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with a few exceptions, was the object of God, and for that purpose an inundation, without these supposed convulsions, otherwise than as required for producing that inundation, was quite sufficient. And do not we find, in conformity with this opinion, that among the rivers of Paradise the Euphrates itself is distinctly mentioned? which goes far towards identifying the other three. And what must have become of rivers, mountains, and all other features of the earth's antediluvian surface, on Mr. Gisborne's supposition? or was the surface of our planet antecedently a perfect plane? If it were, the present dislocations on its surface, instead of being penal in their nature, were among the greatest blessings ever bestowed upon mankind. It would be easy to shew in how great a degree all subsequent improvements in the arts and accommodations of human life depend on the inclined position of the strata of the earth.
We now proceed to some very singular positions and reasonings of our author, intended to prove, from physical phenomena, the Fall of Man.
'It has already appeared evident, from documents furnished by natural theology, that mankind are fallen by transgression from the condition in which they were created. Let imagination' (we seriously wish that our ingenious author had exercised his reason more and his imagination less, but) 'let imagination form to itself a picture of the state of beings in which, fresh from their Maker's hand, and in full possession of his favour, they were originally stationed upon earth. For the assistance of our conceptions, we are supplied with two models, one delivered by the finger of God in the opening chapters of the Book of Genesis; the other by the pen of man in the representations given by poets of a golden age.'
Surely we may remark, in passing, that the juxtaposition of the Book of Genesis and Ovid's Metamorphoses was not very judicious or well considered, in so serious a Christian as our author. With his permission, therefore, we will discard the latter in toto.
Form the picture, however,' says Mr. Gisborne, on either pattern, on any consistent pattern, including unsullied innocence and the complete possession of the favour of God, there will remain two questions to which we may desire a reply. In the first place, in what degree, according to our conception, could the mineral substances which have been specified be necessary or useful to man in such a state of innocence, &c.? The necessity or the utility of such substances to such beings is not easily, if at all, to be discerned.'
Here we will just observe, that as Adam in Paradise was required to work the ground, as it is in the original, the utility of an iron mattock in preference to a wooden stake may perhaps be discerned. But now we get into Ovid and poetry, for surely what follows is no more the sense than the language of Moses.
Were men dwelling in a paradisiacal state, or amidst the realization of an age of gold, when neither corporeal need prompted a wish for cloathing,—when the grove, though shelter were superfluous, would ever be at hand with its grateful vicissitude of shade, —when trees loaded with fruit were spreading their offerings in spontaneous luxuriance to meet the first sensations of hunger and thirst, -when all was purity, and peace and joy, on what obvious grounds could we rest the applicability and the importance of the substances under consideration ?
On this declamatory passage we have to observe, that Mr. Gisborne betrays a strange antipathy to labour, which was necessary in order to give a relish to all these enjoyments; and that his idea of our first parents in Paradise seems to be that of two indolent, contemplative, voluptuous devotees.—Yet, in the midst of all this purity and peace and joy, the pains and penalties of idleness must have been felt, and accordingly our great poet, in order to make ease more easy, has been careful to find employment for the inhabitants of his Paradise, whereas that of Mr. Gisborne would have better suited the Castle of Indolence
• Where labour only was to kill the time,
And labour sore it was and weary woe.' • But, in the second place, if it be assumed that the possession of coal and of iron, and of the rest of the metals, would be not only in a moderate degree desired, but even of essential advantage to man in the supposed condition of felicity, and in the consequent continuance of the favour of the gracious Father of Creation, is it possible to suppose that those substances would be placed in the situations in which they are now arranged? To answer this question affirmatively, appears beyond the possibility of reason. Consider that the beds of coal and the metallic veins are deeply stationed below the surface of the earth, that they are buried under strata of powerful resistance, that by the convulsions through which these sțrata have been disjoined and dislocated the accompanying coal and metal participate in every mode of confusion, and that by the combination of all these circumstances they are rendered at once of doubtful discovery and of difficult access. Consider further that the metallic bodies, when discovered and obtained, are rarely in a state fitting them for the service of man. They offer themseļves to him in masses of shapeless, rugged, stony, and untractable ore, and are to be subdued by the strongest discipline of fire and of labour, ere they will submit to the forms and manifest the qualities which are indispensably necessary before he can derive a particle of benefit from his acquisition. Is it conceivable that men, innocent, happy, in the full enjoyment of God, men dwelling in an actual or a virtual Paradise, should be doomed by their heavenly Father to seek the mineral production which we are supposing them to need, in such a situation? Assuredly we may without hesitation conclude, that if to innocent and favoured man minerals were of importance, they would be provided for him by divine goodness in stations easy of detection and of access, and would be endued with the qualities necessary for that purpose.'
The drift of this argument is to prove, that all these are prospective contrivances for the purpose of inflicting penal suffering on a race of fallen and guilty creatures: that had man been in a state of innocence, and the use of metals been necessary for him in that state, they would have presented themselves upon the surface in a fusible state; and all the labour and research, all the skill of subduing the stubborn qualities of ore by fire or otherwise, are proofs of the wrath of God against a creature to whom such occupations are necessary ;-in other words, that all labour is penal. As well might Mr. Gisborne have required, that every instrument of luxury or ornament,—the golden goblet, the diadem or the tiara studded with diamonds, should present themselves spontaneously to man. On the other hand, all the toil of research, all the ingenuity employed in refining and modifying native materials for the use of man, is represented as so much misery. Almost every thing may be taken by two handles; and it would surely have occurred to a more cheerful temper, or a more philosophical understanding, that these prospective contrivances, for such unquestionably they are, may be proved by the event to have been intended for a very different purpose;—that innumerable blessings were placed within the reach of man, but at a proper distance to stimulate research, to reward labour, to exercise the sagacity, and in all respects so circumstanced as to suit the condition of a creature destined to advance to the highest degrees of civilization and of intellectual improvement, by a vigorous exercise both of mind and body ;-that the dislocations and disruptions which it suits our author's temper to bewail in strains so lamentable, by inclining the strata of the earth, have been in many instances the very means by which mines and minerals were discovered, and have afforded the greatest facilities to their being wrought. Again, according to Mr. Gisborne, miners and manufacturers of metals are damnati ad metalla-criminals condemned, for the original transgression of their first parents, to darkness, damps, and intolerable toil: but we would beg leave to ask him, whether, in our happy country at least, this state of gloom and suffering is not spontaneously chosen? Does not every individual who embraces this occupation elect it for himself? Are not other callings at his option? Or are our miners, like the convicts of the Roman law, worn out by the combined operation of labour and want, proportioned, in either case, with artificial and exquisite cruelty, so as to constitute the severest of all punishments? Is not their free and moderate share of labour a blessing instead of a curse? Is it not the parent of health, vigour and spirits ? But further, the exercise of the understanding in research for the discovery of mines and minerals is
highly pleasurable. The consciousness of sagacity and skill at once encourages hope and enhances the joy of success; nay even the stimulus to exertion under temporary disappointments is far from being undelightful. But in the long and varied process by which the most important and valuable of metals is modified for the uses of man, invention and improvement, the progress of which is almost without bounds, are so many sources of pure and innocent pleasure. Intimately connected with the subject of metallurgy are the sciences of chemistry and even electricity: and are all these pursued in gloomy discontent, as if their prosecutors were merely condemned to the endurance of some great evil, merely to avoid a greater? In short, we need not at this time to be told how much of that highly cultivated state of society in which we live is owing to improvement in the modification of metals; nor that every improvement in art, every step in the progress of human society, is not only an accession to general happiness, but a source of delight to the inventor.
* But,' says our author, with inflexible adherence to his hypothesis, . what are the tendency and effects of the present arrangement and collocation of mineral beds? Precisely those, which, for the benefit of our argument, we should especially desire. They are to sbew that the Deity, when placing mankind in a state of innocence upon the globe, devised and carried into execution, in its very structure and composition, provisions and prospective arrangements unadapted to the then existing state of man, but suited to the situation of men in the event of their falling from holiness and from his favour, and that his omniscience foresaw such fall, and made provision for it,'— --that is, to punish it. Had Mr. Gisborne applied another and a truly Christian analogy to this case, he might have arrived at this conclusion--that as God had made a prospective arrangement for the recovery and salvation of mankind, foreseeing the fall, so in foresight of the same event and of the consequent expulsion of our first parents from Paradise, he had graciously provided in the structure and furniture of the earth materials for human skill and industry, by which they might; in a great measure, repair the physical consequences of the fall, and raise themselves to an higher degree of intellect than could have been naturally attained in Paradise itself. This would have been an inference at once cheering and pious.
For the establishment of the same hypothesis, our author pursues through many a page of gloomy declamation, the case of earthquakes and volcanos, and then infers, from the case of Korah and his company, that each of these phænomena is an act of divine vengeance; and so plainly,' saith he, is this conclusion rational, that in the volume of Revelation itself, and when earthquakes formed as now part of the ordinary dispensations of Providence, the argu
ment, as addressed to natural reason, is most awfully applied and illustrated in the miraculous judgment on Korah and his company. “ If these men die the common death of all men, or if they be visited after the visitation of all men, then the Lord hath not sent me. But if the Lord make a new thing, and the earth open her mouth and swallow them up, then shall she understand that these men have provoked the Lord”-the voice of the earthquake proclaims to the pupil of natural theology “ Man has provoked the Lord.”)
To this inference we have two objections First, that the fate of these rebels is not clearly proved to have been produced by an earthquake. It was a new thing, probably a sudden, tranquil, and miraculous subsidence of the earth beneath their feet-and, secondly, because the analogy is wholly inapplicable; for this terrible event was specifically threatened beforehand as an act of vengeance. The same fallacy runs through all our author's reasonings on these subjects. We believe the deluge, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, the peculiar agonies of human childbirth, and the awful event of death, all these we believe to have been, or to be, properly, penal, because we are so assured in Scripture; but as to other convulsions which have agitated the earth, or other miseries which have afflicted it, since they are all capable of being accounted for by physical causes, we deem it presumptuous to judge as to their moral purpose or direction because we have no authority for so doing. We have another instance of our author's unhappy bias towards the gloomy system, ." There is a circumstance connected with the ordinary suppor of the human frame, which accords with a fallen state only, namely, the general necessity for the use of animal food. That one holy and pure being, &c. &c. should be constrained for the preservation of his existence, or his strength, continually to 'dip his hand in blood-this would be a supposition inconsistent, I think, with any semblance of probability.' What is there unnatural or improbable in this ? The organs of the human frame, the teeth, the stomach in particular, prove that, though capable of being sustained by vegetable food, man was either created in part a carnivorous animal, or was refashioned into a different creature at his expulsion from Paradise. Besides on the opinion here advanced, we have only to observe that no man is constrained to dip his hand in blood and to eat the flesh of what Mr. Gisborne thinks proper to call a fellow-creature: it was allowed to Noah as an indulgence, and may be accepted or declined by his. posterity. But we cannot forbear to urge the immense addition which was made to the happiness of those species of animals, which ordinarily constitute the food of man by this very indulgence. Had