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This series of Treatises is published under the following circumstances: The Right Honourable and Rev. FRANcis Hex Ry, Earl of Bridgewater, died in the month of February, 1829; and by his last will and testament, bearing date the 25th of February, 1825; he directed certain trustees therein named, to invest in the public funds, the sum of eight thousand pounds sterling; this sum, with the accruing dividends thereon, to be held at the disposal of the President, for the time being, of the Royal Society of London, to be paid to the person or persons nominated by him. The Testator farther directed, that the person or persons selected by the said President, should be appointed to write, print and publish one thousand copies of a work, on the Power, Wisdom, and Goodness of God, as manifested in the Creation; illustrating such work, by all reasonable arguments, as for instance, the variety and formation of God's creatures in the Animal, Vegetable, and Mineral Kingdoms; the effect of digestion, and, thereby, of conversion; the construction of the hand of man, and an infinite variety of other arguments; as also by discoveries, ancient and modern, in arts, sciences, and the whole extent of literature. He desired, moreover, that the profits arising from the sale of the works so published, should be paid to the authors of the works. The late President of the Royal Society, Davies Gilbert, Esq. requested the assistance of his Grace the Archbishop of Canterbury, and of the Bishop of London, in determining upon the best mode of carrying into effect the intentions of the Testator. Acting with their advice, and with the concurrence of a nobleman immediately connected with the deceased, Mr. Davies Gilbert appointed the following eight gentlemen to write separate Treatises in the different branches of the subject here stated:—
I. The Adaptation of External Nature to the Moral and Intellectual Constitution of Man, by the Rev. Thomas Chalmers, D. D. Professor of Divinity in the University of Edinburgh. II. The Adaptation of External Nature to the Physical Condition of Man, by John Kidd, M. D., F. R. S., Regius Professor of Medicine in the University of Oxford. III. Astronomy and General Physics, considered with reference to Natural Theology, by the Rev. William Whewell, M.A., F. R. S., Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge. IV. The Hand; its mechanism and vital endowments as evincing design, by Sir Charles Bell, K. H., F. R. S. V. Animal and Vegetable Physiology, by Peter Mark Roget, M.D., Fellow of and Secretary to the Royal Society. VI. Geology and Mineralogy, by the Rev. Wm. Buckland, D.D., F.R.S., Canon of Christ Church, and Professor of Geology in the University of Oxford. vii. The History, Habits, and Instincts of Animals, by the Rev. William Kirby, M.A., F. R. S. viii. Chemistry, Meteorology, and the Function of Digestion, by Wm. Prout, M. D., F. R. S.
The whole of these valuable works being now published, they can be had in the following manner:—
ON THE ADAPTATION OF EXTERNAL NATURE TO THE MO. RAL AND INTELLECTUAL CONSTITUTION OF MAN. By the Rev. Thomas Chalmers, D. D.
CHEMISTRY, METEOROLOGY, AND THE FUNCTIONS OF DIGESTION, considered with reference to Natural Theology. By William Prout, M. D., F. R. S.
A TREATISE ON THE ADAPTATION OF EXTERNAL NATURE TO THE PHYSICAL CONDITION OF MAN, principally with reserence to the supply of his wants, and the exercise of his intellectual faculties. By John Kidd, M. D., F. R. S.
ASTRONOMY AND GENERAL PHYSICS, considered with reference
The above five works in two handsome 8vo. volumes—or they may be had separately in a cheap form, each in one vol. 12mo. TREATISE SEVENTH.
THE HISTORY, HABITS AND INSTINCTS OF ANIMALS. By the Rev. William Kirby, M. A., F. R. S. Illustrated by numerous engravings on copper. In one handsome 8vo. volume.
ANIMAL AND VEGETABLE PHYSIOLOGY, considered with reference to Natural Theology. By PETER MARK Roget, M. D. Illustrated with nearly 500 wood-cuts. In two handsome 8vo. volumes.
GEOLOGY AND MINERALOGY, considered with reference to Natural Theology. By the Rev. William Buckland, D. D. Illustrated by 87 large and expensive plates engraved on Copper, forming two handsome 8vo, volumes.
THE BRIDG E WATER TREATISES, THE WHOLE NOW COMPLETE,
In seven volumes octavo, handsomely done up in fine cloth, or half bound with calf backs and corners.
WOLS. 1 and 2, embracing Treatise
I. The Adaptation of External Nature to the Moral and Intellectual Constitution of Man, by the Rev. Thomas Chalmers, D. D., Professor of Divinity in the University of Edinburgh.
VIII. Chemistry, Meteorology, and the Function of Digestion, by Wm. Prout, M.D., F. R. S.
II. The Adaptation of External Nature to the Physical condition of Man, by John Kidd, M. D., F. R. S., Regius Professor of Medicine in the University of Oxford.
III. Astronomy and General Physics, considered with reference to Natural Theology, by the Rev. William Whewell, M.A., F.R.S., Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge.
IV. The Hand: its mechanism and vital endowments as evincing design, by Sir Charles Bell, K. H., F. R. S.
WOL. 3, embracing Treatise
VII. The History, Habits, and Instincts of Animals, by the Rev. William Kirby, M.A., F. R. S. With numerous plates on Copper.
WOLS. 4 and 5, enbracing Treatise
V. Animal and Vegetable Physiology, by Peter Mark Roget, M.D., Fellow of and Secretary to the Royal Society. With numerous wood-cuts.
WOLS. 6 and 7, embracing Treatise VI. Geology and Mineralogy, by the Rev. Wm. Buckland, D. D., F.R.S., Canon of Christ Church, and Professor of Geology in the University of Oxford. With 87 large Copper-plate engravings.
The following notices of these works are selected from amongst numerous commendations bestowed on them by the Reviews and public prints:—
“The volumes before us are every way worthy of their subject. It would seem almost supererogatory to pass any judgment on the style of a writer so celebrated as Dr. Chalmers. He is well known as a logician not to be baffled by any difficulties; as one who boldly grapples with his theme, and brings every energy of his clear and nervous intellect into the field. No sophistry escapes his eagle vision—no argument that could either enforce or illustrate his subject is left untouched. Our literature owes a deep debt of gratitude to the author of these admirable volumes.”—Lit. Gazette.
“It is ably written, and replete both with interest and instruction. The diffusion of such works cannot fail to be attended with the happiest effects in justifying “the ways of God to man,' and illustrating the wisdom and goodness of the Creator by arguments which appeal irresistibly both to the reason and feelings. Few can understand abstract reasoning, and still fewer relish it, or will listen to it: but in this work the purest morality and the kindliest feelings are inculcated through the medium of agreeable and useful information.”—Baltimore Gazette.
“In the present treatise, it is a matter of the warmest satisfaction to find an anatomist of Sir Charles Bell's great eminence, professing his contempt for the late fashionable doctrines of Materialism held by so many anatomists, and now coming forward to present the fruits of his wide researches and great ability, in a treatise so full of curious and interesting matter, expressly intended to prove, by the examination of one particular point, that design which is impressed on all parts of the various animals which in some degree answer the purposes of the hand, and has shown that the hand is not the source of contrivance, nor consequently of man's superiority, as some materialists have maintained. To this he has added some very valuable remarks, showing the uses of pain, and he has illustrated this work with a variety of the most admirable and interesting wood cuts.”—British Magazine.
“The manner in which he has executed his task is able and satisfactory. With great and extensive experimental knowledge, and a complete acquaintance with his subject, as well as just and elevated views of the greatness and divine nature of the Creator, he has brought one of the most powerful chains of reasoning to the support of Revelation which philosophy has yet added to that holy cause.”—N. Y. Commercial.
“Let works like that before us be widely disseminated, and the bold, active, and ingenious enemies of religion be met by those, equally sagacious, alert and resolute, and the most timid of the many who depend upon the few, need not fear the host that comes with subtle steps to “steal their faith away.’”—N. Y. American.
“That the devoted spirit of the work is most exemplary, that we have here and there found, or sancied, room for cavil, only per adventure because we have been unable to follow the author through the prodigious range of his philosophical survey—and in a word, that the work before us would have made the reputation of any other man, and may well maintain even that of Professor Whe well.”—Metropolitan.
“We have read this work (Buckland's Geology, &c.) with a degree of satisfaction and admiration which has increased at every step. “It is a full digest of the most important facts in geology, happily combined, with great condensation and perspicuity, and by the most liberal use of plates beautifully executed, it speaks intelligibly to the eyes, even of those who are not familiar with the language of natural history, and thus it displays the astonishing structure of the world. “The great moral demonstration which is its main object, is fully sustained, and we think that no man can rise from the intelligent perusal of it, without a full conviction that a creating and governing mind, infinite in power, knowledge, wisdom and benevolence, has gradually arranged the materials of this planet, and caused to be interred in its strata and mineral masses, documents of its history, and of that of innumerable races of animals and plants, from the most miscroscopic to the most collosal, which lived and died ere man appeared—documents surpassing in number and in credibility every thing of actual history, except the inspired record itself. “With this record we believe these facts to be entirely consistent, and we are fully assured that ignorance of them is the sole cause of the incredulity and displeasure which are manifested by some as to the moral bearing of geology. “We cannot now enter upon this argument, and can only say, in conclusion, that Dr. Buckland has, by the present work, laid both science and religion under great obligations,—while he will delight all his readers by the vigour, beauty and eloquence which gives his work as high a rank in literature as it claims in science.”—Silliman's Journal.