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As the velocity and force of a falling and the same reasons apply, with more body is increased, according to the force, to the admiilion of proverbs. keight of the elevation from which In my opinion, notbing can be more it tell, so we find by experience that inconsistent, than to perinit an appeal the progress of error is always in pro- to the opinions of an individual author, portion to the eminence of the cha. and reje&t an appeal to the wildom of a rates who assists in its dissemination. whole country. It is a curious fact,
As error, when it becomes prevalent that many of the proverbial sentiments by this means, is more mischievous, fo of the present times are to be found it onght to be more carefully opposed; among those that are handed down to and the world thould not be so partial us by Heliod and Homer, the two most and overawed by great talents, as not to ancient writers extant. Thus, when give a patient bearing to those who are we exclude the authority of proverbs, of an oppofite opinion. But such is we not only exclude the authority of the influence of a favourite author, one nation, but the combined authority that it needs a degree of courage, which of all nations and all ages. Aristotle, few poffefs, boldly to display his errors, whole opinions thould certainly have even when they are almost palpable. great weight, even now that his power The actions of a tyrant may be directly is on the decline, lias placed proverbs contrary to reason and justice; but who among what he confiders as undeniable will dare to inform him they are of testimonies of truth. that defcription? The Republic of The arguments that are adduced, if Literature, like some other republics, they may be called by that name, for has nothing of a free government but the exclufion of proverbs, may, with the name ; and an Aristotle, a Pope, or equal justice, be applied to the exclufion a Johnson, are as great tyrants, in their of quotations. They are both equally way, as any that exist in civil govern. fententious, for it is unavoidably occa. ment; with this difference, that it is lioned by their necessary brevity. Pro. not themselves, but their admirers, verbs are said to be dogmatick; but who are the means of infli&ting punith. I cannot conceive that a maxim from ment on the ralh, rebellious spirit, who Rochefaucault, or a couplet from Pope, dares, in the least, oppose their autho. is less so. rity.
It cannot be said, because many of Human nature, we find, is fallible, in them are expressed in coarse language, its highest state of perfection; why, that, for that reason, they should be then, ihould there be any excuse re totally excluded. Are not there paso quired for venturing to expose its fages in Ovid, Lucretius, and Horace, errors?
more gross and indecent than are to be I thought it necessary to premise these found in the proverbs of any country? few observations, before I should enter And should we, for that reason, he on the discussion of a fi.bject in which debarred from quoting there elegant it is my fate to differ with a writer of and instructive writers ? The doctrine very Superior abilities, and justly. is absurd, and need not be combatted founded celebrity. The subject 'I with serious arguments. allude to is, the use of proverbs, I thall not waite words in endeavour. which, by the authority of Lord ing to prove the peculiar force, and Chelterfield, and some other authors, sometimes elegance, of expression in are now entirely banished from polité proverbs. Were it neceflary, I could conversation; a fate which I do not give examples that are not excelled think they deserve.
by any author, ancient or modern; The chief end of introducing quota- but any one who has given the smallett tions from authors in convertation is, attention to the subject can easily supeither to support our own opinions by ply the deficiency from their own the opinions of some superior and uni. memory. versally admired genius, or to borrow That the exclusion of proverbs from a peculiarly felicitous expresion, which, conversation is a piece of modern perhaps, places the sentiment we with refinement, or affectation, is evident, to convey in a more elegant and per- from the respectable manner in which spicuous point of view than any we they were treated by authors of anticould ourselves contrive at the mo. quity. Plutarch did not think it ment. These, surely, are sufficient degrading to his abilities to make them seasons for tbe admission of quotations; his study; and they are often to be
found in the pages of the politest authors too often, used ; but are not quotations of the Augustan age. Quintilian has likewise so? is not Dr. Pangloss as recommended them as proper orna. ridiculous a character as Sancho Panza? ments for a discourse; and the cele- or the stile of Burton as absurd as that brated Erasmus Jras given us a col- of Sir Roger L'Estrange? lection of them. Nor, when enume
There is a medium in this as in every rating the testimonies in their favour, thing else; and it is my opinion, that thould it be forgotten, that, in modern when proverbs are used in moderation, tines, the elegant and graceful Lord they adorn, rather than make a dirCheiterheld has, more than once, bad' course contemptible. After what I recourle to them, in the laine epistolary have said on quotations, hall I be correfpondence in which he has lo excused if I conclude with one from much condemned them.
Horace, which expreffes my sentiments What is the reason, then, that the better than I'can pretend to do myworld have agreed in their degradation' self? of proverbs and admit the use of quota- “ Elt modus in rebus funt certi denitions. The reason is plain: the latter flatters our vanity, by giving us an
Quos ultra citraque nequit confiftore opportunity to display our learning,
rectum." which the former will not afford. I agree that proverbs become dir- April 3d, 1803.
HERANIO. gutting when they are improperly, or
IN A SERIES OF LETTERS, WRITTEN DURING A TOUR THROUGH THA
BATAVIAN REPUBLIC IN THE YEAR 1802.
(Continued from Page 181.)
INTRODUCTORY LETTER I*. GRAVESEND-TEXEL. On re-perusing my laft (for I am so apathifts; My withers are unwrung."
much of an author as to observe a Doubtless it appears surprising, that a regular system which I have laid down being who, perhaps, deerns himlelf on the subject of correspondence, viz. rational thould employ a moment on to keep a copy of every line that I such common subjects. Precisely the write),'I cannot forbear smiling at my fame ideas Itrike the inhabitants of the own observations. There are very few, most picturesque and beautiful places I am inclined to imagine, who would in England. I allude to the curiosities have bestowed a moment's notice on near the Peak in Derbyshire, and the such objects as I have introduced as im- Lakes of Lancashire, Westmorland, and portant, in my Epittle, to those who in- Cumberland. « On an excursion to habit the places which I have de. these latter,” says a Gentleman on scribed. I may, perhaps, appear like whore veracity I can rely, “I met the maniac, who followed the bubbles with an honest rustic, who seemed on the lurface of a rivulet, till the greatly aftonished that I should find air escaped, and be loft light of his any thing worthy of registering in my object; the deeds of the great man Journal... These places,' said the affected him; he had rather hunt a rustic, ' have no curiolity in them; swallow than a fox. Sinile on, ye marry, none at all in the world. I
Errata in our laft; after the title, for “ Letter 1." read “ Introductory Letter I. ;" and page 179, col. 2, line 18, for " wretched ircns by which the vicii, &c." read, “ irons by which the wietched vi&tim, &c."
would VOL. XLII. APRIL 1893.
would not give a bean to see a thousand dious notes: the thrush sung loudest, such places. If you had talked o’Lun. and called on Echo to repeat the bar. min, i Mould have thouglit there were mony which died in faint murmurs fome reason in your remarking parti- on the ear*. This helped to dispel culars;
but of this.poor place, I am those melancholy musings into which certain there is nothing worth your the mind, at scenes of real or pictured trouble.' I cannot say but I pitied woe, becomes enervated and unelastic. the mistaken ideas of the peasant, who, The coasts from Woolwich to Gravelwhile I was rapt in ecstasy at the end exhibit a fine variety of picturesque enchanting scenery, could perceive no scenery and pleasing images. A long beauties in them. But the old adage, series of charming seats are ranged on Familiarité engendre mépris, will be found each side of the river, affording, at the true throughout every avocation in same time, various sensations of plealife.”
fure. On ihore, what is more beautiful But I beg pardon for detaining you than a fleet of vessels under fail, with a moment on so trite a subject ; yet all their canvas spread to receive the it must be recollected, that
inconstant gale ? On board, no less plea. « Travellers do not work hy square and
fure is experienced on palling those line,
mansions of elegance and pleasure : As smiths and joiners perfect a design:" takes leaves of ilieni reluctantly, re
bound to a distant port, the tailor their observations furnish them with volving in his mind the uncertainty materials, and their own genius thould of ever again beholding them. Believe alone be consulted in railing the struc. me, Sir, I did not paš them without ture. Were it otherwile, they could emotion; I reflected on what must be claim no property in the remarks which the feelings of those who pass them for they make; they would be a heteroge- the last time, condemned to banillaneous mass of observations, compiled ment and exile from the dear-loved from other authors, than which no- soil of Britain. thing can be more disgusting to the At Gravesend, the two Officers of researches of curiotity. If we copy Customs (who had been on board the nature, we thall invariably present an vefsel from her beginning to load), original; for no two persons ever be and the Pilot, were dismissed, beld her in the same light, or with the It was impossible to avoid noticing fame propenfities.
the seemingly unimportant and unIt is a folitary truth, that much is necessary formality which fo frequently not at all understood, under the idea attends the execution of nearly every that it is too well known to dwell department in the Constitution. The upon.
Captaing after paying the fees and To those who reside near Woolwich, duties at London, mult go on thore at &c.those scenes are common, and there. Gravesend to clear the veslel, as they fore pass unnoticed; yet this negli- term it; when a bundle of papers, gence is not a criterion of classical which no one thinks it neceilary to discrimination. I had seen them be- look at, are delivered to him, on fore; nevertheless they had the fame payment of a sum of money, without effect as though they were entirely new. informing him of the nature of such But enough of this : If I have at all demand. It cannot be doubted that erred, I am confident you will think it at lealt fifty per cent of tees which are lies in apologizing for what every exacted, never find their way into the reader of sensibility would say itands in Treasury! need of none.
The pallengers also must go on shore Music is at all times delightful; and to the Searcher's Ofice, where they in a grove, or on the banks of a river, are asked a thoufind questions; a fall it has a superior effect : at this moment fee also is demanded; without giving. it was peculiarly enchanting. Several you the least idea of the purport of musical captives were admitted to run their enquiries. Mine, on a balcony which overlooks A little below Gravelend lands an the Thames, and warbled their melo- oak tree, usually cailed the Round
I remarked, when the thrush sing alone, that the notes were faintly repeated by an Echo, which seemed to be across the waier, though it was impossible to ascertain the place precisely, our vesel being under fail.
Tree. From time immemorial this has the next morning. The evening had been held to mark the limits of the been very tempestuous, and the winds port of London. There does not adverse, which drove us considerably appear to have been any design in the from the coast. On making good our plantation of this timber boundary ; situation, we again hoisted a Hag for a it seems rather to have been the effect pilot-boat. Being upon the quarterof chance, and acknowledged, by pre- deck with the Captain, he called my Icription, to define that limit, and attention to a scene too frequent at sea, decide those contests which would a dead body passing under our ftern. frequently arise from the different I solicited him, in vain, to perform an imports that are exacted upon the office of humanity, to put out a boat, fame articles of merchandize within which might have been dune in a few and without the Port of London; an minutes, and take it up. He smiled at instance of which was to-day afforded my request, but refused; adding,
“Such' things as these every day Being in want of coal, the Captain happen, if any person cared for it.' designedly failed below the tree before Remonitrance was in vain; and I he came to an anchor for transacting his contented myself with giving my feel. business at Gravesend, and sent a boat ings the range of sympathy, of suffering to a warehouse which, Itanding without them to be called forth in the interest the Port of London, could afford that of human benevolence. article considerably lower than the · London or Gravesend merchants: if
SONNET, the vessel had laid above the tree, the Written at Sea, on seeing a' Dead Body duties which are exacted in the Port must have been paid, and by this slight Poor friendless corle, by envious waters
floating on the Water. manæuvre they were evaded. This pre
toss'd sents us with a proof that taxation is considered as an evil, and studioully From Moal to hoal, perhaps from coast to
coast ! evaded whenever opportunity favours the design. The practice is committed
(No friend humane enough to save) with impunity; and many take a pride Without one tear that starts from Pity's in relating how often tliey were too
eye, cunning for his Majesty's Revenue Or Sympathy's endearing obsequy, Officers!!
Thou floai'lt, the sport of wind and wave. Departing from Gravesend, the chan- Yet though a tar unheeded let thee país, nel of the Thames expands gradually, Exclaiming, “ There's a body," with a till it loles itself in the Ocean. One side
curle, of the land, only, is now visible; I, tho' unknown, thy fate will mourn : and that we are shortly to part from, Perhaps a wife now anxious waits at home, perhaps for ever! I calt an anxious Her love foreboding-What ?-alas, thy Jook on the battlements which are
doom! erected as guides to the mariner ; the An orphan lisps, “Where is my father signal-Itatfs for the purpose of conveying intelligence along the coasts to the Her tears fhall answer—“. He will ne'er telegraph at London, and vice versa ;
return." the fpire of the village-church, “that -Her woes are real with her I'll confetops the neighbouring hiil;” and the
crate thy urn. peaceful lawn, where sporting innocence knows no toils but play; and When I had sketched my piece, I I wished either to re-tread the ground, prelented it to the Captain.
He or quickly vanish out of sight. We changed colour on seeing a picture were detained some time, by contrary
of himself faded so deeply, and begged winds, off Harwich, and at length of me to alter those two lines. It was reached Orfordness; from which place now my turn to refuse, and I seized we took our departure, and with it took the privilege. Perhaps, when a fimilar leave of every thing British.
scene preients itself, he may forget his Two days after our departure from inhumanity, recollecting what a charmOrfordneis, we gained tight of the low ing figure he made on paper on this coast of Holland. The sea ran high. occasion. But I hate the lombre pen. We builted a jack (a Hag for a pilot); cil, which always dwells on disagree. but none dared to venture out till able fubjecis, the perion who here
acted with so much indifference to. French. This not being the case, I wards the corpse of a fellow-creature, fhall postpone any remarks till the poffefies a generous mind, and (I had period of my vilising them. almost said) a benevolent heart. I Holland, being a champaign-country, assure you I could not but rejoice, has a very indifferent appearance from that a simple couplet of rude poetry the sea. Those who may estimate the made him fenfible of his too great grandeur or worth of a place from its indifference.
appearance at a distance, will form a We have now got a pilot on board, very incorrect idea of Holland. Here who conducts us through the Zuyder- is nothing to arrest the attention, either Zee to Amiterdam. Of what benefit he picturelque or sublime. No towering can poslibly be, I will not pretend to majestic cliifs, like those on the British ascertain ; only he does not understand coatts, that defy the turbulence of the one word of English, nor any on board waves, wbich spend their force in vain a fyllable of Dutch: he throws out the at the foot of the precipice. No proud lead occasionally, and smokes perpetu- mountain, that lifts its head above the ally; in the latter he seems a perfect clouds, and overlooks a valt extent of connoisseur, having a pipe encaled, to territory; it is evening, and the sun is jutt prevent its breaking, a large box of sinking beneath the horizon. No emitobacco, and another with fint, feel, nence to catch the refracted rays, after and tinder ; all those are lodged, with he has drooped below the horizon of a large case-knife, in enormous pockets the valley, appears; they are lost in the made in the breeches :-perhaps from atmosphere. No mountain, rock, 01 the circumstance of having such very steeple, obitructing their progress, and Jarge pockets, the epithet of Dutch. reflecting the golden gleam on the built may have arisen.
inhabitants of the vale. A few itacks I now feel the necessity of unders of chimneys scattered about ale ob. standing a little of the language of the servable above the embankment which Hollanders, as it may, and undoubtedly contines the Ocean within its limits, will, happen, that I shall fometimes saying, “ Hither shalt thou go, and no meet with persons who understand no further.” Were th:ele formidable ramother language but their own ; and if I parts to give way, the whole of the Procannot ask for necessaries in their own vinces would be laid under water, as it tongue, I must be under the disagree. has been repeatedly proved, that even able necessity of wanting many com- at low water the tea is leveral, inches forts which I should otherwise enjoy. higher than the land. By ascending
We are gliding along the smooth sur- the rigging, I commanded a very face of the Zuyder-Zee. To the right extentive prospect over the States. and left are several small villages, the Vegetation is in full bloom; the houses of which are seemingly of only plantations of mustard, which are very one Itory, probably the residence of the extensive, covered the face of nature fishermen whose boats cover the coast of with a golden tinge: here a meadow, the Texel. Yet, though they seem of but and there a few acres of muftarit small importance, I can discover by the yonder a few hamlers emvelope a linali map, or chart of the coaft, that soine of spire, which ferves the double purpole those places witnessed various vicisii- of religion and navigation. To-niortudes of fortune in the late campaigns row we thail reacti Amiterdam. I in Holland; they will, of course, claim have formed many curious opinions some attention in my excursions over of the Dutch from our poor Pilot, the Provinces. Probably fome anec. who, no doubt, deems us beings equally dotes might be learnt from our Pilot, ridiculous, according to his mode «f if I understood Dutch, or he English or allociating ideas.
AN, AUTHENTIC ACCOUNT OF THE LIFE AND CHARACTER OF
ROBERT ORME, ESQ. F. A. S. HISTORIOGRAPHER TO THE HONOURABLE THE EAST INDIA COMPANY.
(From the ASIATIC ANNUAL REGISTER.) OBERT ORME was the son of Mr.
on the Bombay establishment; a fa. John Orme, a surgeon in the Ho.. tion in which he lerved for many years pourable East India Company's service with confiderable reputation. Being • See Vol. XXXIX. p. 163.