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the Platonic Atlantis was fituated in none of thefe places, are very entertaining. The only question is, whether he is not chargeable with a high degree of literary prodigality in spending fo much precious labour on a geographical defcription, which probably had no object but in the imagination of the Athenian fage for his Atlantis may be no more than a moral romance borrowed from the Egyptians, whofe allegorical genius is well known, or perhaps a poetical representation of fome aftronomical fact. But let us not judge definitively on this head before we have seen the farther arguments alleged by M. BAILLY to determine the fituation of this famous inland. Thefe are the result of the hiftories, traditions, fables, monuments, religious inftitutions, feftivals, languages, etymologies, that he has examined, compared, and combined, in order to eftablish his favourite hypothefis.
The ftatue of Hercules is always accompanied with two columns or pillars, one of which was confecrated to fire, and the other to the clouds and winds. They were, alfo, fays our Author, fometimes called limits and boundaries as well as pillars. Now from thefe pillars of Hercules found in his temple at Tyre, which M. BAILLY ingeniously confiders as a monument of gratitude (a mark of the joy that is natural when one comes to the end of a long journey), he boldly concludes that the Atlantides had failed from the North to Tyre, in queft of a fruitful country and a warm fun, and had thus erected the votive pillars to the fire they had found in a funny climate, and to the favourable winds that had conducted them thither. The magic of ftyle, the extenfive erudition, and the fecundity of imagination, which diftinguifh our Author, are employed in the fifteenth letter to render this conjecture palatable. He fees the Atlantides coming down from their mountains in the North with the Scythians, or under the denomination of that people, paffing the Caucafus, and falling on the kingdom of Pontus :-and it is to them he attributes the worship of the fun and moon, that was eftablished in Phrygia, Tyre, and other eaftern countries. This worship is alleged as a proof of his hypothefis; for it muft have been, according to him, imported from the North, where the, beams of the fun, that burn and deftroy in the hot and eaftern climates, are ineftimably precious to quicken and revive the chilly inhabitants of thofe cold and barren regions. Accordingly, fays he, the Greeks fpeak of the Hyperborean Apollo, i. e. of a foreign god, whom they had adopted into their lift of. deities; and the feftivals of Adonis and Ofiris (i, e. of the fun loft and found again), could never have been invented but in thofe countries, which are for a long time deprived of the light and heat of that great luminary. This notion is, however, more ingenious than folid: it is well known, that the alter
natives of heat and cold are felt very fenfibly in Africa and Aft at the 30th degree of latitude, and the Reader has only to caft an eye on the account given of the winters in Perfia by M. Buffon, and he will fee that the fun is not always a devouring lion in that Eaftern region.
In the fixteenth, feventeenth and eighteenth letters, we fee the Perfians descending from the fame Northern mountains with the Scythians; but as the fimplicity and purity of their religious worship, and many other circumftances, diftinguish them from the Phenicians, Phrygians, and the inhabitants of Egypt, Afia Minor, Greece and Italy, M. BAILLY confiders them as the pofterity of an emigration different from that which peopled the countries now mentioned. He was therefore afraid of lofing the trace of his Atlantides among the Perfians; but a man like him is never at a lofs to fill up a chaẩm. He finds in the ancient archives of the Magi an account of a race of creatures called Dives and Peris by the Perfians, and Ginn by the Arabians (of whom the Greeks made their Dios and the Romans their Divus, and we our Genii), and the traditions, however fabulous, which mention this ideal race as a fuperior clafs of beings, and present them as covered with a veil, contain evidently, if we may believe our Author, the notion of a people that once exifted, and are now no more.
To confirm this farther, M. B. in his eighteenth letter, feeks for the origin of the Perfians beyond the northern borders of Afia; and the worship of fire established in Perfia leads him thither: For how, fays he, fhould this artificial heat, be an object of defire or gratitude in a country, where nature produces an exceffive warmth of climate? Fire, continues he, is fo far from being neceffary, that it is ufelefs in Perfia, and it would be na tural to fly from it there, inftead of adoring it. We have ob ferved above, that this reafoning is more ingenious than folid, and that the winters in Perfia, as described by M. Buffon, render fire neither unneceffary nor ufelefs. But our Author has recourse to other proofs of the derivation of this worship from Northern fource: He obferves that pyr, the Greek word for fire, is a Phrygian term, and that the term which is used to fignify fire in the Swedish Edda (that ancient production of i country where fire is indifpenfably neceffary), is fur; and he con cludes from the identity of these two denominations, that it was a Northern people which brought fire and its denomination into Phrygia, from whence they paffed into Egypt and Greece. Fire was procured, preferved, and adored, in a Northern climate, where it was neceffary and comfortable; its worship defcended from thence into the Southern regions, as the torrents defcend from the mountains. We cannot pretend to clothe this hypothefis with the plaufibility it affumes in the work before us,
from the learned detail into which our Author enters, and the ingenious combinations he employs to afcertain it; we must therefore refer the Reader to the work, and confine ourselves to a general sketch of its contents: the number of hiftorico-fabulous relations and anecdotes contained in this and the other letters, is really striking, and discovers the most extensive reading: -We shall only obferve before we leave this letter, that in the mountains North of Caucafus and of (what he calls) the great line of circumvallation that feparates the South from the North of Afia, he finds the origin not only of the Perfians, who brought from thofe frozen climes the worship of fire, but also of the Indians and Chinefe. Befides the proofs deducible from the Hanfcrit, of the Brahmins being ftrangers in India, our Author alleges the fituation of the learned city of Benares (ftrong arguments and weak, all is forced into the fervice!) which is the moft Northern city of India, and lies in the neighbourhood of Thibet, from whence the river Brahma runs into the Ganges, and carried perhaps thither the Brahmins with it in time past.
After having led his Reader a wild-goose chace to the foot of mount Caucafus, in order to fhew him the ancestors of the Perfians, he carries him into Tartary,-he fhews him there a chain of mountains, which, forming the limits between Europe and Afia, continue their direction to the Cafpian sea, and lead from thence, on right and left, to the high plains of Siberia and Southern Tartary. Here our Author fixes the firft refting place the first term of the long journey of the travelling and victorious nation which he is hunting after in the dark, or with the light of mythological, geographical-fabulo-historical tapers, which, together with his own fancy (that resembles a Will with a wifp) are likely to leave the Reader as far from conviction at the end of this entertaining book, as he was, when the paradoxical hypothesis was firft proposed to him.
For a moment, indeed, we thought the hypothefis proved and afcertained, when we faw at the head of the twentieth and twenty-third letters the two following promifing titles-The Difcovery of a loft People-The Discovery of the Country of the Atlantides: but when we read thefe letters we difcovered nothing but wit, amenity, erudition and eloquence,-which amused us abundantly, and that was all-for evidence we have neither feen nor felt. We learn from the first of these letters that Abulghazi, a Khan of the Ufbecs, who reigned at Korafan in the last century, has written a hiftory of his nation, which, amidst a multitude of fables, exhibits an account of the ancient Tartars, their divifion into the Mogul and Turkish empires, and other branches in the neighbourhood of China, as alfo in Bulgaria and Hungary. Thefe Tartars furnish our Author with numerous occafions
occafions of twifting fables to complete his fyftem. He derives ftill more plaufible fuccours from Mr. Pallas *, that able Na turalift, whom Catherine II. fent to obferve the various afpects of Nature in the vaft domain of the Ruffian empire. This learned man fpeaks of the veftiges of an ancient people who were destroyed or extinguished near the banks of the Jenifea in the environs of Krafnojarfk, This he concludes from mines that have been wrought in a remote antiquity in the mountain of Schlangenberg, and from the inftruments of brafs and ftone (for they had none of iron) which these ancient Miners employed to cut the rocks and other hard bodies they found in their way. Many of thefe inftruments, fuch as mattocks and wedges of brafs, and hammers of wood, as also knives and daggers of brafs, arrows pointed with the fame metal, and ornaments of various kinds in brafs and gold, have been dug up from the bowels of the earth, and particularly from burial-places in thefe Northern regions. These facts lead our Author by various inductions to an ancient people, who practifed the arts even before the difcovery of iron, which the Mongol Tartars are known to have employed in a very early period.-Our Author acknowledges that the Ruffians of Siberia make no mention of this people :no wonder (will he fay) becaufe this people have long fince been deftroyed.-If you ask him how he knows that they have been destroyed? He will reason thus: People that are far enough advanced in the arts to work mines and make inftruments, and ornaments of brafs, muft have previously built houfes and cities; -but as thefe houfes and cities have difappeared, the people muft have been deftroyed by fome fatal difafter. Though the Ruffians have no knowledge of this people, yet we are told by M. BAILLY, that tradition has preferved their name, and that they are called by the Northern inhabitants of Siberia Tschauden or Tchoudaki. This is an excellent and fertile word in the hands of our Author; it will difcover to us (fays he) the ori gin and emigrations of this people, and he has drawn by the ears to his affiftance a learned Straiburgher, called Oberlin, who obferves + that in days of yore the Finlanders were called Tjehouden or chaudes, and that there are veftiges of the ancient people of Finland, even in Switzerland and Hungary, as alfo a conformity between their language and that of the Greeks. Now as the Finianders, ancient defcendants of the Scythians, are the first inhabitants of the North known to us, these little
*This voyage of M. Pallas was published in three volumes folio, in German.
+ In his letter prefixed to the curious work of MR. NILS IDMAN, Paftor at Abo, entitled, Rejearches concerning the ancient inhabitants of Finland,
facts lead our Author to important conclufions, and shove him Northward for their origin, and Southward for their emigrations. This people was forgotten, because they were only known by their pacific labours, and the exercise of the ufeful arts, while the nations that ravaged and depopulated the earth left deep impreffions of their cruelty and injuftice, and thus continue to live in the memory of mankind. The good Tchoudi would have been buried, perhaps, in eternal oblivion, had not Pallas (we mean Mr. Pallas) picked up fome brazen pitch-forks and faces out of a Siberian grave, and were there not in our times a family of rank in Switzerland which (rifum teneatis, amici !) bears the name of TSCHCUDI. Be that as it may M. BAILLY is rejoiced at this discovery of a loft people. He finds the discovery infinitely curious: He cannot, indeed, tell us yet, whether this be the people that cultivated aftronomy and the sciences in the remoteft periods of Afiatic antiquity, for (fays he, here, lowering, unusually, his tone towards modeft doubting) I warned you, that I could exhibit nothing but under the cover of a veil; he affirms, however, that the Tfchoudes are very ancientthat they are near the latitude he had imagined-that they were not-uninftructed, fince they wrought mines-and that they exist no more. However, as this good people muft have had neighbours, and a language, this may offer a handle for obtaining farther information-and as M. BAILLY feems to have had a good deal of time upon his hands, he run ideally about the country comparing the prefent languages together, fifting fables in the hope of getting from them fome grains of truth, and has thus fcraped together materials for his twenty-first letter, which is employed in treating of the Languages of the North, and the Garden of the Hefperides. In the first of thefe articles M. BAILLY avails himself of the labours, researches and difcoveries of Leibnitz, the President de Broffes, and the laborious Court de Gebelin, the latter of whom more especially, by combining the terms of different languages, and reducing words to their pri mitive founds, makes us hope for, nay has promifed us, the difcovery of a primitive and original language, from which all others are derived. Our Author obferves, that if all the alphabets were compofed of the fame number of letters, it would be impoffible to come to any certain conclufion with respect to the time of their formation. But this is not the cafe: the alphabets differ, and the number of letters must be different in different nations, in proportion to their progrefs in knowledge and improvement. He therefore ranges the nations into families, according to their alphabets: and he forms, upon this principle, two great families, one whofe alphabet contained only fixteen letters, and one whofe alphabet contained twenty and upwards. To the firft of thefe families belong the Phenicians