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an invasion impart to my Journal! Unhappily, the wolves become every day more rare, and the few that are seen behave themselves with great propriety. If this sort of thing goes on, they will soon be as civilized as we are. It is too clear, then, that I can extract nothing to day from the provincial Journals."

The writer then turns his eyes on the capital; but he finds none of the theatrical performers indisposed, abundance of new authors, but not one new work. His meditations are disturbed by a young lady, who, attended by a gentleman, enters his study.

"I should hope, Sir, that my visit will not alarm you. I am the author of it is a romance which at present is making a great deal of noise in the world. It is superfluous to recommend it to you: you have too much taste not join your suffrage to that of the ton. But allow me to ask why it is that you never come to my soirées? I shall be delighted to have some chat with you. As to my romance, for the fate of which I feel not the slightest apprehension, the public opinion is already decided. Madame de S endeavors to be philosophical; Madame de G— to be natural. I combine both characters. It is conceded on all sides. Linval, whom you see here, and who has conducted me hither, will tell you that no woman feels so strongly as I do, or expresses her sentiments with greater energy. Even my husband, whom I met by chance this morning on the staircase, could not deny that the perusal of my work afforded him some delicious moments. I confess I did not think before that he had so much taste. But I shall say no more on this subject, as it is not that which brought me here. Good morning, Sir: you are too polite, I am sure, not to return my visit.""

This is very well sketched off, and it has, besides, the merit of closely resembling one of those visits, which are made every day to persons, who happen to have any influence over the literature of the age. The editor's basket is another lively article, though in a somewhat different tone.

I shall now point out a great abuse, a crying injustice, which ought forthwith to be put down, and which is the scandal of literature I mean the basket of the journalists. Have you not often observed that these gentlemen review for the public but a very small number of works, which, for some reason or other, they deem worthy of their attention? For one production which they analyze in their papers, there are a hundred of which they say not a single word. They persuade themselves, moreover, that they would degrade themselves if they condescended to notice those little works in prose and verse, which at present form so considerable a portion of our literary treasures. But what becomes of these unfortunate fruits of so many laborious vigils? Devoted to contempt from the hour of their birth, they are thrown by the indignant journalist into a basket, placed under his table, to re

ceive these innocent victims of his culpable indifference. This is the literal fact. Never shall the eye of criticism light on their beauties! no little paragraph shall inform the public of their existence! Their fate is sealed they are doomed to eternal oblivion. I ask you, if there be any affront more insulting to a respectable brochure than to see itself condemned to the basket? Should not an universal cry be raised against an institution so barbarous ?

Our age is accused of poverty of invention. Some melancholy persons insist, that the spirit of poetry is extinct, and that the French muses are mute; I beg leave to say, that, on the contrary, they never have been more talkative; but what signifies their eloquence, if the baskets are to absorb nine-tenths of the poetry which is produced every year? I should make the most alarming discoveries if I were to mention the number of authors who have been buried alive. Age, sex, nothing is sacred to us; no titles or dignities can for a moment impose on us. I have seen, I shudder while I relate it, I have seen a whole provincial academy descend into these catacombs of osier: president, secretary, residents, associates, all heaped on one another pêle-mêle, in this huge sepulchre, with the finest editions of their works.'

In this playful manner it is, that M. COLNET endeavors to compensate for the philosophical elegance of M. Jouy. There is a good deal of variety in his work; and though it is not of the purest order either of wit or morality, yet we have not observed any thing deserving any asperity of censure.

ART. XV. Dictionnaire Infernal; ou, Recherches et Anecdotes, sur les Démons, les Esprits, les Fantômes, les Spectres, les Magiciens, les Songes, les Prodiges, les Charmes, les Talismans, &c. Par J. A. S. COLLIN DE PLANCY. 2 Tomes. Paris. 1825.

THE THE second edition of this curious Dictionary has been recently published in Paris, and if it were translated, we suspect it would be equally well received in England. For those who are inclined to explore the history of superstition, to make themselves acquainted with the demons, spirits, phantoms, magicians, sylphs and gnomes, who have from time to time troubled or inflamed the imagination of mankind, there is a fund of entertainment in these two volumes. They may also, if they please, learn from this diversified work, the art of interpreting prodigies and dreams, of composing charms, and discovering by means of astrology the most hidden secrets of nature. After a single perusal they will be most accomplished magicians, and in the high road towards the discovery of the philosopher's stone.

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It is truly humiliating to look back upon the enormous maze of folly and error to which the human mind has yielded in every age; the childish weakness which has ever been at the side of its godlike strength; its love of truth so strangely intermixed with its fondness for extravagance; its acknowlegement of the obedience that is due to right reason, and yet its propensity to every thing that is supernatural and mysterious. Upon the subject of magic alone, there are no fewer than fifteen thousand volumes in the Bibliothèque du Panthéon. Innumerable are the works which have been written on apparitions and demons, on the superstitions and vulgar errors of mankind. These are links which, however obscure and degrading they may be, will be found connecting together every generation from the beginning of the world. Countries and ages differ from each other in political principles, in religion, in morals, in language, in costume, in taste: but all are, or have been, in some degree superstitious; and chiefly from the same cause, a longing desire to penetrate into futurity. The antients, enlightened as they were in other respects, introduced divination into their religion; and the flight of birds, or the examination of slain animals, regulated the march of armies, the enactment of laws, the foundation or the destruction of cities. These monstrous follies we have rejected, and we can, moreover, look at an eclipse of the sun, or a new comet, without fearing that nations are upon the eve of subversion. But who shall say that the reign of superstition is past, when he reads of the deceptions which are every day inflicted on credulity; of the thousand sects which prevail in religion among us, of which the Johannaites and the Jumpers are not the least ridiculous? Who does not hear, every hour, of the presages which are founded on dreams; of terrors excited by the imagination; of suicides caused by superstition under the civilized name of insanity?

Even among the most sober-minded and learned persons, we seldom fail to find a lurking curiosity with respect to the various subjects which have been for the first time collected together in this Dictionary; they will also find in it a much more philosophical gratification, that which arises from a deliberate view of the surprising fantasies, and chimerical pursuits, which have from time to time fascinated and deceived mankind. Here, also, they will find many strange peculiarities of nations and individuals, which, extravagant as they may appear, are perfectly true and not a little instructive. For instance, under the title Antipathie, we find the following facts:

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Lamothe-Levayer could not bear the sound of a musical instrument, and he found the highest delight in the roar of thunder. Cæsar could not hear a cock crow without trembling. The Lord Chancellor Bacon fainted whenever there was an eclipse of the Mary de Médicis could not bear the sight of a rose, not even in a painting, and yet she loved every other sort of flower. Henry III. would not remain alone in a chamber where there was a cat. Uladislas, King of Poland, became alarmed and ran away whenever he saw apples. Scaliger was seized with a tremor in every part of his frame when he saw cresses. The Cardinal Henry de Cardonne fell into a syncope whenever he smelt the odor of roses. Tico-Brahé felt his knees sink under him whenever he met a hare or a fox.'

The doctrine of antipathies is inexplicable. Contemptible as they may seem, they prevail to a greater extent than is generally imagined, and exercise a serious influence over the happiness of private life. There is in the Spectator a very amusing paper on the habit of founding presages on the most simple accidents, such as the overturning of salt, the fracture of a mirror, the fall of a knife. There are many persons who would sooner receive an insult than a present of an edged instrument from a friend: it is laughable to observe their tenacity upon this subject, and the caution with which they purchase the present with money, however trifling. For such persons, and they are not a few, M. COLLIN DE PLANCY doubtless intended the following system of chiromancy, or divination by inspection of the hand:


In order to tell one's fortune, you generally use the left hand. It must be in proper condition; that is to say, not fatigued, or heated, or benumbed. There are in the hand four principal lines the line of life, the line of health, the line of fortune, and the line where the hand joins the arm. If the lines be well colored, very direct, and clearly defined, they betokena good complexion.


The line of life commences between the thumb and the forefinger, and finishes near the joint which connects the hand with the arm. When it is long, direct, and well colored, it promises a long life, exempt from sickness. If it be short and broken, it announces a short life and ill health. When it is thick, it is a sign of strength; when narrow and slender, it is a sign of weakness. It is red in persons who have a great abundance of blood; if pale, it betrays thin blood. It should be observed, that between the hand of a man and that of a woman there is the same difference as there is between rouge and the color of the rose; the lines are also more delicately marked in women. When the line of life is close, fine, direct, and equally colored, it announces a person of a generous and noble heart, endowed with prudence and talent. If it be thick, deep, and of different colors, that is to say, interrupted with livid spots, it is a sign of malignity, pride, jealousy,

indiscretion, and selfishness. If thick and deeply colored, it denotes a deceitful, immodest, and inconstant person. If livid and lead-colored, it announces an inclination to anger, passion, rage. If red near the wrist, it is a sign of cruelty. If forked at the root (between the thumb and fore-finger), it denotes inconstancy and originality. If crooked and red, it shows a traitor and a person of a naturally evil disposition. If branches be found on the line of life, and if they be elevated towards the root, it is a sign of prosperity; if they descend towards the wrist, poverty and misfortune. The little lines which cross the line of life, are so many maladies and infirmities.


The line of health is in the middle of the hand; it commences in the same direction as the line of life, with which it forms a triangle. If it be straight and equal, it announces a solid intellect, a lively imagination, great memory, and excellent health. If it be long and reach to the lower part of the hand, it denotes courage. If it be short and finish in the middle of the hand, it announces timidity, avarice, imprudence, and perfidy. When the line of health is crooked, unequal, and of different colors, it designates knavery or natural depravity. Straight, equal, well colored, and surrounded with little wrinkles, it denotes an honest and upright heart, and a good conscience. Large and red, a gross and imprudent disposition. Narrow, small and livid, a feeble mind and a disposition to the vapors. If it be characterized by the mean between these two extremes, and neither too wide or too narrow, but at the same time well colored, it announces a naturally good and amiable temper, a strong mind, and an excellent heart. If this line be joined at its commencement with the line of life, so as to form a perfect angle, it denotes uprightness, equanimity, and a happy memory.

The line of fortune commences in the hand below the tuberosity of the little finger, and ends towards the joint of the forefinger. It is parallel with the line of health, and forms with it a sort of oblong square. If it be equal, long, and straight, it denotes a good disposition, a moderate heart, constancy, and chastity. When the line is broken, it betrays an inclination to libertinism, inconstancy, and little conjugal love. If instead of ending at the joint of the fore-finger it rise towards the upper part of the hand, it designates anger, violence, and cruelty. If red at the upper part, perfidy and jealousy. If it have branches turned towards the upper part of the hand, it is a sign of prosperity, good temper, generosity, nobility, modesty, and decorum. The branches promise particularly honors and great riches, when they are of the number of three. Several branches, rising one after another, dominion and power. If the line of fortune be dark, simple, and branchless, misfortune and poverty. If, instead of forming an oblong square with the line of health, it forms a triangle with the line of life, it presages dangers and an inclination to suicide. When it is straight and fine near the fore-finger, it characterizes a person who will know how to manage his affairs, and will raise himself above his equals.

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