Εικόνες σελίδας
PDF
Ηλεκτρ. έκδοση

47

49

Portugal. parently relinquished for some time, but finally carried from the convention of Cintra, were of the most beres. Perten

into execution on the 29th of November, when 15 per cial nature. The whole country was not only in a state Emigration

sons belonging to the house of Braganza embarked at of subordination, but the effects of the energy displayed of the royal Lisbon, for the Brasils, under the escort of a British

by the government began to be felt all over the king. family to fleet. In consequence of this measure, the emperor of dom. The disa flected and suspected were everywhere the Brasils. France declared that the throne was abdicated, and that taken into custody; and the people were making the

the kingdom should henceforth be considered as a consti most active exertions for their own defence, and for the tuent part of the French dominions. He dissolved the common cause.

regency formed by the prince, sequestered all the pro The Portuguese government issued a proclamation 48

perty belonging to the crown, and that of all the nobles calling upon the whole nation, from 15 to 60, to rise The French who followed him into exile. General Junot, who en masse for the defence of their country, and to oppose enter Lisbon.

soon after this, entered Lisbon at the head of 14,000 an insurmountable barrier against the French. This
men, issued a proclamation to the people of Portugal, order met with more prompt obedience than a similar
in whiich he promised the due administration of justice, command experienced when issued by the emperor of
the preservation of tranquillity, and declared that their Germany.
future happiness should be attended to with the utmost During the wars in the Peninsula which followed the
punctuality. These pretensions, however, did not ap general rising of the Spaniards in 1808, the Portuguese
pear to ru concile the subjects of Portugal to their new continued firm in the common cause, and their troops,
masters; for when Junot seated himself in the prince's which generally acted with the British, shared some of
box at the opera, all the Portuguese then present put on the victories gained by the latter. The peace in 1814
their hats, and instantly withdrew. The evils attending restored the Portuguese government to the peaceable
this French invasion were such as might have been ex possession of the country; but the Prince Regent has
pected. The lower classes were dying of absolute want; shewn no disposition to return from the Brasils. In 1817
and more than two-thirds of the mercantile houses in a plot was discovered among the military at Lisbon, the
Lisbon were plunged into the gulf of bankruptcy. the object of which was believed to be the subversion of

The army of Sir Arthur Wellesley, sent by Great Bri the existing government. Some of the ringleaders were
tain to act against the French troops under Junot, amount executed, and others banished.
ed to about 20,000 men, with an equal number of Portu The air of Portugal, in the southern provinces, would Ait.
guese soldiers, wbich were to be joined by a Spanish force be excessively hot, if it were not refreshed by the sea. Tali

of 10,000 men, under the command of General Jones. breezes ; but in the northern, it is much cooler, and French de- The British and French had a desperate action near Vi the weather more subject to rains. The spring is exfeated at

miera on the 21st of August 1808, which terminated in tremely delightful here; and the air, in general more the battle of Vimicra. the total defeat of the French forces, who were to eva temperate than in Spain. Lisbon bas been much resort

cuate Portugal on certain conditions, the chief of which ed to of late by valetudinarians and consumptive persons was, that they were to be carried home with all their from Great Britain, on account of its air. The soil is plunder, in vessels belonging to Great Britain. Sir Hew very fruitful in wine, oil, Icmons, oranges, pomegra

Dalrymple, who succeeded Sir Arthur Wellesley as com nates, figs, raisins, almonds, chesnuts, and other fine 50 mander in chief of the British forces, agreed to what is fruits ; but there is a want of corn, owing, it is said, Convention called the convention of Cintra, by which indeed the in a great measure to the neglect of agriculture. There of Cintra. kingdom of Portugal was freed in the mean time from is plenty of excellent honey here ; and also of sea and

the ravages of an unfeeling enemy; but it has been sup river fish, and sea salt. The horses in Portugal are brisk
posed that such a convention might have been much more lively animals, as they are in Spain, but of a slight
honourable to Britain, and the French troops compelled make : but mules being surer-footed, are more used for
to an unconditional surrender. Dishonourable as this carriage and draught. By reason of the scarcity of pa-
convention was deemed by some, it had the sanction of sture, there are not many herds of cattle or Blocks of
Sir Charles Cotton, the admiral of the British fleet; sheep; and what they have are small and lean, though
and the freeing the Portuguese from the oppression and the flesh is tolerably good : tbeir best meat is said to be
tyranny of France by this means became a justification that of hogs and kids. The country in many parts is
of the measure.
This convention was strongly repro-

mountainous : but the mountains contain all kinds of bated in Britain ; a board of general officers was ap ores; particularly of silver, copper, tin, and iron, with pointed by his majesty to form a court for the purpose of a variety of gems, beautifully variegated marble, millinquiring into the circumstances which led to it; and

stones, and many curious fossils. Not far from Lisboa the result of the investigation was a decision, by a ma is a mine of salt petre ; but none of the metal mines are jority of the court, that the armistice and convention here worked, the inhabitants being supplied with metals were necessary, and that nothing dishonourable or im- of all kinds from their foreign settlements. The principroper attached to any of the officers concerned in it. pal rivers are the Minho, in Latin Minius; the Limia,

Every thing at the Brasils proceeded in a tranquil anciently the fomed Lethe , the Cavado ; the Donro ; and prosperous manner under the auspices of the new the Guadiana, anciently Anas; and the Tajo, or Tagus, government. The highest veneration was shewn by the which is the largest river in the kingdom, carrying some colonists of all descriptions for the prince regent, and gold in its sands, and falling into the sea a little beprompt obedience paid to his ordinances and commercial low Lisbon. There are several mineral springs in regulations. The most enthusiastic attachment prevailed the kingdom, both hot and cold, which are much frein Rio Janeiro and Bahia towards the English settlers; quented. and the happiest consequences were expected to result The only religion tolerated in Portugal is that of the Religiosa from the enterprises of their new friends in South Anie. church of Rome ; yet there are many concealed Jews, rica. The consequences resulting to the Portuguese, and those too even among the nobility, bishops, pre

bends,

2

Portugal. bends, monks, and nuns, and the very inquisitors them- sterling. Lisbon is the greatest port in Europe next to Portugal.

selves.. If a Jew pretend to be a Christian and a Ro London and Amsterdam.
man Catholic, while he is really a Jew, by going to Before the late revolution, the government of Portu. S4

Constitą. mass, confession, &c. or if after being converted, or gal was an absolute hereditary monarchy. For the ad

tion and pretending to be converted and pardoned, he relapses ministration of the civil government, there was a coon-governinto Judaism and is discovered, the inquisition lays cil of state, and several secretaries ; for military affairs, ment. hold of him. In the first case, if he renounce Judaism, a council of war; for the finances, a treasury court; he is only condemoed to some corporal punishment or and for the distribution of justice several high tribunals, pnblic shame, and then ordered to be instructed in the with others subordinate to them, in the several districts Christian religion. In the second, he is condemned to into which the kingdom is divided. The cities bave the flames without mercy. Besides Jews and heretics, their particular magistracy. The proceedings of the who broach or maintain any doctrines contrary to the courts are regulated by the Roman law, the royal religion of the country, the inquisition punishes all so edicts, the canon law, and the pope's mandates. Like domites, pretenders to sorcery and the black art, a po the Spaniards, they transact most of their business in states, blasphemers, perjured persons, impostors, and the mornings and evenings, and sleep at noon. The hypocrites. The burning of those condemned by the nobility are very numerous, and many of them are deinquisition, is called an auto da fe, or “ act of faith." scended from natural sons of the royal family. They There are several tribunals of the inquisition, one of are divided into high and low. The high consists of which is at Goa in the East Indies ; but there are none the dukes, marquises, counts, viscounts, and barons, in Brasil. The number of convents in Portugal is said who are also grandees, but of different classes, being to be 900. The order of Jesuits hath been suppressed suffered to be covered in the king's presence, and hain this country, as they have been in others. Here is ving the title of Dons, with a pension from the royal * patriarcb, several archbishops and bishops : the pa. treasury, to enable them the better to support their triarch is always a cardinal, and of the royal family. dignity: the king styles them Illustrious in his letters, Tbe archbishops rank with marquises, and the bishops and treats them as princes. A duke's sons are also with counts. The Portuguese have archbishops and bi- grandees, and his daughters rank as marchionesses. shops in the other quarters of the world as well as in The inferior nobility or gentry are termed Hidalgos, Europe. The sums raised by the popes here, by vir i. e. gentlemen : they cannot assume the title of Don tue of their prerogatives, are thought to exceed the without the king's license.

55 revenues of the crown, and the nuncios never fail of ac The revenues of the crown, since the discovery of Revenues quiring vast forlunes in a short time. Though there the Brasil mines, are very considerable ; but the real of the king,

&c. are two universities and several academies, yet while amount can only be guessed at. Some have said that it the papal power, and that of the ecclesiastics, continues amounts, clear of all salaries and pensions, to upwards at such a height, true learning is like to make but a of 3,000,000l. sterling ; others make it a great deal small progress. The langnage of the Portuguese does less. Besides the royal demesnes, the hereditary estates not differ much from that of Spain: Latin is the ground of the house of Braganza, the monopoly of Brasil snuff, work of both ; but the former is more remote from it, the coinage, the money arising from the sale of induland harsher to the ear, than the latter. The Portu gences granted by the pope, the fifth of the gold brought guese tongue is spoken on all the coast of Africa and from Brasil, the farm of the Brasil diamonds, the mas

Asia as far as China, but mixed with the languages of terships of the orders of knighthood, and other sources, S5 the several nations in those discant regions.

yield very large sums. The population of Portugal in Mapefac.

With regard to manufactures, there are very few in 1815, was estimated at 3,680,000; the army at 25,000, terss.

Portogal, and those chiefly coarse silks, woollen cloth, besides 33,000 militia ; the navy, 8 ships of the line
and some linen; but their foreign trade is very consider-
and 16 frigates.

56 able, especially with England, which takes a great deal There are several orders of knighthood here, viz. the Orders of of their wine, salt, foreign commodities, and fruits, in order of Christ, the badge of wbich is a red cross within knight

hood. return for its woollen manufactures, with which the a white one, and the number of the commanderies 454. Portuguese furnish their colonies and subjects in Asia, 2. The order of St James, the badge of which is a red Africa, and America. Their plantations in Brasil are sword in the shape of a cross.

A great number of
very valuable, yielding gold, diamondi, indigo, copper, towns and commanderies belong to this order. 3. The
tobacco, sugar, ginger, cotton, hides, gums, drugs, dye order of Aviz, whose badge is a green cross in form of
ing woods, &c. From their plantations in Africa, they a lily, and the number of its commanderies 49. Though
bring gold and ivory, and slaves to cultivate their sugar these three orders are religious, yet the knights are at
and tobacco plantations in Brasil. They have still se-

liberty to marry. 4. The order of St Jobn, which has
veral settlements in the East Indies, but far less consie also several commanderies.
derable than formerly. The Azores or Western isles, The king's titles are, King of Portugal and the Al-
Madeira, and the Cape de Verde Islands, also belong to garves, on this side and the other side the sea of Africa;
them; but a great part of the riches and merchandise Lord of Guinea, and of the navigation, conquests, and
brought from these distant countries becomes the pro commerce, in Ethiopia, Arabia, Persia, India, &c.
perty of foreigners, for the goods they furnish the Por- The king's eldest son is styled Prince of Brasil. In
tuguese with to carry thither. The king's fifth of the the year 1749, Pope Benedict XIV. dignified the king
gold brought from Brasil anounts commonly to about with the title of His most faithful majesty.
300,000l. sterling; so that the whole annual produce Portugal bas recently become the scene of an extra-
of gold in Brasil may be estimated at near 2,000,000l. ordinary revolution. The Portuguese bad long been
VOL. XVII. Part I.

+

dissatisfied

Gg

Portugal issatisfied with their government, and seem really to of an ancient castle. There is also a garrison for a troop Parties

have had many serious grievances. After the removal of horse and two companies of foot. The town is seated ! Portumna. of the court to Brasil, the mother-country had sunk on the river Shannon, where it falle into Lough Derg.

Poruku to the condition of a colony, whose interests, on ac POSE, in Heraldry, denotes a lion, horse, or other count of its distance from the seat of government, were beast, standing still, with all his four seet on the ground. often neglected or exposed to injury, from the arro POSITIVE, a term of relation.opposed to negative. gance and corruption of subordinate functionaries. It is also used in opposition to relative or arbitrary : The pride of the natives was hort by the preference thus we say, Beauty is no positive thing, but depends shewn to the English, who beld many places of trust on the different tastes of people. and power. Besides, the great changes the Portuguese Positive Degree, in Grammar, is the adjective in had witnessed during the last ten years, and their free its simple signification, without any comparison. intercourse with foreigners during that period, had Positire Electricity. In the Franklinian system awakened political feelings which made themi ardently all bodies supposed to contain more than their natural wish for some alteration in their political institutions. quantity of electric matter are said to be positively elecThe revolution in Spain gave increased force to these trified; and those from whom some part of their elecfeelings, and rendered an explosion unavoidable. Ac. tricity is supposed to be taken away are said to be eleccordingly, on the 24th August 1820, about five months trihed negatively. These two electricities being first after the completion of the Spanish revolution, a num produced, one from glass, the other from amber or rober of the leading men in Oporto, including some of sin, the former was called vitreous, the other resinous, the highest military officers, having previously satisfied electricity. themselves of the favourable disposition of the troops, POSPOLITE, in the former military establishment

, assembled publicly, called out the military, and pro- of Poland, is the name given to a kind of militia. It claimed the Spanish constitution, amidst the enthusias was the most numerous and the most useless of the Potic acclamations of the people. A provisional govern lish armies, consisting of the gentry at large, who, in ment was formed, and a deputation, supported by a case of invasion, were assembled by a regular summons strong body of troops, immediately set out towards from the king, with consent of the diet. Every palatiLisbon. The regency in the capital at first seemed nate was divided into districts, over each of which pro. disposed to resist; but finding that both the citizens per officers were appointed; and every person possessing and the army were decidedly favourable to the revolu- free and puble tenures was bound to military service, eition, they yielded to the torrent, and in the name of ther singly or at the head of a certain number of his reJolin VI. issued a proclamation on the 2d September tainers, according to the extent and nature of his possesfor assembling a cortes. This proceeding completed sions. The troops thus assembled were obliged only to the revolution without one drop of blood being shed, serve for a limited time, and were not under the neces. and produced unbounded joy, both in the capital and sity of marching beyond the limits of their country. the provinces. Some distrust, however, naturally at: They submitted to no discipline but such as they liked tached to the agents of the former government; and themselves; and were very apt to mutiny if detained after some negotiation these persons found it necessary more than a fortnight in the place appointed for their 'to lay down their powers.

The cortes has since met, meeting without marching. The mode of levying and and has been actively engaged in making many great maintaining this army was exactly similar to that pracand salutary reforms in the laws and interior police of tised under the feudal system. Although unfit for the the country. The constitution of this legislative as purposes of repelling a foreign enemy, it was considered sembly is pretty nearly the same with that of Spain ; a powerful instrument in the hands of domestic faction: but in one very important point an alteration bas been for the expedition with which it was raised under the introduced. The deputies to the Portuguese cortes are feudal regulations facilitated the formation of those danchosen directly by the people; whereas in Spain there gerous confederacies which suddenly started up on the are three consecutive stages of election,-a mode of contested election of a sovereign, or whenever the noproceeding which offers great opportunities for corrup bles were at variance with each other. tion, and loosens the tie between the representative and POSSE COMITATUS, in Law, signifies the power of the represented. The revolution in Spain was followed the county, or the aid and assistance of all the knights

, by a revolution in Brasil, and this led to the return of genilemen, yeomen, labourers, servants, apprentices

, the Portuguese court to Europe. The leaders of the &c. and all others within the county that are above the Portuguese revolution have conducted themselves hi age of 15, except women, ecclesiastical persons, and tberto with great firmness and moderation, correcting such as are decrepit and infirm. manifest evils, without innovating rashly; and avoid This posse comitatus is to be raised where a riot is ing all unnecessary rigour towards the agents of the committed, a possession kept upon a forcible entry, or former government.

any force of rescue used contrary to the king's writ, PORTUGALLICA TERRA, earth of Portugal; the or in opposition to the executiou of justice ; and it is name of a fine astringent bole, dug in great plenty in the duty of all sheriffs to assist justices of the peace in 'the northern part of Portugal.

the suppression of riots, &c. and to raise the posse coPORTULACA, PURSLANE; a genus of plants be mitatus, or to charge any number of men for that porlonging to the dodecandria class. See Botany Inder. pose.

PORTUMNA, a town of Ireland, in the county of POSSESSION, in Law, is either actual, where & Galway and province of Connaught, is 74 miles from person actually enters into lands or tenements descendDublin. The castle of Portumna, the seat of the earl ed or conveyed to him; or where lands are descended of Clanricarde, is at this place, and near it are the ruins to a person, and he has not yet entered into them. A

long

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Post

[ocr errors]

TE

[ocr errors]

STUM.

"Possession long possession is much favoured by the law as an ar easily do ;' that he was detected in an imposture with Possession

gument of right, even though no deed can be shown, respect to the clenching of his hands; that after money
and it is more regarded than an ancient deed without bad been collected for him, he got very suddenly well;
possession.

that he never had any fits while he was at St George's If he that is out of possession of land brings an ac Hospital in London ; nor when visitors were excluded IX

tion, he must prove an undeniable title to it; and when from his lodgings, by desire of the author of the Nar

a person would recover any thing of another, it is not rative; and that he was particularly careful never to 1

sufficient to destroy the title of the person in possession, hurt himself by his exertions during the paroxysm.
without he can prove that his own right is better than • Is it for the credit of this philosophical age, that so
bis.

bungling an imposture should deceive seven clergymen,
In order to make possession lawful upon an entry, the into a public act of exorcism? This would not have pas-
former possessor and his servants are to be removed from sed even on the authors of the Malleus Malificarum;
off the premises entered on : but a person by lease and for they required signs of supernatural agency, such as
release is in possession without making any entry upon the suspension of the possessed in the air, without any
the lands.

visible support, or the use of different languages, un-
Possession, in Scots Law. See Law, Part III. known to the demoniac in bis natural state."
No clxii. 11. &c.

POSSESSIVE, in Grammar, a term applied to pro-
Dæmoniacal Possession. (See Dæmon and DÆ- nouns, which denote the enjoyment or possession of any
MONIACS). In the third volume of the Manchester thing either in particular or in common : as meus,
Transactions, there is a paper on popular illusions, or « mine ;" and tuus, " thine."
medical demonology, by Dr Ferriar. He informs us in POSSESSORY ACTION, in Scots Law. See Law
a note, that on the 13th of Jane 1788, George Lukins No clxxxiii. 18.
of Yatton in Somersetshire was exorcised in the Temple POSSIBILITY, in Law, is defined to be any thing
church at Bristol, and delivered from the possession of that is altogether uncertain, or what may or may not
seven devils by the efforts of seven clergymen. An ac be.
count of bis deliverance was published in several of the PossibILITY, also degotes a non-repugnance to ex-
public papers, authenticated by the Rev. Mr Easter- isting, in any thing that does not any way exist.
brook, vicar of the Temple church in Bristol.-Dr Fer POSSIBLE, is sometimes opposed to real existence,
riar gives us the following particulars, extracted from and is understood of a thing, which, though it actually
this account, which we shall here insert.

does not exist, yet may exist; as a new star.
“ Lukins was first attacked by a kind of epileptic fit, POSSIDONIA, in Ancient Geography. See PoE-
when he was going about acting Christmas plays, or
mummeries: this he ascribed to a blow given by an in POST, a word derived from the Latin positus, " set
visible hand. He was afterwards seized by fits ; during or placed.” It is used in several different meanings,
which he declared, with a roaring voice, that he was but all of them referring either immediately or remote-
the devil, and sung different songs in a variety of keys. ly to this primitive sense of position. Thus the word
The fits always began and ended with a strong agita- Post signifies, 1. A stake or piece of timber set upright;
tion of the right hand. He frequently uttered dreadful 2. A station, particularly a military station ; 3. An of-
esecrations during the fits. The whole duration of his fice or employment; 4. An operation in book-keeping;
disorder was 18 years.

-5. A conveyance for letters or dispatches ; 6. A parti-
“At length, viz. in June 1788, he declared that he cular mode of travelling.
was possessed by seven devils, and could only be freed Post, a stake or piece of timber set upright. Posts
by the prayers (in faith) of seven clergymen. Accord- are used both in building and in fencing ground. In
ingly the requisite force was summoned, and the patient brick-buildings much of the strength of the fabric de-
sung, swore, lavghed, and barked, and treated the com- pends on the nature of the posts ; as it is through them,
pany with a ludicrous parody on the Te Deum. These that the several parts are sustained and held together.
astonishing symptoms resisted both hymns and prayers, The corner posts are called the principal posts; those form-
till a small faint voice admonished the ministers to ad. ed into bressummers between principal posts for strength.
jure. The spirits, after some murmuring, yielded to the ening the carcase of the house are called the prick-posts.
adjuration, and the happy patient returned thanks for Posty which are to be set in the ground ought to be
his wonderful cure. It is remarkable, that during this well seasoned and coated to preserve them from rotting;
solemn mockery, the fiend swore • by his infernal den,' burning the downward end has been recommended as
that he would not quit his patient ; an oath, I believe, an excellent preservative, but a coating of pitch or tar,
nowbere to be found but in the Pilgrim's Progress, particularly the late iovented coal-tar, can be most safe.
from which Lukins probably got it.

jy relied upon. For the various uses to which posts
“ Very soon after the first relation of this story was may be applied, and the form and species of them fittest
published, a person, well acquainted with Lukins, took to be employed in each case, see the articles Archí.
the trouble of undeceiving the public with regard to TECTURE, JOINING, GARDENING, House, FENCE, &c.
bis pretended disorder, in a plain sensible narrative of In architecture and sculpture, Posts are a term used to
his conduct. He asserts that Lukins's first seizure was denote certain ornaments formed after the manner of
nothing else than a fit of drunkenness; that he always rolls or wreathings.
foretold his fits, and remained sensible during their con Post, a station, particularly a military station.
tinuance ; that he frequently saw Lukins in his fits, Any place where persons are set or placed upon parti-
' in every one of which, except in singing, he per. cular occasions may be termed a post : but the word in
formed not more than most active young people can this view is now chiefly restricted to military operations,

and

Gg2

[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

and means any place or situation where soldiers are sta- whom transactions are carried on, and frequently for pot
tioned. Thus the detachments established in front of the every separate article about which the business is con.
army are termed the out-posts, the stations on the wings cerned. The particular mode according to which such
of the army are said to be the posts of honour, as being transferences are made, may vary according to the na.
the most conspicuous and most exposed. But in the ope- ture of the trade carried on ; the object is the same in
rations of a campaign, a post properly signifies any spot of all, to place every article so as that its operations on
ground capable of lodging soldiers, or any situation, whe- the general state of the business may be certainly known
ther fortified or not, where a body of men may make a and distinctly traced. For a full account of the way
stand and engage the enemy to advantage. The great in which this is done, see Book-keeping.
advantages of good posts, in carrying on war, as well as Post, a conveyance for letters or dispatches.
the mode of securing them, are only learned by experi In the early periods of society, communication bie-
ence. Barbarons nations disdain the choice of posts, or tween the different parts of a country is rare and dili.
at least are contented with such as immediately fall in cult, individuals at a distance having little inclination or
their way; they trust solely or chiefly to strength and opportunity for mutual intercourse : when such commu-
courage : and hence the fate of a kingdom may be de- nication is at any time found necessary, a special mes.
cided by the event of a battle. But enlightened and senger must be employed. As order and civilization ad-
experienced officers make the choice of posts a principal vance, occasions of correspondence multiply. In parti.
object of attention. The use of them is chiefly felt in cular, the sovereign finds it requisite frequently to trans-
a defensive war against an invading enemy; as by car mit orders and laws to every part of the kingdom; and
rying on a war of posts in a country where this can be for doing so he makes use of couriers or messengers, to
done to advantage, the most formidable army may be whom he commits the charge of forwarding his dispatches.
so harassed and reduced, that all its enterprises may be But without stations in the way, where these couriers
rendered abortive. In the choice of a post, the general can be certain of finding refreshment for themselves and
rules to be attended to are, that it be convenient for supplies of what may be necessary for carrying them
sending out parties to reconnoitre, surprise, or inter- forward, the journey, however urgent and important,
cept the enemy; that if possible it have some natural must always be retarded, and in many cases altogether
defence, as a wood, a river, or a morass in front or flank, stopped. Experience, therefore, soon pointed out the ne-
or at least that it be difficult of access, and susceptible cessity of ensuring such accommodations, by erecting
of speedy fortification ; that it be so situated as to pre. upon all the great roads houses or stations at convenient
serve a communication with the main army, and have intervals, where the messengers might stop, as occasion
covered places in the rear to favour a retreat; that it required, and where too, for the greater convenience,
command a view of all the approaches to it, so that the relays of fresh horses should always be in readiness, to
enemy cannot advance unperceived and rest concealed, enable them to pursue their journey with uninterrupted
while the detachment stationed in the post are forced dispatch. These houses or stations were with great pra-
to remain under arms; that it be not commanded by priety termed posts, and the messenger who made use of
any neighbouring heights ; and that it be proportioned them a post. Though at first, it is probable, the institu-
in extent to the number of men who are to occupy and tion was intended solely for the sovereign, and the ne-
defend it. It is not to be expected that all these ad- cessities of the state ; yet by degrees individuals, seeing
vantages will often be found united; but those posts the benefit resulting from it, made use of the opportunity
ought to be selected which offer the greatest number to carry on their own correspondence ; for which they
of them. See WAR.

were willing to pay an allowance to the sovereign. Thus Post, an office or employment. This use of the a post-office, of some kind or other, gradually came to word is probably derived immediately from the idea of be established in every civilized country. Without tak. a military station ; a post being used to express such ing notice of the different means of carrying on corresoffices or employments as are supposed either to ex- pondence said to have been attempted by pigeons, dogs, pose the holder to attack and opposition, or to require and other animals, we can at least trace with certainty the abilities and exertion to fill them. Hence the term invention of something like regular posts as far back as is used only for public offices and employments under the ancient Persians. Xenophon assures us, that they the government; and were strict propriety of speech als were invented by Cyrus on bis Scythian expedition

, ways attended to, posts would denote those stations only about soo years before Christ; that the houses at the in which duty must be performed. In common language, several stations were sumptuously built, and large however, every public office or appointment, even though enough to contain a number of men and horses ; and nominal and sinecure, goes under the name of a post. that every courier on his arrival was obliged to commu

Post, an operation in book-keeping. Posting in book- nicate his dispatches to the postmaster, by whom they keeping means simply the transferring an article to the were immediately forwarded. From the shore of the place in which it should be put, and arranging each under Ægean sea to Susa the capital, there were, according its proper bead. It is opon this that the whole theory Herodotus, u I stages for posts, each a day's journey of book-keeping is founded. The Waste-book, which distant from the preceding. is the ground work of all subsequent operations, records In what manner posts were established and conduct. every transaction exactly in the order in which it oc ed among the Greeks does not clearly appear; but from

From this the several articles are posted, or the extended commerce carried on, and the frequent transferred into the Journal, which in fact is but a kind communications enjoyed among the different states,

there can be no doubt that a regular conveyance, of supplementary book to the Waste-book. From the

in Journal they are posted anew into the Ledger; in which some form or other, was established. a separate place is appropriated for each person with Though posts were well known among the Romans

,

2

curs.

yet

« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »