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By whom Communications (Post-paid) are thankfully received.


[Price Sixteen Shillings, half-bound.]

Shackell and Arrowsmith, Johnson's Court, Fleet Street.

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No. 350.]

FEBRUARY 1, 1821.

[1 of Vol. 51.

If any one enquire in regard to the public feelings which guide the Conductor of this Miscellany, be replies, that in Politics, he is an immovable friend to the principles of civil liberty, and of a benevolent administration of governinent; and is of the party of the Tories, the Whigs, and the Radical Reformers, as far as they are friends to the same principles and practices;-that in matters of Religion, acting in the spirit of Christianity, he maintains perfect liberty of conscience, and is desirous of living in mutual charity with every sect of Christians; and that, in Philosophy, he prefers the useful to the speculative, constantly rejecting doctrines which bave no better foundation than the authority of respected names, and admitting the assumption of no causes which are not equal and analogous to the effects.


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Mare greatly enriched their own OST of the European nations literature by translating the productions of their neighbours, as well as by studying them in the original. It is, however, a remarkable fact that the Dutch writers and their works are as little known to the other nations of Europe as those of China or Japan and indeed they appear to be as if by common consent excluded from the great republic of letters. This may partly arise from a very prevailing opinion that the Dutch have no writers of eminence, and that their works are unworthy of our attention. Without attempting to discuss the subject, or wishing to place Dutch literature on higher ground than it is fairly entitled to, we shall merely give it as our opinion, which arises from a long acquaintance with the Dutch language and the works of their writers, that they are at least not unworthy of our notice, and many of their productions would be found both useful and entertaining if translated into English.

In Holland the trade of authorship is unknown, most of their writers being either engaged in some profession, or merchants, tradesmen, or mechanics. No author lives by his works, and though in some other countries many of them do little more than live, yet in Holland even this would be impossible. A writer having produced a work, bargains with a bookseller to publish it for him at his own (the author's) expence, as no bookseller will speculate as a publisher. If the author is celebrated, perhaps from seven hundred to a thousand copies may be printed, which are sent to the principal booksellers throughout the country on comMONTHLY MAG. No. 350.


mission, and those which are not sold within a limited time, are returned. When a work extends to more than one volume, only one is published at a time; and this is not only the case with poems and plays, but is always done in publishing histories, novels, &c. not only in the Dutch language, but translations from any other. this account, sometimes three or four months or more, elapse between the publication of each volume, and not unfrequently more than a year passes, before even a novel consisting of three or four volumes, is completed! This manner of publication would by no means suit the impatience of an English novel reader, who can scarcely lay his head upon his pillow till he has finished the whole work. It scarcely ever happens that the productions, even of the most celebrated authors, reach a second edition; this has not been the case even with the works of Bilderdijk, their greatest living poet. Literary property is, therefore, of little value in Holland. There are, however, no copies presented to the universities and public libraries, as in this country, which often operates as a heavy tax upon authors or publishers. But though the Dutch have many writers, by far the greater part of the books published are translations, and though their own works are scarcely ever found in any other language, they eagerly translate every publication at all celebrated or popular from the English, French, and German. The booksellers" shops and circulating libraries are almost entirely. filled with translations, a large proportion of which are French romances, many of them not of the purest description. The Dutch are, however, by no means squeamish on this point, and well-dressed modest-looking females enquire for books at the circulating library which an English bookseller would not be permitted to have



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