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firmed by an observation of Mr. Thomas sagacity, but solely to industry and patient Hearne, who says, “that Sir Isaac was a thought. man of no very promising aspect. He was “Initiated early into the abstractions of a short well-set man. He was full of geometry, he was deeply imbued with her thought, and spoke very little in company, cautious spirit. And if his acquisitions were so that his conversation was not agreeable. not made with the rapidity of intuition, they When he rode in his coach one arm would were at least firmly secured ; and the grasp be out of his coach on one side, and the which he took of his subject was proportional other on the other.' Sir Isaac never wore to the mental labour which it had exhausted. spectacles, and never lost more than one Overlooking what was trivial, and separating tooth to the day of his death.'
what was extraneous, he bore down with inThe social character of Sir Isaac Newton stinctive sagacity on the prominences of his was such as might have been expected from subject, and having thus grappled with its his intellectual attainments. He was modest, difficulties, he never failed to entrench bimcandid, and affable, and without any of the self in its strongholds. eccentricities of genius, suiting himself to “To the highest powers of invention Newevery company, and speaking of himself and ton added, what so seldom accompanies them, others in such a manner that he was never the talent of simplifying and communicating even suspected of vanity. But this,' says his profoundest speculations. In the economy Dr. Pemberton, 'I immediately discovered of her distributions, nature is seldom thus in him, which at once both surprised and lavish of her intellectual gifts. The inspired charmed me. Neither his extreme great genius which creates is rarely conferred along age, nor his universal reputation, had ren- with the matured judgment which combines, dered him stiff in opinion, or in any degree and yet without the exertion of both, the elated. Of this I had occasion to have almost fabric of human wisdom could never have daily experience. The remarks I continually been reared."-Vol. ii., pp. 399, 400. sent him by letters on the Principia were received with the utmost goodness. These We have not endeavoured to give were so far from being anyways displeasing
anything like a complete abstract of to him, that on the contrary they occasioned Sir David Brewster's book. him to speak many kind things of me to my
would rather lead the reader to refer friends, and to honour me with a public tes
to it himself for his own perusal. It timony of his good opinion.' "_Vol. II., pp. 413-414, 406-407.
is full of interesting and valuable mat
ter, since not only does it contain the Of his intellect Sir David thus best account hitherto given of the life speaks:
of Sir Isaac Newton, but each of the
great subjects in which he made disco. “ The peculiar character of his genius, and veries is popularly explained, and its the method which he pursued in his inquiries, history brought down almost to the can be gathered only from the study of his present day. works, and from the history of his individual
Were we disposed to be critical, we labours. Were we to judge of the qualities of his mind from the early age at which he
might take exception to occasional
faults of style, especially to certain made his principal discoveries, and from the rapidity of their succession, we should be led
ambitious passages, in which, though to ascribe to him that quickness of penetra
the matter is good, there is a certain tion, and that exuberance of invention, which
effort and straining after effect too is more characteristic of poetical than of phi- plainly visible. There are also some losophical genius. But we must recollect needless repetitions of the same matter that Newton was placed in the most favour- introduced at one time in its proper able circumstances for the development of his chronological order, and at another powers. The flower of his youth, and the
because of its connexion with other vigour of his manhood, were entirely devoted
parts of the same subject. Repetito science. No injudicious guardian con
tions, however, are better than omis. trolled his ruling passion, and no ungenial
sions, and in the life of such a man as studies or professional toils interrupted the continuity of his pursuits. His discoveries
Newton we care little for minor faults were therefore the fruit of persevering and
in the manner of relation, so that we unbroken study; and he himself declared,
have all the ascertainable facts comthat whatever service he had done to the pletely stated, and their nature and public was not owing to any extraordinary connexion adequately pointed out.
We A GLIMPSE OF OLD ENGLISH DIPLOMACY.
MR. REEVE, the learned reviser of a new tholic kingdoms acknowledged Cromand recently published edition of Bul- well as their guardian. The Huguestrode Whitelocke's “Journal of the nots of Languedoc, the shepherds who, Swedish Embassy in theYears 1653-54," in the hamlets of the Alps, professed a remarks upon the close amity between Protestantism older than that of AugsSweden and this country, of which burg, were secured from oppression that mission formed the basis, that by the mere terror of that great name. “though the power of Britain has in- The Pope himself was forced to preach creased in that interval, and the power humanity and moderation to Popish of Sweden has declined, many of the princes. For a voice which seldom same considerations and inducements threatened in vain had declared, that exist in equal or in greater force, at unless favour were shown to the peo. this moment, to lead the statesmen ple of God, the English guns should of England to give their best support be heard in the Castle of St. Angelo. to the Crown of Sweden, and to desire In truth, there was nothing which that Sweden should regain that as- Cromwell bad, for his own sake and cendancy in the Baltic which she so that of his family, so much reason to gloriously acquired and exercised in desire, as a general religious war in the seventeenth century." The sound. Europe. In such a war he must have ness of this opinion will, we believe, been the captain of the Protestant be generally admitted ; and we do not armies. The heart of England would doubt that a glimpse of Cromwell's have been with him." Deeply imfirst exploit, in the character of a high pressed with these convictions, as contracting party, will be, just now, Cromwell certainly was, it was natural especially interesting to our readers, that he should turn with friendly in. as recalling to their recollection the tent to that nation whose illustrious position and policy of Sweden, such as king had, twenty years earlier, laid they were two hundred years since, and down his commision as champion of such as it is not impossible they may the Protestant faith, and his life, upon again be before the present troubles of the bloody field of Lützen. The reEurope shall be composed. There are, gular course of his personal ambition indeed, few epochs in history to which must seem to have led him to claim Englishmen – whatever may be their successorship to Gustavus Ado!phus ; private sentiments with respect to the and in no way could be, at that period, divine right of governing, or of over- have advanced his claim more effecturning governments
commonly look tually than by cultivating a close alback with so much of pride and plea- liance with Sweden, which that great sure as those first years of the latter soldier had raised into the position of half of the seventeenth century, when, a bulwark of Protestant Europe. In to use the eloquent words of Mr. Ma. this policy, Cromwell was encouraged caulay, “after half a century, during by the general feeling of the English which England had been scarcely of nation, and by a romantic admiration more weight in European politics than for his own character, very freely exVenice or Saxony, at or.ce she became pressed by Queen Christina. « The the most formidable power in the business (he said, in one of his converworld, dictated terms of peace to the sations respecting the embassy) is of exUnited Provinces, avenged the common ceeding great importance to the Cominjuries of Christendom on the pirates monwealth, as any can be ; that it is : of Barbary, vanquished the Spaniards and there is no prince or state in Chrisby land and sea, seized one of the tendom with whom there is any probafinest West India Íslands, and acquired bility for us to have a friendship, but on the Flemish coast a fortress which only the Queen of Sweden. She hath consoled the national pride for the loss sent several times to us, but we have of Calais. She was supreme on the returned no embassy to her, only a ocean. She was the head of the Pro- letter by a young gentleman. She testant interest. All the reformed expects an ambassador from us; and churches scattered over Roman Ca- if we should not send a man of eminency to her, she would think herself recorded by himself, that “though slighted by us: and she is a lady of serviceable in some things, he was yet great honour, and stands much upon not thorough-paced.”. He had a proceremonies.” At that time, it is to be found faith in the British constitution ; remembered, Christina was in the full although, when occasion required subenjoyment of the power and prestige tlety in reconciling the letter to the bequeathed to her by her renowned spirit, his conscience was “ lawyer-like, father, whose territorial conquests and of the common fashion." He was from Russia, Poland, and Denmark, brave and punctilious; but yet a thowere recorded in her style and titles rough old soldier, when his business was of Queen of the Swedes, Goths, and to procure intelligence or supplies. Vandals ; Great Prince of Finland, And finally, he was a man of honour Duke of Esthonia, Carelia, Bremen, and good breeding, ready to maintain Veherden, Stettin, Pomerland, Cas- with his sword the precedence of the subia and Vandalia, Prince of Rugia, Commonwealth of England at a court and Lady of Ingria and of Wismar. ceremony, and proud of being taken out A glance at the map will show what by Queen Christina to dancethe brawls, has become of all these fair principali- in that he thus satisfied her majesty that ties and lordships; but they were then he was a gentleman, and bred a gentle. held with no feeble hand by that able man, and that the Hollanders were and brave, though eccentric and un- lying fellows to report that there were steady, princess, and guarded by the none but mechanics of the Parliament wisdom of one of the truest and sagest party. Still, he stoutly resisted all servants monarch ever trusted in the temptations to desecrate the Lord's Day illustrious Chancellor Axel Oxenstiern. with worldly business, or the ball of pleaAn alliance, offensive and defensive, sure, and testified against that wicked with Sweden was then, truly, a worthy custom of cup-health pledging" so no. object of English diplomacy. Crom- bly, as to set the soul of one Jonathan well thought so; and he selected for Pickes, a savory member of a congrehis representative a man peculiarly gation in London, “and many more, fitted for the office, who fortunately a-praising God on his behalf.” It was, recorded the minutest details of his no doubt, the possession of these vaown opinions and acts, and of those of rious and somewhat opposite qualities others, so far as he could ascertain and virtues that recommended Whitethem, in the course of his mission. locke to Cromwell as his representative Upon the product of this labour, in in this “ very bonourable business ;"! the “ Journal of the Swedish Em- and Oliver was manifestly sincere when bassy,” we shall draw freely, and yet he urged him to undertake it " as the leave untouched a mine of curious and, fittest man in the nation for this ser. to the political student, highly useful vice. We know your abilities (conti. information.
nued the General), having long con. Bulstrode Whitelocke, one of Crom- versed with you; we know you bave well's Commissioners of the Great languages, and have travelled, and Seal and his Ambassador Extraordi. understand the interest of Christen. nary to the Court of Sweden, may pro- dom; and I have known you in the bably be set down as a member of the army to endure hardships, and to be class known in those days as “ waiters healthful and strong, and of mettle, upon Providence.” Bred a lawyer, discretion, and parts most fit for this he had served as a soldier and in employment.
so indeed ; several civil employments, carrying with really no man is so fit for it as you are. him throughout many of the habits and We know you to be a gentleman of a feelings engendered by those various good family, related to persons of hopursuits, curiously tempered by their nour; and your present office of Comcontrasts, and by the circumstances missioner of the Seal will make you of his birth and education as a gentle- more acceptable to her. I do earnestly man, and bis strong and manifestly desire you to undertake it, wherein sincere religious views. “He never you will do an act of great merit, and led, but followed (says Lord Claren- advantage to the Commonwealth, as don) and was rather carried away great as any member of it can perform; by the torrent than swam with the and which will be as well accepted by stream ;" and his third wife draws his them." The service was one beset with character with a still more graphic dangers. The only two persons who pen, when she tells him in a dialogue had
been charged with high diplomatic
missions from the Commonwealth had “ Co.—Sir, you have been in great danger been murdered—Dr. Dorislaus at the ere now, and God has kept you; and so, I Hague, by a party of the king's hope, He will still. friends, in 1649 ; and Roger Ascham “WH.— I perceive you are not so much at Madrid, in the succeeding year. It
against my going as others are. was also supposed by Whitelocke's wife,
“Co.-I see no cause to be much against
it, that's the truth on't ; because I hope it and some of his friends, that the pro
may be for the good of you and yours, which posed embassy was designed as an honourable banishment: he [the Ge
I wish with all my heart, and ever did.
“WH. — But do you not think it would neral] means no good to you, but would
be more for our good for me to stay at be rid of you," was the argument of home? Mrs. Whitelocke, who, with abundance
That you know best; but this I of tears, implored him to think of the think, that if by going abroad you may irreparable loss his death would be to gain a good advantage to your state, and her, and their “twelve children, and a by staying at home you will only spend of thirteenth coming--most of them un
it, then it will be more for your good to go able to help themselves.” On his own
abroad than to stay at home. But these
things are above me. part, Whitelocke was not free from a
" WH.-You speak reason, William. feeling that it was unsafe to commit himself to the existing regime in so open and decided a manner as the un
"Co.--I pray God keep you out of dandertaking of an embassy. His habi.
gers if you go, or if you stay ; there will be
dangers everywhere. tual caution "objected that the autho
" Wh. – But more apparent in this jourrity under whose commission he was
ney. to act in this great business, was not “ Co.--I cannot tell that; for I have heard justifiable by the law of God, or of this that our great man, I mean my lord general, nation, and he the more liable to pun- would have you to go; and if it be so, and yet ishment if a change should come.” This you will stay at home, I doubt there may case of conscience was, however, set- be as much danger for you to stay as to go. tled as before the nation, by the sub
“Wh, - It is true, the General would tlety of his legal friends, who proved
have me go; but I am not bound to obey the existence and authority of a go
him in all things.
“ Co. - I am deceived if he will not be vernment de facto, and as before God,
obeyed in what he hath a mind to. by the text, “Let every soul be sub
" Wu. -- I am not under his command ; ject to the higher powers.” “As to what can he do to me? matter of prudence, he was said to be + Co.-- What can he do? What can he so far engaged already with the Parlia. not do? Do not we all see he does what ment party, that he could not go back ; he list ? We poor countrymen are forced to that if any change should be made obey him to our cost; and if he have a with force, it would be safer to be from mind to punish us or you, it's an old proamong them than in the midst of verb, that it is an easy thing to find a staff to them; if it were made upon terms,
beat a dog ; and I would not have you to he, though absent, should be comprised
anger him, lest you bring danger and trouin them." The argument was summed
ble too upon you and your family and state ;
that's the truth on't. up in a discourse with William Cooke,
“WH.—I fully agree with you in this." an ancient, sober, discreet, and faithful servant to Whitelocke and his fa
And so Whitelocke determined, as ther, above fifty years, which is so it was manifest from the first serious characteristic of the times, and so illus-moving of the matter that he would, trative of the state of affairs, that we
to undertake a “very honourable bumust direct our readers' attention
siness,” wherein he might be instru. towards it by a short extract:
mental to promote the Protestant inte
rest, and to do service to good people "COOKE-If you be sent over sea, I pray
both at home and abroad. Whether God bless you, and send you well home
or not he should be able to accomplish again. "WHITELOCKE–There will be some dan
that design was fully discussed upon ger of coming well home again.
the Lord's Day, September 11, 1653, * Co.-Why, sir, many honest gentlemen
the discussion being deemned a fitting before now have been sent over seas, and yet
sabbatical work. It was objected :have returned well home again; and so I hope will you.ro
" That the people of these parts, whither WH.-But this is a journey of more he was to go, differ wholly from our perdanger than ordinary, bagiado noodbo suasion in matters of religion ; and though
they are Protestants after the doctrine of was as zealous to thrust his freedom Luther, yet they are not so easily to be re- down all other men's throats, at point conciled to those of other tenets, nor to be of pike, as the revolutionary propabrought to join with them; and they have a sharp averseness to the opinions of Calvin,
gandist of our own time is to reduce and look upon us as most favouring them,
the world under the heavy yoke of his and more than those of their great author,
churchless, and kingless, and lawless Luther.
liberty. Anabaptists and Fifth Mo“On the other part it was said, that
narchy men roused the fears of the though the Swedish and German professors German princes then, as Socialists are generally Lutherans, yet they are Pro- and Red Republicans rouse them now, testants, and agree with us in fundamentals, while the sharp averseness existing in and against the Roman Church.
the seventeenth century between the " That the Queen of Sweden, but chiefly Calvinist and Lutheran professors, her father, and many of his great men notwithstanding their agreement in yet living, have testified much affection to
fundamentals, and against the Roman the Protestant cause, and are forward to promote it; that such a person as White
Church, is represented in the nine. locke, being with them upon the place, and
teenth by the repulsion that keeps discoursing with them about these matters,
asunder democrats and constitutional. wherein he is able to give them so much sa
ists, and dividing the camp of freetisfaction, and such as they have not had
it an easy prey to an opportunity so fully to receive before; the common enemy. Although the and the example of Whitelocke and his com- Swede and the Dane must clearly see pany, to work upon them to a greater liking the doom that impends over both, of our ways and profession, accompanied they will hardly be reconciled and with such practice, would gain a better ac
united to join against the Russians. ceptation with them than any they have
The Prussian and Austrian people are formerly given to those from whom at present they do differ; and will much persuade to
overpowered by their kings and armies wards a firm amity and union with this
at home, the Switzers are still too far off, Commonwealth.
the Netherlanders still too much in " That there is no other nation in Christ- league with the Czar, and in love with endom from whom the Swedes can rationally trade ; so that in truth it behoves the expect such a friendship and union, but Swedes at this very day to desire a only England, especially in matters of reli- firm amity and union with England gion, and for strength against the Popish for the independence of Europe against party, who love not them nor us.
the common enemy thereof the Rus"The Protestant princes of Germany are
sian party - unless they be content to not at this day so considerable, nor so free of differences and jealousies among them
submit passively to an erasure of the selves and against the Crown of Sweden, nor
glorious name of Sweden from the list so secure of nearer enemies, as to be much
of nations. assistance to the Swedes, who will bardly be
No sooner had Whitelocke signified reconciled and united to the Danes, to join
to Cromwell his assent to the proposal with them against the Papists. The French made to him, than the matter was Protestants are overpowered at home, the brought before the Parliament in a Switzers are too far off, the Netherlanders too report from the council, which was much in league with the Danes, and in love
agreed to nemine contradicente, but not with trade; so that the English only are the without some little grumbling on the people with whom the Swedes may hope for a fair amity and unity for the Protestant in
part of one of the members, who bad terest against the common enemy thereof,
an opinion of himself to be more godly the Popish party."
than others, and who
did object that they knew not whether Whitelocke were
a godly man or not; as though he In this brief sketch of European po- might be otherwise qualified, yet, if he litics, two centuries old, it needs but were not a godly man, it was not fit to to change a few names to bring before send him ambassador." The next obthe mind a lively presentment of the ject of care was to prepare for the form and feature of the present time. embassy, which was done (despite of The despotic party of that day was some higgling by the council) in such called Popish-it is now called Rus- a månner as plainly to show the imporsian. Security against oppression was tance attached by Cromwell to the then associated in men's minds with
impression as to the grandeur and an ecclesiastical, as it is now with a power of England, and as to the aris. civil constitution ; and, as is well tocratic character of its rulers, to proworthy of remark, the religious patriot duce which upon the mind of Europe