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Pissis.' This is an excellent little paper, and draws the balance between Mayow and his contemporaries with great judgement. The author'shows that Mayow was, as we have already observed, noticed by them, particularly by Hales and Baglivi; but the preponderance of Hales's credit obscured that of Mayow; and Baglivi's theory of the loss of elasticity was considered as a more satisfactory theory than the loss of the nitrous aërial spirit. The connexion of the loss of elasticity with the loss of caloric, though not known to Hales, was hinted at by Seneca, who however cannot pretend, as some hasty undistinguishing inquirers have supposed with respect to Mayow, to have anticipated every modern discovery.
ART. IV.-Mémoires de l'Institut National des Sciences et des Arts. Memoirs of the National Institute of Sciences and Arts. (Continued
from Vol. XXXIII. p. 486.) OUR last article commenced with the second volume of the class of Moral and Political Sciences; and we advanced to Memoir VI. inclusively. We now continue our analysis, which will include the remainder of the volume.
· VII. On the State of the French Marine at the Beginning of the Fourteenth Century, and on the Kind of Tactics at that Time employed in Sea-Fights. By M. Legrand d’Aussy.'
This memoir is altogether drawn from a poem, or rather a history in rhyme, of an engagement in the year 1304 on the Zealand coast, between Guy de Namur, count of Flanders, who had usurped great part of the territory of Jean d'Avènes, count of Holland and Hainaut, and the French fleet, under the command of Renier Grimaud (Grimaldi) a Genoese captain, or rather corsair, of great courage and reputation, who was enticed into the service of the French marine by Philip the Fair, at that time engaged in a war against Flanders, and consequently a close and powerful ally of the count of Holland. The period of the battle comprises about sixteen hours, and extends through an entire night. In the ensuing morning, the combatants manifest a double degree of vigour; and, in the issue, Guy de Namur is taken prisoner amidst a prodigious slaughter of his own forces; and the victory of course is amply decided in favour of Grimaldi. This historical poem was written by Guillaume Guiart, a native of Orléans, and was fantastically entitled Branche aux Royaux Lignages. Its versification is totally destitute of merit; but its descriptions appear to be accurate; and the only use which is made of it in the present instance, is to convey some idea of the naval tactics of the century referred to. Prior to the æra of Francis I. the French
heights, roages, or plismen;
had no established marine whatever, nor even conceived the necessity of such an establishment. As the forests of Germany were infested with vast bodies of banditti, the seas were in like manner infested with vagrant fleets of corsairs, several of which frequently united themselves under the command of one intrepid and celebrated chief ; and their services were to be hired by any power who meditated a descent on a neighbouring territory, or who in any other way stood in need of naval assistance. The present French and Flemish fleets were, for the most part, composed of such detached and independent squadrons; and in their attack and defence they retained much of the old Roman mode of combating. Vessels of every descrip- . tion, large and small, ships, galleys, boats, were all brought into action at one time: the larger were laced together for mutual support, and to prevent the possibility of their separation. They were lined on the decks with a promiscuous crowd of archers, slingers, and swordsmen; while strong and gradually diminishing stages or platforms surrounded the masts at different heights, loaded with slingers and bowmen alone : and for the defence both of the deck and platforms, or turrets, as they might more properly be called, a breast-work was thrown around of a kind of sail-cloth, which obviously afforded protection rather by concealment than resistance. Every ship thus manned resembled an oriental pagoda; and, in some instances, the turrets constructed around the masts were so lofty as to give the body of troops there situated a full command of the walls about to be assaulted, and an opportunity of employing their catapults against the interior of the fort or city. This mode of assault was by no means unknown to the ancient Romans. It was adopted, as most of our readers will recollect, on a wonderfully extensive scale, by Marcellus, during the siege of Syracuse ; at which time nothing but the superior skill of Archimedes preserved the city from the destruction that was menaced. We do not find, however,--and it is almost the only deviation we have observed from the instruments introduced into the Roman marine,--any notice taken of the corvus Duillii, or machine invented by the consul of that name, for the purpose of boarding; of which we have given a brief account in our review of M. Le Roi's Memoir *, respecting the advantages to be derived from the re-adoption of that instrument, as well as of several other facts and circumstances common to the naval establishment of that celebrated republic. We may naturally therefore conclude, that, notwithstanding the praises lavished upon ít by several historians, it was found too cumberous and inconvenient for general utility, and was, in consequence, gradually relinquished.
allo se bodgonstructed orient
enaced. des preserved ich time nothing
* See our 3 isi volumo, p.497.
coute indeed white author Fitri, in his Hiefinition,
rineissart and the has not hepat extraordinary
The greater part of this memoir consists of remarks upon the descriptions of the poet by the writer of the article; but they contain nothing either new or extraordinary, and but very little indeed which has not heretofore been advanced both by Froissart and the author of the Histoire générale de la Marine, and especially by De Vitri, in his Historia Orientalis.
" VIII. On the Origin of Law, its Definition, its different Kinds, and the Language which appertains to it. By M. · Baudin (des Ardennes).
• One common will, founded upon a reciprocity of interests, binds every member of each political society mutually to promise and demand protection against violence; and this protection,' says M. Baudin, is the law,-anterior, at least in idea, to every authority which is charged with its execution :
: “ Jura magistratusque legunt, sanctumque senatum.” In this verse of Virgil, continues he, we perceive the natural order by which the formation of the law precedes the choice of those who are to apply it; and these two operations successively emanate from the same source. It presents to us an infant colony, proceeding, in its collective capacity, first of all to discover what laws are best adapted to its well-being, and afterwards what men it shall invest with the possession of public powers.' . This is the common mode of speculating, and ought un. questionably to be the common mode of practice. But if we refer to historical facts, we shall not find that this sort of social compact, which so fascinates us in the pages of Plato and Rousseau, has any degree of universal application. The origin of almost every nation is immersed in such inscrutable obscurity, that we can seldom acquire any certainty of information. That of the Romans is perhaps as well known to us as any. But when Romulus called to his vagrant standard the different hordes of banditti that infested the country around him, marshaled them into some degree of order, and promulged his laws for their obedience, we find but little of that general collection of the public will, so perpetually referred to by the present writer, and those of the same school. It is obvious that Romulus was endowed with talents far superior to any of his comrades. The axiom of the immortal Bacon, that knowledge is power, will stand as long as the world endures; and it was by the possession of this intrinsic power alone, and not by the consent of the brigandine hordes who flocked to his banners, that he seated himself in the possession of the supreme authority. Could we trace the origin of the first associations of mankind in different quarters of the earth, we should probably be able to resolve most of them into similar facts; we should see little or nothing of mickle-gemotes or wittena-gemotes of the popular will, expressed either individually or representa tively; but should trace the first cause of association to the superior craft or wisdom of some individual, who united his fellow barbarians into one class for the purpose of private ambition, or perhaps of private revenge.
M. Baudin considers the science of the law under the various branches of criminal, civil, military, fiscal, and political, strictly so called, or that which regulates the interior police of a state. Many of his observations under the fourth of these divisions, the fiscal or financial, are entitled to much attention, and espea cially those which relate to the principle of levying taxes. We agree with him also in another point, as to the advantage which would necessarily result from a uniformity of legislation, and the application of the same laws to every part of the most extensive empire. But, while we concede the principle, we are compelled to assert its inadmissibility in a variety of cases : and we need only instance, as an example, the immense possessions of the British East-India company. Something of the principle here contended for was at one time attempted in their Asiatic dominions, by the universal introduction and application of Enge lish legislation ; but so widely different are the political views, the national prejudices, practices, and religions, of the natives in the different provinces, that the attempt was soon and wisely re. linquished; and a new system of law, founded upon principles appealed to by all, or admitting the operation of local prejudices and customs, the common law of the cast or province, was introduced in its stead. ."
On the subject of legal language, our author affords us some very happy and judicious remarks; and we trust his countrymen. will profit by them in their present infantine institutions. The redundancy and periphrasis which we are perpetually meeting with at home--the absurd use of obsolete terms, the meaning of which has been long totally unknown to the people, and is scarcely recognised by the profession irself-those barbarisms and obscurities which run through every page, and, instead of adjusting, lay the foundation for additional disputes—are a dis-' grace to the age in which we live. A lawyer, observes M. Baudin, in preparing his brief, ought to be as cautious in the selection of his terms as Boileau was accustomed to be in that of: his rhymes. Doubt would then be discarded, and one word would often answer the purpose of a dozen.
IX. On ancient National Sepultures, and the external Ornaments which at different Times have been employed; on Embalmings; on the Tombs of the French Kings in the heretoforenamed Church of St. Germain; and on a Project of Interment for the Departments. By M. Legrand d’Aussy.? · This is a voluminous memoir, occupying not less than 270 quarto pages. Our author opens the bowels of the earth with App. Vol. 34.
all the hardihood of a mineralogist, and often affords us more entertainment. The title divides this bulky communication into three parts. Of these the first, relating to ancient national sepultures, is subdivided into five chapters 1. On sepultures common to the ancient nations of Europe and Asia. 2. On such as were in use among the Gauls, and the barbarous hordes who invaded Gaul. 3. We have in this chapter the different modes of sepulture cominon to the Gauls, divided into six different epochs. Of these, the first mounts up to a period of very early antiquity, and even of savage life; prior indeed, in our author's opinion, to the invention of tools for excavating the earth, when, merely in consequence of such want of conveniences, the dead body was uniforınly burnt, and the ashes covered over with unhewa stones. To this æra, wishing, like the Scandinavian historians, to designate it by some peculiar appellation, M. d'Aussy, somewhat whimsically, gives the name of the primitive age of fire. His second epoch he entitles the age of hillsalluding to the excarations inade in their prominences for the reception, not of the body itself, but of the bones and ashes collected after it had been burnt, and deposited in an urn or other receptacle : consequently this second age implies some considerable acquaintance with mechanics and metallurgy. The third epoch comprises sepulcral hills, without the use of burning, which our author imagines to have had a very long duration, though he favours us in no instance with any thing like dates, or advances beyond conjecture. His fourth age is that of funeral piles. His fifth, of sarcophagi, or stone coffins interred in the bosom of the earth. His sixth the age of mausolea, including sepulcral monuments of the present day..
· The fourth chapter is devoted to the subject of embalmings, which is again divided into three sections. Of these, the first relates to the mummy of Auvergne. The Auvergnois are well known to have been peculiarky, happy in the art of embalming at a very carly period, and infinitely to have excelled the Egyptian artists: for, while the latter, by withdrawing the brains and entrails, and shriveling the limbs, reduced the body to a mere skeleton, enveloped in a kind of adhesive cere-cloth, the former preserved every individual particle of the body in its just and natural symmetry, and presented, in the person of the embalmed, an image rather of sound and refreshing sleep, than of death and desolation of form. The preparation employed for this purpose, like many other ingenuities of the carlier ages, we are now tocally ignorant of, notwithstanding our general prelensions to superior knowledge and information; nor has any fair and decisive.exe ample of the Auvesgnian mammy reached the present day: whence it is but just, however, to conclude, that, though the artists of that country embaloned with greater elegance. than those of Egypt, their preparations were less. durable. The