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more intelligible :--but it is still pervaded by the same gloom of imagination, and the same fondness for shadowy beings and supernatural agency. Of the poetical talents of the author we have already spoken, and we see no reason for changing our opinion.
POLITICS, FINANCE, &C. Art. 31. A Plan for raising the Taxes impartially, and almost free of
Expence in War; and in Peace for paying off the National Debt, at the same Time that the Wealthy shall receive Interest for their Money, and the Poor be eased of Taxes. By Francis Adams, Esq. one of his Majesty's Justices of the Peace, and Deputy Lieutenant sor the County of Somerset. 8vo. 15. 6d. Richard.
son, &c. 1798. · Mr. Adams appears to be a notable speculative financier, and offers many interesting considerations to the attention of the public. He avows his friendship for Mr. Pitt, and his high opinion, in general, of our ministerial measures, particularly respecting the adopted modes of taxation : but he agrees with those who have expressed their disa approbation of the assessed taxes; in opposition to which he warmly recommends the plan for a tax on income. This scheme he approves as operating more equally, and consequently more justly, than that of the triple assessments; and also as a more effectual method of forcing the money out of the pockets of miserly or disaffected persons, for the support of that government by which they and their property are protected.
Mr. Adams offers a variety of calculations and tables in illustration of his proposals, &c. by all which it appears that he is acquainted, not slightly, with inquiries and investigations of this kind. ! In regard to his general opinion concerning the nature and consequences of the national debt, he thus briefly illustrates his idea of what will be our case, or the case of our posterity, if the continuance and increase of that burden be disregarded. Great Britain is frequently represented by the figure of a lion; in allusion to that simile, the causes for apprehension strike me in the following light : the invasion is a scratch that must arouse the lion; the national debt is an internal gangrene, continually gnawing the vitals, and must in the end de. stroy the animal !' p. 52.
In support of this notion, he refers, in his motto, to the opinion of the celebrated Adam Smith, viz. “ The practice of funding has gradually enfeebled every state which has adopted it.” Wealth of Nations, vol. iii. : Art. 32. Thoughts on Taxation : in the Course of which the Policy
of a Tax on Income is impartially investigated. 8vo. 29. Debrett. 1798. .
This writer approves the proposed tax on income. He reasons on many of the objections to which it is liable, and denies that they are of sufficient weight to occasion the rejection of the measure : but his arguments are rather too general, and his opinions, in some instances, are wavering. On the inquisition that he says must take place in order to ascertain income, he remarks, that the mere disclogure of the state of every man's circumstances is an evil of such mag
nitude, as to be justified by nothing short of the most urgent neces-, sity :' yet he thus begins his next page ; ' it has often been asserted that a disclosure of income will be of the most fatal consequence to the mercantile world ; but I think much more stress is laid upon that.. argument than it will bear. Notwithstanding that the author prefers taxing income to taxing property, he expresses his opinion that the burden of taxes falls with the greatest weight on annuitants; who, he says, ' suffer more by their operation than any other description of men.' Art. 33. A Plan for redeeming Two Hundred and Thirty Millions of
the Three per Cent. Funds, and for improving the Public Revenue more than Three Millions Three Hundred and Forty-two Thousand Pounds a Year, without raising any new Taxes, and without dimic
nishing the Income of any Person. By S. P. a Country Gentle· man. 8vo. 1S. Hatchard. 1798.
When a title-page promises largely, we are not disappointed if the performance produces little: for great promises raise expectation only. in the credulous; and we are too old to belong to that class. Nevertheless, in the pamphlet before us, we find plans that are at least worthy of consideration.
The writer proposes to sell the crown lands; and to enable the lords of copyholds, on paying a fine to government, to convey the fee-simple, converting them into freeholds. These products, in addition to the augmentation of the revenue arising from the sale of the land-tax, he estimates at 490,000 l. per annum. The remainder, 2,852,000l, per annum, he proposes to raise by a different mode of providing for the church. His plan is to make the tithes redeemable, and to convert all church lands and estates into freeholds; and he calculates that the produce raised by these means, being vested in the funds, would be sufficient to pay the clergy the full amount of their present incomes, and would yield a surplus of 2,102,3911. per annum. He then adds 750,000 l. per annum, which he believes the revenue would gain, in consequence of the improvements which would take place in lands thus released from discouraging clogs.
We apprehend that the author has been too sanguine in his calcu. lations; and, no doubt, various objections may be urged against his proposals : but these, perhaps, many will think, would be overbalanced by the benefits of them. His plans have the merit of injuring no person's income: the weight would fall principally on the clergy of future times : but the consequent improvement in cultivation would be a benefit without alloy. Art. 34. A New Inquiry into the Principles and Policy of Taxation,
in the Political System of Great Britain. 8vo. pp. 128. 28. Debrett. 1798.
The object of this work is to justify the principles of taxation which were recommended by Mr. Pitt when he established the heavy assessment of last year.
The author tells us that his particular wish has been to afford the public such an elucidation of the subjects he has treated of, as may serve to recommend them to their universal and general attention:
but circumstances far more powerful than the author's elucidation imperiously force such subjects on the public mind; and we cannot say that his elucidation, though he is a sensible writer, is sufficiently perspicuous to afford any very material assistance towards our better comprehension of them. Art. 35. The Family-Tale : or the Story of Pitt, Fox, and O'Con.
nor. 8vo. 1S. Hatchard. 1798. Could the admirable writer of the History of Fohu Bull revisit this sublunary world, we believe that he would find ample materials for the employment of his exquisite talents for pleasant and! Jiuniliar narrative of great events: but, tíll his return, or till the appearance of some kino. dred genius of the old legitimate stock, it were well if his humble imitators would forbear to obtrude on the public their inadequate efforts in this peculiar walk of humour.---The merit of the present story of the rivalship of “ Pitman” and “ Fox:011," and their struggle for the management of 'Squire George's estate and concerns, consists alone in the laudable zcal of the story-teller, the loyalty of his design, and his hatred of Jacobins. Ait. 36. A limely Appeal to the Conimon Sense of the People of Great
Britain in teneral, and of the Inhabitants of Buckinghamshire in particular, on the present State of Affairs ; with Reference to the Opinions of most of the British and French Philosophers of the present Century. By J. Penn, Esq. Sheriff of Buckinghamshire, 8vo. pp. 120. 28. 6. Hatchard. 1798.
The object of this pamphlet is to examine the causes of popular discontents under the following heads; 1. Tlie Restraints of Reli. gion and Morality. 2. The unequal Distribution of Wealth. 3. Inequality of Rank. 4. The Severity of our Penal Code. . Visre. gard of the Good.will expressed for us by the French. 6. Religi. ous Establishments. 7. Partial Representation. 8. Imperfect Dif. fusion of Knowlege; with Ministerial Influence, Distresses of the Poor, and a long list of &c. The subject is important, and the author's intentions we suppose to be good: but the obscurity of the composition has baffled our utmost exertions to ascertain, in every instance, his meaning. The following sentences afford a specimen of the work :
. The moralist, thus relying more on sympathy and common sense, than an accurate knowledge of moral theories, or even an incautious and undiscriminating originality of remark, would require being favoured in his views by continued perseverance in loval couduct; which would permit our envied constitution to operate the desired chiange un. interruptedly; without undoing, at intervals, by popular cuinmotions, what had taken years of peace and industry to etiuct. This loyal conduct, I think, at this time, would be encouraged by nothing more than having decent habits of life always protected by the clergy
from the imputation of Pharisaic hypocrisy: : We give the following citation, as apposite to the circumstances both of the author and of ourselves :
• Censure directed against the spirit of censure, is laudable, for the same reason that at other times it deserves disapprobation. It is then
a negation of the merit of that which is a negation of merit; and tends to destroy its force ; yet if it perpetually appeals to reason, instead of declaiming with the pomp of moral self-sufficiency, even though its warmth betrays indignation at absurdity, it will appear momentary, and not of that habitual sort which characterizes modern philanthropy. The contemplation of the gloomy objects of censure, at such times, will resemble the view of an unwholesome and unsightly swamp, half veiled with mists, and overshadowed with clouds; which, while something passes there interesting to us, we have no objection to look upon; but when that is over, we immediately turn, and afterwards constantly keep our eyes in preference upon a part of the country where it has cleared up, and which banishes discontent and suspicion by an enchanting combination of all the fair varieties of nature. My censure, however, has chiefly had censure in view. I do not say, its similar object has always been alike objectionable. Those whose business it is to blame, or praise, are obliged to express their real sentiments.' Art. 37. The Tocsin; or, an Appeal to good Sense. By the Rev.
L. Dutens, Historiographer to his Majesty, Rector of Elsdon in Northumberland, and F. R. S. Translated from the French by the Rev. Thomas Falconer. 8vo. Pp. 59. 18. 6d. Cadell jun. and Davies. 1798.
This alarm-bell appears to have been rung with a very good intention. Men of probity and virtue can never be the friends of confusion and anarchy; and when principles are disseminated which lead to wcaken or destroy the power of religious truth, and the morality which it produces and supports, it is very requisite to have recourse to those arguments and reasons which may fortify the mind against their baneful efficacy. This task many writers have applied themselves to perform, and have done it very seasonably and to great advantage ; and such is the design of the present publication. It guards the reader against atheists, or materialists, for the latter are here thus improperly classed ; against theists, or those who admit the existence of a Supreme Being, but allow him neither creation nor providence; and lastly against those who plead for what is called natural religion alone, and will proceed no farther. Rousseau and Voltaire, especially the latter, are immediate objects of censure.
We cannot speak of this little work as producing what is new : but the writer's manner is somewhat peculiar; the fervor and affection with which it is written may recommend it, and its brevity may promote its circulation and increase its utility : it also offers those arguInents which have never been refuted. We learn that this tract has been frequently printed at Turin, Paris, and London : but we apprehend that it has not before appeared in the English language. Art. 38. Our good old Castle on the Rock; or, Union the one Thing
needful. 12mo. 3d. Wright. 1798. Since this well-disposed tract was written, to recommend the union of all parties against an invading foe, our great naval victories have happily dispelled all our fears on that subject. The author's 'exertions, however, are equally worthy of praise.
Art. 39. Thoughts upon a netu Coinage of Silver, more especially as
it relates to an Alteration in the Division of the Pound Troy. By a Banker. 8vo. 28. Ed. Sewell, &c. 1798.
Saavedra *, in his L Xth emblem, enumerates, among the causes of revolutions in states, the badness of the coinage ; and certain it is that great convulsions have frequently succeeded an adulteration of the specie. Almost the last measure of the unmixed monarchy of France was a debasement of the current money, undertaken by M. de Calonne. Yet it would be preposterous to suppose that the Constitution wears out with its shillings, or that a new representation of our bank-notes must bring on a new representation of the people. The fact is that subsitutions of a worse money for a better are not causes but symptoms of a government being in difficulty, which then hesi. tates little to unhinge the settled distribution of property, if it can more easily obtain a supply for the year. They do not exactly produce the eventual confusion, but they reveal a stage of disease which is tending to that termination. Such, no doubt, were the considerations which impressed the very rational author of the pamphlet be. fore us; who deprecates the cutting, in future, a pound Troy of silver into 65 or 66 shillings, instead of 62 shillings, with a solemnity of alarm which an attentive examination of the subject will, we apprehend, but too well justify.
Beccaria, in his Trattato delle Monete, has proved it to be for the interest of all states, that the pound of gold and the pound of silver, when çoined, should preserve the same relative and positive value as in commerce ; levying at most a seigniorage equivalent to the cost and trouble of weighing and assaying. To this opinion, our author tends, or accedes; and he has divided his dissertation into four parts, which contain,
I. A brief Account of the State of the Coins during some preced. ing Reigns. II. The Ways in which the Standard may be altered, with the Consequences that arise from a Debasement of it. III. The Alteration of the Standard of Silver, considered as operating gené. ‘rally on all Coin. IV. A Conclusion, deprecating Change..
In addition to the arguments urged by our author in his third and most interesting section, we would observe that the pound sterling, being only a nominal coin, is necessarily measured by the shilling, which is a real one. If, therefore, twenty of the new shillings are to contain one-twentieth less of pure silver than before, the pound sterling must in fact suffer a depreciation of 5 per cent. All con tracts, therefore, for pounds sterling will become payable with a twen, tieth less of pure silver than before : while produce, necessaries, and all values not resulting from legal contract, will retain their original price. That which was sold for twenty old shillings will cost twenty-one new shillings.
The whole mass of land owners will consequently find their expence increased, or their rents abridged, one twentieth part, which is equivalent to the confiscation of one twentieth part of the whole landed property in the kingdom; and this is done in the case of a