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loveliness and splendor. Another deeply interesting phenomenon is often presented, in this individual history of the Sciences; for we behold the same man, not only excelling in the sublime conceptions of abstract philosophy; but distinguished, for the felicitous arrangement and admirable application of theory to practical usefulness. Let us not, however, omit the homage due to those prodigies of universal talent, comets in the intellectual system, whose spirits appear to be wanderers from some other world, where genius and taste, intellect and memory flourish in a state of union and perfection, consistent only with a superior order of being. Nor is it the least remarkable circumstance, attending these wonderful Men, that all their versatility of talent, and their almost incredible facility, in the acquisition of knowledge, have been for the most part, unprofitable to mankind : and have seldom failed to excite the envy and admiration of their contemporaries, the incrédulity and astonishment of posterity. To illustrate these sentiments we have only to refer to the lives and works of Crichton and Mirandula, of Servin and Magliabechi.
But it is time to close this interesting review of the Biography of Science; nor can we shut the volume, so rich in entertainment and instruction, without acknowledging the wisdom and benevolence of God. In his scheme of moral government, a few, as having authority, whether in legislation, or Science, preside over the destinies of their brethren, and take thought for the well being of posterity. To them is entrusted that variety of talent, which elevates, refines and adorns the human character; converts Man, the destroyer, into the tutelary angel of his species, and connects him by the enduring relations of benefactor and friend, with the remotest posterity, in every clime and every age. But, whilst we indulge a feeling of veneration, for such men, and swell with our humble voice, the mighty tribute of admiration and gratitude, which nation after nation has bestowed during a period of more than twenty-five centuries, shall we forget that all this diversity of talent, flows only from Him, who is “ the Author and Giver of every good and perfect gift.” Had man never enjoyed more than that common understanding, which the vast majority possess, even then, our debt of gratitude could not have been estimated by mortal capacity. But something of that elevated, pure, devotional feeling, which may be supposed to characterize the enthusiasm of seraphs and of just men made perfect,
becomes us, in surveying the rich diversity of talent, vouchsafed to mankind. The order and majestic simplicity of the heavens above, and of the Earth around, with all their phenomena, “ forever changing, yet the same," and all their vicissitudes, of the sublime, the wonderful, the fair, are inferior in the estimation even of poets, to the great and the beautiful in the mind of Man. How eminently, indeed is our conception of these attributes enhanced, when we consider the relations, which Man sustains, in life and death, to his Creator and Benefactor, to his fellow mortals, and to the unknown world of spirits? All his duties, employments and pleasures; all that is valuable, delightful, and curious in his institutions : all that is profound and venerable in Science, permanent and useful in Art, or beautiful in the works of Taste, claims a mysterious, yet sure and indissoluble affinity, to the variety of human powers. How sublime the philusophy, how felicitous and energetic the poetry of Akenside, the Lucretius of English, may I not say of modern poets, in that memorable passage in which he sets before us the wisdom and benevolence of the creator, in the arrangement and combination of every order of talent, for the harmonious structure of society.
We have thus considered Science in connection with its origin, as identified with the biography of individuals. Let us continue our survey, by an examination of its effects, as inseparably allied to the history of society. Here we behold a more spacious and varied field of inquiry than that, which has been already explored-It embraces all the complex, various, and changeable interests of man, whether civilized or barbarous, and comprises all, that belongs to the improvement of our species, individual or social, private or public. Standing, as on an eminence, we look backward, in the spirit of philosophical history, down the long vale of departed ages, to contemplate the progress and decline of those communities, which have perished from the earth. On the same eminence, we look forward up the vista of futurity, to behold, in imagination, people after people, ascending the arduous hights of glory, power and happiness; and passing at their appointed time, from the world of nations, to the world of unimagined communities of the good and the evil. There, our retrospect of the past begins with the garden of paradise. Here, through all the prospect before us, the eye finds no resting place, in the future history of Man, save the final dissolution of government and society,
at the second Advent of the Messiah. We
survey as the lawgiver of Israel, looked back on the wilderness, and the Red Sea, on the trials, and dangers, which had gathered around the march of his people. We look in advance, along the future progress of society, as the founder of the only Theocracy, which ever existed, beheld in vision the promised land of the children of Abraham. He, indeed, may have experienced the assurance of prophecy, whatever might be the future destinies of Israel, that the horrors and sufferings of Egyptian bondage, the feelings of despair at the Red Sea, and the perils of the wilderness should never again be their lot. And may not we feel, in surveying the past, the present, and the future, that, whatever may hereafter be the fortunes of society, in Europe and America, no overflowings of a barbarous population, no civil, much less foreign wars of religious intolerance, no inquisition, no dark ages, no despotisms of unmingled ferocity and bitterness, shall ever again in the fierceness of wrath and wantonness of power, drive back the nations, in their career of improvement.
It is not customary to consider the history of Science, as connected with the history of Society. In tracing the development of its principles, or their progressive application to practical matters, most authors have instituted no inquiry into their effects, beyond the immediate Science itself, or the Arts and other Sciences, connected with, or dependent upon it. But what is the value of human learning, if it do not bless, as well as adorn Society; if it enlighten its Professors only, and not the People? Is it only a matter of speculation for the intellectual powers of man; or of entertainment for his taste? Can its sublimity and beauty be objects of just admiration, unless it improve the condition of the ignorant and oppressed; while it enlightens, and corrects, refines and elevates those, on whom the progress and future character of society depend ?-No: The true glory and ercellency of Science consists in its aptitude to meliorate the condition of man, and to promote substantial, practical, permanent improvement, in the education and government of the people: and in all the Arts, which provide, for the health and happiness, the wants and comforts, the conveniences and elegancies of society, under all its variety of forms, and in all the vicissitudes of its progress. Such is the true end of Science; and in this view, it is indeed an honored and efficient fellow-laborer, with religion, in advan
cing the glory of God, as the Moral Governor of the World, and in blessing Mankind, as the children of his Providence. Such, indeed, is the only end of Science, which can render it an object of intense and enduring interest to the whole human family; because, in this view only, is the history of Science, the history of Man.
The retrospect, which is now to engage our attention, must be, from the limits of an address, exceedingly imperfect. It is, however, the freewill offering of humility and gratitude, after contemplating Science, not merely in the sublime, profound, and comprehensive intellects, which have administered its Systems: not merely in the discoveries, and inventions, which have astonished and delighted the world: not merely in the order educed out of chaos, by a series of sustained efforts, for nearly three thousand years; but, above all, in those admirable practical results, which exhibit man, as a benevolent Brother to his cotemporaries, and as a provident Father, laying up the treasures of his virtue and reason, of his love and justice, for the millions who are to succeed him.
The rudiments of Science are to be sought, in the earliest states of society. The mightiest rivers can be traced to a spring-head, no larger than the basin of a mimic fountain. So may we follow to their sources, in the very infancy of the human family, those Sciences, whose sublimity in theory, and usefulness in practice, have crowned with glory, “ the immortal band" of philosophy; and scattered through every civilized community, necessaries and comforts, ornament and pleasure, blessings and honors, dignity, order and beauty. We would not, indeed, trace every Science, backward to its origin, through all the fluctuations of controversy, and all the vicissitudes of successive improvement: through all the diversities of theory, and all the details of practice; because no attainable results, could reward our labors : nor indeed could it ever be accomplished, from a deficiency of materials.
In reviewing the history of mankind, the eye rests with confidence on the transactions of the Garden of Eden as the beginnings of human knowledge. There, and in the patriarchal state of society, which succeeded, we behold the first image of Science, as unlike itself in the power and splendor of its maturity, as the babe in swathing bands, is unlike man, in the prime of life, and usefulness, and honor. There, however, must have existed the earliest elements of human improvement. In Paradise were found the first principles of the sublimest of Sciences-- Theology-in the knowledge of God and their relation to Him, vouchsafed to Adam and Eve. There, in the various duties of our first parents, to their Maker, to each other and to themselves, were laid the foundations of morality. In the Garden of Eden, the elements of the philosophy of language, appeared in that speech, bestowed by God himself at their creation : and the miracle was renewed at Babel; for man never could have invented the most subtle and complex, the most profound and abstruse, of all the wonderful means of God's moral government on earth. There, the first principles of that Science existed, which Luther esteemed second only to Theology; for, in the orisons and praises of Paradise, are to be sought the primitive elements of music.
As soon as our progenitors had been driven out of the garden, and the privileges of that more than poetical heaven upon th, had vanished forever, the principles of other Arts and Sciences became indispensable to their new condition. Accordingly, Architecture may be said to find its corner stone, in the first rude building, which sheltered Adam and Eve from the inclemency of the weather. The little field of the Father of the human race, humble and diminutive as that of Cincinnatus himself, afforded the earliest experiments in agriculture. The dress of our first parents, became a matter of present necessity: and, accordingly, the first rude essays in manufactures must have engaged their immediate attention. The principles of social morals originated with the earliest relations of man in civil society: and the basis of all government was laid, in the patriarchal form, which embraced within the sphere of its influence, the increasing numbers of the first family. As society advanced, and the various social principles, which constitute the bonds of civil union began to develope themselves, man appeared in new, and more complex relations, and other principles in Art and Science, were observed or discovered, and applied to his general improvement. That great progress was made, in the ascertaining of principles, in the institution of rules, and in practical skill, long before the deluge, need not be questioned; but scarcely any of the achievements of talent and skill could have survived that catastrophe.
Nor could Man have repaired such losses, in the ensuing period of one hundred and fifteen years : not even in those departments of knowledge, to which we find the early