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by the influence of the nerves, the muscles of the ear to such a contraction of its membranes, as shall vibrate harmonically with the found; as the flimulus of light excited i. !o an analogous action of the pupil: yet tho’ the sentient principle thus fuperintends and adjusts these motions, the motions themelves, as he cbferves, are not only unattended with consciousness of volition, bui are altogether neceffary and involuntary; as we cannot move these muscles when sound does not strike the car, nor prevent their action when it does.

[To be concluded in another article.]

I

ART. XXII. The Hiftory of ihe Portuguese, during the

reign of Emmanuel : containing all their discoveries from the coast of Africk to ike farthest parts of China; their battles by Sea and Land, their firges, and ciher memorable exploits : with a description of those countries; and a particular {lccount of the Religion, Government, and Customs of the Natives. Including also their discovery of the Brazils, and their wars with the loors. Translated from the latin of Jerome Oforio, bishop of Sylves. By James Gibbs. Sva. 2 zols. 10 s. Millar. T feems almost incredible how far the human mind is ca

pable of being dilaced, and the virtues of magnanimity and courage improved, by a feries of success; while a train of misfortunes, on the contrary, feldom fails to sink its fa. culties, even to the lowest ebb. Whoever doubts, the truth of this obiervation, may read the Hillory we are now to give an account of, where he will find the Portuguese acting like heroes of the first rank, and performing exploits not easily, at first view, to be credited. What mall we think of an handful of adventurers routing numerous armies, and a few hundreds putting many thousands to flight ? Nothing animates a people more than sending out colonies, and making new le:tiements. The undertakers are often under a necessity of enduring the greatest hardships, and obliged to exert the utmost efforts of valour; and being thus inured to look down on dangers with contempt, they not only attempt, but perform actions, the very thoughts of which, in other circumstances, would have filled them with terror.

One can hardly read this history, without calling to mind the fabulous ages of antiquity, when every thing was full of the marvellous. Besides, is it not seasonable to suppose, that the Portuguese would relate their own exploits in a man

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ner the most favourable to themselves ? and we likewise wish the good bishop of Sylves, may not appear to have complied a little with ihe legendizing spirit of his religion : But be this as it will, there is, however, no doubt that the Portuguese were, during the reign of Emmanuel, in the meridian of their glory.

We shall now proceed to lay before our readers a summary of the transactions of this reign, the subject of the two volumes before us. We thall say nothing as to the merit of the present translation, which the reader will be fully apprized of from the extracts to be given.

As to method and disposition, the whole is fubdivided into twelve books, fix to each volnme, which we shall confider in order. The first book, after a judicious and appofite exordium, fets out with narrating the death of Yohn II. of Portugal, in 1495. who, according to the character there given of him, must have been a prince of great ability, penetration, and spirit. To him fucceeded Emmanuel, prince of equal capacity, and rather more enterprizing than his predecessor. Emmanuel began his reign with settling the affairs of his kingdom, and regulating the courts of juftice. He likewise gave a proof of his humanity, by restoring the Jews to liberty.

As the war carried on by the Portuguese in Africa, makes a considerable part of the transactions of this reign, it will be proper to inform our readers of the state of their affairs, and the footing they had there. Ever since John the first had taken Ceuta, a very strong town in Barbary, situate upon the streights of Gibraltar. His fucceffors never allowed the war against the Moors to lie long dormant. Alphonfo, grandson tó Juhn I. and father to John II. had likewise taken the city of Tangier, together with Arzila, not far distant from thence. And John too, after his father's death, thu' he was involv'd in great difficulties, always perfifted in a firm resolution of carrying on that war: and Emmanuel, following their example, embarked in it with vigour and spirit.

The right revd. author of this history relates many exploits of his countrymen during this reign, which, though poffible, certainly seem highly improbable. For instance, i hat 200 Portuguese horse might have defeated 2000 I loorijn horse, and 800 foot, we allow; but that they fhould do this without the loss of a man, can only be credited by those, whc, like the pious bishop, looked upon this event as a reward from heaven, for Emmanuel's settling a tenth of the

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tribute money, paid by the Moors, upon the priests, who went into Africa. This observation may also, perhaps, hold good, at least in some measure, with respect to the difcovery of the East Indies, and the atchievements of the Portuguese there ; of all which we shall give the reader some account.

• Though John the first, fays our author, had acquired great fame, his love of glory was not leffened by old age; for then he fitted out a formidable fleet, which besieged and took Ceuta, a large, rich, and Arong city of Barbary. Henry, the son of John, who had greatly diftinguished himfelf by his bravery at the siege of Ceuta, likewile carried on the fame grand design. He built a fleet, which he ordered to fail as far as poflible southward, along the western coast of Africa, with a design to find out a passage to the eastern nations; but death prevented him from carrying his designs into execution. His successor, Alphons), was so much harsaffed with war, that he could not enter into the schemes of this great prince. But John, the son of Alphonse, set about this affair with great vigour. In his time the greatest part of Ethiopia was visited, the Portuguefe fleet having failed into places which learned men, in former ages, thought There was no pofiibility of reaching. They turned the point that had hitherto bounded the navigation of these parts, and failed as far as the line; nor did they stop here, but proceeded farther, and discovered vast tracts of unknown land. Being now out of fight of the polar ftar, they were obliged to fix up constellations in the southern hemisphere, by which they might steer their course. A new navigation being thus opened, those who came afterwards into these feas made fill greater discoveries, and at lait reached the extremity of a pridigious promontory, wbich runs southward 35 degrees from the line, besides four which it has of north latitude; fo that its whole extent amounts to 39 degrees ; that is 2340 miles. In turning this cape, or pronontory, they met with the most furious tempeits, whence they callid it Tormontos. The account John received of the situation and extent of this promontory, gave him .nexpreslible joy ; he had now great expectations of finding a paftige to India, and therefore called the extremity of that neck of land, the Cape of good Hope. He next made choice of several persons,

Jews as well as Christians, such as he found to be men of genius and a&ivity; these he sent by the way of Alexandria and Ethiopia, from thence to fail for India, to get intelligence from people acquainted with those coafts, what was

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in We omit all private transactions and regulations, regard

the proper course to steer from the cape to the East Indies, But death put a stop to Ibn's further progress in these affair ; so that he left to Èmmonuel not only the inheritance of his kingdom, but likewise his carnest desire of carrying on this new navigation.'

After this follows an account of Emmanuel's fitting out a fleet, consisting only of four íhips, one of them too being a store-ship. This small squadron was commanded by Valio de Gama, a nobleman of great abilities, who failed from Lisbon on the oth of July 1497ing the policy and better government of the kingdom, that we may have the more room to give the reader an abitract of Gama's expedition,

After a tedious voyage of upwards or four months, he at last made the Cape of Good Hope, from thence coaiting along the eastern shore of Africa ; for being unacquainted with the navigation of these paris, he thought it dangerous to keep out to sea. When they came to 10 degrees of southern latitude, they discovered an island called Mojumlique, mostly inbabited by Saracens, who being good navigators, furnith'd Gama with two pilots, to steer his ships to Calicut, on the coast of Malabar, in the East Indies. The Arabs, at that time knew the use of the compass, and had sea charts and maps, wherein the situation of countries were laid down with great accuracy ; nor were they without quadrants, with which they took the altitude of the fun, and the latitude of places.

Gama arriving at Calicut in May 1498, sent one of his men alhore to get intelligence. This man no sooner landed, than he was carried off his feet by the crowd, and borne here and there, all prefing to see a man of an appearance and dress fo ftrange, and all inquisitive to know whence he came, what he wanted, and by what fortune he had been brought into these parts ; but he understood nothing of their language, nor did they of his. Luckily, however, there were then at Calicut some merchants from Tunis in Africa. These were not a little astonithed when they faw him, and supposed he was a Spaniard by his dress ; accordingly one of them accosted bim in Spani; and being told they were Portuguese, Monzaida (the African) went on board Gama's ship, who gave him a most hearty welcome, and a kind reception. They held a long conversation together, wherein he let Gama into the knowledge of many useful particulars. The following day Gama fent two' vt bis omncers •

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with Monzaida to wait upon the Zamorin, or king of Calicut; who being admitted into his presence, told him, that the king of Portugal, being filled with admiration at the fame and dignity of his name, had sent thither one of his admirals, who would be extremely glad of having the honour of waiting on his inajesty; and, in the name of his master, to enter into a league of friendship with so great a prince. The king made answer, that the arrival of the Portuguese admiral gave himn inexpressible pleasure ; and he would, with cheartulness, embrace the opportunity of making such an alliance; accordingly Gama went alhore, and was graciously received by the king.

Here the second book begins with a description of the country, and inhabitants of India, their clates and cuItoms,'&c. Then follows the intriguing of the Arabians, to prejudice the Zamorin against the Portuguese, by repre. senting them as pirates ; wherein they succeeded as they could have wish'd, the Zamorin having order'd ali their goods which had been landed to be seized, and two Portuguese to be thrown into prison. Gama, irritated by this usage, resolved to make repritals, and assert his right by force. Accordingly he actacked the first ship he law coming into the harbour, and took from thence fix naires, or roblemen, with nincteen of their servants; these he put into close confinement, but dismified the rest. This made the Zamo, rin restore the two Portuguese, with part of the goods. Gama, however, thinking himself ill ufed, refused to deliver up his prisoners, and accordingly failed from Calicut, carrying them along with him. The first harbour he touched at, he set one of the captives free, giving him a letter to be deliver'd to the Zamorin; wherein he set forth the many plots form'd against hiin jy ihe Mchometans; nevertheless, he assured his majcity, he would be attach'd to his interest; and as to the nobility whom he had in custody, he defired him not to be uneasy about them, promising, upon his honour, they should be treated with the highest respect, and sent back safe to their native country. After this he proceeded on his vovage homewards, along the African coast, and arrived at Lisbon in summer 1499. Of 148 who set out with him, oniv 55 returned, and these too worn out by sickness and fatigue. The king expressed the utmost gratitude for the fervices of Gama, and all concerned in the expedition were rewarded according to their rank and services.

In 1500, Emmanuel fitted out 13 ships, with 1500 men on board, under the command of Pedro Alvarez de Cabral,

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