Imatges de pàgina

Lord Rector of the University of Glasgoro.

45 of this office have uniformly been as the most eloquent political philosuch as were recommended to the sopher of modern times. youthful minds of the students by " I am well aware that I have no some eminent claims to distinction in claim to engage your attention, but rank and station, or in science and that of a countryman engaged in laliterature, in legislation, in the useful borious public pursuits. I am well arts, in the science of government, or aware that I have no other pretensions in some department of public business than the love of letters. My life has beneficial to the country. Is it nothing been variegated, and has left little for that the youths of this University the prosecution of projects that were should be trained in their earlier years formed in niy early life, and the age to exercise these functions of duty of repose has been converted into an which they may in maturer years be age of anxiety. I would advise those called on to practise, in the election who are masters of their oiva time, of the magistracy of the country, or that they would confine their life to of the framers of the laws, which it one object, and not be distracted by is the peculiar blessing of our happy diversity of pursuit. I would observe, constitution that the people are sup- Gentlemen, that the national partiality posed to be privileged to exercises which we in Scotland feel for one This early acquaintance with the rights another, may have had some share in of freemen qualifies them to use them this election. This has been consi. without any tumultuary or disorderly dered by some as a reproach. But it feelings, as habitual rights which lead is a singular circumstance, that one of to no disorder in their future exercise, the greatest writers of antiquity rewhenever they have opportunities of presents this quality as predominating using the elective franchise in any of among the inhabitants of the mounthe various forms which our constitu- tainous regions of Italy. It is desigtion provides. It has ever appeared nated as fautrix suorum regio,' to to me, that by this excellent Institu- which some in modern times have tion, the youth who are thus graciously made an approach. entrusted with the choice of their aca “ I should think myself culpable, demical magistrates, are consoled for Gentlemen, were I to pass over a few their subjection to the academical of the extraordinary honours that have laws, and are more submissive to the distinguished this University in former necessary discipline of the University, times. It was founded by the Roman than in other situations where they Catholic establishment—was coeval are deprived of every power of elect with the art of printing with a peing their magistracy. So wisely had riod when a few mechanics, by finding this election heen managed by the out the means of inventing a new youths of the University, that he was copying machine, changed in some almost overwhelmed by the talents measure the whole system of letters, and worth of his celebrated predeces- and almost of civil society. It is a sora. The youth of Glasgow had curious fact, that this discovery was shewn the highest veneration for the made at the period of the evacuation productions of genius; he, too, could of France by the English troops. revere the philosopher, and admire This was an event that was expected the poet, and yet he still thought that to work out a wonderful change on due applause should not be withheld Continental politics. The other event from those whose lives had been spent was hardly known. Yet, in the course in studying the nature and utility of of so short a period, we now find it a Government. In the year 1784, when, difficult matter to settle the precise from the state of political affairs, it time of their leaving France—it is inwould have seemed peculiarly delicate volved in obscurity, and interests no for any literary body to have distin- one. But this inechanical art has guished a person so strongly opposed been extending and improving the to the administration of the day, this condition of mankind-has been perUniversity elected to be Lord Rector, forming its part with silence, rapidity Edmund Burke, who had been called and security and will never perish so the most philosophical orator of his long as man exists to be benefited by day, but whom I would rather describe it.

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“ This University might seem to me leave to say, that, in other branches have been deprived of its chief prop of science, this University has been and stay by the Reformation : but it not less distinguished than in these. is not the course of reforination to. I hold in my hand an old edition of sweep away the sciences--it only fixes Ptolemy, printed in 1530, in which is them on a firmer foundation. The given a character of the various naReformation - the emancipation of tions in the world. The character the human understanding, gave a new assigned to the Scots is, that they are vigour to the University. Under the -Ist, prompt to revenge-20, full of government of Melville, the able law- the pride of birth, so that they boast giver of the Presbyterian Church, this of royal descent, though in a state of University acquired a new impulse, beggary-and 3rd, they are much adwhich led it directly forward to that dicted to logical and metaphysical subprosperity at which it was soon to ar- tleties. Now, happily, the reign of rive. In a brighter period, Dr. Gil- law and regulated government had rebert Burnet, to whom England owes strained this love of revenge within the history of her Reformation, and reasonable bounds; and the progress the exposition of her Creed, and to of commerce and the arts had introwhom the liberties of England are duced a feeling of equality among perdeeply indebted, and whose language sons of birth and merit. But it is cuis elegant and his sentiments liberal, rious that, even up to our own times,

- he came from amongst you, and no change has been wrought upon the hououred the Divinity Chair of this other part of our character. The disUniversity by his virtues and his ge- position to abstract science still adnius. To me it seems fortunate that heres to the Scottish nation. But the the sciences have not retired here, as study of metaphysics has no where elsewhere, to a hermitage, but have been more rationally or more success come and planted themselves in the fully cultivated than amongst you, heart of a great and populous city, and while it has been stripped of its which has risen to be the second in the subtilties, has retained all its vigour island and the third in the empire, and and its usefulness. There is now, in the very midst of this great city this Gentlemen, none of that spirit of hosUniversity has been planted. It was tility to our countrymen of other perowing to this that the two most im- suasions, that formerly was said to portant new sciences discovered in the distinguish the people of this country. eighteenth century-the sciences of This spirit of intolerance is fast wear. chemistry and political economy-were ing aivay from every country. Caboth laid, at the same tiine, within tholic chapels are now erected at Amthese walls where I now address you. sterdam and Geneva; I have seen a They are both of such a nature as to Catholic Bishop at Boston; and, even unite the active with the speculative in Glasgow, is a Catholic Chapel, produties of life. About the same time, bably the most beautiful in the island." the discovery of the steam engine was (Partial disapprobation.) When simade by Mr. Watt, a person connect- lence was restored, Sir James, in coned with this University one of the tinuation, observed with great animamost important discoveries in modern tion and effect, those who had manjtimes. This great increase of scien- fested symptoms of disapprobation tific knowledge was the result of the would probably have withheld them, union of recluse speculation with the had they waited for the following senactive business of life, and of the inti-, tence: “ Far be it from me ever to mate connexion which Dr. Smith and assert any sentiment inconsistent with Dr. Black maintained with the practi- my original convictions of the doccal business of this great city. This trines of a sincere Protestant, or with shows the advantage of men of scien- the most determined opposition to the tific skill mixing with the various in- arbitrary doctrines and dominant and dividuals who exert themselves in per- intolerant spirit of the Church of fecting the arts, compared with those Rome. On the contrary, the reason who dose away life in dreams of sci- that I rejoice in the existence of such ence, without applying them to the a Catholic edifice, is, that it proves practical benefit of mankind. Give that the stain of intolerance has been


Lord Rector of the University of Glasgow.

47 wiped away from the Protestant GLEANINGS ; OR, SELECTIONS AND Charch.” (Valversal Applause.) He was afraid that he had intruded too long on their time. (No no.) · It would give him the greatest pleasure

No. CCCXCVI. !0 prolong his intercourse with them, but he feared it would be inconvenient

A novel Plea. for them. He then delivered an elegant eulogium on the various distin- a felon who pleaded in his defence,

A French paper gives an account of guished individuals who had done hon- that, having been born at the comour to this University. The scientific mencement of the Revolution, he had and benevolent Hutcheson had led imbibed all its pernicious principles, the way in a theory of morals, and his and had never been able to discrimiopinions had been illustrated in a life nate between good and evil. The by Principal Leechman, which deserv- court disregarded this ingenious plea; od to be better known, written with the man was convicted, and sentenced great elegance, and occasionally rising to six years' imprisonment. into eloquence. Dr. Smith had united great ancient learning with a familiar knowledge of the affairs of active life;

No. CCCXCVII. and in the science of political economg, as well as of morals and the prin- Notable Instance of Self-Valuation. ciples of sound taste, had established Modesty has been commonly aca distinguished reputation. Dr. Reid counted one of the true signs of intelhad discussed with excellent good lectual greatness. A modern writer, sense the principles of Metaphysics of considerable notoriety, Mr. Coband Ethics." The lives and opinions of bett, pronounces modesty mean and those eminent persons had been made cowardly, and, acting up to his own known to all Europe by Professor standard of morals, thus appraises Dugald Stewart, in a style of splendid himself, in a letter to Mr. Canning, eloquence, a philosopher, whose writ- entitled, “Mr. Canning at School,” ings had infused the love of sound opi. in the Weekly Register, of October nions and of virtue into more human 26. [The extracts are from several bosoms than it had ever fallen to the paragraphs and are taken verbatim, lot of any other man to do. “I with the writer's own memorable cannot conclude,” said Sir James, italics.) " without warmly adverting to the “I found my pretensions to be your distinction conferred on this Univer- teacher upon the best of all possible sity by my friend Mr. Millar, whose grounds ; namely, that, as to all the merits are too fresh in the recollection chief matters appertaining to your of all who hear me to justify me in office, I have greater abilities than dilating upon. Thus, gentlemen, to you. I care not who calls this vanity: the great men who formed the Uni- the questions with me, and, indeed, versity, a succession of illustrious men with all men of sense, are, whether it have been trained up, and it cannot be true, and whether it be useful to be too much the practice of those who state it. A great deal of what passes now so honourably, and respectably for modesty, ought to pass for cowfill the places of their illustrious pre- ardice, or servility..

• I know, decessors, to hold up to the youth une that, compared with this department der their charge the example

of the of knowledge, every thing of a literary Smiths, the Hutchesons, the Blacks, character sinks out of sight. Yet this and a host of other great names who is of soine importance; and here, too, base adorned the University, and be- I am your master. I can state more Defited mankind by their discoveries clearly and reason more forcibly than er their writings. I return you, Gen- you. Matters intricate in their natlemen, my sincere thanks for the ho- ture I can simplify with more facility nour you have conferred on ine.”- than you. I shall'insert at the end of Loud and unanimous applause.)

this letter (if I have room) a copy of my Petition to Parliainent in 1820. I give it as a specimen of perfect wri


ting. The matter of it is, at this

No. CCCXCVIII. moment, interesting beyond descrip Curious Pulpit Satyr. tion. But I give it as a piece of writing: and I defy you to equal it.”.

In the church of Schwytz, erected “Even in your own department of in 1769, is a pulpit supported by three Foreign Affairs I am more skilled colossal figures, which by a horrible than you. In the first place, though contraction of the muscles, express I confess it is a trifle, I can write and the constraint they suffer in this posi

tion. speak the French language better than

These figures represent the you can, and, perhaps, better even

three celebrated Reformers, Luther, than any of your interpreters.” “The Zuinglius and Calvin ; and the enorprinciples and practice of Public Law

mous weight they here support is I know as well as you can know them" looked upon by the devout inhabitants

-" and can write upon any subject of Schwytz, as an emblem of the appertaining to them with more abi- chastiseinent which, in another world, lity than you, because I can state and weighs heary on the heads of these reason more clearly and more forcibly guilty sectaries. The Zurichese disthan you, because I can illustrate bet. ciples of Zuinglius offered forty thou. ter, and because I can, without the sand florins * for the reinoval of an smallest leaning towards levity, ren

emblein so injurious to their belief, der subjects naturally dry and weari. and to the memory of their countrysome, not repulsive to the mind. And,

But at Schwytz, as at Zurich, as to the interests of the nation, as

religious zeal was more powerful than these are dependant on its foreign

interest, and this offer was obstinately concerns, I am convinced I understand

refused.-Raoul-Rochette, Lettres sur them better than you."-" But,

la Suisse. besides these grounds, there is, fur

No. CCCXCIX. ther, the reputation for knowledge and talent, in which I am far the superior

The Chinese, Deists. of you all." “ The malice, the base The Chinese appear to have been ness, the cowardice, the cruelty, of Deists for at least forty ages : almost my powerful foes had made my name all their laws are founded on the knowas well known as that of the air or the ledge of a Supreme Being, the dissun; and now have come events to penser of rewards and punishments. couple knowledge with that name.” The inscriptions of their temples, of " It would be against nature, if, under which we have authentic copies, are: such circumstances,” (the fulfilinent of “ To the First Principle, without behis predictions,) " men did not, as to ginning and without end. He has public matters, confide in my judgment made all things.; he governs all things. more than in that of any other man. He is infinitely good; he enlightens, You, who have places and pensions, he supports, he controuls all nature." and who are sent from the boroughs, -Voltaire, Histoire Générale. may call yourselves, exclusively, public men; but, who is really so much

No. CCCC. of a public man as I am ?".

Lanar Superstition. do you gentlemen of Whitehall think In Scotland, especially among the that you, or your Ambassadors, have Highlanders, the women inake a curas much weight with foreign govern- tesy to the new inoon, and our Enments as I have? Talk of vanity! glish women in this country have a It must be vanity indeed, that can touch of this. Some of these sit astride make you suppose, that any of the on a gate or stile the first evening the pretty palavering things called Notes new moon appears, and say, “A fine and Despatches can have as much moon, God bless her!” The like I effect with foreign governments as the observed in Hertfordshire. Register has.” “ It does not assert

MS. of Aubrey's, 1678, in the Ashthis or that : it carries the proof: it mole Museum, quoted in Malcolm's shews that the state of things must be Anecdotes of London, 8vo. I. 414, &c. thus, and thus.: and the reputation of the writer has gone before it.”

• About £4000,

“ And


LINES WRITTEN AT THE CLOSE And still, with watchfal, pitying eye,

Celestial Mercy, ever nigh,

Will shield my bosom from despair ;

And if in thy mysterious breast Say ye, who thro' this round of fourscore 'More poignant ills, in embryo, rest, years

Arm me with fortitude to bear. Hare proved its joys and sorrows, hopes and fears,

Alas! what eyes whose radiance ne'er Say what is Life, ye veterans who have Was dimm'd by misery's scalding tear, trod,

Stranger, from thee shall learn to weep; Step following step, its flow'ry, thorny While hearts to anguish, now a prey, road?

Ere the sun gilds thy closing day, Enough of good to kindle strong desire,

Where anguish never dwells shall Enough of ill to damp the rising fire,

sleep! Enough of love and fancy, joy and hope, To fan desire and give the passions scope, My fragile thread of being spun,

Perhaps, ere thy brief course is run, Enough of disappointment, sorrow, These anxious, tearful lids may close ;

pain, To seal the wise man's sentence “AD

And she who now addresses thee, is vain,"

From hopes, from fears, from sorrow

free, And quench the wish to live those

„May, on earth's peaceful lap, repose. years again. Science for man unlocks her various store, Oh! may thy moments, stealing by And gires enough to urge the wish for In silent lapse, quell every sigh, more;

Lull every rebel thought to rest ; Systems and suns lie open to his gaze, Teach me resigu'd, to meet the rod, Nature invites his love and God his Sway'd by that great Eternal God praise;

Whose will is ever wisest, best. Yet doubt and ignorance with his feelings

ANNA. sport, And Jacob's ladder is some rounds too short,

ODE TO A VALLEY ON THE Yet still to humble hope enough is given

AVON. Of light from reason's lamp and light from heaven,

Wrillen in the Aulumn of 1822. To teach us what to follow, what. to

shan, To bow the head, and say,

How many look upon thee with glad “ Thy will

gaze, be done."

Thou old sequester'd valley! rock and


Dim glowing through the film of floating TO THE NEW YEAR, 1823.

haze That wraps, as with a smoke, the

high-bank'd flood Whether thou bearest a scorpion-sting, Of yellow Avon and the foliaged maze Dr, smiling, comest on new-fledg’d wing, Of thy retiring cleft :-though long To whisper peace to this sad heart;

withstood On Him, Ompiscient, I depend,

The sun has struggled through : touch'd And trembling, hoping, trusting, bend

with the gleam • To His decree, whose gift thou art. Thy vista breaks beyond the sparkling

stream. Through many a dread, soul-harrowing i scene,

Yon turreted and marble cliff on high, My weary pilgrim feet have been

Through its green scarf of ivy whitenBy thy stern predecessor led;

ing swells ; Yet, e'en 'inid sorrow's cypress bowers, Beneath-how far beneath ! the skiff Some bright, some balm-distilling flowers, glides by, Merey beneficently spread.

Winding away from the receding dells : VOL. XVIII.


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