« PreviousContinue »
The next fe&tion relates to the poor. Why will not the county-surveyors learn the laws on this subject, inslead of pertering us by their absurd censures of them? The note at p. 64, betrays gross ignorance of the present law on this subject. Did the Board of Agriculture beltow any confideration (as the title-page expresses it) upon the three last lines of p. 69, and upon the four first, with the seventeenth, &c. of p. 70,, ! before this book was sent to the press? We trust they did not ; believing that they would have provided for the quiet of their country by expunging them. Mr. M. (as well as many other surveyors) might have enlarged the tiile of his work thus, “or, an incenive to discontent and disaffection.” In the margin of a returned Reporr, at p. 113, among other ab. surdities, is the following: "though war is urged as a neceffary measure, to prevent too great an increase of inhabitants, it is a reason no man of common feeling or lense would suffer to enier his head." P. 113. Probably it never did enter into any head, except that of this notable remarker.
The seclion on “ rotation of crops," is very deserving of attention, but too long to be abstracted. In general, it recommends" for the best land, alternate green and white crops ; for land of a full medium quality, three green crops for iwo of white; for ordinary land, two green crops for one of corn ; and, for the worst, or most exhausted land, downs and sheep-walks, three green crops to one of white." P. 159.
" Changing the feed of corn every two or three years, is a practice which prevails almost generally. It is done at an excra expence of from fix-pence to one shilling a bushel on wheat, and half those sums on other grain. This practice is as little founded on propriety, as a change of live stock once in every two years would be, and never will be the means of advancing corn 10 a high pirch of excellence. On the comtrary, when corn-farmers become wise enough to apply Blakewell's method of improving carile, to the raising of feed grain, the advance will be rapid indeed, and its improvement will go on towards the mark of perfection, in a degree which, in the present ftate of things, can scarcely be conceived,
“ The method I wish to recommend to those cultivators who defire to excel in the article of grain, is the following; namely, a few days before harvest to walk through their fields of corn, to select and gather the prime samples of every species of feed, and ever afterwards to con. tinue the same practice, by repeating the operation of collecting the moit perfect grain from the crops produced froin fuch collected teed.
« The same observacions apply to every variety of cultivated crop.” P.165.
The evil practices of mealmen, in and about London, are exposed at pp. 177, &c. At p. 236, we find an useful aumonilion to land owners.
" I am
. “ I am sorry to say, i; is the practice of some farmers, in most other counties, to continue fois.g coin so long as the and will produce any, and then to apply to the landlord or is iteward, saying ihat they are ready to lay such a field (cus Thamefuily exhausted!) down to grass, provided he will give them permiffion to pl ugh up an equal quantity of old grass land. In this app ication they ivo otren lucceed ; and thus they gi on ruining one tela after another. This, I believe, is seldum the practice in Middletex.”
Al p. 237, &c. tre Middlesex method of making hay is minutely explained, and hig'iy exiuiled. But ihe colouwing remark is not enurely agnituitural.
“ Much of the colrur, and all, or nearly fo, of the sediment, or tartar, and part of the flavour of red wine, are obtained by the infamous addition of un huletome drugs, which have deftroyed some persons in a few hours; others in a few days, and reduced the duraiion of life in thousands to half the nu'nber of years which they might otherwise tave attained. This practice has determined, or will determine, every man who has any regard for his healih, to refrain from drinking such wine, until it has been kepi a sufficient num. ber of years to procure the deposit and concretion of the poisonous in- ' gredients that have been obtruded into ii." P. 258.
We cannot say what kind of port is produced at marketa crdinaries, which is probably the sort described by Mr. M. or perhaps this is merely a specimen of his talent ai delamation. , We can tell him, however, ihat, in point of fact, the tartar. belon s to the wine itfeif; even the best red wine. So that the poisonous insertions, in that respect, are mere nonsense and ignorance. « The consumption of the metropolis and its environs, in fruiis and vegetables, is upwards of one million pounds sterling per annum." P. 267. We atient to the fol.
lowing remark, and think that a ge: eral attention to it would · be most highly useful and important:
" This country ought to be in a fiate of garden-like cultivation. No parts should be in wood, except such as are unfit for the producrion of grass, corn, and garien-cron; nor would there be, in that case, any deficiency of timber and cople; if the millions of acres of bleak, rocky, and, at prelent, unprofitable situations, were to be fully planted.” P. 274.
Al p. 309, we find a molt curious reverie, concerning the uge of the globe; which is supposed to have been, fome rime ago, not more than half of its present size, and within some million of years, not exactly alcerlained, to have doubled the quanti'y of its folid mailer by she increase of thells, &c. in dali and fresh Waler, pear-boys, &c. Bravo! goodman Middleton.
The total price of milk consumed in London, is said to be 481,6661, half of which is the profit of the retailers; whose
various frauds are exposed, and a correction of them is properly wifhed for from the legislature. But the suggerions here offered for such correction, are as futile as could easily be contrived ; namely, an annual licence from the magistrates, on the production of a certificate of good conduct; which would doubiless be procured from the “ cow-keepers and their customers,” with at least as much facility as a licence to keep an ale-house is at present obtained from the parish-officers. The impoling of an oath, upon such wretches as the retailers are here described to be, could tend only to add one enormous wickedness to many others. ''
“ Hogs.— The largest breed in Britain is supposed to be kept in the neighbourhood of Rudgewich, on the borders of Surrey and Sussex; which feed at two years old to an astonishing weight, even to doubic or treble the usual weight of hogs at that age." P. 376.
The largest of these hogs, two years old, weighed 116 stones, 6 pounds ; others from 80 to 100 stone.
Warnings like the following cannot be too often repeated : " the increase of public-houses is, in my opinion, more ruinous to the lowest orders of society, than all other evils put together.” P. 383. That this increase, however, has happened by reason of many of the brewers and distillers being in the commission of the peace,” (ib.) we cannot believe; fuch people being made incapable of granting licences by 26 Gco. II. C. 13. In this, as in most other cases, the countyfurveyors would have done well, by abstaining from all pretensions to even ihelcast knowledge of the laws of their country.
Roads.-The trustees of turn-pike roads in this county are very severely, and (as it seems) juftly reprehended (p. 395, &c.). We believe that the whole secret of the mismanagem ment of such roads, throughout the kingdom, may be expressed by one word, jobs. 'The Grand Junction Canal is reprobated for its “ very unnecessarily expensive scale” (p. 405); but canals, in general, are strongly and wisely recommended. The consumption of aniinal food in London, is affirmed to be full one half more than it was 45 years ago. The frauds in most of the London markets are represented as scandalously enormous. At p. 461, the inagistrates of Middlesex, and the officers subordinate to them, are spoken of in terms grossly offenlive, and (we trust) unmerited. The legislature itself is created with as little ceremony at p. 63. But it feeins to be a part of Mr. M.'s plan, to render all existing institucions odious in the eyes of his countrymen.
Let us produce, however, a specimen of his own legillative wisdom.
“ The cure of fo mighty an evil would require a law, enjoining every person annually to state in writing, by what means he gains his livelihood, to some tribunal competent to scrutinize the information, and punish the party if it be false.” P. 463.
The County of Middlesex has more than once astonished the rest of England by its choice of a member of parliament ; and why should they not keep up the wonder, by returning the sage Mr. M.
Mr. M. ought to have heard in December, 1797, that Weishes and Measures not only “ require,” but had received on the 22nd of June, 1795 (in addition to about 25 preceding Atatutes) " the affistance of the legislature, to shield mankind agaiost numerous impositions.” P. 471. This last statute (amended by 37 Geo. III. c. 143) we can affirm to be singu. Jarly useful in those distri&s, within which it has been executed ; and shame must be taken to themselves by the magistrates, if, in any district, they have neglected to do what is by the statute positively required from them.
It appears from the Appendix, that Mr. M. has done himself much credit, by declining any remuneration for his trouble in preparing this Report ; and by zealously offering tool. to. wards the execution of an improved plan, for drawing up the County Reports in general. Among the improvements which may be suggested, we strongly recommend a much more rigid abstinence than almost any surveyor has yet practised, from schemes tending to the invasion or compulsory transfer of property; and from invectives against burthens imposed by i be pirblic necessity ; against the management of the poor, which is more indulgent in the present than in any former time ; and against the laws of our country, in general, and those by whom they are administered.
ART. III. Asthenology, or the Art of preserving Feeble Life,
and of supporting the Constitution under the Influence of incurable Diseases. By Christian Augustus Struve, M. D. Translated from the German, by W'iilium Johnson. 8vo. 430 pp.
8s. Murray and Highley. 1800. IN a hort Preface, the author explains the nature of the work,
which is new, he observes, in its object, no writer having treated expressly on the subject before.
- piss Afthenology," he says, “ in regard to its theory, and the application of
it as an art to maintain feeble life, is diftinguished not only from the macrobiotic art, or that of prolonging human life, of which it forms a subordinate part (afhenomacrobiotic) but also from the antiasthenic art of healing, or ashenotherapia, which is employed in removing weakness, and restoring the loft powers and health. The art of maintaining feeble life leaves to these the direct strengthening meiliod ; and has for its object merely to preserve and prolong the existence. It extends its aim farther than the direct art of healing, and is therefore active, when the common physician deserts the patient, and declares his malady to be incurable. In regard to its object, the maintaining and prolonging life in the af henic state, it comes within the boundaries of both sciences, and endeavours to maintain feeble life, rescued from apparent death. It tries also how far it is possible to operate a direct cure in cases of asthenia ; and, when no radical method of cure is applicable, relieves by the palliarive method the most urgent symptoms, and exerts itself to prolong, for a certain period, that life which it is not able to preserve.” Introd. p. 2. .
The present volume is divided into two Parts. In the first; the author gives the theory ; in the second, the application or practical part. To be methodical, he thinks it necessary to begin with giving a definition of life, or ihe vital principle, or what he would be understood to mean by ir. “ The naturaliss and physicians of the present period have made great progress,” , he says, " in the discovery of that all-powerful principle, which he calls the vital principle, &c.” Who those physicians are, and what their discoveries, we profess ourselves to be totally unacquainted ; sume conjectures on the subject, and very sorry ones, we have indeed seen. This author's discoveries, however, go far beyond any of his predeceffoss.
• The vital principle,” he says, “is self-subfiftent, free, and indea pendent. It is only modified by foreign powers, between which and it there is a certain mutual connection. It exifts also without this connection; that is, without the organization which it at prefent animates. It is not confined to certain bodies, but is generally diffused throughout the corporeal world : it is indefaultible. As soon as an organized body is decomposed, it removes from it, and communio cates itself to another organization. In a word, it has a great resema blance to the electric fluid.
- The grounds of life, therefore, do not lie in organization, not in fimulants; both are necessary conditions of our existence on earth." P. 20.
These are not discoveries, our readers will observe, but bold affertions, that are in their nature incapable of being ascertaine ed cr proved. Their direct tendency is to materialilin, which is still not the author's intention, as he talks of intellect, or . S
I foul, DRIT. CRIT, VOL. XVII, MARCH, 180r.