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XIV of France. Soon after, his attention became engrossed in a project to drive the infidels out of Egypt by a union of the European powers with the Abyssinians. He endeavored to divert the attention of Louis XIV from an intended invasion of Holland, to the conquest of Egypt, and the colonization by Christians of the African coast of the Mediterranean, a glory which he predicted would belong to, France. Receiving some encouragement from the French court, Leibnitz, in 1672, set off with his servant for Paris. His mission, it is known, was unsuccessful. He remained however in Paris, examining the libraries and amusing himself with various studies until 1673, when by order of the Elector of Mentz he left France, and sailed for London in company with the Baron Von Shönborn, son-in-law of Boineburg, and embassador of the Elector to the courts of France and Great Britain. Shönborn brought with him to Paris, Philip William, the son of Boineburg, to be placed under the care of Leibnitz. It was during their visit to Paris, that he invented his celebrated calculating machine, a model of which was favorably received by the Royal Society of London, on his arrival in that city. While in London he busied himself in making the acquaintance of eminent men, and in ascertaining the state of science. He found that many of his discoveries had been anticipated by others, and what was much to his advantage, he became acquainted with some mathematical operations of use to him in his subsequent studies. On the death of the Elector of Mentz, Von Shönborn returned to Paris. Leibnitz accompanied him, “bearing away,” as he expresses it, “the bloom and fragrance of English literature, all for forty thalers.” Here, at Paris, he remained in the capacity of counsellor to the new Elector—declining invitations from the Duke of Hanover,
and from the prime minister of the King of Denmark, to enter their respective services. His time was chiefly occupied in superin. tending the education of the son of Boineburg, in settling the claims of Boineburg's estate on the French government, in drawing up me. morials to the court, and state pa. pers of importance, for respect. able persons, and in the adjustment of the affairs of illustrious foreign. ers. In these ways he defrayed the expenses of his residence in the capital of France. At length he became so much attached to Paris, that on being offered a lucrative office, he determined to make it his permanent home. A large sum, however, was to be paid for the preferment, and after in vain applying to his friends in Saxony for aid, being suspected by them of having become a Romanist, he was obliged to relinquish his object. It was in 1673, that Leibnitz, while in Paris, entered on his splendid ca. reer of mathematical investigation, The first discovery made by him was the differential calculus. In 1776 Newton took the pains to inform Leibnitz, that he himself likewise was in possession of certain new methods, the application of which to tangents and quadratures he pointed out, but did not reveal the nature of these methods. At this point commenced the long and painful controversy between these two great men, as to which belongs the honor of priority in the discovery of fluxions. There is no reasonable doubt, that the discovery was original with both of them, whence the honor of priority is not worth a word of disputation. In 1776, the Duke of Hanover invited Leibnitz for the third time to enter his service, in the capacity of counsellor and librarian. He accepted the appointment, returned to Germany by the way of London and Amsterdam, in which cities he made the acquaintance of several distinguished men, among them the philosopher Spinoza. He was received by the Prince of Hanover with marked favor, and remained in his service, and in that of his successors, the remainder of his life—although for a considerable period, his time was devoted, in part, to the interest of the courts of Berlin and Vienna. The first two years of his residence at Hanover were chiefly spent in the Hartz mountains, where the duke had valuable silver mines, the working of which was very greatly impeded by the influx of water. It was Leibnitz's business to - discover a method of draining them—but though he failed in this main object, yet having his attention turned towards the subjects of mining, of coining, and of the currency, he introduced some important improvements. Under his management the Hanoverian currency became the best of the age. He entered also with zeal upon investigations in mineralogy and geology, and was the first to make the various layers composing the earth's surface, the foundation of a theory respecting the origin and structure of our planet. He was also the first to suggest that the strata of the earth's surface were formed by the processes of cooling and evaporation. Natural history, too, had a share of his attention. In 1678, the duke raised him to the rank of court counsellor, in virtue of which he was a judge in the court of chancery. At this time he wrote an able diplomatic paper on the rights of the smaller German princes, with a view to advance the claim of his master as an elector of the empire. In 1679, his patron the Duke of Hanover died, and was succeeded by Ernest Augustus. Leibnitz employed his pen, at this period, in writing political papers, to further the views of the duke, and in corresponding with distinguished Catholics and Protestants respecting a reunion of Christians in one com
munion—a darling project with him for many years, but finally abandoned in despair. In 1686, he undertook a purely literary work, on the genealogy and history of the House of Brunswick. After many years of interrupted labor, this work was completed in two volumes, near the close of his life, but as yet it remains unpublished. [The complete works of Leibnitz are now in a course of publication at Hanover.] In order to collect materials for this work, he was ordered by the duke to visit various parts of Germany, and also Italy. These journeys occupied him more than two years. He was received at Vienna, at Rome, at Bologna, at Florence, and at Venice, with high consideration, and found ready access to the libraries and eminent scholars of those cities. At Modena he discovered indubitable evidence of a connection between the house of Brunswick and the ancient Margraves of Este. After reaching Hanover, Leibnitz continued his efforts in favor of his master's claim to the rank of Elector, and wrote several able pamphlets on the subject, until the duke at last succeeded in obtaining the object of his ambition. In reward of these services, the new Elector promoted Leibnitz to the office of privy counsellor of justice—the highest judicial office in the country. Between the years 1693 and 1711, he published, as historiographer of Hanover, several valuable historical works, besides continuing his history of the house of Brunswick. In 1698, Leibnitz met with a heavy loss by the death of Ernest Augustus. His son and successor, George Lewis, confirmed the philosopher in his offices, but never gave him his hearty confidence— and finally abandoned him to neglect. In 1700, Leibnitz went to Berlin, having several ends in view, the closer union of the houses of Brandenburg and Brunswick, the union of Protestant sects against the Catholics, and the establishment of a society of sciences in the Prussian capital. In this last project he succeeded, and became the first president of the society—the objects of which were, to guard the purity, and promote the improvement, of the German language; and to cultivate the sciences with a view to their practical applications to the useful arts. The culture of silk was at this time introduced into Prussia by Leibnitz, and a monopoly of the business given to the new society for its support, but the plan turned out in loss, not in profit. At this time he embarked ardently in the cause of popular education, and opened a correspondence with the philanthropist Franke, the founder of the Orphan Asylum in Halle— whose plans he warmly approved. He advised an application to Peter the Great, to establish similar asylums in every part of his dominions. In 1700, Leibnitz went to Vienna, on an invitation from the emperor, to attend a conference on the subject of Church union. At the end of that year he returned to Hanover, just as Frederic, the Elector of Brandenburg, was crowned King of Prussia ; to which elevation the writings of Leibnitz had very much contributed. In 1703, he addressed a memorial to Frederic, recommending a union with the Church of England, and the introduction of a hierarchy into Germany, adducing the English adage, “No bishop, no king.” In 1704, the English liturgy was translated, and sent in the name of the king of Prussia to the Archbishop of Canterbury, with a request that he would give his advice as to the mode of introducing into Germany the organization of the English church; and it is a singular fact, that the plan was defeated by the Helmstädt divines refusing to avow in express words their abhorrence of Popery, at which the archbishop was so offended that he would hold no connection with the Protestant
churches of Germany. Would it be so now * The interest Leibnitz took in the reunion of Christians led to his writing his great philosophical work, the Theodicea, or Justification of God on account of the evil in the world. This work contains not only his philosophical system, but its application to the doctrines of the atone. ment, the eucharist, of grace and works, of freedom and predestination. It was published in 1710. The phi. losophy of Leibnitz was well received in Germany and France, and maintained its ascendancy until Kant superseded him. In 1704, Leibnitz became acquainted at Berlin with Christian Wolf, the cele. brated expounder of his philosophy, with whom he maintained a friend. ly correspondence for the rest of his life. Just prior to the publication of the Theodicea, occurred the death of Sophia Charlotte, the queen of Prussia, a princess of the house of Hanover, a pupil of Leibnitz, and his generous patroness. This event broke off his connection with Berlin. Soon after, he was sent on a secret misson to the head quarters of Charles XII, at Altranslädt, near Leipsic. He met also with Peter the Great, in 1697, at the castle of Koppenbrück, where Peter visited incognito the Elector of Hanover. He met him twice af. terwards, the last time by invitation from the emperor, at Carlsbad, where he received from the Czar the title of privy counsellor of jus: tice, with a pension of one thousand albertus-thalers. Instead of returning from Carlsbad directly to Hanover, he visited Vienna, being weary of life in a small city, where he could find, as he complains, no one but the Electoress Sophia, who took any interest in philosophy. He was extremely desirous of spending a part of every year in London, where he could enjoy the society of such men as Boyle, Bentley, and even Newton. But he could not obtain liberty from the Elector, who con
fined him at Hanover, to complete the history of the house of Brunswick. While at Vienna, Leibnitz was treated with distinction by the emperor and court, was received into the cabinet for his private advice, and had conferred on him the title of imperial court counsellor, the highest honor that could be conferred on a Protestant. He was also advanced to the rank of a baron of the empire, at what precise period is not known. During this visit to Wienna, the death of Queen Anne, and the call of the Elector, George Lewis, to the British throne, occurred. His patroness, the Electoress Sophia, also died, leaving him next to no object of interest in Hanover. It was, therefore, his earnest desire to make Paris or London the home of his old age, but all his plans and endeavors were thwarted, until, in 1716, he departed this life at Hanover. George I. had espoused the side of Newton, for the sake of pleasing the English; and so far had court favor been withdrawn from Leibnitz, and the spirit of philosophy died out of Hanover, that no notice was taken of the decease of this great man. The court was invited to attend his funeral, but not one was present, except Eckhart, Leibnitz's secretary. The Royal Society of Berlin took no notice of the death of its founder and first president. Even the Royal Society of London, of which he was a distinguished member, passed the event by in silence. It was only the Royal Society of Paris that paid suitable honors to his memory. About a century afterwards, the Hanoverians united with the government enthusiastically, in erecting a circular temple to his name. The intellectual character of Leibnitz may be known from this outline of his life and labors. His mind was distinguished preeminently for precocity, versatility, discrimination and inventive power. In early boyhood he excelled his companions in study Wol. III.
as remarkably as he transcended his contemporaries in mature life. The germs of his most splendid philosophical conceptions appear in the reflections of his early youth. The versatility of his talents was still more wonderful. He excelled him. self only in the mathematics, to which, unhappily, the least portion of his life was devoted. No branch of knowledge, to which his attention was called, escaped his studious examination. He is now immersed in efforts to perfect the arts of mining and coining—now in the improvement of lenses—now in constructing a machine for performing arithmetical operations, even to the extraction of square and cube roots—now in writing political papers, and dissertations on civil and international law, and in diplomatic negotiations —now his attention is engrossed in mineralogy, geology, natural history—now he is occupied in attempts to unite christendom in one communion, or to unite Protestants against Romanists, or to introduce the English hierarchy into Germany, or to enlist France and other Christian powers in a new crusade against the Turks—now he is corresponding with kings and scholars respecting his plan of a universal language, by means of which the learning of every nation was to become at once the common property of mankind— now he philosophizes; he is in the depths of metaphysics; he founds a system of philosophy which rules over a large part of the civilized world for nearly a century—now he is zealously embarked in an effort to enrich his native tongue, and is the first to give a check to the practice of introducing foreign words to supply its deficiencies—now he is writing history—now poetry—now endeavoring to improve the science and art of medicine—now founding scientific societies—and finally, returning to his favorite mathematics, he makes those splendid discoveries which exalt his fame to a rivalship with Newton. His inventive power was most remarkable. A desire to improve every art, to make discoveries on every subject, seemed to be his ruling passion, and under the guidance of a vigorous imagination and a discriminating intellect, he searched out the secrets of nature with surprising success. The religious and moral principles of Leibnitz, are shrouded in some obscurity. He was a generous, kind hearted man—a sincere philanthropist. All his undertakings seemed to have in view the greater civilization of mankind. His ecclesiastical projects, all of which failed, appeared to have had their origin in political and not in religious considerations. Although he was a Protestant in his views, he was in no wise scrupulous, if he could thereby promote the political interests of his sovereign, in making concessions to the Papists. In religion, the common people called him a nothingarian—owing, no doubt, to his habitual neglect of public worship. In his writings, however, he was a strenuous defender of revelation in opposition to the English deists. Few, if any, stains rest on his reputation. Some have accused him of being mercenary; but, in our opinion, unjustly. The story of his having a natural son, is also without any solid foundation. The great defect in his character, over which the Christian must mourn, is the want of an evangelical spirit, a lively appreciation of our infinite indebtedness to Christ, and intelligent devotion to his service.
A Vocabulary and Elementary Lessons for the Deaf and Dumb. By HARVEY PRINDLE PEET, Principal of the New York Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb. New York. 18mo. pp. 286.
This work was prepared with the design of supplying a deficiency
which has long been felt as a most serious one by instructors of the deaf and dumb. The importance of a series of lessons carefully prepared expressly for this class of learners, would seem sufficiently obvious. In the case of persons with every organ of sense perfect, and already in possession of a mother tongue, the advantage of a systematic proceedure in the acquisition of a new language; taking one thing at a time, proceeding gradually and in proper order from the simple to the complex, making each point sure and familiar by repetition, and making each acquisition a stepping stone to another beyond, advancing thus step by step till the elements of the language are mastered, can not be too highly estimated, and is fully demonstrated by the success of such works as Ollendorff's and Manesca’s for the German and French languages. Much more must such a course be advantageous, if not indispensable, in the case of those who, in consequence of their peculiar deprivation, are utterly destitute of any notion whatever of the nature of verbal and syntactical language, and who are restricted to modes of representing words,--by writing or the manual alphabet,_so far inferior to speech in rapidity and expressiveness. Such a method fully carried out, may seem slow and barren at first, but proves in the end, not only a saving of time, but indispensable to thoroughness of acquisition. It opens a way by which those of the better order of capacity may proceed pleasantly, surely and without discouragement, and practicable for those who would otherwise find in the difficulties of language, a tangled and absolutely impenetrable maze. It is nature's method. Nature teaches the child to select from the multitude of expressions uttered in his hearing those which are easiest to his understanding, and by attention and practice to make these familiar, and then directs him to