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Spes cannot be answered by anticipation.
We suspect H. B.'s Sonnet to the Rising Sun was written for a lark.
-but we have answered him before.
We are sometimes charged with being severe,-and, perhaps, we are occasionally betrayed by the rashness, vanity, or folly of certain writers, into an intolerant tone of expression, not quite becoming such grave judges as we are known to be. But in sober sadness, what is to be said to Counting-house Versifiers, and Warehouse Essayists? We are continually furnished with ricketty sonnets from Milk-street, Friday-street, Ironmonger-lane, and all the softer alleys of the city,—which the writers chuckle over with all the dangerous fondness of parents. We could crown this notice at once by printing a passage or two from the “effusions” of A. B.-Flavius,—Thurza (query, any relation of Lord Byron's?) K.-T. T.-But a word to the unwise may be sufficient.
Thersites is left “ to be reclaimed,” as he desires, of which there is much need, and perchance but little hope.
We should be loth to make Mr. Christie angry, by printing Athenæus's Ode to Fonthill Abbey, now that it is advertised for sale. The Poem opens bravely, but sneaks miserably off at the conclusion-or to speak in our own styletakes up at the Lion, and sets down at the Lamb. Caliph Vathek is not “ That simple Eastern Tale of Turkish hearts," which the Bard describes. Why cannot our Correspondent get his Ode inserted among the sundries in the Catalogue ?-It would sound well—Three saucepans, four sets of fire irons, two grates, one Ode, and a coal-skuttle. There is a way of getting these things smuggled in.
The following verses are selected from an Ode written in the fear of the New Marriage Act.
FARE THEE WELL,
Oh now-or fare thee well !
Oh now-or fare thee well!
Before we lay the following Observations on Phrenology before our readers, we deem it requisite to put them in possession of the Theory of external Indications, on which the science is founded, so far, at least, as this information is capable of being conveyed by diagrams and names. Dr. Spurzheim adopted the same mode of illustration in his work; but the plate which he gives is not so satisfactory as that which is contained in a pamphlet intitled, « Observations on Phrenology,” from which the various positions of the head, in the annexed engraving, have been copied:
* We regret that the founders or advocates of the system have not ere this honoured it with a Nomenclature more apposite; and of less barbarous construction. The Phrenological Society cannot better employ their sittings, than in doing it this just and necessary piece of service. The name of the organ of Space, we perceive, has been changed to that of Locality; but the latter term is still very exceptionable.- It should rather be called the organ of Exploration, thus expressing the active principle, for the exercise of which space or locality is but the proper sphere. It will certainly be found more applicable in this sense ; for to explore belongs not only to geographers, astronomers, and travellers, but to the metaphysician, the historian, the investigator, and the discoverer,– to all inquirers, whatever be the object of pursuit. This organ ought, indeed, to be regarded, from its seat and function, as the antenna of the human race. Vol. VI.
OBSERVATIONS ON PHRENOLOGY." The general condemnation of Dr. it has taken its appellation. In 1821, Spurzheim's views is known to all Mr. Abernethy, a gentleman sufficiour readers. They were represented ently known in the circles of literature as “trash,” “ trumpery,” “ quack- and science, and certainly a compeery;" and, in short, the vocabulary tent judge of points connected with of contemptuous epithets was ex- physiology, published the pamphlet hausted in an apparently vain en- referred to in the note below, in which, deavour to express with sufficient without coinciding in all the views of force the great extent of their de- Drs. Gall and Spurzheim, he styles merits. But in the course of the seven Phrenology years which have elapsed since 1815, the doctrines have not, like those of when viewed in its proper light, and with
A representation of human nature, which, Johanna Southcott and Mr. Spence, due attention, must please every one. It with which they were compared, sunk is not (says he) like others heretofore preinto oblivion, and died of their own sented to us, which appear in comparison inanity, as was then confidently pre- but as mere diagrams, the result of study dicted. In 1819, Mr. Combe, of and imagination ; whilst this seems like a Edinburgh, published Essays on portrait from life by masterly hands. It Phrenology,t in which he strenuously is not, indeed, exactly like any individual, maintained the doctrines to be, not only
but capable, by alterations, of being made true, but highly important. In 1820, help of a few touches, we are able readily
to resemble every one ; so that, by the Sir George M-Kenzie published Il
to show “ virtue her own image, vice her lustrations of Phrenology, in which he also staked the credit of his repu
own deformity,” in all their diversities. tation, that the system is founded in
The author of the second pamphlet, nature. So far as we have observed, who also declares himself not to be no philosophical answer to these a complete convert to the system, works has appeared, notwithstand- makes the following observations :ing the vehemence of the early op
The doctrines of Phrenology are so novel position to the doctrines. Farther, in their nature, and differ so widely from in the year 1820, a society, I bearing the common notions on the subjects to the name and title of Phrenology, which they relate, that it was natural to was established in Edinburgh, and expect that they should encounter much from a report of its proceedings we opposition, having to contend with so many observe that its members consist of prejudices and long confirmed habits of gentlemen in the professions of divi- thinking. The author of these remarks nity, law, and physic-of literary has endeavoured, as far as possible, to dimen, artists, and persons engaged in
vest himself of such prejudices, and has commerce ; many of whom are mem
come to the present inquiry with the sinbers of other societies, and some of 1. Whether the doctrines of the phrenolo
cere purpose of ascertaining these two points, whom are favourably known to the gists are true ? and, 2. Whether, if true, public by their writings. This so
they are worth knowing or inquiring into ? ciety proclaims a decided belief in
It appears to him that the prevailing opthe truth of the system from which position to this new doctrine is at least as
* Reflections on Gall and Spurzheim's System of Physiognomy and Phrenology, addressed to the Court of Assistants of the Royal College of Surgeons, in London, in June, 1821. By John Abernethy, FRS., &c. London. Longman, and Co. 1821. Pp. 75.
Observations on Phrenology, as affording a systematic view of Human Nature. Edinburgh. Waugh and Innes, Edinburgh; Ogle, Duncan, and Co., London. 1822. Pp. 57. † We have been informed that this work is reprinting in America.
# It is a curious circumstance, that we should derive our information of the proceedings of this society through the medium of the Parisian press. In a late number of the Revue Encyclopedique we observe its labours adverted to ; while the Edinburgh press preserves a total silence on the subject. We know that the proceedings of the society have excited considerable interest in Edinburgh ; and that during last winter Phrenology was much discussed in the private circles of that metropolis, although no notice of this fact has yet reached the public eye.