« ZurückWeiter »
perour, it could not in appearance escape charms authorized. So that ever since taking. In fine, it was attaqued with such witchcraft hath been very freely tolerated ; order, that the army came up to the very of which the Chief of the town, and even gates, where the Chevalier de Sauignac, a those who are esteem'd to be of greatest Frenchman by nation, made himself re- sanctity among them, such as are the Mamarkable above all the rest, by the miracles rabou's, a religious order of their sect, do of his valour. For having repulsed the for the most part make profession of it, Turks, who having made a sally at the under a goodly pretext of certain revelations gate call’d Babason, and there desiring to which they say they have had from their enter along with them, when he saw that prophet Mahomet. 'they shut the gate upon him, he ran his And hereupon those of Algier, to palponyard into the same, and left it sticking liate the shame and the reproaches that are deep therein. They next fell to battering thrown upon them for making use of a the city by the force of cannon; which the witch in the danger of this siege, do say assailants so weakened, that in that great that the loss of the forces of Charles V, extremity the defendants lost their courage, was caused by a prayer of one of their and resolved to surrender.
Marabou’s, named Cidy Utica, which was But as they were thus intending, there at that time in great credit, not under the was a witch of the town, whom the history notion of a magitian, but for a person of a doth not name, which went to seek out holy life. Afterwards in remembrance of Assam Aga, that commanded within, and their success, they have erected unto him a pray'd him to make it good yet nine days small mosque without the Babason gate, longer, with assurance, that within that where he is buried, and in which they keep time he should infallibly see Algier deliver- sundry lamps burning in honour of him : ed from that siege, and the whole army of nay they sometimes repair thither to make the enemy dispersed, so that Christians their sala, for a testimony of greater vene should be as cheap as Birds. In a word, ration. the thing did happen in the manner as foretold; for upon the twenty-first day of Oc
Can it be doubted for a moment, tober in the same year, there féll a con. that the dramatist had come fresh tinual rain upon the land, and so furious a from reading some older narrative of storm at sea, that one might have seen this deliverance of Algier by a witch, ships hoisted into the clouds, and in one and transferred the merit of the deed instant again precipitated into the bottom to his Sycorax, exchanging only the of the water : insomuch that that same
“rich remuneration," which did not dreadful tempest was followed with the loss suit his purpose, to the simple parof fifteen gallies, and above an hundred don of her life. Ogilby wrote in other vessels ; which was the cause why 1670; but the authorities to which the Emperour, seeing his army wasted by he refers for his Account of Barbary the bad weather, pursued by a famine, occasioned by wrack of his ships, in which are Johannes de Leo, or Africanus was the greatest part of his victuals and — Louis Marmol - Diego de Haedoammunition, he was constraind to raise Johannes Gramaye -- Breves — Cel. the siege, and set sail for Sicily, whither he Curio—and Diego de Torres-names retreated with the miserable reliqués of his totally unknown to me--and to which fleet.
I beg leave to refer the curious reaIn the mean time that witch being ac- der for his fuller satisfaction. knowledged the deliverer of Algier, was richly remunerated, and the credit of her
NOTES FROM THE POCKET-BOOK OF A LATE oriUM-EATER.
ENGLISH DICTIONARIES. It has already, I believe, been by the way, settles a question often said more than once in print that agitated, viz. whether the true meanone condition of a good dictionary ing of a word be best ascertained would be to exhibit the history of from its etymology, or from its preeach word; that is, to record the sent use and acceptation. Mr. Coleexact succession of its meanings. ridge says, “ the best explanation of But the philosophic reason for this a word is often that which is sughas not been given; which reason, gested by its derivation
(I give the Nov. 1823.
substance of his words from memory). the word ought to be abandoned to Others allege that we have nothing women: doubtlass, when sitting in to do with the primitive meaning of a bower in the month of May, it is the word; that the question is pleasant to hear from a lovely mouth what does it mean now ? and they -"I put implicit confidence in your appeal, as the sole authority they ac- honour:" but, though pretty and beknowledge, to the received- coming to such a mouth, it is very Usus, penes quem est jus et norma loquendi. and I will be bold to affirm that no
unfitting to the mouth of scholar: In what degree each party is right, man, who had ever acquired a schomay be judged from this considera- lar's knowledge of the English lantion—that no word can ever deviate guage, has used the word in that from its first meaning per saltum : lax and unmeaning way. The hiseach successive stage of meaning tory of the word is this.-Implicit must always have been determined (from the Latin implicitus, involved by that which preceded. And on in, folded up) was always used orithis one law depends the whole phi- ginally, and still is so by scholars, losophy of the case: for it thus ap- as the direct antithete of explicit pears that the original and primitive (from the Latin explicitus, evolved, sense of the word will contain virtu- unfolded): and the use of both may ally all which can ever afterwards be thus illustrated. arise: as in the evolution-theory of Q. “ Did Mr. A. ever say that he generation, the whole series of births would marry Miss B.?."-A. “No; is represented as involved in the first not explicitly. (i. e. in so many parent. Now, if the evolution of words); but he did implicitly-by successive meanings has gone on showing great displeasure if she rerightly, i. e. by simply lapsing ceived attentions from any other through a series of close affinities, man; by asking her repeatedly to there can be no reason for recurring select furniture for his house; by to the primitive meaning of the word: consulting her on his own plans of but, if it can be shown that the evo- life.” lution has been faulty, i.e. that the Q: “ Did Epicurus maintain any chain of true affinities has ever been doctrines such as are here ascribed broken through ignorance, then we to him?”-A. “ Perhaps not exhave a right to reform the word, and plicitly, either in words or by any to appeal from the usage ill-instruct- other mode of direct sanction: on ed a. usage better-instructed. the contrary, I believe he denied them Whether we ought to exercise this and disclaimed them with veheright, will depend on a consideration mence: but he maintained them imwhich I will afterwards notice. plicitly: for they are involved in Meantime I will first give a few other acknowledged doctrines of his, instances of faulty evolution. and may be deduced from them by
1. Implicit. This word is now used the fairest and most irresistible loin a most ignorant way; and from gic.” its misuse it has come to be a word
Why did you complain of wholly useless: for it is now never the man?
the man? Had he expressed any coupled, I think, with any other contempt for your opinion?"-Å. substantive than these two-faith “ Yes, he had: not explicit conand confidence: a poor domain in- tempt, I admit ; for he never opened deed to have sunk to from its origi- his 'stupid mouth ; but implicitly gal wide range of territory. More- he expressed the utmost that he over, when we say, implicit faith, or could : for, when I had spoken two implicit confidence, we do not thereby hours against the old newspaper, and indicate any specific kind of faith and in favor of the new one, he went inconfidence differing from other faith stantly and put his name down as a or other confidence : but it is a vague subscriber to the old one.” rhetorical word which expresses a Q.“ Did Mr. great degree of faith and confidence; that gentleman's conduct and way a faith that is unquestioning, a con- of life?"-A.“. I don't know that fidence that is unlimited ; i. e. in fact, I ever heard him speak about it: a faith that is a faith, a confidence but he seemed to give it his implicit that is a confidence. Such a use of approbation by allowing both his
sons to associate with him when the he may never have heard of it even : complaints ran highest against him." his faith is implicit, i. e. involved
These instances may serve to illus- and wrapped up in the faith of the trate the original use of the word: church, which faith he firmly bewhich use has been retained from lieves to be the true faith upon the the sixteenth century down to our own conviction he has that the church is days by an uninterrupted chain of preserved from all possibility of errwriters. In the eighteenth century ing by the spirit of God.”+ Now, this use was indeed nearly effaced : as this sort of believing by proxy but still in the first half of that cen- or implicit belief in which the be tury it was retained by Saunderson lief was not immediate in the thing the Cambridge professor of mathe- proposed to the belief but in the matics (see his Algebra, &c.), with authority of another person who three or four others, and in the lat- believed in that thing and thus ter half by a man to whom Saunder- mediately in the thing itself) was son had some resemblance in spring constantly attacked by the learned and elasticity of understanding, viz. assailants of popery,-it naturally by Edmund Burke. Since his day I happened that many unlearned readknow of no writers who have avoided ers of these protestant polemics the slang and unmeaning use of the caught at a phrase which was so word, excepting Messrs. Coleridge much bandied between the two parand Wordsworth; both of whom (but ties: the spirit of the context sufficiespecially the last) have been ren ently explained to them that it was markably attentive to the scholar- used by protestants as a term of re like * use of words, and to the his- proach and indicated a faith that was tory of their own language.
an erroneous faith by being too easy l'hus much for the primitive use - too submissive
and too passive: of the word implicit. Now, with re but the particular mode of this errogard to the history of its transition neousness they seldom came to uninto its present use, it is briefly this; derstand, as learned writers naturaland it will appear at once, that it ly employed the term without exhas arisen through ignorance.-When planation, presuming it to be known it was objected to a papist that his to those whom they addressed. church exacted an assent to a great Hence these ignorant readers caught body of traditions and doctrines to at the last result of the phrase " imwhich it was impossible that the plicit faith” rightly, truly supposing great majority could be qualified, it to imply a resigned and unqueseither as respected time-or know- tioning faith ; but they missed the ledge-or culture of the understand whole intermediate cause of meaning ing, to give any reasonable assent,- by which only the word “ implicit the answer was: “ Yes; but that could ever have been entitled to exsort of assent is not required of a press that result. poor uneducated man; all that he has I have allowed myself to say so to do-is to believe in the church: much on this word “ implicit," ben he is to have faith in her faith: by cause the history of the mode by that act he adopts for his own what- which its true meaning was lost apsoever the church believes, though plies almost to all other corrupted
* Among the most shocking of the unscholarlike barbarisms, now prevalent, I must notice the use of the word nice' in an objective instead of a subjective sense : ' nice' does not and cannot express a quality of the object, but merely a quality of the subject : yet we hear daily of “a very nice letter "-"a nice young lady," &c. meaning a letter or a young lady that it is pleasant to contemplate : but" a nice young lady a fastidious young lady ; and " a nice letter” ought to mean a letter that is very deli. cate in its rating and in the choice of its company.
+ Thus Milton, who in common with his contemporaries) always uses the word accurately, speaks of Ezechiel “ swallowing his implicit roll of knowledge”-i. e. coming to the knowledge of many truths not separately and in detail, but by the act of arriving at some one master truth which involved all the rest.--So again, if any man or government were to suppress a book, that man or government might justly be reproached as the implicit destroyer of all the wisdom and virtue that might have been the remote products of that book.
words—mutatis mutundis : and the plied to space as to time; “I cannot amount of it may be collected into punctually determine the origin of the this formula,—that the result of the Danube ; but I know in general the word is apprehended and retained, district in which it rises, and that but the schematismus by which that its fountain is near that of the Rhine." result was ever reached is lost. This Not only however was it applied to is the brief theory of all corruption time and space, but it had a large of words. The word schematismus I and very elegant figurative use. have unwillingly used, because no Thus in the History of the Royal Soother expresses my meaning. So ciety by Sprat (an author who was great and extensive a doctrine how, finical and nice in his use of words) ever lurks in this word, that I defer -I remember a sentence to this efthe explanation of it to a separate fect: “ the Society gave punctual diarticle. Meantime a passable sense rections for the conducting of experiof the word will occur to every body ments;" i.e. directions which dewho reads Greek.-I now go on to a scended to the minutiæ and lowest few more instances of words that details. Again in the once popular have forfeited their original meaning romance of Parismus Prince of Bothrough the ignorance of those who hemia—“She”(I forget who)" made used them.
a punctual relation of the whole mat“ Punctual.” This word is now ter;" i. e. a relation which was perconfined to the meagre denoting of fectly circumstantial and true to the accuracy in respect to time—fidelity minutest features of the case. to the precise moment of an appoint- But, that I may not weary my ment. But originally it was just as reader, I shall here break off; and often, and just as reasonably, ap- shortly return to this subject.
Amongst the numerous instances not understand the meaning of that of ignorance in Mrs. Macauley, (or term ! Dr. Johnson hated her of Macauley Graham as I believe she course as a republican; and, as we was latterly,) scattered up and down all know from Boswell
, contrived an her history-is this:-(and by igno- occasion for insulting her. He might rance, I mean ignorance of what be- have confounded her still more by longed to the subject she had under- asking her, as she professed to have taken to treat, and ignorance which read Andrew Marvell, in what sense it was impossible she could have she explained that passage in one of displayed if she had read the quarter the many admirable speeches and of what she professed to have read, songs which he has put into the or the tenth part of what she ought mouth of Charles II., where his Mato have read.)—Quoting some pas- jesty tells the House of Commons sage about the numerous
officers who that they must provide him sufficient had accumulated in London from the funds, not only for such ladies as he broken regiments and under the self- had upon present “duty,” but also denying ordinance, who all for the whole staff of his “refor. classed under the head of Refore mado concubines.” madoes, she declares that she does
As the “ wisdom of nations," and with an opposite pole ; and the two the quintessential abstract of innu- proverbs jointly compose a spheremerable minds, proverbs must na- i. e. the entire truth. Thus one proturally be true: but how? In verb says—“ Fortune favours fools:” what sense true? Not itdws, not but this is met by its anti-proverb absolutely and unconditionally, but “Sapiens dominabitur astris.”—Each in relation to that position from is true, as long as the other co-exists.: which they are taken. Most pro- each becomes false, if taken exverbs are hemispheres as it were; clusively. and they imply another hemisphere The illustration, by the way, is not the best I might have chosen— nometrical term);-and until they with a little more time for consider- are rounded into a perfect figure by ation: but the principle here ad- an opposite hemisphere,—this prinvanced of truths being in many ciple, I shall endeavour to show a cases no truths unless taken with little further on, is a most important their complements (to use a trigo- one and of very large application.
In this article I mean to apply the as instances of this pedantry. This principle of antagonism, as it is ma- criticism I pronounce to be founded nifested in the fine arts, to the solu- on utter psychological ignorance and tion of a particular difficulty in narrow thinking. And I shall enMilton; and in that way to draw deavour to justify Milton by placing the attention of the reader to a great in a clear light the subtle principle cardinal law on which philosophical by which he was influenced in that criticism, whenever it arises, must, practice: which principle I do not hereafter mainly depend.-) presume mean to say that Milton had fully that my reader is acquainted with developed to his own consciousness; the meaning of the word antagonism for it was not the habit of his age or as it is understood in the term “ an- of his mind to exercise any analytic tagonist muscle,” or in general from subtlety of mind; but I say
that the the term “ antagonist force.” principle was immanent in his feel
It has been objected to Milton that ings; just as his fine ear contained he is guilty of pedantry in the intro- implicitly all the metrical rules which duction of scientific and technical are latent in his exquisite versifica. terms into the Paradise Lost; and tion, though it is most improbable the words frieze, architrave, pilaster, that he ever took the trouble to and other architectural terms, to- evolve those to his own distinct congether with terms from astronomy, sciousness. navigation, &c. have been cited
TO THE LAKERS.
Those who visit the lakes, not of a monsoon. They commit many those who reside amongst them (ac- other absurdities, which have furcording to a recent use of the word) nished me with matter for a pleasant are called by the country people of paper upon them; “pleasant,” as in that district, lakers ; in which word the farce of Taste Foote says, “pleathere is a pleasant ambiguity and a sant, but wrong;" for it is too sati. lurking satire. For the word lake rical: and I doubt whether I shall (from the old Gothic, laikan, ludere) publish it. Meantime, that the poor is universally applied to children people may not be driven to distracplaying: and the simple people, who tion by being ridiculed for errors till the soil of Westmoreland and which they know not how to amend, Cumberland, cannot view in any Mr. Coleridge, Mr. Wordsworth, other light than that of childish lak- Professor W- and myself, with ing, the migrating propensities of all some ten or twelve others, have had the great people of the south, who a meeting, at which we have agreed annually come up like shoals of here to club our several quotas of wit and rings from their own fertile pastures learning, for the production of a new to the rocky grounds of the north. Guide to the Lakes : considering All the wits and beaur esprits of Lon- what sort of cattle our competitors don, senators, captains, lawyers, are, it can be no honour to us I pre" lords, ladies, councillors, their sume, that our work will put an exchoice nobility,” flock up from Mid- tinguisher on all which have precedsummer to Michaelmas, and rush ed it: it will not be so proper to violently through the lake district, as call it a Guide to the Lakes, as the if their chief purpose in coming were Guide; not the latest and best of to rush back again likt the clifting guides (as if there were any other