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The Rise and Progress of the Colonies of South Carolina and Georgia," that a frolling Moravian preacher came to Carolina, to the family of Dutartres, and filled their heads with wild and fantastic ideas, which, produced mischiefs, for which three persons were deservedly hanged in 1724. Now it happens, that none of the Moravian Brethren, whatever nonsense they may be accused of, ever caine to Carolina, till ten years after that date, at least. Mr. Garden, on whose exaltness the Author of that book relies, may, in 1738, have heard of a Moravian being at Pury burg, and confounded his ideas. Ceriaia it is, that none of the Moravian Brethren were in Carolina so early ; nor could I ever learn ihat any of them were used to spread Jacob Behmen's books, whatever their merit or demerit may be.
I am, Gentlemen, yours, &c. Feb. 5, 1780.
AN OLD CORRESPONDENT.
11 I see in your Monthly Review for Jan, 1780, an account of ad Article in the Philosophical Transactions, relating to a machine which Mr. Le Cerf, watchmaker at Geneva, pretends to be the in. ventor of. It was not of his invention; Mr. Louis Preudhomme, of Geneva, was the inventor. Le Cerf arrogated to himself the invention of an instrument he does not even understand, but has spoiled. Some papers relative to this machine, are in the hands of the Prefident of the Royal Society, and I believe Lord Mahon has, since the communication of Le Cerf's paper to the Royal Society, been informed by some of his friends at Geneva, of the true state of the facts relative to this machine ; but I know not whether the Royal Society, confiltent with its usages, can now do any thing in the matter. When the Transactions of the Geneva Society of Arts shall appear, the fact with regard to Le Cerf will, I am informed, be set in its true light. However, I should hope, Lord Mabon will, if he has received true and satisfactory information, give it to the Royal Society.
I am, Gentlemen, yours. Feb. 6, 1780.
sis In answer to an applicacion which we have received, relative to a passage in our Review for latt month; we need only refer our Correspondent to the late publications of Dr. Prieitley, for instructions relating to the methods of imitating, and even excelling, with respect to their medical qualities, the waters of Spa, and others of that class,
1f Dr. FRANKLIN's Political and Miscellaneous Pieces in our next. Allo Mr. Fell's Demoniacs.
The deign of a General Index to all the volumes of The Monthly Review, is postponed for the present.
R An accident has prevented Mr. Hey's Letter from appearing in this Month's Review. It will be given in our next.
By Jones, and others on this which the H
Art. I. Demoniacs. An Enquiry into the Heathen and the Scrip.
ture Doctrine of Dæmons. Io which the Hypo:hesis of the Rev. Mr. Farmer, and others on this Subject, are particularly confidered.
By Jotn Fell. 8vo. 5 s. Boards. Dilly. 1779. W H EN we began to read the preface to this publication,
V we flattered ourselves that we were about to perufe, at leaft, a candid discussion of the subject mentioned in the title. We suspected, however, before we had finished it, that we were miltaken : and now that we have gone through the whole work, we find ourselves obliged to consider Mr. Fell as a prejudiced and conceited writer, whose performance is equally des ficient in judgment and in candour.' We have had occasion, heretofore, to reprove Mr. Fell for his pertness and arrogance ; but he has not profited by our admonition. In his present publication, Mr. Farmer is treated with an air of superiority and contempt; which would have been unjustifiable, even if Mr. Fell had been as much superior to Mr. Farmer, with respect to judgment and learning, as Mr. Farmer is to most writers on this contraverted subject. The opinions of this Author are, in general, advanced with the confidence of infallibility, and the principles and spirit of those against whom he writes, are arraigned and condemned with equal severity and presumption. Mr. Fell has yet to learn, that modesty and humility are qualities necessary to give a writer of his moderate abilities and at. tainments a claiin to attention, and that judicious inquirers will not take confident assertions for conclufive arguments, but will ever suspect the soundness of that writer's judgment, and the goodness of his cause, who, inftead of proving that the system which he opposes is not well founded, is perpetually declaiming on its tendency and consequences, and inveighing against its abettors. Vol. LXII.
The The greater part of the publication before us is little more than a vehement declamation upon the tendency and confequences of denying the agency and influence of superior evil beings in the natural and moral world. To assert, that the world is under the sole government of God, and that no other Being has any power or dominion over the course of nature, is prepotteroully represented as Itriking at the foundation of both natural and revealed religion. The Reader may judge by the following instance, how well qualified our Author is, critically to examine, and fairly to state, the opinions of others.
Near the beginning of his first chapter, the design of which is to prove, that the greatest part of those Deities to whom the Heathens facrificed, were by them considered as exifting prior to the creation of man,' he has quoted a passage from the beginning of Hefiod's Theogony, containing a poetical and allegorical account of the origin of the immortals always exifting,' and of the earth in its present form, &c. In his remarks upon it, he says, among other things, " The ancient Greeks acknowledged one Supreine Deity, the Creator of the universe, whom they considered as incapable of any evil, and to whom they ascribed every perfection, while, at the fame time, they worshipped a multitude of other gods as intelligent beings, superior to the nature of human souls; and thought these deities to have been brought into being by the First Cause, along with the different parts of nature, prior to the existence of man. This is evident from those passages in Hefiod's Theogony, which we have just quoted.'.
Without inquiring into the truth of this observation, which may easily be contraverted, we have only to remark, that in the paflages quoted from Hesiod, no mention is made of a Supreme Deity, the Creator of the universe, incapable of evil, and possessed of every perfection,' or of any · First Cause, by whom other deities were brought into being.' Mr. Fell has several times in this chapter repeated this title, the Creator of the Universe, as given by the Heathen to their chief deity, but has not produced a fingle passage from any of their writers in support of his assertion. Ovid's Ille Opifex Rerum- Mundi Fabricator, will bear no such interpretation. It is doubtful at least, whether even those philosophers, who allowed that the world had a beginning, had any proper idea of a creation. Mr. Fell is confident that they had, and arrogantly declares, that 'to affert that he is called,' in a passage not quoted, the source of nature, who had once been a man, and that,' in another *, he is represented as being filled with terror, whom the Heathens considered as the Creator of the Universe, must be evident proof, either of
* Hor. lib. iii. 01. 4. V. 42, &c.
very great inattention to the language and design of ancient writers, or else of that kind of prejudice which admits of no cure.' We believe, that many persons whose attention and judgment are equal to Mr. Fell's, will still be of opinion, that Horace referred to the chief deity of the Heathen. Whether they or Mr. Fell be under the worse kind of prejudice, must be left to others to determine.
In the sequel of this chapter, he labours to prove, in op. position to Mr. Farmer, that the Pagans never confounded their natural with their hero gods, or even associated them together. His proofs are vague and inconclusive; but his assertions are as positive as if they had been supported by demonftration.
The chapter closes with the following paragraph, which we give our Readers as a specimen at once of the loose reasoning and of the illiberal sentiments of this writer. . Idolatry, indeed, is in its very nature the nurse of vice; because it cannot exist without a denial of the strongest moral obligations. Nothing can be more repugnant to reason, and the first principles of natural religion. That which setteth aside our moft solemn duties towards God, must, in its consequences, be pernicious to the interests of mankind; the religious worship therefore of any creature is the height of wickedness. Hence the extensive influence of this crime, which was a continued opposition to the light and dictates of nature, clearly proves all idolaters to have been void of true morality and religion. For if genuine virtue doth not include a resolute and steady observe, ance of those sacred duties which we owe to our Maker, it is an empty name, and not worth cultivating: if, indeed, we also understand by it, those highest moral obligations which are due to God, then genuine virtue never can be found but in the exercise of pure religion, undefiled with idolatrous practices. To talk therefore of virtuous Heathens, if idolaters be meant, is an absurdity, too great for language to express!
That idolatry and superstition have a tendency to corrupt the mind and manners, will readily be allowed; but that no virtuous characters are to be found amongst idolaters, is a position inconsistent with the common use of words, with all just notions of human nature, and with the united testimony of ancient and modern history,
The second chapter is entitled, The Testimony of Scripture cone arning Heathen Gods. The design of it is to prove, that the worship of dead men is never mentioned, or even referred to in the Old Testament; that that kind of idolatry was not practised in the neighbourhood of Judea, till after the time in which the books of the Old Testament were written; and consequently, that the only deities to which the Jews and neighbouring nations sacrificed, were the heavenly bodies, or thole which N 2
are called the natural and primary gods of the Heathen. To
This, however, is but one instance out of many, in which Mr. Fell has replied to Mr. Farmer in the same concise and con. vincing manner.
Mr. Fell's principal arguments in support of his own opinion are, that whenever the particular objects of idolatrous worship in Judea or the neighbouring countries are specified in the Old Testament, no others are mentioned than the sun, moon, planets, and hosts of heaven;' and that even the writers of the New Testament are ' so far from representing all the Pagan deities as nothing but dead men, that they do not take any notice of the worthip of deceased persons, even when reasoning with idolaters, where dead men were known to be worshipped.'