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on the propriety of ladies taking upon themselves the management of Sunday-schools.
" I dislike, however, their superintendence of schools. Girls, who are in want of being taught, should not become teachers. This inspires éven the best minds with vanity. It occasions an overbearing manner: it induces a habit of officiousness. Even when grown up to women, I do not approve of the interference of ladies with the management of schools. To visit a school with a view to its support, is quite a different business: no one can object to an act of charity. In regard to Sunday-schools, there is little doubt that Mrs. Hannah More and the whole tribe of her imitators have done an incalculable deal of mischief to religion. They have all, more or less, intruded on the province of the parochial clergyman in attempting that which he was ordained to do; and they have thus made him secondary to themselves, and consequently degraded him in the eyes of his parishioners. And from their schools they have turned out crowds of self-conceited folks - politicians, sceptics, methodists-holding their ignorant parents and relations in contempt, disqualified for the stations to which God had called them, and aspiring after objects in the pursuit of which they fail and become desperate, or in the attainment of which they frequently discover designing heads and hearts the most depraved." 7.59.
Here we close both our quotations and our remarks; strongly recommending the attentive perusal of the “Family Picture” to all parents, and to all those who think the proper education of the rising generation an object of public importance. The author's sentiments are uniformly good, his principles sound, his observations judicious; while bis poetry displays genius, taste, and talent.
One word more respecting the observations which we have been compelled to make on the present erroneous system of education: When we consider it, can wonder at seeing the bar prostituted to the defence of impiety and vice? - Can we be surprised at the capitulation of Buenos Ayres, the Convention of Cintra, and the Report of the Board of Inquiry? -- Or can we be astonished at the frequent bankruptcies in the commercial world; at occasional instances of the degradation of the clerical character, by clergymen becoming pugilists, gamesters, parasites, and panders to profligate princes; or at the rapid growth of adultery and prostitution ?-We should rather wonder at what we are as a nation, and at what we have done. This system, however, is a radical evil which calls loudly for correction; but as it effects no party, as it interferes with no politics, as it defrauds no revenue, it may continue to call - its voice, we fear, will pipt be heard.
Our remarks, however, on the effects of this system, though generally just, must admit of many and most honourable exceptions. But while the youths of both sexes, who have braved the dangers and escaped the snares which it has prepared for them, are deserving of peculiar commendation, they must have peculiar merit. The system itself is not the less mischievous, nor the less entitled to censure and condemnation.
The Chemical Catechism, with Notes, Illustrations, and Experiments.
By Samuel Parkes, general manufacturing Chemist. The Third Edition, containing the new Discoveries and other very considerable Additions. Svo. pp. 660. 12s. Lackington and Co. 1808.
WE are pleased to find that our opinion of this work has been fully confirmed by the approbation of the enlightened part of the public, and that the sale of the second edition was so rapid, that we had not time to examine it before a third appeared with considerable additions and improvements. The author, like a man really actuated by the true spirit of science, has most carefully corrected all those errors and incorrect expressions which we noticed in reviewing the first edition, and has now made this · Catechism,' not only the most useful, but the most copious and correct introductory treatise on chemistry extant. The corrections and additions are by far too. numerous for us to particularise; and above one hundred and sixty new articles are introduced, besides one hundred curious experiments added to the one hundred and fifty-four which appeared in the first edition. As the last eight of these include the principal phenomena exhibited bỹ potasium and sodium, the metallic bases of the alkalies discovered by Mr. Davy, and communicated by him to Mr. Parkes, we shall extract them.
“ 1. Take a small piece of pure potaslı, gently breathe on its surface, and place it on an insulated plate connected with the negative side of a powerful galvanic battery in a state of intense activity. - Then bring a metallic wire from the positive side of the battery in contact with the upper surface of the alkali, and soon a very vivid action will be observed. Small globules, having a high metallic lustre, and of the appearance of quicksilver, will be seen, some of which will burn with explosion and a bright flame as soon as they are formed. Thus POTASH may be DECOMPOSED AND Its metallic BASE RENDERED VISIBLE in a separate state.
“ 2. Take the metallic substance formed in the last experiment, called potasium, make it very hot, and confine it in a small glass : vessel of oxygen gas. Here a rapid combustion, with a brilliant white flame, will be produced, and the metallic globules will be
REGENERATED PURE POTASS.
converted into a white and solid mass, which will be found to be
be to " 3. Place a small piece of potasium within a dry wine glass, and in order to acquire an idea of its specific gravity pour a little alcohol
, ether, or naphtha upon it; when, quitting the bottom of the glass
, it will immediately rise to the surface of the liquid, it being, notwithstanding its metallic appearance, the LIGHTEST FLUID BODY KNOWN.
" 4. If a little potasium be dropped into a jar of oxy-muriatic acid
gas, it BURNS SPONTANEOUSLY, AND emits a bright red light. In this experiment a white SALT IS FORMED, being A TRUE MURIATE
" 5. If a globule of potasium be thrown upon water, it decomposes it with great violence: an instantaneous EXPLOSION IS PRODULED with brilliant flame, AND a solution of PURE POTASH IS THE
" 6. If a similar globule be placed upon ice, it will spontaneously BURN with a bright flame, AND PERFORATE A DEEP HOLE IN THE ICE, which will contain a solution of potash.
7. Take a piece of moistened turmeric paper, and drop a globule of potasium upon it.
At the moment that it comes into contact with the water, IT BURNS and moves rapidly UPON THE PAPER, as if IN SEARCH OF MOISTURE, leaving behind it a deep reddish brown trace.
“8. When a globule of sodium is thrown into hot water, the decomposition of the water is so violent that small particles of the metal are thrown out of the water, and actually BURN WITH SCINTILLATIONS and flame, IN PASSING THROUGH THE ATMOSPHERE. P. 592.
Mr. Parkes, since the publication of this Catechism,' has been employed in making a series of experiments on sugar, the result of which has been laid before a committee of the House of Commons, and the report printed. It has also appeared in Tilloch's Philosophical Magazine, and does credit to the talents and industry of the author. An abstract of it will be an acceptable addition to the fourth edition of this work, which we understand he is now preparing. We think he can still improve the Vocabulary;' and as we have had experience of his disposition to profit by our suggestions, we would recommend him to add such words as oxydation, &c.; and as no reason can be given why we should write oxyenizement with a
and oxidizement with an i, unless it be to stupidly imitate the French, we should prefer an adherence to the etymon of the word.
An expostulatory Letter to Dr. Moseley, on his Review of the Report of
the London College of Physicians on Vaccination. By M. T. C. M.B. F.L. S. 8vo. pp.51. 2s.6d. Murray. 1808. IT is in vain to expostulate with a man who evidently discovers himself actuated by motives, and not reasons. Dr. Moseley, nó doubt, well knows the value of notoriety; and we think his opporents would have acted far wiser, and disappointed him much more,
had they treated his indecent remarks with silent contempt. This is a very able and argumentative letter, but the man who could outrage society by the introduction of such a term as lues bodilla, cannot deserve the attention of such a respectable writer, who throughout evinces himself a gentleman and accomplished scholar. Upon the whole, the character of the enemies of vaccination is worthy of their cause. One of them has lately been exhibited in a court of justice for a crime which shall be nameless : another was alternately a mountebank and a smuggler in the East, then a deserter, next an Aberdeen doctor, afterwards a newspaper-reporter, and now a medical lecturer, &c. &c. !!!
A Letter to the Conmissioners of military Inquiry, in Reply to some
Animadversions of Dr. E. Nathaniel Bancroft on their Fifth Report.
NOT having seen Dr. Bancroft's Letter, we cannot decide on this controversy, which has so warmly engaged the army medical gentlemen. We perceive, however, from the several quotations here introduced from it, that Dr. M. Gregor had fallen into some inaccuracies, but not such as to effect kis character for veracity and medical skill. There appears also to be much useless logomachy about the greater mortality in general or in regimental hospitals, when Dr. M. Gregor candidly admits, “ that in general the majority of the more dangerous cases being taken to the general hospitals, a greater mortality was naturally to be expected in them, than in regimental hospitals.” After this, we are surprised that the author should insinuate that all “general hospitals receive patients who have not been under the charge of a regimental surgeon.” If military patients “ have not been under the charge of a regimental surgeon,” they must at least have been inspected by him, and ordered to the general hospital; for no military officer would take upon himself to order his sick men to a general hospital, while he had a surgeon to attend them, or direct their treatment. Dr. M.Gregor's “ Abstract of the monthly Returus of Sick and Deaths in the Army in Great Britain, from May 1807 to April 1808,” both inclusive, therefore proves nothing to his purpose, although it is a valuable document. By this it appears, that in the regimental hospitals the deaths were to the sick, as one in thirty-one; in the general hospital, as one in twenty and a half. Out of 110,000 men, the regi. mental hospitals had 61,585 sick, and 1987 deaths : in the general hospital (Isle of Wight), 2647 sick, and 129 deaths. Thus we see, that nearly two out of three are sick, although not above one in fifty die every year. It is much to be wished that such abstracts were regularly published in the periodical publications every year, as such an enormous list of sick is highly disgraceful to the discipline of our troops and the medical officers of the army. In March, 1808, we find very nigh one twelfth of the whole British army was sick! Dr. M Gregor expresses the hope, that “ frauds and peculations” in the medical department of the army will be exposed and stopped by the labours of the commissioners, in which we most sincerely
concur. We are, indeed, well convinced, that numerous and serious abuses existed, and we fear still exist, in that department; and if this " deputy inspector of hospitals” succeeds in remedying such evils, he will confer a memorable service on his country, and be rewarded by the gratitude of posterity. We could have wished, however, that he had allowed himself, in this Letter, to have been much more copious in facts, and as much more sparing of recriminatory charges of " falsehood” and “mis-statements' against Dr. Bancroft. In matters of opinion, such as the advantages or disadvantages of general or regimental hospitals, there is no occasion for crimination or recrimination : he who avoids this, may make « the worse the better cause."
The Times, an Ode at the Commencement of the Year 1809. By Joseph Blacket.
12mo. pp. 16. Is. Goddard. THIS is a spirited Ode, by a young man, we understand, in a very humble station of life, and with no other education, as we learn from himself, than what he has derived from his own voluntary application. From the perusal of the Ode itself, we should never have discovered that the author had laboured under such disadvantages. It is free from every defect which might naturally be expected in the production of a self-tutored mind; and possesses many beauties which are not to be found in many of the effusions of a highly-educated Muse. We shall extract one of the stanzas, that the reader may judge for himself of the merit of the Ode.
« Not so Iberia's warlike sons,
Each manly breast at danger spurns,
As through the ranks, like lightning, runs
Yes, Freedom's banners, now unfurl'd,
Her rights from an untimely grave;
Where giant prowess in the fight
Has boasted long superior might, And fill’d the air with groans--the earth with many a tear." This is a fair specimen, and by no means the best that might be extracted. Both the poetry and the principle are entitled to praise; and we heartily wish success to this modest volunteer in the service of the Muses. To the Ode is prefixed an appropriate dedication to Mr. Pratt, accompanied by some well-deserved compliments to that gentleman, for his able poem on the present crisis, originally in, serted in the pages of this Review.