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spring of a cultivated imagination ; for many of these are not only productive of delightful recreation to the nrind , but must ever rank among the finest efforts of human genius . However , well-arranged details of authen *
tic facts are better calculated to improve the understanding , and , in a high degree , to interest the best feelings of the heart ; to use the words of Bacon , they u come home to men ' s business and bosoms , " and often leave
impressions as indelible as they are important . The anecdote related of Mr . Hume lending Plutarch ' s Lives to a lady who was fond of novel-reading , and who , when she returned them , told him c < that it was the most
interesting novel she had ever read ; " and the effect which Madame ^ Roland states the same work to have made upon her mind , strikingly illustrate the great advantages of truth over fiction . The circumstance that has led me
to make these few remarks has been the inspection of some portraits of Dr . Priestley , George Walker and Gilbert Wakefield , recently published . * The images of these truly excellent men forcibly recalled to my mind the
many noble traits in their conduct ; and induced me again to peruse the interesting " Memoirs" of " the amiable , the intrepid , and the virtuous " Gilbert Wakefield , as he was so justly and felicitously designated by his friend the late Dr . Aikin . Whilst
enumerating in that work the characters of those excellent men who were his associates at Warrington Academy—he has portrayed , with a superior and masterly hand , the truly admirable one of George IValker ; and as Mr . Wakefield ' s book is now but rarely to be met with , I have transcribed this
fine piece ot composition , thinking you may not deem it unworthy of a place in your columes . Such an impressive and instructive lesson to the rising generation , who ^ nay have to pursue the same career , may induce them to emulate his truly eminent example ; and to cherish the same love of truth , freedom , virtue and science .
* Portraits of Dr . Priestley , George Walker , Gilbert Wakefield and I \ Jaiy Wollstonecraft Godwin , published by D . Eaton , High Holboni .
" The last whom I shall mention of this laudable fraternity , but not the least in love , is the Rev . George Walker , Dissenting Minister at Nottingham , and F . R . S . This gentleman , take him all in all , possesses , the greatest variety of knowledge with the 1
most masculine understandingI ever knew . He is in particular a mathematician of singular accomplishment . His treatise on the Sphere , long since published , and one upon the Conic Sections , preparing for the press , are
the vouchers of my assertion . His two volumes of Sermons are pregnant with the celestial fire of genius , and the vigour of noble sentiments . His appeal to the People of England upon the Subject of the Test Laws , would
not be much honoured by . my testimony in its favour , as the best pamphlet published on that occasion , were not this judgment coincident with the decision of Charles James Fox , who has declared to a friend of mine
the same opinion of its excellence . " But these qualifications , great and estimable as they are , constitute but a mean portion of his praise . Art thou looking , reader ! like ^ Esop in the fable , for a Man ? Dost thou want
an intrepid spirit in the cause of truth , liberty and virtue ; an undeviating rectitude of action ; a boundless hospitality ; a mind infinitely superior to every sensation of malice and resentment ; a breast susceptible of the truest friendship , and overflowing with the milk of human kindness ; au ardour , an enthusiasm in laudable
pursuits , characteristic of magnanimity ; an unwearied assiduity , even to his own hindrance , in public services ? My experience can assure thee that thy pursuit may cease , thy doubts be banished , and thy hope be realized : for this is the man . "
In the above are omitted a few phrases which appeared to me irrelevant , but in other respects the transcript is faithful to the very letter . W . MATTHEWS .
Sir , IN looking over my last communication , ( XX . 729 , ) I find that I have committed an error in transcribing" the Latin version of the passage quoted from Philostratus . Instead of writing serpentibus concreti , I have
14 Mr . Cogan ' s Correction of a Former Communication *
Monthly Repository (1806-1838) and Unitarian Chronicle (1832-1833), Jan. 2, 1826, page 14, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/mruc/issues/vm2-ncseproduct2544/page/14/