Images de page

he was a traveller of great observation and reflection, endowed with a mind for discovery, and formed for atchievments of the greatest hardihood and peril.→→ He had promised his next communication from Senner, about six hundred miles south of Cairo; but, death put an end to the hopes that were entertained of his projected journey.

We shall conclude this short sketch, with Mr. Ledyard's character of the female sex. "I have always remarked, that women, in all countries, are civil, obliging, tender, and humane; that they are ever inclined to be gay and cheerful; timorous and modest; and that they do not hesitate, like men, to perform a generous action. Not haughty, arrogant, nor supercilious; they are full of courtesy, and fond of society; more liable, in general, to err than man, but generally more virtuous, and performing more good actions than he. To a woman, either civilized or savage, I never addressed myself, in the language of decorum or friendship, without receiving a decent and friendly answer-with men, it hath been otherwise.

"In wandering over the barren plains of inhospi table Denmark, through honest Sweden, and frozen Lapland, rude and churlish Frisland, unprincipled Russia, and the wide spreading region of the wandering Tartar-if hungry, dry, cold, wet, or sick, the women have ever been friendly to me, and uni formly so; and to add to this virtue (so worthy of the appellation of benevolence) their actions have been performed in so free and kind a manner, that, if I was dry, I drank the sweetest draught and, if hungry, I eat the coarsest morsel, with a double re lish."

We have understood, from a quarter on which we can depend, that a number of the MSS. of this extraordinary person are in the hands of his brother, Dr. Isaac Ledyard, the present health officer of the port of New-York,-Should the Doctor think proper

to publish them, they would, no doubt, be found highly interesting and curious.

LEMERY, (NICHOLAS) a celebrated chemist, was born November 17, 1645, at Rouen, in Normandy, of which parliament his father was a proctor, and of the reformed religion. Nicholas, having received a suitable education at the place of his, birth, was put apprentice there to an apothecary; but, finding that his master knew little of chemistry, he left him in 1666, and went to improve himself in that art at Paris; there he stayed but two months, and then proceeded to travel through France, in quest of some master of abilities.. In this resolution he went to Montpelier,, where he continued three years with Mr. Vernant, an apothecary, who gave him an opportunity of performing several chemical operations, and of reading lectures, also, to some of his scholars. These lectures were very useful to him, and he made such advances in chemistry, that, in a little time, he drew all the professors of physic, as well as other curious persons,, at Montpelier, to hear him; leaving, always, some new discoveries to instruct and entertain the most able among them.-. This raised his reputation so high,, that he practised physic in that university, without a doctor's degree... Returning to Paris, he at length provided himself with a laboratory of his own, and might have been made a doctor of physic, but he chose to be an apothecary, on account of his attachment to chemistry, in which he opened public lectures, and had so great an affluence of scholars, that he had scarce room to perform his operations. He now found out some chemical secrets, which he sold to good profit. But, in 1681, his life began to be disturbed on account of his religion, and he received: orders to quit his employ. In 1683, he crossed the sea to England, where he was well received by Charles II. who gave

him great encouragement. Yet, as the face of the public affairs there appeared no more promising of quiet than in France, he resolved to return thither. He now took the doctor's degree at Caen; and repairing to Paris, had a great deal of business for a while, but did not find that tranquillity he desiredAt last, the edict of Nantz being revoked in 1685, he was forbid to practise his profession, as well as other protestants. At length, he sunk under the persecution, and entered into the Romish church, in the beginning of 1686. This change procured him a full right to practise physic; and what with his pupils, his patients, and the sale of his chemical secrets, he made considerable gains..

Upon the revival of the Royal Academy of Sciences, in 1699, he was made an associate chemist, and became a pensionary. In 1715, June 12, he

[ocr errors]

died, at the age of of seventy. He published, 1st. "A Course of Chemistry.' 2d. "An Universal Pharmacopoeia." 3d. "An Universal Treatise of Drugs." And, 4th. " A Treatise of Antimony; con taining the chemical Analysis of that Mineral."

LEO X. Pope of Rome, was descended from the ancient family of the Medicei, and was called John de Medicis. He was born in Florence in 1475, and instructed in Greek and Latin literature by the best masters. At eleven years of age, he was made an archbishop, by Lewis XI. of France; and, at fourteen, a cardinal, by pope Innocent VIII. The Medicei being overthrown, and driven from Florence by Charles IX. of France, he spent many years in exile; but returning to Rome in 1503, he found great favor with Julius II, Some Some years after, he was invested with the dignity of legate by that pope, and was in that quality in the army which was defeated by the French near Ravenna, in 1512. He was taken prisoner, and, during his captivity, is

[ocr errors]

said to have made a wonderful experiment of the ascendancy which superstition has over the minds of the soldiers, who, when they had overcome him, shewed him so much veneration, that they asked his pardon for gaining the victory, besought him to give them absolution for it, and promised never to bear arms against the Pope. He was raised to the pontificate March 11, 1513, when he was no more than thirty-seven. Having been educated by preceptors who had taught him perfectly the belles lettres, he loved and protected men of wit and learning. The literati, as well as professors of arts and sciences, of what religion or country they may be, ought to reflect upon this pope's memory with gratitude. He was a lover and patronizer of learned men, and learning; he spared neither care nor expence in recovering the manuscripts of the ancients, and in procuring good editions of them; and he equally favoured arts and sciences, being himself a man of


But, the most memorable particular relating to this pope was, his very undesignedly giving birth to the Reformation. Leo being of a rich and powerful. family, and withal of a high and magnificent spirit, entertained an idea of building the sumptuous church of St. Peter, which was begun by Julius II. and required large sums to finish. The treasure of the apostolic chamber was exhausted, and the pope was so far from being enriched by his family, that he had contracted large debts before his advancement to the pontificate, which he had increased by his profuse manner of living since. Finding himself, therefore, in no condition to bear the charges of such an edifice, he was forced to have recourse to extraordinary methods. Leo, therefore, in 1517, published general indulgences throughout Europe, in favor of those who would contribute any thing to the building of St. Peter's, and set persons in each country to preach them up, and to receive money for that purpose. In

[ocr errors]

Germany, the Dominicans were preferred to the Au gustine friars, who had hitherto been employed in that office; and this, together with the bare-faced, mercenary manner of doing it, provoked Martin Luther, who was of the order of St. Augustine, to preach against them. And thus the reformation began; nor could all the bulls of Leo and his successors against Luther and his adherents, nor all the various policy of the court of Rome, stop its progress. Leo died, Dec. 2, 1581, in the forty-fourth year of his age, and ninth of his pontificate. Some think his death was occasioned by poison. Several of his letters are preserved by various authors, besides the sixteen books written in his name by his secretary Bembus, and printed in the works of that cardinal..

LINNAEUS, (CHARLES DE) the father of moderne botany, was the son of a Swedish divine, and born May 24, 1707, at Koeshult, in the province of Smaland, in Sweden, of which place his father had the care when his son was born, but was, soon after, preferred to the living of Stenbrihult, in the sa me province, where dying, in 1748, at the age of seventy,, he was succeeded in his cure by another son.


1717, young Linnæus was sent to school at Mexsio, where, as his opportunities were enlarged, his progress in all his favourite pursuits was proportionably extended. At this early period, he paid attention to other branches of natural history, particularly to the knowledge of insects, in which he made a great proficiency. The first part of his academical education Linnæus received under professor Stobæces, at Lund, in Scania, who favored his inclinations to the study of natural history.

This eminent man, whose talents enabled him to reform the whole science of natural history, accu-mulated, very early in life, some of the highest ho- . nors that await the most successful proficients in me

« PrécédentContinuer »