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the Universe ; however generally touch our atmosphere, or fall upon they have been apprehended the it by its own gravity, the vapours causes or forerunners of evil, there belonging to the comet, brought from are not wanting philosophers, and the most distant and different rethose among the best and most reli- gions, might, by mixing with our gious ones, who appear to consider air, produce in it an alteration very them rather as instruments of the sensible, especially by animals and beneficence of the Deity. This vegetables, and possibly prove desseems particularly to be the opinion tructive to terrestrial constitutions. of sir Isaac Newton. He conjec- And Mr. Whiston imagines, that tures, that the tails of comets are comets seem fit to cause vast muta. intended to supply the diminution of tions in the planets, particularly in moisture on our earth and the other bringing on them deluges or confiaplanets, and may in a great measure grations, according as the planets furnish that most subtile and excel. pass through their atmospheres in lent part of our air which is requi- their descent or ascent to the sun. site to the life of all things : for as If these conjectures appear founded these tails are undoubtedly the va upon the best established theory, or pours exhaled from the gross at- the most certain experience, they inospheres of comets by the action must no doubt be considered as proof the sun, they will dilate as they bable: but surely, as to the pretendascend, and will gradually be dis. ed concurrent testimony of all ages, persed through all the planetary re- it is neither strictly universal nor gions; and therefore, in consequence uniform ; and if the mere consent of of the power of gravitation and at- many nations and centuries is to intraction, will be gathered into and duce us to the reverence and belief absorbed by any planets that may be of popular opinions, we shall be nearest to them, and stand most in obliged to receive the grossest and need of their assistance. The bodies most impious absurdities in philosoof the comets may also be as ser phy, in religion, and even in mora. viceable to our system as their tails, lity. especially the bodies of those which have the greatest approximation to the sun, since these may possibly at their perihelion move within the so For the Literary Magazine. lar atmosphere, and from its resistance be somewhat retarded: if so, at every revolution they will meet with a greater resistance, and be IMMANUEL KANT, the subyet more retarded, and consequently ject of the present memoir, known at length fall into the body of the and so highly esteemed on the contisun, and supply any decrease which nent for his metaphysical acuteness, may have happened in that vast was born on the 22d of April, 1724, globe of fire by the continual emis- at Konigsberg, in Prussia, near sion of light and heat for so great a the Saddle-street, in the suburbs. number of centuries.
His parents held a respectable If it still be imagined, with Dr. though not high rank in life, his faGregory, a deference due to the ther being a saddler, of the name of common suffrages of all ages to con- John George Kant, the latter, sider comets as having a pernicious though born at Memel, was origiinfluence upon our earth, such influ- nally descended from a Scots fa. ence cannot possibly, I think, be of mily. any partial or political nature, but Kant's intellectual qualifications must be some physical disorder or were by no means of an ordinary mischief to the whole globe. For stamp. He possessed an extraordi. instance: Dr. Gregory supposes, nary faculty of retaining words, that if the tail of a comet should and representing absent things to
MEMOIRS OF IMMANUEL KANT.
A similar ques.
himself. He often cited long passages his mind. All his philosophical from ancient and modern writers, conceptions flowed from the inexparticularly his favourite poets, Ho- haustible source of his own reason. race and Virgil, Hagedorn and Bur. The facility with which he deduced ger. He could describe objects that every thing from his own reflections, he read of in books, even better gave him at length such a habitual than many who had seen them: familiarity with himself, that he thus, for example, he once gave a could not properly enter into the description, in the presence of Lon- sentiments of others. He found all doner, of Westminster bridge, ac in his own mind which answered cording to its form and structure, his purpose, and had, therefore, no length, breadth, height, and dimen- occasion for foreign resources. sions of all its parts, so that the En With all this depth of reflection, glishman enquired how many years Kant was, notwithstanding, a wit. he had been in London, and whether He had frequent and sudden strokes he had dedicated himself to archi- of ready wit at hand, to give a grace tecture? Upon which he was assur and interest to his conversation, ed, that Kant had neither passed writings, and lectures.
He was a the boundaries of Prussia, nor had general admirer of all that polishes been an architect.
and beautifies the graver topics ; tion was put to him by Brydone, and, in his lectures, he studied to to whom he unfolded, in con- acquire an agreeable delivery, with versation, all the relative situations an easy flow of words. His manner of Italy. By the aid of his quick of address, however, was peculiarly observation and clear conception, he well adapted to the nature of his was enabled to converse with admi. discourse.
On morality he could rable accuracy on chemical experi- move his audience to tears. He ments, although he had never once knew how to give the dry subwitnessed any
process in chemistry; jects of logic and pneumatics an and did not begin the theoretical easy turn, that rendered them even study till after the sixtieth year of amusing ; but on metaphysics he his age. Dr. Hagen, the great che was abstruse, and, for beginners, mist, could not forbear expressing not perfectly intelligible. He was his perfect astonishment, while con sometimes carried, by a too great versing with Kant at dinner on the minuteness, away from the main subject, to find any one able, by subject, to which he was then forced simple reading, to make himself abruptly to return. He was also such a perfect master of a science liable to be confused by the smallest so difficult.
trifles. One day, in particular, he But the most prominent feature discovered a remarkable embarin Kant's intellectual character, was rassment, and confessed afterwards, the accuracy with which he analys- that one of the audience who had a ed the most complex ideas. Nothing coat with a button wanting had been escaped the scrutiny of his intellec- the cause of his discomposure, from tual eye. Whatever was perceivable the involuntary attraction of his eyes to others in the moral and physical and mind to the defective quarter. world became manifest to hiin. He We must not forget to view Kant discovered, therefore, so easily, the in another relation, which does hoincongruities of other men's senti. nour to his heart: this was, his ments, and traced, with unspeaka. warm and steady attachment as a ble precision, their errors to the true friend. Professor Rhunken was the
He had likewise an asto- bosom friend of his youth. This nishing faculty of unfolding the friendship was the offspring of conmost abstruse principles, and digest- genial sentiment, and lasted till the ing singular and individual senti. death of the former. Theodore ments into a systematic order. Gottlob von Hippel, secretary at Herein consisted the originality of war to his Prussian majesty in Ko
nigsberg, a man well known for his was otherwise quite perfect. His literary performances, lived many face when young must have been years in the closest intercourse with handsome; he had a fresh colour, Kant; as also the generals Brunet, and fine large blue eyes, which von Mayer, von Losson. With were as expressive of goodness as Lambert, Sulzer, and Garve, he talent. held a very interesting literary conrespondence. His nearest
and dearest friend, however, was one Green, an English merchant, re
Por the Literary Magazine. siding at Konigsberg. Their friend. ship was occasioned by the following BULL FEASTS IN SPAIN. singular occurrence : Kant was expatiating once, in a coffee-house, (Extracted from a Journal kept by during the American war, with some a Traveller in that Country.) warmth, in favour of the Americans, and against the English, when a I CANNOT but conceive it an man suddenly started up, and de- egregious error in those travellers, clared himself offended by the reflec- who have attributed bull-feasts, or tions thrown on his country, and de- amphitheatrical entertainments, in manded honourable satisfaction. Spain, to the Moors, and stiled them Kant, undisturbed by this strange the barbarous relict of their customs. mode of attack, continued to give a It was not till long after the chriscool, bat striking illustration of his tian æra, that Gibraltar was first own sentiments, in particular re. conquered by Tarick, the famous ference to the case of the Englishman. leader of the African adventurers : His impressive manner of reasoning, but this practice can be traced to combined with his good-nature, had epochs long before that period from such an effect on Mr. Green (for which we now date; of consequence, that was the name of the gentleman), if it is an exotic custom, they must that he acknowledged the impro- owe its origin to the conquest of the priety of his own conduct, and soli- Romans, or the imitation of their eited Kant's pardon, which was im. European neighbours. It cannot be mediately granted. "Green attended denied that the Spaniards retain to Kant to his house ; and from that this day many remains of Moorish hour, a friendship was commenced, customs and manners ; and it which terminated only with the would, perhaps, be more to their death of the former. Mr. Green credit if they retained more ; for if was a whimsical, but well-informed we may judge from the monuments man, possessed of many excellent the latter have left behind them, qualites of the head and heart. they possessed the most valuable kant found in him so much solid in- ideas of architecture, tilling, draintellect, that he never published any ing, watering, and laying-out thing without first submitting to his grounds; which once made the now judgment.
rude plains of Grenada a perfect Kant was of a remarkable slender garden, and beautified them beyond and delicate make; and his body our most romantic ideas of an Elywas covered with so little flesh, that sium ; but amidst all their splendour his clothes could never be made to and dreams of dear-bought happifit, but by artificial means. His ness amidst the gaities of a Boba. nervous and muscular system was dil's reign, they did not practise no less tender. He was five feet fighting bulls; for their entertainhigh ; but his head was large in ments consisted of hunting, feats of proportion to the rest of his body. the sword, club, and lance, wresto He had a flat breast, that bent al. ling, &c., at which their jealous dismost inwards; and his right shoul- positions did not suffer their women der projected rather out. His form often to be present, the very soul of
the exercise under our considera- they had such ferocious beasts on tion; nor is it the theme of any of their own plains, which would afford the Spanish writers of romance, who nearly an equal display of courage, have handed down to us their cus without that excess of danger. toms. The many remains of Roman In tracing this practice, for the architecture in Spain, the circular information of my readers, I shall and oval forms of places built for be explicit and correct. Formerly exhibitions of this kind, together the most valiant captains of the Liiwith the cells, vomitoria, podia, sitanian bands entered the lists in seats, and other yet visible ruins, this ferocious combat. 'After conevince to us, that those conquerors quering the Saracen, a Gonsalvo, a of what they called the Provincia Lara, weilded the spear and sword Cunicularis not only spread the against the dart-enraged bull; their glory of their arms amongst this recompence was the smile of appronewly-subjugated people, but cele- bation from their favourite fair-one. brated their victories by triumphal The greatest merit in her eyes was arches, and those public exhibitions courage, and the greatest bond in which were common amongst them- love was the contempt of danger. selves. Few Roman historians Arrayed in the scarf their mistresshave mentioned the amphitheatrical es had embroidered, it was their games; and the early annals of the pride to show their familiarity with church are filled with the mention
scenes of peril, and the lengths to of victims that were exposed both which they would go for objects into the contumely of the mob and the comparably more deserving. This assaults of the lion and the tiger, spirit was fostered by their generals: whilst their liberty and pardon were it made their hearts martial, and the rewards of their courage. This counteracted the inert languor and was a favourite punishment for their inactivity of the camp. Not such criminals, and at once evinces to us, the present champions: their pristhat these masters of the world, of tine nobleness is iled; they are hirelearning, and of renown, had only lings, and the traits of their courage advanced a few removes beyond bar are ferocious and butcher-like. barism. Legislation afterwards al. The days chosen for this sport are tered this practice, and the combat. generally the anniversaries of some ants were either hired, or served as saints, with which the calendar is volunteers. We are then only at a filled; but in the great cities, durloss how to account for bulls being ing the season, it may be seen three pitched upon as the tortured object times a-week. No sooner is the day of this practice, which is easily done, fixed on for this exhibition, than the when we consider the difficulty and news is eagerly spread, and electri. expence of obtaining the lion and fies every class with joy. The topic the tiger alive*, particularly after becomes general, every countenance the Moorish conquest, when the exults in the glad tidings, and old Spaniards had only a partial access and young, equally joyous, anticipate to the shores of Africa, and when the scene. From all parts they
crowd to the spot ; neither distance * The lion and tiger to this day
nor penury withholds them; and if form part of the tribute of the depen. government or the police of the indent beys in Africa; and the bagnios dividual cities had not fixed restricand slave prisons are peopled with tions to these games, the fields would these savage rangers of the wild, but remain untilled, and the grapes unonly for show; and, to the shocking gathered. torture of every feeling of humanity,
The bulls intended for the day's they are made the inmates of the sport are brought into the city in the wretched and equally fettered slave, night, when the streets are empty, who is often destined to be their by means of a tame ox or cow, which keeper.
serve as decoys. They are pent up
in separate cells, so small that they The signal trumpet sounds; a comhave not room to turn, and with pany of soldiers, with a lively band their heads to the area. They are of music, enters at the gates, and, here goaded, and rendered furious after forming into a line, clears the by every artificial means.
area of its numbers. One of them Already is the amphitheatre is then placed at each of the little crowded by an immense concourse, recesses, made at small distances in impatient for the signal to begin. the inner palisado, and sufficient to Perhaps not a sight in nature is admit the body of the combatants, equal to this of the thronged specta- for whose safety they are intended. tors, clothed in all the gaieties and The governor next appears, and luxuries of dress, filling the progres- the ministers of police are seated sively rising seats, and almost fran- nearly over the place where the tic with pleasure. The eye, enrap- bulls are confined. Two trumpetured, measures its favourite circle, ters stand behind them, and under rows on rows at once swell the their direction the feast is conducted. grateful focus, and pleased the visual Every thing in readiness, four orb indulges in the scene. The men champions in different coloured are clothed in their short cut jac- dresses enter the area on horse kets, loaded with innumerable rows back, their legs and thighs are cased of buttons à lo majo; with broad in tough leather, in their right hands brimmed hats, or small high velvet they bear a long ashen lance tipped caps; their hair confined within a with a small piece of iron, and with silken net, and cloaks of black or their left dextrously manage their scarlet half envelope their shoulders. steeds. They prance gaily along The women, whose general street the circle, make their devoirs to attire is black, now appear decked the governor, presidents of the in all the showy contrast of colours, feast, and their individual patrons gay bunches of ribbons ornament and protectors. They then range their jet black hair; the richest themselves according to their merit mantles flow down their comely opposite the first cell, from which waists, over a short fringed petti. the bull is expected to issue ; but on coat, and at once give to view forms the left, as the animal from instinct the most divine, without hiding those makes his attack on that side. A soul-enlivening eyes and animated trumpet again sounds, a trap-door countenances which allure, enrap- is raised, and forth rushes the belture, and command. Costly fans lowing monster, astonished, enraged, produce an artificially cool atmos- and frantic with hunger and frequent phere, and with great légèreté de goadings. With impetuous onset main serve to salute their distant he rushes on the prepared horsefriends. Refreshing drinks and man, who with his lance repels him cakes of every kind are harded to the right or left of his horse. about by their attendants; hand. The second champion then follows, bills announce the particulars of the invites him to combat, and receives entertainment, and the different co- him in the same way. The greatest loured ribbons that are affixed to strength and dexterity are evinced the bulls' manes, to denote their in these frequent opsets ; but it often race, progeny, and from whence happens, that the greater furious brought. A gay display of flags strength of the horned enragé overwave on the tops of the battlements turns both horse and rider, and lays and when at war with any nation, both promiscuously in the dust. they fix theirs, reversed, in the Both then often share the frantic most conspicuous place. The shouts revenge of the animal, and are proof the gay multitude, and the swift- miscuously torn with his horns, notwinged rockets that break high in withstanding the efforts of the others air, announce the approach of the to get him away, and divert him on hour, generally four in the afternoon. another side. He often buries his