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chosen one of the physicians to the esteem and regard of his furviving Foundling Hospital, which office he friends, which were the natural reheld during the remainder of his life. sult of his shining abilities, added to
In 1784 he was chosen a Fellow of the uniform propriety of his conthe Royal College of Physicians, and duct. made one of the Elects,
Few men have inherited from naIn 1786 Dr Watfon had the ho- ture more extensive talents than Sir nour of knighthood conferred upon William Watson, and few have made him, being one of the body deputed by a better use of them. The wonderthe College, to congratulate his Ma- ful strength and accuracy of his rejesty on his escape from assassination. collection, his intimate acquaintance
As Sir William Watson lived in with men, manners, and the objects intimacy with the most learned and of science, and the penetrating atillustrious Fellows of the Royal So- tention which he bestowed on the ciety, so he himself was one of its scientific topics of the day, always molt active members, and ever zea- enabled him in a superior degree to lous in promoting the ends of that communicate entertaining informainftitution. For many years he was tion ; while the easy, free, and ena frequent member of the council; gaging manner, in which he converand during the life-time of Sir John fed, rendered him a desirable associs Pringle was elected one of the Vice- ate in every society, and occasioned Presidents, which honourable oslice his company to be courted and frehe continued to fill during the re- quented, by all contemporary philomainder of his life. He was a most sophers. conftant attendant on
In the younger part of his life he meetings of the Society, and on the was noticed by those respectable cha. private associations of its members, racters Sir Hans Sloane, Dr Mead, especially on that formerly held eve- Martin Folkes, and others of the same ry Thursday, at the Mitre, and now rank and eminence, who very early at the Crown and Anchor Tavern, introduced him into the Royal So. in the Strand.
ciety; and in the latter part of his Notwithltanding the great fatigue time he enjoyed the friendship of to which Sir William Watson was Lord Charles Cavendish, the honoursubjected in his professional duty, and able Mr Cavendiih, Doctors Hehis laborious exertions in profecu- berden and Pitcairn, Sir John Pringle, ting his favourite objects, which were Sir Joseph Banks, and Sir George equally beneficial to mankind, and Baker, all peculiarly distinguished in honourable to himself, he in general the philosophical world, and for their enjoyed a firm and found itate of ardent zeal in promoting the cause health. It was sometimes interrupt. of science and literature. ed by fits of the gout, but these sel. On the continent his connexions dom confined him to his house. In were also extensive and respectable. the year 1786 the decline of his He lived in the freeft habits of comhealth was very visible to his friends; munication with the most celebrated his strength was greatly diminished, foreign Literati, and maintained a and he had loft much of that viva, regular correspondence with the incity, which so itrongly marked his genious philosophers and naturalists character. He, however, continued of every country, where the iciences his utility to the very verge of the were cultivated and held in estima.' grave, and died on the roth of May tion. Were proofs of this affertion 1787, in the perfect exercise of his necessary, there could be produced senses, and the full posession of that to the world, by his worthy fon and VOL. XI, No. 61. G
In his e
representative, a very copious collec. uninterrupted hours for study. In
IR rion of letters, written to him by the his younger days these early hours greatest philofophers of his time, were frequently given up to the pur: which are known to contain much poses of fimpling; but in riper years matter of curious information; and they were devoted to study. He read which, if communicated, would be much and carefully; and his ardent infinitely more interesting, than ma- and unremitting desire to be acny of those insipid collections with quainted with the progress of all which the time and pockets of the thofe sciences, which were his obpublic are continually taxed. jeets, joined to a vigorous and re
As a physician, his humanity, af- tentive memory, enabled him to fiduity, and caution, were eminently treasure up a vait ftock of knowledge. conspicuous; and his exact obfer: What he thus acquired he freely vance of the duties of social polite. difperfed. His mode of conveying ness must ever be remembered with information was clear, forcible, and pleasure by all thofe who enjoyed energetic, and justified the encomium the happpiness of his acquaintance. bestowed upon him by a learned foThe smile of benignity was always reigner in a letter to a correfpondentt. displayed on his countenance; he in- His liberal and communicative disvariably continued the general, the pofition, and his courteous behaviour, ready, and the obliging friend of encouraged enquiry ; and those who mankind ; he was respectful to the wished for information from him felelder and superior, encouraging to dom departed without it. the younger, and pleasant and easy piftolary correspondence he was reto all with whom he had any inter- markably copious and precise, and course. The fame affability and good fuch as enjoyed the privilege and humour, which adorned his character pleasure of it, experienced in his in public life, were preserved allo ir punctuality another qualification the bosom of his family, and endear- which greatly enhanced its value.'
. ed him to those who were more im We shall conclude our account of the mediately around him:
He was life and writings of this great and scarcely ever out of temper ; was ał- good man, with the following anecways benignant and kind to his dote, which it would be injurious to friends and relations, whilft he li- his memory not to mention, and ved, and equally fo when he died, as which equally displays his humanihe disposed by will, of his large for- ty, and the warmth with which he tune, with that justice, judgment, and interested himself in the cafes of his propriety, which gave univerfal fa- patientsi Not many years before tisfaction to all who were concern- his death Ke was waked suddenly one ed.
morning very early by his fervant, • Sir William Watson had a na- who came to inform him, that his tural activity, both of mind and body house had been broken open, and that never allowed him to be iodo. that his plate (which was of confilent in the slighteft degree. He was derable value) was stolen. • Is that a most exact economift of his time, all,' said he coolly, “I was afraid and throughout life a very early riser, you had brought me fome alarming being up usually in summer at fix message from Mr-, concerning o'clock, and frequently sooner ; thus ' whose dangerous situation I have securing to himself daily two or three been very uneasy all night.'
Miscellaneous + M. Michel, of Berlin. . Watsonius Botanicus et Phyficus clarus est et perspica xţ.
homo itidemque humaniffimus.
Miscellaneous Obfervations on the Origin of Certain Customs and Inventions.
IFFERENT substances were D
to prevent them from being destroyed formerly employed, instead of by insects. Before the invention of books, for preserving knowledge. The printing, books were more valuable first characters, as we learn from scrip- and rare than precious stones. The ture, were traced out upon stone; but, barbarous nations of Europe had in process of time, the leaves of the scarcely any till the time of Charlepalm-tree, the outer and inner rind of magne; from the reign of that Prince the lime-tree, and the Egyptian papy- to Charles V. and from Charles V. to rus, were used for the fame pur. Francis I. they were still very scarce. pose. Thin pieces of board, covered Grecia, Countess of Anjou, purchased with wax, were also employed, upon a Collection of Homilies, in 1067, unwhich letters were formed with a sharp- der Philip I. for two hundred sheep, a - pointed inftrument of iron, called a measure of wheat, another of Aylus. Skins were afterwards subfti- third of willet, and a certain quantity tuted in the room of these, and espe- of martens kins. From the eighth cially those of fheep and goats ; which century of our ära till the thirteenth, gave rise to the invention of parch the Arabs alone were in possession of ment. Lead, linen, filk, horn, and books. China was filled with them lastly, paper, were used in fucceffion at a time when the people of Europe, for writing. Books were formed, could not read. Henry II. of France, also, of certain parts of vegetables. in 1555, published a declaration forThis custom still sublists among the bidding any book co be printed withKalmouk Tartars, and fome other out the name of the author, and Louis people of the North. When the ap- XIII. published one of the same kind cients had occafion to treat of any in 1626. The Romans condemned subject that required length, they pernicious books to the flames, and used leaves, or ikins, ftitched one to the business of seeing this executed the end of another, which they named was entrusted to the Triumvirs, and rolls : a custom followed by the Jews, sometimes to the Priests and Ædiles. the Greeks, the Romans, the Per- The fatirical Labienus was the first sians, and even by the Indians, and whose works were treated with this which continued several centuries af. ipdignity. lo Italy one must be an ter the birth of our Saviour. These Inquisitor of the Faith to have perbooks, composed of sheets stitched to million to read forbidden books, acone another, were rolled up on a piece cording to the bull cum pro munere of of wood named umbilicus; the out. Pope Pius V. and that of In Cana fide of the leaves was called frons, Devini. and the extremities of the piece of The beard, amongst molt nations, wood cornua ; they were ornamented has experienced all the caprices of fawith bits of ivory or silver, and even lion. The Greeks preserved it until with gold and precious stones. When the reign of Alexander, and the Rothe volume was unrolled, it might be mans till towards the year of Rome about a yard and a half in breadth, and 454. Scipio Africanus introduced four or five in length. The present the custom of having every day, and form of books is said to have been in- a long series of Emperors conformed vented by Attalus, King of Perga- to it; but Adrian resumed it again, mus. The leaves of all books were and his example was followed by his formely dipped in oil of cedar, or fucceffors till Conftantine. It appeared perfumed with the kin of rhe citron, again under Heraclius, and all the
Greek Emperors wore beards. The till the time of Theodosius, these Goths and the Franks had only whilko people always burnt their dead. Clodion ordered his subjects to
The use of coffee was not known let their beards grow, that they might in Europe till the sixteentu century, be distinguished from the Romans. The tree which produces it grows in The ancient philophers wore long great abundance in the kingdom of beards. The ecclesiastics of the East Yemen. For the cultivation of it always had beards, but the c!ergy of we are indebted to the Dutch, who the Welt used a razor. There are carried it from Moka to Batavia, and fome countries where a long beard thence to Holland. The properties serves to express grief, and there are of coffee were discovered, as is said, others where the want of a beard by the Prior of an Arabian monastery, is a mark of mouroing. The trouble who having obferved that cattle did of having is certainly disagreeable to not sleep when they ate certain small most people, and it would be a subject beans, tried the effects of them upworthy of some academy to propofe a on his monks, to prevent them from considerable. prize to the person who falling alleep in the choir during might discover a method of ealing night. them of it.
Amon; the Romans, at the end of The art of explaining all sorts of December, during the Saturnalia, coats of arms is an invention of the children drew lots with beans to see French. It began to be in vogue in who would be King; and this custom the eleventh century, and the techni-' was borrowed from that practised at cal terms which express the different Athens for the election of magiftrates, parts of coats of arms, are the names Hence, perhaps, is the origin of our of different pieces which corapofed drawing for King and Queen on then the harness of the knights. It Twelfth Night. was necessary for heralds at arms to Cardinals were at first only the be wel versed in this science, because principal priests, or clergymer, of the they characterised the arms of those different parishes in Rome: but this who wished to enter the lists in tour- title was not confined to the church naments.
of Rome ; it was used also in France, The Egyptians are said to have The Bishop of Paris, and several others, been the inventors of beer, is the year had their Cardiñal Priests. These 1212 before the Chistian æra. They priests alone had the right of admi. named it the Pelafian liquor, because it niftering the facraments; and when was first made at Pelufium, a city near they were promoted to be Bishops, the mouth of the Nile.
eir Cardinalship was at an end. In The brutality and favage fury of this state things remained till the elethe Barbarians, who, after a battle, venth century, when the Sovereign took from their graves such of their Pontiff thought that his grandeur reenemies as had perished, that they quired him to have a council of Car. might insult and strip them, intro- dioals fuperior in dignity to the anduced among the ancients the cuf- cient priests. But thefe Cardinals tom of burning dead bodies. The had no longer pre-eminence over the Greeks adopted it long before the Bishops; they never claimed this pri'Trojan war; and Sylla, fearing that vilege till they assumed to themselves the Romans would treat him in the the right of electing the Pope. Other fame manner as he had treated distinctions followed. They obtained Caius Marius, ordered, when dy- a red cap, and the purple. Urban ing, that his body should be placed the Eighth granted them the title of on a funeral pile. From that epoch, Eminence, en the 10th of January, 1630; till then they had been styled cipal standard of an army, which was only Mor Illustrious, a distinction fixed to a pole erected in a chariot which the Princes of Italy who have covered with purple. This is said to no title still enjoy.
have been the invention of Heribert, Coaches, as well as all other kinds archbishop of Milan, about the year of carriages which have been since 1124, The emperor
Otho IV. and made in imitation of them, were in- several kings of Hungary employed vented by the French, and the use of carriages of the same kind. them is of a modern date. Uoder Afhes among several nations were Francis I. there were only iwo a mark of grief and repentance. The coaches; that of the Queen, and thai Hebrews covered their heads with of Diana, natural daughter of Henry them in the time of public calamities, II. The Kings of France, before and the people of Niniveh expiated they used these machines, travelled on their faults with fackcloth and ashes. horseback; the princesses were car- in the primitive church, the bishop ried in litters, and ladies rode behind marked with ashes the forehead of a their squires. The magistrates, who finner who began his penitence, and went to the palace on mules, opposed hence came the practice enjoined by the luxury of coaches, as much as they the council of Beneventum, in
1091, could. In 1563 they petitioned of going to receive fome on the WedCharles IX. to forbid them in the nesday * which precedes the first Suncity, and preserved their ancient çuf- day of Lent. There are fill fone toms till the commencement of the monasteries where the monks expire seventeenth century. The number of upon aihes. The Greeks and the coaches began then to encrease. The Romans, who were accustomed to buia first Lord at court who had one, was their dead, and to collect the ashes in John de Laval de Bois-Dauphin, and urns, gave rise to that elegant exseveral others followed nis example. preslion of the poers, the ashes of the Nevertheless, about the middle of the dradt. last century, there were no more than The ancient Gauls considered long three or four coaches in Paris ; at hair as a mark of honour and liberty, present there are above fifteen thou.. but Cæfar made them lay it afide 29 find, without including hackney soon as he had subdued them. Ecclecoaches, and those which are let for fiallics rendered homage to God by hire. A person of the name of Sau- cutting their hair fheit, and imavage, who lived in the ftreet of St gined that in doing this they gave Martin, at the Hotel of St Fiacre, first him a proof of their spiritual tasformed the idea of establishing pub- tude, and of their perfect subminion lic carriages, which made the name to his will. People formerly swore of fiacre be applied both to the car- by their hair, and to cut off this · riage and the driver *. In 1650 badge of dignity from any one was Francis Villerme obtained the exclu- to devote him to ignominy. Those five privilege of letting out for hire who entered into a conspiracy were all kinds of chaises; and seven years obliged to cut off each other's hair. after, one was granted for hackney It was a piece of refined pol teness Ejaches to Mr. Givri. The success among the French to pull out a hair, of this enterprize excited many other when they met a friend, and to preindividuals to folicit the same favour. sent it to him. In the eighth century and carriages were foon seen in all great lords caused the firlt hair of their the quarters of Paris. Some hiiło- children to be cut by those for whom rians, and especially those of italy, they entertained the greatest esteem, gave the nam of coach to the prin- and by this ceremony they became
thcir * Fiacre, in French, signifies both a coach and a hackney coachman.
b. innanlan Wenefiiny