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and daughters of reason have joined their treble screams to the yell of triumph when the bull either tossed or worried a dog, or a dog had pinned the bull, by fastening on his nose so desperately firm as even to suffer his limbs to be broken—nay, cutoff— before he would let go his hold.
A man (of course of the bull-dog breed), not many years since, engaged to attack a bull with his teeth, and so far succeeded as to deprive the animal of power to hurt him.
In Bury, too, so late as the year 1801, a mob of "Christian savages were indulging in the inhuman amusement of baiting and branding a bull. The poor animal, who had been privately buited on the same day, burst lrom his tethers in a state of madness. He was again entangled, and, monstrous to relate, his hoofs were cut off, and he defended himself on his mangled, bleeding stumps I"
The public exhibition of this most cowardly pastime is now prohibited; and the bull-ring was taken up, by order of Mr. Buck, out of this marketplace about eight jears back.
The name of the Rev. James Buck, rector of Lavenham, deserves to stand recorded as one of the most indefatigable magistrates who, uniting authority with compassion, exerted himself to the last in the cause of humanity.
The common arguments which have ever been adduced to show that we have animals bred by nature for various sports, and that the poor man has as great a right to his share of amusement as the rich man—that there are in all countries animals originally formed and carefully trained to the exercise of sports— must be admitted; but the Creator of Brutes and the Judge of Man never can behold cruelty to animals without hearing their cry; and although they are all evidently sent for the wise purpose of affording food, and of contributing to the comfort and improvement of the condition of man, they never were created to be abused, lacerated,mangled, and whilst living, cut to pieces and baited by brutes of superior race, depraved at heart and debased by custom.
If two men choose to stand up and fib each other about (saying nothing of the practice), why let them do it; or if two dogs worry each other to death for a bone, or two cocks meet and contend for the sovereignty of a dunghill. In these last two cases the appearance of cruelty is out of the question, and how much soever we may be inclined to pity, we are entirely divested of the ability to blame. Dogs naturally quarrel; and any
attempt to reform and reconcile two snarling puppies, would be as inconsistent as it would be foolish to abuse the nettle for stinging our flesh, or to upbraid the poppy for its disagreeable and choking odour.
The true criterion of perfection to civilization is in proportion to the kind feeling entertained, and the humanity practised, towards those animals (in particular) which are subject to the immediate control of man.
Lavenham. F. Ribbans.
LITERARY NOTICES OF
THE JEWS BEFORE THEIR DISPERSION.
In our second reading of Levi. and Sarah, or the Jewish Lovers, we have been struck with the following narrative of the pristine celebrity of this favoured people:—
The most ancient of all the written histories of the human race, of their deeds and condition, is undoubtedly that of the people of Israel: a people to whom God himself was both leader and lawgiver—for whom the sea was divided, and the stony rocks poured forth fountains of water—whose food descended on them from heaven—for whom angels from above fought—and whom all nature cheerfully obeyed,—in short a people, who, through a course of many centuries, though surrounded with numerous Heathen nations, bore constant testimony to the existence of one God alone. It is not wonderful that such a people should think themselves exalted far above all others. Moses, the first of all instructors and legislators, desired to raise his people above the fate which had ruined other nations, by communicating to them firmness and perseverance in their adherence to such institutions, as should keep them a distinct nation from all others. These institutions were peculiarly appropriate to the time, to the situation, and the circumstances of the people for whom they were prescribed. It was not his design that the Children of Israel, when freed from their misery, after wandering forty years in the wilderness, should mix themselves up with the Heathens, and adopt their morals and principles. He desired that they should continue a distinct and holy people, that strangers should be extirpated, und their country be possessed by Jews alone. Their bounds were marked out
by God himself, and extended from Lebanon and the Euphrates to the seaj and he commanded them to keep his commandments in the land which he had bestowed upon them, so that he alone should be their Lord. Hereupon, «s I have before observed, Moses delivered such laws as were adapted to their situation. But these wanderers of the desert adhered not to the law delivered to them. We find even during the life of Moses much obstinacy, and an unbridled inclination to Heathenism was manifested, by their making objects of idolatrous worship. After the death of Moses, the seventy - two interpreters collected his doctrines; but they added to them some, withdrew others, and confused several, by which the pure Mosaic opinions must have been obscured. And we read accordingly, in the tenth chapter of Judges, "that the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord." They served Baal and Ashtaroth, the deities of the Syrians and Moabites, and even the gods of the Philistines, whom God had commanded they should not serve.* Their hearts became hardened in their apostacy. The siege of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnazar, and the captivity in Babylon, had the most corrupting influence on the purity of the Mosaic doctrines, and on the laws. The original writings discovered by Hilkiah, were retrenched, added to, and the order of the events displaced. From the long residence amongst, and n great intercourse with strange people, all the frightful prejudices, all the ianciful dreams of our rabbins, were introduced into the sacred books. We learn from the second book of Chronicles, chap, xxxvi. verse 17, "that the king slew the young men with the sword in the house of the sanctuary, and had no compassion upon young man or maiden, old man or him that stooped for age. And all the vessels of gold, and the treasures of the house of the Lord, and of the king and all the princes, these he brought all to Babylon; and they burnt the house of God. and brake down the walls of Jerusalem, and burnt all thepalnces thereof with fire."
During the seventy years that this captivity lasted, only a few o'd men survived who had retained any recollection of the laws of Moses. Esdras collected, as far as was possible, the doctrines of Moses; but they were mingled with too
* The greater part of the kings, both of Israel and of Judith, served straaue pods. Under Josioh, as be cleared out the Temple, the hook of the laws of Moses was found hy Hiikiuu the priest, and was delivered to the king, who was much struck with the tbrcateuiogs it contained.
many principles which were foreign to them, and some of them may be traced to Zoroaster. The existence of the three sects of the Pharisees, the Sadclucees, and Essenes, each of which give a different interpretation of the word of God, abundantly prove this. Hillel and Schamai, a little before the time of Vespasian, had a school. The Rabbi Jonathan Sillai, a pupil of Hillel, exalts his master by saymg, "If every tree were a pen, and the whole ocean ink, I should not be able to describe the wisdom I have received from Hillel." What extravagant expressions! How well do they paint the fanaticism of sectarianism! It was not, however, long, before this blind zeal drew down on the people a punishment from Heaven, by the destruction of Jerusalem under the Roman chief, Titus. Read the work of Flavius Josephus, and you will behold the noble firmness and perseverance of the Israelites on one side, and on the other the melancholy truth, that raving enthusiasm and blind obstinacy precipitated the ruin of the most flourishing people in the world. The last siege and capture of Jerusalem will ever be memorable in the history of mankind. How violent was the exasperation between the two sects of the believers! What firmness and obstinacy in each party, who preferred death and the destruction of the whole nation to yielding up the smallest particle of their different opinions! At that time, there fell, by (amine and the sword, more than a million of the Jews. One part of the people were left as food for the wild beasts of the field, whilst some were kept alive to grace the triumph of the victor; but that which above all moved the grief of the Israelites, wa» the destruction of that temple which had been erected by their own monarchs at so great an expense. Its glory has been described by the author already named; I find the description among my papers, and send it to you. You will weep as a true Israelite, and compare our former greatness with the degraded state to which the blindness and errors of our Elders have reduced us.
Under Hadrian, the Jews were once more excited to a contest. t Bar Co
f About fifty years after the destruction of Jerusalem, when the great body of the Jews held the opinion that the tine for the appearance of their Messias bad arrived, there arose this man, who announced himself in that character, and called himself Bar Cochef, or the "Son of a Star." He was acknowledged by numbersof his people, who hecnme his followers, declared him their kiuft. aud made war upon the Uomnna, many of whom were destroyed, both iu Greece aud iu Africa. His power continued betwixt chef announced himself as the Messias, but in the sequel .'ifck^OOO of our nation were destroyed, and the name of Jerusalem was changed for that of Eliiu The emperor Julian, usually called the Apostate, in his ambition for future lame, ordered the Temple of Solomon to be rebuilt. But the fathers of the Christian Church, as well as the contemporary author Amminnus Marcellinus, assert that a fire, which burst forth from the ground, suspended the operation at its commencement.
ANATOMV OP SOCIETY.
By J. A. St. John, Esq. The title of this work leads the reader to expect a regular and connected series of illustrations of the constitution or frame-work of society, in which its scheme might be traced through the various ramifications. On the contrary, we have two volumes of essays of no consecutive interest, but well written, and in some cases abounding with turns of scholarly elegance. They seldom flag, or grow vapid, notwithstanding they are on subjects of common life and experience, upon which moralists have rung the changes of words for centuries past. Occasionally, however, there are some new positions and little conceits which have more of prettiness than truth to recommend them. To call Cowper's line
Cod made the country, but man made the town I "a piece of impious jargon'' is no proof of Mr. St. John's acumen or fair comprehension of the poet's meaning, but accords with his unproved assertion "The mark of man's hand is as visible in the country as in the town to all those who make use of their eyes.'' Yet this sentiment is a fair specimen of the stern stuff of which Mr. St. John's creeds and opinions are made up.* Nevertheless, the volumes are entertaining, and in proof we have carved out a few laconic extracts:
Love of Pleasure.—The cause why men visit each other and converse, abstracting all considerations of business, seems to be simply the love of pleasure.
three and fonr years, when the very people who had supported him proclaimed him an impostor, and pave him the name Bar Cosifa, or the " Son of a Lie."
* One of Mr. St. John's lines in the Etsnyon the Influence of Great Cities (the worst in the volume J is " The very name of London sounds sweetly to me." This is not a whit better than the man who thought " no garden like Covent Garden, aud no flower like a cauliflower." Captain Morris's " sweet shady side ol Pall Mall,:' compared to these seulimeuts, is a piece of delicious refinement.
This is the passion truly universal; this is the pivot upon which the world intellectual, as well as the world of sense, turns. Philosophers and saints feel it in their speculations and devotions, and yield to it too, in their way, as completely as the Sybaritish gourmand, whose stomach is his Baal and Ashtaroth. Nor is this at all surprising, in realitj1, for the gratification of this passion is happiness—a gem for which all the world search, and but few find.
Conversation.—The persons who shine most in conversation are, perhaps, those who attack established opinions and usages; for there is a kind of splendid Quixotism in standing up, even in the advocating of absurdity, against the whole world.
Love.—Do we imagine, when we open some new treatise on Love, that the author has discovered a fresh vein, and mined more deeply than all former adventurers? Not at all: we know very well that the little god has already usurped all beautiful epithets, all soft expressions, all bewitching sounds ; and the utmost we expect from the skill of the writer is, that he has thrown all these together, so as to produce a new picture. Love is immortal, and does not grow wrinkled because we and our expressions fade. His heart is still as joyous and his foot as light as when he trod the green knolls of Paradise with Eve. He will be young when he sits upon the grave of the thousandth generation of our posterity, listening to the beating of his own heart, or sporting with his butterfly consort, as childishly as if he were no older than the daisy under his foot. His empire is a theme of which the tongue never grows weary, or utters all that seems to come quivering and gasping to the lips for utterance. We think, more than we ever spoke, of love; and if we have a curiosity when we first touch some erotic volume, it ia to see whether the author has embodied our unutterable feelings, or divulged what we have never dared.
Wit in Season.—The jest of an exminister is as flavourless as a mummy; as unintelligible as its hieroglyphical epitaph. Three days after his fall, his wit, under the sponge of oblivion, has grown as much a mystery as the name of him who built the pyramid, or the taste of Lot's wife.
Read my book.—When Hobbes was at any time at a loss for arguments to defend his unsocial principles, viva voce, he always used to say—" I have published my opinions; consult my works; and, if I am wrong, confute me publicly." To most persons this mode of confutation was by far too operose; but they might have confoundedly puzzled the philosopher in verbal disputation.
In " Vino Veritas."—Horace speaks -with commendation of kings—
'wbo never chose a friend
.Till will) full bowls they had unmasked bis soul, And seeu the bottom of his deepest thoughts.
But much dependence cannot be placed upon what is wrung out of a man under the influence of wine, which does not Bo much unveil as it disarranges our ideas; and, therefore, whoever contemplates the character from the combination of ideas produced by intoxication, views man in a false light. Violent angar has nearly the same effect as wine.
Ctipid—was painted blind by the ancients, to signify that the affections prevent the sight, not so much from perceiving outward as inward defects.
Character—Whoever would study the characters of those with whom he lives or converses, must keep up the appearance of a kind of recklessness and frivolity, for the mind closes itself up like the hedgehog, at the least sensible touch of observation, and will not be afterwards drawn out. Men have been known in the middle of a discovery of their character, to be stopped short by a look, which brought them to themselves, and traced before them in an instant the danger of their position and the methods of escape. A keen observer, indeed, may always adjust the temperature of his discourse by the faces of his auditors, which are saddened or brightened, like the face of the sea in April, as more or less of th« sunshine of rhetoric breaks forth upon them.
Greatness.—What renders it difficult for ordinary minds to discover a great mtm .before he has, like a tree, put forth his blossoms, is the manner, various and dissimilar, in which suchpersons evolve their powers. For as m nature the finest days are sometimes in the morning overclouded and dark, so the developement of genius follows no rule, but is hastened or retarded by position and circumstanoe. But to a keen eye there always appear, even in the first obscurity of extraordinary men, certain internal commotions and throes, denoting some magna vis animi at work within.
Physiognomy.—When Atticus advised Cicero to keep strict watch over his face, in his first interview with Ciesur
after the civil wars, he could not mean that he might thereby conceal his character from Cajsar, who knew well enough what that was; but he meant, that by such precaution he might conceal from the tyrant his actual hatred and disgust for his person. Yet for the character and secret nature of a man, fronti nnll i fides.
fVriting.— It was Addison, we believe, who observed of the schoolmen, that they had not genius enough to write a small book, and therefore took refuge in folios of the largest magnitude. We are getting as fast as possible into the predicament of the schoolmen. No one knows when he has written enough; but, like a player at chess, still goes on with the self-same ideas, merely altering their position. This must arise from early nabits and prejudices, from having been taught to regard with veneration vast collections of common-places, under the titles of this or that man's works. Tacitus may be carried about in one's pocket, while it will very shortly require a wagon to remove Sir Walter Scott's labours from place to place. Voltaire's facility was his greatest fault; better he had elaborated his periods, like Rousseau; who, notwithstanding, wrote too much. The latter, however, of all modern writers, best knew the value of his own mind. His prime of life was passed in vicissitude and study. He did not set himself about writing books for mankind, until he knew what they possessed and what they wanted. It was his opinion that a writer who would do any good should stand upon the pinnacle of his age, and from thence look into the future.
BIRDS CHANGING COLOUR.
In a letter to the Editor of the Literary Gazette.
Sir—Observing in the Literary Gazette of last week, a notice of Mr. Young's account of the change of colour in the plumage of birds from fear, I have been mduced to mention some circumstances which, among others, fell under my own observation, and from which I am led to conclude that such changes among the volatile tribes are not so rare as may be imagined, and are often produced by disease, as well as by other mental passions besides terror.
Without referring to the celebrated Jacobite goldfinch of Miss Cicy Scott, which the good old maiden of Carubber's Close affirmed became of a deep sable
hue on the day of Charles's martyrdom— though doubtless the natural philosopher would have discovered in this some more efficient cause than respect Tor the royal sufferer!—I myself recollect a partial change in the colour of a fine green parrot, belonging to Mr. Rutherford, of Ladfield. Like Miss Scott, the laird of Ladfield was a stanch adherent of the house of Stuart, and to his dying day cherished the hope of beholding their restoration to the throne of Britain.
In the meantime, Mr. Rutherford amused his declining years by teaching Charley to whistle " The king shall hae his ain again,'' and to gibber " Send the old rogue to Hanover;" for which he was always rewarded by a sugar-plum or a dole of wassail (Scotch short-bread). Those epicurean indulgences at length induced a state of obesity; and so depraved became the appetite of the bird, that, rejecting his natural food, he used to pluck out the feathers from those parte of the back within his reach, and bruise them with his bill, to obtain the oily substance contained in the quills.
The feathers which grew on the denuded parts were whitish, and never resumed their natural hue. I often saw Charley long after the death of his master, and he looked as if Nature, in one of her sportive moods, had created him half parrot, half gosling—so, strangely ,'lid his whitish back and tail contrast with his scarlet poll and brilliant green beck.
A still more remarkable change of colour in a lark, belonging to Dr. Thos. Xoott, of Fanash, occurred under my own eye, and which, I have no doubt, "was produced by grief at being separated from a mavis. Their cages had long hung side by side in the parlour, "and often had they striven to out-rival each other in the loudness of their song, till their minstrelsy became so stunning, that it was found necessary to remove the laverock to a drawing-room above stairs,.
The poor bird gradually pined, moped, and ceased its song; its eyes grew dim, and its plumage assumed a dullish tint, which, in less than a fortnight, changed to a deep black.
The worthy physician watched with the eye of a naturalist this phenomenon; but, after awhile, fearing for the life of his favourite, he ordered it to be replaced alongside its companion.
In a short time it resumed its spirits "and its song—recommenced its rivalry with the mavis; but, after every moulting, the new feathers were always of the same coal-black colour.
The mavis evinced no corresponding feeling of attachment—neither, so fur as I recollect, missing its companion, nor rejoicing at its restoration. A. C. Hall.
SPIRIT OF THE
BATTLE OF THE CATS.
(From the " A'octes " of Blackwood.)
Tickler.—A Battle of Cats.
"How tweet Uie moonlight sleeps upon the slates!"
Miss Tabitha having made an assigna-
"0 happy love! when love like this is found .—
Shepherd.—The last line wanna miBwer—
'• Beneath the milk-white thorn that scents the eveniirg gTsle^
Tickler.—Woman Or cat,—«he who hesitates, is lost. But Diana, shining in heaven, the goddess of the Silver Bow, Sees the peril of poor Pussy, and interposes her celestial aid to save the vestal. An enormous grimalkin, almost a wild cat, comes rattlmg along the roof, down from the chimney-top, and Tom Tortoiseshell, leaping from love to war, tackles to the Red Rover in single combat. Sniff—snuff—splutter—squeak— squall—caterwaul—and throttle!
North. — Where are the following lines?'
"From the sett music of the spinning purr,
Shepherd^—Wheesht, North, wheesht.