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its original purity and integrity. Another work, of which we find interesting extracts, under this article, is the Hiao-King, or Canonical Book of Filial Piety, which was composed in the year 480 before Christ, and is supposed to have been the last work of Confucius. It was involved in the proscription of the ancient books under the reign of Tsin-chi hoangi-how it was recovered-whether or not it remained pure, and which of its copies are the most authentic; these are questions debated among the learned. It was translatea into Latin by Father Noel, and inserted in a work of his published at Prague, in quarto, in the year 1711, under the title of Sinensis Imperii Libri Claffici Sex. The translation of this work, given here, is different from that of F. Noel. His version was made from the Kou-ouen, or old text, this is made from the Sin-ouen, or new text, adopted by the imperial college of China, and the literati in the provinces. This is followed by a piece intitled, Filial Piety of the Emperor, which was published in the year 1689 by the emperor Kang-hi. The extracts here given from this piece are ample, commendable, and instructive. They shew the fruits and importance of filial affection, in its root from son to father, in its progress and branches, as comprehending the filial regard of all orders of the empire to the monarch, considered as the Father and Mother of the nation, and in its effects as engaging the emperor to love that people of which he is the father, to promote agriculture, diminish taxes, fuccour the distressed, and soften the rigour of penal laws. All these duties are treated in an ample and circumstantial manner, and in this detail the reader will be informed of a multitude of things relative to the customs, manners, and laws of China, that have been hitherto unknown in Europe, or known but imperfectly.-In all these extracts, however, there is such a remarkable monotony, and such multiplied repetitions of the fame ideas, that they are, now and then, adapted to exercise the reader's patience.

The above-mentioned pieces are followed by several petitions or remonftrances, addressed to different emperors, in which they are censured for the neglect or violation of the duty under consideration :-some of these are laughable, and they are all trivial. The details concerning filial piety, drawn from the Cheng-hium of the emperor Kang-hi, are more interesting; to theie our Author has added an account of all that relates to this subject in the code of laws of the reigning dynasty, which he reprefents as one of the noblest productions of the human mind. He celebrates this code, and observes, that the tranquillity, order, subordination, police, and population, that flourish, at present, in the vast empire of China, are proofs of its excellence. With respect to population, the missionary tells us, that according to


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the lists presented to the empire in the year 1761, the inhabitants of China were computed at 198,214,555. We think the Author should here have added in the cautious style of the banker, errors excepted. In this code there are many curious anecdotes relative to the laws and jurisprudence in China. This code is divided into several sections, according to the different tribunals, that of the emperor's house, the tribunal of the Mandarins, the tribunal of rites, of finances, &c. and it contains so many instructive relations, that it is with regret that we pass it over ; but an account of all the contents of this volume that merit attention, would swell this extract beyond all bounds. The article which relates to censors, who are, ex officio, monitors of the emperor, and of all in civil and military employment, who watch over the morals and conduct of the citizens of all ranks, and are the continual defenders of the laws, is fingularly curious. The extent of their office, the power and danger that attend it, the intrepidity it requires, the suffer. ings often accompany it, are described by our Author, who, however, refers the reader to the Grand Annals of China for a more particular account of this critical employment.

Under this great article of Filial Piety, we are presented with a collection of different Pieces in Verse and Prose on the subject, which are, for the most part, sensible, elegant, and pathetic, though not taken from authors of the first class in China. This is followed by a declaration of the Emperor Kang-hi, published in 1663, and another of the Emperor Yong-Tching in 1724; from whence our Author has given several extracts, which we have read with pleasure. We meet with a curious medley of morality and medicine, or rather of medical morality, in the following piece: it gives an idea of the 86th book of the collection, called Kou-kin-y-tong, which contains a summary of the beft books that have been published in China, on the art of healing, so far down as the year 1617.

This first Article (which occupies 298 pages) is concluded by the reflections and confiderations of our Author on the Doctrine of Filial Piety in China. These reflections discover good sense, fagacity, and candour. This Author acknowledges that The Chinese doctrine on this important duty, which is to pure and luminous when traced up to its primitive state, has degenerated greatly, as the best things do, in passing through the hands of men, and the course of ages. He even draws a striking picture of the abuses that have been introduced by filial piety ill understood, ill applied, and superstitiously or corruptly abused. It leads, for example, a husband to repudiate a wife whom he loves, when she happens to be disagreeable to his father or mother,-to abandon his mother, if she has been divorced by his father, or has married after his death,--to com

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mit the most atrocious acts of barbarity to avenge the injuries done to his parents—to entertain prejudices against a missionary, because he has left his parents and country, and to suffer death rather than allow his hair to be cut, or his nails to be paired, from a notion that he is obliged to preserve his body in the state he has received from his father and mother. Our Misionary acknowledges the gross ignorance of the people in China, even of those in the ranks above the populace, and their blind attachment to the authority of Confucius. Filial Piety indisposes also the Chinese against the Christian religion in several respects : because this religion treats, as delirious superstition, the rites, the worship, and opinions of their forefathers, for which filial piety excites a boundless veneration ;-but farther (says our charitable Missionary, and pray hear him!) “this is nothing when compared with what passes in the tender and filial heart of a Chinele, when he is told positively (by a narrow-minded bigot, say we) that all those who have died without adoring Jesus Christ, are condemned to eternal punishment, from which there is no deliverance. What a bitter wound this to a good heart (and is not this a presumption that it is not true?) What! all his ancestors,-that beloved father, that tender mother to whom he is entirely devoted,--that brother and sister with whom he has passed his life, are in a place where he cannot revisit them without being consummately miserable! All that we can say here is, that nothing in our ministry has been so painful as the dismal office of supporting and comforting profelytes and Neophites, under the agonies of sorrow into which they have been thrown by the first dawn of the faith in their minds.'Wretched Missionary !--is not this abusing the faith of the Gospel, as much as the Chinese ever abused the doctrine of Filial Piety? The Missionary, however, tells us, that the Christian religion has several aspects that render it agreeable to Filial Piety, for which we leave the Reader to consult the work itself.

The second Article in this volume is, A Memoir or Treatise concerning the Interest of Money in ChinaIn order to illustrate this subject, our Author enters into a long and ample detail concerning the form of the Chinese government, the nature of the taxes, the manner of raising them, the administration of the finances, the riches of the different orders of the empire, the circulation of specie, coin, weights, and measures, and many other objects of political economy. What he says on all these heads is curious and instructive; but there are many discusions in this Memoir which have no relation at all to its title. Were we to give this piece a title answerable to its contents, we should call it, an Efsay on the Government, Finances, Agriculture, Commerce, and political Oeconomy of China.


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