“Tobias Adami, ... who dedicated to the philosophers of Germany his own Prodromus Philosophiae Instauratio, prefixed to his edition of Campanella’s Compendium de Rerum Naturae, published at Frankfort in 1617. Most of the other writings of the master seem to have preceded this edition, for Adami enumerates them in his Prodromus.”—Hist. of Literature, iii. 149.
The title is not Prodromus Philosophiae Instauratio, which is not sense; but Prodromus Philosophiae Instaurandae (Forerunner of a philosophy to be constructed). This Prodromus is a treatise of Campanella’s, not, as Mr. Hallam says, of Adami. Adami published the Prodromus for Campanella, who was in prison; and he wrote a preface, in which he gives a list of other writings of Campanella, which he proposes to publish afterwards. What Mr. Hallam calls an “edition,” was the first publication.
Mere accident enabled me to detect these errors. I am not a bibliographer and do not know a ten-thousandth part of what Mr. Hallam knows. I extract this note from my common-place book, and send it to you, hoping to elicit the opinions of some of your learned correspondents on the general accuracy in biography and bibliography of Mr. Hallam’s History of Literature. Has Mr. Bolton Corney, if I may venture to name him, examined the work? His notes and opinion would be particularly valuable.
As a few inaccuracies such as this may occur in any work of large scope proceeding from the most learned of men, and be accidentally detected by an ignoramus, so a more extensive impeachment of Mr. Hallam’s accuracy would make a very trifling deduction from his great claims to respect and well-established fame. I believe I rightly understand the spirit in which you desire your periodical to be the medium for emending valuable works, when I thus guard myself against the appearance of disrespect to a great ornament of literature.
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NOTES FROM CUNNINGHAM’S HANDBOOK FOR LONDON.
We have already shown pretty clearly, how high is the opinion we entertain of the value of our able contributor Mr. Peter Cunningham’s amusing Handbook for London, by the insertion of numerous Notes upon his first edition. We will now give our readers an opportunity of judging how much the second edition, which is just published, has been improved through the further researches of that gentleman, by giving them a few Notes from it, consisting entirely of new matter, and very curious withal. When we add that the work is now enriched by a very copious Index of Names, it will readily be seen how much the value and utility of the book has been increased.