OF MY LITERARY LIFE.
* A PRESENT of the ornithology of Francis Willughby, esq. made to me, when I was about the age of twelve, by my kinsman the late John Salisbury,esq. of Bachegraig, in the county of Flint, father of the fair and celebrated writer Mrs. Piozzi, first gave me a taste for that study, and incidentally a love for that of natural history in general, which I have since pursued with my constitutional ardor.
* A TOUR I made into Cornwal, from Oxford, in the year 1746 or 1747, gave me a strong passion for minerals and fossils, in which I was greatly encouraged by that able and worthy man, the late reverend doctor William Borlase of Ludgvan, who, in the kindest manner, communicated to me every thing worthy my notice.
THE first thing of mine which appeared in print was inserted unknown to me; an abstract of a letter I had written to my ever venerated friend and uncle James Mytton,esq. on an earth|quake which was felt at Downing, April the 2d, 1750. This, with several similar testimonies, may be seen in the xth volume of the Abridgment of the Philosophical Transactions, p. 511.
* THIS honor I resigned about the year 1760. I had married a most amiable woman; my circumstances at that time were very narrow, my worthy father being alive, and I vainly thought my happiness would have been permanent, and that I never should have been called again from my retirement to amuse myself in town, or to be of use to the society.
* IN the summer of 1754 I visited the hospitable kingdom of Ireland, and travelled from Dublin to Balli-Castle, the Giants-Cause|way, Colraine, the extremity of the county of Donegal, London-Derry, Strabone, Innis-killen, Galway, Limcrick, the lake of Kil|larney, Kinsale, Cork, Cashel, Waterford, Kilkenny, Dublin. But such was the conviviality of the country, that my journal proved as maigre as my entertainment was gras, so it never was a dish fit to be offered to the public.
* In the Philosophical Transactions of 1756, vol. xlix. p. 513, is a trifling paper of mine, on several coralloid bodies, I had collected at Coal brook-dale, in Shropshire. It is accompanied by a plate engraven from some drawings by Watkin Williams, a person who at that time was an humble companion of my father.
* On February, 1757, I received the first and greatest of my literary honors. I value myself the more on its being con|ferred on me, at the instance of Linnaeus himself, with whom I had began a correspondence in 1755. I had sent him an account of a recent concha anomia, which I found adhering to a sea-plant of the Norwegian seas, sent to me by bishop Pontoppi|dan. Page 3Hanc, says the great naturalist, recitavi in societatis regiae Upsaliensis, publico consessu, 1757, d. 17 Februarii, quam collegae et socii omnes avidissimè excipiebant et mirati sunt; te quoque codem die membrum praefatae societatis unanimo consensu elegere omnes, et mibi in mandatis dedere hoc tibi significandi; probè persuasi te excep|turum hoc eorum officium benevolè, ob amorem quem sers in scientias et omnia quae usui publico inserviant. My correspondence conti|nued with this illustrious personage till age and infirmities obliged him to desist. He did me the honor of accepting all my labors published before the year 1774. He spoke of them in terms too favorable for me to repeat.
* About the year 1761 I began my British Zoology, which, when completed, consisted of cxxxii plates on imperial paper. They were all engraven by Mr. Peter Mazel, now living, and of whose skill and integrity I had always occasion to speak well. The painter was Mr. Peter Pallou, an excellent artist, but too fond of giving gaudy colours to his subjects. He painted, for my hall, at Downing, several pictures of birds and animals, at|tended with suitable landscapes. Four were intended to re|present the climates. The frigid zone, and an European scene of a farm-yard, are particularly well done; all have their merit, but occasion me to lament his conviviality, which affected his circumstances and abridged his days.
THE worthy and ingenious George Edwards, that admirable ornithologist, at first conceived a little jealousy on my attempt: but it very soon subsided. We became very intimate, and he continued to his dying day ready and earnest to promote all my labors. He presented me, as a proof of his friendship, with numbers of the original drawings from which his etchings had Page 4been formed. These I keep, not only in respect to his me|mory, but as curious testimonies of his faithful and elegant pencil.
I dedicated the British Zoology to the benefit of the Welsh school, near Gray's-inn-lane, London, and supported the far greater part of the expence. I lost considerably by it, notwithstanding several gentlemen contributed. My agent was that very honest man, Mr. Richard Morris, of the navy office. His widow was left in narrow circumstances, I therefore permitted her to keep the plates, and make what advantage she could of them. I was, at the time of undertaking this work, unexperienced in these affairs, and was ill-advised to publish on such large paper; had it been originally in quarto, the school would have been considerably benefited by it.
* THIS work was for a time left unfinished, by reason of a short tour I made to the continent. I lest London on February the 19th, 1765, passed through St. Omer, Aire, Arras, Perron, and across the great forest to Chantilli, and from thence to Paris. I made some stay at that capital, and was during the time made happy in the company of the celebrated naturalist Le Comte de Buffon,* with whom I passed much of the time. He was satis|fied with my proficiency in natural history, and publickly ac|knowleged his favorable sentiments of my studies in the fif|teenth volume of his Histoire Naturelle. Unfortunately, long before I had any thoughts of enjoying the honor of his ac|quaintance, I had, in my British Zoology, made a comparison between the free-thinking philosopher and our great and re|ligious countryman Mr. Ray, much to the advantage of the lat|ter. The subject was a Mole, really too ridiculous to have been Page 5noticed; but such was his irritability, that, in the first volume of his Histoire Naturelle des Oiseaux, he fell on me most unmer|cifully, but happily often without reason. He probably relented, for in the following volumes he frequently made use of my au|thority, which fully atoned for a hasty and misguided fit of pas|sion. I did not wish to quarrel with a gentleman I truly es|teemed, yet, unwilling to remain quite passive, in my Index to his admirable works, and the Planches Enluminécs, I did venture to repel his principal charge, and, con amore, to retaliate on my illustrious assailant. Our blows were light, and I hope that nei|ther of us felt any material injury.
I MUST blame the Comte for suppressing his acknowlegement of several communications of animals which I sent to him for the illustration of his Histcire Naturelle. One was his Conguar Noir, Suppl. iii. 223. tab. lxii; my Jaguar or Black Tiger, Hist. Quadr. 1. No 190. Another was the drawing of his Isatis, Suppl. iii. tab. xvii. which he attributes to good Peter Collinson. The third was his Chacal Adive of the same work, p. 112. tab. xvi; and my Barbary Fox, Hist. Quadr. 1. No 171, of which I furnished him with the designs. These are no great matters: I lament them only as small defects in a great character.
* I took the usual road to Lyon, excepting a small digression in Burgundy, in compliance with the friendly invitation of the Comte, to pass a few days with him in his seat at Monbard. His house was built at the foot of a hill crowned with a ruined castle: he had converted the castle-yard into a garden, and fitted up one of the towers into a study. To that place he re|tired every morning, about seven o'clock, to compose his ex|cellent works, free from all interruption. He continued there Page 6till between one and two, when he returned, dined with his fa|mily, and gave up the whole remainder of the day to them and his friends, whom he entertained with the most agreeable and rational conversation.
* AT Ferney, in the extremity of the same province, I visited that wicked wit Voltaire; he happened to be in good-humour, and was very entertaining; but, in his attempt to speak English, satisfied us that he was perfect master of our oaths and our curses.
THE forenoon was not the proper time to visit Voltaire; he could not bear to have his hours of study interrupted; this alone was enough to put him in bad humour, and not without reason. Lesser people may have the same cause of complaint, when a lounger, who has no one thing to do, breaks on their hours of writing, estimates the value of their time by his own, and di|verts their attention in the most pretious hours of the rural morning.
From Lyon I went to Grenoble and the Grand Chartreuse, Cham|berri, and Geneva, and from thence over the greatest part of Swisserland. At Bern I commenced acquaintance with that excellent man the late baron Haller,* who, on every occasion, shewed the utmost alacrity to promote my pursuits. At Zurich with the two Gesners, the poet and the naturalist; the last the descendant of the great Conrad Gesner.
Ulm and Augsburg were the first cities I visited in Germany. Donawert, Nurenberg, Erlang, Bamberg, and Frankfort on the Maine succeeded. At the declining city of Nurenberg I visited doctor Trew,* a venerable patron of natural history. At Mentz I embarked on the Rhine, and fell down that magnificent river Page 7as low as Cologne. From Dusseldorp I went to Xanten, and from thence reached Holland; few parts of which I left unvisited.
* I esteem my meeting with doctor Pallas, at the Hague, a momentous affair, for it gave rise to my Synopsis of Quadrupeds, and the second edition, under the name of the History of Quadru|peds; a work received by the naturalists of different parts of Europe in a manner uncommonly favorable. This and the fol|lowing year, doctor Pallas resided at the Hague. From conge|niality of disposition we soon became strongly attached. Our conversation rolled chiefly on natural history, and, as we were both enthusiastic admirers of our great Ray, I proposed his un|dertaking a history of quadrupeds on the system of our illus|trious countryman a little reformed. He assented to my plan, and, on January the 18th, 1766, he wrote to me a long letter, in which he sent an outline of his design, and his resolution to pursue it with all the expedition consistent with his other en|gagements. But this work was fated to be accomplished by an inferior genius. In the next year he returned to Berlin, his native place; his abilities began to be highly celebrated; his fame reached the court of Petersburgh, and the empress, not more to her own honor than that of my friend, invited him into her service, and in 1768 placed him at the head of one of the philosophical expeditions projected for discovery in the most distant parts of her vast dominions. This was an expedition worthy of Pallas; it began in June 1768, and was concluded on the 30th of July 1774. It unfolded all his great talents, and established his fame equal at left to the greatest philosophers of the age. He was lost to me during that period. On hear|ing of his return I wrote to him at Petersburgh, and sent to Page 8him all the works I had published since our separation; he re|ceived them with the candor which only great minds possess at the fight of the successful labors of others. On November the 4th, 1777, I received from him the first letter of our renewed correspondence, which continued several years, to my great in|struction. He suppressed nothing that could be of service to the cause of literature, nor did he desist, till, overpowered with business, he dropt all epistolary duties except those which were official. To this day he convinces me of his friendship by con|stant presents of the productions of his celebrated pen.
* AT Leyden I had the pleasure of making a personal acquaint|ance with my worthy correspondent doctor Lawrence Theodore Gronovius, descended from a race celebrated for their immense erudition; his own labors will remain lasting proofs of his be|ing an undegenerated son.
On February the 26th, 1767, I was elected Fellow of our Royal Society.
* Mr. Benjamin White, bookseller, proposed to me the republi|cation of the British Zoology, which was done in 1768, in two volumes, octavo, illustrated with xvii plates; he payed me £.100 for my permission, which I immediately vested in the Welsh charity school. I may here observe, that M. de Murre, of Nurenbergh, translated the folio edition into German and Latin, and published it in that size, with the plates copied and colored by the ingenious artists of that city.
IN the May of this year I met Sir Joseph Banks, then Mr. Banks, at Revesby Abby, his seat in Lincolnshire; during my stay I made many observations on the zoology of the country, and must acknowlege the various obligations I lie under to that Page 9gentleman for his liberal communications resulting from the uncommon extent of his travels.
I MAY here mention, that our first acquaintance commenced on March 19th, 1766, when he called on me at my lodgings in St. James's Street, and presented me with that scarce book Turner de Avibus, &c. a gift I retain as a valuable proof of his esteem. An unhappy interruption of our friendship once took place, but it recommenced, I trust, to the content of both par|ties, in a fortunate moment, in March 1790.
* IN 1769 I added to the British Zoology a third volume in, octavo, on the reptiles and fishes of Great Britain. This was illustrated with xvii plates.
IN the preceding year sir JOSEPH BANKS communicated to me a new species of Pinguin, brought by captain Machride from the Falkland islands. I drew up an account of it, and of all the other species then known, and laid it before the Royal Society. They were pleased to direct that it should be published, which was done in this year, in the lviiith volume of the Philosophical Transactions. It was accompanied by a figure. It is not a good one, the skin having been too much distended: but in the second edition of my Genera of Birds a most faithful representa|tion is given, taken from the life by doctor Reinhold Forster. I named it Patagonian, not only on account of the size, but be|cause it is very common in the neighborhood of that race of tall men.
* MY mind was always in a progressive state, it never could stagnate; this carried me farther than the limits of our island, and made me desirous of forming a zoology of some distant country, by which I might relieve my pen by the pleasure of Page 10the novelty and variety of the subjects. I was induced to pre|fer that of India, from my acquaintance with John Gideon Loten,esq. who had long been a governor in more than one of the Dutch islands in the Indian ocean, and with a laudable zeal had employed several most accurate artists in delineating, on the spot, the birds, and other subjects of natural history. He offered to me the use of them, in a manner that shewed his liberal turn. Twelve plates, in small folio, were engraven at the joint ex|pence of sir Joseph Banks, Mr. Loten, and myself; to which I added descriptions and little essays. I forget how the work ceased to proceed; but remember that, at my persuasion, the plates were bestowed on doctor John Reinhold Forster, together with three more engraven at my own expence. These he took with him into Germany, faithfully translated the letter-press into Latin and German, and added a most ingenious differtation on the climate, winds, and soil of India, and another on the birds of Paradise and the Phoenix, all which he published at Halle, in Saxony, in 1781.
* IN the spring of this year I acquired that treasure, Moses Grissith, born April 6th, 1749, at Trygain-house, in the parish of Bryn Groer, in Llein, in Caernarvonshire, descended from very poor parents, and without any other instruction than that of reading and writing. He early took to the use of his pencil, and, during his long service with me, has distinguished himself as a good and faithful servant, and able artist; he can engrave, and he is toler|ably skilled in music. He accompanied me in all my journies, except that of the present year. The public may thank him for numberless scenes and antiquities, which would otherwise have remained probably for ever concealed.
Page 11* THIS year was a very active one with me; I had the hardi|ness to venture on a journey to the remotest part of North Bri|tain, a country almost as little known to its southern brethren as Kamtschatka. I brought home a favorable account of the land. Whether it will thank me or not I cannot say, but from the re|port I made, and shewing that it might be visited with safety, it has ever since been inondée with southern visitants.
* IN the same year I received a very polite letter from the reverend Jo. Ernest Gunner, bishop of Drontheim, in Norway, informing me that I had been elected member of the Royal Aca|demy of Sciences on March the 9th past; of which society that prelate was president.
IN the midst of my reigning pursuits, I never neglected the company of my convivial friends, or shunned the society of the gay world. At an assembly in the spring, the lively conversa|tion of an agreeable Fair gave birth to the
ODE, occasioned by a Lady professing an attachment to INDIFFERENCE.
CHESTER, March 1769.
* IN 1770 I published ciii additional plates to the three vo|lumes of British Zoology, with several new descriptions, besides reserences to those which had been before described; it appeared in an octavo volume of 96 pages, in which is included a list of European birds extra Britannic.
* In 1771 I printed, at Chester, my Synopsis of Quadrupeds, in one volume, octavo, with xxxi plates.
ON May the 11th, 1771, I was honored by the university of Oxford with the degree of doctor of laws, conferred on me in full convocation. I was presented (in the absence of the public orator) by the reverend Mr. Foster, who made a most flattering speech on the occasion.
Page 13IN September, of the same year, I took a journey to London, to see sir Joseph Banks and doctor Solander, on their arrival from their circumnavigation. In my return I visited Robert Berkeley,esq. of Spetchly, near Worcester, to indulge my curiosity with see|ing and examining Mr. Faulkner, an aged jesuit, * who had passed thirty-eight years in Patagonia; his account satisfied me of the existence of the tall race of mankind. In the appendix to this work, I have given all I could collect respecting that much|doubted people.
* ABOUT this time I gave to the public my Tour in Scotland, in one volume octavo, containing xviii plates. A candid account of that country was such a novelty, that the impression was in|stantly bought up; and in the next year another was printed, and as soon sold.
IN this tour, as in all the succeeding, I labored earnestly to conciliate the affections of the two nations, so wickedly and stu|diously set at variance by evil-designing people. I received seve|ral very flattering letters on the occasion. An extract of one, from that respectable nobleman, the late earl of Kinnoull, dated February the 27th, 1772, may serve instar omnium.
* IN this year doctor Forster published a catalogue of the ani|mals of North America. I had begun the work, by a list of the quadrupeds, birds and fishes. Doctor Forster added all the rest: and afterwards, in a new edition, favored the world with a most comprehensive Flora of that vast country, with a catalogue of insects, and the directions for preserving natural curiosities. My part in this work is of so little merit that it need not be boasted of. I only lay clame to my proper right.
IT was in this year that I laid before the Royal Society an ac|count of two new species of Tortoises. The one a fresh-water species, known in North America by the name of the Soft-shelled Tortoise. It is attended by a very accurate history of its man|ners, and two fine figures, communicated to me by the worthy doctor Garden, of Charlestown, South Caroline. My paper was published in vol. lxi. of the Transactions, attended by a plate. This is the Testudo ferox of Gmelin, Lin. iii. 1039. and Le Molle of La Cepede, i. 13. tab. vii.
THE other is a small and new species, which I name the tu|berculated. Le Comte de la Cepede and Mr. Gmelin err in mak|ing it the young of the Coriaceous Tortoise, Br. Zool. iii. No 1. Le Luthe of de la Cepede, i. 115. tab. iii. and T. Coriacea of Gmelin, 1036. B. T. tuberculata.
THIS year another little poetical piece was produced, by the Page 15accident of a lady being chosen, on the same day, patroness of a Book-society and Hunting-meeting.
CHESTER, Sept. 20, 1771.
ON May the 18th, 1772, I began the longest of my journies in our island. In this year was performed my second tour in Scot|land, and my voyage to the Hebrides: my success was equal to my hopes; I pointed out every thing I thought would be of service to the country; it was rouzed to look into its advantages; societies have been formed for the improvements of the fishe|ries, and for founding of towns in proper places; to all which, I sincerely wish the most happy event; vast sums will be flung away; but incidentally numbers will be benefited, and the pas|sion of patriots tickled. I confess that my own vanity was Page 16greatly gratified by the compliments paid to me in every cor|porated town; Edinburgh itself presented me with its freedom, and I returned rich in civic honors.
* I PUBLISHED the octavo edition of Genera of Birds in 1773, and gave with it an explanatory plate.
* THIS likewise was a year of great activity. I rode (for almost all my tours were on horseback) to Mr. Graham's of Netherby, beyond Carlisle, through those parts of Lancashire, Westmoreland, and Cumberland, which I had not before seen. I visited Sefton, Ormskirk, Blackburne, and Clithero, in Lancashire; Malham Coves, Settle, and Ingleborough, in Yorkshire; Kirkby Lonsdale, Kirkby Stephen, and Orton, in Westmoreland; and all the countess of Cumberland's castles in that county; Naworth, Corbie, and Beu|castle, in Cumberland. In my way I skirted the western side of Yorkshire; I passed some hours with the reverend doctor Burn at Orton, in Westmoreland, a most useful and worthy cha|racter.
FROM Netherby I crossed Alston Moor into the bishoprick of Durham, made some stay with its prelate, doctor John Egerton, and entered Yorkshire after crosing the Tees at Barnard Castle. From thence I visited Rokesby house; Catterick bridge; the sin|gular circular entrenchments attributed to the Danes: the pic|turesque Hackfall, and the venerable remains of Fountaine's abby. The last attracted my attention so much that I revisited them in May 1777, and each time they gave full employ to the pen|cil of Moses Griffith. He etched two of his drawings: I here give one of the plates, as a specimen of his extensive genius.
FROM thence I crossed to Boroughbridge and Knaresborough.
Page 17From Harrogate I visited the wonderful lususes of Bramham crags, and caused great numbers of drawings to be made of the most striking pieces.
FROM Harrogate I rode to York, where Moses Griffith was by no means idle. Among many other drawings, I caused him, out of veneration to the taste of Mr. Gray, to make a second drawing * of the chapel, so much admired by that elegant ge|nius. From York I rode the great diagonal of the county to Spurnhead. Near Hull, payed a second time my respects to my friend William Constable,esq. of Burton Constable,*, a gentleman the most happy in a liberal and munificent turn of mind of any one I know. I kept along the Humber, and from its banks went to Howden, Pontefract, Doncaster, and Kiveton; visited Work|sop, Welbeck, the antient house of Hardwick, Bolsover Castle, Derby, Dovedale, Buxton, Leek; and proceeded by Congleton and Chester to my own house. I kept a journal of the whole I mention, as well as numberless places which I omit. In every tour I made I kept a regular journal, all which are placed apart in my libra|ry; these I wish never to be made public, as they may contain inaccuracies, either from haste or misinformation: yet, as they contain many descriptions of buildings, and accounts of places in the state they were at the time they were made, they ought not totally to be neglected.
Moses Griffiths made numbers of drawings: my ingenious friend Mr. Grose honored me with using several for his fine work of the Antiquities of England;* and I believe Mr. Hut|chinson,Page 18of Bernard Castle, will do the same in his history of Durbam.
I COMMENCED a friendship with that gentleman in this jour|ney, in a most singular manner: I was mounted on the famous stones in the church-yard of Penrith, to take a nearer view of them, and see whether the drawing I had procured, done by the rev. doctor Tod, had the lest foundation in truth. Thus en|gaged, a person of good appearance, looking up at me, observed "what fine work Mr. Pennant had made with those stones!" I saw he had got into a horrible scrape; so, unwilling to make bad worse, descended, laid hold of his button, and told him, "I am the man!" After his confusion was over, I made a short de|fence, shook him by the hand, and we became from that moment fast friends.
THE subject of part of this journey will be found among my posthumous works, fairly transcribed, neatly bound in vellum, and richly illustrated with drawings by Moses Griffith, and with prints. This will take in the space from Downing to Orford, the seat of my worthy and venerable friend the late John Blackburne,esq. From thence to Knowsly, Sephton, Ormskirk, Latham, and (crossing the country) to Blackborn, Whalley-abby, Ribchester, Mitton, Waddington-hall, and Clithero, most of them in the county of Lancashire. In that of York, I visited Sally-abby, Bolton-hall, Malham Coves, Settle, Giggleswick, and Ingleton.
I THEN crossed the Lune to Kirkby Lonsdale, and visited all the parts of Westmoreland and Cumberland, omitted in my printed tours of 1769 and 1772: and finally I finished this M.S. vo|lume at Alston, near the borders of Durham. For a more full Page 19account of my various posthuma I refer the reader to the latter pages of this book.
IN this year I kept a regular journal of the road between my house and London, and did the same on my return, digressing to the right or to the left, as the places which merit notice hap|pened to lie.
I BEGAN the account of this excursion with saying, that al|most all my tours were performed on horseback; to that, and to the perfect ease of mind I enjoyed in these pleasing jour|nies, I owe my viridis senectus; I still retain, as far as possible, the same species of removal from place to place. I consider the absolute resignation of one's person to the luxury of a carriage, to forebode a very short interval between that, and the vehicle which is to convey us to our last stage.
* IN 1774 I published a third edition of my Tour in Scotland, 1769, in quarto, with the xxi new plates; but, to accommodate the purchasers of the first edition, I republished, with letter-press of the octavo size, all those plates.
IN this edition appeared a small poem of mine, in reply to a most amiable dignitary, now high on the bench of bishops, who had written to me, half-jest, half-earnest, on an invidious compa|rison I had made between the English and Scotch clergy. I thought it best to make my defence in rhyme, so sent him the lines in p. 173 of that edition, and all was well again; my coloring of the portraits I gave is certainly high, but the likenesses are con|fessed by all who have seen the originals. The reader need not be informed, that the seven first lines are borrowed from the ini|mitable author of the New Bath Guide.
Come jolly Bacchus God of Wine!
Hear me O Lord for I am poor & needy.
Dying in all its Branches. The worst Reds dyed Black; or any Colour be it ever so bad; Enquire at the Key and Crook, in 〈◊〉 & at the 〈◊〉, in 〈◊〉
—put off three times— due now near six years; besides two new suits—bear it no longer— —not paid by Tuesday next— —will arrest you—go to gaol for you
Yrs. Tho. Thimble
I AM a sincere well-wisher to the pure form of worship of the church of England, and am highly scandalized if I see any thing wrong in the conduct of our hierarchy. Now and then com|plaint has been made against the unguarded admission of per|sons of the most discordant professions into the sacred pale, who, urged by no other call than that of poverty, do not prove either ornamental or useful in their new character. To check the pro|gress of a practice injurious to the church, and highly so to those who had spent their fortune in a course of education for the due discharge of their duties, I sent a sarcastic, but salutary print, into the world: at which even bishops themselves have deigned to smile.
* IN the same year I published my journey into Scotland, and my voyage to the Hebrides, in one volume quarto, with xliv plates. In this work the beautiful views of the Basaltic Staffa appeared. I had the bad fortune to be denied approach to that singular island; but, by the liberal communication of Sir Page 22Joseph Banks, who touched there the same year, in his way to Iceland, the loss to the public was happily supplied.
* IN this year I visited the Isle of Man, in company with the reverend doctor Lort, captain Grose, Paul Panton, esq. junior, of Plas Gwyn, in the island of Anglesey, and the reverend Hugh Da|vies, at this time rector of Aber in Caernarvonshire, whose com|pany gave additional pleasure to the tour. I kept a journal, and was favored with ample materials from the gentlemen of the island, most of which were unaccountably lost about a year after, and my design of giving an account of that island to the public was frustrated.
I SHOULD accuse myself of a very undue neglect, if I did not acknowlege the various services I received from the friendship of Mr. Davies, at different times, since the beginning of our acquaintance. I will in particular mention those which resulted from his great knowledge in botany. To him I owe the account of our Snowdonian plants; to him I lie under the obligation for undertaking, in June 1775, at my request, another voyage to the Isle of Man, to take a second review of its vegetable produc|tions. By his labors a Flora of the island is rendered as com|plete as possible to be effected by a single person, at one season of the year. The number of plants he observed amounted to about five hundred and fifty.
* IN the spring of 1774, on my return from my annual visit to London, I took the Northamptonshire road, passed by Baldock, Eaton, St. Neots, Kimbolton, Thraipston, Draiton-house, Luffwick and its fine tombs, Broughton-house, and the monuments at Warkton, Leicester, Ashby de la Zouch, Bradford-hall, celebrated in Page 23Grammont's Memoirs, through Burton on Trent, and by Caversal Castle to my own house.
* ON August the 26th I brought my son David to Hackney school, and placed him under the care of Mr. Newcome. In my way I saw Whitchurch, Cumbermere, Newport, Tong Castle, and the tombs in the church, Ombresley, Westwood-house, Henlip, Crome, the two Malvernes, and Tewkesbury; and, after passing a few days at my respected friend's, the then bishop of St. David's, at Forthampton, proceeded and discharged my duty at Hackney by the way of Gloucester and Cheltenham.
I NEVER lost an opportunity of enlarging my knowlege of topography: on my return I had the honor of passing some days with her grace the late dutchess dowager of Portland, at her seat at Bulstrode, and visited from thence Windsor and Eaton;* I also one morning saw the great house of Stoke Pogeis, then the seat of Mr. Penn; it had gone through many great hands. In the reign of Edward III. it belonged to John de Molin, a potent baron, in right of his wife, daughter of Robert Pogeis. From Bulstrode, I took the common road to Worcester, passed a day or two, as usual, at Beverey, with my old and constant friend the reverend doctor Nash, author of the Antiquities of Worcester|shire: from his house went by Stourport and Bewdley to Bridge|north, and from thence through Newport to Downing.
* IN 1775 I published my third and last volume of my Tour in Scotland, 1772, which took in the country from my landing at Armaddie, on the conclusion of my voyage to the Hebrides, to my return into Flintshire. This was illustrated with xlvii plates.
THESE tours were translated into German, and abridged in Page 24French, in the Nouveau Recueil de Voyages au Nord, &c. 3 torn, quarto, Geneve, 1785; they were likewise reprinted at Dublin, in octavo size.
* IN my road, in 1776, from London, I visited Banbury, Wroxton|hall the seat of lord Guildford, Buckingham, Edge-hill, Charlcot the seat of the Lucies, Warwick and Kenelworth, and passed through Coventry, Atherston, and Temworth to Downing. At Buckingham I narrowly escaped a death suited to an antiquary; I visited the old church at 8 o'clock in the morning of March the 26th. It fell before 6 in the afternoon, and I escaped being buried in its ruins.
ON July the 14th I took the route of Oulton-hall, Winnington, and Durham in Cheshire, visited Manchester, Buxton, Bakewell, Haddon-hall, Matlock, Nottingham, Southwell, Newark, and Lin|coln. Near Horn-castle I entered the Pais-bas of Great Britain. I visited Tatersale and Boston, Spalding, Crowland-abby, Stamford, Burleigh-house, Castor and Peterborough, Whittlesea-marsh and Ely, Newmarket, St. Edmundsbury, the reverend Mr. Ashby at Barrow, Cambridge, Ware, and Waltham-abby; passed a day with Mr. Gough at Enfield, and concluded my tour in the capital.
IN this journey Moses Griffith made some of his most beauti|ful drawings in the line of antiquity: of several of the most elegant parts of the gothic architecture in the magnificent ca|thedral at Lincoln; and also a few of the grosser figures in the Saxon remains of the west front; and at Southwell he drew the exquisite interior of the matchless chapter, one of the lightest and most elegant productions of the gothic chizel which we can boast of. I wish my time would permit me to make a cata|logue Page 25of the performances of Moses Griffith. I never should deny copies of them to any gentleman who would make a dig|nified use of them.
* IN this year Peter Brown, a Dane by birth, and a very neat limner, published his illustrations of natural history in large quarto, with L plates. At my recommendation, Mr. Loten lent to him the greatest part of the drawings to be engraven, being of birds painted in India. I patronized Brown, drew up the greatest part of the descriptions for him, but had not the lest concern in the preface.
IN 1776 Mr. White published a new edition of the three vo|lumes of the British Zoology, in quarto, and in octavo, and in|serted in them the ciii additional plates published in 1770.
* IN the spring of the year 1777 I made an excursion from town to Canterbury, along the post road, and digressed from Canterbury to Sandwich, and from thence to Deal, and by St. Margaret's church and Cliff to Dover. In this tour I had the happiness of making acquaintance with Mr. Latham of Dart|ford, Mr. Jacobs of Feversham, and Mr. Boys of Sandwich; all persons of distinguished merit in the study of natural history and antiquities.
IN that year I published a fourth volume of the British Zoology, which contained the Vermes, the Crustaceous, and Testaceous ani|mals of our country; this was published in quarto and octavo, and illustrated with xciii plates.
To this volume I prefixed a most merited eulogy on my respected friend Benjamin Stillingfleet, esq. who died Dec. 15th, 1771, at his lodgings in Piccadilly, aged 71. His public and private character might demand this tribute: but the many Page 26personal acts of friendship I received from that most amiable man, was an irresistible incitement to me to erect this small, but very inadequate, monument of gratitude.
* AFTER several journies over the six counties of North Wales, in which I collected ample materials for their history, I flung them in the form of a tour, and published the first volume in quarto, * with xxvi plates, in 1778.
* IN 1781 the first part of the second volume of the same tour appeared, under the title of, A Journey to Snowdon, with xi plates, a frontispiece, and 2 vignets. The second part soon fol|lowed, with xv plates, and a large appendix, which completed the work. In all my journies through Wales, I was attended by my friend the reverend John Lloyd, a native of Llanarmon, and rector of Caerwis: to his great skill in the language and antiquities of our country I own myself much indebted; for without his as|sistance, many things might have escaped me, and many errors crept into my labors.
*Moses Griffith engraved a Supplement of x plates, to which I added a little preface, and a few explanatory pages. Besides these proofs of his ingenuity, he etched several other (private plates) such as, about a dozen North American birds, two beauti|ful parts of Fountains-abby, and a few other things.
* IN this year I also published a new edition of my Synopsis of Quadrupeds, in two volumes, quarto, with lii plates, including the xxxi from the Synopsis, which received considerable im|provements and corrections from the correspondence of my friend the illustrious Pallas, who bestowed a long series of let|ters on this alone; this he performed, as it was a favorite work of his, and by accident transferred from his, to my infe|rior pen.
Page 27To Mr. Zimmerman I was greatly indebted for several impor|tant improvements, from his able performance the Zoologia Geo|graphica, as well as great information from his frequent letters. It is unbecoming in me to express the partiality which that emi|nant writer, and other of my foreign friends, have shewn towards me: if the reader has the curiosity to learn their opinion of me, he may consult Mr. ZIMMERMAN's Zoologia Geographica, p. 286. The rev. Mr. Cox, in vol. II. p. 440, 441, of his travels, quarto edition, hath recorded the compliment paid to me by LINNAEUS; and PALLAS, in p. 376 of his Nova Species Qua|drupedum, hath dealt out his praise with much too liberal a hand.
* The liberties which the country gentlemen, in the character of deputy-lieutenants, and militia-officers, now and then took with their fellow subjects, urged me strongly this year to pub|lish Free Thoughts on the Militia Laws.
ON Feb. the 3d, 1781, I was elected honorary member of the Society of Antiquaries at Edinburgh.
* IN the Philosophical Transactions of 1781 was published my history, and natural history, of the Turky; it had been doubted whether this was not a bird of the old world; but I flatter my|self that I have made it apparent that it is peculiar to America, and was unknown before the discovery of that continent. My respected friend, Mr. Barrington, had taken the other side of the question; but this was not published by me polemically, or in any wise inimical to so excellent a character.
To this paper is annexed an engraving of a singular Lusus, the toe and claw of some rapacious bird growing on the thigh of a Turky, bred in my poultry court.
Page 28AT the request of Sir Joseph Banks I drew up an account of the several earthquakes I had felt in Flintshire; and remarked they were never felt at the bottom of lead mines, or coal pits, in our country. This paper was published, in the year 1781, in volume lxxi of the Philosophical Transactions.
* IN 1782 I published my journey from Chester to London; this was formed from journals made at different times in my way to town. I frequently made a considerable stay at several places, to give this book all the fulness and accuracy in my power. This was republished in Dublin, in 1783, in an octavo form.
ON June the 5th, * 1783, I was honored by my election into the Societas Physiographica at Lund, in Sweden; a favor I proba|bly owed to my learned friend, professor Retzius.
IN the same month and year I made a short elopement to meet the reverend doctor Nash, Mrs. and Miss Nash, at Shrews|bury, in order to make a partial voyage down the Severn. My son met us from Oxford, and we took boat at Atcham-bridge. About four miles distant from Salop, we were highly amused with the picturesque scenes, especially those from Buildas to Ombresley. We landed opposite to Holmsflat, a little below that village, and concluded our tour at Beverey, the hospitable seat of doctor Nash, about three miles distant.
IN 1784 appeared my letter from a Welsh freeholder to his representative, * to convert him from his political tenets. My then opinion of the minister is daily vindicated.
A WORK designed to comprehend the ZOOLOGY of North Ame|rica had long employed my mind and my pen, on which I in|tended to have bestowed that name; but, for the affecting rea|son Page 29given in the advertisement prefixed to that work, (altered, indeed, from its original plan) I thought myself under the ne|cessity of changing the title. I did so; and, after having consi|derably enlarged the work by the addition of the animals and history of the northern parts of Europe and Asia, I this year gave it to the public, under the title of the Arctic Zoology. It consists of two volumes, quarto; * the first contains a long introduction, and Class I. QUADRUPEDS; the second, Class II. BIRDS. In this work I received considerable improvements from the voyage of Sir Joseph Banks, to New|foundland, in 1767. He added greatly to the ornithology by the communication of several new species of birds, and several other subjects.
* THIS work was speedily translated into German by professor Zimmerman, and published in two volumes, quarto, with the prints, which I permitted to be taken from my plates. The introduction was also translated into French,* under the title of Le Nord du Globe, in two volumes, octavo; and, what is pecu|liarly flattering to me is, that as much as relates to the north of Europe is to be translated into Swedish, as an introduction to the natural history of that celebrated seat of the votaries of the great Cybele.
THE Arctic Zoology gave occasion to my being honored, in the year 1791, on April 15th, by being elected member of the American Philosophical Society at Philadelphia, (in the president|ship of David Rittenhouse, esq.) My labors, relative to that vast continent, were there favorably received: but this honor I esteem as a reward above my merits. There, science of every kind begins to flourish; among others, that of natural history; Page 30in which branch I may predict, that my correspondent and friend doctor Benjamin Smith Barton will soon rise into celebrity, and to his pen I trust the many errors, respecting the zoology of his native country, will be corrected with tenderness and candor. In regard to the abilities of the society, the volumes of its Philosophical Transactions, already published, are most in|contestable proofs.
IN this year came out a second edition of the first volume of my Tour in Wales.
IN May 1784, I had the distinguished honor of being elected member of the Royal Academy of Sciences at Stock|holm. In Sweden I am favored with the correspondence of doctor Thunberg of Upsal, doctor Sparman of Stockholm, Mr. Wilcke of the same city, and Mr. Odman of Wormden, not re|mote from Stockholm. I must not forget a grateful tribute to the memory of departed friends, to that of baron de Geer, pro|fessor Wallerius, and above all doctor Solander; the last so dis|tinguished by urbanity of manners, and liberality of communi|cation of the infinite knowlege he possessed.
ON Jan. the 3d, 1785, I was elected honorary member of the society at Edinburgh for promoting of natural know|ledge.
ON March the 5th I received the same honor from the So|ciety of Antiquaries at Perth.
AND on December the 24th was honored by being elected member of the Agriculture Society, at Odiham, in Hampshire.
* IN 1787 I gave a Supplement to the Arctic Zoology; it con|tains several additions and corrections, which I owe to the friend|ship of my several northern correspondents, and a systematic Page 31account of the reptiles and fishes of North America, together with two very beautiful maps of the countries I had treated of in the introduction, (corrected since the first publication) en|graven by that excellent artist Mr. William Palmer.
* EVER since the year 1777 I had quite lost my spirit of ram|bling. Another happy nuptial connection suppressed every desire to leave my fire-side. But in the spring of this year I was induced once more to renew my journies. My son had returned from his first tour to the continent, so much to my satisfaction, that I was determined to give him every advan|tage that might qualify him for a second, which he was on the point of taking over the kingdoms of France and Spain. I wished him to make a comparison of the naval strength and commercial advantages and disadvantages of our island, with those of her two powerful rivals; I attended him down the Thames; visited all our docks; and by land (from Dartford) followed the whole coast to the very Land's End. On his re|turn from his second tour, I had great reason to boast that this excursion was not thrown away; as to myself it was a painful one; long absence from my family was so new to me, that I may sincerely say it cast an anxiety over the whole journey.
THESE were my greater labors. I, at several times, gave to the public some trifles, which were not ill-received; but few knew the author. These I collected some years ago, * and printed, for the amusement of a few friends, thirty copies, by the friendly press of George Allan, esq. at Darlington.
* THE principal was my history of the Patagonians, collected from the account given by father Faulkner, in 1771, and from the several histories of those people by various writers. I believe Page 32that the authenticity of the several relaters is now very well established. This was printed at the same press, in 1788.
BESIDES these may be added, the ode on indifference, and the verses on the lady being chosen patroness of a hunt and book-club in the same day.
AN essay on the improper behaviour of married ladies to|wards our sex, 1774.
A RIDICULE on the bold and masculine fashion of the ladies wearing riding-habits at all times of the day; which was republished, in 1781, by Mr. Smith, with a good mezzotinto of a modern toilet.
AMERICAN annals, an incitement to parlement-men to inquire into the conduct of our commanders in the American war. I omit this paper, unwilling to revive the memory of the most deplorable event in all the annals of Great Britain.
THE Flintshire petition. The discontents of the year 1779 were grown to such a height, that the county of Flint took share in the attempt to produce a redress of grievances. I wished to allay the popular fury as far as in me lay; because num|bers of the complaints were excited by that bane of this king|dom in all ages, pretended patriots. I formed a speech, which I had not courage enough to speak, so printed the lenitive in|tention, as certainly it could do me no discredit. The event shewed that impossibilities were attempted, and that soon as the patriots got into power, no more was thought of the plan once urged with much violence.
AN inscription over the entrance of the new gaol at Flint is printed in Mr. Howard's account of the principal Lazarettos in Europe.
THE following grateful epitaph, in memory of my faithful Page 33servant and friend, Louis Gold, may be seen on a small brass plate in Whiteford church, close to which he was interred, August the 22d, 1785.
PREVIOUS to this I could not, in the warmth of my heart, re|sist giving, in one of the Chester papers, the following paragraph as a notification of his death.
* THIS spring I published an account of our capital. I had so often walked about the several parts of London, with my note|book in my hand, that I could not help forming considerable collections of materials. The public received this work with the utmost avidity. It went through three large impressions in about two years and a half. The first, in April 1790; the second, in January 1791; and the third, in the latter end of the last year. Many additions were made to the second; toge|ther with three more plates by the persuasion of that worthy Page 35character William Seward, esq.. One was of the bust of Charles I. by Bernini, which stood over one of the doors in Westminster-hall, but was removed on the preparations for the trial of Mr. Hastings. I wish the drawing had been better executed.
IN this year Mr. White sent into the world a fifth edition of my Tours in Scotland, with several additions and corrections.
I AM often astonished at the multiplicity of my publications, especially when I reflect on the various duties it has fallen to my lot to discharge. As father of a family, landlord of a small but very numerous tenantry, and a not inactive magistrate. I had a great share of health during the literary part of my days, much of this was owing to the riding exercise of my extensive tours, to my manner of living, and to my temperance. I go to rest at ten; and rise winter and summer at seven, and shave re|gular at the same hour, being a true misopogon. I avoid the meal of excess, a supper; and my soul rises with vigour to its employs, and (I trust) does not disappoint the end of its Creator.
So far respects my own labors; it will be but just to men|tion Page 36those of others, * which have been produced by my counte|nance and patronage; for I never can be accused of witholding my communications or my mite to assist my brethren who have wished to assume the perilous characters of authors.
* I, VERY early after the arrival of doctor John Reinhold Forster, had opportunity of introducing him to several of my friends, which proved of no small service to him during his residence in this kingdom. At my persuasion, and by my encouragement, he translated Kalm's Voyage into North America, which was published in 1770, in three volumes octavo.
IN 1771 he published Osbeck's Voyage to China, with that of Torcen, and Eckberg's account of the Chinese husbandry, in two volumes.
HE also added a second volume to his translation of Bossu's Travels in Louisiana, containing the life of Loefling, and a cata|logue of Spanish plants, and those of part of Spanish America. By these the works of three of the most eminent disciples of the Linnaean school have been made known to the British nation.
I PUBLISHED, at much expence, in 1777, the Flora Scotica, in two volumes, octavo, with xxxvii plates. This was the elabo|rate work of my worthy friend, and fellow traveller, the rev. Mr. Lightfoot.* The lamented loss of that admirable botanist, on February 20th, 1788, I have related in a short account, printed 1788, to be given to the purchasers of the remaining copies of the Flora Scotica.
* THAT indefatigable topographer Richard Gough, esq.. paid me the compliment of submitting the sheets of his edition of Camden, which related to North Wales, to my correction; and Page 37I flatter myself that they would not have come out of my hands unimproved. To him I also communicated several of my manuscript journals, which I flatter myself might in some small degree contribute to the improvement of our venerable topographer.
* As it was my wish that no part of North Britain, or its islands, should be left unexplored, or any of their advantage lost for want of notice, I supported the reverend Charles Cordiner, episcopal minister at Banff, in a journey over the countries north of Loch Broom, which I was obliged to desist from at|tempting; this he performed, much to my satisfaction, in 1776. I published his journal, entitled, Antiquities and Scenery of the North of Scotland, at my own hazard. It is illustrated with xxii plates, taken from drawings by the skilful pencil of that ingenious traveller. The work succeeded. I made him a present of the expences which attended his journey.
NUMBERS of other subjects of antiquities, views, and natural history, are now in publication by the same gentleman.
* I WAS actuated by the same zeal in respect to the extreme islands of the same parts of our kingdom. In the reverend Mr. George Low, minister of Birsa in the Orknies, I met with a gentleman willing to undertake the visitation of those islands, and of the Schetlands, and to communicate to me his observa|tions of every thing he imagined would be of use to the king|dom, or afford me pleasure. His surveys were made in the years 1774 and 1778, and he favored me with a most instruc|tive journal, and several drawings. It was my wish to publish his voyages, as I had the travels of Mr. Cordiner; but certain reasons discouraged me. This ought not to be considered as Page 38any reflection on the performance. Mr. Low gives a good ac|count of the natural history and antiquities of the several islands; enters deeply into their fisheries and commercial concerns; and on the whole is highly worthy the attention of the public.
I CANNOT help mentioning the services I did to the pro|fessors of the art of engraving, by the multitude of plates per|formed by them for my several works; let me enumerate the particulars and total.
- British Zoology, folio 132
- British Zoology, octavo or quarto 284
- History of Quadrupeds 54
- Tour in Scotland, the three volumes 134
- Journey to London 23
- Tour in Wales, two volumes 53
- Moses Griffith's Supplemental Plates 10
- Some Account of London, second edition 15
- Indian Zoology, second edition 17
- Genera of Birds 16
- Arctic Zoology, two volumes 26
- Systematic Index to de Buffon 1
- The Rev. Mr. John Lightfoot's Flora Scotica, two volumes 37
IF I have omitted Mr. John Ingleby of Halkin, Flintshire, I did not do justice to a very neat drawer. I have often profited of his services: and many of the private copies of my works have been highly ornamented by his labors.
Page 39NOTWITHSTANDING my authorial career was finished on the preceding year, yet no small trouble attends my past labors. The public continues to flatter me with demands for new edi|tions of my works: to the correction and improvement of which, I am obliged to pay considerable attention. Early this year appeared a new edition of my account of London,* as I have mentioned at p. 34.
NONE of my acquaintance will deny that I write a most ille|gible hand. In order to deliver my labors intelligible to poste|rity, on January 1st, of this year, I took into my service, as secretary, Thomas, the son of Roger Jones, our parish-clerk, a worthy, sober, and steady young man: I determined to profit of his excellent hand-writing to copy my several manuscripts, and he has discharged his duty very much to my satis|faction.
* MR. White, at the latter end of this year, printed a third edition of my History of Quadrupeds, with most of the old plates re-engraven, and several new ones. This work was always a favorite one of mine: I bestowed very true pains on it: and added, I may say, every new animal which has to this time reached the knowlege of the naturalists.
* IN the spring of the same year appeared my letter on Mail Coaches. I was irresistibly compelled to resume my pen, from the oppressions which the poor labored under, by the demands made on them to repair the roads for the passage of the mails, with a nicety, and at an expence beyond their powers. Let the little performance speak my apology for the publi|cation.
Page 40* IN this year came out a second edition of my Indian Zoology, (see p. 9) but very considerably enlarged by doctor Forster's essay prefixed to the German edition of that work, which was translated by doctor Aikin; and by a tolerably complete Fau|nula; a labor taken off my hands principally by the friendship of the rev. Mr. Hugh Davies and Mr. Latham; the Faunula of insects fell to Mr. Latham, and cost him no small pains.
THUS far has passed my active life, even till the present year 1792, in which I have advanced half way of my 67th year. My body may have abated of its wonted vigour; but my mind still retains its powers, its longing after improvements, its wish to receive new lights through chinks which time hath made.
A FEW years ago I grew fond of imaginary tours, and de|termined on one to climes more suited to my years, more ge|nial than that to the frozen north. I still found, or fancied that I found, * abilities to direct my pen. I determined on a voyage to India, formed exactly on the plan of the Introduction to the Arctic Zoology; which commences at such parts of the north as are accessible to mortals. From London I follow the coasts southern to part of our island, and from Calais, along the oceanic shores of Europe, Africa, and Asia, till I have attained those of New Guinea. Respecting these, I have collected every informa|tion possible, from books antient and modern: from the most authentic, and from living travellers of the most respectable cha|racters of my time. I mingle history, natural history, accounts of the coasts, climates, and every thing which I thought could instruct or amuse. They are written on imperial quarto, and when bound, make a folio of no inconsiderable size; and are illustrated, at a vast expence, by prints taken from books, or Page 41by charts and maps, and by drawings by the skilful hand of Moses Griffith, and by presents from friends. With the bare possibi|lity of the volume relative to India, none of these books are to be printed in my life-time; but to rest on my shelves, the amuse|ment of my advancing age. The following is the catalogue of these labors, all (excepting the first) composed in the space of four years, all which will be comprehended under the general title of, OUTLINES OF THE GLOBE.
* VOL. I. will contain the Introduction to the Arctic Zoology, with considerable additions, in order to make it unite hereafter with China, which will be comprehended in the xiiith volume; but this first volume will also be augmented very greatly, by accounts of the internal parts of the country, and with the coun|tries to the south, as low as lat. 45, to comprehend the great rivers of the north of Europe and Asia: not only the coasts but the internal parts of the United States of America will be de|scribed, as also our poor remnant, as far as the mouth of the Mississippi, and each side of that vast river as high as its source. The plates will be of new subjects, and executed by the first en|gravers of the time: the size of the books, that of Cook's Voyages. I feel an inclination to have one volume published in my life, as a model for the remaining twelve. It was impossible to omit this arctic volume, otherwise the work would have been very imperfect.
* VOL. II. describes a tour, commencing at the Temple-stairs, comprehending my passage down the Thames as low as Dartford Creek, and from thence to Dover.
Page 42* VOL. III. and IV. The voyage along the coasts of France, from Calais to the frontiers of Spain, with a digression up the Loire as far as Orelans; and a second digression from the Garonne, near Toulouse, above Bourdeaux, along the great canal de Lan|guedoc, to its junction with the Mediterranean sea near Sette; and a third from Andaye, along the French side of the Pyrenecs, as far as its termination on the same sea.
* VOL. V. comprehends the coast of Spain, from the Bidassao to the borders of Portugal, the whole coast of Portugal; after which those of Spain are resumed, and continued to the Streights of Gibraltar, and its celebrated rock. This volume is particu|larly rich in drawings (by Moses Griffith) of the birds and fishes of Gibraltar, communicated to me by the rev. the late Mr. John White, long resident in that fortress.
* VOL. VI. contains the entrance into the Mediterranean sea, and the southern coasts of Spain, to the borders of Italy at Nice, comprehending the coasts of southern France.
* MR. Ignatius d'Asso of Sarragossa, author of the Zoologia Arago|niae, and Flora of the same country, by his intelligent correspond|ence, from the year 1783 to the year 1786, furnished me with several very instructive materials for the natural history of Spain, which were of considerable service in my account of that king|dom. I cannot quit the subject of the four last volumes, with|out (I trust) a most venial exultation at the source from whence I drew a considerable part of my account of the coasts of the kingdoms of France and Spain; and also of some of the interior country. It would perhaps be affected: but it certainly would be unnatural to suppress acknowlegements which spring warm|ed from my heart, because I pay them to a son. David PennantPage 43began his travels into foreign parts in August 1785; and from that time, (after intervals passed at home) has visited Switzerland, the Grisons country, all parts of Italy, as low as Paestum; al|most all Germany, and a small part of Hungary; Stiria, Carin|thia, and Carniola; almost every part of France, and much of Spain. From his journals, which, now fairly transcribed, fill eight folio volumes, I borrowed my most authentic materials.
* VOL. VII. is an account of the coasts of northern Africa, from Egypt, to the streights of Gibraltar, and from the streights, along the shores of western or atlantic Africa, to the Senegal, or borders of Nigritia. This will include the history of the great rivers of that vast continent, as far as has yet been discovered, and in particular that of the Nile.
VOL. VIII. is descriptive of the coasts of Nigritia,* from the river Senegal to Cape Negro; and gives an account of the isle of Ascension, and other distant isles.
* VOL. IX. takes in the coasts from Cape Negro to the Cape of Good Hope, and again the eastern coasts to the entrance of the Red Sea, and its southern shores as far as the Isthmus of Suez; Madagascar, and the several isles to the east and to the south of that vast island.
VOL. X. contains the coasts of Arabia on the Red Sea,* and on the Indian ocean; and on the gulph of Ormuz or Persian gulph. Some account of the river Euphrates, and the most remarkable places from its source to its mouth. The coasts of Persia,* within the gulph, and on the Indian ocean, to the limits of Persia, as divided from that empire by the river Indus. In this volume will be introduced accounts of several places mentioned in holy writ.
VOL. XII. describes the eastern coast of India,* quite to the mouths of the Ganges; and contains an account of that river from its sources, and the several great rivers which fall into it; and of the Burrampooter, which, after an equal course, and vast devia|tion, falls into the Ganges just before it reaches the sea. In these volumes, much history (party and controversy avoided) will be given in their proper places.
* VOL. XIII. resumes the subject at Arracan, the first kingdom in the India beyond Ganges. Those of Ava, Pegu, Lower Siam, the archipelago of Mergui, the Andaman and Niccbar isles, are described. Then follow the streights of Malacca, and its pe|ninsula on both sides; the gulph of Siam, and the Upper Siam; the celebrated Ponteamas, Cambodia, Pulo Condor, Ciampa, Cochin-China, and the bay and kingdom of Tonquin. The two last favor so much of China, that it is in compliment to the common geographical division that I do not place them out of the limits of India. The vast and amazing empire of China comes next: future times will read it fully explored by the no|bleman so judiciously selected for performing the celebrated embassy now on its way. The several countries dependent on China, bordering on the northern and north-western sides, the islands of Japan, and the land of Jeso, conclude this volume.
* VOL. XIV. The vast insular regions of India form the xivth volume, comprehending the great Malaye islands, such as Suma|tra, Java, Balli, Banca, Madura, and others of less note. Cum|bava, Flores, Timor, or the isles which stretch east of Balli, to Page 45the isles of Arrou, not very remote from the coast of New Guinea.
AFTERWARDS are mentioned Borneo, and Celebes or Macassar;* and to the north of them, the Manilla or Philippine isles; and to the east the rich archipelago of the spicy isles, comprehending the Banda and the Moluccas,* and others which may fairly be ranged under that general name. New Holland, and New Guinea,* with its appendages, New Britain and New Ireland,* conclude this im|portant list, New South Wales, or the western portion of New Holland, is as fully described as possible: the transient wonder of the vast views of the British nation, which, annihilating time and space, has dared a plan, which would make other countries startle at the very idea.
A FAR more complete Flora of India (than any that has yet appeared) will follow these three volumes, as a separate work, with small historical notations, and references to the best authors on the subject. It certainly will prove the best Linnaean index to Rumphius, and others of the greater Indian botanists.
THE reader may smile at the greatness of the plan, and my boldness in attempting it at so late a period of life. I am vain enough to think that the success is my vindication. Happy is the age that could thus beguile its fleeting hours, without in|jury to any one, and, with the addition of years, continue to rise in its pursuits. But more interesting, and still more exalted subjects, must employ my future span.