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per on every one that comes in his suavity, meekness, and Christian huway; while, instead of a genial and ge- mility, are qualities essential in the Therous strain of admiration for the man character of that churchman who sits whom he pretends to eulogise, he keeps on the Episcopal bench. He did incessantly pouring out reproaches not think, that high stations in the against those, compared with whom, church establishment were to be deeither in virtue or in talents, he, manded as a right-claimed as a possesbe he who he may, would at oncesion-seized on as a prey. He thought, be “ diminished to his head.” Re- and he thought justly, that with all flecting persons are not thus to be his talents, erudition, and virtues, deceived. This writer does not wear Richard Watson was not entitled to the air of sincerity and truth. He higher promotion than he enjoyed. does not care one iota about the cha- That this view of Bishop Watson's racter of the Bishop of Landaff-he as- character was a just one, his Memoirs sumes an appearance of veneration for have shewn to all the world. It is a that great man, that he may indulge gross absurdity to maintain, that men his spleen against a man far greater are to be made bishops solely on the still, and he drivels out his impotent score of talents. It is still more abeulogies on Richard Watson, that he surd to maintain, that if a man of tamay mingle them with still more im- lents has been made a bishop, it is potent execrations on William Pitt. wicked and infamous not to continue
When he asserts that Pitt had no to promote him to the highest bishopdoubts of the orthodoxy of Watson, rick of all. This Reviewer could not and thought him in all respects wore have more dolorously whined over the thy of promotion to a richer See, but fate of Watson, or more bitterly vituthat he was afraid to offend his Sove- perated Pitt, though the minister had reign, lest he might lose his place, – left the theologian to pine away in poand therefore, in deference to what is verty and oblivion. He, and others called the prejudices of that Sovereign, of his Whig friends, seem most tensacrificed the duty he owed to the in- derly alive to their own interests and terests of religion,-he asserts what he those of their party. The good things knew to be false. Pitt never did, of this life, contrary to the ordinary and never could think Watson a fit laws of nature, acquire magnitude in person to be raised to the very proportion to their distance, and of highest dignities of the church. That fices of trust and honour, in church and divine had, beyond all bounds of rea- state, assume to them a more magnifison, at one time given up his mind to cent and overshadowing grandeur in an admiration of the French Revolu- the hopeless distance of an everlasting tion-a revolution which at no period perspective. It is a sure way of making was such as to demand the unqualified themselves and their friends ridiculous, praise of a minister of our religion. to be constantly deploring the injusThough he afterwards abjured his faith tice of ministers to the great men of in the revolutionary creed, there still their party; and there cannot be a remained in his political opinions much more sudicrous instance of such folof the ancient leaven-he was a man ly, than this of holding up to commisewho submitted impatiently to consti- ration the late Bishop of Landaff as tuted authority in others, though most a neglected man, cruelly suffered to ambitious to possess it in himself-he drag out his existence with only five saw no especial merit in the establish- thousand a year of church preferment. ment of the church of England, and It can but excite laughter to hear such felt for it no especial veneration and complaints uttered for the sake of a though this Reviewer says, with a most man who wanted only those highest of laughable simplicity, that “ he never all honours which he did not deserve, was a party-man," it is reluctantly ad- and who can be said to have been disa mitted by his best friends, that he was appointed only because his arrogance in all temporal things ambitious over- was boundless and his ambition insamuch, while it was, and is, notorious tiable. to the whole world, that he often in- We ought almost to beg our readterfered with mean party-politics in ers' pardon for thus exposing the a way highly unbecoming his sa- self-evident folly of all such accusacred profession.-Pitt was right in tions; but we wished to direct their thinking, that moderation, temper, attention to the pitiful weapons with which this pitiful person has tried to is with their loyalty as with their rewound the character of William Pitt. ligion. They pretend to fear God and to At this time of day, such imbecile at- honour the king; yet for twenty years tacks move something more than de- have they been insidiously attacking rision. We cannot bear to see one Christianity, and they have not been of the greatest intellects the world on this, and many former instances has ever produced treated in this of still greater atrocity, ashamed way, even by an implacable enemy; sneeringly to insult their Sovereign, If the giant statue is to be moved now that his crown is laid by, and his from its pedestal, it cannot be by a head strewed with the dust and ashes piginy's hand. The voice of England of affliction. That grand principle is has decreed that Pitt was a great man admitted in its full force by all, of in his failings as in his strength; and calling to a strict account the character it is now expected, by the people of of the kings of England when death England, that his character shall be has laid them side by side with their spoken of, even by his enemies, with subjects. But we must not antedate such a tone of feeling as the illustrious our King's death that we may clutch dead demand from all worthy to be the privilege of dissecting his life. It their compatriots. In our blame of is well that kings should know that the great spirits who have left us, it is posterity will judge them with stern fitting that we hold in memory the impartiality. We, who are free men, inperishable impression which their will send our free thoughts down into characters have left on the mind of the the grave. But we think not of this country. We are unworthy of being our privilege of free men, till death sons of that country, if we disturb the puts it into our hands, and then we use awful repose of its veneration for the it with a solemn awe and a lofty comdead, by words which would have punction. But this man snatches it been condemned as splenetic and vile as a right which he impatiently thinks had they been applied to the live has been too long withheld—he frets ing. It is one of the finest things because his Sovereign yet lives--he in the character of our people, that chides the tardy tomb that will not they always think and feel truly relax "its ponderous and marble jaws, of the great men who have died in and he angrily snatches, as it were out their country's service. Pitt so died; of the hand of nature, that privilege and if his conduct is to be arraigned, of condemnation which she would let it be in a way unknown to this Re- grant only when its object is a lump viewer,---with some portion of that of earth. No genuine Briton would, magnificence of language, and eleva- like this Reviewer, suppose the King tion of sentiment, that clothed the son dead, on a fiction, that he might calumof Chatham with perpetual power; let niate his memory. In other similar it be with all the freedom, but, at the cases death calms anger, and often elesame time, with all the dignity, of vates it into a feeling that is sublime ; one who feels what noble ashes lie but here the reviler seats himself with every where spread around his feet.
in the shadow of the grave, that under But we have a few words to say of its protection he may rail in safety more solemn import; and we ask, what against the human being whom it has manner of man he must be, who can entombed. This is a sight which the think of what his Sovereign now is, and people of Britain will not calmly endure. yet fears not to speak of him with bit
Having thus meanly calumniated a terness and insult. We will not dis- great dead statesman, and cruelly ingrace our pages with the dark disloyalty sulted his afflicted King, it is someof this despiser of his King. But we' what startling to hear this man advowill tell him, that he knows nothing cating the cause of Christianity, and of the spirit that reigns in this island, lamenting the untoward worldly lot if he expects any other reward for that of its successful champions. disloyalty than universal contempt and Risum teneatis amici ? indignation. The Edinburgh Review An infidel writer, in an infidel Reis, we believe, the only journal of any view, with a grave face, and in the pretensions to good feeling or prin- dullest of all possible words, accuses ciple that has spoken disrespectfully of the King and his Ministers of having the King ; yet they, forsooth, are all neglected the interests of the only true lovers of a limited monarchy. It true religion. But we will ask him,
and his coadjutors and abettors, if the friends, and, if possible, with his own late Bishop of Landaff deserved hon- inconsistent infidel self; and has, thereour and reward for his defence of fore, not scrupled to give the name of Christianity (and he deserved and re- serious, anxious, conscientious, philosoceived it too), what do the infidelphical doubts, to the indecent, sneerwriters in the Edinburgh Review de- ing, insidious, and malignant attacks terve for the twenty years warfare of Gibbon, whose mind, whenever he they have been waging against that spoke of Christianity, fell into melansame Christianity? This is a subject choly degradation - and what is, if on which they ought not to open their possible, still more barefaced,- he has mouths, for they open them but to applied the same language of comconfound themselves,- and better to mendation to the feeble and feverish remain dumb for ever, than thus scepticism of the Edinburgh Review. blindly to call down shame and pun- The time is gone by when the reputaishment on their own degraded heads. tion of being a philosopher could be They talk of Gibbon as having been acquired by disbelieving Christianity. "the most effectual” enemy of the The truth of Christianity is establishChristian faith, and hypocritically eu- ed; and none but weak or wicked logise Watson as his triumphant an- persons would in these days seek to tagonist. They themselves, without revive the long-exploded, and of any of Gibbon's eloquence or erudi, ten refuted fooleries, misnamed argution, possess all his disbelief, and all ments, by which soi-disant philosohis insidious malignity; and if Wat- phers once strove to effect its overson is worthy of all good men's re- throw. Had the Edinburgh Reviewverence for having disarmed Gibbon, ers been high-souled and melancholy and blunted the edge of his weapons, sceptics ; preyed on in the solitude of they are deserving of all good men's meditation by fears that rose up from, hate for having picked up those weap- and darkly overshadowed, the grave; ons, tried to restore their edge, and had they shewn themselves to mourn wielded them with a determined, over and deplore the curse of their though a feeble hostility.
own incurable infidelity; had they But this writer, with all his affect thought and spoken in the spirit of that ed zeal for Christianity, is, after all, religion whose divine origin was yet not quite comfortable in the idea of doubted by their reason; had they envibeing thought a Christian. And he ed the happiness of the true believer, lets us know, that if Christianity can and expressed their own doubts, not only be attacked in a calm, quiet, gen- in order to create or increase those of tlemanly, philosophical manner, it is others, but if possible to obtain relief quite allowable to do so; as if it from the direful weight of darkness were a question of good manners, cour- that loaded their own souls,--then tesy, and decorum, rather than one might we have read their thoughts affecting the eternal happiness of the with a profound commiseration, exhuman soul.
tended to them not only forgiveness “ To attack," says he,“ by ribaldry, but sympathy, and acknowledged them or with virulence, or before the multitude, to have had the feelings, if not the what millions of our fellow creatures believe, faith of Christians. But conscience and hold sacred as well as dear, is beyond tells them that such is not the nature all question a serious offence, and the law of their scepticism. And when one of punishes it as such. But to investigate re- their number now dares to insinuate ligious questions as philosophers, calmly and that it is so, he is met at once with seriously, with the anxiety of their high
an indignant denial from the whole bræportance, and the diffidence which their intricacy prescribes, is not only allowable Christian population of the land.bret meritorious ; and if the conscientious There is nothing more shocking in inquirer is led by the light of his under their infidelity than its levity, exstanding TO A CONCLUSION DIFFERENT cept it be its ignorance. We may FROM THAT OF THE COMMUNITY, he as unsuccessfully look throughout may still, we should think, in many cases their writings for one lofty sentiPROMULGATE IT TO THE PHILOSOPHI. ment in their scepticism, as for one CAL WORLD," &c.
trace of knowledge of the history or The meaning of all this is plain evidence of Divine Revelation. They enough : the Edinburgh Reviewer want scholarship sufficient to enable wishes to stand well with his infidel them to pass for decent infidels--they have been denied a degree in the that punishment which is now inflictschools of scepticism. There is not ing upon them, and of which they one of all their number who under- have as yet sustained but a very insiga stands the language of the New Tes- nificant portion. tament.
The querulous eulogists of this inBefore we conclude, let us shortly no- fidel Journal have made use of a very tice the feeble and querulous complaints delicate but perhaps not very apposite which we understand the friends of illustration. The religion of a man, this class of writers have, in the sore- they say, is like the virtue of a wo„ness of their wounded affection, been man, and may be destroyed by the piping abroad. They wouldfain charge slightest breath. This is not happy. us with an unwarrantable interfer- We cannot, for our lives, perceive any ence with their religious opinions, resemblance between a modest young which, it is said, are between them- virgin and an impudent old Edinburgh selves and their God. We know that Reviewer. Were a young lady to there is, or ought to be, a sanctuary in make immodest gestures to gentlemen every man's bosom, in which his own on the street, and indulge in loose contrite spirit may hold converse with conversation, no doubt her virtue the Divine Being. Into that sanc- would be suspected. But the reputatuary we never sought sacrilegiously to tion of a well-behaved woman is very enter. But the religion of the Edin- safe in this country—and so is that of a burgh Reviewers is not between them- sincere christian. When, however, a selves and their God. Shame to the man tells the whole world that he does hypocrite who dares to utter such a not believe Christianity, what can the falsehood. It is between themselves world do but take him at his word ? and the whole world. They have Nor does it at all alter the matter, forced it upon those who wished not that his disbelief may have been to hear it,--they have juggled it into told by inuendo and insinuation. It our minds under the cover of far dif- is not incumbent on us to shew an exferent matters,--they have decoyed us treme and sensitive delicacy in our unawares into the dark nooks of their language to a man who has wholly infidelity, when we believed that we were dismissed it from his own practice walking in an open country and in day- and really, if we were seeking for a silight-they have met us suddenly at mile to apply to any of the intidel Edinthe corners of streets, and thrust their burgh Reviewers, it would be just the manifestoes into our unwilling hands reverse of that now so current among -they have, at times, ventured to cry the agitated friends of their dissolving loudly from the house-top. And can Confederacy. it indeed be, that now they wish to throw themselves on our mercy-on our charity-on our christian forbear
GRAY THE POET TO ance and to demand for themselves, after a long course of loud and brazen infidelity, a respectful and soothing dence of Count Algarotti, in the possession
(This Letter is taken from the Corresponattention to their feelings forsooth- of Mr Murray.) they who have all their lifetime so bitterly, and so savagely, and so unre
Cambridge, Sept. 9, 1763. mittingly persecuted, reviled and ri- SIR, diculed all those who fortunately dif- I RECEIVED, some time since, the unfered from them in their religious be expected honour of a letter from you, lief. If they or their friends wish and the promise of a pleasure, which, at once to subject themselves to the till of late, I had not the opportunity charge of the grossest and most foolish of enjoying. Forgive me if I make falsehood, let them declare boldly that my acknowledgments in my native the Edinburgh Review never attack- tongue, as I see it is perfectly familiar ed Christianity. The whole world to you ; and I (though not unacquaintknows that they have been its unceas- ed with the writings of Italy) should, ing foes.
And the whole world ac- from disuse, speak its language with knowledges that their wickedness in an ill grace, and with still more conhaving so attacked Christianity, is on- straint to one, who possesses it in all !y equalled by their folly in now deny- its strength and purity. ing it, and their pusillanimity under I see, with great satisfaction, your
efforts to reunite the congenial arts of Nicollina) with little voice and less Poetry, Musick, and the Dance, which, beauty, but with the utmost justness of with the assistance of Painting and ear-the strongest expression of counArchitecture, regulated by taste, and tenance—the most speaking eyes—the supported by magnificence and power, greatest vivacity and variety of gesture. might form the noblest scene, and be- Her first appearance instantly fixed stow the sublimest pleasure, that the their attention; the tumult sunk at imagination can conceive: but who once, or, if any murmur rose, it was shali realize these delightful visions ? soon hushed by a general cry for siThere is, I own, one prince in Europe, lence. Her first air ravished every body that wants neither the will, the spirit, they forgot their prejudices—they nor the ability ; but can he call up forgot that they did not understand a Milton from his grave, can he reanie word of the language,-they entered mate Marcello, or bid the Barberina or into all the humour of the part—made the Sallé move again? Can he (as her repeat all her songs—and contimuch a King as he is) govern an Ita- nued their transports, their laughter, lian Virtuosa, destroy her caprice and and applause, to the end of the piece. impertinence, without hurting her ta. Within these three last years the Palents, or command those unmeaning ganina and Amici have met with al. graces and tricks of voice to be silent, most the same applause, once a-week, that have gained her the adoration of from a politer audience, on the Opera her own country?
stage. The truth is, the Opera itself, One cause that so long has hinder- though supported here at a great exed and (I fear) will hinder that hap- pence for so many years, has rather py union which you propose, seems to maintained itself by the admiration beme to be this, that Poetry (which, as stow'd on a few particular voices, or you allow, must lead the way, and di- the borrow'd taste of a few Men of rect the operations of the subordinate condition, that have learned in Italy arts) implies at least a liberal educa- how to admire, than by any genuine tion, a degree of literature, and various love we bear to the Italian musick: nor knowledge; whereas the others (with have we yet got any style of our own, a few exceptions) are in the hands of and this I attribute, in a great measlaves and mercenaries, I mean, of sure, to the language which, in spite of people without education, who, though its energy, plenty, and the crowd of neither destitute of genius, nor in- excellent writers this nation has prosensible to fame, must yet make gain duced, does yet, I am sorry to say it, their principal end, and subject them- retain too much of its barbarous origiselves to the prevailing taste of those, nal to adapt itself to musical composiwhose fortune only distinguishes them tion. I by no means wish to have from the multitude.
been born any thing but an EnglishI can not help telling you, that eight man; yet I should rejoice to exor ten years ago, I was a witness of the change tongues with Italy. power of your comic musick. There Why this Nation has made no adwas a little troop of Buffi that exhi. vances hitherto, in painting and sculpbited a Burletta in London-not in ture, is hard to say. The fact is unthe Opera House, where the audience is deniable, and we have the vanity to chiefly of the better sort, but on one apologize for our ourselves, as Virgil of the common theatres, full of all did for the Romans, “ Excudent alii, kinds of people; and, I believe, the &c. It is sure that Architecture had fuller from that natural aversion we introduced itself in the reign of the bear to foreigners ;-their looks and unfortunate Charles the first, and Inigo their noise made it evident they did Jones has left us some few monunot come thither to hear ;-and, on si- ments of his skill, that shew him milar occasions, I have known candles capable of greater things. Charles had lighted-broken bottles and pen knives not only a love for the beautiful arts, flung on the stage-the benches torn but some taste in them. The confus up--the scenes hurried into the streets sion that soon follow'd, swept away and set on fire. The curtain drew his magnificent collection—the artists up, the musick was of Cocchi, with a were dispersed or ruin'd-and the few airs of Pergolesi interspersed: the arts disregarded till very lately. The singers were, as usual, deplorable, but young Monarch now on the throne is there was one Girl(she called herself the said to esteem and understand them ;