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The hypothesis of matter evenly disposed through infinite space, seems to labour with such difficulties, as makes it almost a contradictory supposition, or a suppofition destructive of itself.
Matter evenly disposed through infinite Space, is either created or eternal; if it was created, it infers a Creator : if it was eternal, it had been from eternity evenly spread through infinite fpace; or it had been once coalesced in maffes, and afterwards been diffused. Whatever state was first, must have been from eternity, and what had been from eternity could not be changed, but by a cause beginning to act as it had never acted before, that is, by the voluntary act of some external power. If matter infinitely and evenly diffused was a moment without coalition, it could never coalesce at all by its own power. If matter originally tended to coalesce, it could never be evenly diffused through infinite space. Matter being supposed eternal, there never was a time when it could be diffused before its conglobation, or conglobated before its diffufion.
This Sir Isaac seems by degrees to have underftood: for he says, in his second Letter, “ The reason “ why matter evenly scattered through a finite space " would convene in the midst, you conceive the same “ with me; but that there should be a central par“ ticle, so accurately placed in the middle, as to be “ always equally attracted on all sides, and thereby “ continue without motion, seems to me a supposition “ fully as hard as to make the sharpest needle stand “ upright upon its point on a looking-glass. For if “ the very mathematical centre of the central particle as be not accurately in the very mathematical centre “ of the attractive power of the whole mass, the par.
“ ticle « ticle will not be attracted equally on all sides. And “ much harder is it to suppose all the particles in an « infinite space should be so accurately poised one « among another, as to stand still in a perfect equili« brium. For I reckon this as hard as to make not “ one needle only, but an infinite number of them (so “ many as there are particles in an infinite space) stand “ accurately poised upon their points. Yet I grant it “ possible, at least by a divine power; and if they “ were once to be placed, I agree with you that they « would continue in that posture, without motion for “ ever, unless put into new motion by the same power. “ When therefore I said, that matter evenly spread “ through all space, would convene by its gravity into “ one or more great masses, I understand it of matter “ not resting in an accurate poise."
Let not it be thought irreverence to this great name, if I observe, that by matter evenly spread through infinite space, he now finds it neceffary to mean matter not evenly spread. Matter not evenly Spread will indeed convene, but it will convene as soon as it exists. And, in my opinion, this puzzling question about matter is only how that could be that never could have been, or what a man thinks on when he thinks of no. thing.
Turn matter on all sides, make it eternal, or of late production, finite or infinite, there can be no regular system produced but by a voluntary and meaning agent. This the great Newton always asserted, and this he asserts in the third letter; but proves in another manner, in a manner perhaps more happy and conclusive.
« The hypothesis of deriving the frame of the 66 world by inechanical principles from matter evenly “ spread through the heavens being inconfistent with “ my system, I had considered it very little before “ your letter put me upon it, and therefore trouble 6 you with a line or two more about it, if this comes “ not too late for your use.
« In my former [ represented that the diurnal ro“ tations of the planets could not be derived from “ gravity, but required a divine arm to impress them. “ And though gravity might give the planets a mo« tion of descent towards the sun, either directly, or “ with some little obliquity, yet the transverse mo« tions by which they revolve in their several orbs, “ required the divine arm to impress them according " to the tangents of their orbs. I would now add, “ that the hypothesis of matter's being at first evenly « spread through the heavens, is, in my opinion, in« confistent with the hypothesis of innate gravity,
without a supernatural power to reconcile them, and 6 therefore it infers a Deity. For if there be innate “ gravity it is impossible now for the matter of the « earth, and all the planets and stars, to fly up from " them, and become evenly spread throughout all the • heavens, without a supernatural power; and cer“ tainly that which can never be hereafter without a “ fupernatural power, could never be heretofore with* out the same power."
R E V IE W
OF A .. JOURNAL of EIGHT DAYS JOURNEY, . from Portsmouth to KINGSTON U PON Thames,
through SOUTHAMPTON, WILTSHIRE, &c.
• Miscellaneous THOUGHTS, moral and religious;
'IN SIXTY-FOUR LETTERS:
• Addressed to Two LADIES of the Partie.
"To which is added,
• An Essay on Tea, considered as pernicious to Health, ob
• structing Industry, and impoverishing the Nation : with an • Account of its Growth, and great Consumption in these • Kingdoms; with several political Reflections; and Thoughts • on Publick Love: in Thirty-two Letters to Two Ladies.
• By Mr. H*****
(From the Literary Magazine, Vol. II. No xiii. 1757.]
UR readers may perhaps remember, that we
gave them a short account of this book, with a letter extracted from it, in November 1756. The author then fent us an injunction to forbear his work till a second edition should appear: this prohibition was rather too magisterial; for an author is no longer
the sole master of a book which he has given to the publick; yet he has been punctually obeyed; we had no desire to offend him, and if his character may be estimated by his book, he is a man whose failings may well be pardoned for his virtues.
The second edition is now sent into the world, correčied and enlarged, and yielded up by the author to the attacks of criticism. But he shall find in us no malignity of censure. We wish indeed, that among other corrections he had submitted his pages to the inspection of a grammarian, that the elegancies of one line might not have been disgraced by the improprieties of another; but with us to mean well is a degree of merit which overbalances much greater errors than impurity of style.
We have already given in our collections one of the letters, in which Mr. Hanway endeavours to show, that the consumption of Tea is injurious to the interest of our country. We shall now endeavour to follow him regularly through all his observations on this modern luxury; but it can scarcely be candid, not to make a previous declaration, that he is to expect little justice from the author of this extract, a hardened and shameless Tea-drinker, who has for twenty years diluted his meals with only the infusion of this fascinating plant, whose kettle has scarcely tiine to cool, who with Tea amuses the evening, with Tea folaces the midnight, and with Tea welcomes the morning.
He begins by refuting a popular notion, that Bohea and Green Tea are leaves of the same shrub, gathered at different times of the year. He is of opinion, that they are produced by different shrubs. The leaves