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be little difpofed to hearken greatly to a man, who, like one of the prophets of old, calls them to repentance and reformation. Neverthelefs, let them know that this Author's remarks are worthy their attention, respecting their intereft both in this world and another. There is an honesty and integrity apparent in the performance; and there is, we doubt not, a fincere and heart-felt grief for the corrupt state of our own country, and of the Chriftian world in general. Mr. H. treats on liberty, government, virtue, religion, trade, &c. and fhews himself not unacquainted with any of thefe fubjects. He is a true friend to civil freedom, and indeed to all that is really excellent and valuable among men, and while he writes with the serioufnefs, the piety, the earnestness of a reformer, shows that he wants neither knowledge nor learning.
Art. 62. Primitive Religion elucidated and reflored. In a fupplementary Abbreviation of a late Differtation on the original Doctrines of the Metempsychofis; wherein the Arguments of the benevolent Author lofe much of their deferved Force and Influence by the want of ftri&t Connexion in Matter and Form. In short Meditations, on God, on Creation, on Faith and Worship, on a fu ture State. Wherein fome of thofe important Heads are confidered in quite a new light. By a Divine of No Church. 12mo. 2 s. Bath, printed; London, fold by L. Hawes: 1776.
This writer has been perplexing and confounding himself by enquiries into the origin of evil; he labours to disentangle himself from the fhackles of human authority, and aims at what he may fuppofe a rational view of religion, but at the fame time, he wanders into conceits and chimeras. His favourite principle is that of a pre-exiftent ftate, in which rational fpirits have offended, and are therefore now placed in circumftances of degradation and pu nifhment: Man and Angel be concludes to be one and the fame individual apoftate fpirit, Here and here only he finds a folution of the queftion, why was man created, and doomed to mifery; and, as he fays, of every other phenomenon in nature. In treating of faith and worship, he condemns the Liturgies of every established church of the different fects of Chriftians; he confiders the established church of thefe kingdoms as fuperior to all others, but greatly imperfect :
Nineteen parts, fays he, at least in twenty of its Liturgy must be abolished, to reduce it to the ftandard of reason or common sense, to infure its being acceptable to that Being who is the great object of worship, and to make it heartily embraced by any rational, thinking mortals.'
Our author is an enemy to long prayers: as a fpecimen of his fcheme of devotion let us infert what he calls, a short, but comprebenfive Chriftian prayer.
O Eternal One, with a grateful, penitent, and obedient heart, I look up through the pure doctrines of Jefus Christ, to thy mercy and providence.'
For weak minds, he adds, who may think more words and more fentiments neceffary, it may be paraphrafed in manner following:
O Eternal One, with a moft grateful heart, for all thy mercies, all thy bleffings of which we implore thy gracious continuance ;with the deepest forrow and repentance for having offended against thy holy laws;-and with perfect refignation to thy divine will ;we moft humbly look up, through the pure doctrines of Jefus Chrift, to thy mercy and providence; befeeching thee to pardon all our tranfgreffions, but more especially our great, our original fin, our angelic apoftacy.'
On the fubject of fhortening the Liturgy he is a little jocular and fevere; The fubaltern clergy, fays he, on whom (with fhame be it spoken) refts the burden of the day, would be relieved from the tedious pageantry of prayer and worship, through which they fweat with piteous labour of body, as well as of mind.-Now as the fhares of the loaves and fishes, which fell to these miferable fubalterns, do not amount to more than a hard cruft to the one, and the head, tail, and bones of the other, the least their pampered brethren and fuperiors can do for them is, to lighten their load, by fhortening their portion of unprofitable and unneceffary duty, for their fake, as well as God's, by labouring to promote a rational, fhort Liturgy.'
Should our Readers infer from the mention of original fin in the above short form of prayer; that our Author is Calvinistical, or what is commonly deemed Orthodox, they will be greatly mistaken, original fin and other points which have the reputation of orthodoxy he wholly difcards; but alas! while he afpires to rationality, he feems to fall into abfurdity and folly! He often writes like a man of sense and reflection, but he is greatly perplexed and bewildered with imaginations and hypothefes which can only tend to lead his Readers aftray from folid piety, or humble and truly acceptable devotion.
Art. 63. An earnest Exhortation to the Religious Obfervance of Good
Friday. In a Letter to the Inhabitants of Lambeth Parish. By Beilby Porteus, D. D. Rector of the faid Parish. 8vo. 6 d. Rivington, &c. 1776.
Serious, affectionate, and fenfible,
Art. 64. Serious Thoughts on the Birth of a Child. 12mo. I s. Buckland. 1776.
Very pious, and edifying, in the good old Original Sin-way. Art. 65. A Letter to the Rev. John Jebb, M. A. occafioned by his Reafons for a late Refignation.' 8vo. 6d. Johnfon. Written in commendation of Mr. Jebb's truly confcientious and laudable conduct; and recommending to the clergy his good example. But though this pamphlet hath been publifhed thefe fix months, we have not heard of any fon of the church that hath yet chofen to follow the example, or to regard the recommendation of this wellmeaning and fenfible writer.
Art. 66. An Efay on Liberty and Neceffity: In Anfwer to Auguftus Toplady's Tract, on (what he calls) Chriftian and Philofophical Neceffity afferted. In which John Wesley's Thoughts on Neceffity are examined and defended; the difficulties of thefe fubjects, rendered plain and easy to common Readers; and Human Liberty fully proved. By Philaretes. 12mo. ìs. Hawes, in Spital-fields, Buckland, &c.
Philaretes, who appears by his ftyle to be a quaker, seems an over-match for Mr. Toplady. Both thefe writers, however, if we are not mistaken, will leave this inexhaustible fubject-just where they found it.
I. The proper Happiness of the Ecclefiaftic Life, in a public and private Sphere. Before the Right Rev. the Lord Bishop of Bath and Wells, at his primary Vifitation at Uxbridge, July 4, 1776. By John Langhorne, D. D. Rector of Blagdon, Somersetshire. 4to. 1 S. Cadell, &c.
A pleafing display of the honour, utility, and happiness of the clerical character and ftation.-The preacher alfo ftates, and, we think, very fairly, the fuperiority and the advantages which the ecclefiaftic enjoys in the bofom of our excellent church, compared with the Religious of other countries.'
II. In the Cathedral at Hereford, June 21, 1776, at the first annual Meeting of the Subfcribers to the General Infirmary in that City. By William Skinner, M. A. Prebendary of Hereford. 6d. Baldwin.
To our READERS.
AVING received repeated affurances from the friends of the
dents, an original Novel," is not genuine, we take this opportunity of undeceiving the Public, fo far as regard may have been paid to the opinion we had formed*, of the authenticity of the Letters in queftion. We are now fatisfied that thofe Letters do not contain à real Correfpondence between the NOBLE Poet and Hiftorian lately deceased' and Mrs. Peach.-But while we justly condemn the impofition, let us do equal juftice to the Writer's abilities: for, though we hang the man who counterfeits the lawful coin of the kingdom, we fhould not refufe him the praife that may be due to his ingenuity as an Artist.
*See Review, May, 1775.
The Correfpondent who feems to infer, from our laft Review (fee Art. 20.) that Mr. Stuart's publications against Dr. Price are replete only with fcurrility and abufe, has given too much latitude to our cenfure of that writer; who has offered many things, as we then obferved, to the confideration of his antagonist, and the public, which merit a degree of attention, that ought not to be diverted from his arguments, on account of the afperity of a few expreffions, fuch as, no doubt, after this hint, will be corrected in the next edition.
ART. I. A Complete Treatise on Perspective, in Theory and Practice; on the true Principles of Dr. Brook Taylor, made clear, in Theory, by various moveable Schemes and Diagrams; and reduced to practice in the most familiar and intelligent Manner. In Four Books. Embellished with an elegant Frontifpiece and Forty-fix Plates; containing Diagrams, Views, and original Defigns in Architecture. By Thomas Malton. Folio. 21. 5 s. Becket, &c. T is a great difadvantage both to the Authors and to the
treat of a fingle fubject, a variety of heterogeneous matter is introduced, which only ferves to difguft the buyer, or to deprive the Author of the pecuniary benefit of his labours. Few writers excel in every department of fcience; and it behoves them to confider, whatever rifk they may be ready to run on their own account, that the tax on the Public is much too high, when they are obliged to gratify their curiofity, or procure inftruction, in a fingle inftance, at the expence of purchafing materials which do not immediately relate to the main fubject. We have frequently paid this tax ourselves; and we are well convinced that authors would find the advantage, both in refpect of reputation and profit, if they confined themselves within narrower limits and did not discharge common place knowledge on the curious and inquifitive, by no means necefiary to the illuftration of the principal fubject. Perhaps the laudable defire or vain affectation of rendering every treatife complete' has been the fource of this mistake, no lefs prejudicial to the Author than chargeable to the Public. How many complete' treatifes have we feen on trigonometry, furveying, navigation, and the feveral branches of philofophy, in which every writer seems defirous of fuperfeding every thing that has been done by others!
We have been led to make thefe obfervations in return for 41 folio pages which Mr. Malton has given us, as an introduction to the theory and practice of perspective; containing his own difcoveries and remarks on light and colours, and the different kinds of vifion, without any neceflary connection with the principal fubject of his book. It is not very likely that his philofophical difquifitions will prepoffefs any intelligent reader in his favour; or that his fcepticifm, as to the Newtonian theory of light and colours, will contribute to the advancement of his reputation or the fale of his book. We regret this the more, because, as a writer on perfpective, he is in many refpects fuperior to any with whom we have yet been acquainted. Who can read without extreme difguft the remarks which he has made on Newton's difcoveries in optics? We are so far from agreeing with him in opinion that they are trivial and uninterefting, and that they add nothing to Sir Ifaac's reputation, that, we are perfuaded, his inveftigations in this part of science, fingly confidered, would have made him immortal. • Had the theory of colours (fays our Author) as deduced from the prism, been amongst the first and chief of this great man's pursuits, I am much in doubt, if the reputation he has acquired had been ever eftablifhed, at leaft on that bafis; things of infinitely more importance to the community fixed his credit (moft defervedly) on the highest pinnacle of fame; for, what useful and neceffary knowledge has been communicated to mankind by this acquifition to the fcience of optics? which (with fuch, apparently wondrous, fagacity and penetration) he has explored and given to the world.'
In the theory of the colours produced by a prifm, there is no real utility yet difcovered, and I do believe there never will; it has not the least apparent tendency to benefit mankind accruing from it.' How far this unlimited affertion indicates the true fpirit of philofophy, or is confiftent with fact and with the conceffion that follows, let our Readers judge. 'Tis afferted that the perfection of telescopes is owing to the theory of the prifm. Now, as I am not converfant in the mechanical conftruction of lenfes, and in their application to telescopes, I canHot fay how far it may have been of ufe in that refpect.'
Our Author feems to think that the different colours are actually inherent in bodies; and he can by no means admit the Newtonian hypothefis concerning them. He has likewife C ftrong objections' against the general opinion, as it is now received and almoft univerfally affented to, viz. that the perception we have of external objects, from vifion, is by means of rays of light, reflected from all parts of their furfaces to the eye; and that thofe rays are material or compofed of matter."