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lively imagination, corrected however by a strong judgment, and guided by the laws of system. Add to these, the most retentive memory, an unremitting industry, and the greatest perseverance in all his pursuits ; as is evident from that continued vigour with which he prosecuted the design, that he appears to have formed so early in life, of totally reforming, and fabricating anew, the whole science of natural history: and this fabric he raised, and gave to it a degree of perfection unknown before ; and had moreover the uncommon felicity of living to see his own structure rise above all others, notwithstanding every difcouragement its author at first laboured under, and the oppofition it afterwards met with. Neither has any writer more cautiously avoided that common error, of building his own fame on the ruin of another man's. He every where acknowledged the several merits of each author's system ; and no man appears to have been more sensible of the partial defetis of his own. Those anomalies which had principally been the objects of criticism, he well knew every artificial arrangement must abound with; and having laid it down as a firm maxim, ibat every system fhould finally rest on its intrinsic merit, he willingly commiss his own to the judgment of pofterity. Perhaps there is no circumstance of LINNÆus's life, which focws him in a more dig. nified light, than his corduct towards his opponents. Disavowing controversy, and jusly considering it as an unimportant, and fruitless facrifice of time, he never replied to any, numerous as they were at one season.

To all who see the aid this extraordinary man has brought to natural science, his talents must appear in a very illustrious point of view ; but more especially to thole, who, from similasity of taste, are qualified to fee more diftinétly the vast extent of his original design, the greatness of his labour, and the elaborate execution he has given to the whole. He had a happy command of the Latin tongue, which is alone the language of science; and no man ever applied it more luccessfully to his purposes, or gave to description such copiousness, united with that precision and conciseness, which so eminently characterise his writings.

"In the mean time, we are not to learn that it has been objected as derogatory to his learning in no small degres, that he has iniroduced a number of terms not authorised by clasical authority. But granting this, it ought to be recollected, that LINNÆUS, in the investigation of nature, has discovered a mul. titude of relations which were entirely unknown to the ancients; if, therefore, there be any force in the objection, it should first be shewn, that the terms which he has introduced to express these relations, are not fairly and analogically deduced from the language, since it must surely be granted, that

LINNÆUS

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LINNÆUS could not have spoken the language of natural history, as it is known at this day, in that of Pliny, or of any classical writer whatever.

• The ardor of LINN Ævs's inclination to the study of nature, from his earliest years, and that uncommon application which he bestowed upon it, gave him a most comprehensive view both of its pleasures and usefulness, at the same time that it opened to him a wide field, hitherto but little cultivated, especially in his own country. Hence he was led to regret, that the study of natural history, as a public institution, had not made its way into the universities; in many of which logical disputations, and metaphysical cheories, had too long prevailed, to the exclufion of more useful science. Availing himself therefore of the advantages which he derived from a large share of eloquence, and an animated style, he never failed to display, in a lively and convincing manner, the relation this study had to the public good; to incite the great to countenance and protect it; to encourage and allure youth into its pursuits, by opening its manifold sources of pleasure to their view, and shewing them how greatly this agreeable employment would add in a variety of inItances, both to their comfort and emolument. His extensive view of natural history, as connected with almost all the arts of life, did not allow him to confine these motives and incitements to those only who were designed for the practice of phyfic: He also laboured to inspire the great and opulent with a taste for this study; and wilhed particularly that such as were devoted to an ecclesiastic life should share a portion of natural science, not only as a means of sweetening their rural situation, confined, as many are, perpetually to a country residence, but as what would almost inevitably lead, in a variety of instances, to discoveries which only such situations could give rise to, and which the learned in great cities would have no opportunities to make, Not to add, that the mutual communication and enlargement of this kind of knowledge, among people of equal rank in a country figuation, must provę one of the strongest bonds of union and friendship, and contribute in a much higher degree than the usual perishing amusements of the age, to the pleasures and advantages of society.

LINNÆUS lived to enjoy the fruit of his own labour in an uncommon degree. Natural history raised itself in Sweden, un. der his culture, to a state of perfection unknown elsewhere, and was from thence disseminated through all Europe. His pupils dispersed themselves all over the globe, and, with their master's fame, extended both science and their own. More than this, he lived to see the sovereigns of Europe establish several public

inftitutions in favour of this study, and even Profefforships esta,blished in divers universities for the same purpose, which do ho

nour

nour to their founders and patrons, and which have excited a curiosity for the science, and a sense of iis worth, that cannot fail to further its progress, and in time raise it to that rank, which it is intitled to hold among the pursuits of mankind.'

A.

Genech is prefixed Environ. des: Pra

FOREIGN LITERATURE.
SWITZER L A N D.

ART. 1.
VOYAGES dans les Alpes : Precedés d'un Essai fur lHifoire Na-

turelle des Environs de Geneve. i. e. Travels in the Alps : TO which is prefixed an Ejay on the Natural History of the Environs of Geneva. By HORACE BENEDICT DE SAUSSURE, Professor of Philosophy in the Academy of Geneva. Volume I. 410. Neufchatel. 1779. 550 Pages.--As an attentive observation of mountains must contribute greatly to our acquiring just ideas relative to the theory of the earth, the work before us will undo';bredly meet with a favourable reception among the learned. It comes from the pen of a keen, intelligent, and indefatigable observer of Nature, who, after contemplating her operacions in detail, confiders them in their combination, and views, more especially, the mountainous parts of the globe in their totality, connections, and effects. How this excellent Author has acquired the materials this work contains, we learn from a Preliminary Discourse, which is, in our opinion, a masterly compolition--pleasing, instructive, and eloquent. He seems to have been, from his early youth, as pasionate a lover of mountains as M. De Luc; and he describes with a glowing pencil the beauties observed from their summits, the elevation or mund which the philosopher feels, when he looks down, from these fuperior regions on the ambition, the cares, and pallions of men, whose generations buzz and pass successively in the cities beneath.

In 1958, at the age of 18, M. De SAUSSURE had frequently vilised the mountains in the neighbourhood of Geneva. In 1760, he went alone, and on foot, to the Glaciers, or Icemountains of Chamouni. There were but smail beginnings of his philosophical peregrinations: for he travelled fourteen times through the whole ridges of the Alps, by eight different passages ; made fixtecn excursions to the centre of the chain; traversed the

ura, che l'ofges, the mountains of Switzerland, Germany, Engjand, Italy, Sicily, and the adjacent ifiands; and vilited the ancient volcanos of Auvergne, a part of those of the Vivarais, and the principal inountains of Forez, Dauphing, and Burgundy.

As to the work-it is compoied with the true spirit of a phiJosophical oblerver. The materials and facts go before; and then follow, or are to follow, the results and conclusions that

form

form the theory, and produce the system. This first volume is divided into Two Parts.

In the il Part, we have a natural history of the distriet about Geneva, which exbibits a multitude of curious details, and new and interesting observations. The branch of Lithology is amply treated in this Elay, on account of its essential relation io the theory of the earth. The Author could not, indeed, give, in a work of this kind, a complete system of chymical Lithology; and yet he could not, on the other hand, avoid entering more ar less into analytical researches concerning the origin and formation of earths and stones. He has therefore observed a mediuin; among a multitude of stones he has particularly described the rolled flints (so called from their having acquired their round form by being rolled along with the currents of rivers), that are found in the environs of Geneva, and whose different kinds are analogous to those of the Alps. The experiments he made on the fusibility of these stones led him to discover the primitive basis or matter of the Lava and the Basaltes, of which he treats in a large digression, and thews, that this basis is micacious earth, pr. what our Author calls, Roche de Corne.

In the 20 Part of this volume, M. DE SAUSSURE gives an ample account of his voyage to Chamouni, and the Glacier of Buet, to which the observations and experiments of M. De Luc have given no small degree of celebrity in the records of natural history. The details of a lithological nature, and the descriptions of mountains, both with respect to the materials they contain and the positions of their strata, which we find here, are minute and circumstantial, but are always relative to our Author's great object, his general plan, of which he never loses sight. From time to time, he shews the tendency of the faits he enumerates to illustrate the science of Geology, or phyfical Geography, and to lead to the knowledge of the theory of the earth. The second volume, which we have not yet feen, will contain the remaining excursions of our keen observer through the Alps. The third, which is to be published about two years hence, will contain the general inferences deducible from our Author's obfervations, and exhibit the results and confequences pointed out in different places of the preceding volumes, combined, arranged, completed, and also confirmed, by new refearches. · The Reader will easily perceive, in perusing this work, that the ingenious Author has given a peculiar degree of attention to his favourite object, the Primitive Mountains, and more efpecially to those of granit, which are the least known. In these great masses, that seem, as it were, contiguous to the origin of things, the procedure of Nature is so fingularly hidden and myrterious, that even the celebrated Pallas, whose travels through

the the Ruffian empire contain such an inestimable treasure of obfervations and discoveries, and whose researches concerning the formation of mountains are fo juftly esteemed, despaired of making any discoveries with respect to the formation of the mountains of granit, and left that subject untouched in the course of his inquiries. Our Author has neither been discou. saged by this intimidating example, nor by the difficulties of the subject. An obstinate application to the study (if we may use that expression) of the granit mountains, a view of the forms of this kind of mountains in the Alps, and some new facts, which happy accidents have discovered to him, have enabled him to acquire fome light with respect to their origin and structure, that may have escaped other observers.

The views of the mountains, which our Author has annexed to his descripcions, were drawn upon the spot by another ingenious Alpine traveller, M. BOURRIT, with an accuracy, as yet rare in undertakings of this kind. The Travels of this excelJent Naturalist in the Pennine and Rhætian Alps, as well as his other productions, have procured him a very confiderable and delerved reputation : and we propose to make our Readers farther acquainted with him on another occasion,

There is a particular phenomenon, relative to the Lake of Geneva, in the first part of this work, which the Author explains by an ingenious hypothesis, not totally different from that of M D : Luc; but capable, on the contrary; of an easy reconciliation with it. The fact is, that upon a bottom of grit, and calcareous earth, the valley of the Lake of Geneva exhibits fragments of granit and primitive rock, which the waters have loosened, carried off, and washed down from the Alps. But where find a torrent, impetuous enough to roll over a space of between twelve and fourteen leagues, fragments, some of which are several cubical fathoms in circumference? Our Author solves this question by the following hypothesis, for which he alleges folid proofs.

The waters of the ocean (says he), in which our mountains were formed, covered ftill a part of these mountains, when a fudden jolt, or violent motion of the globe, opened, in an infant, great cavities, which were before empty, and occasioned the disruption of a number of rocks. The waters were precipitated towards these deeps with an extreme violence, proportioned to the height from which they fell; they excavated deep vallies and carried along with their rapid current immense quantities of earths, sands, and fragments of all kinds of rocks. These aggregations, half liquid, driven forward by the weight of the waters, were accumulated to the height that many of these dispersed fragments still have. - The waters, which continued to how afterwards, but with a smaller degree of velocity,

on

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