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able toward accomplishing Dr. Gale's desire, but he obscured his just merit by his extravagant deference to a single MS. in the Medicean library at Florence. Wesseling to his exquisite learning added signal advantages from the extensive collations which he made or procured, and from the contributions of those illustrious masters of Grecian literature, Valckenaer, Rhunkenius, Abresch, and Reiske. Yet, in the restoration of the genuine Ionicisms, he himself admits that he was cautious and sparing to a fault. His noble edition will, however, retain its high rank in estimation : and it is one of its distinctions, that, in this respect, it has so greatly facilitated the labours of future editors. Reitze gave an improved text, in a very inelegant and repulsive form; but was prevented by death froin finishing his proposed labours. A most beautiful and correct edition of the pure text of Herodotus, by Godfrey Henry Schaefer, is now in a course of publication from the press of M. Sommer of Leipzig. This editor, whose competency to the task seems well demonstrated, has attempted the long desired object through a small part of his first volume ; but he afterwards desists from the minute and troublesome labour, assigning a reason, for the change of his plan, which has too much the appearance of a petitio prin. cipii.
From the superlative talents of Professor Porson, and from the obligations which he owes to his friends and admirers for all the deference with which they have treated him, we cannot but wish that he had employed himself, with the resolution and energy of which he is so capable, in an actual revision and restitution of the text of the great Father of History. It is deplorable that his amazing erudition and fertile genius should exist for so little benefit to the literary world, and honour to himself. What are the Letters to Gibbon, and the four tragedies of Euripides, in the long course of twenty years fr---But we return to the work on our table. A selection of Notes is appended to each volume, composing,
closely printed pages. With the exception of a few mere references to Major Rennell's Geography of Herodotus, they are all taken from Wesseling and his coadjutor Valckenaer. It must have been no easy thing to determine on the particular notes to be extracted, when the narrow boundaries prescribed for the selection, were compared with the amplitude of the store out of which it was to be gathered. After an attentive comparison, we are bound to say, that we admire the judgement with which the collection has been niade. None of the notes are critical; but they all relate to interesting topics of history, antiquities, and interpretation.
The Latin translation of Lorenzo Valla, as revised by Gronovius, is printed at the foot of each page. Mr. Dunbar, in his sensible preface, justly laments his having been compelled thus to subserve the commands of the bookseller, and the laziness of school boys. We do not know how the case is in Scotland, but we think that an intelligent bookseller ought to have reflected, that, by Greek scholars in England and Germany, the obtrusion of the Latin version will be deemed a blot and a deformity to the beautiful pages of this edition. The same price we doubt nọt, would have been cheerfully paid, had this encumbrance been banished, even if the lines had been doubly or trebly leaded to fill up the page.
Or if the laziness of the tyro must be complimented, though to his own ultimate injury, why was not the translation printed separately ?
The Latin Index is an ample and good one. It is that of Gronovius, with the few alterations which Wesseling made, when he inserted it in his edition. Had the translation been omitted, there would have been room for the introduction of more of the valuable contents of Wesseling's two Appendices. The collection of Ionic Words and Phrases, by Camerarius and Henry Stephens, and the Chronological Tables to Herodotus, by Dr. Gale, would have rendered the edition much more serviceable. We recommend it to the learned editor to consider whether a supplementary volume might not well answer the expense of publication. It should include, not only the particulars which we have just specified, but some select elucidations of this most useful and venerable historian, from the writings of Major Rennel, Dr. Vincent, and M. Borheck, and from the researches of Bruce, Parke, and the literati of India.
The paper of these volumes is excellent.' The typographical execution reflects much honour on the taste and ability displayed in the conduct of the Edinburgh University Press. We have found the text and notes to be respectably correct: yet the number of literal errors that occur, deprive this work of any claim to that exquisite accuracy which fastidious scholars so highly covet. We have, however, good reason to congratulate ourselves on this cheap and handsome accession to the enjoyments of the classical student; especially as the recent continental editions of Greek authors, though printed on the vilest paper, are sold, in this country, at so extravagant a rate,
The precursor of this edition was a Thucydides, from that of Wasse and Duker, by the Rev. P. Elmsley. A complete edition of Xenophon, on the same uniform plan, is announced for speedy publication. It would afford us additional satisfaction, if the editors would so far recede from their plan of unifora mity, as to exclude the Latin version from the Greek pages,
Art. V. A Course of Theological Lectures, on the Peculiar Doctrines of
Christianity. By the Rev. Joseph Robertson, Edinburgh. 8vo. pp. 439.
Price 8s. Ogle and Co. Edinb. Longman and Co. London. 1806. To the opposition of heresy and infidelity, the Christian
world has been doubtless indebted for some of the most useful exertions of genius and learning in its defence. When the enemies of the Truth have rallied their forces, and exhibited the most formidable and resolute hostility, Christianity has always found advocates zealously disposed, and eminently qualified, to defend her rights. They have equalled their opponents in strength of intellect, versatility of genius, laborious research, profound and diversified knowledge, and adroitness in polemic discussion. We cannot, therefore, regret the existence of controversy, which, though designed by opponents for the subversion of truth, has engaged such able advocates in its defence, and brought such important accessions to the evidence of our holy religion.
We should have been highly gratified to have found these remarks invariably applicable to the Course of Lectures before
But we dare not relax the integrity of criticism even toward the friend of truth; nor do we apprehend that the cause of religion will suffer greatly, because all her advocates are not equally skilful.
Mr. Robertson has dedicated his work to the Right Honourable Henry Erskine of Ammondell, M. P. His Majesty's Advocate for Scotland. It consists of twenty-three lectures, which embrace the great outline of Christian theology, beginning with “ The Inspiration of the Scriptures” and closing with “ The Future Happiness of the Righteous.” Here subjects are presented, which, by their importance, are the most interësting to the human mind, and which, from their nature, may engage the full exercise of all its powers: subjects, in the illustration and defence of which, may be combined, acuteness of discernment, and force of argumentation, vigour of conception, fire of genius, and the various beauties of composition, We are not able to add, that our author has excelled his predecessors in any of these respects.
As examples of composition, we think these Lectures exa ceedingly defective. The Preface and Introductory Lecture, which are principally employed on subjects relating to language and general science, are so arbitrarily connected with the Author's professed design, that we consider them scarcely Jess proper to precede an Essay on Language, than “ to pave the way" (as he often expresses it) to a Course of Divinity Lectures. The selection of Scriptures, whether designed as texts or mottos, is often unhappy, the Introduction foreign and
pedantic, and a lucid arrangement egregiously wanting. Mr. R.'s constant affectation of diguity and harmony frequently obscures his sentiments; and an aim at stateliness and pomp, in those parts which require simplicity, especially in the pro
ositions and transitions, often fatigues and offends his reader. His periods are twisted into perpetual inversions, are too mechanical in their structure, and are often swollen with epithets, and enfeebled by expletives. We have observed a peculiar fondness for new words and phrases, which are more commonly new than happy, and which are seldom suffered to retire, till, by a perpetual recurrence, they have become disgustingly familiar. i. Mediation of salvation,” “ seeds of conversation, “ individual entity,” “ nevertheless of all," and a host of the same kindred, are employed, where a more humble author would have said, medium of salvation, topics of conversation, &c. We have seldom heard, except from Mr. Robertson, of a book " emanting,” or a testimony being “ emitted.” But such modes of expression abound in the pages which we have had the fatiguing task of reading through. An idea of their style may be collected from the following extracts. Having described the effects of the Scriptures under
the Mosaic dispensation, he proceeds,
Stay not and wonder here ; fly along the region of gospel-operation, and see what mighty works were performed by the Sacred Oracles. Lo! they reach a quarter of the globe where the darkness of ignorance and superstition reign in all their strength and horror ; they have no sooner en. tered, than ignorance becomes the light of salvation, and superstition the rational worship of the living God.”—pp: 35, 36.
• Let us repair to the regions of sacred information in quest of the revelation of this doctrine.”
“ Reason is the ray of divinity sent to contemplate the beauty of that revelation, when presented to the mind.”
To the general sentiments and tendency of these Lectures, we cordially testify our approbation. We are willing to allow their author the praise of a good intention: he appears the friend of orthodoxy, though not always happy in his method of supporting it. Many of his arguments are obscured by diffusiveness and pomp, some of his principles are at least dubious, and some of his conclusions unsatisfactory. In proving the Inspiration of Scripture, he borrows one kind of evidence from what he denominates PROPHETIC Facts, which he thus defines.
“ All the predictions concerning the resolutions of God may be denominated facts, because they will all be realized in their proper and destined season;" after some explication he adds, " but numerous predictions are contained in the Old and New Testament, therefore their Divinity stands confessed.” p. 17.
To this it might be replied, that impostors have uttered predictions : and to appeal to the infallibility of the Scriptures, (as the argument supposes the prophecy to be true) in order to prove their inspiration, is a mere gratuitous assumption. The correspondence of the fact with the prediction, we acknowledge with Mr. R., forms a capital argument; but how far an appeal to the unaccomplished predaction is calculated to convince, we presume not to affirm. If the former only be intended, the novelty and ambiguity of his manner and expression are much to be condemned.
A want of perspicuity and closeness of investigation we have observed in many of the arguments. We could have wished greater attention, especially, to some parts of the Arian and Socinian controversy. Though we admit the general cogency of his proofs, we apprehend that the opponents may sometimes find him unguarded, and open to critical censure. Scriptures, which Mr. R. ought to know are warmly controverted, are sometimes quoted with such an air of confidence or triumph, as if his interpretation were on all hands admitted. Nor is this the worst. With ignorance equalled only by his bombastic amplification, he cites the discredited passage (1. John, v. 7.) the retention of which, in the common copies and translations of the sacred canon, has done so much injury to the cause of evangelical truth.
We most cordially unite with this author, in believing the peculiar sentiments of Dr. Priestley to be both erroneous and dangerous; but we should feel some reluctance in asserting, that " He furiously defended and propagated the tenets of Socinus by publishing small pamphlets, slyly zeorded, and full of insinuations, in order to beguile the ignorant and the unwary. The titles of some of these,” adds Mr. R. “ were the Divinity of Christ disproved, The Doctrine of the Atonement disproved." We know that there are two tracts among his works, on “ The Divinity of Christ," and on “ The Atonement for Sin by the Death of Christ,” but whatever he attempts to disprove by them, he hạs not announced his supposed success in the titles. What severity of reprehension does any man deserve, who uses the weapons of misrepresentation and calumny, in the pure and holy service of truth?
We do not think our author worthy of imitation, when in the fervour of triumph he asks, “ can an Arian blush ??? or when he utters his zealous premonitions respecting their condition at the second advent of the Saviour:
" Where then will they fly for help? In vain shall they invoke the rocks and mountains to fall upon them, to cover them from the face of the Lamb. What mind can conceive, or pen describe, the feelings of these men in that awful moment ??--p. 118.
When Mr. R. asserts, “Nor can the principles of reason instruct mankind, how natural and moral evil were introduced