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1798.] Mr. Elkington's Plan for draining marshy Grounds. highly probable that he was the most in- is no fcandalous story without some foundulgent husband in the world, and that dation.” The was the most unreasonable and disobe I might now proceed to consider the nedient wife. Or, should this not be the ceflity of newspapers, as supplying fund case, the reverse will exactly ferve the for political conversation ; but as that fame purpose ; that is, gratify that infa- fubject would lead me to be more prolix tiable desire for news, which is become as than in duty bound, I shall adjourn the necessary as the food we eat, or the rai- question fine die, and conclude with an ment we put on.

humble hope that I have fuggested enough We constantly pray to be delivered to prove that newspapers are articles of “ from battle, murder, and from sudden absolute necessity, and of the « first redeath ;"

(this, by the hye, seems an quisition." "I am, Sir, your's, &c. anti-climax, battle being the greatest ca

ŘHAPSODICUS. lamity of the three ; but let that país) and yet, Mr. Editor, I know no three

To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine. ingredients more necessary, nor, of late years, more frequent than these. Battles,

SIR, indeed, from long habit, we read over IF success

shall not betray you to relax with frigid indifference, and I must say, your efforts, your Magazine seems they are very dull and unentertaining. The likely to become the most excellent and the other two, however, afford many com most generally acceptable periodical miscelments, which greatly tend to promote lany of the age. For this reaso, and conversation, because they come home to as thofe who have just begun to learn, are ". men's business and bosoms," The often the most eager to teach, I beg leave death of one man in the streets, who to trouble you, for the information of thought himself a match for half a dozen your readers, with a short account of Mr. armed robbers, is a topic of conversation ELKINGTON's Mode of Draining ; with for a month; but the proftration of ten which I have had a recent opportunity to thousand bodies on a field, to gratify the make myself acquainted. inexplicable schemes of contending courts, There are but two ways in which stagis the ephemera which cannot outlive the nant water can be diffused over grounds, day.

fo :is to reduce them into the state of moThus much for the facts recorded in ralles. It may proceed from the overour newspapers. Now, Sir, only consider flowing of adjacent rivers, or the collecwhat the case muft be, if, after dwelling ticn of rain-water; or, it may bubble up fo long upon any important event handed incessantly from springs dispersed within to us at our breakfast-tables, and carried the bounds of the morals. from thence about with us wherever we In the former of these cases, the overgo throughout the day, as ammunition flowing of adjacent rivers is to be preventready to shoot the monster, filence, and ed only by strong embankments ; and any fupply the deficiency, thought---if, I say; fimple trench will ealily carry away ftagafter all this, it should be next day con nant water, which has no interior Tource, tradi&ted by the fame authority. This and merely floats upon the surface. may appear somewhat embarrassing ; but In almost all lakes and morasses, nuhabit has reconciled us to this also. “ We mercus (prings are dispersed within the always thought there was something in- compass of the lake or morass. These can probable in the fory;"! or, we had our never be exhauited. Very many moraffes fufpicions, yet did not chuse to communi- have therefore long bathed every endea-cate them;" or, we were very cautious vour to drain thein effectually for cultivain giving full credit to the report, al- tion. Trenches of almost every different though, to be fire, it appeared to be very depth, and in almost every different diwell founded, and every body mult ac- rečtion, have been tried, in vain, or at knowledge it was remarkably well told.best, with very iinperfect success, Valt With this ex poft falo fagacity, fome tracts of morals, in England, in Scotland, continue to get out of the scrape pretty and in Ireland, have been hopelessly abandecently, while others, determined to doned to perpetual barrenness. support the dignity of first impressions, But, about the year 1764, Mr. Elkingand studious to avoid the weather-cock ton, in an attempt to draw some part variations of common changelings, are of the farm of Princethorpe, in the parisa till firmly of opinion that there was jame- of Siretton, upon Dunsmore, in the county thing in, it, and yote nem. con. “ that there of Warwick, was accidentally led to ob

ferre

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I am per

8 Mr. Elkington on Draining....Mr. Coleridge on his Monody. (Jan.
ferve, that by commencing bis drains from ficiently dry and kindly; that an astonish-
the different springs which continually ing proportion of the lands of Great Bri-
poured forth their waters upon the ground, tain and Ireland might be thus redeemed
and by this means alone he could effe&tually from infertility. Contriving to cover his
accomplish his purpose. He had not even drains, with only certain openings at pro-
reflected upon the possibility of the moisture per distances, he thus prevented them
of morasses, arising from springs at a con- from marring the beauty and equality of
siderable depth beneath the surface, when, the fields. To collect water for the use
to his furprise, he happened to observe a of mills and canals; to draw off the wa-
column of water burst up with great force, ter from mines and coal-pits, and for
by a hole which he casually made with an other useful purposes, may the same in-
iron crow, within the bounds of his mo vention of Mr. Elkington's be likewise
sals. The fact, although neither new applied.
nor strange, ftruck his mind as an extra To reward this invention, and to pur-
ordinary discovery. He soon after adopt. chase it for the use of the public, the
ed the use of an auger, instead of an iron Board of Agriculture obtained to Mr. El.
crow; and determined to make his mo- kington a grant from Parliament, of a
rass perfectly dry for tillage, by detect- thousand pounds sterling.
ing all the springs, and continually ex- suaded, that the beneficial effects of his
hausting thefe by suitable drains. He discovery have already more than compen-
quickly succeeded in making that parti- fated this fum to the nation. I am, &c:
cular field perfectly dry. The subsequent Kelso, Dec, 21, 1797.

R. H.
application of the same principle to all the
other marshy parts of his farm, proved To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine.
alike successful.

SIR,
In consequence of the thriking improve I Hope, that

this letter may arrive time ment thus effected upon his own grounds,

enough to answer its purpose. I canMr. Elkington was consulted and em

not help considering myself as having ployed by his neighbours. He, in every been placed in a very ridiculous light, by instance, sought out the springs from the gentlemen who have remarked, anwhich the stagnant water was fupplied; swered, and rejoined concerning my mowherever there was a declivity of the sur- nody on Chatterton. I have not seen the face, endeavoured to detect the main compositions of my competitors (unless spring, on which, in every such case, there indeed the exquisite poeri of Warton's, are usually various smaller springs de- entitled, The Suicide,refer to this pendant ; ítill bored with the auger to dif- fubje&t) but this I know, that my own cover springs uf which he suspected the is a very poor one. It was a school exexistence, although they were not quite ercise, somewhat altered ; and it would apparent; commenced his drains from the have been omitted in the latt edition of respective {prings; but, instead of cutting. my poems, but for the request of my a drain, in every case, to the very level of friend, Mr. CoTTLE, whole property a very deep spring, adopted the idea of those poems are. If it be not in your preserving only an auger-hole perpendi- intention to exhibit my nan:e on any fu. cular to the spring, as an outlet by which turė month, you will accept my beft its waters might afcend into the drain, to thanks, and not publish this letter, But be by it conveyed away. Continued ex- if Crito and the Alphabet-men hould perience gave him, at last, very great fa- continue to communicate on this subject. gacity in detecting the existence of hidden and you thould think it proper, for reaiprings, and extraordinary skill to discern fons beft known to yourlelf, to publish the readiest means for draining off their their communications, then I depend on waters. He learned to pay particular at your kindness for the insertion of my lettcntion to the nature of the itrata through ter ; by which, it is possible, those your which the water had to rise, and to adapt correspondents may be induced to expend to it the construction of his drains.. His their remarks, whether panegyrical or vifame as a drainer was extended his af- tuperative, on nobler game than on a poem filtance was sought even from diftant parts which was, in truth, the first effort of a of the country. It decisively appeared, young man, all whole prems a candid that barren morasses might, by his art, critic will only consider as first efforts. be converted into rich meadow and fertile

Your's, with due respect, arable fields; that four, wettish grounds, Shrewsbury, S. T. COLERIDGE. might, by the fame means, be made fufa

TO

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1798.]
On the Fables of Antiquity,

9 To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine, great genius, without the assistance of SIR,

intellettual philosophy is able to effect : but THOUGH the fables of the ancients the most piercing lagacity, the moft bril

are, in their secret meaning, utility, liant wit, and the most exquisite subtilty and construction, the most beautiful and of thought, without this affistance, are admirable pieces of composition which the here of no avail. mind of man is capable of framing, yet This being premised, it will be neces. nothing has been fo litile understood, or sary, in the first place, to observe, that fo thamefully abused. Of the truth of between us and the highest god there are this obfervation, the philosophic part of certain mighty powers, which, though your readers will, I persuade myself, be rooted in, yet possess energies distinct from fully convinced, by comparing the fol- their ineffable cause; for we, in reality, are lowing explanations of some of these nothing more than the dregs of the unifables, with those given by the Abbé verse. These mighty powers are called Banier, and other modern writers on by the poets a golden chain, on account of mythology, in those ridiculous and con- their connection with each other, and intemptible publications called Partbeons. corruprible nature. Now, the first of

That these moderns, indeed, thould these powers you may call intelleétual ; have grossly erred in their interpretation the second vivific; the third pæonian, of ancient fables, is by no means wonder- and so on, which the ancients defiring to ful, if we consider that they appear to fignify to us by names, have symbolically have been ignorant that there fables were denominated. Hence, says Olympiodoinvented by theological poets **, and rus (in M.S. Comment. in Georgiam) adopted by intellectual philosophers t; we ought not to be disturbed on hearing and, confequently, that their meaning such names as a Saturnian power, the can only be unfolded by recurring to the power Jupiter, and such-like, but explore theology and intellectual philosophy of the things to which they allude. Thus, the ancients.

for instance, by a Saturnian power rooted It is, indeed, easy for ingenious men to in the first cause, understand a pure intclgive an explanation of an ancient fable, left: for Kpovos, or Saturn, is

Xo605 You 5,

i. e. which to the superficial observer shall ap- o nabagos, or a pure intelle&t." He adds, pear to be the precise meaning which its hence we call all those that are pure and inventor designed to convey, though it virgins, rogas. be in reality very far from the truth. On this account, too, poets * say, that This may be easily accounted for by con Saturn devoured his children, and after. fidering, that all fables are images of wards again fent them into the light, truths, but those of the ancients of truths because intellect is converted to itself, with which but few are acquainted. seeks itself, and is itself fought: but he Hence, like pictures of unknown persons, again refunds them, because intellect not they become the subjects of endless con only seeks and procreates, but produces jecture and absurd opinion, from the into light and profits. Hence, likewise, similitude which every one fancies he Saturn is called ayxunguentus, or infleeted discovers in them to objects with which coursel, because an inflected figure verges he has been for a long time familiar. He to itself. who understands the explanations given Again, as there is nothing disordered by the Platonic philofophers of these and novel in intellect, they represent fables, will subscribe to the truth of this Saturn as an old man, and as flow in his observation ; as it is impossible that these motion : and hence it is that astrologers interpretations could so wonderfully har- fay, that such as have Saturn well situated monize with the external or apparent in their nativity are prudent and enduedo meaning of the fables, without being the with intelle&t. true explanations of their latent sense. In the next place, the ancient theologists Even Lord Bacon himself, though he saw called life by the name of Jupiter, to enough to be convinced that these fables whom they gave a twofold appellation, were replete with the highest wisdom doce and Sniz, signifying, by these names, of which he had any conception, yet was

that he gives life througla himself t. far froin penetrating the profound mean

Farther ing they contain. He has, indeed, done all in attempting to unfold them that

* So in Hesiod in his Theogony.

+ These etymologies of Saturn and Jupiter, Orpheus, Homer, Hefiod, &c.

are given by Plato in the Cratylus ; a cialogue * Pythagoras, Plato, &c.

in which he every where etymologises agreeMONTHLY MAG. XXVII.

с

ably

10
Mr. Taylor on the Fables of Antiquity.

[Jan. Farther still, they assert that the sun is that these are dedicated to the gods, in drawn by four horses, and that he is per- the same manner as herbs, stones, and petually young, signifying by this his animals, is the part of wise men ; but to power, which is motive of the whole of call them gods, is alone the province of nature subject to his dominion, his four- mad men ; unless we speak in the same fold conversions, and the vigour of his manner as when, from established custom, energies. But they say that the moon is we call the orb of the sun, and its rays, drawn by two bulls : by two, on account the sun itself. of her increase and dimirution ; but by ." But we may perceive the mixed kind bulls, because as these till the ground, lo of fable, as well in many other particuthe moan governs all those parts which lars, as in the fable which relates that surround the earth.

Discord, at a banquet of the gods, threw I persuade myself every liberal and in a golden apple, and that a dispute about telligent mind will immediately perceive it arising ainong the goddesses, they were the propriety and accuracy of the above sent by Jupiter to take the judgment of interpretations; and be convinced, from Paris, who, charmed with the beauty of this specimen, that the fables of the an-' Venus, gave her the apple in preference cients are replete with a meaning no less to the reit. For in this fable the ban. interesting than novel, no less beautiful quet denotes the supermundane * powers' than fublime.

of the gods; and on this account they That your readers may be still farther sobift in conjunction with each other : convinced of this, I thall subjoin the divi- but the golden apple denotes the world, fion of fables given by the Platonic philo. which, on account of its composition sopher Sallust, in his elegant Treatise on from contrary naturts, is not improperly the Gods and the World : “ Of fables, laid to be thrown by Discord, or Sirife. some are theological, others physical, others But again, fince different gifts are imanimasiic (or belonging to soul) others parted to the world by different gods, material, and, lastly, others mixed from, they appear to contest with each other there.

for the apple. And a soul living ac" Fablcs are theological, which employ cording to lense (for this is Paris) not nothing corporeal, but speculate the very perceiving other powers in the universe, effences of the gods ; such as the fable afferts that the contended apple fubfifts which afferts that Saturn devoured his alone through the beauty of Venus.” children: for it obscurely intimates If the intellectual philosophy, then, is the nature of an intellectual god, fince alone the true key to ancient mythology, every intellect returns into itself. Surely nothinx can be more ridiculous

“But we speculate fables physically, than the attempt of the Abbé Banier, to when we speak concerning the energies explain ancient fables by history; not to of the gods about the world; as wlien mention that his interpretations are al. considering Saturn the same as Time, and ways triflins, and frequently impertsealling the parts of time the chi.dren of nent; are neither calculated to initruct the universe, we assert that the children nor amute ; and are equaily remote fron are devoured by their parents.

elegance and tiuth. "That this is not “We employ fables in an animafie mere deciamation, the foltowing instance mode when we contemplare the energies from his l'apology, will, I persuade myof foul; because the intellections of our self, abundantly evince : “ I shall make fouls, though by a discursive energy they it appear (says he t) that the Minotaur, proceed into other things, yet abide in wiib Pilipoor, and the rest of that fable,

contain nothing but an intrigue of the “ Laitlv, fables are maleria', such as quieen of Crete with a captain nained the Egyptians ignorantly employ, con Taurus ; and the artifice of Dædalus, hdering and calling corporeal natures only a sly conhdent." Let the reader divinities; tuch as Isis, earth; Ofiris, contrast with tris, the following explanahumidity , Typhon, heat: or again, de- tion of this fable, given by Olympiodorus nominating Saturn, water; Adonis, fruits, in his Ms. Commentary on the Gorgias and Bacchus, wine. Indeed, to affert of Plato: “ The Minotaur fignifies the

their parents:

ably to the Orphic theology. Must critics, not perceiving that Plato's deligia in this didugue was to speculate nanes 2!1i1afophic sily, and not grammatically, have very ridiculously confidersd his etymologies as for the most part falle,

* By this is to be understood, powers 'which are wholly unconnected with every thing of a corporeal nature.

+ Vol. I, of the translation of his MythoJugyo p. 29.

savage

5798.] Answers to Queries....Poetry of Spain. Lavage paffions which our nature contains: ing of a peal, he will be convinced of the the ibread which Ariadne gave to The- power of bells, to communicate their vir seus, a certain divine power connected brations to folid bodies. A. B. - with him : and the labyrintb, the obliquity and abundant variety of life. The. seus therefore being one of the most ex

To the Editor of the Monthly Magazines cellent characters, vanquished this impe SIR, diment, and freed others together with PERMIT me to correct some errors in himself."

my account of Lupercio and Barto: Reserving a farther discussion of this lome Leonardo. 'I afferted, from the interesting subject to another opportunity, Parnaso Espanol, that no edition of their

I remain, your's, &c. works had been printed fince that of Manor-Place, Tho. Taylor. Zaragosa, 1634: I have now procured Walworib.

one published since the Parnalo. Don

Ramon Fernandez, the editor, has preTo the Editor of the Montbly Magazine. fixed a sensible preface : “ One of the SIR,

principal causes,” he says, < of the bad IN the same page of your Magazine for taste observable in the greater part of the

last month there are two queries from poetry of the present day, is the scarceness correspondents, which betray a degree of of good authors, who might serve as moignorance of the most common places of dels to our youth ; while the multiplied philosophy, that one would hardly have editions of the corruptors of our poetry expected to meet with at the present day are in the hands of all, maintaining and from any person who had at all turned perpetuating a bad taste.” He remarks his mind to that study, and from those the vague eulogies lavished upon the who had not, such questions are not to be Spanish poets by their editors, applying expected.

to them indiscriminately the phrases of Mr. W. E. if he had ever attended to purity, elegance, enthusiasm, beauty, the Lavoisierian chemistry, as he is pleased &c. and proceeds to point out the chato term it, must have known that azote is racteristic, and peculiar merit of the two found in confiderable quantities in a very Argensolas. In this preface there is a large tribe of plants, viz. all the cruciform, very curious trait of the national vanity. which comprehends the wild-cress, mus. After mentioning the rich and harmotard, &c. found in every pasture; and the nious versification of these authors, he experiments of Bertholt, prove that it is adds, this has at all times been an enalso present in a very great variety of dowment peculiar to the Spanish poets, other vegetables. It is strange indeed for if we consider well, we shall find that any man who ever perceived the that they gave a harmony and ease to the Imell of putrid cabbage, should assert that La'in metres which is not to be met with azote exists in no vegetable whatever. in the poets anterior to Lucan and Seneca. Bat even allowing this negation, let The chorusses of the three genuine trageus attend to Lavoifier's own words ; dies of this great tragedian, incomparably "Azote is one of the principles moft exceed those of Horace in their fowingabundantly diffused through nature. Com- ness and harmony ; and the excellent hexbined with caloric, it forms azotic gaz, ameters of Lucan, have, in these points, which constitutes two-thirds of the com. a great advantage over those of Virgil. mon atmospheric air.” Might not then And even what Cicero * says of the Corany quantity of it be combined with the dovan poets confirms this, though some, animal organization, by the act of refpi- from wrongly understanding the passage, ration, which is fo often repeated during interpret it as a reproach: for Tully, in life, even if none were received by the this place, speaks only of their pronunciaftomach.

tion and accent, which to Ronan ears, acTo Mr. E. L's query about the bell, it customed only to sweetness, might appear is fufficient to observe that the vibrations strange and harsh ; this by no means proves of the air within the glass-receiver, are that their verses were bad or deficient in communicated to the receiver itself, and harmony ; instead of this I presume, that by that means to the external air. The the too great swell and fullness of the Spaaccuracy of this experiment is doubted by nish poets, that loquiore rotundo, that. os many ingenious philosophers, but on other magna fonaturum, which Horace so much grounds than those stated by E. L. If your correspondent will apply his hand * Cordubæ natis poetis pingue quiddam to the walls of a steeple during the ring, cantibus atque peregrinum. Cicer. pro Archias

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