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. it is thinking.” Were this position al- rently inexplicable and not absolutes in the mitted, I do not apprehend that, in the ly so ; although, if this be the case, iary by end, it would materially assist Dr Co- there appears no reason why they may plestone ;-it is too sweeping, how- not be believed together. That I may eyer, and therefore erroneous. It can- not misrepresent the reverend doctor, not be denied, undoubtedly, that very however, I shall first quote the pas often the certainty is improperly trans- sages from both discourses in which ferred from the thinker to the thing this odd rule of faith is embodied, and thought of;—that is to say, when the then hazard one or two observations certainty of the thinker is not built upon them. upon demonstrably adequate grounds. At p. 69, we read as follows :-"If, Yet, because it does not always happen that God made every thing, knowing that, when the mind feels certain of beforehand all that would come to any thing, that thing is itself actually pass, and all that men do, be an undecertain ; is it therefore to be contended niable truth-if, nevertheless, he deals that the certainty is always improper- with man, as if he were free to act, ly transferred from the thinker to the and rewards and punishes him accordobject thought of? Surely not ;-at ing to this trial, and we cannot com least if it be, then abstract certainty is prehend how both these things should denied altogether. This is going into be true together, we yet can believe extremes. When Newton or Halley them both to be true---and so believing, mathematically demonstrated the oce we may well conclude, that many of currence of eclipses at certain times, our occasional reasonings concerning the completeness of the demonstration these things must be infected with was certainly an infallible proof of the the same apparent incongruity that certainty of the future event; and it is strikes us in the enunciation of those therefore properly transferred to it; first principles.” Again, at p. 79, “ If, nor can reasoning be falsified by such however, we set ourselves to examine a transfer. Considerations of a simi- each of these abstract positions sepa.lar nature are also applicable to the rately from the other, dark and per-words"impossible” and contingent.” plexing as the inquiry often is, yet
“ The most extraordinary passages of the arguments deducible from reason the discourse, however, are those in and experience alternately in their which the reverend author attempts to favour, appear to be irresistible ; and establish the propriety-possibility per- as one of the most candid inquirers haps should be the word of the mind's observes, whạt flashes of light break believing two distinct contradictory out, from time to time, present the propositions whilst they are separate; image of truth on opposite sides. but which, if brought together, form Why then should not truth itself be a direct contradiction in terms. By really an inmate of each opinion ? this means, he seems to hold, that we Unless it can be shewn, which never may easily believe, that an event, the has yet been shewn, that the two opioccurrence of which is uncertain, may nions are contradictory to each other
. be certainly foreknown. We have on- That they are contradictory has been ly to believe in the contingence of the tacitly assumed, because to us their event, and also in the foreknowledge; union is inexplicable; and hence the and take special care to admit only one most pernicious errors of different kinds of these beliefs into the mind at one have at times prevailed, some denying time, so that they may never fight. or doubting the agency of Providence, - As Dr Coplestone has, in one place, others the freedom of the human admitted that direct contradictions in will." terms, are merely propositions without This method of believing separately meaning, and therefore cannot be pro- two propositions, which, when composed to any end, either derogatory or pared, cannot both be believed, has, the contrary, as to the power of any in one shape or other, been recombeing to understand or perform them, mended before, though never perhaps - I presume he considers fore-knowledge so undisguisedly as in the present -and contingence as two qualities, the instance.* In the second quotation -compatibility of which is only appa- it is asserted, that “ it has never been
Akin to this ingenious scheme of taking a contradiction " at twice,” for those whose swallow is not sufficiently Boa-like to manage it whole, are the “ sensus divisus", and
shewn that the two opinions are con- on such subjects; we believe in that tradictory to each other.” This is not stream which a little unreasonable. If tó suppose; “ Ne'er feels retiring ebbs, but keeps due that a being certainly knows that an
event shall, certainly and without any To the Propontick and the Hellespont--" a chance of failure, take place; and
that he, at the same time, knows that because there is room for hidden cir
its occurrence is a contingency, or cumstances, the knowledge of which“ #doubtful chance, and that it may pos- would elucidate the seeming inconsist
sibly not take place-if to suppose this ency. To believe purely contradictory be not to suppose a plain, evident, and propositions, is neither more nor less palpable contradiction, I know not than believing that a thing may be at
what a contradiction is. And I am oncc true and false ; for how do we i equally at a loss to conceive, if the absolutely ascertain the truth of any # meaning of the words be understood, proposition but by ascertaining that
what possible room there is for further there exists no counter proposition, of "shewing." One might as well be undoubted truth, which may be set
demanded to shew that “ no” and against the first; and what other detar" yes,” when predicated of the same finition can be given of perfect and ** proposition, are contradictions to each absolute truth in ratiocination ? to say
other. The ideas, as we 'perceive them, that contradictions may be true is only
and the words, as we understand them, denying the existence of abstract cersi cannot, and do not consist ; and it is tainty in the world.
for those who deny the contradiction, To come to a right understanding 3 to shew, either reasons why they do of this question, it is only necessary to A consist, or room for hidden reasons make this distinction. If there be two
why they may consist. This they, I contradictory propositions, the possibi
think, cannot do ; and till they have, lity of the union of which is inexpliu it is an abuse of language to term the cable to the mind, that is to say, of is union of these two opinions--Contine which we cannot conceive room for
gence and Foresight="inexplicable," the possibility of their being brcught * merely. The word inexplicable refers to consist, then they form a contradic
itself to mysteries as opposed to impose tion to us absolutely incredible. But sibilities. Now pure contradictions are if of the two contradictory propositions not mysteries. We fully apprehend we know enough to know that there is
the meaning of the terms, and we view room for the possibility of their being se every thing that is embodied in them, shewn to be inconsistent, then they are
and we see that the ideas which they credible as far as the contradiction is embody are contradictory. We see, at concerned. If this distinction be not the same time, that there is no room attended to, and both sorts of contrafor any mysterious hidden circumstan- dictions are held to be credible, there ces, the detection of which may recon- must be, as it appears to me, an end cile the two apparently clashing pro- of human reasoning. The very rankpositions. There is no difficulty in est contradiction that language can believing proved tacts, which are appa-, express comes under the first definirently, as far as we know, contradict- tion. Suppose it be asserted that two ory to each other ; but then we do and two are five, what is this but a this only from perceiving at the same proposition embodying ideas so contratime that
, between them, and connect- dictory, that we cannot see or conceive ed with them, there is room for some- any room for the possibility of their thingfurther to be known, which, when ever being shewn to agree? Further known, mustclear up the contradiction. than this we cannot go.
If Thus we believe in many peculiarities tradiction of this sort be held to be connected with tides and currents true, all other contradictions may, for which contradict all the general laws aught we know, be true; and a denial
the “ sensus compositus” of the following controversial morceau of the schoolmen.
Resp. Estius hanc propositionem. Quod prævisum est potest non evenire' duplicem habere sensum, compositum, scilicet, et divisum. Compositus sensus hic estsimul consistunt ut aliquid sit prævisum a Deo, et tamen non eveniat; quô sensu, falsa est propositio. Divisus verò sensus hic est. Fieri potest ut hæc res (demonstrata ea quæ prævisa est) non eveniat ; et in hoc sensu vera est propositio !” and so on.
of all received truths, and the assertion As I have already encroached upon of all acknowledged falsehoods, may your limits, I am the better pleased at upon this principle be established, as feeling it unnecessary to apologize to far as any thing could be said to be Dr Coplestone, for the liberty I have established in the mental chaos that taken in offering these remarks upon must ensue.
his work. To suppose the learned and With the theological consequences reverend Inquirer less aware than myresulting, or supposed to result, from self of the importance of free discussion the doctrine of Philosophical Necessi- to the interests of truth, would be the ty, I have already said that I shall not height of arrogance. To imagine for meddle. It may be permitted me, a moment that the support of a set of perhaps, to express my opinion that, doctrines, rather than the furtherance with respect to many of those alleged of general knowledge, was the object consequences, the two doctrines of of his pen, would be worse. Free-will and Necessity do not differ so much as is commonly supposed.
I am, &c.
“Who,'-ask ye! No matter.—This tongue shall not tell,
O'er the board of oblivion the name of the bard;
That sheds on the perish'd their only reward,
No, no ! look abroad, Sir, the last of October ;
In the pages of Blackwood that name shall be writ,
Was not more than his match, in wine, wisdom, or wit.'
Ye Dowdens and Jenningses, wits of Cork city,
Though mighty the heroes that chime in your song,
Ye forget the great poet of Blarney so long.
I mean not the second, O'Fogarty hight,
Who can speak for himself, from his own native Helicon,
(Be it said with due deference,)--honest Dick Millikin.
Then fill up, to his mem'ry, a bumper, my boys,
'Twill cheer his sad ghost, as it toddles along
That were dear upon earth to this step-son of song.
When the goblets all ring with “ Och hone, Ullagone !"
To the name of a minstrel so sweet, so unknown.
LATIN PROSODY FROM ENGLAND.*
To CHRISTOPHER NORTH, Esq.
about three times as many faults as You must often have perceived how they have lines. It certainly was a haughtily our southern neighbours as- betise of the Doctor's, but a candid cri. sert their superiority over us in every tic † would not have noticed it just thing relating to classical literature, then. If we wished to retaliate in the and particularly in the science of metre. same way—that is, by picking up abI readily admit that the country of surd books written, and mistakes com
George Buchanan does not support mitted, by English writers on similar in the fame conferred on it by that illus- subjects we should find no difficulty
trious scholar ; that the system of edu- in doing so, though it would be unjust cation in our schools is not as well cal- to imitate them, in making the errors culated for the diffusion of deep classi- or ignorance
or ignorance of a few, the grounds of cal knowledge, as that in the great and reproach against the classical learning valuable public schools of England; of all England. and that some remarkably ignorant I have got into my hands this mornblunders in prosody have been occa- ing a book in considerable use in Engsionally made by some of our coun- lish schools—written by a clergyman, trymen; but I nevertheless contend, master of a grammar school-which, that the charge against us is made too in 1813, had reached a fifth edition, general and sweeping, and urged more and in all probability has added anowith a spirit of nationality, than a re- ther since-receiving, as its author gard for the real state of the case. For informs us, (p. 10.) various puffy criexample, you may recollect how un- ticisms from the British Critic, the mercifully they hunted down the un- Monthly Review-which at one time fortunate Musæ Edinenses. They was really not a contemptible workwere bad enough, in all conscience; the Critical and Analytical Reviews, but it was hardly fair to stigmatize, as in its progress; and if you, Mr North, the English Reviewers did, the literado not think the minute disquisitions
ture of a whole country, from the folly of prosody unfit for your pleasant pae of an indiscreet person who printed ges, I shall shew you, by this pane
the exercises of raw and half-taught gyrised book, that an inconceivable schoolboys. All the prosodial sins of ignorance of metre is sometimes to be Scotland were raked up on the occasion. found south as well as north of the I remember that the Quarterly twit- Border. ted good old Doctor Anderson with The first portions of the book I have having published, as a correct speci- but slightly glanced over. They conmen of the Sapphic, a few verses writ- sist of rules of construction and positen sixty years ago by Græme, which tions of Latin arranged on a peculiar have the misfortune of containing plan, that appears tolerably well exe
• The Latin Primer in three parts
Part III. A large and plain de. scription of the Latin verse, and of many kinds of composition in verse ; a summary account of Terence's Metres, and a more minute one of the Metra Horatiana ; with a table designed to give a ready and perfect knowledge of all Horace's Metres at one view. By the Rev. Richard Lyne, Rector of Little Petherick, and late Master of the Grammar-school at Liskeard. Fifth edition. Longman & Co. 1813.
+ The passage is in Anderson's Poets, vol. xi. p. 411. The poem begins with a line which may serve as a specimen,
6 Pueri agrestes irridendum pecus," consists of 16 lines, and contains 45 faults ; on which Dr Anderson remarks, that it must be allowed to be a very correct and manly performance for a boy of fifteen !_A.
# The Quarterly, however, was at that time nettled at the calumnies poured out against Oxford and the great English Schools, by the Edinburgh, and may perhaps be on that ground excused. But
the principal of these calumnies were written by an Englishman, the Reverend S**** S****, one of the most unfortunate men that ever passed for a wit. Animals of that kind were in great feather some dozen or half dozen years ago ; but now, as Sir Walter Scott says in Marmion, “ Thanks to Heaven and good Kit North,” they are clean gone. Requiescant in pace !-A.
cuted. The third part, which pro- selves would say, a barbarous music fesses to be a large and plain account and accentuation. They are sung as of Latin verse, &c. is my object, and Trochaics thus : Nõbis | dātės | noI shall go through it with as much bis | nātússlēx în- | -tāctă | vīrgi- | order and dispatch as possible. nē: without any regard to the true
He begins properly enough by con- quantities. He might as well have sidering the hexameter, of which he quoted honest old Walter de Mapes's gives a very meagre account, contain- “Mihiest propositum in taberna mori,” ing some inaccuracies which I shall for a specimen of Latin verse, as this not stop to point out, as there is bet- sample of the Roman breviary. ter game in view. Nor shall I delay We next come to a chapter on six on his pentameters, except
to make a small verses, parts of the hexameter. few remarks on rhymed Latin, the The second of these he exemplifies by consideration of which he here intro- a fragment of a line from the Æneid, duces, and shews he knows nothing by following which plan he. might about it. “ The following verse of have treated us with a more copious Ovid,” he says, (p. 204.) “ is spoiled variety of metres than any former proby a rhyme,
sodian, a great object of his ambition. Quærebant flavos per nemus omne faros." Why did not he give examples of the
verse, (the heroic hepthemimeris,) Now there is no rhyme here ; flavos from authors-Prudentius, Boethius, accented on its first syllable and favós Ausonius, &c.---who really used it as on its last, (which is the way they an entire line, instead of having reought to be pronounced) rhyme no course to Virgil, who, of course, inmore than a mán rhymes with Háman, tended to have finished it as a full or promontory with spárkling story. hexameter? The same objection will Nor, with all deference to the learned apply to the example of his next author of Metronariston, do the verses metre; the tetrameter a priore, for which Lyne quotes after him, such which his authority is Horace, who as,
unquestionably, uses it only as part of O pater, O patriæ cura decusque tuæ,
a heptameter. For this division, I own,
however, he may plead the authority deserve the name of rhyme. They are of some commentators; but the acmerely homoteleutic, and of course do count the pherecratian, his fifth in not rhyme any more than correct with this department, is entirely original. direct, or causeway with highway, or He tells us (p. 206) that it consists of James Hogg with hedge-hog. The the three last feet of the hexameter, author of Metronariston considers such but adds that the first foot might be verses as agreeable: to my ear they a choree. This should, I think, have are very displeasing, if of any thing startled him a little as to it's origin like frequent occurrence. Persius from the hexameter; and the line, in laughs at the poets of his day for fact, is choriambic. But what think using them, and crabbed as the sati
is the example he gives us of the rist is, I owu I prefer his authority to initial choree ? Catullus's that of the master of Liskeard school, who declares them "soft and musical.”
Hýměn 1 o Hymenæe ! True it is, there are limits to his ad- Hyměn ! runy! a short n! and the miration. Rhyme carried too far, he next sentence is just as bad, “ Catulthinks spoils the dignity of some lus forms this trimeter not only with hyinns in the Roman breviary, for in- a choree in the first place, but a dacstance,
tyl likewise in the last, which writers Nobis datus, nobis natus
on this subject seem to have taken no Ex intactâ virgine ;
account of, as
Collis 1 o Hěli. | -conii
Cūltor | ūăni- l' æ genus"
I have heard of a blind man, who
maintained that there was no such Spoil the dignity of such a composi- sense as sight, because he did not postion as this! Why, sir, it is not Latin sess it'; and we have an analogous verse at all. It is nothing but Latin words 'instance here. Because our author adapted to a foreign, or, as they them- could not see that two Glyconic verses