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contain space for one more grave, which the Mahometans believe will be occupied by “ Isa ben Maryam," i.e. our Blessed Lord, when, after His second coming before the end of the world, He will pay the debt of nature. These tombs are surrounded by a plain enclosure, outside of which is hung a curtain, like that of a four-post bed. A narrow passage surrounds this drapery, outside of which is an iron filigree railing, painted a vivid green, with a brass inscription inserted, testifying to the unity
of Alah, the mission of the Prophet, and similar articles of faith. On the south the railing is gilt. On this side there are three windows, supposed to be opposite to each tomb, before which the prayers are recited. There are four gates to the enclosure, only one of which is ever opened, and then only to admit the treasurers and the eunuchs who serve the tomb. Above it is the green dome, with its gilt crescent, over which, say the Moslems, the faithful perceive a great pillar of light, which directs, from three days' distance, the pilgrim's steps towards El Medinah. Authorities are not at all agreed about the tombs within the veil: some say they ase mere slabs on the pavement, others declare them to be boxes of ebony; some consider them to be square altartombs, others to be covered with a convex coping. One authority says that the tombs are only deep holes. Our author doubts whether the place of the Prophet's sepulchre is known at all, or, at any rate, whether his body has not either crumbled into dust, or been stolen by the schismatics who had for so long a time charge of the tomb.
The third volume, which is to contain our pilgrim's observations at Meccah, is to be published in the autumn.
We think we have now shown our readers enough to make them desire to see this book for themselves. We assure them, that if they once get over their scruple, they will find the author a very pleasant companion. Haters of slavery find slave-grown sugar just as sweet as the product of free labour ; we may be as virtuous as we please, but ginger will be hot in the mouth still. So this book is interesting and valuable, though our author took such unwarrantable means to procure his information. Yet, probably, there are many who will consider him a martyr to science, and will think it even wiser for him to risk his soul to procure his adventures and his information, than for the naturalist to peril his neck to determine the height of a mountain or to procure a specimen of a new plant. The world is now full of people who think that knowledge is to be gained at any price; hardly one table-turner out of a hundred but suspects that the Evil One has something to do with the effects of the manipulations and passes which he nevertheless persists in practising. These would-be dealers with the devil are so numerous, that they even propose to set up a theosophic college in London, for the purpose of investigating natural and spiritual truth up to its fountain-head in the divine magia. We do not rank our author with these drivelling blasphemers. We consider that, carried away by his high spirits and his enthusiastic love of adventure, he has thoughtlessly done something which, with better knowledge, he would not have done. As to the way in which he has recorded his adventures, we have not much fault to find; the flippancy and satire which he delights in are quite in the modern taste, and serve very well to gild the pill of the drier and more scientific details which he gives with profusion. He is really well read in Mahometan theology and Oriental literature. He travels for scientific and useful political objects; and all the time he keeps his eyes open for subje
for subjects on which he may exercise a power of word-painting as great as is found in any of our modern travellers, and for opportunities for adventure which would rejoice the heart of a hunter in the Himalayas or in the wilds of Central Africa. The book is a valuable present, not only to the ethnographer and philosophical inquirer, but to the miscellaneous readers of circulating-libraries.
BREWSTER'S LIFE OF NEWTON.-GALILEO AND THE
INQUISITION. Memoirs of the Life, Writings, and Discoveries of Sir Isaac
Newton. By Sir David Brewster. 2 vols. Edinburgh:
Constable. Sir David BREWSTER has enlarged his popular and brief life of Sir Isaac Newton into the two goodly volumes now before
A free use has been made of original papers preserved in the family of the Earl of Portsmouth; and the result has been to clear the character of Sir Isaac from the imputations on his honour and veracity made by Flamsteed, and lately repeated by Baily in his life of that reverend and ill-tempered astronomer, and also to refute the theory of M. Biot, that the philosopher lost his intellect in consequence of a fit of insanity in 1693. They also throw some new light on his religious tenets, and confirm the suspicions of his Arianism, which have always been more or less rife.
The present is the only biography of the philosopher that can be called worthy of him; but still we do not consider this at all a model for a memoir of a scientific man.
The history of the man is so strangely jumbled with the history of the sciences which he enlarged, and with detailed accounts of the antecedents and consequences of his discoveries, that it is next to impossible to find any given event of his life. We can compare Sir David's method only to that of certain hagiographers, who write a saint's life, not historically or chronologically, but in the order of his virtues; each chapter being dedicated to some special good quality, under which head all the events that bear on this character are related. So in this life, after two preliminary chapters, in which an historical order is observed, we have eight chapters chiefly devoted to Sir Isaac's optical discoveries and theories; then, after a chapter on astronomical discoveries previous to Newton, there follow two chapters on the theory of gravity, the publication of the Principia, and the course of the Newtonian philosophy to the present day. This zigzag course is continued through the second volume, to the utter confusion of all chronology and historical order.
There are two subjects mooted in these two volumes, on which we are anxious to offer a few remarks. The first is, the often-discussed question of Galileo, which Sir David has occasion to bring in, when giving an account of astronomy previous to Newton; and the other is, the question of Newton's religion.
Galileo, says our biographer, was charged with maintaining the motion of the earth and the stability of the sun, -with teaching and publishing this heretical doctrine, and with attempting to reconcile it with Scripture. On the 25th of May 1616, the Inquisition desired that Galileo should be enjoined by Cardinal Bellarmine to renounce the obnoxious doctrines, and to pledge himself that he would neither teach, publish, nor defend them in future. In the event of his refusing to obey this injunction, it was decreed that he should be thrown into prison. Galileo acquiesced in the sentence, and on the following day he renounced before the Cardinal his heretical opinions, abandoning the doctrine of the earth's motion, and pledging himself neither to defend nor teach it either in his writings or his conversation.
This is by no means a true account of the case, as the following certificate of Cardinal Bellarmine, which was written on the day on which this pretended renunciation of Galileo's was made, will prove :
“ We, Robert Cardinal Bellarmine, having heard that Sig. Galileo Galilei is calumniously and injuriously reported to have made abjuration before us, and moreover to have been thereupon punished with salutary penances; and being asked the truth of this, affirm, that the aforesaid Signor Galileo has made no abjuration either before us, or before any others here in Rome, nor in any other place that we know of, of any of his opinions or doctrines; and that he has not received any penances, salutary or otherwise : but only that the declaration made by our lord the Pope, and published by the Holy Congregation of the Index, has been made known to him; this declaration being the doctrine attributed to Copernicus, that the earth moves round the sun, and that the sun stands in the centre of the world, and does not move from east to west, is contrary to the Holy Scriptures, and therefore cannot be defended or held. In testimony whereof we have written and subscribed this with our own hand, this 26th of May 1616.
“ T'he aforesaid Robert CARDINAL BELLARMINE." It is clear, then, that Galileo's acquiescence and promise of obedience did not, nor was intended by the authorities to, include any abjuration or abandonment of the doctrine; but simply a recognition that it was forbidden ground, and an engagement not to teach it in future. It is clear, therefore, that Bellarmine, who was here the representative of the Sacred Office, never understood that the doctrine was condemned as heretical, in the same sense as, e.g. Arianism is heretical. For it would be quite as impossible for any one to give permission (such as is implied in the above certificate) to hold a doctrine really heretical, as it would be for him to give a license to murder, or to worship a false god. An heretical and false doctrine which a Catholic is allowed under a certificate to hold, must be a doctrine called heretical and false in a sense quite different from the ordinary religious meaning of these terms.
What, then, is the sense in which the Congregations of the Inquisition and the Index must have pronounced the Copernican theory to be heretical, false, and contrary to Scripture ?
1. As to the Inquisition: this Congregation has received no authority to pronounce on the truth or falsehood of a doctrine, but only on questions of fact with regard to individuals and their actions; whether such a person has committed such an offence, or held and defended such an opinion.
2. The Congregation of the Index bas no more right than that of the Inquisition to designate such an opinion as true or false, orthodox or heretical; for this would be equivalent to the right of making a new definition of faith. Its function is simply judicial, to inquire into the fact, whether such a doctrine or principle, known from another source to be true or false, is contained in a proposition or book or writing under consideration. The Congregation of the Index does for books that which the Inquisition does for persons,
3. What, then, is the source from which these Congregations derive their knowledge of what is true and what is false? What is the legislative authority which alone can make definitions of faith?
This office belongs solely to the Catholic Church as a teaching body; and it can only be fulfilled in the following ways, either singly or in combination,-namely, by the consent of all bishops in communion with the Pope; or, by a general council approved by the Pope; or, lastly, by the Pope speaking ex cathedrá, and pronouncing, and declaring that he is pronouncing, a definition of faith.
The Congregations of the Inquisition and the Index are neither the general body of pastors, nor a general council ; and though their decrees may be made and promulgated in the name of the Pope, as if the Pope made them and the Congregations
only published them, yet the Pope, speaking through these Congregations, does not speak ex cathedra. They were instituted as judicial tribunals to judge of persons and books, and the Pope, speaking through them, only speaks as judge, not as legislator. The Pope, in other words, does not make a new definition of faith through the medium of a decree of the Index or of the Holy Office, because these institutions are the seats of judgment concerning the heresy of persons and of books, not the Chair of Peter and seat of doctrine, whence legislative definitions can emanate. Hence it follows, that if the Copernican theory has only been condemned by these Congregations, it has not been condemned as contrary to the faith simply. If an opinion is condemned as heretical by these authorities only, they need not be understood as condemning the opinion as heretical in the common acceptation of the term; but, as seems to be actually implied in Cardinal Bellarmine's certificate, in some modified sense, not inconsistent with the orthodoxy of the person who refuses to abjure the doctrine.
What, then, it may be asked, is this modified sense of the words false and heretical ? and how can we defend the Pope and his Congregations in coming forward with this show of authority, and with these weighty words, which seem to mean, and are generally thought to mean, so much more than they are intended to convey ?
We answer, that the Church may be considered either as a teaching, or as a believing body. As a teaching body, it is the depositary, the judge, and the legislative authority on the doctrines of faith. That which the Church as a teaching body condemns as heretical, cannot be maintained without shipwreck of faith, and liability to eternal perdition. But the Church, con