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Robertson, he sat down by the bedside, end, with all the manner of the reverend Principal, gave him a ■ound lecture for having been out so late last night. Oreville, who had fully expected this visit, lay in remorseful silence, and allowed his supposed monitor to depart without saying a word. In the course of a of an hour, however, when the real Dr Reentered, and commenced a harangue exactly duplicating that just concluded, he could not help exclaiming, that it was too bad to give it him twice over. "Oh, I see how it is," laid Robertson, rising to depart; "that rogue Bob Cullen must hare been with you." The Principal became at length quite accustomed to Bob's tricks, which he would seem, from the followiug anecdote, to have regarded in a friendly spirit. Being attended during an illness by Dr Cullen, it was found necessary to administer a liberal dose of laudanum. The physician, however, asked him, in the first place, in what manner laudanum affected him. Having received his answer, Cullen remarked,, with surprise, that he had never known any one affected in the same way by laudanum, besides his son Bob. "Ah," said Robertson, "dues the rascal take me off there too 9"
Mr Cullen entered at the Scottish bar in 1764, and distinguishing himself highly as a lawyer, was raised to the bench in I I'M',, when he took the designation of Lord Cullen. fie cultivated elegant literature, and contributed some papers of acknowledged merit to the Mirror and Lounger; but it was in conversation that he chiefly shone. We were informed by the late Sir William Macleod Bannatyne, who was his early associate, that the late George IV. always spoke of him as one of the most delightful men he had ever met. Lord Cullen died on the 28th of November 1810.
HONOURS PAID TO MEN OF SCIENCE. While we hear much of the neglect and persecution which men of genius have experienced in past times, we seldom find any allusion made to the honours which have been paid, even in life, to the same or different persons. As this one-sided view of the matter is apt to have an unfavourable effect, we shall present a few striking instances of the encouragement extended by royal and noble personages, during the last two centuries, to eminent cultivators of science, as reckoned up in the Quarterly Review:—*
"At whatever period of the history of science we begin our inquiries, it is difficult to find any well-au-, thenticated instance where knowledge was persecuted or neglected by the sovereigns of civilised nations. The appellations of the sage and the hero have at all times been inseparably joined; and in countries but little removed from barbarism, and in ages comparatively dark and ignorant, kings have conferred the same honours on those who saved their country by prowess or enlightened it by their wisdom. The reigns of the Ptolemies, of Alphonso the Great, of Ulugh Beig, the Tartar prince, were particularly distinguished by this noble patronage of learning. Not content with fostering the genius of their own subjects, they invited to their courts the philosophers of foreign countries; they even took an active part in their scientific inquiries, and honoured them with every mark of confidence and friendship. It was scarcely to be expected that this golden age could have a permanent existence; but though the condition of the civilised world became unfavourable to the patronage of learning, yet no sooner did the human mind recover from its fall, than the princes of Europe sought for reputation from the protection of the arts.
The history of Galileo furnishes a striking example of the munificence of the Grand Duke of Tuscany, and of the influence which it produced on the discoveries of that illustrious astronomer. He had enjoyed the appointment of professor of mathematics at Padua, with a salary of 520 florins; but as this was insufficient for the support of his family, he was obliged to give private lectures, and to receive pupils into his house. Cosmo, who had succeeded his father as grand duke, made proposals to Galileo, in 1607, to return to his original situation at Pisa. In reply to these proposals, Galileo observes—
'My public duty does not confine me more than sixty half-hours in the year, and even that not so strictly hut that I may, on occasion of any business, contrive to get some vacant days: the rest of my time is absolutely at my own disposal; but because my private lectures and domestic pupils are a great hinderance and interruption to my studies, I wish to lire entirely exempt from the former, and in great measure from the latter; for if I am to .return to my native country, I should wish the first object of his serene highness to be, that leisure and opportunity should be given me to complete my works, without employing myself in lecturing, '-f
i To theso arrangements Cosmo cheerfully agreed. Galileo was appointed honorary professor of mathematics at Pisa, with an annual salary of 1000 florins; he was distinguished by the title of Philosopher and Principal Mathematician to his highness; he was exempted from all professional duty, excepting that of giving lecture* on extraordinary occasions to sovereign princes, and other strangers of distinction; and was
* xliii. .108-13.
t Life of Galileo, Library of Useful Knowledge, No. 10.
thus_ as he himself expresses it, 'left without the duties of any office to perform, and wi<h the most complete leisure, so that I can complete my treatises on Mechanics, on the Constitution of the Universe, and on Natural and Violent Local Motion.1 But the generosity of Cosmo did not stop here: he personally assisted Galileo in observing the satellites of Jupiter at Pisa during several months; and when he parted from him, he gave him a present of more than 1000 florins. In the spring of 1624, Galileo went to Rome, to congratulate Pope Urban on his elevation to the pontificate. Flattered with this compliment, his holiness granted the astronomer a pension for the education of his son Vicenzo. He recommended him in the strongest terms to the liberality of the Grand Duke Ferdinand, who had now succeeded his father; and in a few years afterwards, he rewarded the discoveries of Galileo with a pension of 100 crowns. Ferdinand did not hesitate to extend to science the liberality of his father. Inheriting his knowledge along with his fortune, he even devoted himself to optical pursuits; and Galileo informs us, in a letter to his friend Micanzio, 'that Ferdinand had been amusing himself with making object-glasses, and always carried one with him, to work it wherever he went.' Honoured with such distinguished munificence, Galileo was enabled to complete those great inquiries which he had so successfully begun. All the physical sciences experienced the generosity which was extended to the Italian philosopher; and in every succeeding age the Grand Dukes Cosmo and Ferdinand will inherit a portion of that glory which Galileo earned for himself and for his country.
While the abstract sciences were thus fostered in Italy, Tycho Brahewas experiencing the most princely liberality from Ferdinand I. of Denmark. Besides a pension of 1000 crowns a-year, he conferred upon him the canonry of Rothschild, with an annual income of 2000 crowns, and he made over to him the island of Huen, upon which he erected the celebrated observatory of Uranibourg, at an expense of I ..20,000. In this temple of astronomy Tycho pursued his researches for more than twenty years. Princes and philosophers courted his acquaintance; and among his illustrious guests were Ulric Duke of Mecklenburg, accompanied by his daughter the Queen of Denmark, William Prince of Hesse, and James I. of England. This last monarch spent eight days under the roof of Tycho, and not only honoured him at his departure with a magnificent present, but addressed to him a copy of verses, and gave him his royal licence to publish his works in his dominions. The death of Frederick II., in 1588, proved a severe blow to the fortunes of Tycho. Instigated by the malice of his enemies, the infamous Walchendorf, the minister of Christian IV., deprived the astronomer of his pension and of his canonry, and forced him, with his wife and children, to seek the hospitality of a foreign land: but on learning this, the Emperor Rodolph II. invited him to his kingdom, and assigned to him the castle of Benach, near Prague, with an annual pension of 3000 florins.
The illustrious Kepler experienced the same generosity from Rodolph, and, on the death of Tycho, he succeeded to him as principal mathematician to the emperor, with a liberal pension; but, unfortunately for science, it was always in arrear; and this exalted individual was compelled to draw his subsistence from calculating nativities, and imposing upon the credulity of his species.
In the history of Descartes, we are presented with still more striking instances of royal kindness and munificence. At an early period of his life. Lord Charles Cavendish, the brother of the Duke of Newcastle, invited Descartes and his friend Mydorgius to settle in England, and Charles I. offered to make a handsome provision for these two mathematicians; but this arrangement, so honourable to the British sovereign, was frustrated by the commencement of the civil wars. By the advice of the Cardinal Richelieu, Louis XIII. invited Descartes to Paris j but, notwithstanding the high offers made to him, he could not be prevailed on to quit his retirement at Eyndegeest. Crowds of admirers, from every quarter, flocked to visit him, and among these was Elizabeth^ princess-palatine, who went in the character of a disciple, to receive his instructions. Returning to France in 1C47, the king granted him a pension of 3000 crowns, not only out of respect to his talents, and on account of the great benefits which his discoveries had conferred upon the human race, but for the purpose of enabling him to complete the researches which he had begun.
Upon his return to Holland, he received from Christina, Queen of Sweden, an invitation to visit Stockholm, and initiate her into the principles of his philosophy. He accordingly arrived in that capital in October 1649, and was welcomed with all that respect and affection which might have been expected from a sovereign of such acquirements. She rose every morning at five o'clock to receive his instructions; and such was her anxiety to retain him in her kingdom, that she offered him an annual pension of 3000 crowns, and the perpetual possession of the property from which it was derived; and lest the climate should prove too severe for his delicate health, he was allowed to choose a residence either in the archbishopric of Bremen or in Swedish Pomerania. The indisposition of the French ambassador alone prevented the completion of this arrangement; but no sooner had he recovered, than Descartes caught a cold which terminated his life. The royal disciple was inconsolable for the loss of so
distinguished a master: she proposed to the French ambassador to bury Descartes at the public expense; to lay his hallowed remains beside the ashes of the Swedish kings; and to erect a magnificent mausoleum over his tomb. A simpler funeral, however, and an humbler grave, were considered more appropriate to a philosopher. He was int eared in the Catholic cemetery; and about seventeen years afterwards, the tre*surer-general of Franee conveyed the body to Paris, where it was interred with great pomp in the church of St Genevieve.
Among the other distinguished philosophers won adorned the seventeenth century, there is scarcely an individual who did not receive the most substantial rewards for his scientific labours. Newton was appointed successively warden and master of the Mint* by Charles Montague, afterwards Earl of Halifax, and in the subsequent reign of Queen Anne the then undegraded honour of knighthood was conferred upon him. Olaus Rcemer, the discoverer of the propagation of light, was appointed a counsellor of the chancellory of Denmark. Huygens was invited to France by Colbert, and resided at Paris, in the enjoyment of a liberal pension, till the revocation of the edict of Nantes drove him back to his native place; and Hevelius, while consul of the republic of Dantzic, received a pension from Louis XIV. for his astronomical discoveries, without even the necessity of quitting his own country.
Leibnitz, the great rival of Newton, was equally honourcd in Germany. He was early appointed one of the counsellors of his own sovereign, who permitted him to remain at Paris till he completed his arithmetical machine. In 17H, he was nominated aulic counsellor to the Emperor of Germany, who gave him a pension of 2000 florins, and promised to double it on condition of his residing at Vienna. The Emperor of Russia likewise elected him a privy counsellor, with a pension of 1000 ducats; and the situation of keeper of the Vatican was offered to him by Cardinal Casanata. George I., upon his accession to the British throne, invited Leibnitz to England, where he was received with the highest distinction. These lucrative appointments enabled him to leave a fortune of 60,000 crowns, which were found, after his death, accumulated in sacks, in various kinds of specie.
The celebrated family of the Bernouillis, who flourished about the beginning nf the eighteenth century, were rewarded with lucrative professorships, which enabled them to pursue their studies with all the energy which springs from independent circumstances. When Leibnitz exhibited to Frederick I. of Prussia the luminous barometer discovered by John Bernouilii, he generously presented the philosopher with a gold medal of forty ducats. His son Daniel was invited by the court of Russia to the academy of St Petersburg, where he enjoyed a handsome pension. A desire, however, to revisit the place of his birth having made him determine to quit Russia, the imperial government increased his appointments; and, on a subsequent occasion, settled upon him for life half his income, with permission to return to his native land.
The illustrious Eider—a name scarcely less sacred than that of Newton, and in whom piety and wisdom were equally conspicuous—enjoyed in a peculiar manner the friendship and the liberality of kings. On the invitation of Daniel and Nicholas Bernouilii, be went to St Petersburg, where he was appointed, successively, professor of natural philosophy and of mathematics, with a pension from the government. Frederick the Great invited him to Berlin iu 1741; and no sotner had he arrived in that capital, than he received a letter of welcome from the king, written from his camp at Reichenbach. The queen-mother honoured him with her special friendship, and derived the highest enjoyment from his conversation. An opportunity unfortunately occurred, which exhibited in a striking light the feeling then cherished for men of genius. The Russian army, under General Tottleben, having penetrated, in l"6'0, into the march of Brandenburg, pillaged and destroyed a farm which Kuler possessed near Charlottenberg. As soon as the Russian general was made acquainted with the event, he transmitted a large sum in reparation of the loss, and to this liberal compensation the Empress Elizabeth added a present of 40C0 florins. During Euler's residence in Prussia, the Russian government had handsomely continued the pension which it had formerly granted him; and this generous treatment, combined with the former munificence of the Russian empress and her general, induced him to accept of an invitation from Catherine the Great to return to St Petersburg. The King of Prussia having consented to this arrangement, Prince Czartorysky invited Euler, in the name of the King of Poland, to take the road by Warsaw, where, distinguished by the highest regards, he spent ten days with Stanislaus, who afterwards honoured him with his correspondence. When Euler became old and blind, he was still the object of royal attention. The heir of Prussia, when he visited St Petersburg, spent several hours at the bedside of the dying philosopher. During this long visit, he held him all the while by the hand, having, at the same time, upon his knee, one of Euler's grandchildren, who had evinced an early attachment to geometry.
The contemporary and rival of Euler, the illustrious Lagrange, was honoured with even higher digni
• An office then worth from L.liOO to L.1500 per annum.
ties. When Euler left Berlin, Lagrange was invited by the king to become his successor, with a pension of 1500 Prussian crowns, and with the title of Director of the Academy of the Physico-Mathematical Sciences. On the death of Frederick, philosophers ceased to enjoy that elevated station which he had assigned them, and Lagrange became desirous of returning to his native country. No sooner were his withes known, than sovereigns contended for the possession of so inestimable a prize. The King of Sardinia eagerly invited him to return to his native country. The Prince Cardito de Laffredo offered him the most flattering terms from the King of Naples; but the liberality of Louis XVI. prompted by his minister M. ISreteuil, secured him for the French Academy. In 1787, he came to Paris, and his station as foreign member was changed into that of veteran pensionary. The Queen of France treated him with the highest regard, and obtained for him apartments in the Louvre, Even amid the changes of the revolution, his person and talents were respected ; and though he seems at one time to have dreaded the fate of some of his illustrious colleagues, yet he was induced, by his wife, to wait for the arrival of better times. These times did arrive; and the extraordinary man who then wielded the destinies of France was not slow to honour the genius of the most distinguished of her citizens. Lagrange was created, by Bonaparte, a Senator of France, a Count of the Empire, a Grand Officer of the Legion of Honour, and Grand Cross of the Imperial Order of Reunion; and when he sank under the weight of his years and his honours, his remains were deposited in that noble mausoleum on which France has engraven the memorable inscription—
'AUX GRANDS IIOMMES LA FATRIE RECONNAISSANTE.'*
On the death of Lagrange, Laplace held the most elevated station among the great philosophers of Europe. From the humble situation of professor of mathematics in the military school of Paris, he was raised, by the force of his talents, to be president of the Conservative Senate, and was successively created a count and a marquis.
From France we pass to Italy for another illustration of the honours conferred on scientific men. Volta of Como, the celebrated inventor of the voltaic pile, was invited to Paris in 1801, and was honoured with the presence of the First Consul while repeating his experiments before the Institute. Bonaparte conferred upon him the orders of the Legion of Honour, and of the Iron Crown, and he was afterwards nominated a count, ami senator of the kingdom of Italy. At the formation of the Italian Institute, a meeting was held, at which Bonaparte presided, for the pur pfse of nominating the principal members. When they were considering whether or not they should draw up a list of the members in an alphabetical order, Bonaparte wrote at the head of a sheet of paper the name of Volta, and, delivering it to the secretary, said, 'Do as you please at present, provided that name is the first.' At the death of this eminent philosopher in 1827, his fellow-citizens struck a medal, and erected a monument to his memory; and a niche in the facade of the public schools of Como, which had been left empty for him between the busts of Pliny and Giovio, natives of the town, has, we believe, been recently filled by the bust of Volta."
Among these numerous instances of honours paid to men of science, it will be remarked with sorrow that few, comparatively, refer to Britain. Our country, indeed, lias been remarkable both in remote and recent times, but especially in the latter, for the indifference manifested by the government respecting those who contribute to national improvement. We shall probably advert to this subject more largely on a future
MATCH-MAKING IN CALCUTTA. Ism A has hitherto been considered a place of matrimonial speculation, where nabobs were to be had for a look. "Such prizes," says Miss Roberts in her work on India, "are scarce. The damsel educated in the fallacious hope of seeing a rich antiquated suitor at her feet, laden with 'barbaric pearl and gold,' soon discovers to her horror, that, if she should decide upon marrying at all, she will be absolutely compelled to make a love-match, and select the husband of her choice out of the half-dozen subalterns who may offer; fortunate may she esteem herself if there be one amongst them who can boast a staff-appointment, the adjutancy or quarter-mastership of his corps. Formerly, when the importations of European females were much smaller than at present, men grew grey in the service before they had an opportunity of meeting with a wife. There consequently was a supply of rich oTd gentlemen ready at every station to lay their wealth at the feet of the new arrival; and as we are told that' mammon wins its way where seraphs might despair,' it may be supposed that younger and poorer suitors had no chance against these wealthy wooers. The golden age has passed away in India; the silver fruitage of the rupee-tree has been plucked, and Love, poverty-stricken, has nothing left to offer but its roses.
In the dearth of actual possessions, expectancies hecome of consequence; and now that old civilians are less attainable, young writers rank amongst the eli
» Dcdicsted to Great Men, by a grateful Country.
gibles. A supply of these desirables, by no means adequate to the demand, is brought out to Calcutta every year; and upon the arrival of a young man who has been lucky enough to secure a civil appointment, he is immediately accommodated with handsome apartments in Tank Square, styled, par distinction, ' The Buildings,' and entered at the college, where he is condemned to the study of the Hindoostanee and Persian languages until he can pass an examination which shall qualify him to become an assistant to a judge, collector, or other official belonging to the civil department. A few hours of the day are spent under the surveillance of a moonshee, or some more learned pundit, and the remainder are devoted to amusements. This is the dangerous period for young men benrupon making fortunes in India, and upon returning home. They are usually younger sons, disregarded in England on account of the slenderness of their finances, or too juvenile to have attracted matrimonial speculations. Launched into the society of Calcutta, they enact the parts of the young dukes and heirs-apparent of a London circle, where there are daughters or sisters to dispose of. The 'great parti' is caressed, feted, dressed at, danced at, and flirted with, until perfectly bewildered: either falling desperately into love, or fancying himself so, he makes an offer, which is eagerly accepted by some young lady, too happy to escape the much-dreaded horrors of a half-batta station. The writers, of course, speedily acquire a due sense of their importance, and conduct themselves accordingly. Vainly do the gay uniforms strive to compete with their more sombre rivals; no dashing cavalry officer, feathered, and sashed, and epauletted, has a chance against the men privileged to wear a plain coat and a round hat; and in the evening drives in Calcutta, sparkling eyes will be turned away from the military equestrian, gracefully reining up his Arab steed to the carriage-window, to rest upon some awkward rider who sits his horse like a sack, and, more attentive to his own comfort than to the elegance of his appearance, may, if it should be the rainy season, have thrust his white jean trousers into jockey boots, and introduced a black velvet waistcoat under his white calico jacket. Figures even more extraordinary are not rare; for though the ladies follow European fashions as closely as circumstances will admit, few gentlemen, not compelled by general orders to attend strictly to the regulations of the service, are unwilling to sacrifice to the Graces. An Anglo-Indian dandy is generally a very grotesque personage; for where tailors have little sway, and individual taste is left to its own devices, the attire will be found to present strange incongruities.
When a matrimonial proposal has been accepted, the engagement of the parties is made known to the community at large by their appearance together in public. The gentleman drives the lady out in his buggy. This is conclusive; and should either prove fickle, and refuse to fulfil the contract, a breach of promise might be established in the supreme court, based upon the single fact that the pair were actually seen in the same carriage, without a third person. The nuptials of a newly arrived civilian, entrapped at his outset, are usually appointed to take place at some indefinite period, namely, when the bridegroom shall have got out of college. It is difficult to say whether the strength of his affection should be measured by a speedy exit, or a protracted residence, for love maybe supposed to interfere with study; and though excited to diligence by his matrimonial prospects, a mind distracted between rose-coloured billet-doux and long rolls of vellum covered with puzzling characters in Arabic and Persian, will not easily master the difficulties of Oriental love. The allowances of a writer in the Buildings are not so exceedingly splendid ; writers do not, according to the notion adopted in England, step immediately into a salary of three or fonr thousand pounds a-year; though very probably with the brilliant prospect before them which dazzled their eyes upon their embarkation, not yet sobered down to dull reality, they commence living at that rate. The bridegroom elect, consequently, is compelled to borrow one or two thousand rupees to equip himself with household goods necessary for the married state, and thus lays the foundation for an increasing debt, bearing an interest of twelve per cent, at the least. The bride, who would not find it quite so easy to borrow money, and whose relatives do not consider it necessary to be very magnificent upon these occasions, either contrives to make her outfit (the grand expense incurred in her behalf) serve the purpose, or, should that have faded and grown old-fashioned, purchases some scanty addition to her wardrobe. Thus the bridal paraphernalia, the bales of gold and silver muslins, the feathers, jewels, carved ivory, splendid brocades, exquisite embroidery, and all the rich products of the East, on which our imaginations luxuriate when we read of an Indian marriage, sinks down into a few yards of white sarsnet.
The mode of living in India is exceedingly adverse to bridal tours. Unless the parties should procure the loan of some friend's country mansion, a few miles from Calcutta, they must proceed straight to their own residence; for there are no hotels, no wateringplaces, and no post-horses—circumstances which detract materially from the eclat of a marriage. The poor bride, instead of enjoying a pleasant excursion, is obliged to remain shut up at home, and her first appearance in public creates very little sensation, probably from the absence of expectation on the score of new garments."
HINTS ON HOUSE-PAINTING.
[By Mr D. R. Hay, house painter, Edinburgh.— Loudon's Architectural Magazine, AugUJt 18353 It is well understood that the ceilings and walls of all the apartments of dwelling-houses and other buildings in this country are now almost uniformly finished, in plaster, and the nature and properties of this composition are also well known. One of these properties is its power of absorbing moisture, or, in other words, its facility in attracting and imbibing dampness. Consequcntly, when an apartment is left for any length of time without the benefit of a fire, or of heated air supplied by other means, the plaster will continue to absorb a portion of the dampness from the atmosphere with which the room is filled; and it is natural to suppose, that, when a fire is put on, or heated air is otherwise admitted, this dampness will be gradually given out by exhalation from the plaster. This ptocess of exhalation must affect the durability not only of the plaster itself, but of the woodwork under it, and must also render the apartment much less comfortable than if it had been rendered incapable of such absorption.
It therefore becomes an inquiry of some interest, whether painting or papering is the best adapted to counteract these disadvantages.
The process of painting plaster-work is as follows :— White lead and linseed oil, with a little litharge to facilitate the drying, are mixed together to about the consistency of thin cream j a coating of this being applied, the oil from it is sucked into the plaster in the course of a few hours, leaving the white lead apparently dry upon the surface. In the course of a day or two, when this coat has sufficiently hardened, another is given, a few degrees thicker, the oil from which is partially absorbed according to the nature of the plaster. In the course of a few days more, a third coat is applied. This coat is made pretty thick; and if the absorption of the oil from the second coat has not been great, about one-fourth of spirits of turpentine is added; but where the absorption has been great, a less proportion of spirits of turpentine is employed. Into this coat are put the colouring ingredients, to bring it near the shade intended for the finishing coat. Should the plaster now be thoroughly saturated, the flatting or finishing coat is applied; before this is done, however, a fourth coat, thinned with equal portions of oil and spirits of turpentine, is generally given, particularly where the work is wished to be of the most durable kind. The flatting or finishing coat is composed entirely of paint; that is, of white lead and the colouring ingredients mixed together, and ground in oil to an impalpable paste: this mixture it of a very thick consistency, and must be thinned with spirits of turpentine until it will flow easily from the brush. The spirits of turpentine, being very volatile, evaporate entirely, leaving the surface of the paint of a very compact and hard nature. By this process, the plaster is rendered incapable of absorption; and the surface of it is hardened by the oil which it has sucked in from the first and second coats, and is thereby rendered less liable to breakage, with the great advantage of being washable.
It now remains to be seen whether paper-hangings are equally well adapted to the comfort, cleanliness, and durability of the generality of apartments, as a decoration for plastered walls. Every one knows that paper itself is mure or less absorbent, according to its quality. When it is manufactured into paper-hangings, it is washed over with a coating of size colour, equally absorbent with the paper itself, upon which a pattern is stamped with the same material. To prepare the plaster for papering, it receives a coating of a weak solution of glue in water; and the paper, aa every one knows, is fixed to the wall by paste. Paperhangings, therefore, cannot be considered, in a general point of view, as being so well adapted to plastered walls as paint; and there are particular situations in which serious disadvantages attend paper, which ■ short explanation will make apparent to every one. Take a dining-room for example. The papered wall has nothing in it to resist the absorption of the steam of the dinner, or breaths of the large parties by which, it is often crowded: the glue and paste used in paperbanging must be thereby softened, and the moisture absorbed must, of course, be afterwards gradually given out in connexion with the natural effluvia of these, the former of which all know to be extracted from animal substances, not of the most cleanly nature, until the wall be again thoroughly dry. Besides, a papered wall is liable to be injured past remedy by so common a casualty as the starting of a bottle of table beer, champagne, or soda water.
Lobbies and staircases are sometimes papered, although the practice is not very common in Scotland. This is very objectionable, as tlie condensation of the atmosphere, which always takes place upon the walla of such apartments on a change of temperature from cold to warmth, must be absorbed, and again given out, as before explained. They are likewise very liable to accidental injuries, and should, therefore, have the hardest and most impervious covering.
In regard to drawing-rooms and bed-rooms, thes6 particular objections to papcr-hungings do not apply; yet there are modes of painting drawing-rooms superior, not only in point of utility (to which for the present these observations are confined), but also in 'effect.
Column foe tlje ISons. Mr Dear Little Boys — Among my various friendly addresses to you, I do not remember having attempted to impress upon you with sufficient force, the danger which you are in of acquiring and nourishing prejudices or views of a narrow-minded and ungenerous character. A narrow-minded feeling is not perhaps in all instances actively vicious, but it should be, if possible, shunned as the source of much disquietude in society, and as frequently leading to that which is injurious both to our own interests and the interests of others.
Young persons who remain in a state of comparative ignorance from want of proper mental cultivation, are usually impregnated with all kinds of absurd prejudices and evil propensities. They have the most ridiculous fears, the most narrow-minded notions. Education at school is understood to be beneficial in stripping away the natural errors of the pupil; but unless the usual routine of school studies be followed up by the perusal of the works of intelligent authors, and unless the young man learn to judge of the actions of mankind by the extensively applicable rule of Charity, elementary education does not completely fulfil the end for which it is designed.
One of the first prejudices which a boy acquires, is one of self-love. It is the notion that he is the best, the cleverest, the most knowing, and, if chastised for misconduct, the worst-used, of all boys whatever. He has an idea that all mankind should bow down and worship him, or at least minister to his desires without regard to either one thing or another. His next prejudice is, that the place where he was born and dwells is superior in excellence to all other places in the country. His third great leading prejudice is, that the country to which he belongs is the greatest and niost-to-be-lauded country in the whole world : he believes that there is no country like it; that it could fight and beat any two nations on the globe; that the people of other countries are a poor, shabby, ignorant race, not nearly so strong or so wise as the people of his country, and are only fit to be despised; and that his country, in short, is the essence of every thing that is excellent and admirable. Now, my dear young friends, all this is the result of sheer narrow-mindedness and want of knowledge. If the boys who think so foolishly would reflect a little, or read a little, or knew a little more of mankind, they would perceive that such notions are both weak and absurd. They would know that there are boys far cleverer and boys much worse used than themselves. They would know that the place of their birth or residence is not only no better than hundreds of other places, but perhaps very much inferior in many points. They would likewise know that their country is not the best of all possible countries: that there are nations who are as virtuous, as courageous, as wise, as worthy of esteem as their own, if not a great deal more so.
There is another prejudice which young people are apt to acquire; it is the prejudice of class or rank. Country boys affect to despise town boys, because they are ignorant of many things connected with the country; and town boys similarly look down upon country boys, because they are perhaps less neatly dressed, or know less of some kind of public or citv amusements. Poor boys, also, affect a contempt for bovs who belong to wealthier parents; a prejudice which is repaid by the contempt which the sons of the rich have for those who are in poverty. All this is exceedingly bad. Every such prejudice has a tendency to increase in virulence, till at length whole classes of grown men are found holding mean and unworthy opinions of each other.
It is my cordial wish that you should habituate ourselves to the practice of suspending your opinions of any body, of any class, or of the people of any country, till you have read a good deal, gained experience of the world, or have had just cause for forming a mature judgment. I remember believing, along with my juvenile companions, that the French were a puny race of men, not nearly so stout, or well made, or well dressed, as the English and Scotch. I was, indeed, told this by persons who ought to have known better. I can now say, from observation, that the French are by no means the miserable race they have been represented to be. The people who crowd the streets of Paris are as good looking and as well dressed as the people of London or Edinburgh. It is time, therefore, that these aspersions and prejudices should be done away with, both among young and old. Every one among us is also told what a bad class of men the Turks are: they are believed to possess no good qualities whatever. Now, this is likewise an aspersion on national character. A late enlightened traveller, who was not carried away by prejudices, describes the Turks as possessing many excellent qualities. He says they are remarkably charitable, not greedy of wealth, ho
nest, pious, and innocent in their enjoyments, delighting chiefly in the contemplation of nature, and the attributes of the Deity. They have, it seems, nogrc: t hospitals for poor, or for education, as in this country, their rich men preferring to go about relieving the needy with their own hands rather than leaving money for the erection of splendid edifices. They likewise seek out poor old distressed slaves, whom they purchase, and kindly treat for the remainder of their existence. All this, you see, shows fine traits of feeling; and should convince you, that, even among Turks, and what are called heathens, there exist principles of virtue, and a sense of moral responsibility.
By reading the works of travellers and historians, and comparing the facts detailed one with another, you will, I have no doubt, purify your minds from many such prejudices as I have here exemplified. Without reading, you will remain in a hopeless state of ignorance. Make a point of occupying a portion of your leisure hours in reading—not reading frivolous trashy novels, but the productions of respectable travellers, historians, and other writers. Of the various branches of literature which may thus engage your attention, and raise generous emotions in your mind, I consider that you will reap most benefit from the reading of books of history. Unfortunately, most historians dwell too much on descriptions of battles and other military achievements: all such matters, however, you will pass over; in sorrow for the mass of suffering which has from first to last been endured, and devote your attention principally to the causes which conspired to effect the rise and decline of empires, kingdoms, and states—the gradual improvement of the human mind—the origin, progress, and influence of arts and sciences, literature and commerce— the manner in which the privileges you enjoy were established—and how the civilisation and refinement displayed in cities, courts, and senates, rose from small beginnings to their present condition. The reading of these matters will furnish you with an inexhaustible fund of entertainment and instruction, and will have a wonderful tendency in clearing away those illiberal prejudices which narrow the mind, deaden the feelings, and cloud the understanding.
I beg to conclude these observations with a quotation from an excellent author, Bigland, whose letters on history form one of the best works which you could peruse. "Certain prepossessions (says he) take hold of our minds, and domineer over our reason, from our infancy, from the first dawn of thought. They are inspired by systems and establishments, by received customs, by current opinions, and by the conversation and the authority of those who are the nearest and dearest to us, and have the greatest influence over us. Every nation, every religious sect, every class of society, has prejudices pcculk'.' to itself: these prejudices are strengthened by various circumstances; they acquire a deeper root from the books we read, the country we live in, the persons with whom we converse, the station of life in which we are placed, and a thousand other incidents. If we should select a certain number of children, of capacities as nearly equal as possible (for a perfect equality in this respect does not exist), if we should give them all the same education, and place them in the same station of life, whatever trifling difference might be observed in their understandings or acquirements owing to the different degrees of their application and intellectual exertion, or other incidental circumstances, we should still find in all of them (more or less) the same views, the same prejudices, the same current opinions and general ideas. But if, on the contrary, they should be differently educated and disposed of—if one should be made a soldier, another a sailor, the third an husbandman, the fourth a merchant—if another should be placed in a monastery, and enter into one of the religious orders of the church of Rome, another become a minister of some Protestant church—if another should be lent into a Mahometan country, and, after a suitable education, become a mufti of the Mussulman religion—if another should be educated among the Brahmins of India, and the mind of another be formed among the Lamas of Thibcttian Tartary, or among the disciples of Confucius, or the worshippers of Foe, in China or Japan, we should then see in their different prejudices, current opinions and general ideas, the full force and influence of external and adventitious circumstances upon the human intellect. If the minds of men could be rendered visible, what different pictures would those persons in their maturer years display! They would exhibit in the most luminous, the most distinct, and the most striking point of view, the full power and effect of national, political, and religious prejudices upon the human mind. These prejudices, diversified by a thousand different shades, some more faintly, others more strongly marked, influence, in it greater or less degree, almost every individual of the human race; but more especially the vulgar and illiterate, the slaves of systems, opinions, and fashions; and their influence is hostile to the improvement of the human mind, as well as to true religion and Christian charity.
Nothing has a greater tendency to eradicate narrow and illiberal prejudices than a general acquaintance with those circumstances and events, which, at different periods, have taken place in the world, and which have, in so decisive a manner, determined the condition and opinions of mankind; and this knowledge the judicious perusal of ancient and modern history communicates. Hence arise extensive views
and just ideas, with which the spirit of persecution and intolerance is'incompatible. While the prejudiced individual breathes nothing but intolerance and persecution against [or, at least, speaks spitefully or disrespectfully of] those who happen to differ from himself, the enlightened and benevolent consider the different nations of mankind as living under different dispensations, and resign them all into the hands of that Divine Being, who rules and disposes all things as he thinks fit, and in a manner which our feeble reason is not able to comprehend."
MY ISLAND HOME.
My verse's tuneless jingle
With Thule's rounding tides shall mingle,
While to the ear of wondering wight
Upon the distant headland height,
Soften'd by murmur of the sea,
The rude sound seems like harmony! Scott.
My Island Home! I love thee well,
Despite the rugged shore;
Fled to return Jio more.
Of sorrows, scarce less dear;
Affliction's balmy tear.
My Island Home! I love thee well,
Despite thy barren plains:
While memory remains.
Yet not for aught below
Though early tinged by woe.
My Island Home! I love thee well,
Despite thy cloudy skies;
What varied thoughts arise!
Thy ocean's circling foam
They speak of peace and home.
My Island Home! my childhood's home!
Beyond far fairer lands,
That all my love demands:
Are blended with each scene;
Each spot where bliss hath been.
A Prudent Gull.—The family of H. Peter, Esq, of Harlyn, on the north coast of Cornwall, one morning at breakfast-time, threw a piece of bread out of the window to a stray sea-gull, which happened to have made its appearance at the moment: the bird ate the bread and flew away. The next day, at the same hour, he appeared again, was again fed, and departed. From this time, for a period of eighteen years, the gull never failed to show himself at the window every morning at the same hour, and to stalk up and down till he had received his meal (a basin of brwd and milk), when he instantly took his leave till the next morning. The only time he omitted to do this was during the period of the pilchards being on the coast, which lasted about six weeks in each year; and at this time he omitted his morning visit. At length he brought one of his own species with him to partake of his meal; and they continued to come together daily for about a fortnight, when they suddenly disappeared, and were never seen afterwards.—Jesse's Gleanings in Natural History.
A Foolish Custom Reproved Sir Gilbert Heathcote being one night in company with the minister, Sir Robert Walpole, at his house, and being asked what he would like for supper, made free to mention beef steaks and oyster sauce. After supper an hour or two was spent in conversation over a glass of good wine: at last Sir Gilbert rose to bid his friend good-night; but in passing into the hall, he found it lined with the liveried attendants of the minister, to whom he now turned and asked, "Pray, Sir Robert, be so good as to point out which of these I am to pay for my beef steak?" Sir Robert, taking the hint, gave the signal for the servants to withdraw immediately.
Imitation.—Sir Joshua Reynolds continually deprecated imitation, as the ruin of rising ability, as an impediment which if talent raises for itself, at once and for ever limits its progress. "We have a host of players of the Garrick school," said he, "and art one of them can ever rise to eminence, because they are of the Garrick school. If one man always walks behind another, how can he ever equal him, still man get before him ?"—Monthly Magazine.
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SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 14, 1835.
Price Three Halfpence.
A Little Learning.
There are some popular sayings which have only enough of plausibility about them to gain a dubious respect and exercise an imperfect authority among mankind, and yet, though not sound enough to be confidently or generally acted on, are capable of presenting some little obstruction to the progress of truth. A few of these, I regret to say, are to be traced to the most eminent of our poets.
To Pope we are indebted for the sapient maxim, that "a little learning is a dangerous thing." The moral bard, I believe, designed this expression to have a particular application only; and he is not therefore chargeable with any blame for having put it into circulation. It has been caught up, however, by the world, and we hear it quoted on all sorts of occasions, jocularly, half seriously, and whole seriously, being peculiarly useful to those sage and well-informed persons, who pay mankind the compliment of thinking that the bulk of them ought to be kept in a state of ignorance. "A little learning is a dangerous thing!" there is a terrifying sententiousness and mysterious- ness in the apothegm, highly suitable for the purposes of those who do not find any advantage in coming to particulars. When aided by a judicious use of the words "smattering" and "smatterers," it can hardly be resisted.
Now, the plain truth is, that there is no danger in any degree of learning. Every thing must have a beginning. The child must totter before it can walk, and prattle before it can talk. As wise would it be to apprehend serious mischief from the tottering and prattling of the child, as from the first steps in learning. Is there any peculiar ferocity in the first classes of our academies, resulting from their imperfect instruction, and which experiences a gradual decline in the ensuing years of their course? Is there an atmosphere of wickedness about Ruddiman's Rudiments, which does not hang over Livy and Horace? Are the boobies, whose learning is usually little enough, supposed to contract therefrom a wildness not to be found in the duces? Can those gentle beings be suspected to have, like Macbeth, "something dangerous" beneath all that tranquillity of demeanour which so much distinguishes them? If they have, what hypocritical dogs they must be, and how innocently, after all, do they contrive to live! Many men have risen, by the acquirement of knowledge, from the very humblest and most ignorant condition; some to be heads of colleges, others to be dignitaries of the church, others eminent teachers; but in none of the works which give an account of their early years, though some of these are written with great minuteness and fidelity by themselves, are we told of any viciousness of nature having broke forth in them, at the time when they first handled their dictionaries. Many artisans and clerks now possess " a little learning," or rather a little knowledge (for the distinction b material), and I own it would puzzle me to tell what danger they have incurred, or threaten to their by knowing that an eclipse of the sun from the intervention of the moon, while ignorant of the sublime geometry which calculates the laws of the motion of the latter body. If there be various degrees of danger in various degrees of learning, I should like to have a graduated scale by which ihose various degrees should be indicated: I should like to know when a man might be trusted in arithnetic, when in geometry, and when in natural philoophy. At ivh at point in heraldry, for instance, does a lan cease to be liable to fall into criminal propensities, nd begin to recover his pristine innocence? But an it really be that there is any peril in having simple
addition at one's finger-ends, while there is safety in fractions? Is there a danger in the first dozen problems of Euclid, while there is none in those which follow? Is the Ass's Bridge a kind of line of demarcation between a land of terror and a land of security? Is an infant school necessarily a scene of flesh-shaking fears, while Eton and Harrow display the peace and tranquillity of a country that knows not guilt? Are we to fly from an alphabet class as we should from a pestilence, while we hug the firstform boys to our heart of hearts? Are we to expect that, when our country is ruined by her degenerate sons—children, servants, mechanics, and other individuals possessing "a little learning," are to be exclusively found in the ranks of her destroyers, while all who know more than that two and two make four are to be looking on in despair?
But what is a little learning? The wisest of uninspired men said that the utmost he could know was that he knew nothing. And it is no insult to the world to declare, that as yet but a small part of what is knowable is known. Even so primarily necessary a piece of knowledge as the relation of man and his mind to the rest of nature, is only beginning to dawn upon us. At this rate, the high and mighty persons who talk of the danger of a little learning, must be possessed of very little learning themselves. Their acquisitions, compared to what they might acquire, are perhaps not more than as 3 to 100, while the learning of those at whom they sneer, is as 1. Now, suppose that there existed a person possessing the whole hundred, and suppose Mr Three complaining to that individual of danger from Mr One. What would Lord Hundred think and say ?" You poor miserable fraction!" we can conceive him exclaiming; "you imp of ignorance! you vain wretch, who hardly know any thing, and nothing worth knowing, and yet think yourself at the very summit of perfection! If you look down upon the honourable struggles of an ignorance only a shade deeper than your own, but more modest, with what feeling am I to regard your learning, which is not a thirtieth of mine? What deeper dye of the passion of contempt is to be employed in expressing what I think of you 9 You anticipate danger, too, from knowledge only a third part of your own: am I to anticipate thirty times more danger from you? No j I anticipate thirty times less—for I scorn you thirty times more. Get you gone, you paltry thing, and never let me see your face again, till, as the least possible reparation for your insolence, you have made poor One as well-informed as yourself!"
It can scarcely be necessary to argue this question in a more serious manner. The blessing of knowledge, in all its shapes and degrees, is so fully estimated by the bulk of mankind, that the clamours of that small minority of supposedly learned but really ignorant persons, who think that it is necessarily accompanied by danger, may well be despised. It may be proper, however, to take this opportunity of correcting certain popular notions respecting knowledge. Its occasionally failing in all its degrees to produce perfectly laudable conduct, while virtue is sometimes found to reside with ignorance, is perhaps one of the principal stumblingblocks in the way of the more general diffusion of knowledge. It ought to be thoroughly understood that the cultivation of the intellectual faculties, though likely to be favourable to the general conduct, is not necessarily so, and may often advance a great way with not only no improvement, but a positive deterioration, of the moral sentiments. Knowledge is only power when combined with morality. If the ruling aim of our acquirements be not to enable
us to pursue good and shun evil, to promote our own happiness and that of our fellow-creatures, we learn either in vain or to our loss. But though learning, if it set up for itself other objects, may be " a dangerous thing," it is not so with a reference to amount or degree; it is so only in reference to kind. Evil learning will produce evil, and good learning will produce good, while the intellectual improvement of a nature inclined originally to evil, and unprovided with moral checks, can only confer greater powers of mischief. If it were generally known, however, that the moral faculties require a separate cultivation from the intellectual ; and if a separate but corresponding cultivation were accordingly, under whatever circumstances, given to them—in the domestic circle, at school, in the management of private study, and in the lectureroom—no learning, except it were of a kind more pernicious than any now in vogue amongst mankind, could be attended with evil consequences. The true object would then be attained.
INSENSIBILITY OF ANIMALS TO PAIN. Ms Stoddart's proposition, in his instructive and entertaining little work on angling, that fishes do not feel pain in being hooked, is somewhat startling, and such as will have set many persons a-thinking on the nature of the nervous system of the pike, trout, and other finny inhabitants of the waters. Mr Stoddart being only a practical angler, and no casuist, does not attempt to explain why fish are thus insensible to what is called pain; leaving that to physiologists, he contents himself with, simply, what he has observed in the course of his experience in angling. Speaking of pike-fishing, he remarks—" Although the pike is often nice and suspicious, in places where trout abound, still, when provoked, he becomes bold and unwary, treating your presence as no constraint upon his temper and appetites. He will follow the bait to your very feet, and should it escape him, will retire a yard or two, waiting eagerly for its reappearance. When angry, he erects his fins in a remarkable manner, as the lion doth his mane, or the porcupine his quills; moreover, the pike appears careless of pain, if, indeed, fishes in general feel it to any great degree. We have actually landed one of these fish, cooped him alive in our creel, and when, by some negligence of ours, he made his escape into the water, have succeeded a second time in securing him. On another occasion, we remember having a part of our tackle, consisting of a large double gorge-hook, dressed upon brass wire, carried off by a pike; and yet, upon renewing it, the aggressor returned to the charge, and was taken. The former hook we discovered, gorged by him in such a manner as must, we thought, not only have suffocated any other animal, but done so by the medium of the most exquisite internal agony.
Judging from these facts, and others we shall presently relate, it seems to us, that, according to the arrangements of Nature, fishes are possessed of no very acute sense of pain, and are generally defective in that structure of emotions, upon which suffering and pleasure are separately dependent. Those who hold angling to be a cruel sport, are, we maintain, without argument, until they discover to us the clue by which to trace those capabilities in fish enabling them to endure the great extremes of heat and cold, to which water is liable. Should it be answered, they are cold-blooded—that is the best reason why they are not easily affected by any other sort of pain, such, for instance, as is inflicted by the hook. It will be asked, however, why do fish struggle so vehemently, and make such vigorous efforts to escape? Merely from a love of freedom, and impatience of control, which desire after liberty is common to all breathing creatures, from the fly upwards.
And as to trout, we may mention, that the same insensibility to pain has been practically proved to us to be theirs, in common with the pike. We have caught them with large hooks, and even minnowtackles, encased in their mouths and stomachs; nor did they seem to suffer any great inconvenience, seeing that their appetites were not impaired, nor their condition rendered less healthy. On one occasion, we remember losing a small fly-hook upon some willows, which overhung the water; and on the evening of the same day, angling near the spot, we caught a trout with our identical fly sticking in his jaw. We remember also, when lashing the Yarrow behind a companion, he having lost his cast of hooks upon a fish, we were so fortunate as to entrap it, and recover his flies, not ten minutes after. The trout had the tackle fastened to his body, dragging after him at least five yards of gut."
Whatever may be the degree of nervous insensibility of fishes, it is a well-known truth in natural history, that a vast number of insects are not only insensible to acute pain, but are capable of living and enjoying themselves after they have been mutilated, and even cut in pieces. On this subject of interest, the following lucid observations occur in the article Animal Kingdom, in the new edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica, now in course of publication :—
"In proportion as the brain decreases in size, the medullary matter appears to collect in other parts of the body, or in the cords which emanate from the brain; so that many animals with much smaller brains have nerves more voluminous in proportion to their bodies than those of man. This medullary substance, the medium of sensation, is, in the human race especially, collected into one principal mass, as the engine of thought and reflection, the intellectual attributes by which man is characterised; but it becomes dispersed in the inferior animals, or ramified over the whole body in the form of ganglions or nervous chords, without any preponderatingsuperior brain. It is owing te this dispersion of the nervous system into these small separate centres in the polypus and other tribes, that almost every portion of the body, when separated from the rest, is capable of becoming a distinct animal, and of assuming an independent existence.
Singular effects result from the dispersion of the brain into so many small and separate centres; and this class of phenomena also illustrates the analogy which exists between the lower animals and the vegetable world. Among the superior creatures no reproduction takes place except of the fluids, and of whatever partakes of the nature of the epidermis. Injury is repaired and superficial parts renewed, but nothing resemblingregeneration of important organs ever takes place. But it is otherwise with the inferior orders. The tentacula of the polypus and of many molluscous animals, the rays of the star-fish, the external members of the salamander, and the entire head, with the eyes and antennae of the snail, when cut off, are speedily renewed.
if the head of a mammiferous quadruped, or of a bird, is cut off, the consequences are of course fatal; but the most dreadful wounds that imagination can figure or cruelty inflict, have scarcely any destructive influence on the vital functions of many of the inferior creatures. Riboud stuck different beetles through with pins, and cut and lacerated others in the severest manner, without greatly accelerating death. Leeuwenhoeck had a mite which lived eleven weeks transfixed on a point for microscopical investigation. Vaillant caught a locust at the Cape of Good Hope, and after excavating the intestines, he filled the abdomen with cotton, and stuck a stout pin through the thorax, yet the feet and antennae were in full play after the lapse of five months. In the beginning of November, Redi opened the skull of a land-tortoise, and removed the entire brain. A fleshy integument was observed to form over the opening, and the animal lived for six months. Spallanzani cut the heart out of three newts, which immediately took to flight, leapt, swam, and executed their usual functions for forty-eight hours. M. Virey informs us, 'We have seen a salamander live two months, though deprived of its head by means of a ligature tied round the neck.' A decapitated beetle will advance over a table, and recognise a precipice on approaching the edge. Redi cut off the head of a tortoise, which survived eighteen days. Colonel Pringle decapitated several libellulas or dragonflies, one of which afterwards lived for four months, and another for six; and, which seems rather odd, he could never keep alive those with their heads on above a few days.
Some curious particulars connected with the great tenacity of life in the lower animals, are mentioned by Mr Fothergill. A friend being employed one day in the pursuit of insects, caught a large yellow dragonfly (Libellula varid), and had actually fastened it down in his insect box, by thrusting a pin through the thorax, before he perceived that the voracious creature held a small fly, which still struggled for liberty, in its jaws. The dragonfly continued devouring its victim with great deliberation, and without expressing either pain or constraint, and seemed totally unconscious of being pinned down to the cork, till its prey was devoured, after which it made several desperate efforts to regain its liberty. A common flesh-fly was theu presented to it, when it immediately became quiet, and ate the fly with greediness; when its repast was over, it re
newed its efforts to escape. This fact being mentioned to Mr Haworth, the well-known English entomologist, he confirmed the truth of the remarkable insensibility to pain manifested by insects, by narrating an additional circumstance. Being in a garden with a friend who firmly believed in the delicate susceptibility of these creatures, he struck down a large dragonfly, and in so doing unfortunately severed its long abdomen from the rest of the body. He caught a small fly, which he presented to the mutilated insect, by which it was instantly seized and devoured; and a second was treated in the same manner. Mr Haworth then contrived to form a false abdomen, by means of a slender portion of a geranium; and after this operation was performed, the dragonfly devoured another small insect as greedily as before. When set at liberty, it flew away with as much apparent glee as if it had received no injury. It is a fact well known to practical entomologists, that large moths found asleep during the daytime may be pinned to the trunks of trees without their appearing to suffer such a degree of pain as even to awake them. H is only on the approach of the evening twilight that they seek to free themselves from what they must no doubt regard as an inconvenient situation.
The cruelty of zoological, especially of entomological pursuits, has too often been stated as an objection to the practical parts of the study of natural history. When an individual slaughters a hundred brace of grouse in a single day, we hear nothing of such an objection, possibly because the flavour of moor-game is very exquisite; and the reason of defence is good. But the tastes of men differ, and fortunately, as all have not the means of an equal gratification from the same source. 1 Cruelty,' say Messrs Kirby and Spence, 'is an unnecessary infliction of suffering, when a person is fond of torturing or destroying Ood's creatures from mere wantonness, with no useful end in view; or when, if their death be useful and lawful, he has recourse to circuitous modes of killing them, where direct ones would answer equally well. This is cruelty, and this with you we abominate; but not the infliction of death when a just occasion calls for it. With respect to utility, the sportsman, who, though he adds indeed to the general stock of food, makes amusement his primary object, must surely yield the palm to the entomologist, who adds to the general stock of mental food, often supplies hints for useful improvement in the arts and sciences, and the objects of whose pursuit, unlike that of the former, are preserved, and may be applied to use for many years. But in the view of those even who think inhumanity chargeable upon the sportsman, it will be easy to place considerations which may secure the entomologist from such reproof. It is well known, that, m proportion as we descend in the scale of being, the sensibility of the objects that constitute it diminishes. The tortoise walks about after losing its head; and the polypus, so far from being injured by the application of the knife, thereby acquires an extension of existence. Insensibility almost equally great may he found in the insect world. This, indeed, might be inferred a priori, since providence seems to have been more prodigal of insect life than of that of any other order of creatures, animalcula perhaps alone excepted. No part of the creation is exposed to the attack of so many enemies, or subject to so many disasters; so that the few individuals of each kind which enrich the valued museum of the entomologist, many of which are dearer to him than gold or gems, are snatched from the ravenous maw of some bird or fish, or rapacious insect, would have been driven by the winds into the waters and drowned, or trodden under foot by man or beasts; for it is not easy in some parts of the year to set foot to the ground without crushing these minute animals; and thus also, instead of being buried in oblivion, they have a kind of immortality conferred upon them. Can it be believed that the beneficent Creator, whose tender mercies are over all his works, would expose these helpless beings to such innumerable enemies and injuries, were they endued with the same sense of pain and irritability of nerve with the higher orders of animals?' Instead, therefore, of believing, and being grieved by the belief, that the insect we tread upon,
In corporal sufferance, finds a pang as great
the very converse is nearer the truth. 'Had a giant
under similar circumstances, if the finger be moved to it, will attempt to sting.'
That the acuteness of bodily suffering, even among the higher classes of the brute creation, is in some manner providentially subdued, and rendered so much less acute as not to be a fit subject of comparison with the suffering of the human race, is indeed evident from various phenomena, whatever the cause may be. The writer of this article has seen a turtle-dove (Columba risoria) which was so severely lacerated by a cat, that the contents of its stomach were torn out. The painfully excited sympathy of those who had long cherished the gentle creature was, however, in a great measure allayed by seeing the bird immediately afterwards proceed to pick up the fresh grains of barley which (till the aid of the surgeon was called in) continued to fall from its wounded paunch.
Considerations of the nature glanced at in the preceding paragraphs can never, of course, be so misconstrued as to afford any palliation to wanton or inconsiderate cruelty to the brute creation. The judges of the Areopagus who condemned to death the child whose amusement it had been to pluck out the eyes of quails, were regulated in their determination by the motives imputed to the young criminal, and which they deemed expressive of so cruel and pernicious a character, that in after-times he would assuredly offend the state. But had some great oculist, intent on the structure and physiology of the human eye, and engaged in a difficult course of experimental observation, by means of which the 'dim suffusion' which often veils the orbs of his fellow-men might be obviated or decreased, found himself under the necessity of having recourse to a somewhat similar operation, the case would have assumed another character, and the most sentimental philanthropist must have applauded the practice of the philosopher. So it is in a great measure with the pursuits of the naturalist. If the wonderful structure of the lower orders of creation cannot be studied or understood, or their infinitely varied forms held in remembrance, without hastening by a few days or hours the termination of that brief career which in truth scarcely ever meets with a strictly natural end, then is the student of nature, following out the principles of an elevating and intellectual pursuit, as well entitled to command a portion of animal life as he who, to pamper the refined grossness of a sensual appetite, bleeds his turkeys to death by cutting the roots of their boils crabs and lobsters alive, and swallows i ing oysters by the score."
THE TWO BROTHERS,
AN IRI6II TALE.*
The village of Ballydhas was situated in as sweet a
valley as ever gladdened the eye and the heart of man to look upon. Contentment, peace, and prosperity, walked step by step with its happy inhabitants; and the people were marked by a pastoral simplicity of manners, such as is still to lie found in some of the remote and secluded hamlets of Ireland. Within two miles of the village stood Ballaghmore, the market town of the parish. It also bore the traces of peace and industry. Around it lay a rich fertile country, studded with warm homesteads, waving fields, and residences of a higher rank, at once elegant and fashionable.
Many a fair-day have we witnessed in this quiet and thriving market town, and it is pleasant to go back in imagination to one of these hilarious festivals. About twelve o'clock the fair-tide is full, when the utmost activity in solid business prevails. For aa hour or two this continues. About three o'clock the tide is evidently on the ebb; business begins to slacken; and now it is that the people fall into distinct groups for the purpose of social enjoyment. If two young folk have been for some time coortin' one pnnthor '•
the " bachelor," which in Ireland means a suitor, generally contrives to bring his friends and those of his sweetheart together. The very fact of these accepting the "trate," on either side, or both, is a good omen, and considered tantamount to a mutual consent of their respective connexions.
Amidst such scenes as these, at the fair of Ballaghmore, several years ago, a party of the kind now alluded to was seen to enter a public-house. It was less numerous than is usual on such occasions, and consisted of a young man, a middle-aged woman, and her two daughters—one grown, the other only about fifteen. Who is—ha!—it is not necessary to inquire. Alley Bawn Murray! Gentle reader, bow with heartfelt respect to humble beauty and virtue! She is that widow's daughter, the pride of the parish, aad the 1 loved of all who can appreciate goodness, and filial piety. The child accompanying tl sister, and that fine, manly, well-built, youth, is even now pledged to the modest ai ful girl. He is the son of a wealthy farmer, some tiiue dead, and her mother is comparatively poor; but in purity, in truth, and an humble sense of religion, their hearts are each rich and each equal.
Their history is very brief and simple. Felix O'Donnell was the son of a farmer, as we have said, sufficiently extensive and industrious to be without possessing any of the vulgar pride which i independence frequently <
* Abridged from a tale in the Dublin University Magazine, for ctoixtr 1834, by the auuior of " Traits and Stones of Lhe U-iab