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principle—pendulum clocks—watches—air-pump-spinning Jennies--safety lamp, &c.

Few inventions owing to chance. Cautions to be attended to in the construction and use

of the safety lump. Mechanics have a greater chance of becoming inventors than mere

philosopmers. Prospects of improvement in future ages - - - - -

III. The erterrol comforts of mankind promoted by intelligence and improvements in the arts.
Contrast between the past and present aspect of the social state. Wretched accommoda-
tions which still exist among the lower classes. Mental improvement would lead to
diligence and economy, to cleanliness in person, clothes, and furniture—to tasteful decora-
tions of houses and garden-plots-improvements in foot-paths, narrow lanes, villages, &c.

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Grovelling conceptions of the Deity both in heathen and Christian countries. Just con-

ceptions of the Divinity acquired from his external manifestations. Ignorance exhibits

distorted views of the Divine character. Attributes of the Deity which science illustrates :

l. The unity of God. 2. Wisdom of the Deity—manifested in the various arrangements

of sublunary nature. Particular illustration. 3. Benevolence of the Deity—manifested in

the parts of the human frame, and in the surrounding elements—muscles of the eye (illus-

trated with figures)—gratification afforded to our different senses. Remedies against

the evils to which we are exposed. Multitudes of animated beings, and the ample

provision made for them. Calculations in relation to the number of certain species of

birds, and the velocity with which they fly. Number of species of plants eaten by

different animals. 4. Science exhibits a view of the multiplicity of conceptions which have

been formed in the Divine mind. Exemplified in the different construction and functions

of the various species of animals—in the numerous parts which enter into the construction

of an animal frame. Lyonet's description of the numerous parts of the cossus caterpillar.

Multiplicity of ideas manifested in the Vegetable kingdom. Varieties in the Mineral

kingdom. Varieties in Microscopical objects—scales of fishes, feathers of birds, wings

of flies, leaves and transverse sections of plants, &c. Numbers and varieties of ani-

malculae. Immensity of nature. Description of the engravings of microscopic objects.

Variety in the external aspect of nature—in the sun, planets, comets, and on the surface

of the moon. 5. Science expands our conceptions of the power of the De ty, and of

the magnificence of his empire. Such views of Deity in unison with the dictates of

revelation,--and calculated to produce many beneficial effects on the understandings and

affoctions of mankind . - - - - - - - - - - - -

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increase of knowledge, of late years. Tendency to irreligion in certain scientific inquirers,
and the circumstances which have produced it. Religion and science connected—
irrationality and inconsistency of attempting to dissever them. Christian religion over-
looked. Supreme importance of Christianity. Effects of a complete separation of science
and religion. Tendency of our present modes of education. Illustrated from the scenes
erhibited during the French Revolution. Demoralization produced by the principles of the
continental philosophists. Persecuting spirit of French infidels and skeptics. Science
without religion produces few moral effects. Subversion of morality in France, a beacon

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to guard us from similar dangers. Foxtract from Rev. D. Young. Nature of the pro-
posed connexion between science and religion. Attributes of the Deity displayed in his
works. Authors who have illustrated this subject, with remarks on some of their writings.
Modern system of physico-theology, a desideratum. Newton, Maclaurin, and Robison's
sentiments on this subject. Truths of revelation ought to be recognised in scientific
instructions. Squeamishness of certain philosophers in this respect. Extract from
Dr. Robison. Harmony of Nature and Revelation. Scientific instructions should
produce a moral impression. Prayer and recognition of the Deity in philosophical
associations. Hypocrisy of skeptics. Exemplified in the case of Buffon. Topics,
connected with religion, which might occasionally be discussed in scientific associations.

. Immortality, its importance in a scientific point of view. Skeptical philosophy insufficient

to support the mind in the prospect of dissolution—exemplified, in the case of Voltaire,

Buson; Gibbon, Hume, and Dideral Concluding reflections - - - - - 149


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Whrw we take a restrospective view of the state of mankind during the ages that are past, it presents, on the whole, a melancholy scene of intellectual darkness. Although in every age men have possessed all the mental faculties they now or ever will enjoy, yet those noble powers seem either to have lain in a great measure dormant, or, when roused into action, to have been employed chiefly in malignant and destructive operations, Hence the events which the page of history records chiefly present to our view the most revolting scenes of war, rapine, and devastation, as if the earth had been created merely to serve as a theatre for mischief, and its inhabitants for the purpose of dealing destruction and misery to all around them. Such, however, are the natural consequences of the reign of Ignorance over the human mind. For the active powers of man necessarily follow the dictates of his understanding, and when the intellectual faculties are not directed to the pursuit and the contemplation of noble and benevolent objects, they will most frequently be employed in devising and executing schemes subversive of human happiness and improvement.

Amidst the darkness which, in ancient times, so long overspread the world, some rays of intellectual light appeared in Palestine, in Egypt, and in the Greek and Roman empires; but its influence on the nations around was extremely feeble, and, like a few tapers in a dark night, served little more than to render the surrounding darkness visible. The light of science which then shone was, however, doomed to be speedily extinguished. About the fifth century of the Christian era, numerous hordes of barbarians from the northern and the eastern parts of Europe, and the north-western parts of Asia, overran the western part of the Roman empire, at that time the principal seat of knowledge; and, in their progress, overturned and almost annihilated every monument of science and art which then existed. Wherever they marched, their route was marked with devasta

tion and with blood. They made no distinction between what was sacred and what was profane—what was barbarous and what was refined. Amidst the din of war, the burning of cities, the desolation of provinces, the convulsion of nations, the ruin of empires, and the slaughter of millions, the voice of reason and of religion was scarcely heard; science was abandoned; useful knowledge was set at naught; every benevolent feeling and every moral principle was trampled under foot. The earth seemed little else than one great field of battle; and its inhabitants, instead of cultivating the peaceful arts and sciences, and walking hand in hand to a blessed immortality, assumed the character of demons, and gave vent to the most fiend-like and ferocious passions, till they appeared almost on the brink of total extermination. For nearly the space of a thousand years posterior to that period, and prior to the Reformation, a long night of ignorance overspread the nations of Europe, and the adjacent regions of Asia, during which the progress of literature and science, of religion and morality, seems to have been almost at a stand; scarcely a vestige remaining of the efforts of the human mind, during all that period, worthy of the attention or the imitation of succeeding ages. The debasing superstitions of the Romish church, the hoarding of relics, the erection of monasteries and nunneries, the pilgrimages to the tombs of martyrs and other holy places, the mummeries which were introduced into the services of religion, the wild and romantic expeditions of crusaders, the tyranny and ambition of popes and princes, and the wars and insurrections to which they gave rise, usurped the place of every rational pursuit, and completely enslaved the minds of men. So great was the ignorance which then prevailed, that persons of the most distinguished rank could neither read nor write. Even many of the clergy did not understand the breviary, or book of common prayer, which they were daily accustomed to recite, and some of

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