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"The Monk" the author of which has entitled his book a romance. As such,

I suppose, it defies the critic's ordinary laws; but it should not be suffered with impunity to do the same by the laws of morality, and even by those of the land. Accordingly one of the best, satirists, the finest writers, and most truly learn ed persons of the age, the author of "The Pursuits of Literature," has, in a note to that poem, bestowed some pains in the castigation of the "Monk;" to this note I refer those who are desirous of seeing as choice a specimen of just severity and manly reproof as can any

where be found; and shall therefore, on this disagreeable subject, add little more than an expression of regret, that, with the eloquent reprehension adverted to, any thing like praise should have been mingled.

By such as are not ashamed to applaud the pages of the Monk, the talents of the author are extolled as boundless; while, amongst those who detest the impurity that stains them, there are many ready to confess the magnitude of the writer's powers, but lament their misapplication.

I must say it is my wish to separate

myself from each party. In powers of imagination, and variety of language, the author of the " Monk" is, I think, excelled by very many of the fair sex, and by several of his own; and, far from considering his genius misapplied, I am firmly convinced that romance is its proper element

Of the works hitherto glanced at, the effect produced to society is of a naturé so exceedingly alarming, that it is impossible to smile when we reflect on the operation of such ingredients as are used in their composition.

But this is not entirely the case with

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regard to a tribe of exotic volumes, extremely well known to the proprietors and frequenters of all circulating libraries; and which, for the benefit of this and ensuing generations, have been industriously imported, and painfully done into the English tongue. 3.

In turning over some of these, and most of the multitudes manufactured at home, one cannot but wonder how any books, thus ridiculous, should find readers so sparingly gifted with understanding as to be misled by them; of tastes so perverted as to be amused by such illdigested stuff, or possessing so feeble a

sense of humour, as to resist laughing at the amazing absurdities they contain.

Amongst our importations, I shall take a short view only of one: for instance, The Sorrows or, as they have been newly termed, The Letters of Werter; than which a richer combination' of dangerous precept, and pompous foolery, will not easily be discovered.

In the preface to the translation of Werter, we are informed that the story is not to be received barely as the product of imagination; but that M. Goëthe has given the world little else


than the particulars of a fact occurring

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