« PreviousContinue »
Give it way,
With downcast mien, and eye in tears fuffus'd,
Enter Z ULIM A.
Still mocks restraint, and clamours for my life
Thy weeping eyes my destiny reveal.
Conspire against your happiness; at length
His sharpeft arrow.
Whence these fatal words ?
I cannot speak;
And end this horrible suspense.
Ere my fad eyes the dreadful fight had view'd,
Too well I knew, disfigur'd all with wounds.
And heav'n has seal'd my doom-I will not weep;
Down, swelling sorrow.
Do not look so wildly.
Pacience, saidt thou ?
Not one fad agh shall heave my struggling borom.
With looks that speak unutcerable anguish.
With patient resignation.
Doft thou talk
Till thou entomb me in eternal reft.
Have torn in anger from its parent tree,
And to the doit hurl'd proftrate.
All mangled too! Some pitying pow'r untune
Become my desperation !
Dwell not, princess,
And rise superior
Woman! canst thou free me
Let my pale corse be laid !
Accursed Osman !
[Exeunt. The most beautiful scenes in this tragedy are, in our opinion, those which are founded on the discovery and remorse of Of man. They are not, like the catastrophe, and other parts of the fable, marvellous ; but they are uncommon, yet not improbable. The conduct both of the Emperor and conspirator is extraordinary, but not unnatural. We are sorry to say that we find little else to admire or approve, though there are feveral circumstances that remind us of other popular dramas. The conferences between Almaimon and Zirvad are counterparts of Friar Laurence and Romeo ; Almaimon's attempt on the life of Zoraida is a second edition of Oroonoko with Imoinda ; and the proposed marriage of Zoraida with Selim, is a repetition of a similar fituation in the Distreft Mother. In a word, the play and the observations taken together, Zoraida appears to be a tragedy, written by a receipt.
Art. III. Fanatical Divinity exposed; and the Gospel of Christ
vindicated; or, Remarks on a Sermon occasioned by the Death of the Rev. John Parsons, Rector of S:. Martin's, Birmingham, and preached by the Rev. William Toy Young, Curate of the said Parish. With a Dedication to the Author of Pietas Oxonienfis. By Alumnus. 8vo. 1 s. Vallance, &c. 1779. HE Spectator hath given us a curious account of bites,
of various characters and descriptions. The literary bite comes frequently in our way, and reminds us of the common proverb, Fronti nulla fides : i. e. There is no depending on title-pages.
Our Mr. Alumnus (which, by the way, is only Latin for a Nurseling ) hath very dextrously followed his worthy predecessors in the trade and mystery of biting; for, instead of exposing fanatical divinity,' he hath mustered up all the light infantry of his wit, and brought forward all the heavy troops of orthodoxy, zeal, and damnation, in order to guard the standard of fanaticism, and push its dreadful triumphs beyond the lines of common sense and Christian charity.
“ But, perhaps, it may be said, this knight of the fanatic poft skulks behind the entrenchment of equivocation. As he appears to know something of small Latin, he may make use of the word, expose, in a different sense from that in which a mere English reader might be ready to construe it. To expose, may mean to bring forward to public view to display-to illustrate, &c.” This, indeed, is literally true of the present performance, and with this interpretation, one part of the titlepage tells us no lie. But our Author's bite lies chiefly in the word, fanatical. It is in this word that he exposes his fagacity and erudition. Here begin - and here end the higher triumphs of his wit and humour! O! what a glorious thing is Latin ! If thou art disposed, gentle reader, to doubt it, peruse what follows, and thou wilt be convinced that there is more in it than thou wast aware of.
• You will wonder (says Alumnus in his dedication to thç author of Pietas Oxoniensis) —you will wonder, perhaps, Sir, at one branch of the title prefixed to this pamphlet. An explanation of that matter will involve in it my apology too. You are not ignorant, that it is become a popular practice with the adversarics of the Gospel, when they are at a loss for ar. gument in defence of their errors, and when hard pushed by is the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God, to fly to the trite and paltry subterfuge of shouting, “ enthusiasm ! fanaticism !” Now, I thought, it might not be amiss, for once, to turn the tables on our opponents ; and having wrested out of their hands a blunt weapon, with which, however, they do much mischief among the ignorant (thei gnorant !) and
profane, fane, to direct it against themselves, by evincing that to be fanaticism whigh they call religion, and vice versa.?
. Now this is one of the most curious and original designs that was ever conceived by a daring genius: and if the execution were but answerable to the intention, we should, notwithstanding our long and well-known predilection for heresy, moft cheerily clap the Author on the back, and cry out with Shakespeare.
“ It is sport to see the engineer hoist with his own petar.” But it is not good manners to interrupt our Author in his bold attempt; let him go on.
• A system which aggrandizes natural reason on the ruins of revelation, celebrates a thing called virtue to the discredit of that faving faith in the son of God, by which finners are justified, and from whence fprings the fruits of holiness; and establishes human merit to the depreciating the gratuitous * mercy of the Most High; and the all-fufficient sacrifice of the Redeemer :-a system, I say, of this nature is perfectly congenial with the spirit of Deifm, and hath for its real birth-place, the Fanum, i.e. the Temple of a Heathen-priest, or the Portico of a Stoica philofopher, rather than the temple of truth. He who adopts, or he who propagates such a spurious theology, is to all intents and purposes, fanaticus, a fanatic (2. E. D.]: the light that is in hin, is darkness, and the zeal that actuates him is compofed of sparks of his own kindling.--Fanaticism, THEREFORE (viz. by the logic of Latin), is to be found, not with the humble and fober enquirer after truth, who, with his Bible in his hand, and his heart elevated to the fountain of wisdom, prays, “ What I know not teach thou me;" but with felfilluminated rationalists, and self-juftifying moralifts. And their system which makes so much of Self, Reason, Virtue, Works; and so little of the Lord Jefus Chrift, is (and be it from this time forth for ever called) fanatical divinity.'
Thus (as the Author expresses himself) the tables are turned, with a witness! And by the authority aforesaid - what if it be the authority of a “ word-catcher who lives on fyllables;** it is to all intents and purposes, as infallible as the authority of a general council - be it enacted, and it is hereby enacted, that from this time forth and for evermore,' fense and nonfense fhall change hands, cast over, and figure into each other's places. Glorious revolution ! and to add to the wonder of lo itrange and fingular an event, all'is to be brought about by the feeble etymology of a Latin word, of which Varro and Voffius cannot agree in settling the derivation. This, in truth, is
* Excellent logic! gratuitous mercy! all-fufficient sacrifice! i. e. the fru-gift was dearly fold and paid for to the uttermot farthing!
literally, literally, and without a figure, “ to make the weak things confound the strong, and things that are not to bring to nought things that are."
So much for our Author's learning; and we have laid a tax on his gratitude, for having exposed what might otherwise have been undiscovered by the eyes of any--but critics by profeffion, « whose senses have been long exercised” by the minuteft of all possible enquiries.
We cannot do this writer ample justice (a matter we are al. ways scrupulous in discharging!) without exposing some good qualities of his heart, as well as of his head, in order to exhibit the tout ensemble of his character.
As a specimen of his decency, take the following very modest conceffion : « Could reason subserve these beneficial and important ends, in which is comprised every thing that relates to. our felicity here, and the consummation of it hereafter, then we might court, yea deify her as our all. But then too (horrefco referens) we might instantly consign our Bibles to the flamesį, throw by the lamp of revelation as a superfluous and unnecessary guide; take a Bolingbroke, a Hume, or a Priestley, for our oracle; join in the profane cry with a W-n, against the influences of the Holy Ghoft; think and speak as degradingly of the Son of God, as the execrable and abandoned author of an Eflay on Ioman; hail a restoration of the halcyon days of Gentilism and infidelity, and unite in a solemn apotheosis of dame Reason.' (N. B. The fingular modesty of this delectable paragraph is chiefly obvious, in not printing Dr. Warburton's name at full length! We are the more particular in noting it, left the decency of Alumnus Thould, like his learning, pass unobserved.)
For the Author's most unaccountable and superlative disinterestedness, we need go no farther than his own declaration. • Reader, you may easily perceive what the world's reason, prudence, and virtue are, by their effects on our modern rationalists and prudentialists. They are three idols which spring from that accursed, many headed hydra, self. They are three phan. toms which delude their fascinated votaries into the inextricable mazes of pride and enthusiasm; and for any thing they can do in a way of enlightening, sanctifying, and saving, a sinner, they are in fact three nothings. And yet, when placed upon the head of self, they form a kind of triple crown.'-To be sure, our Author, like other faints, is beside him felf!
His humility and candour will serve to bring up the rear of bis other virtues. "I am (says this meek servant of the truth, who hath renounced self) bold to declare, and am ready to demonftrate, that no life was ever begun well, spent well, or concluded well, where the governing principles of the heart were Rev. Mar. 1780.