Albert had been brought up religiously, but on leaving home he occasionally
associated with young people who 'argued for liberal opinions, and recommended
plays, balls, and concerts, as highly rational and instructive [...] and
asserted that attention to these things was necessary to keep pace with the
"march of intellect"'. Albert began to lose his veneration for sacred things,
and was discovered by his friend Philip shamefacedly reading on a Sunday what
he called 'a very interesting well-known publication,
DSB CloseView the register entry >>Voyages round the World'Cook, James 1790.
Captain Cook's Voyages Round the World: The First Performed in the Years
1768, 1769, 1770, 1771; the Second in 1772, 1773, 1774, 1775; the Third and
Last in 1776, 1777, 1778, 1779, and 1780; for Making Discoveries in the
Northern and Southern Hemispheres, by Order of His Present Majesty, Containing
a Relation of all the Interesting Transactions which Occurred in the Course of
the Voyages. Including Captain
Furneaux's Journal of his Proceedings During the Separation
of the Ships. With a Narrative of Commodore Phipps's Voyage to
the North Pole, and an Abridgement of Foster's Introduction to his History of
Northern Discoveries on the Progress of Navigation. To Which is Added,
Voyage to Botany-Bay; with an Account of the Establishment of the Colonies of
Port Jackson and Norfolk Island, &c. &c., 3 vols, Newcastle:
CloseView the register entry >>. Philip
considered that Albert's parents would applaud his taste and approve his
industry on any other day, 'for certainly the information derived from
intelligent travellers is improving and valuable', but observed that, on
Sunday, reading 'should be confined to what is adapted to improve the mind in
sacred and divine things'. (3) After further discussion on the subject, the
friends embraced and went to church, Albert observing: 'The ways of God are
always pleasant and profitable, and the path of duty is the path of safety'
Describes the fixed stars in general terms, referring to such phenomena as
double stars and 'nebulous stars' which 'when closely examined [...] appear to
consist of large numbers of small stars' (15). Describes
Herschel'sHerschel, Sir William
ODNB CloseView the register entry >> discovery of an 'astonishing number' of stars 'by means
of his powerful instruments'. Considers that enough is known concerning the
fixed stars 'to convince us of the omnipotence of their Maker'. While the
'enlightened observer of the heavens' is 'more forcibly' impressed of divine
greatness than the ignorant person, the stars nevertheless 'speak a very plain
lesson' to all nations. Quotes Psalms 19. 3–4 in support of this claim.
Lindley 1826. Memoirs of the Life and Writings of Lindley Murray,
In a Series of Letters, Written by Himself: With a Preface, and a Continuation
of the Memoirs by Elizabeth Frank, York: Thomas Wilson and Sons; London:
Longman, Rees, Orme, Brown and Green, and Harvey and Darton
CloseView the register entry >>
Cruelty, Theology of Nature, Animal Behaviour, Menageries
The first extract contains
ODNB CloseView the register entry >> autobiographical thoughts on his cruelty to animals as a
child: 'I ought to have reflected, that all animals have assigned to them, by
the Author of nature, a pleasurable existence; and that it is our duty to
second his intention, as we have opportunity, and especially to avoid all
occasions of inflicting upon them unnecessary pain' (28). A second extract
reports an incident in which his tormenting of an elephant was remembered and
punished by the elephant.
A brief biography, concluding with details of such of his treatises as have
'survived the ravages of time, viz. A History of Stones, Treatises on Plants,
Winds, Signs of Fair Weather, and a work entitled Characters' (30).
Natural Theology, Creation, Feeling, Time, Degeneration
Under the text of Psalms 19. 2, the poem starts with a dialogue between
Nature and Time 'On the blindness and folly of reprobate man!'. Nature is
'truly surprised [...] / That the glories of earth, and the splendours on high
/ Should have ministered counsel again and again, / To this impotent heir of
the dust all in vain'. They agree to work together to enlighten humankind, with
Nature as 'Preacher' and Time as 'Clerk'. (34) In each of the remaining
stanzas, Nature creates, but Time brings decay. Time singles out a star which
'dies in his merciless hand, / Like the doomed, whom the Judge from his chosen
shall sever, / And consign to the blackness of darkness for ever!' (35)
Medical Practitioners, Medical Treatment, Pharmaceuticals,
A tale about two children whose mother seeks to obtain their obedience by
reasoning with them, rather than by demanding it. The children become ill with
scarlet fever, and, refusing to take their medicine, one of them dies.
Keppel 1827Keppel, George
Thomas 1827. Personal Narrative of a Journey from India to
England: By Bussorah, Bagdad, the Ruins of Babylon, Curdistan, the Court of
Persia, the Western Shore of the Caspian Sea, Astrakhan, Nishney Novogorod,
Moscow and St. Petersburgh, in the year 1824, London: Henry Colburn
CloseView the register entry >>
Anon 1810Anon. 1810. An Essay on Knowledge: Being an Attempt to
Examine its General Character, and to Shew its Salutary Influence on Human
Happiness and Virtue, London: G. Wilkie and J. Robinson, and T.
CloseView the register entry >>
Considers that instructive literature 'safely fills up leisure, and
honourably adorns life'. It is particularly important for the Christian, who
'should be able to meet the world at its own weapons'. It is urged: 'We should
[...] fulfil the ends of our creation, by employing our highest natural
gift—viz. our reason'. The 'amusement and unceasing pleasure which
knowledge gives' is described in relation to various branches of physical
science. Examples are given of the gratification afforded 'by tracing
resemblances and relations between things which to common apprehension seem
widely different'. (123)
Ann's mother redeems her promise that, if Ann were attentive to her lessons,
she would give her an account of the silk worms sent by a relative.
Youth's Magazine, 3rd ser. 1 (1828), 126–27.
Fishing in the East Indies
Heber 1828Heber, Reginald
1828. Narrative of a Journey Through the Upper Provinces of India from
Calcutta to Bombay 1824–25 (With Notes upon Ceylon): An Account of a
Journey to Madras and the Southern Provinces, 1826, and Letters Written in
India, 2 vols, London: John Murray
CloseView the register entry >>
The narrator's uncle is the eminent author of a work on an undisclosed
subject. He is described by someone in the narrator's hearing as 'a close
reasoner' and as having 'a mathematical head—a man of sense—quite
the man of sound plain sense'. Another commentator agrees that his is the only
book on the subject 'not mingled with, and spoilt by, metaphysical subtleties'.
The narrator gives an account of a visit to a friend who instructed his
grandchildren in 'all the doctrines and duties of religion', in every case
enforcing these 'by the help of some sensible object' (187). A fortnight
after teaching them about the Fall, he fitted up his lecture room 'with a
number of panoramic scenes, which were viewed through magnifying glasses,
placed for the purpose, by which the objects appeared as large as reality',
such as had recently been exhibited at the
PiccadillyBullock's Museum, Egyptian Hall, Piccadilly CloseView the register entry >>, but he forbade the children to look at one of them
until the following day (188). Two of the children attempted to remove the
slide covering the forbidden view, but 'some wires which were attached to that
slide had been strongly charged with the electric fluid, and the moment it was
touched, Curio and his sister received the shock and were thrown down in the
middle of the room'. The children thanked their grandfather for his 'kindness'
in teaching them that they were 'true descendants of Adam'. (189)
The writer seeks to enforce the message 'try again' using moral tales and
argument. He observes that steamships and gaslighting are the result of
perseverance. 'To such an astonishing perfection has machinery been
brought in this country, that Britain has supplied foreign markets with her
manufactures and considerably augmented her wealth; but if "Try again" had not
influenced the mind of the chymist, and the mechanic, and the astronomer, and
the artisan, no improvements would have been made in the sciences' (204).
Observes that the art of music was one of the earliest human inventions.
DSB CloseView the register entry >> observations in his
William 1713. Physico-Theology; or, A Demonstration of the Being
and Attributes of God, from His Works of Creation: Being the Substance of XVI
Sermons Preached in St. Mary le Bow-Church, London, at the Honble Mr. Boyle's
Lectures, in the Years 1711 and 1712. With Large Notes, and Many Curious
Observations Never Before Published, London: W. Innys
CloseView the register entry >> on
the divine goodness demonstrated in the creator's indulgence in enduing humans
with 'the power or faculty of invention' and enabling them to cheer and
entertain themselves by the art of music (240).
'What a preceptor is the Bee! / Little active teacher, say, / Why
thus greet the embryo day? / Why so diligent to pry / Every blossom thou com'st
nigh? / [...] But, I cease: thy care I see / Is thy Virtue, sprightly
The title is quoted from Hebrews 11. 38 and refers to heroes of the faith,
'of whom the world was not worthy'. The poem reviews the natural order, and
considers that it is not unworthy of the faithful. Indeed 'universal nature
longs / To cry aloud, and lift its voice / In choral melody and songs' and the
creator's works 'recite / Their Maker's wisdom and his might'. It is
'man alone that works him [the faithful one] woe'.
The narrator describes his or her moralizing musings on observing a spider.
Questioning the supposed cruelty of the spider, the narrator contrasts it with
the cruelty of children to flies. He or she observes the design evinced by the
form of the spider, and notes that 'wisdom was displayed in the
formation of this little creature, and power and goodness' (266).
The perseverance of the spider is made an example, as is its skill. Further
morals concern the 'mischievous' purpose of the spider's web and the
thoughtlessness of the flies caught by it (267).
Reflections on the moral impact of a thunder storm: 'There is scarcely any
thing more calculated to rouse man to a sense of God's omnipotence, than when
"The thunders murm'ring round the skies, / His power and glory shew"'
'The skeleton of the human body consists of 254 separate bones, or osseous
substances, most of which contain a quantity of matter called marrow, and are
surrounded with a membrane called the periosteum'.
Mental Illness, Medical Treatment, Feeling, Morality, Piety
When Charles corrects what he considers his sister Ellen's pride,
manifesting itself as a sensibility to affront, he speaks of it in medical
terms. He tells her: 'before I begin a search into this mental disease, which
may possibly be painful, I must have the assurance of my patient that she will
not consider me unkind' (400). Later he speaks of the disease being
'only in its first stage' (402) and looks for the 'remedy' (403).
After a review of the history of ancient agriculture starting with the Fall,
the writer reflects on both the importance and the practice of agriculture. He
observes: 'the proper method of managing and improving soils should be well
understood, to which may be added the necessity of experience, which holds the
pre-eminence in all the arts, which infinitely exceeds all precepts, and which
enables us to profit even by the faults we have committed' (412).