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CRITICAL NOTICES.

Quarterly Review for March, 1825. MR GIFFORD, who, as our readers probably know, has been rather unsparing of his abuse of this country, closed his labours as editor of this work with the last number. It will hereafter be conducted by Mr J. Coleridge, brother of the poet. Assurances have been given and circulated pretty freely in our public papers, that the work will henceforth assume a different tone towards the United States; and we hope they have been given by those who are authorized to pledge the character of the most popular and extensively circulated journal of the kind printed in Great Britain. There is certainly nothing in this number to contradict the report; and a few sentences may be found, which seem to confirm it. It contains, besides several lighter and interesting reviews of popular books recently published, a long article on the “ Funding System;" and another on the comparative advantages of “ Canals and Rail-roads.” It is shown conclusively, that the advantages are decidedly in favour of the latter, and on the following grounds: “ The disadvantages of a canal are numerous.

The frost at one season of the year entirely puts a stop to all conveyance of goods; and the drought at another renders it necessary to proceed with half cargoes. A rail-road is exempt from both these serious drawbacks; and even if snow-blocked, nothing can be so easy as to send forward a scraper at the front of the steam-carriage to clear it as it proceeds.

“ The speed, by which goods can be conveyed on a rail-road, can be so regulated as to be certain and constant, while boats are frequently delayed for hours at the lockages of a canal. This speed besides is limited on canals, as we shall presently show, but unlimited, as far as the power of steam can be made to exceed the power of friction, on rail-roads. To what extent, with safety and convenience, this advantage is capable of being carried, nothing but experience can determine. Rail-roads may be made to branch out in every direction to accommodate the traffic of the country, whatever be the nature of the surface ;* the possibility of carrying branches from a canal in any direction must depend entirely on the surface, and a supply of water.

“ In every case, with regard to speed and the weight to be moved, the rail-road has the advantage, except when that speed is less than 2.82 miles an hour, when it is in favour of the canal,--but even this small advantage is lost by the circuitous windings of the one, and the direct line of the other.”

A horse will draw, at the rate of two miles an hour, about three times as much upon a canal as upon a rail-road; but the expense of constructing the canal will also be three times as great; so that neither, in this point of view and under these circumstances, seems to have an advaniage over the other. But when the speed is increased, the power of the horse is rapidly diminished, and, at thirteen miles per hour, he can exert no power at all.

" A stationary engine will pass the wagons up and down any hill that may occus in the live."

“ But this diminution of strength in proportion to the speed of the aninal is not the only disadvantage; the resistance of any body fioating in the water increases as the square of the velocity; thus whatever power is required to move a floating body with any given velocity, it will require four times that power to give it twice that velocity, and nine times that power to give it three times that velocity. Nor is this all. The horse, when put to the speed of four miles an hour, can exert only a force of eighty-one pounds, a loss equal to that of two borses at that speed. It would therefore require no less than six horses to draw along a canal, at the rate of four miles an hour, the same load that one horse would draw at the rate of two miles an hour.

“ The application of steain to canal navigation, if practicable, would, to a certain degree, supply the irremediable defect of that of horses ; that is to say, an engine of 16 horse power would drag the same load at the rate of eight miles an hour, that one borse would do at the rate of two miles ad hour; but the result would be destructive to the canal. The rapid motion of the wheels would cause such an agitation of the water, as to wash down its banks. Several attempts have been made to move the barges in canals without disturbing the water; and Mr Perkins has succeeded in this to a certain extent, by a sort of perpetual sculler at the stern, in the shape of the four arms of a windmill's sails, moving in pairs, in a contrary direction; but as increased speed must cause an accumulation of the water, which, on falling from the vessel against the banks of a narrow canal, would create the mischief complained of, it would seem that all improvement, as to speed on ca. nals, is nearly, if not altogether, hopeless.”

The writer of an article on "Artizans and Machinery,” though he acknowledges the correctness of the policy, which encourages an unrestricted system of trade, contends that the exportation of machinery is one of the cases wisely to be excepted from the wisest rule.

“That considerable injury would accrue to the English manufacturer, by extending this system of free trade to machinery, seems almost universally admitted; and the principal reason hitherto assigned for the repeal is, that by withholding these machines from the French, we compel them to make them for themselves, and that ultimately they will equal ours in excellence. In the first place, they have as yet only made a small quantity, and those of a very inferior quality. In the next place, supposing that in process of time they will gain skill and experience, that seems scarcely a reason for giving them now, wbat it must cost them much time to acquire, nor for enabling them at once to profit by the numerous experiments, and the many years' labour of Great Britain, and by furnishing them with all our machinery, place them, in a single day, on that very elevation, to attain which has cost our manufacturers such an expense both of money and of time."

The review of “Daru's Venice” is a rapid sketch of the origin, progress, decline, and final extinction of that interesting republic.

In the article on “The Church in Ireland," we have a defence of the tithe system. It is contended, that the church have a right to their tenth prior to and stronger, than the landholders have to the remaining nine parts. Because, amidst the revolutions in the history of the coun. try, the nine parts of the land have been repeatedly forfeited to the

owners.

crown, and have changed owners by its authority; while the tenth bas been steadily appropriated to the church. So on this ground the government itself could not abolish tithes in Ireland, without a more flagrant act of injustice to the church, than they would be guilty of by taking the other nine parts from the land holders, and appropriating thein to other

And, although the country is indirectly admitted to be miserable in the last degree, it is contended, that its miseries are, and ever have been, w be attributed to other causes than the church, and principally to the landholders. The facts cited in this article differ widely, in soine instances, from those cited in the article on the same subject in the last number of the Edinburgh Review, of which we gave a notice in our last. And the reasoning and conclusions differ still more widely from those of that article; but our limits forbid us to go into the same extended analysis, which we then indulged.

Tho review of “Washington Irving's Tales” is interesting to us, as all foreign notices of American writers are interesting to Americans. We suspect, however, it would have been quite as agreeable to Mr Irving, as well as to his frieods on this side of the water, if the reviewers bad not seemed to take so much credit to themselves for their kindness and candour in admitting him to the “ English guild of authorship.” We quote a few sentences, which express as unqualified praise as any thing in the article. Of Knickerbocker's humourous History of New York, they say:

“ To us it is a tantalizing book, of which all that we understand is so good, and affords us so much pleasure, even througb an imperfect acquaintance with it, that we cannot but conclude that a thorough knowledge of the whole point in every part would be a treat indeed. We may compare it now to a book of grotesque hieroglyphics, in a great measure unintelligible, but intrinsically diverting from the humour and imagination which their fantastical combinations display," The following is their estimate of Mr Irving's talents, and their

very graceful and friendly leave of him,

“ It may be doubted, perhaps, whether Mr Irving would succeed in novels of a serious and romantic cast, requiring, as they do, heightening touches of the savage and gloomy passions. Every thing in his style and conceptions is of a happy and riant nature, except when saddened for a moment by those touches of pathos which come and pass like April clouds; and the darker shades of revenge, remorse, and ominous presage, which hang over the Bride of Lammermoor, like the thunder-cloud over Wolf's crag, appear never to gather over his mental horizon. But there is a class of novel for which he possesses every requisite, and which is at once popular and capable of great improve. ment: the art of blending the gay, the pensive, and the whimsical, without jarring and abrupt transitions, so as to take by surprise the stubborn reader, who resists the avowed design of making him wretched, is so rare a gift, as to have compensated in the case of Sterne, for want of plot, and digressions which often degenerate into stark nonsense ; and combining, as Mr Irving does, so large a share of the indescribable humour of Sterne with a manly tone of moral feeling, of which the latter was incapable, we are convinced that moderate labour and perseverance might enable him to make material additions to our literature in the style to which we allude.

“Whether or not however we are likely to see our wishes realized,

we may congratulate him on the rank, which he has already gained, of which the momentary caprice of the public cannot long deprive him ; and with hearty good will, playfully, but we hope not profanely, we exclaim as we part with him, “Very pleasant hast thou been to me, my brother Jonathan !'”

Correspondence of Lord Byron, with a Friend, including his Letters to his Mother,

written froin Portugal, Spain, Greece, and the Shores of the Mediterranean, in

1809, 1810, and 1911. Philadelphia. 1825. 12.no. pp. 200. Tars book contains those letters of Lord Byron, which were intended to form a part of Mr Dallas' “ Recollections,” and which were prevented from being inserted in the English edition of that work. This objection, however, as we observed in our review of the “Recollections," did not apply to the American edition, and they should accordingly have made a part of it. This course, it seems, did not suit the views of the publishers, so that we have first a volume of “ Recollections” garbled, by being deprived of Byron's letters, and then another, of which about one half is a mere reprint of the first. If the booksellers would publish the letters separately, why not publish them, by themselves, in a form calculated to be bound with the Recollections, to which they belong. We do not wish to pay twice for the same nonsense. The truth is, that the volume before us contains as much of Mr Dallas' production as is worth having; the volume of “Recollections” is altogether unnecessary; and, in fine, the whole affair is a specimen of impudent book-making, only to be paralleled by the publication of the Giaour by peacemeal,a circumstance, which probably most of our readers recollect. We hope the public will show their indignation at this method of proceeding, treating it with the contempt it merits. And what, after all, are these letters, about which Mr Dallas has made such a disturbance, and which required the interposition of the court of chancery to prevent their promulgation? Why, next to nothing; a few commonplace epistles to his mother, such as any young man of tolerable education and smartness might have written, and such as are written, we presume, by hundreds, every day, from travellers to their friends in England and America. Besides these, we have a number of such notes as are constantly passing between writers and the publishers or editors of their works. Why, we would engage to furnish the public with a dozen such volumes yearly, from the scraps which are lying upon, beneath, and around our study table; and right glad should we be to turn them to some account other than that of lighting our candles. Lord Byron wrote directions for correcting errors of the press, striking out and amending lines, sentences, and passages, just as any body else does. The following are specimens.

TO R. C. DALLAS, ESQ.

Cambridge, October 25th, 1811. Dear Sir-I send you the conclusion to the whole. In a stanza towards the end of canto 1st, in the line,

Oh, known the earliest and beloved the most, I shall alter the epithet to "esteemed the most." The present stanzas

for the end of canto 2d. In the beginning of the week I shall be at

No. 8, my old lodgings, in St James' street, where I hope to have the pleasure of seeing you. Yours ever,

B.
TO R. C. DALLAS, ESQ.

8, St James' street, 29th October, 1811. Dear Sir I arrived in town last night, and shall be very glad to see you when convenient. Yours very truly,

BYRON.

Yours ever,

TO R. C. DALLAS, ESQ.

December 17th, 1811. We will have the MSS. and extracts printed in an appendix. I leave to you to determine whether the lighter pieces in rhyme had better be printed before, or after the Romaic.

BYRON. The letters to his mother are the only things in the book which have the slightest claim to the attention of the public; and these occupy by the assistance of spaces and margin, just fifty-four duodecimo pages. Printed in the same form with the “ Recollections," they would have made a thin pamphlet, easily inserted by the binder in their proper place in that work, -if any one should think them worth buying,--the rest of the book being a mere saddle upon these. In short, we are utterly disgusted with the whole matter, and desire to waste no more words upon it.

Pp. 320,

A Catalogue of American Minerals, with their Localities; including all which are

known to exist in the United States and British Provinces, and having the Towns, Counties, and Districts in each State and Province arranged Alphabetically. With an Appendix, containing additional Localities and a Tabular View. By SAMUEL ROBINSON, M. D. Member of the American Geological Society. Boston. 1825.

8vo. The rapid progress which the science of mineralogy has made in the United States within the last few years, may be fairly attributed to the industry and talent of Professor Cleaveland, whose Mineralogical Manual has not yet been equalled in any part of Europe ; other works of the kind are either too brief, too technical, or too learned for general use. The second edition of this work appeared in 1822, with some improve. ments, and a great deal of additional knowledge of the minerals wbich have been discovered in the United States. Notwithstanding the recent appearance of this edition, so much information has since been added to the common stock, by several periodical publications and essays by dif. ferent individuals, that for localities, at least, a new edition is almost requisite for the convenience of the active collector. This deficiency is in a great degree obviated by the present publication, which presents a geographical view, alphabetically arranged, of all the known localities of mineral substances discovered in the United States down to the date of the publication. Localities will, of course, continue to increase by the unparalleled industry of the American youth, who are searching every hill and brook to add to the knowledge of the mineral productions of their country; but many additional species to the present extensive number can hardly be expected. And such additions alone would call for a new manual in the science. The present publication, therefore,

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