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struct them in what is right. In one of our conversations one day,
standings. I examine into the end of our actions, how they may af-
R.' The reader will be pleased to learn to whom he owes the entertainment and instruction which these volumes afford him. The names of the writers are prefixed to the work, with the signatures that distinguiff their respective letters, and are as follow :
P. Hon. Mr. Yorke, late Earl of Hardwicke.
O. Henry Coventry, Esq. Author of the Letters of Philemon to
L. Rev. Mr. Lawry, Prebendary of Rochester.
The engravings consist of portraits of Philip Earl of Hardwicke, and the Hon. Charles Yorke, as frontispieces; and busts of Alcibiades, Pericles, Herodotus, Thucydides, Socrates, Aristophanes, Democritus, Aspasia, Hippocrates, Nicias, Euri. pides, &c. which are finely executed.
ART. XV. Philosophy of Mineralogy. By Robert Townson, LL. D.
F. R. S. Edinburgh. Author of the Travels in Hungary. 8vo.
pp. 219. 75. Boards. White. 1798. А
BOOK which claims the title of the Philosophy of a par
ticular science should contain either the fundamental principles of that science, or the most general results of whatever is known concerning it. The first is the case of Linné's Philosophia Botanica, the second that of Fourcroy's Philosophy of Chemistry, the two principal works, according to our present recollection, which bear such a title. Botany being a science of discrimination, Linné, with wonderful sagacity, established in his Philosophia Botanica the natural rules by which we might distinguish vegetables, and fix their species and genera on solid foundations. Chemistry being a science but lately reduced to a natural system, Fourcroy endeavoured (we will not ven. ture to decide with what success) to give, in his Philosop?y of Chemistry, the results of our investigations in that science, reducing them to the most general heads and the most simple and connected order. Both these celebrated productions have been considered as elementary works, not because they contained the rudiments, but because they explained the fundamentals of these two sciences.
It was most probably a neglect of this necessary discrimination, which led Dr. Townson to bestow on this elementary performance the title of Philosophy of Mineralogy : thus naturally exciting in our minds those expectations which, we are sorry to observe, were not gratified on reading the work: not that it is deficient in point of merit, but that it does not fulfil the promises virtually made in its title. Had Dr. T. entitled it “ Outlines of Mineralogy," we might then have found little to object against it: or perhaps it would have been still more correct to call it “ Outlines of Mineralogy on the Neptunian system ;" because mineralogists are still divided in opinion concerning the origin of mineral substances, and the events which caused them to be arranged as they now are in our globe. Dr. Townson, however, assumes the opinions of the Neptunists as unquestionable facts; an assumption which, whatever their intrinsic merit may be, is not yet undisputed.
After having thus expressed our sentiments respecting the propriety of the citle prefixed to the volume before us, we hope that the author will not deem us too unfavourable to his work, if we attempt an abstract of it considered only as Outlines of Mineralogy; in which point of view, it may justly claim con. giderable praise
Of works of this nature, not pretending to be the vehicles of new discoveries, the chief merit must consist in the choice of the materials, the method in which they are disposed, and the clearness with which they are explained. Under none of these heads has the present author been deficient; and we can add, with pleasure, that the order of his chapters is truly natural, and that the contents of each very properly prepare the reader for the information to which they lead.
Dr. T. begins by a definition of the object of the science of Mineralogy, after which he gives an idea of the elementary substances, and of the laws of attraction, aggregation, and combination, which govern the mineral kingdom. The kinds of minerals which result from the elementary substances actuated by these natural laws are the subject of a chapter, which is indeed too short, considering that it contains the real science of mineralogy; the preceding observations belong. ing rather to chemistry, while those contained in the following chapters more properly appertain to geology. The 'stratification and the formation of monntains are afterward examined, and explained entirely according to th: Neptunian system; supposing a general solution of the mineral substances in water, and their gradual precipitation. The veins, their origin, and the formation of the substances which fill them, occupy chapter; after which, the petrifactions are considered.
The 9th chapter is wholly appropriated to the Wernerian exterior characters. The oth and uth contain useful hints for the classification, description, and investigation of minerals ; with directions relative to the best manner of forming collections of them; and the volume concludes with a valuable catalogue of nearly three hundred books, which may prove useful to the lovers of this science.
The perspicuity of this order is obvious ; and the clearness (if not the purity) of the author's style certainly deserves commendation. Respecting the choice of materials, though we have not in some instances been perfectly satisfied, (for example, in the 6th and the 8th chapters, where the author treats of the formation of mountains, and of petrifactions,) it would be ungenerous to exercise any unnecessary severity, after Dr. Townson has informed us in several parts of his work, that he wrote it in the country, deprived of the advantage of consulting books. Under these circumstances, he certainly deserves praise for the able use which he has made of the materials that he had at hand; and we ought to give him credit for his ingenuity in compressing a good portion of valuable information within the compass of a few pages: for instance, in the 4th and 9th chapters, where he treats of
the different kinds of minerals, and of the exterior characters of mineral substances, according to the Wernerian school.
Before we conclude this article, it may not be wholly im. proper to take some notice of Dr. T.'s inclination to widen the distinction between chemistry and mineralogy.- What is the latter science but a branch of the first ?-just as mechanics may be deemed a branch of the mathematics. Whit would be our knowlege of minerals without chemistry? or what our proficiency in mechanics without the aid of mathematics ? both are only sciences as flowing, the one from chemistry, the other from geometry.-We must also dissent from the author in his supposition of the almost total neglect of mineralogy in this country. While we possess a Kirwan, a Babington, a Greville, a Hatchett, and others who might be named, our situation in this respect is not so deplorable as might be imagined from Dr. T.'s expressions, in his dedication to the Duchess of Devonshire, and in his preface.--He himself, in ch.iv. (the most mineralogical part of his book,) makes use, with very inconsiderable alterations, of Dr. Babington's systematical arrangement of minerals. Does he complain of the zjegiect of this science in Great Britain, even at the time while he is transcribing the truly mineralogical part of bis publication from a living British mineralogist ? --If the real meaning of his complaints on this head be, as we suppose, that the torrent of fashion has not yet involved the study of this science, we would wish him to reflect how often, in the pursuit of serious investigations and useful sciences, that which is gained in surface and number is lost in depth and solidity.
Art. XVI. T. Lucretii Cari de Rerum Natura Libros Sex, ad ex
emplarium MSS. fidem recensitos, longe emendatiores reddidit, commentariis perpetuis illustravit, indicibus instruxit; et cum animadversionibus Ricardi Bentleii, non ante vulgatis, aliorum subinde miscuit Gilbertus Wakefield, A. B. Collegii Jesu apud Cantabrigienses olim Socius.
40. 3 Tom. 51. 55. Semicompt. Ch. Max. 2ıl. Impensis Editoris, W
HEN a new edition of an author is announced, who has re
ceived such frequent commentaries as have been bestowed on Lucretius, and from such eminent critics as Gifanius, Lambi. nus, Creech, and the last elaborate editor Havercampius, the public will naturally inquire with what new MSS., or with what additional aids, is the present editor supplied, which were not enjoyed by his predecessors ? - Mr. Wakefield, whose classical talents are already well known to the learned world, seems prepared for the question ; and in his preface he gives the following account of the new materials by which his work is distinguished: