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what is new and original in a great part of them. An article in a dictionary of science must contain a system, and what is new becomes of course so mixed up
with the old and the known, that it is not easily distinguished. Many of Mr Robison's articles in the Encyclopædia Britannica are full of new and original views, which will only strike those who study them particularly, and have studied them in other books. In Seamanship, for example, there are many such renarks; the fruit of that knowledge of principle which he combined with so much experience and observation. Carpentry, Roof, and many more, afford examples of the same kind. . The publication now under the management of Dr Brewster, will place his scientific character higher than it has ever been with any but those who were personally acquainted with him. With them, nothing can add to the esteem which they felt for his talents and worth, or to the respect in which they now hold his memory.
TRIGONOMETRICAL SURVEY. *
The work here announced is composed of papers read at different periods in the Royal Society of London, since the commencement of the Trigonometrical Survey in 1784, down to the present time. As the interest excited by that survey created an unusual demand for the volumes of the Philosophical Transactions in which the accounts of it were contained, the publisher of this work thought he would do a thing useful to science, and acceptable to the public, by collecting all these accounts into one. In this he has had the assistance of the Royal Society, and has been furnished with the plates already engraved for the Transactions ; an indulgence of which he has made a very fair use, by selling the book at a lower price than the elegance of the work and the number of the plates might have entitled him to demand.
* From the Edinburgh Review, Vol. V. (1805.)-Ed.
The first volume of the Trigonometrical Survey was published in 1799 ; and it is only the second part of the second volume which, by its date, falls immediately under our notice; but we trust that the importance of a great national undertaking will justify the retrospect which we are about to take of the whole.
The idea of a Geometrical Survey, to be undertaken by Government, and executed at the public expence, first occurred on the suppression of the Rebellion in 1745, at the suggestion of the late Lieutenant-General Watson, at that time Deputy Quarter-master-general in North Britain. It fell to the late General Roy, who was then Assistant Quarter-master, to have a great share in the execution of this work; and the survey, which was at first meant to be confined to the Highlands, was extended to the low country, and made general for Scotland. Of the map produced from this survey,
, and which has remained in manuscript in the hands of Government, the General himself tells us, that though it answered the purpose for which it was intended, and is not without considerable merit, yet, the survey having been made with instruments of an inferior kind, and the sum annually allowed being very inadequate to so great a design, it is rather to be considered as a magnificent military sketch, than as an accurate map of a country.
At the conclusion of the peace of 1763, it came