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• The fame caution is necessary against hunting, keeping many < fervants, equipages, furniture, buildings, and all other occafions of expence that luxury has invented. A tafte for any of these things foon degenerates into a kind of paffion, of which the wafte of time is not the only bad confequence; prodigality, ruin, and difhonour, are the ufual effects of it: it belongs only to a man who cannot refolve to live and amufe himself • with his own company, to think continually of galleries, columns, and gildings, and to run all his life after statues, • antiques, and medals.-I am, however, far from carrying the feverity of these maxims fo far, as to forbid a man, in• vefted with a public employment, from having any attention to himself; and to deny him all kinds of amufement. I • would have him indulge himself in moderate pleasures, and • take care of his fortune; provided that he does the one without diffipation, and the other without dishonour. It is one of thofe advantages that attends a difpofition not prone to expence, and fond of regularity, that he who is poffeffed of • it, if he lives long, finds himself infenfibly in affluent circumftances. To have made a fortune,—a phrase that has fo hateful a found, because when it is applied to a man of bufness, it commonly means nothing but injuftice, oppreffion, and cruelty; and when applied to a courtier, nothing but 6 mean tricks, despicable flattery, cringing fervility, and even, • at fometimes, knaveries and treachery,-is nothing more than 6 a natural confequence, and even an act of virtue, where all fee that the fortune is only the reward of labour, or an honeft recompence of good actions: that I may not be miftaken, I will add, that this ought to appear fo clearly, as to • force our greatest enemies to fee it, and confess it.'
After this our Memorialist gives a long detail of his own conduct as a minifter, and endeavours to fhew how exactly it quadrates with the foregoing portrait: but for this comparifon, as well as for many other valuable maxims of state and policy, we must refer to the work at large, which feems to be the best picture of its Author.
[To be continued.]
The Account of the Abbé de Condillac's Effay on the Origin of Human Knowlege, concluded.
the Review for laft month, we attended the learned Abbé whilst he brought the Human Mind itself in review before us. We faw him proceed from one intellectual power
to another, from the inferior to the fuperior faculties, juftly difplaying the force of each, marking its connection with the others, and gradually exciting thofe faculties and powers to action, till, by their union and conjunct influence, the whole mind became animated, and awaked, in all its vigour of reafon and understanding.
We are now, in this second part, to observe what efforts the mind naturally makes,. to communicate its intentions, defires, or discoveries; and how it improves and brings to perfection, the methods it naturally falls upon. And here, as in the former account, we fhall, for the fake of difpatch, generally make use of Mr. Nugent's language, tho' fomewhat contracted.
Let us fuppofe, fays the Abbé, that sometime after the deluge, two children, one male and the other female, wandered about in the defarts, before they understood the use of any fign. I am authorized to make this fuppofition, because children have been found in defarts; and who knows but fome nation or other owes its original to an event of this kind? Let us then enquire in what manner this nation first invented language.
So long as the above mentioned children lived afunder, the operations of their mind would be confined to perception and confcioufnels, which never cease to act whilft we are awake; to attention, which muft take place whenever any perception affects one in a particular manner; to reminifcence, when by ftriking circumftances they recollected fomething elfe; and to a, very limited exercise of the imagination.
But when they came to live together, they would have occafion to enlarge and improve thofe first operations; because their mutual correfpondence would induce them to connect with the founds attending each paffion, the perceptions naturally intimated by them. These founds would generally be accompanied with fome motion, gesture, or action, whose expreffion would be of a yet more rousing nature. For ex
ample, were the female debarred of access to an object neceffary to the supply of her wants, fhe would not confine herfelf to mere founds whilft the object was in view; but would exprefs her endeavour to obtain it, by moving her head, her arms, and other parts of her body. The male, ftruck with this fight, would fix his eye on the fame object, and perceiving fome inward emotions, which he was not yet able to account for, would fuffer in seeing his companion fuffer; and, feeling himself inclined to relieve her, would follow this impreffion to the utmost of his power. Thus by inftinct alone
would they afk and yield each other affiftance; I fay by inftinct alone, for as yet there could be no room for reflection.
And yet these fame circumftances could not be frequently repeated, without accuftoming them at length to connect with the voice of the paffions, and with thofe various emotions of body, the perceptions expreffed by them in fo lively a manner. The more they grew familiar with thefe figns, the more capable would they become of reviving them at pleasure. Thus would their memory acquire fome fort of habit; themselves be able to command their own imagination; and infenfibly learn to do by reflection, what they had hitherto done merely by in inct.
By thefe particulars we fee in what manner that fort of utterance, which in all animals is the effect of paffion, might contribute to enlarge the operations of the human mind, by giving a natural occafion to the mode of fpeaking by action; a language which, in its infancy, tho' probably confifting only in contortions and violent agitations, yet would be proportioned enough to the flender capacity of this young couple.
But when once they had acquired the habit of connecting fome ideas with arbitrary figns, the natural founds, accompanying the paffions, would themselves ferve them for a pattern to frame a vocal language. They might articulate new founds, and by repeating them feveral times, and accompanying them with fome gefture which pointed out fuch objects as they wanted to be taken notice of, accuftom themselves to give names to things. The progrefs of this language muft be, however, very flow; for in them the organ of fpeech would at firft, and for want of early ufe, be fo inflexible, that it could not eafily articulate any other than a few fimple founds; and the obftacles which hindered them from pronouncing others, would prevent them even from fufpecting that the voice was fufceptible of any further variation, beyond the fmall number of words already devised.
But let us fuppofe this young couple to have a child, who preffed by wants which he could not without difficulty make known, put every part of his body into fome fort of motion. His tongue being extremely pliant, would be capable of motions productive of found, in a manner that must appear extraordinary to the parents, and give rife to new expreffions. As continued wants preffed the child, they would occafion a repetition of the fame efforts. He would again and again move his tongue, as at firft, and frequently articulate the fame found. The furprized parents, having at length gueffed his meaning, would give him what he wanted, and try, as they
gave it him, to imitate the found. The difficulty with which they must pronounce it, hews that they were not of themselves capable of inventing it.
For this very reafon the new language could not much improve; for the child's organ of fpeech, for want of exercise, muft quickly lofe all its flexibility. His parents, fenfible of their own deficiency in pronunciation, and practised in action, would teach him to communicate his thoughts by action. In this cafe, chance alone could give rise to fome new words; and it must doubtlefs have been a long time before their number, by fo flow a method, could be confiderably increased. The mode of fpeaking by action, at that time so natural, must be a very great obftacle to furmount; for how could they leave it to prefer another, whofe advantages were yet unforefeen, and whofe difficulties were fo obvious?
In proportion as the language of articulate founds became more copious, the neceffity of feizing early opportunities for improving the organ of fpeech, and preferving its first flexibility, would more and more appear; till at laft the mode of vocal expreffion would feem as convenient as that of speaking by action; and for a time both would be indifcriminately used, till at length articulate founds became so easy, that they abfolutely prevailed.
The mode of fpeaking by action was by the antients called by the name of Dance; which is the reason that David is faid to have danced before the ark.
As tafte improved, men gave a greater variety, grace, and expreffion, to this dance. They not only fubjected the motions of the arms, and the attitudes of the body, to rules; but they likewife marked out the movements of the feet. dancing was naturally divided into two fubordinate arts; one, if I may be permitted an expreffion conformable to the language of antiquity, was the dance of geftures, which they preferved to accompany and enforce the communication of their thoughts; the other was the dance of steps, employed in expreffing particular emotions of the mind, chiefly of joy, and was therefore used on occafions of rejoicing, as its principal object was pleasure.
Speech fucceeding the language of action, retained its character: yet these languages did not fucceed each other abruptly. They were a long time intermixed, and it was not till very late that fpeech prevailed. This new method of communicating thought muft of courfe imitate the firft; and, in order to fupply the place of violent contorfions, raife and deprefs the voice by very fenfible intervals.
We might improperly give the name of mufic to this manner of pronouncing: I fhall only fay, then, it partook of the nature of mufic.
This profody was so natural to mankind in the beginning, that to feveral it appeared easier to exprefs different ideas by the fame word pronounced in different tones, than to multiply the number of words in proportion to that of ideas. A language of this kind is ftill preferved among the Chinese. They have only 328 monofyllables: these they vary on five tones, which is equivalent to 1640 figns; and it has been obferved, that our languages are not more copious.
The fame caufes which determine the voice to vary by very diftinct intervals, neceffarily occafion it to make a difference between the times which it useth in the articulation of founds. It was not, therefore, natural, that a people, whofe profody was in fome measure mufical, fhould obferve equal stops in each fyllable. This method of pronouncing would not have fufficiently imitated the mode of fpeaking by action. Some founds, therefore, at the origin of languages, fucceeded each other with greater velocity, and others very flowly. From hence arifes what Grammarians call Quantity, or the fenfible difference between long and fhort fyllables.
As the inflexion by fenfible intervals introduced the ufe of mufical declamation, fo the diftinct inequality of fyllables, added a difference of time and measure to it. The declamatory fpeaking of the antients contained, therefore, thofe two things, characteristical of vocal melody, I mean Modulation and Movement.
If it be natural, as I have obferved, for the voice to vary its inflexions in proportion to the greater variety of geftures; it is, for the fame reafon, natural for a people, who speak a language, the pronunciation of which borders very near upon mufic, to have a more varied gefture, and a manner of action expreflive enough to be meafured.
When geftures were once reduced to an art, and determined by notes, it was found an eafy matter to fubject them to the movement and measure of declamation. Nay, the Romans went farther; they divided the recitation and action in their Soliloquies, betwixt two players.
The custom of dividing the declamation, naturally led to the difcovery of Pantomimes: there was only one Rep more to take, namely, for the actor to render his gesture so expreffive, that the recitation fhould appear ufelefs; and this is what happened.