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SCOTS M A G A ZINE,
Sketch of the Life of Mæcenas 10 New PUBLICATIONS
The Delusions of the Heart.-A Tale 13 || Ode for the year 1796, by H. 7. Pye 54
Characters of some Writers during Thirty-Eight, by Mrs C. Smith
the reign of Q. Anne, compared Hawking, a Ballad, by P. Pindar
20 Copy of a Prayer by Q. Elizabeth 57
Defcription of a New Churn 34 Containing Dispatches from Sir J.
Col. Craufurd, &c.
An Account of the INand of Ceylon 39 thyft frigate
REVIEW OF NEW BOOKS. Incidental occurrences,
E D I N B D R G H :
And Martin & BAIN, No 184. Fleet-street, London.
NEW THEORY FOR THE RISE AND FALL OF THE BAROMETER.
MR DALTON, Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy Manchester, in an Efsay on the Variation of the Barometer, advances an hypothesis, which is engenious and somewhat new.
From fome observations on the barometer, at different elevations above the sea, he concludes that the height of the atmosphere does not perpetually vary, with the height of the column of quicksilver, but that the variation of the barometer depends on a change in the density of the lower strata of air. This change Mr D. supposes to arise from the influx of warm air containing much water, and therefore as is well known being lighter, into a body of cold and dry air ; by which means, part of the cold air is displaced, and the warm air diffused among the remainder; hence the weight of the column is diminished, its elasticity and bulk continuing the same: the reverse happens when dry air mixes with warm air, containing much water. On this principle, the author explains, with considerable address, the range of the barometer in different climates and seasons ;
will appear from the following specimen :
“ The barometer is often low in winter, when a strong and warm S. or SW. wind blows ; the annual extremes at Kendal for these 5 years have always been in January ; the lowest was in January 1789, about 2 weeks after the above mentioned high extreme ; it was accompanied with a strong S. or SW. wind, and heavy rain; the temperature of the air at the time was not high, being about 37°, but the reason was no doubt because one half of the ground was covered with snow ; it was therefore probably warmer before. Now the reason why the low extreme should have at that time, as well as at many others, foon succeeded the high extreme, seems explicable as follows : the extreme and long.continued cold preceding, must have reduced the grofs part of the atmosphere unusually low, and condensed an extraordinary quantity of dry air into the lower regions; this air was succeeded by a warm and vapoury current coming from the torrid zone, before the higher regions, the mutations of which in temperature and density are flow, had time to acquire the heat, quantity of matter, and elevation consequent to such a change below; these two circumstances meeting, namely, a low atmosphere, and the greatest part of it constituted of light vapoury air, occafioned the pressure upon the earth's surface to be so much reduced. Hence then, it should seem, we ought never to expect an extraordidary fall of the barometer, unless when an extraordinary rise has preceded, or at leat a long and severe frost; this, I think, is a fair induction from the foregoing principles ; how far it is corroborated by past observations, besides those just mentioned, I have not been able to learn."
A METHOD TO MAKE HENS LAY EGGS ALL THE WINTER.
GATHER nettle-tops when going to seed. Dry them, and lay them by for use." Mix some of this with a little broken hemp seed and pollard in barley meal, and give them two or three pellets or little balls of it daily throughout the
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M A G A ZINE,
For J A NU A RRY
ACCOUNT OF THE LIFE OF ADAM SMITH, L. L. D.
WITH A PORTRAIT.
DAM SMITH, Author of the friendly and generous. Even then he
was remarkable for those habits which Causes of the Wealth of Nations, was remained with him through life, of the son of Adam Smith, comptroller of speaking to himself when alone, and of the customs at Kirkaldy, and of Mar- abfence in company. garet Douglas, daughter of Mr Dou- From the grammar school of Kirglas of Strathenry. He was born at kaldy, he was sent, in 1737, to the uKirkaldy on the 5th of June 1723. niversity of Glasgow; there he remain.
An accident which happened to him, ed till 1740, when he went to Baliol when he was about three years old, is College, Oxford, as an exhibitioner on too interesting to be omitted in the ac- Snells' foundation. At that university, count of fo valuable a life. He had his favourite pursuits were mathematics been carried by his mother to Strath- and natural philosophy. These, howenry, on a visit to his uncle Mr Dou- ever, were certainly not the sciences in glas, and was one day amusing himself which he was formed to excel ; nor did alone at the door of the house, when he they long divert him from pursuits more was stolen by a party of that set of va. congenial to his mind. The study of grants who are known in Scotland by human nature in all its branches, more the name of tinkers. Luckily he was particularly of the political history of foon missed by his uncle, who, hearing mankind, opened a boundless field to that some vagrants had passed, pursued his curiosity and ambition ; and while them with what asistance he could find, it afforded scope to all the various powers till he overtook them in Leslie wood, of his versatile and comprehensive geand was the happy instrument of pre- nius, gratified his ruling paffion, of conferving to the world, a genius which tributing to the happiness and improvewas destined, not only to extend the ment of society. To this study, diverboundaries of science, but to enlighten lified at his leisure hours by the less seand reform the commercial policy of rere occupations of polite literature, he Europe.
seems to have devoted himself, almost Mr Smith received the first rudis entirely, from the time of his removal ments of his educution at the school of to Oxford; but he still retained, even Kirkaldy. Among the companions of in advanced years, a recollection of his his earliest years, he foon' attracted no- early acquisitions, which not only adtice
, by his passion for books, and by ded to the splendour of his converfa-
The weakness of his bodily con- of his favourite theories concerning the
residence at Oxford of seven years, he Sentiments," and in the “ Wealth of returned to Kirkaldy, and lived two Nations." years with his mother, engaged in study, There was no situation in which the but without any fixed plan for his fu- abilities of Mr Smith appeared to greatture life. He had been originally def. er advantage than as a professor. In tined for the church of England ; but delivering his lectures, he trusted elmoft not finding the ecclesiastical profession entirely to extemporary elocution. His suitable to his taste, he chose to con- manner, though not graceful, was plain sult, in this instance, his own inclina- and unaffected ; and as he seemed to be tion, in preference to the wishes of his always intere&ted in the subject, he never friends; and abandoning, at once, all failed to interest his hearers. His rethe fchemes which their prudence had putation as a profeffor, was accordingformed for him, he resolved to return ly raised very high, and a multitude of to his own country, and to limit his students, from a great distance, resortambition to the uncertain prospect of ed to the university, merely upon his obtaining, in time, some one of those account. Those branches of science moderate preferments to which literary which he taught became fashionable at attainments lead in Scotland.
this place : and even the small peculiIn the year 1748, he fixed his refi-. arities in his pronunciation, or manner dence at Edinburgh, and, during that of speaking, became frequently the ob. and the following year, read lectures on jects of imitation. rhetoric and belles lettres, under the While Mr Smith was thus distin., patronage of Lord Kaimes. About this guishing himself by bis zeal and ability time, he contracted acquaintance with as a public teacher, he was gradually many eminent men, particularly with laying the foundation of a more extenMr David Hume, which afterwards five reputation, by preparing for the grew into friendship; a friendship found press his fyftem of morals. The first ed, on both sides, on the admiration of edition of this work appeared in 1759, genius, and the love of fimplicity; and under the title of " l'he Theory of which forms an interesting circumstance Moral Sentiments," a work too well in the history of each of those eminent known, and too juftly estimated, to remen, from the ambition which both have quire either illustration or praise here. shown to record it to posterity. In the fame volume with the Theory of
In 1751, he was elected Professor of Moral Sentiments, Mr Smith published. logic in the university of Glasgow ; and a dissertation “On the Origin of Lanthe year following, he was removed to guages, and on the different Genius of the Professorship of moral philofophy in those which are Original and Comthe fame university. In this situation pounded." It is an Effay of great inhe remained thirteen years ; a period genuity, and on which the author himhe used frequently to look back to, as self set a high value ; but, in a general the most useful and happy of his life. review of his publications, it deserves It was indeed a ficuation in which he our attention less, on account of the was eminently fitted to excel, and in opinions that it contains, .ian as a spewhich the daily labours of his profeffion cimen of a particular fort of inquiry, were constantly recalling his attention which may be traced in all Mr Smith's to his favourite pursuits, and familiar- works, whether moral, political, or liizing his mind to thofe important fpe- terary. culations he was afterwards to commu- After the publication of the Theory nicate to the world.
of Moral Sentiments, Mr Smith reOf Mr Smith's lectures, while a pro- mained four years at Glasgow, dischargfeffor at Glasgow, no part bas been ing his official duties with unabated vipreserved, excepting what he himself gour, and with increasing reputation. published in “ The Theory of Moral Towards the end of 1768, Mr Smith
received an invitation from Mr Charles they fixed their residence for eighteen Towoshend, to accompany the Duke of months, and where, in addition to the Buccleugh on his travels; and the libe- pleasure of an agreeable society, Mo sal terms in which the proposal was Smith had an opportunity of extending made to him, added to the 'trong de- his information concerning the internal fire he had of visiting the continent of policy of France, by the intimacy in Europe, induced him to refign his of- which he lived with some of the princifice at Glasgow. With the connections pal persons of the parliament. which he was led to form, in confe- From Thoulouse they went, by a pretquence of this change in his fituation, ty extealive tour, through the south of he had great reason to be satisfied, and France to Geneva, where they passed he always spoke of it with pleasure and two months. About Christmas 1765 gratitude. To the public, it was not, they returned 10 Paris, and remained perhaps, a change equally fortunate, as there till O&tober following. The foit interrupted that ftudious leisure for ciety in which Mr Smith passed these which nature seems to have destined ten months, may be conceived by the him, and in which alone he could have advantages he enjoyed in consequence. hoped to accomplish those literary pro- of the recommendations of Mr Hume. jects which had fattered the ambition Turgot, Quelnai, Necker, d'Alembert, of his youthful genius.
Marmontel, Madame RiccoThe alteration, however, which from boni, were among the number of his this period took place in bis habits, was acquaintances; and fome of them he not withoat its advantages. He had continued ever after to reckon among hitherto lived chiefly witlsin the walls of his friends. an university; and although, to a mind It is much to be regretted, that he like his, the observation of human na- preserved no journal of this very
interest ture on the smallest scale is sufficient to ing period of his history; and such was convey a tolerably just conception of his averfion to write letters, that scarcewhat paffes on the great theatre of the ly any memorial of it exists in his corworld, yet it is not to be doubted, that respondence with bis friends. The exthe variety of scenes through which he tent and accuracy of his memory, in afterwards passed, must have enriched which he was equalled by few, made it his mind with many new ideas, and cor- of little consequence to himself, to rerected many of those misapprehensions cord in writing what he heard or faw; of life and manners, which the first de. and from his anxiety before his death Scriprions of them can scarcely fail to to destroy all the papers in his poffeffion, convey. But whatever were the lights he seems to have wished, that no matewhich his travels afforded him, as a stu• rials fhould remain for his biographers, dent of human nature, they were pro- but what were furnished by the lasting bably useful to him in a still higher de monuments of his genius, and the ex. gree, in enabling him to perfect that emplary worth of his private life. Syften of political economy, which it In October 1766, he returned to was now the leading object of his studies London with his noble pupil, whose to prepare for the public. After leav. impressions of the fatisfaction he reing Glasgow, Mr Smith joined the ceived from their tour, may be conceive Duke of Buccleugh at London, early ed from the following paragraph of a in the
year 1764; and set out with him letter written by his Grace to Professor for the Continent, in the month of Stewart : “ We returned to London, March following
after having spent near three years togeIn their first visit to Paris, the Duke ther, without the slightest disagreement of Baccleugh and Mr Smith employed or coolness : on my part, with every caly ten or twelve days ; after which advantage that could be expected from they proceeded to Thoulouse, where the society of such a man. We contiVol. LYIII.