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ing reported that his patient had in- vinced that nothing more convenient. jured ihe abdominal muscle, the wife ly conceals dullness and ignorance repeated the information, slightly than metaphor, antithesis, prosopochanging abdominal into abominable. paia, and a thousand others. who,
Rabelais, sensible that the great end amidst kis blaze of figures and altisoof language was to puzzle and con- nants, observes that the mind of Harfound, petitioned for entrance to a vey was devoted to St. Vitus, that his monastry with such dexterity as to ideas are perpetually dancing the hay, be utterly incomprehensible : this he or that his language is obscure as the was the better able to perform in time-eaten epitaphs upon his favourite being master of some ten or a dozen tombs. languages: to a Greek, who first ap- It may sound ridiculous to assert peared to answer his inquiries, he that a style incumbered with words spoke high Dutch, to a Dutchman is attained with more felicity than Italian, io an Italian Welch, to a that which has simplicity and ease for Welchman Syriac, to an Assyrian its basis: yet so it is : and I have it Spanish, to a Spaniard Sancrete, and from good authority, that those who in short succeeded to such admira- write with least ornament and cirtion as to be bastinadoed from the cumlocution set down their ideas, at grate for an impertinent.
first, with great verbosity and length, I maintain that mankind have a na- and upon a review of their language, tural relish for obscurity, else how to the great waste and injury of time, happens it, since all write with a de- are forced to reduce it 10 conciseness sire to be read, that books are hourly and precision. It was upon this prinpublished, designedly free from all ciple that a celebrated Frenchman perspicuity and order; I say design- apologized for the length of his letter, edly, for that they are not necessarily by saying he had not time to write a so is evident by the usual afterbirth of shorter. a volume, consisting in notes, anno- If then your ideas be poor and vultations, remarks, additions, allusions, gar, let your language be sonorous and explications, which, were it not and splendid, as they who have the to fatter the prevailing bias ( speak emptiest pockets wear the gayest of, might just as well have been in- clothes ; for no one in his senses ever corporated with the work itself. imagined a low thought adorned with
Again, if any one have so "little flowery diction to be still a low judgment as to wite with the small- thought, any more than he would est clearness or certainty, a swarm of esteem a clown in lace a clown, or a commentators immediately surrounds weak man in impenetrable armour him like gnats about a candle, not still a weak man. 'If your notions be indeed to extinguish what light there few and scanty, your expression t, but to increase it-a proceeding by should be copious, voluble, and luxno means incongruous to their design; uriant, as you may observe that they for, as nothing blinds sooner than too who have the thinnest legs wear the much light, so an author is best greatest number of stockings : nay, obumbrated by explanation. Sensible if your ideas be ever so excellent, of this, they seize upon the most self- neglect not the art of indistinctness, evident and luminous parts, and art- for as virtues are seen to most advanfully encircle them with the rays of tage in adversity, the shade of life, . Hlustration, till the mind, aching with good sentiments are best observed in the dazzling brilliancy of its objects, obscurity, the shade of writing. Proscan distinguish nothing. Hence he perity and perspicuity are sunshines, who, from some unaccountable pre- which, by setting objects in too glajudice or defect in taste, would under- ring a point of view, perplex and constand wbat he reads must shut up all fuse the eye of observation. expositions of his author, as the phi- To conclude, as some dishes at once losopher closed his eyes that he might satisfy and excite the appetite, so obsee the better.
scurity, whether you wish to be or As best productive of obscurity and not to be understood, is alike desiconfusion,'I wouid advise a rigid ap- rable, and they give no mighty proof plication for the acquirement of ine of their good sense who think otherforid and turgid style, being con- wise.
" Nulli negabimus, nulli differemus justitiam." The REAL STATE of France in the nibals, where he landed, and what
Year 1809; with an Account of the were his feelings when he first found Treatment of the Prisoners of War, himself upon his native shore, the and Persons otherwise detained in grateful effusions that escaped him on France. Ly CHARLES STURT, Esq. this occasion, &c. &c. &c. On the • late M.P. for Bridport, resident in contrary, leaving his readers to supFrance lefore the IVar, and detained pose he might have reached this coudnearly Seven Years as a Hostage. try in a balloon or a fishing boat, and 5th edition. pp. 108. 1810. that he is not actuated by the com
HEN Mr. Pitt, of immorta) men feelings of humanity, he comes
memory, in the anguish of his directly to his point, and give us to mind, exclaimed, “Oh my country," understand, that instead of being opthough it is not probable ihat he had pressed by unnecessary sererity and its weak writers as well as its areak the most rigorous confinement, as it defenders in view, still it is much to
would appear in the sequel, he has be apprehended whether the former been, no doubt, at his ease, at his will not ultimately do it more injury reading several publications, English than the laiter. This reasoning may
of course, and that an opinion probably apply to many of the pam
seems to be gaining ground here that phlets launched in this new war of France is a happy nation, that the words ; but to none more appropri- people are contented with their ately than the present production, change; that the price the revolution called " The Real State of France in has cost the nation in blood and trea1500," and said to be written by sure has been well worth the object Charles Sturt, Esq. lately a resident attained; and that the arts, internal in France. His name, however, is to commerce, and agriculture, flourish the work; and provided the assertions in a wonderful degree; and that to do be paiatable, and the time of publica- away this misrepresentation is the tion well chosen, it was not to be object of the follo:ving sheets." supposed the public would be so cri- This pamphlet, it is hoped, will be tical as to entertain doubts on a na- a terrible warning to Bonaparte, not tional subject. Yet, to believe the to imprison any more Englishmen of reality of the picture this work con- such abilities as those of Mr. Sturt ; toins, it would be necessary for us to for, though contined to Verdun, and undergo a kind of magical transfor- for several months closely in the mation. Almost every thing is so fortress of Bitche, it seems he could differently represented by Mr. Sturt see every thing that was passing elseto what it has been bý preceding where, just as if he had been present! writers, that it is of course necessary for instance, “the soldier with bis to believe, seriously, that hitherto we great whiskers, and his sabre draghave been under the highest degree ging along the ground to the annoyof deception, with respect to the in- ance of every one." And so by these terior of France; and therefore, if it means, as Mr. Sturt says, were possible, in order to appreciate dier has all the law on his side, if law the value of the supposed Mr. S.'s ex- it can be called.” As to the poorer clusive information, we ought to drink sort of people, they are (again it largely of the waters of Lethe, and seems) honoured with the title of la forget nearly every thing we had read canaille, which Mr. S. thinks the and heard of before respecting France! most opprobrious and contemptible
Consistently with this idea of im. term in the French language!" It is plicit faith and perfect confidence in true that he adds, just after making the writer's assertions, it was thought these assertions, - to correctness of quite unnecessary to satisfy the rea- style I renounce all claim.” der's natural curiosity to know when We should rather suppose it hyperand by what means Mr. Sturt escaped bole than falsehood, when Mr. S. eat of the hands of these French cane claims credit for the truth of his state.
ments respecting France at large; 40,000 Turks in the battles he gained because, notwithstanding his close in Egypt, with veteran troops opposed confinement at Bitche, &c. they are, to a poor Mahometan rabble, deficient he says, “ formed from my own ob- in every thing but courage, was noservations on innumerable occasions :" thing to boast of. But when this vahe adds, “I have been supported in pouring general tried his fortune ail my assertions by hundreds of my against European troops in Egypt, he countrymen, who have travelled met with nothing but disconfiture through the interior of France."-- and disgrace. His attack of St. Jean Where and when he gave these nu- d'Acre, shewed him deficient of even inerous audiences to his countrymen military talents. It dishonoured him is not mentioned. He adds, “ I want, as a soldier. however, no support; I have seen the “ At the battle of Marengo he was misery and distress I describe with equally wanting of that decision which my own eyes." Still astonishing! who characterises a real great man. For, can now say that miracles have after having bein benten, and having ceased ?
seen bis army ily, ir stead of shewing As to the superior talents of Bona- a mind full of resources and vigour, parte, Mr. S. is perfectly amusing and he was forced from the field of b'itle, agreeable, and very justly confines frantic and bereit of all reason. not them to the things of which he has knowing where to gn, or how to make simply heard. He says,
the smallest altempt to recover bis “ I hear so much on these topics directions, when Dessaix appeared
disaster. His troops were Aying in all from some of my countrymen, that I should a'nost be tempted to believe lle censused Bonaparte for his con
with a reinforcement of 10,400 men. they had been favoured with the order duct, in terms harsh and went, and de legion d'honneur. I own I am not immediately charging the Austrians, one who view him as the consum:nate
recove ed the lost battle, I have character and great man which so beard it declared by many officers many conceive him to be. His.con. who were in that battle, thai Desaix duct on the overturning of the direc- did not receive his mortal wound fiom tory and establishing bimself first cop
an enemy. sul, was marked with indecision apd personal fear; and if it had not been he lost the flower of his imperial
At the battle of Asperne, where for the bold and decisive character of his brother Lucien, he would have whom he feared, he again lost his
guard, and one ' f his ablest generala consulted his personal safety by a head, and was perfectly frantic. It flight, which he had actually coni:
was to Messina he then owed the safety ted, pale, and incapable of speaking of himself, his army, and his empire. Lucien, who filled the chair, baran- “ Surely in these four great crises gued the assembly, and dissolved of his iite, the want of judgmeni, coolthem, while Napoleon was surrounded ness, and self-command, which he is by the grenadiers. It was Lucien Bo. well known to have exhibited, prove naparte then who fixed his brother on him to be very deficient in what conthe destinies of France, and no bold stitutes a really great character. I and daring conduct of his own. Num. cannot but consider his rising to his bers who were present, and some present power, more to be attributed members of the assembly have fre- to the extraordinary circumstances of quently declared to me, they never the time and to the talents ibat sursaw a man betray so much agitation round him, than to any commanding and aların as Bonaparte did on that genius or ability of his own. occasion.
“ It is to be recoilected that it was “ His desertion from his brave not one man who composed the famous troops in Egypt marked him deficient Dictionnaire de l'Academie. That in greatness of soul, and of generosity work was the result of the labours of towards an army which had planted forty, in the same manner many have so many laurels on his brow on the contributed to the creation of the plains of Italy. It was a base and dis- present state of France, both civil and konourable Alight. The massacreing military. Bonaparte has assisted little
in producing that great colossal power, attentive reader ; viz. that though though circumstances have placed it these reflections are, some of them under his direction. He has had a literally, and others in substance, weapon put into his hands, which it taken from English newspapers, was scarce possible to wield without yet, in respect to the French mode success."
of treating our prisoners, not to
mention the testimony of private Mr. Sturt proceeds thus, “ The cruelty exercised towards English pri: have recently stated' facts in direct
persons, the newspapers themselves soners of war, and the hostages, shall opposition to Mr. Sturt's assertions. form a consideration distinct from the The liberation and kind treatment of picture I mean to exhibit of the real a number of fishermen taken by the situation of France; and I shall be French, belonging to one of our much disappointed if my countrymen Kentish ports, is one of these circumdo not, one ard all, feel indignant at stances. An event still more recent, the wanton larbarily practised against was an act of the French Emperor, all ages and sexes."
in person, when, as a reward for the But though the charges brought exertions of several of our seamen at against General Wirrion, the com- a fire, they received their liberty and a mandant of Verdun, may be well sum of money, each man, tantamount founded, yet, as the writer is every to their pay for six months. where running a comparison between Mr. Sturt implicates the GendarEngland and France, he should have merie in the same censure which he known that General Wirrion was re- bestows upon the French military for moved by his government; and that cruelty towards the English. complaints elsewhere against the go.. perhaps, the first time such a charge vernor of a prison, the very name of has been brought. Mr. J. Worsley, which used to be disgusting to an in his Accouni of the State of France Englishman, could not effect his re- and its Government, &c. who had moral!
It is probably to Verdun also been detained as a a hostage, and alone, that Mr.'S. wishes to contine published in 1900, speaking of the the particular charge, that our courr- Gendarmerie, observes, “ In some trymen were lodged in filthy stables, instances our countrymen have been often without straw, confined in close ill used by them; but it must be conplaces, not permitted to go out, and fessed, that, in general, they have nothing allowed but bread and water. met with humane and liberal treatBut he goes on to assert, “ that in ment. The English, be says, in some towns they were secured in general, “having been indulged in loathsome civil prisons ainong wretch- taking one of them from the place ed animals (what animals?) dýing where they were arrested to the town with disease and filth.” The seamen where they were to be confined, in too, like the French conscripts, "have these cases, as it was an extra service, been conducted from one extremity they were expected to pay, for a of France to another, chained by the horseman six livres a day, and for a neck, feet, &c.” Now this may be footman four.-The author was rethe truth, but not the whole truth. quired to pay three louis for the inBut, because in England we frequent. dulgence of having one of these for a ly see recruits that have deserted, and companion, who was an intelligent others walk handcutted along the man, and from whom he derived streets, and thus conreyed from town some of the information which is to town, could we therefore give cre- now communicated to the public.". dit to a French prisoner, who, on As to the political reasoning of this getting back to his own country, writer, it may be appreciated by the should assert, in general terms, that frequent insinuation, that the peorecruits for the British army were ple of France and the enemies of conveyed from place to place in Bonaparte can have no hope but in
One circumstance, not. the hand of a second Charlotte Cordé." withstanding the nullity of many of By way of conclusion, also, in p. 137, the reflcctions which this pamphlet a hope is expressed, that " a fanatic cuntains, will very forcibly 'strike an may arise, and put an end to the life
of a man whose whole conduct has an attention to strict justice imposbeen one scene of perfidy, oppression, sille !" and cruelty towards every nation he Ti is writer may, if ever any rehas ever interfered with."
proaches should arise in his own mind, But, if Bonaparte be deficient in reflect that he is not the only bach his morals, and lost to all human feel- advocate, who may have contributed ing, it seems“his pious generals and to tlie ruin of a good cause. Howsoldiers are fatigued, worn out with ever, one of the most singular circumsanguinary wars, which they find lead stances attendant upon this pamphlet, no nearer to the blessings of peace professedly written in France previous than at their commencement. The to February last, is the manifest allugenerals,” it seems, who are becom- sion which it contains to the state of ing excellent divines and casuists, parties, &c. and the sentiments of the feel that murder and plunder, how. friends of Sir F. Burdett, arising from ever successful, produces neither tran- events of recent date. One merit quillity to the soul, nor respect from after all must be allowed this writer; markind.” This is like asserting, be has fou'd an object for the present that merchants, irac'esmen, &c. howo war! It is so great and wortby of its ever protitable their avocations are, author, as he tells us in page. 69, feel, nevertheless, that they do not that the French, who are not in produce tranquillity to the soul, “ and their hearts enemies to England, dethey would therefore be happy to voutly hope the nation (the English) unite with the people” to destroy the may accomplish it, viz. “a universal consumer of their merchandise and peace established on principles of mumanufactures ! In page 68, we are
tual interest throughoue the globe." told that " the senseless cry of liberty To which we add, - Soit ainsi. of the seas and freedom of commerce is
W. H. R. treated in France with great levity. Give us peace with England, say the A SHORT Treatise on the Passions people, and the liberty of the seas fol. low." In the very next page we are
illustrative of the HUMAN MIND. informed that the French regime, or
By a Lady. 2 vels. 12m0. 1810. government, coristantly frightens and I would not be easy to support a nation; so that if the levity of the this work. Numerous are the subFrench just before spoken of be jęcts which are touched upon. All founded, they laugh, tremble, and the passions of the human mind, reason all in a breath!
good and bad, noble and insignificant, At length, compeiled to admit that with something like magical rapidity.
generous and mean, pass before us " our gallant countrymen in Spain There is plenty of assertion and little receive the kindest and most gene; inquiry. We are expected to believe, rous treatment from the French," but we are not previously convinced. page 88, he would have it believed There is much confidence in the that other feelings, besides a prin- writer, which is not always supported ciple of honour, operated in this in- by corresponding merit. stance, viz. the dread of retaliation,
Yet we have perused these volumes just as if the English, who have so with some degree of pleasure. Some many prisoners in their care, could parts are good; and the best of the retaliate in Spain only, and in no other whole is the difference of character place!
between man and woman. The conThis author's attempt at a vindica- tending claims are impartially ba. tion of the seizure of the King of lanced. Before, however, we speak Denmark's fleet is the lamest imagi- of the body of the work, we will adnable; he having found it necessary vert to the Introduction, in which are to qualify it by admitting, “that it is two or three things not exactly as to be lamented, that justice in poli- they should be. tics is too seldom considered, and the At p. xxxiv, the writer says, terrible times we live in, and the daily transition can be more monstrous excroachments oj" Bonaparte render than that from the army to the