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connected, and contained all things: they saw that there was no such thing as real absolute space: that mind, soul or spirit, truly and really exists : that bodies only exist in a secondary and dependent sense; that the soul is the place of forms: that the sensible qualities are to be regarded as acts only in the cause, and as passions in us: they accurately considered the differences of intellect, rational soul, and sensitive soul, with their distinct acts of intellection, reasoning, and sensation, points wherein the Cartesians and their followers, who consider sensation as a mode of thinking, seem to have failed. They knew there was a subtle æther pervading the whole mass of corporeal beings, and which was itself actually moved and directed by a mind : and that physical causes were only instruments, or, rather, marks and signs.
“Those ancient philosophers understood the generation of animals to consist, in the unfolding and the distending of the minute imperceptible parts of pre-existing animalcules, which passeth for a modern discovery: this they took for the work of nature, but nature animate and intelligent: they understood that all things were alive and in motion: they supposed a concord and discord, union and disunion in particles, some attracting, others repelling each other : and that those attractions and repulsions, so various, regular, and useful, could not be accounted for, but by an intelligence presiding and directing all particular motions, for the conservation and benefit of the whole.
“ The Egyptians, who impersonated nature, had made ber a distinct principle, and even deified her under the name of Isis. But Osiris was understood to be mind or reason, chief and sovereign of all. Osiris, if we may believe Plutarch, was the first, pure, unmixed and holy principle, not discernible by the lower faculties; a glimpse whereof, like lightning darting forth, irradiates the understanding; with regard to which Plutarch adds, that Plato and Aristotle termed one part of philosophy &moplinov ; to wit, when having soared above common mixed objects, and got beyond the precincts of sense and opinion, they arrive to contemplate the first and most simple being, free from all matter and composition. This is that soice outws šou of Plato, which employeth mind alone; which alone governs the world, and the soul is that which immediately informs and animates nature.”
We have, however, been so liberal of quotation, that we must confine ourselves only to one additional extract; and we have selected it, because it indicates the sources whence the author derived his tenet of the non-existence of matter.” .
“ Neither Plato nor Aristotle by matter, can, understood corporeal substance, whatever the moderns may understand by that word. To them, certainly, it signified no positive actual being. Aristotle describes it as made up of negatives, having neither quantity nor quality, nor essence. And not only the Platonists and Pythagoreans, but also the Peripatetics themselves, declare it to be known, neither by sense, nor by any direct and just reasoning, but only by some spurious or adulterine method, as hath been observed before. Simon Portius, a famous Peripatetic of the sixteenth century, denies it to be any substance at all, for, saith he, nequit per se subsistere, quia sequeretur, id quod non est in actu esse in actu. "If Jamblichus may be credited, the Egyptians supposed matter so far from including ought of substance or essence, that, according to them, God produced it by separation from all substance, essence or being, átrò govótnia Toogoo Devons úrótola. That matter is actually nothing, but potentially all things, is the doctrine of Aristotle, Theophrastus, and all the ancient Peripatetics.
“According to those philosophers, matter is only a pura potentia, a mere possibility. But Anaximander, successor to Thales, is represented as having thought the supreme Deity to be infinite matter. Nevertheless, though Plutarch calleth it matter, yet it was simply cò atsipov, which means no more than infinite or indefinite. And although the moderns teach, that space is real and infinitely extended; yet, if we consider that it is no intellectual notion, nor yet perceived by any of our senses, we shall, perhaps, be inclined to think with Plato, in his Timæus, that this also is the result of noglouós volg, or spurious reasoning, and a kind of waking dream. Plato observes, that we dream, as it were, when we think of place, and believe it necessary, that whatever exists should exist in some place. Which place, or space, he also observes, is pet avainolas årlov, that it is to be felt as darkness is seen, or silence heard, being a mere privation.
" If any one should think to infer the reality, or actual being of matter, from the modern tenet, that gravity is always proportionable to the quantity of matter, let him but narrowly scan the modern demonstration of that tenet, and he will find it to be a vain circle, concluding, in truth, no more than this, that gravity is proportionable to weight, that is, to itself. Since matter is conceived only as defect and mere possibility; and, since God is absolute perfection and act; it follows, there is the greatest distance and opposition imaginable between God and matter; insomuch, that a material God would be altogether inconsistent.
. “ The force that produces, the intellect that orders, the goodness that perfects, all things, is the Supreme Being. Evil, defect, negation, is not the object of God's creative power. From motion, the Peripatetics trace out a first immoveable mover. The Platonics make God author of all good, author of no evil, and unchangeable. According to Anaxagoras, there was a confused mass of all things in one chaos, but mind supervening, genowe, distinguished and divided them. Anaxagoras, it seems, ascribed the motive faculty to mind, which mind, some subsequent philosophers have accurately discriminated from soul and life, ascribing it to the sole faculty of intellection.
“ But, still, God was supposed the first agent, the source and original of all things, which he produceth, not occasionally or instrumentally, but with actual and real efficacy. Thus, the treatise, De secretiore parte divinæ sapientice secundum Ægyptios, in the tenth buok, saith of God, that he is not only the first agent, but also that he it is who truly acts, or creates, qui veré efficit.”
We have thus endeavoured to convey a few intimations of the great mass of knowledge, and of the acuteness of reason-. ing, which are to be found in Berkeley's Treatise on Tar-water. He was no slight admirer of the wisdom and literature of antiquity, and his understanding received a strong impulse from these habitual and beloved studies. Hence it was, that he adopted on several occasions the delightful form of dialoguewriting, particularly in his Minute Philosopher, a disquisition that well deserves to be reprinted. Probably the same. examples invited him to his excursions from tar-water into the remote speculations of theology and metaphysics, for, with the ancient writers, disquisitions on physical science were frequently blended with the highest and most abstruse subjects of contemplation. His own apology is, that an Essay is not tied down to method and system. “ It may, therefore,” he says, “ be pardoned, if this rude Essay doth, by insensible transitions, draw the reader into remote inquiries and speculations, that were not thought of, either by him, or the author, at first setting out.” But what critic can except to the diffusion of Berkeley's exuberant mind in a tract, which usuriously repays us for its laxity by such ample stores of learning and meditation, expressed in a style, easy, perspicuous, and elegant, and above all, truly English ;-or complain that its excellent author did not make it a barren dissertation upon the uninviting subject of Tar-water.
Art. IV.-A Short View of the Long Life of that ever-wise,
valiaunt, and fortunut Commander Rice ap Thomas, Knight, Constable, and Lieutenant of Brecknock; Chamberlaine of Carmarthen, and Cardigan; Seneschall and Chauncellor of Haverfordwest, Rovese (Russ,) and Buelth; Justiciar of South Wales, and Governour of all Wales; Knight Bannerett and Knight of the most Honourable Order of the Garter, a Privie Councellor to Henrie VII. and a favourite to Henry VIII. MS.
In one of our earlier numbers, * we intimated that it was our intention to notice works, which, from different causes, have never been printed, but are lying in public or private collections, unseen and unknown to any but the antiquarian scholar, or the enthusiastic Bibliomaniac. The title which we have prefixed to the present Article designates one of these neglected
* See No. VIII. in an article on “The Shah Námeh of Ferdusi,” a Persian MS.
manuscripts, which has been mouldering on the dusty shelves of an unfrequented library, but which, from the historical value of its contents, and from the quaint and amusing manner in which those contents are registered, merits the especial attention of all those who are attached to the study of the earlier history of our country.
This learned composition-and learned indeed it is, was never intended for publication. Like the History of the Gwedir Family, it was written by a descendant to commemorate the mighty exploits of an ancestor, who, as we may learn from his numerous titles, was a man of no ordinary importance in his day. The writer lived and flourished under the erudite reign of James the First; and we have every reason to believe that the documents made use of in the compilation were perfectly authentic: indeed, we have cause to know that several of the incidents which are recorded-although trivial in themselves—are borne out by facts of greater importance, and so placed beyond the reach of doubt. It must not be supposed that a man of Rice ap Thomas's rank and consequence left no traces of his glory among the mountain-wilds of the Principality: there are still in existence several traditions of his prowess, his wisdom, his wealth, and his valour; and although, in many points, these traditions differ from the grave details of his biographer, the variation is only such as we might expect to find between the distant traditions of an untutored and partial peasantry, and the deliberate reflections and records of a learned historian..
We pass over the “ Proëme or Apparatus," as it is called, and come at once to the introduction of our hero.
“Oh! there was a time when we had our Mutii, our Fabritii, and our Reguli, as well as Rome; and we had our Socrates, and our Catos, too, men little dreading fine, poverty, torment, prison, or death, when the saving or upholding of their country's honour were once in question. That we may not suffer the fame of our noble progenitors utterly to perish, let us but imagine this spacious. goodly island to be a fair triangular garden, and out of each corner thereof, among the many sweets there growing, let us select some choice flower of chivalry to solace and refresh our too-much dejected spirits." Fix we our eyes first upon that noble chieftain the stout Earl Percy, and then upon his no less noble antagonist, the renowned Earl Douglas. Exainine we tneir brave actions and doughty perform- : ances in that 'memorable combat of bravery and of gayté de cour, as the French term it. In Chevy Chace, there may we behold Hector against Ajax, and Ajax against Hector, both conquerors, both conquered-equal combatants. Had England and Scotland been wagered for the garland there as Rome and Alba were in time past, there had been champions for them indeed! Now, to add unto these, two worthies (and so make up my triangle) give me leave to point out a third in Wales; for Wales, as that famous commander himself said of the Carthaginians, had its Hannibal too, even the great Rice, the subject of the ensuing discourse,-nay, more than a Hannibal, carrying yet this advantage with him, that he never met with a Marcellus to teach him in martial affairs. He was, to do him right, both a Marcellus and a Fabius Maximus ; for, as they of Rome, so he of Wales, might truly be called their sword and buckler. You shall seldom read in martial story of any man adorned with such high attributes and epithets of honour as this Rice was, both by English historiographers, and especially among our Welsh bards; who, in their rhymes and carols, magnify him above all that ever were in those parts."
. His various cognomina then follow, and very grand and sonorous they are. Thus—Tudor Alud, “ a famous poete in those days,” calls him the sword and buckler of his country; another bard terms him the shield of Britain ; a third, the champion of Wales; while others have chronicled his fame under the titles of the head of the world; the scourge of the obstinate, the protector of the innocent, the heart of the soldier, the flower of Cambro-Britons; and, lastly, Camden doth him the honour to call him, Deliciæ Henrici Octavi. “ Thus you may see,” quoth our annalist, “ by clapping these eulogiums and favours upon him, of what high estimation that noble gentleman was in those days, when his virtues hammered and hewed him out these glorious titles. Now, should these three brave champions (Percy, Douglas, and Rice to wit) have met and encountered in a fight, this, of necessity, must have followed, England had been England still, Scotland Scotland, and Wales Wales. But peace, and the God of peace, hath produced those effects by conjoining these three in one, which (perhaps) otherwise the doubtful valour of their invincible swords might have perpetually severed-trino uni sit gloria.”
Notwithstanding the high honour and excellent fame of his hero, our biographer considers it incumbent upon him to explain, very particularly, why he has been induced to presume to write his life; and these, he says, are my reasons :
; “ First, to revive an ancient custom of writing the lives of worthy men, that so their fame might not perish. My second reason proceeds from a desire I have to dash in pieces some false forged traditions concerning this Rice, which daily (so apt, for old affection, we are to believe wonders of that man) increaseth among the credulous multitude, and may, hereafter, if not prevented, bring his name, as of others, into suspect. And, lastly, in discharge of the reverence I owe to his memory (for I may not deny but I have an interest in his blood) I could not chuse but let my pen play the part of a spade, to dig him out of the pit of oblivion." Truth,