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It has also been observed, that the births occur more numerously in a morning than in the evening. In all these pecularities, in proportion as they prevail and recur, the features of plan, and regulating agency, and of providing foresight, and I think, also, of superintending government, appear, to our contemplation, accomplishing determined purposes and operating to an assigned end.

LETTER XIII.

The Laws of Death considered.-Their Adjustment to the Laws of Birth-Statement of their Rate and Proportions in different Coun

tries.

MY DEAR SYDNEY,

Let us now endeavour to trace the laws and principles on which the withdrawing and destroying agency of DEATH is administered as to the human race. The consequences which follow from it are very extensive and multifarious. But we

Mr. Lemaire's average of twenty years, from 1806 to 1825, at Tourmy, has many similarities to this. I will cite only his months of the births.

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Bull. Univ., 1827, 95.

January

December

At Brussels, the nativities, from 1811 to 1822, in the Hospital de Maternité there, were found to take place in the following numbers at the

different hours:

HOURS.

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100

Mr. Villermi found analogous results in the Hospital of Maternities at

Paris-Buil. Univ., ib.

12

48

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will confine ourselves to a consideration of the has been established as to its operation on our p to the laws by which it is made to regulate the st bers of the human race, in their several national and general amount.

The laws of death, as soon as we begin to st easily discerned to be much more peculiar and than those of marriage or birth. I have alread the consideration of it only as a check, and repe to avoid a term that misleads. Death is as mu in the formation of human nature as birth and has invariably accompanied both. It has been the days of Adam, an essential part of the Di mankind, that all who are born shall die. T from the beginning, a fundamental law, as so parents showed that both themselves and the would not submit to be trained and taught Preceptor. Certain, by this decision, and by chose, in disregard and disobedience to him, not spontaneously become, as he desired, such admirable, and congenial beings as he meant he ordained that their existence on the earth placed them should not be perpetual. The of we call death was appointed to terminate, in rary connexion of their intellectual soul with it body, and to remove the living principle elsew is, therefore, as inseparable from birth as that riage; all three are original and essential parts of human nature in its present residence. N without the other; each is alike importantadapted to the other. Death is, therefore, one tive laws of our life on earth, and of the organi of our frame. Our body is so made that it mu at present composed, and as its functions are a art or means can prevent its dissolution, or the its animating spirit, when the agencies occur fectuate the change. Violence may accelera which skill may a while protract, but nothing eventually avert it.

If death had not been made a part of the pres of our being, the system of our births could not b nor could mankind be either what they have been

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portion of in; ba il its laws, polities, habits, and at they are under the infonce and from the in and unceasing occurrence of o ke away death from the world, and spirit, view, and operations of h Its present form and establ mortal population, nor wild ng beings. Let us fee al principles of the in our inquiry on th at have appeared from th deaths in England, as every every year, with fluctuation anded with the apparent Their series in the In this we see

in the tenth yea

by one min

There were fes

law, known

will confine ourselves to a consideration of the system which has been established as to its operation on our population, and to the laws by which it is made to regulate the state and numbers of the human race, in their several national aggregations and general amount.

The laws of death, as soon as we begin to study them, are easily discerned to be much more peculiar and complicated than those of marriage or birth. I have already objected to the consideration of it only as a check, and repeat the caution to avoid a term that misleads. Death is as much a principle in the formation of human nature as birth and marriage, and has invariably accompanied both. It has been always, since the days of Adam, an essential part of the Divine plan as to mankind, that all who are born shall die. This was made, from the beginning, a fundamental law, as soon as our first parents showed that both themselves and their descendants would not submit to be trained and taught by their Divine Preceptor. Certain, by this decision, and by acting as they chose, in disregard and disobedience to him, that they would not spontaneously become, as he desired, such improved, and admirable, and congenial beings as he meant to immortalize, he ordained that their existence on the earth on which he placed them should not be perpetual. The operation which we call death was appointed to terminate, in all, the temporary connexion of their intellectual soul with its earth-formed body, and to remove the living principle elsewhere. Death is, therefore, as inseparable from birth as that is from mar-⚫ riage; all three are original and essential parts of our system of human nature in its present residence. Neither occurs without the other; each is alike important-each has been adapted to the other. Death is, therefore, one of the primitive laws of our life on earth, and of the organic constitution of our frame. Our body is so made that it must die, as it is at present composed, and as its functions are arranged. No art or means can prevent its dissolution, or the departure of its animating spirit, when the agencies occur that are to effectuate the change. Violence may accelerate the time, which skill may a while protract, but nothing on earth can eventually avert it.

If death had not been made a part of the present economy of our being, the system of our births could not be what it is; nor could mankind be either what they have been or what they

are. Every portion of human life; all its movements and institutions; all its laws, polities, habits, and occupations, have become what they are under the influence and from the effects of the certain and unceasing occurrence of our individual mortality. Take away death from the world, and the whole framework, spirit, view, and operations of human society must be altered. Its present form and establishment would not suit an immortal population, nor would have proceeded from never-dying beings. Let us, then, consider the laws of death as original principles of the earthly system of human nature, and begin our inquiry on their nature and operation with the facts that have appeared from them in our own country.

The deaths in England, as everywhere else, have varied in number every year, with fluctuations to and fro, that have not corresponded with the apparent progression of the whole population. Their series in the last thirty years sufficiently show the fact.* In this we see that, in its first year, 20,891 more died than in the tenth year afterward, when our numbers had increased by one million and a quarter, or nearly one seventh part. There were frequent vacillations of this sort, as if no constant law, known to us, was in operation to produce them.‡

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In the first seventeen years, the deaths were only in three of the years more than the first year, notwithstanding the continual increase of the population. The variations were successively unequal in themselves, and not governed by the amount of the people. Thus, 4544 less in 1802; 3839 more in 1803; then lessened by 17,449 in 1804; increasing 63 in 1805 and 2212 in 1806; enlarging the two next years, to sink by a diminution of 9292 in the one following; again rising by 16,713 in the succeeding year, to lessen nearly 20,000 in that which came after, and

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