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informed me that they were a party of guards, carrying two malefactors, who were chained, to suffer death for their crimes. We proceeded over another mountain, very lofty, very beautiful, and more impracticable than all that had preceded it. Having surmounted it with some difficulty, we came, near the end of the descent, to a place where the road was for about twenty or thirty feet literally almost perpendicular. I had dismounted and was leading my mule; but to conduct him down this pass was impossible. I could by no means walk down myself, but half sliding, half tumbling, with some care got safe to the bottom. How the baggage-mules were to descend, passed my comprehension: but when the one who was most heavily laden arrived, he did not hesitate an instant; but resting himself on his feet, or rather his hocks, slid down with perfect coolness and safety. The skill and success of these animals in getting through difficult places is really astonishing; when they cannot walk they make a sort of clumsy spring, but never tumble or refuse the most impracticable passes. At St. Agatha at length we arrived just before sun-set. This is a small village, standing on the seashore, from which we could expect little. On inquiry, however, we found there was a locanda, containing one clean room for us, and a room behind for the servants. This was quite sufficient for a single night, and here, therefore, we determined to abide.
How many pensive visions have I wove,
For joy has vanished like the morning beam,
That mock the idle thought which mused on fancied ill.'
vol. i. pp. 60-4.
The early poetry of Mr. Bowdler consists of two or three copies of versés addressed to his mother and sisters; and two or three school exercises, which, like the greater part of all compositions written at the same age, and in the same circumstances, are rather centos of the phrases, or perhaps patch-work of the lines of fullgrown poets. Yet it would not be doing justice, if we did not say that the exercises in question are above the average of their kind.
There is, however, a great and rapid transition in the character of the poems which follow the lines entitled To his Sister Jane.' The verses on leaving England for the South of Europe in conse→ quence of illness, unite, with a pleasing degree of fancy, all the charms of truth and feeling; and we regret that we have not space to indulge ourselves or our readers by extracting more of them than one of the closing stanzas.
But when the fading eye grows dim,
And short and frequent pantings show
The prose works consist, 1. of an Essay on the Comparative. Merits of public and private Education-the ideas of a boy on a subject which requires the experience of a man; 2. of an admirable composition on the Improvement of Female Education: and though in this, and indeed in other places there is too frequently a somewhat ponderous attempt at lightness, the defect is amply redeemed by the depth of the writer's philosophy, and the extent of his knowledge; 3. of a somewhat angry stricture on a review of the Family Shakspeare, which appeared, we are not told where or when, but certainly, from the date of the Reply, some time before our existence. We shall not, therefore, be suspected of wincing under the castigation, which at present falls lightly on some nameless brother, when we express a doubt whether the temper and some even of the principles of these strictures are altogether consistent with the spirit of the Essays, which form the greater part of the volumes.
The fourth and fifth articles consist of Extracts from a Review of the Tableau de la Littérature Françoise pendant le XVIII. siècle, (the whole critique should have been given,) and of Mr. Dugald Stewart's Philosophical Essays. The editor does not state (in reference to either of these articles, or indeed to any others) whether he has taken them from original MSS. of the author, or from the critical works to which he gave them; though he has suffered the papers to retain all the dignity of the plural pronoun, and thus to betray their origin. Nec vox hominem sonat, O Dea, certe !
Both these articles are of merit so extraordinary and so various, that our estimate of the talents of the author which would have been high, if we had confined ourselves to either, was considerably raised when we read the two consecutively; and recollected, that he, who in the space of one year was thus giving to the world one of the first specimens of philosophical analysis which criticism had yet received, and one of the ablest sketches of French literature which England had produced, was, at the time of composition, with a constitution broken and hopes ruined, and spirits almost
exhausted, devoting himself with an assiduity apparently undivided to a profession of all others the most jealous: and that, while he thus snatched with eager hand the fruits and the flowers which grew on either side his path, and scattered them among the throng who watched his progress, he was still pressing onwards with a firm step in the great line of his duty, to that eminence which his talents would have dignified and his piety consecrated.
The theological tracts follow. The first is a sermon on the Atonement, written at the age of twenty; and which, notwithstanding one or two passages of obscurity, is, on the whole, abundantly creditable to the author. We may say the same of the second tract, a work of his twenty-first year, on the Eternity of Future Punishments. The third tract is on the supposed Connexion between Religion and Melancholy. It is in some respects one of the least satisfactory in the volume: that is to say, it has more faults of style and of taste than any other, and it contains more questionable positions. The following is one: He is speaking of a man being happily irregularly educated, or his powerful mind might have been lost in dialects and prosody.' ii. 139. as if Mr. Pitt, Mr. Fox, and Lord Grenville, who were all regularly educated, and who therefore learnt much about dialects and prosody, had thereby lost their powerful minds. The truth is, that these restraints are the cords of the Philistines which the Sampsons break like tow, and by which no really-powerful mind was ever endangered.
The most original portion of these volumes is the Series (of Essays on the Christian Graces) with which they close. We could almost wish to see it published in a detached form, for it would not be easy to name any religious work which combines more taste, wisdom, and piety, with so much grace and so much strength. We are aware that essay-writing is a species of composition peculiarly easy, and therefore adopted by men, women, and children, of every height and growth of intellect. But the success of Mr. Bowdler is not of an ordinary kind; and indeed appears to us so great, that on sacred subjects, at least, we cannot recollect above one or two essayists whom we should place on the same level.
The essays are eleven in number, and are entitled as follows: Practical View of the Character of Christ, and of his Atonement; on Submission to God; Trust in God; Love of God; on Faith; Hope; Spiritual-mindedness; Thankfulness; Prayer; and Humility. The first in the order, and we think in the relative excellence of the Series, is the practical View of the Character of Christ.
As a specimen of Christian philosophy, we select the following from the Essay on the Love of God.
"I cannot but observe here, and it can scarcely be considered as a digression from the subject, how wisely it has been ordained of God, that actions, rather than sentiments, shall be the proofs of our allegiance to him. Whoever is at all acquainted with the speculations of philosophical writers respecting the will, must be aware that no man can with propriety be said to desire or will any thing, which lies within the reach of his own powers, unless he so prefers that he really endeavours to obtain it. For the will is governed by motives; and if a man says, he desires to do one thing while he actually does another, it is plain that he speaks inaccurately: his preferring the second, is a proof that he does not, in any strictness of expression, desire the first. If a man says his earnest desire is to be virtuous, while he continues to live on in sin, it is plain he deceives himself; for (through God's assistance, freely offered to all) he might be virtuous if he would; that is, if he really desired so to be: and the truth is, he does not desire it; though, if he could be virtuous, and still continue to enjoy the pleasures of sin, he probably would desire it. Yet we hear men talk of a thousand wishes, which they think real, though in truth they exist only in their imaginations; and there can be no doubt that many bad men take great comfort to themselves from their supposed desires to be good. Now God, who knows what is in man, could not but know, (I speak with reverence,) that if the sentiments and dispositions of the heart were made the test of holiness, men would deceive themselves respecting these, just as we find they do respecting their wishes; that they would fancy they loved God, while they really loved the world; and imagine they loved their fellow-creatures while they really loved themselves. For contrary affections are just as incompatible, and, in strictness of language, as absurd, as contrary desires. God, therefore, has declared, that actions shall be the test of our sentiments, exactly as they are of our wishes. And this is the more observable, because the dispositions of the heart, and not external actions, evidently furnish the qualifications for heaven and happiness; so that it might have been supposed, (with apparent reason,) that a revelation from God would enjoin only the attainment of certain tempers of mind, as the proper conditions of our acceptance. We see, however, that a different test has been established; and surely it is no mean proof of the truth of christianity, that the most accurate researches into the constitution of man enable us to verify its wisdom.'-vol. ii. p. 218,
The Essays on Faith, on Prayer, on Thankfulness, and on Submission would afford almost equal materials for selection.
The peculiar value of these volumes, if nothing had been known of the author, is the combination of talent, of taste, and of piety which they exhibit. Even if they had appeared without a name or a tale, we should have recommended them confidently, because we believe them to be eminently calculated to shew that the most comprehensive talents are not inconsistent with the deepest devotion. They afford a practical proof that the most acute and powerful understanding may submit itself, with filial docility, to the precepts
of the Scriptures; and that the most cautious and reasoning mind may embrace the humblest and most self-denying faith of a Christian. This lesson, however, after all, may be learnt in other schools: but that, which is pre-eminently the lesson of these volumes, is the proof that this consecration of talent to piety is not necessarily confined to one studious and retiring class, to those whose duty and whose privilege it is to find their ordinary employment in the most exalted pursuits that can occupy human attention. The attainments in religious knowledge and principle which we have admired in these Remains of Mr. Bowdler were the lessons learned in the intervals of the most exhausting professional labours: they were acquired in hurried walks through crowded streets, by a patient attention to the moral improvement of his own character, an attention encouraged by sickness, and not discontinued in health. They were acquired by habitual reflection on the scenes and circumstances around him, by an analysis equally philosophical and Christian of the mind, the dispositions and the moral capacities of man. His classical and mathematical attainments were not acquired at Oxford, or Cambridge. His school-boy learning of Winchester was matured by his midnight labours while an attorney's clerk, and often maintained by half hours in the intervals of journies. His knowledge of the exact sciences was wholly gained as a relaxation. His philosophy was not learnt under any public advantages; though in one man of eminent talents and virtue, Mr. Henry Thornton, he appears to have found a guide, philosopher, and friend.' His theological attainments were the harvest of a single day in the week, though, indeed, he seems to have acted on the principle recommended in the words in which Sir William Jones so beautifully paraphrased the celebrated distich of Sir Edward Coke.
'Seven hours to law, to soothing slumber seven,
In considering the style of his genius and character, it is impossible not to revert to the memory of the greatest luminary of the English law. We may indeed observe, that the essays of Mr. Bowdler, though they no where betray, as far as we know, the slightest marks of an imitation of the Contemplations, moral and divine, yet not only agree with those remarkable productions in their general aspect of seriousness, and in the uniformly practical tendency of the principles which they deliver, but even treat, in a great measure, the same subjects. They contain, however, both eloquence and more philosophy; and in poetry, though we have already said that we do not regard that department of these volumes as the best, the superiority of the author over his illustrious predecessor is beyond all competition. On the whole, if it had pleased Providence to spare the life of this interesting young man,