this is the feature of the case with which I am chiefly concerned here. That George the First was, during many years of his life,
by a prophecy* that he should die very soon after wife, that Mr. Lyttletonf died most mysteriously and unexpectedly at the very moment that was predicted to him by the apparition of a woman whom lie had wronged, and that Captain Speer stated to several gentlemen, just before setting out on an expedition in America, that he had received a notification of his approaching death in a dream, appear to me to be as worthy of belief, nay as susceptible of proof, as are any of those private or domestic occurrences that pass unquestioned in ordinary life. At the same time no tourist is now scared from visiting the Highlands or the Isles of Scotland, by an apprehension of seeing himself disappear gracefully in a kilt, over some neighbouring knoll, or ot hearing his doom rehearsed to him in ghostly characters, amid the mists of Lock Awe or under the disturbed
clouds of Ben Crouchan. The Banshee has become a topic of conversation, even for the professional
teller in Kerry or Connemara; and even sensation novelists now shrink from the use of illustrations which Pascal and Johnson
did not hesitate to employ. Where they trod, one like me need not be ashamed to follow ; and I have already said that the phenomena I am relating ai-e, for the most part, if not altogether, susceptible of an interpretation which physiology approves or experience may endorse. Whether they will ever admit of a higher application is not for me to determine, and medical paper is scarcely the proper vehicle for a spiritual a I will say for
myself, that I shrink with annihilation, and anything would be better than that materialism which is now eating its way, like a canker, through all the chinks and crevices of our national
horror from the idea of
and moral life. Isaac Wait ing relates of Dr. Donne that, having gone to Paris, leaving his wife, who was then pregnant, in London, he, (Dr. D.) two days after his arrival in that city, saw his wife in a vision pass twice before him, with her hair hanging about her shoulders, and a dead child in her arms. A messenger that was sent to inquire into the state of Mrs. D.'s health found her a long and dangerous very sad and sick in bed, and that after labour she had been delivered of a dead child. Upon examination, the abortion proved to have occurred on the same day, and about the very hour that Mr. Donne affirmed he saw her pass by "
him in his chamber."
DO YOU BELIEYE IN
Wm. CuERAN, A.xM.L'.
(Concluded from page 97.) "Whether the variety, which I have ventured to call mixed, come under the heading of Apparimay not more appropriately tions or Second Sight, rather than of Presentiment, pure and simple, must be determined by the interpretation which each That both for himself on these phenomena. one will put
present than they equally certain
used to be in former times is it that the incredulity
with which such stories are now received is on the increase. Many indeed hold that they are a priori impossible ; but the evidence oi history and tradition is too stiong fur them, and
writer quotes the credulous
* The Pour Georges, p. 53, and the learned reader need scarcely be informed that prophecies of this kind played a much more important part in former days than they do now. M acaulay gives an amusing account of the excitement produced by the arrival of one Baldearg O' Donnel in Limerick, during the first "siege of that place,"and Kaye, op. cit > Vol. II, p. 420, seems to think that the exciting national prophecies which said that' the'sikbs would some day stream down to the sack of Delhi" had something to do with the turn their loyalty or love of loot took in the mutiny. For some further account than, is called for here of that stichomanci/ or divination through books, especially the writings of Virgil, which was' so much in of the Stuarts, as well as among other non-Christian vogue in the days refer to Scott's Heart of Midlothian, pp. 102-3, and Pirate, people, I would as to Elphinstone's Caubul, Vol. I, p. 293, Malcolm's History p. 213, as well of fersia, Vol. I, p 470, and bale's Preliminary Discourse, (Tegg's Koran) Life of Wesley, Vol. I, pp. 115-16, Chamber's Encyclopaedia p. 90, tfouthey's article Sortes Biblicae. The christian Intelligencer, Xo. 1, p. 73 ; Lee's Ihe Other World, Vol. I, pp. 269-70; Varia, by H. Friswell, p. 230; Sketches of Central Asia, by A. Vambery, p. 291; Sehulyer's Turkistan, Vol. I, pp. 81-2; and Prejevalsky's Mongolia, Vol. I, pp. 80-1. t Por particulars of this strange occurrence see Wraxkall's Memoirs, of Soger's Table Talk, pp. 219-20, Hayward's Auto-biography Letters, &c., Mrs. Hozzi, Vol I, pp. 332-37, and Dr. Lee's work already quoted, Vol. I. Mathew' 'Father p. 38, &c. Mr. Maguire relates a story iu his interesting, to give A Biography, p. 519, which is so much akin to this that 1 am induced " a it here. It runs to the effect that while at Pensaeolia Mathew offi. and Keoboe named Demetrius died, JfatherDecember young foreigner loth, ciated at his funeral. This funeral took place on Monday, funeral at which he 1850, and on Wednesday the 18th, there was another Demetrius. A contract also attended. This was the funeral of a cousin of had been made between them that the first who died should preparc a place in heaven for the other who was to follow immediately. Demetrius was both cousins were tenants of buried on the Monday and, in 20 hours more, it was the^ellect of imaginathe same tomb. What was the cause ? Possibly sorrow at the loss oi a beloved friend. by a tion upon system depressed as have been stated," they Whatever the explanation, the facts were + Londiniana, Vol. IV, p. 293. ?
THE INDIAN MEDICAL GAZETTE.
two-fold aspect, viz., as impressing the mind with a presentithe beautiful Lady Diana Kich, ment of death on the one hand, and as bracing, nay exalting, about 11 father's garden, o'clock, walkinginher it into such a forgetfulness of the present, as rendered it inmet with her own apparition, habit and everything different to what passed around it on the other. The applicaafter she died of smallas in alooking glass. About a month tion of this feature of the case to the physical interpretation pox," and the following story of Lord Eoscommon is told by of our task is, I think, self-evident; and there is a general be" The Lord Eoscommon, Johnson* in his Life of that poet: lief that drowning men and others subjected to great or unforeat Caen in of age, Normandy, one day seen being a boy of ten years strains, are often able to recall incidents which had long in playing, leaping, it madly extravagant as were, was, since occurred or form such a picture in their minds' eye of In the heart getting over the tables, boards, &c the nature of things and the destiny of man, as years of study he cries fit out, my father is dead. of this extravagant or contemplation in their closet would fail in developing or A fortnight after, news came from Ireland that his father unfolding. if it A is not indeed similar, even a dead." very more was The religious is, like the feminine mind, very prone to enterauthentic and striking, example is given in Dr. Lee's book tain impressions of the same kind ; and this is not to be wonalready quoted ; and having so far dealt with the subject in its dered at when we consider the elements of which it consists individual relations and under particular aspects, I will now and the aspirations it feeds on. Looking to the future rather considerations on some the whole subject, and offer general than to the present, it is more conversant with the ideal then leave these and it to speak for themselves. the real, more apt to indulge the imagination That the belief in presentiment is more intense and operative than with and the fancy than the reason or the judgment, and to as of in times danger, during sieges, battles, &c., is proved by " regulate its range of thought and vision accordingly. Guidnumerous examples, and it is certain that when the mind is ed by a standard of its own creation, which it often places on wound up to a high pitch of feeling and expectation, the a pedestal that is inaccessible to ordinary mortals, it aims at a slightest incident, if unexpected, gives fire to the train which which is scarcely attainable in ordinary life, and cheimagination has already laid." Many instances in point perfection rishes hopes that can only be fully realized beyond the grave.* occurred during the Peninsular and Crimean Wars. The panics This feeling naturally leads to a dissatisfaction with, or a we occasionally hear of a^ occurring in corps or armies are often distrust of, its present wordly surroundings, if it does not engenthe products of the same unseen influences, and it is well known der a habit of prying into the future, that savours of credulity that scores of our sepoy battalions were under the spell of If it does not emasculate the mind it unnerves or superstition. this kind of impulse in 1857. f Kayej tells us that Darcy Tod and enfeebles it. It may produce either ecstacy or hysteria, into action at Ferozeshuhur with a led his to the effect that
she was .
ment of his approaching end, and Kinglake? adds that Admiral Korniloff, the first defender of Sebastopol, was labouring during the early hours of the siege of that place under a similar impression. Dwelling upon the great and ceaseless strain to which the heavy Brigade was subjected in its encounter
with the Eussian cavalry in the early part of the war, the able writer says that " with some it suspended to an extraordinary degree all care about self" || and, describing the same
celebrated Balaclava charge,
he adds that,
under tension of
prolonged for some minutes, the human mind, without being flurried, may be wrought into so high a state of activity a as to be capable of well-sustained thought, and man, if he chose whilst he rode down the length of this fatal north valley, could examine and test and criticise, nay even could change or restore that armour of the soul by which he had been accustomed to guard hi3 serenity in the trials and dangers of life^f." Here we see the influence of danger under a this kind
Lives of Eminent English Poets, Chandos Classics, p. 89. t Kaye, op cit., Yol. I, pp. 311-12. % Kaye's War in Afghanistan, Yol. I, p. 606. He tells a similar story in his Lives of Indian Officers, Ed. of 1869, Vol. Ill, p. 87. ? Op cit., Vol. II, p. 363. || Op cit., Vol. IV, p. 177. 5 Ibidem, Vol IV, p. 280, and the late Dr. George Wilson has given
utterance to a sentimenr which I have often heard mentioned in connection with sudden emergencies of the l;ind here contemplated, but which is almost as inexplicable as the phenomenon under review. The experiment is, at least, one which few would care to undertake. " There is a strange fact, he says, viz., that on the point of sudden drowning or the like the whole life of the individual, from his youngest days has passed before him, accompanied by an aptitude to comprehend the whole; and a writer has most beautifully imagined that the book of account of the Bible will be our own mind endowed with a power of contemplating all its past conduct and judging of its propriety"?\ Memoir of George Wilson, pp. 50.1. Describing a supper at Professor Wilson's (of Edinburgh), at which De Quincey was present, and during which the conversation turned on forgetfulness, which the latter seemed ttf deny, " of the late Mr. Warren, Miscellanies, pp. 497-8, mentioned an instance, from on board the to a "Excellent," gentleman, who, in hastily jumping and fell into missed the water it, catch a boat sinking he was supposed drowned. He afterwards to a great depth. For a while said that all he remembered after plunging into the water was a sense of freedom from pain and a sudden recollection of all his past life, that he had long forgotten. Professor especially of guilty actions Wdson said that, if this were so. it was indeed very startling; and I think Mr. De Quincey said that he also had heard of one, if not two to the same effect, in his Central or three such cases." Colonel Long speaks Africa?Naked Truths of Naked People-where he describes, p. 169, the electric flash of memory which enabled him to review the past from childhood's days to manhood," as he watched one night, in great peril and anxiety, for the movements of the savages by whom he was sur.
Men prove with child, as powerful fancy works, And maids turned bottles, call aloud for corks ;
religious excitement or isolation is, we all kaow, more efficacious in the development of these exalted feelings, than It any other condition of life that we are acquainted withal. was so as well in pagan times as under the banners of the Cross ; and
it led the Mahomedan to Cordova and the Crusader to the gates of Gaza ; it enables the Hindoo widow to mount, without flinch-
ing, the funeral pyre, and the red ekin to pass, without murmuring, through his horrible ordeal of initiation ; and contemplation, vision, and trance are the very basis of Budhism, the largest religious organization in the world. On the contrary, Nor is this spirit to be always deprecated. the excitement or enthusiasm it sometimes produces may disarm death of its sting, and stimulate to deeds of endurance or daring from which ordinary prudence or valor might shrink. It encouraged the captive Jews to baffle all the arts of their for an ultimate delivery. It oppressors and look with serenity enabled the early Christian martyrs to submit without repining to tortures, whose very name elicits a shudder, whilst it also induced them to throw away their livesf rather than yield to compliances which appear to us frivolous or unmeaning. And It can produce a herein lies its danger, namely, in its excess. * Wishart and Guthrie, who are included among 'he 'martyrs' of Pr?sbyterianism, are said to hare foretold, or at least to haTe had presentiments of their r'eaths. Se? the Works of Thomas M'Crie, Vol. I> p. 21, and 'ames Guthrie, p. 144. Of the and the Lives of Alexander Henderson '? former his biographer says that secluded from the bustle of the world, he had an opportunity of conversing with his Hod, and of being admitted to those heavenly enjoyments, and attaining those religious experiences which are often, in a high degree, the privileges of Christians placed in such circumstances," and I have no doubt a all that similar, if not precisely identical, examples of this tendency and spirit might be found in Ribadineira, Butler and others of the hagiologists of the Greek and Latin Churches. f for confirmation in noint see the Persecution of Diocletian, by A. J. Mason, pp. 123-191 and 228. The same writer has an interesting account, p. " 33, of the revival of belief in omens and prophecies, auguries and oracles" that took place during the excitement and anxiety that accompanied the
followed the establishment of Chris-
tianity under Constantino. Consult, al-o, for information, abou' oracles and the importance attached to them in the early church, an article on the Sybilline Books that appeared in the Edinburgh Review for July 1877, passim. Many of these oracles, however, were so pronounced as to cut both ways, such as the well-known one? Aio te, Acacide, Romanos vincera posses? which may account for the verification tha;
DO YOU BELIEVE IN PRESENTIMENT ??BY W. CUEEAN.
May 1, 1878.] Cromwell and
Columbus as well as a Fox or a Johanna
gifted Gilfillan or a Southcote, as well as
Richard Baxter and a Fenelon, or even a St. Francis DeSales. It enabled the victims of the Bloody Assizes to meet death, not Some of merely with fortitude, but with exultation them, we are told, composed hymns in the dungeon and chaunta
on the fatal sledge,* and Southeyi- expressly tells the Methodist soldiers in the English army were at the time preceding the battle of Fontenoy wrought up to such a pitch of fanaticism that one of them being fully prepossessed with a
ed them that
belief that he should fall in the
action, danced for joy before he went into it, exclaiming that he was going to rest in the bosom of Jesus. Others when mortally wounded broke out into rapturous expressions of hope and assured triumph at the mere prospect of dissolution."
wood, what may we not expect in the green tree, and a gloomy despondency of mind, which sometimes assumes the dimension of a presentiment, is no more to be wondered at on the eve of a journey or during the uncertainty of a battle, than are the morbid exultation and hilarity described above. That the examples given above?and I might quote many more?clearly prove the existence of such a phenomenon as I have been describing, admits, I think, of no reasonable doubt, Do you believe in and were I again asked the question : Presentiment?" I would say, Yes! There is undoubtedly such a phenomenon, and it has occurred so often and under such circumstances, as to preclude the possibility of its being altogether illusory or fictitious." And, were I further asked to explain it, I would, I fear, be obliged to confess that I was, at present, unable to do so. I could only point out the conditions under which it usually occurs. Ask for some account of the peculiar"
ities of the individuals in whose persons it has been known to happen, and say tliat every example of such occurrence should its own surroundings, and allowed to stand or fall the evidence, pro or con, available in the case. There is I have never myself experino such course now open to me. enced any such sensation or impression as is contemplated be
within, and it is now universally acknowledged that " events that took place in a distant past are not realized with the same intense vividness as those which take place among ourselves. They do not press upon us with the same keen reality and are not judged by the same measure; they come down to us with a legendary garb, obscured by the haze of years, and surrounded by circumstances that are so unlike our own that they refract the imagination and cloud and distort its picture.''^ Another great observer has said that:?"Nothing grows so insipid by lapse of time as personal anecdote. The allusions become indistinct, the words lose the original seasoning of tone and gesture, the facts lose their interest, and even their authenticity is apt to be called in question, when proof is become impossible and, if this be so in respect of the records of daily life, how much more is it likely to be the case in connection with narratives which are, from their very nature, improbable, or, at * M?caulay, op. eit. (P. E.) Vol. I, pp. 315-16. f Souihey's Life of Wesley, Vol. I, pp. 38-9. See also for a very similar account of I be enthusiasm of the Covenanters, who were defeated at the battle of Rulliongreen previous to execution. Scott's Tales of a Grandfather, p. 225, also pp. 238-7, and for a good and very graphic account of the fanaticism, daring, and indifference to torture and death, of the Anabaptists of Germany under Matthias, John of Leyden and others, see liob-rtson's History as above, pp 253-55. "There is a Constitutional Mesmerism, Odyllism, &c. tendency in many minds, says Dr Carpenter," " &e., in I' raser for February 1877, p. 136 to be seized by some strange notion which takes entire possession of them; so that all the actions of the individual thus 'possessed,' are results of its operation such delusions are most tyrannous and most liable to spread, when connected with religious enthusiasm; as we see in the dancing and flagellant manias of the Middle Ages: the supposed demoniacal possession that afterwards became common in the nunneries of France and Germany : the ecstatic revelatons of Catholic and Protestant visionaries; the strange performances of the Convulsionaires of St Mddor, which have been since almost paralleled at Methodist 'revivals' and Camp Sweden; and many other Meetings; the preaching epidemic of Lutheran " ....
outbreaks of a nature more or less similar See Lecky's History of Rationalism, Vol. I, p. 160. + ? The Memoirs of sir Philip Francis, Vol. II, p 400,
of having been exaggerated by open to the suspicion disordered fancy, if they are not actually conjured up from the recesses of a too sensitive consciousness, by the unwonted
the existence of any special inspirasupernatural message when we hear of the occasional fulfilment of political and other prophecies or predictions amongst us. Many coming events cast their shadows before them, and history is constantly repeating itself even in our own day. The Russians are now where they were in 1829, dictating their Neither need
terms to the terrified Mahmoud, and few doubted the success of the northern states over those of the south, notwithstanding the gallantry and early victories of the latter own
same may be said, totidem verbis, of the encounter between the Germans and the French, and the very acceptance of such qualifying epithets as able, shrewd, far-seeing, long-
headed, &c., fittest.
often see prefixed to the names of of itself a belief in the survival of the All that is wanted is a little more dash or vigour, a
more worldly sagacity or penetration on their part than possessed by their neighbours or opponents. If to these wo add greater powers of introspection or intuition, a more calculating mind, or a better use of experience and observation, than are possessed or made by others, we have got at the secret, and nothing succeeds like success. Every one knows instances," both in ancient and modern times, of says Dean Stanley,* pre-
dictions which have been uttered and events of this kind?political
fulfilled in. regard to Even within our own memory the great catastrophe of the disruption of the United States of America was foretold, even with the
date, several years beforehand. Sometimes there has anticipation of some future epoch in the pregnant sayings of eminent philosophers or poets ; as, for example, the intimation of the discovery of America by Seneca, or of Shakespeare by Plato, or the reformation by Dante. Sometimes the same result has been produced by a power of divination granted in some inexplicable manner to ordinary men. Of such a kind were many of the ancient oracles, the fulfilment of which, according to Cicero, could not be denied without a perversion of history. Such was the foreshadowing of the twelve centuries of Roman dominion by the legend of the apparition of the twelve vultures to Romulus, and which was understood four hundred actual accomplishment ; such, but with less years before its certainty, was the traditional prediction of the conquest of Constantinople by the Mussulmans ; the alleged predictions of of the series of Archbishop Malachi Popes down to the present time ; not to speak of the well-known instances which are recorded both in French and English history."
faculty. Alluding to the exulting triumph of the protestants the religious changes that were made by at Henry the Eighth, as well as to the corresponding depression and anxiety there seems,indeed, to be in of the Catholics, he says that religious men, whatever be their creed and however limited their intellectual power, a prophetic faculty of insight into the true bearings of outward things?an insight which put to shame the sagacity of statesmen and claims for the sons of God, and only for them, the wisdom even of the world. Those only read the world's future truly who have faith in principle, as opposed to faith in human dexterity; who feel that in human things there lies really and truly a spiritual nature, a spiritual connection, a spiritual tendency, which the wisdom of the serpent cannot alter, and scarcely can affect." Dr. Arnold^ held, on the other hand, that "people try to make out from prophecy too much of a detailed history," and he thinks that, " with the exception of those prophecies which relate to our "
History of the Jewish Church, Vol. I, pp. 514-15 ' t The History of England, Vol. I, p. 3U8, I Life By Dean Stanley, Vol. I, p. (j2.
Lord, the object of prophecy is rather to delineate principles opinion which shall come than external events." But any further discussion of tbis phase of the subject might take us out of our depths, and the object of this little essay is to show that there is, firstly, historical evidence of the existence of such an insight or faculty as I am here describing ; and, secondly, that this gift or power need not necessarily be the offspring of a supernatural spirit or agency. "What I have already advanced will, I think, suffice to prove the truth of the former proposition, but the latter is much less amenable to this kind of deduction, and I have already said that my concern is more with the physiological side of the question, than with its theological significance or bearing. I believe with poor Keats, that and states of
never lived a
appetite beyond his natural sphere, But starved and died;
and I am neither afraid nor ashamed to confess that the latter of the question is beyond me. All I contend for is that the faculty exists or may be acquired through the ordinary
channels of human intercourse
wanted, it may be supplied from sources that are accessible to all, and whose authority few will question. Thus Butler, whose curious rhymes are so frequently fraught with quaint allusion to the past or humorous description of the present, gives expression to the former view, when he asks, though Sidrophel, Hudibras Canto II, part 1, p. 192? proof
Do not the hist'ries of all agea Relate miraculous presages Of strange turns in the world's affairs Foreseen b' astrologers, soothsayers, Chaldeans learned Genethliaes, And some that have writ almanacks;
while Shakespeare, with his usual comprehensiveness and sensible grasp of facts, adopts the more commonplace interpretation advocated within. Falling in with the King's?Ilenry his wish for
IY?humour answering future, Warwick replies that or
There is a history in all men's lives, Figuring the nature of the times deceas'd; The which observ'd, a man may prophecy, "With a near aim of the main chanoe of things As yet not come to life; which in their seeds, And weak beginnings, lie intreasured, Such things become the hatch and brood of time
application of this art has ere while passed for a superhuman wisdom, or been regarded with horror, as witchcraft or worse.
If now applying these tests to the interpretation of the phenomena detailed within, we may thereby account for the scepticism or incredulity with which such stories have been usually read or related, we have only got rid of one difficulty to find ourselves face to face with another, and that by no means
the least of the two. The evidence in favor of the occurrence and realization of presentiments is quite as strong as that upon which we rely for the truth of other historical occurrences, and small as may appear to be their utility, yet is their existI say ence not to be ignored from the apparent absence of it. for there are many well-authenticated instances of
through compliance Xiord Dundonald* expressly ascribes
another and more etherial kind ? The obvious answer to these queries is that, if so, they ought to be far more frequent than they appear to be, and that their realization ought to be much less fitful or casual than it now notoriously is. We all feel or know that presentiments and predictions like dreams often miss their mark, if they do not fail outright, and this failure alone ought to stamp them as of the "earth, earthy." Whether,
they can be placed in the same category, I am unable to say ; but I do not think they can, and as to those vague generalities, constitutional sympathy, and chemical action
affinity, they are, to my mind, incapable of affording us any aid in the inquiry. The so-called psychic force is equally unavailing, and I am not ashamed to confess my almost entire I of reflex, automatic, or unconscious cerebration. or
have never, moreover, had much taste for metaphysical subtlety or conjectural refinement. My forte, whatever it be, does not in the direction of profound psychological analysis, or minute intuitive speculation, and so declining to discuss the " question with scrupulous quirks and disquisition nice." I leave it, as above, for elucidation by or the confusion of my readers. I had once indeed fondly hoped I might be able to turn the phenomenon to account in support of a belief in the existence lie
of a separate spiritual life for the soul, but occurrences of thi3 kind are so open to miscarriage or misconception, or so susceptiblo of a natural explanation, that one is afraid to trust to them in so momentous a question. Moreover, they would probably, had we sufficient data to go upon, be found as often within
and I view with considerable attempts that try to explain the inex-
plicable, or remove the veil that can only be pierced, if at all in this life, by the eye of faith. The apparition that beckoned Antony to his doom at Actium, with an iterum me Philippis videbis," was probably as real as the "Tolle, Lege, Tolle, Lege," which the great Saint Augustine ascribed to the interposition of an angel. Colonel Gairdner who fell at Preston Pans, acted to his dying day, as we learn from Scott, on the belief that he had received a similar ghostly warning, and the good Dr. Newman assures "
and the proper
life being saved
in a grave crisis, to the supervention or presentiment. However that may be, the question still remains : Are these visions or impressions of a spiritual or physical nature the outcome of an overwrought brain or of a supernatural inspiration ? Do they result naturally from that modicum of uncertainty or fear that involuntarily attaches to every dangerous undertaking ? Or are they as naturally the consequence of an interference or inspiration of
and of his
[Mat 1, 1878.
THE INDIAN MEDICAL GAZETTE.
with one of them, and the safety of himself
* Describing an attack of the French on the town and citadel of Kosas and the straits to which he and his companions in the latter were reduced, I ord I), says:?" The dawn of the 30th might have been our last, but from the interposition of what some people may call presentiment. an impression that the enemy Long before daylight I was awoke with were in possession of the castle, though the stillness which prevailed showed this to be a delusion. Still I could not recompose myself to sleep, I left couch and hastily my and after lying for some time tossing about, * * * * went on the esplanade of the fortress. All was perfectly still A loaded mortar, however, stood before me, pointed during the day in such a direction, that the shell should fall on the path over the hill which
that the straw that broke the camel'3 tack in his case, was " securus judicat orbes in the Dublin Review,* terrarum," which had reference to the supremacy of the pope. us a
I quote these familiar examples to show that a feather may turn the scale either way when the mind is agitated by danger or doubt, when it is in a state of unusual tension or excite-
or per contra, too much We may, in either case, leave religion out and speaking for myself alone, I will not hesi-
much buoyed up by hope,
tate to say that Christianity's strongest claim on our adhesion lies, in my opinion, in the fact that it has so long survived the attacks of its professional exponents. * * Without other object than the French must necessarily take * * that of diverting my mind from the unpleasant feeling which had taken of I fired the the echo had died away a, Before it, mortar. possession volley of musketry from the advancing column of the enemy showed that the shell had fallen amongst them, just as they were on the point of storming?" The Autobiography of a Seaman, Vol. I, p. 309. * See, for a somewhat similar state of mind and escape from it, the Autobiography of John Stuart Mill, pp. 133-141 inclusive. It is said of the celebrated Raymund Lulli, who had been, till his thirtieth year, quite 'a man of the world, that, " one night, while composing a love song, the image of the crucified Saviour was presented visibly to him. He sought to lose the impression, but in vain."?Neander's History of Christian Dogma, Vol. I, p. 548 ; "and both Hepworth Dixon, Her Majesty's Tower, Vol. I, p. Ill, and Froude op eit.> Vol. I, pp 260-7, testify to the comfort which the passage of scripture, on which his eye casually glanced, gave Cardinal Fisher on his way to the scafi'old.
DIAGNOSIS OF DISEASES OF THE EYE MADE EASY.?BY G. C. HALL.
those, however, who, looking beyond the cold and formal precision of a negative philosophy, recognise a higher aim and object in life than is implied in a process of destructive analysis, or a carping criticism of whatever is not obvious or useful, there is another outlook, and that affords so ready a solution of the difficulty as to dispense those who believe in its operation from the necessity of further question or inquiry. Need I say that I allude to the intervention and ministry of good angels, the assaults of bad, the certain power of consecrated places, and the persevering malignity of the Devil and liislegion.*" At no time could such a power be so benefioientlv or fruitfully exercised as during the strife and confusion of a battle, in the conflict of peoples or nations, and generally on the approach of danger to life. A belief in the tutelary guardianship of angels would appear, from the Old Testament, to have been a part of the religion of the Jews. It descended from them to the early Christians, and is now, as indeed it has ever been, professed by both the great eastern and western communions. Its more general acceptance in these days would save us all a good deal of mental trouble, as well as do away with the necessity of referring for an explanation, in this and other mysterious questions, to those very elastic if not quite inexplicable hypotheses, To
facility with which people can now converse, by means electricity, from China to Peru, appears to me to lend no little sanction to this doctrine. Moreover, 'tis a very consoling one ; and, admitting the existence of disembodied spirits at all, we may easily assume that the intercourse between them and their proteges would be far more rapid and vivid, nay more instantaneous and impressive than anything of the kind we can But this is a phase of the question with new even conceive. which my readers may not care to sympathise, and even if they did, this would scarcely be the place to push it to its legitimate I merely introduce it as a means towards an end, consequences. as one, perhaps the most plausible, of the solutions that might be offered of the phenomenon here reviewed, and my readers need And the
not be reminded that it is much easier to state a case in the
region of metaphysics or philosophy than it is to offer an adequate explanation of the same. Demonstration is only possible to the mathematician, if so, or always even to him, and it is a part of our earthly nature always to find something wanting, always to havf a vague, dull, ignorant yearning for some knowledge of the future wrhioh cannot be appeased"* in the present. Let us piously hope it may not be so with us always. "
the so-called doctrines of association and intuition.
spirituality of their nature would with their ubiquity; for, as Moore says, Angels,? The
be quite compatible in his Loves of the
No aid of words the unbodied soul requires To waft a wish or embassy desires, But by a throb to spirits only given By a mute impulse only felt in heaven, Swifter than meteor
shafts, through summer skies, glanced idea flies.+
From soul so soul the
* Need I say that I quote from Dr. Lee's book so often referred to. t Tliis sentiment is so well set forth in a letter on Angels and Flowers that lately appeared in a CalcuMa paper, that I cannot refuse myself the satisfaction of reproducing it in full and the more so as this little essay makes no pretence of exclusive knowledge, or exhaustive physiological investigation. It also eschews controversy and leaves the writers quoted, as Tvell as their writings, to interpret themselves, or be interpreted by others. Sik,?The graceful writer of the notes in your yesterday's issue descriptive of the "Wallachian peasantry, says :? "Another fancy of the Wallachian peasant is that every leaf and flower has life and immortality. They suppose that leaves and flowers are the habitations of imprisoned souls, and their songs upon this subject have a freshness and pathos hardly to be found in the popular ballads of any other country. The Wallachian 'doine' or folklore has something of an Ossianic character; but instead of representing the thoughts of a stern solemn people living in a misty mountain lari'i, it breathes the ardent spirit of a southern race, inhabiting a delightful climate, beautiful with purple skies and gorgeous flowers The passage recalled to my mind a beautiful thought in one of Father Bewmiii's sermons (1831) many years before he left the University, and some of your readers may be glad to see it:? ' and ray of-light and heat, "I say of the Angels, every breath of air skirts of their garments, the every beautiful prospect, is, as it were, the see God.' Again, I ask what waving of the robes of those whose faces " when examining a flower, or a herb would be the thoughts of a man who, or a pebble, or a ray of light, which he treats as something so beneath him iu the scale of existence, suddenly discovered that he was in the presence of some powerful being who was hidden behind the visible things he was inspecting,?who, though concealing his wise hand, was giving them their beauty, grace, and perfection, as being God's instrument for the purpose,?nay, whose robe and ornaments those objects were, which he wqs so eager to analyze?" Newman himself attributed these views to the influence of the Alexandrian school and the early Church upon his mind. He considered the " the real angels as carrying on the economy of the visible world, and as causes of motion, light and life, and of those elementary principles of the our Universe to senses, which, when offered in their development physical suggest to us the notion of cause and effect and of what are called the laws of nature." I do not know that there is anything very fanciful in the indulgence of such views, and the eminent scientific authors of the Unseen Universe have, I think, suggested somewhere in that work, the possibility of certain phenomena in the visible world, being produced by "
The 'writer might have added that a very similar thought, but which has even a higher aim, is embodied in the following beautiful lines of Mr. Keble (the Christian Year, cheap Ed., p. 45) whereat commenting on the ?words of St. Paul, lfomans 1-20, he says The raging fire, the roaring wind Thy boundless power display, But
breeze we find
Thy Spirits viewless way.
Or, if unwilling to trust to such interested or gushing evidence, lie might quote the more terrestrial, though equally beautiful, lines in which Burns celebrates the influence of his mistress as well as her presence in absentia, " Of a' The Airts The Wind can to his enamoured eye in his flue song, blaw." If more sceptically inclined he could quote the more pantheistic lines of Pope : All are but parts of one stupenduous whole, Whose body nature is and God the soul. Or the more familiar lines of his contemplative vein?
Nor is this sentiment peculiar to Christianity. On the very contrary a belief in angelic, or if you so prefer supernatural, interposition has extended from the days of Homer to those of Mahomed, and it pervades all the best as St. Paul poetry of Greece and Rome. Ovid is almost as pronounced in favor of the necessity of a celestial initiation or guidance, when he says, Fast. Lib. vi. 5. Est Deus in Nobis, agitante calescimus ipso. and Dante took the wind out of the sails of Spinosa when he said that?
?And again, p, 58 :? There's not a strain to memory dear, Nor flower in classic grove ; There's not a secret note warbled here, But 'minds me of thy love.
Shakespeare might perhaps better accord with
Finds tongues in tree, books in the running Sermons iu stones and good in everything.
La gloria di Colni, che tutte muove, Per l'uuiverso penetra e, risplende M una parte piu, e meno altrove. *
Miss Braddon in Aurora
Floyd, Vol. I,