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In the place of those placid regulations, which render mankind ufeful to their lords, we fubftituted, with prepofterous policy, FORCE, the abrupt expedient of barbarous conquerors. The preffure of taxation has, in the fpace of a few years, trebled the price of provifions of all kinds. The Company have, in the mean time, been endeavouring, by every poffible measure, to encrease their investments without raifing the price. Various oppreflions have for this purpose been adopted this wretched expedient is of fhort duration: the manufacturer may for one year, perhaps for two, redouble his induftry; but whilft the work of his hands is forced from him at a stated and arbitrary price, he finks under an uncommon effort, fubject to defpair. The principal fervants of the Company, to conceal the evil, have found themfelves obliged either to remit in the quality of the goods, or to raife the price to the manufacturer. Both expedients have been in part adopted; but it is a temporary remedy, without the hopes of effectuating a
The reafons already mentioned have contributed to deftroy the trade of Bengal with the rest of Afia: merchants can only procure the gleanings of the Company: the quality is inferior and the prices high: nations formerly fupplied from Bengal, found themfelves under the neceffity of establishing manufactures of the fame kind at home, or to adapt their cloathing to their poverty: argument on this head is fupe:fluous: the plan must be totally and radically changed. The queftion is not to oblige the people to become filk-winders, spinners, and weavers, and to take the fruits of their labour, as it is practifed at prefent, at an arbitrary price. Industry cannot be forced upon a people; let them derive advantage from toil, and indolence fhall lofe its hold. Ingenuity expires under the foolish defpotism which defeats its own ends; and human nature, in its most wretched ftate, revolts against labour which produces nothing but an increase of toil.'
The enquiry concludes with a plan for reftoring Bengal to its former profperity. Mr. Dow propofes, in this view, that there be a new arrangement and fettlement of landed property; that a paper currency and an invariable current coin be eftablifhed; that monopolies be abolished, and free merchants encouraged; that an abfolute toleration of all religions be allowed; that the executive and judicial powers be placed upon a proper and equitable foundation, and that they be kept diftinct and feparate from each other. For the particular regulations which are recommended under each of thefe heads, and the advantages that will arife from carrying the fcheme into execution, we refer our Readers to the Work itself, which will fhew that the Author is poffeffed of an enlarged understanding and a li
beral mind. The plan, fays he, to speak the leaft in its favour, is practicable in its great and general line. It would produce, even partially followed, immenfe, fudden, and permanent advantages; but no human forefight can abfolutely eftimate the precife fums. Though the Author of the Enquiry has not the vanity to fuppofe that his fcheme is, in all its branches, infallible, he will venture to pledge himself to his country, that, fhould the more material parts of his fyftem be adopted, the advantages to be derived from it would not fall fhort of his calculations. His knowledge of the kingdom of Bengal, and its various refources, gives him a confidence on this fubject, to which he is not intitled by his abilities.'
Without pretending to any extraordinary knowledge of the Indian affairs, we cannot but concur with Mr. Dow, in thinking that the execution of his plan would be highly beneficial and we have paid the greater attention to the introductory part of the volume before us, on account of the present situation of the Eaft-India Company.
ART. IV. The Advancement of Arts, &c. or Defcription of the useful Machines and Models contained in the Repofitory of the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce. Illustrated by Defigns on fifty-fie Copper-plates. Together with an Account of the fe veral Difcoveries and Improvements. By William Bailey, Register to the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce. 4to. 21. 12s. 6d. Dodfley, &c. 1772.
HE public are greatly indebted to the Society inftituted for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce, for its munificent and conftant endeavours to promote every intereft of this nation dependent on the improvements which ingenuity, induftry, and emulation, may be excited to accomplish, in agriculture, manufactures, mechanics, chemistry, and the polite arts, either by honorary or pecuniary rewards. Nor have our American colonies been overlooked. Every part of the British empire hath, in fome measure, already felt, and will hereafter more extenfively feel, the happy effects of this most useful and truly public-fpirited inftitution.
It is with equal pleasure and astonishment that we see such a multitude of improvements and difcoveries produced, under the happy influence of a Society, which has not yet been twenty years in exiftence; and of all which we have now
This laudable Affociation firft began to be formed in 1754. It was fet on foot by Lord Folkstone, Lord Romney, Dr. Hales, and a few private gentlemen, who were brought together by Mr. William Shipley, a perfon little known, but of extraordinary application; and who had long laboured to carry into execution a scheme he had pro
before us a collective view, in methodical arrangement, and (as we apprehend) difpofed with the requifite care and accu
Á more particular idea of the contents of this publication, may be given in the words of the Compiler's Preface.
It was originally intended by the Society, fays Mr. Bailey, to publish an historical regifter of their tranfactions, which was prevented by fome occurrences needlefs here to be mentioned.
Part of this design (not the leaft laborious, poffibly not the leaft ufeful) is here attempted; and I flatter myself, fo far as the industry of an individual may prefume on fuccefs, that a publication of the defigns and defcriptions of the many useful and ingenious machines and models placed in their repofitory, for the benefit of the public, will be a means of ftill extending this benefit, and co-operate, in some measure, with the truly Jaudable views of this patriotic Society.'
The method which our Author has taken in digefting the materials of this volume, has been that of arranging the defigns and descriptions of the feveral machines and inftruments, under thofe general heads of improvement to which they refpectively relate. Thus Book 1, 2, and 3, relate folely to ebjects of agriculture; the first comprehending defigns, defcriptions, and explanations, of the feveral ploughs and implements of husbandry, preferved in the repofitory of the Society.
In the execution of the defigns, alfo, care has been taken to reprefent not only the whole machine, but every material part of it, in fuch various points of view, as to enable the artizan to conftruct it from the defcription. To this end, more plates than one have been found neceffary in the expla nation of fome machines; in which cafe, fuch plates referring to one machine or model, are diftinguifhed by numbers. To the perspective views, geometrical plans are alfo farther added, to facilitate the comprehenfion of the workman who would copy them in practice.'
In the fecond Book is given a fhort account of fuch ploughs, machines, and models, in the Society's repofitory of agriculture, as are not yet delineated; and, of courfe, have not their defcriptions affifted by defigns on copper-plates.'
Book third contains a lift of the noblemen and gentlemen, who, for their diftinguifhed fervices in promoting the views of the Society, have been prefented with honorary or pecuniary premiums,
jected for this purpofe. His plan was afterwards greatly improved by Mr. Baker, who fuggefted the rules for regulating and governing the Society; the members of which foon became fo very numerous as to afford a molt remarkable and noble proof of the public fpirit of
premiums for improvements and difcoveries in agriculture and husbandry.'
The 4th, 5th, and 6th Books comprehend the like defigns, defcriptions, and explanations, of fuch of the Society's machines and models as relate to manufactures; with an enumeration of the premiums and bounties given for employing the poor in parifh work-houfes, and for improvements in various branches of manufacture.
Book 7 and 8 treat of mechanics, and contain defigns, &c. of the engines and machines; among which are defcriptions of: various kinds of mills, cranes, weaving engines, hydraulic machines, ventilators, &c. together with a particular explanation of the apparatus ufed by the Dutch, in the turbot and cod fishery.
The remainder of the prefent volume relates to chemistry, our American colonies, and the polite arts.
The plates, which, as the title page mentions, are fiftyfive in number, form of themfelves a confiderable volume when bound separately; and they appear to be very well executed.
ART. V. A Collection of curious Difcourfes written by eminent Antiquaries, upon feveral Heads in our English Antiquities. Together with Mr. Thomas Hearne's Preface and Appendix to the former Edition. To which are added, a great Number of Antiquary Difcourfes written by the fame Authors. Most of them now first published from the original Manufcripts. 8vo. 2 Vols. 14 s. in Boards. Richardfon.
T is with pleafure that we embrace the opportunity now offered us of recommending to our ftudents of law, an attention to English antiquities. As the ftudy of the law is too frequently conducted, it is harsh and difagreeable. The memory of the lawyer is perpetually and fully employed; but he is rarely induced to exercife his judgment. He becomes learned in maxims, and precedents, and authorities; and by thefe he forms and fupports his opinions. He can quote, but is feldom able to reason. In the place of general and fundamental principles, he holds out the practice of courts, and the decifions of judges. To comprehend the spirit of laws is no object of his care. His head is crowded with particular facts; and even of thefe he poffefles but an imperfect knowledge. He can talk of the prefent ftate, and the prefent form of our laws; but he perceives not the fteps by which they arrived at this ftate and this form. He has not attended their progrels from rudeness to maturity he is ignorant of the changes they have undergone: in one word, the branch of knowledge which he ventures to profefs, he has not ftudied as a fcience.
The law, in this aspect, cannot fail of giving disgust and inquietude to the ftudent. His ingenuity is never exerted; his curiofity is never inflamed. He labours, but without pleasure ; and in the fordid profpect of future gain, he alone can find a confolation for the fatigue he suffers. But, if directed by other principles, this ftudy is, of all others, the most delightful. The law, when traced hiftorically from its earliest condition to its more cultivated ftate, becomes a rational occupation. fee its connection with manners, and with arts; our faculties are employed and improved in examining the great objects which are moft interefting to mankind; we difcover the real foundations of government; we perceive the variations of property; and we behold that extenfive range of dependencies, which conftitutes the fabric of jurifprudence.
The works, accordingly, of our antiquaries and hiftorians ought to be confidered by the ftudent of law as the only proper introduction to this study. When he has perused these with attention, he will read with every poffible advantage the productions of profeffed lawyers. If to form a due judgment of a particular ftatute, it be abfolutely neceffary to confider the time when it was framed, and the views of the legislature, it must be no less requifite, in order to conceive a comprehensive idea of the whole fyftem of our laws, that we attend them from their first rough sketches to their more perfect draughts.
A lawyer of fome eminence, the Author of Hiftorical Lawtracts, has offered to the public an example of this enlarged and liberal method of profecuting legal investigations: but unhappily his doctrines are generally fallacious; and while he gives too great a fcope to conjecture and to fancy, he is deftitute of erudition, and discovers a propensity to adopt as his own the inventions of other men. The advantages of uniting hif tory with law, and of joining philofophy with both, will be better seen in that delightful work, The Effay on General Hiftory, by Voltaire;' in the writings of Mably, Pfeffel, and Du Bos; in the feudal refearches of Montefquieu; and, above all, in the admirable View of the Progrefs of Society in Eu rope, from the Subverfion of the Roman Empire, to the Begin ning of the Sixteenth Century, by Dr. Robertfon;' where that learned and moft ingenious Author penetrates into, and explains, in the most masterly manner, all the important and difficult ob jects of the middle ages; where he advances with bold and decifive fteps in the most intricate paths, and explores his way through the double obfcurity of antiquity and barbarism.
In the view of this union of hiftory and law, the publication before us may have its ufe. But as the Difcourfes were writ
Published at Edinburgh, in 2 vols. 8vo.