easy to get up than to come down. In the present instance I have
no sympathy--at least no pity--for him who descends. He is that monstrum
horrendum, an unprincipled man of genius. I confess, however, that I
should like very well to know the precise character of his thoughts,
when, being defied by her whom the Prefect terms 'a certain personage'
he is reduced to opening the letter which I left for him in the
"How? did you put any thing particular in it?"
"Why--it did not seem altogether right to leave the interior blank--that
would have been insulting. D--, at Vienna once, did me an evil turn,
which I told him, quite good-humoredly, that I should remember. So, as
I knew he would feel some curiosity in regard to the identity of the
person who had outwitted him, I thought it a pity not to give him a
clue. He is well acquainted with my MS., and I just copied into the
middle of the blank sheet the words--
"'-- -- Un dessein si funeste, S'il n'est digne d'Atree, est digne de
Thyeste. They are to be found in Crebillon's 'Atree.'"
THE THOUSAND-AND-SECOND TALE OF SCHEHERAZADE
Truth is stranger than fiction.
HAVING had occasion, lately, in the course of some Oriental
investigations, to consult the Tellmenow Isitsoornot, a work which (like
the Zohar of Simeon Jochaides) is scarcely known at all, even in Europe;
and which has never been quoted, to my knowledge, by any American--if
we except, perhaps, the author of the "Curiosities of American
Literature";--having had occasion, I say, to turn over some pages of the
first-mentioned very remarkable work, I was not a little astonished to
discover that the literary world has hitherto been strangely in error
respecting the fate of the vizier's daughter, Scheherazade, as that
fate is depicted in the "Arabian Nights"; and that the denouement there
given, if not altogether inaccurate, as far as it goes, is at least to
blame in not having gone very much farther.
For full information on this interesting topic, I must refer the
inquisitive reader to the "Isitsoornot" itself, but in the meantime, I
shall be pardoned for giving a summary of what I there discovered.
It will be remembered, that, in the usual version of the tales,
LEAVITT, TROW & CO Prs.Page 4
It mattered not whether the truth was even demonstrably such; for the dogmatizing philosophers of that epoch regarded only _the road_ by which it professed to have been attained.Page 25
that each atom attracts each other atom and so forth, and declares this merely; but (always under the supposition that what I propose be, in the end, admitted) it seems clear that some error might occasionally be avoided, in the future processes of Science, were a more ample phraseology adopted:--for instance:--"Each atom tends to every other atom &c.Page 31
In other words, the number of atoms lying upon the surface of any one of the concentric spheres, is directly proportional with the extent of that surface.Page 36
which I have suggested for the atoms, is "an hypothesis and nothing more.Page 42
In throwing off a ring from.Page 48
Admitting what I have urged, it is clear that, from the moment of the Sun's discarding a ring, there must be a continuous diminution both of his heat and light, on account of the continuous encrustation of his surface; and that a period would arrive--the period immediately previous to a new discharge--when a _very material_ decrease of both light and heat, must become apparent.Page 51
This fancy has arisen from the report of late observations made, among what hitherto have been termed the "nebulae," through the large telescope of Cincinnati, and the world-renowned instrument of Lord Rosse.Page 52
In a subsequent Lecture, however, Dr.Page 53
That we may conceive these processes, then, as still going on in the case of certain "nebulae," while in all other cases we find them thoroughly at an end, we are forced into assumptions for which we have really _no_ basis whatever--we have to thrust in, again, upon the revolting Reason, the blasphemous idea of special interposition--we have to suppose that, in the particular instances of these "nebulae," an unerring God found it necessary to introduce certain supplementary regulations--certain improvements of the general law--certain retouchings and emendations, in a word, which had the effect of deferring the completion of these individual stars for centuries of centuries beyond the aera during which all the other stellar bodies had time, not only to be fully constituted, but to grow hoary with an unspeakable old age.Page 58
This band is the ultimate _cluster of clusters_.Page 60
What is general among the whole race of Man, of course no individual of that race can be warranted in considering abnormal; nevertheless, there _may_ be a class of superior intelligences, to whom the human bias alluded to may wear all the character of monomania.Page 75
On one hand, without a rotary motion and a centrifugal force, it is hardly possible not to regard them as in a state of _progressive collapse_.Page 79
This conception, however, so commonly entertained, has never, within my knowledge, arisen out of any abstract considerations.Page 85
An Intelligence exists greater than your own; and it is only through this Intelligence you live at all.Page 87
It will form an elegant and appropriate gift-book for all seasons.Page 88
Downing, Thos.Page 89
Hunt's book has been aptly styled, a series of exquisite engravings of the magnificent pictures painted by these great Italian masters.Page 98
cloth, $3 50.