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oxigenant, not easily combining with water, and thus being quite distinct from the muriatic acid: its principal uses are also pointed out.
The last two articles of this section relate to the fluoric and boraciç acids: the former in a gaseous state and a liquid form, is distinguishable by its smell, its weight, its action on hard stones and glass, by its weakness when compared with several of the preceding kinds, its complete inactivity on combustible bodies, as well as the resistance it makes even to the activity of such substances. The boracic, which is one of the weakest of all the species, is particularly diftinguishable on account of its solid and crystalline form, its weak tafte, its fixity and vitrifiable property, its difficult folubility in water, its absolute want of action upon simple eatables. M. Fourcroy informs us in this article that he has made numerous attempts at different times to ascertain the nature of this acid, but his experiments were unsuccessful.
Sect. IV. On the falifiable bafes, earths and alkalis. This is di. vided into fourteen articles,
Art. 1 is occupied with observations on salifiable bases in general, on earths in particular, and a definition and classification of confiderable length. “After this definition and an explanation of the earthy character, the author asserts that the ancient opinions concerning an elementary earth are entirely chimcrical ; and that the greater the progress in the ftudy of the earths, the more their number has been found to increase. He distinguishes fix carthy substances, which are very different from each other; the division consists of acid, or proper earths, of which there are four species, denominated filex, alumine, zircone, and glucine, and of alkaline earths, of which two fpecics only are known, viz. magnesia and lime.
Árt. 2 relates to filex, and contains its various names, its history, existence in nature, extraction and purification, uses, &c.
Alumine, which, on account of its greater changeableness and attractions, affords a number of chemical phenomena, is treated more at length than silex, and forms the subject of the third article. Zircone and glucine are examined with similar attention in the two following articles :
The new earth very lately discovered by M. Gadolin, a Swedish chemist, and called by him Ytterby, but more generally known on the Continent by the naine of Gadolinite, is mentioned by the author in his preliminary discourse, together with the result of his experiments on this substance.
Magnesia, which forms the subject of Art. 6, is now known to polless alkaline properties, and therefore differs from the four earths above-mentioned. Having long been confounded with absorbent earths, on account of its property of easily forming combination with acids, the author describes the manner in which it lias been distinguished by Hoffman and Black. Its different states in nature, the manner of obtaining it pure, its external characters, the action ex
cited on it by caloric, air, some combustible bodies, water, and the acids, as well as its combination with the four preceding earths, are also examined, and its various purposes and the method of employing it pointed out.
We cannot with justice to the learned author pass over the seventh article of this section, which is one of the most remarkable, as it contains the history of lime. He fuccefiively traces the historical facts of the principal discoveries which relate to this substance, including its natural history, its preparation in the kiln, and by chemical process in general, the alteration it undergoes by the action of fire and air ; its important combinations with phosphorous, sulphur, the phosphorated hidrogen and sulphurated gases, its action upon water, and the reciprocal action of water upon itself; the properties of its aqueous folution, or lime water, its attractions for acids, compared with those of oiher bases; its union by heat and water, with silex and alumine.
Art. 8, bearing the title “ On Alkalis in general,” explains thę origin of the word, the alkaline characters, and their enumeration, as well as the clailification of those bases. The author admits of five alkalis, which he arranges according to the order of their attraction for the acids: in articles 9, 10, 11, 12, and 13, he successively examines barites, potaih, soda, strontian, and ammonia.
Art. 14. contains some general ideas on lithology, or the history of stones, in which the author gives an abstract of the present state of lithological knowledge: he also explains the distinctive characters of ftones, and the method employed by lithologists, for making the necessary distinctions. The means employed by chemnits for analysing and feparating the various component parts of stones are also laid down with great precision.
It was not to be expected that a work of this nature would long remain unknown to the British public. A translation of it has been undertaken, and is now far advanced.
Porte-feuille Politique d'un Ex-employé au Ministère de la Police
Generale, &c. i. e. The Political Port-folio of a Person formerly attached to the Board of General Police ; or an Essay on Public Inftruction, publithed by Le Brun (of Grenoble). 8vo. Pp. 344. 7s. Paris printed; imported by De Boeffe, Gerard-street, Lon
don. 18oo. VITIZEN Le Brun, who, we apprehend, is the author as well
as publisher of this notable production, begins by dividing the nations of Europe into two parts, one consisting of dupes, and the other of rogues. As a French Republican sees but one nation in the world--La grande nation--we cannot be at a loss for the premises whence our author has deduced this conclusion. Indeed, no staunch royalist, no inveterate ariltocrat, no determined enemy to the new
order of things, ever drew a more horrid picture of Republican France than that which is here exhibited by this ardent republican. According to him, and we have private reasons for knowing his representations on this subject to be correct, as far as they go, the system of Marat and his worthy associates has been attended with the fullest success, and the demoralization of the country to use their own Gipsy-jargon) is complete ;-in other words, all '
moral principle is eradicated from the hearts and minds of the abandoned subjects of the French Republican Consul. But bad as France confeitedly is, Mr. Le Brun is so sturdy a reformer, that he does not despair of working a complete revolution in her moral and political state, and to bring her back to the true standard of republican purity, by the operation of one simple remedy-The Conversion of the Churches into Playhouses !-- Before, however, we enter upon an examination of the main subject of the book, we must cull fome few beauties from the Preface.--And, first we thall notice the citizen's lamentations on the absence of a republican spirit in France, which we hope will have fome effect on the opinions of the republican spirits in England, whose incredulity on this point has hitherto been proof alike against arguments and fact.
“ We have had a revolution in places, I mean to say that one set of men have taken the places of others, and that a multitude of thieves have enriched themselves sufficiently to become the objects of theft in their turn; but the great mass of the people have not been revolutionized; they have stupidly degenerated; they have not only retained all their old vices, but have contracted new vices, and will continue to contract them, until a system of public instruction, founded on their taste, on their habits, shall have neutralized the peftilential miasmata with which they are surrounded, and the evil examples by which they are subdued."
The taste and habits of a people, funk into debauchery and inured to vice, our readers will probably think, must form but an indifferent basis for a system of public instruction ; and in such a system, there would evidently be what the French term an action and re-action between the foundation and the superstructure.--He is a hopeful projector who seeks to purify a depraved taste, by flattering it; and to correct vicious habits by perpetuating them.
- For this fublime work you must not employ exhausted quacks, men filled with revolutionary prejudices;-you must chuse for this holy operation, a virgin genius who has no communication with lepers; to whom all the windings of the human heart, all the conditions of society are known ; who sees man as he is, a vain and rapacious animal, alternately prodigal and avaricious, dishonest and indifereet, docile and proud, impatient of the yoke, and yet casily subdued, when a skilful hand takes care to conceal from his eyes the rein by which he is guided.”
The first business of this fublime workman, this holy operator is to be the destruction of the empire of fahion, and the institution of a pational drejs.
“ No legislator, worthy to be called such, ever forgot to proscribe fashion and to substitute in its place constant and indelible customs. It is they which give a character and a phyfiognomy to a people; that attach them to manners, by an infinite number of ties, and retain them, without their knowledge, within the bounds of obedience and moderation. The Turks (I am not now spealing of their government) have fill the same dress and the same habits, as prevailed in the time of Mahomet the Second:- It is true, indeed, that Mahomet the First was a legislator."
This attachment of the Turks to their ancient cuftoms is adduced, by this consistent projector, in support of his argument, not for the revival of old fashions, but for the introduction of a new drefs in the Republic. At present he insists that every thing is English, and this mode of apeing foreigners he reprobates very juftly, though he is egregiously deceived in fuppofing that the practice is peculiar to his own country; we heartily with that were the case, but when we go into public and witness the beastly custom of fcratch wigs and cropped heads, making. not brutufes, but brutes, of the men, and deforming the native beauty of our women, a custom, which notwithstanding the assertion of citizen Le Brun, was imported from France, we are compelled to acknowledge that, in this respect, the English are as great apes as the French.
“ What must we think of our legislative puppets, who have none but English carriages, English furniture, English beauffets, English clothes, English breakfafts, English suppers, English horses, with cropped tails, and gloomy children faits a l'Anglaise?
“ If these gentemen and ladies were not Republicans, but Frenchmen only, would they suffer the ignominious liveries of our mortal enemies to be worn in their presence? No, they would ere this have created a Frencb etiquette, which would be rigidly observed at the Consular palace, at all the Minifters' houses, by all the Confiituted Authorities, at all places of publie 'amusement, and even in the public walks, where no one would be admitted but in a citico-national dress. Every kind of fashion would be expelled from their houses.
“ The English have carriages into which they cannot enter without the aid of a ladder; they would, therefore, order a carriage to be made of a form totally different and of a moderate height. The Anglo-Chouans wear
large hat, on which the national cockade is scarcely vifible; they would therefore, wear the majestic polifb cap. Lastly, they would make their fashionable wives cover their nakednets. Far from this, they favour by their indifference, or by a smile of approbation, that contempt which, is daily displayed for the new system, at what are called falbionable focieties.
The author then proceeds to lavish his impudent and malevolent abuse on the Abbé de Lille, whom any rational Frenchman would be proud to claim as his countryman, for he is indisputably the best of the French poets, and is not less distinguished for the brilliancy of his genius than for the suavity of his manners; not less respectable for his talents, than estimable for his virtues. But, in the
of citizen Le Brun, the good Abbé is guilty of a mortal fin ; first, by
being a Christian and a Priest; and, fecondly, by having written a poem in which he describes the leisure hours of a Lord of the Manor !
To calumniate an enemy, that is, to tell the most wilful and atrocious falfhoods of him, to impute to him crimes which he never committed, and plans which he never conceived, is, we should suppose, a fure test of Republican virtue ; it certainly has been practised by all the most distinguished Republicans from Brissot to Marat and from Marat to Buonaparte; the infamy of the attempt is worthy of the French Republican character; it is, at the fame time, in them, an instance of gross cowardice, for there is no possibility of retaliating; as the very worst that can be said of them falls
far short of the truth. That our author poffeffes this virtue, in an eminent degree, may be seen by the following paffage :
“ Kleber was affassinated in Egypt by order of the English. At this time the Cabinet of London keep in their pay the leaders of the Royal herd and the chief of the anarchial band, to affaflinate Buonaparte. They have no, wish to restore to the throne the ido! of gentlemen. Children of a stupid pride, ridiculous dolls of vanity, they have no intention to give you back a talisman dragged in the mud; their obje&t is to reduce the inhabitants of France to the extreme of misery; they feek to despoil you; it is France herself that they wish to dismember—that they wish to annihilate !"
The citizen is more correct in his delineation of the manners and state of his darling republic. He thus describes “ the personages who are at the head of affairs.'
“ We shall first find Carnot and Talleyrand able to prove their profound knowledge of their profession. Some few of the prefects are not without merit; the majority of the Council of State is not bad; but, with the exception of four or five, if the rest, both senators and tribunes, legislators and judges, were publicly asked, before a national jury, what they have done, what they do, and what they are able to do, who raised them to their present fituation, who taught them politics, who instructed them in the science of legislation and government ?-I am certain, that the bookfeller who would print their answers, would publish a book, that would be extremely diverting, extremely curious, and would have a very great fale.
“ See the difference, benevolent readers! .... Put the same questions to our generals, to our colonels; and you will probably not find one that will not give a pertinent answer, and prove himself, in all respects, on a level with, or above, his profession. The reason of this is; that the force of things, and the danger of circumstances have republicanized the army; and that their Supreme Chief is a great master of the art.”
This acknowledgment is followed by some infamous abuse of the officers under the monarchy whom the author has the audacity to accuse of cowardice; when ihę whole world knows that a braver fet of men never existed than the officers of the French army, as the military history of Europe for centuries, past will fufficiently demon