Page images








Illustrated with nearly six hundred Engravings.












[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]




NORDYCE, DAVID, an elegant and learned writer, was born at Aberdeen in the year 1711. Having received the early part of his education at the grammar school, at the age of 13 he was entered at the Greek class in Marischal college, Aberdeen; in 1728 he took the degree of A. M. and was afterwards, in 1742, admitted professor of philosophy in the same college. He was originally designed for the ministry; to prepare himself for which was the whole object of his ambition, and for a course of years the whole purpose of his studies. How well he was qualified to appear in that character, appears from his "Theodorus, a dialogue concerning the art of preaching." Having finished this work, he went abroad in 1750 on his travels, in order to obtain fresh stores of knowledge: but after a successful tour through several parts of Europe, he was, on his return home, unfortunately cast away in a storm on the coast of Holland, in the 41st year of his age. Besides the above work, he wrote Dialogues on Educa tion, 8vo, and a Treatise of Moral Philosophy, pub. lished in the Preceptor. The third edition of his Theodorus was published in London, in 1751, after his death, by his brother James, the subject of the following article.

FORDYCE, James, a Scotch divine, justly esteemed for his piety and ingenuity, as well as for his pulpit eloquence, was born at Aberdeen in the year 1720. He received his classical education at the public grammar school, and went afterwards to the Marischal college, where he went through the usual course of studies necessary for a minister of the gospel. His natural abilities were excellent, and he improved to the utmost the favourable opportunities he enjoyed at the university, which made him be considered as well qualified for a preacher of the gospel at an early period of life. His first appointment was that of second minister in the church of Brechin in the county of Angus, after which he accepted of a call to Alloa near Stirling. The people of that parish were prepossessed in favour of another, and prejudiced against Mr Fordyce, which could not fail to be a most unpleasant circumstance; yet by his impressive delivery, and indefatigable attention to every part of his ministerial duty, he soon changed their prejudice into esteem, and their esteem into admiration.

During his residence at Alloa, he drew on him the notice of the public by three excellent sermons; the first on the eloquence of the pulpit, the second on the method of promoting edification by public institutions, and VOL. IX. Part I.

[ocr errors]

FOR the third on the delusive and bloody spirit of popery, Fordyce. preached before the synod of Perth and Stirling. But still greater wonder and astonishment were excited by his inimitable sermon on the folly, infamy, and misery of unlawful pleasure, preached before the general assembly of the church of Scotland in 1760. It contains such masterly composition with respect to description, spirit, and elegance, and was delivered with such uncommon solemnity, animation, and pathos, that it filled his learned fathers and brethren with astonishment, and justly raised him to unrivalled eminence among his clerical cotemporaries. About this time he was compli mented with a degree of doctor in divinity by the university of Glasgow, probably on account of the fame he acquired by this extraordinary sermon.

The friends of Dr Fordyce being mostly in London, he was invited to that metropolis to be the colleague of Dr Lawrence, minister of a respectable congregation in Monkwell-street, on whose death, which happened a few months after, Dr Fordyce became once more famous for his pulpit eloquence, always preaching to overflowing audiences. This popularity he justly deserved, whether with respect to the elegance of his compositions, or their happy tendency to impress the heart with the love of virtue and religion. Yet even Dr Fordyce lived to see his popularity on the decline; for such as attend a place of worship from mere motives of curiosity must have fickle and unstable minds, changing their preachers as they do their dress, loving to be where others are, of doing what others do, and of admiring what others admire, for they have no taste of their own.

His pews were thinned from another cause, which was the failure of a younger brother, an extensive banker, which ruined many of the doctor's constant bearers and most liberal supporters. Although the doctor could not be reasonably blamed for the failure of his brother, yet it is certain that it brought a degree of odium on the whole family. Another cause of the diminution of his hearers was an unhappy difference between him and Mr Toller his colleague, which happened in the year 1755, and which ended in a division of the congregation, many respectable families following Mr Toller to another place of worship. Soon after this he declined officiating as a minister, the impaired state of his health rendering such a step necessary. The best specimen of pulpit eloquence which perhaps ever came from his pen, was delivered at the ordinaA tion

Fordvee. tion of his successor Mr James Lindsay, and highly meriting the attentive perusal of every clergyman. The remainder of his valuable life he spent chiefly at a retirement in Hampshire in the vicinity of the earl of Bute, with whom he lived in the greatest intimacy, and to whose valuable library he had unlimited access. He afterwards went to Bath, where he suffered much from an asthmatic affection, but bore it with the heroic fortitude of a Christian, and expired without a groan on the first of October 1796, in the 76th year of his


The doctor's writings discover much genius and imagination, a correct taste, extensive knowledge of the world, and a happy method of engaging the attention; full of ardent piety, and a zeal for the interests of genuine virtue. His religious sentiments were manly and rational; in private life he was highly amiable, and deservedly beloved by all who knew him. He was author of Sermons to Young Women, in two volumes 12mo, which have been translated into several European languages; A Sermon on the Character and Conduct of the Female Sex; Addresses to Young Men, in two volumes 12mo; Addresses to the Deity; A volume of Poems; A discourse on Pain, and Additions to his brother's Temple of Virtue.

FORDYCE, George, a writer and lecturer on medicine, was born in the year 1736, and studied at the university of Aberdeen, where he obtained the literary degree of M. A. at the early age of 14, perhaps not altogether owing to the superior cast of his genius, or the extent of his acquirements, which could not be extraordinary in a boy of his years. He became apprentice to an uncle who practised surgery at Uppingham in Rutlandshire, when he was only 15, and afterwards went to the university of Edinburgh, where his diligence and progress attracted the attention of Dr Cullen, at that time professor of chemistry, who very generously promoted his improvement. He graduated in 1758, when only 22 years of age; after which he resided one winter at Leyden. The greater part of his patrimony being spent on his education, he resolved to try his fortune in London, where he settled in the year 1759. He commenced with a course of lectures on chemistry; and although his encouragement at first was by no means flattering, yet be steadily and diligently persevered, notwithstanding such unfavourable appearances, till his literary merit began gradually to be discovered and properly appreciated. A number of young men who came to study in London did not think that their medical course was complete, without availing themselves of the benefit of his course of lectures.

In the year 1768, he published his Elements of the Practice of Physic, which formed the text book of his medical course, and were much read as a valuable epitome of medicine. His private practice was very respectable; and in the year 1770 his medical reputation was so great, that he was chosen physician to the hospital of St Thomas, although he had to contend against a gentleman with very powerful interest; and his merit as a man of science made him a member of the Royal Society in 1776. He was chosen in 1787 a fellow of the College of Physicians; and his chemical knowledge was of singular importance to that body for a new edition of their Pharmacopoeia. By the influence of his connections, but probably more so by his literary repu

tation, he was appointed to furnish the navy with sourkrout, which we believe he executed with advantage both to himself and the public.

His constitution discovered symptoms of premature decay, yet he continued to discharge his professional duties till he fell a victim to an irregular gout, and a water in his chest, on the 25th of June 1802, in the 66th year of his age. If his lectures wanted the charms of an eloquent delivery, he made ample compensation by the originality of his ideas and his scientific information, and by a memory which was uncommonly retentive. His works are, Elements of Agriculture and Vegetation; Of the Practice of Physic; A Treatise on the Digestion of Food; and Four Dissertations on Fe


FORE, applied to a ship, denotes all that part of a ship's frame and machinery which lies near the stem. FORE and aft, is used for the whole ship's length, or from end to end.

FORECASTLE of a Ship, that part where the foremast stands. It is divided from the rest by a bulkhead.

FOREIGN, something extraneous, or that comes from abroad. The word is formed from the Latin fores, "doors;" or foris, "out of doors;" or forum, market," &c.


Foreign minister, foreign prince, foreign goods, &c. are those belonging to other nations. See MINISTER, &c.

Foreign to the purpose, signifies a thing remote or impertinent.

FOREIGN, in the English Law, is used in various significations. Thus,

FOREIGN Attachment, is an attachment of the goods of foreigners found within a city or liberty, for the satisfaction of some citizen to whom the foreigner is indebted; or it signifies an attachment of a foreigner's money in the hands of another person.

FOREIGN Kingdom, a kingdom under the dominion of a foreign prince.

At the instance of an ambassador or consul, any offender against the laws here may be sent for hither from a foreign kingdom to which he hath fled. And, where a stranger of Holland, or any foreign country, buys goods at London, for instance, and there gives a note under his hand for payment, and then goes away privately into Holland; in that case, the seller may have a certificate from the lord mayor, on the proof of the sale and delivery of such goods, whereupon a process will be executed on the party in Hol


FOREIGN Opposer, or Apposer, an officer in the exchequer that opposes or makes a charge on all sheriffs, &c. of their green wax; that is to say, fines, issues, amerciaments, recognizances, &c.

FOREIGN Plea, signifies an objection to the judge of the court, by refusing him as incompetent, because the matter in question is not within his jurisdiction.

FOREIGN Seamen, serving two years on board British ships, whether of war, trade, or privateers, during the time of war, shall be deemed natural-born subjects.

FOREIGNER, the natural-born subject to some foreign prince. Foreigners, though made denizens, or naturalized,




« PreviousContinue »