that scarce any culprit escapes ority of their respective publication without punishment. It is because furnishes the only criterion dethis alarm has been raised to the manded to ascertain the transgresgreat annoyance and detriment of sor. Many make no allowance many good and honest citizens, who for inevitable resemblances of two in consequence thereof have been congenial minds, employed on the arrested, tried, and by a verdict of same subject. To give an exam. their peers honourably acquitted of ple ; Mr. Ames, in his eloquent the charge, that the writer of the speech in the house of represenpresent article has conceived it his tatives on the subject of Mr. Jay's duty to state the law on the subject. treaty, has the following exquisiteBy the good old laws of said com- ly brilliant and beautiful passage : monwealth it is expressly provi- • Some would rejoice if Great ded, that no freeman of Parnassus Britain were sunk into the sea, if the shall be arrested or imprisoned, or place where liberty and law, and disseized of the free customs and humanity and religion reside, liberties of the realm, or outlawed, should become å sand bank for or exiled, or passed upon, or in the sea-monster to fatten on ; # any manner destroyed, unless by space for the storms of the ocean trial of his peers, or by the laws to mingle in conflict ! of the land. Grave and learned commentators on this
! All dwellings else passage have
Flood overwhelm’d, and them with all holden, that according to the letter
their pomp and spirit of the text, no man's lit- Deep under water roll’d; sea covered erary reputation shall be put in sea, jeopardy, without probable cause is Sea without shore; and in their palaces, first made manifest. They have
Where luxury late reign'd, sea-monster: further holden that all persons so
And stabled.? offending are 'trespassors'ab initio, and liable to pay heavy damages This was probably the seminal to the
party so aggrieved. The idea, which,when planted in a soil a
Bounding in every beautiful flowret, the peace and dignity of said litershot up into a noble plant and ex. ary republick. panded the magnificent drapery of its blossoms. In the trial of
Oh ! knew he but his happiness, of Archibald Hamilton Rowan, the The happiest he ! who far from pubmetaphorick Curran thus expres. ses himself : My lord, you are Deep in the vale, with a choice few now standing on a scanty isthmus, retir'd, that divides the vast ocean of dura. Drinks the pure pleasures of the rural
life. tion; on the one side the past, on
What though the dome be wanting, the other side, the future; a ground whose proud gate, chat, while you yet hear me, is Each morning, vomits out the sneaking washing from beneath your feet.'
crowd Addison in one of his Spectators
Of flatterers false, and in their turn
abus'd ? remarks, that.. in our speculations
Vile intercourse! What though the of eternity, we consider the time,
glittering robe which is present to us, as the mid- Of every hue reflected light can give, dle, which divides the whole line Or floating loose, or stiff' with massy into two equal parts. For this gold, reason many witty author's com
The pride and gaze of fools,' &c.
Seasons, p. 133. pare the present time to an isthmus, or narrow neck of land, rising in
O fortunatos nimiùm, sua si bona nothe midst of an ocean immeasurably
rint, diffused on either side of it.'
Agricolas, quibus ipsa, procul discor.
dibus armis, Whether the mind of Mr. Curran, Fundit humo facilem victum justissima at the time he was speaking, dwelt tellus ! on the passage cited from Addi. Si non ingentem foribus domus alta sule son, or not, it is unimportant to perbis know ; he is free from the charge
Manè salutantum totis vomit ædibus
undam ; of plagiarism in either case, the Nec varios inhiant pulchrâ testudine ocean of eternity and the isthmus postes, of existence have from the frequen- Illusasque auro vestes.' cy of their use, now become com
Geor. lib. 2. o. 457 et seq. mon piroperty ; it is only the wash.
Let others brave the flood in quest ing away of the ground that ren
of gain, ders the figure wovth the preser. And beat, for joyless months, the vation.
gloomy wave. I am not to be deterred by the
Let such as deem it glory to destroy, squibs and crackers, which mis
Rush into blood, the sack of cities seek; chievous literary boys throw in my Unpierc’d, exulting in the widow's face, from citing Virgil again. The virgin's shriek, and infant's tremJames Thomson, of and belonging bling cry, to the island of Great-Britain, poet, Let some, far distant from their native stands charged with having taken; Urgʻd on by want, or harden'd avarice, stolen, and carried away sundry Find other lands beneath another sun. articles of poetical property, be
Seasons, p. 134-5. longing to Publius Virgilius Maro,
" Sollicitant alii remis freta cæca, ruknowing the said articles of right
untque to belong to him the said Maro, In ferrum, penetrant aulas et limina rewith force and arms, and against gum :
Hic petit excidiis urbem, miserosque Frigidus obstiterit circum præcordia penates,
sanguis ; Ut gemmâ bibat, et Sarrano indormiat Rura mihi et rigui placeant in vallibus ostro :
amnes ; Condit opes alius, defossoque incubat Flumina amem silvasque inglorius.'
v. 482. et seq. Hic stupet attonitus rostris : hunc plausus hiantem
- O qui me gelidis in vallibus Per cunens geminatus enim plebisque Hæmi patrumque
Sistat, et ingenti ramorum protegat Corripuit : gaudent perfusi sanguine umbra.' fratrum,
Geor, lib. 2. v. 487. et seqe Exsilioque domos et dulcia limina mu.
tant, Atque alio patriam quærunt sub sole instances. Some of the passages
The above are only given as jacentem.' Geor. lib. 2. v. 502 et seq. the author of the Seasons bas ex
panded, some contracted, and oth· The fall of kings, ers adapted to the country, where The rage of nations, and the crush of he resided. It is well worth the states,
labour of a man, whose hours Move not the man, who,from the world escap'd,' &c.
are consecrated to literature, to Seasons, 135.
begin at the 458th line of the * Illum non populi fasces, non purpura second book of the Georgics and regum
continue on to the end, and then Flexit.' Geor. lib. 2. v. 494. to compare it with the 1233d line
of Thomson's Autumn to the con“Snatch me to Heav'n ; thy rolling won- clusion of the book, and he will ders there,
be convinced beyond all doubt, World beyond world, in infinite extent, Profusely scatter'd o'er the blue im.
that the British Bard was under mense,
more obligation to the Roman, Shew me ; their motions, periods, and than he had the gratitude to confess. their laws,
This charge is perfectly distinct Give me to scan.'
from that casual coincidence of • But if to that unequal ; if the blood, In sluggish streams about my heart, expression, or thought, between forbid
two writers, denominated plagiarThat best ambition ; under closing ism by some. In fact, if Thomson shades,
has done this without being sensiInglorious, lay me by the lowly brook, ble of it, it fuipishes an argument And whisper to my dreams.
in favour of the Pythagorean sysSeasons, p. 137.
tem of divinity, and we may ven"Cælique vias et sidera mon- ture to pronounce that the shade strent,
of Virgil passed from Elysium Defectus solis varios, lunæque labores. and inhabited the body of the Brit
Geor. I. 2. v. 476 et seq. ish Bard, without tasting a drop * Sin, has ne possim naturæ accedere of the water of Lethe before his partes, passage.
For the Anthology.
SUPERIORIT OF PRACTICAL PHILOSOPHY TO SCIENTIFICK
RESEARCHES. IT was the labour of Socrates to turn philosophy from the study of nature to speculations upon life. He was of opinion, that what we had to learn was, how to do good, and avoid evil.
Otle ton iv key&pcios xaxóvl &y«bóvls títumlar.
IN every cultivated age of the obscuring the plainnest truths by world the misapplication of learn- doubtful suggestions, or perplexing has been a subject of severe ing them in the incumbrances of reproach. If the complaints had sophistry and the subtleties of originated from irritable petulance, metaphysíck. Socrates was the envious discontent, or vulgar ani- first who inveighed against such madversion, the objects of censure employment of time and talents ; in their superiority of character he drew down from heaven a betwould have despised the weakness ter philosophy, and showed to the of such harmless effort; they Athenians sublimer subjects of would have felt little despondency contemplation ; in his familiar about the continuance of present conversations he insisted on the applause and the durabiiity of fu- necessity of active, personal benefture renown. But when the satire icence ; his days were consumed, proceeds from men, whose excel.' not in the schools of frivolous lence in virtue places them above sophists, or in the retreats of allthe imputation of injurious designs, important, self-opinionated dogmaor whose rank in erudition authó- tists, but in the streets, among the rizes the 'sentiments of reproach, poor, the ignorant, and the weak, all attempts at justification are at the couch of repentant crime, fruitless, for the opinion of the orin the lowly coverts of declining world is settled, when the edict of age. The propriety of his dissovereignty is irresistible. tinction between speculative and
The biographers of Socrates practical good, and the general have delighted to dwell on his excellence of his doctrines, if they moral exertions and practical phi. wanted support, might receive it losophy. As experience convin- from the applause of successive ced him of the shortness of life, generations ; but they require no and reasoning prompted the credi. superfluous confirmation, for they bility of future existence, he are evidenced by the goodness of thought it foolish to spend a little his life and corroborated by the sound of days and waste the glori. greatness of his death. ous endowments of the mind upon Undoubtedly active benevolence subjects of much theoretie ingenui- is superiour to intellectual greatty,but of no determinate value. The ness in the advantages, conferred philosophers of Greece in the age upon mankind ; but, in the order of Socrates confined the exertion of Providence, it was never intenof their knowledge to speculating ded that an example of continual on the elements of nature, or chief active charity should be the absogood ; to elucidating the princi- lute rule of universal conduct. ples of matter and mind ; and to Such an obligation would confound
Vol. IV. No. 9. 30
the general order of society, and worth, than the principle of moral would introduce greater evils, than utility. those, which it proposed to reme: If the misapplication of learning dy. All congregations of social be subjected to regular considera man must have regular profes- tion, how much time will be dissions, settled subordinations, and covered to have been wasted on necessary differences of character. barren sciences by natural vigour Without them, order would soon of mind and by acquired predom. be converted into chaos, law would inance of intellect! Some have be confounded in anarchick mis. toiled for years in the hope of rule, and religion must fly from solving a perplexing question in the savageness of atheism and ex- metaphysicks, and at last have left ecrations of impiety.
the difficulty, like a German game
of chess, to be decided by their From an accurate survey of the successors, who in turn have lavarious departments of knowledge, boured with similar persever there seem to be several grada- ance, and have experienced simitions of intellectual excellence. lar embarrassment. Regular has By what standard the variety of been the industry and numerous ranks shall be regulated into sub- have been the years, which gramordination, and by what principles marians have employed in disserthey shall be confined to their de- tations on the Greek accents ; terminate stations ; what art shall which the chymists have consum. be designated by the badge of in- ed on elements and calces; and feriour place, and what science which mathematicians have ex: shall be honoured with the sceptre pended in developing the harmoof superiority, are curious ques. nies of curves, and in demonstra: tions, susceptible of imperfect so- ting the principles of diagrams lution, and promotive of no lasting These pursuits indeed are not advantage. But in the considera- wholly useless. Such speculations tion of our moral and religious have generated discoveries, numenature, the tendency of knowledge rous and important, which have to exalt our affections to the illustrated the versatility of our Father of the universe, to teach us minds, and exalted the rank of ou the practical duties of general life nature ; which have sometimes and the social employments of been the means of individual acnecessary relation, is a principle of commodation, and sometimes the determination, by which the com- instruments of national aggran parative attributes of particular dizement. But by the law of our sciences may be fixed, subject to being such topicks cannot reach no vagueness of reasoning, and to no oscillation of doubt. It will cannot enter into the ordinary o
us often,or detain us long. They not indeed decide all controversies currences of life, nor guide us in of this kind ; because some parts the regulation of our conduct. nature, cannot be subjected to this ned in their operations, the abstandard ; and because there are stractions of intellect seldom come other tests, by which the object of home to men's business and bosexperiment is to be fixed, more
oms ;' they may challenge conformable to its nature, and more ence to the object of their pura demonstrative of its proportionate suits, and by their sublimity may