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בס"ד

Literary Notices.

 

A Retrospect of the Past, as connected with, and Preparatory to, a faithful Exposition intended to be given of the Divine Will and Dispensation disclosed in the Sacred Books, received as Authority by Jews. By A. A. Lindo, an Israelite. Cincinnati: 8vo., pp. 49.—This is the title of a pamphlet which has been for some time in our possession; but the multiplicity of our engagements, the preoccupation of our pages, and a continued state of indisposition, which renders the labour of reviewing books extremely unpleasant, have prevented us hitherto from noticing it. Indeed, it is not easy for us at any time to review works properly, as our space is hardly extensive enough for that purpose, and it is not quite consonant with our ideas of right either to praise or to condemn, without giving ample quotations. Besides, we truly aver that we cannot devote the time, in connexion with our other pursuits, to do ample justice to new works in such a brief space of days as authors usually expect editors to be ready for them with a judgment. It would in all cases be better, were they to submit their works to a well-learned person in their immediate neighbourhood for review, whose notice we would at all times gladly adopt into our pages, if it meet with our approbation; and if it do not, we could easily append such remarks as the case may require. This would enable writers to appear speedily before the readers of the Occident, and would relieve us from a labour which is at times impossible for us to accomplish.

Mr. Lindo, in the present pamphlet, wishes to oppose the progress of infidelity, which has of late been spreading over the civilized world, and threatens, unless checked, to weaken the pure morality which we on to the word of God alone. He calls on Christians as well as Jews, to aid him in stemming the downward torrent, and to uphold those principles which we esteem in common as sacred; at the same time he stands firmly by the standard of the Jewish Faith, defending its <<212>>dogmas against the corruptions which men have endeavoured to engraft on it by the new systems which have been invented, under the name of revelation. He traces in the Retrospect a rapid history of the Jewish religion, and its influence on society, the rise and progress of Christianity, and again its decadence, through the modern progress of anti-religious ideas, which Mr. L. justly thinks threatens destruction to the social structure, unless arrested in time. He believes that the Jews are destined to play an important part in coming events, and that they are to contribute greatly to social happiness, by spreading abroad the pure truth which they have received; and he boldly proclaims, that as we have now the liberty of the press, we ought not to hesitate longer to do what is incumbent on us by reason and duty, to let the world know the blessing which we possess in our law. He therefore proposes, on his part, to issue an exposition of the Holy Scriptures on a Jewish basis, without controverting others’ doctrines; and the present pamphlet is therefore to  be viewed more as a mere introduction to a greater work, than as a finished production. To discuss the subject in our periodical, would require as much space as the pamphlet itself occupies, and in fact a great deal more, as Mr. Lindo has touched on so many points in the briefest manner possible; wherefore we must be content with the mere notice we have given above. We should be pleased, were the public to encourage Mr. L. by a ready purchase of his present production, and we take this opportunity to announce, that we are prepared (see advertisement on the cover) to supply our friends with it. In case Mr. L. publishes his contemplated larger work, we hope that he will divide it properly in chapters, and furnish each with a suitable heading, as it is very difficult to follow up a train of reasoning or inquiry, without some convenient resting points from which to start at each reading. The pamphlet is in this respect somewhat defective. At the same time, Mr. L. ought to give his sources whence the information is derived; for all books with numerous allusions to facts, dates, and places, ought to be furnished with authentications to verity the facts they embrace. Notwithstanding these blemishes just noticed, we can assure our readers that the “Retrospect” contains much that is curious and instructive, and that it deserves their kind consideration; and we hope that the spirit of inquiry will become stronger and stronger among us, till it shall not be a novelty to have a new Jewish production presented to the public from the American press.