Imágenes de páginas

Spain, considered with relation to their different climates, productions, and the manners of their inhabitants. Foreigners are admitted among the candidates ; and the dissertations may be written either in Spanish, French, English, Portuguese, or Latin.

The prize of 1500 rials, left by R. P. Pedro de Torres, the object of which was to assign the causes that favour the multiplication of caterpillars, not having been adjudged, the Society have substituted for it a prize of 2000 rials, and a medal of gold, four ounces in weight, for a memoir, in which the author iuft establith, by inconteftible authorities, the æra when mules • were first employed in Europe in Labour, that in which this Custom was introduced into Spain, the Time when it was inoit common, and the Influence which it has had on Crops and on Population.' The memoir must be divided into four parts ; in the firit the author is expected to enquire, ift, how the earth was cultivated before the introduction of mules : 2. whether oxen were employed, and, if so, how they were fed, in places where at present there are no pastures ; 3. by what means the paltures were renewed ; 4. the advantages and disadvantages which would ensue to the kingdom if oxen were employed in labour. In the second part, if the author proves that oxen are neither to be admitted or rejected generally, he is expected to point out the nature of the grounds best adapted to thein, and that of the foil, where mules may moit advantageously be employed. In the third part, the author is expected to point out the real itate of the commerce between Spain and France relating to mules, and the advantages which are drawn from that commerce : 2. he must examine what benefits Spain can draw from a similar cominerce, with oxen. In the fourth part, he will compare the respective advantages of mules and oxen, considered relatively to their propagation, their nourishment, their diseases, the length of their lives, and their use after death. These inemoirs must be addressed, with the usual forms, to D. Polycarpe, Saenz de Texada Hermofo, secretary to the Society.

With respect to the prize which is to be distributed on faino Charles's day of the fame year, the Society proposes a gold medal of four ounces for a differtation which shall Thow, in the molt faristactory manner, the prejudice which the perpetual intail of a funded debt will bring on a kingdom; and which will point out the best means to check and repair this misfortune most conveniently, without producing greater evils. Memoirs will be received till the end of August.

As an introduction to Spanish literature, we shall content our. selves with announcing two great works, and explaining, in some degree, their objects and contents : the one is materials for an interesting part of their national history; the other, an attempt to complete the Spanish Flora.

For near seven years a society of learned Spaniards have been collecting the chronicles relating to the history of Caftile, from


Alonzo VIII. in the year ! 126, to the union of the two great monarchies in 1492, a period of 366 years. These chronicles have either remained in manuscript, in the archives of great families, or have been partially publifhed, with particular, and sometimes interested views. The publications are now very scarce; and not valuable. Many faults have occurred from the inattention of transcribers, and some perhaps from worse motives. The design of this publication is not new : it has been already undertaken, but again neglected. In this attempt, the best copies are chosen, collated with great care, enriched with what occurs in other papers, on good authorities, and explained by the writings of cotemporary authors. They are published in quarto; the print and paper are beautiful : the Spanish national works are generally executed with uncommon care. Where the author's orthography is uniform, it is continued; where it varies, it is brought as near as possible to the present state. The chronicles already published relate to Juan I. and II. Don Alonzo VIII. D. Pedro, D. Henri II. and III. of Castile. The chronicle of D. Pedro Nigno, relating to two voyages, undertaken by the command of Henri III. on the Mediterranean and Atlantic, are peculiarly interesting, and have been hitherto very little known.


We may just observe, that the eleventh volume of instructive and curious memoirs 6 on Agriculture, Commerce, Industry, Oeconomy, and Experimental Chemistry,' is begun. The first piece is by D. Michel Jerôme Suarez, on Experimental Chemistry: the author treats of all kinds of earthen-warc and porcelains, particularly on those manufa&ured in England. He explains, with some success, the nature of the compolition ; but has not succeeded equally well with the glazings. It is this part which is now brought almost to perfection in this kingdom.

The Spanish Flora occurs to us at present, in consequence of the recent publication of the fifth and fixth volumes. The work was originally undertaken by D. Joseph Quer, and his name is continued at the head of these volumes. Since his death it is configned, we find, to Don Cazimir Gomes de Ortega. Quer was a judicious botanist, and an able physician: to him we owe the introduction of some new remedies, which have been occafionally useful ; but what fullies his fame, as the historian of the Spanish Flora, is his attachment to Tournefort, and his outrageous enmity to Linnæus. Ortega has followed the alphabetic plan, and the system of the French naturalist, to give the work the necessary uniformity, but has added the trivial names from Linnæus, the synonyms of C. Bauhine, and many others. We perceive that the descriptions are extensive, and the medical properties numerous, but seldom, except in the case of the uva urfi, introduced by Quer, taken from modern authors. The foxglove, for initance, is recommended in epilepsy and schrophula, from Hulse and Parkinson ; the gratiola, from Lobel and Boulduc. The species are very numerous, but varieties are too



often admitted into the same rank. The engravings are indiffer ent, and the plates represent chiefly common plants. The mucizonia is almost the only uncommon plant, but of this Ortega published a separate account in 1772.

We cannot conclude a botanical subject, though we mean not to infringe the articles of the Union, by considering Scotland as a foreign kingdom; but since we cannot find a filter place, we shall conclude with shortly mentioning the death of Dr. Hope, late professor of botany at Edinburgh. He established the prefent botanical garden in that university; and, by an unwearied industry, with perpetual attention, he brought i', in a few years, to great perfection. Though he had not particularly cultivated this science in his early youth, he became a skilful and wellinformed botanist. He was eager in the pursuit, and anxious to inspire others with the same ardour. He first intrudu, ed the Linnaan system into Scotland, for his predeceffor taught that of Tournefort. He had made large collections for a Flora Scotica, which he generously communicated to Mr. Lightfoot; and had made some considerable advances, part of which lie before us, in improving the natural method of arrangement. He was modeft, humble, and diffident; but actively benevolent, and chearfully communicative. Many have attained a more extensive reputation, but few have better deserved it.

Disertatio Botanica de Sida. Sccunda Disertatio Botanica, de Malva

Serra, Malope, Lavatera Althæa, Alcea, & Malacra. Auctore
A. . Cavanillos. Hispano, Valentino, Paris. F. Didot &
S we have related the substance of the abbé's memoir, read

before the Royal Academy of Sciences at Paris, we shall conclude the subject by some account of his two Dissertations. They are, in other refpects, botanical works of great importance. The first was published in the beginning of the year 1785, the second in 1786. The sida abutilon of Linnæus, is the althæa Theophrasti, flore luteo (C. Bauhin), än inhabitant of both the Indies; but the abbé takes a larger scope. He examines all the species of fida, and mentions some of the varieties. He corrects the specific characters; and, in his Mantiffa, published in the second Dissertation, adds to them a number of fpecies. At the end of this Supplement he deferibes five new species of fida, one of which has a capsule, containing five feeds, which makes a new rank among the numerous species of this genus.

The second Differtation is a continuation of the malvaceous plants; and we find eighty plants of this family, and two others from the pentandria. He purposes to examine all the monadelphia, to correct the characters of the genera already known, to make new ones, and to add all the new species which he can procure. He draws his own figures ; and the accuracy with which those in the Differtations before us are executed (twenty



three in number), show that he is well fitted for this part of his talk.

The abbé begins with the mallows, and describes forty-eight fpecies, of which twenty-four'åre new ones. He admits, with Linnæus, the principal generic character, drawn from the cap. fules disposed annularly, and from the exterior calyx, commonly compofed of three folioles ; but our author first observed, that, among the mallows, there were some whole fruit was composed of bilocular capsules. The herbaria of Juffieu, la Mark, Thouin, Dombey, Sonnerat, and Commerson, have greatly affifted him ; but he has himself cultivated many fpecies.

Our author next proceeds to a new genus, called serra, frong a Spanish botanist. It contains but one species, for which he is indebted to fir Joseph Banks. This genus the abbé confiders as a link between the mallows and the cotton-tree, but different from both : for, first, it has a double calyx, not deciduous, the external one composed of three large leaves ; the internal one very small, of a single leaf, in five divisions ; fecondly, a malraceous corolla ; thirdly, a single germ, terminating in a style, with five curved stigmata ; fourthly, a tube which covers the germ, and supports on its upper part ten short stamina, and as many kidney-shaped antheræ ; fifthly, between the base of this tube and the calyx, it has four or five little membranes ; fixthly, an oval fruit coiitaining ten oval seeds. The author could not determine whether it was a single capsule, with five divisions, though he leans to this opinion.

The malope, the third genus, distinct from the malva by its capsules being raised up into a head, is enriched with two new fpecies, characterized with care.

The fourth genus, lavatera, contains ten species, which the author has successively examined and determined.

In the next genus, styled althæa, M. Cavanilles has united the atthæa and alcea of Linnæus, because the fruit is the fame in both ; and that part of the character derived from the divition of the exterior calyx will not distinguish them, since it frequently varies in each genus. Linnæus knew but of two species of althæa, and four of alcea, Our author has described ten.

The last genus of malvaceous plants described by M. Cava. nilles, is the malacra, and it contains three species. He corrects an error of Linnæus, who had said that this genus had but five stigmata : the abbé always found ten, with five capfules. He allo corrects the character of the calyx, fince, in two species, besides the conmon calyx, each flower has two others.

The next genus has no connection with the malvaceous plants : it is a new one, perealy ditinct, and connected with che folanums. He calls it Triguera, from his friend D. Candi de Marie Trigueros, a Spanish botanist. It contains two fpecies, cach of which are indigenous in Spain. It has a calyx, with five divisions; a corolla, bent at its border, and divided into five


lobes, almost round; five stamina, inserted into a denticulated membrane, which surrounds, and sometimes covers the germ, as many fagitated antheræ, leaning towards each other, to form a cone; the superior gerin is bilobated, and surmounted by a style, terminated by a itigma; the germ is quadrilocular, con. taining two offeous feeds, stuck with points, and in each feed is an almond.

The abbé announces a third differtation on malyaceous plants, which is to contain eight genera.

Six are new ones, for which he is indebted to the herbary of Commerson. He gives the ge. neric character of each, and, under the dombeya, points out a mistake in Linneus' description of pentapete phænicea. M. Heritier, in a new work, entitled, - Stirpes novæ Descriptionibus, & Iconibus illustratæ,' which we have not been able to procure, has also a genus of dombeya. We fear the custom of giving names to plants, taken from those of botanists, may produce some confufion. In this instance, M. Heritier's dombeya is of the class didynamia, and cannot be the same with M. Ca. vanilles'. We are sorry to add, that the declining health of M. Dombey, occafioned by great fatigue, and ten years refidence in Peru, will prevent him from publishing his discoveries. Those in the botanical department are intrusted to M. Heritier.

[ocr errors]



POLITICAL. The Principles of British Policy, contraßed with a French Alliance,

8νο. .

Is. 6d. Debrett. *HIS pamphlet consists of Five Letters, under the signature

of a Whig Member of Parliament to a Country Gencle

The author professes to regard the treaty with France as infinitely more a question of politics than of commerce ; but without examining the juftness of this remark, as of no great importance, we shall proceed to consider his sentiments, which, we must acknowlege, are a little extraordinary. His proposition, he tells us, is this, viz. ' that our political interests were never more opposite to those of France than they are now; that her views have constantly been directed againit the common libere ties of mankind; that her inclination to annihilate our importance in the scale of nations, was never more manifest ; that our differences take their source from no cause which can admit of mutual accommodation ; and are, therefore, unfit objects for a Greaty of commerce, in which we cannot safely engage with France, until she gives some solid security that she will disturb the peace of Europe no more.' What the author means by differences, when not one, so far as we know, fubfifts at present between the two nations, we are at a loss to determine; and VOL. LXIII. Feb. 1787.



« AnteriorContinuar »