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which no more belonged to it than the universities of Oxford and Cambridge could belong to the British nation.'-p: 21.

Fortunately for us, Oxford and Cambridge do still afford a just illustration of the Abbé's argument: but we have no doubt that if our reformers should succeed in revolutionizmg England, they would act as their elder brothers did; and that the Sorbonne would, instead of a contrast, be a precedent for the spoliation of our venerable establishments. Nay, without a revolution, a certain education scheme, which we take the credit to ourselves of having materially helped to defeat, might have produced the same philosophical and philanthropical effect ! I have never, the 'Abbé adds with some pathos, “bad the courage to re-visit the Sorbonne since the barbarians robbed it of the monument of Car, dinal Richelieu,'

Morellet now became the preceptor, and, afterwards, travelling tutor of a young Abbé de Galaizière. After having, in this latter capacity, visited Italy, (of which visit there is a tedious account,) he fixed himself in Paris, on a small annuity settled on him by the father of his pupil; this income, too scanty for existence, was subsequently increased by one or two pensions from the Crown, bestowed by the Economiste-ministry for some works which the Abbé wrote, and for others which he intended to write, in favour of their system. 'We beg leave to observe, with what consistency these Economical patriots, on becoming ministers, granted their partizan a pension for the works which he was to write. Verily this equals the Scotch professor of medical jurisprudence of 1806.

The Economists were nearly allied to the philosophers; the former were often political lords of the ascendant, and the latter were always the dispensers of literary reputation: it is not there fore surprizing that Morellet should have become a philosopher, though it exhibits, no doubt, a whimsical union of characters,pensioned economiste and a philosophe-Abbé!

Morellet was soon enlisted in the service of the Encyclopédie, and contributed to that work, the Articles Fatalité, Figures, Fils de Dieu, Foi, Fondamentaux (articles), Gomeristes, &c. He also defended the Encyclopédistes, and attacked their enemies in several jeux d'esprit, in imitation of Voltaire; for one of which 'he was sent for a short tịme to the Bastile. He also now and then published an economical pamphlet, and made translations from the Italian and the English ; of these the most remarkable was Beccaria's Essay on Crimes and Punishments, which he probably undertook by way of advancing the cause of philosophy, and which made some noise; the rest of his translations, and particularly those of his latter years, were made for a livelihood; for he lost

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his pensione early in the revolution; and as early, he began to discover that the revolution was not quite so fine a thing as he at first imagined. Like all other reformers, he was ready to level down to himself, but as soon as liberty and equality came to be practically applied to his own case, he saw in them nothing but oppression and injustice.

The Appendix to the Memoirs contains a list of seventy-two publications, chiefly in favour of reform, between the years 1756 and 1808; but not one of them is now remembered, and whatever little chance the Abbé has of being known to posterity arises from his Memoirs. In truth, his literary reputation was greater than his merit; and his conversation better than his writings; he was greatly prôné in the infidel societies of Helvetius, d’Holbach and Madame Geoffrin, because a philosopher of his cloth was a matter of some rarity and importance; and the accident of having survived so many illustrious acquaintance, of having lived through the revolution, gave him a degree of patriarchal importance in his latter years, which his mere literature could not have justified. In June 1785, he was elected into the French Academy-this distinction he owed to the party to which he had attached himself, rather than to his talents or his worksia The following epigram, which ran at the time, is severe, but far from being unjust.

Pour un triomphe aussi complet
Quel titre a donc ce Morellet?
De l'impiété vrai soufflet;
Homme d'état par caquet ;
Contre le misérable Linguet
Il a fait un méchant pamphlet;
Un dictionnaire en projet ;
Maint et maint ouvrage guinguet ;
Des talents de ce Prestolet

Voilà quel est le produit net.'* Our readers know that the produit net was one of the cant words of the Economistes; the dictionnaire en projet was the dictionnaire du commerce, for which the Abbé was pensioned, but which never was completed.

The editor somewhere compares Morellet to Swift; in truth, the Abbé sometimes translated and sometimes borrowed the plear santry of the Dean; but he showed no original humour, and even his imitations are but clumsy performances ; for example-hementions with great satisfaction, as a most droll and original conception, a pamphlet which he wrote during the reign of terror, and which he, very reluctantly, was persuaded by his friends to sup* Mémoires de Bachaumont. Tom. xxix. p. 104.


press. The point of this agreeable production was, that the mob of Paris should eat the flesh of the wretches they guillotined. Our readers see, at once, that this is a plagiarism from the Dean of St. Patrick's Modest Proposal'; but mark the difference! Swift's Modest Proposal is a mere jest, which by its very exaggeration fails to produce any horror, and is, in fact, so treated as to excite none but the most amusing ideas. On the other hand, Morellet's piece was written in the midst of realities, nearly as horrible as those which he imagines. The murders were actually perpetrated; human corpses encumbered all the streets and squares; pay, there had not been wanting instances in which the insane barbarians had—without the Abbé's advice-actually devoured the flesh of their victims. The fiction had, therefore, in fact, ceased to be a fiction, and the joke was no joke, but a terrible reality; and we own it gives us no great opinion, either of the Abbé's head or heart, that, under such circumstances, he should have thought of treating the subject as a pleasantry. It was the same taste which dictated the Bals à la victime after the fall of Robespierre, of which the condition of admittance was, that every dame and every cavalier should have lately had a near relation guillotined !

Morellet escaped through the fury of the revolution by great good luck, and without any dishonourable compromise of his feelings ; and when the storm had sufficiently subsided to make any courage available, he was one of the first to raise the voice of moderation and justice; but it was his reason, rather than his humanity or his religion, which prompted bis efforts; and we are afraid it must be confessed, that his heart was not very susceptible, and that his christianity was little more than nominal.

In the account he gives us of his life and society previous to the revolution, he seems to take pride in not being an atheist, and leaves us to suspect that when he vindicated, against his profligate associates, the existence of a God, his theism, as he calls it, was not Christianity. As a specimen of the tone of society at the Baron d’Holbach's, a leading philosophe and a professed atheist, we are tempted to extract what the Abbé calls an excellent scene.

'One evening that Diderot and Roux had outdone each other in talking atheism, and had said things to call down a thousand thunder. bolts on our heads, if thunderbolts fell on such occasions, the Abbé Galiani, who had listened patiently to this dissertation, at last said—“Gentlemen, gentlemen, allow me to say that if I were Pope, I would clap you

both up in the Inquisition; or if I were King of France, in the Bastille: but having the happiness to be neither, I have only to promise to meet you here next Thursday, and I hope you will hear my


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answer as patiently as I have heard you.” “Very well," —we all exclaimed, and particularly our Atheists, " on Thursday !"

Thursday came, and after dinner and coffee, the Abbé gathered himself up into an arm-chair cross-legged like a tailor; and as the weather was hot, holding his wig aloft on his left hand, and gesticulating with his right, he proceeded as follows:

'“ Let me suppose that one of you, gentlemen, who believe that this world is the production of chance, were to go to a gaming table, and that your adversary were to throw seize-ace once, twice, thrice, four, five and six times running, our friend Diderot would lose his money, and think the devil was in the dice. Very well; the game proceeds, and your adversary still goes on throwing his main of seven, and without variation or interruption wins every stake. Diderot will now lose his temper as well as his money: he will swear that the dice are loaded that the adversary is a blackleg, and that the house is a hell! Ah, Mr. Philosopher! because the same sides of two dice come uppermost for ten or a dozen times, and you lose a few shillings, you firmly believe that it is caused by a trick, an art, a combination, by, in short, a master swindler and his subservient tools: and yet, seeing in the universe around you, millions of millions of combinations, more regular, more difficult, more complicated, and all certain—all useful--all beautiful-you never suspect that the dice of nature are loaded, that there is, indeed, an art, a combination, and a Master Intelligence above, who regulates the great play by his subservient tools, and confounds the reason and the skill of such short-sighted gamesters as you.”—p. 132.

The rest of the discourse is wanting, which we rather regret : Galiani handles his illustration somewhat too lightly; but we cannot imagine what answer M. Diderot could have made, and Morellet does not inform us.

Our Abbé, having made acquaintance with Lord Shelburne, (afterwards first Marquis of Lansdown,) was induced to pay his noble friend a visit in England in 1772. Lord Shelburne seems to have treated him with the most attentive hospitality, and not only to have made him welcome in his own houses, but to have conducted his guest through a considerable part of England, and shown him whatever was most worthy of notice. In this visit Morellet made or improved his acquaintance with Barré, Garrick, Franklin, Sir William Hamilton, Sir Joseph Banks, Doctors Hawkesworth, Price, Priestley and Solander, Dean Tucker, Bishop Warburton, the Duke of Richmond, Lords Sandwich and Mansfield; but this catalogue of names is almost all that the Abbé gives us concerning these eminent men. He says, indeed, a few words of Franklin and Garrick, but they are neither novel nor interesting

This journey, however, produced to the Abbé an advantage which some may think more solid than even the acquaintance of such persons, and which, for the singularity of the


transaction, ought to be recorded. When Lord Shelbume concluded the peace in 1782, he made a personal request to the French ministry, that some professional advancement should be conferred on the Abbé Morellet, for if,' said his lordship, 'my opinions have, in the course of our negociations, been such as to obtain your esteem and approbation, I owe them to M. Morellet, whose conversation and information have essentially contributed to extend and liberalize my ideas on such subjects.'— This compliment seems to us so outré, that if the Abbé had not printed the letter, we should have a little doubted that Lord Lansdown could have used such an hyberbole; and even, as it is, we suspect a little exaggeration in the translator:- but the essential fact is beyond doubt-the request was made, and granted, and the whole affair is creditable to Lord Lansdown, to the Abbé himself, and to the French ministry who accomplished his lordship's wishes, after the Coalition had driven him for ever from the helm of affairs.

The Abbé in gratitude offered Lord Lansdown to be cicerone to bis eldest son, Lord Wycombe, (the second Marquis,) in a tour through France—this took place in 1784, and they ran over 3000 miles in less than two months !—for so the ardent youth would have it-after which the Abbé accompanied 'young Rapid to England, and spent three months with his benefactor at Bowood. Few of those who could have known the Abbé in these visits are now left to feel the expressions of gratitude and respect in which he mentions bis reception in England.

But we must hasten to the Revolution.

The Abbé, like all those who called themselves moderate reformers,' concurred, not merely in the first steps of the revolution, but in giving to those first steps the peculiar force and chas racter which eventually produced so much mischief and misery. The younger and more desperate of the philosophical school threw themselves headlong into the violence of the revolutionists -the older and more cautious, like Morellet, joined the party of Monsieur (the present King), which, really—though, on the part of most of them, unintentionally-revolutionized France. Whether France was to accomplish a monarchical reform, or to suffer a democratical revolution, depended (as was well foreseen by Sieyes and his fellows at the time) on the constitution of the States-General. If the three chambers were to sit and debate apart agreeably to ancient principles and practice, it was evident that they would act as salutary checks upon each other; but, as the whole hope of the agitators was in the OVERWHELMING FORCE of the Tiers-ETAT, M. Necker was cajoled and terrified, and the king was harassed and betrayed into doubling the


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