« PreviousContinue »
views which he can neither comprehend, nor co-operate with. To him the confined and temporary honours of the festive party offer small attraction ; his more extended ambition grasping at the admiration of ages, feels as faintly prompted to exhibit its excellence in such contracted circles, as the comedian does to exert his talent before empty theatres. The elevation of mind produced by the giandeur of his designs, compensates to him the want of that credit and respect, for the acquisition of which it incapacitates him ; full of the fame he hopes to possess in future ages, he is indifferent to the estimation made of him by his contemporaries, and disdains the practice of those arts, which usually secure present reputation and fortune.
· Hence it is that many learned and ingenious men, capable of im. proving all who might associate with them, and deserving general csteem and encouragement, wear away an obscure and solitary life in the unprofitable worship of truth and science : while hundreds, who have exerted their modicum of sense and information merely to contribute to the immediate, and perhaps, sordid convenience of the indolent and luxurious, are loaded with opulence, and treated with the regard due only to those who instruct the ignorance, or purify the morals of mankind.
Often have I reflected with indignation and surprise on the fate of men, who though endowed with every quality to add to the happiness, engage the affections, command the respect, and merit the gratitude of society; though forined to please and shine among the elegant and great, and adapted to support and adorn the proudest offices, remain iminured in poverty and neglect; while honours and emoluments are engrossed by hereditary dunces; or by knaves, who have raised themselves from the dregs of society through mean compliances and dishonest artifices.'
In discussing the ill effects of Solitude on the Passions,' the author dwells perhaps too much on the excesses, in cloisters and convents, of those whom solitude was designed to teach exemplary purity, but in whom peculiar sensuality was thus excited. His details are too much extended, and his delineations are indelicate.
The translation is in general executed with elegance, and it does even more than justice to the German original.
ART. XIII. Memoirs illustrating the History of Jacobinism. Trans
lated from the French of the Abbé Barruel. Part IV. Vol. IV,
of facilitating some internal changes in French Free. masonry that should be favourable to the antichristian cause, and to the views of the Duke of Orleans, Mirabcau published at Paris an Essay on the Illuminés, which was afterward reprinted as a third volume of his Secret Memoirs of the Court
180 Barruel's Memoirs of Jacobinism, Vol. IV.
This was not perhaps exactly the place for these observations :- but what is there to say about the fourth volume of a
translation *, unless that in quality it resembles and in size ex-
wiselier chosen ones we recommend him to purchase some German grammar for beginners. We are not surprised (see Rev. vol. xxv. p. 510) at this instance of fellow-feeling.
Art. XIV. Application of Barrue!'s Memoirs of Jacobinism, to the
Secret Societies of Ireland and Great Britain. By the Translator
of that Work. 8vo. is. 6d. Booker. As
s we have already indicated in the Abbé Barruel's trans
lator (See Rev. vol. xxv. p. 510.) some departure, apparently voluntary, from his text, serving to misrepresent and to blacken the societies attacked, we do not now wonder at his coming forwards in his own person in the same line of hostility.
He describes (p. iii.) the English public as surprised in 1797 that the Abbé Barruel should refer an antichristian conspiracy to the philosophists of France. This surprise can only have extended to the ignorant. It cannot possibly have included the reading public; who, for thirty years past, have been perfectly aware of the avowed, systematic, and ostentatiously notorious co-operation of the Encyclopedists to overthrow Christianity. Smollet, Nugent, and others of the last generation of writers, translated into English many of the principal books composed for this purpose by the leaders of the conspiracy. The works of the foreign infidels made as little impression in this country, as those of their plundered prototypes, the deistical writers, whom Leland has enumerated. In their turn, perhaps, they will one day be known on the continent only from the Abbé Barruel's enumeration. On this portion of the work, Mr. Burke bestowed precisely the praise to which it is justly entitled.
When, however, the Abbé Parruel advanced to assert that the republicanism of France was the result of a previous agreement of the Freemasons begun in the times of the Manicheans, or before, and handed down through the Templars to the Ja
* For an account of the original of this volume, see Rev, vol. xxvii. Appendix, p. 509.
cobins; that the crimes and proscriptions of the executive power in France were the result of aboriginal premeditation and deliberate foresight, and formed a part of the misanthropic object and not of the accidental misfortunes of the Revolutions when he maintained that a similar ruinous crisis was an essen. tial aim and perpetual pursuit of the Free-masons'lodges throughout the world, and when he asserted that the Illuminés of Germany had undertaken, with more complete design, to effect a similar catastrophe ;-all Europe was indeed surprised, and is likely to continue so. When it is pretended that the Basedows, the Meiners', the Wielands, the Böttigers, the Bodes, the Feders, the Nicolais, the Stolbergs, the Sonnenfels, the Weishaupts, and the Cobentzels, of Germany *, were in a confederacy to abolish property and science, who can refrain from wonder at the rival audacity of so atrocious and malignant a denunciation, or a project? We have little doubt where to attribute the absurdity.
Prudence requires that we should avoid comments on what this author says concerning the societies of Great Britain and Ireland. We may, however, recommend to his attention Wood's View of the History of Switzerland +. He will there find that, in a country in which Free-masons and Illuminés were scarcely known, precisely the same phænomena occurred which he wishes to ascribe to the machinations of those sects. He will thence, surely, be led to infer that the part taken by all societies of persons, ander whatever denomination, religious, convivial, or civil, is a consequence and not a cause of the general state of public sentiment. Combination and conspiracy against the magistrate every where result from an extensive opinion of grievance, and no where occasion it. They may therefore always be obviated in states, by a timely and qualified accommodation to rising opinions.
Tay. Art. XV. Sermons on various Subjects ; more particularly on Christian
Faith and Hope, and the Consolations of Religion. By George Henry
Cadell jun. and
has enjoyed the reputation of a popular preacher; and his name has been announced on several occasions, when it has been usual to apply
Not all these persons belonged to the society of Illuminés, though denounced by the Abbé Barruel in connection with it. + Of this publication, an account is preparing for our Review.
to clergymen of this description. We have seen some of the discourses which he has delivered at these times, and they appeared to be adapted to the purposes for which they were written: indeed, his mode of composing, and, probably, that of his delivery, are suited to a popular audience; and we can easily conceive that they would excite attention and produce effect. The volume before us, which contains twenty discourses on different subjects, will serve to establish the cha, racter which Mr. Glasse has acquired. They were published at the sole request of a lady in whose presence they were delivered ; and if the judicious reader should not peruse them with the same satisfaction which they afforded to those who heard them, his candour will lead him to recollect that they were written for the pulpit, and not for the press. If they had been more textual and more argumentative, they would have been more acceptable to those who read sermons not merely with a view to present impressions, but to more permanent bem nesit. For our own part, we should have been much better pleased if they had been less desuitory and declamatory, and had been addressed more to the judgment than to the feelings and passions. Instruction and lasting improvement should not be sacrificed to popularity. The effects of declamation, whatever advantage it may derive from the elegance and energy of language, or even from the graces of elocution, are very slight and transient. It conveys little knowlege to the understanding, and the impression produced by it has no long duration.
We deliver our opinion the more freely on this occasion, because the discourses belong to the superior class of such as we have now generally described. However we may differ from the author in his theological creed, or may disapprove some reflections which have escaped from his pen in the hurry of composition, we are much pleased with many of the sentiments that occur in the discourses, and with the animated manner in which they are generally expressed ; and we beg leave to recommend to other preachers, the ardour and solicitude which he manifests in his endeavours to promote practical religion and virtue. We cannot but regret, at the same time, that Mr. G. should so often misapply his text, and wander from the subject which it obviously suggests ; that he is desultory when he ought to be close and methodical ; that he amplifies when he ought to be concise, and that he declaims when he ought to reason.
The following extracts will enable our readers to form their own judgment.