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After having made this discovery, as or iron, conveniently shaped ; and all our author says, with surprize (at which that this burnisher does, is but to de. we are not surprized, considering it was press the little prominences of the filver, fo surprizing a discovery) he proceeds and reduce them, and the little cavities to'tell us, that he was no sooner cone of it, to one physically level, or plain vinced of the falsehood of the lystem ge- superficies. nerally received than he thought it in From phænomena, say they, we cumbent on him, if possible, to discover may proceed to establish general rules. the true system of nature, in order When we see these changes produced in to fill up the vacuum he had left in his bodies by mechanic alterations, we are own mind. To this end, we are told, authorized to conclude universally, that he applied himself to that experimental alike effects will proceed from the same knowledge, by which only the general causes and by the most rational and scheme or plan of nature in this materi- unexceptionable analogy in the world, al world is to be known, and by simply to lay it down as an axiom, that the attending to fact and reality, drew the shapes, lizes, texture, and insensible outlines of the draught here presented motion or rest of the invisible corpuscles, to the public.
determine the body, compounded of Before Mr. Usher lays down his them, to be this or that particular thing, own system, however, he give his readers, viz. a stone or an apple-tree, gold or what he calls, a miniature idea of the sea-water.' “ In order to explain this Syften he attacks.
hypothesis, they assert, as I observed be6. Mechanic philosophers, says he, fore, that all matter is homogenous, suppose all the parts and particles of and that though it may be conceived as matter to be homogenous, and to differ infinitely divisible, (and would really trom each other in their shapes, sizes, be so by an agent of infinite power) yet) and motions only; and that natural bo- in the present state of things, it is redu. dies being formed by the concourse and cible, by natural agency only, to cerconvention of the minute particles of tain very minute corpuscles ; beyond matter, the whole variety we observe in which, there is no physical poffibility of natural bodies, is the mere result of the subdividing it farther ; that each of Lhapes, fizes, texture, motion, and reft those corpuscles are of some determinate of the minute and insensible corpuscles bulk and figure, and capable of differa of which the particular bodies are com- ent degrees
of motion ; and that accor. pored.
dingly as these corpuscles happen to “ This doctrine they pretend to de. convenc, they form an oak tree, a sive from similar effectsin objects of sense, cloud, or a rock; which differ only in and to establish on analogy or a parity the mechanism of their constituent par. of reasoning. We fee, say they, a piece ticles. So that the result of the corpurof iron, by a change in the form, be- cularian philosophy, is, that lize, shape, come a new thing, i. e. a knife, and motion, or rest, are the catholic, prima. acquire a new capacity of cutting and ry, or radical properties of hodies ; and separating other substances : a piece of that the other properties, as colour, glass or resin, by a motion which beats taste, smell, &c. arise out of them, as it into powder, is deprived of its transpa. secondary qualities, or mere effects.' rency, and becomes white ; a piece of Such is our author's abitract of the Hilver, by being burnished, loses much mechanical philosophy : the whole fyftem of its former colour, and acquires a new of which he invalidates at once, by the power of reflecting the beams of light, following Ihrewd and conclusive reflecand visible objects, in the manner pro- tions. per to specular bodies; yet all this is “ The supposed analogy, or parity done by the intervention of a burniling of reason, which is the whole support sool, which often is but a piece of feel of this system, upon examination, ap
pears to be fallacious and groundless ; castles built every day in the air ; but į the iron of the knife is not changed or
insist on it, that this familiarity gives transmuted, it is only flatted and ground us no right to hide in, by a philosophic to an edge: the glass or refin pulveriz.' legerdemain, an analogy that does not ed, are still real glass and resin, mingled. sublift in nature, and alter, to make a with particles of air, and thereby ren- real foundation for science on that fan. dered white, as water is in foam ; and ciful analogy." burnished silver, is silver still : they are The reader will see that our new theall the same identical natural bodies, orist is a bold man; his taking upon him and of the same real species they were to challenge his adversaries, and to before this egregious mutation ; and mark out the ground on which he is to therefore the true consequence, from be attacked, may be thought, however, these instances, is, that the different rather too bold and peremptory. In. kinds of natural bodies, are not the re. deed mechanic philosopher with a ve. Sult of insensible shapes, sizes, or moti- ry small share of logic, might object to ons, or of any mechanic quality what. him the-Sophiftry of denying that any ever; and that there is no analogy in analogy sublifts between artificial bodies nature, that leads to such a presumption. and natural bodies, because natural bo
“ I must request of any person, who dies are not changed and diversified so takes up his pen for the mechanic system, palpably as artificial ones. He might to point out one single instance in na- fay, no mechanic philosopher ever preture, of a transmutation wrought in a tended that any alteration in the visible natural body, by an alteration in the and known Mape, size, or motion of a visible and known shape, size, or mo- natural body, could change the specific tion of that body. This is a request he substance of that body. To be ferious, cannot with any reason deny me, if he' no one ever said, that by giving a piece attempts to support his theory on ana. of steel that form, which converted it logy, or parity of reasoning ; but if he into a knife, or a razor, he thereby algives up the analogy, by producing no tered the qualities, or changed the subsuch transmutation, then I desire, he stance of the steel. will thew any other foundation for his The qualities of the knife, or razor, System; and even make it appear, that however, are certainly owing to the alit is pollible to conceive, that any varia. teration of the form of the steel: nor tion of Mape, size, or motion, can na do we see any absurdity in concluding turally and spontaneously, cause this, or from analogy, that as the qualities of arthat particular odour, tafte, or colour, tificial bodies, evidently depend on their preferable to any other. Thus I have visible shape, fize, or modification of pointed out the only ground on which parts, so may the specific qualities of a mechanic philosoplier may solidly an. natural bodies, depend on the invisible swer me ; but let it be remembered that and impalpable shape, size, or modifica.' I protest in form, against his producing tion of their parts likewise. Our not instances, where the transmutation is being able to trace minutely the mechanot real, and then making a transition nism
of natural bodies in their formato the new productions of nature ; and tion or transinutation, is nothing to the supposing, instead of proving, that they purpose : indeed if we could, we should are effects of alterations, in thape, size, have no need to reason from analogy, or motion. The ulual changes made on this subject at all : fo that Mr. by mechanism every day, from the ease Ussher here objects to the use of analogy, with which they are conceived, are very without our having such a knowledge apt to cheat us into a belief, that real of things as would entirely set it alide, essential transmutations are equally ef. and render it useless. fects of the same caule. Mutations, in But let us attend to our author's own this tract of thought, are familiar it is 'fyftem. prue; so are dreams, and the thousand
“ I have
" I have concluded, says he, from with applause, and swallow down the an attention to well known effects evi. stupendous legend for knowledge and dent to sense, which I have placed in learning. I can aflign no reason for my reader's view, that the simple ele. this credulity, but that the doctrine is ments of bodies are ingenerable, une beyond all limits of common sense ; for changeable, and incorruptible, and there is a certain noble heighth in exwere at the beginning created different, travagance, to which if once we be able and divided into kinds or forts; that the to carry our system, it becomes free from embryoes, or seeds of natural bodies, all examination or triai, like the counare select compositions of thele elements, tries on the surface of the moon; and which inherit in themselves, by a divine if we be lucky enough to make a few law, principles productive of new feeds converts of note, then it may pais freely and embryoes, that continue and eternize upon the millions who judge only by the species by succession; that each kind precedent " of element being endued with particu What is this but to tell us, that all tar attractions and repulfions, the spe. mechanic philosophers must be atheists ? cific seeds convene, and consolidate to A most egregious and scandalous false, themselves, their respective kindred and hood ! Nor doth this author deal more family elements, and resist and repel candidly with the mechanic philosophy the unrelated and dissociable ones; itself than with its professors ; endea. whence in the natural round and course vouring throughout his whole pamphlet of attractions and repulsions, the pro to mirepresent or misapply the most ductions and dissolutions we see in thiş common arguments and illustrations of transitory world, take place."
his opponents ; all which, however, Such is the author's account of the serve rather to strengthen their cause lyftem he attacks, and of his own. In than his own. combating the former, however, we We shall give the reader a short spedo not think him so fair and candid as cimen or two of the expedients which we could have wished. In particular this writer hath fubfituted, inttead of he tell us, that, “ Whether a mecha- the homogenous particles, to account nic philosopher avows it in express terms for the phænomena of bodies. or no, it is an unavoidable and funda Nothing hath inore puzzled the phimental part of his hypothesis, that the losophers of the present and last centukinds of bodies that form the world, ry, than to account for the cohesion of and "consequently the amazing and the parts of bodies. Mr. Usler, howbeauteous order thereof, are the effects ever, hath wiped off the difficulty with of the undirected concourse of particles a wet finge 1;letting us at once into the of various shapes, sizes, and motions. whole secret of cohetion, and the pro
" When a philosopher gravely tells cels of fertilization in the mineral and us, that the sun, the moon, the stars, vegetable kingdom. Doth any body and this habitable globe, with all its alk, what makes the parts of bodies wondrous progeny, where every single adhere together ? body hath such amazing traces of su. Clay, says Mr. Ussher, is the comperlative wisdom and power, are form- mon basis, and unchangeable unfleeting ed in consequence of the mere shapes conlistence, that consolidates all vegeand sizes of the constituent particles table and animal bodies, which gives jumbled together ; and relates a thousand them stability and fixedness, and retimes more violent and numerous me mains naked to the eye, when the volatamorphoses than those of Ovid, with tile and specific e'emonts are transpired out the poet's probability of introduc- and fed. As some elements are much ing a God equal to the work ; I say, less volatile than others, and recede when a philosopher tells us this wond- more leisurely, the caput mortuum, or rous tale we listen to the venerable fage clay of corrupted bodies, differ in their
qualities for some little time, but at " Water adheres to, and cements length, by their final egress, the de- the minute and fugitive particles of beserted clay becomes of the nature of dies. Fire gives them elasticity, and the soil it lies on.
rends them asunder. It is, probably, “ The clay of perished bodies deserts by the cohefion of water to the corpuled and stripped, discovers itself, and cles of the grosser elements, and by its puts on his pristrine form once more; levity, when rarified, they become fu. while the transient and volatile elements, gitive The fire evaporates the water, that have broke their bonds and escap- and wings away the minute particles ed, mingle with the circumfluent at. that cohere to it, upon the ætherial mosphere, where they are scattered by wings of the liquid element into the the action of the sun, till they impreg. atmosphere; by which ceconomy it for nate the whole fluid with the seeds of ever replenishes the inexhaustible stores life. In process of time, being ab- of nature, and supplies the wardrobe sorbed by the rarified vapours, and the of successive springs. The cohesion of clouds that scour the regions of the air water to the elementary particles of
to and fro, they descend in proliç show- bodies occasions the drying of winds ; ' ers and dews, and make the smiling for those invisible atoms fanning the
earth teem with plenty and beauty. Ele surface of the earth and waters, dip ments of a different nature, that are their wings in the liquid wave, and not arrested by vegetables, enter with carry off the impercep.ible dew-drops the rain into the fissures of the earth, by successive millions. and lodging in masses, proper for their “ The joint operation of fire and was reception, form metals, stones, and ter seem necessary in the dissolution and other fossils. Whence it has happened vegetation of bodies ; or rather the mic that shells of fishes, ears of corn, plants, nistry of the water, when it is animatand leaves petrified, are found fome. ed and put in motion by fire. The times in the hearts of blocks of marble ; power of moisture and heat in combinac, and that columns of stone have been tion, are known to every body in vegedilcovered irregularly Auted, like ici. tation ; but that combination is also ecles, pendenta from the roofs of grot- qually necessary in the dissolution of botoes, and subterraneous caves, made by dies. Flesh does not corrupt in trolly the now dropping of water, that weather : the carcases of men are found brought itony parricies along with it in whole and fresh on the Andes, secured. successive layers. Pure clay is wholly in eternal frost. In hot and dry counbarren. The fertility of the earth is a tries, where the moisture is exhaled from foreign, alienable acquisition, by no the flesh, we find nearly the same efmeans permanent in the soil, as appears fects; the bodies of men are tossed afrom the changeable state of lands bout in Arabia, in the deserts of Atrio' Thirting from fertility to barrenness, and ca, and the south part of Persia, whole from barrenness to fertility ; this truth and inoffensive of smell, for years, pero' also is evident from the whole practice haps for ages, embalmed in ærherial of agriculture."
fires. The alust climate of Upper As clay, according to our author, Egypt, has contributed more to the binds the parts of bodies together, so preservation of the bodies of their water and file are the agents which sedead, than their spices and balsams. parate them. Hear what he says on this Heat and moisture in concert awaken head, and at the same time let this par. all the elements to life and action, and sage serve as a specimen of Mr. Ussher's that action in course produces vegetati. Itile, which as far surpasses that of our on and corruption. Let me here demechanic philosophers, as his system is plore our ignorance of the nature of. superior to that of Newton, or any o those two distinguished elements, and ther of the corpuscularian tribe, the attachment ot mankind to that bır.
ren philosophy, which, by turning the plains; their itinery is marked out by attention of the learned to the trilling immemorial custom, and by ordinan. powers of mechanism, bound down all ces, and is as well regulated as the genius, and laid an arrest on the know- march of troops. They feed freely in Jedge of nature, except what is merely all the wilds and commons they pass acquired by accident.
through, but as they must necessarily After entertaining his readers with a pass through many cultivated spots, good deal of this kind of reasoning, the proprietors of them are obliged Mr. Uslher stumbles at length on some. by law to leave a passage open for the thing like a truth, which is, “ that the sheep, through vine-yards, olive-yards, fyftem he has been endeavouring to trace corn-fields, and pasture land common is not new, but of all others the most to towns, and these passages must be at ancient; and had fallen into oblivion, least 90 yards wide, that they may not before the other ancient theories were be too crowded in a narrow lane. thought on, much about the time man. These passages are often so long, that kind unfortunately loft fight of their the poor creatures march fix or seven own origin, and funk into endless er- leagues a day to get into the open wilds, rors." The expedient indeed of re- where the shepherd walks flow to let curring to specific forms, qualities, and them feed at ease and reft; but they elements, is of too ancient a date, and never stop, they have no day of repose, favours too much of the days of igno- they march at least two leagues a day, rance and barbarism, to be adopted in ever following the shepherd, always these more enlightened times of me- feeding or seeking with their heads tochanical reasoning and philosophical wards the ground, till they get to their experiment.
journey's end, which, from the Mon.
tana to Extramandura, is about 150 * leagues, which they march in less than
40 days. The chief nepherd's first From the GentleMAN'S MAGAZINE. care is to see that each tribe is conduct
ed to the same district it fed in the year An Account of obe Sheep and Sheep. before, and where the sheep were yeanWalks of Spain concluded.
ed, which they think prevents a variaT the latter end of September tion in the wool, though indeed this
they put on the redding or ocre; requires but little care, for it is a noto. it is a ponderous irony earth, common rious truth that the sheep would go to that in Spain ; the shepherd disolves it in very spot of their own accord. His next water, and dawbs the theeps backs with care was to fix the toils * where the it from the neck to the rump. It is an leep pass the night, left they should old custom. Some say it mixes with the stray, and fall into the jaws of wolves. grease of the wool, and so becomes a Lastly, the shepherds make up their
poor varnish impenetrable to the rain and huts with stakes, branches, and bram. cold; other's, that its weight keeps the bles, for which end, and for firing, they woel down, so hinders it from growing are allowed by the law to cut off .one long and coarse; and others, that it branch from every tree; I believe this acts as an absorbent earth, receives to be the reason that all the forest-trees part of the transpiration, which would near the sheep walks in Spain are as hol. foul the wool, and make it asperous. low as willow-pollards. The roots of
The latter end of September the sheep trees and the quantity of sap increase begin their march towards the low yearly with the branches ; if you lopp
• The Toils are made of Sparto, in meshes a foot wide, and the thickness of a finger, so that Toils serve instead of hurdles. The whole square Toil is light. Sparto is a fort of ruth which bears swifting into ropes for coasting vessels. It swims; hemp finks: It is called Boss by the Englith failors.