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Acquaintance quickly made, the Turks advance;

prostitution, makes him decide that this
The maidens join them in a sprightly dance;
Sweet music charms them as they trip alongi disciple should be an assassin. So that
And every feathered warbler adus his song.
The joys that could for every sense suffice.

the education which Jean Jacques would Were found within this earthly paradise.

give to a young man, consists in teaching Wipe, too, was there-and its effects the same : These people drank, till they could drink no more,

him how to handle the plane, and in fitBut sioking down as senseless as before,

ting him for salivation and the rope.
Were carried to the pace from whence they came.
And what resulted from this trickery?

We doubt whether fathers of families
These men believed that they should surely be
Again transported to that place of pleasure,

will be eager to give such preceptors to 11, without fear of suffering or of death,

their children. It seems to us, that the
They showed derotion to Mabomet's faith,
And to their prince obedience without measure. romance of Emilius departs rather too
Thus might their sovereign with reason say,

much from the maxims of Mentor in Tele-
His subjects were determined to obey,
And tbal, now his device had made them so,

machus; but it also must be acknowH s was the mightiest empire here below, &c.

ledged that our age has in all things very All this might be very well in one of much varied from the great age of Louis La Fontaine's tales-setting apart the XIV. weakness of the verse; and there are a Happily, none of these horrible infatuhundred historical anecdotes which could ations are to be found in the Encyclopedia. be tolerated only there.

It often displays a philosophy seemingly

bold, but never that atrocious and extraSECTION II.

vagant babbling, which two or three fools Assassination being, next to poisoning, have called philosophy, and two or three the crime most cowardly and most de- ladies, eloquence. serving of punishment, it is not astonishing that it has found an apologist in a man

ASTROLOGY. whose singular reasoning is, in some ASTROLOGY might rest on a better things, at variance with the reason of the { foundation than magic. For if no one rest of mankind.

has seen farfadets, or lemures, or dives, In a romance entitled Emilius, he ima- or peris, or demons, or cacodemons, the gines that he is the guardian of a young predictions of astrologers have often been man, to whom he is very careful to give found true. Let two astrologers be conan education such as is received in the sulted on the life of an infant, and on the military school--teaching him languages, weather; if one of them say that the child geometry, tactics, fortification, and the shall live to the age of man, the other that history of his country. He does not seek he shall not; if one foretel rain, and the to inspire him with love for his king and other fair weather, it is quite clear that his country, but contents himself with there will be a prophet. making him a joiner. He would have The great misfortune of astrologers is, this gentleman-joiner, when he has re- } that the heavens have changed since the ceived a blow or a challenge, instead of rules of the art were laid down. The returning it and fighting, “prudently sun, which at the equinox was in the Ram assassinate the man.” Moliére does, it in the time of the Argonauts, is now in the is true, say jestingly, in L'Amour Peintre, { Bull; and astrologers, most unfortunately “ assassination is the safest ;" but the for their art, now attribute to one house of author of this romance asserts that it is the sun that which visibly belongs to anthe most just and reasonable. He says other. Still, this is not a demonstrative this very seriously; and, in the immensity argument against astrology. The masters of his paradoxes, this is one of the three of the art are mistaken; but it is not or four things which he says the first. The proved that the art cannot exist. same spirit of wisdom and decency which There would be no absurdity in saying, makes him declare that a preceptor should { "Such a child was born during the moon's often accompany his pupil to a place of increase, in a stormy season, at the rising

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of a certain star : its constitution was bad,: One of the most famous mathemaand its life short and miserable, which is ticians of Europe, named Stofler, who the ordinary lot of weak temperaments ; ; Aourished in the fifteenth and sixteenth another, on the contrary, was born when centuries, foretold a universal deluge for the moon was at the full, and the sun in the year 1524. This deluge was to hapall his power, in calm weather, at the rising í pen in the month of February ; and noof another particular star; his constitution thing can be more plausible; for Saturn, was good, and his life long and happy." } Jupiter, and Mars, were then in conjuncIf such observations had been frequently, tion in the sign of the Fishes. Every repeated, and found just, experience people, in Europe, Asia, and Africa, that might, at the end of a few thousand cen- heard of the prediction, were in conturies, have formed an art which it would sternation. The whole world expected have been difficult to call in question : it the deluge, in spite of the rainbow. Sewould have been thought, not without veral cotemporary authors relate, that some appearance of truth, that men are the inhabitants of the maritime provinces like trees and vegetables, which must be of Germany hastened to sell their lands, planted only in certain seasons. It would at any price, to such as had more money have been of no service against the astro- } and less credulity than themselves. Each logers, to say, “ My son was born in fine one provided himself with a boat, to weather, yet he died in his cradle.” The serve as an ark. A doctor of Toulouse, astrologer would have answered, “It often in particular, named Auriol, had an ark happens that trees planted in the proper { built for himself, his family, and friends; season perish prematurely: I will answer and the same precautions were taken in a for the stars, but not for the particular 3 great part of Italy. At last, the month conformation which you communicated { of February arrived, and not a drop of to your child : astrology operates only rain fell: never was a month more dry; when there is no cause opposed to the never were the astrologers more embargood which they have power to work." rassed. However, we neither discouraged

Nor would astrology have suffered any nor neglected them; almost all our princes more discredit from its being said :—“Of continued to consult them. two children who were born in the same I have not the honour to be a prince ; minute, one became a king, the other no- nevertheless, the celebrated Count de thing more than churchwarden of his Boulainvilliers, and an Italian, named parish;" for a defence would easily have Colonna, who had great reputation at Pabeen made, by showing that the peasant ris, both foretold to me that I should inmade his fortune in becoming church- } fallibly die at the age of thirty-two. I warden, just as much as the prince did in have already been so malicious as to debecoming king.

ceive them thirty years in their calculaAnd if it were alleged that a bandit, tion,—for which I most humbly ask their hung up by order of Sixtus the Fifth, was { pardon. born at the same time with Sixtus, who,

ASTRONOMY, from being a swineherd, became Pope the astrologers would say that there was a mistake of a few seconds, and that, according to the rules, the same star could M. Duval, who, if I mistake not, not bestow the tiara and the gallows. It was librarian to the Emperor Francis I. was, then, only because long-accumulated gives us an account of the manner in experience gave the lie to the predictions, which, in his childhood, pure instinct that men at length perceived "ihat the art gave him the first ideas of astronomy. was illusory ; but their credulity was of} He was contemplating the moon, which, very long duration.

as it declined towards the west, seemed to

WITH A FEW MORE REFLECTIONS ON

ASTROLOGY.

touch the trees of a wood. He doubted } principles of astronomy before the Doge not that he should find it behind the and Senators of Venice on St. Mark's trees; and, on running thither, was as- tower; he demonstrated every thing to tonished to see it at the extremity of the the eyes. horizon.

Indeed, not only a child, but even a The following days his curiosity man of mature age, who has seen the prompted him to watch the course of constellations only on maps or globes, this luminary; and he was still more finds it difficult to recognise them in the surprised to find that it rose and set at { heavens. In a little time, the child will various hours.

very well comprehend the causes of the The different forms which it took from sun's apparent course, and the daily reweek to week, and its total disappearance volutions of the fixed stars. for some nights, also contributed to fix He will, in particular, discover the his attention. All that a child could do constellations, with the aid of these four was, to observe and to admire : and this Latin- lines, made by an astronomer about was doing much ; not one in ten thousand } fifty years ago, and which are not sufhas this curiosity and perseverance. ficiently known :

He studied, as he could, for three Delta Aries, Perseum Taurus, Geminique Capellam; years, with no other book than the hea- Nil Cancer, Plaustrum Leo, Virge Coman, atque Bootem, vens, no other master than his eyes. He { Delphinum C'aper, Amphora Eques, Cepleida Pisces. observed that the stars did not change Nothing should be said to him about their relative position ; but the brilliancy the systems of Ptolemy and Tycho of the planet Venus having caught his Brahe, because they are false; they can attention, it seemed to him to have a

never be of any other service than to ex particular course, like that of the moon. plain some passages in ancient authors, Hle watched it every night: it disap- relating to the errors of antiquity. For peared for a long time; and at length he instance, in the second book of Ovid's saw it become the morning instead of the Metamorphoses, the Sun says to Phaeevening star.

ton, The course of the sun, which from

Adde, quod assiduâ rapitur vertigine coelum ; month to month rose and set in different

Impetus; et rapido contrarius exehor orbi. parts of the heavens, did not escape him. He marked the solstices with two staves, without knowing what the solstices were.

Marching secure in my opposing path. It appears to me that some profit might This idea of a first mover turning the be derived from this example, in teaching heavens round in twenty-four hours with astronomy to a child of ten or twelve an impossible motion, and of the sun, years old, and with much greater facility { though acted upon by this first motion, ihan this extraordinary child, of whom I yei imperceptibly advancing from west have spoken, taught himself its first ele- to east by a motion peculiar to itself, ments.

and without a cause, would but embarrass It is a very attractive spectacle for a

a young beginner. mind disposed to the contemplation of It is sufficient for him to know that, nature, to see that the different phases of whether the earth revolves on its own the moon are precisely the same as those axis and round the sun, or the sun comof a globe round which a lighted candle is pletes his revolution in a year, appearmoved, showing here a quarter, here the ances are nearly the same; and that, in half of its surface, and becoming invisi- astronomy, we are obliged to judge of ble when an opaque body is interposed things by our eyes, before we examine between it and the candle. In this man- them as natural philosophers. ner it was that Galileo explained the true He will soon know the cause of the

Nitor in adversum: nec me, qui caetera, vincit

A rapid motion carries round the heavens ;
But I-and I alone-resist its force,

eclipses of the sun and the moon, and s universal extravagance, which so long why they do not occur every night. It infected all mankind, and is still in great will at first appear to him that the moon, vogue in Persia. being every month in opposition to and A inan born, according to the almain conjunction with the sun, we should nack, when the sun was in the sign of have an eclipse of the sun and one of the the Lion, was necessarily to be couragemoon every month. But when he finds ous: but, unfortunately, he was in reality that these two luminaries are not in the born under the sign of the Virgin. So same plane, and are seldom in the same that Gauric and Michael Morin should line with the earth, he will no longer be have changed all the rules of their art. surprised.

It is very odd, that all the laws of He will easily be made to understand astrology were contrary to those of astrohow it is that eclipses have been foretold, nomy. The wretched charlatans of anby knowing the exact circle in which the tiquity and their stupid disciples, who apparent motion of the sun and the real have been so well received and so well motion of the moon are accomplished. į paid by all the princes of Europe, He will be told that observers found by talked of nothing but Mars and Venus, experience and calculation the number stationary and retrograde. Such as had of times that these two bodies are pre- Mars stationary, were always to conquer. cisely in the same line with the earth in Venus stationary, made all lovers happy. the space of nineteen years and a few Nothing was worse than to be born under hours, after which they seem to recom- Venus retrograde. But the fact is, that mence the same course; so that, making these planets have never been either rethe necessary allowances for the little in- trograde or stationary, which a very equalities that occurred during those slight knowledge of optics would have nineteen years, the exact day, hour, and sufficed to show. minute, of an eclipse of the sun or moon How then can it have been, that in were foretold. These first elements are spite of physics and geometry, the ridisoon acquired by a child of clear concep- culous chimera of astrology is entertained tions.

even to this day, so that we have seen Not even the precession of the equi- men distinguished for their general knownoxes will terrify him. It will be enough ledge, and especially profound in history, to tell him, that the sun has constantly who have all their lives been infatuated appeared to advanoe in his annual course, by so despicable an error? But the erone degree in seventy-two years, towards ror was ancient, and that was enough. the east; and this is what Ovid meant to The Egyptians, the Chaldeans, the express in the lines just now quoted- Jews, foretold the future; therefore, it

may be foretold now. Serpents were Marching secure in my opposing path.

charmed and spirits were raised in those

days ;-therefore spirits may be raised Thus the Ram, which the sun formerly, and serpents charmed now. It is only entered at the beginning of spring, is now necessary to know the precise formula in the place where the Bull was then made use of for the purpose. If predicThis change which has taken place in the tions are at an end, it is the fault, not of lieavens, and the entrance of the sun into the art, but of the artist. Michael Morin other constellations than those which he and his secret died together. It is thus formerly occupied, were the strongest ar- that the alchymists speak of the philosoguments against the pretended rules of pher's stone : if, say they, we do not now judicial astrology. It does not, however, } find it, it is because we do not yet know 2? pear, that this proof was employed be- precisely how to seek it; but it is cerfore the present century to destroy this į tainly in Solomon's collar-bone. And,

Contrarius evehor orbi.

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with this glorious certainty, more than that he will be devoured ; but you cantwo hundred families in France and Ger- not be absolutely sure of it, after the admany have ruined themselves.

ventures of Hercules, Jonas, and OrIt is not then to be wondered at, that { lando Furioso, who each lived so long the whole world has been duped by astro- } in a fish's belly. logy. The wretched argument—"there It cannot be too often repeated, that are false prodigies, therefore there are } Albertus Magnus and Cardinal d'Ailli true ones," is neither that of a philoso- both made the horoscope of Jesus Christ. pher, nor of a man acquainted with the It would appear that they read in the world.

stars how many devils he would cast out “ That is false and absurd, therefore it of the bodies of the possessed, and what will be believed by the multitude,” is a sort of death he was to die. But it was much truer maxim.

unfortunate that these learned astrologers It is still less astonishing that so many foretold all these things so long after they men, raised in other things so far above happened. the vulgar; so many princes; so many We shall elsewhere see that in a sect popes, whom it would have been impos- which passes for Christian, it is believed sible to mislead in the smallest affair of} to be impossible for the Supreme Intelliinterest, have been so ridiculously se- gence to see the future otherwise than by duced by this astrological nonsense. supreme conjecture ; for, as the future They were very proud and very ignorant. does not exist, it is, say they, a contraThe stars were for them alone; the rest | diction in terms to talk of seeing at the of the world were a rabble, with whom present time that which is not. the stars had nothing to do. They were like the prince who trembled at the sight

ATHEISM. of a comet, and said gravely to those who

SECTION I. did not fear it—“You may behold, it } On the Comparison so often made between without concern; you are not princes."

Atheism and Idolatry. The famous German leader Wallenstein was one of those infatuated by this It seems to me that, in the Dictionchimera ; he called himself a prince, and snaire Encyclopédique, a more powerful consequently thought that the zodiac had { refutation might have been brought against been made on purpose for him.

He { the Jesuit Richeome's opinion concernnever besieged a town, nor fought a bat- ing atheists and idolaters—an opinion tle, until he had held a council with the formerly maintained by St. Thomas, St. heavens ; but, as this great man was very { Gregory Nazianzen, St. Cyprian, and ignorant, he placed at the head of this } Tertullian—an opinion which Arnobius council a rogue of an Italian, named placed in a strong light when he said to Seni, keeping him a coach and six, and the pagans, “ Do you not blush to regiving him a pension of twenty thousand proach us with contempt for your gods? livres. Seni, however, never foresaw that? Is it not better to believe in no god, than Wallenstein would be assassinated by i to impute to them infamous actions ?"order of his most gracious sovereign, and an opinion long before established by that he himself would return to Italy on Plutarch, who said, he would rather have foot.

it said that there was no Plutarch, than It is quite evident that nothing can be } that there was a Plutarch, inconstant, known of the future, otherwise than by choleric, and vindictive-an opinion, too, conjectures. These conjectures may be fortified by all the dialectical efforts of so well-founded as to approach certainty. Bayle, You see a shark swallow a little boy ; Such is the ground of dispute, placed you may wager a ten thousand to one in a very striking point of view by the

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