Page images
PDF
EPUB

cient to prove that the Encyclopædia is worthy of the present state of science, and that its most important articles are contributed by those who have themselves been foremost in the onward march of science. The elaborate Treatise on ARITHMETIC, by the present Dean of Ely (Dr. Peacock), Lowndian Professor of Mathematics in the University of Cambridge, is interesting alike to the scholar, the mathematician, and the speculator in metaphysics. The brief but comprehensive Treatise on TRIGONOMETRY, by Professor Airy, now Astronomer Royal, is of considerable value from the general elegance of its demonstrations. The publications of the Rev. H. P. Hamilton on ANALYTICAL GEOMETRY and Conic SECTIONS, and that of Professor Barlow on the THEORY OF NUMBERS, are so highly esteemed, that any eulogium on their papers on these subjects would be superfluous. The Treatises of Professor Levy on the DIFFERENTIAL and INTEGRAL CALCULUS are calculated to carry the student to a very high point of proficiency. The GEOMETRY, ALGEBRA, and GEOMETRICAL ANALYSIS complete the Volume in a manner worthy of the treatises with which they are associated.

20. These sciences are, however, in some degree elementary; and although by them the student would be so far advanced as to enter upon the works of some of the ablest analysts, it would be unworthy of such a publication as the Encyclopædia Metropolitana to leave untouched or imperfectly treated, the more refined applications of the higher Calculus. It will be found, accordingly, that the highest branches of mathematical analysis have been treated by writers conversant with all its intricacies, and the mathematical student is furnished in them with results of far greater variety and of a more subtle nature than can at present be used in the application of analysis to Mixed Mathematics.

21. The CALCULUS of VARIATIONS, and the CALCULUS of FINITE DIFFERENCES by Professor Hall, are distinguished by the clearness peculiar to his treatment of these refined and subtle portions of analysis. The Calculus of FUNCTIONS and the THEORY of PROBABILITY are the work of Professor De Morgan. The latter (on a subject which has exercised the talents of the greatest mathematicians, even down to the times of Laplace) is, as might be expected, one of the most complete in any language. The Treatise on DEFINITE INTEGRALS completes the series of these elaborate surveys on the higher branches of Mathematical Analysis. The name of Professor Moseley is a sufficient warrant that his Essay is also of the highest character.

22. Without wishing, therefore, to offer any undue eulogium on the Treatises enumerated above, we confidently ask that portion of the public which is qualified to judge of their merits, to compare the whole system of Pure Mathematics here presented to them with that in any similar work, whether of this country or of the Continent, on the grounds of arrangement, cleurness, ability, and completeness.

23. We must now allude to such of the Pure Sciences as are not included in the Mathematical department. Sir

John Stoddart has given a lucid and able summary of the General Principles of GRAMMAR, or the Philosophy of Language. The Logic and RHETORIC of Archbishop Whately require no commendation here, as they have long since been published in a separate form, and have taken their place among the standard works of our language. The Treatise on Law is the work of Richard Jebb, Esq., Professor Graves, and Archer Polson, Esq. It embraces one of the most difficult portions of Philosophy—the general foundations of Law and Morals; and the Editor is happy to state that testimony from the very highest quarters has been given both to the profoundness of the views entertained, and the ability with which they are developed.

24. In the present state of metaphysical knowledge, it would be presumptuous to put forth any system of Metaphysics; but a general HISTORY OF MORAL AND METAPHYSICAL Philosophy affords the most convenient opportunity for displaying the principles on which the greatest philosophers have hitherto endeavoured to form their systems, for pointing out their difficulties, and for marking how far each has contributed to the progress of the science. Such a sketch, however, required the hand of a master; and the Editor confidently believes that the Treatise on Moral and Metaphysical Philosophy which is here given is calculated fully to sustain the

deservedly high reputation of the Rev. F. D. Maurice. Of the Outlines of THEOLOGY, it does not become the Editor to say more than to acknowledge with gratitude the very able assistance of Professor Corrie, to whom two chapters are due. He has endeavoured to render this Treatise as practically useful as possible, not only to avoid passing controversies, but to bring forward the sound and genuine doctrines of the Church of England; and perhaps he may be allowed to add that, in pursuance of this object, he has spared no pains or labour.

MIXED AND APPLIED SCIENCES. 25. From Pure Mathematics we proceed in natural order to their application to physical phenomena. Of these sciences, some belong to the elementary branches of physical knowledge, and others to a higher and more advanced stage. Now, the treatises on MECHANICS, HYDRODYNAMICS, PNEUMATICS, OPTICS, and PLANE ASTRONOMY, have been written by Professor Barlow with an express view to this distinction. They are elementary enough to enable any student, with a competent knowledge of Pure Mathematics, to overcome their difficulties; and yet they are so based on scientific principles, that they will also prepare him to enter readily on the higher branches of Mixed Mathematics. In Mechanics, more especially, a foundation is laid for the succeeding investigations of Physical Astronomy, which is, in fact, only one of the higher branches of Analytical Physics.

26. Some of the treatises in the volumes devoted to the Mixed Sciences demand a separate notice, as enlarging the boundaries of our scientific knowledge. Of this class are the Treatises on LIGHT and Sound, by Sir J. F. W. Herschel. The Treatise on LIGHT, by Sir J. F. W. Herschel, from the position it has already obtained in the scientific world, both in England and on the Continent, cannot require any recommendation here. The simple mention of Sir J. F. W. Herschel's name is a sufficient recommendation to the Treatise on PHYSICAL ASTRONOMY, and proves at ovce that it must be an Essay of the highest order of merit, and worthy of the present state of the Science; and the conductors of this Encyclopædia may justly be proud that that distinguished writer has contributed so largely to its pages. But although Plane and Physical Astronomy had been thus ably treated, it was considered that something more was required ; and the late Captain Kater kindly furnished the very useful and able Treatise on NAUTICAL ASTRONOMY, a subject with which his acquaintance was at once profound and practical.

27. MAGNETISM and ELECTRO-MAGNETISM are treated by Professor Barlow with the same ability and research which he has displayed in the other Essays contributed by him; and GALVANISM, by Dr. Roget, whose scientific character is too firmly established to leave any doubt as to the merit of his contributions. The author of the Treatises on ELECTRICITY, HEAT, and CHEMISTRY, the late Rev. F. Lunn, was one whose merits as an experimental philosopher and chemist were not so extensively known as they deserved to be; þut at Cambridge his acquirements were acknowledged to be of the highest order. The treatises themselves, it is believed, will amply justify their favourable anticipations.

28. The Third Volume of Mixed Sciences is chiefly devoted to the FINE ARTS; but there are two or three Essays in the early part of the Volume which belong to the more exact sciences, viz., the Essay on the FIGURE OF THE EARTH, by Professor Airy, the present Astronomer Röyal, and his Treatise on the TIDES. With regard to the former much novelty was hardly to be expected; but it is presumed that this Treatise contains the most complete combination and discussion of observations relating to the subject hitherto produced in England. The treatise into which this great mathematician has thrown all his power is the Theory of the Tides. The terms in which some of the most distinguished mathematicians of Cambridge have spoken of this treatise prove that they consider it to have greatly advanced the knowledge of this difficult subject. Every previous treatise on the theory of the tides is entirely superseded by this production, and it will supply, for many years to come, the only sound foundation of our knowledge upon this subject.

29. The Treatise on POLITICAL ECONOMY was written by N. W. Senior, Esq. 30. The Treatises on BOTANY and HORTICULTURE are supplied by G. Dop, Esq.,

1

whose profound acquaintance with every department of knowledge which belongs to the vegetable kingdom is known to all botanists and florists. The ZOOLOGY combines GENERAL PHYSIOLOGY with COMPARATIVE ANATOMY, and is the work of J. F. South, Esq., Surgeon of St. Thomas's Hospital (assisted in one portion of Physiology by Mr. Clark and Mr. Solly). The descriptions in this Treatise possess the very unusual and peculiar merit of being given by Mr. South, in every practicable instance, from the specimens themselves. Of the Anatomy, by Mr. South and Mr. Le Gros Clark, and the MATERIA MEDICA, by Dr. G. Johnson, it may be said that their names ar sufficient pledge that these Treatises are of first-rate character. The Treatise on MEDICINE, by Dr. Robert Williams, of St. Thomas's Hospital, is an attempt to give a more philosophical view of the classification of disease than has hitherto been taken in any work of modern date. To W. Bowman, Esq., the Encyclopædia is indebted for an able outline of SURGICAL PRACTICE. The medical volume is closed by a comprehensive Treatise on VETERINARY ART, by W. C. Spooner, Esq.

31. The METEOROLOGY of the late Mr. Harvey, and the CRYSTALLOGRAPHY of Mr. Brooke, have been referred to respectively with especial commendation by Professor Forbes and Dr. Whewell. The names of Mr. Phillips and Dr. Daubeny will sufficiently recommend the Treatise on GEOLOGY, as exhibiting an adequate representation of that science at the time of its publication. The Treatise on MINERALOGY by Mr. Brooke ; the Essays on CARPENTRY, by P. Nicholson, Esq.; on FORTIFICATION, by Major Mitchell and Captain Procter; and on NAVAL ARCHITECTURE, by the late Mr. Harvey, must not be passed over. The names of these writers guarantee the value of their contributions.

32. In this class of Mixed Sciences a novel feature is exhibited in the Sixth Volume of the series, viz., A Systematic Account of the Arts and MANUFACTURES of Great Britain. There is probably no writer who would be able to do such ample justice to so extensive a range of matter, requiring both theoretical and practical knowledge, as its author, Mr. Barlow; but that nothing might be wanting to the completeness of this portion of the work, Professor Babbage supplied a Preliminary Discourse on the Principles of Manufactures ; and it may confidently be asked, to what other source could the conductors of the work have appealed with equal confidence on so difficult and multifarious a subject ?

HISTORICAL DIVISION. 33. It is not possible, in this rapid sketch, to specify all the papers in this portion of the work; but as nearly every contribution is assigned to its proper author at the beginning of each volume, such a course is unnecessary either for the information of the public, or as a tribute of respect to the distinguished authors themselves. Ample care has been taken to enlist among the contributors to this department writers not only of splendid endowments, but also of the highest attainments in different classes of historical knowledge. There will

be found among the numerous writers in this division contributions from Bishop Blomfield, Dr. Whewell, Mr. Justice Talfourd, Dr. Arnold, Dean Hinds, Rev. J. A. Jeremie, Rev. G. C. Renouard, Rev. J. H. Newman, Bishop Russell, Archdeacon Hale, Dean Lyall, Rev. J. B. S. Carwithen, Bishop Hampden, Rev. R. Garnet, Major Mountain, Rev. J. H. B. Mountain, Captain Procter, Rev. J. E. Riddle, Archdeacon Ormerod, T. Roscoe, Esq., W. Macpherson, Esq., Rev. R. L. Browne, Rev. H. Thomson, Rev. J. G. Dowling, Rev. J. W. Blakesley, Rev. J. B. Ottley, W. Lowndes, Esq., Q.C.

34. A good work on General History has long been a great desideratum in our literature. The summaries of Tytler and Russell are too brief, and the Universal History, independently of the heavy manner in which it is written, is too long. It is presumed that the Historical Volumes of the Encyclopædia Metropolitana will be found to meet this want in an efficient manner. They are written by men of undoubted ability ; they exhibit the history of the world at first in a series of biographical sketches, and then in a continuous history of each remarkable country, combined with an Ecclesiastical History remarkably full and rich in the most interesting epochs of the Christian Church. Dissertations of great importance in a

[ocr errors]

philosophical point of view, such as those on Ancient Philosophy and Literature, on the Crusades, the Feudal System, and the Scholastic System, are introduced into the text at the most convenient periods, for the illustration of the respective subjects.

MISCELLANEOUS PORTION. 35. Although the Miscellaneous Division of this Encyclopædia occupies a larger number of volumes than any other, it requires a less extended notice. It appears, however, desirable to explain in some degree the principle on which this portion of the work was executed, and to indicate the authors of some of the most remarkable series of papers. The leading features in this division of the Encyclopædia are— 1. The ENGLISH LEXICON.

3. The NATURAL HISTORY. 2. The GEOGRAPHY.

4. The MISCELLANEOUS ARTICLES. The universal approbation with which the LEXICON, compiled by Dr. Richardson, has been received, precludes the necessity of enlarging either on the plan itself or on the gigantic labour involved in its execution. The plan of giving the quo. tations of each word chronologically has the advantage of embodying in a philo. sophical Lexicon a History of our own Language.

36. For the whole of the Articles on GEOGRAPHY, the proprietors feel that they may fairly advance the claim of having obtained the co-operation of persons mora than competent to bring forward whatever is most valuable for a work like this from all usually accessible sources of information. In this respect, the Encyclopædia Metropolitana claims to take a high station among similar works; and the names of the contributors of the Articles on European and American Gecgraphy are a sufficient pledge of the ability and care with which they are executed, viz. :--T. Myers, Esq., Captain Bonnycastle, R.E., C. Vignoles, Esq., C.E., H. Lloyd, Esq., G. H. Smith, Esq., A. Jacob, Esq., W. D. Coolie, Esq., and Cyrus Redding, Esq.

One class of Geographical Articles deniards especial mention, and may be said to be wholly without a rival in any similar work in our language, viz.: those on Ancient, Oriental, and African Geography, which were entirely supplied by the Rev. G. C. Renouard (of Cambridge, formerly Chaplain at Smyrna), and evince the most extensive familiarity with every variety of language, ancient and modern. The Editor believes that if these essays were collected together, and published as a system of Oriental Geography, they would surpass in accuracy and value anything at present existing in our own or any other European language.

37. The section of NATURAL HISTORY is divided chiefly into Botany and Zoology. In these two sciences the Genera will be found described in their alphabetical order, while their scientific arrangement and the principles of the sciences form part of the treatises in the volumes devoted to the Mixed Sciences. For these two departments, the services of several eminent naturalists were engaged. In Botany. T. Edwards, Esq., and G. Don, Esq., &c. In Zoology, T. Bell, Esq,

F.L.S., &c., J. E. Gray, Esq., F.L.S., &c., of the British Museum ; J. F. Stephens, Esq., and J. F. South, Esq.

38. The highly-gifted individual to whom this Encyclopædia owes so many of its attractions—the late Rev. Edward Smedley,-enriched the Miscellaneous Division with a series of articles which embody a vast store of curious and recondite information, communicated in a manner at once instructive and agreeable. Besides these articles, the Geographical Gazetteer and the Dictionary of Law and Political Philosophy, a large number of very important and valuable articles will be found scattered through the volumes of the Miscellaneous Division. Attention may be called, amongst a variety of others, to the Biblical Articles, by the Rev. T. H. Horne; to the Philological and Oriental, by the Rev. G. (. Renouard; the Scientific Articles, (as e. 9., Dialling, Surveying, Weights and Measures, fc.) by Mr. Barlow; Meteoric Stones, by Professor Miller; Stove and Ventilation, by C. Hood, Esq., F.R.S. ; Stucco, by T. L. Donaldson, Professor of Architecture in University College, London ; the Theological Articles, by Archdeacon Hale; Essays on Engine eering, by C. Vignoles, Esq., C. E.; and Writing, by the Rev. R. Garnet.

THE PLATES are for the most part the work of those two eminent engravers

Messrs. Lowry. They require only a simple inspection to prove their beauty and excellence.

The GENERAL INDEX was, at an early period in the publication of the Encyclopædia, intrusted to the Rev. J. Hindle, and occupied the attention of this very competent person for several years. It will be found to contain ample reference to all that is most important and interesting.

From this review of the FIRST EDITION of the Encyclopædia Metropolitana, we proceed to describe the peculiarities of the projected SECOND EDITION.

39. THE SECOND EDITION of the ENCYCLOPÆDIA METROPOLITANA will be handsomely printed in a series of CABINET VOLUMES, in CROWN Octavo, in the style shown by the SPECIMENS on pages 14 and 15.

40. The whole work will be THOROUGHLY REVISED; many NEW TREATISES will be added; and the Articles will all be provided with comprehensive INDEXES, or with analytical TABLES of CONTENTS.

41. It will be abundantly illustrated by Maps, Woodcuts, and Engravings.

42. It will be published in WEEKLY PARTS, PRICE ONE SHILLING, and in MonthLY VOLUMES, varying in price according to the number of Parts contained in each.

43. METHODICAL ARRANGEMENT OF THE SECOND EDITION.—In preparing the SECOND EDITIon of this Encyclopædia for publication, very little change will be made in its SYSTEM. The peculiar characteristic impressed upon it by Mr. Coleridge—ITS METHODICAL ARRANGEMENT—will be followed strictly. Indeed, the chief difference that will appear between the arrangement of the Second Edition and the First, will proceed from a more rigid adherence in the Second Edition to the principles of Method established by Mr. Coleridge, than it was possible to attain in the First Edition. The work being wholly original and composed by more than a hundred Contributors, it happened, during the first publication, that many of the articles, either because they were not produced in proper time to be incorporated in their systematic places, or for other unexplained reasons, were cast into the great

Alphabetical, Miscellaneous, or Supplementary Division,” where they are connected together by ,no stronger scientific bond than their alphabetical initials. But now that we have the whole work before us, complete (as respects the First Edition), and capable of re-arrangement, we propose to rectify these acci- , dental departures from the true method of the Encyclopædia, and to transfer, from the Alphabetical Miscellany, every article that is capable of transference, to its appropriate position in the Philosophical Classification. Thus, the Article GEOGRAPHY, properly organized, will form a new division, complementary to that on History, as was originally intended, see $ 8; the details of NATURAL HISTORY will be grouped with the General Treatise on that science ; the art of Diplomacy will be suhjoined to the science of the Law of Nations; and so on. What remains in the Alphabetical Division, after this effective re-arrangement has been made, will form a SERIES of DICTIONARIES, Lexicographical, Classical, Theological, Technological, &c.

44. REVISION AND ENLARGEMENT.—Though the chauges contemplated in the General System of the Encyclopædia are not important, the improvements to be made in the details will be considerable. In all possible cases, before the articles are reprinted for the Second Edition, they will be thoroughly revised, either hy their authors or other competent persons, and Iudexes and Tables of Contents will be added; the Historical series will be completed and re-arranged; the Treatises on the Natural and Experimental Sciences will either receive important amendments,

66

« PreviousContinue »