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All this is very natural, and may
very common. The effect of this arrangement will be a remitting spring at P, for when the cavern is filled higher than the point N, the canal M NP will act as a syphon ; and by the conditions assumed, it will discharge the water faster than TÖ supplies it; it will therefore run it dry, and then the spring at P will cease to furnish water. After some time the cavern will again be filled up to the height N, and the flow at P will recom
If, besides this supply, the well P also receive water from a constant source, we shall have a reciprocating spring.
The situation and dimensions of this syphon canal, and the supply of the feeder, may be such, that the efflux at P will be constant. If the supply increase in a certain degree, a reciprocation will be produced at P with very short intervals; if the supply diminishes considerably, we shall have another kind of reciprocation with greater intervals and great differences of water. If the cavern have another simple outlet R, new varieties will be produced in the spring P, and R will afford a copious spring. Let the mouth R, by which the water enters into it from the cavern, be lower than N, and let the supply of the feeding spring be no greater than R can discharge, we shall have a constant spring from R, and P will give no water. But suppose that the main feeder increases in winter or in rainy seasons, but not so much as will supply both P and R, the cavern will fill till the water gets over N, and R will be running all the while; but soon after P has begun to flow, the water in the cavern sinks below R; the stream from R will stop; the cavern will be emptied by the syphon canal MNP, and then P will stop The cavern will then begin to fill, and when near full R will give a little water, and soon after P will run, and R stop as before, &c. Bocking, March 14, 1812.
AGRICULTURE AND COMMERCE
CONSIDERED AS NATIONAL ADVANTAGES.
The Query proposed in the last number of the Enquirer as to the superiority of Commerce or Agriculture in promoting the good of this country, opens a very extensive field of discussion, and furnishes numberless objects for consideration. A full and elaborate examinativn of this question would take up more of the pages of the Enquirer than can reasonably be appropriated to one subject, and therefore this communication has no other object than to simply state the most prominent features of the subject, and from a hasty traced sketch leave its readers to fill up the picture, and complete the design by their own reflections and deductions.
In order that the writer and the reader may fully understand each other, it will be necessary to state what is or may be considered as implied by the words
advantage to this country;" they may be understood as signifying the political prosperity of the country relatively considered with regard to other countries; or they may imply the quantum of happiness enjoyed by the individuals who form that country; or they may relate to the facility afforded to luxurious gratifi. cation; this premised, the discussion is in some measure simplified, and the hazard of misapprehension partly removed.
For my own part, I have no ideas of national political prosperity, separate and distinctly independent of the happiness of those individuals who form a nation ; and shall therefore consider the political prosperity of a community as correctly represented by the degree of comfort and personal happiness individually enjoyed. Other views respecting this branch of the subject may be entertained, but they would lead to discussion of a nature which the plan of the Enquirer would probably exclude. All who consider that personal comfort and individual happiness must generate contentment, satisfaction, and tranquillity, will not hesitate to admit that a diminution of these blessings will bring along with it murmuring, contention, and tumult; neither can it be denied that the power and political consequence of a nation depends upon the union of the people, and that external strength can only proceed from internal peace, or in other words, that the happiness of the people constitutes the political strength of a nation.
Proceeding to the consideration of the individual happiness respectively conferred by agriculture and commerce, it will be necessary to state as a fundamental axiom, that morality and rectitude of conduct are the only certain sources of happiness and mental satisfaction. Happiness, as an individual possession, can only consist in bodily health, and mental use; the first compréhends the capacity of enjoyment, and the latter is that enjoyment itself. In the primeval ages of the world, when the cultivation of the earth formed the great business of mankind; when their wants were confined, and their wishes and desires were limited to the posa session of a few simple and necessary gratifications, disease was rare; the boary headed peasant sunk down to his grave by the gradual decay of nature; and the lamp of life, though necessarily impaired in its brilliancy as its pabulum was exhausting, cast a cheerful light to the last, and its lambent flame expired with a momentary struggle.
Agriculture is eminently conducive to the advantage of those actively engaged in it, not only by its promoting their health and vigour, but in the tendency which it has to cherish in them a manly and ingenuous character; every improvement in the art must be considered as of high utility, not only as it facilitates the subsistence of a greater portion of rational and moral agents; but supposing the number to be stationary, it furnishes them with greater opportunities than could be possessed before, of obtaining that intellectual and moral enjoyment which is the most honourable characteristic of their nature. The strength of nations is in proportion to their skilful cultivation of the soil; and their independence is secured, and their patriotism animated, by obtaining from their native spot all the requisites for easy and vigorous subsistence; the people who suffer their attention to be withdrawn from the cultivation of the earth, to pursue projects of glittering but too often illusive and deceitful promise, will soon be dependant for their very subsistence upon the good will and forbearance of their neighbours; industry, which has failed through having a wrong direction, will sicken and become enfeebled; the habits of virtue and moral restraint, imposed and nurtured by the simplicity and innocence of agricultural pursuits, will be supplanted by unnatural and excessive desires, indepena dence of character will bend beneath the pressure of disease and want, and a system of tyranny and servility be founded on the mouldering fabric of agricultural strength and virtue.
Let us compare the situation of a labouring cottager who earns his bread at the plough, with that of the manufacturer who spends his day at the loom; let us make a calculation of the relative happiness likely to be enjoyed by each; and attending to their habits, let us infer, as fairly as possible, which is the most important and useful member of society.
The ploughman rises with the sun, full of health and vigour; the objects around him are generally such as impress cheerful ideas, and the nature of his employment secures to a considerable degree his continuance in health ; his daily labour affords him a sufficiency of wholesome food, his wants are few, and easily gratified; and though far removed from the means of luxurious enjoyment, and the acquisition of worldly wisdom, his life is spent in a cheerful succession of useful labour and contented repose, and his mind remains untainted with the maxims of the cold blooded speculatist, the
visionary theorist, or the gloomy fanatic. The manufacturer rises from his care-pressed pallet, and drags to , his loom a body enervated by sedentary employments, and a mind rendered peevish and discontented by the pressure of poverty and the deprivation of personal comfort; during his long protracted hour of labour, “the blessed sun” never illuminates his pallid cheek, or the winds of heaven cool his feverish brow; immersed amongst hundreds of his fellow beings as wretched as himself, recourse is too often had to dissipation, to rob "care's barbed arrow of its sting;” and the earnings of his labour, instead of ministering to the real wants of himself and his family, are squandered in riotous excess. He beholds his employers and the favourites of fortune around him rolling in affluence ; he sees them possessing luxuries whilst he lacks necessaries;
discontent ensues. Again he flies to the intoxicating draught; then, roused by the remnant of native goodness and natural feeling still within him, he returns to his employment. Thus cheerless and unwholesome labour, with intervals of dissipated indulgence, form his miserable existence; discontented and gloomy, his mind is open to the suggestions and machinations of the designing ; seeing wretchedness in its thousand shapes around him, he becomes indifferent as to the production of it, and suffering misery, and making miserable, appears to be the business of his life.
It will be said that the bright side of one employ. ment is contrasted with the dark side of the other, and it will be asked, has the ploughman no pains ? has the manufacturer no pleasures ? There are no doubt numerous instances of misery in the cottage, and of happiness in the manufactory; but taking things in the aggregate, I am not aware that I have on either side been guilty of exaggeration in this sketch.
Here then is a manifest superiority as to the production of individual happiness to be attributed to agriculture; and as such, it is inferred that agriculture conduces more to the advantage of this country than commerce, from its very nature, possibly can do.
But if luxury contributes to happiness certainly commerce does also, for all our luxuries, or nearly so,