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lose ourselves in an abyss of his purposes; Hall that God depart from his wisdom and goodness in the general destination and difposition of our species, and act in these without a plan? Or can be have intended to keep us in ignorance of this, while he has displayed to us so much of his eternal purposes in the inferior part of the creation, in which we are much less concerned? What are the human race upon the whole but a flock without a shepherd? la the words of the compi ining prophet, are they not left to their own ways, as the files of the lea, a: the creeping things that have no ruler over them? Or is it unnecessary to them to know this plan? This I am inclined to believe: for where is the man, who discerns only the little purpose of his own life? though he sees as he is to see, and knows sufficiently how to direct his own fteps.
• In the mean time perhaps this very ignorance ferves as a pretext for great abuses. How many are there, who, because they perceive no plan, peremptorily deny the existence of one; or at leait think of it with trembling dread, and doubting believe, believing doubt! They constrain theinselves not to consider the human race as a nest of emmets, where the foot of a stranger, himfelt but a large emmet, crushes thousands, annihilates thousands in the midit of their little great undertakings, where lastly the two grandivrants of the earth, Time and Chance, sweep away the whole nelt, destroying every trace of its existence, and leaving the empty place for some other industrious community, to be obliterated hereafter in its turn. Proud man refuses to contemplate bis species as such vermin of the earth, as a prey of all-destroying corruption : yet do not history and experience force this image upon his mind ? What whole upon earth is completed? What is a whole upon it? Is not time ordained as well as space! Are they not alle twin off. spring of one ruling power? That is full of wisdom; this, of ap. parent disorder : yet man is evidently formed to seek after order, to look beyond a point of time, and to build upon the past ; for to this end is he furnithed with memory and reflection. And does not this building of one age upon another render the whole of our Species a deformed gigantic edifice, where one pulls down what another builds up, where what never thould have been erected is left standing, and where in the course of time all becomes one heap of ruins, under which timid mortals dwell with a confidence proportionate to its fragility ?' P.vii.
Whatever may have been M. Herder's object, his work, in general, is a hiltory of animated nature, and chiefly of man in his various forms and situations, either as a natural being, or as a gregarious and civilised one. This volume, with some philoiophical inquiries into the causes of the variations -obfervable in different races, published originally in five octavos, coniais therefore an immense collection of facts on all these Lubjects, with the author's opinions on different parts of their
tendency to one vaft whole, arranged and animated by the deity. The purest religion and the warmeft benevolence breathe in every page; the best-informed mind will, in this work, add to its knowledge, and the niost religious inquirer may, by the perusal, extend his views. Yet, in the philosophical part, we meet with many errors; and, as usual in affigning final causes, the author seeins to us to have injured that of religion, which he wishes fo fincerely to promote. In this part, and perhaps in the whole of the Philosophy of History,' we attempt to fathom the designs of Omnipotence by the thallow and imperfect line of human reason-infinity by an atom. We fear to follow the most intelligent philosopher in such a path; but, fortunately, the most intelligent tread it with cau. tion, with an holy awe. · The first book relates to the general history of the earth as a planet, and as the habitation of animated beings. In the lecond, the author rises from a more particular history of the structure of vegetables, by gradations, to that of man, whoin he fupposes to be the connecting link between the beings of this world and of a superior and more perfect existence. This beautiful idea is expanded with great judgement and ability. In the third book, the author advances to the physiology of vegetables and animals, ftill comparing their properties and powers with those of man, his principal object, concluding with the organic difference between man and beast. In the fourth book, he treats of the organisation of man as a rational creaturé, capable of attaining arts and language, susceptible of instincts finer than thofe of brutes, and organised, in confe. quence, to a freedom of action.' Man is organised also to endure the heats and colds of different climates,-formed for humanity and religion, for the hope of immortality. Froin this book we shall select a specimen of our author's reason. ing. We select it not invidiously, though we own that we ftarted on the perusal as much as Yorick did at the iminente power of the auxiliary verbs in Mr. Shandy's systein of education ; but we extract the passage as a specimen of the phie lofophic turn given to common observations by the German metaphyficians. It amounts to no more than the fact, that intellect is connected with the bulk, probably the shape of the cerebellum.
• Thus we come to the fuperiority of man in the structure of his brain. And on what does this depend? Evidently on his more perfect organization in the whole, and ultimately on his erect posture, The brain of every animal is fashioned after the shape of its head : or the proposition might with more propriety be reversed, as nature works from within to without. To whatever gait, to whatever proportion of parts, to whatever habits, she destined the creature;
for these me compounded, to these the adapted, its organic powers. According to these powers, and to the proportion in which they operated on each other, the brain was made large or small, narrow or extensive, light or ponderous, lumple or complicated. According to this the senses of the creature became feeble or powerful, paramount or subservient. The cavities and inuscles of the forepart of the head and of the occiput fashioned themselves, according as the lymph gravitated, in short, according to the angle of the organic direction of the head. Of numerous proofs in support of this, that might be adduced from various genera and species, I shall mention only two or three. What produces the organic difference .between the head of man and the head of an ape? The angle of direction. The ape has every part of the brain that nian poflefles : but it has them thrust backward in situation according to the figure of its skull, and this because its head is formed under a different angle, and it was not designed to walk erect. Hence all the organic powers operated in a different manner: the head was not so high, to broad, or so long, as that of man: the inferior senfes predominated with the lower part of the visage, which was the visage of a beast, as its back-thoved brain must ever continue the brain of a brute. Thus, though it has all the parts of the human brain, it has them in a different Situation, in a different proportion. The Parisian anatomists found in the apes they diseated the foreparts similar to those of man; but the internal, from the cerebellum, proportionally deeper. The pineal gland was conical, with its point turned toward the hind-head, &c, Thus there is a manifest relation between the angle of direction of the head, and the mode of walking, figure, and way of life of the animal. The ape diffected by Blumenbach had still more of the brute; being probably of an inferior species, whence arose its larger cerebellum, and the defectiveness of the more important regions. These differences do not exist in the ourangoutang, the head of which is less bent backward, and the brain not to much presled toward the hind part, though sufficiently fo when compared with the high, round, and bold curve of the human .brain, the only beautiful apartment for the formation of rational ideas. Why has not the horse the rete mirabile as well as other brutes ? Because its head stands erect, and the carotic artery rises in some measure like that of a man, without having occasion for this contrivance to impede the course of the blood, as in brutes that have depending heads. Accordingly it is a nobler, fiery, courageous animal, of much warınıh, and neeping little. On the contrary, in creatures with heads hanging down, nature had many precautions to take, in the contruction of the brain, even separating the principal paris by a bony partition. Thus every thing depends on the direction in which the head was formed, to adapt it to the organisation of the whole frame. I shall not proceed to any other examples, hoping, that inquisitive anatomists will turn their attene tion, particularly in diffecting animals that resemble man, to this intimate relation of the parts to their situation with respect to each other, and to the direction of the head as it fornis a part 'of the whole. othere, and ere, he beliectio fiesta
Here, I believe, lies the difference, that produces this or that instinct, that elaborates a brutal or a human mind: for every creature is in all its parts one living co-operating whole.' P.79.
In the fifth book the author afçends still higher in the scale, and traces the progressive compositions of powers and forms, each assuming a more noble nature, and acting a more important part, till the visible series end in man, the.connecting link of two worlds.' The organisation of particular races is next examined and explained; and, in this part, we meet with many curious, many interesting, remarks. The whole of this book will afford the reader particular pleasure, though we wish that the translator had rendered the picture more coinplete, by adding, in notes, what has been discovered by the numicrous travellers of this country within the last fifteen years; a supplement which will be highly proper in another edition, We may here remark, that M. Herder confiders the Chinese as the descendants of the Mongols, a Tartarian race, called in this work • Mungals;' that the form and colour of negrocs are derived from the heat of their climate, fro:n their sensuality, and their active spirit. Many authorities are adduced to show, as we have always contended, that a negro race once inhabited the Afiatic islands of the Indian Ocean: in Thort, without exa pressly saying so, M. Herder eems to consider the negro as the original man, and, so far as organisation is concerned, the more perfect being. The Americans he supposes to be de. rived from the north-west of Asia.
Man, however, notwithstanding his varieties, is, in his opinion, of one species only, naturalised in every climate, and modified by it. The generic power, the constitution, the indoles, form the chief variations, cliinate only operating as an auxiliary. These also vary the appetites and influence the fancy, ihough in the last tradition adds some share. The thepherd, the fisherman, and the huntsman, have in each country their distinguishing characteristics, for the practical understanding is influenced both by tradition and custom The feelings and inclinations are iniluenced in a great degree, according to our author, 'by organisation; and this subject leads hin to an elegant disquisition on the difference of manners:in different cliinates, and in different sexes, as influenced not only by organisation but by culom. • Whatever man has, however, attained, the accuinulated riches of ages are only handed down by tradition and language. Religion rests chiefly on the former, but certainly is connected with both. This inore obvious part of the subject is dilated somewhat too much, and fills the ninth book; but, if this part is unusually meagre, the tenth book is highly valuable and original. It contains the substance of the various traditions of the origin of man, and traces the original seat of the human race, with a bold and original pencil. M. Herder agrecs, with every enlightened inquirer, that the first created pair was placed in those high mountains of Asia, not covered with the chaotic sea, or soon emerging from it. There are the four rivers, mentioned in the Mosaic history, on which our author wholly relies; and many others might be added, for scarcely a great river falls into the Indian Ocean, or the North Sea, but what derives its source from the Tartarian mountains. The Pifon is, he thinks, the Ganges, Gihon the Oxus, and the Hiddekel perhaps the Indus. The fourth river cannot be the Euphrates, as its source is diftant, but the Phraath is an appellative from its situation, and in reality means the most celebrated eastern river,' a term applied with strict propriety to the Euphrates by a more western race, M. Herder has left the real appellation in modern times unde, termined, but we can have litile hesitation, at present, in considering it as the Irrawaddy, the river of Ava, which rises, we know, from the same niountains, and is most strictly a cele. brated eastern river. It is certainly the most eastern stream which these mountains send forth. 'But our author in general adheres to the spirit, not the letter, of the sacred writings, and he considers the Cainites and Sethites as appellatives of shepherds and cultivators, as Cabeils and Bedouins, for Cain, in the Arabic, is styled Cabil. This may give offence to the rigid believers of verbal inspiration, but rational piety cannot object, and we will defy the most exact scrutiny to draw an atom of infidelity from the present work. With this precaption we may venture to transcribe a passage before us.
" It is the same with regard to Noah's flood, as it is called. For, cer-ain as it appears from natural history, that the habitable earth has been ravaged by an inundation, and Aha particularly bears inconteftible marks of such a deluge; yet what is delivered to us in this narration is nothing more or less than a national story. The compiler has collected together several traditions with great care, and delivers i he journal of this tremendous revolution poffefled by his tribe : at the fune time the style of the narrative is so completely adapted to the mode of thinking of this tribe, that it would be high, ly injurious to it, to extend it beyond those limits, which alone stamp on it credibility. As one family of this people, with a conGderable houshold, escaped, so other families of other nations may have been saved, as their traditions now. Thus in Chaldea Xisuthrus Scaper with his family, and a number of cattle, which were then necessary to the support of men's lives, in a similar man.