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dency to do the greatest good, by affording, in the beft manner, the most agreeable and useful relief to the poor ; by encouraging frugality, industry, and virtue among them, and by promoting the population of the kingdom, and removing many of the evils which attend our present poor laws. I will add what appears to me a further recommendation of it, that it will substitute in the room of the prefent dangerous plans of the friendly societies scattered throughout the kingdom, ONE GENERAL PLAN of the same kind, well-formed, subftantial, and permanent.'
Every other testimonial would seem needless after this; and we have only to add, that if Mr. Acland's plan should meet the approbation of the legislature, and a trial should be made of its practical efficacy and utility, we fincerely with that its success may answer his expectation, and reward his zeal.
Art. XIV. Lucubrations; consisting of Esays, Reveries, &c. in
Prose and Verse. By the late Peter of Pomfret. 12mo. 35.
fewed. Dodsley. 1786.. YTTE have been so frequently entertained by this ingenious
VV Author, that it would give us great pain if, after all, we were obliged to sacrifice him at the altar of criticism. We always make those immolations with reluctance; even when there is no claim on our gratitude for past obligations : but when an old friend, to whom we have been indebted for many hours of rational amusement, becomes infipid or tedious, and yet will - will talk, it occasions a fad conflict between humanity and justice before we have the heart to bid him hold his tongue.
As we dread to have our better feelings put to so rigid a test, we were really afraid to go one step beyond the title-page of there Lucubrations, lest Peter, whom we had loved and cherished in his more vigorous days, Ihould become our victim in his old age.
But (happy for us both!) as we proceeded, our apprehensions subsided ; and we exclaimed with pleasure, · Though Peter's grey hairs appear, yet the laurels are not yet withered on his brow!' :
• Languefcit !' he exclaims : or in other words, he feels bim. felf growing old, and is conscious that his muse partakes of his infirmity. The acknowledgment is ingenuous: for very few whose powers are languishing by age have the candour to con. fess it, but most old fools have the vanity to think that they are as young as they ever were, and whether their object be a mufe or a mistress, they will ftill affect to be brisk and gay; though all their gaiety only reminds us of
• Sober Lanesborough dancing in the gout.' . These Lucubrations appear to have been the amusements of a vacant hour: and wbile there is nothing in them offensive to virtue, religion, or good manners, there is something that.will
afford entertainment to those who read for no other purpose : and something too from which minds of a more elevated and enlightened cast may not disdain to take hints of instruction
The lines on suicide express the common arguments against self-murder, in a concise manner; though we can say littie in praise of the poetry; for it is deficient boch in ease and spirit.
From the essay on our reception in public places,' our Author appears to have met with some severe affront from a haughty die vine, which he hath taken the opportunity of chastiting with more than common asperity.
We cannot conclude without saying, that though Peter's taper doth not burn with its former vigour, yet its light is clear and pure; and we doubt not but when its laft flame trembles on the locket, it will still show the good qualities of its compofurion, and leave a grateful odour behind.
Art. XV. A short Review of the political State of Great Britain as
the Commencement of the Year One thousand Seven hundred and
Eighty-seven. 8vo. 15. 6d. Debrett. 1787. 6 A Nintelligent mind,' says this very ingenious writer, ac
A customed to speculate upon human events, to regard their causes, their progression, and their effcats, and to form its general opinions from an expanded survey of the whole; such a mind will naturally stop at particular æras in the history of nations, and assemble their scattered rays into one concentered point of view. The political situation of this country at the prejent juncture, may, perhaps, be regarded as forming one of those epochas; and may merit consideration, as detached from the general mass of time and matter, which constitute and compole what we denominate history. My object, in writing the following theets, is principally to present a pi&ture of the actual and existing moment, without either taking any ample retro(ped of past transactions, or extending my conjectures far ir to an unascertained and imaginary futurity. It is certainly curious, and it may be useful, to consider the relative and respective potitions of the king and the people, of the governors and the governed, of the ministry and of the opposition, at the opening of a new year, before the incumbent pressure of succeeding events has diverted our attention to other scenes and objects. I shall confine my survey to a few of the great component features.me
He, accordingly, begins with THE SOVERFIGN, who stands foremost on the canvas : a most respectable figure, as a good and amiable man. The reader may imagine the back ground of the picture to be grouped by Edwards, and Henrys, and the late King of Prullia, as MONARCHS. The piece is well keiched, with a bold but not licencious pencil. To drop, for a moment, ihe allufion, our unknown Arthur leonis to poffefs a great dea Rev. Jan, 1787.
gree of candour, as well as of spirit. He disclaims all party at: tachment. • Above the vileness,' says he, of writing for any faction, or adopting from interest, any opinions : having little to hope, and less to apprehend, from any minister, I have written as I felt on, every subject. I am neither to be found on the terrace at Windsor, nor at the suppers' [few authors are, we ruppose] at Carlton-house. I have neither bowed to the meridian, nor to the rising fun. I have neither Aattered the Minifter, where I conceive that he is an object of censure; nor juftified the Opposition in those acts where I believe them to have merited condemnation
The Heir APPARENT next attracts our notice; and in this masterly piece we see, with inexprefible concern, the rising sun almost totally eclipsed by----But we refer to the picture, and turn our eyes to the drawing which is here given of the Minister. Mr. Pitt's portrait is a favourable likeness of (if we mistake not) a favourite with the artist. We do not, however, think that he has done more than justice to the original.
The Companion to the last mentioned picture (though the ori. ginals are not companions), gives Mr. Fox, painted, indeed, to the life: for, although our political Vandyke modestly professes to have given us only sketches, this is, unquestionably, a marterly portrait. Free, animated, glowing, -the figure seems ready to start from the canvass; its lustre is, however, duly tempered by the requisite thading of an imparcial pencil. The foibles that muft necessarily enter into a true delineation of so mixed a character are not overlooked : and we are seasonably reminded that it is not a divinity that we are contemplating, but a mortal, like ourselves, and subject to the frailties of o:her men.
In coalition with the last piece, we have a brief outline of Lord North. It excites in our minds a just recollection of the character, but furnishes us with no new ideas of the man or the minifter.
Of Burke, it should seem as if the Author thought, the less is said, the better ; but to Sheridan greater attention is given, and ample tribute is paid to lo' rare and fo matchless a combination of talents. There, a temperate and a winning elocution, suro tained by claffic elegance, adorned with dramatic and poetic images and allusions, pointed with the keenest irony, and riling, where necessary, into the boldest animation, conspire to render him one of the most conspicuous leaders of parliamentary debate.'
No longer a painter, but a political spectator of the pulling times, our brother Reviewer proceeds, toward the conclusion of his work, to speak, in terms of approbation, of the commercial treaty with France. He then goes on to take notice of a great event by which, among other memorable occurrences, the last year hath been diftinguished, the death of Frederie the Grea, on whom the highest culogia are lavilhed.
Lord Lord Rodney's ample Share of public merit is likewise the subj.ct of much encoinium, attended by a severe charge of in. gratitude hore brought against his country, grounded on the peculiar circunstance, and present situation of this first-rate ta val officer,- the saviour of the empire, whole age is embistered by suits and attachments, and all the nameless engines of judicial to:ture !
Mr. Hastings, too, finds here a warm and aile advocate, who pleads the caute of the Oriental hero, and ftrongly recommends him to the protection and gratitude of his coun:ry.'
The retreat, cicher actual or imminent,' of Lord Mansfield, ' from a situation which he has held with so much dignity to himiril, and so much benefit to the Public, for a perind of thirty years,' furnishes our Author with an opportunity of paying a just tribute of applause to the rare merits of a man, whole loss to : his country, whenever it happens, will not be easily repaired.
This Review concludes with an intimation, that, should the present pertormance meet the public approbation, the writer may, probably, be induced, at some moment of leisure, to refume his pen, and to attempt to complete that picture, of which he has only traced ihe outline.'
MONTHLY CAT AL OG UF,
For JANUARY, 1787..
AFFAIRS of IRELAND. Art. 16. An Aldress to the Nobility and Gentry of the Church of
Ireland, as by Law established. Explaining the Causes of the Con motions and Infurrections in the Southern Parts of this King. dom, respecting Tiches; and the real Motives and Designs of the Projectors and Abetrors of those Cominotions and Insurrections, &c. By a Laym. n. Dublin printed, London, reprinted for Kearley. Svo. 23. 1786. T HE continual dispoñtion of the Irish peasantry to tumultuous
disturbances, the enormity of their outrages, a d the persons against whom their brutal resentment is directed, all tend to the that the poor ignorant agents are spurred on, by concealed and crafty directors, to some dark purpose. The Author of this Address argues throughout, to piove, that Popery is the root from whence the presenc infurreétious (pring. The insurgents are all Papiits, their ma. nifestoes proclaim them to be fo, their priests openly read them at their altars ; their mass-houses are their places of rendezvous, where they bind themselves by solemn oaths to execute their designs; and the extirpation of the Protestant eltablished clergy, and consequently of their religion, is the object of their confederacy. Some particular events and circumstances have, at this time, caused the fire of these discontents, hitherto mothered, to break out into a blaze; the first and principal of these are, the hally and improvident repeal of the F 2
most important parts of that code of laws, called Popery laws; and par. ticularly of that part of them, which forbids che acquisition of free. hold property by Papifts. —
• Another circumstance which has much contributed to the present disturbances is, the vast number of Pa;ifts in this kingdom, who have lately armed and regimented themselves, under the denomination of too lunteers ; they have not only intermixed themselves with Proteitants, in several bodies of Volunteers, but have formed distinct bodies themselves. And even in the city of Dublin, the Popish Volunteers, under the insulting denominacion of the IRISH BRIGADE, greatly outnumbered all the other Volunteers.
Another reason that these insurrections have broke out in this last summer, is, that a bill was (to say no worse of it) very haftily and ini providently introduced into parliament in the course of lait feffion, purporting to be a bill for the protection of the persons and properties of the clergy of the established church.- The bill was ill digefted, had many exceptionable clauses in it, and if it had pafled into a law, would have been the occasion of mischief and inconvenience, instead of advantage, to the clergy; it luckily miscarried in the House of Commons, and never was introduced into the House of Lords: during the debates on this bill in parliament, some ill. weighed reAcctions, and which, on examination, would have been found to have arisen from mistake and mil-information, were thrown out on the clergy, and their proctors, respecting the collection of cithes.--These debates, and the miscarriage of a bill, with such title, spread like wildfire through the kingdom ; some men of great weight, and in the confidence of government, were represented in the publications of these debates, as having spoken very hardly of the clergy, and their proctors, and as having accused them of exaction in the collection of their tithes. The Papists immediately concluded, that this was their time to commence hoftilities against the ellablished clergy, and that they would be countenanced, or at leaft connived at by government, and instantly broke out into open out rage and violence; and formed a folemn league and covenant against the church established.'
The preceding account of these artfully fomented disturbances, corresponds with that given in the Philosophical Survey of the South of Ireland '; and the result of the whole is, to prove that the most trifling compliance by the legislature of this country, with the infolent factious demands and pretensions of a Popith banditti, fpirited up by agitacing friars and Romish missionaries, sent here for the purposes of lowing sedition, is as inconsistent with justice as it is with found policy, and the safety of this Protellane itate : and that our religious establishment is the main pillar of our constitution, which cannot be pulled down without the ruin of the whole structure of our government.'
When we consider the assuming politics of the church of Rome, and the intriguing character of its millionaries, a Protestant establishment Mhould, before it holds forth indulgencies to the Catholics une der its toleration, cautiously weigh the numbers and strength of the • See Rev, vol. Ix. p. 11.