Puslapio vaizdai

wholo of the popular intellect. And in France, during menon, of absoluto cause and relative causes, of tho perthe last century, completo materialism, with implicd de- fect and the imperfect, of the finite and the infinite." nials of man's immortality and God's existence, took But to collect a full view of philosophic opinion, it is possession of the people at largo, who neither read the necessary to attend to the definitions of the principal syssensualistic writings of Locke, nor studiod the distorted tems of modern philosophy. Sensationalism, the philosophy edition of his principles, published by Cordillac, nor com- of the French Encyclopædists, and in tendency of Locke, prehended the farther development of the process by made the senses the sole fountains of human knowledge, Cabanis, but simply caught up the formulas of that falso and built up a whole metaphysical system on the basis of philosophy in the very intelligible propositions in which it external nature. Idealism, the philosophy of Berkeley camo before them ; so that, instead of being restricted to and Fichte, and in tendency of Kant, and, in its first the few, and unintelligible to the mass, the results of in- movement, also of Reid, followed the contrary direction tellectual philosophy practically influence the mass of of a too close and partial analysis of self, and based a mankind more than those of any other department of whole philosophical system in this ono notion. Out of knowledge. The objection that revelation renders specu- the contradictions of these systems arose Scepticism, a lative philosophy unnecessary, is disposed of by showing philosophy capable of detecting falsehood without attemptthat revealed religion itself is rested on the foundation of ing to build up any system of truth. Then followed Mystinatural religion, and so far from putting a check upon cism, in which the mind last of all takes refuge. To the philosophical investigation, renders it the more necessary. mysterious spiritual nature within, the mystic looks for a

Going a step farther, speculative philosophy is to be knowledge for transcending the feeble results of reflection. regarded as absolutely inevitable"as inevitable,says Eclecticism, the school of Victor Cousin, recognises ono Morell, “ as tho wants, desires, and tendencies of the and all of these four philosophies as movements of the human mind can make it."

human reason, and rejecting in each its apparent extra“: Every age of the world,” he adds, “and every vagancies and inaccuracies, pretends to build up from tho nation, the mind of which has attained to any degree of residuum of truth a new and more perfect system. cultivation, have had their different philosophics ; that is, A review of the progress of sensationalism, from the have attempted to unravel the problems of their own period of Bacon to the commencement of the 19th cenexistence and thoso of the universe they behold around them.

The gravo and contemplative Asiatic silently tury; and of the progress of idealism, from the period of brooded over those subjects in the carlier stages of man's Descartes to the same time ; with a development of the history ; the lively and versatilo mind of Greece could different forms of scepticism and mysticism which have not fail to think deeply, and to grapple carnestly with the arisen from these preceding systems, on the Continent same great questions; the Roman intellect, at first taken up with the practical toils of warfare and government, and in England, furnishes Mr. Morell with the proximato was constrained, so soon as the opportunity came, to sources of the philosophy of the nineteenth century. tread in the same path, notwithstanding it had been Into these systems we do not cnter, however, at the already so diligently explored ; and Christianity, when it offered peaco to the spirit of man, wounded by commencement of modern philosophy. The two great consciousness of moral imperfection, and satisfied the

eras in the history of metaphysics undoubtedly resolve heart's longings after immortallity, did not repress but into the ancient and the modern. But even the period of rather incited the intellect to greater cxertion, in order transition from the one to the other, and the scholastic to sound the depths of our being, and fully to comprehend our relation to the Infinite and the Eternal. The middle age itself, mere renewal as it was, with some peculiar ages, which witnessed the almost total decline of litera- modifications of ancient philosophy, must, with all ture, present us still with the spectacle of the human deference to Mr. Morell, be allowed some place in reason struggling on amidst all the surrounding darkness, the commencement of modern philosophy. That schoin order to look beneath the phenomeral world, and to scek after the foundations of human knowledge ; and ever

lasticism had to be combated before the new philosince the revival of our modern civilisation, has given a sophy could ariso, is r.othing to the purpose. Schofresh impulso to the human mind; the whole region of lasticism as principally a form; and what was the subspeculative philosophy has been one of the principal ob- stance with which this shadow was overthrown? Mr. jects upon which it has applied its awakened cnergies. It is no more possible for the spirit of philosophy to become

Morell himself supplies the answer ; it was altogether a extinguished, than for the poetic fire to dio out of human- renewal of the ancient contest betwixt the porch and the ity, or the religious faculty to cease to operate within the academy ; upon the arena of modern history Plato overmind of man; for as long as the impulse of the intellec- threw Aristotle and the peripatetics. tual faculties exists, it will ever be seeking after satisfaction.”

The interval, till the age of Bacon, was thereforo er

clusively occupied with the renewal of the ancient docThe inevitable rise of philosophy is also shown by the trines

. Amongst which those of Plato had a foremost fact, that the power of accurate generalisation is the mea

place, under the Medicis at Florence, although those of sure of true knowledge, and that every branch of human Aristotle still retained a part, and were upheld by such knowledge, when fully gencralised, lands us in the region men as the German reformer, Melancthon. Inferior of metaphysical rescarch.

spirits, such as Lipsius and Heinsius, advocated a modiAristotle, Kant, and Cousin, in turn attempted the fication of tho doctrine of the Stoics. To one and all of resolution of all our knowledge into categories of primary these prevalent doctrines must we assign some influence ideas. Aristotlo, dealing with the matter of our ideas, over the future philosophy of modern times. Much more reduced his categories to ten ; Kant, applying himself must wo ascribe it to the logical science of Peter Ramus; to their forms, by his deep, clear, criticism, reduced to the physics of Telesius and Campanella, and the novel two fundamental ideas, "contingent” and “necessary,” theories of the independent thinkers of those times, such which, he says, “you can represent to yourself under the as Patritius and Bruno. It is yet indisputable that all formula of unity and multiplicity, of substance and pheno- l these minor and indefinite influences merged in the ef

forts of two gigantic minds—those of Bacon and Descartos | Reid, promised, at tho period in question-the close of

- to turn the stream of scientific investigation into those the century-a development of its resources commensutwo main channels of modern inquiry it has ever since rate with its victories over scepticism. The two antibeen pursuing. Both dealt in analysis. Bacon in the sensational forces of this particular era wero, therefore, analysis of Nature ; Descartes in that of thought. the respective philosophers of Scotland and Germany.

The influence of Bacon's experimental philosophy upon The masters of the Scottish school we need not pause the progress of speculative scionco-different from that of to discuss. The merits of Dugald Stewart, Dr. Thomas the Cartesian-was necessarily indirect. Bacon threw away Browne, Young, Milne, Ballantyne, Abercrombio, are the useless Aristotelian philosophy which he had studied too well known to requiro comment. Morell regards the in his early youth, and substituted for it his Novum Or- great excellency of the Scottish philosophy as to a ganum, or new method of investigation--the inductive great extent consisting in having perfected the method method-consisting of something more than collecting ob- of metaphysical roscarch ; its main defects as taking a servations and predicating concerning the class any qua- false or inadequate view of the reflective method in mental lity observed in cach. This would havo given but a small philosophy, and, as consequently, wanting comprehenextension of knowledge. He instructs us first to collect a siveness as to the legitimato objects and extent of philoNatural History, of which we are to classify the facts, ex- sophy at large. punging the useless, and viewing the sign cant by their The German school of the nineteenth century ho tries, relative value and the test of experiment, until the causes through its six representatives, Kant, Jacobi, Herbart, of phenomena, or the constitution of bodies, begin to ap- Fichte, Schelling, and Hegel ; requiring us to bear in pear. Without excluding from his method psychological mind that, instead of the analysis of the powers and faculinvestigations, Bacon directed his chief attention to the ties of the human mind being, as with us, the chief point, great want of his age, a knowledge of facts; and the ex- it is comprehended by the Germans in one very subordinate ample of the master led to the sparing application of his division, termed psychology, and their three great promethod in higher science; and whilst his doctrines upheld blems are the existence and nature of God, the universe, the importance of metaphysical analysis, the tendency of and human freedom. his system was in favour of sensationalism.

In noticing the numerous characteristios of modern Ilobbes proceeded upon this ground to develope the Ba- scepticism, Mr Morell's present edition is characterised by conian philosophy, so as to make sensation the real basis a digression on Dr. Lamennais' “ Esquisse d'un Philoof every mental operation, sole originator of ideas, sole sophe,” of which he made no mention in his previous medium and test of truth. Matter, therefore, became edition, with him the only reality. Ilis whole doctrine was the The residuo of the work, after illustrating the fourth doctrino of bodies. But these be divided into Natural generic system of philosophy of tho nineteenth century, bodies and Political bodies. In physics he inculcated ob- viz., mysticism, as exemplified in England by Coleridge servation, and leaned to the atomistic theory of Gasscndi. Taylor in one department, and Sewell in another ; in In psychology, he viewed the mind as wholly material, France by St. Simonism, Fourier, Pierre Leroux ; and in the phenomena of consciousness as the direct result of Germany by Jacobi ; is devoted to the Eclectic school of organisation.

the nineteenth century, Royer, Collard, Cousin, and the The criticism of Locke and the effects of his sensa- modern French writers. The tendencies of the philosophy tionalism in England, as seen in the writings of Collins, of the ninoteenth century aro summed up apart. The Dodwell, Hartley, Priestley, and Ilorne Tooke, as well as tendency of modern sensationalism is, the author argues, in France and Germany in those of Candillac, Bennet, in science to push aside the doctrine of Providence as Helvetius, St. Lambert, Baron D'Holback, and the altogether exploded, as in such works as “ Combe's ConFrench Encyclopedists, fill up the chapter of the progress stitution of Man,” and “ Vestiges of the Natural History of sensationalism. That in the progress of idealism is de- of Creation;" and, in politics, to base all human legisveloped, in four movements, cmanating from the influence lation upon mere expediency, discarding moral principle, of Descartes; the first including Malebranche and Spinoza; staking the outward happiness of the community as the the second English polemical idealism, commencing with sole guide of the legislator, as exer plified in the political Lord Herbert of Cherbury, and including Cudworth, school of Jeremy Bentham; whilst, as respects theology, Clarke, Butler, Berkeley, and Price ; the third, German just in proportion as the sensational element becomes idealism, including Leibrutz, Wolf, Kant; and the fourth, predominant, spiritual truth dies away-as exemplified the Scottish philosophy of Ilutcheson, Smith, and Reid. in the materialism of Priestly and his numerous followers

The grand result is, that modern philosophy, up to the in England and America. The tendency of idealism, opening of the present century, just exhibits four diffe- again, is shown to be to raise the idea of nature in phyrent movements in four different parts of Europe. The sical scienco, above mechanism, and to impart to it lifo first is the French movement of the school of Descartes, and soul; this is illustrated in the writings of Sir John dwindling away into the revived plalsuism of Malebranche, Herschel ; whilst in those of Coleridge and Carlyle we or the realistic pantheism of Spinoza. The English pole- have exhibited the tendency of idealism in the practical mical idealism was well nigh extinguished under the suc- walks of legislation, adjudging institutions not to be right cessors of Locke. The German idealism, however, of because they appear expedient; but to be expedient because Leibrutz enjoyed a prosperous carcer under its Wolfian they are right. With regard to the religious tendencies of connection ; and, taking another direction, seemed only idealism, Mr. Morellcxercises a wide discrimination betwist preparing for a grander flight through the influence of the cases of England, France, and Germany. He appeals the immortal works of Kant. The fourth, the Scottish to such writers as M'Culloch and Whewell, and Lord philosophy, most vigorous and original in the hands of Brougham, in his “Proliminary Discourse;" who have applied the highest scientific knowledge to maintain the vali- remnants, footprints and dried fishes, limestone and coal dity of our natural conceptions of religion. He asserts that measures,“ ready made.” There would be nothing the spiritual philosophy of France has done more to bring more wonderful in the creation of a fossil, than in causing back the people of that country to a sense of religious | those circumstances by which the materials of museums obligation than all the direct efforts of Christian zeal are supposed to have been produced. Those persons who combined. But in Germany he admits that the more accept the literal language of our Scriptural translaextreme and daring features of idealism have unhappily tion believe in something of this kind. They do not developed themselves in connection with the religious life allege that the trees in the garden of Eden were the subof that country.

jects of such gradual growth and development as have The appendix is chiefly occupied with a matter which been evinced ever since that creation in their regular sucwill excite much interest amongst Morrel's readers-a cession. They do not suppose for a moment that the first reply, on his own part, to the critic of the late Rev. Dr. created man went through all those painful gradations of Chalmers, in the “ North British Review.” It is sup- creeping, and teething, and tottering, and ultimately walkplemented by a very pathetic tribute to the memory of ing, and acquiring strength, that since then have been the that great man, which does honour to the living as well lot of all the successive generations of his descendants. as the dead.

It is unnecessary that they should believe in the Having now afforded a faithful summary and dispassion- thorough absence of any material, in any form, out of ate estimate of Mr. Morell's philosophical work, we have which this earth was constituted six thousand years since, only to refer for ampler satisfaction to his own text. antecedent to that date. The eduction of a habitable Should he undertake, as is, we believe, anticipated, to lec- world out of a chaotic and inhabitable mass is an equally ture in Edinburgh on these topics during the ensuing great miracle with the volition that a world should apwinter, we feel assured that there is no living authority pear where nothing previously existed, working out its will be listened to with more earnest attention.


We know not, therefore, that there need be, or that

there really is, any immediate cause of quarrel between How are Worlds Formed ? being a New System of the geologists, and those who insist for the literal interCosmogonical Philosophy. By Samuel Beswick,

pretation of scripture upon the mere question of the Ilaslingden. 1847.

earth's age. We apprehend that the real quarrel oriThe Ancient World; or, Picturesque Sketches of Crea- ginates in other matters on which geologists themselves

tion, By D. T. Ansted, Professor of Geology in have arrived at no precise conclusion. Mr. Beswick King's College, London. London : John Van Voorst.

has a high and highly proper regard for revelation at the The construction of worlds was formerly considered to commencement of his work : thus he says— be a subject altogether out of men's reach. Even since “But we have an opinion, that mankind will less oppose we remember, comparatively few persons pretended to the progress of science, when the important fact is seen in toll, with any degree of precision, either how this or any Sacred Writings, not a single scientific fact is revealed

all its consequences, that, throughout the whole of the other world was produced. Science and information are,

which was not known before ; neither throughout the however, progressing, and there is absolutely now no whole of our Lord's life, from birth to crucifixion, as regreat difficulty encountered in the inquiry. By aid of a corded in the gospels, did he revcal a single scientific to hammer, and a few months' rock-chipping, persons of or

mankind. This is a demonstration, that the object and

mission of revelation, or of theological teaching, are not dinary capacity get at the whole secret. We have two

to make known scientific truth, but rather to make a works before us, of recent publication; one, a large right and true use—a sincere use-a charitable and phipamphlet, showing how worlds in general are made ; and lanthropic use-of whatever truth or knowledge we may the second, an antique and profusely-ornamented volume, His constant end and aim was to direct the attention, in

already possess. This is proved by our Lord's mission. which contains a history of this world in particular, not the use of natural truth and things, to what is spiritual, merely before the flood, but before what simple-minded heavenly, and eternal. There is not a precept, saying, persons are disposed to regard as the period of its parable, private lecture to his disciples, or creation. Mr. Beswick, the author of the thick pamph- the attention invariably to things of a spiritual na

on the mount, but what shows us, that he directs let, obligingly intimates that he expects to be assailed

ture. His constant subject of discourse was about on every hand by those who "found their cosmogoni- heaven and hell, and the life of, and for each. As, for cal ideas upon the letter of the sacred writings, who be- instance, the kingdom of heaven is likened to this and to lieve that the system was originated in six literal days.” heaven ; fear not them which kill the body, but rather

that ; lay not up treasures on earth, but treasures in Mr. Beswick, of course, believes nothing of the kind. them which kill the soul; such was the invariable tendency Nobody, in short, who professes to be learned on these and object of all that he said and did; consequently, of subjects has any such belief. There has been much his mission. And are not his gospels the sublimest standard learned criticism and speculation on this topic, and sion? yet he revealed not a single scientific to mankind.

of theological teaching, and his life of a theological miswhether the announcement of creation in Genesis might Shall we say that he, of whom such miracles are reor might not be in our translation more accordant with corded to have been done from self-power, was ignorant of the original if "epochs" had been used instead of “days," much scientific truth, then not known ? this would be a is, after all, a question of less practical importance than downwards, did not reveal a single scientific truth. Their

display of ignorance indeed. The prophets, from Moses many persons seem to suppose ; since nothing, we think, mission, and that of revelation is to teach the ultimate can be clearer than that the same exertion of power which ends to be realised—to be intended and designed by the is supposed to have placed the strata of the world in re-application and use of scientific truth.” gular order, could have formed a world, if we may re- If we concede this reasoning, its author will surely verently use the phrase, with all its geological relics, and allow us to insist that this revelation, on which ho pro


fesses to place—and we have no ground to suppose that | tion of the experience of successive generations, extending he really does not place the highest value-did not make over a period that would baffle and render ridiculous all erroneous statements regarding natural science or historic attempts at chronological computation. But it was an

age of allegory and correspondency; and hence this facts. Ho will allow, we presume, that while it in no

appears to have been their scientific method of arriving at part professes to be what his work is styled, “ a new the discovery of truth." system of cosmogonical philosopliy,” yet in no part does We do not know that in any similar work we ever met it offer a distinct statement on any subject whatever which

more grossly absurd statements than those which we have is not also a distinct fact. We turn from the commence- quoted. They exhibit the wonderful credulity of Mr. ment to the termination of his pamphlet—where pago 15+ Beswick-a credulous acceptance of his own imaginations and onward he says

that almost transcends anything manifested by the Latter“The existence of boulders on the north-eastern shores Day Saints. We certainly never could find out any of Great Britain, the east of Iceland, the south-cast of records of Persia, Chaldea, and the other nations named Groenland, and especially on the north-east of North America, or that region contiguous to Europe, and their -all, it may be obserred, within the supposed limits of non-existence both in South America and in the southern the flood—that antedated their existence so much farther latitudes of North America, considered in connexion with back in time than the Mosaic history, as this expounder the direction of the Great Northern belt of the same kind of the way that worlds are made coolly assumos. Accordof stones, forcibly leads us to the conclusion, that the precessional circulation of the waters of the ocean had

ng to his theory, the notion of a general flood originated carried these masses of granite from the north of Europe, with the colonists of Germany, Poland, and so on; but and projected them upon the north-eastern localities of how Moses, who was, so far as his education went, “an North America, where they would be deposited before Egyptian," learned the tradition, since there was no they could be glided, or cast upon the South American shores. It must have been since this last precessional overland mail in these days, remains to be explained. retreat of the ocean that the debril matter on and about Mr. Beswick will perhaps indulge us so far as just to the prominences, the mountains, hills, and rocks of Eu- cast his eyes over the last sentenco save one in our rope and Asia, has been formed by disintegration. From last quotation ; and the reason why we respectfully the same period we may date the formation of our alluvial mattor, by the deposition of flowing streams, rivers, ask the favour is, that this sentence alone is gufficient &c., and the origin of the latter also. In fact, the whole proof that he is not the man to explain the mysteries of of the present superficial arrangement of Europe and creation, and tell us how the worlds were made. Asia commenced from this epoch. It was then our pre-If these Egyptians had reached, as he says, at the era of sent vegetation began its existence ; our rivers to widen their borders at one place, and fill up in others; and Eve, such a degree of intellectual advancement, as only our different classes of animals to multiply and spread accumulations of experience, extending over periais themselves over the surfaco. It was then that colonies of " that baffle and render ridiculous chronological computamen coming from the nearest habitable locality, Cau- tion,” could confer ; it follows, that now in the era of casia, spread themselves along its retreating borders, thus passing over central and northern Europe, forming Victoria the same people must be advanced in intellectual establishments in what are now known as Germany, matters, at least, considerably beyond those European Poland, European Russin, and Scandinavin. the waters retreated, gradually spread themselves over

races, who, it is allowed, began the world anew only four Greece, Italy, Spain, France, Britain, &c., everywhere


years ago. The rapid advances made in physicarrying with them the tradition of the Deluge or Flood cal science and its application, in

his country and in which had covered the whole earth they were then colo- Europe, within half a century, being immensely over any nising ; though, in consequence of all records and stories progress attained by the men who built Thebes, must being then composed according to a science of correspondency, the tradition of the Deluge would, by them, have certainly be the product of incalculable ages of experience, a meaning distinct from the literal fact.

according to Mr. Beswick's theory; and thus his Egyptian “We may now see the truth of that long disputed sub- theory knocks out the side of his European theory, leaving ject, and the reason why the Chinese, inhabiting the it plain and palpable, in the tecth of boulders and parallel shores, east of this flood, have records much older than those of European nations :* also those nations in- roads, that there was no flood here, but that we have been habiting the southern range of this Flood, viz., India, progressing in science, knowledge, and arts, for a million Persia, Arabia with Chaldea, Egypt, and Africa. “ IIence at the supposed time of the Mosaic deluge,

of years, less or more, uninterruptedly. All history is about 4,000 years since, these nations had arrived at a

thus made a lie; and even the memory of the more addegree of perfection in the arts and sciences which is a vanced class of citizens is converted into a fiction. We marvel to this learned age, and of which we can form no have a dim remembrance of having been taken-we actuconception. At tho time when the religious community ally think carried—to see the first steamer that ever enof the present day is supposing the heavens to have been formed, they had mapped it out into configurations : at

tered a secluded Scottish port ; but that is a dream the time when it supposes the first man and woman were mere fanciful vision ; and the remarks we fondly treasured rudely tilling the ground, without clothing and shelter,

as the forebodings of village patriarchs and matrons are these nations, particularly Egypt, were teaching the arts and sciences in schools : had formed the most durable

mere boulders or debris of some disordered vision of the edifices and buildings that have ever been erected in the night. The fact must have been that steam-boats of history of man ; and, at the supposed time of the Mosaic rather rude construction navigated our waters many cena deluge

, they had so far progressed as to be ablo to teach turies ago ; and the gallies that brought Julius Cæsar to the most sublime mysteries in the form of allegory. Such Dover;

or the curraghs, in which the Lords of Lorn naviis the nature of the Mosaic Cosmogony, as described in the Sacred Writings, which was composed in those gated the Sound of Mull, must have had at least one days. † Their intellectual condition supposes an acquisi- paddle-wheel ; although, probably, like Clarke, the cele

brated engineer of the Cricket, half

penny steamer, which See M. de Fortiu d'Urban's History of China before the recently plied between Hungerford, and London bridges

, deluge of Ogyges. t" And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the

on the Thames-they tied down their valves with a Egyptians."-Acts, c. vii., v. 22.

hempen cord, and made a fatal explosion occasionally.

And as

We have, indeed, a clue in this argument to the spinning machinery, but“jennies," and such things, prolabyrinths of Ossian ; and we take many of the descrip-bably of rude construction, were wrought in Manchester tions in that work to be, instead of highly imaginative, at the period of Agricola. So some old persons in very prosaic accounts of certain transactions on the water Greenock detail, as things consistent with their own and in the air, that may be even yet accomplished, at the knowledge, various recollections of the celebrated hero of small charge of one halfpenny. We can also fully explain, antiquity, James Watt. The whole matter curiously ilon the reasonings flowing naturally, spontaneously, and lustrates the progress of mental mystificatiɔn. James unavoidably, from the basis of the great Beswickian Watt, if ever he existed at all, must have watched his theory, those accounts of human sacrifices that have been mother's tea-kettle, .soine afternoon when that matron ascribed to the dark mythology of the Druids. We beg was to have an old friend from the desert to tea with our readers to take our assurance that the Druids were her, nearly 800,000 years ago, in a cottago, not on the mere engineers of the Cricket species, who only threw an banks of the Clyde, but those of the Nile-perhaps beunfortunate passenger or two into the air now and then, low the cataracts, although some authorities point to the and they came down dead.

uppermost regions of Upper Egypt. Most probably, The statements addressed in Scripture against human however, James Watt had no real existence, but is a sacrifices in Tophat and elsewhere are pure allegories. myth-neither man nor mite, but myth. So in referenco

There was a “myth," as the Germans have it, and the to Robert Napier, whose steamers are so highly fumed story is told in Scripture with such reflections as seem that one of them is said to have beaten the Fairy in speed, suitable. Baal was a respectable gentleman—the mayor he is an allegory, that may be depended on, and his works of one or two cities, and the chairman of several railway are thoroughly allegorical. companies. Tophat was merely the Sowerby-bridge sta- Commonplace persons, who will not investigate theories tion on a railway out of Jerusalem, which had a viaduct of and their deductions, may style all these statements ex318 arches over the Valley of Jehosophat—or some other travagantly absurd; but we beg to tell them that they valley, it matters nothing which. 'If any person doubts are neither absurd nor Pickwickian, but good sound Bes. us, he can consult Brunetti, who will put it into his model. wickian consequences from “ a new system of cosmogoAt this station a great accident occurred, in consequence nical philosophy.” of the last first-class carriage, in an express train, getting We return, in a serious and staid mood, to the book, and off the line, and the guards not paying attention-in point its beginning, page 8, for the purpose of making the folof fact, there being scarcely any guardianship—because lowing extract :Robert James Baal, Esquire, the chairman, and the other “ If objectors to our philosophy think that the letter directors, wanted for the shareholders a dividend of eight of the Divine Word contains the real truth, is to scientific and a fourth instead of seven and a half per cent., and subjects, and if, likewise, they believe it, then why fear could not afford two guards for cach express train. The

an appeal to fact?!! carriage being unnoticed, was dragged along for thirty

But what is fact? Objectors are asked to appeal to two and a third minutes, at the rate of sixty miles an hour,

filct. They are justitied, therefore, in asking for a fact. and several persons were killed. That is the origin of the Tho nebulize thicory was considered a fact three years ago. myth which we find in Scripture, whe Mr. Baal is used to

After explaining it-and we must say in passing that the employ a principle ; sometimes, also, set forth under the explanations in this pamphlet display much research and personification of R. D. S. Mammon, Esq., who was the acquaintanco with the subjects-after its explanation at original chairman of the company, and ultimately retired page 31, the author saysto his estates and villa, near Sodom, with a large for coupled with that of gravitation : nay, that it is: in fact.

Here, it will be observed, the nebular theory is tunc acquired by bearing the company's scrip on the nothing more than the theory of gravitation applied to the bourse of Babylon. Of course, the prophets, standing in elucidation of certain phenomena, or certain aprearances those days in the position of troublesome newspaper of a self-luminous matter, with a view to show that it is reporters~"the vermin of the press”—a phrasc crro

the substance from which all the stellar bodies and astral

systems are made. neously ascribed to a celebrated songstress, though, no

But could it be proved, that this apparently self-shindoubt, originating in a committee-room that shall be ing fluid is nothing else than an extensively vast system of nameless, where the only music is the porter's bell and stars--so distant, that it appears like an irregularly diin the engine's whistle : these prophets, who were perpetu- proved to be not rooted in the nature of things, to bavo

cloud of light-then, of course, this Theory would be ally interfering with the amusements and money-getting to ground in which to germinate and flourishi

, or to rehabits of society, made a myth of this fatal accident, and ceive the culture of successive generations; Lecause, no the evidence, as it appeared on the coroner's inquest held | longer consistent with known fact." at Bethlehem—which we in our day have read wrong ; Then he tells us that this is exactly what occurre). but now the matter is explained, and the entire tran- The Earl of Rosse and Dr. Nichol smoto the nebula hip saction, we trust, placed upon an intelligent footing. and thigh. They made an end of the theory one fine and Such is the advantage flowing from an enlightened criti-clear evening, by discovering that the nebula wero cism. The theory involves some singular corrections of clusters of individual stars. They were too late, howmodern history. For example, Sir Robert Peel is re- ever, for a myth had been written, and four editions sold, ported, in aristocratic language, to be without a grand- under the title of “ Vestiges of Creation,” which became father. His father is said to have made a large a very popular book, especially amongst fine young fortune by the use of some extraordinary inventions gentlemen who liked to believe that they were descended in the cotton-spinning business. This vulgar impression by regular succession from reptiles and toads, and had a is, however, quite a blunder. There were no such in- very fair chance of being re-transmuted into reptiles. ventions of modern date. Gradually men inyented the ! This myth was founded mainly on the nebulæ theory. It

2 U

[ocr errors]


« AnkstesnisTęsti »