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Thus, Pollux, thus the rover Hercules
Thus, tiger-curbing Bacchus, couldst thou climb
To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine.
CIRCUMSTANCES prevented my fecing your Magazine for June, till very lately, elfe I fhould have endeavoured before this to have anfwered the objections which your correfpondent, G. brings against my letter, on the comparative advantages of large and finall farms.
What your correfpondent feems particularly anxious to prove is, that on large farms a lefs number of horfes, and fewer labourers in proportion are employed, than on fmall ones. This I allow to be the cafe in a trifling degree; I do not mean to lay that a large tarm has no advantages, I only contend that the annihilation of fimall farms, and the prefent fyftem of encreafing them to the very great magnitude that now we fo often obferve, is difadvantageous. By fo doing, the body of the yeomanry is very much diminished, and one man occupies what would fupport, in a refpectable way, perhaps half-a-dozen.
He fays "the great fource of ill ma-nagement in farming, is the keeping of an unneceffary number of horfes or oxen to cultivate the foil," and then adds, as an undoubted fact, that the fame number of cattle which are neceffary for the management of 50 acres, are equal to the management of 100. That it is a bad fyftem to keep an unneceffary number of hories I allow, but I am apt to believe, that bad cultivation proceeds oftener from too few than from too many being employed; and as for the affertion that a man can cultivate 100 acres with as fmall a number of cattle that he can 50, it is too extravagant to require confutation. If we are to reafon in this manner, we may go on and fay 1000, or 10,000.Afterwards I am atked, if I never heard of any other manure than the house dunghill? I have not lived most of my life in the country, without knowing that manure is chiefly obtained from the farm yard; and it is therefore probable that the fmall farmer will have the more in proportion. If G.'s affertion about the
50 and the 100 acres were true, there would be no doubt of it. As for the fmall farmer's felling his hay and straw, and bringing back their value in coin," that is very feldom done. Perhaps near London, and fome few great towns it may, though even there manure is always brought back; but in the country, farmers are obliged, by their leafes, nine times out of ten, I may fay 99 times out of 100, to expend all their hay and straw on the premifcs.
The charitable reason given, viz. the mildnefs of the winter, why farmers did not thrash out their grain fooner, is, I fear, far from the real one. Monopoly in corn can only take place when the crops are indifferent, and little doubt is entertained but that the crops of the two preceding years were fo; and I alfo believe that little doubt is entertained, that corn was both monopolized and withheld from market. Perhaps it was not monopolized by the farmer alone, but I know, from facts, that many farmers did buy it up, as well as withhold it.
When I faid that the finall farmer is obliged to fell his coin at the ufual time to pay his rent, I did not fuppofe it could be urged as an argument against small farms. Surely that which tends to keep the price of grain tolerably low, cannot be faid to be detrimental. G. need not be afraid of its finking too much. But when is the little farmer compelled to neglect his land to thrash? By the ufual time, I do not mean that he is forced to thrath it to a day; I only mean that he cannot afford to let it lie fpoiling in his barns, like the rich and purfe-proud farmer.
The comparifon between a manufactory and an inclofure, does not hold good, for here reafoning is fuperfeded by fact; for that the poor's rates are generally increafed on an inclofure taking place, is too well known to be controverted. I can cite many and many inftances. I do not by this mean that I condemn inclofures in toto, but, except when a confiderable quantity of wafte land is brought into cultivation, I do not conceive them to be very advantageous.
Because I faid that a fniall farm held out an incitement to induftry, it is not to be concluded that I with all farms to be let to men, who by their care and prudence have faved a fmall fum of money. A perfon who has been thus prudent and laborious, will moft probably do his utmoft to cultivate the land properly; and furely it is a good thing that an incite..
1796.] Addifon's Drummer. . .. Imprisonment of Seven Quakers. 617
ment to induftry fhould be afforded. I know many men who now are respectable farmers of 150l. a-year or more, who were twenty years ago nothing but common labourers. Is it not more advan
rageous that their money fhould be thus employed, than fpent in drunkenness and debauchery?
Perhaps I did not fufficiently explain myself with regard to milk, for I was unwilling to take up more room in your Magazine than was neceffary. I only faid that another confequence of large farms was, that the poor could not obtain milk; but I did not mean fo much from the fcarcity of it, as that the large farmer will not fell it them. He is too rich and too much fet up to receive their halfpence: no, it feeds his hogs; and, in his eyes, that is a matter of much greater importance than the health of his poor neighbours. I fay bealth, for nothing contributes fo much towards the health of a poor perfon's family, as plenty
G. thinks poultry a luxury and beneath confideration, but whether juftly or not, I much doubt. Whatever like poultry is reared at little or no expence, and is, befides, a plain and wholesome food, I can never conceive as a luxury or as beneath confideration.
I cannot but fuppofe, but that which deftroys the just gradation of the different orders of fociety is detrimental. This is a matter of opinion, but I believe of an opinion very generally received.However, it certainly is a matter of fact, that large farms do destroy this grada
I have thus, fir, briefly endeavoured to defend my opinion on this fubject. How far I may convince others, I know not; but of the truth of what I advance, I myself am, from experience, fully perfuaded. It is not iny intention to enter into any farther controverly on the matter; but if any other perfon chufes to take it up, I fhall be happy to fee my affertion defended by abler pens, for it is a fubject well worthy difcuffion. Did not circumftances prevent me from taking the pains due to what appears in your Magazine, perhaps I might have defended it better myself. I am, &c.
Olney, Sept. 4.
A. Q. Q. L.
*A communication. which takes this fide of the queftion, written by our able correfpondent, "A Poor Northumbrian," is unavoidably deterred on account of its great length. EniTOR.
To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine.
HAVING underfood from Dr. John
fon's Life of Addifon, that the latof the Drummer to be the production of ter had never acknowledged the comedy his pen, and that its claim to fuch an origin depended merely on its having been delivered by Addifon to Steele at a tavern, as the compofition of a gentlcman in company; I was fomewhat furprifed to find in the edition of Beaumont and Fletcher, by Theobald, Steward, and Sympfon, vol. i, p. 294, a note by Theobald, which, if it may be credited, will place the claim of Addifon beyond dif vil, in the Scornful Lady, he fays, "The pute. Speaking of the character of Saingenious Mr. Addifon, I remember, told
me that he iketched out the character of
Vellum, in the comedy called the Drummer, from this model." The character of Theobald, I believe, was not much diftinguished by veracity, and in this inftance his memory might have failed him. Perhaps however fome of your correfpondents may be able to afcertain what fort of credit is due to the above affertion; and in doing this they will oblige,
Your's, &c. Norwich, Sept. 12, 1796.
J. C. F.
To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine.
THE imprifonment of feven Quakers
tithes (mentioned page 350 of your mifin York Castle for refufing to pay cellany) was a fubject which had long lic might not be deceived as to the cirengroffed my attention. That the pub
cumftances of an affair, about which there was a general curiofity, I wrote in the month of May laft, a pamphlet entitled "Strictures on the conduct of the Rev. George Markhain, A. M. Vicar of Carlfeveral members of the people called ton, occafioned by his profecution of Quakers, for their non-payment of
This was published in June, by Mr. Owen, and I have reafon to behas been approved by many worthy and lieve that the tendency of that pamphlet diftinguished members of the Church of England; who being attached to the prefent establishment, and fully convinced of the excellence of chriftianity, cannot but view the line of conduct which Mr.
Markham has purfued, as aiming to deftroy the existence of the former, and di
rectly hoftile to the principles of the latter.
I afferted, page 6, that "in the reign of Charles I. the fociety was periecuted with the greatest degree of violence,, which did not abate till the acceffion of William and Mary to the British crown." I have fince been told that the fociety was not perfecuted in the time of Charles 1. I am willing to acknowledge that the affertion is made with too great a latitude. As a fociety perhaps they were not perfecuted, no laws, that I know of, being made against them. But it should alfo be remembered that the heads of this fociety were made the objects of perfonal violence, and became the victims of bru. tal cruelty even before the time of the commonwealth, efpecially during the truggle between the Parliament and the King; and what the ftate had not time or opportunity to perform, the priests of that day took care fhould not be neglected. Perfecution is perfecution, whether it be received from the state or from individuals, or whether you fall under its lafh either perfonally or collectively.
I believe this is the only mistake I have made, excepting a grammatical one, at the beginning of the paragraph, page 37, which efcaped me in the hurry of compofition.
I am one of those who confider perfecution of our fellow creatures as rebellion against God. It is to me equally hateful whether it proceeds from a monarch or a prieft; whether it refides in the temples of luxury, or fuperftitiously hides itfelf in the gloom of a convent. I am strongly inclined to think that Mr. Bourn was right in saying "there are no characters in the world more oppofite to each other, than those of a chriftian and a perfecutor
I think, fir, I have not difgraced my character, as a member of the church of England, by expofing the conduct of one of its teachers. The propriety of fuch an establishment I am ready to confefs, and am equally ready to declare, that the purer it is kept the longer it will laft.
I am, fir,
Your humble fervant, L-, Aug. 9, 1796. CHARLES WILSON.
There are in the Welth (he fays) words perfectly fimilar in found, to the mytho logic names of the ancient world, anfwering exactly to moft of the explanations given by Gebelin and Bryant. Mr. Bryant is a very learned man, but though his fyftem may amuse us by its ingenuity, it is not accurate enough to convince. Sanconiathon, Manetho, and Berofus, afford but bad premises on which to erect a demonftration. The explanations which Mr. Bryant has given of what he calls the Ammoniat particles, and on which he founds his fyftem, are entirely conjectural; and his conjectures have been proved by Mr. Richardfon, the ableft of our oriental fcholars, to be totally unfounded.
Meirion fays, "there is not the leaft difference between the language of the laws of Howell in the tenth, or Geoffrey of Monmouths hiftory in the twelfth century, and that now fpoken in Wales;" but, Geoffrey of Monmouth wrote in latin, and the British History which he is faid to have tranflated, was brought from Armorica, by Walter Mapæus, the celebrated archdeacon of Oxford, and at that time carried marks of great antiquity. A copy of this original history is faid to exift at Wynneftay; if Meirion means this copy, he has confounded the original with the tranflation, confequently his dates are wrong, and this proof of the ftability of the Welsh language
Dr. PERCY in his preface to his very valuable tranflation of Mallet's Northern Antiquities, has given the Pater Nofter in the ancient and the modern British languages. I know nothing myfelf of the language, but the difference to the eye is as evident, as the difference between Chaucer and Dryden's tranflation would appear to a man who understood neither.
The advocates of Welsh poetry have extolled it too highly. The fair Pilgrim, which EDWARD WILLIAMS has tranflated from Dafydd ap Gwilym, is the beft fpecimen I have feen; and a few detached fentences in Llywarch Hen are very beautiful; but these must not be compared with the wild majesty of the Runic poems, or the remains of Offian, whofe exquifite merit has ever been, and ever will be acknowledged, fee nature, and the heart that can feel by thofe who poffefs, "the eye that can
Anfwer to Heraclito-Democriteus.
To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine:
YOUR ingenious correfpondent Hera
clito-Democriteus has affumed a very appofite fignature. He reminds me of a perfon I have fomewhere heard or read of, who had fuch a command of mufcles, as to laugh on one fide of his face, while he wept on the other. I could have indulged a hearty laugh at the wit and humour with which his letter abounds, had 1 not been checked by the thought Ha nuga in feria ducunt.
Swift's Yahoo, though there are many ftrokes of wit and fatire in it, I cannot but confider as a piece of blafphemy against human nature, and from my foul abhor the fentiment he utters in a letter to Pope:"I love Peter and I love John, but as for that thing called human nature, I deteft it."
It has been faid, and I believe, justly, that the fcorn and contempt with which the unhappy Jews have been for ages invariably treated by the good orthodox Chriftians, has been one caufe of that bafe and abject fpirit which is fo generally attached to their character; and I cannot but fufpect, that if, inftead of inculcating that truly noble maxim of the old philofophers," Reverence thyself," we are prefented with degrading caricatures of human nature, however humouroufly drawn, and highly finished, it may have a fimilar effect.
ality, &c. which history and experience abundantly furnish, who will fum up for us the contrary inftances of love to relatives, friends, neighbours, strangers,
enemies, and the brute creation? who fhall reckon up the innumerable inftances of private virtues in the middle clades of life, which are feldom regarded as within the province of history; instances of temperance and chastity, generoficy, gratitude, and compattion, courage, humility, patience, refignation, piety, &c. and ftrike a fair balance? Thefe latter, like cheering funs, fertilizing fhowers, healthful and fruitful feafons, the common phenomena of nature, occur often, mix themfelves with our most common thoughts, words, and actions, and pafs little noticed; while the former. efpecially if joined with power, as they ulually are, like ftorms and tempefts, famines, plagues, and earthquakes, make ftronger and more lafting impreffions, and occur to the memory and imagination, more readily in all enquiries of this
Let us fee, then, Mr. Editor, whether we cannot, as Her. Dem. defires, from a fair drawing after nature, give a better and more favourable portrait of this animal, man, than his Simia fine Cauda exhibits, or, at least, mend his draft?
HOMO: Animal fui generi; os fublime; intelligens; boni investigator; fagax; audax; confortio gaudens; animalium reliquorum domitor; fermonis, artium & fcientiarum multarum, capax; cœlum intuens & illorfum tendens.
I am, fir, your humble fervant,
Your correfpondent, indeed, appeals to history, and the uniform experience of paft ages, to prove, that men were made for the purpose of pillaging, enflaving, and murdering each other, at the command of tyrants and leaders of armies: but this is furely a very partial and in- Hackney, Sept. 8, 1796. complete view of the fubject. Was I about to draw the general moral character of the inhabitants of London and Westminster, would it be fair to form my estimate from the annals of Newgate, and the Old Bailey, or from the fcum of mankind, as corrupt courts, wicked princes, armies and their leaders, ufually are?
Hiftory is, in fact, little more, confidered in a moral point of view, than the hiftory of the canaille of mankind, and by no means proves that there is more moral evil, than moral good in the world.
How, indeed, fhall we make the computation? For after heaping together the many inftances of ambition, violence, impofture, cruelty, revenge, ingratitude, want of natural affection, brutal fenfuMONTHLY MAG. No. VIII.
THE ENQUIRER. No. VIII,
QUESTION: Wherein do the prefent Modes of Popular Inftruction admit of Improvement?
Without thee, what were unenlighten'd man?
IT has hitherto been too much the
practice of the higher orders of society to treat the lower ranks with contempt, The philofopher has fpoken of the vulgar as a favage herd, whofe thoughts are all vanity, whose words are all false, 4 K
hood and error; who cenfures that which is good, and approves that which is bad; whofe praife is difgrace, and whofe actions and enterprizes are folly. The hiftorian has allowed the common people neither judgment, nor honeftyt. Even the good-natured poet, who has had the candour to acknowledge, that the opinion of the vulgar may fometimes be right, has not fcrupled to speak of them as a many-headed monfter §, and to fpurn them with indignant difdain. By ftatefmen and politicians the common people have been regarded as a herd of fine; ftupid, troublefome, and unmanageable; as beafts of burden, formed only to toil and fweat, that their fuperiors may live in eafe and luxury; as wheels in the great machine of commerce, in which no other power is required, than that of moving in their proper places; cr, laftly, as mechanical inftruments of defence or hoftility, to kill, or be killed off, at the pleasure of their leaders; and not lefs blindly under their direction, than the gun or the bayonet which is put into their hands,
If there be any ground for these contemptuous notions of the common people, it can only be found in that ignorance which their degraded ftate has hitherto rendered almoft unavoidable, or in thofe prejudices which their fuperiors have thought it their intereft to fofer. The wealthy and powerful have been afraid of communicating to them that light which would enable them to fee both their rights and their wrongs. The wife have made a monopoly of their wifdem; fhutting it up in the fchools, or fhrouding it under the veil of hieroglyphics and myfteries. Inftead of providing for the inftruction of the multitude, or even leaving them to the unbiaffed operation of their rational powers, it has been the conftant practice to inftitute fyftems of delufion, for the difhoneft purpose of feeding credulity and cherishing fuperftition. What right have thofe, who have thus enfeebled men's understandings, in order to fubjugate their wills, to complain of vulgar ignorance and prejudice? Firft to put out a man's eyes, and then to blame him for not finding his path, is to add infult to cruelty.
Philanthropy muft reprobate the idea of keeping men ignorant, in order to keep them flaves. Knowledge is the naturar food of mind; and to deny men the opportunity of attaining it, is as unjuft, as to withhold from them the means of acquiring their daily bread. Capable as every man is by nature of deriving pleasure and benefit from the exercise of his intellectual powers, it becomes one great end of focial alliance, to furnish each individual with the means of increafing his ftores of rational enjoyment, by improving his underftarding. Befides the increafe of perfonal happinefs, which, in a well regulated itate of fociety, would be the neceffary effect of increafing knowledge; it is evident, that the interefts of fociety are beft promoted by a free diffufion of intellectual light, through the general mais of the people. It is only by the cultivation of the understanding, that the groffnefs of brutal manners can be corrected, that the violence of appetite and paffion can be reftrained, and that man can be rendered "mild and fociable to man." No one, who has actually compared the character of the moft illiterate with that of the better inftructed poor, in different places, will doubt, that the eaficft and fureft method of making men good citizens, is to afford them means and opportunities of information.
Admitting the utility of public inftruction, as a point which will be controverted only by thofe who have finifter ends to ferve by keeping the people in ignorance, it is important to enquire in what manner this bufinels has hitherto been conducted, and in what refpects it is capable of improvement? In the most civilized nations of antiquity, the commun'cation of knowledge to the common people appears to have been almost entirely neglected; the idea feems fcarcely to have occurred to their most enlightened philofophers; and it would be difficult to find, in the writings of the ancient Greeks or Romans, any explicit affertion of the neceffity or utility of papular inftruction. Some individuals, indeed, of more than ordinary benevolence, took upon themfelves the character of moral inftructors. Pythagoras and Socrates, are celebrated names which come under this defcription. Of the former, we read, that at Samos, his native place, in a femicircular building, in which the inhabitants had been accustomed to meet