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modation; and staid there until the 5th of June. The weather now became hot; and the phalangium, a huge spider, which wars successfully with the scorpion, grew troublesome in the tents. An agreeable station at Sengilabat is described on the 6th, where they met with two English travellers, Colonel Johnson and Captain Salter, from the East Indies. The Miana bug is another insect-nuisance of the route; and its bite is stated sometimes to produce a mortal fever. On the 25th of June was crossed, on a beautiful bridge of three arches, the river Kisil-osun; near to which place, the celebrated English traveller, Browne, was murdered. At Sangan, the embassy made a long halt; and the diary is interrupted by the want of fresh materials. At Samanarchie, another long halt took place. At length, on the 19th of July, the embassy reached Sultanie, where they were expected by the King of Persia; and some of the presents sent from Astrakhan across the Caspian Sea had already arrived. The detailed description of the King's entry into Sultanie, on the above date, his invisibility during the Ramasan, the view of his residence, the favourable reception of the embassy on the 26th, the catalogue of presents, and the forms of interview, must be very interesting, particularly to Russian readers, but require the curiosity of patriotism to delight. A graphic representation is given of the tomb of Saint Hassain-Kashi, which is the most magnificent ruin remaining. In Chardin's time, the town did not present the marks of declension which it now exposes.
The Persians, says Captain Kotzebue, have no conception how a sum of money can bear interest without a diminution of the capital. They have neither banking nor exchange. The rich man hoards his money, and uses it up by degrees: so that, if he lives longer than his calculation, he goes to the grave a beggar. Hence the fear of outliving his capital renders a Persian disgustingly avaricious; and those who serve the government save their pay, that they may not be exposed to future want.
August 27. The negotiations having drawn to a close, the ceremonies of separation took place; and on the 29th the encampment of the embassy broke up, and it returned through Sangan and Tauris. Some variation of route being made between this city and tho rest of the journey, the ruins of Julfa were visited, and a convent of Armenian monks. On the 29th of September the embassy was at Erivan: on the 2d of October it passed the Russian frontier, and on the roth was again at Tiflis; where its members had been ordered to
meet, and where they were again, however reluctantly, to disperse.
In this whole journal the writer supplies much of eyesight, but nothing of retrospect; the narrative is picturesque, natural, and sometimes lively, but not prominently stamped with the sensibility of genius or the reminiscences of learning : it may be read without fatigue, but will not powerfully contribute to delight, to elevate, or to surprize. Perhaps it adds more to our knowlege of the Caucasian provinces of the Russian empire, than to our acquaintance with the Persian territory.
Art. III. Essays on the Institutions, Government, and Manners,
of the States of Ancient Greece. By Henry David Hill, D.D. Professor of Greek in the University of St. Andrew's.
pp. 380. 7s. 6d. Boards. Baldwin and Co. 1819. DR.
R. Hill is now, we believe, beyond the reach of our
praise or our censure, if we rightly recollect to have remarked his name, a few months since, in one of those obituaries which our daily prints present to us.
He has left, however, a literary legacy, the value of which will not, we trust, be depreciated by being divided among many heirs by its publication. The Essays, in number twenty, which it contains, comprize the substance of some of his lectures to his class, from his chair at St. Andrew's;'and they may undoubtedly be of service to many of those who are drinking of the antient fount in our southern districts, which have always hitherto been more famed for the eminence of young and old in classical attainments.
It is generally observed that our northern neighbours are apt to undervalue, as they certainly neglect, those studies which form the usual basis of liberal instruction in our part of the island; and the paucity of such persons as we, possibly in too restrictive a sense, are apt to call scholars, makes no inconsiderable deduction from the splendor of that intellectual ray which has long beamed on Scotland.
Our feelings of respect, then, towards the author of these Essays, ought to rise in proportion to our knowlege of the prejudices of the literati of the North : for he attempted to fan a flame, assiduously, if not very powerfully, which, although dormant, he probably saw was not extinct; and, having himself experienced the gratifications resulting from a mind stored with the learning of the antients, he was not sparing of labour to render other soils productive of the same fruit. A a 3
We can imagine some young Oxonian, in preparation for his degree, caught by the expanded title-page of this small volume in the window of some academical bookseller; making a purchase of it, and, having turned over its pages, concluding with expressions of surprize that he had found in it so little matter which was not previously familiar to him. He
may possibly, too, indulge in a sneer at an academical class in an University which apparently required such instructions there, as he had himself attained before he had become animated by " the strong contagion of the gown.". It may not be unnecessary, however, to remind such a critic (a severe one, no doubt,) of a fact with which most of our readers are well acquainted, — that the Humanity Classes, as they are called at Edinburgh, and (we believe) in the other Universities of the North, are formed of very different materials from the lecture-rooms of the South. The component parts of the first are brought almost like the rude block of marble to receive there its first shape and fashion; those of the latter to obtain in their new abode little else than the finishing stroke from the hand of the artist. With this necessary distinction in our view, we shall not condemn as trivial that which was well adapted for the instruction of those for whom it was primarily intended, but weigh its utility in the only just scale to which we can apply. Dr. Hill, indeed, tells us that these lectures were read to the more advanced of those students who attended at his chair : but these degrees of advancement in antient literature are by no means to be measured by ideas formed exclusively in an English University. We are not willing, even under these circumstances, to say any thing which might tend to limit the circulation of the Doctor's Essays to that narrow circle for which they were originally designed. It will be recollected that the boy in one of the higher classes of a southern school may find much advantage in that which was written for his senior in years, but not his superior in one particular branch of attainment. We may also observe that, in our larger seminaries, much is left, perhaps more than ought to be, to the individual and uncompelled industry of the scholar; whose extra diligence is certainly applauded and encouraged, but from whom a very moderate degree of knowlege is accepted without rebuke. Hence it happens that very many and obvious gradations occur in the classical attainments of those who leave our greater schools for the Universities, under the same apparent advantages; and these are more numerous than the mere diversity of talent would lead us to anticipate. We conceive, therefore, that the volume before us may be no useless com
panion to the many of the “ lautorum pueri" of Oxford and Cambridge, as well as to the less favoured aspirant at St. Andrew's.
The Essays in themselves are short, and pretend to no very great research, but afford a good general notion of the subjects of which they treat. A more frequent and direct reference to chronology, - a few more historical illustrations of the narrative, — and a more regular developement of the increased prevalence of customs, and growth of institutions, might not probably have been an inconvenient addition either to the Professor or the student. The writers cited as authorities are not usually in the hands of young persons; and, though it may suit the taste and the dignity of the Professor to go nearer the fountain-head for his own information, the names of some more modern and popular writers might have been usefully added to stimulate the researches of the pupil, by rendering them more easy.
The topics of the Essays embrace a great majority of those points to which it is especially necessary to direct the attention of the student, but do not comprize them all. The literature of the Greeks is a subject to which the Professor intended to revert in a succeeding course; so that the omission of it here may be a cause of regret, but cannot be a matter of surprize. One of the present Essays does indeed relate to the comedy of the Athenians, a consideration of which seemed necessary for an examination into the private life of that singular people, for which we have few other means of inquiry : but an essay devoted to a general discussion of the religion of the Greeks would not have been misplaced here. Another, more exclusively limited to the progress of the arts, especially architecture and its embellishments, as also an account of their money, their measures of distance, &c. would necessarily afford great facilities to the student, if exhibited in the same manner as the other subjects to which the author has distinctly referred. Some of these topics occur indeed incidentally, but not in a manner that admits of satisfactory illustration.
In limine stands an essay on the Heroic Ages of Greece, which the author carries down to the death of Codrus. In a cursory reference to the state of the arts in this rude state of society, Professor Hill observes that, though some of the ornamevts and manufactures mentioned by Homer display considerable skill and ingenuity, yet the poet is careful 10 inform us that they were the work of Sidonian artists. This is probably true as far as it relates to embroidery, and all the splendid appurtenances of dress : but we do not think that Аа 4
the observation will hold good in its general form. The description of the divine workmanship of the shield of Achilles, let ingenuity divest it of its wonders to any possible extent in the form of criticism, must still be allowed to have been more than ideal; as far as the possibility of execution of the several parts in those early ages is concerned. Dr. Hill conceives that the art of extracting iron from its ore was in the heroic ages very imperfectly known:- in comparison with modern science, the art was clearly imperfect, but we mistake if Hesiod, in his ages of mankind, does not mean to imply that, in his time at least, it was a common material for arms; though he speaks, as does Dr. Hill, of the use of copper in arms at an earlier period. . We cannot place Hesiod very much lower than the age of Codrus.
In his essay on the Oracles of the Antients, the author confines himself almost exclusively to those of Delphi: the
commune humani generis oraculum,” as Livy terms it. The phrenzy of the Pythiæ is attributed by Dr. Hill to the physical cause of the mephitic vapour arising from the chasm in the earth. Modern travellers have, we believe, searched for this cavern in vain : but the effect of such exhalations is not unknown in other parts of the earth, and we may therefore give some credit to this tale of antiquity as far as the local peculiarities of the spot are concerned. The cessation of the oracles of Delphi is involved in much uncertainty. We may be pleased with the use which Milton has made of the presumed annihilation of these prophecies at the nativity of our Saviour, in his ode:
" Apollo from his shrine
With hollow shriek the steep of Delphos leaving ;
Inspires the pale-eyed priest from the prophetic cell :" which Dr. Newton calls an allowable allusion in a young poet, while Warton defends and praises it in less equivocal terms. However this be, poetry is no history, and history herself is nearly, if not altogether, silent on this head. The gradual decay of faith, the consequent neglect of the oracle, and the final abolition of it by the political ascendancy of Christianity under Constantine, as urged by Dr. Hill, seem to afford the most natural solution; and we may fairly interpret the words of Juvenal, who lived so long before,.“ Delphis oracula cessant," in a qualified sense, and as an allusion to the peglect in which they were held in his age.