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gant or ungrammatical Italian; and here, we beg leave to observe that although we were not born
'Nel bel paese là dove il sì suona.'
yet we have, in various ways, acquired enough of the bell' idioma to know that the following solecisms would expose the perpetrator to the unsparing anathemas of a genuine Della Cruscan.
Page 11. Spensieroso. Adjectives in oso, as focoso, frondoso, nervoso, pensieroso, are of the kind which grammarians call amplificative, and do not admit of a negative prefix. To express the opposites of their several attributes, the adjectives sfocato, sfrondato, snervato, spensierato, would be uniformly employed.
Page 13. Senza dispiacerti della perdita, instead of senza che la perdita ti dispiaccia.
Page 16 and 17. Eccedere is here used twice in the sense of eccellere or oltrapassare. We believe that in all good writers it is used invariably in a bad sense corresponding to its etymology. It is, besides, a neuter verb, and its employment in the present instance is therefore doubly erroneous.
Page 19. Azzopire, instead of azzoppare or zoppicare.
Page 21. Ne lascia la prosperità. Ne lascia esposto, Page 26. Ne dì. Page 38, Ne fa. Page 38, Ne fa. Page 86. Nè abusati. Page 101. Nemmen lusingati. Does not Signor Aloisi know that the second person singular of the imperative mood is never joined, in Italian, to the negative particles non, nè, neppure, nemmeno. This peculiarity in the language is derived from the Latin, in which the same rule is observed. There is this difference, however, that the Romans substitute the subjunctive ne eas instead of non i, whereas the Italians always use the infinitive mood non andare. Alfieri has been very severely, and very properly, criticised by Cesarotti for having once violated this rule in one of his tragidies.
Dovrà soffrire; a Gallicism. Soffrire is an active verb.
Non dubitar alcuno. An Anglicism; for non diffidar d'alcu Dubitar is, moreover, a neuter verb, and very unjustly pressed into active service.
Non usar oggi ció, &c. Usar is also a neuter verb, at least in the sense of the text.
Page 23. Siccome-tale instead of siccome—così, or quale— tale. This error is repeatedly committed. Page 41, 84, 90. Page 33. Nel boccio! What sort of a botch is this? It can
not be an error of the press; for the article is also of the masculine gender. A reference to the original informs us that the translator meant boccia, bocciuolo, bocciuola, or bocciolina. Any thing but boccio.
Page 38. Adilettati-anellati. Page 90. S'addiletta. Are these barbarisms intended as foils to set off the pretto toscano of this translation, or are they seriously offered as specimens of Tuscan in its purity?"
Dalla sua bocca non esce che lamenti. A Gallicism, and a violation of the laws of syntax committed at the same time.
Page 39. Se non vuoi appassire i fiori. We here enter our solemn protest against the arbitrary tyranny which the translator exercises over quiet, peaceable, and well behaved neuter verbs. They are all, without any authority or provocation whatever, forced into a state of unnatural and portentous activity. The only thing they can do, we think, is to establish forthwith a system of armed neutrality to defend themselves against this wanton violation of their undoubted and acknowledged rights.
Page 45. Quello privo di Padre. Poor quegli! After being deprived of his father by fate, he is robbed of the commonest rights of his species by Signor Aloisi! Unless his grief has turned him into a stock or a stone or a dumb beast, we hold it very unkind to call a reasonable creature quello!
Assisti coloro che non hanno alcuno da recarli aiuto. Then, we say help the pronouns first! They are scurvily treated. No wonder that so many of them are driven, though much against their will, into the accusative case.
T'apri la bontà il core. Number, gender, and case being driven from their ancient dominions, person, of course, could not hope to escape. We shall presently see that mood and tense are made to share the lamentable fate of their companions.
Page 47. Resiste l'influenza. Another neuter verb made active.
Page 51. Riterrà la soavitì quando sia svanita la freschezza. Mood and tense dispossessed at once. This completes the defeat of the inflexions.
Page 72. Tavola affollata. An Anglicism.
Page 73. Più uguale. The phrase in which this comparative degree of equality is found, is not in our edition of the original.
Page 84. Si messe in società. Messe is only used in poetry, and then for the sake of the rhyme.
Page 93. La pena che prende. A Gallicism, scrupulously avoided by classical writers.
These are but a few of the errors with which the book abounds, and we appeal to our readers, if we would not be justly chargeable with gross neglect of the duties of our office, if we allowed such a mistranslation to pass into the hands of the students of Italian, without warning them before hand, how very far it is from being a specimen of the Tuscan in its purity,' or a proper 'introduction to the study of the best Italian classics.'
Tariff, or Rates of Duties, payable after the 30th of June, 1824, on all Goods, Wares, and Merchandise, imported into the United States of America in American Vessels, under the act passed May 22d, 1824, entitled "An act to amend the several acts imposing duties on imports," and the several revenue acts thereby amended, now in force. By D. S. Lyon, Deputy Naval Officer of the Port of New-York. New-York. C. S. Van Winkle. 1824. pp. 140.
Partial and unadvised legislation is the vice of all popular governments. This fact, however, argues nothing against their excellence. It is but another proof that the imperfections of our nature must necessarily attend the most perfect of our works; and that the best of all political institutions are not faultless. Measures thus inconsiderately adopted, affecting only minor interests, and not invading constitutional principles, are seldom considered by the great body of the people, and are not, in fact, of sufficient importance to cause much excitement, or produce extensive injury. But when one of the great sources of a nation's wealth, agriculture, commerce or manufactures, is materially affected, this improvident mode of legislation becomes oppressive and ruinous, and incalculable in the extent of its consequences; and even
in this case, the evil might be foreseen, and, in a great measure avoided, were inconsiderate laws confined to parts of a system, instead of effecting the destruction of the whole, and establishing on its ruins one of untried, and too often doubtful principles.
To such an extent has the commerce of this country suffered from this evil, that it may fairly be said to have attained to its present prosperity in spite of opposition, and in defiance of law. Year after year have propositions been offered in
our legislature, and too many of them adopted, uncalled for by the wishes of the people, or the necessities of the times; and without a single promise of benefit to any other class, tending to loss or embarrassment to the merchants. And even where they have been rejected, the mere fact that there are men of character and influence among us who can advocate them, is sufficient of itself to render uncertain the hope of profit from the most promising adventure. A bold, hazardous and too often unprincipled spirit of speculation is the consequence; which if successful, is called enterprize-if defeated, misfortune.
The effect of all this, we doubt not, has been to retard us years in our march to solid and substantial power; and though our strides have been rapid beyond all precedent, yet man cannot tell what we might have been, had our agriculture, commerce and manufactures been uniformly cherished by a sound discriminating and judicious course of measures. Under present circumstances it is by no means certain, that the fundamental principles upon which they are now regulated, may not be changed within two years, and ruin, with a double weight, fall upon him who is now quietly pursuing his avocations, relying upon the prudence of his legislators.
A system, however erroneous in its principles or structure, still improves by age; its asperities are worn down, its inconsistencies reconciled; its contradictions amended; the legislature, the courts, and those who are subjected to its operations, unite to perfect it. Sound and well-established rules of construction are brought to bear upon its details; decisions are made, and regular and settled rules aid its imperfections, till at length, well understood, and as the known law of the land, it is acquiesced in and supported. The government bases its calculations, and the merchant his schemes, upon an intimate acquaintance with its particulars.
But with us, scarcely has it approximated to this point, when some sudden gust of popular caprice, some full swell of popular delusion, sweeps the fabric from its foundation, and, to use a hackneyed but applicable expression, "leaves not a wreck behind." The labour of years is lost in a day; a new order of things is introduced; new schemes, new plans, new calculations must be made the highest hopes, the best ordered arrangements, the most promising undertakings, are disappointed and defeated; difficulties arise at every step; the government and the people impelled by opposite interests, find themselves in angry collision with each other; producing distrust and suspicion on the one side, and an unwonted feeling of authorized oppression on the other.
But the frequent alteration of fundamental principles is not the only evil of which we complain. There is another, serious in its consequences, and tending to produce much angry feeling; it is, that when the change is made, it is done so imperfectly, as sometimes almost to defeat the intentions of the legislature, or at least to envelop the subject in doubt and uncertainty; this arises from the vague and loose manner in which our acts are framed.
Professional men well know the difficulties attending this department. In England, though the drafting of laws is a separate and distinct occupation, and consigned to a few men of ability and experience, the books of reports are filled with cases arising upon ambiguities of expression. When the acuteness of a Hale was found inadequate to draft an act which could defy professional criticisms, we may safely say that it is a department which demands the best talents and the greatest acquirements. But speculation on this subject is useless-the constructions of our courts, and the endless list of amendatory and explanatory acts, which crowd our statute books, fully prove the fact.
These remarks, we conceive, apply with great force to our acts imposing duties on imports and tonnage; laws which, independent of their governing principles, are of ten times the importance of any other. To these we shail confine our reflections in the remainder of this article, and in due time state some facts, which we think will substantiate our remarks.
A tariff we define to be the regulations prescribed by the laws of a state, imposing duties on articles introduced from other countries, or entirely prohibiting their introduction. If our definition be correct, a tariff act covers a field as broad as the wants or ingenuity of man. 'The furs of the north, the metals of the south-the fruits of the tropics-the spices of India-all that is made by the millions of England, of France, of Germany, or the hundreds of millions of China; in fine, all that is produced on the earth or dug from its bowels, and capable of transportation, comes in some way or other under its supervision. To this act we must look for the extent of our license, to take advantage of those great natural resources which the God of nature has given us; whether to make up for consumption that which our labour has produced, or to exchange it for the luxuries of our neighbours; to aid our rich and prosperous country in her march to greatness; to spread her population to the shores of the Pacific, and reclaim from savage barbarism the boundless regions of the west. Here our gallant navy must look for its strength, our government for