Abbildungen der Seite
[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Arr. XXIV. Substance of the Bibop of Rochester's Speecb, in the

House of Peers, Friday, May 23d, 1800, in the Debate upon tbe
third Reading of the Bill for tbe Punishment and more effectual Pre-
vention of the Crime of Adultery. 8vo. Pp. 35. Is. Robson.

THE Bishop takes a view of the Divine law, as it affects the crime of adultery, in order to establish the illegality of the marriage of the adulteress, and to thew that such marriage during the life of her injured husband, was always considered adultery. His Lordship's arguments, on this point,, are, : to us at at leaít, convincive; and we perfectly agree with him in his interpretation of the paflage in the 19th chapter of St. Matthew, which, we have ever thought, will not admit of any other construction than that which he puts upon it.

« When I speak of the Divine law, I mean the divine law as it stands under the Gospel. By that law I contend there marriages are adulteries. By the Laws of Moses, the punishment of adultery was death: and a large power of repudiation yas given to the husband for inferior offences. In the latter periods of the Jewish History, when the morals of the peopie were exceediogly relased and depraved, capital punishment in the case of adultery was rarely inflicted; but the power of repudiation was used, in an extent ben yond any thing the letter of the law could justify; and this the more fober part of the nation seem to have understood. Our Lord was consulted concerning the propriety of such divorces. His anIwer was, that by the original institution of marriage, the contract was indiffoluble. That the liberty of divorce, under the Mosaic law, was an accommodation to a certain hardness of heart among the Jewish people that from the beginning it was not so. He adds, ' And I say unto you, (I, in conformity to the spirit of the institution, thus lay down MY law) whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her, which is put away, committeth adultery."* In the first Epiftle to the Corinthians, St,

Paul lays down the same rule, as a positive command of our Lord, · with respect to married persons, both Christians. Where one of

the parties was a Heathen or a Jew, and the other a Christian, the case admitted some exceptions. But in the case of husband and

[ocr errors][merged small]

** Matt. xix. 3-9. In this gth verse, - I say unto you,' &c. Our Lord lays down his own law, without regard to the law of Moses, which he abrogates. By Christ's law, the man who puts away his wife, except for adultery, and marries another, commits adultery. And he who marries her, thus put away by Christ's law for adultery, the only cause of putting away under Christ's law, committeth adultery. This is the only exposition which our Lord's words can bear. For by the law of Mofes it was not adultery for a man to put away his wife for another cause than adultery, and marry another. Neither was it adultery by the Mosaic law for another man to marry a woman put away," See Deut. xxiv. 1, 2.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

by'Spy wife both Christian, the Apostle says, unto the married I com

Diese mand (not I, but the Lord) let not the wife be separated from her marich husband. But if he be separated, let her remain unmarried, or ;, li ; be reconciled to her husband.'* The Apostle' enjoins this, not as

from himself, but as a positive command of Christ. The Apostle therefore agrees in my interpretation of our Lord's words, when I

say, that, as the Divine Law is laid down by our Lord himself, in namn - his answer to the Pharisees, the cohabitation of a divorced adultress Ondekate with her feducer, under colour of a marriage, notwithstanding the

connivance of human laws, is grofs adultery.” m. in The Bishop successfully ridicules the preposterous idea that nei.

ther," ther the clergy nor the lawyers are competent judges of the subject; enbereiches and he vindicates the bill from the charge of innovation by shewing

it to be perfectly consistent with the primitive purity of our laws. viheba The peroration is too energetic and too much to the purpofe, to be

omitted here. : 012 «My Lords, you have been addressed as fathers. You have been

entreated, not to be severe against those infirmities of our common Ik nature, from which your own daughters, with all the advantages

of high breeding, cannot be exempt. My Lord's, I too call upon Task you, as FATHERS. I demand of you, not connivance at the shame,

but protection of the innocence, and honour of your daughters, A od 1 father may have many daughters. If one of these is betrayed by

Ort! these infirmities of our common nature, how is the father to "proa . His teet the honour of the reft? Will he think its security, too dearly re colec bought by the sufferings of the guilty? How is it to be secured at

all, if this guilt is generally to escape with impunity? But, my rt arma, Lords, I address you not as fathers individually. I say, that the fo. E innocence of daughters is a matter, in which fathers ought to make t of this a common cause : and the feelings of the individual must be facri

ficed, when the occasion requires it, to the common interest. r, er "My Lords, once more I conjure you to remember, that justice, t awes not compassion for the guilty, is the great principle of legislation.

Yet, my Lords, your compassion may find worthy objects. Turn, my Lords, your merciful regards to the illustrious suppliants proftrate, at this moment, at your bar; conjugal fidelity ; domestic happiness; public manners; the virtue of the fex. These, my Lords, are the suppliants now kneeling before you, and imploring the protection of your wisdom and your justice.”

?way B


Art. XXV. Substance of the Speeches of Lord Mulgrave in tbe House

of Lords, in reply to the Speeches of Lord Auckland and the Bishop of Rocbefter on the Divorce Bill. 8vo. Pp. 50. Wright. LORD MULGRAVE opposed the bill on the fame ground with the Duke of Clarence, that it would have a tendency to increase the very crime which it professed to check. Our opinion of this ground of opposition we have already declared; but in this speech

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

we have not found a single argument capable of producing any change in those sentiments which a perusal of the speeches, to which it was meant as an answer, had excited in our minds. We cannot agree with his Lordship in his opinion that in point of general morality, society is in a better state than it has formerly been in this country;" we have already assigned our reasons for entertaining an opposite opinion; nor can we possibly concur with him, in the idea, that the marriage of an adulteress with an adulterer tends to promote the reformation of the former, because a complete deteftation of her crime must precede her reformation, and how such detestation can exist in conjunction with the enjoyment of the fruits of the crime, it is impossible for us to account upon the operation of any known quality of the human mind, of any known principle of human action. The reverse of this position appears to us to be incontestibly the fact. His Lordship differs from the Bishop of Rochester in his construction of the passage in the nineteenth chapter of St. Matthew, but all the precedents adduced in support of his arguments, are fully proved by the Bishop not to bear upon it.

This is the last speech we have to review on this very important subject, and it is with great pleasure we find that notice has been given, by a very worthy and able member of the House of Commons, of a determination, to make a frelh application to Parliament in the next sessions. We trust, the matter will be amply discussed in the interval, and that the firm friends of religion and morality will not Neep upon their posts. We cannot, however, dismiss this topic without expressing our regret that the masterly speeches of Lord ELDON and Mr. Erskine have not been printed. The latter we understand to have been a speech containing more found knowledge and legal information, than any fpeech that was delivered on the subject in the House of Commons. .

Art. XXVI. Thoughts on the Propriety of preventing Marriages .: founded on Adultery. 8vo. Pp. 27. Rivingtons.: 1800.

THESE are the temperate and judicious thouglits of a sensible mind, which has duly considered the subject, in its tendency to affect individuals, and society. The author was a decided friend to the Bill which the Commons rejected ; and his proposition for making the adulterer contribute to the future fupport of the adultress, whom he is restricted from marrying, is entitled to serious attention. .. .

Art. XXVII. A Discourse to unmarried Men. Small 8vo. Pp.

15. No Bookseller's Name. : THIS is a very excellent discourse on the fin of fornication, which ought to be read by every man of the world, who acknowledges the truths of Christianity. We are informed by a Correspondent that it is to be had at Mr. Clarke's, Bookseller, in New Bond-Itreet.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]


Art. XXVIII. The Annual Antbology. Vol. I. 12mo. 6s. Longa

man. 1799.
man. 1709.


OF this collection it may very truly be said :

“Sunt bona, funt quædam mediocria, sunt mala plura." . But, we believe, the public concur with us in opinion, that the number of bona are, in proportion, very small. Among the mala plura are the pieces of Mr. Dyer and Dr. Beddoes. Dyer's Ode to

the river Cam is unworthy of a schoolboy just beginning to ver- fify, in English, an epigram of Martial.

“ While yon skylark warbles high,

While yon rustic whistles gay,
On thy banks, O Cam, I lie,

Museful pour the pensive lay." What common-place stuff is this ! -Ex pede Herculem. With respect to Beddoes, we advife him to confine himself to his laboratory, ne futor ultra crepidam.--Yet, the nymph Aura, perhaps, may be as coy as the muse; the Gas may go off in a bubble; and, in spite of his airs, the doctor may give us fimum ex fulgore, both philosophical and poetical.

of the quædam mediocria, Mr. C. Lloyd and Mr. Southey are ready to furnish us with specimens : but we condescend not to transcribe verse, which « Non Dii, non homines, non con-. : ceffere columnæ.”

For the best, we bow to a lady, with pleasure; we hasten to confer the wreath on Mrs. Opie; not from any feeling for the fair sex, or any sentiment of politeness ; but as the impartial judges of poetical merit. " To Mr. Opie, on bis baving painted for me the picture of Alrs.

Twiss.By Mrs. Opie.
“ Hail to thy pencil! well its glowing art

Has trac'd those features painted on my heart : .
Now, tho' in distant'fcenes fhe soon will rove,
Still shall I here behold the friend I love;
Still see that smile “ endearing, artlefs, kind,".
The eye's mild beam that speaks the candid mind,
Which sportive oft, yet fearful to offend,
By humour charms, yet never wounds a friend. :
But, in my breast contending feelings rise,
While this lov'd semblance fascinates my eyes,
Now pleas'd, I mark the painter's ikilful line,
Now joy, because the 1kill I mark was thine ::.
And, while I prize the gift by thee beítow'd,
My heart proclaims, I'm of the giver proud.
Thus pride and friendship war with equal ftrife,
And now the friend exults, and now the wife."

. . . Se

Song, by Mrs. Opie.
“ Think not, while gayer swains invite

Thy feet, dear girl, to pleasure's bowers,
My faded form shall meet thy fight,

And cloud my Laura's smiling hours.
Thou art the world's delighted guest,

And all the young admire is thine;
Then I'll not wound thy gentle breast,

By numbering o'er the wounds of mine,
I will not say, how well, how long,

This faithful heart has sigh'd for thee,
But leave, the happier swains among,

Content, if thou contented be.
But Laura, should misfortune's wand

Bid all thy youth's gay visions fly,
From thy soft cheek the rose command,

And force the lustre from thine eye;
Then, thoughtless of my own distress,

I'll hafte, thy comforter to prove;
And Laura shall my friendship bless,

Altho', alas ! The scorns my love."
These are charming little pieces. They are the lowers of the
Anthology: but they were wasting their fragrance among weeds ;
and we were willing to remove them to a more genial spot *.

Art. XXIX. The English Sailor and French Citizen, a loyal Sketch,

in Verse, embellished with a Caricature Frontispiece, designed by Woodward. 4to. Pp. 8. Is. 6d. Allen, Weft, and Hughes, Chapple. 1800.

This Jeu d'Esprit contains much point and pleasantry. For ex« ample:


- Me come
To teach de English freedom, from my home."

1 “ You teach us freedom! -teach us to make flip,

To heave an anchor, or to steer a ship;
A lath like you-teach Britons to be free!
Damme-we learn it with our A. B. C." .

* That the Anthology (as it is called) is not a little tin&tured. with Jacobinism, we scarcely need observe, after mentioning the names of these authors : we hold their politics and their poetry, in equal contempt.

« ZurückWeiter »