Page images

petition as the plan can be supposed to admit; which if it has not an indefeasible claim to logical precision, is at least duly comprehensive, and well adapted for reference.

In filling up so extensive an outline, the authors acknowledge their obligations to the ancient records and manuscripts in the British Museum; to the records of the Tower; of the Augmentation Office; of the Chapter House, Westminster; of the College at Arms; and to those of the offices of the Duchies of Cornwall and Lancaster; and of the Auditors of the Land Revenue. They profess also to have made personal surveys in every county; and we believe them entitled to the credit of having visited all the parishes of those which they have described. At the same time we know their visits in several of them to have been very transient; and their information is, consequently, superficial and defective, in many instances; and in some, palpably erroneous. Considerable allowance, however, is due, for occasional lapses, to the compilers of so complicated a work and it is probable that most of their future productions will be less marked by such imperfections, than those which are already published; as their adherence to alphabetical arrangement obliged them to begin with three counties of which no general topography, had been printed.

The praise of conciseness and compression, and of a style well suited to the subject (bating too many ambiguous expressions) is due to the compilers. They must have bestowed great labour on the construction of this volume; and in the antiquities of the respective counties they have done as much, we think, as could be reasonably demanded from them. In the article of Roman (more properly ancient) roads and stations, they have received very valuable assistance from the Bishop of Cloyne. On the Watling-street, his Lordship thus ex

presses his judgement.

This I have no doubt was another British track-way, traversing the island from the Kentish coast to the country of the Guetheli; and it is a curious circumstance, that an ancient track-way, under the very same name, tends from the eastern extremity of Scotland to the same country. These Guetheli were the remains of the old Celtic inhabitants of England, who had been driven by powerful and successive invaders, to the extremity of Wales, and to the opposite shores of Ireland; and the communication with their country must have been of the utmost importance in those early times, as providing a passage for cattle and other articles of trade, from the extreme coasts of the west, to the great marts for foreign merchants in the eastern parts of Britain. Thus the Watling-street, (via Guethelinga, as Richard of Cirencester expressly calls it) would be the road of the Guetheli, as the kening-street was the road of the Iceni.' pp. 25, 26.

We have the pleasure of perfectly agreeing with his Lordship, that the Watling-street was originally a British, not a Roman work; and on this account we object to the title assigned to this division: but we are compelled to question, whether the Guetheli (as he terms them) were "the old Celtic inhabitants of England." We do not indeed find, either in ancient classic writers, or in the venerable relics of internal tradition comprised in the Archaiology of Wales, any reason to sup pose that the Celts ever inhabited England. The learned and ingenious Edward Llwyd, in the Welch preface to his British Glossology, hazards a conjecture, that the Gwyddyl (or Irish) first occupied Britain, and were driven thence to Ireland by the Cymry: but he acknowledges this supposition to be destitute of historical authority; and he might have added, that it is even inconsistent with it. We apprehend, that the name of the Watling-street, meant neither more nor less than a road toward the Gwyddyl; that is, toward the people of Ireland. These, according to all historical authority that has yet been traced, were not Celts, but Iberians; and the Welch were evidently a distinct tribe of the same nation. Nothing is more rare, than for historical or geographical speculations to stand the test of progressive discoveries. Our great Camden erred, in supposing the Picts to have been correlative with the Welch. By protesting, however, against the Bishop of Cloyne's adoption of Llwyd's hypothesis, we are far from wishing to detract from the general merits of his communications to the present work, of which they form a very desirable portion,

The heads of Messrs. L.'s plan clearly intimate, that the authors have by no means neglected the gratification of the principal families, and proprietors, of the several counties. Their attention to Ecclesiastical architecture also is prominent. Of forty-four plates which accompany the present volume, thirty, at least, refer to this head. The execution of these, demonstrates their purpose to have been the illustration, rather than the embellishment, of the work.

The commerce of this country is a subject of so great im portance, and its agriculture is one so congenial with a topographical performance, that we should have been glad to see more on these subjects in the work before us, Its geographical and geological division, also, is very inadequate. The maps are not sufficiently distinct; and if not enlarged for the more extensive counties, will be of little use. The results of the late Census are inserted under the head of population; but in some instances so incorrectly, that it is fortunate they are repeated in the parochial topography. According to the popu lation table, Wallingford has only 1266 inhabitants: the parochial account gives 1744, which is doubtless nearer to the truth. VOL. III. R

Messrs. L. have very properly kept in view a comparison of the divisions which are distinguished in Dome's-day book, with those of the present time. Hence it appears, that little altera tion has, in this respect, occurred in Bedfordshire; the nine bundreds into which it is now divided retaining nearly the same names as at the Norman conquest, and being only changed in their extent by the distribution of three half hundreds, which then were separate, among the other divisions. Thus, the half hundred of Bochelai is now divided between the huudreds of Willey and Barford; that of Stanburge is added to the hundred of Manshead; and Weneslai, to that of Biggleswade. In the other counties here described, much greater changes Lave taken place. Of the twenty-two ancient hundreds of Berkshire, only eleven retain their former names; and the limits of some of these, especially the hundred of Reading, are greatly altered; the modern hundred of Theale being taken out of that district, and parts of the hundreds of Bucklebury and Thatcham being added to it. The modern hundreds of Compton, and Faringdon, answer nearly to those formerly called Nachededorne and Wifol; those of Cookham and Morton have been formed out of the ancient hundreds of Eletesford and Blitbury; those of Sunning and Wargrave, of parishes formerly belonging to the hundreds of Charlton and Ripsmere; the modern hundred of Ock is formed of the ancient Marcham and Sutton; and that of Faircross, from Roeberg, with parts of other ancient divisions.

The hundreds of Buckinghamshire have been reduced in number from eighteen to eight, by uniting several of the ancient divisions to form the modern. The Hundred of Buck ingham contains the former Rouelai, Stodfold and Lamua; the three Hundreds of Aylesbury, were one so named, and those of Stanes and Riseberge; those of Newport, were Bonestou, Segelai, and Moleslou; the ancient Hundreds of Coteslow, Mureslai, and Erlai, with some additions, compose the modern Hundred of Coteslow; and those of Esedene, Votesdone, and Ticheselle, that of Ashendon. The three celebrated Chiltern Hundreds of Desborough, Stoke, and Burnham, retain nearly their ancient names, with trifling changes of their limits. The first of these, and the Hundred of Buckingham, are the only districts of this county of which topographical accounts had been published; although half a century had elapsed since the late Browne Willis had made ample collections for a history of Buckinghamshire. We have heard also, that the late Mr. Knapp, of Little Linford, had continued, but not completed, collections, for the same purpose; which are not mentioned by the present compilers.

We cannot, in one article, pay all the attention which it

deserves, to this valuable work; we therefore refer the reader to our next number for a specimen of its execution. From an advertisement, however, of the second volume, we are apprehensive that Messrs. Lysons design regularly to comprise the history of three counties in every volume. Against so disproportionate a distribution, we wish to enter a timely protest; as it is obvious, that one county may justly demand an extent of description more than double of that which is due to another. This consideration increases the expediency of a separate publication for every county.

(To be concluded in our next Number.)

Art. III. Forsyth's Principles of Moral Science.
(Concluded from p. 112.)

AVARICE, in Mr. Forsyth's distribution, follows the malevolent passions; this is followed by self-love; and this again is succeeded by ambition, emulation, pride, and the love of praise. On these various articles we are not disposed to make any remarks; though we must confess, we are rather at a loss how to enter into the Author's views, when he assures us, in page 275, that in the feelings which pride excites, it resembles in every respect what is called a good conscience, with this differ ence, that being an obstinate and deep rooted sentiment it is not liable to be disturbed by doubts about its own propriety. For this extraordinary discovery, the author is certainly entitled to our acknowledgements!

[ocr errors]

Curiosity, and a passion for reforming the world, come next under the author's observation, and these are followed by hope, fear, joy, and grief, which he has strangely denominated accessory passions. We say strangely denominated, because it is a deviation without any assigned, or, we believe, assignable reason, from the arrangements of Locke, Watts, and others; and from the dictates of every intelligent mind. But on these passions we shall suspend our animadversions, after observing, that the passions, in passing through the author's alembic, are evidently tinctured with the prevailing princi ples of his work, and plainly discover, in his description, the existence of that moral evil, which he attempts to persuade us is a bug-bear and a cheat.

"The power of habit," Mr. F. tells us, p. 308, "almost always implies imbecility of mind." Such an inoffensive mis take is unworthy of severity.

In his 19th chapter, which nearly concludes his second part, we are presented with " a review of the value of the passions." Instead of multiplying expressions of disapprobation, we will

transcribe the concluding paragraph, that the reader may peruse and judge for himself.

• In the meanwhile, it appears impossible to avoid admiring the skilful manner in which the moral education of the human mind is contrived, and particularly the way in which the passions are rendered subservient to our intellectual progress, previous to the period at which we acquire sufficient discernment to enable us to pursue directly and from our own choice the object, on account of which, we received our existence. Every one of the passions leads us to perform some duty, or to do the very same actions which an enlightened understanding would have led us to perform had we been possessed of it. A complete knowledge of what is excellent and worthy of pursuit, would induce us to preserve ourselves, and to propagate our species, that intelligent beings may abound, and that reason and virtue [why virtue?] may be cultivated on the earth. The same knowledge would have led wiser beings to repel and to disarm unjust violence, to exert their talents in the cultivation of every art, to accumulate the means of subsistence, to bind together society by a reciprocity of good offices, and to seek distinction and eminence that they may be employed for wise purposes. Eut hunger and thirst, lust, avarice, ambition, vanity, and self-love, induce us to pursue the same objects. The consequence is, that when the human mind becomes improved, and we discern our true situation in the world, we find that we have been performing the very same actions that we would have wished to perform, had we possessed the highest conceivable degree of knowledge and self command. Thus we are trained up in the way wherein we should go; and thus, when we acquire extensive views of truth and excellence, we are under no necessity of changing our conduct. We continue to perform the same actions, but with different motives and purposes; reason, or the desire of perfection, being now the motive, as blind inclination or passion was formerly.' p. 330.

We now turn to the third and last part of this extraordinary volume, which the author has divided into seven chapters. The first of these treats of Religion in general; the second, of the existence and character of the Deity; the third and fourth, of the connexion between the Deity and the Universe; the fifth, of the duties of Religion; the sixth, of different Religions com pared; and the seventh, of a future state of existence. In each of these chapters, he has furnished us with much em ployment.

He begins the first chapter with observing, that "there are two kinds of religion. There is a kind of religion that arises out of the passions and imagination of men; and there is a religion that is founded on reason and the dictates of the understanding. The religious passion or feeling is called devotion. It is of a very mixed nature, and is composed of the passions of fear, amazement, and admiration. This passion or devotion" he adds, (p. 348) "leads to a misapprehension of the mature of our duty, and induces us to substitute the effects of

« PreviousContinue »