« FöregåendeFortsätt »
country, from the Balkan to then they were in possession of the whole of the 1828.) Review,-Dr. Walsh's Journey from Constantinople to England. 55 are a kind of
of feudal cavalry, possessing hereditary lands, on the tenure of appearing in the field when callen on. Some of their troops are called, for their headlong and wreckless impetuosity, Delhis, or madmen ; and the desperate enterprizes they undertake, justifies the name. Such cavalry, in the passes of the Balkan, must oppose a formidable resistance to the most effective and best disciplined troops; and no doubt the Russians, if they ever attempt this barrier, will find it so.
Another obstacle will be afforded by the season of the year. The only time for operation is the spring: the country is then exceedingly beautiful and healthful, the rivers are full of sweet water, the grass and fodder abundant, and the air elastic and healthful; but as the 'summer advances, the rivers dry up, vegetables disappear, and nothing is presented but an arid, burning soil, intolerable from the glare of the sun by day, and dangerous from the cold and the damp of the heavy dews by night; and the morbid effects of these every ariny has experienced, campaigning in those countries at that season, both in ancient and modern times. To pass this chain in winter, with an army, seems a still more hopeless attempt: the morasses saturated with rain, incapable of supporting the heavy burthen of waggons or artillery; the ravines filled with snow or mountain torrents, and passed over by tottering bridges of wood, so rotten as to break with the smallest pressure ; the numerous defiles, which a few can defend against â multitude, affording so many natural fortresses, behind which the Turks
ght with such energy and effect; the scattered villages, which can afford neither shelter nor supplies, –all these present obstacles, of which the Russians themselves seem very conscious. In their last Danube, with the exception of Varna
, Nyssa, and Shumla, in which the Turks were shut ; and they had nearly 100,000 men in the plain below, completely equipped, and were at the very base of the mountain, and the entrance to the
yet they never attempted to ascend, with the exception of a few straggling Cossacs, who made a dash across the ridge, and returned as speedily back again.
The Turks seem to have no apprehension of an approach to the capital on this side: relying on the natural strength of this chain of mountains, they have not fortified any of the i passés, nor do I recollect a single, fortress from Shumla to Constantinople. Their great apprehension is, that the invasion will be made by sea ; and in this pera suasion, not only the Dardanelles, but the Bosphorus, resembles one continued for. tress, from the Sea of Marmora to the Black Sea. In the year 1821, when a rupture was apprehended with Russia, all the castles were completely repaired, and additional batteries were erected on every point of land which bore advantageously on the channel, Šo'as to present a most formidable obstruction to any approach by water. These batteries
, bowever, were altogether untenable, if attacked on the land side ; the high ground, above the shores of the Bosphorus, everywhere commanding them: and if a landing were effected anywhere in the rear, which it was at that time said was the plan of the Russians, they must be immediately abandoned. But it seems as if the Turkish power in Europe was fast hastening to ruin, which the few convulsive efforts they occasionally řhake cannot avert or long delay.
The most striking circumstance to a traveller in the Turkish provinces is their depopulation. This is not so observable in large towns (though Con. staatinople has lost more than half its inbabitants within the last twenty years) as in the country; where villages existed, there are uninhabited wastes. From the co-operation of various causes, there is more of human life wasted, and less supplied, in Turkey, than in any other country.
« We see, every day, life going out in the fairest portion of Europe; and the human race threatened with extinction, in å soil and climate capable of supporting the most abundant population."
The people of Moldavia and Wallachia, the countries between the Pruth and the Danube, and now occupied by the Russian armies, are unwarlike and physically weak; their disposition indolent. Their moral qualities are modi
fied by their physical temperament; great crimes are unknown amongst a people who have not sufficient bardihood to attempt them. From this cause, and the rapacity of the Turks, the effects of human labour are not visible in this fertile country. The population of the two provinces is estimated at a million and a half. The peasants are not, as formerly, bound to the soil, but are at liberty to move where they please; they are only subject to a capitation tax. The great mass of the people are very illiterate.
The basis of the language of these and the adjoining provinces is the Latin, which is spoken generally, and with something of a Roman purity in Transylvania. Upon Dr.Walsh's arrival at Hermanstadt, the first principal town in Transylvania, he was surprised to find Latin the common language of the people; not a jargon like the Wallachian tongue, but "such as is taught and spoken in our classical schools and colleges, and pronounced exactly as in Ireland," of which country we suspect our author is a native:
I was awoke in the morning by a man, who came with a lantern into my room before it was day. He held in his hand a glass, and said distinctly, “ Visne schnaps, Domine." Well pleased to hear a language I could understand in the inn, I said, « Quid est schnaps ?" He held up his finger in the manner of demonstrating a proposition, and said, “ Schnaps, Domine, est res maximè necessaria omnibus hominibus omni mane." Satisfied with his definition, I declined any further proof; but was greatly amused at the boots of an obscure inn talking distinct Latin, which he told me was the common language of the house.
Another curious fact related by Dr.Walsh is the popularity of Sir Walter Scott's novels in these remote parts. At the quarantine in the Carpathian mountains our author solaced himself with some of these works, which, he says, are the delight of the Boyars of Wallachia ; and in Transylvania, happening to enter a bookseller's shop, the owner pointed to a portrait, observing, in French, that it was “Le Sieur Valtere Skote, l'homine le plus célèbre en toute l'Europe."
In Transylvania, our traveller was much struck with the Saxon colonies, which have taken ground '
here, forming an heptarchy. They are the descendants of those families who were driven from Saxony in an early period of the reformation, and were suffered to plant themselves here as a barrier against the encroachment of the Turks, whom they valiantly withstood. They retain all their ancient traits of character, differing little in air, manner, and dress from the primitive reformers. They are of a very grave demeanour, with serious thinking faces; they have, in general, aquiline noses, dark and somewhat stern countenances, to which black mustachios give a sombre caste ; their persons are large and robust, and their very gait has a certain air of sturdy independence; they wear large round felt hats, from under which their long strait hair hangs down loose about their face and shoulders; short coats and large breeches, like the doublet and hose of their forefathers: in fact, they nearly resemble the figures represented in the wood-cuts to be seen in the "black letter" histories of the early reformers. A graphic representation of these Transylvanian Saxons fully supports the description.
We conclude our notice of the interesting work of Dr. Walsh with the following reflections upon the present crisis, and upon the character of the Greeks :
Whatever be the future fate of this extraordinary nation; whether, having thus advanced into the heart of Christendom, and vainly attempted to establish the religion of the Koran on the ruins of that of the Gospel in the west, as they had done in the east, it is the design of Providence that they should now return to the place from whence they
came, after having used them as instruments for its own purpose, to prove the final permanency of the religion of Christ; or, whether they will be permitted to remain in Europe, and at length adopt, not only its arts and sciences, but its religious belief also; and so be no longer a peculiar people, but amalgamated with the rest, and received as members of the great European family. Whatever may be reserved for them, there is one subject of pure congratulation, which no change of events can now alter; and that is, the safety and independence of the Greeks.
You have been in the habit of despising this people, and believe them so sunk and degraded from their former name as hardly to be recognized as the same nation; but certainly my experience of them for several years would induce me to adopt a different opinion; their strong moral features, like those of their language, though dehased by some recent barbarisms, remain essentially the same, the character of both being but little altered. As far as they have had opportunities, they have evinced the same industry, activity, genius, love of literature, enterprize, talent, and intrepidity; shaded, at the same time, with the levity, fickleness, personal jealousies, cruelty, and want of faith, which occasionally distinguished their ancestors; and assuredly they are not inferior to them in an ardent and unextinguishable love of liberty, and their country, for which they have perilled as much, and fought as bravely, in the days of the Turks, as their ancestors in the days of the Persians. To their domestic virtues I should be very unjust if I did not pay them the tribute they deserve. I have nowhere met more kind and cordial people to strangers; or, who perform the relative duties in their swn families with stronger affections, in wbich I am disposed to think they exceed these progenitors. If, in addition to this, we consider the obligations we owe their nation our sympathy will not be confined to mere respect for their unchanged character. We acknowledge them as our masters in literature and the arts and science, and the marca from whenee we derive whatever is estimable in those attainments; and they we endeared to us by all the recollections connected with such interesting utjects; butve do not seem to remember that they are our instructors in religion alo, in a guage was the medium through which the Gospel was first conreget, ai suoi éria were among the first where it was preached and adopted. And stress Posideron, for its own wise purposes, permitted to Makomedanista a tempora tresk á Lana, no inducement or intimidation could prevail on the modern Gues to saco na cause of Christianity ; but, for four centuries, they cheristeri and kept are the mod fame, in the centre of the Turkish expire. To hold forth the taas si meg t se people; to put an end to the carnage that was consardag heus, ad om at en subdued and unyielding remnant from etter extermination; we, u, s prack them in such a state of security as no fature domination saixant ES can have any pretest to interfere with, was sereij ars sixt 6 us Enggantung and one of those bright events #bich will at the and her to súsar.
Statement relative to Setomapore, Supplementary to Brie Mensa" by
J. MARSHMAN, D.D. With Introductory Obser atins, by do** #vit, London, 1828. 670. pp. 244. It is greatly to be lamented istite pots between the Baptist Mis sionaries of Serampore add the parent com * 2:nd bent be adjusted without these reiterated aga's to the points, 9 lu berme to vok parties, as well as to the rigtige res, re or itself. When the missionaries were calumniatsi to the preu, Bey were just lied is exculoyee the same medium to set the senere in the estimation about the world; but the public press was not a fit retice to the sainte duvrijweut y wade, Is it impracticable for the parties to get in the cock of a discibet, kurartial, and judicious person, to wbose arbitratum they might diront the writers sa dispute? Surely they slust both be sentirse that the put vrtion of yamyb kls Asiatic Journ. Vol. 26. No.151. 1
and letters and paragraphs upon this subject tends to excite acrimonious feelings which must widen the breach betwixt them, and to provoke a spirit foreign to the very nature of Christianity. Let both parties be prepared to make concessions; let each forego, for peace-sake, a certain portion of what may in strictness be their right to insist upon; and a few simple issues will remain to be tried, which any honest man of ordinary capacity may decide in a few hours.
With a full knowledge of the mischief which this dispute is working in India and England, we urgently recommend a reconciliation between the disputants; and for this reason we refrain from inflaming the quarrel by a re-examination of the subject. We shall, therefore, say no more of the work before us, than that we regret that a writer like Mr. Foster should show such a want of discretion as to express himself upon this delicate and unfortunate subject with so little moderation as is exhibited in his tedious “ introduction” of seventy pages. It is true, indeed, that Dr. Marshman is not responsible for these intemperate strictures, beyond the permission he gave to suffer them to' accompany his '“ statement;" they are, therefore, merely the officious opinions of an individual inspired with all the zeal of a partizan, who has no better means of determining the merits of the question than any
other person acquainted with the facts.
MISCELLANEOUS WORKS. A Treatise on Gout, Apoplexy, Paralysis, and Disorders of the Nervous System. By A.
RENNIE, Surgeon, &c. London, 1828. The object of this treatise is to ascertain, on physiological principles, aided by practical observation, what are the remote and insidious causes which dispose the constitution' to gout, apoplexy, and other diseases termed nervous, the increased prevalence of which, especially apoplexy, has of late years been a subject of universal remark. The present portion of the treatise, a second part of which is promised towards the close of the current year, is deroted to an investigation into a history of the origin and progress of the gouty habit or diathesis, a description of its symptoms, an inquiry into its true causes, and an enumeration of the diseases which dispose to gout.
De Prisca Ægyptiorum Litteraturâ ; Commentatio prima quam scripsit J. G. L. Kose
Weimar, 1828. 4to. pp. 71. Plates. Professor Kosegarten bas, in this treatise, illustrated the newly discovered science of hieroglyphics by various papyri in the Museum of Berlin. The learned professor is no favourer of the system of Spohn and Seyffarth; he upholds that of Young and Champollion. This treatise affords an evidence of his learning and industry.
ASIATIC SOCIETY OF CALCUTTA. ficult subject, but we are still as far from At a meeting of this Society at Chow the attainment of that object as we are ringhee, January 2, the Hon. Sir C. Grey, from an elixir vitæ, or the philsopher's president, in the chair, the following pa stone. Dr. Butter observed, that writpers were read :
ing may represent either the innumerable A memoir by Dr. G. M. Paterson, ideas which pass through the mind, in containing general disquisitions on the which case its own characters must also true origin of the earth, and on the mi be innumerable ; or it may represent the neral, vegetable, and animal kingdoms, comparatively limited number of sounds according to the analogies of universal utterable by the human voice, and emnature,
ployed in endless combination to signify In this extraordinary production, Dr. those ideas, in which case its characters Paterson attempts to prove that the for
will also be limited in number. Ideas mation of the earth was effected by the may be shadowed forth by a pictorial medium of the solar orb. After describ- character, full or abridged, like that of ing the revolutions of the earth round the the aboriginal Mexicans, and of the ansun, and the supposed influence of the cient Egyptians ; or, when referring to latter upon that planet, he thus pro- abstract qualities, may require the aid of ceeds:
symbolic figures, as, in the ideographic As, unquestionably, the sun thús exe portions of the existing hieroglyphics of cutes all the mediatory functions of paren Egypt. Again, if the grand improvetal duty, does it not follow, from the ment of representing mere sounds by connection and tenour of causes, that if those figures be sedulously avoided, the we are desirous to unfold a true history of hurry of writing and constant aim at abthe earth, from her earliest infancy, and breviation, will at last reduce this species to examine her from her primeval origin, of writing to the condition of the modern we must have recourse to the sun him Chinese written character, which requires self? – Most certainly,” says Dr. Pa a life-time for its complete acquisition. terson ; and adds, “ there was a time (no The most eligible mode of writing is time to us, however,) when the sun be that which represents the sounds of spoing, as it were, in a state of pregnancy, ken languages; and, without dwelling carried within himself the foetal planets of on the visionary scheme of Bishop Wilhis own system, and after a time de kins, an attempt, however imperfect, livered them into the regions of space. must be made to ascertain and classify He thinks that the sun was primitively the sounds of several of the languages overspread with effluvias, exhaled from, now spoken in different parts of the and hatched by virtue of his own real world. One good basis for the classifiirradiations, flowing together in abun cation of sounds, Dr. Butter thinks, is dance, and in every direction towards afforded by the difference which is famihimself, as to an asylum and harbour of liarly known to exist between speaking rest; and that from these fluids, in pro aloud and whispering. The former class cess of time condensed, there was de of sounds may, he adds, be called larynrived a circumambient nebulous expanse, geal, and the latter, whispering, or, for including the great parent, the sun him- uniformity's sake, susurral. self! In consequence, now, of the rays The sounds being thus classed and arbeing intercepted, and their influences ranged, we more clearly perceive the shut up, this nebulous expanse, he con means of adapting to each an appropriate ceives, would thence derive a crust, which symbol, or combination of symbols. crust the sun, by its concentrated partu “ We may,” says Dr. Butter,“ select rient virtues, would burst, and hatch an one of the European languages as a mooffspring of globes, equal to the number del, and assign unalterably one of its let. in this system, which exist at present, ters and combinations of letters, accordand still look up to the sun as their pa- ing to the most general usage of that lanrent.
guage, to each sound of the above arThis rhapsody is continued in the re rangement; but this plan has the disadport before us usque ad nauseam.
vantage of being unintelligible to the other The other paper was an Essay by Dr. European nations, who never could be Butter, of Ghazeepore, respecting the expected to adopt it." formation of a universal alphabet. From Instead of following, then, implicitly the time of Bishop Wilkins to that of Dr. any one European language, we may take Gilchrist, many ingenious men have em the average of the whole, and adapt to ployed themselves in giving shape and each sound, the Roman letter or letters, compass to their conceptions on this dif which are, throughout Europe, most ge