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To sum up the merits of our author, we cannot juftly afcribe to him any of those nicer traits of susceptibility, and those elevated and profound views of morality, which of all things afford us the greatest pleasure in performances of this kind. The higher energies of the understanding, and the venerable powers of discovery are absent. But en revanche, he entertains us with good sense and vivacity. His remarks speak the man of observation and experience, and his manner is fa enchanting and agreeable, that the most faftidious critic wilt find it difficult to quit his volume, before he has given it nearly a complete perufal.
ART. II. Memoirs of the Literary and Philosophical Society of Mano
shelter. Vols. I. II. 8vo. 125. bds. Cadell, 1785.
(Concluded from our lajt.) A Brief Comparison of some of the principal Arguments
in Favour of public and private Education. By Thomas Barnes, D.D. Read May 7, 1783.' 'Dr. Barnes classes the prime objects of education in the following order ; beginning with those of less importance, and rising up to those of the greatest. “ Health, knowledge, temper, self-government, morals.". On this division of the great objects of education, it may be observed, that the three last mentioned heads of temper, self-government, and morals, are all of them reducible to one head, namely, that of morals. Arbitrary divifions should be avoided : all arrangements fhould be fcientific : Qui bene dividit bene docet. After weighing the arguments for and against a public, and those for an dagainst a private education, Dr. Barnes gives a preference before either to a middle plan, which, by enlarging a private school, fo as more nearly to approach to a public one, seerns calculated to blend, in some degree, the advantages, and to divide the disadvantages of both the others.
The common conclusion on this important subject, after all that has been said upon it, seems to be very juft : that a private education is the most favourable to good morals, and a public one the best adapted to produce those qualifications which are requisite in order to make a figure in the active world,
A Plan for the improvenment and extension of Liberal Education in Manchester. By Thomas Barnes, D.D. Read April 9, 1783. Dr. Barncs remarks, “ that there is a stage which passes between a school and busines, which is often a very distressing one to a parent, and an useless, if not a dangerus one to a young man. He has passed through the common
forms of classical institution : he is rather too old to continue to paçe round the beaten tracts of a grammar school ; and yet, he is too young to be trusted abroad in the world as his own master, This interval the author wishes to fill up with the acquirement of knowledge and the formation of taste : and, he thinks, that perhaps the happy art might be learned of connecting together liberal science and commercial industry. He therefore, proposes, for the occupation and improvement of the young man, between the school and the active scenes of business; a course of lectures upon natural philosophy, the belles lettres, mathematics, history, commerce, jurisprudence, criticism, and ethics. Proposals for establishing such a plan of liberal educațion in Manchester were drawn up by Dr. Barnes, and approved by the literary and philosophical society of Manchester. And as the society thinks that it is desirable that fimilar establishments should be formed in other large towns, a report is subjoined of this inftitution, printed 1783, under the title of; “ College of Arts and Sciences instituted at Manchester, June 6, 1783.' The lights of science may certainly open new hints to the manufacturer, and new views to the merchant. But where an enthusiafm of science prevails, we can hardly expect great application to the drudgery of bufiness. It is impossible to serve God and Mammon!
On Orichalcum. By the Right Rev. Richard Watson D. D. F. R.S. &c. &c. Lord Bishop of Llandaff. Communicated by Dr. Percival. Read October 1, 1783.' Dr. Watson shews that the Romans were not only in possession of a substance, called by them orichalcum, and resembling gold in colour, but that they knew also the manner of making it, and that the materials of which they made it were the very same of which we make b:ass. What we call brass was anciently, in the French language, called archal, and brass wire is still, not unfrequently, denominated fil d'archal. Now, says the author, if we can infer from the analogy of languages, that archal is a corruption of aurichalcum, we may reasonably conjecture that our brass, which is the fame with the French archal, is the fame also with the Roman aurichalcum. From certain passages in ancient writers, the bishop infers that brass was made in Asia, much after the same manner in which it appears to have been made at Rome.
Remarks on the Origin of the Vegetable_fixed Alkali, with some collateral Observations on Nitre. By M. Walt, M. D. Prælector in Chemistry, in the University of Oxford, Communicated in a Letter to Dr. Percival. Read Nov. 19, 1783.'. As the sum paid by the nation to Ruflia, and other foeign states, is no less than one hundred and fifty thousand
pounds per annum for pot-afh, every hint that can be fuggested towards an improvement in its preparation, is valuable; especially as it is not impossible that we may now also lose, in a considerable degree, the advantage of that, which has been hitherto prepared for the use of these islands in North Amèrica.
Dr. Wall thinks it probable that the Alkali, wherever it is found, whether in consequence of combustion or otherwise, is formed by some transmutation of the native acid of plants, or by the particular combination of it with the earthly and infiammable principles.
• I am inclined, says he, to adopt this doctrine, from the three following circumstances; the two laft of which will also fhew, that this transmutation may be effected without combustion, and therefore, that this alkali cannot be any longer considered as the creature or offSpring of fire.
Firft, Those vegetable substances, which contain the largest portion of the native acid, afford the largest quantity of alkali by incinera, tjon ; and the quantity of alkali obtained is very considerably in. creased by particular modes of applying the heat, which can only be understood to operate, by bringing the several component principles of the vegetable substance into closer contact, and within the sphere of each other's action.
Secondly, This aikali is produced in a very considerable quantity by the process of fermentation, to which only the faccarine and acel. cent parts of plants are liable. And,
• Thirdly, It is produced in the putrefaction both of animal and vegetable matters'
• Some account of the Life and Writings of the late Professor Gregory, M. D. F. R. S. By James Johnstone, M. D. and Soc. Reg. Medic. Edinb. Socius. Communicated by Dr. Barnes. Read December 10, 1783. Dr. Johnstone fays, that “ Dr. Gregory displayed in his writings, and evidently carried into his profession, a spirit congenial to that of the Gerrards and Beatties." This certainly requires fome illustration. Dr. Gregory was a very amiable man, and the author of three publications; one intitled, “a comparative View of the State and Faculties of Man, with those of the Animal World ;” another intitled, “ Observations on the Duties and Offices of a Physician, and on the Method of profecuting Inquiries in Philosophy ;" and a third, which was posthumous, namely, “ A Father's Legacy to his Daughters. Dr. Johnstone quotes fome elegant lines, from Dr. Beattie, bewailing the death of Dr. Gregory, between whom and the author there subfifted a very strong friendthip.
• Remarks on the Knowledge of the Ancients respecting Glass. By Dr. Falconer. Read, December 17, 1783. Dr. Falconer, with great learning, shews that glass in various forms, and adpated to various uses, as well as fpecula or metallic reflectors, were of very high antiquity.
• On the different Quantities of Rain which fall, at different Heights, over the fame Spot of Ground ; with a Letter from Benjamin Franklin, L. L. D. By. Thomas Percival, M. D. Read Jan. 21, 1784.' It is matter of humiliation, as Dr. Percival observes, to pride and arrogance, but of encouragement to the spirit of patient attention, that many of the most interesting laws of nature have remained undiscovered, till some happy coincidence of circumstances has pointed them out to inquiry or observation. After illustrating the truth of this observation, the doctor gives an account of the following curious, interesting, and very important appearance or matter of fact in the natural world.
• A comparison having been made between the rain which fell in two places, in London, about a mile distant, it was found that the quantity in one of them constantly exceeded that in the other, not only every month, but almost every time it rained. The apparatus used was very exact; and this unexpected variation did not appear to be owing to any mistake, but to be the regular effet of some cause, hitherto unnoticed. The rain-gage, in one of these places, was fixed above all the neighbouring chimnies ; the other was conside. rably below them: and there was reason to suspect, that the difference in the quantity of rain might be owing to the different situations of the vessels, in which it was received. A funnel was, therefore, placed above the highest chimnies, and another upon the ground of the garden, belonging to the same house; and the like diversity was found between the two, thus near together, which had subsisted when they were fixed, at correspondent heights, in different parts of the town, Similar experiments were made on Westminfter Abbey; * and repeated at Bath, Liverpool, Middlewich, and other places, with nearly uniform results. The observations, therefore, however new and singular, are too well authenticated, to admit of the least degree of doubt: and it is the office of philosophy to furnish an adequate and rational solution of them.
Dr. Heberden conjectures that this phenomenon depends on fome unknown property of electricity. But to Dr. Percival it appears probable that the common laws, by which this power influences the ascent and the suspension of vapours, are sufficient to explain their precipitation in rain, and the lately-dil
. Phil. Transact. vol. LIX. p. 359.
covered mode of its defcent. In a memoir, written and publifed some time ago, Dr. Percival had endeavoured to prove that the electrical Auid is strongly attracted by water; and that, by destroying the cohesion between its particles, and repelling them from each other, it becomes a powerful agent in evaporation, and in the formation of clouds. This memoir procured him many curious and interesting observations on the subject of it; and, among other commucations, a letter from Dr. Franklin, from which the following is an extract.
« On my return to London I found your favour of the lúth of May (1771). I wish I could, as you desire, give you a better explanation of the phænomenon in question, fince you seem not quite satisfied with your own; but I think we want more and a greater variety of experiments in different circumftances, to enable us to form a thoroughly fatisfa&tory hypothesis. Not that I make the least doubt of the facis already related, as I know both Lord Charles Cavendish and Dr. Heberden to be very accurate experimenters : but I wish to know the event of the trials proposed in your fix queries; and also, whether, in the same place where the lower veffel receives nearly twice the quán. tity of water that is received by the upper; a third vessel, placed at half the height, will receive a quantity proportionable. I will however en deavour to explain to you what occurred to me, when I first heard of the fact.
• I suppose it will be generally allowed, on a little confideration of the subject, that scarce any drop of water was, when it began to fall from the clouds, of a magnitude equal to that it has acquired when it arrives at the earth ; the fame of the several pieces of hail ; because they are often fo large and weighty, that we cannot conceive a poffibility of their being fuipended in the air, and remaining at rest there, for any time, how small foever ; nor do we conceive any means of forming them so large, before they set out to fall. It seems then; that each beginning drop, and particle of hail, receives continual addition in its progress downwards. This may be several ways : by the Union of numbers in their course, so that what was at first only à de. fcending mist, becomes a hower; or by each particle in its descent through air that contains a great quantity of diffolved water, striking againīt, attaching to itself, and carrying down with it, such particles of that diffolved water, as happen to be in its way; or attracting to its self such as do not lie directly in its course, by its different state with regard either to common or electric fire; or by all these causes united.
In the first cale, by the uniting of numbers, larger drops might be made, but the quantity falling in the same space would be the same at all heights ; unless, as you mention, the whole should be contracied in falling, the lines described by all the drops converging, so that what set out to fall from a cloud of many thousand acres, should reach the earth in perhäps a third of that extent, of which I somewhat doubt, In the other cases we have two experiments.
• 1. A dry glass bottle, filled with very cold water, in a warm day, will presently colle& from the seemingly dry air that surrounds it, a quantity