Imatges de pàgina

obvious. He fells the tree which over shades him, and rolls it to the water's edge;- he mounts it, and regains his former ftation.'

The picture which our author draws of the progress of in-. vention, respecting swords and canoes, seems entirely conformable to nature ; but on what occasion, the use of the bow was first suggested, he finds it difficult to conjecture; there being nothing among natural objects similar to the effect of the bow. This inftrument, however, was introduced at an early period; as appears from the Mosaic History, and the battles described by Homer..

Mr. Moseley afterwards describes the bow, and its feveral appendages, at different periods, with great accuracy. His attention is first employed on the figure of the bow, and the degree of power with which it appears, from the evidence of history, to have acted; making likewise some observations on the different ways of managing that instrument; and pointing out the feveral attitudes which have been practised by various nations for that purpose. He then treats, in distinct chapters, of the bow-string, arrows, the whistling-arrow, and poisoned-arrows; and takes notice of some other uses to which the arrow has been applied, different from that of a warlike instrument. The chief of these is divination by the arrow, of which he gives a general account. Quivers and targets are next the object of his enquiry; after which he treats largely of the English long-bow, and arbalest; concluding with a historical chapter of skilful archers.

It may well be imagined, that an author who has devoted so much attention to the subject of the present Essay, must be a particular admirer of archery. Of this, the following extract affords sufficient evidence:

· That archery posseffes many excellences as an amusement, will require little trouble to prove. It is an exercise adapted to every age and every degree of frength, and the blood may be driven with any required velocity, by increasing or diminishing the power of the bow made use of. It is not necessarily labori. ous, as it may be discontinued at the moment it becomes fa. riguing; a pleasure not to be enjoyed by the hunter, who, baving finished his chase, perceives that he must crown his toils with an inanimate ride of forty miles to his bed. Archery is attended with no c. uelıy. It sheds no innocent blood, nor does it torture harmless animals ; charges which lie heavy against some other amusements.

• It has been said a reward was formerly offered to him who could invent a new plcasure. Had such a reward been held forth by the ladies of the present day, he who introduced archery as a


female exercise, would have deservedly gained the prize. It is unfortunate that there are few diversions in the open air, in which women can join with satisfaction; and as their sedentary life reoders motion neceffary to health, it is to be lamented that such suitable amusements have been wanting to invite them. Archery has, however, contributed admirably to supply this defect, and in a manner the mot delirable that could be wilhed.

• But I do not intend to fing the praises of this elegant art in their full extent. Fathion now introduces it to the world, and with far greater success than that which may probably attend my reasoning and feeble panegyrics. I subjoin a wish, however, that this fashion may be universally cultivated and approved ; and may we see the time when (with Scatius) it can be said,

“ Pudor eft nescire fagittas." Whether archery be really a suitable amusement for ladies we shall not take upon us to determine; but it is so far happy for the world, that this ancient military art has now become an innocent exercise. We have only to inform our readers, that the ingenious author has ornamented his Essay with some elegant platcs.

A Difertation on the Querulousness of Statesmen. 8vo. 25. 6d.

Longman. 1792. N o observation has been more frequently made, than that,

* in this country particularly, there are always some politicians who affect to complain of the ruinous state of the nation, even in times of its apparent prosperity. To expose this common foible, or rather, perhaps, artifice, is the design of the present author, who considers the subject under a variety of different heads, of which the following quotation affords an abstract:

« The diminution of our territory in America; the insufficiency of the public revenue ; the decay of manufactures, and commerce ; together with the neglect of agriculture, and the depopulation of our villages ; are circumstances which have often engaged the attention of politicians, and extorted from them many expressions of regret. As if these evils, affumed in their greatest extent as real ones, were yet too small, the same politicians have conceived luxury to fubfist among us, in as high a degree as it did among the Romans, at the most vicious period of the reign of the most degenerate of the Cæsars. They have spoken of corruption, as if it threatened an immediate overthrow of the conftitution. They have asserted, that the national character is excinet; and that the virtue of the people is no more. And, by

way way of fully convincing the world that they have not desponded by halves, they have sometimes included in one description, the ruin of every resource which our empire enjoys ; and the annihilation of every quality through which her reputation has been exalted. I am about to pay fome attention to each of these topics.'

We consider it as unnecessary to lay before our readers the proof adduced by the author, in confirmation of the querulousness of which he treats. Suffice it to say, that he produces, both from political writers, and speakers in parliament, sufficient instances of the charge ; and these he endeavours to refute by a copious investigation of each subject.

The following extract, taken from the general conclusion, will give an idea of his sentiments :

In treating of the finances, we perceived, that neither the predictions of discredit, and of bankruptcy, uttered during the American war; nor those uttered fince the close of that war, had been, in any sense, verified. On the contrary, we perceived, that the revenue, after a trial of almost nine years, bore, and was very likely to continue to bear, to the expenditure-an higher proportion than it had done at any paft period.

We found, that the declire of trade was a malady of a very old standing ; but, happily, one altogether ideal. We fair some reasons for believing our commerce to have been benefited, and not injured, through the secession of our American provin, ces; and some for Aattering ourselves, that its range would soon be widened, and its value enhanced, in consequence of its being made to flow in channels from which it had unwisely been with drawn. The topick of manufactures, I left vnheeded. And I did so, in hopes that it would not escape observation, that, as the increase of the exports of Great Britain, of which a small part only confifts in raw materials, has recently been great; lo also must have been the growth of her manufactures.

• The very hort discussion bestowed on the topics of the neg-, le&t of agriculture (lry agriculture the bulk of writers seem to mean tillage); and the depopulation of our villages ; gave us a result Somewhat to this effect : that tillage is never omitted, in this country, unless for the purpose of securing ends more delirable than any likely to be gained by practising it constantly; and, chat, if many villages have been pulled down, not a few, as well as some towns, have been built up, and filled with inhabitants,

• Luxury appeared to subfitt in our island, in a degree not greater than that in which it had often fubfifted before ; exo actly in that degree in which, according to statesmen and philosophers, it ought, and must sublist.

( The


The measure of our political corruption, seemed to be confi. derably greater than any honeft man would wish it to be: yet, no greater, bit rather smaller, than it had been at most jonctures since the Revolution; and as small as it is likely to be at any fu. fure juncture.

As to the national character, and the virtue of the people :the farmer appeared as distinct as it had ever done ; while the latter, however defective when considered abstractly, appeared superior to that of their ancestors.

. And, with regard to those complaints which had, most patriotically, been made to embrace all our resources, and all our valuable qualities ; they seemed fitted to produce hardly any thing but laughter.

• In thus calling up past perceptions, I have imperfe&ly recapitulated the results of the arguments used in tủe preceding Differtation.

• But, in order to point out, in an adequate degree, the felicity of our fituation as a people, it would be necessary to do much more than recapitulate :- It would be necessary to take notice of the tranquillity of the nation ; of the stability, and the excel. lence of the English constitution of the advanced price of land; of the favourable state of exchange; of the flourithing condition of publick credit ; and, of the increased, and increasing confideration in which Great Britain is held by all the leading powers of the world. I shall say nothing upon any of these heads, the two last excepted: and even upon them I shall say little.

• When the public credit of a people is high, it may, in general, be taken for granted, that their affairs are prosperous,

The public credit of the British is now uncommonly high; and hence we may infer, that their affairs are uncommonly prosperous.'

This author's sentiments are accompanied with one advantage, which is, that they seem to be confirmed by facts not eally controvertible.

A Sermon on Public Worship and Instruction, preached on Suns day 4th September, 1791, at the Opening of St. Peter's Chapel, Edinburgh. By C. Webster. 4to. is. 6d. Rivingtons.

1791. THIS discourse, the text of which is taken from Leviticus,

1 xxvi. 2. has been published at the request of the congregation to whom it was delivered; and whether we conlider


the elegant fimplicity of the style, or the justness of the fentiments, it is well entitled to that distinction.

The preacher sets out with pertinent reflections on the proper observance of times and places of religious worship, which he shews to be not only founded upon the command of God, but essentially connected with the interests and happiness of . mankind.

• What, says he, can be so natural or necessary, what can make us so good, or so happy, as to adore that Being to whom we owe, all we are, all we have, and all we hope for ; to pour out our forrows and our sins before him, and to offer up for ourselves and others, our desires of forgiveness and favour Though our homage can add nothing to the happiness of the deity, yet his goodness has put on it a value, which it becomes not us presumptuously to scan; and the same law which commands us to believe with the heart, obliges us to make confession with the mouth. The sentiment is thus rivetted and improved by the expreslion, as our gratitude by thanksgiving, our benevolence by intercession, and our humility by prayer. Thus piety is not only itself a virtuous sentiment, but the best means, motive, and principle of virtue : it connects and includes all other virtues ; ic fanctifies, it survives them : it is the best bond of society and friend thip: it brightens our brighteft moments, and gilds our darkest days : it is that fire from above, which, while it consumes the impurities of our nature, can alone consecrate and kindle any sacrifices which we make, and render them acceptable to heaven : it is the security of youth, the dignity of age, the balm of life, the support of death, and chat deathless wing, on which alone the soul, rising above this little orb, can foar through the blissful regions of eternity.'

After establishing, from reason and fcripture, the propriety of ritual observances, and the reverence due to the places which are fet apart for those holy solemnities; the author proceeds to describe the religious and moral advantages resulta ing from the institution of the fabbath.

Of the former of these he presents us with a beautiful am- : plification in the following extract:

Public worship refts not folely on the footing of a positive law. It is recommended to us by the general consent of mankind, our own sense of decency, and the established rules of society, as a merciful appointment of rest and thought amidit the labours and diffipations of life, as a public testimony of reverence due to the Almighty, as an evidence of our faith to our fellow worshippers, and as a connecting principle of our common relations, necelties and bleflings. The principle of piety, like our other affections,


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