worthy the attention of the public, and which will give us a view of the opinions and conduct of the amiable Agathon, at fifty years old. Art. VI. The Farmer's Lawyer ; or, Every Country Gentleman bis own

Counsellor. Containing all the Laws now in Force that particolarly concern the Farmer, the Country Gentleman, the Clergy man, the Maltfter, the Hop-Planter, the Carrier, or any other Person whose Business or Amusements occasion him to reside chiefly in the County, &c. By a Gentleman of Lincoln's Inn. izmo, 3 5. 6 d. Kearfley, &c. 1774.

S this Gentleman of Lincoln's Inn seems disposed to pare

cel out our laws into small compendiums for different uses (which is not an ill scheme, if maturely executed, and not converted into hasty jobs) it is to be hoped he will be more careful in any performances of this kind now under contemplation, than he has been in those already published. His Complect Parish Officer * was far from meriting that character; and his Farmer's Lawyer, will leave his client as ignorant as he found bim with respect to many points on which he may have occafion to consult him, notwithitanding his liberal assurances of supplying all the laws now in force relating to—a specification too long to copy from the ample title-page. A farmer's lawyer is a deřnite term, and if judiciously executed might have anfwered the purpose both of the farmer and publisher ; but this Gentleman, in one duodecimo volume, affures us he has given us any (or every) person's lawyer whore business or amusements occafion him to reside in the country! Alas, our laws cannot be so compactly epitomised, that we should take a random assertion of this nature for a truth ! But as the Farmer, the Country Gentleman, the Clergyman, the Maltfter, the Hop.planter, and the Carrier, are particularly mentioned, it may also be asked at random, why no notice is taken of laws under the titles Advowsons, Bailiffs and Bailiwicks, Banks, Chaplains, Churches, Commons, Copyholds, Courts Baron and Leet, Fairs and Markets, Fences, Fens, Firat-Fruits and Tenths, Forefis, Freeholds, Husbandry and Husbandmen, Land-Tax, Leases, Militia, Mortgages, Parks, Poor's Rate, Simony, Tenures, Trespass, &c, all which concern one or other of the three former rural stations ?

Whatever may be thought or faid by such writers as the prefent nameless Compiler, the exposing the failures in their engagemenış affords no pleasure, apart from the care we endeavour to take not to deceive our Readers, who in this instance are no small number, by unfair representations; and no author has a right to claim any tenderness of this kind. Let him sertle the point with his bookseller who happens to be deceived in the • Vid. Catalogue for this month.

confidence confidence he reposes; and who is necessarily led to indemnify himself as well as he can. Unbappily the difcredit of such conduct extends to literature in general, and affects the first proposals of the most accurate writer on any subject ; a disappointed purchaser naturally forming conclufions prejudicial to every author who solicits attention to his labours.

Even the classes contained in this performance, are neither full nor correct. Under Cyder we have regulations for making malt, from the last act, which the Author afterward, under Malí, owns to be « unnaturally blended” with cyder. Under the title Game, the penalties for killing game in the night, or on Sunday, are recited from the io Geo. III. c. 19. which was repealed by the 13 Geo. III. c. 80. The provisions relating to black and red game are taken from the 2 Geo. III. c. 19. though that act, so far as it related to those species of game, was repealed by 13 Geo. III. c. 55. These acts 13 Geo. III. c. 55. and c. 80. do indeed by a strange instance of carelessness, tending to confound the reader, follow the obsolete matter; and it is to be noted, in general, that recent acts, not already abridged by others, are given at large without abstract, the formal enacting words beginning the clauses, excepted: by which easy means, the book is unnecessarily swelled with little trouble to, the Compiler,

The laws relating to Hay and Straw are quoted from the act 2 W. & M. c. 8. which reference appears to govern the whole; though the greatest part of what is there said is caken from the 31 Geo. II. C. 40. by which means the reader who may with to consult the original act more carefully, is misled in his search, and left without a guide to set him right.

Under Hemp, one only circumstance is mentioned, viz. the penalty on watering it in streams or ponds where cattle are watered ; although there are several other laws relating to Alax and hemp, necessary to be known by perfons concerned in those articles,

Under title Horses, there is no mention of the statute relating to the exportation of them, and the duty to be paid on sending them abroad; nor of the regulations for horse-racing, which most country gentlemen would wish to know, as racing is at this time so seriously pursued by the gentlemen of the turf.

Laws relating to the grinding corn and malt, are indeed given under the article Miller ; but those fly knaves are not cold the penalty they are subject to if they sell four for making standard Wheaten bread, of a different quality from that prefcribed by the late bread act. • It had not perhaps been worth while to enter into thefe instances of careless compofition, were it not sometimes needful to guard against common place invectives, which are generally ready

N 4


when the writers of superficial books are fummarily dismilled, without evidence being produced to enable the Public to judge of the verdict given against them. As to the hafty Compiler of the present performance, whatever he may now deem of the foregoing hints, they may hereafter, perhaps, be made to an swer a purpose, to which the Reviewers will have ab objection.

ART. VII. The Irenarch; or, Justice of the Peace's Manual. Addreled

to the Gentlemen in the Commission of the Peace for the County of Leicester. By a Gentleman of the Commission. To which is prefixed, a Dedication to Lord Mansfield, by another Hand. Evo. 2 s. Payne. 1774. 10 begin regularly with this excellent pampblet, the un

commonly expanded dedication to the Chief Justice of the Court of King's Bench claims the firft notice, though the reader's attention will finally reft on the tract before which it is placed : the latter being of standing utility, while the former is only of temporary imporưance; the one respecting the welfare of the whole body of the nation, the other only regarding the character of an individual ;-an individual indeed of no trifling relation to the Public, considering his station and his power. The declared purpose of this address is thus expressed.:

' It was not so much meant for a dedication to your Lordihip, as · for a vehicle to convey certain hints to the Public, under the auspices and Sanction of your Lordship's name. Hints will suffice for the purpose here in view : which is, not to treat things in detail and at Jarge, but only to touch them in a summary way; not so much to teach men any thing of which they are ignorant, as to remind them of what they know. Under this idea, and upon this plan, let me be borne patiently, while I mention a few of those articles, which are reckoned among our grievances in the law; and which have fome what unsettled your Lordship in the affections of the English.'

This is artfully done by commenting on the leveral charges exhibited in Junius's celebrated letter to Lord M. from which charges the Dedicator would seem willing to exculpate his Lord{hip, though it is probable the personage addressed will not hold himself under any greater obligation for the matter of the defence, than for the manner of thus refrefhing the memory of the Public with respect to these accusations against him.

The Writer is undoubtedly a man of abilities, and of exten{ive reading; which latter qualification he seems no less disposed to display throughout, than sufficiently to value bimself upon, at the close of his address. Beside our with not to enter into the personality of this dedication, it is too far extended for us to include any fatisfactory view of it, in a short extract, we fhall therefore only produce, as a detached {pecimen, what he fays on a subject of general import, the liberty of the press :


As to the liberty of the press, Junius calls it “ the palladium of all the civil, political, and religious rights of an Englishman," to which I readily affent; and he contends, that." no particular abuses oughs, in reaton and equity, to produce a general forfeiture, or to abolith the use of it.” I hall lole no time in descanting, whether they ought or ought not : persuaded am I fincerely, that, if our prefent manners hoid, they most assuredly will: for, as a certain writer has faid very truly, “ never did an envenomed fcurrility againk every thing sacred and civil, public and private, rage throughout the king. dom with such a furious and unbridled licence.”: But take warning, my good countrymen ; and deceive not yourselves. When the preis ridicules openly and barefacedly the most revered and fundamental doctrines of religion : when the press, in political matters, attacks persons without any regard to things, or perhaps fometimes attacks things for the sake of abusing persons: when the press not only wan tonly affaults the firft characters in church and itate, but evet facrifices the peace and quiet of private families' to the sport and enterr tainment of an ill-natured public and is it pot notorious, that all this has been, and daily is done ?--then, I say, this noble, rear fonable, and manly liberty is degenerated into a base, unwarrant able, cruel licentiousness; and this licentioufness, determine as low gically, and contend as loudly, as you please, will, by an unavoidable consequence, flowing from the nature and conftitution of things sooner or later bring about its destruction. Things are fo formed, that extremes muit ever begets and prepare the way for, extremes. Abuses of every thing moll deltroy the ole of every thing: and if the people grow licentious and ungovernable, it is as natural, perhaps as necessary, for their rulers to increafe their rettraint, and abridge their liberty, as for an horfe-breaker to tighten the reins, in proporrion as his steed fall thew an impatience to be managed.

It has been said, that without freedom of thought there can be no such thing as wisdom, nor any such ihing'as liberty without freedom of speech: and, because the latter is true in a qualified fenfe, and under certain limitations, the authority of Taciras has been abfurdly and even Itupidly obtruded, as a warrant to take off all restraint, and allow ourselves an unbounded licenfe, as well in speaking as in thinking, “ Rare and happy times, fays he, when a man may think what he will, and speak what he thinks :" rara temporum felicitas, ubi fentire que velis, it quæ fentias dicere, licet : Rare and happy cimes indeed! But pray, dear Gentlemen, what times were those, or who has read of suy times, when men were not at liberty to think as they would ? A man may think as pleases in the wordt times, as well as in the bett, because Thought, as is commonly faid, is at all times free : but can a man at any cime, or under any gom vernment, even the best, be allowed the liberty of speaking what be pleafes, of communicating himself up to the standard of his ideas ? May every man speak of

every man, what, for instance, the fpleen of humour, or the caprice of imagination, shall happen to fuggeft? My Lord, these people know as little of Tacitas, as they do of Society, and what it will bear. “ If life remains, says he, I have reServed, for the employment of my old age, the reign of the deificd Nerva, with that of the Emperor Trajan ; a work more copious, as


well as more fafe : such is the rare felicity of these times, when you are at full entertain what sentiments you .please, and to declare what sentiments you entertain." To declare what sentiments you entertain : yes, but of whom, or what ?- not of every man you meet, nor indeed of every thing that happens : Tacitos understood human affairs in a different manner: but of those particular reigns, in opposition to some former tyrannical reigns; when men, far from speaking out, durft scarcely trult themselves even with their own thoughts.

• It is remarkable, that the freeft thinkers as well as the freeft Speakers have never allowed such a license in theory, whatever themfelves may have taken in practice. “Let us seek truth, says Lord Bolingbroke, but seek it quietly as well as freely. Let us not imagine, like some who are called Freethinkers, that every man, who can think and judge for himself as he has a right to do, has therefore a right of speaking, any more than of acting, according to the full freedom of his thoughts. The freedom belongs to him as a rational creature: he lies under restraint as a member of society.--We may com: municate our thoughts only fo, as it may be done without offending the laws of our country, and disturbing the public peace.” And if this be true aboat things and opinions, fall it not be so a fortiori, when applied to persons and characters'? Must a philosopher be cir. cumspect and guarded, when treating of abftract propofitions, or dirculling speculative points, which not one in ten thousand knows any thing of; while every low, malicious, unprincipled wretch fall be permitted to scatter firebrands indiscriminately in society, and vomit out fcurrility and abuse, without juflice and without measure? Will any man say, that the laws of our country are not offended, and the peace of society disturbed, more in the latter case, than in the former? -I know it will be asked, where will you draw the line of diftinc. tion? how ascertain the point, where Liberty ends, and Licentiousness begins ? and I fall in this, as in many other cafes, allow the extreme difficulty of reducing human affairs to any degree of precifion and exactness; but I believe nevertheless, that, unless some expedient can be hit upon to correct the very atrocious abuse of the press, the destruction of its use will be found unavoidable.

. As to any formed design against the liberty of the press, I cannot suffer myself to be at all apprehensive of it: it is of more use and importance to a King of Great Britain, than (if possible) to any of his subjects; and this alone fuffices with me to file and keep down every rising jealousy. . In absolute despotic governments, where the will of the prince is the law of the country, where all things are administered by force and arms, and where the glory of the Grand Monarque is the sole end and object of the monarchy, it matters not much for him to know, what the condition of his subjects is, and what they say or think about him: but in a qualified and limited monarchy, like ours, where the King is no more than the first magistrate appointed by the people, where he is as bound to obey the laws as the meanest of his subjects, and where the wellbeing of these subjects is the sole end of his appointment-surely co fuch a Prince it must be of the last consequence to know, as minutely as he can, what is doing in every corner of his kingdom; what the


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