Immagini della pagina

who are near the patient; but I must say, that wherever I have seen this tried, it has rather heightened the disorder, by bringing on fits. The same thing may be said of obedience, or letting the patient have her own way. This is precisely like giving drink in a dropsical case, or curing a burning fever by throwing in great quantities of brandy.

As the chief intention of this paper was, to prove that scolding is a disease, and not a fault, I shall not enlarge much on the mode of cure; because, the moment my theory is adopted, every person will be able to treat the disorder secundum artem. I shall mention, however, the following prescription, which I never found to fail, if properly administered: Také_Of Common Sense, thirty grains,

Decent Behaviour, one scruple,

Due Consideration, ten grains. Mix, and sprinkle the whole with one moment's thought, to be taken as soon as any of the occasional causes appear.

By way of diet, though it is not necessary to restrict the patient to a milk or vegetable diet, yet I have always found it proper to guard them against strong or spirituous liquors, or any thing that tends to heat the blood.

But it is now expedient that I should stale a matter of very great importance in the prevention of this disorder, and which I have left till now, that my arguments on the subject may appear distinct, and may be comprehended under one view. It is commonly supposed, and, indeed, has often been asserted, that this disorder is peculiar to one only of the sexes: and, I trust, I need not add, what sex that is. But although it may be true that they are most liable to it, yet it is certain, from the theory laid down respecting the predisposing causes, that the men are equally in danger. Why then do we not find as many males afflicted with scolding as we do females? For this plain reason;--scolding, as proved above, is the effect of a certain noxious matter pent up. Now this matter engenders in men, as well as in women; but the latter have not the frequent opportunities for discharging it, which the men enjoy. Women are, by fashion and certain confined modes of life, restrained from all those public companies, clubs, assemblies, coffee-houses, &c. &c where the men have a continual opportunity of discharging the cause of the disorder, without its ever accumulating in so great a quantity as to produce the symptoms I have enumerated. This, and this only, is the cause why the disease appears most often in the female sex

I would propose, therefore, if I were a legislator, or if I had influence enough to set a fashion, that the ladies should, in all respects, imitate the societies of the men; that they should have their clubs, their coffeehouses, disputing societies, and even their parliament. In such places, they would be able to take that species of exercise that tends to keep down the disorder, which at present accumulates

[ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]

in confinement, and, when nature attempts a discharge, the explosion is attended with all the violence and irregularities I have before enumerated.

Thus much I have ventured to advance respecting scolding, and I hope that I shall succeed in abating the unreasonable prejudices which have been fostered by an affected superiority in our sex, joined to a portion of ignorance, which, to say the least, renders that superiority a matter of great doubt. I have only to add, that

my motives for all this have been perfectly disinterested, and that I shall be very happy to give advice to any person labouring under the disorder. Letters (post paid) may be addressed to



To the Editor of the Atheneum. SIR-The late Dr. Campbell, Principal of Marischall College, Aberdeen, who published a new Translation of the four Gospels

, with notes, &c. has the following note on chap. x. v. 30, of the Gospel of St. John: « 30. I and the Father are one, Eya tell ó πατης


The word is not eis one person, but év one thing, or the same thing. It inight have been so rendered here; but the expression is too homely, in the opinion of some excellent critics, to suit the dignity of the subject. The greater part of foreign interpreters have thought otherwise. Vulg. Erasm. Zuric, Castalio, Beza, have Ego et Pater unum sumus, Luther, Ich und der Vater sind cins. Diodati, Io ed il Padre siamo una istessa cosa. Le Clerc, Mon Pere et moi sommes une seule Chose. , Port Royal, Simon and Saci, Une meme Chose.

“What is distinguished in the original, we ought, if possible, to distinguish. Yet no English translator known to me has, in this, chosen to desert the common translation."

These reasons appear to have influenced Dr. Campbell in retaining the old translation, but it may perhaps be worth recording, that the true rendering of the word was adopted more than forty years ago by an anonymous translator, who published a new version of the four Gospels and Acts of the Apostles in the year 1761, under the following title.

“ Divers Parts of the Holy Scriptures, done into English, chiefly from Dr. J. Mill's printed Greek copy. With Notes and Maps. London, printed for T. Piety, at the Rose and Crown, Paternoster Row.”

This translator gives the words “I and the Father are one Thing;" and it should seem as if this was the first English translation in which the true rendering was given.

The translation in question is probably very little known, at least neither Dr. Campbell nor the Archbishop of Armagh (Dr. Newcome) who gives a long catalogue of translations of the Scriptures, take any notice of this. From a manuscript note of the author in the copy which I possess, there is reason to believe that it was the work of a dissenting minister: respecting the merits of the translation I pretend not to judge; it renders some passages much clearer than they are in the commonly received translation, and the arrangement of the letter-press is calculated to make the whole extremely perspicuous to the reader; in this respect it is superior to any other which it has fallen to my lot to

“Ιλαρ ανθρωπος. . M. F. March 4, 1807.


MRS. ELIZABETH HAMILTON. MRS. ELIZABETH Hamilton was born at Belfast, in Ireland; and the affection for her country, which she constantly expressed, proved that she had a true Irish heart. She was well-known to the public as the author of “ The Cottagers of Glenburnie,” “ The Modern Philosophers,” “ Letters on Female Education,' and various other works. She has obtained in different departments of literature, just celebrity, and has established a reputation that will strengthen and consolidate from the duration of timethat destroyer of all that is false or superficial.

The most popular of her lesser works is the “Cottagers of Glenburnie," a lively and humorous picture of the slovenly habits, the indolent winna-be-fashed temper, the baneful content which prevails among some of the lower class of people in Scotland. It is a proof of the great merit of this book, that it has, in spite of the Scottish dialect with which it abounds, been universally read in England and Ireland, as well as in Scotland. It is a faithful representation of human nature in general, as well as of local manners and customs; the maxims of economy and industry, the principles of truth, justice, family affection and religion, which it inculcates by striking examples, and by exquisite strokes of pathos, mixed with humour, are independent of all local peculiarity of manner or language, and operate upon the feelings of every class of readers, in all countries. In Ireland in particular, the history of the “ Cottagers of Glenburnie” has been read with peculiar avidity; and it has probably done as much good to the Irish as to the Scotch. While the Irish have seized and enjoyed the opportuni. ty it afforded of a good humoured laugh at their Scotch neighbours, they have secretly seen, through shades of difference, a resemblance to themselves; and are conscious that, changing the names, the tale might be told of them. In this tale, both the dif. ference and the resemblance between Scottish and Hibernian saults or foibles are advantageous to its popularity in Ireland. The

difference is sufficient to give an air of novelty that awakens curiosity; while the resemblance fixes attention, and creates a new species of interest. Besides this, the self-love of the Hibernian reader being happily relieved from all apprehension that the lesson was intended for him, his good sense takes and profits by the advice that is offered to another. The humour in this book is peculiarly suited to the Irish, because it is, in every sense of the word, good humour. The satire, if satire it can be called, is benevolent; its object is to mend, and not to wound, the heart Even the Scotch themselves, however national they are supposed to be, can bear, the “ Cottagers of Glenburnie." Nations, like individuals, can with decent patience endure to be told of their faults, if those faults, instead of being represented as forming their established unchangeable character, are considered as arising, as in fact they usually do arise, from those passing circumstances wbich characterise rather a certain period of civilization than any particular people. If our national faults are pointed out as indelible stains, inherent in the texture of the character, from which it cannot by art or time be bleached or purified, we are justly provoked and offended; but, if a friend warn us of some little accidental spots, which we had, perhaps, overlooked, and which we can, at a moment's notice, efface, we smile, and are grateful.

In “ The Modern Philosophers," where the spirit of system and party interfered with the clesign of the work, it was difficult to preserve throughout the tone of good-humoured raillery and candour; this could scarcely have been accomplished by any talents or prudence, had not the habitual temper and real disposition of the writer been candid and benevolent. Though this work is a professed satire upon a system, yet it avoids all satire of individuals; and it shows none of that cynical contempt of the human race which some satirists seem to feel, or affect, in order to give poignancy to their wit.

Our author has none of that misanthropy which derides the infirmities of human nature, and which laughs while it cauterises. There appears always some adequate object for any pain that she inflicts; it is done with a steady view to future good, and with a huinane and tender, as well as with a skilful and courageous, hand.

The object of “ The Modern Philosophers" was to expose those whose theory and practice differ; to point out the difficulty of applying high-flown principles to the ordinary, but necessary, concerns of human life; and to show the danger of trusting every man to become his own moralist and legislator. When this novel first appeared, it was, perhaps, more read, and more admired, than any of Mrs. Hamilton's works; the name and character of Brigettina Botherain passed into every company, and became a standing jest-a proverbial point in conversation. The ridicule answered its purpose; it reduced to measure and reason those who, in the novelty and zeal of system, had overleaped the bounds of common sense.

«The Modern Philosophers,” « The Cottagers of Glenburnie,” and, “ The Letters of the Hindoo Rajah," the first book, we believe, that our author published, have all been highly and steadily approved by the public. These works, alike in principle and in benevolence of design, yet with each a different grace of style and invention, have established Mrs. Hamilton's character as an original, agreeable, and successful writer of fiction But her claims to literary reputation, as a useful, philosophic, moral, and religious author, are of a higher sort, and rest upon works of a more solid and durable nature; upon her works on education, es, pecially her “ Letters on Female Education;" In these she not only shows that she has studied the history of the human mind, and that she has made herself acquainted with what has been written on this subject by the best moral and metaphysical writers, but she adds new value to their knowledge by rendering it practically useful. She has thrown open to all classes of readers those metaphysical discoveries or observations, which had been confined chiefly to the learned. To a sort of knowledge, which had been considered more as a matter of curiosity than of use, she has given real value and actual currency; she has shown how the knowledge of metaphysics can be made serviceable to the art of education; she has shown, for instance, how the doctrine of the association of ideas may be applied, in early education to the forma tion of the habits of temper, and of the principles of taste and morals; she has considered how all that metaphysicians know of sensation, abstraction, &c. can be applied to the cultivation of the judgment and the imaginations of children. No inatter how little is actually ascertained on these subjects, she has done much in wakening the attention of parents, and of mothers especially, to future inquiry; she has done much by directing their inquiries rightly; much by exciting them to reflect upon their own minds, and to observe what passes in the minds of their children. She has opened a new field of investigation to women, a field fitted to their domestic habits, to their duties as mothers, and to their business as preceptors of youth; to whom it belongs to give the minds of children those first impressions and ideas, which remain the longest, and which influence them often the most powerfully, through the whole course of life. In recommending to her own sex the study of metaphysics, as far as it relates to education, Mrs. Hamilton has been judiciously careful to avoid all that can lead to that species of " vain debate," of which there is no end. She, knowing the limits of the human understanding, does not attempt to go beyond them into that which can be at best but a dispute about terms. She does not ahm at making women expert in the “ wordy war;' nor does she teach them to astonish the unlearned by their acquaintance with the various vocabularies of metaphysical system-makers.

Such jugglers' tricks she despised; but she has not, on the other hand, been deceived or overawed, by those who would represent the study of the human mind as a study that leads to no

« IndietroContinua »