Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

T periodicawdillemination of triding

tales of fiction, which too frequently deceive while they amuse, and ruin while they fascinate. It was hoped on the most solid principles--that the History of this and other countries, would furnith amusement blended with instruça: tion ; and interesting incidents, adorned by Truth. We ought not to speak decisively on the result of our endeavours ; we are not so ridiculously guided by Fanaticism, as to suppose that reformation of any kind is to be obtained by an instantaneous effort, or by a daring afleveration : on the contrary, it is presumed, that the lurest advances are to be made by gradual, or perhaps imperceptible, degrees. And in this way have we already met success, if our numerous private correspondents are fincere in their expressions of approbation; and the general bulk of our present readers seriously disposed, as their orders indicate, to continue their journey with us, along the impetuous course of Time.

In no walk of literature is an author fendered more confpicuous than as a faithful and energetic narrator of public events : a great Historian is a literary character of the first magnitude; nor are Homer and Virgil more admired for the beauty of their poetical descriptions, than for the historical information contained in their celebrated works, which no other records have handed to pofterity,

Recent circumstances; indeed, have convinced us of the utility of our favourite subject: for, since the first appearance of this Compilation, volumes and pamphlets, somewhat of the fame nature, have been foifted on the Public; and, as if conscious of success, the several Editors, wholly inattentive to the formation, or the quality, of their contents, have sheltered themfelves under the bulwark of a reputation, which they neither railed nor accelerated.

The valuable addition to this Work - ENGLISH HISTORY by Eminent Men-is in a state of great forwardness, when the Price of the whole is taken into deliberate consideration. Some of our inVOL. II,

А

genicus

genious Correspondents have indeed intimated a wish to have the quantity of this elegant and correct Letter-Press greatly extended, that young minds might the fooner acquire a knowledge of the History of their country. But as these requests have been few, in comparison to the number of our readers, it was judged expedient to make such an increase only as would oblige one party, without offending the other.

Bacon's celebrated Life of HENRY the SEVENTH will finish in a short time; when, among the succeeding names which will adorn this department, we scruple not to announce that of the illustrious HUME: and when the whole of this part of our plan fhall be complete, the Reader will be possessed of a HISTORY OF ENGLAND, which no past attempts can equal, nor any future ones excel.

As advocates for truth, it would ill become us to risk even an assertion : fuffice it therefore to fay, that we consider the First Volume as a general, though not an exaci, Specimen of our intentions : improvements are yet in contemplation; and several, from the commencement, have actually taken place. The superiority of the embellishments given with No XV. will fufficiently manifest our solicitude te obtain pre-eminence.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

THE

[blocks in formation]

TH

SINGULAR PUNISHMENTS.

was to walk three times round the

market-place, behind the dog, and [Translated by the Editor.]

kiffing his pofteriors during the whole HE known influence of ridi- time; for stealing a hawk, the cul

cule over the ininds of men' prit was sentenced either to pay á has frequently urged legislators to fine of eight crowns of gold, or to the adoption of punishments, which, expose his posteriors to the beak of to superficial observers, appear pre- that voracious animal till he had loft pofterous and absurd.

five ounces of flesh. The count de Buat, in his An- ' An Algerine, caught in the act tiquities of France, says that the of thieving, has his right hand imancient inhabitants of that country mediately cut off and tied round his condemned all who had been de- neck, after which he is placed on an graded, by undergoing a public pe- ass with his face to the tail, and led nance, to wander naked about the round the town. country, armed only with a sword. An eaftern monarch having put Among the Dacii, too, a man con. one of his judges to death, for previcted of perjury, was stripped and varication, caused his skin to be compelled to pass the remainder of stuffed with horle-hair, and conhis days like a wild beast; " Since verted into a cushion; and his son, he has forfeited the character of a who succeeded him in his office, man,

he ought no

was compelled to fit on it whenever longer to wear cloaths."

he administered justice. The ancient Poles sentenced a Boemus, in his Mores Gentium, calumniator to walk on all-fours, remarks that in those Mahometan and to bark, for a quarter of an countries where the customs and hour, like a dog.

ceremonies prescribed by the AlcoAmong the Franks, the punishi- ran are rigidly observed, a criminal ment for stealing a sporting-dog, has a plank, embellished with fox's

A 2

tails,

said they,

*

« PreviousContinue »