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them coming towards him, and flatters himself, that they are come to help him out. This, in fact, they do; but, being of the fame domesticated kind, as soon as they have pulled him out by means of ropes, they make him prisoner, and deliver him up into the hands of their leader. If he appears discontented at this treatment, and endeavours to regain his liberty, he gets well threshed : and is disciplined in this manner, till he lubinits with a good grace: 'to be fettered and led any where, just as his driver pleaies. That he may be got out the easier, the pit is made rather shallow, and thelving on one side, so that he can in some measure help himself out;, otherwise it would not be poilible to draw out such a large and heavy animal, without doing him fome damage.
• III. The third and lait species of capture, is that practised by the Moors (as they are called in those parts, from their following the doctrines of the Koran) who by these means are enabled to pay their rents to the lords of the manor, the Dutch Eatt-India Com, pany. It consists of the foilowing manœuvres: in times of drought, when the elephants, being in want of water, are used to haunt certain particular spots, where they know they shall find water to quench their thirit, thete people (a strong and hardy race of men) go a hunting in parties, contiiting of four men each, accompanied by fome itout young lads, their children, whom they have brought up to this business; and in this manner search the wood through, till they have found a herd of elephants. Having attained this point, they pitch on the largest of these animals, and keeping continually hovering about him, endeavour to get him away from the rest. The elephant, on his part, wishes for nothing to inuch as to get rid of these troublesome visitors, and accordingly strives to drive them out of the wood. On the other hand, the boldeit and most expert of these fellows, with an ebony stick which he carries with him, about two feet long, begins a sham fight with the ele. phant, who bangs the stick heartily with his proboscis. But the Moor parrying the strokes, and taking care to avoid coming to close quarters, by leaping nimbly from one side to the other, the elephant grows extremely angry, and does every thing in his power to disarm this strange fencing-master, and take his life. But besides this more adventurous enemy, he finds he has two more to cope with, one on each side of m; and while he is engaged with these, comes a fourth behind him, and watching his opportunity, throws a rope, made into a noose, round one of his hind legs. At this instant, the lads, knowing that the animal has work enough cut out for him before him, and that his whole attention is 'taken up by the stick, approach him with the greateit bolúness, and fastening the noose as quickly as possible round his leg, drag him on till they find a tree fit for their purpose, to which they taiten him, and let. him stand. In the mean time, two of the men run home, and bring a tame elephant, to which having coupled the wild one, they lead them together to the itabie.
By one of these three methods, are all the elephants taken in Ceylon; and he who thinks otherwise of this matter, is certainly yery much out in his judgement. It is not my cuitom to dispute with any man, for I would have every man enjoy his own opinion;
and I am not in the least hurt, if others consider as fufpicious, what from experience I know to be fact; or think otherwise of me, than I am conscious that I deserve. However that be, as I have had occasion for the space of twenty years, not only to see a great number of elephants in their wild state, but have likewise been in the way to oblerve closely and accurately the methods of capturing them, the management of them, the methods of felling them, and the various uses they are put to, I make no fcruple of pretending to as much knowledge in the animals, as the belt jockeys in Germany can poffibly have in horse ficíh; and fhall therefore take the liberty of mentioning some more particulars relative to them, which have come within the compass of my own experience.
• There is a sale for thele animals in the kingdom of Jaffanapatnam every year, in the month of July. The inerchants of the coaft of Malabar and Bengal are invited to it by advertisements, in which the fize and sex of the animals that are put up to sale, are specified. On the appointed day, all the beasts are brought into the market, distributed into certain lots, each lot containing the different sizes, great, middling, and finall. Each lot is likewise num bered, and the numbers are drawn by the merchants out of a golden or silver bason. This being finished, the whole amount of each lot is reckoned up according to a table of the current prices laying before them, and a proper deduction at the same time is made for defects ; in one beast, perhaps, a nail, of which when the number is complete there are eighteen, being wanting on the foot; another having a cleft or ragged ear; another again a short and Stumpy tail, &c.
In the course of all these transactions, the Secretary and his clerks never meet with the least contradiction or opposition of any kind from the merchants, as these former are known to be thoroughly acquainted with the current prices and the customary abatements. This businefs being finished, and the respective fums of money, which have been previously paid into the Company's coffers, being counted over, the Governor, by way of conferring a particular honour on the merchants, after having sprinkled them with rose-water from a golden font, presents each of them with a nosegay with his own hand; and orders his porter, who is a native of the country, to rub them th powder of fanders-wood. In return, and by way of shewing their deep sense of the honour done them, the merchants make each of them a low bow : and in this manner the fair is finished. In some years above a hundred elephants have been fold at once; by which the Company has been a great gainer: for one of these animals, that is twelve feet high and has no blemish, and at the same time has two tusks of an equal fize, will fetch above two thousand dollars.
• The decoy-elephants are never fold; and throughout the whole island, none are used for this purpose but such as are blemished. The natives of the country never buy any elephants, as they cannot make use of them. And the purchasers of them come from other countries, where these animals can be of more service. One of the uses to which they are put, is to keep up the state and pomp of the nobility, who have always one or two of them flanding before their
palaces. These yeomen of the guards are generally clad in a costly covering of tapestry; and their tulks are tipped with gold or silver, set round with jewels.
"They are likewise used for the purposes of war, by the inland princes, in which case they are generally brought into the field coupled together, and having heavy chains fastened to their tiunks. The Indians are wont with this view to make them furious and almost mad with a drink prepared from amfium, so that they are afraid of nothing that can poisibly be opposed to them; and they have this advantage, that neither darts, nor even bullets from small arms, have the power to wound them. This animal is likewise made use of as the public executioner; and it must be owned, that he performs this office to perfection, when he is properly educated for it. He usually executes his commillion by taking the criminal (lupporing this latter to be condemned to death) up with his proboicis, and throwing bim up in the air, in which case he catches him on the point of his tusks, and thus makes an end of him. But if the malefactor is not decreed to suffer torture, he then lays him down on the ground, and with one of his fore-feet treads him to pieces at one smash.
When the sentence does not amount to death, he then takes the criminal, and toffing him up in the air, gives him a fair fall without interposing any farther : in this case the poor delinquent sometimes gets off safe and found; but it is an equal chance if he is not a cripple for life. This animal is likewise uied for labour. He is made to drag the heaviest pieces of timber fastened to one of his hind legs; and in general, to carry on his back all kinds of heavy burthens.
He is also frequently made use of for riding. I have myself made some trials of him in this way; but cannot say, that I experienced any pleasure in it, as by his fideling way of going he jolts one excessively.
To the narrative of our author is fubjoined a very good geographical description, with other particulars of the island of Ceylon by Mr. Efchelskroon.
As Mr. Wolf every where discovers a lively sense of a superintending providence, and as his life illustrates the connection between steady virtue and success in the world, his book is a very fit companion for youth, and fitted to afford moral instruction.
Art. V. Landscapes in Verse. Taken in Spring: By the Author
of Sympathy. 4to, 25. 6d. Becket, 1785. WE
E shall not be suspected of delivering a very novel and
uncommon truth, when we observe, that the excel, lencies are various and distinct that go to the conftituting perfect poetry. But there are some species of the imperfect kind (and indeed where shall we find an example of the perfe&t?) that are calculated to afford us unmingled pleasure. There is a sort of excellence so entire in its kind, that it
enables us by a sort of magic to set out of our view all that merit of which it does not partake. This is particularly the cafe with that simple and unaffected poetry, which, flowing in an artless and caly strain, and full of the genuine and at'tractive touches of nature, without alking leave of the judgement, wins upon and makes itself master of the heart. It is also true of that elegant and polite compofition, which, without borrowing any thing from the loftier powers of the imagination, deals in elegant allusions, graceful expreffions, an harmonious versification, and a fonorous and polithed i vle.
But there are other branches of poctical composition, whichi, though they cannot make their boast of affording unminn!ed pleature, yet cxcite a much higher degree of complacence and delight, than they do of pain, disgult, and averlion. And it ofte:. happens that these kinds of poetry are more excellent aná inore honourable, contribute more to the entertainmentor elevation of the reader, and rette et greater luftre upon the nation that produced them, than any of those kinds which excite no pain at ali. One touch of fublimity, of the grandeur of moral truth, of the terrible graces of the imagination, or the melting strokes of the pathetic, is worth all the uniform elegance, and all the paftoral fico'icity that ever existed. It usually happens indeed that these beauties of a more elevated description are accompanied with the most glaring inequalities, and the grofleft blemishes. But as light is ever more powerful than darkness, and iruth more perma, nent than falsehood, so blemishes, however grofs, and inequalities, however mortifying, are swallowed up and forgotten in the contemplation of superior and uncommon eninence, It is upon this estimate that Shakespeare is by all readers preferred to Pope, and that the Paradise Lost will never endure a competition with the Pastoral Ballad.
It will not be perhaps to venture too much to consider this as a perfect distribution of genuine and legitimate poetry; and it will not be to act with undue feverity, to pass an unfavourable judgement upon any performance that will rank under neither of these heads. An inattention to this maxim, we were going to say has done much harm in the science of criticism. But we retract our observation. Criticism, as an abftract science, may have something to do with the outline of a poem, with the regularity of its construction, and its conformity to the unities, but the 'first decision respecting style, metaphor, and all the minuter and more concentrated beauties of composition, lies before another tribunal. The tribunal, we mean is that of taste. Taste however has its measure and its standard ; and if we can at any time persuade ourselves to relish beauties, which, when analyzed, appear to
he neither easy, natural, por unaffected, we may assure ourfelves that we have no taft: at all.
It is as the guardian of taste that such publications as ours are valuable. There is at all times, in every thing of human institution, a tendency towards corruption. And this is perhaps more true of poetry than of any subject in the world. : Poetry, in its original idea, is embellishment" and
And there is nothing 'more to be feared than that, in the progress of refinement, fick of genuine and legitimate ornament, wo bhould look after all that which is dazzling, unexpected, and glaring. If indeed we must wait till a literary journal be uniformly conducted upon the principles of true taste, there is good ground to apprehend that our expectation would be both tedious and unsuccessful. But we had been almost tempted to say, that the thing would be just as useful, though falle, as when true in its decisions; especially if it poffeffed fufficient variety, and contradicted itself sufficiently often. It is difcufion and not judgement, it is debate rather than a formal and authoritative sentence, that is most to be desired. Truth will be struck out amidsc the collision of opinions, and the eftablishment of a tyrant can never be effected in a country, which has preserved free' dom of debate and freedom of the prefs.
In the author and in the poem before us, we perceive the evidences' of that corruption of taste which may so naturally be expected in a period of refinement so late as the present. The characteristic of his composition, which would have equally fubfifted in every period, is a kind of feebleness and imbecillity, ever grasping at something comprehensive, and never securing it. This necessarily disqualified him for the higher departments of poetry, but might have proved only a In all disadvantage in pure description, and the agreeable sportiveness of a trifler. He indisputably possesses, in our opinion, some fancy and some touches of elegance and affection worthy of a more distinguished pen. But that which has accomplished his ruin, is the undue and unreasonable attachment he has contracted to what Drvden calls the “Dalilas", the gaudy and bedizened harlots of the muse. He is ever labouring after something fine, far fetched, and unnatural. His style is fo adorned with bugles and tinsel that it is often as difficult to discover his meaning, as it would have been to have found the texture of Lord Peters coat, under all its accumulation of heterogeneous ornaments. There is one other 'defect under which the author labours but whicli we could more easily pardon, as it certainly cannot destroy the higher beau ties of poetry, We mean' his total ignorance and flagrant breaches of the rules of grammar, .