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1. Lectures on Theology. By the late Rev. John Dick, D.D. ( Published under the
Superintendence of his Son. 2 vols. M. W. Dodd.
The Theological Lectures of Dr. Dick have been long enough before the public, to have acquired a solid and respectable, though not a brilliant reputation. They are able, judicious, and concise, and possess such advantages of arrangement and method, as to render the work extremely convenient for a class book, and for general reference. A professor in the United Session Church in Scotland, the general tone of the theology of his work will not need to be defined. It is consistently and decidedly Calvinistic, without being excessively strained. The calm and courteous spirit of all the Doctor's discussions—the fairness and urbanity shown towards opponents, and the judicious qualifications with which what he regards the truths of his system are asserted, give the work a pleasing, and at the same time a rare characteristic. The elegant style, too, in which the dry themes of abstract theology are presented, always agreeable and chaste, and often rising to true eloquence, ought not to be forgotten among the excellences of the book. Though defective in some of its discussions of points which have acquired special interest in this country, by the course which theoTogical controversy has taken, we can say of the work, that for a systematic, concise and well-composed manual on theology, there is hardly a superior to be had; and, without excluding other works of the kind, or the more elaborate treatises on particular doctrines, it is one that should find a place in every well appointed clerical library. 2. A Comprehensive Lexicon of the Greek Language, adapted to the use of Schools
and Colleges in the United States. Third Edition, enlarged and improved. By JOHN PICKERING. Boston : Wilkins, Carter & Co., 1816.
From a comparison of our own examinations with those of some of the most accurate scholars among us, we are prepared to award a high degree of merit to this work. Its chief excellence consists in its adaptedness to the wants of students in all the earlier departments of classical study. The advanced scholar would of course demand something more; but it is the great merit of this book, that its author has resisted the temptations to swell his pages by a cumbersome and pedantic display of learning, patched up and gathered from every source. He has had the purer ambition to make a useful book. It is the case, however, that learning and research have been employed to an extent, we believe, exceeding that of other more expensive and more showy compilations. The experience of some of our most practical teachers has confirmed our own observations, that it is just the lexicon the college student most wants. It will be found to contain almost every word in those Greek poets, orators, and philosophers, that are ever read in our most thorough and extensive courses of instruction. Its arrangement of meanings—the chief inerit in a Lexicon, is all that could be desired; and its explanations of peculiarities of form and idiom will almost invariably be found to be those which the student most wants, and in which the practical teacher knows, from long experience, that his scholars stand in the most special need of assistance. The outward execution is admirable, and in a most substantial style, as respects printing, paper, and binding, that will enable it longest to sustain the wear and tear to which such works are especially subject. We scarcely know of any book in which the practically useful, to the exclusion of expensive show and worthless pedantry, seems to have been more the object of all the parties concerned in its production, from the lamented author to the binder of the volume. It need only be added that whilst at least as good, in other respects, as any lexicon published in the country, it surpasses all its rivals in the recommendation of cheapness.
3. History of the Discovery and Settlement of the Valley of the Mississippi, by Spain,
France and Great Britain, and the subsequent Occupation, Settlement, and Extension of Civil Government by the United States. By John W. MONETTE, M.D. 2 vols. Harper & Brothers.
It would argue great want of skill and abil if, with the exciting incidents, important movements, gallant exploits and rapid progress, of which the Valley of the Mississippi has been the theatre, the author had not produced a work of great and thrilling interest. The world has never before witnessed an experiment of colonization on so grand a scale and with such rapid strides, as the settlement of that valley; and the incidents of enterprise, hardship, courage and success, which make up the details of its history, have a grandeur and magnitude which partake almost of the sublime. The attempt to embody such facts into history deserves well, and cannot fail of being regarded with satisfaction.
The chief' value of the present work, however, is as a pains-taking collection of facts. It has but little of the method and philosophy of history; and the author's opinions are often worse than none at all. A historian must rise above the prejudices and partial views of the mere partisan—a task to which there are indications that this author is unequal. Yet there is much lively, and even graphic, description, and a degree of enthusiasm in view of the magnificence of the events he describes, which is kindling. These events are so surpassingly attractive that the reader will easily forget all imperfection of the manner in which they are presented. The typographical appearance of the work is extremely beautiful. 4. School Grammar of the Latin Language. By C. G. Zumpt. Translated by Leon
hard Schmilz, Ph. D. Corrected and enlarged by CHARLES ANTHON, LL.D. Harper & Brothers.
The lucid method and philosophical arrangement which distinguish Zumpt's larger grammar, decidedly the best grammar of the Latin extant, appear in this work for beginners. The skilful and learned author has taken the true course to develope the principles of the language, and at the same time to adapt them to the pupil's progress. The thoroughness of its exercises, the intelligibility of its rules, and its admirable style, finely adapt it to the purpose for which it is intended. 5. Select Treatises of Martin Luther, in original German, with Philosophical Notes,
and an Essay on German and English Etymology. By B. Sears. Mark H. Newman & Co.
The synopsis of words which have a similar etymology in English and German, with which Prof. Sears prefaces his work, is an admirable help to the pupil to a knowledge of this important language, and might be profitably extended further. The idea of selecting the best passages of Luther for the use of students in reading German, is a happy one on all accounts. There is no more idiomatic writer in the whole circle of German literature than Luther; while the earnest feeling and excellent sentiment with which his writings abound, render them useful as exercises. The work consists of the Sermon on Indulgences; an Exposition of the 37th Psalm; the Address to the German Nobility, one of the most stirring and eloquent productions in any language; an address in behalf of Public Schools; an Exposition of John 14: and a fragment. They are all noble effusions of a great soul; and can be commended to those who desire a knowledge of the language, as the very best exercises that can be had.
6. Amenities of Literature, consisting of Sketches and Characters of English Literature.
By I. D'ISRAELI, D. C. L. 4th edition. Harper & Brothers. 2 vols. 12mo. In many respects this is the most valuable of all the literary productions of its erudite and curious author. It abounds in acute and learned criticisms upon authors and their works, and brings to light a vast deal of information respecting the early literature of the language. Though not without his conceits, and a passion for oddities which sometimes becomes tedious, D'Israeli evinces a cultivated critical taste, and genuine good sense in his estimate of books. The present work is more than a bundle of criticisms-it seeks to penetrate the philosophy of books, and show the influence of authors and their views upon the age they lived in. It might almost be termed a history of English literature; and yet philosophy is so charmingly intermingled with anecdote and incident, that its lessons are learned unawares.
7. Harper's New Miscellany of Sterling Literature,
Two capital works of Schiller's have been added to this excellent series of popular works—the Thirty Years' War, and the Revolt of the Netherlands. The first is a thrilling picture of that terrible period, which succeeded the Reformation in Germany, in the attempt of Rome to regain her lost ascendency. Schiller's political sympathies moved him to take a just view of the parties in that contest, while the deeds of lofty devotion and patriotism by which the war was signalized, kindled his poet soul with genial enthusiasm. It is seldom that history has to deal with so exciting and pregnant a period, and still less often that her tale finds so brilliant and stirring a narrator.
of the history of the Revolt of the Rhine, less has been known in this country; but it possesses equal spirit and excellence. It warmly espouses the side of freedom, and depicts, with exquisite taste and spirit, the incidents of the great event it chronicles. The two works are well adapted to be popular in this country, where freedom and religion are both ready to sympathize with the noble sufferers, in each of these wars for truth and right. We think they greatly enhance the value of the series of which they form a part, which, as a series, has no superior in this country.
8. An Exposition of the Apocalypse. By David N. Lord. Harper & Brothers.
The Apocalypse has been so long the theatre for all the uncouth antics and crude experiments of exposition, that a new claimant is apt to be met with more than a just measure of distrust. No book has been so abused, nor had so much reason to wish to be saved from its friends. Yet exposition has not exhausted itself on the book, and there is abundant room for learning, insight and talent, to display themselves in unfolding its hidden meaning. We are glad to say of this work, that it incurs none of the suspicion which conceit or ignorance justly excite. Though advocating peculiar views, it exhibits undoubted learning, a kind spirit, and great ingenuity and talent. We can speak in high terms of its clear and graceful style, in which respect it is surpassed by scarcely no philological work of our acquaintance.
Mr. Lord is a millennarian, and finds of course, in the prophetic announcements of the Apocalypse, full warrant for the peculiarities of his creed. The personal advent and earthly reign of Jesus Christ at the millennium; the resurrection and enthronement of the saints; and the ushering in of a new dispensation at that time, are prominent parts of his theory. His general view of the outline of prophecy, in other respects, does not greatly differ from the current interpretation of the church-except that he protracts the period of the millennium to three hundred and sixty thousand years. His view of the principles of interpretation, though more literalizing than Newton, Edwards and Scott, are really less so than Prof. Stuart: and his exposition of the law of interpreting symbols is novel and excellent. This brief outline, all that we can make, will give the reader a hint as to what a work, composed with the candor and ability which characterizes this, will probably prove to be.
9. The Works of the late Rev. Robert Murray McCheyne. 2 vols. 8vo. Robert
The character, devotel labors, and early death of Mr. McCheyne, bring him within the cherished circle of such servants of Christ as Martyn, Spencer, Summerfield and Larned. He was a clergyman of the Free Church of Scotland, and though called from the scene of his labors before he had finished his thirtieth year, he won a high reputation as an efficient and acceptable minister of the word, and a godly Christian. The perusal of his life, and of his private papers and correspondence, as here published, justifies the estimate in which he was held. They breathe a spirit of devo." tion, holy living, and enjoymeni in God, which explain the secret of his power in the pulpit, and the sweet influence of his private life. The sermons, as homiletic efforts, are clear, discriminating, and practical-well adapted for impression, and indicate an intimate knowledge of the language and spirit of the Scriptures. His preaching was eminently blessed; revivals were of frequent occurrence under it. We regard Mr. McCheyne as presenting many excellences of life and labor, which are worthy of the study of the ministry, and are particularly valuable to the young. Communion with his devoted and guileless piety, would quicken the heart that has ever felt the power of grace upon it.
10. The Office and Work of the Holy Spirit. By JAMES BUCHANAN, D. D. Robert
Carter. pp. 520. 12mo.
Dr. Buchanan is the professor of Divinity in the Free Church College, at Edinburgh. The treatise before us is a full and very able discussion of the Spirit's work in regeneration and sanctification; and it is written with a degree of solemnity and earnestness befitting the august theme, and with a precision of statement and cogency of reasoning which indicate the union of a clear head and a sound heart. The views entertained are entirely Scriptural, and the method of setting them forth, though without novelty, is forcible and engaging. One part is devoted to the iilus. tration of the principles of the work by Scriptural instances of conversion, which are ingeniously drawn and applied. The sanctifying agency of the Spirit is dwelt upon with great unction and impressiveness. The perusal of the work by the church as well as by the unconverted, must be adapted to leave a vivid sense of the infinite grace and indispensableness of the Spirit's influences, and to promote an enlightened and tender piety.
11. The Genius of Scotland ; or, Sketches of Scottish Scenery, Literature, and Religion,
By Rev. Robert TURNBULL. Robert Carter.
A very pleasant and useful work, which commands admiration for its subject, its information, and its agreeable style. It consists of descriptions of the principal points of Scottish scenery, interwoven with portraits of eminent personages, and sketches of society; all adapted to throw light upon the history and condition of a land to which no Christian, or philanthropist, or scholar, can turn with indifference. The descriptions of character, and criticisms upon authors, strike us as very sensible and acute. Mr. Turnbull possesses a warm admiration of his native land; and it is high praise of his ability as a writer, that he infects the reader with an equal inte
We doubt if so true and vivid a picture of Scotland and her religion and literature can be elsewhere found, in so brief a compass.
12. The Constitutional History of England, from the Reign of Henry VII. to George
II. By HENRY HALLAM. From the fifth London edition. Harper & Brothers.
The voice of transatlantic criticism in respect to this great work, has been so unaniinously and decidedly in its favor, that it appears here with a character already formed. The typographical execution is beautiful-exceeding in fairness and accuracy, the English copy, though costing far less. Without exhibiting the originality and research which gave to Mr. Hallam's previous works their high character, the present is perhaps the most popular and generally useful. The English Constitution is a widely significant term; and has a meaning in relation to the na. tional existence and growth, not unlike that which the same word possesses in relation to the body. It is the expression and embodiment of the social, religious, and political condition of the English people; and its history is nothing else than that of all the great elements of national being and character. The work has, therefore, a wide scope. It generalizes all the great facts, events, and influences of English his tory for this long period; and the masterly, candid, and judicious style in which this great task is done, has been the praise of foreign critics ever since the work first ap peared. Free from religious or political bias—a little too free in respect to the for mer-possessed of a comprehensive and yet highly analytical mind, a serene temper and cultivated taste, he has portrayed the men and the measures of the troublous epochs of England's history with masterly force, and generally satisfactory results. A friend of popular rights, and of liberty, he has given due justice to the people as well as to their rulers and oppressors; while religion and its influences are usually treated with candor and truth,—with occasional exceptions in reference to the analysis of the Puritan element of the Constitution. Though infinitely more just than any preceding historian to the character of the Puritans, and of Cromweli, it is painfully evident that Mr. Hallam understood neither. His portrait of the Protector is full of glaring inconsistencies, and rests on many an exploded error. But as a whole, it is a work of great and even exciting interesi, of splendid scholarship, of trustworthy character, and incalculable worth.
13. Interprelation of the word "Beasts,” in Rev. 4, 5, 6.
The following just remarks on the interpretation of the word "beasts,” in ch. 4,5, and 6 of ihe Apocalypse, are from the pen of Rev. Dr. Hutchinson of Warrenford, England, and published in the English Presbyterian Messenger.
The interpretation of this phrase is disgraceful to our theology as it stands at present. It shocks our feelings and does violence to our understanding. How repugnant to all our notions of heaven to meet with beasts in that holy and glorious abode; and to find them barping the praises of the Lamb that sits upon the throne; nay, taking the lead in conducting the sublime services of angels and glorified saints! We wonder that the strange incongruity has never before called forth remark, and strongly demanded censure and revision.
The error lies in the translation, and not in the original. The original word characterizes them properly, and terms them “living creatures.” But our translators not knowing what to make of “living creatures," described (as in chap. 4:7) as resembling a lion, a calf, or flying eagle, or the face of a man; having each of them six wings, being full of eyes, and employed in praising God, most absurdly denominated them “beasts;" and most unaccountably in the same breath ascribed to them the most honorable place and office in heaven, viz., that of sitting in the midst of the throne, and of conducting the devotions of the glorious assembled company. These "living creatures” were the cherubs of Ezekiel, who possessed lite, intelligence, and piety, and who filled a most important office under the Old Testament economy, viz., that of symbolizing the covenant of grace, or the incarnation of the Divine Word, under whose Government all things in heaven and earth are placed: and the word "zoa" should at once have been translated, though not literally, yet according to the sense and spirit of the passage, "cherubim." If they had been so translated, no one would have been offended with the offices and works ascribed to them; because every one knows, or ought to know, that cherubs have no real existence, but are simply visionary and symbolical beings. They were intended to shadow forth the humanity of Christ and its excellences, having the body of a man, and the head of some animal, the most excellent of its kind. They were first made of fire, and set up at the gates of Paradise to shadow forth Christ and the covenant of grace, which he was to ratify and fulfil. Four of them combined made a Cherubim; and two Cherubims with a Divine glory between them made a full symbolical representation. In Isaiah and Ezekiel they are represented as alive, and as taking an active part in the administration of the affairs of that covenant of which they were the visible symbols. So in the Apocalypse we meet with'them again, after having fulfilled their typical office, as living redeemed creatures (because humanity was redeemed), and actively employed in the praises of God and the Lamb. But lei it be distinctly observed, that they had no life, nor intelligence, nor piety, except in visions. They were at first constituted of fire; afterwards of gold, silver, or finely polished stone. They were set up in every principal place of Divine worship, and especially in magnificent temples among all nations in early ages, remains of which are to be found in their architectural ruins at the present day. We know for certain that they were set up in the Tabernacle of Moses' erection in the wilderness; and in Solomon's Temple, where God was pleased to give responses to his High Priests. They were also carried about in the ark; and it was this that made the loss of the ark so great a calamity to the Jews; because in losing the ark, they lost the symbol of the covenant of grace, through which God might at any time be consulted, and valuable directions be obtained. The study of the Cherubim is calculated to throw immense light on ancient theology, on the rise and progress of idolatry, and on the equity of God in communicating Gospel knowledge to all mankind. And it is the more worthy of study, because we see that the Cherubim is interwoven with the sublime imagery of this book, which unfolds the obstructions and the triumphs of Gospe) truth; here the different cherubs are repreresented as filled with intense anxiety while the seals are opened, and as exclaiming each in their order, “Come and see;" here also they are exhibited as calling on all nature to join them in celebrating the praises of God and the Launb for covenant love. They connect ancient and modern ecclesiastical history.
From what has been stated above, say, if much of the beauty and sublimity of the imagery of the Apocalypse te not altogether lost, by the unjustifiable use of the word “beasts” in the aforesaid passages ? Say, if the mind of the Holy Spirit be not obscured, if not wholly hidden ? Say, if a new and brilliant light would not