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the Epistles.- Observations on the Resurrection of Jesus Chrift, by Gilbert Weft."
“ VI. Eight Charges to the Clergy, by Arbp. Secker.Of the Corruption of Chriftians, by Oftervald..The Design of Christianity, by Bishop Fowler.
Beside the above articles, these volumes contain a collection of Theological questions, maintained in the University of Cambridge, in the earlier part of the last century, and from the year 1755 to 1785. There is also an appendix, exhibiting a copious lift of publications in the various branches of Theology, with strictures on their respective merits.
Upon the gericral strain of the compilation we shall only obferve in one word; that an omission, which greatly furprized us in turning over the contents of the volumes, is that of bishop Butler's Analogy of Natural and Revealed Religion to the Constitution and Course of Nature. We are perfectly aware, that the taftes of different men must always be expected to be different, and that persons; equally found of understanding, and equally versed in the science in question, must be expected to vary extremely from each other in a selection of this kind. But Butler's treatise has always been received with fo high applause, coincides so much with the professed sentiments of our editor, and is of a merit so far out of comparison with half the pieces in this collection, that such confiderations seemed wholly inadequate to the solution, and insufficient to justify us in suppressing our astonishment.
The preface of the compiler distributes itself into two heads. The one, just and sensible reflections on the present state of Christianity, and the proper methods for its improvement; the other a lesson of moderation, liberality, and candour towards those who differ from us. The principles here delivered, appear to us unquestionably true; our only wonder has been, that it was thought necessary to deliver them with so much accuracy, prolixity, and labour. We have always thought that the garb of oftentation and parade, fat but ill upon the personages of liberality and truth., And we have been led to form somewhat a more humble opinion of the progress of the present age, when we have observed the appearance of the most natural sentiments of the human mind, thus accompanied with effort, and struggle, and a certain conscious fuperiority.
The quality of candour may be considered as of two kinds. There is a mind, to which it is in a manner innate, and where it is perfectly at home. Here no study is requisite to create it, and no discipline to bring it to perfe&tion. Like the fruits of a rich and generous climate, it bursts forth
spontaneous, and cultured by no hand bụt that of the alt mighty Maker, displays every attraction of form, and every exquisiteness of flavour. So far from being accompanied with exertion in its energies, it poffefses them únbidden, and brings them forth without any reflex perception of their beauty and worthiness.
But there are also minds, which, poffeffing no inherent comprehension of thought, and largeness of sentiment, come by flow and weary steps to the conviction of their merit. They accordingly aspire to their attainment, fome from a principle of honest rectitude, and some from an ambition to adorn themselves with the characteristics of men of a fuperior order. With such the exercise of liberality and justice, will always have something of the laborious, and, unlike the men to whom the qualities originaily belong, they will ever be rehearsing their praises, and reminding you of the facrifices they make at their thrine.
It will however be said, that, granting all this, the liberal minded man will often find it neceffary to teach with earnestness those lessons to others, which he least of all needs to have inculcated upon himself. But for ourselves, we profess to have our doubts respecting the utility of these grave lectures of forbearance and moderation. Let us see the heads of our church and the expositors of our holy religion, displaying their gentleness and candour in the fimplicity of “their language, the charity of their conduct, and the edifying philosophy of their conceptions. It is by such means that the lesson will be fpread far and wide, and the beauty of the pattern give birth to universal emulation. Am I a Socinian, a Mahometan, a Deitt, an Atheist? You expect me perhaps to bespeak your indulgence, and pathetically to adress your generosity. But you are niftaken: I have not a word to lose upon so low minded a theme. I ask no favour, I demand no pardon, I am guilty of no crime. And I cannot stoop to the meanness of asking that as a suppliant, to which I have a claim of right as a man.
It is not necessary to apologise for the freedom of these animadversions. The discerning reader will easily perceive 'that they are dictated by a general spirit of philosophy, and proceed from no disrespect to the illnítrious compiler of this publication. It is saying little to his discredit to confess, that we cannot rank him in the very first class of human minds; for, we are apprehensive that forms a 1lender band indeed.
But we have long enlisted ourselves among the fincerest of his admirers for independency of sentiment, integrity of profession, and a noble disdain of personal and feifith confiderations. And, though we may believe that
bis character is not without all shadow of a blemish, we are however persuaded, that he is an honour to the church of which he is a member, and second to no man that fits upon the bench of bishops.
Art. II.“An Elay on Medals. Sinail Svo. Price. 4s, sewed. Dodsley,
and a solid understanding, is of the utmost utility ; it is likewise productive of much rational and pleasing entertainment: in both these views therefore a directory in this study is to be considered as an object of consequence. To history, geography, chronology and the elucidation of the writers of antiquity, a knowledge of medals is of the greatest service. The advantages to be reaped from it by the architect, the sculptor, the poet, and the painter are sufficiently obvious. Nor will the natural philosopher 'find it a barren and unprofitable pursuit : while the conoiffeur, who collees and arranges his coins merely for the purpose of amusement, need not bluth at a comparison of his occupations with any of those which fill up the hours of gay or serious idleness.
The present compilation appears to be the work of a perfon well acquainted with his subject. The arrangement is good, and the author briefly touches upon every thing that is necessary for the study he means to recommend. Of this the reader may judge by the following skeleton of the work. • Rise and progress of the study of medals–Utility of this
study-Connexion of the study of medals with the fine arts of poetry, painting, sculpture and architecture--The various sources of delight and amusement arising from it-Metals used in the fabrication of coins and medals
Different sizes of ancient coins-Their former value« Conservation of medals-Portraits to be found on them,
of which different series may be arranged - The Reverses • of medals-Symbols observable on them-Their Legends
-Medallions-Medals called Contorniati-Greek medals . Roman medals-Medals of other ancient nations-Mo
dern coins and medalsCoins and medals of Great Britain ' and Ireland-Observations on the progress of the British ? coinage-Rarity of some ancient and modern coins• Counterfeit medals, and the arts of distinguishing them
from the true-Directions for forming cabinets-Present
prices of medals.--An explanation of the more common • abbreviations occurring on Roman medals-A valuation
• of English coins from William the Conqueror--Brief no« tices from the Scottish acts of parliament with regard to • the coins of that kingdom: and an account of the rarity • of Scottish coins-An estimate of the rarity of all the coins • of Roman Emperors, with their prices.'
Such is the variety of matter treated of in the present publication; which as an introduction to the study, as an ele'. mentary book, possesses great merit: and the more so, as it points put the sources which lead to a complete knowledge of the subject. The author frequently expresses himself too Itrongly, and besides attempts an epigrammatic turn in many places which might have been better omitted. An instance or two will confirịn our animadversion. The series of “ English pennies extends therefore without any failure “ from Egbert the first king, to the present reign; and will “ in all probability, to the end of time.” Considering the various revolutions to which this Globe has been, and in all probability ever will be subject, this is speaking rather positively, of the filver halfpenny of Edward the fixth, he fays. “ The smallness jidced even of the silver halfpenny, “'though continued down to the commonwealth, was of “ extreme inconvenience; for a dozen of them might be in
a man's pocket, and yet not be discovered without a good magnifying glass.” · Had he been speaking of the coins of Lilliput, he night have obtained some credit.
Be this as it may, the coinage of England was, soon after the revival of the mill in this kingdom by Briot, carried to a pitch of perfection which it never had reached; and, in point of workmanship, never will in future attain. The reader will instantly perceive that the miraculous works of Thomas Simon are meant; works which excell, and will ever excell any of the kind, either ancient or modern.
Simon was truly a wonderful artist, but to say that he never has, nor never will have his equal, is carrying panegyric Beyond all reasonable bounds. Should we be disposed to allow that no medallic artist has come up to his perfection, we cannot poflibly subscribe to what may be called the author's prophetic encomium, as what may, or may not be, is beyond the reach of mortal decifion.
As a specimen of the work, we shall present our readers with part of what is said upon the British coinage, thinking it will be more interesting to Englishmen than any other portion we could have chosen, and as it will justify what we have faid of the epigrammatic turn which appears without much propriety in several parts of the publication.
The whole coinage of Queen Ann, and part of that of George I. which is of this artist, is entitled to praise. It afterwards con. tinued in a tolerable condiţion till the commencement of the present reign, when it fell into the deplorable state in which we now view
it. In the first gold coinage of this reign, the face was quite a model, destitute of all feature and character: and another portrait has been given fince 1770, or a year or two before or after, with fich gross faults as to make our coinage a matter of laughter. For the head being most sweetly and languishingly screwed about to the left, so that a great part of it should appcar, yet, to our astonishment, no head is to be seen; so that the malicious joke of Foote mighệ jump into any one's mouth. Instead of the due proportion of head and hair, we only perceive the face cut off from the head, and a few rude lines fcratched where the junction muit have beega, evidently put there that ladies might not be shocked with the study of anatomy.
Our gold coin can only be rivalled by our copper. The first half: pence present such a face as human creature never wore, jutting out something in the likeness of a macaw. The latter ones are improved a little ; and in this our copper coin has a preference over our gold.
• The state of coinage iq any kingdom is commonly a barometer of its power, always of the itate of its arts. Hence it is matter of na, tional glory, that the coin be well executed ; and the decline of the money is justly esteemed a fure symptom of the decline of the state, Some grev-haired medallists, from this circumstance, foretold the loss of America, and all the calamities which, during this reign, have hafteyed the decline of Britain. Jesting apart, whatever may be the case with our glory, our coin may rank with that of the lowest times of the Roman empire,
• It is not therefore surprizing to hear that a noble Lord has projected a wonderful improvement upon our money, and has actually got pattern pieces struck
this new plan. The intent of this project is, that all our coin hall be in cameo, not intaglios cut hollow, not in relief. Were it to take effect, what would be the nummi bračteati, or all the efforts of the politer Goths of antiquiry, to our currency? May the noble Lord appear upon one of the first hollow coins, in all his glory!
! But surely the whole plan of coinage is yet susceptible of real and most important improvements. A far higher relief might be given to the impreilion, to as to rival the ancient in this grand criterion of good coin; and this relief might with ease be protected by a circle of equal height around the rim of the piece. This circle would not only serve to preserve the coin, but might, in the whole coin. age, bear a legend upon the edge ; an operation so simple as to appear upon the tin halfpence, when they were in use. This circular legend, now used only upon the crown and half-crown, ought to adorn and protect every coin, from the five-guinea piece down to the farthing; for there cannot be so easy and fo effectual a guard against forgery. The legends ought to be placed within the circle, and that on the edge might extend over the whole surface, fo as nothing could be taken from the coin without appearance. The copper coinage of 1717, and gold coinage of 1928, are something in the general style of this proposed, but not of sufficient relief, and without the circular legends. Such as they are, however, these X 4