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YENSIBLE of their obligations, the Editors of the Boso
TON MAGAZINE, repeat their acknowledgments to their several Correspondents, and ask the continuance of their favours. From the pieces presented both in prose and verse, they have selected such as they imagined would be mqit entertaining to their readers. They do not deny fome mfrit to the rest, but it is their opinion, they are not so well calculated for a Magazine:
The proposals for a Poem upon the Falls of NIAGARA were received with great pleasure ---- The author is desired to complete the work. The Editors have no doubt of his poetical talents, though he modestly disclaims all pretendons to them.
They once more defire that their correspondents would transmit their pieces earlier in the Month: That they would mark such as are not original; and mention the work from whence they were taken.
The Fifth Number is now submitted to their friends and readers. Should it be received with the same candour which has been exercised towards their former publications, the Editors will think they have not been wholly unsuccessful in their attempt to amuse a vacant hour ; and to relieve a mind oppressed with more serious application.
N. B. The Efray on the English Universities was taksa from an European Publication.
ERRATAPage 176, column 1. 1. 12. from bottom, dele and before rederftanding. p. 186, col. 2. 1. 8th from bot. for luxurient r. luxuriant. 1. 7 frona bot. for- or r. for. p. 187, col. 1, 1. 4 from top, for unable r. enable. same col. 26 I. from bot. for reclaim r. retain --). 21 from bot. for juft r. firft-.-. 20 from bot, for affe& r. effe&t. p. 192, col. 2, 1.38 from bot. after laid add it.
On Genius and Taste.
sary that at some time or other we From Reynold's Academical Dir..
should see things as they really are,
and not impofe on ourselves by that courses,
false magniinde with which obje&s apT has been the fate of arts to be pear, when viewed indiftinaly at
enveloped in mysterious and ihrough a mif, We will allow a poet incomprehensible language, as to express his meaning, when it is
if it was thought neceffary that not well known to himself, with a cereven the terms Mould correspond to tain degree of obfcurity; as it is ono theidea entertained of the inftability source of the sublime. But when, in and uncertainty of the rules which plain prose, we gravely talk of court. they expressed. To speak of Genius ing the use in thady bowers ; waitand Tafte, as any.way conneaed with ing the call and inspiration of Genius, season or common fente, would be in finding out where he inhabits, and the opinion or fome towering talkers, where he is to be invoked with the to speak like a man who pofiessed ni- greateft success ; of attending to times ther, who had never felt that enthuf- and seasons when the imagination arm, or, to ure their own inflated lan- Moots with the greatest vigour, wheguage, was never warmed by that ther at the summer folftice or the ePromethean fire, which animates the quinox ; fagaciovlly observing how canvass and vivifies the marble. If, much the wild freedom and liberty of in order to be intelligible, I appear to de imagination is cramped by attention grade art, by bringing her downfrom to enablished rules; and how this same her visionary situation in the clouds, imagination begins to grow dim in it is only to give her a more solid advanced age, smoothered and deadmanfion unga therorth. It is necef. ned by too much judgment. When we talk of such sentiments as there, when he embodies his knowledge, and we generally ref contented with mere formas a fyftem, muft separate those words, or at beft entertain notions which are only plaufibie. But it be: not only groundless, but pernicious. comes more peculiarly a duty to the
If all this means what it is very professors of art, not to let any opinipollibie was originally intended only. ons relative to that art pass unexamito be meant, that in order to culti- ned. The caution and circumspection vate an art, a man secludes himself reqaired in such an examination, we from the commerce of the world, and Mall presently have an opportunity of retires into the country at particular explaining. Genius and Tafe, in seasons < or that at one time or other, their common acceptation, appear to his body is in better health, and con- be very nearly related; the difference sequently h?s mind fitter for the busi- lies only in this, thar Gralus has funels of hard thinking than at another peradded to it a habit or power of time; or that the mind may be fatiguo execution. Or we may say, thaiTafe, ed and grow confused by long and when this power is added, changes its unremitted application ; this I can name, and is called Genius. They understand. i likewise believe that both in the popular opinion, pretend an eminent man, when young, for to an entire exception from the repofseffing poetical imagination, may, ftraint of rules. It is supposed that from havingtaken ano her road, sone- their powers are intuitive ; that unJeft itscultivation, as to thew less of its der the name of Genius great works powers in his latrer life. But I am are produced, and under the name persuaded, that scarce a poet is to be of Taste, an exa& judgment is given, found, from Homer down to' Dryden, without our knowing why ; and withwho preserved a sound mind in a out being order the leaft'obligation to sourid body, and continued pradifing reason, precept, or experience. One his profession to the very last, whose can scarce fate these opinions withlater works are not as replete with the out exposing their absurdity , yet fire of imagination, as those which they are constantly in the mouths of were produced in his more youthiul men, and particularly artists. They days. To understand literally the who have thought seriously on this metaphors or ideas expressed in poet- subje&, do not carry the point so far ical language, feems to be equally yet I am persuaded, that even among absurd, as to conclude, that because those few who may be called thinkpainters fometimes represent poetsers, the prevalent opinion gives less writing from the diâates of a little than it ought to the powers of reason, winged boy or genius, that this same and considers the principle of Tafte, genius did really inform him in a while which gives all their authority to the per what he was to write; and that he rules of art, as more flu&uating, and is himself a mere machine,unconscious as having less solid foundations, than of the operations of his mind. we fall find, upon examination, they Opinions generally received and float- really have. The common faying, ing in the world, whether true or falsey that Taftes are not be disputed, owes we naturally adopt & make our ow; its influence, and its general receptie they may be considered as a kind of on, to the same error which leads us inheritance to which we succeed and to imagine it of too high original to are tenaots for life, and which we submit to the authorty of an earthly leave to our pofterity'very near in tribunal. It will likewise correspond the condition in which we received it; with the notions of those who confinot much being in any one mans pow. der it as a mere phantom of the imaer either to impair or improve it. The gination, so devoid of fubftance as to greatest part of these opinions like cur» olude all criticism. We often appear rent coin in its circulation, we are to differ in septimeuts from each obliged to take without weighing or other, more from the inaccuracy of examining ; but by this inevitable in- terms, as we are not obliged to speak attention, many adulterated peices are always with critical exađaess. Somereceived, which when we seriously efti- thing of this too may arise from want mate our wealth, we muft throw away. of words in the language, to exprefu Se the collector of popular opinions
the more nice discriminations which mathematical demonftration ; buc deep inveftigation may discover. A known to be true only to those who great deal however, of this difference ftudy these things. vanithes, when each opinion it tolera. bly explained and understood by conAancy and precision in the use of A description of different terms. We apply the term Tafte to
Snakes found in tbe fouthern that ad of the mind by which we like or dislike, whatever be the subject.
States. From a late publiOur judgment upon an airy nothing, cation entitled Letters from z fancy which has no foundation, is called by the same name which we
an American Farmer. give to our determination concerning those truths which refer to the molt
are the countries where nature general and moft unalterable princi- has formed the greatest variety of alples of bumao nature, to works which ligators, snakes, serpents, and scorpiare only to be produced by the greatest ons, from the smallest size up to the efforts of the human understanding. PINE BARREN ; the largeft fpecies However inconvenient this may be,
known here. We have but two we arcobliged to take words as we find whose stings are mortal, which de. them; all we can do is to diftinguish serve to be mentioned. As for the the things to which they are applied. black one, it is remarkable for no.. We may let those things pass which thing but its induftry, agility, beauty are at once subjects of late and sense, and the art of enticing birds by the and which having as much certainty power of its eyes. The moft dangeras the senses themselves, give no occa. ous is the pilot or coPPERHEAD, son to enquire or dispate. The natu. for the poison of which no remedy ral appetite or tafte of the human has been discovered. It bears the nind, is for truth, whether that se. first name, because it always precedes sults from the real argument or equal- the rattlesnake, that is, quits ita ity of original ideas among them. corpidity in the spring a week before selves, from the agreement of the the other. It bears the second name (hing represented, or from the cor. on account of its head, and being a. respondence of the several parts of dorned with many copper coloured any arrangement with each other. ' It spots. It lurks in rocks near the wais the very fame taste which relishes a ter. Let man beware of it! I have demonftration in geometry, that is heard only of one person who was pleased with the resemblance of a pic. ftung by a copper-head in this counture to an origioal, and touched with try. The poor wretch instantly the harmony of music. All these have swelled in a mort dreadful manner. unalterable and fixed foundations in A multitude of spots alternately apo nature, and are therefore equally in- peared and vanished, on different veftigated by reason, and known by parts of his body. His eyes were filAudy ; some with more forae with less led with madness and rage, he caft clearness, but all exactly in the same them on all present with the most way. A pidure that is unlike is vindi&tive looks. He thrust out his false. Disproportionate ordonnance tongue as the snakes do; he hissed of parts is not right because it cannot through his teeth with inconceivable be irue, until it coales to be a contra- Arength, and became an object of di&tior to affert, that the parts have terror to all by-ftanders. To the lino relation to the whole. Colouring vidness of a corpse, he united the is true where it is naturally adapted desperate force of a maniac. And af-, to the eye, from brightness, from foft' ter che space of two hours, death re. ness,from harmony,from resemblance, lieved the poor wretch from his trug. because these agree with their object gles, and the spectators from their NATURI, and therefore are true, as fears.
The : poison of the rattle saake is and sometimes to the left, but Aill nat morta! is so fort a space, and with their fight invariably dire&ed to hence there is more time to provide the object. The distracted vidim, relief. There are several antidotes infead of Aying its enemy, seems to with which almost every family is be arrefted by some invincible powprovided. They are extremely in. er ; it screams; now approaches and adive, and if not touched are perfe&. then recedes. And after skipping ly inoffensive. I once faw, as I was about with unaccountable agitation, travelling, a great cliff which was full finally ruflies into the jaws of the of them. I handled several, and they snake, and is swallowed as soon as it is appeared to be dead ; they were all covered with a fine or glue to make entwined together, and thus they re- it Aide easily down the throat of the main until the return of the sun. I devourer. found them out by the track of some One aneddote I must relate, the wild hogs which had sed on them ; circumftances of which are as true as and even the Indians often regale on they are fioguiar. As'l was one day them. When they find them aneep, sitting in an arbour, my attention they put a small forked Alick over was engaged by a strange sort of rufttheir necks, which they keep im- ling no fe at some paces difance. I movably fixed on the ground, giv- looked all around withour diftinguish ing the (nake a piece of leather to ing any thing, until I climbed one bite.
This they pull back several of my great hemp falks; when to my times with great force, untill they ob- astonishinent, I beheld two snakes of serve their two poisonous fangs torn confiderable length, the one pursuing out. Then they cut off the head, skin the other with great celerity,ihrough the body, and cook it as we do eels; a hemp Aubble-field. The aggressor and their flesh is extremely sweet and was of a black kind, fix feet long : white., I once saw a TAMED ONE, as the fugitive was a water-snake, neargentle as you can possibly conceive a ly of equal dimensions. They soon reptile to be. It took to the water, met, and in the fury of their firft enand fwana whenever it pleased. And counter, they appeared in an infant when the boys to whom it belonged firmly twifted together ; and whilft called it back, their summons was their united tails beat the ground, readily obeyed. It had been depri• they mutually tried with open jaws ved of its fangs by the preceeding to facerate each other. What a fell method; they often ftroked it with a alpeat did they prelent! Their heads foft bruth, and this friction seemed to were compressed to a very small fize, Cause the moft pleasing sensation, their eyes Aashed fire; and after this
The black faake always diverts me condid nad laited about five minutes, because it excites no idea of danger. the second found means to disengage Their fwiftness is aftonishing. They itself from the first, and hurried towill sometimes equal that of a horse'; wards the ditch. Its antagonift inat other times they will climb up ftantly assumed a new pofture, and trees in queft of tree-toads, or glide half creeping and half erect, with a on the ground at full length. On majestic mein, overtook and attacked fome occafions, they present them. the other agaio, which placed itself felves half in the reptile ftate, half in the same attitude, and prepared to erect. Thein eyes and their heads in refift. The scene was uncommon the ere& paffure, appear to great ad- and beautiful; for thus opposed they vantage. The former display a fire fought with their jaws, biting each which I have often admired, and it other with the utmoft rage ; but not. is by these they are enabled to fasci- withstanding this appearance of munate birds and squirrels. When they tual courage and fury, the waterhave fixed their eyes on an animal, roake ftill leemed desirous of retreatthey become immovable ; only turo- jog towards the ditch, its natural eleing their head sometimes to the right ment. This was no sooner perceived