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chapter, we do not find matter sufficiently interesting to detain the reader a
We shall therefore pass on to the fourth chapter, which treats of the geology of the island.
By some, Elba, as it now exists, has been supposed to own a volcanic origin ; by others, it has been conjectured, that the ' island once formed a part of the Italian continent, and that it 'has been detached by the shocks which separated Sicily from 'the territory of Rheggio, the islands of the Archipelago from the continent of Italy, anu England from antient Gaul.' Neither of these suppositions, however, does our Author deein wellfounded. His reasons for rejectiog the notion of its volcanic origin, are, that there are no fragments of true lava, no pumice stone, nor any proper vitrifications found on the island, as in the neighbourhood of volcanoes. Even the granites are different from those which are unquestionably of volcanic production. In place of consisting of quartz, schorl, mica, and feldspar,
they are a combin ition of many different substances united, * conglobated and cemented together, by an aggregation altoge. ther accidental, by a simultaneous crystallization resulting from the waters, and they possess no magnetic property.'
That Elba never formed a part of the European continent, our Author thinks is evident by the different construction and arrangement of the soil from that of the neighbouring coast of Italy, and he therefore conceives, and, indeed, announces the supposition with a greater degree of confidence than geologists have in general a right to assume, that it has arisen from the • bottom of the sea.'
The climate of Elba, we are told, is temperate. As in Italy, the autumn and winter are almost always rainy. Its highest mountains, are sometimes covered with snow for fifteen or twenty days during the latter season. Earthquakes are never experienced at Elba.
Some naturalists have conjectured, that the fresh water which is found in the island, is furnished by means of a submarine communication between it and Corsica, or the continent. Berneaud, however, imagines that the common processes of filtration, evaporation, and atmospheric deposition, are quite equal to the production of all the water with which Elba is supplied.
Having thus gone over a general view of the Isle of Elba, its population, natural history, agriculture, commerce, diseases, political history, and geology, our traveller favours us with a concluding chapter on the topography of the place, together with a slight notice of the other islands in the Tyrrhenian sea. This chapter he has contrived to render extremely amusing, and weare sorry that our limits will not suffer us to follow him in due order through its several divisions. The reader who feels disposed to know more of the place than we can relate, will find it instructive o travel with Berneaud through the several departments of the island, with the assistance of the map, with which the little volume before us is furnished. There is a very good account of the iron mountain, wbich forms the mine for which Elba was principally remarkable prior to the residence of Buonaparte; and in the department of Longone, we met with a description of the hermitage of Monte Serrato, which is too pleasing to be withheld from our readers.
In a delightful situation in the midst of stupendous rocks, whose sharp and rugged summits seem to pierce the clouds, at about the distance of two miles from the city, we find the charming hermitage of Monte Serrato. We pass to it through an alley of cypress trees. I have sometimes stopped in this picturesque place, where he fresh spring yields delicious water, and which seems foodly to mingle with the excellent wine which the hermit lavishes on all who visit him. This tranquil retreat enjoys a certain something of Ossian in it which I know not how to describe, wbich insensibly sooths us to meditation and delight, elevates the soul to sublime thoughts, and makes its inhabitants forget their pains, and all the corroding cares of life. There all is calm, all well adapted to invite sensibility to pour forth, ts whole soul in boundless confidence; this were the Paraclete two lovers would desire. The wild magnificence of nat:re, agrecable solitude, a view which, extending from the fertile plain, is finally lost in the vast expanse of the ocean ; murmurs secretly prolonged, which fill the heart with numerous ideas of long life; the concerts of the feathered songsters, an unclouded sun spreading light and life around, and a moon whose silver rays throwing the shadows of the trees on the neighbouring rocks, a long and fugitive train, produce a magical effect. Such is the hermitage of Monte Serrato.' p. 134.
With this extract we must conclude the article, merely observing, that the translation, so far as we can judge, without having bad an opportunity of comparing it with the original, appears, with a few trifling exceptions of false idioms and ina volved sentences, to be very respectably and faithfully executed,
Art. X. A Treatise on Mechanics : intended as an Introduction to
the Study of Natural Philosophy. By the Rev. B. Bridge, B.D. F.R.S. Fellow of St. Peter's College, Cambridge, and Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy in the East India College,
8vo. pp. x. 598. London. Cadell and Davies. 1814 WE gave a favourable account of the first edition of this ingenious work, in our Number for January, 1814
As we augured, it has been well received by the public. In revising for this new edition, the Author has made several corrections, and some slight alterations. He has now introduced into he text the substance of the notes which were formerly annexed to the end of Part II.; and has given a new and improved form to the first lecture. There is, also, an improved solution to Prob. iii. p. 131, of Simpson's Miscellaneous Tracts, in which his resulting formulæ are made to agree with those of that admirable mathematician. Mr Bridge's solution is now correct; though, we apprehend, he might still have amended it, had he consulted the solutions of sir. Ivory and Mr. Bazley, in Nos. III. and IX. of Leybourn's Repository. Besides these alterations, the Author has given one in the title of the work, which, conformably to our suggestion, he now dienominates mechanics. We are persuaded that this Gentleman would have stili more improved his performance, had he attended to our other hints. But even as it is, the work is valuable ; and we trust its success will stimulate Mr. Bridge to exertion in other branches of mixed matheunatics.
Art. XI. Eighth Report of the Directors of the African Institution,
read at the Annual General Meeting on the 23 of March, 1814. To which are added, an Appendix, and a List of Subscribers, 8vo.
Price 2s. Hatchard, 1814. A brief explanatory notice indicates the causes which have
withheld the publication of this Report, till a time approaching the period when, in regular course, the ninth will be made. The delay is attributed chiefly to that multiplicity of occupation brought on the Directors of this active and important association, in consequence of that most flagrant scandal of diplomacy, the article respecting the Slave Trade in the treaty of peace with France. Advantage has been taken of the lateness of publication, to insert a variety of particulars belonging to the subsequent year.
The Report will be less gratifying, we fear, than any of the former ones.
It is, substantially, a melancholy illustration of the prodigious difficulty that there is in effecting any considerable amendment in the moral state of this world; and of the opprobrious fact, that such an object is among the very last things to which the chief possessors of power among the human race can be induced to lend their aid. "We have here a repetition of the statement, and, in a tone of diminishing hope, of the total inefficacy of the representations continued to be made by the Directors of the Institution, to the holders of power in this coun try, relative to the very urgent importance of bringing the Portuguese government--not to an abolition of the trade, that is now far too ambitious an achievement for England to think of—but to some definitive interpretation of the notorious article in our Treaty of Alliance with that state.
If the indulgence 'so kindly conceded to the Portuguese statesmen, of a dubious meaning in the terms of that article, was so conceded in the presumption that, after they should have freely availed themselves of it for a year or two, they might be wheedled or lectured into a surrender of the advantage, there never was a grosser miscalculation. As might have been foreseen, they hold it fast, in easy contempt of common places of justice and humanity, to which they know no reason why they should pay the smallest attention. And then to venture on the slightest hint beyond this style of persuasion, to make the remotest allusion to the argument of power, it would be as much as the existence of a state like England is worth, to hazard such an inuendo to a state like Portugal or Brazil,especially as England owes the preservation of that very existence through the late dreadful political storms, to the generous aid of that faithful and invincible ally!
Meanwhile it is perfectly conceivable how this well-contrived uncertainty must perplex and cripple the exertions for carrying into full effect our own abolition laws.
considerable Slave Trade, carried on under the Portuguese flag, still exists on the western coast of Africa. This trade has been partially restrained by the vigilance of out cruizers; but their exertions in this line of service have been materially impeded by the uncertainty which still prevails respecting the real import of that article in the Treaty with Portugal, which stipulates for the limitation of the Portuguese Slave Trade to places on the coast of Africa actually under the dominion of the Crown of Portugal. A number of appeals from the sentence of the Vice-Admiralty Court of Sierra Leone, involving this momentous question, are now before the Lords of Appeal; and on their decision it will in a great measure depend, whether the Portuguese Slave Trade shall henceforth be confined within the narrow limits of their African Settlements, or whether it shall again spread its fearful ravages, without restraint, along the whole range of the African Coast.'
No one will be malicious enough to surmise that the benefits of all these law proceedings, foreseen as a natural consequence of the indefinite Article, could have any influence in the formation of it. But certainly it will innocently recall to many people's recollection the old proverb, It is a bad wind that blows nobody any good.
The next thing that has given a gloomy cast to this Report, taken with its additions included, is the portentous enormity that has arisen since the time of the General Meeting, and has turned to blackness those prospects which, in several of the earlier Reports, were hailed as so delightfully dawning over Africa. If the Institution does not number among its members or officers any person implicated in the gratuitous guilt, there is great cause to admire the self-government by which the Directors have refrained from a language of unlimited severity and indignation.
There are probably in the annals of time extremely few instances so signal of the power or principle of evil watching a grand crisis, and striking in with exquisite precision and magnificent triumph. It was really so mighty an achievement, that it would seem too much mischief for human agents, on any fair principle of proportion to effect. When they reflect on the ininfinity of crimes and miseries that will result from their act; when they reflect, that by one decision of their will, by one dipping of the pen in ink, misery and desolation are about to be scattered over unmeasured spaces of the globe; afflicting beyond remedy or hope, unknown and countless multitudes of the human race; what an efficacious resource against the rigorous castigations of conscience will offer itself in the suggestion that evil is the element of this world, and the predominant quality of man; and that therefore it is a grand general power above them, acting by innumerable servile instruments, that is accomplishing these dreadful and immense effects !
As to any check from a consideration of the doctrine of a future retribution, we strongly fear there is no legend of the most antiquated superstition, more powerless than this suggestion on the minds of such persons as those who are now standing accountable for the removal of one of the most enormous abominations that ever plagued the earth.
All the while, however, there remains the humble commonplace, that such an event will coine.
We have assumed without scruple or qualification, and we. but concur in the general conviction in assuming, that the agreement and sanction on the part of our government to the French Slave Trade, was altogether without necessity, for there was the most complete power, as well as the happiest opportunity, of putting a decisive final negative on its renewal. There have been but few, and feeble, and shrinking attempts to maintain the contrary. The plain, notorious state of France as a political power, at the time the treaty was made, appeals irreşistibly to the understanding, of every honest man. It is then such a mortification as philanthropists can hardly ever again be reduced to feel, to see in a very considerable measure undone, hus coolly, gratuitously, and in a moment, the results of the zealous, comprehensive, and indefatigable labours of so many past years,--and to see virtually done by the same act, a mass of iniquity never to be repaired, and, in all probability, to be indefinitely prolonged.
A large portion of the pamphlet is occupied with an account