Joseph Lyon Miller.

American monthly review online

. (page 19 of 54)
Online LibraryJoseph Lyon MillerAmerican monthly review → online text (page 19 of 54)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


his successors, the practice in this branch of the law has
been brought to a good degree of perfection.

The action of ejectment in England under a feigned lease
entry and ouster, which had its origin with Chief Justice
RoUe, about the middle of the seventeenth century, wa4
never used in New England, if we except a short period itt
Massachusetts, during the reign of James the Second. But
in New York it was early introduced, and is still preserved,
with much other cumbrous practice that has never prevailed
at the north.

In New England the ancient law of Real Actions has been
retained, stripped of numerous unnecessary refinements, and
a host of idle appendages. And probably there are no pre*^
cedents, we know of none, in which there is greater simpli-
city and plainness, than in those used in New England, in
real actions.

The first edition of Mr. Stearns's work was published in
1894, when he was Law Professor in the University at Cam-
bridge. The substance of it was delivered in lectures to the
law students of the University. It is an elementary treatise,
and is deservedly esteemed by the profession. He has stated,

VOL. I. NO. II. 22



Digitized by



Google



166 Steams on Real Actions. [Feb.

with great clearness of style and method, some of the funda-
mental principles of the law of real property, and of " the
ancient remedies, their form and structure, with the pleadings
and evidence applicable to them." He has also given an
interesting history of the early practice in Massachusetts, and
has appended a large number of practical forms. These
forms are of the concise and technical character contained in
the Register and in Rastell, to which our author has very
properly had frequent recourse.

Mr. Stearns in his modest Preface remarks, that his work
is designed chiefly for students and the younger members of
the bar. But it is valuable also to those more advanced in
the profession ; and even those who are best grounded in
this kind of learning may recur to it with advantage and im-
provement. It has the merit of being the earliest treatise on
the subject in this country, and of more than fulQlIing all
that the author promises ; and though designed chiefly for
Massachusetts and the other states that retain the old com-
mon law remedies in real actions, it will be found useful to
the profession elsewhere. It is still used as a text-book in the
new arrangement of studies at the Law School of Harvard
University.

The second edition contains numerous additions, and em-
braces the cases decided since the publication of the first edi-
tion. These decisions are taken chiefly from Greenleafs
Reports of the Supreme Court in Maine, the New Hamp-
shire Reports, Peters's Reports of the Supreme Court of the
United States, Mason's Reports of the Circuit Court, con-
taining the decisions of Mr. Justice Story, and Pickering's
Reports of the Supreme Court of Massachusetts. A Table
of Cases cited is prefixed ; the want of which was felt in the
former edition.

Three new precedents are introduced in the practical forms;
one a declaration in an action by the assignee of the mort-
gagee setting forth the mortgage deed and assignment with
profert; another in an action by a mortgagee against mort-
gagor, setting forth the mortgage deed and condition ; and a
fiiird, a jpha that the demandant, who sues as minister, has^
resigned his office pending the writ. The second declaration
is taken in substance from Mr. Jackson's valuable treatise.
Mr. Stearns has retained in this edition the general form of
declaring in an action by the mortgagee against the mortga-



Digitized by



Google



1888*] Tucker^ 8 Light of Nature, 161

eor, alleging simply the disseizin, and counting upon a seizin
in fee and in mortgage, without stating the mode of acquir-
ing the seizin. A learned writer in the American Jurist, who
reviewed Mr. Jackson's treatise, suggested that this form
might be bad on special demurrer ; but the decisions of the
Supreme Court of Massachusetts seem to have established
its sufficiency. That lawyer is a benefactor to his profession
and the public, who is able to shorten legal precedents, and
still retain every thing substantial.



Art. XVI. — The Light of Nature Pursued. By Abra-
ham Tucker, Esq. From the Second London Edition,
Revised and Corrected. Together with some Account
of the Life of the Author, by Sir H. P. St. John Mild-
may, Bart., M. P. 4 vols. 8vo. Cambridge. Hilliard
& Brown. 183L

It does not enter into our plan to give much space to
notices of reprints of foreign works of known and long estab-
lished reputation. Tucker's " Light of Nature " might perhaps
be regarded as an exception, in some respects, to this rule, if
we had room for a full examination of its character and mer-
its ; because, though familiar to a few readers, and extrava-
gantly admired by them, it comes before the reading public
generally, in this country, for the first time, and almost as a
new work. It is a philosophical treatise, interspersed with
the happiest touches of humor and eccentricity on man, his
duties and expectations, and his relations to God and eter-
nity. The author was a private eenlleman of independent
fortune, shrewd and good-tempered, mingling but little either
in the political or theological disputes of the day, writing at
his leisure and as the humor seized him, with but little regard
either to the connexion or the consequences. This accounts
for, and explains at the same time, his excellences, his faults^
and his defects. By readers of a kindred genius and temper
few books are perused with more interest and satisfaction than
this, or recurred to with so much pleasure, or so frequently ;
and few books have done so much to help plagiarists to a
reputation for smartness and originality. Mr. Tucker, how-
ever, must continue to share the fate of most persons of
strong and marked peculiarities ; those who do not like him',



Digitized by



Google



168 Stat^ NfdlififiaHim. [Feb.

9xe apt to be disgusted with bis occasional extiravaganc^,
and to reject even bis jests^ in some instances, and bis odd
and curious illustrations, as ill-timed and impertinent. On
tbe wbole, candid and judicious critics will not say that be
has done raucb to enlarge tbe boundaries of buman knowl*
edge. It is cbiefly on bis merits as a wit and bumorist, and
as a practical writer, tbat bis reputation must stand. Much
credit is due to tbe publishers, who have furnished a cheap
and neat, edition of a work which will be eagerly read by
many, and which can hardly be read without affording both
pleasure and instruction.



Abt. XVII. — The Calhoun Doctrine^ or State NulKfication
discussed. Originally published in the ^' Irisluuan and
Southern Democrat." By a DnjaocRATic Rspubucan.
Charleston, S. C. 1831. 12mo.- pp. 33.

" The doctrines of Nullification," as they are commonly
called, which, after for a time threatening the union of these
States, were effectually put down by Mr. Webster in the
Senate, in January, 1830, are becoming more thoroughly
understood, as their origin, motives, and history are becom-
ing more known. This pamphlet, written in South Carolina,
and written with pungency as well as power, furnishes addi-
tional materials for their elucidation. What was known be-
fore was, that a sort of combination was begun on the sub-
ject in May, 1828, at the lodgings of General Hayne in
Washington, which was afterwards exposed in a correspond-
ence between Mr. Mitchell, General Hayne, and other
members of the South Carolina delegation, who constituted
the meetings thus held ; that in the summer following the
impulse thus given was felt in meetings held in Colleton Dis-
trict, at Edgefield Court-House, Stc, advising, as they said
in the report of the first assembly, " an attitude of open
resistance to the laws of the Union ; " that in the autumn,
Mr. Calhoun so far forgot his pride of place and his duty to
the Union, as to write for a committee of the Legislature of
South Carolina, the remarkable " Exposition and Protest,"
which, as the author of the pamphlet now before us truly
5ays, " has hitherto served as the text-book for Nullifica-
tion ; ** and, finally, that in tbe session of 1829—30, a vio-



Digitized by



Google



18881] Sintc NutUfieatiM. l«9

lent attempt was made to bring these doctrines forward in
Congress, and give them countenance and currency under ait
least the implied sanction of the Senate ; on which occasion
the great debate took place between General Hayne and Mr.
Weteter, which reduced the doctrines of Nullification, before
so threatening, to the rank of an idle and exploded theory.
So far we knew before. The present pamphlet contains fur-
ther developeraents and explanations, — particularly on Mr.
Calhoun's course of policy ; the cause of the depressk>Q of
property at the South, and the attempts of Mr. Calhoun to
conciliate to himself the passions of those who were thus
sofieriog under losses, which he would persuade them we«e
to be retrieved by means willnn the reach of the power of
South Carolina, as a sovereign state, nullifying some of the
laws of the Union.

The concluding remarks are striking ; and are as true as
they are striking.

^ It is among the most lamentable events of onr history, that
this heresy should ever have found countenance. It 19 not goed
ta become familiar with evil. Its presence shoold alv^ays lM
shoekisg. New disputes may revive this discusstoB, aad the
opinions and arguments of the present day,, although repudiated
aacd refuted, will be dragged forth to suit some emergency, in
the same manner as the ofl rejected objections to the adoption
of the present Constitution have been newly vamped up, and
presented to shake the faith of the rising generation in oui beau-
tiful and beneficent system of government. It is not among the
least of the lamented evils of this dangerous creed, that it has
perhaps for ever cancelled all that admiration and kindness, with
which the rising fbrtnnes of the Vice-President were hailed by
his whole country. It was indeed an evil hour in which hopes
fl» briglUt, anticipatioQs so elevated, and a destiny so full of
honor and of fame, were all sacrified upon the altar of thw
' 9lran^ God.' '' pp. 3d, 38.

The whole pamphlet is worth reading, and contains facts
and illustrations to which we at the North are little accus-
tomed ; and though the great power and distinction must
always belong to him, whose motto may well be, — Diram
jjttt coniudit Htjdramy — still the argument against Nullifica-
tion will be read with interest even after the greater argu-
ment in Mr. Webster's speech has become a settled and
femiliar article in our political faith.



Digitized by



Google



170 Mr. Tuckerman'9 Report. [Feb'.



Abt. XVIII. — Mr, Tuckerman^s Eighth Semi-Annuctl
Beport of his Service as a Minister at Large in Boston.
Boston. Gray & Bowen. 12mo. pp. 48.

The labors of Dr. Tuckerraan, as missionary to the poor,
are not the first attempts which have been made in the city
of Boston for their moral and religioiis improvement. It is
several years since a society was formed for that express pur-
pose ; and a system of operations was commenced, which,
if not so judicious and thorough, as could have been desired j
was not, we have reason to think, without essential benefit.
It is believed, however, that no former eflForts have excited
so much public interest, and been attended with such benefit
cial results, as the services of Dr. Tucker man. He has been
employed in this mission for a little more than five years,
during which time he has been eminently prospered in. his
labors, and has observed the most gratifying results in proof
of their utility. His object, as we understand it, from this
and former reports, is not to imbue the minds of bis charge
with the distinctive spirit and principles of any of the vari-
ous religious sects which divide our community ; he does not
go out into the lanes and alleys and dark places of the city
with the quixotic project of gathering recruits for any theologi-
cal creed ; but, simply as a minister of Christ and a friend of
man, he wishes to urge the plain truths of that Gospel, which
was first preached to the poor, and which is so rich in conso-
lation for all the miseries which afilict our suffering nature.
At the same time that he aims to impart pure and Scriptural
religious instruction, he does not neglect the temporal wants
of the poor who fall under his ministerial care. He has per-
formed valuable services, by doing something for those who
were unable to do any thing for themselves ; and still more
so, by aiding the industrious, but unfortunate ; by giving
counsel to the perplexed ; by encouraging the desponding ;
and by presenting favorable opportunities to those who were
able and ready to exert themselves, but who, from sickness,
accident, or disappointment, were destitute of the means.

We regard a ministry of this character as one of the most
efficient agents in social improvement and civilization, to say
nothing ol its religious influences. We cannot but wonder
that far more interest is not felt in the subject. There is a



Digitized by



Google



I8dS.] Omn$U'i Address. 171

wide field not only in Boston, but in all our lar^e cities, for
the ablest services of many missionaries, possessmg the good
judgment, enlightened zeal, and deep devotion to the inter-
ests of the poor, which characterize the author of the present
Report.

In this, as well as in former Reports, Dr. Tuckerman en-
ters into very thorough discussions of the causes, evils, and
remedies of pauperism, and enforces his reasonings by state-
ments of appropriate facts, most of which have come under
bis own observation. We think no one can read these
Reports without a deep impression of the importance of the
cause which they advocate, and of respect for the head and
heart of the writer.



Ajit. XIX. — An Address delivered before the Boston Sun-
day School Society on the Celebration of the Fifteenth
Anniversary of the Sunday School Institution, at the
Federal Street Church. September 14, 1831. By Ezra
S. Gannett. Boston. Gray fc Bowen. 12mo. pp. 42.

We have not seen any Discourse called forth by the inter-
esting occasion of the Sunday School Jubilee, which, upon
the whole, seems to us more appropriate and impressive,
than that of which we have given the title above.

After a brief history of the origin of Sunday Schools and
of the labors of their principal founder in England, Mr. Rob-
ert Raikes, the writer proceeds to enumerate several distinct
claims, which they present to the public favor and patronage,
and then notices, with great fairness and discrimination, some
of the objections which have been alleged against them. We
cannot name the volume, which, in so small a compass, gives
such a clear and just view of the real purposes and practical
ntility of Sunday Schools, as is contained in a few pages of
this pamphlet. We think, that if any one is disposed to
doubt whether the institution, whose merits are set forth by
Mr. Gannett, can be conducted without reference to secta-
rian principles, and in a manner at once productive of emi-
nent advantage to both parents and children, and free from
all evils, this Address will convince him, that his scruples
are without foundation, and that his objections are good, not
against the institution itself, but only against the circum-



Digitized by



Google



1T» CobVs Review 6f WOster'a Dictianaries, fyc. (JVb.

sisnces whick mfty sotnetitnes have been actkietitally eo]>
nected with it.

k would be a good service to put a copy of this Address
into the hands of every Sunday School teacher in the cotin-
try. No denomination of Christians will find in it any thing
ofieneive to their peculiar views. It breathes a spirit of warm
and glowing piety, and of fervid zeal in the cause of religious
instruction, which no reader can fail to respect, and in some
measure, at least, to feel and to make his own.



Art. XX. — 1. A Critical Review of the Orthography of
Dr. Webster^ s Series of Books for Systematic mstruc-
tion in the English Language ; including his former
Spelling-Book, and the Elementary Spelling- Book, com-
piled by Aaron Ely, and published under the name of
WoaA fVebster, LL, D. By Ltman Cobb. New York.
1831. 8vo. pp. 56.

2. A Method of Acquiring a full Knowledge of the Eng^
lish Language, propounded at their Invitation, by A. B.
Johnson, Vtica, August 10, 1831, before the New York
State Lyceum. Utica. Northway & Porter. 1831-
pp. 16.

We received Mr. Cobb's work after our remarks upon
" English Lexicography in the United States " were in the

fress ', and it amply vindicates the caution with which we
ave spoken of Mr. Webster's claims to improvements in
orthography. It shows Mr. Webster's great want of uni-
formity in his successive publications ; and if this were all,
we should not lay very ^reat stress upon it, though it would
justly lead to a suspicion, that the author was governed
rather by temporary caprices, than by any fixed and perma-
nent rules. But when we are furnished with irrefragable
proofs, as in Mr. Cobb's Review of Mr. Webster's quarto
Dictionary, of very numerous " discrepances in the orthog-
raphy of the definitions and the text," m the same work, the
subject comes very fairly before the public, and there is no
reason why the whole truth should not be told.

** When I commenced," says Mr. Cobb, "the exposition of the
diicrepances in the orthography of the definitions and text joi



Digitized by



Google



.1832.] Johnson on the English Langtiage. 173

the American Dictionary, I intended to show all which I had
discovered ; but they are so numerous that the limits of this
review will not permit me to pursue the exposition farther. I
have already shown between seven and eight hundred discre-
pances of this kind, and have noted about ^v^ hundred others."
p. 18.

Having compared this Dictionary with others, in respect
to orthography, Mr. Cobb pronounces its defects, inconsist-
encies, and contradictions to be much more numeroiu than
those in any other dictionary.

This pamphlet exhibits the proofs of the most thorough
examination into a minute though important subject, which
it has ev6r fallen to our lot to witness. It is a document
which will be of unspeakable value to any one who may
hereafter undertake a new English Dictionary, or become
responsible for the literary execution in the republication of
such as are now used.

Mr. Cobb has reviewed for the same purpose, and in the
same thorough manner, Mr. Webster's American Spelling-
Book, and the Elementary Spelling-Book, published under
his name. We know nothing of these books, to our shame it
may be, far-famed and widely extended as they are, ex-
cept what Mr. Cobb has told us. His Review is well worthy
the attention of the author or proprietor of these Spelling-
Books ; for, however unwelcome the truths that are uttered,
none have more reason to be grateful than those whose duty
and interest it is to render such elementary works as im-
maculate as possible.

Mr. Johnson's title-page promises too much ; but there
have been titles to books pertaining to the knowledge of
language, which promised more. We met some years since
with the title of a book written by one Dalgamo, of Great
Britain, and published in 1661 , which, translated from the
Latin, runs thus : " The Art of Signs ; cr an Universal Char-
acter and Philosophical Language, in which men speaking
different languages may be able, by studying it for the space
of two weeks, to express their thoughts, either by writing or
speech, no less intelligibly than individuals of the same com-
munity in their vernacular tongue ; by which also the young
may acquire the principles of philosophy and true logic with
much creator ease and despatch, than from the common trea-
tises of philosophers."

VOL. I. NO. 11. 23



Digitized by



Google



174 Johnson on the English Language. [Feb. 1832.

Aside however from the exaggerated title of Mr. Johnson's
Discourse, and from the strange notion that a dictionary is a
book from which we are to get a full knowledge of language,
and also from the collocation and use of words in the title-
page, which, if not ungrammatical, are very peculiar, there
is an independence and ingenuity in the Discourse itself,
which are deserving of notice.

He would not destroy the present alphabetical arrange-
ment of words, or any thing which belongs to lexicography
as it now exists ; but he would add what he calls words in
sets; — as, "knowledge, knowing, know, knowingly." Still, as
such words are found near each other he does not insist much
upon these regular derivatives being placed in close connex-
ion. He is in search of deeper treasures. To show what
cobweb is adjectively, he would note araneous; summer —
estival ; iron — chalybeate, ferruginous, ferreous. Again,
the adjective or substantive should be followed by a verb
of corresponding meaning ; as naked by denude, abscess by
imposthumate. So also by the adverb; as, praise should
have eulogistically, and war, belligerently. Still farther, he
lays great stress upon correlatives and opposites, negatives
and aflBrmatives, — and synonyms. Here are a few of them
which our readers may class for themselves. Horizontal,
vertical ; analogous, anomalous ; weeping, illachrymable ;
heathen, ethnic. Once more, a dictionary should collect
together modifications, as he calls them, of other words,
branching out as follows : death, — euthanasia, posthumous,
demise, defunct, &c.

O shades of Priscian and Sanctivs ! rescue us from that
**art in impious pharmacy," which mingles with our whote-
some Saxon food all sorts of foreign deleterious drugs of an-
cient and modern times, which the healthy philologer cannot
choose but nauseate and dash from his lips.

Er&ATA IK No. I.

Advertisement, page 1, line 18, for pronounced read procured.
Review, " 18, *^ 33, after na< read a>.



Digitized by



Google



NOTE.

We have received a communication from Dr. Waterhoose, the
author of the valuable work entitled ^ Essay on Junius,'' &c., which
was respectfully noticed in the first number of this Review. The object
of the communication is to prove,

I. That the MUceUaneous Letters^ ascribed to JuntiM, are not unwer'
sally admitted to be genuine ; that most of them are doubtful^ and some
of them spurious ; at the head of which last class are those signed
Poplicola and Anti-Sejanus :

II. To impugn some of the facts adduced by the Reviewer, which
favor the supposition that Earl Temple was the author of Junius.

Dt. Waterhouse denies that Temple wrote the ^ Enquiry into the
Conduct of a late Right Honorable Commoner," (the Reviewer says
it was '<in substance the work of Temple,") and affirms that it was ^
written bjr Humphrey Cotes, Dr. Waterhouse denies also, that Temple
joined Wilkes in mriling the NoHh-BrOon^ and affirms that all the
assistance he gave to Wilkes was in money and in good advice ; and
that the " Patriot" never failed to take the first, and to neglect the
last Dr. Waterhouse says further, that Lord Temple (he being Ju-
nius^ could not have denied in print a knowledge of his own brother,
nor nave spoken in such a shameful manner of his sister's husband,
under the signature of Poplicola, nor have written in the style of inde-
cency which marks the closing paragraph of Jhdi-S^anus ; and, finally,
that the rupture between Chatham and Temple did not result in hiUer
enmity, but in a degree of estrangement which fell much short of bitter
enmify.

Dr. Waterhonse cites some authorities for these counter statements,
together with illustrations from contemporaneous history, and ^ves his
own arguments upon those authorities and illustrations. It is a very
interesting communication, and we should gladly insert it as a discos-
sion of facts concerning which the author of the Essay, Uie Reviewer,
and the Editor can have no other motive than that of ascertaining the
truth, except so far as either may be influenced by an opinion already
formed and not founded on an estimate of the whole evidence in the
case, which after all is full of difficulties. But as we have not room for
Dr. Waterhouse's communication, and cannot do justice to it, without
proceeding to a discussion which would interfere with the leading de-
sign of our work, we hope he will favor the public with his views and
proofs upon the subjects in dispute in some other way. Tbey would
make a valuable Appendix to his book upon Junius, and would be



Online LibraryJoseph Lyon MillerAmerican monthly review → online text (page 19 of 54)