Imatges de pÓgina

ourselves Justice, it must be allowed, we are not altogether insensible of our Happiness; for 1, with the highest Pleasure, afsure Your Royal Highness, that in more than half the great Towns in England, and among all Ranks of People, I have been a constant Eye and Ear-Witness of their universal Joy and Sa. tisfaction with their present Condition ; of their extraordinary Esteem and Regard for the Person, Title and Government of his present Moit Gracious Majesty, and their most exalted Hopes, and highest Confidence in their future Sovereign : This gocd Disposition, permit me, Great Sir, to say, is the natural Consequence of encouraging the Studies of useful Arts and Sciences, Learning and Humanity; for these furnith the Prince with Notions and Principles of Wisdom, Religion, Virtue, and Liberty, and secure the People from the Attacks of Ignorance, Barbarity, Superstition and Imposture; and in every Person they produce a rational and noble Propensity towards promoting the general Good of the Community, and the Promulgation of the Sciences among all Ranks and Orders of Men, and inculcate on their Minds Principles that will not fail to render them good Subje&ts : As this is the professed Design of these Papers, I humbly presume they will be acceptable to Your Royal Highness, and shall for ever esteem it the highest Honour that I am permitted to offer them to Your Highness's Inspection. That Heaven may preserve his present Sacred Majesty to the latest desirable Period of Life, and then Your Highness ascend the British Throne, and long reign the happiest, as well as the greatest, Monarch of the World, is the inceffan¢ Prayer of,


Your Royal Highness's

Mot dutiful, devoted,

And obedient bumble Servant,


An ACCOUNT of the Plan and DESIGN

of this MAGAZINE.

S the highest Attainments of the human Mind con

fift in useful Knowledge, the Perfection of our Naa A

ture can only result from thence; and, in order to

promote that in the greatest Degree, we muft render the various Arts and Sciences as eafy of Access, or the Pathway to Knowledge as direct and plain, as possible: And this, in fort, is the Design of our present Publication. To effect which, we fhall employ our Time and Abilities in the best manner we can, and therefore presume that the Public, who are ever candid and ingenuous, will want no other Indụcement to a good Opinion, and favourable Reception of such an Undertaking.

But tho' the Merit of a Design may be indisputable, yet the manner of executing it is a Thing very material, and therefore we shall here at large lay it before the Reader; since it too often happens, that the Expectation of the Public is mightily raised by Title-Pages, Proposals, &c. but immediately subsides upon reading a few firft Sheets of the Performance.

Our Purpose is to compile and present our Readers with a real and general Magazine of Arts and Sciences: Concerning which it is to be obferved,

First, That the Undertaking is in itself a Work entirely new; for though the Press has long groaned under the Weight of Magazines of various Complexions, not one of them has appeared with any Pretensions of this kind, most of them being calculated for Amusement only; and as to the rest, if the Words Arts and Sciences are found in their Title-Pages, you seek in vain for the Things themselves, in the Body of the Work; or if any Thing of that Sort appears, it is only by Peace-meal, in Bits and Scraps, disjointed and mangled, without Order or Connection, and therefore of no Use to any one. On the contrary, in our Magazine, we propose a compleat Body of real Arts and Sciences for

[ocr errors][merged small]

I distinguish between those that are truly and really so, and those that are not: Since it is well known, that many Subjects have been ulhered into the World under the respectable Names of Arts and Sciences, to the great Abuse and Delusion of Mankind. Thus, formerly, the blasphemous Jargon of Astrology was dignified with those Epithets; and many other Subjects are deemed Sciences, but are falsely so called, as they convey no real Knowledge to the Mind.

Secondly, The Form of our Worķis intirely new; for a Body of Arts and Sciences has never yet been attempted in any monthly periodical Publication, under the Title of a MAGAZINE. And this Form we rather chuse, not only as it suits with the Humour and Taste of the present Age, but also because it will be the easiest Way to communicate Subjects of this Sort, and attended with less Expence and Trouble as well to the Publisher as the Reader; not only fo, but a whole Body of Arts and Sciences poured out on the Public at once, might not perhaps be quite so pleasing and acceptable, as when retailed out in monthly Portions; for now a Person cannot think one Half-sheet upon a Science in a Month too much, as he will have Time enough to read and digest that before another comes to Hand, even in the more abstruse Arts, that require some Study and Attention: and since it will be in vain to crave for more than there can be Time to peruse and understand, it is presumed, that what has been now said, may be a sufficient Answer to an Objection that may possibly be made against a monthly Publication, That it will be too slow, or tedious a Performance; but we shall make no Scruple to say, that admitting a Person has a good Genius, he will be allowed to make a great Proficiency, if he can make himself Master of the useful Arts and Sciences in the Compass of Ten Years.

Thirdly, There has been no compleat System, or Body of Arts and Sciences since the new Discoveries, and great Improvements in all the Branches thereof made in the last and present Age,

The Face of Philosophy is entirely new, and a new Geometry has succeeded the old, which occafions a general Renovation in all the Mathematical Sciences; the most fubftantial and solid Parts of Learning have therefore nowa new Aspect, and wear quite a different Dress from what they used to appear in. A general System of the Sciences, attended with fo much Novelty and Utility, can


not now, we hope, but be very grateful to every Lover of Art and Friend to Learning.

Fourthly, The Novelty of our Method we may reasonably fuppose will be another Argument to recommend since our Plan is to carry on the four great Classes of Science at once. Variety never fails to please in other Cases, and here it must have all its Force, since every Half-sheet of our Magazine will be pregnant with new Principles of Knowlege, and every Number will present the Reader with a gradual Progress of the Sciences, proceeding Hand-in-Hand; when he has considered the Subject of one, he may apply himself to another, after that to a third and fourth, all different from each other, and each in particular such, we prefume, as will be worthy his Attention, and afford him Pleasure and Instruction at the fame Time. After this, by Way of Relaxation and Amusement, in the fifth and fixth Half-sheet, we shall present him with some of the choicest Pieces of Learning, Wit, Humour, Poetry, News, &c. all which we judge will be sufficient to fill up the vacant Hours of each respective Month.

Fifthly, Another great Inducement to this Undertaking is, the satisfactory Prospect we have of making the Arts and Sciences more generally known and useful to Mankind; for Experience forbids us to expect that a general Publication of the whole at once, would ever fall into fo great a Number of Hands as it probably may this Way, it is not consistent with Prudence, in any Case, to overdo a Thing; People should be gradually conducted from one Apartment to the other in the Temple of Science; for since one fimultaneous View of the whole would rather tend to confuse than instruct the Mind, and deter from, rather than invite to a particular Examination of the Parts: Things, though ever so good in themselves, by too great and sudden a Profufion, instead of exciting a Curiosity and Inclination, would probably create an Aversion, if not a Nausea thereto. And therefore to avoid any Tendency to discourage the Study of the Sciences, we have thought it by much the best Way, to proceed in the Method of our present Plan.

We proceed now to give some Account of the Subject-Matter of the Work:

I. The first Part will consist of a general Survey of the Works of Nature and Art, that is to say, we shall take a particular View



of the several Phenomena of Nature, as they arise from the various
Subjects that fall under our Observations, in the Heavens, the
Air, the Earth, and Water, which we shall represent, illustrate
and explain, by the several Inftruments and Machines which Art
has invented, or can supply for that Purpose, and that in the moft
easy and natural Manner, so that the Truth and Reality of the
Nature and Cause of those Appearances may be rendered quite ob-
vious to the Understanding; for in this Part, we shall propose no-
thing but what we may reasonably suppose all our Readers can
understand; and in order to do this more effectually, we shall pro-
pose it in the common Way of Experiments, since it is found by
general Experience the best of all accommodated to convince the
Understanding, as it consists in little more than an Appeal to the
common Sense of Mankind. We oftentimes express great Diffi-
dence with respect to our intellectual Faculties, but few People
are so foolishly modest as to distrust their Senses in Cases where
Objects are proposed to them in a proper Manner; and fince
the Senses are the general Inlets and Means of Knowledge,
and are formed as accurately and just as perfect, in one Sex as the
other, therefore these philosophical Subjects must be, in this
Way, equally intelligible to both; consequently the Ladies may
be admitted to the Pleasure and Advantage of these Speculations
as well as Gentlemen, if not with more Reason, since Gentlemen
have generally an opportunity of coming to the Knowledge of
these Things, in a way different from that of the Fair Sex: And
therefore we have proposed it in Dialogues between a young Gen-
tleman and a Lady in the natural and easy Way of Conversation;
by which Means we hope the Inftruction will be more easily con-
veyed, and attended with much greater Pleasure than in the com-
mon, dry and tedious Dialogues, heretofore written on these Sub-
jects. Moreover, the Instruments and Machines themselves will be
very particularly described, and many new ones introduced, with
their Advantages and Excellencies pointed out; also Copper-
Plates and Diagrams will be supplied where ever they are wanted
for Illustration. Lastly, to render the Whole as compleat as pol-
fible, we shall frequently embellish the Subject with the most beau-
tiful Descriptions, Allusions, and Similies that can be found in
the most celebrated antient and modern Poets; so that upon the


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinua »