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From the Polytechnic Review. tric sparks-its optical agencies (which is all that À CHAPTER ON EYES.

now concerns us) are evident enough ;-it acts in

straight lines, penetrates some bodies, is retarded Of all the various organs of sense, none have so by others; is of three primitive colors, which frequently been the theme of a poet's laudations were formerly erroneously supposed to be seven, as the eye. Thus consecrated, by time and pre- and occupies in travelling a perceptible space of cedent, as the soft expressions have become, it time. would be difficult to select a page of rhyme, or In tracing the gradual development of organs rhythm, epic, didactic, lyrical, or dramatic, with throughout the animal kingdom, we shall be freout finding some allusion to "burning glances," quently struck with this fact, that as we proceed " gentle beamings," or some other poetical attri- low in the scale of creation, functions which in bute of those highly prized and certainly very ourselves require localized and complex organs, beautiful litile ministers to our noblest sense. are discharged in a much more simple way.

Well ! surely they are worthy enough of all Thus, for instance, in all mammalia there is a this praise ; but if repetition be detractive of the localized respiratory system consisting of organs beauty of a poetical sentiment, (and but few will called lungs, for the purpose of purifying blood by doubt it,) then we cannot but admit that the eyes, means of atmospheric air-indeed, all vertebrated as regards their poetic attributes, are a somewhat animals possess localized organs for this purpose, hackneyed theme. It has recently occurred to us, of one construction or another; but on descending however, when musing in a kind of poetico-philo- the scale, we find that the respiratory organs, sophical vein, that the subject of eyes is not yet although still specific, become disseminated threadbare ; it has occurred to us that, without throughout the body ; in the insect tribe of inveryielding ourselves up to that species of mental tebrate animals, for example, breathing is carried aberration which is usually termed poetical, with- on by various tubes on either side of the body : the out wandering in the world of dreams and spectres, air is no longer inspired through the mouth, but and giving our imagination carte blanche over penetrates the sides ; neither does it proceed to veracity, we might yet write a little about the localized organs or lungs, but is diffused through eyes that is at once philosophical and poetical, the various breathing tubes. Hence the agony and, strange enough to say, true withal.

and ultimate death of a wasp, when its sides are To be serious! How beautiful is it to specu- smeared with oil or syrup, an operation which late on the nature of light! How delightful to occludes its breathing pores, and it becomes suffotrace the various forms of the visual organs as cated. Here we observe one step towards the disthey appear in different animals, variously modified semination of organs for the performance of a as they are to suit their various exigencies ! How specific function : let us descend lower still in the instructive to regard the clumsy means by which, scale of creation until we arrive at the polyp, in our optical instruments, we copy the effective, where there are absolutely no specific organs, though simple handicraft of nature !

either diffused or localized, for the performance of Understand our purpose well, then, reader. We this specific function, and hence respiration can do not intend to offer you anything like a treatise only take place by mere general absorption on the eye, either anatomical, optical, phycologi- from the surface or the cavities of these animal cal, or physiological ; no, nothing of the sort. We bodies. are now in that kind of mood to which most of us Now one of the senses, namely, that of touch, are not strangers ; too indolent to study, too fa- is remarkable for its known diffusion. Every part tigued to keep wide awake, yet too excited with of our bodies is subject to this sensation—we have philosophical inusings to sleep, although ever and no specific member for touch, although some parts anon we sink into a kind of reverie. We could of our body are more delicate in this respect than not for the life of us expound the rigid principles others. In some animals, however, this sensation of a system—we are disinclined, in short, at the is localized in a remarkable degree-a fact which present moment, to direct our deepest, our most naturally leads us to inquire whether in certain serious attention, to a philosophical subject; but beings it may not be limited to some specific we would fain amuse ourselves with it a little, and organ. if possible we would also amuse you.

Next comes the question whether or not other Very crude, indeed, were the opinions of the senses may not be subject to the same variation ancients with regard to the principle of light. also—whether, in short, referring to the sense now Plato imagined it to consist of emanations from the most specially under our notice, namely, the sense eye itself, which by impinging on objects rendered of sight, it may not be in some animals diffused, them luminous; an idea poetical enough in itself, and require no specific apparatus for its apprecito be sure, but yet not very rational. It would ation? It is not doubted that many animals not serve, however, to render intelligible the ex- possessing specific visual organs, without eyes in pression of “ burning glances,” which, according point of fact, are nevertheless sensible of the influto this Platonic theory, might be darted out from ence of the principle of light : the veretillum cynoyoung ladies' eyes. Far more rational was the morium, for instance, one of the polypiferæ, avoids Pythagorean theory, that light, instead of being the light, and prefers shaded situations, and yet an ernanation from the eyes themselves, was given has no eyes. Other instances might be adduced. off from luminous bodies, and impinged upon the It is imagined, therefore, that such animals see eyes : this explanation is indeed the one now with their skin, a condition which, if true, in one usually received, including as it does two rival particular animal or class of animals, may be suptheories, one that light consists of actual particles, posed by some lusus or freak of nature to be occathe other that it consists of waves.

sionally present in higher creatures, for instance Whatever may be the intimate nature of light, man; this granted, we may, if charitably inclined, whether it be really matter, or a motion amongst offer this as a rational hint to the advocate of clairthe particles of matter, or whether it be, according voyance and mesmerism. to Professor Oersted, merely a succession of elec- Leaving these beings, which, at the remotest

own.

confines of animated nature, derive their scanty | enable us to see the facets of these compound insense of luminosity from impressions so vague that sect eyes; most persons have looked upon the eye they defy our attempts at explanation, let us rise of a common dragon-fly, and seen thai their own upwards in the scale of creation, and remark how face was multiplied into a number of little images : variously the organs of vision are formed, how the house-fly's eye presents the same appearance, modified, how elaborated ! until in vertebrata they but not so distinctly. This optical appearance de attain their very acme of perfection.

pends upon the existence of several facets, each Those persons who have not been accustomed presenting itself under a different angle.

By the to view the wonderful disclosures of microscopic aid of a microscope these facets have been counted, life, are but little competent to form even an idea and then their number may well excite our admiof the myriads of living beings existing in a mere ration. In the ant there are fifty of these facets, drop of water !-Nay, even vegetable infusions, or eyes ; in the house-fly four thousand; in the and most animal and vegetable liquids, teem with dragon-fly upwards of twelve thousand; in butterlife! with minute beings, often highly organized, flies upwards of seventeen thousand three hundred which have not been merely observed, but actually and fifty-five have been counted ; nay, in some classified, and their characters and habits-nay, coleopterous or scaly-winged insects there have even their anatomy-minutely studied ! We do been numbered no less than twenty-eight thousand not purpose classifying these minute creatures, but and eighty-eight! will content ourselves with the casual remark, that How wonderfully constructed is this beautiful most of them, if we are to believe the united testi- organ of insect vision ! how admirably adapted to mony of numerous microscopical observers, are the necessities of insect life! The gaudy dragonpossessed of actual organs of specific vision ; fly, presenting, as he does, such a conspicuous and simple, it is true, and limited as regards power, tempting show of colors to the active swallow, but nevertheless as localized and as distinct as our eludes the feathered enemy by superior agility of

The eyes of these living beings are little Aight. Mere agility, however, would avail nored or darkish spots, adapted to absorb Juminous thing without the aid of powerful eyes ; accordrays, and therefore capable of enabling the animal ingly nature has given him somewhat more than to distinguish light from darkness, but nothing twelve thousand bright and piercing ones—some more; the perception of various tinted hues, and looking upwards, some downwards, more backof form and outline, must be to these little beings wards, and some on either side. Beautiful though totally unknown. Eyes scarcely more elaborate they be, and admirable in their contrivance, we than these are found in the leech and snail, ani- must leave the compound eyes of insects, and mals which, although so much superior to those ascend the animated scale. One step upwards just described in point of dimensions, are never- brings us to the arachnidans, including spiders, theless but little better provided for in regard to and cheese mites, and scorpions, none of which their power of vision.

little beings are insects, although frequently conThe eyes of insects are far more elaborate, and sidered as such-they belong, as we have intipresent iwo perfectly distinct varieties or type- mated, to the arachnidans, and differ from insects they are either simple or compound. Nature, ever in several important particulars : firstly, their head bountiful, though never lavish to prodigality of her and thorax are joined together; secondly, they endowments, gives organs only in proportion as possess eight legs, whereas insects have only six; they may minister to the exigencies of an animal : thirdly, instead of antennæ, like insects, they posthe red eyes of polygastric animalculæ, merely sess terrific weapons of attack and defence-fangs capable of distinguishing light from darkiless, are like the spider, or pincers like the scorpion ; abundantly sufficient for all the necessities of those fourthly, the greater number of them respire by Jittle creatures ; but for the denizens of the insect | lungs; and last, though not least, their eyes world—beings whose strength and agility are, in are formed on a different plan, being invariably proportion to their size, superior to all other beings simple, and made up of parts almost similar to our who wing their rapid flight, encompassed on all own. sides by ever-vigilant enemies of larger growth- Amongst the molluscous divisions of animals another and more elaborate ocular apparatus is ab- we have already alluded to the eyes of snails; in solutely necessary. Their simplest eyes (for they some other beings of this tribe, however, the vishave two kinds) are nearly as perfect as our own, ual organs present remarkable peculiarities. The consisting of cornea, lens, vitreous humor, and cuttle-fish is an extraordinary instance of thisblack pigment, which surround the other parts of its eyes being entirely covered by the external the visual apparatus, except a minute portion in integument or skin, which is transparent, it is front, thus forming a pupil and iris—such is the true, and thus serves the purpose of cornea in the simple insect eye with which some insects—for higher animals. instance, the cockroach-are alone supplied. Now We next come to the eyes of vertebrate anithis eye, perfect though its optical arrangements mals, which present all the excellent qualities that be, is not imbedded in a movable socket like our the most acute optician could desire, and which own; therefore nature compensates for this defect are as infinitely superior to the clumsy devices of by giving several of them, placed on various parts his art as the pure light of heaven is superior to of the head. But the most wonderful arrange- | all other. One thing is particularly interesting in ment consists in aggregating many of these simple studying the optical devices of the eye-our most eyes into one mass, thus forming a compound eye perfect optical instruments are formed after the of many distinct facets, each of which takes in a exact principles on which have been constructed separate field of vision. Some insects are entirely those organs : every step towards the improvesupplied with these compound eyes—of which the ment of such instruments has been the result of beetle is an example-whilst others possess eyes our copying Nature-or rather on our having folboth simple and compound, for instance, the sirex lowed Nature's steps—for although often plagia gigas.

rists, we were not always conscious of plagiarism. A microscope is not absolutely essential to In the days of Sir Isaac Newton, it was thought by this great man that refracting telescopes would called spherical aberration, may in a great measure never be rendered achromatic, or capable of repre- be obviated by cutting off those edges, or, what senting white objects without color—their im- amounts to the same thing, by covering them with provement he pronounced hopeless. Opticians, an opaque diaphragm, as is done in the microas was natural enough, regarding the opinion of scope and telescope. This proceeding, however, this great man as infallible, gave up the attempt, does not totally overcome the evil. Newton, and made reflecting telescopes exclusively. Re- who discovered that the different colors of light fractors, however, have since been rendered achro- were possessed of different amounts of refrangibilmatic—and how ?—why, by copying the mechan- ity for the same medium, was not aware that difism of the eye. Nature suggested the means, ferent media possessed different refractive power but Newton did not take the hint.

for the same color. Had he been aware of this We think the beauty of the eye will be more fact he would not have pronounced the improvefully appreciated if we previously take a review ment of refractive telescopes hopeless. We will of the construction and optical properties of tele- set out with the assumption that one kind of glass scopes. True, this will be a digression, but what disperses one kind of primitive light-viz., for then? we claimed a sort of poetical license in the example, blue light-beyond the true focus ; thetreatment of our subject, and we will proceed to ory indicates that another lens of different glass, take it.

having a property (if such can be found) of disThe merest tyro in optics knows that light persing the other two primitive colors, namely when it passes through transparent bodies is re- yellow and red, beyond the focus, would counfracted ; if the refracting body be plane and of teract the imperfection. Well, this, in modern equal thickness, then will various rays of light be telescopes, is actually accomplished by using comequally refracted ; if, however, the body be not of pound lenses made of various kinds of glass. We equal thickness, whether plane or curvilinear, will, in our next paper, show how beautifully all then other phenomena result, all explicable, how this knowledge had been anticipated in the conever,

by a consideration of two facts: firstly, that struction of the human eye. of the three primitive colors of which white light is composed, each possesses a different refractive

A Nomenclature of Colors, Hues, Tints, and power; secondly, that a ray of light impinging on a refracting body of greater density from one of

Shades, applicable to the Arts and Natural Scilesser density, is refracted towards the perpendic

ences, to Manufactures, and other purposes of ular, and vice versů.

general utility. B. R. HAY, Edinburgh. Now, we take it for granted, that everybody [In this catalogue raisonné of colors, Mr. Hay knows the property of a triangular prism in de- has reduced to a system of mathematical exactcomposing white light, and the reason of this ness the constituent parts and value of every modproperty. This understood, what we are about to ification of separate and combined colors. He rernark will be intelligible enough.

shows the proportions, calculated in numerical As soon as it was discovered that an arrange- ratios, that each of the primary colors bears to ment of different lenses in a proper manner would light and darkness, and the quantity of white and make an instrument capable of rendering remote black used to dilute or degrade them in order to objects more distinct-in other words, as soon as produce various tints and shades; also, the ariththe discovery of the telescope was accomplished-metical proportions and degrees of intensity in the observers viewed with regret that the outline which the primary colors enter into the composiof such objects was fringed with an unpleasant tion of the secondary colors, and tertiary and other misty burr, more or less indistinct, and tinted with compounds. numerous colors. The removal of this imperfec- The volume is illustrated by forty plates, each tion was a great desideratum ; and amongst othersone containing six different hues; forming tothe celebrated Des Cartes imposed on himself the gether a scale of colors sufficiently extensive for task of accomplishing this great end. He investi- all general purposes of the artist or manufacturer : gated the subject mathematically, and arrived at uniformity of the tints in each copy of the work the conclusion that all lenses which were mere being secured by the adoption of colored papers, segments of spheres must necessarily possess this in preference to hand-coloring. The simplicity defect, inasmuch as their curve is such that they and scientific exactness of this nomenclature recannot possibly concentrate every ray of light, commmend it to adoption as a handbook for use in even of one color, on the same point or focus. all business where colors are employed, and a He therefore succeeded in determining the form standard of positive distinctness is required for of a particular set of ovals, (termed, after him, reference. the Cartesian ovals,) out of which lenses might be The examples arranged in a tabular form, with cut which should be free from this injurious qual- the requisite explanations printed on a sheet, would ity; and he succeeded to this extent that with one be a serviceable chart to hang up in work-rooms : particular kind of primitive light his lenses over-the chromatic scale might be carried out to its full came the previous indistinctness of vision : with extent for this purpose. compound light, however-white light for exam- In an appendix, Mr. Hay hazards a conjecture ple—the imperfection still remained. Hence op- as to the constitution of the atmosphere in relation ticians no longer troubled themselves to make to light and sound, that is deserving of scientific these Cartesian lenses ; and even Newton subse-consideration.] quently pronounced the improvement of refracting telescopes hopeless.

Now the indistinct vision of which we have Railway Economy.—The saving between drivspoken is chiefly produced by the edges of a lens, ing a sheep to the London market from Lincolnwhich, in point of fact, may be regarded as prisms; shire and conveying it by railway is proved to be consequently, the imperfection alluded to, and no less than 10 per cent.

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From the New Quarterly Review. in Lord Brougham's behalf with many of them, Men of Letters of the Time of George III. By than possibly any other biographer could hope to LORD BROUGHAM. 1845.

possess. It is an invidious task to depict talent, The proof sheets are before us of a series of when that talent is employed to defame and debase highly valuable biographies, ten in number, begin- purity and religion. ning with Voltaire, and followed by Rousseau, Rousseau, and Hume, should, we think, exempt

His lordship’s remarks rela

iive to three of the biographies before us, Voltaire, Hume, Robertson, Black, Priestley, Watt, Cavendish, Simpson.

him from severe treatment in including them in The preface to them contains a just estimate of

the series. the peculiar characteristics of the epoch, in the

“ Although,” he adds, “I have no political following words :

animosities to encounter, I fear my historical state• The reign of George III. may in some impor- those of Voltaire, Rousseau, and Hume, may

ments and my commentaries on some lives, as tant respects be justly regarded as the Augustan find enemies among the two great parties whose age of modern history. The greatest statesmen, the most consummate captains, the most finished principles come in question. The free-thinkers orators, the first historians, all flourished during their favorite authors; the friends of the church

will object to the blame which I have imputed to this period. For excellence in these departments it was unsurpassed in former times, nor had it may take exception to the praises which I have even any rivals, if we except the warriors of occasionally bestowed. It may, however, be ex. Louis XIV.'s day, one or two statesmen, and pected from the justice of both these conflicting Bolingbroke as an orator. But its glories were

bodies, that they will read with attention and not confined to those great departments of human with calmness before they condemn. From the genius. Though it could show no poet like former class I can expect no favor beyond what Dante, Milton, Tasso, or Dryden ; no dramatist every one has a right to claim from avowed adverlike Shakspeare or Corneille; no philosopher to saries; a fair hearing is all I desire. To the latequal Bacon, Newton, or Locke-it nevertheless

ter I would address a few words in the spirit of in some branches, and these not the least important respectful kindness, as to those with whom I genof natural science, very far surpassed the achieve-erally agree. ments of former days, whilst of political science,

• Whoever feels disposed to treat as impious the most important of all, it first laid the foun- any writer that has the misfortune not to be dations, and then reared the superstructure. The among the great body of believers, like the celescience of chemistry almost entirely, of political brated men above named, should bear in mind that economy entirely, were the growth of this remark- the author of these pages, while he does justice to able era ; while even in the pure mathematics a

their great literary merits, has himself published, progress was made which almost changed its whether anonymously or under his own name, aspect since the days of Leibnitz and Newton. nearly as much in defence of religion as they did The names of Black, Watt, Cavendish, Priestley, against it; and if, with powers so infinitely below Lavoisier, Davy, may justly be placed far above theirs, he may hope to have obtained some little the Boyles, the Stahls, ihe Hales of former times; success, and done some small service to the good while Euler, Clairault, Lagrange, La Place, must cause, he can only ascribe this fortune to the intrinbe ranked as analysts close after Newton himself, sic merits of that cause which he has ever supportand above Descartes, Leibnitz, or the Bernouillis ;

ed. He ventures thus to hope that no one will and in economical science, Hume, Smith, and suspect him of being the less a friend to religion, Quesnai really had no parallel, hardly any fore- merely because he has not permitted his own runner. It would also be vain to deny great belief to make him blind upon the literary merit poetical and dramatic genius to Goldsmith, Vol- of men whose opinions are diametrically opposed taire, Alfieri, and the German school, how infe

to his own. His censures of all indecorous, all rior soever to the older masters of song."

unfair, all ribald or declamatory attacks, however There are those that might object io the canon graced by wit or eloquence, he has never, on any on poetry with the names of Byron, Scott, and occasion, been slow to pronounce.”Pref. Moore in the period, or think Leibnitz scarcely

We shall now open the list, in the order prehas his due, and possibly that the German school served by his lordship, with Voltaire. Lord is treated somewhat unceremoniously—but it is a Brougham conceives that there are three furins difficult matter to adjust the relative merits in so under which Voltaire is to be viewed: first, as an vast a field of view, and probably Lord Brougham atheist and blasphemer; secondly, as one who has formed a better estimate of ihe exact branches vents his ribaldry upon the mere ground of his than of the imaginative. His lordship next tells skepticism ; and thirdly that of a careless person, us, and quotes a splendid passage from Sallust for yielding to a prevailing unbelief. The circumthat end, that he has amused bimself, in his retire- stances of the church of his day are viewed by ment from office, with these biographies of the Lord Brougham as fully constituting the extraordistinguished men of a portion of his lordship’s dinary problem of Voltaire's mind, and his deterown era. We presume the moderns will succeed mined opponence to Christianity. His atheism he in their turn, and if we have no historiographers considers not proved. We think this matter of we shall have at least biographies of the great and much doubt; we allow that he often seemed 10 illustrious, written with powerful vigor, and from speak nobly of God. The celebrated extempore one who knows much of many of them. The composition on the firmament, composed on : statesmen of George III. have already passed summer's eve, is but a plagiarism on the Peniaunder his lordship's hand, and now the literati teuch, and renders unwilling homage to iis truth. of the same period succeed each other in the pres- "Tous ces vastus pays d'azur et de lumière, ent work. With some Lord Brougham has had Tirés du sein du vide, formés sans matière, a personal acquaintance; Robertson was his rela- Guidés sans compas, tournans sans pivot, tion ; and there are more favorable circunstances N'ont à peine coûté la dépense d'un moi."

The intent of the “Candide” is also estimated friend, obtained permission for him to reside in far too gently by Lord Brougham ; the obvious his house at Saint Ange. The Bishop Caumarinference from that work is, that all things are tin, a prelate well acquainted with literary pereither accidental when they must be for the worst, sons, probably excited him to the “Henriade” or the work of an evil agent. The following pas- and his History. On the death of Louis, which sage, however, amply redeems the piety of his occurred on his return to Paris, a libel being aslordship from any injury :

cribed to Voltaire, he was placed in the Bastile ; " Let no

man severely condemn the untiring thence he was liberated, and recompensed for his zeal of Voltaire, and the various forms of attack captivity, by the Regent, with a sum of money. which he employed without measure, against the After this event he produced his

dipe," religious institutions of his country, who is not which was written at eighteen years of age. prepared to say that he could have kept entire His first published work was however a devopossession of his own temper, and never cast an tional poem. The “Edipe” gave him an introeye of suspicion upon the substance of a religion duction to Me. la Maréchale de Villars—Voltaire's thos abused, nor ever have employed against its first, possibly his only true, passion. He was unperversions the weapons of declamation and of successful. His skepticism developed itself both in mockery; had he lived under the system which the composition and performance of the“ Edipe.” regarded Alexander Borgia as one of its spiritual The lines below were not likely to be soon forgotguides, which bred up and maintained in all the ten in the early part of the 18th century :riot of criminal excess an aristocracy having for one branch of its resources the spoils of the altar,

“Nos prêtres ne sont point ce qu'un vain peuple which practised persecution as a favorite means of

pense

Notre crédulité fait toute leur science." conviction, and cast into the flames a lad of eigh

Act IV., Scene 4. teen, charged with laughing as its priests passed by. Such dreadful abuses were present to Vol- We perfectly subscribe to the following crititaire's mind when he attacked the Romish super- cism on his tragedies generally, and think it stitions, and exposed the profligacy, as well as felicitously expressed :the intolerance, of clerical usurpation. He un- “ It is certain that the tragedies of Voltaire are happily suffered them to poison his mind upon the the works of an extraordinary genius, and that whole to that religion of which these were the only a great poet could have produced them; but abuse ; and, when his zeal waxed hot against the it is equally certain that they are deficient for the whole system, it blinded him to the unfairness of most part in that which makes the drama powerthe weapons with which he attacked both its evi- ful over the feelings-real pathos, real passion, dences and its teachers."

whether of tenderness, of terror, or of horror. The powerful authorities of Wilberforce, Lard- The plots of some are admirably contrived ; the ner, Jeremy Taylor, and Warburton, are all diction of all is pure and animated; in most passaadduced against that prosecution for irreligious ges it is pointed, and in many it is striking, grand, opinions, of which we clearly see the evil effects impressive; the characters are frequently well in the Romish hierarchy; and which led, accord- imagined and portrayed, though without sufficient ing to Lord Brougham, to the reaction against it discrimination; and thus often running one into on the part of Voltaire; and to this tendency we another, from the uniformity of the language, may, although possibly almost unconsciously, pre- terse, epigrammatic, powerful, which all aliké cipitate matters. We proceed to the details of speak. Nor are there wanting situations of great the biography. Voltaire was the son of the Sieur effect, and single passages of thrilling force ; but, Arouet, treasurer to the chamber of accounts, a after all, the heart is not there ; the deep feeling, valuable office. His mother was noble, and of which is the parent of all true eloquence as well as the family d'Aumart: he was born on the 20th all true poetry, didactic and satirical excepted, is February, 1694. Voltaire took his name from a rarely perceived ; it is rather rhetoric than elosmall family estate, pursuant to the custom of quence, or, at least, rather eloquence than poetry. those days, for the younger children of wealthy It is declamation of a high order in rhyme ; no commoners to take the name of their estate, leav- blank verse, indeed, can be borne on the French ing to the eldest the family honors. Fontenelle stage, or even in the French tongue ; it is not fine lived to nearly his hundredth year; Voltaire reach- dramatic composition : the periods roll from the ed his eighty-fifth year-splendid quotations for mouth, they do not spring from the breast ; there the longevity of the learned. At twelve years is more light than heat; the head rather than the old, some verses to the Dauphin, for an invalid, heart is at work.' procured him a legacy of 2,000 francs from Ninon The Zaire alone is excepted from the above. de L'Enclos, to buy books with. Ninon was then The “Edipe” was performed in 1718, and in ninety, and Voltaire was presented to her by his a few years was followed by the “Henriade." godfather, the Abbé de Châteauneuf. The court This poem, not without fine passages, is at such of Me. de Maintenon, which was then in the as- an immeasurable distance from the great epic cendant, united the saintly and the sinful in a writers that it was intended to rival, that we enterremarkable degree, and this Châteauneuf, with tain little doubt that the disappointment prowhom Voltaire was much thrown, was unfortu- duced the “ Pucelle.” The following remarks nately a person of dissolute morals and of skepti- are both just, and do Lord Brougham's heart great cal opinions. Voltaire was destined for the law, honor :and his anxious parent sent him as page or attaché “ The · Pucelle' is one continued sneer at all to the French ambassador at the Hague, probably that men do hold, and all that they ought to hold, with the intention of getting him clear of infidels sacred, from the highest to the least important and skeptics. A love affair caused him to be sent subjects, in a moral view, from the greatest to the home. His father, incensed with his conduct, most indifferent, even in a critical view. Religion refused to receive him, unless he entered a no- and its ministers and its professors—virtue, estary's office; and M. de Caumartin, a family | pecially the virtues of a prudential cast—the feel

32

LVII.

LIVING AGE.

VOL. V.

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