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We have vo room left for any remarks on the state of parties : they may properly come under consideration in our review of Mr. Bristed's work on “America and her Resources," referred to by Mr. Fearon, which now lies on our table.
Let it be remembered, in conclusion, that unfavourable as this picture is, when viewed in contrast with the state of things in our own country, (which, after all, we cannot help regarding as the best existing specimen of buman society,) doubly upfavourable as the impression is coming as it does in the shape and with the force of disappointment,--America fully comes up to the standard of morals and of manners in the continent of the Old World. The surprise which we feel at the painful survey, is itself a tribute to the superior political advantages which the people enjoy in the popular nature of their government. But these, unhappily, would seem to be more than counterbalanced by moral disadvantages connected with their uneducated character and colonial origin. We think there is much good sense in the following remarks.
• National, like individual character, must be in a great measure formed or controlled by the circumstances in which men are situated. For the creation of a valuable standard of character, Americans are disadvantageously placed : they are far removed from that mass of floating intelligence which pervades Europe, but more especially England; and in addition to this, as a people, and in their political capacity, they have nothing to contend for-nothing to call forth their energies, and but little of external excitement beyond the pursuits of gain, and merely animal gratification. In their civil condition, all obtain a living with ease. For religion, their priests think for them; they have neither persecution to excite zeal, opposition or controversy to awaken them to enquiry, nor yet virtue or knowledge sufficient to show them its advantages; whilst, in their political capacity, they have the cheapest, the easiest and the most reasonable form of government in the world. To illustrate nations by individuals is an old, and by no means inappropriate mode of estimating political character ; and, for myself, I never knew an individual who was freed from strong external excitement, or who possessed every thing which he desired without personal exertion, that did not sink into indolence, indifference, selfishness, and actual vice. This seems to be made, and wisely so, one of the terms and conditions of our nature. Whom the Lord loveth he chastiseth,” is a sacred maxim; that chastisement is, I believe, as valuable as it is necessary. I have not indeed seen the character whom I could call excellent, that had not undergone trials, privations, and sufferings. To become intellectual, energetic, and virtuous, in the present state of our existence, seems to require that we should first know sorrow, and have been acquainted with grief; not that I am the advocate for political oppression in order to produce those consequences, or that I wish to see transplanted into this free and hítherto unoppressed country, enormous taxation-iniquity in high places-civil disabilities--reli. gious exclusions-standing armies--and hired spies and informers ; but that a something must occur, before this people can be roused from their present lethargy,-made, even in a limited degree, deserving of their unparalleled natural and political advantages--that something of this nature, among the wise dispensations of Providence, will occur, I have no doubt; for I cannot allow myself to draw the melancholy conclusion of Moore, that what we now see of the character of the people, bad as it may appear, represses every sanguine hope of the future energy and greatness of America.' pp. 351-3.
We shall resume the general subject in a future Number. Upon the whole, while there is!much, we think, in the present volume, to induce in Mr. Fearon's readers a well founded and intelligent preference for their native land, it is adapted at the same time to confirm, rather than to diminish their regard for those principles of liberty, which are the foundation of national greatness. With all that is bad in the social system of the Americans, Pennsylvania is not Paris, nor New York, Naples. They are centuries in advance of the Christian countries which despotism and superstition have so long involved in impenetrable darkness.
Art. V. Narrative of the Mission to Otaheite and other Islands in
the South Seas ; commenced by the London Missionary Society, in the Year 1797: with a Map and Geographical Description of the Islands. Published by order of the Directors. 8vo. pp. 86.
Price 28. 6d. 1818. OF
F the discretion which directed the first proceedings of the
London Missionary Society, the public will probably continue to have but an unfavourable estimate; but it must be in the highest degree consolatory to every friend of humanity, to learn from this Narrative that the perseverance of their Missionaries under discouragements the most trying and disheartening, have at length issued in producing a very extensive renurciation of idolatry among the islanders of the Southern Ocean. The intelligence contained in this pamphlet, comes down as late as the 22d of September 1817, at which period 'peace continued
in all the islands, Pomare to maintain his authority, the ' mission to prosper, and Christianity to spread.' The Missionaries had begun to print the Taheitean spelling-book on the 30th of June; ' on which occasion the king was present aud worked • off the first three sheets :' this edition, consisting of 2600 copies, was now completed, and between 7 and 800 had been distributed in Otaheite and Eimeo. An edition of the Cate- . 'chism' (query, what Catechism?) to which it was proposed to add some chapters of Genesis and Exodus, consisting of 2300 VOL. XI. N.S.
copies, was nearly finished, after which , the Missionaries purposed to print an edition of 1000 copies of St. Luke's Gospel, a new and puch improved translation of which had been ex
ecuted by Mr. Nott.' Translations of other parts of the Holy Scriptures were going forward.
• The number of the natives in the Georgian Islands only, who were able to read and spell, was increased to between four and five thousand, and Pomare had issued orders, that in every district of the islands a school-house should be erected, separate from the places of worship, and that the best instructed of his people should teach others. Several schools had already been erected in Otaheite, where the elementary books and the catechism are taught, and since the establishment of the printing-press, the natives of that island pass over in crowds to Afareaitu, to obtain books from the Missionaries there. At this station a school had been erected, which was well attended ; and of the natives who had been taught in the school at Papetoai there were few who could not both read and spell well.
* The attendance on the public worship at each of the missionary stations, continued on an average to be from 4 to 500.? pp. 63.
Subsequent letters from Eimeo, of the date of December, give equally satisfactory accounts. The first sheet of St. Luke's Gospel was then printed off, and some thousands were eagerly waiting for its completion. • Canoes are frequently arriving ' from various parts, with persons whose business it is to inquire
when the books will be ready, and an increasing desire to become acquainted with the word of God, powerfully pervades
the minds of the people.' 'The Christian religion is now professedly received by the inhabitants of Otaheite, Eimeo, and six other islands, in all of which the Lord's day is devoutly observed. The intelligent nature of this change may be concluded from the deliberation with which it has been adopted.
• The Otaheiteans, for twelve years, had opportunity of closely observing the nature of practical Christianity, as exemplified by the Missionaries; and during most of that time, its doctrines had been explained, and urged upon their attention, in every district of the island. In declaring themselves Christians, therefore, they well know what they profess to believe, and what kind of conduct they bind themselves to obseive. That this was very far from being the state of the barbarous nations of Europe, when first converted to Christianity, is obvious; neither do the sacred Scriptures imply that equal information had previously been acquired by the earliest converts to the Gospel
• Although Pomare, the first in rank, professed himself a Christian before any person among his remaining subjects did so, appears to have been too well informed of the principles and nature of Christianity, to think of enforcing it on others. He patiently travelled round the only island then subject to him, argued with the higher
and lower ranks against their inveterate superstitions, (to which none could be more notoriously addicted ihan he had long been,) prevailed with some, was opposed by others, but never appears to have aimed at any other influence than that of reason. pp. 47, 48.
The London Directors seem to be taking the most effectual means for giving permanence and consistency to this wonderful revolution. Aware of the necessity of introducing among the natives a system of regular labour, as the best safeguard of moral and religious habits, they have, at the recommendation of Mr. Marsden, sent out a person for the express purpose of directing the attention of the Islanders to the rearing and cultivating of the sugar-cane, of the coffee and cotton trees, and of other indigenous plants. He is furnished with a set of utensils for the inanufacture of sugar, of which the colony of New South Wales can take annually 300 tons. We congratulate this important Institution on the improvement which seems taking place simultaneously, in the aspect of their missions, and in the direction of their affairs at home.
Art. VI. Letters, during a Tour through some Parts of France,
Savoy, Switzerland, Germany, and the Netherlands, in the Summer
of 1817. By Thomas Raffles, A. M. 12mo. 7s. Liverpool,'1818. THIS is precisely what the Author seems to have intended
that it should be, an interesting, and agreeably written little volume. Without giving bimself the airs of an antiquary or of a connoisseur, without putting forward that cheap pedantry wbich is so readily furnished out by the local Guides' and • Histories,' Mr. Raffles bas, in a style occasionally poetical, sometimes eloquent, and always spirited and vivacious, detailed the occurrences and observations of a very pleasant journey through some of the most attractive regions of European scenery. He has, it is true, gone over ground which has been repeatedly described ; but he has made good use of bis opportunities, and where he has been unable to make discoveries, he has given a new aspect even to familiar scenes. His feelings are always right, and his reasonings just and well timed.
As Mr. R. has not given the dates of his letters, (a circumstance, by the way, which may lead to the supposition that he has chosen to throw the contents of bis journal into an epistolary form,) we cannot state the precise period of his departure from Brighton, nor of his arrival at Dieppe, a town too familiar to Englishmen to need description. At Rouen, the Manchester of France, the noble cathedral, with the magnificent ceremonies of High Mass, seems to have produced a strong impression on Mr. R.'s imagination; they are very impressively described. The
entrance into Paris by the Barriére de Neuilly and the Champs Elysées, with all the richness of scenery, and the pomp of archi-
. tecture wbich adorn it, is painted in a very distinct and glowing
In the description of the triumphal column erected by Napoleon in the place Vendôme, we suspect 'an error, though without the present means of correcting it. Mr. R. mentions Denon as the sculptor, and Bergeret as the designer of the basreliefs which adorn that magnificent pillar ; we are disposed to think, (subject certainly to mistake, as we are unable to refer to authority,) that this statement should be reversed. We have often lieard of Denon as a designer, but never as a sculptor. In fact, Mr. R. frankly confesses his want of familiarity with matters of virtu, and with much sound judgement abstains from that affectation of rapture and that cant of criticism which are so disgusting in some of those who have gone before him. It is scarcely worth while, perhaps, to notice, that at page 32, he Frenchifies to Bernin the name of the celebrated Chevalier Bernini. While, bowever, we are on dilettanti ground, we shall take the further liberty of quarrelling with the following phrase: . The delicate touches of a Titian, and the rich colouring of a
Claude.' In the first place, delicate is by no means an artistlike or a pleasant term ; besides, though no painter ever bandled his pencil with greater mastery than Titian, he is still more celebrated for his unrivalled science and skill as a colourist. But the opposition in which he is here placed, seems to imply that he was defective in that very particular in which he most excelled.
Wbile at Paris, one of the party started a new project, in which the remainder unanimously joined. It was proposed to quit the metropolis sooner than had been originally intended, and to visit part of Switzerland, returning down the Rbine to England. We shall transcribe the reflections on the French character, which suggested themselves to Mr. R.'s mind, while he was contemplating the gay groupes passing and repassing in the Place Louis XV.
• Here, in this immense area, Te Deum was sung, for the triumph of the Allies, and the restoration of the Bourbons, when the principal Monarchs of Europe were present at the ceremony. This must have been a most sublime and imposing spectacle. No place can be conceived more suited to such a purpose. The buildings and the gardens that surround it are in the highest style of classic elegance and grandeur, while the recollections of the spot at once marked it as appropriate, and must have contributed greatly to the effect and enthusiasm of the ceremony. But the Place Louis XV. is now all life an gaiety. It appears to be a favourite resort of the Parisians. Those recollections, if, indeed, they occur at all, seem by no means to diminieh the pleasure which the beauty and the bustle of the scene im