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lations shew, as the translator ob- the following, the last of them, especially, not very cogent:
serves" that the poetry of the Scalds chiefly displays itself in "That this fine eastern pastoral images of terror.” In a note to was designed for a vehicle of rethe Dying Ode of Regnar Lod- ligious truths, is an opinion handbrog, attributed to the 9th cen- ed down from the earliest antiquity. tury, the translator, in the expres. That it may be so, has been clearly sion of “a mass of weapons," de- proved by one of the best critics tects " a sneer on the Christian of the age (Dr. Lowth): and that religion," which they considered as it is so, may be strongly presumed, the religion of cowards, because not only from that ancient and it would have corrected their universal opinion, but from its savage manners," or rather be- being preserved in a book, all cause they had not witnessed the whose other contents are of a diCrusades into the East, or the vine religious nature." wars for "religion and social order" in Christian Europe.
While the New Translation
was in the press, 66 appeared a In 1764, was published, in one new edition of the Prælectiones, small volume, 12mo. The Song with notes, by Michaëlis," who, of Solomon, newly translated from according to our translator's postthe original Hebrew, with a Com- script, (p. 103) differs from Lowth, mentary and Annotations. This as to the Song of Solomon "being translation has been long ascribed a sacred allegory, and is inclined to Mr. Percy, and we apprehend, to look no further than the literal may be now confidently regard- meaning. Yet allows it to be a ed as the production of his pen. production not unworthy the ceThe translator describes his work lestial muse, and thinks it was as "an atttempt to rescue one of inserted in the great code of sathe most beautiful pastorals in cred and moral truths, to shew the world, as well as the most that wedded love has the express ancient, from that obscurity and approbation of the Deity." It is confusion, in which it has been surprising that the learned profesinvolved by the injudicious prac. sor could discover any recommentice of former commentators. The dation of marriage, in the story generality of these," he complains, of an amorous prince, possessed have been so busily employed already of "threescore queens in opening and unfolding its alle. and fourscore concubines," yet gorical meaning, as wholly to neg- inclined, like a modern grand lect that literal sense, which ought seignior, to add another bride to to be the basis of their dis. his seraglio. It is yet more to coveries." On the contrary, it is be admired that our translator his sole design to establish and could conjecture (p. 103), "that illustrate the literal sense;" pro- this elegant description of conposing, "in a future attempt, to jugal love is, after all, only a enquire, what sublime truths are veil to shadow that divine and concealed under it." The trans- tender regard which subsists belator's reasons for expecting to dis- tween the Redeemer and the souls cover "sublime truths," conceal- of men; a subject," he adds, " of ed in the Song of Solomon, are so much importance as to deserve
a particular and distinct inquiry, and therefore reserved for a future undertaking."
lator regrets as "the assistant and companion of his studies, the instructor of his youth, and the correspondent of his riper age."
Dr. Watts has hinted at the progress of good sense and sober- In 1765, appeared "The Outmindedness as to the religious use lines of a New Commentary on of the Song of Songs. In a later Solomon's Song, drawn by help edition of the Preface to his Lyric of Instructions from the East." Poems, first pul lished in 1709, The author, the late Mr. Harmer, he has this note:- "Solomon's since well known by his "ObserSong was much more in use vations on Divers passages of amongst preachers and writers of Scripture," commends
"the learn. ing, the candour and the elegance displayed in the New Translation.” Of this he makes large use, it in deed his own work were not occasioned by its publication. Hehowever, differs from Bossuet and the translator, and contends, in opposition to the latter, that the Song of Songs was occasioned by Solomon's marriage with Pharaoh's daughter, introducing among the characters a former wife degraded
divinity, when these poems were written, than it is now, 1736." Whiston, about this time, in a Discourse on the subject, had called in question, not only the divinity, but the moral decorum of the book, alledging "the general character of vanity and dissolute. ness, which reigns through the Canticles, in which there is not one thought that leads the mind toward religion, but all is worldly and carnal, to say no worse." At on occasion of that marriage. the date of the "New Transla- This work of Mr. Harmer being, tion," it had become quite safe for we believe, little known, in coma clergyman, without incurring parison with his Observations," scandal, to consider the Canticles we subjoin from his preface the merely as a work of human genius, following explanation of his plan. prudently reserving the point of a spiritual sense. In thus consider ing it, the translator adopted the scheme of Bossuet, who divides the book into seven parts, each comprehending one day of the nuptial festivities.
"That two wives of Solomon, the one just married, and another whose jealousy was greatly awakened by that event, are referred to, and indeed introduced as speakers, which is the ground-work of the whole of what I have offered, and, for aught I know, a thought perfectly new, is a point about which I have very little doubtfulness in my own mind, though perhaps I may not be so happy as to have the generality of my readers adopt the sentiment. -When I speak of my sketching out the interpretation of this venerable Song, I would be understood to mean, as to the literal sense of it, the giving of which the
The Annotations," annexed to the New Translation, discover a critical acquaintance with the customs and phraseology of the Hebrews, and are interspersed with apposite quotations from the Greek and Roman Classics. In the preface, the notes marked B. are ascribed to "the Rev. Mr. Binnel, of Newport, in Shropshire," who died while the sheets were printing off," and whom the trans.
author of the New Translation, with an Introduction, containing very judiciously observes, is the some remarks on a late New first duty of an expositor, without Translation of this Sacred Poem: which it is impossible to discover also a Commentary and Notes, what other truths are couched Critical and Practical. Written under it. though it has been ter- in the year 1769." This work is ribly neglected.” dedicated to Bishop Lowth, and inMr. Harmer communicates his troduced by a letter to an unnam. plan in Remark xii. and xi. of ed reverend friend, in which the the Outines. Dr. Priestley re- writer acknowledges his obligations marks on this poem, (Notes ii. to the New Translation, but pro92.) that every attempt made to ceeds to shew, that it is, in his give a spiritual meaning to it, "apprehension, both defective has only served to throw ridicule and faulty, in several respects." on those who have undertaken it." This commentator is certainly Yet Mr. Harmer found the gos- more at home, in the spiritual pel-state adumbrated in the Song sense of the Canticles, than his of Songs, adducing "the likeness precursor, a disposition likely to be we may observe between Solo encouraged by "Dr. Gill's Ex. " mon's marrying a Gentile princess, planation of the Divine Song," and making her equal in honour which he had just met with, as and privileges with his former well as Harmer's Outlines. To Jewish queen, and in her being both works he frequently refers. frequently mentioned afterwards in history, while the other is passed over in total silence; and the conduct of the Messiah towards the Gentile and Jewish churches." This learned Biblicist was still further sausfied with his plan, because “the universal church is spoken of under the notion of a bride, and the Messiah as her busband, Ephes. v. He found also support in "St. Paun's method of explaining the history of Sarah and Agar," and at length arrived at all the determinateness that can be expected, in a matter that has been so perplexed by the learned, and," as he added, unlike a fierce cubines," are considered as a sort polemic, "of no greater conse. of heir looms, descended to Soloquence to our salvation." mon," the spoils of war in his The New Translation gave oc- father's time, the purchase of his casion to another work which own treasure, or fallen to him as appeared some years after. It was his regal inheritance." Having published anonymously at Edin- thus disposed of these bosom slaves, burgh, in 1775, and entitled The Whom castern tyrants from the light of Song of Solomon, Paraphrased,
He not only speaks" of Christ the heavenly bridegrom, whom Solomon, in this poem is certainly meant to represent," but his fancy runs riot upon this notion, till he presently adds, "The author of the book of Canticles, (for Solomon, as the rest of the prophets, was only the instrument,) the au-, thor, I say, was not a man, but he who judges right; not from appearances, nor from any irregu lar motion in his own breast, as man does, but who knows the inmost thoughts of his frail imperfect creatures." The "threescore queens and fourscore con
"If we examine the lives of future undertaking. Mr. Har
such as have been noted for en mer, expressed a wish to see thusiastic flights, we shall find, "what allegorical sense he would that, if they have not lived in the put on this antient poem," and in practice of vice, (though too many the Commentary, published at of them have,) yet have they Edinburgh, hopes were entertained, been persons of wild and wanton of seeing such a work performed dispositions, careless of their con- by him." Mr. Percy, however, duct, and more careless of their to the credit of his maturer judgconversation and studies, such as ment, appeared not to have purhave had strong passions, and sued the subject further. It he been only kept from indulging ever addressed himself to the. them by the restraints of consci- particular and distinct inquiry" ence, fear, regard for reputation, he had proposed, he probably soon or by having met with cruel dis- found it a labour more herculean appointments. Such persons, when than he had expected, to assimithey take a turn to devotion, love late the sensual Solomon to the God with the same sensual affec- pure and holy Jesus. Their chations they were wont to feel for an racters would no more amalmagate human object, and find their own than the iron and the clay," in warm ideas in places of scripture, the image presented to the imagi. where no such are really to be nation of the king of Babylon. found. And though in all this Our industrious scholar soon at they may not be absolutely crim- tempted another subject, to his inal, yet are they too apt to de- successful prosecution of which ceive themselves and others. The he was principally indebted for love of God is not a sensible pas- that reputation he has acquired sion, nor to be judged of by the among the writers of his time. seeming pious affections which possess the imagination, and which
[To be continued.]
Died, October 5th, at Bewd stitutions and numbers, with those ley in Worcestershire, SAMUEL of his own day, of which he reKENRICK, Esq. This excel- tained a most accurate remem lent man was the third son of the brance. It was at college that Rev. John Kenrick, Minister of his acquaintance began with Dr. the Dissenting Congregation at Wodrow, who was also studying Wrexham in Denbighshire, and under Dr. Leechman, and who was born at Wynnehall, in the has given so interesting an account same county, in the year 1728. of his master, in the Memoir preHaving received his preparatory fixed to his Posthumous Sermons. education in that neighbourhood, Similarity of temper and pursuits he was sent, in the year 1743, to soon ripened their acquaintance the University of Glasgow. This into the closest friendship, which circumstance gave a colour to all only the death of Dr. Wodrow the events of his succeeding life: interrupted. (See M. R. vol. vi. p. and he always regarded it as most 122). They were accustomed to kindly ordered for him by Provi- meet after the hour of lecture, to dence. Having passed through compare and correct the notes the classes of languages and phi- which they had taken, and to purlosophy, he entered the Divinity sue the ideas which their teacher Hall, and attended the lectures of had suggested. Mr. Keurick the celebrated Dr. Leechman, never spoke of Dr. Leechman but who had been recently elected to with enthusiastic affection; rethe theological chair, after violent garding himself as indebted to him opposition from his orthodox for those rational and animating brethren. Time past lightly on views of God and of the Christian with Mr. K. while he pursued his Revelation, which he early emstudies. The period of academical braced and cherished to the end education and the place where it of life. His vacations were spent has been carried on, seldom fail to with his near relation, the Rev. be remembered with regret and Rob. Millar, minister of the Abbey affection by an ingenuous mind,- Church, Paisley, the learned aubeing endeared by two of the thor of the History of the Propa. highest pleasures which a human gation of Christianity. being can enjoy, the acquisition of Mr. K. continued at Glasgow knowledge and the formation of till the year 1750, when he was friendship. In the mind of Mr. engaged as Tutor to the two sons K. these feelings were peculiarly of James Milliken, Esq. of Millistrong--being heightened, perhaps, ken, in Renfrewshire. With the by the contrast between the stu- elder of these young men he set dies of his youth and the business out in the spring of 1760, to make to which his later years were de. a tour on the Continent. At the voted. Even when he was on the Hague, he became acquainted with verge of eighty, accident having the learned translator of Mosheim, renewed his connection with the who gave him much valuable in. University, his affection for his formation respecting the route Alma Mater revived with una- which he was to pursue. From bated strength; and he was de. Holland (as we were at war with lighted to compare its present in- France) they past through part of