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THE

LONDON REVIEW,

AND

LITERARY JOURNAL,

FOR APRIL, 1818.

QUID SIT POLCHRUM, QUID TURTE, QUID UTILE, QUID NON.

Personal Narrative of Travels to the ing, that it was at Caraccas "that M. Equinoctial Regions of the New Con- Humboldt discovered a spirit more ana. tinent, during the Years 1799–1804, logous to that of European society-it by Alejander de Humboldt and Aime was at Caraccas that Franklin was Benpland. Written in French by honoured and Washington adored. dlezander de Humboldt, and trans- “ Caraccas is the capital of a country laled into English by Helen Maria which is nearly twice as large at Peru at Williamus. Fol. III.

present, and which yields little in extent

to the kingdom of New Grenada. This THF THE continuation of M. Humboldt's country, which the Spanish government

Narrative appears at a moment, designates by the name of Capitania when every subject connected with the General de Caraccas, or of the (united) Seathern Contioept of America acquires provinces of Venezuela, bas nearly a Pagmented interest and importance. million of inhabitants, among whom But independent of circumstances which are sixty thousand slaves. It contains, adventitiously enhance the value of the along the coast, New Andalusia, or the present volume, we are persuaded it will province of Cumana (with the island of be found to possess peculiar attractions Margaretta), Barcelona, Venezuela or for the general reader : it is more co- Caraccas, Coro, and Maracaybo ; in the pioan in those personal details which interior, the provinces of Varinas and aniversally interest and please ; it offers Guiana, the first along the rivers of erking examples of that peculiar style Santo Domingo and the Apure, the seof description in which M. Humboldi is cond along the Oroonoko, the Casiconfessedly without a rival; and, above quiare, the Atabapo, and the Rio Neall for the unscientific public), it affords gro. In a general view of the seven more accurate information respecting united provinces of Terra Firma, we the geography, the agriculture, the civil perceive, that they form three dislinct and political state of this immeuse coun- zones, extending from east to west. try, iban bas been supplied by any pre

• We fiod at first cultivated land ceding writer.

along the shore, and near the chain A considerable part of this work is of the mountains on the coast; next occupied by an account of the Chayma savannabs or pasturages; and, finally, sations

, and of the religious establish- beyond the Oroonoko, a third zone, meets which, under the name of Mise that of the forests, into which we can sions, prevail in New Andalusia. M. penetrate only by ineans of the rivers Humboldt gives a pleasing sketch of that traverse them. If the native inbathe monks with whom he associated bitants of the forests lived entirely on at Caripe, and a delicious picture of the produce of the chace, like those of bis own contemplative and philosophi- the Missoury, we might say, that the cal existence. To this is appended a three zones, into which we have dimasterly disquisition on the Chayma vided the territory of Venezuela, prelanguar, and on the constitution of sent an image of the three states of Indian and Colonial society. We pre human socieis: the life of the wild face the fillowing extract by reinarkbuvter, in the woods of the Oroonoho ; Lurup. Il ng. Vol.LXXIII. April 1919.

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the pastoral life, in the savannahs, or and the Biscayans of Mexico,

the Catalanos; and the agricultural, in the high. lonians of Buenos Ayres, differ essenvallies, and at the foot of the mountains tially in their aptitude for agriculture, on the coast. Missionary monks and a the mechanic arts, commerce, and the few soldiers occupy here, as in all Ame- objects connected with the unfolding of rica, advanced posts on the frontiers of the intellect. Each of those races has Brazil. In this first zone are felt the preserved, in the New as in the Old prepooderance of force, and the abuse World, the shades that constitute its of power, which is a necessary conse; national physiognomy; its barshness or quence. The natives carry ou a civil mildness of character; its moderation, war, and sometimes devour one another. or its excessive desire of gain ; its kind The monks endeavour to augment the bospitality, or its taste for solitude. little villages of their missions, by avail. In the countries where the population ing themselves of the dissension of the is for the most part composed of Indians natives. The military live in a state of and mingled casts, the difference, that hostility with the monks, whom they manifests itself between the Europeans were iutended to protect. Every tbing and their descendants, cannot indeed be offers alike the melancholy picture of so strongly marked, as that which was misery and privations. We shall soon observed anciently in the colonies of have occasion to examine more closely Ionian and Doric origin. The Spaniards that state of man, wbich is vauuted as a

transplanted to the torrid zone having state of nature by those who inbabit become, under new skies, strangers to towns. In the second region, in the the remembrances of their motherplains and the pasture grounds, food country, must have felt more sensible is extremely abundant, but has little changes than the Greeks settled on the variety. Although more advanced in coasts of Asia Minor, and of Italy, the civilization, men without the circle of climates of which differ so little from some scattered towns do not remain less those of Athens and Corinth. It cannot isolated from one another. At the view be denied, that the character of the of their dwellings, partly covered with Spanish Americans' has received difskins and leather, it would seer, that, ferent modifications from the physical far from being fixed, they are scarcely constitution of the country: ibe isoencamped in those vast meadows, which lated site of the capitals on the tableextend to the horizon. . Agriculture, lands, or in the vicinity of the coasts ; which alone lays the basis, and draws the agricultural life; the labour of the closer the ties of society, occupies the mines, and the babit of commercial third zone, the shore, aod especially the speculations : but in the inbabitants hot and temperate valleys in the moun.' of Caraccas, Santa Fe, Quito, and Bue. tains near lbe sea."

nos Ayres, we recognize every where

something that belongs to the race, and “ Wbere we seek to form a precise the situation of the people.” idea of those vast provinces, which have M. Humboldt discovered most scibeen governed for ages, almost like se- ence at Mexico, most literature at Lima, parate states, by viceroys and captains- and the most enlightened views of pogeneral, we must fix our attention at licy in the Caraccas, where Washington once on several points. We must dis. was mentioned with veneration. In a tinguish the parts of Spanish America population of fifteen millions, diffused that are opposite to Asia, from those over the continent, be computes three that are bal hed by the Atlantic Ocean; millions of the Creoles, or Hispano, we must discuss, as we have already Americans, allowing only two hundred done, wbere the greatest portion of the thousand Europeans. The negroes, population is placed ; whether near the though wuequally distributed, amount coast, or concentrated in the interior, to a considerable oumber. Slavery in on the cold and temperate table-lands general assumes a milder form in the of the Cordilleras. We must verify the Spanish colonies ; yet the most alconumerical proportions between the na- cious outrages are often committed, tives and other casts ; search into the to which the legislature affords no reorigin of the European families; and dress. examine to what race, in each part of We are tempted to present another the colonies, the greater vumber of sbort extract, in which M. Humboldt whites belong. The Andalusian-Cana- demonstrates that pbilosophy is not jurians of Venezuela, the Mountaineers, compatible with poetry, and that the

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laborious researches of science do not of les Missions Etrangers, where he impede the exercise of a cultivated remained many years, eminently distale.

tinguished by his moral and religious " Nothing can be compared to the conduct, and by his strict performance impression of majestic tranquillity which of his appropriate duties. In 1779, he the aspect of the firmament inspires in was introduced to the court by being this solitary region-following with the made Confessor to the Princess Elizaee, at the entrance of the night, those beth. From this moment he was demeadows that bound the borizon, those voted to the Royal Family, whom he plaids covered with verdure and gently followed through all the vicissitudes esdulated, we thought we saw from of fortuve, with unshaken faith and afar, as in the deserts of the Oroonoko, fidelity. the sarface of the ocean supporting the Involved in the revolutionary per Warry vault of heaven; the tree under secution common to all the friends which we were seated, tbe luminous and partizans of that unfortunate insects flying in the air, the constel- family, he found it prudent to withlations tbat appeared toward the south, draw from Paris to Choisy; where, every object seemed to tell us, that however, he was not permitted to rewe were far from our native soil - main in privacy. The occasion of his if amid this exotic nature the bellowing recall is related by himself, in a man. of a cow, or the roaring of a ball, were ner at once so interesting and so simbeard from the depth of a valley, the ple, that we cannot forbear to extract remembrance of our country it for our readers. It affords, indeed, a swakened, suddenly ; in the sound they fair specimen of the work ; the intrin. were like distant voices resounding síc value of which is much enhanced by from beyond the ocean, and with ma: the judicious forbearance of the Editor, gial power transporting us from one in permitting the Abbé's genuine epishemisphere to the other.”

tolary composition to appear without correcting even those Gallic idioms

which lend the stamp of uoadulterated Lellers from the Abbé Edgeworth to his

authenticity. Friends, wrillen belween the Years

The unfortunate Lewis XVI. fore. 1117 and 1807, with Memoirs of his Life. By the Rev. Thomas R. Eng. seeing to what lengths the malice of his

enemies was likely to go, and resolved land. 1818.

to be prepared at all events, cast his To rescue from oblivion the memory eyes on me to assist him in his last of superior virtue, to vindicate religiou, moments, if condemned to die ; but and to give dignity to human nature, by would not make any application to the abibiting in his native colours one of ruling party, nor even mention my the most valuable and distinguished name without my consent. The mesa characters of the day in which he lived sage he sent was moving beyond ex-fach is the avowed and Jaudable ob. pression, and worded in ject of the present very interesting pube which I never shall forget. A king, lication.

though in chains, had a right to coni: The Abbé Edgeworth was io the num- mand; but he cominanded not. My ber of those who shared in the perils aod attendance was requested, merely as calamities of the French Revolution: a pledge of my affection for him but although it is notorious that be at. as a favour which he hoped I would tended the ill-fated Louis to the scaffold, not refuse ; but, as the service was his exemplary character bas hitherto likely to be attended with some danger been little known, and but imperfectly for me, he dared nul insist, and only appreciated

prayed (in case l deemed the danger The Abbé was born at Edgeworth's to be loo great) to point oul to him Tower, in Ireland, from whence bis a clergyman worthy of his confidence, father, a Protestant clergyman, thought bul less knoion than I was myself: it advisable to emigrate, with his family, leaving the persun absolulely io my is consequence of having embraced the choice. Catholic persuasion. From this period " This message, as you may believe, his second son Heary was destined for give me more to think than any mes. the church. Having completed bis aca- sage I had received in any life. The demnical sendies, he removed to Paris, general opinion was, that the clergyand became an iomatc io the semjuary man called to that awful inisistry would

a manner was a

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not survive the prince; and it must wards the side on which the rank be allowed, that the horrid policy that seemed to have less depth., All eyes veg prevailed at that time made this opi. were fixed on me, as you may suppose, nion probable enough. However, as but as soon as I reached the first line, far as I can judge, this consideration to my great surprise, no resistance was was not the one which preyed most made : the second line opened in the upon my mind ; aud if I do not de. same manner; and when I got to the Jude myself, I was perfectly resigned fourth or fifth, my coat being a com to my fate. But the confusion in which mou surtout (for I was not permitted, I saw the largest diocess of France, on this occasion, to wear any exterior now committed to my care,

marks of a priest), I was absolutely lost • consideration of far greater weight with in the crowd, and no more noticed me, as I clearly saw myself lost for it, than if I had been a simple spectator whether I survived the King or not. of a scene which for ever will dishonour However, being obliged to take my France." party upon the spot, I resolved to conply with what appeared to be, at that noment, the call of Almighty God; Sensibilily, the Stronger, and other and committing to his providence all

Poems. By W.C. Hurvey. Foolscap the rest, I made answer to the most

8vo. pp. 319. unfortunate of kings, That whether Je lhe poetry of the present day was as he lived or died, I would be his friend generally profilable to its authors, as is to the last.'

the case witb a few highly gifted indivi. As soon as I had given the final an- duals, we should cease to be surprised at swer, I received orders to remain in the constant and unceasing increase of Paris, and not to stir out of my house volumes, similar to that before us. until I saw what turn affairs would The case is, however, far, very far, take. Many days elapsed ; and I leave otherwise ; and to the love of fame, you to judge, in what tortures of mind rather than the desire of riches, must they were spent. However, I profited we look for the source of that unabating of them, to put my affairs in order : to floud of poetry which sometimes make my will, and provide, as well threatens to overwhelin us.--The preas I could, for the diocess, in case sent production is scarcely in any resof death."

pect distinguished froin the multitude The Abbé continues to describe his of its compeers. The language is in impressions at that agonizing moment most instances correct and elegant, and when he bad just witnessed the last the fables are in general appropriate struggles of bis injured sovereign. and interesiipg: but in the present age,

“ You will undoubtedly be curious this is scarcely to be termed a complia by what luck I escaped the danger, ment, as the art of writing good poetry which both friends and foes apprehendappears of much easier acquisition than ed on this occasion, for my life. To formerly; and though our great poets this, the ouly answer I can give is, that are not, perhaps, increased in oumber, I really know it not: all that I can say our second-rate bards are certainly far is, that as soon as the fatal bluse was superior to those of any former æra, given, I fell upon my knees, and thus Youth, our author tells us, might be remained until the vilc wreich, who offered as an apology for bad rhymiog: acted the principal part in this horrid but he wishes not * to propitiate cri. tragedy, came with shouts of joy, show. ticism by any such assertion :” of ing tbe bleeding head co.the mob, and course, he does not deprecate our sesprinkling me with the blood that verity, and has no right, therefore, to streamed froin it. Thien, iodeed, I expect a leuiency which he does not thought it time to quit ibe scaffold; solicit. The present Poems, however, but casting my eyes sound about, I require not the advantage of any such saw myself invested by twenty or thirty trite excuse; and with a general apo thousand men in arms; and to pierce proval of the volume, we will point the crowd, scemed to me a foolish, out only two defects, as being ibose attempt. However, as I must take which our critical duties would vot that party, or, by remaining, appear permit us to pass over.- Page 199 conto share the public joy, my only re- iains a most palpable plagiarism from a source was, to recommend myself to poem generally attributed to the pen of Providence, and steer my course to. Lord Byron, and so little altered, as la.

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induce us to suppose, that the soi-disant any other false religion. In the six

auther must bave long since given over thousand years which the world has i blasking as an inconvenient appendage counted, scourges and evils of every

to authorship; the other blameable sort have existed, and Mubanimedanism piece, "

occurs at page 261, and should after Christianity, is no greater proof 1 the work ever happily reach a second of the failure of the divine goodness,

edition, we bope Mr. Harvey will make than the existence of Paganism before
the waende honorable for these impro- it.
prieties in his first.

T. The volume now under notice, pre

sents us with a liberal view of the his.

tory and actual state of tbe professors As History of Muhammedanism: com- of Islamisin, with the causes and mode prising the Life and Character of the of the establishment of the religion : Arabian Prophel, and succinct Ac. and no writer could select a more incounts of the Empires founded by the teresting subject. It comprises a period Viukennedan Arms: an Inquiry into of twelve hundred years; it covers a the Theology, Moralily, Laws, Lite

large space of geography, and it is con. rature, and Usages of the Muselmuns,

nected with the temporal and spiritual and a View of the present Stale and

happiness of a population scarcely inEstent of the Muhammedan religion. ferior to the Christian world. If the By Charles Mills. The Second Edi

subject be interesting, the mode' of tion, revised and augmented. pp. 490.

treating it is equally difficult, and these The analogy between the natural and two circumstances have a reciprocal Doral worlds suggests many arguments influence in estimating the merits of capable of removing the secret doubts the work before us. Difficulty will of the wavering, and of repelling the beget candor in the reader, and interest opea blasphemy of the infidel. Though will forbid presumption in the writer. analogical reasoning is not the highest More than half of this volume is occuspecies of proof, yet it has its merits, pied with a sketch of the annals of the and those are peculiar. Moral cer- various people who have embraced tainty may be atiained by the evidence Islamism, so far as those anpals are of facts

, and may produce submission connected with the establishmeot of of mind, but reasonableness is as inn. the religion. The grand and generat portant as aclhority; and when we features of this portion of history, the koos that any objections to Christianity causes and consequences of events are striše at the root of religion altogether, all that are important. The details are the most daring sceptic will pause ever the same, ever savage, brutal, and before he ruos into the dreary wastes of sanguinary. Yet in this map of human Albeisma. The existence of evil in the woe, the philosophical observer of man moral world, tbe varied dispensation of casts his eye on some particular characthe gifts of Providence to ihe natural, ters. Our attention is arrested by the are facts plain, palpable, and solemn; author of a mighty revolution. Fanaand imply the agency and creation of ticism gave rise to his empire, and the some superior Being. The grado al pro- sword spread it from the Ganges to gression of nature's works is evident to Gibraltar. Mahmud, the founder of the most careless enquirer, and that the Mubainmedan sovereigoties in India, great law and principle must rise into and Tamerlave, are names familiar in the mind, wbeaever it is tempted to ask our mouths; but Zingis was the greatest the question, why Christianiny was not of all the Tartarian heroes. His power contemporaneous with the birth of died not with him. When he descended time. The variegated appearance of the joto Persia with four hundred thousand nataral and intellectual worlds, is as men, be did not bead the undisciplined striking as the fact is true, that the sun rabble of 'Tarlary, but a well governed of Christianity has as yet but partially people; and at his dealb he left a fair shone. Comparative similarity of de. and ample inheritance to his children. signi

, appears in nature and grace; and Mr. Mills' comparative view of Zingis Teason and revelation cry aloud, that and Timour, is one of the best executed the God of this earth and the God of passages, and the most original portion the Christians are the same. If, theo, of the historical part of his book. It' inequality does not imply imperfection, is, however, too long for an excerpt. we cannot wonder at the origin and · When the din of arms had ceased, coutinuance of the Mubammedan, or and the standard of Islamism was dis. '

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