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Art. 43. Observations en some Parts of Natural History, to which is
prefixed an Account of several remarkable Vestiges of an ancient
Date, which have been discovered in different Parts of North
America. Part I. By Benj. Smith Barton, Member of the Royal
Medical Society of Edinburgh. 8vo. 2 s. Dilly. 1787.
A prefixed advertisement to this treatise informs us, that * it is the
production of a very young man, written chiefly as a recreation from
the laborious studies of medicine.' It is however a curious tract ; we
have here only the first part; the other three, which will complete
the work, are to be published in a few months.
The Author apologizes for calling this part Observations on Natural History, since it relates entirely to antiquities, the ancient customs of the inhabitants, &c. &c. Mr. Barton has given an accurate description and a plan of some ruins which have been discovered on the banks of the Mujkingham, about a mile above its junction with the Qbio * (». e. according to the latest maps we have, in Lat. 400 N. and Long. 82 B. nearly). The town, as it is called, is in a large plain, and the walls which encompass it form a quadrilateral figure whose sides are from 530 to 480 yards long; they are about 10 feet high above the level on which they stand, and about 20 feet thick at their base. Within the walls several elevations and buildings are observable, but the whole is overgrown with plants of various kinds, and ' trees,' fays the Author, ' several feet diameter.'
Mr. Barton adds some remarks on the first peopling of America; he does not however throw much light on this dark and difficult subject.
The Author concludes with some considerations on the state of civilization of the Mexicans, as given by Abbe Clavigero, in his history of that empire; which work we noticed in our last Appendix, Page 633- &- ?n .
Art. 44. An accurate and descriptive Catalogue of the several Paintings in the King of Spain's Palace at Madrid'; with some Account of the Pictures in the Buen-Retiro. By Richard Cumberland. i2mo. 2s. 6d. Dilly. 1787.
By a prefixed advertisement to this publication we learn that the Catalogue was made, at Mr. Cumberland's request, by the gentleman who has the superintendance of the Royal Collection in the Palace of Madrid; it was transmitted to the Author after his return from Spain, but came too late to be inserted in his Anecdotes | of Spanish Painters. Æ— /H
Art. 45. A Colhaion of all the Papers relating to the Proposal.f»v uniting the King's and the Mari/dal Colleges of Aberdeen, which, have been published by Authority of the Colleges. 410. 2 s. 6d. Evans. 1787.
It is impossible perhaps to agitate the most salutary measure in any body of men, without dividing them into parties. To have two rival
———» • Similar ruins have been found in other parts of N. America, for 'an account of which fee our 60th volume, p. 281, from Capt. Car. ver's Travels, f For an account of which fee Rev. vol. Ixvii. p. 50.
seminaries in so remote a city as Aberdeen, when, by a union of plan and of means, the articles of education might be extended, and rendered more competent for the purposes of the country, seems to be a matter easily decided. Vet, as it was a treaty between A and Co. and B and Co. it has proved far otherwise; and altercation has fomented animosities to such a height, that what was first an amicable proposition among themselves, from a conviction of expediency, may become absolutely necessary to be done for them, to prevent worse consequences to both. Their counter-remonstrances are very long, and may be extremely important at Aberdeen, but the pro and con. is so like a quarrel between man and wife, that we hold it prudent not to interfere. yr
Art. 46. EJsayi on -various Subjects, critical and moral: containing Remarks on Butler's Analogy; a Review of Locke's Philosophy; Grammatical Strictures; Letters on Wit and Humour: in which, various Observations are made on the most celebrated Writers on the Subjects of Logic, Morals, and Metaphysics. By William Belchier, Esq. Kent. Crown octavo, 2 Vols. 5 s. Jameson. There are writers who bid defiance to all the powers of criticism, some by rising above, and others by finking below, the level of common fense. To one or other of these classes the Author of these Essays certainly belongs; but to which, it is impossible for us to determine: for after labouring through his tedious pages of unconnected matter, expressed in inelegant and often coarse language, we are at a loss to discover his meaning. If we do not therefore attempt to extract any articles of information, or amusement, from these volumes, our apology must be, that where there is no light, a reflector can be of no use. J?
Art. 47. Some Reasons for thinking that the Greek Language was borrowed from the Chinese: in Notes on the Grammatica Sinica of Mons. Fourmont. By Mr. Webb. 8vo. 2 s. sewed. Dodsley. J787
The learned Lipfius observed a striking affinity between the old Persic and the German language. Mr. Webb has remarked the fame between the Greek language and the Chinese; and has ingeniously collected a variety of resemblances in support of his opinion, that the former is derived from the latter. Whether his arguments are as satisfactory as ingenious, must be left to the determination of those who are better acquainted with the Chinese tongue, than we can pretend to be. T*
Art. 48. SeleS Passages from 'various Authors. Designed to form the Minds and Manners of Young Persons; and at the fame Time to afford an agreeable Miscellany for those of riper Years. i2mo. 3 s. 6 d. Boards. Richardson. 1787.
These selections are from some of the best and most admired authors of our own country, and from a few of those of France. They are collected by a sensible, and by no means unlearned lady *, and the choice does not disgrace either her judgment or her taste j but
* We say lady, because some passages in the Preface, &c. lead us so to conclude, with tolerable certainty.
she she has not done justice to the beautiful and well-known lines made by the late excellent Dr. Doddridge on his family motto, Dune wivimus vi-vamut, as (he has neither laid whence they are taken, on, what occasion they were written, nor has she given the motto entire so that the point and meaning cannot be fully understood.
These moral and instructive collections are generally useful, and, we recommend the present publication as proper to be added to those os the same sort already given to the world; but we were sorry to see so very numerous a list of Errata, which few will take the trouble to mark; <we must, however, especially as coming from a fair lady, accept the apology here made (great distance from the press), and we wish others may be equally inclined to mark them as Errata, and to overlook them as defect!. /■>
Art. 49. A Treatise on the Wines of Portugal; and what can be gathered on the Subject since the Establishment of the English Factory at Oporto, Anno 1727: also a Dissertation on the Nature and Use of Wines in general, as pertaining to Luxury and Diet. By John Croft, S. A. S. 8vo. 1 s. York printed; sold by Baldwin, London. 1787.
This work gives a very circumstantial detail of the Portugal winetrade. The Author, who seems well acquainted with his subject, enters minutely into a description of the several methods of making the wine, and the various ways of adulterating it, as practised both in Portugal and in England.
In the second part of this performance he describes the different kinds of wines, usually imported in this country; enumerates the excellencies of each, and ihews how to distinguish the good from the bad : extending his observations to the Rhenilh, Hungarian, French, Madeira, Canary, Spanish, Italian, &c.
We could have wilhed Mr. Croft had clothed his useful informa* tion in better language; or given his readers an exhilarating glass, to sustain them under the fatigue of perusing a useful but dull pam
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Art. 50. A Charge and Sermon delivered at the Ordination os the Rev. Mr. John Deacon, April 26, 1786, at Leicester. Together with the Introductory Discourse, the Questions proposed to the Church and the Minister, the Answers returned, and Mr. Deacon's Profession of Faith. Small octavo, is. 6d. Buckland. This Ordination service, which was performed in a society of Baptists of the Calvinistic persuasion, is drawn up in a plain and serious Jlyle; and, notwithstanding the general character of Puritanism which runs through it, contains many hints not undeserving attention from young divines, of all professions. C'
Art. 51. A Defence of the DocJrinc of the Trinity, and eternal Sonship of our Lord Jesus Christ, as revealed in the Scriptures; in Opposition to a late Scheme of temporal Sonfhip. By a Baptist. 8vo. is. 6d. Buckland. A dispute in a society of Baptists, at Edinburgh, concerning the
(Ctemal Sonsliip of Jesus Christ, gave occasion 10 this piece of pole
mical divinity; from which we learn nothing, bot that it is writrett by one who hag more zeal than knowledge, or candour. For, when the contending parties, for the fake of peace, agreed to a temporary forbearance on the point in dispute, till they should be farther enlightened, this zealous defender of the Trinity was highly displeased; declaring, in his preface, that«this forbearance was inconsistent with every view the Scripture gives us of Christian forbearance.' Alas' how little does this good man know of the gospel! xf
Art. 52. Letters on Faith. Addressed to a Friend. By James Dore. 12mo" '*• 6d" Bl,ckland. 1786. Mr. Dore considers the nature of faith, its grounds, its effects: the reasonableness of faith in Christ; its importance, and the improvement of the subject. The Letters are sensibly and agreeably, though somewhat diffusely, written. Faith is defined, in general, as 'cred.t given to a report; faith in Christ, faitb in the testimony of Chnst, or « full persuasion of the truth os ntAat be has taught, properly understood and fully realized in the mind.'-FaitA is certainly nothing or of no value, destitute of its proper effects on the life and conduct. This Author appears to write very candidly and rationally on the subject. 7 *■* +
Art. 53. Man naturally inclined to Religion. A Dissertation, by the' Rev. John Steffe, V.car of Little Baddow, Essex; Author of Seven Letters on the State of the Soul after Death, and other Subjects. 8vo. 61 Pages. Chelmsford, printed, 1786. No London Bookieller mentioned, nor price.
Had this writer asserted that mankind were in danger of beine influenced and led astray by imagination and paffion, instead of attending to the voice of truth and reason; or that they are more affected by and inclined to pomp and pageantry than what is of real worth and excellence; or had he substituted the word superstition for that of rehgion, he might possibly have been nearer the truth, in this hasty declamat.on. Superstition is chiefly created and directed by fear and terror and has often been employed (politically) as one means of more easily fobjecling and enslaving mankind. When a country is visited by some dreadful or threatening calamity, every place of worship is crowded: but religion h of a distinct nature. Piety, and devotion,** Si £* f 'T^hl-' a0d uscfulakind (if properly understood), to be thus degraded by ignorance and abject fear. ^They are excellent principles, which ought certainly to be manifested by external acts of worstup at the fame time that they have a much larger extent, and Jbould have the.r prevalence, and operate with enerfy, on the whole conduct of man. That he has a capacity for themfsome tendencies to them, and (u the Christian world) great advantage, for their exertion and improvement, is also evident. Equally clear M& thatu.tr"e1dev0UO" ^d piety are greatly distinct from that super
E^lNrft r" °Tspread a!! P*"5 of the ear,h» and which ha. * "yt, somejvhat not only lgnorant and terrific in its appear
reoui'siteaÆ-CrUel -nd- b,aneful in "' Cffects- A» this P~ves how xequ.ate Christian principles are to correct the errors and mistakes of
S'd.| « «he fame nine that it must be deeply lamented that Christianity itself has, by the means of bigotry, fraud, and ambition,
been too often directed, by human hands, to the most wretched pur-
Art. 54. Sermons on different Subjects. By the late Rev. John Tor-
Art. 55. Sermons by the late Reverend Dr. James Paterson; one of
It will require very little more to recommend this volume to the notice of the humane and charitable, than to transcribe a passage from the Advertisement to the Public, which, though anonymous, we doubt not is authentic. It is as follows: 'Dr. Paterson's situation was in every period of his life far removed from affluence, but he was never heard to regret on his own account the narrownesses his fortune. For his family, however, he felt, what he felt not for himself; and the prospect of the circumstances in which, on his deathbed, he saw them about to be left, gave his heart many a painful pang. If these circumstances shall be rendered in any degree more easy by the sale of the volume which is now offered to the Public, no injury will be done to the memory of a man, who, to serve a benevolent purpose, would at any time have sacrificed all pretensions to fame as an author; and to those readers who possess that benevolence of heart which so strongly marked his character, any apology for a work published with such a view is surely unnecessary: by such men g
the following discourses, were they much less accurate than they are, f
would be perused with indulgence, and they do not claim their applause.''
It is farther and properly observed by the unknown Editor, that though, 'these discourses are not composed with all the accuracy, which, had they been prepared by their Author for the press, the Public would have had a right to expect; they are not, in the opinion of those who have seen them, without merit.' They certainly are not; they are plain, practical, and rational, and while they can hurt none, they may be serviceable to many. TT
* In 12 volumes octavo; see Rev. for March last, p. 210.