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immediate feelings, and this is iden are wrong, and where they are right, tically the reason, if I mistake not, and follow them no farther than this why the poetry and eloquence of perception leads us, we are then acsavages are always natural. They tually in the state of nature, because always write and speak as they feel; ultimately we have no guide or auor, more properly, they cannot write thority but ourselves, and the conotherwise, because they have no au sultation which we hold with our thority to consult. They have no own feelings and understanding. literary guides, no critical monitors, It is evident, at the same time, that no principles, systems, or theories we cannot reach this height, and be of elegance and propriety. They perfectly qualified to judge how far are therefore entirely their own every thing communicated to us is teachers and directors, and it is im right or wrong, until science and possible they can write otherwise literature have reached their utmost than what their own feelings dictate. height, because, until then, we have Now as every feeling that is actually not all the aids and means of ascerfelt is a natural feeling, (for if it taining the truth of every proposiwere otherwise it could not be felt) tion, theory, and system, to which the expression of these feelings must our assent may be required. They always be natural, and it is therefore may be right or wrong, for any in a manner impossible for men in a thing that we can discover to the state of nature to write or speak but contrary, because the means of diswhat is natural. It is true indeed covery are not placed within our there is a grossness frequently in reach, while science herself is emwhat they say which shocks the de ployed, as we are, in exploring and licacy of more refined feelings, but investigating the nature of things, this is no argument of its being un and even the nature of the means by natural, for it was natural to them, which this nature can be discovered. though it is not so to us, and we im But when science has reached her mediately recognize it as such. Man utmost height, she places within our is altogether the creature of circum reach the means of ascertaining what stances, and so consequently are his is demonstratively true, what is confeelings. The feelings therefore jectural, and the degrees of probawhich are natural to him at one time bility on which conjecture is founded, are not natural at another, though what is merely possible, and, lastly, he perceives they would be natural what is purely ideal. The moment if he were placed under the circum- we are enabled to ascertain all this, stances that would have naturally we are no longer the slaves of excited them. We therefore recoge authority, because we have the same nize the real feelings of nature in means of ascertaining, whether what the productions of the rude unculti- they teach us be true that they had vated mind, though such feelings themselves, and, consequently, we are no longer agreeable to ourselves revert back to the state of nature. because a more exquisite sense of We are no longer influenced by the propriety, which is in fact all that authority of others, except so far as distinguishes the savage from the this authority quadrates with our courtier, insensibly generates other own feelings and perceptions of feelings which become as natural to things; and, therefore, we stand us as those which nature herself ori- exactly upon the same ground with ginally gave us.
It is different, the natural poet and orator, whose however, when we take our depar effusions are always the emanations ture from the state of nature, and of his own mind and feelings, havseek to enrich our minds with the ing no other feelings or authority knowledge of others. If we can which he could possibly consult. make the knowledge of others pro It appears, then, that the state of perly our own, if we believe that nature, and that in which science the truths which they communicate has reached her last perfection, are, to us are truths, not because they so far as regards natural feeling, have taught them to us, but because exactly the same; and therefore we we perceive, on examining them can have no difficulty in explaining ourselves, that they are true, if we why Cicero and Demosthenes are, as can perceive where our authorities natural orators, as the savage chief
who animates his followers to deeds they are right, or if we reject their of heroism, and inspires them with opinion, we are apt to go into the the most perfect contempt for death, extreme of scepticism, and to suspect and all the images of horror which that there is no certainty in human follow in its train. If it should be knowledge. It is impossible, howsaid that the eloquence of the sa ever, that we can become complete
vage chief is not true or natural sceptics in the infancy of science, .cloquence, 1 reply that the enthusi- because we are every day discoverasm which he excites in his follow- ing the cause of effects, and the reers proves it to be eloquence of the solution of problems of which we · very first order, because the highest were ignorant the day before; and aim of oratory is to persuade, and we very justly conclude, that if we he who persuades us to face danger cannot understand what is taught in all its terrifying and appalling as by others, or even if it appear doubtpects must certainly be of all other ful, the fault is in ourselves, and we men best acquainted with the art of expect that when we enlarge our persuading. To maintain that the views, and extend our enquiries fareloquence of the savage chief cannot ther, we shall perceive them as clearbe natural, because he does not ad- ly as we do the truth which we disdress his followers with that force covered to day, but of which we of argument which Cicero was were yesterday perfectly ignorant. obliged to use in addressing a Ro- A nation must therefore be far reman audience, would be, to maintain moved from the state of nature, and what is in itself not less unnatural approach very nearly to the last than it is absurd.
stage of human knowledge before The moment however we go one it can generate sceptics. The constep beyond the state of nature, the sequence is, that during the interhuman faculties present us with an mediate periods, we are completely aspect totally different from either the slaves of authority. The mere the state of nature or that of know- light of nature cannot enable us to ledge. By perfect knowledge I do deterinine whether what we are · not mean that perfectability of hu- taught be true or false for the rea. • man reason which Madame de Stael sons which I have already assigned, so strenuously advocates, because and therefore we are apt to devour this is a perfectability which I have greedily whatever is sanctioned by shewn in my“ Essay on Taste,"to be the authority of others. Hence it placed beyond the utmost reach of is that we seldom venture to think human attainment. I mean, there for ourselves, because every day fore, by perfect knowledge, only that makes us acquainted with the folly perfection of knowledge of which of our own opinions, with a clear the limited nature of our faculties perception of things which we could are capable. Keeping this idea of not understand before, and with the perfection in view, I say, that the difficulties which we have yet to · moment we advance one step beyond surmount before we are qualified to the state of nature, we enter into a form a correct judgment. We are new world where all our faculties therefore apt to believe implicitly are enchained, and where it is im- whatever we are taught, and make possible we can display a perfect no distinction between truth and freedom of opinions. The reason is error, provided we have as good auobvious: we are thenceforth, neces thority for the one as for the other. sarily obliged to look up to the au The consequence is, that we view thority of others. We acknowledge every thing through the medium of at once that we are no longer qua- authority, that we feel and think as lified to judge for ouselves, that na others feel and think for us, and ture is not sufficient to direct us, that we suspect our own feelings and that to attain to higher perfec- towards the close of life, withdrawn tion, it is necessary to become ac from the gay illusions of society,quainted with the acquirements of and opinions whenever we find them others. The moment we adopt this at variance with those of persons creed, we necessarily abandon all whom we are in the habit of reveconfidence in ourselves, and we view rencing as our guardians and dievery object through the speculum rectors. of others, We either believe that
(To be continued.)
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QUID SIT PULCHRUM, QUID TURPE, QUID UTILE, QUID NON.
FOREIGN. Ideen über unsre Erasmische aus. peither of us understands. Sound cansprache des Altgriechischen :-Aview
not be corrupted, for it is not composed
of parts; and therefore the separating of our pronunciation of the ancient
or vitiating principle cannot act upon Greek, called Erasmian. By M. it. A corrupt sound can, therefore, Neidlinger. Vienna.
mean nothing more than a disagreeable
sound, or a sound void of harmony. The subject of the present work is How absurd is it then, to accuse the a proof, that the Germans of the pre inhabitants of Zaute with using inharsent day are more eager of grasping monious sounds, for if they appear harat what is curious, than of aiming at monious to them, they must be so, howwhat is useful. The rage in Germany ever barsh and grating they may be to seems to be for subjects inexplicable in us. Perhaps, if their ears were more their nature, and which, if resolved, exquisitely attuned to musical expreswould leave us no wiser than we were sion, they would ond our pronunciation before. It matters little how the Greeks of Greek more musical than their own; pronounced their vowels and dipthongs, but while they want this nice discrimiprovided we agree in pronouncing them nation, our sounds may offend them, in the most harmonious manner, or at and consequently possess bo harmony least in that manner which seems most 80 far as regards them. Whatever agreeable to our ear; for as there can pleases the ear of any individual is be no abstract harmony, all sounds are harmony to him, however grating it harmonious that seem to be so. If, then, may be to the ear of another. If we we be satisfied with our own mode of could prove the existence of an harmopronouncing Greek,--and if we were nious sound without recurring to the not we should not have adopted it, ear at all, we might then indeed deterwhat avails it to know how it was pro miné whose pronunciation is the most nounced by the original framers of it? harmonious, but surely if we can form Sounds, indeed, excite agreeable or no idea of an harmonious sound but by disagreeable sensations, and therefore our ear, and if we can assign no reason we should prefer the former in the for why it produces the agreeable effect, mation of languages; but between two no man can pretend to make his own agreeable sounds, it matters not which ear a standard for that of another. Perwe take, because neither of them con haps the most musical sound iu nature, veys any meaning to the mind, antece. is discord compared to the music of dent to convention, and therefore one less materialized beings than man. A will suit our porpose as well as the French critic, treating of the work beother. There can be no room for choice fore us, makes the following judicious where the harmony of sound is equal. reflections. When, therefore, we admire a certain " The pronunciation of the Greek passage iu Homer, according to our has excited no inconsiderable dispute manner of reading it-and when the among the learned; but after all that natives of Corfu or Zante admire it has been advanced concerning the vaequally, though they pronounce and lue of letters, we now remain where read it differently,--and when we ac we set out, and are as wise as if the euse them, and they accuse us of in question had never been agitated: and troducing into the language of Homer, the most elegant of languages no longer barbarous and corrupt sounds, we speaks but to our eyes, and offers to the bring charges against each other which ear but contested sounds. M. Neidlinger
All foreign publications may be procured through Messrs. Treuttel and Wurtz, Soho Square, or other foreign booksellers in London.
Eur. Mag. Vol. 82,
has thrown one opinion more into dustry than the Germans, in elucidating the balance: it is, no doubt, judi- historic facts, and fixing the chronology cious and reasonable; but it is still of doubtful events, particularly those of only an opinion, and will ever remain the middle ages. That this is the naso; and though' be finds both parties tional spirit, and not confined to the in error, he has not helped in the least curiosity of a few antiquaries, appears to determine the controversy. The ob evident from the interest, which the servations of learned men are always public authorities take in promoting of little value when opposed to the this species of knowledge. How far grammar of a people. M. Neidlinger this zeal, however, may tend to proacknowledges that we may have adopt mote the ends of science, appears to us ed an erroneous pronunciation of the of a questionable nature. The knowdiphtongs. He shews that since the ledge of events is of little importance, second century, ei and oi had lost their unless it make us wiser or better; but quality as dipthongs, and became sim- neither wisdom nor virtue is promoted ple vowel sounds : in support of this by knowing when events took place. opinion, he cites a passage from Slobée; If history had merely informed us, that but why has he not cited a passage stili the Romans were defeated at the battle more ancient, I mean that of the oracle, of Cannæ, and that the engagement took related by Thucydides, in his second place on a certain day, in a certain year, book, chap. 54, the entire ambiguity of what advantage could we derive from which rests on the prounciation of the this abstract information ? To tell us dipthong oi. The Athenians, afflicted that a battle was fought, and the weaker by a pestilence, recollected a prediction party overcome, is only to tell us, that which their fathers had reported former power prevails over weakness. The ly: "Het Awplakog modepos kai lovos information, therefore, can serve only üp' aurq. As in the pronunciation Lojos, those, if any such there be, who are pestilence, does not differ from dijos, ignorant of the fact. But to tell us the scourge which threatened them was that it was fought on a certain day, not anticipated, till its effects were pre adds still less to our experience, and viously felt. It is certain, that, among can only gratify an idle curiosity. The the ancient Greeks, oi was pronouncedi. case, however, is different when we are 'But I will readily say with one of our told, that upwards of forty thousand most learned Hellenists, thanks to eta ! men were lost by the rashness of one this letter, n, which is the principal general, who would have been all saved, point of difficulty in Greek pronun had they been guided by the wisdom of ciation, has been disputed with such another. It is not, then, the event which acrimony, that there has been Etacists takes place, much less the time in which and Itacists; as there have been Jan it takes place, that interests us, or at senists and Molinists. What seems to least that should interest us, but the give the victory to the partisans of the causes by which it is brought about. It Erasmian pronunciation is, a passage is this knowledge which the wise man from Plato, and another from Terence: seeks after : the fool is satisfied if he the former proves that this letter eta, n, can tell the date of the event. has been intended to strengthen epsilon, as oméga has been to prolong omi
Nisi utile est quod facias, stulta est gloria . cron. The second proves that the sound of both was preserved in the new let
M. Wedekind, however, though he ter. The passages are these :-Plato
attaches more importance to dates than Says, Ου γαρ η εχρωμεθα αλλα ε το
we do, and has, consequently, exerted Talaiov; and Terence, Literam nam
more diligence in ascertaining them, que E videmus esse ad nya proximam, directed his attentiou to more useful
than we think them worthy of, has still sicut o et w videntur esse vicinæ sibi. Temporum momenta distant, non soni
purposes. He has corrected many geopativitas."
graphical errors, and pointed out, with great precision, many places which
have been hitherto very imperfectly Noten zu einigen Geschichtschrei- kuown. The author throws considerabern des deutschen Mittelalters ble light on the genealogy of the house Notes on some of the German His.
of Saxe, and on its alliance with Charle
magne. The diligence which he has torians of the Middle Ages. By exercised in elucidating the obscure, 4. C. Wedekind. 8vo. Hamburgh, and exploding the fabulous, las neces1921.
sarily enabled him to correct many
popular errors, and even to trace them Few nations have, for a considerable to their source. He consigns, for intime past, evinced more zeal and iu- stance, Joada, a princess of Hungary,
to the regions of romance, and shews, that she owed her imaginary existeuce to a false Latin genetive case.-On the whole, it may be said, that if his work be not one of those which expands the mind by the lights of useful science, at least it is well calculated to gratify curiosity, and to unbend the mind from the toil of active pursuits, and severer studies,
Saggio sulle Azioni, &c. An Essay on the Life and Writings of Francesco Guicciardini, by Professor Giovanni Rosini. 8vo. Pisa.
Pindariis Werke :
:-a Mctrical Translation of the Works of Pindar, with the original Texts and Notes. By T. Thiersch. 2 vols. royal 8vo. Leipsick.
This is the first time the works of the most difficult of the Greek poets, with the fragments, have been completely translated into German verse of the same metre with the original. M. Thiersch has completed this bold undertaking in a manner that does him great credit. The translation is faith. ful; and although the original is rendered verse for verse, yet nothing seems forced, and the Greek text is conformable to the best editions. The introduction treats of Greek music, and of the author of "Pindar's verse; and explains the subject and occasion upon which each ode was writtén. The author treats generally of the origin of dramatic poetry at Athens, and icon. cludes with a chronological table of Pindar's poems.
The object of Rosini in this work is, to make us acquainted with the life, studies, and writings of this celebrated author; and we cannot refuse him the credit of evincing judgment and impartiality in the execution of it. Guicci. ardini flourished in Italy when it was the scene of important political occurrences, and the parent of eminent literary productious. His Italian history of the principal events of his own time is a master-piece in its kind, but he has been accused, nor does Rosini deny the charge, of entertaining sentiments unfavourable to liberty. He admits that he was infected with a portion of the spirit that characterized his age, and how few writers have triumphed over its influence! He adopted that dangerous maxim of Machiavel, that whatever is useful and happily executed is always just and reasonable; and this maxim had no inconsiderable ascendancy over his life and writings. Ro. sini, however, maintains, that he was an enemy to despotism, though no ad. vocate for popular administration; and that in all his vicissitudes, he distin. guished himself by his firmness and consistency of character. He likewise takes considerable "pains in shewing the merits of his history, aud vindicating him from some unfounded charges which had been brought against his character and his impartiality as a writer. It is mournful to reflect, that a writer who had been equally caressed by the court of Rome and the house of Medicis, should be finally abandoned by both, and suffered to conclude his days in privation and misery: and if we may believe Legni, whose fidelity as an historian has been seldom questioned, he died at length by poison.
Delle Rivoluzioni d'Italia, fc. :Of the Revolutions of Italy. By C. Denina, with the unpublished additions and corrections of the Author. 3 vols. 8vo. Milan.
The continuation of the Revolutions of Italy, from 1713 to 1792, under the title of “ Modern Italy," appeared full of errors. The author undertook to correct them by a copy of the edition, published at Venice in 1793. He accordingly retouched the entire of his “ Revolutions.” After his death, this corrected and improved copy fell into the hands of Giuseppe Micali, known by bis “ History of Italy before the Dominion of the Romans.” graphic society of Italian classics happily succeeded in gaining possession of this valuable compilation, and have published it with great accuracy and correctuess.
L'Italia avanti il Dominio dei Romani :-Italy before the domination of the Romans. By Joseph Micali, Second edition, 4 vols, 8vo.
The present work is the history of a people that had no historians of their owb; and though it procured for the author one of the decennial prizes instituted by the French government in Italy, it is obvious that neither talent