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A. D. 1803, it appears, that the num- many thousands more have been eduber of parishes, or places, in England cated in the kingdom in a far supeand Wales, amounted to 14,011, rior manner than what can be done which made returns, and they wilí under the intended bill. With all require a considerable sum to put this these endeavours, have not the poor's new plan into execution. Where the rates, within the last thirty years, inparishes are small they will be per- creased double upon us? Why then mitted to unite within a reasonable proceed upon such an extensive plan, distance ; and where they are large, in defiance of experience, if expenses two or three schools will be required; increase upon us on
a contracted and if we reckon the average number scale? What can we expect more at 10,000, we shall not probably from the children of cottagers, and of much exceed the mark. Each of he lowest of the manufacturers, who, these seminaries are to be provided by the time they are seven years of with a master and mistress; and, if age, are employed in various ways, they are qualified to teach what is re. to add a penny to their parents' earn. quired of them, it will be in times like ings: Por, in times like the present, the present but little better than all those who are endeavouring to starving them, upon a stipend of forty live by their industry must work, if pounds a year. But, admitting it they would eat ; and between necesforty upon an average, then 10,000 X sity and playing the truant, there 40=100,000 a yearly expense, with- will be but few scholars who will atout the buying of land, purchasing or tend half their time. building houses and schools, and re- But after such an enormous ex. pairing them.
pense in making preparations, we If only three hundred pounds be must expect not a little perplexity and allowed for this purpose, as the aver- trouble in admitting scholars, and in age price for each house and school, compelling them to attend to good then our expense will stand as fol- regulations. lows,10,000 X 300=3,000,000 X5-- The fourteen articles relative to 15,000,000-100=150,000; the in- the building of the schools, framing terest of which must be paid yearly rules to be observed, presenting and till the debt can be discharged. dismissing children, providing for the
To meet these sums, the bill hath master and mistress, and suspending provided, that a rate of one shilling in or discharging them for misbehaviour the pound may be levied upon all tax. or neglect of duty, may be reduced able property yearly; and, if this to a short compass, by giving the should not be equal to answer the whole power at once into the hands various expenses this bill will entail of the justices of the peace, and letupon us, each parish may take up ting them transact the whole business. money at interest, and add a further If the ministers, churchwardens, burden; but they cannot raise more and overseers of the poor of a parish, than one additional shilling in the be not qualified to discharge the dupound within the year. By the re- ties they are required to perform, why turns of the oficers to parliament the appoint them?" And, if the integrity parochial taxes already annount, upon or the abilities of men are now to be an average, to 45.5 d. in the pound estimated by their rent-roll or their throughout the kingdom, which raises ořice, then let those who have the 5,3-18,205). (5. 3 d.; and, by adding most money in the parish be selected one shilling in the pound, we shall to guard this new system of educa. hare 0,675,300). 103. 7.d. Is this tion, and let them have the power of the way we are to ease our present doing it. burdens? Are we to be led blindfold Can it be supposed, that the miniinto such expenses without cousider- ster, and the churchwardens, and ing what the charity and Sunday oversærs of a parislı, will offer to disschools have done for us towards les- charge their duty with spirit, as nosening the poor's rates for the last minal visitors, when they can neither thirty years? in London and West- present or dismiss a child, or susminster they have educated yearly be- pend or discharge their teachers fur teen seven and eight thousand, and neglector misbehaviour, without
being amenable to a justice of the any fees annexed to their office by peace, upon the complaint of a statute; fees, which are to arise from drunken or worthless parent of a the surplus beyond what shall be child ; and the officers to be sum- found sutticient to answer the princimoned to answer for their conduct, pal money laid out. Surely, it would and have eight or ten miles to travel, have appeared more patriotic, if a as a certain expense, the loss of a plan had been formed for the poor to day's work, and the neglect of their have received every possible advanbusiness? After all they have done, tage which could be made of their the magistrate may reverse their or- scanty pittance, and to have had less ders, the master and the mistress may parade in transacting the business. set them at defiance, the children Can any good reason be assigned, play the truant as they please, and why gentlemen of title and fortune their parents will find an excuse for should have a gratuity reserved for
and the minister and the of them in the same bill, which requires ficers may go and complain to the the minister, church wardens, and justices, that their authority is at an overseers to give up their time and end. If the statute is to contain ar- their trouble, and be liable to be haticles for establishing and superintend- rassed by a summons from a magiing the schools, they must, if they are strate without the least prospect of any of any service, be very different from recompence, and with a certainty of those which are now offered, or there i!l-will and censure for their services? had much better be none.
The articles belonging to these sec. As there appears such a fundamental tions are too long and perplexed for error in supposing, that so great an the poor to comprehend them; and if effect as the changing of the habits they should save a few pounds, they and morals of the poor of a whole will be too cautious of them to trust nation can proceed from su trifling a them in the hands of strangers, to be cause as the teaching of children to sent they know hot where, nor to spell, which is all that can be ex- whom. pected from the plan, it naturally Much trouble might have been leads us to doubt, whether the two spared by appointing country bankers next heads in the bill, or the scheme to transmit the money, but it does for forming a poor's fund and an in- not require many observations on surance ottice, will not prove an un- those heads, as they will probably be successful undertaking:
az unproductive as the first; but they The preparations for establishing will not put the nation to upwards of these offices, and the appointing com- half a million sterling to try the exmissioners, cashiers, clerks, servants, periment. accountant and treasurer, hath the There are several other parts of this appearance of the establishing of a bill which require some attention, as new national-bank; or an insurance they will considerably increase, inoffice, upon as large a plan as that stead of lessening our expenses. near Blackfriar's-Bridge, to receive If a person is to gain a settlement the sum of five pounds at one pay- by five years residence in a parish, a ment, and not more than twenty of drunken idle fellow ought to be exany one person within the year. The cluded from the privilege, as much as king, his heirs, and successors, are to a criminal one; and there ought to be appoint the commissioners, who are a marked distinction between them to provide all the persons to be em- and the industrious poor. ployed with the approbation of the A law is certainly very much commissioners of his Majesty's trea- wanted to compel strangers who
come to abide in a parish, to swear to If a certain number of commis, their last legal settlement; but it sioners be necessary to inspect the must be very different from that which proceedings in the poor's tund and is now proposed to us, or it must ine. insurance office, it would surely be evitably create a considerable expense.
respectable for gentlemen of As the section of the intended act character and fortune to discharge now stands, if a person in Cornwall their duty disinterestedly, than to have swears to his last legal settlement in
Northumberland, the triplicate of the to ask or receive collections.' What adjudication of the justices and the ex- occasion then is there for what follows amination must be sent by a special in the bill under consideration, when messenger, and delivered to the it already appears by the returns of church wardens, or one of them, that the officers to parliament, that they the delivery may be proved upon now relieve 336,199 paupers peroath. It is plain that the framer of manently in England and Wales? this bill hath never considered any The repealing of a bill, and then thing of expenses; and it is in vain to enacting again that they may allow complain of them in appeals, if in. what is already allowed, may seen vention is racked to increase them. strange to those who do not look far When the duplicate is filled, why enough to discover the secret. The should not the clerk send the triplí- repealing that part of the 9th of cate by post, and the officer be George 1. and enacting that they obliged to acknowledge the receipt of shall allow one-fourth of the labour it within a limited time, under a pe- of a man to a man, one-fifth of the nalty? But these are not the only labour of a woman to a woman, and objectionable parts of the bill: there one-sixth of the labour of a child to a is a most singular assertion advanced, child, will considerably enhance the page 23, which offers a striking proof expense, and deprive the ofticers of how far prejudice may bias the judg- all discretionary power. It will also ment, even of a sensible man. It is encourage idleness, for there are but said, “ It is found by experience, that few who will work while they can the maintaining the poor in work- get any supply to subsist without it. houses is much greater than main- Though there is much to reprobate taining them in their own habita- in this bill, there are one or two good tions." This is contrary to all expe- points in it. The holding monthly rience. This error was first advanced vestries might be made useful, if any upon the authority of the returns means could be devised to get the pamade by the parish officers, when it rishioners to attend them. The ofappears that the difference between ficers might lay before them the the occasional reliefs and the intire whole transactions of the month, with maintenance of the poor in work- the sums expended under different houses is as three to twelve. Mr. heads. The names of paupers who Rose made this wonderful discovery; have applied for relief, the reason of the Monthly Reviewers catched at their applying, and how much alit, and said, every person admitted lowed them; what removals they into a workhouse was a loss of nine have, what appeals, and upon what pounds a year to the public. So ig- ground they proceed, and the reason norant were they of the management why any one is excused from paying of the affairs of the poor, that they the parochial rates; if this step made no distinction between the giv- guarded with caution, it will cast the ing a poor person a shilling or two in burden upon very few in corporate a week to help them on, or the taking towns. Every one will interest himthem into the house to clothe, and self in behalf of his friend and relafeed, and maintain them in all the ne- tions, and the friends of his customcessaries of life. To publish such er- ers; and it will become a trafficking rors for facts is inexcusable, and yet systen, and the last evil will be much they are not suffered to rest in quiet. worse than the first. If it would not
This subject is now brought for- be considered an invidious underward to get the statute of the 9th of taking, I could produce proof of it. George 1. repealed, or that part of it The giving a person a number of
any poor person or per- votes, in proportion to their rates, sons who shall refuse to be lodged, or can never answer any good purpose ; maintained in a house provided for for it is placing all the power in the them, such poor person so refusing lands of a very few persons. shall be put out of the book or books, If rewards are to be given, they where the names of the persons who onght to be left to the discretion of ought to receive collections are to be the vestry, whether in doing it there registered, and shall not be entitled is a probability of lessening any fu
ture expense. These are not times are of so pleasing a nature to the man to be prodigal of the public money. of letters, that a short account of them
It is rather a singular circumstance will, I hope, prove agreeable to the to me, that the justices in this bill readers of this excellent miscellany. should be ordered to equalize the The Arabians or Saracens, whose county rate; and that the magistrates wild and barbarous enthusiasm had in corporate towns should be suttered destroyed the Alexandrian library ill to go on levying the rate, expending the seventh century, were the first the money and passing their own ac- people who were captivated with the counts, and not the least notice taken learning and arts of Greece; the Araof it. As the law now stands, the bian writers translated into their own inhabitants of a privileged jurisdiction language many Greek authors, and must pay, but they cannot inspect the from them the first rays of science and accounts if they know their money is philosophy began to enlighten the illegally expended. One of the first western hemisphere, and in time dissteps is to correct abuses, and it is to pelled the thick cloud of ignorance be hoped that some public-spirited which, for some ages, had eclipsed member will propose a clause for the literature. magistrates of exempt jurisdictions to The Caliph Almanzor was a lover admit such accounts to be inspected of letters and learned men, and science at reasonable times by such inbabit- of every kind was cultivated under his ants as pay to them; for the treasurer patronage. His grandson Almamun of the county will not refuse it to any obtained from the Greek emperors creditable person.
copies of their best books, employed If the bill in question should ever the ablest scholars to translate them, pass into a law, many of the clauses and took great pleasure in literary will be attended with serious addi- conversations. Under the patronage tional expenses to the public, and of the Caliphs, the works of the most with very little prospect of any ad- valuable Greek authors, in ditterent vantage. The observations I have of- branches of science, were translated fered on the most prominent and into Arabic. In philosophy, those of leading features of this intended sta- Plato and Aristotle; in mathematics, tute ought to be well considered by those of Euclid, Archimedes, Apolloevery one, before they begin to de- nius, Diophantus, and others; in memolish the old system. It would be dicine, Hippocrates, Galen, and the certainly a much safer method to en- best protessors in this branch of deavour to correct the errors and science; in astronomy, Ptolemy, and corrupt practices which time hath in- other authors. The Arabian literati troduced in the management of the not only translated the works of the affairs of the poor, and to try what Greeks, but several of thein composed the present laws are capable of doing. original pieces, as Abulfeda, Abulpha
I'much doubt whether this hath ragius, Bohadin, and others. ever been put to the test ; and I dare It was from the Arabians that these affirm, that with a few additional western parts became first acquainted laws there are men in this kingdom, with the Greek philosophy; and from who, if they had the authority with- them several branches of science were out being checked and perplexed with introduced into Europe as early as the interested people, would soon reduce ninth century, and even into Britain the poor's rates very considerably in- before the end of the eleventh, in deed, without adopting any doubtful which and in the three succeeding or expensive experiment, and at the centuries several Englishmen trasame time they would render the velled into Arabia and Spain in search poor more comfortable.
of knowledge; amongst others Ade
lard, a monk of Bath, Robert, a monk On the Events which contributed to of Reading, Retinensis, Shelly, Mor
the Restoration of Learning. ley, and others. THI
THE events and circumstances Several foreigners also travelled in
which have contributed to the search of science; amongst others, revival and restoration of learning, Gerbertus, a native of France, who enriched these western parts with the GAMBIER'S MORAL EVIDENCE. knowledge which he had obtained To the Editor of the Universal Mag, from learned Arabians. The abilities Sir, of this great man him to
BOOK lately been pubthat of Ravenna, and at length to the established church, which I with papal chair, which he filled from the many others consider as a valuable year 998 to 1003; but such was the treaiise on the subject of “ Moral bigotry and superstition of those times Evidence.” It was written, I am well that these great luminaries of science, assured, with the sole view of promotthough most of them ecclesiastics, ing the best interests of mankind by were accused of magic by the ignorant pointing out the causes of error, and berd of their brethren. Even Pope ihus in some measure enabling us to Gerbert himself, as Bishop Otho avoid it. I had hopes that the book gravely relates of him, obtained the would be received by the public with pontificate by wicked means; for approbation, and become extensively the bishop assures us, that he had useful. Judge then what must have given himself up wholly to the Devil, been my surprise and disappointment, on condition he might obtain what on being told that in the “ Oxford he desired; and that it was to this Review,"ť a new publication, this circumstance, and not to the patron- book was very severely censured! age of the emperor Otho III. who However, on procuring the Review had been his pupil, nor to that of Ro- and reading the article, I could not bert the French king, his great bene- help thinking that the censures of the factor, that he owed his election. A reviewers reflected more disgrace on Cardinal Benno also accuses this great themselves than on the author of this man of holding an intercourse with work. To me, there appeared in demons; por did superstition and bi- them a striking detect, both of cangory cease to persecute science and dour and of discernment. With your genius till the end of the seventeenth permission, I propose to make a few century.
remarks on the manner in which this Our Roger Bacon, a Franciscan book has been reviewed; and I am monk, who flourished in the 13th encouraged to hope that you will not century, was accused of magic, and refuse to insert them, when you conwas cast into a French prison, where sider that there is no other mode of he remained for many years.
redress to which the author, however Franciscus Petrarch was suspected injured, can have recourse. of magic; and John Faust, who was The Oxford reviewers begin their either the inventor or among the first account of the book by affirming that practisers of printing, was obliged they have searched in vain for either to reveal his art to clear himself novelty of reflection, or depth of refrom the accusation of having had search; nor have we," say they,“ been recourse to diabolical assistance. compensated for the want of these by
But the great Galileo met with the any thing of tlat luminous exposition hardest fate, for he was not only im- of the first principles of reasoning prisoned by the inquisition, but he which we were so fully prepared to exwas also under the necessity of pub- pect.” These are heavy charges, and licly denying those philosophical will doubtless excite a great contempt truths which he had investigated; and, for the work in the minds of those what is worse for posterity, supersti- readers who trust with implicit confition and ignorance persecuted his dence to the judgment of these critics. fame beyond the grave, for the con- It might, however, have been reafessor of bis widow taking advantage sonably expected that the following of her piety obtained leave to peruse passage from the preface would have his manuscripts, of which he destroyed precluded every observation of the those which in his judgment were 'not kind. “ As there is no book written fit to be allowed.
J.S. * The Roy, Mr. Gambier.
† Published Feb. 1, 1807.