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CURRENT LITERATURE.

The Credibility of Venerable Bede that “Bede's History abounds in and of his Followers. Read before miracles of the ordinary monkish the Literary and Philosophical character, which he records as Society of Liverpool by JOSEPH authentic," and he instances this : Boult, 29th October, 1877.

“ Germanus achieved without That the history of England bloodshed the Hallelujah Victory, during the fifth and up to the with other miracles.” The Alle seventh century requires revision, luiatic Victory, though spoken of and to be read by the light of indeed as a favour from Heaven, is modern research, may be fully really simply the account of a admitted. It may also be granted sudden panic which seized on the that the Ecclesiastical History of Saxons and Picts arriving at the Bede, which is so much an authority entrance of the valley unconscious for that period, may not altogether of an ambuscade, when the arrived possess the critical faculty — it Britons rushed upon them with would be an anachronism if it the loud shout of “Alleluia,” driving did—and it may not be wholly free them in part into the river, and from a certain bias; but the writer thus completing their consterof this essay (p. 25) considers nation. The received account of “Bede and those whom he followed, the Teutonic conquest of England and those who followed him, amen- is also impugned, and Mr. Boult able to the charge of being slavish combats at once “ Dr. Freeman's copyists, or of making imagination delicate handling of the evidence" and invention supply the place of and“ Professor Stubbs' boldness of research. ... He accepted assertion and pictorial description," equally authentic all the infor- pp. 17, 19. There are doubtless mation presented to him, from many reasons against the general whatever source. . . . The whole is assumption that the Keltic popucrude, ill-digested, inconsistent with lation of England was exterminated itself.” Mr. Green, however, has in the Teutonic immigration, arrived at a very different estimate, especially when that has been and in his well-known “History of reduced to its due proportions ; the English People" speaks thus and the last page of this paper of what he calls - the work which quotes in corroboration Dr. immortalises the name of Beda :" Mackay's very recent “ Gaelic "In his Ecclesiastical History he Etymology of the English Lanwas at once the founder of mediæval guage,” as showing the linguistic history, the first English historian. survival, which would contradict First among English scholars, first theory of extermination. among English theologians, first One element in an investigation of among English historians, it is this kind has, however, been overin him that English literature looked by Mr. Boult himself. In strikes its roots. Mr. Boult the fourth and fifth centuries makes it his chief objection Britain was part of Gaul. Gaul,

as

as a generic term, included Britain ; almost conclusive as a reply to the the same language was spoken in arguments of the Higher Criticism. Gaul proper and in Britain. An There is no common ground on occupation of four hundred years which to begin ; it is, in fact, had given to Britain the full treated as an hypothesis, and met influence of Roman civilisation. by a denial. But the pamphlet It had all the privileges of a contains much in the examination Roman province, and was a of Ewald in particular, also of favoured country. The charge of De Wette and Dr. Davidson, barbarism against the Britons of well worth attention, as well as this period is refuted by its in- the remarks on the canons of the applicability to Gaul and by the Higher Criticism, and again on the remains of temples, baths, and porti. Jehovistic and Elohistic theory. coes in Britain, as well as by the working of mines and the like. Ancient Monuments and Holy That there should be a large Writ. By W. Pakenham Walsh, amount of survival from this Dean of Cashel. Herbert, Dublin. Roman occupation is proof then 1878. that the immigration of the people A more precise title for this little from the Angulus was not an ex- book would have described it as termination or an extirpation of Inscriptions from Ancient Monueverything Roman, nor, any more ments, which is its subject. The than Roman, was everything Keltic only monuments treated of are also then exterminated or extir- those to which inscriptions are pated. The paper is altogether of attached, and the inscriptions are a character that speaks much for the theme; e.g., the Rosetta stone, the breadth of investigation and the rock of Behistun, and what is inquiry at the Liverpool Literary called the Library of Assur-baniand Philosophical Society.

pal (the Sardanapalus of the

Greeks), discovered at Koyunjik, The Higher Criticism : Some Ac- Nineveh, the Moabite stone, and count of its Labours on the Primitive the like. With drawings of these History, the Pentateuch, and the is given a popular account of the Book of Joshua. By Rev. Cyprian inscriptions, and a translation. Rust, Řector of Westenfield. Hurst The elaborate and costly works in and Co., London, 1878.

which these descriptions are conThe writer very properly defines tained are very fairly epitomised his use of terms and words. By as to their results. The records of the Higher Criticism he under. Sennacherib, with the two remarkstands “the attempt to explain able cylinders now in the British Holy Scriptures on the supposition Museum, are the subjects of that there is nothing supernatural another chapter, to which is added in their composition or in their one on the inscriptions of Nebucontents ;” in other words, that chadnezzar. Of the Moabite stone the Bible is to be treated as any Dr. Walsh says: “Scarcely is there other book. The view maintained a line of it which does not coris that, above all other things, the roborate either the history, the Bible is a book of prophecy : “it language, or the geography of the begins and ends with foretelling Bible, explaining many things future events; its history is so before inexplicable, refuting objecconstructed as to call the reader's tions hitherto perplexing, and attention to the fulfilment of the adding considerably to our knowevents foretold.” Of course this is ledge on most important subjects.”

con

We no way impugn this statement the present century, when the when we add that other views have “transfer” he writes about was been taken on some of the evi- made formally complete by the dences adduced in this volume, Act of Union. and that at present opinions are in There is material for a most insolution, or at least provisional; teresting and most instructive nor yet when we add the suggestion narrative even in the thirty years that the Bible should be taken as that have succeeded the great itself a record, and to be used in potato famine. Writers in plenty illustration of other“ monuments," have descanted on Irish grievances. in corroboration, or in confutation, What nobody tells about is Irish and according to the weight of evi- progress. Yet it may be reasonence. We rather regret that the ably contended that hardly any Dean of Cashel, in this connection, nation in Europe has made such has not spoken of the Moabite pot- steps in advance as Ireland has in tery-the "jars,”—and the Shapira the last thirty years. It is true "forgeries," --if so to be accounted. she had a very backward starting

point; but her progress has been The Transfer of Erin; or, The marvellous when that is Acquisition of Ireland by England. sidered. By Thomas C. Amory. Philadel. It would be impossible within phia and London : Lippincott and our limits to go into any detailed Co.

proof of our assertions with reIs there any raison d'être for gard to this matter.

All we can such a book as this? We really do is to record our own belief, and think there is not. The story of to protest against the continuance the conquest, or acquisition of of the use of language which, Ireland by England—the transfer however true a quarter of a of Erin, if anyone chooses to call century ago, is mere cant now. it so—has been told often enough We may, however, point to a few already. There is nothing new in circumstances that confirm our the subject; and there is nothing opinion. One is the vast extension new in Mr. Amory's treatment of of the cattle trade, which is the it, not even in his style, for staple source of Irish wealth. jerkiness and shaky grammar are Without wearying our readers no new features. The title is with statistics, it may suffice to perhaps the only novelty in the mention that nearly all the leading book; and it is an obvious misuse English railway companies have of language. It is true we do now depôts in Dublin for the special talk in a loose kind of way of the accommodation of this branch of " transfer” of the soil of a country

their traffic. One very important froin one race to another ; but in company, the London and Norththe first place this is an admitted Western, has found it expedient to laxity of speech ; and, moreover, start an entirely new line of “ transfer" in this sense cannot steamers, to build a new terminus be applied to the English con- at Dublin, and to place this terquest of Ireland. But, to leave minus in connection with the three this word-splitting, the author inland Irish railways, by a system of the book before would of extension which must have inhave been much better em- volved the construction of about ployed if he had made some fifty miles of new railway work. attempt to survey the condition of These facts imply a vast increase Ireland since the beginning of in the traffic.

us

The rise in the wages of ordinary known in England through his labour is notorious, and, though biblical works, or as a member of certain relics of a past state of the New Testament Revision Com. poverty and degradation may still mittee, in Scotland was a successbe found in country places, the ful city clergyman, professor in a observant traveller will not fail to Theological Hall, and a man with a perceive many proofs of a rise in delightful name for kindly humour the standard of living.

and bonhommie. None ever in his Another circumstance which goes life more discouraged men from a long way to confirm our view is attempting his biography after his the great increase in the middle- death, His was a life singularly class population of the great towns. devoid of incident; and even of its Dublín is a very conspicuous in- commonplaces he made no record. stance of this. Within the last He kept no journal, and rarely thirty years there have been added wrote a letter extending to a second to the city two suburbs (the Pem- page. Such of his epistles as are broke and Rathmines townships), preserved are veritable curiosities containing a population of twenty of penmanship—almost illegible thousand each. The average rental and very unsightly. He often of the houses in these suburbs is a spoke of learning to write with his little under forty pounds, and if left hand, in the hope that he might families be enumerated at five souls appease the printers with improved to a household, and the rental be manuscripts. There must be some taken as one-tenth of the income among Dr. Eadie's friends of the of the family occupying a house, opinion that, after all, his life was this represents an addition of eight not a good subject for the chronithousand families whose average

cler. A quiet existence passed income is between three and four amid books, varied only by the hundred a year. This is quite in- labours of a preacher or the daties dependent of the increase in the connected with a theological chair, population of Kingstown and the does not easily work up into a villages lying between that port memoir. The biography of such a and Dublin.

man as Eadie should be contained, Facts like these prove an immense not in books written about him, advance in material wealth ; and, but in the books he wrote. Dr. though material wealth is not every- Brown has the credit of making thing, it has always been and is the most of his materials. All that

more than ever an indis- good taste, good English, and pensable antecedent to national gentle hun

gentle humour could do for the well-being. But it would not suit book, has been done. . The biowriters of Mr. Amory's school to grapher has acquitted himself of dwell upon facts of progress and his task perfectly. If he has not prosperity: their cue is to keep men produced a standard biography the looking back to injustice and fault is not his. Particularly incruelties for which no one is now teresting is his appreciative account responsible, and which their own of young Eadie's schoolboy days pet political schemes are utterly at Alva.

There he was “a causepowerless to redress.

way saint and a hoose deil.” These

were the days when dissent was Life of John Eadie, D.D., LL.D. indeed divided against itself; and Ву Rev. James Brown, D.D. Eadie's choice among its forms was Macmillan and Co. 1878.

made very simply : “My mother Dr. Eadie, a

scholar chiefly was an Antiburgher--the old true

now

blue party of Scotland. My father years he was able to repeat it line belonged to the Relief, and his by line and book by book from church was two miles off, while my beginning to end.” mother's was three. My mother carried bread and cheese with her I. A Vision of Sumeru and other on Sabbath, and my father carried Poems. By Shoshee Chunder Dutt none; and therefore I cast in my Rái Báhádoor, Justice of the Peace, lot with my mother, and became Calcutta. Thacker, Spink, Calan Antiburgher."

cutta. The best passage in this Life is II. Bengaliana. By the same. well worthy preservation: "He Thacker, Calcutta. obtained from his parents a promise The native press of India is of that he should be sent to his increasing interest and of increasclasses in Tillicoultry, and thus ing importance. The late Vernathe road along which he had been cular Press Act, it may be hoped, is accustomed to

to trudge by his an exceptional measure and the mother's side on Sundays, sustained censorship it creates temporary; by bread and cheese, now became but, called forth as it has been by his daily walk to and from school. the tone of the native newspapers, In all weathers—fair and foul-in it at least shows, from the restraint winter and in summer, he un- imposed, the strength of the power grudgingly made the journey, that has arisen. Hardly less imhaving been seized, under the portant are English publications influence of his able teacher, with by natives; all the more that to that enthusiasm for learning which them the stringent new Press Law never left him, but which then, as does not apply. These two volumes always, he was able to conceal have an interest of their own as under a manner which, to a casual the literary work of an educated observer, betokened indifference. and cultivated native; one of the On winter mornings he had to

class to whom, for good or ill, will start before daybreak; but he be committed the office of forming provided himself with a blazing the ideas which, finding their extarred rope, which he carried in pression in outward acts, will make one hand, while his copy of the future of British India, so far Paradise Lost was in the other. It as that depends on the natives. seems to me that there is hardly a The English of both volumes, it finer picture in literary history may be noticed, is very different from than that of the quarrier's son- the English of the native newsdestined to raise himself to a fore- papers, and shows a complete commost place among the scholars and mand of the language of England, divines of his native country, and something of her tone of finding his way along the foot of thought, coupled with Indian the Ochils in the dark of the winter opinions and feelings. mornings, made darker by the No. I. is a volume of poems, and, shadow of the hills and of the besides the versification of the overhanging trees of Alva woods, legend which gives its title, and a reading Milton's great epic in the collection of Indian Ballads, ” light of a blazing tarred rope. thirty pages are occupied with Nor was it a careless reading, “ Lays of Ancient Greece,” while serving only to shorten the long among the miscellaneous are transwinter walk. The poem was so

lations from Jean Paul Richter, read that it fixed itself in the Lamartine, with many more;

in memory of the boy, and for many other ways the references and

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