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To this early divifion of the people either in transactions of private bufiinto casts, we must likewise ascribe a ness, or in the conduct of political afpeculiarity in the state of India ; the fairs, have been deemed nor inferior permanence of its institutions, and to the people of any nation in fagaci. the immutability in the manners of ty, acuteness of understanding, or adits inhabitants. What now is in In- dress. From the application of such dia, always was there, , and is likely talents to the cultivation of science, an ftill to continue : neither the ferocious extraordinary degree of proficiency violence and illiberal fanaticism of might have been expected. The Laits Mahomedan conquerors, nor the dians were, accordiegly, early celepower of its European masters, have brated on that account, and some of effected any considerable alteration. The most eminent of the Greek philoThe same distinctions of condition fophers travelled into India, that, by take place, the Lime arrangements in conversing with the fages of that councivil and domestic fociety remain, the try, they might acquire some portion fame maxims of religion are held in of the knowledge for which they were veneration, and the fame sciences and distinguished. The accounts, howearts are cultivated. Hence, in all ver, which we receive from the Greeks ages, the trade with India has been and Romans, of the sciences which atthe same ; gold and silver have uni. tracted the attention of the Indian formly becu carried thither in order philosophers, or of the discoveries to purchase the same commodities which they had made in them, are with which it now supplies all na very imperfect. To the researches of cons; and from the age of Pliny a few intelligent persons, who have vito the present times, it has been al- fited India during the course of the ways considered and execrated as a three last centuries, we are indebted galf which swallows up the wealth of for more ample and authentic informaevery other country, that flows incel- tion. But from the reluctance with family towards it, and froin which it which the Brahimins communicate never returns. According to the ac their sciences to strangers, and the incounts which I tave given of the care ability of Europeans to acquire. much goes anciently imported from India, knowledge of them, «hile, like the they appear to have consisted of near- mysteries of their religion, they were ly the lame articles with those of the concealed from vulgar eyes. in an un. investments in our own times ; and known songne, this, infurmation was whatever difference we muy observe acquired Nowly and with in stem seems to have arisen, noi foculiy. The same observation, tonen much from any diversity in the nature ver, which I made concerning our of the commodities which the Indians knowledge of the fate of the fine arts prepared for sale, as from a variety in amor.g the people of India, is applithe wants, of the cations which de- cable to that of their progress in icimanded them.

ence, and the p:esent age is the first furnished with sufficient evidence up:

on which to found a decisive judg, Proofs OF THE EARLY CivilizATION ment with respect to either. of India, FROM THE STATE OF THE

Science, when viewed as disjoined Sciences.

from religion, the confideration of THE atrainments of the Indians which I reserve for another head, is in science, furnish an additional proof employed in contemplating either the of their early civilization. By every operations of the understanding, the person who has visited India in an. exercise of our moral powers, or the cient of modern times, its inhabitan:s, nature and qualities of external ob


great diffic

jects. The first is denominated logic; of proceeding from the observation of the second ethics; the :hird phylics, facts to the establishment of principles, or the knowledge of nature. With or from the knowledge of principles refpe& to the early progress in culti- to form arrangements of science. I'he vating each of hele sciences in India, philosophers of ancient Greece were we are in poletion of facts which me- highly celebrated for their proficiency Tit attention.

in these abitrufe speculations; and, in But, prior to the conlideration of their discussions and arrangements, disthem, it is proper to examine the ideas covered such depth of thought, and aof the Brahmins with respect to mind cutness of discernment, that their fy. 'st felf, for if there were not juft, all stems of Logic, particularly that of the their theories concerning its operations Peripatetic School, have been deemed must have been erroneous and fanciful. most diftinguished efforts of human reaThe distinction between matter and fon. {pirit appears to have been early But fince we became acquainted, in known by the philosophers of India, some degree, with the literature and and to the latter they ascribed many scierce of the Hindoos, we find that powers, of which they deemed the for- as soon as men arrive at that stage in mer to be incapable'; and when we social life, wheo they can turn their recollea how inadequate our concep- attention to speculative inquiries, the tions are of every objeå that does not human mind will

, in every region of fall under the cognizance of the senses, the earth, display nearly the fame Fe may affirm (if allowance be made powers, and proceed in its investigafor a peculiar di tion of the Hindoos tions and discoveries by nearly Gimilar which shall be afterwards explained) fteps. From Abul Fazel's compenthat no description of the human soul dium of the philosophy of the Hinis more fuited to the dignity of its na- doos, the kaowledge of which he acture than that given by the author of quired, as he informs us, by affociatthe Mahabarat, “Some,' says he, ‘se. ing int mately with the mot learned gard tbe fool as a order, others hear men of the nation ; from the specimen of it with aitonishment, but no one of their logical discullions contained kroweth it. The weapon divideth it in that pcrucn of the Shafter publishBO?; the fire burneth it not; the wa. ed by Colonel Dox, and from many ter corrup'eth it not; the wind drieth pairages in the Baghvat-Geeta, it api lot away; fur it is insilible, incon- pears that the same fpeculations which jun.ble, inconi uprille; it is eternal, cccupied the philosophers of Greece vuiseill, perinanent, immoveable; it had engaged the airention of the Inis icv.lible, inconceivable, and unal. dian Brahnios; and the theories of terall. After this view of the fenti- the former, either concerning the quarents of the Brahmins concerning lities of external objects, or the rature mind itfelf, we may proceed to confi- of our own ideas, were not more ingeder their ideas with respea to each of nious than those of the latter. To dethe sciences, in that tripartite arrange fine with accuracy, to diftingu th with ment which I mentioned.

acuteness, and to reason with subtlety, aft, Logic and Metaphyfies. On are characieriitics of both; and in po subje&t has the human ur derstand. bosh, the same excess of refinement, ing been more exercised than in ana. in anicmpting to analyse those operaly fag its own operations. The rari- tions of mind which the faculties of oss powers of the mind have been ex. man were not formed to comprehend, ained and defined. The origin ard led fumetimes to the most falle and progrefs of our ideas have been traced; dangerous conclufions. That fceptiand proper rules bare been prefiribed, cal ; hilofophy, which decies the exi.


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ftence of the material world, and af 6 inherent in his nature. He who serrs nothing to be real but our own " restraineth his active ficulties, and ideas, seems to hate been known in « fi.reth down with his mind attentive India as well as in Europe; and the to the objects of his senses, may be fages of the east, as they were indebt called one of an astrayed soul. The ed to philofophy for the kriowledge of " man is praised, who, having submany important truths, were not more “ dued all his paflions, performeth exempt than those of the weit from " with his active faculties all the func. its delusions and errors.

6 tions of life unconcerned about the 2d, Ethics. This science, which

Let the notive be in che * has for its object to asceriain what di " ded, and not in the event. - Be Itinguishes virtue from vice, to investi not one whose motive for action is gare what morises should prompt men “ the hope of reward.

Let vot thy to act, and to prescribe rules for the “ life be spent in inzdion. D. pend conduct of life, as it is of all others the upon application, perform thy dury, most intereiting, seems to have deeply 16 abandon all thought of the conse. engaged the attention of the Brah


and make the event equal, mins. Their sentiments with respect“ whether it terminate in good or in to these points were various, and, like “ evil ; for such an equality is called the philofophers of Greece, the Drah. “ Yog (i. e. attention to what is fpimins were divided into sects, diltin. " ritual.) Seck an asylum then in guished by maxims and tenets often o wistom al ne ; for the miserable and diametrically opposite. That feet with 6 unhappy are so on account of the whole opinions we are, fortunately, “ event of things. Men who are enbeft acquainted, had established a fy " dued with true wisdom are unmindftem of morals, founded on principles “ ful of good or evil in this world. the most generous and dignified which Study then to obtain this applicaunalliit-d reason is capable of discover. “ tion of thy understanding, for such ing. Man, they taugt, was formed, " application in bafinefs is a precious not for speculation or indolence, but

Wife men who have abanfor action. He is born, not for him “ doned all thought of the fruit which felf alone, but for his fellow men. The “ is produced from their actions, are happiness of the society of which he “ freed from the chains of birth ; and is a member, the good of mankind, “ go to the regions of eternal happiare his ultimate and highest obje&ts.- “ nefs." In chufing what to prefer or reject, From there, and other passages the justness and propriety of his choice which I might have quoted, we learn are the only considerations to which that the diftinguishing doctrines of the be hooli astend. The events which Stoical Scho I were caught in Il dia may follow his actions are not in his many ages before the birth of Zeno, own power, and whether they be pro- and inculcated with a persuasive earsperous or adverse, as long as he is fa- neftness nearly resembling that of Etisfied with the purity of the motives pictetus ; and it is not without asto. which iadaced him to act, he can en- nishment that we find the tenet's of joy that approbation of his own mind, this manly active philosophy, which which constitutes genuine happiness, seem to be formed on'y for men of the independent of the power of fortune most vigorous spirit, prescribed as the or the opinions of other men.“ Man rule of conduct to a race of people

(says the author of the Mahabarat) more eminent for the gentleness of

enjoyeth no freedom from action. their disposition than for the elevation " Every man is involuntarily urged to of their minds. " aa by those principles which are 3d, Phyfics. In all the sciences VOL. XIV. No. 30.


66 art.

which contribute towards extending proof till more conspicuous of their our knowie Ige uf nature, in ma' hera- extraordinary progress in science. The tics, mechanics, and aitronomy, A. at:ention and success with which they rithmet:c is of elemaniary use. In studied the motions of the heavenly whatever country then we find that bodies were so little known to the such attention has been paid to the Greeks and Romans, that it is hardly improvement of arithmetic as to ren. mentioned by them but in the most der its operations molt easy and cor- cursory manner. Bur as soon as the reet, we may presunr' that the sciences Mahomecans establi:hed an intercourse depending upon it have attained a fu- with the natives of India, they observperior degree of perfation. Such im- ed and celebrated the fuperiority of provement of this science we find in their astronomical knowledge. Of the India. While, amoeg th- Greek and Europeans who visited India after the Romans, the only method used for communication with it by the Cape of the notation of numbers was by the Good Hope was discovered, M. Berleitors of the alpaber, which neceffa- nier, an inquifuive and philofophical rily rendered arithmetical calcolation traveller, was one of the firit who extremely tedious and operose, the In- learned that the Indians had long apdians hai, fiom rime immemorial, em- plied to the study of aitronomy, and ployed for the same purpose the ten bad made confiderable progress in that cyphers, or figures, now unive fully science. His information, however, kno:vn, and by means of them per- seems to have been very general and formed every operation in arith vietic imperfect. We are indebted for the with the greateit facility and expedi- fint scientific proof of the great profi. tion. By the happy invention of giv- ciency of the Indians in altronomical ing a different valur to each figure ac- knowledge, to M. de la Loubere, who, cording to its change of place, no on his return from his einbally to more than ten figures are needed in Siam, brought with him an extract Calculations the most complex, and of from a Siamele manuscript, which conany given extent; and arithmetic is tained tables and rules for calculating the most perfect of all he iciences.-- the places of the sun and nao. The The Arabians, not long after their manner in which there tab’es were settlement in Spain, introduced this constructed rendered the principles on mode of notation into Europe, and which they were founded extremely were caodid enough to acknowledge ob'cure, and it requir-d a commentathat they had derived the knowledge tor as conversant in astrono nical calo of it from the Indians. Though the culation as the celebrated Callici, in advantages of inis niode of outation explain the meaning of this curious are obvious and great, yet fo Abwly do fraginent. The epoch of the Siamese mankind ado,'t new inventions, that tabl-s corresponds to the 21st of the use of it was fur fume time con March, A. D. 638. Another set of fioed to science ; br degrees, however, tables was transmitted from Chrisnamen of buliness relinquished the for- bouram, in the Carnatic, the epoch of mercumbersome method of computa- which answers to the icth of March, tion by letters, and the Indian arith. A. D. 1491. A -third fet of tabl-s metic came into general ule through. came from Narsapur, and the epos hi out Europe. It is now fo familiar and of them goes no far: her back than A. fimple, that the inge, u'ty of the people, D. 156). The fourth and most cuto whom we are ind bied for the in- rious let of tables was published by M. vention, is lef observed and less cele- le Gemul, to whom they were commubrated than it meris.

nicated by a learned Brahmin of Tira The altronomy of the Indians is a valore, a imall town on the Coroman



del coalt, about twelve miles weit of “ astronomy of Europe, when improvNegapatam. The epoch of thefe tables “ed by the latest and most nice deis ot high antiquity, and coincides “ duction from the theory of gravitawith the beginning of the celebrated os tion." These conclusions are repæra of the Calyougham or Collee dered pecularly in eresting, by the eJozue, which commenced, according vidence which they afford of an adto the Indian account, three thousand vancement in science unexam led in one hundred and ino years before the the history of

The Inbirth of Christ.

diao Brahmins, who annually circuThese four sets of tables have been late a kind of almanack, containing examined and compared by M. Bailly, aftronomical predictions of some of who with fingular felicity of genius has the more remarkable phenomena in the conjoined an uncommon degree of e- heavens, such as the new and full Jquence with the parient ref-arch. moons, the eclives of the sun and es of an astronomer, and the profuund movn, ale in pift. 1lion of certain mein:eftignions of a geometrician. His thods of calculation, which, upin excalculations have been verifi d, and his amination, are found to involve in reasonings have been illustrated and then a very extensive fylt m of aftroextended by Mr Piayfair, in a very nical knowledge. M. le Genul, a matterly dissertation, published in the French attronomer, had an opportuniTransactions of the Royal Society of ty, while in India, of obf-rving two Edinburgh.

eclipses of the moon, which had been Inttead of attempting to follow calculated by a Brah in, and he found them in reasonings and calculations, the error in either to be very inconti, which, from their nature, are often ab- derable. Aruse and intricate, I thall fatisfy my. The accuracy of these results is !efs felf with giving such a general view of surprising than the jattnefs and scienshem as is suited to a popular work. tific nature of the principles on which This, I hope, may convey a proper is the tables by which they calculate are dea of what has been publilued con- constructed. For the method of precerning the astronomy of India, a fub- dicting eclipses which is followed by ject too curious and impor ant to be the Brahmins, is of a kind altogether omitted in any account of the stare of differenı from any that has been found science in that country; and without in the posseffion of ruje nations in the interposing any judgment of my own, infancy of attronomy. In Chalıæa, I fall leave each of my readers to and even in Greece, in the early ages, form his own opinion.

the method of calculating eclipies was It may be considered as the general founded on the obfervauon of a cerresult of all the inquiries, reafonings, tain period or cycle, after which the and calculations, with respect to Indin eclipies of the sun and moon return an attrodomy, which have hitherto nearly in the fame order; but there been made public, " That the mo was no a:tempt to analyse the different “tion of the heavenly bodies, and circumstances on which the eclipe de

more particularly their fituation at pends, or to deduce its phenomena “ the commencement of the different from a precise knowledge of the mo

epochs to which the four fers of tions of the sun and moon. This last “ tables refer, are ascertained with was reserved for a more advanced pe

great accuracy, and that many of riod, when geometry, as well as arith" the elements of their calculations, metic, were calied in to the adhitance

especially for very remote ages, are of astronomy, and if it was a tempted " verified by an astonishing coinci. at all seems not to hve be n attempt" dence with the tables of the modern ed with success before the age of Hip


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