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Printed by JOHN NICHOLS, for DAVID HENRY, late of S. John's
Gate; and fold by ELIZ. NEWBERY, the Corner of St. P"
Church-Yard, Ludgate-Street. 1787.
TO THE DEITY, ON THE PROGRESSION OF HUMAN LIFE.
HAIL, gracious Father, 'tis to thee we owe
Each friendly bleffing granted us below:
Of life's review if we the features trace,
Each day will prove a miracle of grace.
The helpless babe, unable to fupply
Its infant wants, would ficken, droop, and die,
Unless thou didst the feeble guest sustain,
And guide fome hand to mitigate its pain.
But with parental love thou doft inspire
The tender mother, and th' enraptur'd fire;
Each in their place nor pains nor trouble
But o'er their offspring watch with willing
Upheld by thee, one added year affords
Some little ftrength, and with but half-form'd
The child lifps out its wants, and fain would
[walk; And, with flow tottering fteps, attempts to The fondling parents, with regard fincere, Gladly behold, and drop the joyous tear. With years increafing, ftrength increaseth
Reafon expands, and bloffems to the view:
Free'd from th' attention of the careful nurfe,
To learning's fount directed is its courfe,
The tutor'd youth is taught to know his God,,
His precepts practise, and obey the rod.
Each winning art is us'd, his mind to store
With folid judgement, and with virtuous lore..
Yet thus advanc'd, without a guardian-friend,
His fluttering life would quickly meet its end,
His playful fports each day would him expofe
To dangers great, to unexpected woes.-
How oft the bail, or quoit, high-pois'd in air,
Would ftrike him dead! unlefs with hea-
Thou didst avert the blow; and o'er his
Unafk'd, thy kind, thy faving shield didft
By fummer's heat opprefs'd, he haftes to
And headlong plunge beneath the rapid
Or loitering fleeps, where lurks within the
The fork-tongued adder, or the coiled fnake;
Dangers encountering in a thousand shapes,
Aided by thee, thefe dangers he escapes.
Manhood comes next, when reason is ma-
Yet then from danger is he not enfur'd,
Far, far from this-for oft, with bufy mind,
He plans thofe fchemes, which nought but
Th' undaunted mariner, in hopes of gain,
Leaves quiet fcenes to plow the raging main;
Tho' blefs'd with plenty, quits his native foil,
In fearch of diftant climes, with painful toil.
With breaft ambitious, and devoid of fear,
From east to west, from north to fouth, he'll
Anxious for riches, he difdains to fhun
Either the frigid or the torrid zone.
Storms bellow loud, the fhip's now toft on
Beneath the waves, half bury'd, now does lie;
The lightning flashes, and the thunder roars,
Nature's at war, and diftant are the fhores.→→
What but a God Omnipotent could fave
The much affrighted crew, and ftillthe wave
But thou in mercy ftretcheft forth thy hand,
And feas and winds obey thy dread com-
Infancy, childhood, manhood overpast, Feeble old age comes creeping on at last ; Bow'd down with years, and frequently with pains,
Nought but the femblance of a man remains;
With faultering speech, dim eyes, each sense
How much is wanted thy paternal aid !
Thou feeft his wants; to ease them or remove,
Thou guid'ft fome friendly hand, or filial love.
Since man, frail man! in every stage of
Todangers prone, to trouble, care, and strife;
And fince our greatrCeator, kind though just,
Decreed frail mortals all fhould turn to duft,
And all our prudence, every anxious care,
Will not perfuade the tyrant Death to spare ;
As things are fo, our voices let us raise,
And hail the God of Heaven with hymns
Thank him for all the mercies he has shed,
Thank him for fhielding oft' th' endanger'd
Imprefs' with gratitude, let's still return
Our grateful praises, every night and morn !
Let all our prayers to Heaven directed be,
With folemn awe, unfeign'd humility!
Let pride, let envy, every vice depart,
And find no footing in the Chriftian's heart !!
May juftice, mercy, charity, combine,
And every virtue in our bofoms thine! [all,
Thee let us praife! Thee, the great Lord of
Without whofe will a fparrow fhall not fall!
I. A. CURATUS.
T is no bad Cuftom for an Author that his Preface is the last Part of the
Book which a Printer calls for. This gives him Leifure to re-confider
his Plan, and to fit in Judgement on his own Performance; to display its
Excellencies, illuftrate its Obfcurities; and to apologize for its Defects.
To us it is Matter of Triumph, that while Competitors, under fimilar
Titles and various Difguifes, are continually ftarting up, we can boaft
among the Supporters of our Work many of the brightest Ornaments in Li-
terature; and that, while our crowded Pages continue to be filled with ge-
nuine Communications in almost every Department of Science and the Belles
Lettres, we may reft fecure in the Patronage of the Publick, whatever may
be the Fate of new Competitors.
To thofe excellent Correfpondents to whom we owe that Superiority
which has never been denied us, our fincereft Thanks are refpectfully
offered; with an Affurance, that though the Infertion of their valuable Fa-
vours may fometimes be reluctantly delayed, they never intentionally efcape
our Remembrance and Acknowledgement. Some Indulgence, we are confi-
dent, they will grant us; and it fall be our Study, by that perfe&t Impar
tiality which has gained us the public Esteem, to merit its Continuance.
A Correfpondent, in p. 1058, after fome obfervations on the Gregorian Calen-
dar, which, from fome mifapprehenfion, he conceives to be much more im-
perfect than it really is, complains, that he was under the neceffity of dating his
letter Nov. 30, although in fact it was written Dec. 1, 1787-For the benefit of
fuch of our readers as may not have the means of better information, and may be
very much alarmed at being obliged to midate their letters all the year round
we beg leave to ftate, that Julius Cæfar, when he reformed the calendar, fuppofed
the tropical year to confift of 365 days 6 hours, and ordained that, on account of
the 6 hours, an intercalary day should be added every fourth year, by reckoning
the fixth kalends of March twice. Hence this year was called Biffextile.-Again,
to correct the error of this intercalation, one day ia four years being found to be
too much, Pope Gregory XIII. in 1582 cut off ten days after the 4th of October,
reckoning the 5th of that month the 15th; and fuppofing the tropical year to con-
fift of 365 days, 5 hours, 49 minutes, 12 feconds, he ordained that the 1600th
year of the Chriftian æra, and every fourth year thereafter, thould be a bifextile,
or leap year. By this method of intercalation, 97 days are inferted in the space
of four centuries. But recent obfervations have determined the quantity of the
tropical year to be 365 days, 5 hours, 45 feconds; this excefs above 365 days
amounts, in four centuries, to 96 days, 21 hours, 3 minutes, zo feconds; hence
2 hours, 56 minutes, 40 feconds too much are inferted. The Gregorian Calendar
mult, therefore, be corrected after a certain period of years; but the error being
lefs than three hours in four centuries, far from amounting to one whole day fince
1582, as is fuppofed in the publication alluded to, will make only about a day
and a half in 5000 years. Our readers may, therefore, long continue to date their
Letters according to the almanack, without fear of committing any great mistake !
As our correfpondent OBSRVATOR LONDINENSIS profeffes, and we have rea-
fon to believe wishes, to state the first introduction of the principles of the Hu-
mane Society of Amfterdam into this country with accuracy and truth (fee p. 1077);
he will not, we flatter ourselves, attribute it to improper motives, if we affume to
ourfelves the merit of giving the eariieft account of the inftitution of that Society,
and of laying before the publick at large the inftru&ions which the Society, from
experience, judged moft effectual for the recovery of perfons fuppofed to be
drowned by lying in the water till every fpark of life is apparently extinguished.-
This we were enabled to do fo early as the year 1771, by immediate advice from
the Society, accompanied with their three first publications, requefting at the fame
time our allistance in promoting their undertaking, by making the means used for
the recovery of fuch unfortunate perfons generally known in Great Britain and
Ireland as well as in Holland and the neighbouring states. Those who have