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derstood himself, and was understood in į because here Aristotle made use of his his own time. We are strangers to the eyes. Alexander furnished him with all language of the Greeks; we do not attach the rare animals of Europe, Asia, and to the same words the same ideas. Africa. This was one fruit of his con

For instance, when he says, in his quests. That hero spent in this way imseventh chapter, that the principles of mense sums, which at this day would terbodies are matter, privation, and form, he }rify all the guardians of the royal treasury, seems to talk egregious nonsense; but and which should immortalise Alexander's such is not the case. Matter, with him, } glory, of which we have already spoken. is the first principle of everything—the At the present day, a hero, when he has subject of everything_indifferent to every} the misfortune to make war, can scarcely thing. Form is essential to its becoming give any encouragement to the sciences; any certain thing. Privation is that which { he must borrow money of a Jew, and distinguishes any being from all those consult other Jews, in order to make the things which are not in it. Matter may, substance of his subjects flow into his coffer indifferently, become a rose or an apple ; of the Danaïdes, whence it escapes but, when it is an apple or a rose, it is through a thousand openings. Alexander deprived of all that would make it silver sent to Aristotle elephants, rhinoceroses, or lead. Perhaps this truth was not worth tigers, lions, crocodiles, gazelles, eagles, the trouble of repeating ; but we have no- ostriches, &c.; and we, when by chance thing here but what is quite intelligible, a rare animal is brought to our fairs, go and nothing at all impertinent.

and admire it for sixpence, and it dies The“ act of that which is in power,” { before we know anything about it. also appears a ridiculous phrase, though it is no more so than the one just noticed.

Of the Eternal World. Matter may become whatever you will- Aristotle expressly maintains, in his fire, earth, water, vapour, metal, mineral, { book on heaven, chap. xi., that the world animal, tree, flower. This is all that is } is eternal : this was the opinion of all anmeant by the expression, act in power. Atiquity, excepting the Epicureans. He So that there was nothing ridiculous to admitted a God-a first mover; and de the Greeks, in saying that motion was anfined him to be “one, eternal, immove act of power, since matter may be moved; { able, indivisible, without qualities.” and it is very likely that Aristotle under- He must, therefore, have regarded the stood thereby that motion was not essen- world as emanating from God, as the ligh: tial to matter.

emanates from the sun and is co-existent Aristotle's physics must necessarily with it. have been very bad in detail. This was About the celestial spheres, he was as common to all philosophers, until the time } ignorant as all the rest of the philosophers when the Galileos, the Torricellis, the Copernicus was not yet come. Guerickes, the Drebels, and the Academy del Cimento, began to make experiments.

His Metaphysics. Natural philosophy is a mine which can- God being the first mover, he gives not be explored without instruments motion to the soul. But what is God, which were unknown to the ancients.- and what is the soul, according to him? They remained on the brink of the abyss, The soul is an entelechia. It is, says he, and reasoned upon without seeing its cono a principle and an act-a nourishing, feel tents.

ing, and reasoning power. This can only Aristotle's Treatise on Animals.

mean that we have the faculties of nourish

ing ourselves, of feeling, and of reasoning. His researches relative to animals were, The Greeks no more knew what an ente on the contrary, the best book of antiquity, { lechia was than the South Sea islanders ;

nor have our doctors any more knowledge Shad in view. Cicero, in his Orator, says, of what a soul is.

that “no one had more science, sagacity,

invention, or judgment..' Quintilian goes His Morals.

so far as to praise, not only the extent of Aristotle's morals, like all others, are his knowledge, but also the suavity of his very good ; for there are not two systems elocution—suavitatem eloquendi. of morality. Those of Confucius, of Zo- Aristotle would have an orator wellroaster, of Pythagoras, of Aristotle, of { informed respecting laws, finances, treaEpictetus, of Antoninus, are absolutely the } ties, fortresses, garrisons, provisions, and same. God has placed in every breast merchandise. The orators in the parliathe knowledge of good, with some incli- ments of England, the diets of Poland, nation for evil.

the states of Sweeden, the pregadi of Aristotle says, that to be virtuous, three | Venice, &c. would not find these lessons things are necessary-nature, reason, and of Aristotle unprofitable; to other nahabit; and nothing is more true. With- tions, perhaps, they would be so. out a good disposition, virtue is too diffi- He would have his orator know the alt: reason strengthens it; and habit passions and manners of men, and the renders good actions as familiar as a daily humours of every condition. exercise to which one is accustomed. I do not think there is a single nicety

He enumerates all the virtues, and does of the art which has escaped him. He not fail to place friendship among them. particularly recommends the citing of inHe distinguishes friendship between stances where public affairs are spoken equals, between relatives, between guests, of; nothing has so great an effect on the and between lovers. Friendship spring- { minds of men. ing from the rights of hospitality is no What he says on this subject proves longer known amongst us. That which that he wrote his Rhetoric long before among the ancients was the sacred bond Alexander was appointed captain-general of society, is, with us, nothing but an inn- of the Greeks against the Great King. keeper's reckoning; and as for lovers, it If, says he, any one had to prove to the is

very rarely now-a-days that virtue has | Greeks that it is their interest to oppose anything to do with love. We think we the enterprises of the King of Persia, and owe nothing to a woman to whom we to prevent him from making himself mas have a thousand times promised every } ter of Egypt, he should first remind thing.

them, that Darius Ochus would not atIt is a melancholy reflection, that our } tack Greece until Egypt was in his power; first doctors have never ranked friendship he should remark that Xerxes had puramong the virtues-have scarcely ever sued the same course ; he should add, recommended friendship; but, on the that it was not to be doubted that Darius contrary, have often seemed to breathe Codomannus would do the same

and enmity, like tyrants, who dread all asso- } that, therefore, they must not suffer him ciations.

to take possession of Egypt. It is, moreover, with very good reason He even permits, in speeches delivered that Aristotle fixes all the virtues between to great assemblies, the introduction of the two extremes. He was, perhaps, the parables and fables : they always strike first who assigned them this place. ihe multitude. He relates some very in

He expressly says, that piety is the me- genious ones, which are of the highest andium between atheism and superstition. tiquity, as the horse that implored the His Rhetoric.

assistance of man to revenge himself on

the stag, and became a slave through havIt was probably, his rules for rhetoricing sought a protector, and poetry that Cicero and Quintilian It may be remarked that, in the second

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book, where he treats of arguing from the make verses, and still more in consideragreater to the less, he gives an example tion of his morality, in which he infinitely which plainly shows what was the opin- surpasses Homer, who has none at all. ion of Greece, and probably of Asia, But he owed his popularity chiefly to the respecting the extent of the power of the critieism on the pride of Louis XIV.and gods.

the harshness of Louvois, which, it was “If,” says he, “it be true that the gods thought, were discoverable in Telemathemselves, enlightened as they are, can- chus. not know everything, much less can Be this as it may, nothing can be a men.” This passage clearly proves, that better proof of Aristotle's good sense and omniscience was not then attributed to the good taste, than his having assigned to Divinity. It was conceived that the gods everything its proper place. could not know what was not; the future was not; therefore, it seemed impossible

Aristotle on Poetry. that they should know it. This is the Where, in our modern nations, shall we opinion of the Socinians at the present find a natural philosopher, a geometri. day.

cian, a metaphysician, or even a moralist, But to return to Aristotle's Rhetoric.— who has spoken well on the subject of What I shall chiefly remark on in his poetry? They teem with the names of book on Elocution and Diction is, the Homer, Virgil, Sophocles, Ariosto, Tasso, good sense with which he condemns and so many others, who have charmed Those who would be poets in prose. He the world by the harmonious productions would have pathos; but he banishes of their genius, but they feel not their bombast, and proscribes useless epithets. beauties ; or if they feel them they would Indeed, Demosthenes and Cicero, who annihilate them. followed his precepts, never affected the How ridiculous is it in Pascal, to poetic style in their speeches. The style, saysays Aristotle, must always be conform- “ As we say poetical beauty, we should able to the subject.

likewise say geometrical beauty, and me Nothing can be more misplaced than to } dicinal beauty. Yet we do not say so ; speak of physics poetically, and lavish and the reason is, that we well know what figure and ornament where there should } is the object of geometry, and what is the be only method, clearness, and truth: it object of medicine, but we do not know in is the quackery of a man who would pass what the peculiar charm, which is the oboff false systems under cover of an empty ject of poetry, consists. We know not noise of words. Weak minds are caught what that natural model is, which must oy the bait, and strong minds disdain be imitated ; and for want of this knowit.

ledge we have invented certain fantastic Amongst us, the funeral oration has terms, as age of gold, wonder of the age, taken possession of the poetic style in fatal wreath, fair star, &c. And this jar prose; but this branch of oratory con- gon we call poetic beauty." sisting almost entirely of exaggeration, it The pitifulness of this passage is suf seems privileged to borrow the ornaments ficiently obvious. We know that there

is nothing beautiful in a medicine nor in The writers of romances have some the properties of a triangle; and that we times taken this licence. La Calprenède apply the term beautiful only to that was, I think, the first who thus transposed which raises admiration in our minds and the limits of the arts, and abused this faci- } gives pleasure to our senses. Thus reality. The author of Telemachus was par- sons Aristotle; and Pascal here reasons doned through consideration for Homer, very ill. Fatal wreath, fair star, have whom he imitated, though he could not never been poetic beauties. If he wished

of poetry

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to know what is poetic beauty, he had This fourth chapter of Aristotle's reonly to read.

appears almost entire in Horace and Bois Nicole wrote against the stage, about leau. The laws which he gives in the which he had not a single idea; and was following chapters are at this day those of seconded by one Dubois, who was as ig- our good writers, excepting only what norant of the belles-lettres as himself. relates to the choruses and music.

His Even Montesquieu, in his amusing idea that tragedy was instituted to purify Persian Letters, has the petty vanity to the passions, has been warmly combated; think that Homer and Virgil are nothing but if he meant, as I believe he did, that in comparison with one who imitates with an incestuous love might be subdued by spirit and success Dufréni's Siamois, and witnessing the misfortune of Phædra, or fills his book with bold assertions, with anger be repressed by beholding the meout which it would not have been read. } lancholy example of Ajax, there is no “ Whal," says he,“ are epic poems? I longer any difficulty. know them not. I despise the lyric as This philosopher expressly commands much as I esteem the tragic poets.” He that there be always the heroic in trashould not, however, have despised gedy, and the ridiculous in comedy. Pindar and Horace quite so much. Aris- This is a rule from which it is, perhaps, totle did not despise Pindar.

now becoming too customary to depart. Descartes did, it is true, write for

ARMS-ARMIES. Queen Christina a little divertissement in verse, which was quite worthy of his ma- It is worthy of consideration that there tière cannelée.

have been, and still are upon the earth, Mallebranche could not distinguish societies without armies.' The BrahCorneille's “Qu'il mourût,” from a line mins, who long governed nearly all the of Jodèle's or Garnier's.

great Indian Chersonesus ; the primitives What a man, then, was Aristotle, who called Quakers, who governed Pennsyl. traced the rules of tragedy with the same vania ; some American tribes, some in hand with which he had laid down those the centre of Africa, the Samoyeds, the of dialectics, of morals, of politics, and Laplanders, the Kamschadales, have never lifted, as far as he found it possible, the marched with colours flying to destroy great veil of nature !

their neighbours. To his fourth chapter on poetry, Boi

The Brahmins were the most considelean is indebted for these fine lines- rable of all these pacific nations; their

caste, which is so ancient, which is still
n n'est point de serpent, ni de monstre odieux
Qui, par l'art imité, ne puisse plaire aux yeux. existing, and compared with which all
D'un pinceau délicat l'artifice agréable

other institutions are quite recent, is a
Du plus atfreus object fait un objet aimable;
Ainsi, pour nous charmer, la tragédia eue pleurs prodigy which cannot be sufficiently ad-
D'adipe tout-sanglant fit parler les douleurs.

mired. Their religion and their policy
Each horrid shape, each object of aftright,
Nice imitation teaehes to delight

always concurred in abstaining from the So does the skilful painter's pleasing art

shedding of blood, even of that of the Attractions to the darkest form impart; So does the tragic Muse, dissolved in tears, meanest animal. Where such is the

regime, subjugation is easy : they have Aristotle says—“Imitation and bar- been subjugated, but have not changed. mony have produced poetry.

The Pennsylvanians never had an terrible animals, dead or dying men, in army; they always held war in abhora picture, with pleasure objects, which rence. in nature would inspire us only with fear Several of the American tribes did not and sorrow. The better they are imi- know what an army was, until the Spatated, the more complete is our satis- niards came to exterminate them all. The faction."

people on the borders of the Icy Sea are

With tales of woe and sorrow charm our ears.

We see

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ignorant alike of armies, of the God of the battles which laid Persia at his armies, of battalions, and of squadrons. feet.

Besides these populations, the priests It was the Roman infantry that subjuand monks do not bear arms in any gated the greater part of the world. At country—at least when they observe the the battle of Pharsalia, Cæsar had but laws of their institution.

one thousand horse. It is only among Christians that there It is not known at what time the Inhave been religious societies established dians and the Africans first began to march for the purpose of fighting -as the elephants at the head of their armies. Knights Templars, the Knights of St. We cannot read without surprise of HanJohn, the Knights of the Teutonic order, nibal's elephants crossing the Alps, the Knights Swordbearers. These reli- which were much harder to pass then gious orders were instituted in imitation than they are now. of the Levites, who fought like the rest of There have long been disputes about the Jewish tribes.

the disposition of the Greek and Roman Neither armies nor arms were the same armies, their arms, and their evolutions. in antiquity as at present. The Egyptians Each one has given his plan of the hardly ever had cavalry. It would have { battles of Zama and Pharsalia. been of little use in a country intersected The commentator Calmet, a Benedic by canals, inundated during five months tine, has printed three great volumes of of the year, and miry during five more. {his Dictionary of the Bible, in which, the The inliabitants of a great part of Asia better to explain God's commandments, used chariots of war.

are inserted a hundred engravings, where They are mentioned in the Annals of you see plans of battles and sieges in China. Confucius says, that in his time copper-plate. The god of the Jews was each governor of a province furnished to the god of armies, but Calmet was not the Emperor a thousand war chariots, his secretary; he cannot have known, but drawn by four horses. The Greeks and by revelation, how the armies of the AmaTrojans fought in chariots drawn by two lekites, the Moabites, the Syrians, and the horses.

Philistines, were arranged on the days of Cavalry and chariots were unknown to general murder. These plates of carnage, the Jews, in a mountainous tract, where designed at a venture, made his book their first king, when he was elected, had five or six louis dearer, but made it no nothing but she-asses. Thirty sons of { better. Jair, princes of thirty cities, according to It is a great question whether the the text (Judges, chapter x, v. 4), rode Franks, whom the Jesuit Daniel calls each upon an ass. Saul, afterwards King French by anticipation, used bows and of Judah, had only she-asses ; and the arrows in their armies, and whether they sons of David all fled upon mules, when had helmets and cuirasses. Absalom had slain his brother Amnon. Supposing that they went to combat Absalom was mounted only ona mule, in alınost naked, and armed, as they are said the battle which he fought against his fa- } to have been, with only a small carpenther's troops; which proves, according to ter's axe, a sword, and a knife, we must the Jewish historians, either that mares } infer that the Romans, masters of Gaul, were beginning to be used in Palestine, so easily conquered by Clovis, had lose or that they were already rich enough all their ancient valour, and that the Gauls there to buy mules from the neighbouring were as willing to be subject to a small country.

number of Franks as to a small number The Greeks made but little use of of Romans. cavalry. It was chiefly with the Mace- Warlike accoutrements have since donian phalanx that Alexander gained changed, as everything else changes.

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