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BEING AND PERFECTIONS OF GOD,
FROM A CONSIDERATION OF
THE STRUCTURE AND ECONOMY OF
ILLUSTRATED WITH A COPPERPLATE.
BY M, LESSER:
and W. Davies, London.
E FORE entring on the perusal of the following Work,
it will not perhaps be disagreeable to the Reader, to have some account of the authors of it.
Of the learned and pious LESSER few particulars are known. He was of Nordhausen in Germany, and published in 1736, a LITHO-THEOLOGY.
Of the author of the Notes, we are enabled to give the following account, which was published in the Gentleman's Magazine for September 1789:
Mr Peter Lyonet, secretary of the Cyphers, translator and patent.master to their High Mightinesses, was born at Maestricht in 1706, and was descended from a very respectable and ancient family in Lorrain. His ancestors were frequently obliged by the wars and troubles occasioned by the Reformation, to abandon their habitations, and their native country, on account of their zeal for the reformed religion. His great grandfather, after having seen his eftates and possessions destroyed and burnt to ashes, and his wife and all his children murdered, was at last reduced to the necessity of flying. He took refuge in Switzerland, where he was afterwards re-married, and bad by his fecond wife a fon, of whom was born Benjamin Lyonet, French minifter at Houfdon, the father of qur author.
ADVERTISEMENT. Mr Peter Lyonet had scarcely attained his seventh year before he displayed an uncommon strength and agility in all bodily exercises; but he was not less diligent in the improvement of his mind. Being placed at the Latin school, he learned chronology, and exercised himself in Latin, Greek, and French poetry, as also in Hebrew, Logic, and the Cartesian Phyfics. He was particularly fond of the study of languages, and understood no less than nine,living and dead; viz. of the former, besides the Dutch and French, the Italian (which he had acquired without the aid of a master,) the Spanish, German, and English. Having entered the University of Leyden, he studied the Newtonian Philosophy, Geometry, Algebra, &c. but his father defiring he should attach himself to divinity, he reluctantly abandoned the former studies, as his passion for them was not easily to be overcome. He at the same time applied himself toanatomy, and also to music and drawing. He began afterwards to practise sculpture, and performed several pieces in wood, one of which in particular, which is preserved, is uncommonly admired by the artists. It is a ballo relievo, cut in palm-wood, representing Apollo, with the Nine Muses ; a most gloririous master-piece, and which the painter Van Gool, in the fecond volume of his “ Review of the Dutch painters, &c. under the article Lyonet, styles a 'wonder-piece.' It excited also the admiration of the painter le Chevalier de Moor. After this, he betook himself to drawing portraits of his friends from life, wherein, after three or four months practice, he became a great proficient. Having attained the degree of candidate in divinity, he resolved to study law, to which he applied himself with so much zeal, that he was promoted at the end of the first year. On this occasion he delivered an academical treatise on the proper use of the torture, which was published, and gained him the esteem of the learned. Arrived at the Hague, he undertook the study of decyphering, and became secretary of the cyphers, translator of the Latin and French languages, and patent
master to their High Mightinesses. Meanwhile, having ta-