Page images

are not less remarkable for the sagacity which directed, than for the inspiration which prompted them. With the sure instinct of genius, he seized the characteristic features of the phenomena presented to his attention, and his inferences, except when distorted by polemical exigencies, have been strikingly confirmed by modern investigations. Of his two capital errors, regarding respectively the theory of the tides and the nature of comets, the first was insidiously recommended to him by his passionate desire to find a physical confirmation of the earth's double motion; the second was adopted for the purpose of rebutting an antiCopernican argument founded on the planetary analogies of those erratic subjects of the sun. Within two years of their first discovery, he had constructed approximately accurate tables of the revolutions of Jupiter's satellites, and he proposed their frequent eclipses as a means of determining longitudes, not only on land, but at sea. This method, on which he laid great stress, and for the facilitation of which he invented a binocular glass, and devised some skilful mechanical contrivances, was offered by him in 1616 to the Spanish Government, and afterwards to that of Tuscany, but in each case unsuccessfully; and the close of his life was occupied with prolonged but fruitless negotiations on the same subject with the states-general of Holland. The idea, though ingenious, has been found of little practical utility at sea, where the method founded on the observed distance of the moon from a known star is that usually employed.

A series of careful observations made him acquainted with the principal appearances revealed by modern instruments in the solar spots. He pointed out that they were limited to a certain defined zone on the sun's surface; he noted the facula with which they are associated, the penumbra by which they are bordered, their slight proper motions, and their rapid changes of form. He inferred from the regularity of their general movements the rotation of the sun on its axis in a period of little less than a month (the actual period is 25d. 7h. 48m.); and he grounded on the varying nature of the paths apparently traversed by them a plausible, though inconclusive, argument in favour of the earth's annual revolution. Twice in the year, he observed, they seem to travel across the solar disk in straight lines; at other times, in curves. These appearances he referred with great acuteness to the slight inclination of the sun's axis of rotation to the plane of the ecliptic. Thus, when the earth finds herself in the plane of the sun's equator, which occurs at two opposite points of her orbit, the spots, travelling in circles parallel with that plane, necessarily appear to describe right lines; but when the earth is above or below the equatorial level, the paths of the spots open out into curves turned downwards or up. wards, according to the direction in which they are seen. The explanation, however, of this phenomenon is equally consistent with the geocentric as with the heliocentric theory of the solar system. The idea of a universal force of gravitation seems to have hovered around the borders of this great man's mind, without ever fully entering it. He perceived the analogy between the power which holds the moon in the neighbourhood of the earth, and compels Jupiter's satellites to circulate round their primary, and the attraction exercised by the earth on bodies at its surface; but he failed to conceive the combination of central force with initial velocity, and was disposed to connect the revoluThe passage is sufficiently remarkable to deserve quotation in the riginal:"Le parti della Terra hanno tal propensione al centro di rasa, che quando ella cangiasse luogo, le dette parti, benchè lontane dal globo nel tempo delle mutazioni di esso, lo seguirebbero per tutto; mempio di ciò sia il seguito perpetuo delle Medicee, ancorché separate

Continuamente da Giove, L'istesso si deve dire della Luna, obbligata

a seguir la Terra."—Diologo dei Massimi Sistemi, Giornata terza, p. 351 of Alberi's clition.

tions of the planets with the axial rotation of the sun. This notion, it is plain, tended rather towards Descartes's theory of vortices than towards Newton's theory of gravitation. More valid instances of the anticipation of modern discoveries may be found in his prevision that a small annual parallax would eventually be found for some of the fixed stars, and that extra-Saturnian planets would at some future time be ascertained to exist, and in his conviction that light travels with a measurable although, in relation to terrestrial distances, infinite velocity.

The invention of the miscroscope, attributed to Galileo by his first biographer, Vincenzo Viviani, does not in truth belong to him. Such an instrument was made as early as 1590 by Zacharias Jansen of Middleburg; and although Galileo discovered, in 1610, a means of adapting his telescope to the examination of minute objects, he did not become acquainted with the compound microscope_until 1624, when he saw one of Drebbel's instruments in Rome, and, with characteristic ingenuity, immediately introduced some material improvements into its construction.

The most substantial, if not the most brilliant part of his work consisted undoubtedly in his contributions towards the establishment of mechanics as a science. Some valuable but isolated facts and theorems were previously discovered and proved, but it was he who first clearly grasped the idea of force as a mechanical agent, and extended to the external world the conception of the invariability of the relation between cause and effect. From the time of Archimedes there had existed a science of equilibrium, but the science of motion began to exist with Galileo. It is not too much to say that the final triumph of the Copernican system was due in larger measure to his labours in this department than to his direct arguments in its favour. The problem of the heavens is essentially a mechanical one; and without the mechanical conceptions of the dependence of motion upon force which Galileo familiarized to men's minds, that problem might have remained a sealed book even to the intelligence of Newton. The interdependence of motion and force was not indeed formulated into definite laws by Galileo, but his writings on dynamics are everywhere suggestive of those laws, and his solutions of dynamical problems involve their recognition. The extraordinary advances made by him in this branch of knowledge were owing to his happy method of applying mathematical analysis to physical problems. As a pure mathematician he was, it is true, surpassed in profundity by more than one among his pupils and contemporaries; and in the wider imaginative grasp of abstract geometrical principles he cannot be compared with Fermat, Descartes, or Pascal, to say nothing of Newton or Leibnitz. Still, even in the region of pure mathematics, his powerful and original mind left notable traces of its working. He studied the properties of the cycloid, and attempted the problem of its quadrature earlier than Mersenne; and in the "infinitesimals," which he was one of the first to introduce into geometrical demonstrations, was contained the fruitful germ of the differential calculus. But the method which was peculiarly his, and which still forms the open road to discoveries in natural science, consisted in the combination of experiment with calculation-in the transformation of the concrete into the abstract, and the assiduous comparison of results. Con

The first fruits of the new system of investigation was his determination of the laws of falling bodies. ceiving that the simplest principle is the most likely to be true, he assumed as a postulate that bodies falling freely towards the earth descend with a uniformly accelerated motion, and deduced thence the principal mathematical consequences, as that the velocities acquired are in the direct, and the spaces traversed in the duplicate ratio of the times, counted from the beginning of motion; finally, he proved,

by observing the times of descent of bodies falling down long inclined planes, that the postulated law was the true law. Even here, he was obliged to take for granted that the velocities acquired in descending from the same height along planes of every inclination are equal; and it was not until shortly before his death that he found the mathematical demonstration of this not very obvious principle. The first law of motion-that which expresses the principle of inertia-is virtually contained in the idea of uniformly accelerated velocity. The recognition of the second-that of the independence of different motionsmust be added to form the true theory of projectiles. This was done by Galileo. Up to his time it was universally held in the schools that the motion of a body must cease with the impulse communicated to it, but for the "reaction of the medium" which helps it forward. Galileo showed, on the contrary, that the nature of motion once impressed is to continue indefinitely in a uniform direction, and that the effect of the medium is a retarding, not an impelling one. Another commonly received axiom was that no body could be affected by more than one movement at one time, and it was thus supposed that a cannon ball, or other projectile, moves forward in a right line until its first, impulse is exhausted, when it falls vertically to the ground. In the fourth of Galileo's dialogues on mechanics, he demonstrated that the path described by a projectile, being the result of the combination of a uniform transverse motion with a uniformly accelerated vertical motion, must, apart from the resistance of the air, be a parabola. The establishment of the principle of the composition of motions formed a conclusive answer to the most formidable of the arguments used against the rotation of the earth, and we find it accordingly triumphantly brought forward by Galileo in the second of his dialogues on the systems of the world. It was urged by anti-Copernicans that a body flung upwards or cast downwards would, if the earth were in motion, be left behind by the rapid translation of the point from which it started; Galileo, however, proved that the reception of a fresh impulse in no way interfered with the movement already impressed, and that the rotation of the earth was insensible, because shared equally by all bodies at its surface. His theory of the inclined plane, combined with his satisfactory definition of "momentum," led him towards the third law of motion. We find Newton's theorem, that "action and reaction are equal and opposite," stated with approximate precision in his treatise Della Scienza Meccanica, which contains the substance of lectures delivered during his professorship at Padua ; and the sam principle is involved in the axiom enunciated in the third of his mechanical dialogues, that "the propensity to fail of a body is equal to the least resistance which suffices to support it." The problems of percussion, however, did not receive a definitive solution until after his death.

His services were no less conspicuous in the statical than in the kinetical division of mechanics. He gave the first direct and entirely satisfactory demonstration of equilibrium on an inclined plane, reducing it to the lever by a sound and ingenious train of reasoning; while, by establishing the theory of "virtual velocities," he laid down the fundamental principle which, in the opinion of Lagrange, contains the general expression of the laws of equilibrium. He studied with attention the still obscure subject of molecular cohesion, and little has been added to what he ascertained on the question of transverse strains and the strength of beams, brought by him for the first time within the scope of mechanical theory. In his Discorso intorno alle cose che tanno su l'acqua, published in 1612, he used the principle of virtual velocities to demonstrate the more important theorems of hydrostatics, deducing from it the equilibrium of fluid in a siphon, and proved against the Aristotelians

that the floating of solid bodies in a liquid depends not upon their form, but upon their specific gravities, relative to such liquid.

In order to form an adequate estimate of the stride made by Galileo in natural philosophy, it would be necessary to enumerate the confused and erroneous opinions prevailing on all such subjects in his time. His best eulogium, it has been truly said, consists in the fallacies which he exposed. The scholastic distinctions between corruptible and incorruptible substances, between absolute gravity and absolute levity, between natural and violent motions, if they did not wholly disappear from scientific phraseology, ceased thenceforward to hold the place of honour in the controversies of the learned. Discarding these obscure and misleading notions, Galileo taught that gravity and levity are relative terms, and that all bodies are heavy, even those which, like the air, are invisible; that motion is the result of force, instantaneous or continuous; that weight is a continuous force, attracting towards the centre of the earth; that, in a vacuum, all bodies would fall with equal velocities; that the "inertia of matter" implies the continuance of motion, as well as the permanence of rest; and that the substance of the heavenly bodies is equally "corruptible" with that of the earth. These simple elementary ideas were emiaently capable of development and investigation, and were not only true, but the prelude to further truth; while those they superseded defied inquiry by their vagueness, end baffled it with their obscurity. Galileo was a man born in due time. He was superior to his contemporaries, but not isolated amongst them. He represented and intensified a growing tendency of the age in which he lived. It was beginning to be suspected that from Aristotle an appeal lay to nature, and some were found who no longer treated the ipse dixit of the Stagirite as the final authority in matters of science. A vigorous but ineffectual warfare had already been waged against the blind traditions of the schools by Ramus and Telesius, by Patricius and Campanella, and the revolution which Galileo completed had been prepared by his predecessors. Nevertheless, the task which he so effectually accomplished demanded the highest and rarest quality of genius. He struck out for himself the happy middle path between the a priori and the empirical systems, and exemplified with brilliant success the method by which experimental science has wrested from nature so many of hor secrets. His mind was an eminently practical one. He cor cerned himself above all with what fell within the range of exact inquiry, and left to others the larger but less fruitful speculations which can never be brought to the direct test of experiment. Thus, while far-reaching but hasty generalizations have had their day and been forgotten, his work has proved permanent, because he made sure of its foundations. His keen intuition of truth, his vigour and yet sobriety of argument, his fertility of illustration and acuteness of sarcasm, made him irresistible to his antagonists; and the evanescent triumphs of successful controversy have been succeeded by the lasting applause of posterity.

The first complete edition of Galileo's writings was published at Florence (1842-1856), in 15 8vo vols., by the Società Editrice Fiorentina, under the able supervision of Signor Eugenio Albèri. Besides the works already enumerated, it contains the hitherto inedited Sermones de Motu Gravium, composed at Pisa between 1589 and 1591; his letters to his friends, with many of their replies, as well as several of the essays of his scientific opponents; his private comadmirer, and on the Gerusalemme Liberata, of which he was an ments on the Orlando Furioso, of which he was an enthusiastic equally persistent depreciator; some stanzas and sonnets of no great merit, together with the sketch of a comedy; finally, a reprint of Viviani's Life, with valuable notes and corrections. The original documents from the archives of the Inquisition, relating to the of Count Rossi, and now in the Vatican Library, were to a limited events of 1616 and 1633, recovered from Paris in 1846 by the efforts extent made public by Monsignor Marino-Marini in 1850, and

more unreservedly by M. Henri de l'Epinois, in an essay entitled | excited considerable controversy in the scientific world. "Galilée, son Procès, sa Condemnation," published in 1867 in the Revue des Questions Historiques. He was followed by M. Karl von Gebler, who, in an able and exhaustive but somewhat prejudiced work, Galileo Galilei und die Römische Curie (Stuttgart, 1576), sought to impeach the authenticity of a document of prime importance in the trial of 1688. He has, however, been victoriously answered by Signor Domenico Berti, in Il Processo originale di Galileo Galilei (Rome, 1876), and by M. de l'Épinois, with Les Prices du Procès de Galilée (Rome, Paris, 1877). The touching letters of Galileo's eldest daughter, Sister Maria Celeste, to her father were printed in 1864 by Professor Carlo Arduini, in a publication entitled La Primogenita di Galileo Galilei. See also M. Th. Henri Martin's excellent biography, Galilée, les Droits de la Science et la Méthode des Sciences Physiques, Paris, 1868; and the anonymous Private Life of Galileo, London, 1870. (A. M. C.) GALITCH, or HALICZ, a town of Russia, at the head of a district in the government of Kostroma, 80 miles N.È. of Kostroma, in 57° 15′ N. lat. and 42° 56′ E. long., on the low south-eastern shore of Galitch Lake. Among its public buildings are a hospital, a poorhouse opened in 1855, about 15 churches, and a convent of the third class. The chief occupation of the inhabitants is the manufacture of leather and gloves; and the fisheries of the lake yield about 30,000 rubles per annum, and give employment to about 400 fishermen, whose rights are secured by ancient charters. At the annual fair a considerable trade is done in woollen and cotton goods, earthenware, and miscellaneous articles. In 1860 the population was 6536; but in the St Petersburg Calendar for 1878 it is given at 5620.

He had almost reached the zenith of his fame when, in 1807, he repaired to Paris and established himself there as a medical practitioner, at the same time continuing his activity as a lecturer and writer. In 1808 appeared his Introduction au cours de physiologie du cerveau, which was followed in 1809 by the Recherches sur le système nerveux en général, et sur celui du cerveau en particulier (originally laid before the Institute of France in March 1808), and in 1810 by the first instalment of the Anatomie et Physiologie du système nerveux en général, et du cerveau en particulier, avec des observations sur la possibilité de reconnaître plusieurs dispositions intellectuelles et morales de l'homme et des animaux par la configuration de leurs têtes. The Recherches, and the first two volumes of the Anatomie, bear the conjoint names of Gall and Spurzheim. The latter work was completed in 1819, and appeared in a second edition of six 8vo volumes shortly afterwards (1822-25). In 1811 he replied to a charge of Spinozism or atheism, which had been strongly urged against him in certain quarters, by a treatise entitled Des dispositions innées de l'âme et de l'esprit, which he afterwards incorporated with his greater work. In 1819. he became a naturalized French subject, but his efforts two years afterwards to obtain admission to the Academy of Sciences, although supported by Geoffroy St Hilaire, were unsuccessful. In 1823 he visited London with the intention of giving a series of phrenological lectures, but was disappointed of the reception he had anticipated, and speedily abandoned his plans. He continued to lecture and practise in Paris until the beginning of 1828, when he was disabled by an apoplectic seizure. His death took place at Montrouge near Paris, on the 22d of August 1828. The Anatomie has been translated into English by Lewis (Boston, U.S., 1835). GALLAND, ANTOINE (1646-1715), Orientalist and archeologist, the first European translator of the Arabian Nights, was born in 1646 at Rollot, in the department of Somme. The completion of his school education at Noyon was followed by a brief apprenticeship to a trade, from which, however, he soon escaped, to pursue his linguistic studies at Paris. After having been employed for some time in making a catalogue of the Oriental manuscripts at the Sorbonne, he was, in 1670, attached to the French embassy at Constantinople; and in 1673 he also accompanied his chief (De Nointel) to Syria and the Levant, where he availed himself of the opportunity to copy a great number of inscriptions, and also to sketch, in some

cases even to remove, historical monuments.

After a

GALL, FRANZ JOSEPH (1758-1828), anatomist, physiologist, and founder of phrenology, was born at Tiefenbrunn near Pforzheim, Baden, on the 9th of March 1758. After completing the usual literary course at Baden and Bruchsal, he began the study of medicine under Hermann at Strasburg, whence, attracted by the names of Van Swieten and Stoll, he removed to Vienna in 1781. Having received his diploma, he began to practise as a physician there in 1785; bat his energies were mainly devoted to the scientific investigation of problems which, even from boyhood, had been occupying his attention. At a comparatively early period he had formed a generalization which he believed to be a sound one, that in the human subject at least a powerful memory is invariably associated with prominent eyes; and further observation had enabled him, as he thought, also to define the external characteristics indicative special talents for painting, music, and the mechanical arts. Following out these researches, he gradually reached the strong personal conviction, not only that the talents and dispositions of men are dependent upon the functions of the brain, but also that they may be inferred with perfect brief visit to France, where his collection of antiquities exactitude and precision from the external appearances of attracted some attention, Galland returned to the Levant the skull. Gall's first appearance as an author was made in 1676; and in 1679 he undertook a third voyage, being in 1791, when he published the first two chapters of a commissioned by the French East India Company to collect (never completed) work entitled Philosophisch-medicinische for the cabinet of Colbert; on the expiry of this commission Untersuchungen über Natur u. Kunst im kranken u. gesunden he was instructed by the Government to continue his Zustande des Menschen. The first public notice of his researches, and had the title of " antiquary to the king " inquiries in cranioscopy, however, was in the form of a conferred upon him. During his prolonged residences familiar thorough knowledge of the Arabic, Wieland's Deutscher Mercur in 1798; but two years before Turkish, and Persian languages and literatures, which, logical lectures in Vienna, where his doctrines soon attracted valuable assistance to Thevenot, the keeper of the royal this Gall had commenced giving private courses of phreno- on his final return to France, enabled him to render general attention, and met with increasing success until, library, and to D'Herbelot. After their deaths he lived for in 1802, they were interdicted by the Government on the ground that they were dangerous to religion. This step on some time at Caen under the roof of Foucault the intendant, himself no mean archæologist; and there he began the the part of the publication (1704-17) of Les Mille et Une Nuits, a transMing public curiosity and increasing Gall's celebrity. In lation which excited immense interest during the time of friend and associate Spurzheim, and made a tour through translation (last edition 1872). In 1701 Galland had been friand 1805 he finally left Vienna, in company with his its appearance, and which is still the standard French Germany, in the course of which he lectured in Berlin, admitted into the Academy of Inscriptions, and in 1709 Dresden, Magdeburg, and several of the university towns. he was appointed to the chair of Arabic in the College de These expositions, which he knew how to make popular France. He continued to discharge the duties of this post and attractive, were much resorted to by the public, and until his death, which took place February 17, 1715.

Besides a number of meritorious archeological works, especially In the department of numismatics, he also published a compilation from the Arabic, Persian, and Turkish, entitled Paroles remarquables, bons mots et maximes des Orientaux (1694), and a translation from an Arabic manuscript, De l'origine et du progrès du Coffe (1699). The former of these works appeared in an English translation in 1795. His Contes et Fables Indiennes de Bidpar et de Lokman was published after his death (1724). Among his numer. ous unpublished manuscripts are said to be included a translation of the Koran and a Turkish dictionary.

GALLARATE, a flourishing town of Italy, the head of a circle in the province of Milan, situated on the railway 23 miles N.W. of Milan at the junction of the line running N. to Varese. It has a technical school, and carries on the manufacture of cotton and linen. In the Middle Ages it is mentioned as Galaratum and Glareatum, and especially in the 10th century it appears to have been a strongly fortified and important place. Population in 1871, 7576. GALLAS, or more correctly GALLA, a powerful race of eastern Africa, scattered over the wide region which extends for about 1000 miles from the interior of Abyssinia to the neighbourhood of the river Sabacki, in 3° 12′ of S. latitude. Almost nothing has been definitely ascertained about the early homes and migrations of the race; but it appears to have occupied the southern portion of its present territory for nearly four centuries at least. According to Ludolf and Bruce, the Galla invaders first crossed the Abyssinian frontiers in the year 1537. The Gallas of Gojam (a district along the northern side of the river Abai) tell how their savage forefathers came from the south-east from a country on the other side of a bahr (lake or river), and the Yedju and Raia Galla also point towards the east and commemorate the passage of a bahr. Among the southern Gallas tradition appears to be mainly concerned with the expulsion of the race from the country now occupied by the Somali. It is usually maintained that the Gallas are ethnographically of Semitic affinity, and find their nearest kinsmen in the Somali, the Dankali, and the Abyssinians; but M. Lejean is of opinion that they rather belong to the Aryan race, and this is so far supported by their physiological characteristics. One thing is certain, that they have nothing in common with the negro type; the "musculation" of the arms, thighs, and calves is altogether different, and they have none of the fetor developed by the negro skin; their frame is large and powerful, their complexion a very dark brown, their brow broad and lofty, their eyes deep-sunk and lively, and their features not unfrequently of a regular and finely-shaped description. Of the Semitic affinity of the language their is no question, and according to the usual classification it belongs to the same Semitico-Hamitic group as the Somali, the Saho, and the Dankali.1

The Gallas are for the most part still in the nomadic and pastoral stage; though, as we advance northwards into Abyssinia, we find them more and more assimilated to the settled and agricultural inhabitants of that kingdom. Among the southern tribes it is said that about 7 or 8 head of cattle are kept for every man, woman, and child; and among the northern tribes, as neither man nor woman ever thinks of going any distance on foot, the number of horses is very large. The ordinary food consists of flesh, blood, milk, butter, and honey, the last being considered of so much importance by the southern Gallas that a rude system of bee-keeping is in vogue, and the husband who fails to furnish his wife with a sufficient supply of honey may be excluded from all conjugal rights. This last fact is one of those which indicate the comparatively high position occupied by the Galla women, who, moreover, have the right, but rarely granted in a savage state of society, of refusing an unacceptable offer of marriage. In the south monogamy is the rule, but in the north the number of a man's wives is limited only by his wishes and his wealth. Each tribe has its own heiitch or sultan, who enjoys

The similarity to the Semitic was pointed out by Benfey in Götting. Gelehrte Anzeigen, 1846, in a review of Tutschek's lexicon and grammar (1844, 1845). Further details in regard to its vocabu lary and structure will be found in Lottner's paper in the Transactions of the Philological Society, London, 1860-61, and in the Novarc Reise, 1867. Krapf had published a grammar as early as 1840.

the strange privilege of being the only merchant for his people, in all public concerns must take the advice of the fathers of famil assembled in council. The greater proportion of the tribes are still pagan, worshipping & supreme god Waka, and the subordinate god and goddess Oglia and Atilia, whose favour is secured by sacrihe of oxen and sheep. With a strange liberality of sentiment, they say that at a certain time of the year Waka leaves them and go to attend to the wants of their enemies the Somali, whom also has created. Some tribes, and notably the Wollo-Galla, have been converted to Mahometanism, and very bigoted adherents of the prophet they are. In the north a kind of superficial Christianization has taken place, to the extent at least that the people are familiar with the names of Maremma or Mary, Balawold or Jesus, Girgis or St George, E.; but to all practical intents paganism is still in force. The serpent is a special object of worship, the northern Gallas believing that he is the author of the human race. A con siderable number of the men find employment in the Abyssinian like. The total number of the Gallas was estimated by Krapf at armies, and in comparison with their neighbours are brave and war from six to eight millions, and Plowden mentions individual tribes that could bring into the field 20,000 or 30,000 horse. Among the more important tribes in the south (the name in each instance being compounded with Galla) are the Ramatta, the Kukatta, the Baôle, the Aurova, the Wadjole, the Ilani, the Arrar, and the Kanigo Galla; the Borani, a very powerful tribe, may be considered to mark the division between north and south; and in the north we find the Amoro, the Jarso, the Toolama, the Wollo, the Ambassil, the Aijio, and the Azobo Galla.

See Beke, "On the Origin of the Gallas," in Trans. of Bris Assoc., 1847; Krapf., Travels in Eastern Africa, 1860; D'Abbadie, Douze Ans en Haute-Ethiopie, 1868; Brenner, "Forschungen in Ost-Afrika," in Petermann's Mittheilungen, 1868; Plowden, Travels in Abyssinia and the Galla Country, 1863; and a paper by Louis Lande in Revue des Deux Mondes, 1878. ALBERT GALLATIN

ALBERT Gallatin was born in Geneva, Switzerland, Jan. 29, 1761. His father, Jean Gallatin, was of an illustrious family and claimed descent from A. Atilius Callatinus, a Roman consul of the third century before Christ. This claim is not substantiated, as a period of fifteen hundred years lies between the Roman Consul and the first authentic Gallatin who lived in Savoy in the thirteenth century. This Gallatin was at that time of aristocratic blood, with titles of nobility; so that the family must have been of considerable importance for at least a century before. In 1510 the family came to Geneva, identified themselves with John Calvin and a Republican form of government, gave up their titles, and in large measure their fortunes, but they still held to the purity of their blood and were powerful factors in the social and political life of Switzerland. They were a numerous family and the little government did not afford employment for the talents of all of them, so they took service under different kings, won distinction, and lost their lives in gallant action; and bepersonal friends were men whom accident or talent came great civic potentates in foreign cities. Their made famous, such as Voltaire and the Landgrave of Hesse.

Albert's father, Jean Gallatin, married Sophie Albertine Rolaz du Rosey, of Rolle, and died in 1765, when Albert was but four years of age. His mother followed in 1770, thus leaving the boy an orphan at the early age of nine, with an invalid sister five years older. At the time of his father's death, one of his mother's intimate friends, Catherine Pictet, seeing the young widow overwhelmed with the care of her husband's business and of her sick daughter, took Albert into her own household. After his mother's death he became virtually her own child, beside being the heir of his grandfather, Abraham Gallatin, and the favorite of a wealthy uncle, Alphonse Rolez, of Rolle. He had a right to expect a fortune from these three people and was popular and beloved by all his friends and relatives: his education was carefully supervised by his foster mother, Mlle. Pictet. At sixteen years of age he was sent to boarding school and afterwards to an academy, graduating in 1779. No expense was spared in his education. His small property was so frugally aged that by the time he reached his majority hus


father's debts had all been paid from the income. About this time both his uncle and grandfather died insolvent, and owing to his own small patrimony, Albert was thrown almost entirely on his own resources. Yet from the distinction of his family, and the mental icquisitions he had gained in college, he was on the road to success and could easily have gained fame and fortune in the city of his birth. At the age of eighteen he was clear-minded, sober and practical. The first year after graduation he returned to Mlle. Pictet and occupied himself as tutor to her young nephew, Isaac Pictet. He often visited his grandmother, who urged him to enter the services of the Landgrave of Hesse, but a military life had but little attraction for him. During this year he visited Voltaire; and widened his acquaintance among the many learned and distinguished men, who made Geneva their home. He breathed this balmy atmosphere of learning and was filled with ambitious dreams and at the same time with a noble discouragement. It seemed to the youth that where there was so much intellectual and moral worth in the market, distinction would be difficult to attain. This, together with his loss of fortune and a quarrel with his grandmother on account of his refusal to "serve under a tyrant," as he termed the Landgrave of Hesse, made him resolve on a course of action, which lost a gladiator for the little arena of Geneva and gained Albert Gallatin for the larger political field which the young and growing government of the United States afforded.


His life in Boston was unproductive and unsatisfactory, and he finally cut himself loose from it and plunged into the freer air of Pennsylvania and Virginia. Here he found his natural element. engaged in land speculation and local politics, married a Miss Sophia Allegre and settled down in a country where it needed energy to live. Here he would have developed naturally into a provincial potentate and wealthy land owner on a large plantation, had his young wife not died a few months after marriage. To this sad event is probably due his subsequent career. He was driven into the excitement of politics by his grief and loneliness. Soon his rare origin and attainments brought him forward rapidly in a pioneer settlement. The times needed such men. Independence had been wrested from England, but the government had not yet been established. The constitution was before the states for adoption. Gallatin belonged to the anti-Federalist, the minority party, and was thus one of the men who helped draft some of the amendments to the constitution. He could not speak English plainly, and was hampered in debate, but the clear force of his reasoning, united with his grasp of the situation, at once brought him to the front in the legislature of Pennsylvania, and carried him to Congress. The impression he made on public men is to be explained only by his intellect and integrity, because he was not a man to whom many people ever became warmly attached. He was tall and strong, with a severe cast of countenance and cold manner, and disdained to conciliate anyone. He soon became the leader of the Republican party in Pennsylvania. He came into collision with Alexander Hamilton at this time on account of the excise on spirits. This measure was the simplest way to meet the existing necessity for money in order to carry on the government. The tax was unpopular, as any tax was bound to be with a people who had just successfully resisted taxation, but Hamilton forced the excise, and subsequent events proved his wisdom in having done so. Gallatin was one of the most powerful opponents of Hamilton's scheme, and thus, while fighting on purely legal grounds, identified himself with a lawless element and was thus practically at war both with the Federalists and with his own constituents. His own force and integrity kept him erect and compelled the respectful attention of both parties throughout this trying period, when he stood the severest test to which a man in public life can be subjected. He received a singular proof of this confidence in him by being chosen to represent Pennsylvania in Congress by a vote of both parties. The Federalists being in a powerful majority annulled his election on the grounds of his being the leader of the insurrectionists and retired him to private life. At the rise of the "whiskey rebellion" by the anti-Federalists he risked his life to face a mob of his own constituents and denounced them in unqualified terms, and by his prompt action turned this movement into a ridiculous affair. He had made a mistake in his estimate of the character of the population and hastened to oppose the rebellion. In history there will always be some doubts expressed as to Gallatin's part in the whole proceeding, and in the opinion of most people he must be held responsible for the first resistance to the government. But at the time he came out of the encounter with a spotless reputation,— the only western anti-Federalist who did so. Shortly afterwards he was again elected to the House of Representatives. His previous mistake in gauging his constituency seems to have been the only time in a long public career when he was not endowed with a keen faculty for feeling the public pulse. This quality was felt by all public men who came in contact with him, and had instant effect when he returned to Congress. He became the leader of the Republican party at once and held his place easily during the six years he remained in the House. There was no one else who

He made silent preparations for his departure, and carrying with him such small resources as he could command, accompanied by his college friend Henri Serre, he departed from Geneva in the spring of 1780, leaving behind him the city of his ancestry, his influential friends, congenial society and prestige, and emigrated to America. He was but nineteen years of age when he thus took his fortunes in his own hands and cut himself off from the assistance of his grandmother and Mile. Pictet. He regretted this step near the close of his life in spite of his wonderful successes, and said that he had advised only one man to emigrate, Jean Bedollet, who afterwards joined him in America, and that he was sorry for having done so. He was proud, shy and reticent. He was moved by political ideals and filled with a spirit of adventure and leadership. For many years these traits of Albert Gallatin's character controlled his actions. They explain the apparent perversity with which he abandoned his friends he would be restrained, should his plans become known. and prospects. He departed secretly from fear that This was a weak and unworthy excuse, as he afterwards acknowleged, for although his friends opposed him they would gladly have furnished him with the necessary equipment for his journey to the New World, if he had only declared to them his intention to go. The two young men started with the small sum of 166 Louis d'or. The cost of their passage reduced the little amount to about $400, all of which belonged to Gallatin. The friends in Geneva strove in every way to smooth the path to success for these young men, and wrote letters of introduction for them to influential people in America, but Gallatin disliked large cities, where his learning would have given him an immediate foothold, and disdaining all these helps struck out into the wooded wilderness of Maine. He had courage, endurance, hope and discipline of a high order, else he would have fallen back on the "cushion of circunHe never used his letters of introduction. always held invitingly before him. wrote him long letters telling how she mourned his Mlle. Pictet

stance," which was

loss, but he was

and did not write to her for a whole year. unwilling to tell her of his hardships In 1781, after untold privations in the woods, and a failure in trade, he obtained a French class in Harvard College. But New England asceticism and the rigor

of the climate were

unfriendly to the Gallic youth.

« EelmineJätka »