Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

CLARKE, HALL, IRVING, PORSON.

431

Supplementary List. GEORGE COMBE.—(1788–1858)an Edinburgh Writer to the Signet- Essays on

Phrenology; The Constitution of Man. JOHN ABERCROMBIE.—(1781–1844)– Aberdeen-an eminent Edinburgh physician

- The Intellectual Powers and the Investigation of Truth ; Philosophy of

the Moral Feelings. ALEXANDER Wilson.-(1766–1813)-originally a Paisley weaver-American

Ornithology. J. RAMSAY MÓCULLOCH.-(1790-still living)— Galloway-in the Stationery Office

Elements of Political Economy; Dictionary of Commerce; Statistical Account of the British Empire.

THEOLOGIANS AND SCHOLARS.

ADAM CLARKE, the son of a schoolmaster at Moybeg in Derry, where he was born in 1760, won great renown as an Oriental scholar and Biblical critic. He was a Wesleyan Methodist. A Commentary on the Bible and a Bibliographical Dictionary are his chief works. He died of cholera in 1832.

ROBERT HALL, born in 1764, at Arnsby in Leicestershire, was a distinguished Baptist preacher. Two of his leading publications were, An Apology for the Freedom of the Press, and A Sermon on Modern Infidelity. Perhaps his finest sermon was that upon

the Death of the Princess Charlotte. Hall died at Bristol in 1831.

EDWARD IRVING, a tanner's son, was born in 1792, at Annan in Dumfries-shire. Having assisted Dr. Chalmers in Glasgow, he removed to Cross Street Church, London, where his preaching created an extraordinary sensation. Many of his Sermons and Lectures were published. Charged in 1830 with heresy, he was soon deposed, and in 1834 died in Glasgow of consumption.

RICHARD PORSON, son of a parish-clerk in Norfolk, and born there in 1759, won great renown at Cambridge, where he was Professor of Greek. His critical pen was especially engaged upon Euripides, Homer, Æschylus, and Herodotus. Adversaria, or Notes and Emendations of the Greek Poets, was published after his death. In college-life he was notorious for deep drinking, and noted for his pungent sarcasms. He died in 1808.

432

TRAVELLERS AND TRANSLATORS.

TRAVELLERS. Books of travel and geographical discovery have come, within the last hundred years, to form a very large and important section of our literature. JAMES BRUCE of Kinnaird (17301794), the brave seeker for the sources of the Nile, and MUNGO Park (1771-1805), that young surgeon of Selkirkshire who explored the basin of the Niger and died in its waters, have left us narratives of their adventures. The works of the latter possess much simple literary grace. Lieutenant CLAPPERTON, RICHARD LANDER of Niger fame, BURCKHARDT a Switzer, and BELZONI an Italian, added greatly to our knowledge of Africa Dr. EDWARD CLARKE of Cambridge (1769-1822), a polished and observant scholar, wrote a valuable account of his travels through the East, including Russia, Tartary, Turkey, Greece, Palestine, and Egypt. FORSYTH, EUSTACE, MATHEWS, Lady MORGAN, and many others, contributed works on Italy. The Polar Regions have found describers in nearly all those brave officers who have tried to penetrate the icy seas. Among such, Parry, Ross, the lamented FRANKLIN, and SCORESBY the whale-fisher, stand out prominently. SILK BUCKINGHAM, in Asia Minor and Arabia ; MALCOLM, MORIER, OUSELY, and KER PORTER, in Persia ; FRASER, among the Himalayas ; STAUNTON, BARROW, and Ellis, in China ; Captain BASIL Hall, all over the Pacific and round its shores ; INGLIS, in Norway, France, Switzerland, and among the Pyrenees and Spanish Sierras—are a few of the leading travellers, who, during this era of our literature, added valuable works to the geographical shelf of our libraries.

TRANSLATORS.

The number of translating pens employed upon the Greek and Roman authors is beyond counting. PHILIP FRANCIS (died 1773) translated Horace and Demosthenes ; THOMAS MITCHELL (1783–

[blocks in formation]

1845), devoted his classic skill to Aristophanes; while in our own time Professor BLACKIE, besides Goethe's Faust, has given us Æschylus in an English dress; and THEODORE MARTIN, of Bon Gaultier fame, has lately translated the Odes of Horace and the lyrics of Catullus. The gentleman last named is also well known for his translations from the Danish and the German. In the latter he has been associated with Professor Aytoun.

A noble version of Dante by the Rev. HENRY FRANCIS CARY (1772–1844); Ariosto by WILLIAM ROSE (1775–1843); Calderon the Spanish dramatist by DENIS F. M-CARTHY ; the Lusiad of Camoens the Portuguese poet by WILLIAM MICKLE (1734–1788); and Poems from the same author by Viscount STRANGFORD (1780– 1855); Goethe's Faust and Schiller's Song of the Bell by Lord ELLESMERE (1800–1857); Bürger's Lenore, Lessing's Nathan, Goethe's Iphigenia, and Schiller's Bride of Messina, by WILLIAM TAYLOR (1765–1836); Russian, Polish, Magyar, Bohemian Poetry by Sir John BOWRING (born 1792); Norse and Icelandic Tales by DASENT,—are far from exhausting the list of our best translations. Bohn's Library contains a most valuable set of these works, almost all of the highest stamp.

[blocks in formation]
[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

FROM THE DEATH OF SCOTT IN 1832 A.D, TO THE PRESENT TIME,

CHAPTER I.

PRINTING BY STEAM.

The old press. Statement in the Times.
Earl Stanhope. König's machine.

Nicholson. Statistics.
An anxious night. Scene in Printing-House Square.

THE clumsy press, with which William Caxton and Wynkyn de Worde printed off their black-letter volumes in the Almonry or Red-pale at Westminster, continued with slight alterations to supply Britain with the works of Shakspere, Milton, Dryden, Pope, Goldsmith, Cowper, in a word, of all the writers who adorned our literature until the present century was some years old. Its great improver was Charles, third Earl Stanhope, who, born in 1753, devoted much of his aristocratic leisure to the study of machinery. The chief change he made was “in forming the entire press of iron, the plate being large enough to print a whole sheet at once, instead of requiring a double action.” The blank paper, being placed upon a frame-work, is folded down upon the newly inked types, which lie in a “form” upon a horizontal slab. Paper and type being wheeled, by the turning of a handle, under a heavy square plate of metal, this, called the platten, is, by means of a lever, brought down upon the paper, pressing it suddenly and strongly against the type. The printed sheet is wheeled

König. | Cowper and Applegath.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

KöNIG's MACHINE. 435

out; another takes its place; and so the work of the Stanhope press proceeds. A Saxon clockmaker, called König, who could find no Continental printers to take up the subject of an improved press, came to London with his plans about the year 1804. He found the presses there throwing off 250 single impressions in an hour; and setting steadily to work in the face of many difficulties, he persevered until he had constructed a printing machine capable of being worked by steam. Already, about the year 1790, a Mr. Nicholson had taken out a patent for printing by revolving cylinders, one of which was surrounded with type, and the other with soft leather, so that a sheet, passing between them, received the impression. It remained for König to apply this principle to the steam machine; and so considerable was his success, that in 1814 Mr. John Walter of the Times, alive to everything in the shape of literary progress, gave him a commission to set up his cylinders On the premises of the great Daily. This was a dangerous move, needing the utmost caution; for the infuriated pressmen, maddened by the prospect of hand-labour in printing being superseded by machinery, would have torn to pieces both inventor and invention, had they got any inkling of the work that was going on, not many yards away. When all was ready, the pressmen were told one night to wait for news expected from the Continent, and at six o'clock on a Nov. 29, dark November morning, Mr. Walter came in among 1814 them with the damp sheets in his hand, to tell them A.D. that the Times was already printed off by steam; that if they meant violence, he was ready for them; but that if they kept quiet, their wages should be continued until they got work elsewhere. Taken completely aback, they looked in amazement at the paper which he distributed among them, and without a struggle they yielded to the power of this friendly foe. And ever since that anxious night the clank of the engine and the rushing of white hot steam have been heard amid the multitudinous noises of Printing-House Square. The following announcement appeared in the Times of that

« ElőzőTovább »