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and space, or definite proportions of either, as of supporting human life, of being inbabited concurring or alternative clements for deter- by Rational and Moral Beings ? mining the probability of a plurality of worlds. The great question, in its physical aspect, is But he says to the dogmatic astronomical ob- now fully before us: Is there that analogy on jector to Christianity, Such arguments as you which the pluralist relies ? have litherto derived from your consideration For the existence of Life, several conditions of SPACE, MULTITUDE, and MAGNITUDE, for must concur; and any of these failing, life, so the purpose of depressing man into a being be- far as we know anything about it, is impossible. neath his Maker's special notice, I encounter Not air only, and moisture, but a certain temby arguments derived from recent disclosures perature, neither too hot nor too cold, and a concerning another condition of existence, certain consistence, on which the living frame DURATION, or TIME. Protesting tliat neither can rest. Without the other conditions, atTime nor Space has any true connection with mosphere alone does not make life possible ; the subject, nevertheless I will turn your own still less, prove its existence. A globe of redweapons against yourself. My argument from hot metal, or of solid ice, however well pro
Time shall at least neutralize yours from vided with an atmosphere, could not be inSpace: mine shall involve the conditions of habited, so far as we can conceive. The old yours, fraught with their supposed irresistible maxim of the logicians is true: that it requires force, and falsify them in fact, as forming all the conditions to establish the aflirmative, premises whence may be deduced derogatory but that the negative of any one proves the inferences concerning man.
The Essayist's negative. ingenious and suggestive argument is intended First, as to the smallest tenants of our sys not to prove an opinion, but to remove an ob- tem, the thirty* planetoids, some of which are
jection ; which according the profound think- certainly no larger than Mont Blanc. er, Bishop Butler, is the proper office of anal- Sir David Brewster dare not venture to sug. ogy. It is asked, for instance, how can you gest that they are inhabited, or in any condisuppose that man, such as he is represented tion to become so, any more than meteorie to be, occupies only an immeasurably minute stones, which modern science regards as masses fraction of existing matter? and it is answer of matter, moving, like the planets, in the ceed, I find that man occupies only an immeasur- lestial spaces, subject to the gravitating attracably minute fraction of clapsed time: and this tion of the Sun; the Earth encountering them is, to me, an answer to the “ Ilow," as conclu- occasionally, either striking directly upon them, ding improbability. Ilow is balanced against or approaching to them so closely that they How: Dilliculty against difficulty: they neu- are drawn by the terrestrial attraction, first tralize each other, and leave the great ques- within the atmosphere, and afterwards to the tion, the great reality, standing as it did be- earth's surface. Here our Essayist gives a fore cither was suggested, to be dealt with ac- thrust at his Pluralist opponent not to
parcording to such evidence as God has vouch- ried, asking him why he shrunk from asserting
We, therefore, do not see that the the planetoids and meteoric stones to be inEssayist is driven to say, as Sir David Brews- habited ? If it be because of their being found ter alleges he is, either that because man has to be uninhabited, or of their smallness, then occupied only an atom of space, he must live the argument that they are inhabited because only an atom of time on the earth,; * or that they are planets, fails him.” I because he has lived only an atom of time, he must occups but an atom of space. In dismissing this leading portion of the Essayist's
“ There is, then," says elsewhere the wary Es reasonmgs, we shall say only that we consider sayist, g“ a degree of smallness which makes you it worthy of the attention of all persons occu- docs that degree of smallness begin? The sur
reject the supposition of inhabitants. But where pied in speculations of this nature, as calculat- facc of Mars is only one-fourth that of the Earth. ed to sumeest trains of novel, profitable, and Morcover if you allow all the planctoids to be deeply interesting reflection.
uninhabited, those plancts which you acknowlThus far the Essayist, as followed by his or- edge to be probably uninhabited får ontnumber poncnt, on the assumption that the other bod- those with regard to which even thc most resolute ics of the universe are fittel, equally with the Pluralist holds to be inhabited. The majority earth, to be the abodes of life. Dui are they? swells every year; the planctoids are now thirty. Here we are brought to the last stage of the The fact of a planct being inhabited, then, is, åt Essayist's speculations— What physical EviDENCE have we that the other bodies of the
* A thirtieth planetoid was discovered by Mr. Solar System, besiiles the Earth, the Fixed Hind since the publication of the second edition Stars, and the Nebulic, are structures capable of the Essay:
† Lardner, Museum of Science and Art,' vol. i. * More Worlds than One, pp. 206, 207.
Dial., p. 60.
any rate, rather the exception than the rule; and In fine, the entire geographical character of therefore must be proved, in each case, by special the moon, thus ascertained by long.continued and evidence. Of such evidence I know not a trace !" exact telescopic surveys, leads to the conclusion,
that no analogy exists between it and the carth We may add, also, that Dr. Lardner, jecture that it fulfils the same purposes in the
which could confer any probability on the convouched by Sir David Brewster, as we shall economy of the universe; and we must infer, that soon see, to be a thoroughly competent witness, whatever be its uses in the solar system, or in the gives up the planetoids as seats of habitation general purposes of creation, it is not a world infor animal life.*
habited by organized races such as those to which Let us now, would say our Essayist, pro- the earth is appropriated.” * ceed on our negative tour, so to speak, and hasten to pay our respects to the Moon, our We must leave Sir David and Dr. Lardner nearest neighbor, and whose distance from the to settle their small amount of differences to Sun is admitted to adapt her, so far, for habi-gether; for Sir David will have it that "the tation.f If it appear, by strong evidence, that moon exhibits such proofs of an atmosphere the moon is not inhabited, then there is an end that we have a new ground from analogy for of the general principle, that all the bodies of believing that she either has, or is in a state the solar system are inhabited, and that we of preparation for receiving, inhabitants ;”. † must begin our speculation about each with whom, ' with monuments of their hands," he this assumption. If the Moon be not inhabited, “hopes may be discovered with some magnifithen, it would seem, the belief that each special cent telescope which may be constructed !” I body in the system is inhabited, must depend And he is compelled to believe that “all the upon reasons specially belonging to that body, other unseen satellites of the solar system are and cannot be taken for granted without these homes to animal and intellectual life.” The reasons. Now, as to the Moon, we have lat- Essayist would seem not to have deemed it terly acquired the means of making such ex- necessary to deprive the sun of inhabitants'; act and minute inquiries, that at the meeting but our confident Pluralist will not surrender of the British Association at Hull last year, Mr. the stupendous bedy so easily. His friend Dr. Phillips, an eminent geologist, stated that as- Lardner properly regards it " as a vast globutronomers can discern the shape of a spot on lar furnace, the heat emitted from each square the Moon's surface, only a few hundred feet foot of which is seven times greater than the in breadth. Passing by, however, the Essay- heat issuing from a square foot of the fiercest ist's brief but able account of the physical con- blast-furnace: to what agency the light and dition of this satellite of ours, we will cite the heat are due, no one can do more than conrecent testimony of one accredited by Sir Da-jecture. According to our hypothesis, it is a vid Brewster & as “a mathematician and a great ELECTRIC Light in the centre of the natural philosopher, who has studied, more system ;” II and "entirely removed from all than any preceding writer, the analogies be- analogy with the earth” — utterly unsuited for tween the Earth and the other planets". the habitation of organized tribes."I NeverDr. Lardner, who, in the third volume (pub- theless Sir David believes that “ the sun is lished since our last Number appeared) of the richly stored with inhabitants ”. - the proba work placed at the head of this article, thus bility “being doubtless greatly increased by concludes his elaborate account of the Moon, the simple consideration of its enormous size" as now regarded by the most enlightened as- a domain so extensive, so blessed with pertronomers — after proving it to be " as exempt petual light;" but it would seem that “if it be from an atmosphere as is the utterly-exhausted inhabited,” it is probably " oceupied by the receiver of a good air-pump!”
highest orders of intelligence !”** who, how
ever, are allowed to enjoy their picturesque, * Museum, etc., vol. i. p.
and, it must be owned, somewhat peculiar, but † P. 71. Her distance from us is 240,000 miles; doubtless blessed position, only by peeping and our Essayist, by the way, tells us (chap. x. 87) every now and then through the sun's spots, that " a railroad-carriage, at its ordinary rate of land so“ seeing distinctly the planets and stars” travelling, would reach 'her in a month.” We should not like to travel by the Lunar Express, but
- in fact, “ large portions of the heavens !” It should prefer the parliamentary train, and hope, Perhaps it may be thought that this is not a starting from the Hanwell station, to get to the ter- very handsome way of dealing with such exminus in a couple of years or so. Good Bishop alted beings! Wilkins intended to be taken up by birds of flight, trained for the purpose. When the Duchess of Newcastle asked him where he intonded to bait by * Museum, etc., vol. iii. p. 48, the way, he answered, “Your Grace is the last † P. 108.
I P. 24. person to ask me the question, having built so $ P. 109.
# P. 112. many castles in the air!"
Ibid. vol. I, p. 63. Essay, p. 272.
** More Worlds than One, pp, 97, 101, Pp. 80, 81.
tt Pp, 99, 100,
The Essayist has now our seven principal than that of the Earth — his density is, as a sister-planets to deal with — the two infra- whole, only a quarter of that of the Earth — terrestrial, Mercury and Venus, and the five not greater than it would be as a sphere of waextra-terrestrial - Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Ura- ter; and he is conjectured to be such, and the nus, and Neptune ;- and as to all these, the existence of his belts to be lines of clouds, fed question continues, do they so resemble the with vapors raised by the sun's action on such earth in physical conditions, as to lead us safely a watery sphere - the lines of such clouds beto the conclusion that they resemble it in that ing of so steady and determined a character, other capital particular of being the habitations in consequence of his great rotatory velocity. of intellectual and moral beings? Here, be it Equal bulk for equal bulk, he is lighter than observed, that every symptom of unlikeness the Earth, but of course much heavier alto which the Essayist can detect, greatly aug- gether; and as he is five times the Earth's disments the burthen of proof incumbent upon tance from the Sun, he must get a proportionhis opponents.
ally smaller amount of light and heat, and even When it was discovered that the old planets that diminished by the clouds enveloping him in certain important particulars resembled the to so great an extent. What a low degree of earth, being opaque and solid bodies, having vitality, and what kind of organization must similar motions round the sun and on their animal existence possess, to suit such physical own axis, some accompanied by satellites, and conditions, especially with reference to gravity; all having arrangements producing day and wlich, at his surface, is nearly two and a half night, summer and winter, who could help times that on the Earth! Boneless, watery, wondering whether they must not also have pulpy inhabitants of the cold waters; or they inhabitants, reckoning and regulating their may be frozen so far as to exclude the idea of lives and employments by day's, months, and animal existence; or it may be restricted to years ? This was, at most, however, a mere shallow parts in a planet of ice. * But if this guess or conjecture; and whether it is now be so, to what end bis gorgeous array of satel.: more probable than then, depends on the inter- lites ?-his four moons? "Precisely the same," vening progress of astronomy and science in answers our pertinacious Essayist, “ as the use general. Have subsequent discoveries strength of our moon during the countless ages before encd or impugned the validity of the conjec- man was placed on the earth ; while it was ture? The limits of our system have been since tenanted by corals, madrepores, shell-fish, bevastly extended by the discovery of Uranus lemnites, the cartilaginous fishes of the old red and Neptune ; and the planetary sisterhood sandstone, or the Saurian monsters of the lias. has also increased in number by thirty little With these differences, it is asked, what be and very eccentric ones.
comes of analogy — of resemblances justifying Now, as to NEPTUNE, says the Essayist, in our belief that Jupiter is inhabited like oursubstance, what reason has a sensible
selves ? for believing it peopled, as the earth is, by hu- To this answers Sir David Brewster : “Juman beings, i. e. consisting of body and soul ? piter's great size “ is, alone, a proof that it He is thirty times further than we are from the must have been made for some grand and useful sun, which will appear to it a mere star purpose :” it is flattened at its poles; revolves about the size of Jupiter to us; and Neptune's on its axis in nearly ten hours; has different light and heat will be nine hundred times less climates and seasons; and is abundantly illuthan ours ! * If it, nevertheless, contain ani- minated, in the short absence of the sun, by mal and intellectual life, we must try to con- its four moons, giving him, in fact,“ perpetual ceive how they get on with such a modicum of moonlight.” Why does the sun give it days, those useful elements !
nights, and years? Why do its moons irradiBut have we general grounds for assuming ate its continents and seas? Its equatorial all the planetary bodies inhabited ? Beginning breezes blow perpetually over its plains ? To with the moon, we have encountered a de. what purpose could such a gigantic world cided negative. If any planet, however, have have been framed, unless to supply the wants, sufficient light, heat, clouds, winds, and a due and minister to the happiness, of living beings ? adjustinent of gravity, and the strength of the Still, it is admitted to that certain objections materials of which organization consists, there or difficulties naturally present themselves.” may be life of some sort or other. Now we The distance of Jupiter from the sun precludes can measure and weigh the planets, exactly, the possibility of sufficient light and heat from by the law of gravitation, which embraces that quarter, to support either vegetable or every particle of matter in our system, and animal life as it exists on the earth; the cold find the mass of our earth to be only five times must be very intense — its rivers and seas heavier than water. Comparing it with Jupi- must be tracks and fields of ice. But it may TER — the bulk of which is 1831 times greater * Essay, p, 278.
* Essay, p, 281, 289. | Brewster, p. 60.
To descend, for a moment, to details, Sir DLV.
VOL. VIII. 6
be answered, that the temperature of a planet | low an opinion of Omnipotent Wisdom, as to depends on other causes — the condition of its assume that “the inhabitants of the planets atmosphere, and the internal heat of its mass must be either men, or anything resembling
as is the case with our earth; and such them. Is it,” he asks,“ necessary that an may'
” be the case in Jupiter; and, "if" so, immortal soul should be hung upon a skeleton may secure a temperature sufficiently genial of bone, or imprisoned in a cage of cartilage to sustain such animal and vegetable life as and skin ? Must it see with two eyes, and ours; yet, it is owned, it cannot "increase hear with two ears, and touch with ten fingers, the feeble light which Jupiter derives from the and rest on a duality of limbs ? May it not sun ;” but an enlargement of the pupil of the rest in a Polyphemus with one eye-ball, or in eye, and increased sensibility of the retina, an Argus with a hundred ? May it not reign in would make the sun's light as brilliant to Jo- the giant forms of the Titans, and direct the vians as to us."* Besides, a brilliant phos- hundred hands of Briareus ? * The being of phorescent light“may” be excited in the sat- another world may have his home in subellites by the sun's rays. Again, the day of terranean cities, warmed by central fires; or ten hours may be thought insufficient for phy- in crystal caves, cooled by ocean-tides; or he sical repose; but, it is answered, five hours' may float with the Nereids upon the deep; or repose are sufficient for five of labor. “A mount upon wings as eagles; or rise upon the difficulty of a more serious kind, however, is pinions of the dove, that he may fee away, presented by the great force of gravity on so and be at rest !” + gigantic a planet as Jupiter;" but Sir David Let us pause at this point, and see how the gives us curious calculations to show that a question stands on the showing of the respec
Jovian's, weight would be only double that of a tively imaginative and matter-of-fact dispuman on the earth.
tants themselves. Sir David Brewster, being Struck by such a formidable array of differ- bound to show that analogy forces us to beences, when he was in quest of resemblances lieve Jupiter inhabited, is compelled to admit only,
a series of signal discrepancies in physical
condition ; expecting his opponent, in turn, Alike, but, oh! how different ! ”
to admit such a series of essential alterations, Sir David rebukes the sceptic for forming so admit of what ?---totally different modes of ani
both of inert matter and organization, as will
mal and intellectual existence; so different, David Brewster will not allow himself to be driven to elect between the icy or watery constituency of as to drive a philosopher into the fantastic Jupiter. He declares direct experiment to have dreams in which we have just seen him inproved that it is neither; that if Jupiter were a dulging. Not so the Essayist, a master of the sphere of water, the light reflected from his surface, Inductive Philosophy. He does not presume not, a large portion of polarized light; and ir his impiously to limit Omnipotence ; but revercrust consist of mountains, precipices, and rocks ently owns His power to create whatever of ice, some of whose faces must occasionally re- forms and conditions of existence He pleases. Hect the incident light at nearly the polarizing an- But when it is asserted that He has, in fact, gle, the polarization of their light would be distinct, made beings wholly different from any that ly indicated. The Essayist, in his Dialogue,' we see, “ he cannot believe this without fur“ doubts whether the remark is applicable; for Ju-i piter's watery or icy mass must be clothed in a
ther evidence." I thick stratum of air, and aqueous vapor, and And on this very subject of the imaginary clouds, But even were the planet free from clouds, inhabitants of Jupiter, he says, after reading the parts of the planet's surface from which polar- what his heated and fanciful opponent has ized light would be reflected, would be only as advanced : " You are hard,” he makes an obpoints compared with the whole surface; and the common light reflected from the whole surface jector say, on our neighbors in Jupiter, would quite overwhelm and obliterate the polar- when you will not allow them to be anything ized light."-Dial. p. 64. We cite this as a sam- better than boneless, watery, pulpy creaple of the ingenuity of both disputants, in a point tures.'” To which he answers, “I had no of scientific contact. jectural polarized light be or be not thus obliterat- disposition to be hard on them when I entered ed, in our view the item in dispute is quite lost in upon these speculations. I drew, what apthe general question, and the great principles on peared to me, probable conclusions from all which its solution depends. If driven to efect be- the facts of the case. If the laws of attraction, tween ice and water, asks Sir David playfully, of light, of heat, and the like, be the same as able ice to the possible water, and accommodate they are here, which we believe to be cerlain, the the inhabitants of Jupiter with very comfortable laws of life must also be the same; and if so, I quarters, in huts of snow and houses of crystal, can draw no other conclusions than those which warmed by subterranean heat, and lighted with I have stated.” S the hydrogen of its waters, and its cinders not wholly deprived of their bitumen ? "--Pp, 236, 237, The answer of his opponent would be obvious, * Brewster, pp. 65, 66, f Ibid., PP, 68, 69. * Brewster, p. 61. † Ibid., p. 62. | Dial, p, 6,
§ Ibid., P, 23,
Says the Essayist, I know that my Maker that it would float in water like a globe of can invest with the intellect of a Newton, each pine wood.
The seas and oceans of
of these planets must consist of a liquid far “The gay motes that people the sunbeams;'
lighter than water. It is computed that a
liquid on Jupiter, which would be analogous but before I believe that he has done so, give to the terrestrial oceans, would be three times me reasonable and adequate evidence of so lighter than sulphuric ether, the lightest known wonderful and sublime a fact; or I must be- liquid; and would be such that cork would lieve in any kind of nonsense that any one scarcely float in it!"* can imagine.
Commending these trifling discrepancies to The planet Jupiter affords a fair sample of Sir David's attention, while manufacturing his the procedure of the Essayist and his oppo- planetary inhabitants in conformity with them, nent, with reference to all the other primary shall we now follow his flight beyond the solar planets of the solar system. From Mercury, system, and get among the fixed stars? Here in red-hot contiguity to the Sun, to Neptune, we are gazing at the Dog Star! I allow," which is at thirty times the Earth's distance says a pensive objector to the Essayist,t “ that from it, and from which, as we have seen, it if you disprove the existence of inhabitants in derives only one nine-hundredth part of the the planets of our system, I shall not feel light and heat imparted to ourselves by the much real interest in the possible inhabitants Sun, Sir David Brewster will have all inhab- of the Syrian system. Neighborhood has its ited, and the physical condition of each cor- influence upon our feelings of regard, --even respondingly altered to admit of it; central neighborhood on a scale of millions of miles !” heat, and eyes the pupils of which are suffi- Here our Pluralist is quite at home, and ciently enlarged, and the retina’s sensibility evidently in great favor. The stars twinkle sufficiently increased, to admit of seeing with and glitter with delight at his gleeful approach, nine hundred times less light than is requisite to elevate them into moral and intellectual for our own organs of sight! “ Uranus and dignity, and at the same time, perhaps, select Neptune,” concludes the triumphant Plural-s some bright particular” one, to be hereafter ist, * nothing daunted by the overwhelming distinguished as the seat of his own personal evidences of physical difference of condition, existence; whence he is to spend eternity in " are doubtless (with the Sun) the abodes of radiating astronomical emanations throughout Life and Intelligence; the colossal temples infinitude. where their Creator is recognized and worshipped,—the remotest watch-towers of our
" Then, unembodied, doth he trace
By steps each planet's heavenly way? system, from which his works may be better
A Thing of Eyes, that all survey, studied, and his glories more easily descried !”
A Thought Unscen, yet seeing all!" ! Why, with such elastic principles of analogy as his, stop short of peopling the Meteoric He stands in the starry solitude, waving his Stones with rational inhabitants ? whom, and wand, and-lo! he peoples each glistening whose doings, as in the case of the Moon, speck with intellectual existence, with the “ some magnificent” instrument, yet to be highest order of intelligence, as in the case of constructed, may discover to us?
that little star, the Sun, which he has quitted. Thus much for the planets. Before quit- Now as to these same FIXED STARS, we can ting, which, however, we may state that, ac- easily guess the steps of Sir David's brief and cording to Dr. Lardner,---about as staunch a satisfactory argument. If the stars be suns, Pluralist as his admirer, Sir David Brewster, they are inhabited like our Sun; and if they --a greater rapidity of rotation, and smaller be suns, each has its planets, like our Sun; intervals of light and darkness, are among the and if they have planets, they are inhabited characteristics distinguishing the group of ma- like our planets; and if they have satellites jor planets from the terrestrial group. He also like some of ours, they are also inhabited. But adds that another "striking distinction” is the the stars are suns, and they all have planets, comparative lightness of the matter consti- and at least some of these planets, satellites; tuting the former. The density of Venus, therefore, all the fixed stars, with their reMars, and our Earth, is nearly equal, -about spective planetary systems, are inhabited. the same as that of ironstone; while the den-|(Q. E. d.) sity of the thoroughly-baked planet Mercury Here are Sir David's words: “We are is equal to that of gold. “ Now it appears, on compelled to draw the conclusion, that wherthe contrary," he continues, " that the density of Jupiter very little exceeds that of * Museum, etc., vol, i. p. 35. water ; that of Uranus and Neptune is ex
† Dial., p. 23, actly that of water; while Saturn is so light losopher will scan,” says Sir David, at the close of
| Lord Byron-Hebrow Melodies.
his eloquent Treatise, " with a new sense, the lofty * Dial., p, 76,
spheres in which he is to study,"-P, 259,
t? The phi