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good faith, when an insult was to be revenged upon some neighbouring clan. If a spirit of noble independence was cherished by a mode of life which brought the lowest of the tribe into personal intimacy withi liis superior, it also conduced to create a pride too easily wounded, and io nurse a disposition im- . patient of the control imposed by legally constituted authority The martial habits which roused the inhabitants of a valley from their peaceful occupations, to gather them to the battle for the purpose of repelling unprovoked hostility, often Jed them to the most savage butchery of their fellow-country, men, merely to avenge the indiscretion of an individual. Every passion, however noble in itself, was too highly teinpered, and was of too delicate irritability.
Such a confession may appear somewhat at variance witb. the sentiments expressed at the beginning of the present Article ; and the plaintive strain in which we took a review of that peculiarity of character of those modes of life, and which are fast vanishing away, may now perhaps be suspected of insincerity. A very few words will be sufficient to show our perlect consistency. It is one thing to feel a lively interest in retracing manners which are now
no more; anotiser, to wish to recall them into actual exsistence. Even those attractive superstitious which gave form to the mist reposing on the breast of the mountain, and 'voice to the hollow blast murmuring down the glen, are not to be regretted. They threw, it inust be admitted, à veil of mysterious solemnity over the humblest occupations ; they still contribute powerfully to engage our feelings, and : to gratify our taste; but can it be deplored that this visionary. creed no longer holds its empire over the mind? or that. FALSE IMPRESSIONS have been supplanted by the triumphs of TRUTH?
Having resigned the most fascinating part of the system, ite sterner elements may be dismissed without a sigh. Upon the whole, we rejoice that a system productive of some brilliant virtues, and of many serious evils, bas gradually given way to the more social habits. Much may have been lost that was romantic; but much has been gained in solid comfort. Thel: simple habits of mountaineers may have been partially suese ceeded by the vicious practices and vulgar propensities of busy life; but a more effectual provision has been made fór the happiness and moral improvement of the species, than could have been effected under an order of things in wliiohja mankind were tied together in little independent knots, rather than woven into the more uniform and even texture of well regulated society. That was
no very comfortable state in which it was not an uncommon event for whole herds of
cattle to be stolen from their rightful owners by a midnight fóras* ;' in which every man slept with his clayınore by bis side and in which the unoffending inhabitants of a retired valley might be murdered in cold blood, because one of their clan had spoken insultingly of a rival chieftain. Such a state of society may be reviewed with enthusiastic interest; but from these retrospective dreams of the mind, we are glad to awaken to the sober realities of less romantic life. In short, we dwell upon these pictures of feudal manners, exactly as we should delight our eyes with the mixture of strength and soft
ness, of grace and wildness t,' which characterizes th- caring paintings of Salvator Rosa, We catch the spirit of his breathing figures. With his predatory banditti we scale the cliffs, and rush down the ravine upon the unwary traveller, But the ardour of imagination would speedily cool, were these reveries of fancy to assume instantaneous existence: we should recoil with horror, were the robbers suddenly to start from the canviss, and did we perceive ourselves to be surrounded by a troop of singuinary in urderers. Art. 1V. Chemical Essays, principally relating to the Arts and Manufactures of the British Dominions. By Samuel Parkes, F.L S 5. vols. 12mo. price 21. 25. Baldwin, Cradock, and Joy London, 1815.
UE Author of these Essays is already advantageously I known to the public, by his “ Chemical Catechisin," á usefut elemevtary work, which has been well received and has bad an extensive sale. He now makes his re-appearance as an author, with the avowed object of diffusing information among that important class of the community, who are engaged in those departments of manufacturing industry that are dependent on chemical principles, and to whom therefore some knowledge of the principles on which their respective arts are founded, is of great and vital importance. For it is an obvious truth, that in proportion as those who are engaged in condacting these processes, shall be conversant with their scientific principles and relations, will be their confidence of always obtaining uniform and successful results, and their means of introducing such scientific or economical improvebents, as may ultimately carry them to perfection.
In the progress of mankind from a state of ignorance and barbarism, to that of refinement and civilization, the arts naturally precede the sciences; but, during that period, their progress, if indeed they are at all progressive, is extremely slow;
The Creach. * Euskare's Class. Tour in Italy, Vol. II. p. 414. 4to Edition.
and the occasional improvement which they may receive, is the result of fortunate accident, and not of well directed inquiry. The establishment of some fixed scientific principles, soon becomes indispensibly necessary to the farther advancement of all which are not strictly inanual; and until these shall have been developed, they must remain circumscribed within the most narrow bounds. Lord Bacon has finely illustrated this subject, by his profound remark, that the discovery of gunpowder was solitary because it was accidental; for had it been the result of scientific investigation, it would have been followed by a crowd of others. This vantage ground being once gained, a new career is opened, which, when compared with the individual capacity of mankind, is of boundless extent.
We may observe, as a further illustration of this subject, that the periods most strongly marked by great improvement in the arts, will be found to be those which have been most distinguished by the progress of scientific discovery. The discovery and development of the theory of latent heat, by Dr. Black, led in the most direct manner to that great improvement in the construction of the steam engine, which, perhaps more than any other individual circumstance, has contributed to raise the manufacturing establishments of Great Britain to their present uvrivalled pitch of greatness.
The “ Essays" which have led to these preliminary observations, are of too miscellaneous a character, to render them susceptible of very rigorous criticism ; nor do they contain so large a proportion of new matter, as to make it proper to attempt an analysis of each individual essay. They will be found in general to address themselves less to the man of science than to the manufacturer, who, it may be expected, will seek to advance his knowledge of the processes about which he is more especially interested, by the most direct and least laborious means. The details are consequently in most instances of a purely practical nature; and Mr. P. has occasionally passed into, the description of processes which almost belong to the province of manual arts. This has been especially the case in the essays on glass and earthenware; but though it certainly contributes to make them more generally amusing, yet we doubt if it contributes equally to their usefulness. In general, howe, ever, they who wish for information on the subjects of which Mr. Parkes bas treated in these volumes, will find them illustrated in a clear and perspicuous manner, and which even those who are not very conversant with scientific chemistry, will not find it difficult to understand. He has indeed shewn great judgement, in keeping the language of his work level with the attainments of those who have never studicd chemistry as a
science, but who, from the nature of their occupations, are most likely to be purchasers of his work, and in whose hands we apprehend it will be found most extensively useful. His own avocations, and his familiar acquaintance with the science of chemistry, have enabled him to become intimately acquainted with the principles of those subjects on which he treats; and throughout the work he shews au anxious concern for the improvement of our domestic industry, which proves that the welfare of his country is an object of his constant solicitude. He neglects, therefore, no opportunity of pointing out the relations of the respective arts, with the established principles of chemical science, nor of suggesting inquiries or supplying bints, the investigation of which might lead to considerable improvements. The successful execution of such a plan as Mr.P. bas
proposed to himself, requires, indeed, accomplishments which are rarely united in the same individual; a profound acquaintance with chemical science, and anintimate knowledge of those arts which are dependant upon it, not as they are often imperfectly described in books, but as they are really practised in the recesses of our manufacturing establishments. Mr. P. has indeed had many valuable opportunities of acquainting himself intimately with the principles and practice of many of our domestic manufactures, and they have not been thrown away upon him. He has availed himself of them with diligence, and his work may be read with advantage by many, who would be discouraged from seeking information from works which are of a purely scientific character.
There is one feature of this work, which we must not overlook, because it contributes a great deal to relieve the uniformity of more formal details. Mr. Parkes has been very attentive on most subjects, in collecting what may be classed as historical notices, relative to the introduction and progressive establishment and extension of some of the important objects of chemical manufacture; a class of facts which are from their dature very liable to fall into oblivion, but which will merit to be preserved, as contributions to the history of our domestic industry, to which many an ingenious and active individual has essentially contributed, whose name will never find its way to that notice to which it is fairly intitled.
In the selection of the subjects of his Essays, Mr. P. states, that he has chiefly fixed on those which have been least examined by other chemical writers, and 'In all cases due atten'tion has been paid to the improvement of the manufactures of • the kingdom.'
The following are the subjects of the Essays on the Utility of Chemistry; on Temperature; Specific Gravity; Calico Printing; Barytes ; Carbon; SulVOL. V. N. S.
phuric Acid ; Citric Acid; the fixed Alkalies ; Earthenware and Porcelain; Glass; Bleaching ; Water; Sal Ammoniac; Edge Tools. The fifth volume consists entirely of Additional Notes and Index.
On perusing this,enumeration, it will immediately occur to every chemist, that some of the essays scarcely come within the range of chemical science; and perhaps Mr. P. ought, on that account, to have made the title page of his work more comprehensive and general, for certainly edge tools and specific gravity cannot be regarded as ohjects of chemistry. Yet those essays will no doubt be found valuable to a certain description of readers; and perhaps that on specific gravity will be the most generally useful of any in the work. We think, however, that the ample space occupied by the first essay, might have been more usefully filled up; for the importance of chemistry, and its extensive application to all the purposes of life, are now so well known, and so correctly appreciated, as to make an essay on such a subject a much less appropriate introduction, than it would have been twenty or thirty years ago.
It is extremely difficult too, on such a subject, to avoid being perfectly trite, and where Mr. Parkes, has endeavoured to give novelty by deviating into less trodden paths, he has unfortunately ventured upon subjects which, being foreign to his pursuits, he does not understand. If there is any class of persons, for example, to whom an exhortation to study chemistry is superfluous, the medical profession is certainly that class, for chemistry forms a constant part of professional education, and it would be grossly incomplete without it. Mr. P. however, in the fulness of his zeal for his favourite science, has recommended it to their sedulous cultivation, for reasons which are less to be admired for their truth than their singularity. After exhorting the medical student, for example, to make him self acquainted with the composition of the different salts, (a very superficial acquirement by the hy, for any medical student,) he remarks, . This will inspire him with professional confidence; and he will be as sure of producing any particular chemical effect upon his patient, as he would if he were operating in his own laboratory.'
This appears to us to be perfect verbiage ; for we have yet to learn, nor does Mr. P. inform us, what resemblance or analogy there can be, between the operation of chemical substances on each other, and their effects on the animal economy. What chemical property of mercury or antimony, for example, will throw the least light upon the power of one in exciting salivation, and of the other in producing vomiting. Mr. P. however, has a remark on the subject, which he may perhaps thiņk will make the matter plain and intelligible, though