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in a moment it reaches to all the surrounding objects. 21. It runs over plains, mountains, rivers, villages, cities, and whatever else lies within sight. 22. Not satisfied with such narrow limits, but disdaining all confinement, it imagines the most distant scenes, and apprehends objects beyond objects without end. 23. Equally unconfined, with respect to time, from the present instant it looks back on innumerable ages already past, and extends its thoughts to an eternity to come. 24. An infinite number of objects far and near, great and small, of all diversities, colours, and figures, are painted in its imagination. 25. The transactions of all nations, in all the regions of the earth, during all past ages, may be treasured up in its memory.
1. Dig-ni-ty, s. rank, grandeur, merit. 3. Te"-le-scope, s. a long tube fitted with glasses, through which
distant objects are viewed and brought nearer. Mi-cro-scope, s. an instrument by which very small objects are
magnified or shewn very large. Ma"-gic, s. the science which pretends to teach the knowledge of
the secret operation of nature. De-scry', v. to discover or discern.
Mi-nu'te, a. very small (either in bulk or consequence.) 4. A"-gri-cul-ture, s. the art of tilling and manuring the ground.
Pas-tu-ring, part. cattle feeding on pasture, grazing. 5. De-mon'-strate, v. to prove so as to convince and render in the 7. Pos-te"-ri-ty, s. those who are born and live after the succeeding
highest manner certain. 6. Ar ti"-cu-late, a. distinct.
generation. 14. E-le-ment, s. the earth, water, fire, and air, are called the
four elements. Figuratively, the first rudiments or grounds of any science are called elements. By the liquid element is bere
meant the sea.
Fa-ci"-li-tate, v. to make easy, or to clear from difficulty. 17. Ar-ro-gance, s. the assuming or claiming to one's-self more
honour merit than is our due. At-tri"-bute, v. to affirm as belonging to a thing, to ascribe as a
property, 18. Di-vi"-ni-ty, s. God, the Supreme Being.
In-spi-ra' ti-on, s. the infusion of ideas into the mind by some
superior power. (The act of drawing in the breath.) 20. Pro”-vi-dence, s. the care and interposition of the Deity, by
which all things are preserved. 21. Il-lus' trate, a. noble, excellent. 22. Mag ni"-ficent, a. grand in appearance.
1. MANKIND have provided, for the dignity, pleasure, and conveniency of life, a numerous train of mechanical arts.* 2. They measure their time accurately by dials, clocks, and watches. 3. They enlarge the objects of sight by telescopes and microscopes ; while through the machinery of glasses, as by magic, they descry the minute and concealed parts of nature; or force the most distant objects to appear in their presence, and expose themselves to view,
4. By planting, sowing, and all the various operations of agriculture and gardening; by pasturing, fishing, and hunting, and by all the arts of preparing food, mankind at once display their genius, and provide plentifully for the necessities and comforts of human life.
5. There is nothing so common as does not demonstrate the force of human genius. 6. It is this which has directed us so distinctly to communicate our thoughts to one another by articulate sounds, and to form a variety of languages. 7. Instructed hy the same happy genius, we easily convey our thoughts. to the absent, or transmit them to posterity by an alphabet of twenty-six letters. 8. By the art of printing, we multiply the copies of our thoughts without end. 9. None of all these things could have been brought to that perfection in which we find them, without the most profound sagacity and deepest attention.
* Are those which consist in the exercises of the body or hand, and make use of machines to attain their ends.
10. Nor is this all that human genius can do, to erect monuments of glory every where upon the land; it also performs wonders in the midst of the sea, and rides upon its proud billows. 11. By a curious machinery of wooden vessels, man floats upon the surface of the waters, and cuts his way among the waves. 12. Rivers, lakes, and seas, cannot stop his passage.
13. He crosses from cast to coast, and exchanges the commodities of different regions. 14. Instead of shutting mankind up, and preventing their mutual commerce, as in early times, the liquid element is forced to promote their commerce, and facilitate an intercourse among the most distant nations.
15. In a word, who can enumerate all those agreeable, curious, and useful arts, which are now so common in the world? To what lucky chance, or happy genius, shall we ascribe their invention ? 16. By what profound observation and sagacity must they have been carried to the high perfection at which they have at length happily arrived ! 17.. May it not be reckoned arrogance to attribute them to human genius alone? 18. Shall we not rather, with the ancients, ascribe them to the Divinity, and derive them from the secret inspiration of the All-wise, “Who is wonderful in counsel, and excellent in working ?”* 19. In truth, these excellent arts may justly be called divine; and while they display the capacity of the human mind, at the same time declare the perfections of the Creator. 20. For human art is nothing but a ray of the divine, it originally derived from the Father of lights, from whom every good and perfect gift cometh down, and is variously dispersed among the innumerable objects of his providence.
21. But, whatever display of the Divine wisdom and energy is made by those arts which are known among men, there is a more illustrious display of wisdom in the works of nature. 22. Compared with the divine, all human arts vanish. The largest and most glorious machines, contrived and erected by human skill, may be counted as nothing, when laid in the balance with the magnificent system of the natural world : in which so many and such various bodies, both great and small, have performed their different operations during so many ages with such an admirable steadiness and regularity, as manifests an energy, wisdom, beauty, and grandeur, beyond expression and imagination.
* Isaiah, chap. xxviii, 24.
Sloth contrasted with Industry.
Sloth, s. idleness, laziness. Also the name of an animal in
South America. Con-trast'ed, pret. set in direct opposition. 1. Im-pel-led, pret. driven on, obliged. 3. Fort-night, so a contraction of fourteen nights, the space of two
weeks. 4. Des'-ti-tute, a. deprived of, in want of. 5. Tor'-pid, a. benumbed of motion or sensation.
Im-per-cep-ti-ble, a. incapable of being perceived either by the
eye, mind, or other senses. 6.' As-cend', v. to mount upwards ; (to advance in knowledge.) 7. Sus -te-nance, s. food, any thing that supports nature. 12. As-sem'-ble, v. to meet together.
So-ci'-e-ty, s. the union of many in one common interest. 13. E-rect', a. to build, to raise in a straight line.
Dam, s. a mole, bank, or any other obstruction to confine water.
stands; here the bottom of the bank is called the base. 14. Dike, s. a mound or bank raised to keep water from overflowing,
or a channel made to receive water.
Mole, s. mound or bank. 15. Per-pen-di"-cu-lar, a. straight or upright. 16. Pro-ject', v. to jut out. 20. Pe'-nu ry, s. want, poverty.
]. The sloth is an animal of South America, and so ill formed for motion, that a few.paces are often the journey of a week; and so indisposed to move, that it never changes its place but when impelled by the severest stings of hunger. 2. He lives upon the leaves, fruit, and flowers of trees, and often on the bark itself, when nothing besides is left for its subsistence. 3. As a large quantity of food is necessary for its support, he generally strips a tree of all its verdure in less than a fortnight. 4. And