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Title: The Continental Monthly, Vol. 6, No. 6, December 1864 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy
Author: Various
Language: English
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THE

CONTINENTAL MONTHLY:

DEVOTED TO

LITERATURE AND NATIONAL POLICY.


VOL. VI.--DECEMBER, 1864--NO. VI.


AN ARMY: ITS ORGANIZATION AND MOVEMENTS

_FIFTH PAPER._


Before the enlightenment derived from the sad experiences of our present
civil contest, upon the incidents of protracted warfare, probably most
persons conceived of war as a scene of constant activity--a series of
marches, battles, and sieges, with but few intervals of repose. History
records only the active portions of war, taking but little account of
the long periods consumed in the preliminary processes of organization
and discipline, in the occupation of camps and cantonments, in the
stationary watches of opposing armies, lying in the front of each other,
both too weak for aggressive movements, but each strong enough to
prevent such movements on the part of its opponent. Such matters, if
noticed at all, are recorded in a few sentences, making no impression on
the reader. Novels of the 'Charles O'Malley' class have also given
incorrect ideas. Every page relates some adventure--every scene gleams
with sabres and bayonets. Our three years' experience has taught us that
the greater portion of an army's existence is spent in inactivity; that
campaigning is performed only through one half of the year, and of that
time probably not over one third is occupied in progressive movements.
In the campaign of 1861, the only marches of the Army of the Potomac
were to the battle field of Bull Run and the retreat. In 1862, after a
march of fifteen miles to Fairfax Court House and returning, the army
was transferred to Fortress Monroe and moved to Yorktown, where some
weeks were passed in the trenches; it then proceeded up the Peninsula,
and laid a month before Richmond; retreated to Harrison's Landing, and
laid another month; returned to Fortress Monroe, and was shipped to the
vicinity of Washington, marched for about a month, fought at Antietam,
and then laid in camp a month; moved to Warrenton and remained a
fortnight; proceeded to Fredericksburg and continued in camp all winter,
except making the short movements which led to the battle of December,
and the ineffective attempt to turn the rebel left, known as the 'mud
march.' In all this long campaign, from March to December, a period of
nearly nine months, spent in various operations, more than five months
were passed in stationary camps--most of the time occupied, it is true,
in picketing, entrenching, and other duties incident to positive
military operations in proximity to an enemy, but very different from
the duties connected with marching and fighting. The campaign of 1863
comprised a still smaller period of active movements. Commencing in
April with the battle of Chancellorsville, it continued till the march
to Mine Run in October--seven months; but considerable more than half
the time was spent in camps at Falmouth, Warrenton, and Culpepper. The
great campaign now in progress has consumed (at the time this article is
written) three months, commencing after a six-months' interval of
inaction, and already half the time has been spent in the trenches at
Petersburg.

Since so large a portion of the time of an army is passed in camps, that
branch of military science which governs the arrangement of forces when
stationary, is one of considerable importance. It is in camps that
armies are educated, that all the details of organization are
systematized, that the _morale_ of troops is cultivated, that a round of
laborious though monotonous duties is performed. Nothing is so trying to
the temper of the individuals composing an army as a long season in a
stationary camp; nothing has more effect for good or for evil upon the
army in the aggregate, than the mode in which the time, at such a
season, is occupied. The commander who does not exercise care to have
his camps pitched in the proper localities, to insure the observance of
hygienic rules, and to keep his men employed sufficiently in military
exercises, will have discontented, unhealthy, and indolent troops.

The words 'camps' and 'cantonments' are frequently used in the
newspapers without any discrimination; but they denote two entirely
different methods of sheltering troops. A camp is defined to be the
place where troops are established in tents, in huts, or in bivouac;
while cantonments are inhabited places which troops occupy for shelter
when not put in barracks. Of camps there are several kinds, according to
the purposes to be effected by their establishment, such as the nightly
camps while upon the march, camps of occupation, camps in line of
battle, &c. Cantonments are most frequently used when, during the
winter, or other considerable period of inactivity, it is necessary to
distribute an army over a large district of country, so as to guard a
number of points. We have not had any instance of cantonment, properly
speaking, during the present war; but in Europe this method of disposing
troops is frequently adopted.

The scenes ensuing upon the arrival of an army corps at its camping
ground for a night, after a day's march, are very lively, often amusing,
and sometimes present picturesque effects. Where the country traversed
by the army is known to the commander, he is able to designate the
nightly camps of the different corps with precision; if, on account of
ignorance of the country, this cannot be done, places are approximately
indicated upon the information given by maps or extracted from the
inhabitants, or procured by reconnoitring parties. Usually, however, the
commander possesses considerable topographical information, procured by
his officers in the advance with the cavalry and light troops, so that
he can fix the nightly camps in such a manner that the various corps
shall all be upon the same line, and lie within supporting distances.
The vicinity of streams is invariably selected for a camp, if other
circumstances permit. When a corps arrives within a mile or two of its
destination, the commander sends forward some of his staff officers
(accompanied by a cavalry guard, if the country is suspicious), and
these officers select the different localities for the camps of the
divisions, of the artillery, the cavalry, and the trains, care being
taken to give all equal facilities for wood and water, and at the same
time to take advantage of the features of the country for military
purposes, such as the guarding of roads in all directions, the
establishment of the picket line, &c. The leading division arrives
perhaps at 5 P.M., and its commander is shown to the locality assigned
him. He immediately distributes the ground to the brigades, and the
troops, as fast as they arrive, filing into the designated spots, occupy
but a few moments in the necessary formalities by which disorder is
prevented; then each man quickly spreads his little tent upon the place
which in the military order belongs to him, a general din of cheerful
voices arises, a unanimous rush is made to the water, cooking fires are
kindled in all directions, and in ten minutes a scene of (it may be)
utter desolation becomes full of life and activity. For a couple of
hours the columns continue to file in, until all the hillsides are
covered with tents. Then, far into the night, is heard the braying of
mules, the shouts of drivers, and the rattling of wheels, as the heavy
wagon trains toil to the place of rest. All through the evening prevails
that peculiar, cheerful din of a camp, as peculiar and characteristic as
the roar of a great city; gradually the noises decline, the bugles and
drums sound the tattoo, the fires grow dim, and the vast mass of hardy,
resolute humanity is asleep--all except the two or three score of sick
and dying men, wasted by fever, who have been jolted all day over the
rough roads in the ambulances, and now groan and writhe in delirium upon
their narrow stretchers in the camp hospitals.

Camps designed to cover and guard a country, are constructed when the
army has not sufficient strength to advance, or when the season
prevents, or some other cause interferes with the prosecution of
hostilities, while at the same time it is necessary to occupy a portion
of the hostile territory. We have had numerous examples of this kind of
camps--indeed, our armies occupy them generally while lying inactive
during the winter. The character of the ground must always determine the
shape and features of such a camp, but unless peculiar modifying
circumstances dictate otherwise, the general form is that of the arc of
a circle. This, with extensions at the sides to cover the flanks, and a
rear guard, is the best for protection. The extent of this kind of camp
is governed by circumstances, but is much greater, generally, than would
be supposed. The camp of an army of 100,000 men, designed to cover any
considerable district of territory, in a country where hills and rivers
assist in giving protection, might have a front (including flanking
parties of cavalry) of from 30 to 50 miles, and a depth of from 10 to
20; besides a continuous chain of forces in the rear, guarding
communications with the base of supplies, from 10 to 50 miles distant.

Camps in line of battle are generally established when opposing armies,
lying in proximity, must be on the alert for attacks. They cover but
little more ground than is required for the manoeuvres of the force,
and are so arranged that, in case of probable conflict, the troops can
assume immediately the formations of battle. Such camps are arranged in
two or three lines, adapted to the natural features of the country for
defence. The approach of the enemy having been communicated from the
outposts, the tents are rapidly struck, the baggage loaded and sent to
the rear, and in an hour the army is free from all encumbrances, and
ready to meet the advancing foe. Usually, when armies lie in contact,
expecting battle, the troops bivouac--no tents being pitched except at
the headquarters of superior commanders, and at other places
sufficiently in the rear to be free from immediate danger. The troops
may be obliged to remain thus for a day or two, no fires being permitted
in the advanced lines, so that their positions may not be indicated.

The season for the suspension of active hostilities having arrived, it
is necessary for the commander of an army to select some place in which
his forces can remain for the winter--where they will have sufficient
facilities for fuel and water, where their health can be preserved,
where they can be protected against surprises or annoyance, where the
country can be covered and guarded, and where the supplies can be drawn
with security from the base of operations. After a due consideration of
all the intelligence that can be obtained upon these points, the
commander issues his general directions, the various corps move to their
designated positions, and preparations for the habitations of the winter
are made. Each corps commander, either personally or by his staff
officers, makes a survey of his ground, and assigns the positions of his
divisions. If within a few miles of the enemy, he throws detachments of
observation toward the front, and then proceeds to establish his picket
line, usually some three or five miles in advance of his main line.
Precautions for security being thus adopted, more minute inspections of
the ground are made, so that unhealthy positions may be avoided. The
troops, being placed, immediately proceed to clear the sites of their
respective encampments, and wagons are set to work to bring in logs with
which huts may be constructed. In about a week thousands of diminutive
log houses arise, roofed with the shelter tents of the soldiers, or,
when the occupants have sufficient handicraft ability, with rough
shingles. Shelters are erected, as far as possible, for the animals,
generally being nothing more than frameworks covered with pine brush. If
there are lumber mills in the vicinity, they are set to work, and boards
sawed for floors to the tents and hospitals. The adjacent forests now
begin to disappear rapidly, leaving nothing but an unsightly array of
stumps; for a regiment is entitled to about two hundred cords of wood
per month as fuel, and in a well-wooded country, where the men can
conveniently cut for themselves, much more is consumed. Every regiment
requires, therefore, about eight or ten acres of woodland per month. An
army of a hundred regiments will, in the course of a winter, denude
several square miles of trees, so that (in the proportion which woodland
generally bears to that which is cleared) a space of country equal to a
county may be stripped of its timber. The men, having made themselves
comfortable, are now called on to form working parties, and put the
roads leading to the depots and the various camps in good order,
generally corduroying them, so as to be passable during the winter;
bridges are made over streams, drainage perfected, &c. In a few weeks,
the chief portion of the labor of preparing a winter's camp is
completed.

The sanitary regulations for camps are very stringent and comprehensive.
The suggestions of experience as to the details by which the diseases
incident to camp life can be prevented, are embodied in orders, and it
is the duty of the medical officers and of the inspectors to see that
they are observed. For instance, it is not permitted to have the floors
of the huts lower than the external ground, and the men are required to
keep pine boughs between their blankets and the earth. The method in
which a camp shall be drained, and the offal disposed of, is prescribed.
The cleanliness of the men is enforced. A rigorous system of reports
upon these and many other particulars exists, so that negligences are
corrected.

The military occupations which relieve the monotony of camp life are
drilling and picketing. It is in the latter that officers and men find
change and freedom, though it often involves severe exposure. The
ordinary detail for this duty in a corps averages perhaps eight hundred
to one thousand men, who are changed usually every three days. If the
country be well settled, some opportunities are presented during that
interval for intercourse with the 'natives;' but in Virginia, it must be
confessed, the attractions of this kind are few. The secession ladies
are not over well disposed to any wearers of Yankee uniforms, and though
many of them are willing to bestow a few soft words in exchange for tea,
coffee, and sugar, they are not liberal of social courtesies. The young
man who joins our armies expecting to realize for himself the love
adventures he has seen recorded in novels, will find the Southern ladies
less given to romance than the damsels of Spain or Mexico. They are
inclined, also, to be treacherous, as the fate of several gallant
officers, who have gone stealthily beyond the lines to spend an evening
with fair rebel sirens, and found themselves delivered to guerillas, has
shown. Nevertheless, the experience of others never warns an adventurous
youth, and opportunities frequently arise for practical jokes. During
the winter of 1862-'3, while the army was encamped on the Rappahannock,
an officer was fascinated by the charms of a fair widow who resided just
beyond the lines, and frequently made evening visits to her. His
companions, being aware of this, formed a party, on a bitter January
night, and proceeding to the widow's house, surrounded it, and sending
within some who were strangers to him, they announced themselves as
belonging to the rebel army, and captured the enamored lover,
blindfolded, led him out, and mounted him. Crestfallen and moody with,
thoughts of his disgraceful situation, cursing, perhaps, the wiles of
the enchantress, to whom he attributed it, he was made to ride many
weary miles, and then, being dismounted, and the bandage removed from
his eyes, he found himself at his own camp, where he was greeted with
uproarious laughter.

The duties incident to picketing and outpost stations are so important
that several works by distinguished authors have been written concerning
them, but most of the rules are of too technical a character for recital
in these papers. The friends of soldiers will, however, take interest in
some general statements. The picket line consists of three
portions--first, the stations of the main guard; second, some distance
in advance of these, the picket stations; and third, some two hundred
yards in advance of these, the stations of the sentinels. If the country
is open and hilly, the latter need not be posted closely together, but
in a wooded country they must be quite numerous. It is their duty not to
allow any person to pass their line; and if a force of the enemy, too
strong to be resisted, approaches, they fall back on the pickets. These
should be stationed where they can command the main avenues of approach,
and offer resistance to the advanced parties of the enemy. After such
resistance becomes useless, the various pickets fall back on the grand
guard, which offers a more determined contest. The advance of the enemy
should by these means have been delayed for a couple of hours, affording
time for the troops to get under arms and take the order of battle.

The following diagram exhibits the general arrangement of picketing:

[Illustration]

Let the line A B represent a chain of sentinels on a mile of picket
front, C D a line of picket stations, and E the grand guard. The whole
force of men may perhaps be three hundred, of whom two thirds will
remain at E, posted advantageously upon some eminence protected in part
by a stream and commanding an open country. The remaining one hundred
will be distributed among the picket stations and thrown forward as
sentinels. The whole arrangement is supervised by an officer of
rank--usually a colonel. With a disposition like the above in front of
every division in an army, it is obviously impossible for any
considerable force of an enemy to approach without detection.

One of the greatest practical difficulties our armies have experienced
has been connected with the system of picketing. The South having been
greatly impoverished in those portions traversed by the contending
armies, and the people entirely destitute of luxuries, there are
innumerable applications from residents outside of the pickets for
admission within the lines, in order to trade with officers, for the
purpose of procuring in return articles from our well-supplied
commissariat. Various other necessities of the people appeal for a
modified degree of rigor in regard to picket arrangements, so that our
armies are never free from the presence of rebel inhabitants, traversing
them in all directions. Perfectly familiar with the country, they are
able to detect any weakly guarded places, and undoubtedly, in frequent
instances, after receiving the kindest treatment, return to their homes
conveying such information to guerillas as enables these prowlers to
penetrate through by-roads and seize animals and straggling soldiers. As
a precaution against such annoyances, a very judicious arrangement was
made last winter by the provost marshal general of the Army of the
Potomac. He established certain points on the picket line at which
traffic might be conducted, and forbade admission to citizens. Some
rigorous system like this is very necessary.

The social life of camps is, however, the topic of chief interest. The
question is often asked, Is the life of a soldier demoralizing? The
answer must be, 'Yes,' but not for the reasons generally supposed. The
opportunities for vice and dissoluteness are really less than at home.
The hundred thousand men in an army use less liquor than the same number
of men in a city. In fact, liquor is nearly inaccessible to the soldier
when on the march. For other kinds of vice the temptations are few. The
demoralization arises from the terrible monotony of a prolonged camp,
which produces listlessness, indolence, and a devotion to small
amusements; deranges and reverses the whole system of active life, as it
is seen at home; renders a man uncouth; disqualifies soldiers for
anything else than the trade of war. To the officer in his tent and to
the soldier in his log hut, while the cold rains are beating without,
and the ground is knee deep with mud, there is a constant temptation to
find amusement in cards. Gambling thus becomes a pastime too generally
adopted. The books sent to the army are not always of the character best
adapted to the circumstances. Moral essays and tracts will not be very
eagerly sought for by men whose principal object is to kill time. The
reading matter needed is the kind afforded by the periodicals of the
day, unobjectionable novels, biographies, works of travel, etc.

Camp life has, however, its pleasures, and it must not be supposed that
all succumb to its enervating influences, or that any great number yield
themselves entirely to its demoralizing effects. The period of military
service among our volunteers is too short to permit its full influence
to be experienced, and the connections of our soldiers with their homes
too intimate to allow them to subside completely into the routine
veterans, whose social, mental, and moral nature is altogether lost and
absorbed in the new and artificial military nature imposed on them.

War collects many characters of peculiar idiosyncrasies, and jumbles
them strangely together, so that curious associations are produced. In
any collection of men upon a staff or in a regiment, gathered from
different localities, will be found characters of the most opposite and
incongruous elements. There will be the youth who has never before
travelled beyond his own village, and is full of small anecdotes of the
persons who have figured in his little world; and the silent and
reserved man of middle age, who, if he can be induced to talk, can tell
of many a wild scene in all quarters of the world in which he has been a
participant, since he stealthily left his native home, a boy of sixteen.
There are men who have passed through all the hardships of life, who
have been soldiers in half a dozen European armies, or miners in
California and Australia, or sailors; and men who have always had wealth
at their disposal, and spent years in foreign travel, viewing the world
only under its sunniest aspects. There are many officers grown gray
while filling subordinate capacities at posts on the Western prairies
and mountains, who can relate many interesting anecdotes of their
companions--the men now prominent in military affairs; and there are
officers of high rank, recently emerged from civil life, who nourish
prodigiously in self-glorification upon their brief warlike experience.
There are brave men, and men whose courage is suspected; quiet men, and
men of opinionated perversity; quick-witted men, and men whose profound
stupidity makes them continual butts for all kinds of practical jokes;
refined, educated, poetical men, and men of boorish habits. In short,
any camp presents such specimens of humanity as would be furnished if
all the ingredients of character and experience that compose the world
had been collected in a huge pepper box and sprinkled miscellaneously
throughout the army.

In such associations there are of course many occasions for extracting
interesting and comical conversation and incident. Jokes of all kinds
are constantly on the wing, and no one can consider himself safe from
collision with them. Ridiculous nicknames become attached--no one knows
how--to the most dignified characters, and altogether usurp the places
of the genuine cognomens. No person possesses the art of concealment to
such a degree that all his foibles and weaknesses will escape
observation in the companionship of a camp; and when discovered, the
treatment of them is merciless just in proportion to the care with which
they had been hidden. All pretensions will be penetrated, all disguises
unmasked. Every man finds himself placed according to his exact status,
no matter how well contrived his arrangements for passing himself off
for more than his par value. Many an officer, whom the newspapers
delight to praise, because he is over courteous to correspondents, and
takes precautions to have all his achievements published, has a camp
reputation far different from that by which he is known to the public.

Opinions of all kinds flourish in the army as vigorously as in the outer
world. There are ardent theorists of the progressive order, full of
schemes for radical reforms, and old fogies believing in nothing except
what they lament to see is fast becoming obsolete. There are students
and practical men, authors and mechanics, editors, lawyers, doctors,
clergymen, school teachers, actors, artists, singers, and
representatives of all kinds of trades and avocations. All are now on
the same platform, and, for a time, class distinctions disappear beneath
the assimilating conditions of the new profession. Political strifes
occur, but are rarely virulent. Generally the association together of
men holding different political views, in a common cause, and subject to
the same dangers, is tacitly accepted as the occasion for an armistice.
But politics of all kinds are represented. There are of course
Abolitionists, Republicans, Unionists, and War Democrats; but, strangely
enough, there are also Copperheads, Peace Democrats, peace-at-any-price
men, and even secession sympathizers. Why extremists of the latter
classes should have joined the army voluntarily cannot be surmised; but
there they are, and, moreover, they do their duty. There are some traits
of original manhood so strong that even the poison of treasonable
politics cannot overcome them.

The daily routine of camp life in a regiment can be told in a few words.
The plan of a regimental camp as laid down in the army regulations is
generally conformed to, with some variations recommended by the
character of the camping ground. The following diagram exhibits the
plan:

[Illustration]

REFERENCE.

  N.C.S. Non-commissioned staff.
  AST. SURG. Assistant surgeon.
  M. Major.
  Q.M. Quartermaster.
  LT. CL. Lieutenant-colonel.
  CL. Colonel.
  ADJT. Adjutant.
  SURG. Surgeon.

In our armies the full allowances of camp equipage are not permitted.
Field and staff officers have only three wall tents, and company
officers only the same shelter tents as the men. The trains very rarely
encamp with the regiments. The tents of the men front on streets from
fifteen to twenty feet wide, each company having a street of its own,
and there is much competition as to the adornment of these. Many
regimental camps are decorated with evergreens in an exceedingly
tasteful manner--particularly during warm weather--chapels, arches,
colonnades, etc., being constructed of rude frameworks, so interwoven
with pine boughs that they present a very elegant appearance.

The daily life of a camp is as follows: At an hour appointed by orders,
varying according to the season of the year, the camp is roused by the
reveille. The old notion that soldiers should be waked before daybreak
in all seasons and all weathers has fortunately been exploded, and the
reveille is not generally sounded in winter till six o'clock. In
pleasant weather the men are formed upon the color line, where they
stack their arms. Breakfast is the next matter in order: after that the
mounting of the guard for the day and the detail of detachments for
picket and other duties. The prisoners are put to work in cleaning up
the camp, and squad drills occupy the morning. About noon the dinner
call is sounded; then come more drills and in the latter part of the
afternoon the dress parade of the regiment. This closes the military
labors of the day. In the evening there are schools for instructions in
tactics, and the time is passed in any amusements that may offer
themselves. About half past eight the tattoo is beaten, when every one,
not absent on duty, must be in camp ready to answer to his name; and
shortly after, the beat of taps proclaims that the military day is
ended, and lights must be extinguished--a regulation not very strictly
enforced. Thus pass the days of camp life.

Very different are those assemblages of huts down among the pine forests
of Virginia from the pleasant villages, the thriving towns, and the
prosperous cities of the North--very different the life of the soldier
from that which he enjoyed before rebellion sought to sever the country
which from his cradle he had been taught to consider 'one and
inseparable.'



APHORISMS.--NO. XIV.


A Query for the Thoughtful.--May we not justly say that _spirit_,
everywhere, in its various degrees, rules over matter, setting its
forces at defiance for the time, and yet never interfering with their
continued operations?

This seems a great law of the universe. The power of life, wherever
guided by _will_, whether in beast or man, or even where we can only
venture to speak of instinct, thus asserts its superiority. Within its
appointed range, the laws of the material world are evidently subject to
its control. Iron may be firmly held together by the attraction of
cohesion: but man wills its severance, and it is effected.

Nor does it contravene the general assertion here made, that we act by
opposing one natural force to another. The rising of the sledge hammer,
to fall with a force more than its own, is just as much against the laws
of matter as the breaking of the iron beneath its blows.

All _power_, so far as we can judge, is spiritual--_i.e._, originates in
spirit, and is exerted in obedience to _will_, or to something
equivalent.

Nor, again, will it avail an objector to say that _spirit_ is also under
law as well as matter. The laws of the one sphere, at all events, are
not those of the other. They may have their relations, but they are not
those of equality. Spirit is sovereign--matter subject; or, if in any
case it should be otherwise, it is from some weak refusal of the spirit
to assert its own power.



ÆNONE:

A TALE OF SLAVE LIFE IN ROME.

CHAPTER XVI.


Gliding softly beneath the shrubbery, and beneath one of the side
colonnades, Leta gained the house unperceived, passing Sergius, who
loitered where she had been sitting, upon the coping of the fountain
basin. His friends had departed, bearing away with them his gold and
much else that was of value; and he, with the consciousness of evil
besetting him on every side, had morbidly wandered out to try if in the
cool air he could compose his thoughts to sobriety. As he sat rocking to
and fro, and humming to himself broken snatches of song, Leta stood
under one of the arches of the court, glowering at him, and half hoping
that he would lose his balance and fall into the water behind. It was
not deep enough to drown him, but if it had been, she felt in no mood to
rescue him. In a few moments, however, the fresh breeze, partially
dissipating the fumes of the wine which he had drunk, somewhat revived
him; making him more clearly conscious of his misfortunes, indeed, but
engendering in him, for the instant, a new and calmer state of feeling,
which was not sobriety, but which differed from either his former
careless recklessness or maddening ferocity. And in this new phase of
mind, he sat and revolved and re-revolved, in ever-recurring sequence,
the things that had befallen him, and his changed position in the world.

Alone now, for she, Ænone, had left him. Left him for a stripling of a
slave--a mere creature from the public market. What was the loss of gold
and jewels and quarries to this! And how could he ever hold up his head
again, with this heavy shame upon it! For there could be no
doubt;--alas! no. Had he not seen her press a kiss upon the slave's
forehead? Had she not tenderly raised the menial's head upon her knee
with caressing pity? And, throughout all, had she attempted one word of
justification? Yes, alone in the world now, with no one to love or care
for him! For she must be put away from him forever; she must never call
him husband more. That was a certain thing. But yet--and a kindly gleam
came into his face for the moment--even though guilty, she might not be
thoroughly and utterly corrupt. If he could, at least, believe that she
had been sorely tempted--if he could only, for the sake of past
memories, learn to pity her, rather than to hate! And this became now
the tenor of his thoughts. In his deep reflection of a few hours before,
he had tried to believe that she was innocent. Now, circumstances of
suspicion had so overwhelmed her, that he could not think her innocent;
but he could have wished to believe her less guilty, and thereby have
cherished a kindly feeling toward her.

Rising up, and now for the first time seeing Leta, as she still stood
under the archway and watched him, he tottered toward her; and, incited
by this new impulse of generous feeling, he pleaded to her--humbling his
pride, indeed, but in all else, whether in word or action, clothing
himself with the graceful dignity of true and earnest manliness.

'Tell me,' he said, 'whether you know aught about her which can calm my
soul and give me the right to think better of her. You cannot make me
believe that she is innocent--I do not ask it of you. That hope is past
forever. But it may be that you can reveal more than you have yet
mentioned to me. You have watched her, I know. Perhaps, therefore, you
can tell me that she struggled long with herself before she abandoned
me. Even that assurance will help me to think more pityingly of her.
Remember that there was a time when I loved her; and, for the sake of
that time, help me to feel and act generously toward her.'

As Leta gazed upon him, and saw how his late imperiousness had given
place to earnest, sorrowful entreaty, she hesitated for the moment how
to answer him. There is, perhaps, a latent sympathy in the hardest
heart; and despite her resolve to become at once lost and unpitying,
some sparks of tender feeling, kindled into life by her parting with
Cleotos, yet glimmered in her breast. Cleotos having gone away, she felt
strangely lonesome. Little as she had regarded him when present, it now
seemed as though, in separating from him, she had lost a portion of her
own being. Certainly with him had departed the last link that bound her
to her native land; and though she never expected to return thither, yet
it was not pleasant to feel that she had been cut asunder from all
possibility of it. Now, for the moment, she was in the mood to look
around her for a friend to lean upon; and it might be that she could
find that friend in Sergius, if she would consent to let her vengeance
sleep, and would forbear to pursue him with further machinations. His
love, to be sure, was gone from her, never to be restored; but, after
all, might it not be better to retain his friendship than to incur his
hate? And if she were now to make full disclosure of the past, and ask
his pardon, who could estimate the possible limits of the forgiveness
and generosity which, in his newly found happiness, he might extend to
her? And then, now that her plans had failed, what need of inflicting
further misery upon those who, in their former trust, had lavished
kindnesses upon her? And once more her thoughts reverted to Cleotos; and
with that feeling of utter loneliness sinking into her heart, and making
her crave even to be thought well of by another, she reflected how that
friend of her youth would not fail to ask the blessing of the gods upon
her, if ever, in his native home, he were to hear that she had acted a
generous part, and, by a few simple and easily spoken words, had swept
away the web of mischief which her arts had woven.

'What can I say?' she exclaimed, hesitatingly, as she met the pleading
look which Sergius fastened upon her.

'Say the best you can; so that, though I can never forgive her, I may
not think more harshly of her than I ought. Can I forget that I loved
her for years before I ever met yourself; and that, but for you, I might
be loving her still? Can I forget that it was not for my own glory, but
for hers, that I tore myself away from her and went to these late wars,
hoping to win new honors, only that I might lay them at her feet? Night
after night, as I lay in my tent and gazed up at the sky, I thought of
her alone, and how that the stars shone with equal light upon us both;
and I nerved my soul with new strength, to finish my task with
diligence, so that I might the more quickly return to her side. And
then, Leta, then it was that I met yourself; and how sadly and basely I
yielded to the fascinations you threw about me, you too well know. It
was not love I felt for you; think it not. My passion for you was no
more like the calm affection with which I had cherished her, than is the
flame which devours the village like the moonlight which so softly falls
upon and silvers yonder fountain. But, for all that, it has brought
destruction upon me. And now--'

'And now, Sergius?'

'Now I am undone by reason of it. From the first moment your ensnaring
glance met mine, I was undone, though I then knew it not. Then was my
pure love for her obscured. Then, impelled by I know not what infernal
spirit, began my downward course of deceit, until at last I almost
learned to hate her whom I had so much loved, and met her, at the end,
with but a simulated affection; caring but little for her, indeed, but
not--the gods be thanked!--so far gone in my selfish cruelty as to be
able to wound her heart by open neglect in that hour of her joy.
Whatever I may have done since then, that day, at least, her happiness
was undimmed. How gladly would I now give up all the honors I have
gained, if I could but restore the peace and quiet of the past!
Remembering all this, Leta, and how much of this cruel wrong is due to
you, can you not have pity? I know that she would never have been
exposed to this temptation but for my own neglect of her, and but for
the fact that you had ambitious purposes of your own to work out. Nay, I
chide you not. Let all that pass and be forgotten. I will be generous,
and never mention it again, if you will only tell me how far your arts,
rather than her own will, have led her astray. It cannot harm you now to
freely utter everything. The time for me to resent it is past. I have no
further power over you, or the will to exercise it if I had.'

A moment before, and she had been on the point of yielding to the
unaccustomed pity that she began to feel, and so make full disclosure.
But now, as, almost unconsciously to himself, Sergius spoke of her
baffled hopes and vaguely hinted at her altered position toward
himself--a change of which he believed her to be yet ignorant--her fount
of mercy became instantly scaled up, and her nearly melted heart again
turned to flint. Yes, she had almost forgotten her new destiny. But now
at once appeared before her, with all the vividness of reality, the
banquet hall, ringing with the shrill laughter of the heated revellers,
as, with the dice box, they decided her future fate. Like a flash the
softened smile fled from her face, leaving only cold, vindictive
defiance pictured there. And as Sergius, who had been led on from
utterance to utterance by the increasing signs of compassion he read in
her, saw the sudden and unaccountable change, he paused, in mingled
wonderment and dismay; and, with the conviction that his hopes had
failed him, he put off, in turn, his own softened mien, and glaring back
defiance upon her, prepared for desperate struggle.

'You speak of my new ownership--of the actor Bassus?' she exclaimed.

'You know it, then?' cried he. 'You have played the spy upon us?'

'Know it?' she repeated. 'When, in your wild revelling, your raised
voices told me how heedlessly you were bringing ruin upon yourself with
the dice, would I have been anything but a fool not to have remembered
that I, too, being your property, might pass away with the rest? Was it
not fit, then, that I should have stolen to the screen and listened? You
thought to keep it secret, perhaps, until Bassus should send to take me
away from here; for you imagined that I might attempt escape. But you do
not know me yet. Am I a child, to kick and scream, and waste my strength
in unavailing strife against a fate that, in my heart, I feel must
sooner or later be submitted to? Not long ago--it matters not how or
when--I could have avoided it all, but would not. Now that I have
sacrificed that chance, I will go to my doom with a smile upon my lips,
whatever heaviness may be in my heart; for, having chosen my path, I
will not shrink from following it. Thus much for myself. And as for you,
who have tossed me one side to the first poor brute who has begged for
me, and even at this instant have taunted me with the story of baffled
hopes, does it seem becoming in you to appeal longer to me, as you have
done, for comfort?'

No answer; but in the angry, heated glare with which he faced her,
could be seen the new fury which was rising within him--all the more
violent, perhaps, from the late calm that had possessed him.

'And yet, for the sake of the past, I might even be willing to comfort
you, if it were possible,' she continued, casting about in her mind for
new tortures with which to rack him, and now suddenly struck with an
inward joy, as her ever-ready invention came to her aid. 'Yes, if I knew
aught of good to tell, I would mention it, for the memory of other days.
But how can I speak with truth, unless to recapitulate new deceits and
wiles which she has practised upon you, and of which, may the gods be my
witness! I would have told you before, but dared not? You say that you
have never loved me, Sergius Vanno. It is well. But if you had done so,
I would have been faithful to you to the end. You say that you loved
her, and that, but for your own falsehood, she would not have strayed
from you. Poor dupe! to believe that, for all that meek, pale face of
hers, she cannot resolve, and act, and mask her purposes as cunningly as
any of the rest of her sex! Shall I tell you more? Do you dream that,
while you have been revelling, she has been idly whimpering in her
chamber? Had you watched outside with me, you might have known better.
Look above your head, Sergius, to where the prison keys are wont to
hang, and tell me where they are now!'

More from mechanical instinct than from any actual purpose of mind--for
he did not, at the first instant, fully comprehend her meaning--Sergius
followed the motion of her hand, and gazed at the wall above his head;
then passed his fingers along until he touched the empty nail--then
looked back inquiringly at her.

'The keys are gone, are they not?' she said. 'Fool! to lock up one party
to a fault, and yet let the other one go free! Do you suppose that
during your carousing with your boon companions, she would fail to
succor him for whose sake she has already lost so much?'

Still he gazed at Leta with a look of puzzled inquiry, which now began,
however, to be disturbed by an expression of painful doubt. Then
suddenly, ascertaining that the keys were really gone, her meaning
flashed upon him; and dropping his hand with a wrathful exclamation, he
turned and strode into the palace. Not, perhaps, with full conviction of
the truth of the suggestion so artfully arrayed before him. But he would
at least prove its truth or falsity; and, with that suspicion fastened
upon his bewildered and unreasoning mind, to doubt was almost to
believe, and crossing the ante-chamber to Ænone's room, he burst in upon
her.

She had fallen into a troubled sleep--lying dressed upon the outside of
her couch, as, in her agony of mind, she had first thrown herself down.
The unspent tears still trembled upon her eyelids. Beside her lay the
little folded parchment which Cleotos had given her. She had taken it
out to read, hoping, but scarcely believing, that she would now be able
to experience the truth of what she had been told about the earnest
words there written being divinely adapted to give peace to a troubled
heart. But her sorrow was too deep to be healed by phrases whose spirit
could, of necessity, be so imperfectly comprehended by her; and the
writing had slipped unheeded from her light grasp.

As her husband now entered, she awoke and sat upright, in frightened
attitude, not knowing what fate was about to befall her.

'Where is he? What have you done with him?' Sergius cried, seizing her
by the arm.

She did not answer, not knowing, of course, wherefore the question was
put to her, or what it concerned. Yet, perceiving that she was again
suspected of some act of which she was innocent, she would have asked
for mercy and pardon, if time had been given her. But even that was
denied her. Hardly, indeed, could she draw a breath, when she felt that
a new thread was woven in the web of misconception which surrounded her.
For, at that moment, her husband's eye fell upon the forgotten
parchment; and picking it up, he opened it, gave one hasty look, and
then tossed it aside. What need, now, of further proof? Was not that the
slave's writing, recognizable at a glance? Words of love, of course! And
she had gone to sleep fondly holding them in her hand, as a treasure
from which she could not be parted for an instant. Words not freshly
written, either, for the parchment was yellow and discolored. So much
the worse, therefore; for did it not prove a course of long-continued
deception? Could there be any doubt now? Yes, a long deceit. And this
was she for whom, in his simplicity, he had but a moment before been
framing excuses, in the effort to convince himself that her fault had
been one of impulse, rather than of cool deliberation! This was she in
whose behalf he had weakly lowered himself to plead to his own cast-off
slave for extenuating evidences! And once more grasping her by the arm,
he lifted her from the couch, and, followed by Leta, hurried her across
the room into the outer hall, into the court yard, past the fountain,
and so onward until they stood before the prison house. There, seeing
the inner door open, the outer door swinging loosely inward, with the
key yet remaining in its lock, and the captive fled, Sergius deemed her
new crime fully proved, and again turned madly upon her.

'Where is he? What have you done with him? Am I to be thus balked of my
vengeance? Is it to be endured that, while I entertain my friends, you
should steal off so treacherously, and thus complete the dishonor you
have brought upon me?'

'I have not--done dishonor--to my lord!' she gasped with difficulty, for
she was almost speechless from the rapidity with which he had hurried
her along, and his close grasp upon her arm pained her. 'Let me but
speak--I will explain--I know not how--'

'No falsehoods--no pleadings to me!' he cried. 'It will avail you
nothing now. What more proof do I need? Is not the whole story written
out plainly before my eyes? Have you not stolen away to release him,
preferring his safety and favor to my honor or your own? If not, where
is he? Escaped me, by the gods! Escaped me, after all! Fool that I have
been, to leave that key within your meddling reach!'

Overborne by his violence, not of words merely, but of gesture, Ænone
had, little by little, shrunk from before him as he spoke, until she had
unconsciously passed through the open doorway, and into the narrow
street beyond. Leta and he still remained within the building, standing
beside the swinging door. There was even now but a single pace between
Ænone and himself, and it was scarcely likely that such a trifling
distance could reassure her. It was more probably something in his tone
or action which now gave her courage to meet his imputation. Whatever
the nature of the inspiration, she now suddenly drew herself up, as
though indued with new strength, and answered him with something of the
same recklessness of spirit with which once before during that day she
had cast aside all fear of misconstruction, and, with the sustaining
consciousness of innocence and justice, had defied him.

'Escaped you?' she cried; 'I thank the gods for it! I did not set him
free, but I would have done so, had I known how. He was my friend--my
brother. Would I have left him, do you think, to suffer torture and
death for simple kindnesses to me, when, with one turn of a key,
I--could have released him? Would I let the memory of other days so
completely pass from my mind as to--'

How, at that instant, happened the door to close? Was it owing to the
wind, or to a skilful and concealed touch of Leta's hand, or to some
unconscious pressure of Sergius against it? The cause matters little. It
was enough that, of a sudden, the loosely hanging door swung round on
its creaking hinges into its place, fastening itself securely with a
spring bolt as its edge touched the lintel, and leaving Ænone shut out
alone in the dark street upon the other side.

Upon the instant, Sergius sprang forward to reopen the door. Convinced
of her perfidy, and madly lashing himself into yet further fury with the
consciousness of his wrongs, it was as yet not in his mind that even by
accident such a forced separation as this should befall her. His hand
was upon the bolt--in another second it would have been drawn back--when
his further action was arrested by a few lowly uttered words of Leta.

Not spoken to him, for, in his present state of mind, he was more than
ever morbidly jealous of any interference or attempted control, and
would most surely have disregarded them. But spoken as though to
herself, in a kind of whispered soliloquy, softly muttered, but yet with
utterance sufficiently distinct to reach his watchful ear.

'Ah, she will not regard that,' were the words, 'for of course she will
know where to rejoin him.'

Sergius started as the new idea impressed itself upon him. Could this be
true, indeed? Why not? Was it likely that the wife would have released
the slave whom she loved, and not have told him where they could meet
again? That, surely, would be too foolish an oversight, for it would be
throwing away all the benefits attending the escape. It were hardly
possible that any trust could have been reposed in the prospect of
future chance interviews, for that would be but a slender hope to lean
upon. In that boiling, seething world of Rome, now more than ever
disturbed by the inroads of strangers eagerly looking forward to the
excitements of the amphitheatre, it would be in vain to make even
deliberate and careful search for a lost slave, unless some clew should
be left behind. Yes, she must surely have that clew; and doubtless she
purposed to use it as soon as daylight came. Let her go now, therefore.
It were idle to call her back only for new flight in a few hours hence.

Still with his hand resting upon the bolt as these reflections passed
through his mind, Sergius glanced keenly at Leta, as though possessed
with some dim suspicion that she had meant her words to be overheard.
Then, feeling reassured by her composed attitude, he turned away,
muttered something to himself the import of which she could not catch,
dropped his hand from the undrawn bolt to his side, stood for a moment
in a kind of maze of confusion, and finally left the prison, and
staggered through the garden to the house.


CHAPTER XVII.

Stunned and confused by her sudden exclusion, and naturally believing
that it was the result of deliberate action upon her husband's part,
Ænone now felt all her sudden inspiration of courage deserting her, and
sank half fainting against the outside wall. For a moment it seemed to
her like a dream. She could realize suspicion, harsh language, and even
cruel treatment within a certain limit, for these were all within the
scope of her late experience; but it was hard to comprehend this
unlooked-for and apparently deliberate excess of degradation. But
gradually the mist cleared away from her bewildered mind, and she
recognized the reality of what had befallen her. Still, however, her
thoughts could not at once grapple with the overwhelming sense of the
indignity and suffering cast upon her. She could not doubt that she had
been expelled from her lord's house--cast out unprotected and friendless
in the midst of night, with undeserved reproaches. But, for all that, a
delusive hope clung to her. He could not mean that this should last. It
was but an impulse of sudden anger. He would repent of it in a moment,
and would call upon her to return to him. He would shed tears of bitter
shame, perhaps, and would beg that she would forgive him. And she would
be foolish enough to do so, she felt, at the very first pleading word
from him; though at the same time feeling that her own self-respect
should prompt her to show more lasting resentment. If thus easily forgot
the past, what security could she feel that, in some future transport of
rage, he might not repeat the act? But for all that, she felt that she
would weakly too soon forgive him.

Sliding her trembling hand down the damp wall, she found along its foot
a ledge of stone more or less projecting in different sections, in
accordance with the architectural requirements of the building. Seating
herself upon the widest portion of this ledge, she now waited to hear
the key again turned in the lock and the door swung open upon its
creaking hinges, and to see loving arms extended with repentant words of
self-reproach. Once or twice she fancied that she heard the key softly
fitted into its place, but it was only the abrasion of two contiguous
branches of a plane tree overhead. Once again she felt certain that she
heard the sound of persons approaching through the garden, but it was
the voice of men in the street--two slaves coming around the corner and
drawing near, speaking some harsh northern dialect which she knew not.
As the men approached, she endeavored to shrink out of sight behind a
perpendicular projection of the wall, and nearly succeeded. They had
passed, indeed, before they noticed her. Then they turned and gazed
curiously at her; and one of them made some remark, apparently of a
jesting nature, for they both laughed. Then again they turned and moved
on out of sight without attempting further molestation.

But the incident alarmed her, and caused her to realize yet more vividly
than before the exceeding unprotectedness of her situation. These men
had not sought to injure her, but how could she answer for the next who
might approach? It was a lonely, dark street, narrow, and comparatively
seldom used, and but little built upon, being mainly flanked by garden
walls. Upon the side where she sat there were no buildings at all,
excepting low prison houses for slaves, similar to that belonging to the
Vanno palace--for the street ran along an inner slope of the Coelian
Mount and parallel to the Triumphal Way, and thus naturally served as a
rear boundary to the gardens of the palaces and villas which fronted
upon the latter avenue. This very loneliness, therefore, added to her
insecurity; for though it was possible that no one else might pass by
for hours, there was the equal chance that if any one came with evil
intent, she might be murdered before help could be summoned. And at a
time when the broadest streets were never entirely safe even for armed
men, a weak woman, with tempting jewelry upon her person, might well
shudder at being left alone in a narrow alley.

Slowly and painfully--for the night was cool, and she had now been
sitting long in one position--Ænone raised herself and stood up, looking
hither and thither for some place of refuge. She had now waited more
than an hour, and if her husband had been inclined to recall her from
her exclusion, his repentance would scarcely have tarried so long. His
anger was generally fierce, but of short duration; could it be that in
this case his sense of injury was so great as to make him more
unreasoning than usual? Her heart sank yet lower with a new weight of
despair; but again hope whispered alleviation. He had been drinking
deeply--she said to herself--and had not clearly comprehended what he
had done. And afterward he had probably forgotten all about it, and had
fallen off into sleep. Upon the morrow he would be himself again.
Perhaps he would not then remember the outrage he had committed against
her. Certainly his anger would not still burn when corrected by
returning reason. She must therefore endeavor to gain access again to
the palace, and there avoid his presence, until the morrow brought to
him fresher reflection and a better inclination to listen to
explanation.

And accordingly she commenced her departure from her hiding place, and
slowly crept along the blank flanking wall of the little street, hoping
soon to gain the palace front. At first it seemed a very easy thing to
do so. Though she had never before been in that portion of the city, she
knew enough of its geography to feel certain that if she followed the
street in either direction, she could not fail to come to some
intersecting alley, through which she could reach the Triumphal Way.
Once there, the route was familiar to her, and she could arrive at her
home in a few minutes. But as she advanced, she found that what had
appeared to be an easy stroll, seemed converted into a toilsome and
perplexing journey. Confused and terrified, the coolness necessary to
pursue in safety even so short a route began to fail her. At times she
imagined that she heard strangers approaching, and then it became
needful to conceal herself again, as well as she could, behind
projections or in recesses of the wall. Then, when once more venturing
out, the shadows of the wall itself or of neighboring buildings would
terrify her into seeking other concealments. And once, after having
resumed her course, she discovered that she had mistaken the direction,
and was retracing her steps.

At last, after a journey of nearly an hour, during which she had only
advanced as far as a resolute person might have gone in a few minutes,
she reached an intersecting street leading to the Triumphal Way. It was
a wider passage than that which she was leaving, and this fact added to
her dismay. For though she had at first feared the narrower street for
its loneliness, yet now that she had so far glided through it in safety,
she had begun to feel somewhat reassured, and in turn dreaded the more
open channels, since they would naturally be more frequented. It was,
therefore, with new trepidation that, upon turning the corner, she saw,
in the broader street before her, signs of movement and life. The street
happened to be a favorite thoroughfare from the Triumphal Way, across
the Coelian Mount, and, in consequence, was never, perhaps, entirely
deserted. Now that the whole city was throbbing with anticipations of
the morrow's festivities, there were more persons wakeful and wandering
about with feverish expectation than usual. Moreover, it was a street
which abounded with drinking shops, and these were now all open, in
spite of the lateness of the hour, and appeared to be thronged with
customers. One of these shops stood upon the corner where Ænone had
halted. A faint light burned over the doorway to mark the locality; and
through the open passage she could see a crowd of ill-conditioned,
rough-looking men, appearing, in the dim light, more rough and uncouth
than they really were. Here were mingled together artisans of the lower
orders, slaves and professional gladiators, all drinking and singing
together in close fraternity. For a moment Ænone paused and hesitated,
not daring to pass on. If she could reach the farther side without
attracting observation, it would be but one step gained, for there were
many other drinking shops glimmering in the distance along the whole
street, and each one had its special crowd of noisy customers. To escape
one peril seemed only to run into another. Then, as she deliberated and
alternately put her foot forward and withdrew it again in a fruitless
attempt to muster courage to run the gauntlet, two men emerged from the
wine shop, and staggered toward her--a slave and a gladiator, linked arm
in arm, and singing a wild song in discordant keys. Both appeared to be
under the influence of wine, though in different degrees; for while the
former had set no bounds to his license, the latter had somewhat
restrained his propensities, in view of the demands upon his strength
which the morrow's work would surely make. Seeing these men reel toward
her, Ænone turned and fled, without knowing, or, for the moment, caring,
in which direction she went. The men had not at first seen her, but, as
they now caught sight of her flying figure, they set up a drunken whoop,
and attempted to follow. All in vain; for ere they had advanced many
paces, their weakened limbs betrayed them, and they sank powerless upon
the ground, and, forgetting the pursuit, rolled over lovingly in each
other's arms. Meanwhile, Ænone, not daring to look back, and not knowing
that the chase had ended, still fled in wild terror, until at last her
breath failed her, and she tottered helpless into the shade of the
nearest wall.

She was now lost indeed. How long she had been running, or in which
direction, how many divergences she had taken, or how many narrow alleys
threaded, she knew not. She simply realized that she was in a portion of
the city where she had never been before, and from which extrication
seemed impossible, so dark and narrow and winding seemed the passages in
every direction. Far narrower and darker, indeed, than the lane behind
the palace, and without its protecting solitude. In place of high garden
walls, the whole route seemed lined with miserable tenements, the refuge
of the lowest of the Roman population. There, crowded together in close
communication, were the rabble of poorer slaves and beggars, all equally
marked with rags and filth.

In all this there was one comfort. However thronged the tenements along
the side might be, the street itself seemed deserted, nor could Ænone
any longer hear the sound of pursuit. That, at least, she had escaped,
and now again she took partial courage as she reflected that with
moderate caution she might yet be able to extricate herself. There must
be some outlet to that neighborhood of squalid misery; and take
whichever way she might, she could scarcely fail, at the end, to emerge
into some more reputable region.

Again the sound of two persons approaching restrained her, and caused
her to shrink into a corner until they might pass. Unlike the others,
these men had not been drinking, but advanced gravely and steadily, with
a slow, deliberate pace, indicative of weighty reflection. These, also,
were slaves; and before they emerged into sight from the surrounding
darkness, Ænone could distinctly mark the low, plotting whisper with
which they spoke, occasionally rising, from excess of emotion, into a
louder key. As they came opposite to her, they paused--not seeing her,
but simply seeming to be arrested by the vehemence of their debate; and
again their words sank nearly into a whisper.

'Tell me why I should not do so?' hissed the nearest, a man of gigantic
proportions and development of strength. 'Why should I not leap out of
the arena where these men place me to play a fool's part; and scrambling
over the ranges of seats, plunge this dagger into his heart? Ye gods!
were I once to begin to clamber up, no force could stop me from reaching
him, were he at the very topmost range! And I will--why not?'

'You would gain but an instant's revenge,' said the other, striving to
soothe him, 'and you would lose--'

'What? My life, would you say?' retorted the first. 'I know it. I know
well, that before I could strike him thrice, I would myself be beaten
down, a corpse. But one blow from me would be sufficient for him. Ay,
though I used not my knife at all, but only my hardened fist. Would it
not be a fine revenge, say you, thus to kill him? It was on account of
my strength of arm that he laid toils for my capture, and for that alone
he most valued me. Why not, then, prove its quality upon himself? With a
single blow I could crush in his proud head like an egg shell. Then let
them kill me--I care not.'

'And yet the life once lost by you cannot be gained again,' responded
the other.

'O feeble-minded!' said the first, with disdain. 'Have I ever so dearly
cared for life that I should thus guard it at the expense of honor?
While I was a free man, in my native Rhodes, with my wife and children
around me, did I not then risk my life among the very first? And am I
likely to value it the more now that I am a slave, with wife torn from
me and sent I know not where, with children slain one by one, as the
only means of capturing me, with the accursed livery of the arena placed
upon me that I may administer to their gaping appetite for blood? Can
all this make me love my life more than I have ever loved it before?'

'But wait--only wait. There will come a time--'

'Ay, ay; there will come a time is what all say, and will continue to
say, and yet the time comes not. There is never any time like the
present. All around me are thousands of men, once free and now chained
into slavery--and chained, perhaps, more through their own indolence
than by the power of their masters; and yet they lie supine, and call
upon each other to wait! And to-morrow there will be a thousand such in
the arena, and instead of rising up together in their strength, they
will fight only with each other. What might not that thousand
accomplish, were they to act together in brave and earnest revolt? What
chance would a few hundred pampered pretorians have of staying the
flood? There, seated in fancied security upon their benches, will be the
emperor, the court, the nobles, and the most wealthy of the empire. In
one hour of action, we could sweep these away like chaff, together with
all else that is held most worthy of place and power in the whole
empire! And yet these thousand slaves will not rise up together with me,
and it will not be done!'

The head of the Hercules dropped upon his chest with a gesture of
despair.

'You say truly,' responded the other. 'It will not be done, for they
will not act with you. And what can you do alone?'

'Nothing--nothing; I see it all. I am powerless,' murmured the first.
'Well, I will be patient, and dissimulate. I will do as you request,
Gorgo. I will restrain myself. As for this man--this imperator--why
should I there wreak my vengeance upon him? It would only be giving to
the rest of the people an unlooked-for sight--a newer pleasure, that is
all. I will therefore act the part of a good and faithful slave--will
kiss the rod held over me--and will duly serve my master by slaying my
adversary, whoever he may be, and thus winning that store of gold pieces
which have been laid out as the stake of my life. And then--then I will
go home to my kennel and my bones. But this I swear, by the immortal
gods! that I will follow this man from house to forum, wherever he may
go, until I find a proper chance to strike him down in secret like a
dog. You were right. I must not lose my life to kill him, when I can so
easily slay him and yet live to slay other men as bad as he. My life is
for other things. And when the time comes that I can raise the standard
of insurrection, will you then--'

'Then I will be with you heart and soul forever, until our freedom is
built up on the ruins of this accursed Rome!' cried the other, striking
his hand responsively into the outstretched palm before him. And the two
men again took up their walk, and passed on until they were swallowed up
in the darkness and their voices, growing more and more indistinct, were
finally hushed.



THE VISION.

INSCRIBED TO TEACHERS TO CONTRABANDS IN THE SOUTH.


  Lo! a picture came before me
    Of a million broken chains,
  Lying cankered with old blood-drops
    Which had oozed from tortured veins,
  Reddening the fleecy cotton
    Snowed upon the Southern plains.

  And the picture's tints grew deeper,
    Redder, blacker, as I gazed,
  And my weak knees smote together,
    And my eyes grew dim and glazed,
  At the vision's spectred horrors
    From the graves of vengeance raised.

  For, where liveoaks and magnolias
    Gloom the earth with densest shades,
  Where the snake and alligator
    Lurk in endless everglades,
  Where the cloud-lace-fretted sunset
    Lingering, longest night evades,

  Where the eagle builds his eyrie
    Nearest to the fervid skies,
  Where the buzzard swoops to fatten
    On the prey that lingering dies,
  Where the bloodhound's hellish baying
    Stills the hunted bondman's cries,

  There uprose, all ghostly shadowed,
    Hosts of wasted, haggard forms;
  And their wild eyes glared and glittered
    Like heaven's fire in dark-browed storms,
  And with outstretched arms toward me
    They came rushing in thick swarms.

  And I saw upon their foreheads
    Letters where the irons burned,
  And their backs left gashed and harrowed
    Where the lash for life-blood yearned,
  And their lank limbs, fester-eaten,
    Showed where gnawing shackles turned.

  There were gaunt and frenzied mothers
    With wan children in their arms,
  There were youths, and there were maidens,
    Curses, tears, and wild alarms,
  There were auction blocks and hammers
    Where were bartered beauty's charms.

  Ah! my heart grew chill within me,
    And my 'frighted blood congealed,
  As my soul's eye raised the shadows
    Which like curtains half concealed
  Deeper horrors, depths of anguish
    Left till God's day unrevealed!

  And my soul went up in sighing
    To God's ear: 'And _Thou_ dost know,
  High and Holy! men are devils,
    Earth, like hell, is drowned in woe?'
  Came an answer: 'Hark! my war-blast
    Dealing sin a staggering blow!'

  'Father! though the chains be broken,'
    Cried my soul, 'the wounds remain,
  Deeper than the irons wore them,
    'Neath the brow within the brain,
  'Neath the body in the spirit!
    Peals Thy war-blast not in vain?

  'How shall knowledge, how shall virtue
    Dwell with ignorance and sin?
  Where is found that earthly saintship
    Can consort with devils' din?
  Who the saintly self-denying
    Through bell's door would look within

  'E'en to save the devil's victims,
    Snatch them from the cooling flames,
  Kiss with love their long-charred spirits,
    Breathe new souls into their names,
  Wing them to the climes supernal,
    And to angels' loud acclaims?'

  Then came answer: 'Lo! I call them,
    Ministers of love, I call!'
  Then I waited in the silence,
    With God waited over all,
  Till I knew how He forgetteth
    No one worthy, great or small.

  For I saw from where the ocean
    Drifts its rhythms to the beach,
  From where mountain snows eternal
    Far toward heaven as stainless reach,
  From where gold and russet harvests
    Of God's 'whelming bounty teach,

  From where all are always freemen,
    From where colleges and schools
  Free the mind from Old-World trammels,
    Unfit men for tyrants' tools,
  From where firesides and altars
    Govern hearts with golden rules,

  Came, as flowers come in spring-time
    Dropt from Winter's icy hand,
  Came to cheer, to teach, to brighten--
    God's commissioned, shining band;
  Came with hands and hearts o'erflowing
    To renew the Southern land!

  And I watched how spirit-anguish
    Songs and smiles soon soothed, allayed,
  And how soul-wounds touched by kindness,
    As by Christ, could heal and fade,
  And how darkness fled affrighted
    Where these angels wept and prayed.

  And my soul went up in praising
    To God's ear: 'Yea, Thou dost know,
  High and Holy! men are devils,
    Earth, like hell, is drowned in woe;
  But Thy war-blast, in Thy mercy,
    Hath dealt sin a staggering blow!'



THE UNDIVINE COMEDY--A POLISH DRAMA.

Dedicated to Mary.


PART IV.

'Bottomless perdition.'--_Milton._

Fog and cloud! Nothing can be seen from the bastions of the castle of
the Holy Trinity, to the right or to the left, in front or in the rear,
but dense, motionless, snowy mist; a spectral image of that deluge-wrath
which, as it rose to sweep o'er earth, once broke against these stern,
steep cliffs and beetling peaks of rock: no trace is to be seen of the
buried valley, for the ghostly waves of the cold, white sea of foam
shroud it closely in their stifling veils; the glowing face of the
crimson sun shines not as yet upon earth's winding sheet of silent,
clinging, pallid vapor.

The tower of the castle stands upon a bold and naked granite peak. Built
of the strong rock from which it soars by the giant labor of the now
dying Past, it seems during the lapse of centuries to have grown up from
its stony heart, as the human breast grows from the broad back of the
Centaur. A single banner streams above its lofty turret, the only banner
of the Cross now raised on earth; the symbol of God's mystic love alone
floats high enough to pierce into the unclouded blue of the stormy sky!

The white and sleeping mist gradually awakens; the sighing and howling
of the bleak winds are heard above; the vapor palpitates in the first
rays of the coming sun, and a drifting ice-floe of curdling clouds
drives wildly o'er this quickening sea of fog and foam.

Other voices, human voices, mingle with the wails and sobs of the
passing storm: borne upward on the ghastly waves of the spectral cloud
sea, they break against the walls of the granite castle.

The pallid shroud of mist is suddenly riven, and through the walls of
the chasm torn through the heart of the white foam, glimpses are seen of
the abyss below.

How dark it looks in the depths! A sea of heads in wild commotion surges
there; the valley swarms with human life as ocean's slimy sands with
creeping things that writhe and sting.

The sun! the sun! He mounts above the rocky peaks; the pallid vapors
rise in blood and melt in gold, and as they roll and lift into the sky,
more and more distinctly grow upon the view the threatening swarms of
men still gathering below.

The quivering mist rolls into crimson clouds and scales the craggy
cliffs; it dies softly away into the blue depths of the infinite sky.
The valley glitters like a sea of light, throws back the dewy sunshine
in a dazzling glare, for every hand is armed with sharp and sparkling
blades and points of steel--and millions are seen pouring into its
depths, numberless as they will pour into the vale of the Last Judgment.

       *       *       *       *       *

     A cathedral church in the castle of the Holy Trinity.

     Lords, senators, dignitaries are seen seated on either side, each
     under the banner of a king or knight. Bands of nobles stand behind
     the banners. The Archbishop is in front of the high altar, a choir
     of stoled Priests kneel behind and around it. The Man appears,
     pauses a few moments on the threshold of the church, then advances
     slowly up the aisle to the Archbishop, holding a banner in his
     hand.

CHORUS OF PRIESTS. O God of our fathers! we, Thy last priests, pray in
the last church of Thy Son now standing upon earth for the faith of our
ancestors! Deliver us from our enemies, O Lord our God!

FIRST COUNT. See with what pride Count Henry regards us.

SECOND COUNT. As if the whole universe were at his feet.

THIRD COUNT. And yet he has done nothing but cut his way through the
camp of the peasants at night!

FIRST COUNT. He left one hundred, nay, it is reported, two hundred of
their men dead upon the place of combat.

SECOND COUNT. Let us object to his appointment as general-in-chief.

THE MAN (_kneeling at the feet of the Archbishop_). I lay my trophy at
thy feet!

ARCHBISHOP (_giving him a sword_). Gird this sword upon thee; it was
once consecrated to Saint Florian!

MANY VOICES. Long live Count Henry! Vivat! vivat!

ARCHBISHOP. And thus sealing thee with the sign of the cross, I commit
to thy hands the sole command of this, our last fortress and refuge upon
earth.

It is the universal wish that thou shouldst assume the rank of
general-in-chief.

MANY VOICES. Long live our general! Vivat! vivat!

A VOICE. I will not give my consent to the appointment!

MANY VOICES. Away with the objector! Long live Count Henry!

THE MAN. If any one present have just cause to reproach me, let him
proclaim it openly, and not hide himself in the crowd!

     He pauses; no one responds.

I accept this sword from thy hands, most reverend father; and may God
send me an early and sudden death if I fail to deliver thee!

CHORUS OF PRIESTS. Gift him with power, O God; and let Thy Holy Spirit
descend upon him! Deliver us from our enemies, O Lord!

THE MAN. Let us all, princes, knights, and nobles, take a solemn oath to
defend the glory and fame of our fathers!

Let us swear that though hunger and thirst may lead us to death, they
shall not force us to dishonor!

Let us vow that no suffering shall induct us to capitulate, to yield one
of our just rights, or to sacrifice any of the duties due to our
Creator! Swear!

MANY VOICES. We swear.

     The Archbishop elevates the Cross, they kneel and pledge their
     faith.

CHORUS OF PRIESTS. The perjured Thou wilt punish in Thy wrath, O God!

The faint-hearted Thou wilt punish in Thy wrath, O God!

The traitor Thou wilt punish in Thy wrath O God!

THE MAN (_drawing his sword_). Keep the oath, and I promise glory--for
victory, pray to God!

     He leaves the church, surrounded and followed by bands of knights,
     nobles, etc.

       *       *       *       *       *

     A courtyard in the castle of the Holy Trinity. The Man, counts,
     barons, princes, noblemen.

A COUNT (_leading the Man aside_). What--is all irretrievably lost?

THE MAN. Not all, unless your courage fail before the time.

THE COUNT. Before what time?

THE MAN. Before death!

A BARON (_leading him off on the other side_). It is reported that you
have seen and spoken with our dreadful foe, Count Henry. If we should
fall into his hands, will he have the least compassion upon us?

THE MAN. To tell you the truth, such compassion as our fathers never
dreamed could be shown to them: '_the gallows_!'

THE BARON. We must guard against that to the utmost of our power!

THE MAN. What says your excellency?

PRINCE. I must speak a few words alone with you, (_He draws Count Henry
aside_.) It is all very well to encourage our people, but you must
surely be aware that we can hold out no longer.

THE MAN. What else is left us, prince?

PRINCE. As you have been appointed chief, it is for you to propose the
terms of _capitulation_.

THE MAN. Not so loud....

PRINCE. Why not?

THE MAN. Because your excellency would thus forfeit your own life! (_He
turns to the men thronging around him._) He who speaks of surrender will
be punished with death!

BARON, COUNT, AND PRINCE (_together_.) He who speaks of surrender will
be punished with death!

ALL. With death! With death! Vivat! vivat!

  EXEUNT.

       *       *       *       *       *

     The gallery of the tower. The Man. Jacob.

THE MAN. Where is my son, Jacob?

JACOB. He is in the north tower, seated on the threshold of the old
vault and dungeon, singing strange songs of prophecy.

THE MAN. Man the Leonoren bastion as strongly as possible, stir not from
the spot, and make constant use of the best glass to observe what
movements are going on among the forces of the besiegers.

JACOB. So help me God the Lord!

It were well to give a glass of brandy to our troops to keep up their
sinking courage.

THE MAN. If necessary, open the cellars of our counts and princes.

  Exit Jacob.

THE MAN (_mounting some feet higher, and standing wider the banner upon
a small terrace_). With the whole power of my eyes I trace your plans;
with the concentrated hatred of my soul I surround you, my enemies! No
longer with a single voice, or with a vain enthusiasm, am I to meet you;
but with the sharp swords and strength of men governed by my will I seek
our last encounter!

It is a noble thing to be the leader in this contest; to look even from
the bed of death, if so it must be, upon the strange power added to my
own single arm through the many wills subjected to my rule; and glorious
to gaze thus down upon you, my enemies, lying far below in the abyss and
crying up to me from the depths, as the damned cry up to heaven!

Yet a few hours more of time, and then I, with thousands of the
miserable wretches who have forgotten and renounced their God, will be
no more forever--but come what will, one day of life at least is left
me--I will enjoy it to the utmost--I will rule--combat--live! Is this my
last song?

The sun sets behind the cliffs; sinks in a long, dark shroud of
vapor--on every side his rays pour blood into the valley. Foreshadow of
my bloody death, I greet thee with a more sincere and faithful heart
than I was wont to salute the allurements of pleasure, deception,
enchantment, love, in the past days of my youth!

Not through low intrigue, through cunning skill, through laborious
effort, have I attained the fulfilment of my wishes; but suddenly and
unlocked for, as I have ever dreamed I would!

Ruler over those who were but yesterday my equals, I have reached the
aim of my ambition: I stand on the very threshold of the eternal sleep!

       *       *       *       *       *

     A hall in the castle lighted with torches; George reclining upon a
     bed; the Man enters, and places his weapons upon a table.

THE MAN. Let a hundred men keep guard upon the bulwarks, the remainder
may repose after our long and exhausting combat!

VOICE (_without_). So help me God the Lord!

THE MAN. You must have been frightened, George, with the noise of our
attack, the firing of musketry, the cries of the soldiers!

But keep up your courage, my child; we shall not be taken to-day, nor
to-morrow.

GEORGE. I have indeed heard it all distinctly, but it is not that which
strikes terror to my heart; the thunder of the cannon flies on and is
here no longer--it is something else that haunts me, that appals me,
father!

THE MAN. You fear for me, George?

GEORGE. No. I know your hour has not yet struck.

THE MAN. A heavy weight has fallen from my heart to-day, for in the
plain below, scattered like autumn leaves, lie the corpses of our foes,
foiled in their fierce attack.

Come, George, we are alone, come! tell me all thy thronging thoughts; I
will listen to thee once more as of old in our own home!

GEORGE (_hurriedly_). Follow me, then--follow me, father! A dreadful
trial--sentence--is reëchoed here every night. Oh come with me!

     He goes to a door in the wall hidden by a heavy fall of tapestry,
     and opens it.

THE MAN. George! where art thou going? Who has made known to thee this
secret passage into endless vaults covered with eternal darkness? to
this black charnel house, where moulder the bones of earlier and
countless victims?

GEORGE. Where thine eye, accustomed to the sunshine, has no power to
pierce, my spirit presses forward.

Gloom roll on to gloom--and darkness gather unto darkness!

     He enters the door, followed by his father, and rapidly descends
     into the vault.

       *       *       *       *       *

     A long, vaulted, subterranean dungeon. Grates, bars, chains, and
     broken instruments of torture. The Man, with a torch in his hand,
     stands at the base of a great block of granite, on the top of which
     stands George.

THE MAN. Come down to me, George, I implore!

GEORGE. Hearest thou not these voices? Seest thou not these forms?

THE MAN. All is still as the grave--and almost as dark. The light of the
torch is instantly swallowed up by the damp chill gloom around us!

GEORGE. Listen! Ever nearer! ever clearer! One after another they are
slowly filing on from the depths of the narrow vaults--they are solemnly
seating themselves below, far in the background; behind thee, father!

THE MAN. Thy madness is my damnation! Thy mind is wandering, my poor
child; thou art destroying the strength which I now so sorely need!

GEORGE. I see their pale and stately forms as they collect for fearful
judgment! I see the prisoner approach the dreadful bar, his tall form
seems.... I cannot discern his features--they float and flow like
morning mist! Hark!

CHORUS OF VOICES. We, once chained, beaten, tormented, choked with dust
and broken with stones, through the Power now given to our hands,
proceed in our turn to sentence!

We too will judge and torture; try and condemn; Satan himself will
delight to assume the execution of our sentence.

THE MAN. George, what dost thou see?

George. The prisoner! the prisoner, father! He wring his hands--O
father! father!

A VOICE. With thee dies out the accursed race; all its power, all its
passions, all its pride, have joined in thee to perish!

CHORUS OF VOICES. _Because thou hast loved nothing--revered nothing save
thyself and thine own thoughts--thou art condemned--art damned to all
eternity!_

THE MAN. I see nothing, but I hear from every side--above--below--sighs
and wails--judgment, threatening, and eternal doom!

GEORGE. The prisoner! he raises his haughty head as thou dost, father,
when thou art angered! He answers with proud words, as thou dost, when
thou scornest--father!

CHORUS OF VOICES. In vain! thou plead'st in vain! there is no redemption
for him more, in earth or heaven!

A VOICE. Yet another day of passing earthly glory, of all share in which
thine ancestors have robbed me and my brethren--and then thou fallest
forever--thou, with thy brethren!

Your burials will be, as once were ours, without the toll of holy
knells, without tears, sobs, or wailing mourners, without friends,
without relations, and you will die transfixed upon the same rock of
universal human pain!

THE MAN. I know you, wretched ghosts! wandering stars amid the angelic
hosts!

     He goes forward into the darkness.

GEORGE. Father! go not into that fearful gloom! Father! in the name of
Jesus Christ--I implore--I conjure thee--father!

THE MAN (_turning toward his son_). Whom do you see below? Speak, and
tell me truly, George!

GEORGE. The prisoner--he is thyself, my father!

He is white as snow--gagged--chained--they drag him on--they torture
thee, my father!

I hear thy gasping breath--thy groans--thy sobs! (_He falls upon his
knees._) Forgive me, father! My mother shines through the dark--and
commands me to....

     He falls back in a fainting fit.

THE MAN (_catching the falling boy in his arms_). This alone was
wanting! Ha! my own, my only child has led me to the brink of hell!

Mary--inexorable spirit! God!!

And thou, second Mary, to whom I have so often prayed!

Here then is the beginning of eternal darkness, eternal torture!...

Back! back into life! one day of glory is at least still left me! First
must I combat with my fellow men--and then for my eternal struggle!

CHORUS OF SPIRITS (_dying away in the distance_). _Because thou hast
loved nothing, revered nothing, save thyself and thine own
thoughts--thou art, damned to all eternity!_

       *       *       *       *       *

     A large hall in the castle of the Holy Trinity; arms and armor hang
     upon the walls, with various Gothic ornaments. The Man; women,
     children, some old men, and nobles are kneeling at his feet. The
     Godfather stands in the centre of the hall, and crowds of men are
     in the background.

THE MAN. No, no. By my son--by the memory of my wife--never! never!

VOICES OF WOMEN. Have mercy upon us! Hunger gnaws our bowels; our
children die of famine; fear is upon us day and night; have pity upon
us!

VOICES OF MEN. It still is time! Listen to the herald--dismiss not the
envoy!

GODFATHER. I regard not your reproaches, Count Henry, for my whole life
has been that of a good citizen.

If I have assumed the office of ambassador, which I am at this moment
fulfilling, it is because I understand the age in which we live, and
estimate our times aright.

Pancratius is, if I may so express myself, the representative of the
people....

THE MAN. Out of my sight, old man!--(_Aside to Jacob._) Bring a
detachment of soldiers hither!

  Exit Jacob.

     The women rise from their knees weeping and sobbing, and the men
     draw back a few paces.

A BARON.--We are all lost, and through you alone, Count Henry!

SECOND BARON. We renounce all further obedience.

A PRINCE. Let us arrange for ourselves the terms of the surrender of
this castle with the worthy envoy!

GODFATHER. The great man who sent me here secures life to you all, if
you will enter into a league with him and acknowledge the justice of the
struggle of the century.

MANY VOICES. We acknowledge it.

THE MAN. You have sworn to me, and I have sworn to you, to die upon
these walls; I intend to keep my oath, and you shall be true to yours.
You are all to die with me!

Ha! can you indeed still wish to live?

Ha! ask the spirits of your fathers why, when living, they were guilty
of such continuous oppression, and why they ruled with so much
cruelty!--(_To a Count._) Why have you, count, oppressed your
serfs?--(_To another._) Why have you passed your youth in cards and
dice, and your life in the land of the stranger?--(_To another._) Why
have you crept before the great, and scorned the lowly?-(_To one of the
women._) Why did you not bring up your sons to defend you? As knights
and soldiers, they might then have served you now; but you have
preferred dealings with Jews and lawyers: call upon them, then, for life
and safety.--(_He rises and extends his arms toward them._) Why hasten
ye thus to shame? why wrap your last hours in shrouds of infamy?

On with me, ye knights and nobles! On, where bayonets glitter, swift
balls whistle!

Oh seek not the accursed gallows prepared for you by the New Men;
believe me, the masked and silent hangman stands waiting to throw the
rope of shame around your high-born throats!

A VOICE. He speaks the truth--to our bayonets!

ANOTHER VOICE. We die of hunger; there is no more food!

VOICES OF WOMEN. Our children! Your children! Mercy!

GODFATHER. I promise you safety--safety of life and limb....

THE MAN (_approaching the Godfather, and seizing him y the shoulder_).
Sacred person of the herald, go! Go, and hide thy gray hairs in the
tents of Jews and low mechanics, that I may not dye them in thine own
base blood!

     Jacob enters with a division of armed men.

Take aim at this brow, furrowed with the folds of idle learning! Aim at
this liberty cap, which trembles on the brainless head before every
breath from the lips of a man!

     The Godfather escapes.

ALL _cry, with one breath_: Bind Count Henry! Deliver him up to
Pancratius!

THE MAN. Wait but a single moment, lords! (_He goes from one soldier to
another._) Do you remember when we climbed a mountain's rocky slope, a
savage wild beast closely tracked our steps, and when you, frightened,
fell into a yawning chasm, I rescued you, and saved your life? You
were most grateful then. Have you forgotten it?--Jerome, we once
were cast away upon the Danube's craggy shore; we braved the waves,
and saved our lives; we were bold swimmers, and we helped each other
well!--Christophe, Hieronymus, you sailed with me upon the wild Black
Sea; we were young sailors then!--(_To others._) When the fire destroyed
your homes, who built your cottages anew?--(_To others._) You fled to me
from cruel lords, and I redressed your wrongs.--(_Addressing himself to
the men generally._) Reflect, and choose!... Speak! will you arm with me
to battle for our rights, or will you leave me here to die alone--with
haughty smiles upon my stiffening lips, because, among so many men, I
found no single _man_?

THE MEN. Long live Count Henry! we desert him not--vivat!

THE MAN. Let the remaining meat and brandy be shared among them; then
upon the walls!

SOLDIERS. Meat and brandy, and then upon the walls!

THE MAN. Go with them, Jacob, and in an hour be ready to renew the
fight!

JACOB. So help me God the Lord.

WOMEN. We curse thee, Count Henry, in the name of our innocent children!

OTHER VOICES. We, for our fathers!

OTHER VOICES. We, for our wives!

THE MAN. And I breathe curses on all craven souls!

       *       *       *       *       *

     The wall of the fortress of the Holy Trinity. Troops are lying
     scattered about. Broken rocks and stones strew the ground, mingled
     with pikes and guns; soldiers are running to and fro; the Man leans
     against a bulwark, and Jacob stands beside him.

THE MAN (_putting his sword into its sheath_). There can be no greater
pleasure than to play at danger when we always win; and when the time
comes to lose, one cast of the die, and all is over!

JACOB. Our last broadside has driven them back for the moment, but I see
them below there, gathering to renew the storm; however, all is vain,
for since the world a world was, no one has ever escaped his destiny!

THE MAN. Are there any cartridges left?

JACOB. Neither balls nor grapeshot: everything has its end!

THE MAN. Bring then my son to me; I would embrace him once more!

  Exit Jacob.

The smoke from the powder has dimmed my eyes; it seems to me as if the
valley were swelling up to my feet, and again sinking back to its place;
the socks crack, and cross each other at a thousand angles, and my
thoughts wander, flicker, quiver in the most fantastic forms. (_Seats
himself upon a wall._) It is not worth the trouble to be a man--nor even
an angel; the highest archangel must feel, after some centuries of
existence, as we do after a few years of our fleeting life, utter
weariness in his soul, and long, as we do, for mightier powers! Either
one must be God--or nothing....

     Enter Jacob with George.

Take some of the men with you, go through the castle, and drive all
before you upon the walls!

JACOB. Counts, princes, bankers?

  Exit Jacob.

THE MAN. Come to me, my dearest son! place thy thin hands in mine, while
I press my lips upon thy pure forehead; thy mother's brow was once as
white and smooth!

GEORGE. Before thy men took up their arms to-day, I heard mamma's voice;
her words came floating to me as soft and sweet as perfumed air; she
said to me: '_George, thou wilt come to me this very evening, and sit
down beside me_.'

THE MAN. Did she name me to thee?

GEORGE. She said: '_This very evening I expect my son_.'

THE MAN (_aside_). Is my strength to fail me, when I have almost reached
the end of the weary way? No, God will not permit it! For one moment's
fiery madness, I will be thy prisoner to all eternity!--(_Aloud_). Oh,
my son! forgive--forgive the fatal gift of life! We part; and knowest
thou for how long a time?

GEORGE. Take me with thee, father, and leave me not! I love thee; oh,
leave me not, my father--and I will draw thee on with me!

THE MAN. Our paths are widely sundered. Amid the choirs of happy angels
thou wilt forget thy father--thou wilt bring me down no drop of cooling
dew. O George! George! my son! my son!

GEORGE. What dreadful cries! I tremble, father. Louder and louder,
nearer and nearer comes the thunder of the cannon; the last hour--the
prophesied--draws near!

THE MAN. Jacob! quick--quick--here!

     A band of counts and princes cross the courtyard. Jacob follows
     with the soldiers.

A VOICE. You give us broken arms, and force us to the combat!

ANOTHER VOICE. Henry, have mercy on thyself!

THIRD VOICE. Weak, wearied, famished, drive us not upon the walls!

FOURTH VOICE. Where do they drive us? where?

THE MAN. To death!--(_To George, folding him in his arms._) With this
embrace I would fain bind thee to my heart forever, George! Alas! I know
our paths are widely sundered: it may not be, my son! my son!

     Struck by a ball, George sinks dying in his arms.

VOICE (_from above_). To me! to me! pure spirit! Up to me, my son!

THE MAN. Ha! to my aid, soldiers! (_He draws his sword, and holds it
before the lips of the wounded boy._) The blade is crystal clear; no
moisture dims the cold and glittering steel! Breath and life already
gone! O George, my son!

Ha! they are upon me! On I on! They are at last but a sword's length
from me! Back! Back! into the abyss, ye sons of freedom. Back!

     Rushing on of man, confusion, struggle.

       *       *       *       *       *

     Another part of the wall of the castle. Men in the distance in line
     of battle. Jacob is seen stretched out upon the wall: the Man,
     sprinkled with blood, hastily approaches him.

THE MAN. Faithful old man, what has happened to you?

JACOB. May the devil reward you in hell for your obstinacy, and my dying
agonies!

So help me God the Lord!

     Dies.

THE MAN (_throwing away his sword_). I will need thee no longer, sword
of my fathers! My son is in heaven--the very last of my retainers lies
dead at my feet--the craven nobles have deserted their cause; already
they kneel before the victor, and sue and howl for mercy! (_Looking in
every direction around him._) There still is time; as yet the enemy are
not upon me! I will steal a moment's rest before....

Ha! the New Men scale the northern tower; they shout 'Count Henry'--they
seek him in every direction!

Here I am! here I am! here I am! But you are not to pronounce sentence
upon me; the dead have already given in their verdict. I go to meet the
judgment and justice of my God! (_He clambers up a steep cliff jutting
out over the abyss._) I see thee, my eternity, as thou rapidly floatest
on to meet me, black with the shadows of eternal night! shoreless,
limitless, infinite! And in the midst of thy rayless gloom, like a
burning sun, eternally shining, but illumining nothing, I see my God!
(_He takes some steps forward, and stands on the brink of the
precipice._) Ha! they run, the New Men--they see me now! Jesus! Mary! O
Poetry! be cursed by me, as I shall be to all eternity! Up, ye strong
arms! cut through these waves of air!

     He springs into the abyss.

       *       *       *       *       *

     The courtyard of the castle. Pancratius, Leonard; Bianchetti stands
     at the head of a regiment of soldiers. The remaining princes and
     counts, accompanied by their wives and children, file in before
     Pancratius.

PANCRATIUS. Your name?

A COUNT. Christopher von Volsagen.

PANCRATIUS. You have pronounced it for the last time! And yours?

A PRINCE. Wladislaus, Lord of Schwarzwald.

PANCRATIUS. It shall be heard on earth no more! And yours?

A BARON. Alexander von Godalberg.

PANCRATIUS. It is already erased from the list of the living. Go!

BIANCHETTI (_to Leonard_). They have repulsed us for two long months;
their arms are wretched, and their accoutrements utterly worthless.

LEONARD. Are there many of them left?

PANCRATIUS. They are all given over to you for execution, that their
blood may flow as an example to the world. But if there is one among
them who can tell me where Count Henry hides, he shall have his life for
his information!

MANY VOICES. He vanished from our sight at last.

THE GODFATHER. Great Pancratius, I appear as mediator between you and
your prisoners; spare these citizens of noble birth, because they have
given up to you the keys and strongholds of the castle of the Holy
Trinity!

PANCRATIUS. I have conquered by my own strength, and need no mediator.
You will yourself take charge of their immediate execution!

THE GODFATHER. My whole life has been that of a good citizen. I have
frequently given proof of true patriotism. When I joined your cause,
Pancratius, it was not with the intention of leading my own noble
brethren to--....

PANCRATIUS (_interrupting him_). Seize the old pedant! away with him!
let him join his _noble_ brethren!

     The soldiers surround the Godfather and the prisoners.

Where is Count Henry? Has no one seen him, dead or living? A purse of
gold for Henry, if only for his corpse!

     A division of soldiers descend the wall from above.

THE LEADER OF THE DIVISION. Citizen general! by the command of General
Bianchetti, I stationed myself with my detachment, on the west side of
the bulwark; upon our entrance into the fort on the third bastion to the
left, I observed a man standing, unarmed, but bleeding and wounded, by a
dead body. I cried immediately to my men: 'Hasten your steps, we must
reach him!' but before we could approach him, he ascended a steep cliff
overhanging the valley, stood for a moment on a sharp and jutting point
of rock, and fixed his haggard eyes upon the depths below. I saw him,
then, extend his arms like a swimmer about to make a sudden plunge; he
threw himself forward with all his force; I saw him a moment in the air,
and we all heard the noise made by the fall of the body as it pitched
and fell from rock to rock into the abyss below.

This is the sword which we found but a few steps from the spot on which
we first observed him.

     He hands a sword to Pancratius.

PANCRATIUS (_examining the sword_). Drops of blood stain the handle, but
here are the arms of his house! It is the sword of Count Henry!

He alone among you all has kept his plighted faith; to him be endless
glory--to you, traitors, the guillotine!

General Bianchetti, you will see that the fortress of the Holy Trinity
is razed to the ground, and will also superintend the execution of the
prisoners!

Leonard!

     He withdraws with Leonard.

     A bastion on the north tower. Pancratius, Leonard.

LEONARD. You require repose after so many sleepless nights; you look
wearied and exhausted with ceaseless labor.

PANCRATIUS. The hour of rest has not yet struck for me, and the last
sigh of the last of my enemies marks the completion of but half my task.
Look upon these heavy mists, these swamps, these desert plains; they
stand between me and the realization of my plans. Every waste on earth
must be peopled, rocks removed, lakes and rivers everywhere connected; a
portion of the soil must be awarded to every human being; the teeming
hosts of the living must far outnumber the multitudes who have perished;
life and universal prosperity must fill the place of death and ruin,
before our work of general destruction can be at all atoned for. If we
are not to inaugurate an era of social and widespread happiness, our
work of havoc and devastation will have been worse than vain!

LEONARD. The God of Freedom will give us power for gigantic tasks.

PANCRATIUS. What! _You_ speak of _God!_ Do you not see that it is
crimson and slippery here--that we are standing deep in human gore?

Whose blood is this beneath our feet?

There is nothing behind us save the court of the castle; no one is near
us. I know that we are quite alone, and yet, Leonard, I feel there is
another here!

LEONARD. I see nothing but this bloody corpse.

PANCRATIUS. It is the corpse of his faithful old servant--that is only a
dead body; but a spirit haunts this spot, and stands beside me; this
cap--see, _his_ arms are embroidered upon it; Count Henry's shield;
look, Leonard! there is the jutting rock o'erhanging the abyss--upon
this very spot _his_ great heart broke!

LEONARD. How pale you grow, Pancratius!

PANCRATIUS. Look up! IT is there! above you! Do you not see it?

LEONARD. I see nothing but a broken mass of clouds drifting down, and
surging o'er the top of yonder craggy peak o'erhanging the abyss, which
is turning crimson in the setting sun.

PANCRATIUS. A fearful symbol burns upon it!

LEONARD. Lean upon me! How ghastly pale you grow!

PANCRATIUS. Millions of men obeyed my will; where are they now?

LEONARD. Do you not hear their cries? They ask for you, their saviour.

Look not on yon steep cliff; your eyes are dying in their sockets as you
gaze upon it!

PANCRATIUS. HE stands there, motionless; three nails are driven in HIM;
three stars; His outstretched arms are lightning flashes!

LEONARD. Who? Where! Revive!

PANCRATIUS. GALILÆE VICISTI!

     He falls dead in the arms of Leonard.



SELF-SACRIFICE.


That for which man offers up his blood or his property, must be more
valuable than they. A good man does not fight with half the courage for
his own life that he shows in the protection of another's. The mother,
who will hazard nothing for herself, will hazard all in the defence of
her child; in short, only for the nobility within us--only for
virtue--will man open his veins and offer up his spirit; but this
nobility--this virtue--presents different phases: with the Christian
martyr, it is faith; with the savage, it is honor; with the republican,
it is liberty.--ANALECT.



SHANGHAI: ITS STREETS, SHOPS, AND PEOPLE.


China has always been looked upon by Europeans and described in both
ancient and modern works as 'the unchanging country,' and it is a common
fallacy that the China of to-day is exactly what it was a thousand years
ago; that foreign trade and intercourse have had and can have no effect
upon the manners or ideas of the people, and that the descriptions we
read of Chinese towns and their inhabitants, written twenty years ago,
would answer for the same places to-day. In a measure this is true, but
it is not true of the cities which have been opened to foreign trade, or
in fact of any of the Chinese cities where foreigners have been settled
since the war of 1857 and treaties of 1858.

Since that time the progress of Shanghai, Foo-Chow, Amoy, and Hong-Kong
(which last, however, is purely a British colony) has been amazing, and
men who visited China ten years ago would not recognize these places.
Indeed, it is not unlikely, with the rapid extension of Chinese trade,
and the removal of the prejudices of the people, that the history of
Chinese cities, like those of the Western States and California, will
have to be rewritten every ten years to be at all correct.

This is peculiarly the case in respect to Shanghai, which, from an
insignificant place, almost unknown in the western world, has sprung up
to an importance in trade surpassing that of any city on the China
coast. It has, from its proximity to the tea district, and easy
communication with the vast country watered by the Yang-tze river, taken
almost without an effort the great trade that once centred in Canton,
and every year shows a greater amount of tonnage in the Woosung river,
and larger exports of tea, silk, and cotton.

Approaching the entrance to the Woosung river from the Pacific, the
waters of the Yang-tze are plainly discernible at sixty to seventy miles
from its mouth, and when near the point where the ship's head is turned
from the broad current of the great river into that of the Woosung, a
thick, yellow mud rolls out with the tide, and discolors the water as
far as the eye can reach. It is like the waters of the Nile or the
Mississippi, turbulent in the great tideways, and heavy with the
coloring matter of the soil it has washed for thousands of miles. It is
evident that we are approaching a great commercial city, although for
miles we can see only a low coast, well cultivated, but without signs of
a town. The number of ships and steamers passing in and out on a fine
day would remind a New Yorker of the fleet that is always beating
through the Narrows, or is to be seen from the heights of Neversink. In
the three hours it took us to run from the light-ship to the anchorage
at Woosung, no less than seven large steamers passed us, outward bound.

The tide in the Yang-tze and its branch, the Woosung, runs with
tremendous force, having a rise and fall of eighteen feet at spring
tides, and few ships are able to proceed beyond Woosung with a single
tide, Shanghai lying twelve miles above. They anchor among a fleet of
native junks from the trading places on the Yang-tze, bound to the same
port, and awaiting a change of tide, which the Chinese sailors celebrate
by a great hubbub on the poops of their unwieldy-looking vessels, with
tom-toms and other instruments of the same nature. This fleet of junks
and sampans is a curious sight to the stranger approaching the China
coast for the first time, and, with a ramble through the filthy village
of Woosung, occupies the time which the tides compel him to spend there.

The junks give proof that if there have been great changes in the trade
of China and in the appearance of the cities where foreigners have
established themselves, there certainly has been none in the mode of
ship building, and in the thousand curious and uncouth ways of working,
acting, and living which have been for generations handed down from
father to son, and which are at the present time in no ways altered from
what they were a thousand years ago. No people in the world are slower
in admitting the ideas of foreign nations, or in taking advantage of the
most obvious improvements daily before their eyes; and, although the
improvements introduced by English and Americans in steamers and vessels
adapted for the navigation of their rivers are so far acknowledged by
them as to lead to the discontinuance of junk building to a marked
extent, yet the vessels they now build are of the same uncouth, clumsy,
and expensive shape as the first they ever put on the stocks.

Their anchors are still of wood, and occupy the greater part of the
vessel before the foremast; and, instead of cables, they still have
immense coils of rough rope like a hair lariat. The sails are still of
bamboo mats, although occasionally a piece of good American or English
duck is to be seen, stretched on bamboos in the style of the
old-fashioned square sail, and once, on the river Min, we saw a native
pilot-boat rigged with the regular fore-and-aft cut, her sails having
evidently been fashioned by a foreign hand.

Out of hundreds of junks moored in the Woosung river it was impossible
to find one without the great staring eye under what is called, by
courtesy, the bows, and not a few of them had the open mouth of a
dragon, with ugly teeth, painted under it, near the water-line, the
corners being drawn down, and the eye (from their desire that it should
see 'all ways at once') having a horrid squint. This gave to the boat a
lugubrious expression--if such a term may be allowed--ludicrous in the
extreme; and with fifty or a hundred junks drawn up in squadrons,
squinting and making faces at each other, nothing more thoroughly
Chinese could well be imagined.

Conspicuous among this fleet were the timber vessels, which were so
loaded as to be able to move only with the tide. The art with which
their lading was tied to the vessels, so as to preserve their shape
while stretching far over the water on either side, was admirable; and,
out of fifty timber junks, all seemed to be loaded in precisely the same
manner. This was accomplished by laying the ends of the poles, tied in
fagots, toward the bows, while their smooth, round butts were exposed to
the action of the tide. The sticks being of uniform length and
thickness, tapering evenly, and about twenty feet long, it was easy to
arrange their fagots so as to give them the swelling lines of a ship,
and enable the junk to breast the storms of the coast without damage to
her cargo.

Woosung, itself, is a place of no interest whatever--a filthy village,
with a market place on the river; the remains of old forts in its
neighborhood, and extensive rice and cotton fields about it, presenting
the only points worthy of note.

There is an old Joss house on the outskirts of the village, occupied by
the French as a barracks, or 'garrison of occupation for the protection
of the coast,' as a cadaverous old soldier told us, manned by twenty-six
soldiers, without earthworks or protection of any kind. They constitute
the 'foreign population' of Woosung, and might as well be drafted to
some more healthy locality for any good that they can do. Such as we saw
looked like men just recovering from cholera or yellow fever.

While lying at Woosung waiting for the tide to change, we were
frequently reminded that we could not be far from a great commercial
entrepôt of the world, by seeing five or six large ships, of one
thousand tons each, rush past with the tide in as many hours, tea-laden
and bound to Europe; but none of our company were prepared for what we
saw as we first rounded the point where a good view of Shanghai is
obtained, and saw, in the brilliant light of a harvest moon, the dense
forest of masts that filled the river. I have seen the mass of shipping
in the Pool at London, and in the Mersey at Liverpool, in the East river
at New York, and the Delaware at Philadephia, in Boston and San
Francisco harbors, and in all the other ports of China, and among them
all Shanghai holds no mean rank. The summer of 1863, from peculiar
circumstances, the dullness of freights elsewhere, and the depredations
of the Alabama and other piratical cruisers, called to the China coast,
and especially to Shanghai, as fine a fleet of clippers as was to be
found in any port of the world; and on that bright mid-summer night we
found them anchored in three parallel rows, crossing the channel of a
river half a mile wide, and stretching for a mile and a half, if not two
miles, up and down before Shanghai.

Interspersed among these ships of all nations whose flags are known on
the seas, were steamers of all sizes, from the little tugboat to the
large steamers, like the Poyang of fifteen hundred tons, plying on the
Yang-tze and between the ports on the China sea, the Yellow sea, and in
Japan. Of these, no less than seventy-one belong to or trade with
Shanghai, and at that time there could not have been less than forty in
port.

Beyond the vessels at anchor in the stream, the space to the very banks
of the river was filled up and covered by a cloud of Chinese junks,
sampans, and river boats of every class and name.

We were before one of the great cities of the world, or one that is yet
to be known as among its most flourishing. The moonlight was reflected
from a long row of stately buildings, palaces in extent and noble
proportions, which lined the bank of the river for more than a mile.
These were the residences and mercantile houses of the merchants, the
public buildings, and the 'foreign concessions' in general, as they are
called. Beyond them could be seen the dim, turreted outlines of the
Chinese city, now closed and hushed for the night, but seemingly of vast
extent. The first and overruling impression here, as in all European
settlements on the China coast, except Canton and Swatow, was the grand
scale on which everything was done. The residences or hongs of the
merchants seemed planned by liberal minds, and executed by as liberal
hands. Space and money are not spared, and to obtain coolness and
comfort in so hot a climate, the ceilings of rooms are made very high,
few of the houses having more than two stories. Generally the material
is the small, over-baked and dark-colored brick of the Chinese, overlaid
with stucco; but occasionally a house is seen built of stone, one or two
of the largest and most valuable being entirely of granite. Generally
these hongs stand in spacious enclosures, or _compounds_, filled with
rare tropical trees and the bamboo so common in China.

The finest residences are on the river bank or Bund, as it is commonly
called; but the city stretches for several squares back from the river,
being densest in the English Concession. The American quarter, Hong-Que,
although not as well filled with fine houses, is the next in importance,
while the French Concession, nearest to the great city within the walls,
is meanly built, and has more of the native element than either of the
others. For, although it is contrary to Chinese law for any native to
hold property in any of the foreign possessions, in practice large
numbers of Chinamen rent tenements from their foreign owners, and even
own them, the property standing, for convenience' sake, in the name of
some foreign resident in trust. Thus there has gradually grown up around
and upon the concessions a large Chinese city, believed by many to
contain almost as large a population as the city within the walls. This
is not incredible when we consider that the excesses of the Tae-Pings in
Soo-Chow, a large city about thirty miles from Shanghai, have driven
vast numbers of its inhabitants to the latter place, which, being
already densely crowded, has overflowed its walls, and, as the presence
of Europeans has made Shanghai, as it were, a city of refuge for the
exiles, they have naturally crowded around the foreign settlement. In
this manner the population of Shanghai and its environs has been
prodigiously augmented within the last two years, and from a place of
six hundred thousand inhabitants, it has become one of more than a
million of people. It is extremely difficult to obtain even an
approximate estimate of the population of a Chinese city. The estimates
of the Chinese are totally unreliable, varying sometimes in the most
ridiculous manner, and generally being preposterously exaggerated, while
the estimates of strangers or foreigners, unacquainted with the
marvellous abundance of human life in very small spaces, as it is seen
in China, are very rarely correct. For instance, it is not uncommon to
find that residents of this city differ as much as a million of people
in their views of its population, their estimates ranging from nine
hundred thousand to two million. It is not unlikely that a medium
between these two extremes will prove to be correct, the figure twelve
hundred thousand appearing to be the favorite at present among those
conversant with the great changes of the last year.[1]

Unfortunately this vast increase in so short a period has led to great
mortality among the Chinese, from the dense crowding it has occasioned,
and in the summer months they are severe sufferers from Asiatic cholera,
which rages among them with shocking mortality. The air, even of the
foreign concessions, becomes tainted by the foul miasma rising from the
Chinese city, and no part of Shanghai can be esteemed healthy in the
months of July and August. A more perfect system of drainage in the
foreign concessions will probably lessen the mortality among Europeans,
and it is pleasing to note that this matter is now receiving the
attention which should have been given to it years ago; but no system of
laws or attempts at organizing better sanitary arrangements can
seemingly be successful among the Chinese themselves. Large sums of
money are now appropriated annually for these purposes, according to
their own account, but the mandarins embezzle it, the work is left
undone, and the filth and horrible stench of a Chinese city is
indescribable; it is something monstrous. Europeans and Americans,
accustomed to their own cleanly cities, cannot conceive of it. New York
streets have an unenviable notoriety on the Western continent for their
dirty condition, but New York is a garden of roses compared with a
genuine Chinese city, such as Shanghai within the walls. Even the
Chinese, who might be supposed to be accustomed to it, carry little bags
of musk to their noses as they ride through in their sedans; and half
the Chinese women one meets in Shanghai hold the nostril with the
forefinger and thumb, with a grace and dexterity only acquired by long
practice.

Mr. Fortune, the celebrated botanist[1] and indefatigable Chinese
traveller, gives to Tient-sin the glory of being the filthiest and most
noisome of Chinese cities, although he mentions Shanghai with high
honor. Canton, from which Europeans have mainly derived their ideas of
China, is comparatively a clean and neat place, far superior to the more
northern cities.

To descend from generalities to particulars. The smells are a horrible
compound, worse than in Coleridge's 'City of Cologne.' First and
foremost are the sewers, which are all open, the deposits of the
night-soil of the city, with convenient wells at every corner and in
niches in the walls. At these are to be found, at all hours, men with
buckets slung on bamboos, filling them for transportation in these
primitive open vessels to the farmers, who use the compost on their
fields. These wretches, with their vile burdens, are met at every turn,
and pass through the streets and roads in long files, loading the air
with abominations. No attention is paid to the wells and sewers until
they overflow, and, as chance may direct, the coolies take their loads
from the most convenient.

This is a terrible nuisance, but it is hardly worse than the odors which
arise from the innumerable cook shops, and from the peripatetic bakeries
at every corner. What they are cooking, no man knows, but if not dog
chow-chow, it is sure to be fried in some vegetable oil that sends up a
mighty vapor, hiding the cooks and rolling into the narrow street, where
it scarcely finds vent between the overhanging eaves of the houses. The
sickening smell of the castor bean seems everywhere. Occasionally the
sight and powerful odor of hard-boiled and rotten goose eggs, split open
to show that they are either rotten or half hatched, attract the Chinese
epicure. The oily cakes and crullers that the wandering baker is frying
for a group of children, powerfully offend European olfactories,
although so tempting to the half-naked brats. Many different and
offensive odors come from these greasy cook shops, but the offence in
almost every instance can be traced home to the vegetable oils, greasy
and rancid, which seem to pervade all Chinese cookery, as it is seen in
the streets of the cities. Many of the dishes, but for this oil, would
be quite tempting; and such, as have tasted them in the houses of the
rich, assure us that they are not so bad as they smell. The
much-talked-of edible bird's-nest soup is really a fine dish. The
substance, after it is prepared, all the dirt and feathers being
separated from it, is as clean and pure as isinglass, which it greatly
resembles in appearance. Great care is taken to make it pure before it
is sold for use, and in the shops at Canton it may be seen in every
stage of manufacture. Their ducks and geese are fine birds, and, with
excellent pork, and their never-failing rice, are the favorite dishes of
such as can afford them; which, by the way, they really know how to
cook--an art that is very little understood in England or America.

Dog chow-chow, kittens, rats, and mice, with crickets and locusts, are
only eaten by the vilest of the vile--poor wretches, who must support
themselves and families on a pittance of about fifteen or twenty dollars
a year.

Of course there are many things in their way of cookery, and in their
tastes for such articles as sharks' fins, fish maws, _beche-de-mer_,
etc., which are revolting to an educated stomach; but in their way the
Chinese are quite as dainty as the most fastidious of other lands, and
in fine vegetables, fish, and fruits they enjoy as much variety and
evince as discriminating a taste as any people in the world. Their fish
are sold in the markets alive, and taken from the tanks as selected by
the purchaser. Their way of drinking tea will be found, after
familiarity, superior to ours, for when milk is not used the finer aroma
of the leaf is obtained. Indeed, they are very particular in regard to
the quality and decoction of their tea, totally refusing the poisonous
green teas that are consumed in such quantities in England, and
especially in America.

They know, too, how to draw it, and just at the right moment the boiling
water is poured upon the leaf, and, without allowing it to simmer by the
fire, as we do, long enough to get the flavor of the stalks and stems,
they drink it off as soon as the boiling water has fairly acted upon the
delicate leaves. English tea-drinkers, who like to mix a green and a
black tea, and allow it to steam for a quarter of an hour to make it
strong, complain that Chinese tea is mere dishwater, just as the man
accustomed to get boozy on brandy, made 'fiery' with sulphuric acid, has
no taste for the light French wines. A Chinaman colors his green tea
with Prussian blue for his foreign customers, who like a bright, pretty
color; but he is too wise to drink it. This process of coloring we have
seen, publicly, in the tea factories of Shanghai; and the disgust with
which the manufacturer denied that he ever drank his own wares, was too
strong to be assumed. 'No good,' was his only reply.

Despite the filth and many disagreeable things to be encountered in a
walk or ride through a city like Shanghai, it is one of the most
interesting places imaginable in which to spend an hour or two on a
summer morning.

In the heat of the day, at mid-summer, it is dangerous in China, and
especially to a new comer, to be exposed even to the reflected rays of
the sun, and many a poor fellow has lost his life by neglect or contempt
of the cautions of his more experienced friends not to be in the
sunshine between the hours of 10 A. M. and 4 P. M. More than ordinary
precaution is necessary in times of cholera, owing to the peculiar
electrical condition of the atmosphere, in which any exertion or
exposure is often fatal to one recently arrived on the coast. All
excursions to the city are therefore, of necessity, made in the morning
or late in the afternoon. The gates are opened at daybreak, and the
early visitor is almost certain to be unpleasantly reminded of the
prevalence of cholera by the number of dead bodies lying in the streets.
They are those of coolies, or poor persons, who have died during the
night, and having no friends, the public authorities must take them
wherever they chance to die, and provide for their burial. In August,
1863, at a time when the cholera was not particularly virulent, the
deaths were supposed to be five hundred a day, principally among the
poor, who, from insufficient food, miserable lodging in the streets and
porticoes of temples, and constant exposure in the day to the direct
rays of the sun, to say nothing of the filth and foul air of the city,
were peculiarly exposed to the ravages of disease. Another sign of the
presence of cholera, and an odd one, was the number of persons passing
with necks disfigured by perpendicular parallel bars, as if branded by
hot irons. This curious remedy is applied for any pain in the stomach,
however slight, even for sea sickness, and the marks are made with
strong pincers. By the Chinese it is thought very efficacious, although
on what theory it is difficult to understand.

Entering the city from the north gate, after crossing the ditch that
separates the walls from, the French Concession, we find ourselves in
close and extremely narrow streets, with shops opening upon them,
neither glass nor any partition separating them from passers by. The
same arrangement is quite common in our own streets for fruit-sellers'
shops, toy stores, and newspaper and periodical stands. But instead of
one or two attendants at a stand, in China we find a dozen, in summer
time naked from the waist upward, emaciated by opium smoking, and having
a sickly look painful to see. Most of the shops have a carved railing
and a counter facing the street, the ends of which are ornamented by
grotesque shapes of dogs and gilded idols. A figure of a pug-nosed dog
with bandy legs is very common. At the first glance it would be supposed
that this was one of those nondescripts the Chinese are so fond of
devising, but a closer examination shows that the figure is an admirably
life-like copy of an odd dog, common to Pekin, pug-nosed and
bandy-legged, and no doubt his form will be recognized in many of the
grotesque, awkward-looking figures of which ivory carvings abound in all
countries where Chinese curiosities are to be found.

Standing on the counter is generally a roll of joss-sticks wound
spirally around a wire frame, and always burning to the tutelary idol of
the shop, for the sake of good luck. It is the duty of one of the boys
to see that this coil of joss-stick is always lighted--a very convenient
arrangement for tobacco smokers strolling through the streets. Another
custom which they have, and which is also supposed to bring success to
the shopkeeper, is to encourage the swallows to build under the eaves
and among the bamboo rafters. Three or four of these nests of swallows,
with broods of twittering young ones, may often be observed in a single
shop, neat stretchers of cotton cloth or bamboo being built under the
nests, to prevent any possible damage to the goods. The birds seem quite
at home amid all the hubbub; and the kind care which protects them amid
a semi-barbarous people is one of those traits of a common humanity--of
kindness to the helpless--which marks the common origin of the most
civilized and most barbarous of the human race. The streets of Shanghai
are not divided among the trades, as in Canton, but shops of all kinds
occur in every crooked lane and alley-way. Principal among them are the
cookshops, some of which are evidently restaurants on a large scale, for
they are filled, from morning till night, with half-naked coolies,
eating indescribable dishes, of which rice is the great staple, and
sipping tea. They all sit at little tables, built for two, or at round
tables, seating half a dozen. In the country and in the suburbs these
last are drawn out into the open air at sunset, and are occupied by
parties taking their tea in a social manner. The roads around Shanghai
are fall of such parties on a warm summer's eve.

After the cookshops, the confectioners' attract the traveller's eye. An
immense amount of sweetmeats is consumed by the people, and the
confectioners' shops are proportionally numerous. They are distinguished
by copper caldrons sunk in their counters, which are kept always hot and
full of molasses. With a ladle like a milkman's pint measure, they bring
up the sweet mass for their customers, and their stalls are always
crowded. Not only are these established shops well patronized, but an
immense quantity of candy and preserved fruits is sold by the wandering
peddlers, who manufacture and dispose of their good things wherever they
find customers. Preserved lychee, a fruit that looks like a small prune,
and like it is stewed in sirup, is a great favorite; and the coolies in
the foreign quarters, while resting under their burdens, are not
backward in disposing of a saucer of sweetmeats obtained from the
nearest peddler. These sweetmeats, of all kinds, are esteemed very good
by Europeans, and no doubt are quite the same as we receive from China
put up in big-bellied blue jars; but as sold in the streets, the lack of
cleanliness in the entire outfit of the shop, and the necessity of using
the dishes and China spoons from which one can see the neighboring
coolies gobbling their purchases, holding the dishes up to their very
noses, would deter any man of ordinary fastidiousness from attempting an
immediate experiment to establish their identity.

After eating, we must rank shaving as the second among Chinese
employments. They all wear the cue, even to the infant in arms, whose
mother shaves its head at three months old, and ties up the tiny cue
with a red ribbon, and from that day to the day of his death the child
and man must be periodically shaved; for, of course, no man can shave
his own head. Great is the barber in China, and vast his field of
operations among four hundred millions of people! They shave their
subjects everywhere, even sitting on a stone in an open field, and at
all hours of the day their shops are full. It is in the neatness of his
'shave' and the glossiness of his rich black cue that the Chinese dandy
is distinguishable. Men who cannot afford to shave every day, allow the
hair to grow until the head (always excepting the part which has never
known the razor or the shears) resembles that of a fire zouave just
after enlistment, or a penitentiary prisoner; while the exquisite has
his head shaved with the sharpest razor, giving a bluish cast or frame
for his yellow face. Occasionally the size or thickness of the tail
appears to be unsatisfactory, and a larger surface is spared from the
knife. The refractory hairs growing out in this supplementary patch
surround the genuine cue with a halo an inch or two in height. Lots of
these apostolical-looking Chinese are to be met with in every street,
and, as they rarely wear hats, they have a very comical appearance. This
question of hats is another of curious import among this curious people.
A Chinese gentleman rarely wears one in the streets, his mode of travel
being in a sedan, and his fan or umbrella answering all purposes of
protection from the sun. A mandarin, on the contrary, wears in the ball
of his cap his badge of office, and the time even when he changes his
winter for his summer hat is regulated by the Board of Rites. The poor
coolie is troubled by no such formality, and wears a great umbrella-like
head covering, that he perches on a little bamboo tower, six inches
above his crown, tying down the whole concern by a string that passes
behind his ears. When at leisure, he wears his long cue trailing to his
feet; when busy, it is snugly coiled around his head and out of sight
under his hat. The gentleman and mandarin, on the contrary, never ties
up the cue, its flowing grace, like his long finger nails, being a badge
of his superior condition in being above manual labor. No wonder, then,
that they attach so much importance to the pigtail, and that the man who
dresses it daily is so useful a character in the community. His tools
are unlike anything a civilized barber uses, and his razor, if its uses
were not explained, would hardly be recognized by the name. It is a
thick, broad instrument, shaped more like a cook's cleaver than any
instrument known to other nations; but it does its work well in the
hands of a good operator. After the head is shaved, it is washed with
warm water in an old-fashioned brass barber's basin, such, as was in use
in England two hundred years ago, and, after having had the few
straggling hairs on lip and chin removed, the patient (for truly he
deserves the name) goes through the torture of having all stray hairs
extracted from the inner coating of the nose and ears, an absurd and
barbarous custom that often leads to permanent injury of the latter
organs. If he chances to have ophthalmia, the barber considers that his
eyes need cleaning, and proceeds to wipe out the inner side of the
eyelid with his instrument, of course to their serious injury. In the
ophthalmic hospitals of Chinese cities European physicians have found
this practice a fruitful cause of many diseases of the eyes, but no
remonstrances can induce the people and their barbers to give it up.

The mustache, as well as the pigtail of immoderate length, is a badge of
a certain dignity, for no man is allowed to cultivate it until he
reaches a certain age, and it is an error to suppose that Asiatics are
totally devoid of beard, for the old fellows among them sport grisly
beards and mustaches of respectable length, and altogether have quite a
venerable look. On the stage the emperor and mandarins are represented
as bearded like Turks. Indeed the excessive length of their horse-hair
mustaches, reaching to their girdles, shows what esteem the people
attach to a long, flowing beard.

On first landing in China, the impression given by so many long-tailed
and petticoated men is like the memory of a dream wherein one has seen
animals walking like men; and, although custom makes the sight familiar,
a Chinaman always appears an odd creature, especially when he passes the
end of his pigtail under his left shoulder and gently caresses it or
twists the final braid. A comical sight, to be seen almost every day in
Hong-Kong, is a sepoy policeman leading some Chinese culprit to the
lockup: the sepoy, tall and erect, with fierce mustaches, lean as a
tiger, and with a warlike air, leading along the meek Chinaman by the
end of his pigtail, John Chinaman following at about two paces behind,
just at the end of his natural tether.

We have already alluded to the grotesque appearance of an infant a few
months old, with close-shaved head, and pigtail two inches long, tied up
with a gay ribbon. When the youngster is four years old, and his pigtail
has reached the dignity of seven inches, it is duly braided, and
constitutes his only dress. Then, being armed with a basket, he is sent
out in this primitive and absurd costume to pick chips.

After the barbers, in order of importance among the Chinese shopkeepers,
come the coffin makers, and they are very important men indeed, in a
country where the worship of ancestors is carried to a degree unknown
elsewhere in the world. Their coffins are of all sizes and degrees of
finish, but of one invariable shape. Some of those seen in Shanghai cost
as much as one thousand taels, equal to $1,500 in American gold. They
are extremely massive, more like miniature junks than the shape we are
accustomed to associate with the idea of a coffin, the head being higher
than the foot, and the lines of the sides swelling gently with very
little taper. The boards of the sides and headpiece are at least three
inches thick, elaborately carved, and gilded in Chinese characters. The
colors are various, black and red predominating. As the body is kept in
this massive shell for several months after decease, and in the house of
the nearest relative, the good sense of making the walls of extra
thickness and strength is very apparent. Even after it is laid in the
tomb, in many parts of the country, the style of sepulture allows the
coffin to be seen, and it is even exposed to the weather in some cases.
Customs differ greatly, however, in different parts of the country. In
the flat region about Shanghai, the tombs are found mostly around the
little streams flowing into the Yang-tze, or the ocean. The coffins are
placed in the open fields, a few shovelfuls of earth are thrown around
them, and they are left undisturbed, for the high weeds and the
accumulations of centuries to form mounds around them. A few regularly
constructed tombs are to be found, but they are rare. In the hill
country bordering the China sea, in the province of Foh-Kien, and
elsewhere on the coast, when the nature of the land will allow,
extensive tombs are hollowed out in the sides of the hills, and the
coffins are deposited out of sight. Here a whole family reposes, it may
be, in one of these majestic tombs (for, seen from a distance, they have
a picturesque and imposing appearance). The popular shape is that of a
horseshoe or half moon, the circle being toward the summit of the hill.
This portion of the tomb is raised like a crown, and facing it is an
altar, with Chinese characters engraven on its pillars, where the
offerings of the relatives or worshippers are placed. Before this is a
place like a court, railed off and flanked, it may be, by smaller altars
on either side, facing other entrances, where the less venerated members
of the family are interred. In front of the whole are two high posts,
the meaning or use of which, if they have any at all, we are not
acquainted with.

On these altars are burnt the paper offerings sent to their departed
friends, the manufacture and sale of which occupy a numerous and
important class of shops in the great cities. These offerings are
generally of gilt and silver paper, in the form of clothes, horses,
houses, and other conveniences of which their friends showed their
appreciation on earth, and which, by a subtile process of reasoning,
they imagine that they can transmit to them in this cheap and ingenious
manner--simply by burning these paper effigies at the altars by the
tombs! One of the most ingenious and economical of these contrivances,
whereby, with a subtlety of argument worthy of the great trafficker in
indulgences, Tetzel, who so raised Martin Luther's ire, they manage
cheaply to transmit funds to heaven, is the paper dollar, strings of
which are sold in the shops, looking exceedingly like goodly bunches of
the silvery onion. It is worthy of a people who are so niggardly in all
their transactions, who have a copper currency that would sink any man
with a fortune invested in it, and who cheat all that come in contact
with them, that they should cheat their departed friends with these
remittances, a bundle of which are to be obtained for a few cash, and on
reaching the other world are understood to pass for a little fortune. In
the ordinary affairs of life it is their habit to put three prices on
everything they have to sell, and in their dealings with heaven they put
their own valuations, amounting to an advance of several thousand per
cent., on all their offerings. Could anything be more thoroughly in
character?

There is, however, a certain degree of respect paid to the memory of
departed friends, and an attachment to the soil where lie the bones of
their ancestors, that, in as far as it is harmless, is entitled to our
respectful consideration. It gives a domestic, settled character to the
people, that is worthy of all praise, and should raise them in our
estimation, from whatever cause it may spring. It is well known that
they show the highest respect to the aged, and that those who emigrate
to foreign lands show the greatest anxiety that after death their
remains should be sent back to their own country. Ships from San
Francisco are often largely freighted with the coffins of deceased
Chinamen; and it is worthy of note that few or none of these belong to
men born in Shanghai, the Chinese seen in other lands coming almost
exclusively from Canton, Ningpo, and Amoy. The northern and middle
population of China is not by nature so restless a class as that of the
south, and has borne this character since Europeans have been at all
acquainted with the Chinese.

The three kinds of shops to which allusion has been made, those of the
cooks, the barbers, and the undertakers, comprise more than one half of
all in Shanghai; but besides these are almost as many varieties of
trades as we are accustomed to in other more civilized countries.
Bankers sit behind their counters, keeping watch over tons of copper
cash, neatly threaded in strings of one thousand each, and pay checks
and make loans with the same regularity as in cities boasting their
superior civilization. Nor are the resources of these native bankers to
be despised. On proper security native and foreign merchants have been
known to obtain loans of several hundred thousand dollars from one
banker. Many of their daily operations are for very considerable
amounts, and are adjusted in credits or in silver. Although they are
cursed with as abominable a currency as any nation in the world, they
do not appear to experience any great difficulty in settlements, every
merchant having his balance, and weighing off the proper amount of
silver, larger payments being made in sycee. This want of a currency
arises from their utter lack of confidence in the coinage of their own
country. No currency that the Imperial Government might issue, not like
the copper cash, or tsien, incapable of adulteration, would be above
suspicion; and while the shameless system of mandarin plunder and fraud
continues, it is hopeless to expect a proper currency in China, unless
the foreigners interfere or obtain the control in this part of the
national affairs which they already have over the customs and the army.
A uniform currency, superior to the wretched, worthless cash, is the
crying need of China. The Mexican, or chop dollar, becomes sadly
depreciated after long circulation, by the clippings and innumerable
marks put upon it, so that it will not pass outside of China, nor does
it long remain out of the pot of the sycee melter. The American half
dollar and quarter and the English shilling are daily becoming more
popular for the smaller transactions of the shops, and the notes of the
local banks possess considerable circulation in their respective cities;
but what is needed more than anything else is an abundance of small
silver coinage for the daily ordinary transactions. The Mexican mint is
quite inadequate to supply so vast and insatiable a country as China,
which should have a currency of its own. No doubt much larger quantities
of silver will continue to reach China directly from California, within
the next few years, in the shape of bars. The great impetus which the
late wild speculations in silver shares is likely to give to the
development of the Washoe mines, is almost certain within a very few
years to so largely increase the yield of California silver as to rival
in amount the immense produce of her gold mines. Careful surveys and the
actual yield of mines, such as the Gould & Curry, and Hale & Norcross on
the Comstock lead, prove that the ore is there in large quantities, and
the stimulus has now been applied which will rapidly bring it to light.
With the increasing facilities between San Francisco and Hong-Kong the
bulk of this must go to China direct, instead of the roundabout course
by which it has reached the East through London. But these are questions
that hardly attract attention at present in Shanghai, or among the
Shanghai bankers, whose shops we were talking of as met with here and
there in the open street.

Next to one of these respectable, long-tailed gentlemen we found a
first-class apothecary, whose shop and mode of business were widely
different from those of one of the guild at home. The ceilings were
swarming with swallows, whose chattering rivalled that of the folks
below, conspicuous among whom was a fat, greasy old chap, in the dignity
of a gray mustache and a monstrous pair of colored spectacles, the
glasses of which were an inch and a half in diameter, rimmed with horn,
and tied by a string to his ears. He was gravely busy in compounding a
prescription on a piece of paper large enough to cover the side of a
chest of tea, and closely written over with Chinese characters. We
lounged by his side as he put up packet after packet of dried roots and
simples, tasting many of them with his consent. Calamus and liquorice
were among them, and camphor, too. Each packet was of the size of a
pound paper of Stuart's candy (any child can tell you what size that
has), and when the entire prescription was filled, the unfortunate sick
man became possessed of no less than twenty-three of these packages,
enough to keep famine from his door for a week at least, to judge from
their bulk. They filled a goodly basket. It was not one man alone who
carried away such a heap of medicines; but before each applicant, as the
prescriptions spread on the counter were ticked off, rose a pile of
similar packages, which bid fair to become as high as that which had
excited our curiosity. All these drugs were put up neatly in the
light-yellow paper we are accustomed to see round our packs of
fire-crackers, and as neatly sealed with a little gum arabic. Indeed, it
is shrewdly suspected by Father Hue, from this prodigious liberality of
drugs, that the physicians feel bound to give a man all he pays for, in
the hope that out of a multitude of remedies some may chance to suit his
case. The foreign residents of Shanghai aver that the doctors take
contracts to cure their patients in a certain time, and if unsuccessful
at the stipulated day, their patients relieve their minds by a little
elegant abuse of their physician, and take the contract to the next in
their neighborhood.

It is not uncommon to see their dentists wandering through the streets
with rows of old fangs suspended from their necks like necklaces,
trophies of their skill; and every dead wall in the city has its
vermilion posters, advertising some great quack medicine, so that it is
quite evident that the science of medicine has reached that pitch of
refinement where a host of quacks can ply their arts with as much
success as among the western barbarians.

Heaven save us, though, from a Chinese doctor! Mechanical surgery is his
forte; for a stomach ache he will pinch your neck; for a broken rib he
will nearly crack the bones of your arm, and if you faint under this he
will hang you up by your heels to restore the circulation.

According to the diagrams published in the books on medicine, the
knowledge of anatomy possessed by the faculty in China is very slight,
and entirely erroneous; and in all their cures it is very probable that
nature, unassisted except by rest and fasting for a season, does the
work. They certainly are able to give her very little help.

It is noticeable, however, as a proof of the high esteem in which the
people hold the science, that the shops of the chemists and apothecaries
are kept by a superior class of people, more intelligent in appearance
than their neighbors, and holding a higher rank.

Of the lower trades there are innumerable shops, the variety of which is
almost bewildering. Every art and manufacture has its minute
subdivisions, and one meets, at every step, signs of the superior
civilization of the people in their admirable division of labor. Silk
looms are working in the open streets, shoemakers and tailors are each
plying their art in their narrow shops. In one they manufacture little
paper offerings for the gods, in another the gods themselves, in the
next their worshippers are supplied with joss-sticks or gayly colored
candles of tallow, mounted on slim sticks, that they may be stuck in the
sand before the divinity. Here you will find a printer hard at work
taking impressions on their delicate paper; next a bookbinder, who sews
the leaves with withes of paper, while in the next shop you can procure
the almanac for the year, months before it is required. In August, 1863,
they were selling copies of the almanac for 1864. Probably this work has
the largest circulation of any in the world, hanging, as it does, in
every house. The only exception may be the Bible, which, it is to be
hoped, will yet be as widely circulated in China as it is among the
other nations of the world.

Numbers of the people are engaged in the delicate carving we so much
admire in the ivory toys scattered throughout Europe and America, and a
vast number of people in preparing the hanging screens with curious
devices, quaint pictures, and sentences from Confucius, which are found
in almost every house of the better class. They have a great fondness
for the proverbs and wise sayings which, are thus kept always before
their children, like the very good rules and aphorisms we see on the
walls of our Sunday schools.

A good example of the minute subdivision of the Chinese trades is seen
in the shops devoted exclusively to the sale of camel's-hair pencils,
and others for that of the little squares of red paper, covered with
hieroglyphics, which we receive on a pack of fire-crackers, and which
constitute its 'chop.'

Jewellers' shops contain very little interesting to a foreigner--most of
the rings and brooches are trashy articles of jade-stone, a greenish
stone which resembles agate or cornelian in opaqueness. The armlets are
of silver, and of the same substance are the large thin circles worn by
the women of Foh-Kien in the ear and resting on the shoulder. Pins for
the fantastic pyramid they erect with their rich black hair are rather
pretty, but are generally ornamented with false pearls. For pearls the
Chinese have a passion, but it requires a judge of the article to
purchase any from them, nine tenths of those in the shops being
fictitious. Seed pearls are also used by them as medicines. In the back
streets it is not uncommon to find places where they make them, and
others where artists are engaged in cutting and polishing on the lathe
the few precious stones they possess. Rock crystal is one of their
favorites, and from it they cut beautiful vases and goblets that are
sometimes as clear as glass. In this, however, they are surpassed by the
Japanese, whoso crystal globes cannot be distinguished from the most
perfect glass. They also cut vases and carve odd figures in an arsenical
stone, of reddish color, with a grain like granite, which is little
known in other countries.

In Shanghai the shops for the sale of china and porcelain-ware do not
present as fine an assortment as those of Canton, where vases costing
fabulous sums are to be seen, but they are rich with the peculiar
pottery of Soo-Chow. Just at present the display of this ware is not as
fine as usual, owing to the occupation of that city by the Tae-Pings,
but enough remains on hand to show its beauty and general usefulness.
Chinese porcelain ware is as well known in every civilized country of
the world as in China itself, and has ceased to be a curiosity unless
when intelligently viewed in its historical character, for all these
quaint scenes scattered over the magnificent vases we receive illustrate
some event in Chinese history, or some custom which obtains among the
people.

When evening approaches and the shops are lit up with lanterns, the
numerous and brilliant lantern warehouses attract the attention: some of
the goods they display (and at nightfall they light every lantern in the
shop) are extremely beautiful and costly; all kinds are to be obtained,
from the fine hall-lamp of painted glass to the sixpenny lantern to be
carried in the hand. At night these gay lights give much animation to
the busy streets. Having gone across Shanghai from the south gate to the
French Concession one dark night, after the city gates were closed, a
good opportunity of seeing the interior of a Chinese city after
nightfall (which few foreigners care to avail themselves of) presented
itself. The people were slowly closing their shops for the night. Here
and there a shopkeeper was counting his cash, and calculating at his
counter with the help of the abacus; many of them were sitting at the
doors of their houses, smoking in the evening air; the barbers were
still at work preparing their customers for the night. Like Washington
Irving, these may have considered a good clean shave the best soporific.
Here and there a citizen of the better class was to be seen picking his
way by the light of a lantern, held by a boy, and twice we met sedan
chairs containing women, preceded by a lantern bearer. The passage of
two sedans in these narrow streets is a difficult and unpleasant
process, the bearers generally managing to grind your shins against a
wall. At night it is still more difficult to avoid contact, and the
coolies are incessantly shouting, in a sing-song voice, to prepare the
way. As it was, in the narrower streets we passed between files of dusky
figures and black, inquisitive eyes, ranged on either side to barely
allow passage. The cook-shops were deserted, and the attendants busy in
putting out the fires; only the places where lanterns or candles were
sold seemed to be doing an active trade, although it had scarcely struck
nine. At ten o'clock no doubt all were asleep, for hosts of beggars and
poor wretches were snoring by the roadsides. The most picturesque groups
passed in this evening stroll were those on the bridges, where, by the
light of tallow candles, men and boys were gambling and fighting
crickets. Although probably there was not another European or American
within the walls of the city, the passage was as safe as if made at
noonday, guarded by a file of soldiers.

A visit to Shanghai would be incomplete if the traveller failed to
inspect the numerous and very curious temples, and to contrast them with
the church edifices erected in the heart of the city by the Protestant
missionaries. There is one without the walls, in the French Concession,
where all the instruments of torture, the devilish devices of heathen
cruelty, are to be seen, a horrid spectacle. The largest of the temples,
however, is within the walls, approached through a wide court, with a
fountain (not in use) in the centre. This court is crowded with fortune
tellers, conjurors, and gamblers of every kind. Some of these gentry
play a game very much like thimble-rigging, in which copper cash,
appears under different inverted teacups. Every man who approaches the
idol draws from among the fortune tellers a stick or a piece of paper,
from the figure on which he is supposed to tell whether his prayer will
succeed, or the work he contemplates prove lucky. Entering the shrine,
it is difficult to see for a few moments, so gloomy is the place and so
grimy every object with the smoke of joss offerings from time
immemorial. A kind of altar faces the worshippers, with a box of sand,
in which are stuck the burning joss-sticks. Before this is a cushion, on
which they prostrate themselves, telling their beads, as they recite
their prayers inaudibly, and bowing to the earth at intervals of a few
minutes. Behind the altar are the idols. These hideous figures are twice
the size of life, and of frightful shape and features, the principal god
being in a tent-like shrine, which permits only a glimpse of his grim
features in the background. On his right hand is the figure of a man
with the beak of an eagle, and on his left a very grotesque divinity,
with a third eye, like that of the Cyclops, in the centre of his
forehead. These two figures, again, are supported by gigantic guardians,
one on either side, who have nothing absolutely monstrous about them,
being distinguished by their saturnine expression. That to the right
hand bears a striking likeness to Daniel Webster's stern and well-known
features. The deep-set eye and compressed lip were those of the great
expounder.

A heavy cloud from the burning candles and paper offerings filled the
air, and the smell of candle snuff mingled with that of incense. A high
railing separated the worshippers from the idols, but the priests were
quite indifferent and not at all exclusive; so, passing around and
without removing our hats, we made a close inspection of the respected
carvings. A nearer view did not increase their attractions, so, passing
up a flight of stairs, we entered a room where the bonzes were busy
praying for rain and apparently going through a species of litany with
open books in their hands. Our entrance stopped proceedings for a
minute or two, but they soon resumed, quite indifferently, singing and
drawling as though it were tedious, tiresome work.

They were all good-looking men, in the prime of life, dressed in scarlet
and embroidered robes of much richness. Unlike the rest of the people,
they neither shaved nor wore the cue. We found them drawn in a line
before the altar, from which they were separated by a screen: an open
porch at their back let in light and air. Each priest had before him a
little table with a fancy gilt screen upon it, and as they slowly
proceeded with their drawl, at convenient intervals, each made a slight
bow behind his screen, his head touching it. As they did this with the
regularity of drilled soldiers, and to the pounding of a tom-tom, they
evidently were chanting in chorus, although the ear would have failed to
distinguish it. The tom-toms and wooden drums were beaten at the
pleasure of the parties in charge: nothing like time was apparent to any
but a Chinese ear.

The idol was a little gilt figure, about six inches high, with the body
of a beast and the head of a man. His peculiarity was the possession of
a supplementary eye, which, as his natural pair squinted horribly, no
doubt was very useful. His position was on a little table surrounded by
tall candles; whether they were borrowed from the Roman Catholics or the
Catholics borrowed the custom from them is a question for the student of
church history. Before the idol was placed another table with ten
elegant bowls, scarcely larger than our teacups, filled with the
choicest fruits and grains that the market afforded. Each article was
perfect of its kind. Rice, tea, the nelumbium, and agaric, a species of
fungus, were among them. Just then the country being in great want of
rain, the priests were trying the coaxing process, and tempting the god
with the best chow-chow to be had; but the next day they got out of
patience, and were to be met parading him through the dusty streets,
exposed to a fierce sun, for the purpose of giving him to understand
that the heat was quite as disagreeable as they had represented it.

Their arguments for this proceeding are extremely logical: they say that
Joss, in his cool temple, laughs at them, and is disposed to think that
they are humbugging him; therefore, if they give him two or three hours
of good skin-roasting in the sun, he will be much more likely to come to
terms, to avoid a repetition of the process. As they do this every day
until rain comes, it is of course seen in a short time, if they are
patient, that it never fails in the end.

Indeed, it is quite common to meet in all the large cities processions
of priests, followed by the rabble, who are giving 'Joss an airing.' The
eminently practical object of these mummeries argues very little genuine
respect for the deity, an inference that has often been drawn by
missionaries from other points in their treatment of their idols.

Their worship of them, such as it is, is almost universal. Every house
has its shrine and altar, and even in the porches of foreign residents
in the quarters occupied by the Chinese servants, one sometimes
(although not often) sees a little figure in a niche, with a tiny
joss-stick before it. Every junk and sampan has its tutelary idol. A
little shrine of bamboo of the size of a common birdcage is built for
it, sometimes fixed and sometimes movable. The interior of this was
gilded once, but the gilt is worn and tarnished by smoke and water. It
has doors that open when the joss-sticks are to be burnt before the toy
figure that presides on a miniature throne. A sampan whose owners are
too poor to supply themselves with decent clothing, will be sure to have
its tawdry baby-house and doll idol, and it frequently has in addition
a roll of paper, four feet by one, like a window curtain, with, a gay
picture of Joss, in a scarlet dress, in the act of dancing, and
generally in a very absurd posture for such a respectable character.

Every evening at sunset there is a prodigious hubbub from the junks on
the Woosung, made with tom-toms, drums, and other unmelodious
instruments, which are vigorously beaten for ten or fifteen minutes, to
bring good luck, and propitiate the devils, or frighten them away for
the night. From the shore, the rapid motions of a dozen arms on the high
poop of each junk, tossed aloft in the dusk, and the discordant, harsh
sounds that come from so many vessels at once, arrest the attention of
the stranger, and once seen and heard, are never forgotten.

The pagodas, so often mentioned in accounts of the Chinese empire,
appear to be more numerous in the mountainous districts, where they add
greatly to the picturesque charm of the scenery, and are believed to be
connected with the religious ceremonies of the people. In the flat
country around Shanghai they are not to be met with; at least it was not
our fortune to see any during our brief stay. The only structure like a
tower, if we except the turrets on the city walls and watch towers
erected within the past few years, when the Tae-Pings have threatened
the city, is a tall, white monument, rising to the height of twenty
feet, and without inscription or distinguishing mark of any kind. It
looks like a fine, white tomb, higher and more ambitious than usual, and
truly it is a 'whited sepulchre'! Baby Tower, it is called by the
foreign residents, for it is filled with the bones of infants--not such
as have died a natural death, as Bayard Taylor asserts, but which have
been thrust into this horrid monument of heathen cruelty when but a few
hours old. Humanity shudders at the thought! These dazzling white baby
towers, with their mockery of purity, their object known to all men, and
openly inviting, as it were, the most unnatural and heartless of
murders, are among the most hideous spectacles to be met with in a
heathen land. True, a river or a pond will be pointed out to you in
other parts of China, or in India, where babies are daily drowned like
puppies or kittens; but they do not affect the mind with such a horror
as these palpable structures, erected with the best skill of their
architects for this express purpose. The water closes over the murdered
infant, and no trace of the crime remains; but here is a tower--a high
tower--with deep foundations, filled with the bones of murdered babes
that have been accumulating for generations.

No wonder that Christian mothers, resident in the East, cannot speak of
them or see them without a shudder, and never willingly pass them in
their drives. Who knows but they might hear, if they approached the
tower, the wail of some poor infant just thrown in, or meet its father
returning from his cruel errand!

At Shanghai the Baby Tower stands on the southwest side of the city,
without the walls, but at Foo-Chow, where the crime of infanticide is
still more prevalent, they use no baby towers, but have provided ponds
for this express purpose. It is the saddest part of this great national
crime of the Chinese, that it is sanctioned by the mandarins, and viewed
as a disagreeable necessity, not as a crime.

It has been the fashion of late years to deny the existence of this
abomination; the doubters, wise in their own conceit, insisting that the
crime is too great for human nature.

Human nature, unfortunately, has proved but a frail barrier to crime of
this character in all parts of the world, and the facts of Chinese
infanticide are indisputable. The witnesses are too numerous, the crime
is too public, and the evidences of it too notorious to deny its
existence. The children destroyed are girls; the most common methods of
destroying them are: 1st, by drowning in a tub of water; 2d, by throwing
into some running stream; 3d, by burying alive. The last-named mode is
adopted under the hope and with the superstitious belief that the next
birth will be a boy. The excuse is that it is too expensive to educate a
girl, but if some friend will take the child to bring up as a wife for a
little boy, the parents will sell or give away the infant rather than
destroy it. The regular price is two thousand copper cash, or $2, for
every year of their lives; for sometimes a girl will be saved for a year
or two, and then sold for a wife or slave. Many instances have come to
the notice of missionaries where large families of girls have been
destroyed. There is one woman now employed as a nurse in a missionary's
family at Fuh-Chow, who says that her mother had eight girls and three
boys, and that she was the only girl permitted by her father to live. We
never heard of an instance of a boy's being destroyed at birth. There is
a village about fifteen miles from Fuh-Chow, which is swarming with
boys, but where girls are very scarce. The people account for it
themselves by alleging the common practice of killing the girls at
birth, a practice which is indulged in by the rich as well as by the
poor.[2]

But to enter into all the particularities of Chinese life which attract
the attention at Shanghai as in other cities, would be to compile an
account of China and her customs.

The points of real importance to be considered in connection with
Shanghai, which is fast becoming the commercial centre of Chinese
exports, are the extent to which foreigners have an influence on the
people in modifying their habits, increasing their knowledge, and
dispelling their prejudices. The growth of European influence and the
complete opening of the Chinese empire, in which immense advances have
been made in the last three years, will, in time, it is to be hoped,
lead to the diffusion of the Christian religion, a work attended with
such gigantic difficulties, at the present day, that one cannot
sufficiently admire the courage, patience, and faith which actuate
missionaries to this empire. No representations of these difficulties
which reach the Christian world have done justice to them, for it is
necessary to observe the heartlessness, self-conceit, and prodigious
prejudices of the Chinese to appreciate the noble zeal of the
missionaries. The course of trade and much more correct notions of the
power and objects of the Western nations, and the firmness with which
they use the former to secure the latter, are unquestionably breaking up
with rudeness the ridiculous ideas of the Chinese concerning their own
importance and superior wisdom. If once they can be made learners in
good earnest, the battle is half won, for none doubt their intelligence.
European influence, alone, has effected great changes in five years, and
European and Chinese combined may, in the five years to come, work out
still greater reforms.

FOOTNOTES:

[1] Sir Frederick Bruce, in a recent report to the Foreign
Office, says:

'The growth of Shanghai is wonderful; its population is estimated at
1,500,000, and it bids fair to become soon the most important city of
the East. The Chinese flock to it on account of the security it enjoys;
and the silk manufacture, which was destroyed by the Taiping occupation
of Soochow and Hangchow, is taking root at Shanghai.'--Pekin, 30th
April, 1863.

[2] Civilized nations profess to look with abhorrence on the
Chinese crime of infanticide, and to believe that the statements of
travellers and missionaries are incredible; but a careful examination of
the mortuary tables of London, Paris, New York, Dublin, Moscow, and
other cities, will show that infanticide is far more common than
supposed. It is a crime easily hidden and hard to trace. Take the
foundling hospitals as a guide to some approximate estimate of the
amount of infanticide in France. We find that she has upwards of 360
hospitals; that in Paris alone, in five years, from 1819 to 1823, 25,277
children were received, of whom eleven thirteenths died, and that the
annual number of enfans trouvés ranges from 3,800 to 4,500. These
children, but for the hospital, would have been murdered. Who can tell
how many are thrown into the sewers of Paris? A recent writer states the
number at 10,000, but we deem this an exaggeration. It is significant
that the percentage of births and deaths in all France is less far the
births and greater for the deaths than in England. These tables we
annex.

It is still more significant that the returns of foundling hospitals,
from widely different countries, show that these institutions, however
charitable and humane their object, are to be viewed as conveniences for
murdering an infant without the actual violence at which humanity
revolts. The proportion of abandoned children who live is so exceedingly
small, that abandonment of a child to a foundling hospital is scarcely
less than murder. If the child live, it may be viewed, almost, as a
direct act of Providence.

Of 62,000 children brought into the Paris foundling hospitals, 52,500
died.

In Dublin, 19,420 children were received in ten years, of whom 17,440
died.

In Moscow, 37,000 children were received in twenty years, of whom 35,000
died.

         COMPARATIVE VIEW OF MOVEMENT OF POPULATION OF
-------------------------------------++------------------------
                     ENGLAND.        ||         FRANCE.
-----------+------------+------------++------------+-----------
           |    1860.   |   1861.    ||   1860.    |   1861.
-----------+------------+------------++------------+-----------
Population | 19,902,918 | 20,119,496 || 35,597,461 | 36,752,565
Marriages  |    170,156 |    163,706 ||    290,657 |    283,642
Births     |    684,018 |    693,406 ||    953,315 |    987,830
Deaths     |    422,721 |    435,114 ||    782,764 |    848,174
-----------+------------+------------++------------+-----------
           |        Percentage.      ||        Percentage.
-----------+------------+------------++------------+-----------
Marriages  |    .855    |    .814    ||    .794    |    .772
Births     |   3.437    |   3.461    ||   2.605    |   2.688
Deaths     |   2.124    |   2.163    ||   2.139    |   2.308
-----------+------------+------------++------------+-----------



ON HEARING A 'TRIO.


  'All thoughts, all passions, all delights,
    Whatever stirs this mortal frame,'
  Thrilled through the wildering harmonies
    That from the music came.

  All soothing sounds of nature blent,
    In wonderful accord,
  With pleadings, wild and passionate,
    From human hearts outpoured.

  The wailings of the world's sad heart,
    Oppressed with social wrongs,
  In mournful monotones were mixed
    With sounds of angel songs.

  The falling of a nation's tears
    O'er Freedom's prostrate form,
  Dew droppings sweet from starry spheres,
    Swift-rushing wings of storm.

  The voices of Time's children three--
    Past, Present, Future, blent
  In that wild 'trio's' harmony,
    Thrilled each fine instrument.

  And, at the sound, my soul awoke,
    And saw the dawning clear
  Of Freedom's coming day illume
    Earth's clouded atmosphere!



THE IDEAL MAN FOR UNIVERSAL IMITATION; OR, THE SINLESS PERFECTION OF
JESUS.

(A POSITIVE REPLY TO STRAUSS AND RENAN.)


The first impression which we receive from the life of Jesus, is that of
perfect innocency and sinlessness in the midst of a sinful world. He,
and He alone, carried the spotless purity of childhood untarnished
through his youth and manhood. Hence the lamb and the dove are his
appropriate symbols.

He was, indeed, tempted as we are, but he never yielded to temptation.
His sinlessness was at first only the _relative_ sinlessness of Adam
before the fall, which implies the necessity of trial and temptation,
and the peccability, or the possibility of the fall. Had he been endowed
with absolute impeccability from the start, he could not be a true man,
nor our model for imitation; his holiness, instead of being his own
self-acquired act and inherent merit, would be an accidental or outward
gift, and his temptation an unreal show. As a true man, Christ must have
been a free and responsible moral agent; freedom implies the power of
choice between good and evil, and the power of disobedience as well as
obedience, to the law of God. But here is the great fundamental
difference between the first and the second Adam: the first Adam lost
his innocence by the abuse of his freedom, and fell by his own act of
disobedience into the dire necessity of sin; while the second Adam was
innocent in the midst of sinners, and maintained his innocence against
all and every temptation. Christ's _relative_ sinlessness became more
and more _absolute_ sinlessness by his own moral act, or the right use
of his freedom in the perfect active and passive obedience to God. In
other words, Christ's original possibility of _not sinning_, which
includes the opposite possibility of sinning, but excludes the actuality
of sin, was unfolded into the _impossibility of sinning_, which _can_
not sin because it will not. This is the highest stage of freedom, where
it becomes identical with moral necessity, or absolute and unchangeable
self-determination for goodness and holiness. This is the freedom of God
and of the saints in heaven, with this difference: that the saints
attain that position by deliverance and salvation from sin and death,
while Christ acquired it by his own merit.

In vain we look through the entire biography of Jesus for a single stain
or the slightest shadow on his moral character. There never lived a more
harmless being on earth. He injured nobody, he took advantage of nobody,
he never spoke an improper word, he never committed a wrong action. He
exhibited a uniform elevation above the objects, opinions, pleasures,
and passions of this world, and disregard to riches, displays, fame, and
favor of men. 'No vice that has a name can be thought of in connection
with Jesus Christ. Ingenious malignity looks in vain for the faintest
trace of self-seeking in His motives; sensuality shrinks abashed from
His celestial purity; falsehood can leave no stain on Him who is
incarnate truth; injustice is forgotten beside His errorless equity; the
very possibility of avarice is swallowed up in His benignity and love;
the very idea of ambition is lost in His divine wisdom and divine
self-abnegation.'

The apparent outbreak of passion in the expulsion of the profane
traffickers from the temple is the only instance on the record of his
history which might be quoted against his freedom from the faults of
humanity. But the very effect which it produced, shows that, far from
being the outburst of passion, the expulsion was a judicial act of a
religious reformer, vindicating in just and holy zeal the honor of the
Lord of the temple. It was an exhibition, not of weakness, but of
dignity and majesty, which at once silenced the offenders, though
superior in number and physical strength, and made them submit to their
well-deserved punishment without a murmur, and in awe of the presence of
a superhuman power. The cursing of the unfruitful fig tree can still
less be urged, as it evidently was a significant symbolical act,
foreshadowing the fearful doom of the impenitent Jews in the destruction
of Jerusalem.

The perfect innocence of Jesus, however, is based not only, negatively,
on the absence of any recorded word or act to the contrary and his
absolute exemption from every trace of selfishness and worldliness, but,
positively, also on the unanimous testimony of John the Baptist and the
apostles, who bowed before the majesty of his character in unbounded
veneration, and declare him 'just,' 'holy,' and 'without sin.' It is
admitted, moreover, by his enemies: the heathen judge Pilate, and his
wife, representing, as it were, the Roman law and justice, when they
shuddered with apprehension and washed their hands to be clear of
innocent blood; by the rude Roman centurion, confessing under the cross,
in the name of the disinterested spectators, 'Truly, this was the Son of
God;' and by Judas himself, the immediate witness of his whole public
and private life, exclaiming in despair: 'I sinned in betraying innocent
blood.' Even dumb nature responded in mysterious sympathy, and the
beclouded heavens above and the shaking earth beneath united in paying
their unconscious tribute to the divine purity of their dying Lord.

The objection that the evangelists were either not fully informed
concerning the facts, or mistaken in their estimate of the character of
Christ, is of no avail. For, in addition to their testimony, we have his
own personal conviction of entire freedom from sin and unworthiness,
which leaves us only the choice between absolute moral purity, and
absolute hypocrisy; such hypocrisy would, indeed, be both the greatest
miracle and the greatest moral monstrosity on record.

The very fact that Christ came for the express purpose of saving
sinners, implies his own consciousness of personal freedom from guilt
and from all need of salvation. And this is the unmistakable impression
made upon us by his whole public life and conduct. He nowhere shows the
least concern for his own salvation, but knows himself in undisturbed
harmony with his Heavenly Father. While calling most earnestly upon all
others to repent, he stood in no need of conversion and regeneration,
but simply of the regular harmonious unfolding of his moral powers.
While directing all his followers, in the fourth petition of his model
prayer, to ask daily for the forgiveness of their sins as well as their
daily bread, he himself never asked God for pardon and forgiveness,
except in behalf of others. While freely conversing with sinners, he
always does so with the love and interest of a Saviour of sinners. This
is an undeniable historical fact, no matter how you may explain it. And
to remove every doubt, we have his open and fearless challenge to his
bitter enemies: 'Which of you convinceth me of sin?' In this question he
clearly exempts himself from the common fault and guilt of the race. In
the mouth of any other man, this question would at once betray either
the height of hypocrisy, or a degree of self-deception bordering on
madness itself, and would overthrow the very foundation of all human
goodness; while from the mouth of Jesus we instinctively receive it as
the triumphant self-vindication of one who stood far above the
possibility of successful impeachment or founded suspicion.

The assumption that Christ was a sinner, and knew himself such, although
he professed the contrary and made upon friends and enemies the
impression of spotless innocency, is the most monstrous deception that
can well be imagined. 'If Jesus was a sinner, he was conscious of sin,
as all sinners are, and therefore was a hypocrite in the whole fabric of
his character; realizing so much of divine beauty in it, maintaining the
show of such unfaltering harmony and celestial grace, and doing all this
with a mind confused and fouled by the affectations acted for true
virtues! Such an example of successful hypocrisy would be itself the
greatest miracle ever heard of in the world.'

It is an indisputable fact, then, both from his mission and uniform
conduct and his express declaration, that Christ knew himself free from
sin and guilt. The only rational explanation of this fact is, that
Christ _was_ no sinner. And this is readily conceded by the greatest
divines--even those who are by no means regarded as orthodox. The
admission of this fact implies the further admission that Christ
differed from all other men, not in degree only, but in _kind_. For
although we must utterly repudiate the pantheistic notion of the
necessity of sin, and must maintain that human nature, in itself
considered, is capable of sinlessness, that it was sinless, in fact,
before the fall, and that it will ultimately become sinless again by the
redemption of Christ; yet it is equally certain that human nature, in
its _present_ condition, is not sinless, and never has been since the
fall, except in the single case of Christ, and that for this very reason
Christ's sinlessness can only be explained on the ground of such an
extraordinary indwelling of God in him as never took place in any other
human being, before or after. The entire Christian world, Greek, Latin,
and Protestant, agree in the scriptural doctrine of the universal
depravity of human nature since the apostasy of the first Adam. Even the
modern and unscriptural dogma of the Roman Catholic Church, of the
freedom of the Virgin Mary from hereditary as well as actual sin, can
hardly be quoted as an exception; for her sinlessness is explained in
the papal decision of 1854 by the assumption of a miraculous
interposition of divine favor, and the reflex influence of the merits of
her Son. There is not a single mortal who must not charge himself with
some defect or folly, and man's consciousness of sin and unworthiness
deepens just in proportion to his self-knowledge and progress in virtue
and goodness. There is not a single saint who has not experienced a new
birth from above, and an actual conversion from sin to holiness, and who
does not feel daily the need of repentance and divine forgiveness. The
very greatest and best of them, as St. Paul and St. Augustine, have
passed through a violent struggle and a radical revolution, and their
whole theological system and religious experience rested on the felt
antithesis of sin and grace.

But in Christ we have the one solitary and absolute exception to this
universal rule, an individual thinking like a man, feeling like a man,
speaking, acting, suffering, and dying like a man, surrounded by sinners
in every direction, with the keenest sense of sin and the deepest
sympathy with sinners, commencing his public ministry with the call:
'Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand;' yet never touched in the
least by the contamination of the world, never putting himself in the
attitude of a sinner before God, never shedding a tear of repentance,
never regretting a single thought, word, or deed, never needing or
asking divine pardon, never concerned about the salvation of his own
soul, and boldly facing all his present and future enemies in the
absolute certainty of his spotless purity before God and man!


HIS ABSOLUTE HOLINESS.

A sinless Saviour surrounded by a sinful world, is an astounding fact
indeed, a sublime moral miracle in history. But this freedom from the
common sin and guilt of the race is, after all, only the negative side
of his character, which rises in magnitude as we contemplate the
positive side, namely, absolute moral and religious perfection. It is
universally admitted, even by deists and rationalists, that Christ
taught the purest and sublimest system of ethics, which throws all the
moral precepts and maxims of the wisest men of antiquity far into the
shade. The Sermon on the Mount alone is worth infinitely more than all
that Confucius, Socrates, and Seneca ever said or wrote on duty and
virtue. But the difference is still greater if we come to the more
difficult task of practice. While the wisest and best of men never live
up even to their own imperfect standard of excellency, Christ fully
carried out his perfect doctrine in his life and conduct. He both _was_
and _did_ that which he _taught_; he preached his own life, and lived
his own doctrine. He is the living incarnation of the ideal standard of
virtue and holiness, and is universally acknowledged to be the highest
model for all that is pure and good and noble in the sight of God and
man.

We find Christ moving in all ordinary and essential relations of life,
as a son, a brother, a friend, a citizen, a teacher, at home and in
public. We find him among all classes of society, with sinners and
saints, with the poor and the wealthy, with the sick and the healthy,
with little children, grown men and women, with plain fishermen and
learned scribes, with despised publicans and honored members of the
sanhedrim, with friends and foes, with admiring disciples and bitter
persecutors; now with an individual, as Nicodemus or the woman of
Samaria, now in the familiar circle of the twelve, now in the crowds of
the people. We find him in all situations, in the synagogue and the
temple, at home and on journeys, in villages and the city of Jerusalem,
in the desert and on the mountain, along the banks of Jordan and the
shores of the Galilean Sea, at the wedding feast and the grave, in
Gethsemane, in the judgment hall, and on Calvary. In all these various
relations, conditions, and situations, as they are crowded within the
few years of his public ministry, he sustains the same consistent
character throughout, without ever exposing himself to censure. He
fulfils every duty to God, to man, and to himself, without a single
violation of duty, and exhibits an entire conformity to the law, in the
spirit as well as the letter. His life is one unbroken service of God,
in active and passive obedience to His holy will--one grand act of
absolute love to God and love to man, of personal self-consecration to
the glory of his Heavenly Father and the salvation of a fallen race. In
the language of the people who were 'beyond measure astonished at his
works,' we must say, the more we study his life: 'He did all things
well.' In a solemn appeal to his Heavenly Father in the parting hour, he
could proclaim to the world that he had glorified him in the earth, and
finished the work he gave him to do.


UNITY OF VIRTUE AND PIETY.

The first feature in this singular perfection of Christ's character
which strikes our attention, is the perfect harmony of virtue and piety,
of morality and religion, or of love to God and love to man. He is more
than moral, and more than pious; he is holy in the strict and full sense
of the word. There is a divine beauty and perfection in his character,
the mere contemplation of which brings purity, brightness, peace, and
bliss to the soul.

Piety was the soul of his morality, and lifted it far above the sphere
of legality or conformity to law. Every moral action in him proceeded
from supreme love to God, and looked to the temporal and eternal
welfare of man. The groundwork of his character was the most intimate
and uninterrupted union and communion with his Heavenly Father, from
whom he derived, to whom he referred, everything. Already in his twelfth
year he found his life element and delight in the things of his Father.
It was his daily food to do the will of Him that sent him, and to finish
his work. To Him he looked in prayer before every important act, and
taught his disciples that model prayer which, for simplicity, brevity,
comprehensiveness, and suitableness, can never be surpassed. He often
retired to a mountain or solitary place for prayer, and spent days and
nights in this blessed privilege. But so constant and uniform was his
habit of communion with the great Jehovah, that he kept it up amid the
multitude, and converted the crowded city into a religious retreat. His
self-consciousness was at every moment conditioned, animated, and
impregnated by the consciousness of God. Even when he exclaimed, in
indescribable anguish of body and soul, and in vicarious sympathy with
the misery of the whole race: 'My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken
me!' the bond of union was not broken, or even loosened, but simply
obscured for a moment, as the sun by a passing cloud, and the enjoyment,
not the possession of it, was withdrawn from his feelings; for
immediately afterward he commended his soul into the hands of his
Father, and triumphantly exclaimed: 'It is finished!' So strong and
complete was this moral union of Christ with God at every moment of his
life, that he fully realized for the first time the idea of religion,
whose object is to bring about such a union, and that he is the personal
representative and living embodiment of Christianity as the true and
absolute religion.

With all this, the piety of Christ was no inactive contemplation, or
retiring mysticism and selfish enjoyment; but thoroughly practical, ever
active in works of charity, and tending to regenerate and transform the
world into the kingdom of God. 'He went about doing good.' His life is
an unbroken series of good works and virtues in active exercise, all
proceeding from the same union with God, animated by the same love, and
tending to the same end, the glory of God and the happiness of man.


COMPLETENESS AND UNIVERSALITY OF HIS CHARACTER.

The next feature we would notice, is the completeness or pleromatic
fulness of the moral and religious character of Christ. While all other
men represent at best but broken fragments of the idea of goodness and
holiness, he exhausts the list of virtues and graces which may be named.
His soul is a moral paradise full of charming flowers, shining in every
variety of color, under the blue dome of the skies, drinking in the
refreshing dews of heaven and the warming beams of the sun, sending its
sweet fragrance around, and filling the beholder with rapturous delight.

History exhibits to us many men of commanding and comprehensive genius,
who stand at the head of their age and nation, and furnish material for
the intellectual activity of whole generations and periods, until they
are succeeded by other heroes at a new epoch of development. As rivers
generally spring from high mountains, so knowledge and moral power rises
and is ever nourished from the heights of humanity. Abraham, the father
of the faithful; Moses, the lawgiver of the Jewish theocracy; Elijah,
among the prophets; Peter, Paul, and John among the apostles; Athanasius
and Chrysostom among the Greek, Augustine and Jerome among the Latin
fathers; Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotus among the schoolmen; Leo I. and
Gregory VII. among the popes; Luther and Calvin in the line of
Protestant reformers and divines; Socrates, the patriarch of the
ancient schools of philosophy; Homer, Dante, Shakspeare, and Milton,
Göthe and Schiller in the history of poetry, among the various nations
to which they belong; Raphael among painters; Charlemagne, the first and
greatest in the long succession of German emperors; Napoleon, towering
high above all the generals of his training; Washington, the wisest and
best as well as the first of American presidents, and the purest and
noblest type of the American character, may be mentioned as examples of
those representative heroes in history who anticipate and concentrate
the powers of whole generations. But they never represent universal, but
only sectional humanity; they are identified with a particular people or
age, and partake of its errors, superstitions, and failings, almost in
the same proportion in which they exhibit its virtues. Moses, though
revered by the followers of three religions, was a Jew in views,
feelings, habits, and position, as well as by parentage; Socrates never
rose above the Greek type of character; Luther was a German in all his
virtues and faults, and can only be properly understood as a German;
Calvin, though an exile from his native land, remained a Frenchman; and
Washington can be to no nation on earth what he is to the American.
Their influence may and does extend far beyond their respective national
horizons, yet they can never furnish a universal model for imitation. We
regard them as extraordinary but fallible and imperfect men, whom it
would be very unsafe to follow in every view and line of conduct. Very
frequently the failings and vices of great men are in proportion to
their virtues and powers, as the tallest bodies cast the longest
shadows. Even the three leading apostles are models of piety and virtue
only as far as they reflect the image of their Heavenly Master, and it
is only with this limitation that Paul exhorts his spiritual children:
'Be ye followers of me even as I am also of Christ.'

What these representative men are to particular ages or nations, or
sects or particular schools of science and art, Christ was to the human
family at large in its relation to God. He and he alone is the universal
type for universal imitation. Hence he could, without the least
impropriety, or suspicion of vanity, call upon all men to forsake all
things and to follow him. He stands above the limitations of age,
school, sect, nation, and race. Although a Jew according to the flesh,
there is nothing Jewish about him which is not at the same time of
general significance. The particular and national in him is always duly
subordinated to the general and human. Still less was he ever identified
with a party or sect. He was equally removed from the stiff formalism of
the Pharisees, the loose liberalism of the Sadducees, and the inactive
mysticism of the Essenes. He rose above all the prejudices, bigotries,
and superstitions of his age and people, which exert their power even
upon the strongest and otherwise most liberal minds.

Witness his freedom in the observance of the Sabbath, by which he
offended the scrupulous literalists, while he fulfilled, as the Lord of
the Sabbath, the true spirit of the law in its universal and abiding
significance; his reply to the disciples, when they traced the
misfortune of the blind man to a particular sin of the subject or his
parents; his liberal conduct toward the Samaritans, as contrasted with
the inveterate hatred and prejudices of the Jews, including his own
disciples at the time; and his charitable judgment of the slaughtered
Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices, and the
eighteen upon whom the tower in Siloam fell and slew them. 'Think ye,'
he addressed the children of superstition, 'that these men were sinners
above all the Galileans, and above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem,
because they suffered such things? I tell you, nay: but except ye
repent, ye shall all likewise perish.'

All the words and all the actions of Christ, while they were fully
adapted to the occasions which called them forth, retain their force and
applicability undiminished to all ages and nations. He is the same
unsurpassed and unsurpassable model of every virtue to the Christians of
every generation, every clime, every sect, every nation, and every race.


HARMONY OF ALL GRACES AND VIRTUES.

It must not be supposed that a complete catalogue of virtues would do
justice to the character under consideration. It is not only the
completeness, but still more the even proportion and perfect harmony of
virtues and graces apparently opposite and contradictory, which
distinguishes him specifically from all other men. This feature has
struck with singular force all the more eminent writers on the subject.
It gives the finish to that beauty of holiness which is the sublimest
picture presented to our contemplation.

He was free from all one-sidedness, which constitutes the weakness as
well as the strength of the most eminent men. He was not a man of one
idea, nor of one virtue, towering above all the rest. The moral forces
were so well tempered and moderated by each other, that none was unduly
prominent, none carried to excess, none alloyed by the kindred failing.
Each was checked and completed by the opposite grace. His character
never lost its even balance and happy equilibrium, never needed
modification or re-adjustment. It was thoroughly sound, and uniformly
consistent from the beginning to the end.

We cannot properly attribute to him any one temperament. He was neither
sanguine, like Peter, nor choleric, like Paul, nor melancholy, like
John, nor phlegmatic, as James is sometimes, though incorrectly,
represented to have been; but he combined the vivacity without the
levity of the sanguine, the vigor without the violence of the choleric,
the seriousness without the austerity of the melancholic, the calmness
without the apathy of the phlegmatic temperament.

He was equally far removed from the excesses of the legalist, the
pietist, the ascetic, and the enthusiast. With the strictest obedience
to the law, he moved in the element of freedom; with all the fervor of
the enthusiast, he was always calm, sober, and self-possessed;
notwithstanding his complete and uniform elevation above the affairs of
this world, he freely mingled with society, male and female, dined with
publicans and sinners, sat at the wedding feast, shed tears at the
sepulchre, delighted in God's nature, admired the beauties of the
lilies, and used the occupations of the husbandman for the illustration
of the sublimest truths of the kingdom of heaven. His virtue was
healthy, manly, vigorous, yet genial, social, and truly human, never
austere and repulsive, always in full sympathy with innocent joy and
pleasure. He, the purest and holiest of men, provided wine for the
wedding feast, introduced the fatted calf and music and dancing into the
picture of welcome of the prodigal son to his father's house, and even
provoked the sneer of his adversaries that he 'came eating and
drinking,' and was a 'glutton' and a 'winebibber.'

His zeal never degenerated into passion or rashness, his constancy into
obstinacy, his benevolence into weakness, nor his tenderness into
sentimentality. His unworldliness was free from indifference and
unsociability, his dignity from pride and presumption, his affability
from undue familiarity, his self-denial from moroseness, his temperance
from austerity. He combined child-like innocence with manly strength,
all-absorbing devotion to God with untiring interest in the welfare of
man, tender love to the sinner with uncompromising severity against
sin, commanding dignity with winning humility, fearless courage with
wise caution, unyielding firmness with sweet gentleness.

He is justly compared with the lion in strength and with the lamb in
meekness. He equally possessed the wisdom of the serpent and the
simplicity of the dove. He brought both the sword against every form of
wickedness, and the peace which the world cannot give. He was the most
effective, and yet the least noisy, the most radical, and yet the most
conservative, calm, and patient of all reformers. He came to fulfil
every letter of the law, and yet he made all things new. The same hand
which drove the profane traffickers from the temple, blessed little
children, healed the lepers, and rescued the sinking disciple; the same
ear which heard the voice of approbation from heaven was open to the
cries of the woman in travail; the same mouth which pronounced the
terrible woe on hypocrites and condemned the impure desire and unkind
feeling as well as the open crime, blessed the poor in spirit, announced
pardon to the adulteress, and prayed for his murderers; the same eye
which beheld the mysteries of God and penetrated the heart of man shed
tears of compassion over ungrateful Jerusalem, and tears of friendship
at the grave of Lazarus.

These are indeed opposite, yet not contradictory traits of character, as
little as the different manifestations of God's power and goodness in
the tempest and the sunshine, in the towering alps and the lily of the
valley, in the boundless ocean and the dewdrop of the morning. They are
separated in imperfect men, indeed, but united in Christ, the universal
model for all.


CHRIST'S PASSION.

Finally, as all active virtues meet in him, so he unites the active or
heroic virtues with the passive and gentle. He is equally the highest
standard of all true martyrdom.

No character can become complete without trial and suffering, and a
noble death is the crowning act of a noble life. Edmund Burke said to
Fox, in the English Parliament: 'Obloquy is a necessary ingredient of
all true glory. Calumny and abuse are essential parts of triumph.' The
ancient Greeks and Romans admired a good man struggling with misfortune
as a sight worthy of the gods. Plato describes the righteous man as one
who, without doing any injustice, yet has the appearance of the greatest
injustice, and proves his own justice by perseverance against all
calumny unto death; yea, he predicts that if such a righteous man should
ever appear, he would be 'scourged, tortured, bound, deprived of his
sight, and, after having suffered all possible injury, nailed on a
post.' No wonder that the ancient fathers saw in this remarkable passage
an unconscious prophecy of Christ. But how far is this ideal of the
great philosopher from the actual reality, as it appeared three hundred
years afterward! The great men of this world, who rise even above
themselves on inspiring occasions, and boldly face a superior army, are
often thrown off their equilibrium in ordinary life, and grow impatient
at trifling obstacles. Only think of Napoleon at the head of his
conquering legions and at the helm of an empire, and the same Napoleon
after the defeat at Waterloo and on the island of St. Helena. The
highest form of passive virtue attained by ancient heathenism or modern
secular heroism is that stoicism which meets and overcomes the trials
and misfortunes of life in the spirit of haughty contempt and unfeeling
indifference, which destroys the sensibilities, and is but another
exhibition of selfishness and pride.

Christ has set up a far higher standard by his teaching, and example,
never known before or since, except in imperfect imitation of him. He
has revolutionized moral philosophy, and convinced the world that
forgiving love to the enemy, holiness and humility, gentle patience in
suffering, and cheerful submission to the holy will of God is the
crowning excellency of moral greatness. 'If thy brother,' he says,
'trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day
turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him.' 'Love
your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you,
and pray for them that despitefully use you and persecute you.' This is
a sublime maxim, truly, but still more sublime is its actual exhibition
in his life.

Christ's passive virtue is not confined to the closing scenes of his
ministry. As human life is beset at every step by trials, vexations, and
hindrances, which should serve the educational purpose of developing its
resources and proving its strength, so was Christ's. During the whole
state of his humiliation he was 'a man of sorrows and acquainted with
grief,' and had to endure 'the contradiction of sinners.' He was poor,
and suffered hunger and fatigue. He was tempted by the devil. His path
was obstructed with apparently insurmountable difficulties from the
outset. His words and miracles called forth the bitter hatred of the
world, which resulted at last in the bloody counsel of death. The
Pharisees and Sadducees forgot their jealousies and quarrels in opposing
him. They rejected and perverted his testimony; they laid snares for him
by insidious questions; they called him a glutton and a winebibber for
eating and drinking like other men, a friend of publicans and sinners
for his condescending love and mercy, a sabbath breaker for doing good
on the sabbath day; they charged him with madness and blasphemy for
asserting his unity with the Father, and derived his miracles from
Beelzebub, the prince of devils. The common people, though astonished at
his wisdom and mighty works, pointed sneeringly at his origin; his own
country and native town refused him the honor of a prophet. Even his
brothers, we are told, did not believe in him, and in their impatient
zeal for a temporal kingdom, they found fault with his unostentatious
proceeding. His apostles and disciples, with all their profound
reverence for his character and faith in his divine origin and mission
as the Messiah, of God, yet by their ignorance, their carnal Jewish
notions, and their almost habitual misunderstanding of his spiritual
discourses, must have constituted a severe trial of patience to a
teacher of far less superiority to his pupils.

To all this must be added the constant sufferings from sympathy with
human misery as it met him in ten thousand forms at every step. What a
trial for him, the purest, gentlest, most tender hearted, to breath more
than thirty years the foul atmosphere of this fallen world, to see the
constant outbursts of sinful passions, to hear the great wail of
humanity borne to his ear upon the four winds of heaven, to be brought
into personal contact with the blind, the lame, the deaf, the paralytic,
the lunatic, the possessed, the dead, and to be assaulted, as it were,
by the concentrated force of sickness, sorrow, grief, and agony!

But how shall we describe his passion, more properly so called, with
which no other suffering can be compared for a moment! There is a lonely
grandeur in it, foreshadowed in the word of the prophet; 'I have trodden
the winepress alone, and of the people there was none with me.' If great
men occupy a solitary position, far above the ordinary level, on the
sublime heights of thought or action, how much more then Jesus in his
sufferings; he, the purest and holiest of beings! The nearer a man
approaches to moral perfection, the deeper are his sensibilities, the
keener his sense of sin and evil and sorrow in this wicked world. Never
did any man suffer more innocently, more unjustly, more intensely, than
Jesus of Nazareth. Within the narrow limits of a few hours we have here
a tragedy of universal significance, exhibiting every form of human
weakness and infernal wickedness, of ingratitude, desertion, injury, and
insult, of bodily and mental pain and anguish, culminating in the most
ignominious death then known among the Jews and Gentiles, the death of a
malefactor and a slave. The government and the people combined against
him who came to save them. His own disciples forsook him; Peter denied
him; Judas, under the inspiration of the devil, betrayed him. The rulers
of the nation condemned him, rude soldiers mocked him, the furious mob
cried: 'Crucify him!' He was seized in the night, hurried from tribunal
to tribunal, arrayed in a crown of thorns, insulted, smitten, scourged,
spit upon, and hung like a criminal and a slave between two robbers and
murderers!

How did Christ bear all these little and great trials of life, and the
death on the cross?

Let us remember first, that, unlike the icy stoics in their unnatural
and repulsive pseudo-virtue, he had the keenest sensibilities and the
deepest sympathies with all human grief, that made him even shed tears
at the grave of a friend and in the agony of the garden, and provide a
refuge for his mother in the last dying hour. But with this truly human
tenderness and delicacy of feeling, he ever combined an unutterable
dignity and majesty, a sublime self-control and imperturbable calmness
of mind. There is a solitary grandeur and majesty in his deepest
sufferings, which forbids a feeling of pity and compassion on our side
as incompatible with the admiration and reverence for his character. We
feel the force of his words to the women of Jerusalem, when they
bewailed him on the way to Cavalry: 'Weep not for me, but weep for
yourselves and your children.' We never hear him break out in angry
passion and violence, although he was at war with the whole ungodly
world. He clearly and fully foresaw and repeatedly foretold his
sufferings to his disciples.

And yet never murmured, never uttered discontent, displeasure, or
resentment. He was never disheartened, discouraged, ruffled, or fretted,
but full of unbounded confidence that all was well ordered in the
providence of his Heavenly Father. His calmness in the tempest on the
lake, when his disciples were trembling on the brink of destruction and
despair, is an illustration of his heavenly frame of mind. All his works
were performed with a quiet dignity and ease that contrasts most
strikingly with the surrounding commotion and excitement. He never asked
the favor, or heard the applause, or feared the threat of the world. He
moved serenely like the sun above the clouds of human passions and
trials and commotions, as they sailed under him. He was ever surrounded
by the element of peace, even in his parting hour in that dark and
solemn night, when he said to his disturbed disciples: 'Peace I leave
with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto
you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.' He was
never what we call unhappy, but full of inward joy, which he bequeathed
to his disciples in that sublimest of all prayers, 'that they might have
his joy fulfilled in themselves.' With all his severe rebuke to the
Pharisees, he never indulged in personalities. He ever returned good for
evil. He forgave Peter for his denial, and would have forgiven Judas, if
in the exercise of sincere repentance he had sought his pardon. Even
while hanging on the cross, he had only the language of pity for the
wretches who were driving the nails into his hands and feet, and prayed
in their behalf: 'Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.'
He did not seek or hasten his martyrdom, like many of the early martyrs
of the Ignatian type, in their morbid enthusiasm and ambitious humility,
but quietly and patiently waited for the hour appointed by the will of
his Heavenly Father.

But when the hour came, with what self-possession and calmness, with
what strength and meekness, with what majesty and gentleness did he pass
through its dark and trying scenes! A prisoner before Pilate, who
represented the power of the Roman empire, he professes himself a king
of truth, and makes the governor tremble before him. Charged with crime
at the tribunal of the high priest, he speaks to him with the majesty
and dignity of the judge of the world. And in the agony of death on the
cross he dispenses a place in paradise to the penitent robber. In the
history of the passion, every word and act are unutterably significant,
from the agony in Gethsemane, when, overwhelmed with the sympathetic
sense of the entire guilt of mankind, and in full view of the terrible
scenes before him--the only guiltless being in the world--he prayed that
the cup might pass from him, but immediately added, 'Not my but thy will
be done,' to the triumphant exclamation on the cross, 'It is finished!'
Even his dignified silence before the tribunal of his enemies and the
furious mob, when 'as a lamb dumb before his shearers he opened not his
mouth,' is more eloquent than any apology. Who will venture to bring a
parallel from the annals of ancient or modern sages, when even a
Rousseau confessed: 'If Socrates suffered and died like a philosopher,
Christ suffered and died like a God!' The passion and crucifixion of
Jesus, like his whole character, stands without a parallel, solitary and
alone in its glory, and will ever continue to be what it has been for
these eighteen hundred years, the most sacred theme of meditation, the
highest exemplar of suffering virtue, the strongest weapon against sin
and Satan, the deepest source of comfort to the noblest and best of men.


SUMMARY--CHRIST'S CHARACTER THE GREATEST MORAL MIRACLE IN HISTORY.

Such was Jesus of Nazareth--a true man in body, soul, and spirit, yet
differing from all men, a character absolutely unique and original, from
tender childhood to ripe manhood moving in unbroken union with God,
overflowing with the purest love to man, free from every sin and error,
innocent and holy, teaching and practising all virtues in perfect
harmony, devoted solely and uniformly to the noblest ends, sealing the
purest life with the sublimest death, and ever acknowledged since as the
one and only perfect model of goodness and holiness! All human greatness
loses on closer inspection; but Christ's character grows more and more
pure, sacred, and lovely, the better we know him.

No biographer, moralist, or artist can be satisfied with any attempt of
his to set it forth. It is felt to be infinitely greater than any
conception or representation of it by the mind, the tongue, and the
pencil of man or angel. We might as well attempt to empty the waters of
the boundless sea into a narrow well, or to portray the splendor of the
risen sun and the starry heavens with ink. No picture of the Saviour,
though drawn by the master hand of a Raphael or Dürer or Rubens--no
epic, though conceived by the genius of a Dante or Milton or Klopstock,
can improve on the artless narrative of the gospel, whose only but
all-powerful charm is truth. In this case certainly truth is stranger
and stronger than fiction, and speaks best itself without comment,
explanation, and eulogy. Here and here alone the highest perfection of
art falls short of the historical fact, and fancy finds no room for
idealizing the real. For here we have the absolute ideal itself in
living reality. It seems to me that this consideration alone should
satisfy the reflecting mind that Christ's character, though truly
natural and human, must be at the same time truly supernatural and
divine.

Even Göthe, the most universal and finished, but at the same time the
most intensely worldly of all modern poets, calls Christ 'the Divine
Man,' the 'Holy One,' and represents him as the pattern and model of
humanity. Thomas Carlyle, the great hero-worshipper, found no equal in
all the range of ancient and modern heroism; he calls his life a
'perfect ideal poem,' and his person 'the greatest of all heroes,' whom
he does not name, leaving 'sacred silence to meditate that sacred
matter.' And Ernest Renan, the celebrated French orientalist and critic,
who views Jesus from the standpoint of a pantheistic naturalism, and
expels all miracles from the gospel history, calls him 'the incomparable
man, to whom the universal conscience has decreed the title of _Son of
God_, and that with justice, since he caused religion to take a step in
advance incomparably greater than any other in the past, and probably
than _any yet to come_;' and he closes his 'Life of Jesus' with the
remarkable concession: 'Whatever may be the surprises of the future,
_Jesus will never be surpassed_. His worship will grow young without
ceasing; his legend will call forth tears without end; his sufferings
will melt the noblest hearts; all ages will proclaim that among the sons
of men there is none born greater than Jesus.'

The whole range of history and fiction furnishes no parallel to such a
character. There never was anything even approaching to it before or
since, except in faint imitation of his example. It cannot be explained
on purely human principles, nor derived from any intellectual and moral
forces of the age in which he lived. On the contrary, it stands in
marked contrast to the whole surrounding world of Judaism and
heathenism, which present to us the dreary picture of internal decay,
and which actually crumbled into ruin before the new moral creation of
the crucified Jesus of Nazareth. He is the one absolute and
unaccountable exception to the universal experience of mankind. He is
the great central miracle of the whole gospel history, and all his
miracles are but the natural and necessary manifestations of his
miraculous person, performed with the same ease with which we perform
our ordinary daily works.

In vain has infidelity, in ever-changing shapes and forms, assailed the
everlasting foundation of this greatest and sublimest character that
ever blessed or will bless the earth. He arises brighter and stronger
from every fiery ordeal of criticism, and stands out to every beholder
as the greatest benefactor of the race and the only Saviour from sin and
ruin.

Yes! he still lives, the Divine Man and incarnate God, on the ever fresh
and self-authenticating record of the Gospels, in the unbroken history
of eighteen centuries, and in the hearts and lives of the wisest and
best of our race. Jesus Christ is the most certain, the most sacred, and
the most glorious of all facts, arrayed in a beauty and majesty which
throws the 'starry heavens above us and the moral law within us' into
obscurity, and fills us truly with ever-growing reverence and awe. He
shines forth with the self-evidencing light of the noonday sun. He is
too great, too pure, too perfect to have been invented by any sinful and
erring man. His character and claims are confirmed by the sublimest
doctrine, the purest ethics, the mightiest miracles, the grandest
spiritual kingdom, and are daily and hourly exhibited in the virtues and
graces of all who yield to the regenerating and sanctifying power of his
spirit and example. The historical Christ meets and satisfies our
deepest intellectual and moral wants. Our souls, if left to their
noblest impulses and aspirations, instinctively turn to him as the
needle to the magnet, as the flower to the sun, as the panting hart to
the fresh fountain. We are made for him, and 'our heart is without rest
until it rests in him.' He commands our assent, he wins our admiration,
he overwhelms us to humble adoration and worship. We cannot look upon
him without spiritual benefit. We cannot think of him without being
elevated above all that is low and mean, and encouraged to all that is
good and noble. The very hem of his garment is healing to the touch; one
hour spent in his communion outweighs all the pleasures of sin. He is
the most precious and indispensable gift of a merciful God to a fallen
world. In him are the treasures of true wisdom, in him the fountain of
pardon and peace, in him the only substantial hope and comfort of this
world and that which is to come. Mankind could better afford to lose the
whole literature of Greece and Rome, of Germany and France, of England
and America, than the story of Jesus of Nazareth. Without him, history
is a dreary waste, an inextricable enigma, a chaos of facts without
meaning, connection, and aim; with him it is a beautiful, harmonious
revelation, the slow but sure unfolding of a plan of infinite wisdom and
love: all ancient history converging to his coming, all modern history
receiving from him his higher life and impulse. He is the glory of the
past, the life of the present, the hope of the future. We cannot even
understand ourselves without him. According to an old Jewish proverb:
'The secret of man is the secret of the Messiah.' He is the great
central light of history as a whole, and at the same time the light of
every soul; he alone can solve the mystery of our being, and fulfil our
intellectual desires after truth, all our moral aspirations after
goodness and holiness, and the longing of our feelings after peace and
happiness.

Not for all the wealth and wisdom of this world would I weaken the faith
of the humblest Christian in his Divine Lord and Saviour; but if, by the
grace of God, I could convert a single sceptic to a child-like faith in
him, who lived and died for me and for all, I would feel that I had not
lived in vain.



APHORISMS.--NO. XV.


'Men,' saith my Lord Bacon, 'think to govern words by their own reason:
but it also happens that words throw back their force upon the
understanding;' and thus, we may justly add, often distort our thoughts,
and lead us to very erroneous conclusions.

This is apparently the case with the word _motive_, in speaking of human
volitions. A motive power in mechanics is one that produces motion; and
hence the application of the word to the occasion or reason of any
particular act of choice, with the all but inevitable fallacy of
confounding the idea of a mechanical force with that of an influence
upon the mind. That there is some analogy must be admitted; but that
there is such similarity as is often assumed, we are obliged to deny.
The almost total difference between a mechanical power and a thought or
desire--between a material and spiritual subject of operation--is too
apt to be left out of the account.



SKETCHES OF AMERICAN LIFE AND SCENERY.

VI.--TO SARANAC AND BACK.


Few indeed are the pleasures that can be compared with the keen
enjoyment of travel in a new and beautiful country, where every sense is
stimulated by the purest and most aromatic of atmospheres, and where
rocks, trees, rivers, lakes, and skies offer every possibility of
combination imaginable under the structural conditions of the region.
The life of the scout and the pioneer is a constant succession of
pleasant surprises and unanticipated adventure; every hilltop promises a
new picture, every dawn and sunset an additional novelty for that
gallery, longer than the Louvre, and fuller than the Vatican, of which
memory holds the key and is sole warden. Hardship and even danger are
enclosed in surroundings so beautiful, so fresh and invigorating, that
they seem only to add zest to the pursuit, to give dignity and
significance to an occupation which might perhaps otherwise be
stigmatized as mere selfish vagabondage. Oh, the freedom of the wild
woods! the rest to the soul of the shadowy forest and flower-strewn
turf! The wind may toss the locks, the sun brown the skin, and the
brambles tear the garments, but there are none to cavil, none to count
the gray hairs or the freckles, or see that said garments are of last
year's fashioning. If the eyes look kindly, the peering squirrels will
be content, and if the voice be gentle, the birds will ask no more,
except, perhaps, a crumb or two from the slender stock of woodsman's
fare. The deer and the trout will not question our philosophy, knowing
instinctively, as we do, that there is a great God who made us all, and
who ever encompasseth us with a love surpassing every created
conception. They will only ask of our good will, and that our absolute
need be the limit of our tax upon their lives. With the sky for roof,
and the beech and the pine for friends and teachers, the body has time
to strengthen, and the conscience and inner self to grow steadily
upright, that they may overtop trifles, rise to the height of heavenly
inspirations, and hence win power to withstand the surging floods of
bewildering human passion. When men meet such souls, they are amazed at
their calmness and simplicity, and dimly guess that the All-Powerful,
through His created universe, has been whispering to them secrets of
strength, perseverance, patience, and charity.

But this subject is boundless as its origin, and we must now to the
particulars of a personal experience, which, if limited, may yet be of
service to others desirous of journeying in the same region.

Having made a thorough acquaintance with the environs of Elizabethtown,
Elsie and I could no longer resist the blandishment of the blue
mountains ever beckoning us westward through the rocky portal of the
Keene Pass. July 13th, at six A.M., we started in the weekly stage for
Saranac, thirty-six miles distant. The morning was bright; a few low
clouds hung about the tops of the higher hills, and the wind blew from
the east, a direction which here, contrary to our experience near the
seaboard, by no means implies rain. So great is the distance of the
Adirondac plateau from the sea, so numerous its ranges, and so great the
elevation of the ridges lying between it and the ocean, that we found
our ordinary weather calculations all come to nought, east winds blowing
for days without a drop of rain, and western breezes bringing clouds
and moisture.

The road to Keene winds along a branch of the Boquet River, on which are
one or two quite pretty falls, with consequent mills; it ascends
continually until it reaches the foot of the steep rocks forming the
Keene Pass. The views back over the Boquet Valley and toward the Green
Mountains of Vermont are very lovely, and those obtained in descending
the western slope of this, the Boquet range, are magnificent. Soon left
behind are the high cliffs and the steep slide, where a gathering
avalanche of rocks and earth swept through a forest, carrying off a
great belt of timber, wherewith to strew the little valley, and block
the road and stream below. The rugged mountains on either hand have been
burnt over, and send up into the blue ether bare, white, foot-enticing
peaks. At the base of the western declivity lies the valley of the East
Branch of the Au Sable, and beyond, the great Adirondac range,
overtopped by Whiteface and Mount Tahawus. We greeted these giants with
due reverence, hoping for a nearer acquaintance, for only their extreme
summits are visible from that point, Whiteface bold and peaked, Tahawus
round and indistinct. The great ridge, hiding all but their heads, is
here jagged or flowing, steep, and dark with spruce and pine. It rises
like an impassable wall; of a clear morning, a frowning barrier of
granite and forest; of a hazy afternoon, the shining, glowing rampart of
some celestial city.

The village of Keene is a straggling collection of dwellings, with an
inn, a post office, and a store or two. It lies in the intervale
bordering the East Branch of the Au Sable, and is twelve miles from
Elizabethtown.

Thus far, our only fellow traveller had been a school girl, going home
for the summer vacation. At Keene our number was increased by the
addition of another damsel, with accompaniment of two hounds, Spart and
Prince, bound for Saranac. When first fastened behind the open wagon
(our stage), they began a vigorous quarrel, which struck us very much as
a matrimonial squabble, both tied, and neither having a fair chance for
a free fight. Our driver, an excellent specimen of the upright and
intelligent man of Northern New York, cracked his whip, increased the
existing merriment by calling out, 'Wal, dogs, hev ye done fightin'?'
and started up the long declivity leading over the Adirondac range,
through Pitch-off Mountain (another pass), to the plains of North Elba.
The hill is a long one, the cliffs of the mountain pass exceedingly
picturesque, and the black tarn under the beetling crags suggestive of
Poe's 'House of Usher.' Long, however, ere we reached this point, Spart
had gnawed through his rope, and was trotting beside the wagon. Our
driver vainly endeavored to refasten him. Although mild of visage, and
apparently good-natured, he showed so formidable a set of teeth, that it
was thought prudent to desist, and trust to his following his companion,
who still trotted along, coughing and choking, and almost stifled by our
own dust, blown after us by the east wind. After this attempt, Spart
evidently played shy of our whole party, and, having raced ahead during
a few miles, finally disappeared in the woods, probably attracted by the
scent of game.

We reached North Elba (twelve miles from Keene) about noon, and there
stopped to dine at Scott's, a place widely and favorably known to
travellers in that section of country. Round the plain of North Elba
tower the very highest peaks of the Adirondacs; Tahawus (Marcy), Golden,
McIntire, and the beautiful gateway of the Indian Pass to the south, and
to the north the scarred sides of Whiteface and the bold forms of the
mountains bordering the Wilmington notch. Descending the plain into the
village, we came to the West Branch of the Au Sable, which rises in the
Indian Pass, and flows past the former dwelling of John Brown. The
little wooden tenement is in full view from the road, and stands in the
midst of the clearing made by old John himself, with the aid of his
sons. His grave is in the garden near the house, beside a huge rock. The
place is of his own selection, and is now visited by many who, while
reprehending the means taken by the gray-haired enthusiast for the
accomplishment of his designs, cannot but rejoice that the final freedom
of every human being within the limits of our country seems so probable
a result of the present struggle. The neighbors--even those of opposing
political creeds--give John Brown an excellent character for integrity
and charitable deeds. His family have all left the region, and are, I
believe, scattered through the great West.

Crossing the Au Sable, we soon came to the tamarac forests and
whortleberry plains, so characteristic of the tract between that river
and the Saranac lakes. We had left the arbor vitæ and the juniper with
the Boquet range, the beech and maple with the valleys and the lower
portions of the Adirondac, and now found ourselves chiefly amid birches,
yellow and white, spruce firs, and interminable stretches of fantastic
tamarac. The hills lower as we reach the lake region proper, and, while
still picturesque, the Saranacs can boast no near mountains such as
skirt Lake Placid and the two 'Ponds of the Au Bable.' Tahawus and
Whiteface are indeed visible from the Saranac waters, but far away, and
shorn of much of their grandeur. The lakes themselves are elevated some
twelve hundred feet, perhaps, above the level of the sea, and the
climate is correspondingly bracing and delightful. There are at Saranac
two inns, at either of which the traveller can make himself very
comfortable. At six o'clock P. M., we found ourselves at the house
immediately upon the lake, and, after an excellent supper, were ready
for a row upon the clear, shining water. The evening was delightful, the
sun just setting, the low, wooded shores (rising beyond into higher
hills) flooded with golden light, the temperature elysian, our oarsman
broad browed, broad shouldered, and athletic, our boat one of the fairy
craft, sharp at both ends, and light as possible, borne by guides over
portages from lake to lake, and the whole scene as placidly beautiful
and reposeful as the most vivid imagination could desire. War,
contention, suffering, even the law, trade, politics, or any acute state
of feeling, seemed incomprehensible excrescences upon the normal state
of man's being, which there, indeed, appeared to be an endless floating
over placid waters, with the tinkling of oars and the even song of birds
for all needful sounds, and those long, low, slanting rays of golden
light forever stealing through half-closed lids, and steeping the nerves
and brain and tired senses in long dreams of peace and quietude--dreams
without the wearisomeness of monotony or the shock of awaking.

Night, however, came at last, and with it forgetfulness; morning, too,
came in due season, and with it, the daily call for active thought and
exertion.

From Saranac, by means of boats, guides, and camping out, delightful
excursions can be made through the lakes, the two Saranacs, Round, Long,
and Racket Lakes, and the Racket River. This region has been much
travelled and often described.

Our faces, however, must be turned eastward, and the following day found
us again in our wagon, _en route_ for Placid Lake. To reach this, we
left the return stage about two miles west of North Elba, and walked
northward two miles through open country and some beautiful woodland,
until we came out upon Bennet's Pond, on whose shore stands the pleasant
farmhouse where we intended to pass the night. The owner and his family
were absent, but we found a smiling little handmaiden, who brought us a
cooling draught, and an antique whaler, who offered to show us the way
to Lake Placid and give us a row.

Placid Lake is a beautiful, clear sheet of water, about five miles long
and two or three wide. It is divided down the centre by three islands,
charmingly wooded. The surrounding mountains are high, and at the
north-easterly end rises Whiteface, nearly, if not quite, 5,000 feet in
height, the lower portion clad in deciduous trees, the middle in spruce,
and the upper rising bare and white, with a great slide of many hundred
feet extending from the top toward the lake, and marking out the steep
pathway by which the ascent must be made. Bennet's Pond is about a mile
and a half long, and half a mile broad. Bennet is a contraction of
Benedict--Benedictus--Blessèd--and never, surely, did blue expanse of
limpid crystal better merit the appellation--Lake of the Blessèd. Its
shores are gently sloping, and beyond the nearer hills rise the giant
summits of the highest peaks. These two sheets of water are within a
quarter of a mile of each other, but have no communication, and are
divided by a ridge of land, chiefly cleared, from whose top the view is
as beautiful as any view from the same elevation to be obtained in
America. To the north lies Lake Placid, with its shining waves, its
islands, and the stately Whiteface; and to the south, the
heaven-reflecting Lake of the Blessèd, crowned by the noble dome of
Tahawus, and his splendid retinue, Colden, McMartin, McIntire, Wallface,
Dial Mountain, Nipple Top, and Moriah. To the east and west are wooded
hills, completing the panorama, and enclosing a scene as enchanting as
any single one the writer ever looked upon.

The following day our host, who had meantime returned, drove us down
through the Wilmington Pass to Upper Jay, and thence through Keene to
the Keene Flats, a distance in all of between twenty and twenty-five
miles.

The Wilmington Pass, though not so rough and rugged as its far-famed
rival, the Indian Pass, is far more beautiful, and quite as majestic.
The great cliffs overhanging the road, and the swift Au Sable, the fine
rapids, and the fall of over a hundred feet, the noble views of
Whiteface and the dark, steep peaks rising round it, all combine to
render this one of the most impressive mountain chasms we have ever
visited. After passing through the defile, we left the West Branch of
the Au Sable, and crossed a low ridge to Upper Jay, where we again came
upon the East Branch, and ploughed our way through heavy sands to Keene,
where we dined, and whence the road up the valley to the Keene Flats
becomes firmer and less tedious. The way was bordered by rich fields of
grass and grain, potatoes in abundance, flax in pale azure flower, and
acres blue with the beautiful campanula or harebell. At the inn in Keene
we met our rebellious friend Spart, who, having tired of his chase, had
returned to his former headquarters.

Toward the 'Flats,' five miles above Keene, the intervale grows
narrower, and the bordering mountains become loftier, wilder, and
correspondingly more grand. Dix's Peak towers above the southern
extremity of the valley.

We passed the night at a comfortable farmhouse, there being no inn at
the 'Flats,' and the following morning were driven back to
Elizabethtown, with the increased store of information, health, and
admiration for the Adirondac country we had amassed during our three and
a half days' scouting excursion.


MOUNT TAHAWUS.

The beginning of August found us once more housed under the neat roof of
our farmer host at the Keene Flats, and not only Elsie and myself, but
also sundry friends, drawn thither by our praise of the beauty of the
land and the fineness of the air. There were the brilliant M. W. C.,
learned in all philosophical lore, and with feeling and imagination
sufficient to furnish out half a dozen poets; the staid but energetic M.
T., whose portrait in our gallery occupies, a conspicuous place in the
small niche devoted to model women; the gay and witty A. I., whose blue
eyes imperil so many hearts, but whose frank, keen speech quickly puts
to rout all popinjays and useless danglers; also E. B. C. (our
Diogenes), a faithful knight from Caissa's thoughtful train, a rapid
walker and sharp thinker; and last, a merry little four-year-old, whose
quaint sayings are heeded and treasured as if emanations from Delphos or
Dodona. Our Orpheus had gone to Saranac.

Our purpose was to visit the Au Sable Ponds, with the waterfalls in
their neighborhood, and to ascend Mount Tahawus; but alas! for weather!
The haze settled down so thickly that the nearest hills were
undistinguishable. A violent thunder storm came, but brought no relief.
Desperate, we thought we might at least see the ponds and the falls, and
early one hazy morning started off with strong wagon, stout horses, and
careful driver. The distance to the Lower Pond is seven miles--three
excellent, and four so execrable that nearly all our party preferred
walking to the jolting over rocks and stumps and ploughing through rich,
deep forest mould, dignified by the name of driving. This is a new road,
just opened, and the intention is, we believe, to work it into better
shape as rapidly as possible. The intervale ceases at the end of the
first three miles, where the road leaves the Au Sable and winds up a
hill to the last clearing, whence the view to the blasted, riven sides
of Mount Moriah, towering opposite, is wonderfully grand. Thousands of
acres of bare rock, scarred and lined, and apparently nearly
perpendicular, form the western slope of that gaunt giant. The road soon
after passes the cabin of one of the oldest pioneers of the region,
crosses Gill Brook, on which are some charming cascades, and, through a
noble forest of beech, basswood, maple, birch, and some evergreens,
finds its way to the lofty shores of the Lower Pond. Arrived there, the
haze was thicker than ever, giving to view only the sparkling waters at
our feet, and the nearest mountains, whose craggy sides overhang the
lake. To cap the climax, a fishing party had carried off both boats, so
that a nearer acquaintance with the Lower Pond was impossible, and the
Upper could not be seen at all--these ponds forming no exception to the
general Adirondac rule, that any sheet of water navigable for boats
requires no road upon its bank. And indeed, a road round this Lower Pond
would be a considerable undertaking, the shores are so steep and high,
the rocks often rising perpendicularly from the water. Crossing the
great dam at the outlet, our guide led us through tangled patches of
magnificent wild raspberries, 'through brake and through briar,' to the
opening of a narrow gorge through which poured a small stream. Climbing
up over the rocks and bowlders, we soon reached the end of the chasm,
where we were enchanted by the spectacle of the most fairy-like and
peculiar waterfall we had ever beheld. The Cascade Brook here falls over
a precipice of about 150 feet. The little stream at this point makes a
right-angled turn, and thus is built up an opposing wall of equal
height. The chasm is so deep and narrow, that the water, descending in a
silvery veil, seems flowing from the clouds. A heavy fringe of trees
bordering the top, adds to the mystery and the apparent elevation. The
campanula, as is usual with this delicate blossom, hangs out its blue
bella and slender foliage from every jutting cornice and earth-filled
cranny. Below, the water has worn away a series of steep, narrow steps,
and comes leaping and foaming down, as if a magic wand had touched the
rocks, and at each touch a springing fountain had gushed forth.

On our way back to the 'Flats,' we went a mile off the main road, to
visit another fall on Roaring Brook. The precipice here is some 250 feet
in height. A great slide has bared the rock for many yards on either
side of the fall, which has worn deep grooves for its passage, and
clings to the face of the mountain, as if it feared to lose itself amid
the savagery of the surrounding desolation. Here, as in all the
neighboring region, are plainly visible the terrible effects of the
great freshet of October 1st, 1856. We were told that, in the vicinity
of this fall, neither the heavy rain nor the rushing waters could for a
time be heard, only the rattling and battering of stones, as if the
Titans had again taken to pelting the poor earth with whatever of rock
and bowlder they could lay their hands upon. The State dam at the outlet
of the lower Au Sable broke down, and the freed lake rushed out through
the valley, over the meadows, carrying away bridges, dams, mills,
houses, and whole fields of earth, with their crops. The Au Sable River
rose three feet in fifteen minutes, and many persons perished before aid
could reach them. Bowlders, rocks, trees, stumps, and timber were
whirled along by the boiling flood. Bowlders of six feet in diameter
were afterward found lying twenty feet above the bed of a brook where
trout had been caught before the freshet. They had been brought down
stream some forty rods, and piled one above another. The effects of the
rise were felt all the way to the mouth of the river, the high stone
bridge at Keeseville being the only one on the whole course left
standing, and that, to this day, bearing a stone inscription marking the
almost incredible height to which the water rose on that eventful first
of October. The inhabitants of the region sued the State for damages;
but as the dam had been constructed in consequence of a petition of
sundry of those inhabitants, for the purpose of running logs down the
river at all seasons, the court decided that the State was not
responsible for the consequences. John's Brook, which flows into the Au
Sable near the farmhouse at which we stayed, bears wild marks of this
desolating freshet; indeed, one can scarcely credit the fact that the
pretty little stream and smoothly purling river could ever have met in
such desperate conflict as is evidenced by the scars and rifts still
existing near their confluence.

This John's Brook, by the way, is the shortest route up Mount Tahawus,
the entire distance from the 'Flats' being only ten miles. As the
greater number of visitors, however, desire to see the Au Sable Ponds
_en passant_, no path has been 'bushed out,' and that mode of ascent is
practicable only for hunters or woodsmen familiar with the region.

At length a 'wind blew out of the north, chilling and killing' that
terrible haze, and rendering the prospect of a distant view at least
possible. Tahawus loomed up before the mind's eye clear and majestic.
Such an invitation being irresistible, the little party were soon ready
for their journey, said party consisting of Elsie, E. B. C., and Lucy
D., with three guides--an old pioneer, short, slight, weather-beaten,
and sun-browned, a younger aspirant for scouting honors, tall, handsome,
and athletic, and a novice, making his first ascent of the kingly
mountain, but offering a pair of broad shoulders that promised to do
good service in the bearing of the necessary packs. Each guide carried
his own axe, blanket, and provisions, and, in addition, his share of our
united baggage, which consisted of a thick Mexican blanket, four shawls,
two heavy and two lighter, a woollen cap, a water-proof cloak with hood,
one overcoat, two loaves of bread, a small piece of salt pork, a little
can of butter, two or three pounds of maple sugar, a little bag of
cornmeal, two pounds of crackers, the same quantity of chocolate, some
tea, a small tin pail, a frying pan, three tin saucers, three knives,
forks, and spoons. A pint of brandy and the same of whiskey were carried
in flasks to meet emergencies of cold or weariness, and a canteen for
water was also taken to serve as a pitcher, and to bear that refreshing
element to heights where no springs could be hoped for. It will be seen
that we had reduced our appliances to the smallest quantity compatible
with proper warmth and nourishment, and the possibility of being
detained out several days, perhaps, by stress of weather. We had at
first thought india-rubber blankets indispensable, but having been
advised against their use as conducive to rheumatism, and, besides,
finding them difficult to procure, we started without, and certainly
never missed them. The garments worn on such an excursion should, as far
as practicable, all be woollen, and the shoes moderately thick, but not
too heavy. A light umbrella will be found a useful addition in case of
sudden rain or very hot sun. Each person will carry such toilet
arrangements as he or she may deem necessary, only let them be as light
as possible, every ounce on such a tramp soon becoming a matter of
serious consequence.

We left the farmhouse at half past six in the morning, and drove in the
wagon as far as the road was good, three miles, namely, to the last
cabin on the way to the Au Sable Ponds. There our guides shouldered
their packs, and our party was increased by the addition of 'Uncle
David,' another ancient pioneer, who was to row us up the Lower Pond in
a large Albany-built boat kept by him for that purpose. He talks of
building a moderate-sized tenement at the lower end of the lake, for the
accommodation of travellers. I doubt not it would be well patronized.

Now, our Diogenes does not use the lantern of his wit so much to seek
out a thoroughly honest man, as to discover the honesty and good will
pertaining to each individual specimen of the _genus homo_. The
consequence is a series of pleasant results, people usually showing him
whatever of good may be in them, and esteeming him proportionately. As
Uncle David was discussing the amount of furniture required for his
intended caravansary, he paused to ask if feather beds would be thought
a necessity. Diogenes replied that 'every goose needing feathers could
bring them on his own back,' which shaft _took_ immensely, as proved by
the loud guffaws and low chuckles that echoed through the beautiful
forest whose branches shaded us from the August sun. _His_ reputation as
a wit of the first water was firmly established, and every pun and jest
thereafter succeeding was crowned by the halo of this first success.

The four miles to the Pond were speedily and gayly accomplished, and
there we took boat to cross the lake, Uncle David rowing _us_, and the
good-humored, broad-shouldered 'novice,' the scow to be used for our
return, in case we were not back at the time then supposed probable.
'Bill's' rowing was the source of much merriment, the strokes proving
powerful, but the course amusingly devious. So little does it take to
entertain people in the woods, who have laid aside grim behavior and
questioning philosophies, and have for the nonce become veritable
children of nature, knowing that this earth is beautiful and that God is
good, and caring for little else.

The Lower Au Sable Pond is from one to two miles long, its banks are
craggy, steep, and high, the general impression grand and somewhat
desolate. The dam, by raising the water, has destroyed many of the trees
along the shore, and filled the upper portion with driftwood, which
blocks the channel and is altogether unsightly. There is a winter road,
a mile in length, cut through the forest from the Lower to the Upper
Pond. This road is so overgrown that in summer it is a mere pathway. The
Upper Pond reached, we again embarked in a light boat, our young athlete
rowing. Uncle David had quitted us at the upper lake. This row was not
necessary, the path to Tahawus, or Mount _Mercy_, as our guides called
it, turning off at a right angle from the lower end of the upper lake,
but was taken to show us the inexpressibly lovely Upper Pond, and
transport us to certain bark shanties presumed to offer excellent
facilities for dining purposes. The lake is about two miles long, and
one broad. Its shores are gently sloping, and wooded with splendid trees
of the primeval forest, beech, birch, maple, and spruce. The soil is
excellent, and the wild flowers and mosses are luxuriant and abundant.
The steep rocks circling the Lower Pond are visible through a cleft, the
singular, jagged ridge known as the Gothic Mountains is in full view,
the sharp peak of the Haystack lifts its bare top far into the skies,
the North River Mountain crowns the south, and graceful waving lines of
wooded hill complete the circle; the clear water gives back the most
wonderful reflections, and those 'ladies of the forest,' the white
birches, could ask no more transparent mirror. There is nothing to mar
the effect of the whole, no driftwood, no burnt patches, no
ragged-looking clearing--all is harmonious and entirely satisfactory.

Our dinner was a light one. Indeed, our experience was, that while we
required a substantial breakfast and supper, but little was needed in
the middle of the day, and that little better cold than warm.

Returning in the boat to the end of the lake, we struck into the pathway
to Tahawus, a track of hunters, marked by sable traps; and here began
work in earnest. The pioneer took the lead, sweating and grumbling under
his load, for the day was warm, and the sun but little over an hour past
the meridian. Fortunately, he was not a very rapid walker, making only
from two to two and a half miles per hour, so there was no danger of
fatigue to any of the party, except to our Diogenes, who measures
weariness by time and not by miles, walking more easily eight miles in
two hours than in four.

On and up we went, ascending a gentle declivity until we came to a brook
said to be two miles from the boat landing. There we cooled, rested, and
drank of the fresh, clear water, before commencing the steep ascent of
the Bartlett Mountain, a spur of the Haystack, needful to be crossed
before reaching the actual foot of Tahawus. The ascent is some three
quarters of a mile, and the descent on the other side about as far, but
not nearly so steep or considerable. Thus, three and a half miles of
walking, through a dense forest, with no view out except an occasional
glimpse of the Haystack, the Skylight, or the side of Tahawus, brought
us from the lake to the basin of the 'Mount Marcy stream.' The sun was
still high in the heavens, and the bark shanties in the 'basin' having
fallen in, rendering the construction of new ones imperatively
necessary, we concluded to push on and build our camp somewhat nearer
the top.

Descending the Bartlett Mountain, we made our first acquaintance with
the renowned 'black fly' of the Adirondacs. We had heard so much of this
pest, and seen so little of him, that we began to think his existence
somewhat mythical, in short, a traveller's tale, invented by men to keep
women from venturing beyond the well-beaten track of ordinary
journeying. At this, our second halt, however, he assaulted us so
vigorously that we were glad to take refuge in the smoke of a _smudge_
our guides had lost no time in making. For the benefit of the
uninitiated, we may here explain that a smudge is a fire of leaves or
sticks slightly dampened to make a denser smoke, and intended as a
safeguard against the attacks of black flies, midges, and mosquitoes,
the two latter nuisances appearing in the evening, when the flies have
finished their day's work. We saw the creatures, and found them somewhat
troublesome (especially when, later in the day, they insisted upon
spreading in with bread and butter), but suffered no pain or even
inconvenience from their bite. This may have been owing to the lateness
of the season, or to the non-inflammatory condition of our blood. Pests
they are said to be, and doubtless are; but we think their general
prevalence has been exaggerated, and they will be found chiefly beside
watercourses, near lakes, and on damp, marshy ground. Fishermen are
especially annoyed by them. If we intended to camp out for the mere
pleasure of that kind of life, we would choose the season when the flies
are supposed to have disappeared; but if we had any special object in
view, such as the ascent of some particular mountain, or the sight of
any remarkable natural feature of the land, we would not suffer
ourselves, at any season, to be deterred by fear of the flies. Certain
districts and certain conditions of atmosphere are doubtless especially
favorable to their development, but the refuge, a thick smudge, is
always at hand, or, if that be objected to, the traveller can try the
recipe of an old hunter at the Adirondac Iron Works (where the creatures
are said to be particularly rampant), namely, a coating of grease mixed
with essence of penny-royal. We fear we would prefer the results of a
vigorous attack to the use of this latter safeguard; but no one knows
what he may do until he is well tried.

A short distance above the 'basin' we came to a final halt, in a
splendid spruce forest, and near a little stream, that necessary
accompaniment of a camping ground. It was feared lest the season was so
far advanced that the spruce bark would no longer peel; but our tall
young aspirant speedily tested the question by a few vigorous,
well-directed strokes of his axe, and soon a great circle of bark, six
feet high and nine feet in breadth, stood ready for use. Five other
pieces, rather less in size, were found sufficient to furnish the sides
and roof of our hut, which was made by cutting down two stout young
saplings to supply the crotched stakes for the triangular front, and a
third, to serve as ridge pole, extending back into the gently sloping
bank of dry turf covered with dead spruce leaves. We were a mile and a
half from the top of Tahawus, and had entered the great belt of spruce
forest encircling the middle regions of the mountain; deciduous trees,
with the exception of a few birches, had already been left behind. Round
these stakes were arranged the great layers of bark, making a perfectly
water-tight cabin, with open doorway, and large enough to give
comfortable shelter to as many as four persons. The enclosed space was
then covered with soft moss, and a thick layer of spruce twigs laid
wrong side up. Over this spicy flooring we spread our gayly-striped
blanket, and then sat down within our substantial wigwam to enjoy the
blaze and crackle of the bright fire of great logs that had been kindled
a few feet from the entrance.

A similar edifice, somewhat less imposing as to size and detail, was
then constructed for the use of the guides. These operations employed
our three men with their axes the greater part of two hours. Supper was
the next matter under consideration, and was deftly prepared by 'Sid,'
the aspirant, who proved himself an excellent cook. Our bill of fare
consisted of hasty pudding (corn mush), eaten with butter and maple
sugar (a dish for a king, and therefore well suited to sundry of the
sovereign people, only Elsie and I, having no vote, cannot in any sense
be called sovereign), bread and butter, crackers, and toast. Our guides,
in addition, ate a slice of raw pork. Diogenes tried it, but pronounced
it rather too much like candles to be very palatable south of Labrador
or Kamtschatka.

Supper over, the sun had set, and the only work that remained for the
twilight was the gathering of the fuel to feed the fires during the
coming night.

Daylight faded away, the moon rose, and the gay chat by the fireside
being exhausted, a silence, profound, and unbroken save by the crackling
flames, fell upon the quiet, gray old forest. By and by the fire died
down, and not a single sound could be heard, not the rustle of a bough,
the tinkling of the stream, or the stirring of any forest creature. The
moon sailed over the treetops, and a ghostly dreaminess lulled every
sense, not to sleep, but to languid repose. Fatigue, thus far, there had
been none, but physical and mental excitement plenty, and hence the
writer's sleep during her first night of camping out lasted about one
half hour. She watched the careful guides, how each one rose once during
the short night to feed the fires, the elder one alert, the two younger
drowsy and but half awake; her mind wandered with Humboldt and Bonpland
to South America, with Dr. Kane to the Arctic zone, with Winthrop over
the Rocky Mountains, with Dr. Livingstone to Central Africa, and with
Father Huc to Tartary and Thibet. The busy, confined life of a city
seemed an absurdity, the woods the only rational place for human beings
to dwell in, and spruce boughs the only bed suitable to the dignity of
mankind.

Morning broke, and with the dawn the guides were up preparing
breakfast. Bill of fare: Salt pork, first parboiled to extract the
brine, then drained off and fried crisp, bread and butter, toast,
crackers, and tea, with maple sugar, but without milk. Our little tin
pail served alike to draw water, boil hasty pudding, and make tea. But
although the day had dawned and the sun risen, the light was feeble, and
the elder guide shook his head ominously.

'Indeed,' said he, 'it won't be much use to go on up, for the Haystack
looks so blue that _durn'd_ haze must have come back again, and you'll
have no view from _Mercy_ to-day.'

'Well, it can't be helped, but we'll try it anyhow!' was the unanimous
response.

We were a mile and a half from the top of Tahawus, having already
entered the great belt of spruce encircling the middle regions of the
mountain, and having left behind all deciduous trees except a few
birches. The forest here is especially grand, the original wood still
remaining, tall, wide of girth, dark, and sturdy. The girdled trees
standing near our camp looked at us reproachfully in the morning light;
ten giants doomed to death to furnish a night's covering to six pigmies!
Our fires, too, were they safe, or might they not run along the
inflammable turf and perhaps destroy acres of beautiful, precious
timber?

But time pressed, 'the dishes were washed,' and we must away. All the
heavy articles were left in the camp, and nothing taken up with us
except a light lunch, a canteen of water, and the shawls needed to
protect against the winds on the top. The little stream crossed, the
ascent began quite steeply. A half mile of walking brought us out of the
wood, and to the foot of the great slide, a bare, sloping rock, some
thousand feet in height. Up this slide, either on the rock, or beside
it, through the bushes and the spruce trees, which soon become low and
shrubby, leads the pathway, not difficult, but somewhat fatiguing, from
its steepness. Indeed, the whole way up is so excellent one wonders so
high a mountain can be ascended with so little exertion or actual
climbing. In places, the moss is some, six inches thick, and the feet,
worn with stony ways, sink into it as if there to find lasting repose;
but _Excelsior_ is the cry, and the top of the slide the next goal to be
won.

Meantime the haze had been turning into mist, and great clouds were
gathering on the bare, rocky head of the mountain. The slide passed, the
path winds through dense, low spruce growth, and, the last steep cliffs
gradually overcome, the extreme limit of tree vegetation (four thousand
eight hundred feet) is passed, and the remaining rocky slope offers no
growth except a few hardy plants, such as sandwort, grasses, and several
varieties of moss and lichen.

The summit is broad, and, although in part composed of broken rocks, is
quite compact in structure. Its general form is rounded and dome-like.

But the view?

Here we were among the clouds, the wind blowing freshly, and the mists
sweeping past, obscuring every object below. In this wind lay our hope,
and scarcely less in the mists, for they might be the means of
dispersing the haze. There went a rift, a patch of blue sky--and there a
bit of green mountain! Then again all was leaden, damp, and cold. We
seemed to have reached the Ultima Thule, to be the sole living creatures
in some far-away corner of an earth gone back to chaos and mysterious
twilight. Again a break, and again appeared a stretch of dark
fir-covered mountain tops, an avalanche-riven peak, a bright, green
field, or a corner of some far-away blue water. This hide-and-go-seek
between landscape and mist lasted some half hour, when the clouds all
rolled away, and left us with bright sunlight and the most glorious view
our eyes had ever rested upon. The extreme distance was still hazy, but
the nearer wilderness of forest and mountain was wild and grand enough
to have satisfied the most fastidious. The elder guide, who had stood
some dozen times on the summit, missed the bits of Lake Champlain and
some dim outlines of hills and waters that ought to have been visible,
but we were quite content with the sharp ridge of the Haystack and its
deep chasm, the bold and beautiful lines of the Gothic Mountains, the
stern, scarred face of Moriah, the distant, still cloud-capped Dix's
Peak, the pleasant valley of the Au Sable, the Camel's Hump, the Schroon
Mountains, the Boreas Waters, Mud and Clear Ponds, the hills about Lake
George, Mounts Seward and Sandanona, Lake Sanford, Mounts McIntire,
McMartin, Golden, Whiteface, Bennet's Pond, the plains of North Elba,
the Skylight, with its singular rock whence is derived its name, and an
infinity of peaks of every possible form, all gathered about us as doing
homage to the stately monarch, the comely and benignant giant, Tahawus.

The sun was warm, and, sheltered by a rock to screen us from the west
wind, we found a single shawl all-sufficient covering. Diogenes produced
from his capacious pocket sundry lemons, which, added to some maple
sugar, a block of chocolate, and a few crackers, furnished a delightful
repast. We had reached the top of the mountain about nine o'clock. By
eleven the clouds again began to thicken, and grew so dark upon their
under edges that we feared rain. McIntire had collected a murky company
that threatened with the rumble of heavenly artillery. Wishing to
descend the slide before a coming rain should render it slippery, we
took a last look, and hastened away down the rocky slope, through the
shrubby spruces, to the top of the slide, where great stones, flung down
the bare, sloping rock, bounded and rebounded until they plashed into
the marshy pool, one thousand feet below.

Stopping only long enough at our camp to gather up our 'traps,' and to
inscribe its name, 'Tahawus,' with a tiny sketch from Elsie, and a chess
problem from E. B. C., upon the 'barked' side of a spruce, we hurried
down to the 'Mount Marcy stream,' over the Bartlett Mountain, on to the
Upper Pond. The thunder rumbled all around us, and we had several light
showers. Just as we reached the lake, the storm burst in all its fury.
By the aid of our shawls and umbrellas we managed to keep dry until a
lull came and we could row to the bark shanties, where we purposed
passing the night. It was only half past three, and we might have
returned to the 'Flats' that evening, but we did not care to walk
through the wet woods in the rain, and, besides, desired a still further
acquaintance with the beautiful Upper Pond.

The three bark huts on the shore of the lake had been recently erected
and used by a hunting and fishing party. They proved perfectly water
tight, and a bright fire of green logs soon dried all dampness out of
our garments. Our supper that night was quite elaborate, both pork and
hasty pudding entering into its composition. The rain continued to
descend, and pattered softly as we disposed ourselves to rest.

That repose was sweet and unbroken, save by a characteristic 'Te-he-he,'
and 'Good morning, good morning!' uttered in the high but feeble voice
of the elder guide as he came to mend the decaying fire. A reference to
our watches showed the hour to be but one past midnight. It must have
been a profound yearning for human sympathy that had induced our
courteous and considerate guide thus to awaken us. Sleep, however, soon
again took up her broken threads, and so firmly reknit their ravelled
edges, that the web needed the morning dew and the approaching glories
of a brilliant sunrise once more to break and give freedom to the
prisoned senses.

Our pioneer, who loved every peak and pond in the neighborhood with the
affection of a discoverer, took advantage of the charming morning to row
us all round the lake, to show us the pretty inlet with its beaver dam,
and help us gather the singular leaves of the pitcher plant, and the
beautiful, fragrant white water lilies riding at anchor in the lucent
stream.

We soon after took up our line of march for the Lower Pond, where we
found 'Uncle David,' with his sturdy wife and pretty, chubby children,
awaiting our arrival. Rowing rapidly down the lake, we took our last
Mount Marcy lunch beside the outlet, and, early in the afternoon,
returned to the Flats. The time devoted to the excursion was thus a
little over two and a half days. Going and returning we had driven six
miles, rowed four miles (exclusive of our visits to the Upper Pond), and
walked somewhat over twenty-one. There had been no fatigue and no
difficult climbing. Indeed, it would be no very serious matter to go one
day and return the next. And hence we advise all travellers in that
region with sound lungs, moderate strength, and any love for forest life
and magnificent scenery, to make the ascent. They will assuredly bring
home with them a host of pleasant memories, and many new and enchanting
pictures for that precious gallery already mentioned.



TIDINGS OF VICTORY.


  When David's winning son rebelled,
    They smote the traitor low,
  And thought the monarch would rejoice
    At riddance of his foe.

  But in his chamber all alone
    That kingly head was bowed,
  And for the erring Absalom
    His father wept aloud.

  The ministers astonished stood
    At such a burst of grief!
  The traitor's death alone could bring
    Their sovereign sure relief.

  Back to their tents in sullen gloom
    The faithful warriors flee;
  While still he cried, 'My son! my son!
    Would I had died for thee!'

  My country's wilful erring sons,
    Disloyal men, but brave,
  Such tears of anguish now she sheds
    Above the traitor's grave!

  Amid the pealing notes of joy
    For glorious victory won,
  Is heard Columbia's piercing cry,
    'O Absalom, my son!'

  Ye faithful men whose crimson blood
    In her defence is shed,
  Upbraid her not if thus she weep
    Above the guilty dead!

  Her noble heart is true to you,
    But generous as brave,
  She mourns in royal grief apart
    For those she could not save.



THE ESTHETICS OF THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL.


It behooves every man, toiling along this dusty roadway of life, to
seize upon something which he may study and elaborate, that at the end
of his journey he may look back and content himself it has not been
utterly in vain to himself and his fellow pilgrims. A man with a mania,
or, as the Greeks have it, a man with a _madness_, is the true
world-advancer. This madness, when cultured, ripens into talent; if
original and inborn, we call it genius, and the subtile anatomists of
the French schools prove it by telling us that the brains of geniuses
are diseased. The healthy oyster ministers only to the palate. It is the
diseased oyster that secretes the pearl for Miss Shoddy's necklace. It
is the diseased brain that shines through the ages, lights men on to new
epochs in knowledge, and advances the race to the millennial perfection.
Immortal Jean Paul, picturing himself in Schoppe, knew this. For what is
all of Schoppe's eloquent and matchless buffoonery, compared with his
wise oracles, in the mad conflicts with his other 'I,' whom he saw in
the mirror of his diseased brain?

Therefore, let every man have his madness, to which he may give his
leisure and his thoughtful hours. Let it grow upon him, until it becomes
a strong, controlling, natural element, as Mozart grew into music and
Haydon into painting, and is ingrained into his very habit and method of
life; for it is only thus and then he becomes a master, fitted to lead
the van in the world's march. Only, let it be a praise-worthy madness,
and one the development of which wilt secure for himself some new fund
of knowledge, and add to the store of his fellow men.

It was somewhat in this vein I looked upon a dingy skilling species,
with its rudely crossed hammers--a rough coin, bold, sturdy, and rigid
as the old Norse character itself which formed the initial of my
cabinet--a cabinet which has given to me new ideas of the low-browed
Roman and elegant Greek; has admitted me to the arcana of their
fascinating mythology; has whispered strange tales of a mummy's perfumed
sleep in the shadow of the awful, eternal Sphynx; has taken me to the
fall of Grenada, and, bridging over the dark lapse of the ages, has
emerged with the resurrection of art into the bloody days of early
English history--the grim Puritanic times, when good old John Hull, the
mintmaster, regulated the finances of the colonies, and filled his own
pockets with pine-tree shillings and sixpences; the horrors of Danton
and Marat; marking faithfully each historic change from orient to
Occident, and culminating in that latest triumph of the engraver's
cunning skill--the Philadelphia Sanitary Fair medal, commemorating for
our children and children's children the magnificent benefactions of the
people and the self-devotion of the Commissions--Christian and
Sanitary--the angels of mercy and charity, scattering blessings in the
furrows of war.

The _utile_ and the _dulce_ of the study of numismatics are shown in
many ways. Caraccio, Aretine, and Raphael studied the figures on the old
oboli and drachmas. So did Le Brun. Rubens was the most conscientious
coin and medal gatherer of his time, and applied them sedulously to the
furtherance of his divine gifts. Petrarch found time between his sonnets
to Laura to make the first classified collection on record, which he
presented to the emperor of Germany, with his well-known and remarkable
letter. Alphonso, king of Naples, visited all parts of Europe gathering
coins in an ivory casket. The splendid Cosmo de' Medici commenced a
cabinet which formed the nucleus of the Florentine collection. Matthias
Corvinus, king of Hungary, made a cabinet, and Francis I. of France laid
the foundation of the Paris collection--the finest in the world. All
artists recognize the value of coins, medals, and medallions. From them
they get the model faces and heads of the Greek and Roman, the copies of
lost statues, the folds of the chlamys and the graceful sweep of the
toga, the eagles and ensigns, rams and trophies, the altars, idols, and
sacrifices, the Olympian games, and the instruments of music,
mathematics, and mechanics. They reveal the secrets of a thousand
antiquated names and ceremonies, which but for the engraver's chronicle
must have been utterly lost.

Coins throw additional light upon history. They illuminate the dark
passages, clear away the obscurities, and bridge over the gaps. Hugo, in
'Les Miserables,' says men solidified their ideas in architecture before
the printed page came from the brain of Faust. He might have added, they
wrote their histories upon these bits of gold, silver, iron, brass, and
bronze. Vaillant wrote the chronicles of the kings of Syria from a jar
of medals, as Cuvier would build up the mastodon and give you the
monster's habits from a tooth or a tibia. The Roman denarii give the
best idea of Cæsar's well in the forum. The Epidaurian coins with the
snake of Æsculapius tell in brief characters how the Roman senate sent
an embassy to the great father of medicine to come and heal them of the
plague. The migration of the Phocian colony to Asia Minor is succinctly
told in the [Greek: phôchê], or seal, which followed the early Mayflower
stamped upon one of the earliest of the Grecian coins. The late coins of
the Grecian series, with the portraits of Alexander, Ptolemy, Seleucus,
Lysimachus, and others, have lent to the historian a fresh and life-like
picture of those stern days, and have been silent but incontrovertible
witnesses of the truth of the records which have come down to us.
Cymbeline, of Shakspeare, dates back to the Cunobelin of an ancient
Saxon coin, struck before Boadicea's time. Who would have known of the
Grecian domination in Bactria, long after Alexander's time, but for a
casual traveller who found the fact, together with a lost language, upon
a series of coins unearthed in that part of Asia? The coins of Alexander
fix the capture of Egypt; those of Vespasian, the capture of Judea; and
those of Trajan, the capture of Parthia. They were the 'brief
chroniclers of the time'--Stantonian bulletins, announcing each fresh
conquest.

The coins of the ancient day--for our modern productions can hardly
claim the credit--blend artistic grace and beauty. Upon them art made
its first and some of its best essays. A cabinet of Grecian and Roman
coins is a compact history of art from its inception to its meridian in
the culmination of Grecian splendor--and since that time, if we may
believe Ruskin, we only approximate, or what is worse, degrade. The
gradual decline of art and the decay of the empire are traceable on the
Roman series. You may follow the downward steps, until it becomes nearly
extinct, to revive, after a period of stagnation, in a new feeling in
the quaint but strong and rugged Gothic, the beautiful development of
which may be seen in the coinage of modern Europe from the fifth to the
fifteenth century. The Farnesian Hercules, the Venus de' Medici, the
Apollo Belvidere, and the famous equestrian Marcus Aurelius make their
appearance upon the ancient medals. Undoubtedly many of the magnificent
designs of Grecian medals in particular are but the types of Protogenes
and Apelles, as Houdin's model cast of Washington has been photographed,
as it were, upon the Wright medal. The grand Byzantine school of art is
nowhere better brought out than on the coins of that period. The
details of Constantine's coins are found in the ivory dyptics and those
splendidly illuminated Gospel vellums which art-despising monks kneeled
upon from the seventh to the tenth century, and which art-loving monks,
even in the middle of the nineteenth century, used in the decoration of
their monastery halls at Mount Athos.

I come to a phase in the study of numismatics which to many will seem
paradoxical--the romance of coins--and pick out here and there a few
incidents, which I shall string together, not heeding closely
chronological sequence.

One of the saddest pictures in all history is the first mention that is
made of money. Sarah was dead, and Abraham was sojourning among
strangers in a strange land. He mourned for his wife, and stood up
before the sons of Heth, and begged of them to intercede with Ephron,
the Hittite, for the cave of Machpelah, as a burial place. Ephron
liberally offered him the cave and the field, but the patriarch insisted
upon payment; whereupon the Hittite answered: 'My lord, hearken unto me;
the land is worth four hundred shekels of silver; what is that betwixt
me and thee? Bury, therefore, thy dead.' Abraham weighed the 'four
hundred shekels of silver current (money) with the merchant,' and the
field and the trees and the caves were Abraham's, and Sarah was buried.
The first use of money is the last, and the cave of Machpelah, typical
of the last resting place of all men, is the most important because the
most imperative use of money. He that hoards and he that squanders,
Croesus and Lazarus, at the end of life, provided they have money
enough to purchase their caves of Machpelah, have fortune enough, and
more than enough, for they may not carry gold and silver with them
through the valley of the Shadow. We buy and sell, we loan and
speculate, we hoard our shining wealth as Croesus hoarded the golden
sands of Pactolus in the treasury of Delhi, but when we come to the cave
of Machpelah, we leave it at the entrance, and go into the darkness
unencumbered.

The earliest and standard specimen of Roman coinage was the _as_,
subdivided almost indefinitely, and originally weighing a pound. This
ponderous coin subserved a purpose which our penny does to-day. It had
upon the obverse the double-headed Janus, and upon the reverse the keel
of a ship, rudely done, but answering the requirements of the light,
juvenile gambling known as pitching coppers. _Capita aut navem_, 'Heads
or the ship,' the Roman boys cried, as Young America cries now, 'Heads
or tails.' It is an eminently conservative custom, and Master Freddy, as
he tosses his new bronze cent, may summarily answer paternal reproof by
showing that Master Tullius, two thousand years ago, pitched the _as_
his father coined, and, for aught we know, grew to be a wise emperor and
a great man.

Judea is represented upon several coins of the time of Titus and
Vespasian by the figure of a woman with flowing hair and bared breasts,
seated upon the ground in a posture of sorrow and captivity, above her
the wide-spreading branches of the palm, and behind her a stalwart Roman
soldier in mail, leaning upon his spear. Thus exactly did the Roman
engraver follow out upon these coins the language of the Scriptures. The
Psalmist describes this posture in the lamentations of the Jews over
their captivity. 'By the waters of Babylon we sat down and wept.' Still
more remarkable is it that the prophet, in a passage foretelling this
identical captivity, likens Judea to a woman sitting upon the ground
wrapped in sorrow.

It is not often that coins have been used as vehicles of wit or for
plays upon words, but there are examples upon record. Some of the German
coins represent in the legends the years in which they were minted. A
coin of Gustavus Adolphus also is an excellent illustration of this
practice. The legend is: 'ChrIstVs DVX ergo trIVMphVs.' Take the
capitalized letters or numerals from the words, and arrange them in
their proper order, and you have 1627, the year in which the coin was
struck. Upon a coin of Trio Lucretius, a member of the _Lucretia gens_,
who would have remained unknown to this day but for his coin, a case of
punning by means of types occurs. The obverse has the head of Apollo;
the reverse, the crescent moon and seven stars, or rather _triones_--the
constellation of the Ursa Major. The sun and moon refer to the family
name, while the _triones_ are an allusion to the surname. Pope Urban
VIII., with execrable taste and questionable wit, upon repairing certain
roads, struck a medal with the legend: _Beati qui custodiunt meas vias_,
'Blessed are they who keep my ways.' The 'speaking types' of the ancient
Grecian coins are very curious. The coinage of Rhodes has a rose for a
type, which flower bears the same name as the island. The coins of Side
have a pomegranate, in Greek, _side_ ([Greek: sidê]); Melos, the apple,
in Greek, _melon_ ([Greek: mêlon]); Ancona, in Italy, the elbow, in
Greek, _ancon_ ([Greek: agkon]); Cardia, the heart, in Greek, _cardia_
[Greek: kardia].

The coins of Constantine the Great, 306 A.D., will always remain of
peculiar interest, as connected with the early history of Christianity.
Constantine, after forcing his brother-in-law, Licinius, from his
Eastern dominions, built Constantinople, and made Christianity the state
religion. The principal emblem upon his coins is the Labarum, or sacred
banner, bearing the monogram of Christ--the letters [Greek: Ch] and
[Greek: R]--being the initials of [Greek: CHRISTOU], the angles of which
are occupied by the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, Alpha
and Omega, in allusion to Christ's declaration in Revelation. A rarer
type of Constantine's coins has the monogram, and the legend, _In hoc
signo vinces_. The _signum_ was the vision of a beautiful cross in the
heavens, which was presented to the view of Constantine, near Milan,
during his march against Maxentius. To this cross he attributed both his
victory and conversion. These Christian emblems remained upon the coins
of his successors until the reign of Julian the Apostate, who removed
them and substituted pagan emblems. Nor do they again appear until the
accession of Michael Rhangabe (811-813), when the bust and sometimes the
full length of Christ is on the obverse, with the _nimbus_, and the
legend, _Jesus Christus nica(tor) rex regnantium_. Upon the reverse, the
emperor, with a singular degree of boldness, is seated by the side of
the Virgin, the two holding aloft the banner of the cross.

We come to more modern coins. England and Ireland were in continual
trouble about the standard of coinage. On the accession of Mary, she
declared the intention of restoring the old standard of silver coinage,
viz., 11 oz. 2 dwt. fine, to 18 dwt. alloy; but, instead of that, the
new coinage was a pennyweight lower than that of Edward. Nor did it mend
matters that her handsome face and Philip's were on the obverse. The
wits of the day had many a joke over it; and Butler's sarcastic pen
could not omit the opportunity of writing:

  'Still amorous, fond, and billing,
  Like Philip and Mary upon a shilling.'

The first manifestation of displeasure between the mother country and
the colonies was with Massachusetts, of course. The old Bay State was as
impatient toward masters then as later in the Revolution against George,
and still later with the slaveholders. Charles II. was displeased with
the colonists for coining money, which he considered his royal
prerogative, and intimated to Sir Thomas Temple that they must be
punished, and the business stopped. Sir Thomas was considerable of a
wag, and showed the king one of honest John Hull's shillings, on the
reverse of which was the pine tree. The king asked him what sort of a
tree that was. Upon which Sir Thomas replied that, of course, it was the
royal oak, which had saved his majesty's life. The king smiled at the
courtier's wit; but it is not reported that he allowed Hull to continue
the coinage.

The proverbial misfortunes of Ireland have attended even her coinage,
and her troubles in that direction commenced as early as the reign of
Henry VII. He coined sixpences for Ireland worth only fourpence in
England. Mary issued base shillings and groats for Ireland, and
Elizabeth issued still baser ones, while she purified the coinage of
England. James I. struck copper farthings of two sizes, that if they
failed in England, they might be used in Ireland for pence and
halfpence. Charles I. established a mint in Dublin, but, in the
confusion attendant upon his death, the Irish lost it. Cromwell gave
them tokens in place of coins of the realm; and James II. base silver
money, made principally from brass cannon, and even this alloyed stuff
was gradually diminished in size. White metal followed, then lead, and
finally tin. George I. granted a patent to William Wood in 1737 for
coining pence and halfpence for Ireland, but he coined them of smaller
size than was stipulated in the patent. Dean Swift, with his merciless
satire, drove them out of Ireland, and his majesty, having no use for
them in England, sent them to his American colonies. Circulating media
were scarce here at that time, and anything in the shape of coins was
welcome. George II. did better for Ireland, and gave her honest coins.
In 1760 the famous _voce populi_ halfpenny appeared, a company of
gentlemen in Dublin having obtained permission to issue them. There was
a bit of quiet revenge in this halfpenny. The head of the sovereign,
though apparently done in the usual manner of the king's portrait, was
in reality a portrait of the Pretender. The coins attained a
considerable circulation before the trick was discovered, and then they
were suppressed.

Coins have figured in sermons. Bishop Latimer, on the 8th of March,
1549, delivered the following sarcastic sermon. On a previous occasion
he had spoken jestingly of the new currency of Edward VI. For this he
was accused of sedition, which charge he answered thus:

'Thus they burdened me even with sedition. And wot ye what? I chanced in
my last sermon to speak a merry word of a new shilling, to refresh my
auditory, how I was like to put away my new shilling for an old groat. I
was therein noted to speak seditiously. ... I have now gotten one more
fellowe, a companion of sedition; and wot you who is my fellowe? Esay
(Isaiah) the prophet. I spake but of a little prettie shilling; but he
speaketh to Jerusalem after another sort, and was so bold as to meddle
with their coynes. 'Thou proud, thou haughty city of Jerusalem.
_Argentum tuum versum est in scoriam_;' thy silver is turned into what?
into testious _scoriam_, into dross,' Ah! seditious wretch! what had he
to do with the mint? Why should he not have left that matter to some
masters of policy to reprove? Thy silver is dross; it is not fine; it is
counterfeit; thy silver is turned; thou hadst no silver. What pertained
that to Esay? Marry, he replied a piece of diversity in that policy; he
threateneth God's vengeance for it.

'He went to the root of the matter, which was covetousness, which became
him to reprove; or else that it tended to the hurt of poore people; for
the naughtiness of the silver was the occasion of dearth of all things
in the realm. He imputeth it to them as a crime. He may be called a
master of sedition indeed. Was not this a seditious fellowe, to tell
them this even to their faces?'

The three-farthing piece struck in Elizabeth's reign is often mentioned
in the poets. Shakspeare has an allusion to it in King John. He
introduces the bastard Falconbridge, ridiculing the personal appearance
of his legitimate elder brother, having just before compared him to a
half-faced groat:

  'Because he hath an half face, like my father,
  With that half face would he have all my land.'

Farther on, he says he would not have such a person (body):

            'My face so thin,
  That in mine ear I durst not stick a rose,
  Lest men should say, Look where three farthings goes;'

alluding to the rose which was on both the obverse and reverse of the
coin. Beaumont and Fletcher, in the 'Scornful Lady,' show the difference
between the penny and three-farthing piece, and inform us of a knavish
trick then practised, to impose upon ignorant people the lesser as the
greater coin. Lovelass, speaking of Morecraft, the usurer, says: 'He had
a bastard, his own toward issue, whipt and thin cropt, for washing out
the rose in three farthings to make them pence.'

In England, during the reign of George III., an act was passed to amend
an act of the 51st of the king, respecting the gold coin and the notes
of the Bank of England. By this act the provisions of the former statute
were extended to Ireland, and the notes of the bank there were placed
upon the same basis as those of the Bank of England. While this act was
passing the House, the following epigram appeared in the public papers:


BANK NOTES AND GUINEAS.

  Bank notes, it is said, once guineas defied
  To swim to a point in trade's foaming tide;
  But ere they could reach the opposite brink,
  Bank notes cried to gold: 'Help us, cash us, we sink!'

  'That paper should sink, and guineas should swim,
  May appear to some folks a ridiculous whim;
  But before they condemn, let them hear this suggestion:
  In pun making, gravity's out of the question.

There is a romantic incident in the early history of Massachusetts,
which has been often told. Money was scarce, and in 1652 the General
Court passed a law for the coinage of sixpences and shillings. Captain
John Hull was appointed the mintmaster, and was to have one shilling in
every twenty for his labor. All the old silver in the colony, wornout
plate, battered tankards, buckles, and spoons, and especially the
bullion seized by the buccaneers then sailing the Spanish Main (for all
was honest that came to Hull's melting pot), was brought in for coinage,
and the mintmaster rapidly grew to be the millionnaire of the colony,
and suitors came from far and wide for the hand of his daughter. Among
them was Samuel Sewall, who was the favorite of the plump and buxom
miss. Hull, the mintmaster, roughly gave his consent: "Take her," said
he, "and you will find her a heavy burden enough." The wedding day came,
and the captain, tightly buttoned up with shillings and sixpences, sat
in his grandfather's chair, till the ceremony was concluded. Then he
ordered his servants to bring in a huge pair of scales. 'Daughter,' said
the mintmaster, 'go into one side of the scales.' Mrs. Sewall obeyed,
and then the mintmaster had his strongbox brought in, an immense
ironbound oaken chest, which the servants were obliged to drag over the
floor. Then the mintmaster unlocked the chest, and ordered the servants
to fill the other side of the scales with shillings and sixpences. Plump
Mrs. Sewall bore down hard upon her side of the scales, but still the
servants shovelled in the bright, fresh pine-tree shillings, until Mrs.
Sewall began to rise. Then the mintmaster ordered them to forbear.
'There, you Sewall,' said the magnanimous old money maker, 'take these
shillings for my daughter's portion. Use her kindly, and thank Heaven
for her; for it is not every wife that is worth her weight in silver.'
And Master Sewell took Mistress Sewall and thirty thousand pounds (not
avoirdupois, but sterling).

The liberty cap was first used as an emblem by the committee of safety
organized at Philadelphia early in 1775. At a meeting on the 31st of
August of that year, it was resolved by the committee that Owen Biddle
provide a seal for the use of the board, about the size of a dollar,
with a cap of liberty, with this motto: 'This is my right, and I will
defend it.' Upon the first cent issued by the United States Mint for
circulation, in 1793, the cap appears. This cap is the Phrygian cap, and
all nations recognize it as the badge of liberty. When Spartacus rose at
the head of his fellow slaves against their Roman masters to obtain
liberty, his followers were distinguished by this cap. Though their
effort was unsuccessful, the principle of liberty still exists, to be
fought for until the last manacle is struck from the last slave. And
mankind has recognized that early struggle for freedom by adopting the
cap as one of the attributes of the goddess of freedom.

The freaks of currency are singular. The early Greeks bartered with
cattle; hence we derive _pecunia_ (money) from pecus (the flock). Cowry
shells have bought slaves on the African coast, and wampum answered for
money with the Indian, The Carthaginians, Frederick II. at the siege of
Milan, Philip I. and John the Good, kings of France, used stamped
leather, the latter inserting a silver nail in the centre. St. Louis, of
France, issued the black coin made of billon. The Anglo-Saxons used
rings, torques, and bracelets. Homer says the Greeks carried on their
traffic with bars and spikes of brass. Salt is the money of Abyssinia,
and codfish in Iceland. In Adam Smith's day, the Edinburgh workmen
bought bread with nails, and drank from foaming tankards paid for with
spikes. Marco Polo found mulberry-bark money in China, stamped with the
sovereign's seal, which it was death to counterfeit, as was the case
also with the Continental currency of our own country. The first
families of Virginia, now fighting for the ideas of aristocracy and
labor owned by capital, are the lineal and quite recent descendants of
shiploads of women exported from the crowded capitals of Europe, with
little regard to character or condition, and bought at so many pounds of
tobacco per head. The cannon used by James II. in his desperate struggle
for the throne, were melted up and coined into the famous gun money; and
the bells of Paris which tolled over the horrors of the guillotine, in
the bloody days of Robespierre, met a similar useful end. Charles I.,
with a Vandal hand, melted up the plate of the aristocracy and the
almost inestimable relics of Oxford into siege pieces. In 1641,
Massachusetts enacted that wheat should be received in payment of debts;
and during the French Revolution, the convention, upon the motion of
Jean Bon Saint André, discussed the propriety of making wheat the
standard of value.

From coins to wealth is but a step. The ancients surpassed the moderns
in splendid wealth and lavish extravagance. Seneca, writing superb
treatises in favor of poverty, was worth nearly five millions of
dollars. Lentulus, the astrologer, made his black arts yield him over
three millions. The delighted heirs of Tiberius found nearly thirty-six
millions in his coffers, and in less than a year Caligula spent the
whole of it. Milo's debts were Titanic, amounting to six millions. Cæsar
had a list of creditors whose name was legion, before he obtained any
public office; but he was soon enabled to present Curio with six hundred
thousand dollars, Lucius Paulus with four hundred thousand, and
Servilia, the mother of Brutus, with a trifle of a pearl worth over
thirty thousand. Mark Antony's house was sold to Messala for over half
a million, and Scaurus's villa was burned at a loss of over twelve
millions. Otho spent over fourteen millions in finishing the wing of a
palace commenced by Nero. One of Caligula's dinners cost a million
dollars; and one of Heliogabalus's breakfasts, twenty-seven thousand
dollars, Oesopus, the actor, swallowed a pearl worth eleven thousand
dollars, and Apicius, the gourmand, ate over seventy-seven millions
during his worthless life, and then committed suicide, because he was
reduced one day to only a hundred thousand dollars in his purse.

I hold in my hand a huge iron token which Ptolemy struck in
commemoration of his conquest of Egypt, and by its side the new two-cent
piece of the United States, fresh and sparkling from the Mint at
Philadelphia. The one antiquated, rude, corroded, and begrimed in its
long conflict with time, and the other bright and vivid, its field and
exergue unmarred, its emblems and legends clear and sharp. The coin of
Ptolemy has a history. The obverse gives us undoubtedly the head of
Jupiter, the cloud bearer, rugged, massive, stern, iron featured,
taurine neck, hair in great serpentine coils and shocks; the reverse, a
magnificent spread eagle, and the inscription in Greek, _Basileus
Ptolemaion_. Ptolemy, flushed with the victory he had won for Alexander,
issued it over two thousand years ago. After subserving the purposes of
Athenian barter, some swarthy Egyptian obtained it; but our friend the
Egyptian, in time, was gathered to his fathers. He was embalmed, and
slept in the shadow of the Pyramid, where his royal predecessors were
sleeping, and by the side of the eternal Sphynx, whose riddle he could
not read in life. Perhaps death unsealed the mystery of those stony lips
to him. The token was placed in the mummy case upon the Egyptian's lips,
perhaps as Charon's toll. But, in that event, evidently our friend the
Egyptian never crossed over the black river of Death, but is still
wandering--a miserable shade--along its banks, seeking rest, and finding
none. Token and Egyptian remained in their tomb while Thebes flourished
and decayed, Tyre and Sidon crumbled into ruins, Rome, mistress of the
world, cowered beneath the scourge of Goth and Vandal and Hun, and the
earth was eclipsed in the night of the ages. Still the Pyramids towered
toward heaven, the Sphynx gazed on with calm, earnest eyes, Memnon made
music of welcome to the sun, and our token sealed the shrivelled silent
lips of the Egyptian. The world emerged from its night. Dante and
Aquinas, Copernicus and Galileo, Luther and Melanchthon, Gutenberg and
Faust, Kant and Schlegel, Bacon, Leibnitz and Newton, Watt and Morse,
tore away the seals before our token saw the light. It came forth into a
new world by the hand of a missionary, preaching a religion founded
three hundred years after it closed the lips of the Egyptian. The
heathen god was upon its field, but the Christian religion had set aside
the old mythology of which it was a representative. I turn from this
relic of the past to the coin of the present, and upon the latter I find
the acknowledgment of that religion, and of dependence upon its
immutable Author: 'In God we trust;' and from this legend I augur
deliverance from the troubles that beset us, the vindication of outraged
laws, the Union of dissevered fragments, the return of peace to our
distracted land, the integrity of the Republic.



MIRACLES.


People refuse to believe in miracles because they esteem, them
incredible: how, then, do they believe in existence--in the being of
anything? Is it credible--to human reason, I mean--that anything should
be without a cause? Nothing, so far as we can judge, _ever comes to_ be
without an efficient cause--something that goes before, with power to
bring that which comes after.

But existence is an indisputable fact: we must believe it, whether we
can or not.

Oh yes, one may say, but there is an infinite Being from all eternity,
and He has produced all other forms of existence.

Very well; but if that be so, do not let us trouble ourselves about what
are called miracles. They come very easily after the creation of
light--the creation of sun and moon and stars; or even of nebulous
matter, so constituted that by its revolution in space it may generate
these wondrous orbs.

But there is a difficulty, it seems, about laws--natural laws: we are
not to suppose that they will ever he violated. But there is another law
above all these; all at least of the inanimate world, _i.e._, that the
forces of brute matter are subject to the will, or whatever is analogous
to will, in any living creatures. The law of gravitation is one of the
most universally operative; but every bird rising upon its wings, every
dog in its leaps, yea, the grasshopper springing from the earth, sets
this law at defiance. Almost every common law of matter is set aside by
the ingenuity of man, as put forth by that most truly spiritual faculty,
the will.

Are we then to suppose that the Almighty has so tied his power to
agencies purely material that He can never perform an act except under
their regulation? This would leave Him with no discretional power
whatever--with no such liberty even as that which He has bestowed upon
every creature that has will, or anything like it. Is this the idea of a
God infinite in power, as in wisdom and goodness? Are we to think that
the Almighty has just for once set a universe in motion, and forever
withdrawn Himself from all meddling with its affairs? He permits us to
control the electric power: but is never permitted to direct a
thunderbolt upon the guilty, or to turn one aside from any path it might
incline to pursue!

Miracles! Is it then so much more wonderful that water should be turned
into wine, than that a little water and a little earth, under the rays
of the sun, should be turned into the beautiful flowers and luscious
fruits of our gardens and orchards? These same elements are even now
maturing gapes, which, with a little management, under merely natural
forces, directed by a human will, may produce wine fit for the wedding
feast of a king.

Or, in another line of thought, we may ask, Is it much more difficult to
call back a living soul and unite it again to its former body than in
any way to produce that soul at first?

These and the like considerations apply to the subject of prayer, and
the special favors which it is believed to bring. We men are perpetually
turning the forces of nature where we please, and for the most special
purposes: can we for a moment imagine that the Almighty has less of this
power of control than we?



LETTER OF HON. R. J. WALKER, IN FAVOR OF THE REËLECTION OF ABRAHAM
LINCOLN.

_London, September_ 30, 1864.

     [The 'Letter of Hon. R. J. Walker' herewith offered to our readers,
     is no ephemeral production, to perish with the passing hour. The
     views therein offered, the vital principles discussed, the details
     given, the facts handled, have a wide bearing on the future policy
     and destiny of our country. Marked by the practical wisdom of the
     experienced statesman, while glowing with the fervor of the
     patriotic citizen, we have induced him to permit us to include this
     Letter in the loyal pages of the CONTINENTAL, where so many of his
     important financial essays have already appeared. Our readers will
     find it a worthy and logical sequence from the premises heretofore
     sustained therein by his able pen.--ED. CON.]


The succession of days and years and centuries is noted in calendars;
but it is great events, constituting historical epochs, that mark the
progress and destiny of our race. Decisive battles, vast reforms, civil
or religious, great scientific discoveries or mechanical inventions,
dynastic changes, political revolutions, the union or dismemberment of
states, the birth or death of republics, the rise or fall of
empires--these are the deep notches in the groove of time, the mighty
landmarks in the pathway of humanity. It is the fate of the American
Union, involving the liberty of our country and mankind, that is to be
decided in our approaching Presidential election. How paltry are all
party questions in the presence of an issue so transcendent as this! How
dare we mingle old party names or conflicts with such a question, when
the life of the Union is trembling in the balance! The maintenance of
the Union is the one majestic question, and the _Union party_, in name,
and in fact, is the only one that should exist, until this great issue
is decided. Then, when the Union is rescued from present and future
peril, we may exhume the past, use old party names, or discuss old party
issues, but until then to unfold a party banner, and revive old party
prejudices, is treason to our country and mankind. It is not Democrats
alone, or Republicans alone, as separate parties marshalled against each
other, that can save the Union. During this straggle for the Union, we
do not hear of Democratic or Republican admirals or generals, divisions
or regiments; no, we have only one great Union army, discarding all
party names or symbols, and fighting only for and under the banner of
the Union. It is then a grave objection to the Chicago McClellan
Convention, that, in such a crisis as this, it summoned only a
_Democratic_ Convention, and appealed only to the _Democratic_ party to
save the Government. As well might we summon only a Democratic army to
fight the battles of our country, as conduct such an election as this
under any old party name and banner. Thousands of Republicans as well as
Democrats, together, under the banner of the Union, fight now the
battles of their country. Thousands of Republican as well as Democratic
soldiers sleep in their bloody shrouds, or lie wounded on beds of agony;
but who dare ask to what party they belonged? It was an unholy ambition,
stimulated by party leaders, a thirst for office and emoluments, that
rallied under an old party name at Chicago, when the whole people should
have been summoned to the rescue.

And who met in council at Chicago? Was it the friends of the Union? No,
it was Democrats, as they called themselves, whether unionists or
disunionists. Avowed disunionists constituted a large and influential
portion of the Convention (profaning the name of Democrats) that met
together at Chicago. Who were Vallandigham and Harris and Long and many
other of their compeers, who not only met together at Chicago, but some
of whom were received with shouts of applause, and resolutions moved by
some of them unanimously adopted. It was a meeting of loyal men and
disloyal, peace and war men, unionists and disunionists. Every
disunionist is a traitor. He is for the overthrow of the Republic, upon
the demand of rebels in arms against the Government. Every peace man now
on the Chicago McClellan platform is a disunionist and a traitor,
because he knows, in his inmost soul, that no peace can be obtained but
upon the ultimatum of Jefferson Davis, now officially proclaimed by him
through the secretary of state to foreign Governments, namely, the
severance of the Union, and the establishment throughout the South of a
separate slave-holding empire. Most of these peace men openly avow their
disunion doctrines, while others attempt to conceal their treason, under
the transparent mask of an "armistice," a "cessation of hostilities,"
and an _ultimate_ "convention of the States," ignominiously declaring,
at the same time, by their platform resolutions at Chicago, that to
suppress the rebellion by war _has proved a failure_. What truly loyal
man, by voting for their candidates, will indorse at the polls such a
platform as this? It is a surrender of our country's honor--it is a
capitulation, upon the demand of Southern traitors, whose hands are
dripping with the warm life blood of our sons and brothers, and who now
boldly and defiantly _pledge themselves_ to foreign Governments, as they
always had declared to us, that they will have no peace unless based
upon disunion. Did a Democratic Convention ever before receive avowed
Disunionists and traitors among its number? Did it ever before trail in
the dust the glorious flag of our country? Did it ever agree before,
that our banner should be torn down from half the States and territory
of the Union, and replaced by a foreign standard, having upon it but one
emblazonry--the divinity and perpetuity of Slavery? And shall we treat
with the Confederate authorities on this basis? No; while we will gladly
treat with States and people _desiring to return to the Union_, with
Jefferson Davis and his Cabinet brandishing over our heads the two-edged
sword of Slavery and disunion, we will, in the emphatic words of General
Jackson, "_negotiate only from the mouths of our cannon_."

General Jackson was, in truth, the father and founder of the Democratic
party. Prior to his first nomination in 1823, in the election of
Jefferson, Madison, and Monroe, the parties were known as Federal and
Republican. In the fall of 1823, I united with a few friends in calling,
at Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, the FIRST _Democratic_ meeting, by which
General Jackson was nominated as the Democratic candidate for the
Presidency of the United States. I offered the resolutions in his favor
adopted by that meeting, calling the Democratic State Convention of
Pennsylvania which confirmed that nomination in March, 1824. I attended
that Convention, as a delegate from Pittsburg, and wrote the address of
the Convention to the Democracy of the State and of the Union on that
momentous occasion. I supported General Jackson for the Presidency in
1823 (my first vote), 1824, 1828, and 1832, and uniformly adhered to
the Democratic party until after the rebellion of 1861.

During the great nullification and secession question of South Carolina,
on the first Monday of January, 1833, at Natchez, Mississippi, I made
the opening speech, then published, against nullification and secession,
in favor of "_war_," if necessary to maintain the Union--in favor of
"_coercion_" to put down rebellion in any State. The Legislature of
Mississippi indorsed that speech, and passed resolutions declaring
nullification and _secession_ to be _treason_, and, upon THAT ISSUE, I
was elected by the Legislature to the Senate of the United States. If
Mississippi, under the influence of Jefferson Davis, and other traitor
leaders, has since that period abandoned those principles, she cannot
expect me to follow her, and thereby surrender opinions which I have
uniformly maintained and advocated throughout my life, but more
especially from 1833 until the present period. Mississippi (whose
prosperity I would restore by bringing her back to the Union) indorsed
those opinions when she elected me to the Senate of the United States
over an avowed and distinguished secessionist (George Poindexter), after
a contest of unexampled violence, personal and political, extending from
January, 1833, to January, 1836.

It was on that occasion that General Jackson wrote his celebrated letter
in favor of my election and sustaining my political course. It was after
the adoption of the secession ordinance by Carolina, that General
Jackson sent our war vessels to Charleston to hold and blockade the
harbor, and our troops, under the illustrious Scott, to maintain, by
force, if necessary, the authority of the Federal Government over the
forts commanding the city of Charleston. Let us suppose that the rebels
had then shot down our flag, captured our forts, made war upon the
Union, and proceeded to dissolve it by force--let us suppose that a
committee from any convention had then dared to nominate General Jackson
for the Presidency upon such a platform as that adopted at Chicago,
proposing an armistice and cessation of hostilities until a National
Convention could be assembled, accompanied by the declaration that the
rebellion could not be crushed by war, who doubts what would have been
the course of that devoted patriot? He would have stamped the
disgraceful and treasonable resolutions under his feet, and indignantly
scouted the traitors who offered them. And now this McClellan Convention
at Chicago professes to represent the Democratic party. As Jefferson was
the founder of the old _Republican_ party, Jackson was the father of the
_Democratic_ party. Now, with perhaps one exception, is there a _single
member_ of that Convention (assuming the name of 'Democratic') that
(like myself) supported General Jackson in 1823, 1824, 1828, and 1832,
and uniformly adhered to the Democratic party until after the rebellion
of 1861?

What right had that Convention to assume the name of Democracy, while
trampling upon the advice of the founder of the party, and all its great
and vital principles? How dare they offer an 'armistice' and 'the
cessation of hostilities' to rebels in arms against their country,
especially when the so-called rebel government had again and again
declared that they would negotiate upon no terms, except the
acknowledgment of their independence, and the definitive dissolution of
the Union? But, above all, how dare they record the disgraceful and
treasonable falsehood, that the war to suppress the rebellion had
failed, and ask the freemen of America to indorse at the polls such a
declaration?

And has, indeed, all the blood of patriots shed in defence of the Union
in this war, been poured out in vain? Ye patriot soldiers! now in the
field, say, are you unable or unwilling to suppress the rebellion? Say
it not only in words, but answer the foul accusation by your votes in
the approaching Presidential election.

The Chicago McClellan Convention says that the war is a failure, and
that therefore there must be an armistice and a cessation of
hostilities. Will not your answer at the polls be this: 'It is a foul
and treasonable falsehood?'

And is this war for the Union indeed a failure? Let our many and
well-fought battles upon the ocean and the land answer the question. Let
a country nearly as large as half of Europe, taken from the rebels since
the war commenced, respond. Let Shiloh, and Donelson, and Gettysburg and
Vicksburg, and Port Hudson, and New Orleans, and the Mississippi from
its source to its mouth, answer. Why, this wretched calumny had scarcely
been uttered by the McClellan Convention, when Sherman, the great
commander, and his army had washed out the accusation in the blood of
the vanquished, and unfolded our banner at Atlanta, the grand military
strategic centre of Georgia, never to be recalled. And while the shouts
of the great victory in Georgia were still sounding in our ears,
Oppequan responded to the thunders of Atlanta, and the heroic Sheridan,
after a decided victory, was driving the rebel army from the valley of
Virginia. Was Sherman's campaign from Memphis and Nashville to
Chattanooga, and from Chattanooga to Atlanta, a failure? Why, that
campaign is unsurpassed in history. Was Grant's Potomac advance a
failure? What, the hero of the great campaign of the West, terminating
with the capture of Vicksburg and its garrison, not know, or do his
duty! Was the victory of the Wilderness a failure, or the destruction in
successive battles of one third of Lee's army, together with the seizure
of the great Weldon Railroad, or the repulse there of the Confederate
attack--were these failures? Recollect, Grant was Lieutenant-General,
subordinate only to the President and Secretary of War, in planning the
whole campaign, and, while too much credit cannot be given to the heroic
Sherman and noble Sheridan, and their gallant armies, yet, it must be
remembered, that their great victories and strategic military movements
are but a part of Grant's plan--_concentrating_ the three armies of the
Potomac, the Shenandoah, and the West, so as to seize and hold all the
roads connecting with Richmond, and capture the Confederate army and
government.

And now as to our navy. Were the gallant deeds of Admiral Porter at
Vicksburg, on the Mississippi River, the Arkansas, and the Red River,
failures? Were the destruction of the forts protecting New Orleans and
the capture of that city by the illustrious Farragut failures? Were the
capture or destruction by that gallant man, aided by General Granger, of
the forts commanding the Bay of Mobile, together with the occupation of
its harbor by our fleet--and the destruction there of the Confederate
navy--were these failures? Were the capture of the forts and city of
Pensacola, of all the Florida forts, and the fortifications commanding
Savannah--the defeat of the Merrimac and Tennessee--the destruction of
the Alabama--the capture of Port Royal, and of the forts which commanded
it--were these failures? No; the war is not a failure. It is a glorious
and trancendent success. Already the whole Southern and Southwestern
coast is ours. The whole of the Mississippi is ours, with far more than
a thousand miles of its course from Columbus to its mouth, and even to a
considerable extent up the Mississippi and Missouri, which had been once
in the hands of the enemy. Chesapeake Bay is ours, and all its
tributaries, from the Potomac to the James River. The whole coast of
North and South Carolina, of Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana,
and Texas, with vast portions of the interior, including many
impregnable positions, is ours. Tennessee, one of the seceded States, is
now wholly ours. Kentucky is loyal. Missouri is ours, and has abolished
Slavery. Maryland is ours, and has, I believe, uprooted Slavery also.
Our whole _Territorial_ domain, greater in extent than one half of
Europe (and about Slavery in which this contest began), is now wholly
ours. Not a rebel flag floats within its limits. When before were such
mighty conquests achieved within so short a period? Why, the conquests
of Alexander, of Cæsar and Napoleon covered no such extent of territory.
And, 'we take no steps backward.' Where our flag now is once unfolded in
any part of rebeldom, there it continues to float, and will float
forever. What are we to negotiate about? Is it as to giving up the
Mississippi and its tributaries, together with New Orleans, Vicksburg,
and Tennessee? Is West Virginia, which has been admitted as a new Free
State, to be surrendered? Are Fortress Monroe and the Chesapeake to be
abandoned? Is the rebel flag to float at Alexandria, and on the heights
of Arlington; and are rebel cannon to be planted there, in sight of and
to command the _very capital of the Union_? Are we to insult loyal
Kentucky, Missouri, Maryland, and Delaware, by negotiating about them?
Are we to give back Western to Eastern Virginia? Where is the line of
division to be run, and what armies would be strong enough to maintain
peace upon the border? What portion of the mighty Territories uniting us
with the Pacific are to be surrendered? Are we to turn over to the cruel
despotism of their bloody and relentless masters, the millions of loyal
people of the South, to whom we have given the most sacred pledge of the
protection of the Union? And, last of all, are the two millions of
slaves, as Jefferson Davis complains, who have been emancipated by the
constitutional war proclamation of President Lincoln, are they to be
remanded to Slavery, including the thousands who have so gallantly
fought in our defence? And as to Slavery, or what, if any, may be left
of it, when the war is over, are we to abandon the unquestionable right
to abolish it, as Mr. Lincoln and his friends propose, by a
constitutional amendment? Is Jefferson Davis to come back again as
Senator from Mississippi? Are the traitors Cobb and Thompson to take
their places in the McClellan Cabinet? Is Toombs, of Georgia, (as he
boasted) to call the roll of his slaves on the Boston Common? Slavery,
we know, was the sole cause of the war. It was Slavery that fired the
first gun at Sumter, and demanded to rule or ruin the country. It was in
the name of Slavery that the South seceded; and it was to extend and
perpetuate Slavery, as a blessed and divine institution, that they
avowedly framed the Confederate constitution. In the debates of Congress
of 1860-'61, in the proceedings of the Committee of 1833, in the acts of
the Peace Congress, in the various secession ordinances, by the very
terms of the Confederate constitution, Slavery was the sole cause of
this war upon the Government. Slavery was and is our great enemy, and
shall we not destroy it? Slavery was the sole cause of the war, and
shall it not be eradicated? When the patient calls for a physician, he
seeks for the source of the disease, so as not merely to alleviate
present pain, but to remove the cause, and prevent relapses or
successive attacks. If he deals only with palliatives, to assuage for a
brief period the present suffering, when he can remove the cause, and
restore the patient to permanent and perfect health, he is but a quack
and an impostor.

The party supporting Mr. Lincoln is composed of men of all the old
parties. Its candidate for the Presidency is from the North, and
belonged to the late Republican party. Its candidate for the Vice
Presidency, a brave, loyal, Union-loving man, is from the South, and
belonged (like myself) to the old Democratic party. But the Baltimore
Convention, in the spirit of true nationality and patriotism, discarded
all old party names or issues. It acted only in the name of the Union,
and as one great Union party, and asked all patriots, dismissing for the
present all old party names or issues, to unite with it for the
salvation of the Union.

My first objection, then, to the organization against Mr. Lincoln is,
that it is a mere party organization, arrayed under an old party name,
and marching under an old party banner. In the midst of a great contest
like this, when all old party names and prejudices should be forgotten,
and when Democrats and Republicans should be united as brethren in the
one grand effort to suppress the rebellion, the Chicago McClellan
Convention reopens old party strifes, renews old party issues, and,
denouncing Republicans, assumes the name and professes to represent the
Democratic party. It was the banner of the Union that was raised by the
Convention at Baltimore, and the salvation of the Union, with its rescue
from present and future perils, the suppression of the rebellion, with
the removal of the cause, constituted the only issues presented by that
Convention to the people of the loyal States of all parties.

It was far otherwise at Chicago. It was a mere assemblage of partisans,
some for, and some against the Union, in the search of power and
emoluments. It was the flag of the Union that was given to the breeze at
Baltimore. It was the flag of a party that was unfolded at Chicago.
'_For the Union_' was written on the flag of the one--'For the
Democratic party' was inscribed on the standard of the other. It was
said that the Baltimore Convention has made the abolition of Slavery one
of its issues; but, as well might it be objected that it had made the
prosecution of the war, or the maintenance of the army or navy, part of
its creed. The Emancipation Proclamation of the President had its whole
constitutional force as a _war measure_ TO SAVE THE UNION, and, as such,
it was adopted by Mr. Lincoln as ex-officio 'commander-in-chief of the
army and navy of the United States.' That it was, as a war measure,
perfectly constitutional, I have never doubted, and so declared in an
article published at the time in THE CONTINENTAL MAGAZINE. It is the
duty of all persons, not aliens, to unite with the President in
suppressing a rebellion. Slaves, in the relation which they occupy to
the National Government under the Federal Constitution, are '_persons_.'
As _persons_, they are thrice named in the Constitution, and by no other
name whatever. Especially, under the clause providing for direct
taxation, they are _enumerated_ as _persons_, not _valued_ as
_property_. The term 'person' is used more frequently in the
Constitution than any other, and it is applied expressly to slaves, and
to the whole people of the United States, including the President and
Vice President, who are designated therein as persons. This very
question, whether slaves are persons or property under the Constitution,
arose in the great case of _Groves_ vs. _Slaughter_, when, in 1841 (with
a single dissenting opinion, that of Judge Baldwin), after the fullest
argument on both sides, it was unanimously decided by the Supreme Court
of the United States that slaves, in the relation which they hold to the
National Government under the Federal Constitution, are _persons only_,
and not _property_. Were it otherwise, Massachusetts could not forbid
the introduction of slaves from the South for sale there as merchandise;
for Massachusetts could not prohibit the introduction of the cotton or
any property of the South for sale as merchandise within her limits, for
that would have been a prohibition of the _exports from State to State_,
which is forbidden by the Federal Constitution. My own elaborate
argument before the Court, as one of the counsel in that case, will be
found in the appendix to the first edition of the 15th volume of
Peters's Reports. As _persons_, the President has a right to call for
the aid of all residing in the United States, except aliens, to
suppress the rebellion. He has a right to call for the services of the
loyal or rebel masters for such a purpose, as well as for the service of
their slaves.

It cannot be denied, that the masters, whether rebel or loyal, may be
called and even forced by conscription into the army to suppress the
rebellion. Would it not then be strange if the master could exempt his
slaves from similar services? The only right of the master recognized by
the Constitution, is to the 'service or labor' of his slaves. But he has
a right equally strong to his own service or labor; yet both must yield
to the paramount right of the Government to the services of both or
either to suppress the rebellion. There is not a single word in the
Federal Constitution which, either by inference or express declaration,
exempts slaves, more than any other persons, from the call of the
Federal Government to aid in suppressing a rebellion. Such is the
construction given, by the South to the so-called Confederate
constitution, which is much more stringent than ours in that respect,
for it recognizes slaves as property; yet, the rebel authorities, the
rebel congress and government, force slaves, even by conscription, to
perform military duty--to dig the trenches--to make the earthworks--to
erect the barracks and arsenals--to help to make the cannon, small arms,
and powder, and vessels of war--to construct the fortifications--to
transport the provisions, munitions, and cannon for their armies,
together with the tents and military equipage--to raise the food
indispensable for the support of their military forces--and, of course,
they would, _if they dare_, put arms in their hands to meet us on the
battle field. It is clear, then, not as a confiscation of property
(which is also constitutional under certain circumstances), but as
_persons_, that we have a right to the service of the slaves as well as
of their masters to suppress the rebellion. But it is only by
emancipation (with compensation for loss of their services by loyal men)
that the slaves can be called into our army, and used to suppress the
rebellion. A call by the President for the slaves to serve in our
armies, to risk their lives and shed their blood for the Union,
accompanied by the declaration that they were still slaves, and, upon
the termination of the war, such as survived would be restored to their
masters, with whom their wives and children must still remain in
bondage, would be an atrocious crime, as well as the climax of all
absurdities. No; it is only by emancipation that the services of the
slaves can or ought to be obtained for the suppression of the rebellion.
The Emancipation Proclamation then of the President, with compensation
to loyal masters, is most clearly constitutional during the continuance
of the war, and as a war measure to suppress the rebellion and save the
Union, and such must be the decision of the Supreme Court of the United
States, to which tribunal the President has properly submitted the final
arbitrament of the constitutional question. It is true, when the
rebellion is crushed, the President can issue no new emancipation
proclamation. But neither can he then recall or modify the one already
issued; and if he had the power to recall the proclamation, it would be
an act of perfidy unparalleled in the history of the world. The nation
would be so utterly disgraced by such bad faith as would be involved in
the revocation of the Emancipation Proclamation, as to earn the contempt
of all honest and honorable men, and the loss of sympathy of the
industrial classes and working men of Europe, whose rulers would then no
longer fear to recognize or aid the South. It was the magnificent
uprising of the working classes of England in favor of the Union, that
alone saved both countries from a bloody and disastrous war.

The Emancipation Proclamation being, as we have seen, clearly
constitutional, as a war measure, with a view to save the Union, was
it, as such, wise and expedient? We have seen that the rebel South, even
by conscription, when necessary, used slaves for military purposes, and
those not used directly in that way are required to raise breadstuff's
and provisions (instead of cotton), to supply the Confederate army.
Indeed the debates of Congress for many years past, will show that the
South boasted, not vainly, of their great military strength, because
they declared that, while the slaves would be used in raising provisions
to supply their forces, the whole white population capable of bearing
arms could then be called into the field. This constituted, as they
declared, their _great military strength_. And is it not then a most
important war measure, to deprive them of that all-powerful and
efficient weapon: which, we have seen, can only be done by emancipation?
Now, let us suppose that while we refuse the use of the colored race,
whether bond or free, in aid of the war, they are used for that purpose
by the South, what would be the result? By the census of 1860, the whole
population of the United States was 31,445,080, of which there were
white, 26,975,575; free colored, 487,996; slaves, 3,953,760; total, of
colored, 4,441,756, of which there were in the seceded States 3,653,110,
and in the loyal States, 788,446. Add the whites in the seceded States,
5,449,463, would thus make the whole population of those States, by the
census of 1860, 9,102,573. In the loyal States, the whole population was
22,342,507; of which 21,553,861 were white, and 788,646 colored. Now
then, if the colored race, as we have seen, in the seceding States, are
used for war purposes by them and not by us, the relative number of
opposing forces would be as follows: Loyal States, 21,553,861; seceded
States, 9,102,573; difference in favor of the Loyal States, 12,451,288.
Now, to begin the process, add to the whites in the Loyal States the
free colored, and the total number is 22,342,507; seceded States,
9,102,573; difference in favor of the Loyal States, 13,239,934.
Continuing the process, if we deduct by the emancipation policy the
whole colored population of the seceded States, the result would be,
Loyal States, 22,342,507; seceded States, 5,449,463. But if, concluding
the process, by the emancipation policy we not only deduct the colored
race from the aid of the South, but add it in aid of the Loyal States,
the result would be, Loyal States, 25,995,617; seceded States,
5,449,463; difference in favor of Loyal States, 20,456,154. Thus the
policy opposed to emancipation and to the use of the colored race by us
in the war, mates the difference in our favor as against the South only
12,451,288, whereas the difference in our favor by the emancipation
policy of the President is 20,546,154. Deduct from this the above
12,451,288; final difference, 8,094,866. Thus we see that, by the
President's policy, there is, in effect, a gain to the Loyal States
equivalent to more than eight millions of people, more than 200,000 of
whom are already soldiers in the Union army, all of whom must be
disbanded if Mr. Lincoln's policy was erroneous. Will any say that a
policy which makes a difference in the relative forces of the two
contending parties of more than eight millions of people in favor of the
North, and which has already increased our army 200,000, is not a most
important war measure, aiding us to suppress the rebellion and save the
Government? and, therefore, it is a policy eminently calculated to
preserve and perpetuate the Union. Indeed, it is this measure which
renders the maintenance of the Union certain, and, without it, the Union
is subjected to great peril.

As, then, the emancipation policy of the President is not only wise,
beneficent, and constitutional, but renders certain the preservation of
the Union, while that of his opponents subjects it to imminent peril, I
go for the reëlection of Mr. Lincoln. I go for him as a _Union man_,
and because his emancipation policy will certainly save the Union; and I
go against his opponent, because, however loyal he may be, and however
sincere his desire to save the Union, practically he is a disunionist,
because, independent of the Chicago McClellan platform, his
anti-emancipation and anti-negro policy subjects the Union to imminent
peril. Now, with me, in this, as in all preceding elections, the
preservation and perpetuation of the Union constituted the great
transcendent question, involving the liberty of our country and mankind,
and I can give no vote which subjects it to the slightest peril. Save
the Union, and all else will be added in time (including the _ultimate_
downfall of Slavery, which I predicted and advocated in January, 1844),
has been the doctrine of my life. To that doctrine I still adhere, but
support the President's emancipation policy _now_, because it is the
most efficient, if not the only means of saving and perpetuating the
Union. I opposed emancipation when it was unconstitutional as a _peace
measure_, and because I knew it would cause civil war, invite foreign
intervention, and endanger the Union. I support emancipation now,
because it is constitutional as a war measure, greatly diminishes the
danger of foreign intervention, and insures the maintenance and
perpetuity of the Union. I supported Judge Douglas and opposed the
election of Mr. Lincoln in 1860, because I believed it would imperil the
Union. While always denying that his election would justify disunion, I
feared that the rebellion would be the result. In voting against Mr.
Lincoln in 1860, I did so to save the Union from peril. In voting for
him now, it is to suppress the rebellion and maintain the Union. It is
not for Mr. Lincoln as a man (however worthy he may be), that I now
vote--I vote for principles--I vote for the Union--and in supporting
him, I vote for the best, if not the only means to maintain and
perpetuate the Union.

But there is another principle of vital importance involved in this
election. The South, under the banner of Slavery, proceeded to secede
from the Union, immediately after the result of the Presidential
election of 1860 was made known. South Carolina seceded in December,
1860. Mississippi followed early in January, 1861, and the Cotton States
all followed during that and the succeeding month of February. Now, Mr.
Lincoln was not and could not be inaugurated as President until March,
1861. The South did not and would not wait for his inaugural address of
that date to know, under the new condition of affairs, what would be the
policy of his Administration. They did not and would not wait for any
measures of his Administration, much less any act of the Government or
of Congress, but proceeded to secede merely because Mr. Lincoln had been
constitutionally elected to the Presidency by the people of the United
States. Such an act was an overthrow of the great fundamental principle
of all free government, namely, that the majority shall govern under the
forms of the Constitution. It was an attack upon the right of suffrage,
an assault upon the ballot box and the great principle of an elective
President, as provided in our Constitution, and which lies at the very
basis of free institutions. That principle is the vital element of our
existence. It is 'the casing air' of liberty. Take it away, and freedom
instantly expires. The right of suffrage is the great American right of
every citizen, rich or poor, humble or exalted. It is the great
palladium of our liberty. It is a Government, like a mighty pyramid,
reposing on its broad and immovable base, the will and affections of the
people. It is the people's Government, and therefore the people maintain
it, and with us two millions of volunteers have rushed to its support.
Therefore, while it is the best Government in peace, it is the strongest
in war. But secession because of the election of a President, is not
only war upon the Union, but war upon the elective franchise, the great
fundamental principle of free government, and without which it is but a
fleeting shadow. Democrats--people of all parties--my countrymen, while
you are asked now by the Chicago Convention to vote against Mr. Lincoln,
you would nullify by that very vote the right of suffrage, because, what
is that suffrage worth, what is your vote but an empty form, if it may
not elect your President? But if, because the minority who have voted
against you, dissatisfied with your choice, can rebel, make war upon
you, because you thus voted, and set up another President for that
minority by force of arms, what is that but to say that the majority
shall not rule; that the right of suffrage shall be nullified; that the
Constitution, under which that vote was given, shall be overthrown? This
is what the rebellion has done in attempting to destroy the Republic,
merely because of the election of Mr. Lincoln. This arrogant and
insolent slave-holding oligarchy would not even wait to hear what the
President of your choice would say. They treated the President of your
choice, and therefore they treated you and the Constitution under which
you acted, with scorn and defiance. So long as you would act with them,
so long as the Northern parasites would adhere to the Southern upas tree
of Slavery, so long as the 'mudsills' of the North, as they arrogantly
called you, would obey the orders of their Southern masters, so long as
you would be their slaves, they would permit the President to be
inaugurated. But so soon as you elected a President against their
dictation, then your suffrages should be nullified by the rebellion of a
minority against the majority. What is this but to say, that the
majority shall not elect a President, and thus render the right of
suffrage an empty form, striking at the fundamental principle of free
government, and substituting the _bayonets_ of the minority for the
_ballots_ of the majority of the people? Freemen of America, is it
possible that by voting against Mr. Lincoln now because of the Southern
rebellion, you will thus declare that the election of a President by the
people is not to be maintained, but that his reëlection is to be
defeated, and that his authority, as your President and as your
representative, is therefore never to extend over the _whole United
States_, because a rebellious minority oppose it by force of arms? This
is one of the transcendent issues involved in this contest. It is in
fact the great question whether the majority shall rule or the
minority--whether self-government is an unreal mockery, or whether it is
indeed a God-given right of _man_, born in the image of his Maker. You
voted that Mr. Lincoln should be President of the _whole United States_.
That was your decision at the ballot box. Has it been obeyed? No: an
arrogant slave-holding minority has rebelled against it, and, within the
boundaries of the area occupied by that minority, has suppressed your
election by the bayonet, and substituted Jefferson Davis, one of the
rebel leaders, in place of Abraham Lincoln. Within the limits of that
rebellion, the power, under the Constitution, which you devolved upon
Abraham Lincoln, has been nullified by force of arms, and now, if you
abandon the war, or defeat his reëlection, your choice will have been
nullified, and he never will have exercised throughout the United States
the power given to him by your suffrages under the Constitution. Now the
party in the North thus acquiescing in this destruction of the right of
suffrage, dares to assume the sacred name of Democracy, which you know
is but Anglicized Greek, meaning the _power of the people_. Shade of the
immortal Jackson! the father and founder of the Democratic party, burst
the cerements of the Hermitage, and blast with the thunders of New
Orleans the wretched traitors who thus dare to profane the sacred name
under which you were chosen President of the United States.

But there is another grave objection to the McClellan platform adopted
at Chicago. It is its _intentional ambiguity_. The Convention was
composed of unionists and disunionists, of peace and war Democrats, as
they style themselves, and the platform was adapted to suit the views of
both these parties in and out of the Convention. It was a platform upon
which the temple of Janus was to be closed, but with side doors at
either extremity, into one of which the peace men with their olive
branches should enter, and the war men in full military array in the
other, and the lion and the lamb meet together in the centre in cordial
agreement. But, it appears that the war men in this case were only asses
in lions' skins, for in the compromise between antagonistic principles
and candidates, the peace men got far the better of the bargain. While
there were some vague and glittering generalities in favor of the Union,
they were connected with conditions which rendered the destruction of
the Union certain, namely, an armistice and cessation of hostilities,
accompanied by the false and flagitious declaration, calculated to
encourage the enemies of our country at home and abroad, namely, that
the war to suppress the rebellion was a failure. Remember, soldiers,
that the McClellan platform declares that your battles are failures;
that your blood has been shed in vain; that your arms can never crush
the rebellion; that you are inferior in courage to the slave-holding
rebels; that you must admit your defeat, throw down your muskets, return
in disgrace to your homes, disband the army, lay up the navy, recall
Generals Grant, Sherman, Sheridan, Meade, and Gilmore, and Admirals
Farragut, Porter, Dupont, Davis, and Winslow, and leave it to the
civilians of Chicago, Vallandigham, Harris, Long, PENDLETON, and others,
to negotiate a peace.

Now what is an armistice? It is defined to be a suspension of the war
for a limited period. There may be conditions added, but none are named
in the McClellan Chicago platform. Of course, then, it means a cessation
of hostilities by land and sea. Indeed, the platform is weaker than
this, for it proposes directly a 'cessation of hostilities,' not by land
only, or by sea only, but, of course, by _both, as the words are
general_. Now then, the blockade of the rebel ports, and the capture or
destruction of blockade runners and their cargoes, is war upon the
ocean. This blockade, then, is to be abandoned during the armistice, for
there is to be a cessation of hostilities upon the ocean and the land.

During this interval of peace, when there is to be no blockade of the
Southern ports, what is to follow? By their own accounts and estimates,
the Confederates have within their limits, in cotton (at present
prices), tobacco, and naval stores, a value exceeding one billion of
dollars in gold. Now then, so soon as the armistice was agreed upon, the
war upon the ocean, including the blockade, having ceased, the whole of
this cotton, tobacco, and naval stores, would be shipped to Europe, or
partly to Nassau, on the way to Europe, and this enormous amount
realized by the Confederate government in gold. We know what tremendous
disasters have been produced by the cotton famine in England, France,
and other countries. Now, the first effect of such shipments would be
the total ruin of all our manufactures of cotton and other textile
fabrics. But another still more serious result would follow. We know
that Louis Napoleon is the bitter enemy of the Union; we know that he
has again and again declared that we could not suppress the rebellion;
that he has earnestly thrice endeavored to persuade the British
Government to unite with him in acknowledging the independence of the
South--twice through efforts made directly upon the British Cabinet, and
once through Roebuck and Lindsay, members of the House of Commons, to
induce it by a parliamentary vote to compel the British Ministry to
unite with the Emperor in acknowledging the independence of the South.
That Louis Napoleon is our bitter enemy, is proved also by the
French-Mexican war, in which England, and even Spain, separated from
him. It is proved also by the diplomatic correspondence of Jefferson
Davis, and by his friendly and approving recognition of the
establishment of the French Imperial Government in Mexico. It is further
proved by Louis Napoleon's own letter, in which he declared, that one of
the objects of the Mexican war was the establishment of the equilibrium
of the Latin race upon the American continent. It is farther
demonstrated by the proceedings of the French in Mexico, and especially
recently at Matamoras, in the mutual aid given and received by the
French and Confederate forces. Now, what is the meaning of establishing
the equilibrium of the Latin race on the '_American continent_'? In the
first place, it means European military intervention; in the second
place, it means to embrace not only Mexico, _but the whole Latin race on
the American continent_. By the Latin race is included all Spanish
America. It means, then, in the future, if our Government is overthrown,
that all Spanish America, from the northern boundary of Mexico to Cape
Horn, is to be consolidated into one great Power under imperial sway. It
means to include in this vast empire the command of the Isthmus of
Tehauntepec, the route by Central America (about which Louis Napoleon
has written so much), by Honduras and Chiriqui, but more especially the
Panama, as also the Atrato routes.

In the great future, whoever commands these routes, especially together
with that of the Isthmus of Suez, which I visited a few months since,
and which Louis Napoleon has nearly completed, will command the commerce
of the world, and, as a consequence, ultimately control the institutions
of the world. Such are the tremendous problems teeming in the brain of
Napoleon the Third, and all, as he believes, depending upon the
destruction of the American Union. I speak of what I know from a
residence now of nearly two years in Europe. Thus it is that Louis
Napoleon intends to bring us within the centrifugal gravitation of the
European balance of power. This wonderful man proposes to extend this
system from the old continents to the new, embracing both, and thus hold
in his grasp the equilibrium--the balance of power of the world. We may
well imagine what that equilibrium will be when Napoleon the Third shall
hold the balance in his hands. Already he has considerable possessions
(insular and continental) in North and South America, and Mexico, under
Maximilian, is substantially a French dependency. He holds Algiers. He
is colonizing Egypt (as I myself saw this year) by his railroads and
canals. He has seized and colonized Cochin China and Annam. He has made
Italy a dependency on the bayonets of Franco. Now then, under these
circumstances, when the blockade shall have terminated, and Jefferson
Davis, who is quite as ambitious and even more talented than Louis
Napoleon, shall hold in his hand more than a billion of dollars' worth
of Southern products ready for immediate shipment, may he not, and will
he not say, through his most able and adroit diplomatic representative
at Paris, 'Recognize the independence of the South, and all these
products shall be shipped for sale in France, and to French
manufacturers,' and thus enable France to crush for the present the
cotton manufacturers of all the rest of the world. It is well known in
Paris that Mr. Slidell is upon terms of the most intimate association
with Louis Napoleon, and has thoroughly convinced him that we cannot
suppress the rebellion. Is it not, then, clear, anxious as Napoleon is
for the success of the South, that he would, in the event of McClellan's
election, at once recognize Southern independence. Indeed, it is the
boast of the Confederate leaders in Europe, since the adoption of the
platform at Chicago, that, upon the election of their candidates,
without waiting four months for the inauguration in March next, Napoleon
will AT ONCE recognize the Confederate government. Indeed, I do not
doubt, from the circumstantial evidence (although I do not know the
fact), that there is already a secret understanding between Jefferson
Davis and Napoleon the Third to recognize the independence of the South
upon the election of the Chicago candidates. Why wait four months, until
the 4th of March next, when the American people, by indorsing the
Chicago platform, shall have declared for peace, with the additional
announcement in that platform, that the war for the suppression of the
rebellion has failed?

If, indeed, that war has failed, and we cannot thus suppress the
rebellion, it would not only be the right, but, upon the principles of
international law, the duty of every foreign power to acknowledge
Southern independence. Thus is it that the Chicago McClellan platform
invites recognition. What is the meaning of the recognition of the
independence of the South by France, under such circumstances? IT MEANS
WAR. It means, in the first place, commercial treaties stipulating great
advantages in favor of France, and perhaps other Powers. It means, of
course, the overthrow of the blockade, so as to carry out those
treaties. It means conditions destructive of our interests, and
favorable to the recognizing POWERS. It means advantages and
discriminations in tariffs and tonnage duties, and navigation
privileges, which would exclude us from Southern ports, including New
Orleans and the mouth of the Mississippi, and deprive us of the markets
of the South. Such a recognition, then, with its attendant consequences,
means war--war not only with France, but probably with England and
Spain, and other Powers. Doubtless, upon the election of the Chicago
candidates, Napoleon would again ask the Ministry of England to unite
with him in recognizing the independence of the South, and to
participate in the benefits of the proposed commercial treaties. Who can
say that England, under the dangers and sacrifices incurred by a
refusal, would again decline the offer?

It is clear, then, that the election of the Chicago candidates involves
the most imminent peril of war with France, if not with England, both
acting then in alliance with the Confederate government. That my country
even then would accept the contest rather than the dishonor and ruin of
disunion, I do believe; but who can predict the result of such a
conflict? My countrymen, we are speedily approaching the very edge of a
dark and perilous abyss, into which we may be soon plunged by the
election of the Chicago candidates; I implore you not to make the dread
experiment. You must know that there will be no recognition of the
independence of the South by France or England, or any other Power, if
Abraham Lincoln should be reëlected in November next. The American
people will then have loudly proclaimed, through the ballot box, that
they can and will subdue the rebellion by force of arms; and that they
will continue to negotiate from the mouths of our cannon, until the
Southern armies shall have been dispersed and vanquished. Upon the news
of the reëlection of Mr. Lincoln reaching Europe, the Confederate stock,
now waiting the success of the Chicago candidates, will fall, like
Lucifer, to rise no more. American securities, including those of the
Federal and loyal State Governments, of railroads, and other companies
with real capital, will all be immensely appreciated. The difference in
favor of our country, including the rise in greenbacks, would be
equivalent in a few months to hundreds of millions of dollars. Nor is it
only our stocks that will rise at home and abroad, but the national
character will be immensely exalted. The friends of our country and
liberty in Europe, including the grand mass of the people, will echo
back the exultant shouts of freedom as they roll on from the Pacific to
the Mississippi, from the Mississippi to the lakes, and, bounding from
the glad Atlantic, are carried by steam and lightning to the shores of
Europe. The fetters of American Slavery will be broken by such a result,
and man--immortal man, of whatever race or color, born in the image of
his Maker, will emerge from chatteldom, and rise to the dignity of our
common humanity.

There is one point still remaining of vast importance. It is the
question of Slavery, so far as it yet lingers within our borders.
Without entering upon other aspects of that case, we call attention to
the proposed amendment for the purpose of abolishing Slavery on the
recommendation of Congress and the ratification of three fourths of the
States, as provided in the Federal Constitution. This is recommended by
Mr. Lincoln, and it is a plank in the Baltimore platform. It passed the
Senate by a more than two-thirds vote, but was defeated, _by the
Democrats_, by a vote of 69 to 94, in the House, thus failing to receive
the two-thirds majority of both Houses of Congress as required by the
Constitution. If, as has been heretofore shown, Slavery is the great
enemy of the Union, and was the sole cause of the rebellion, why not
extirpate the _cause_ of the war? Why not remove what may remain of
Slavery after the war is ended, by the proposed amendment, as
recommended by Mr. Lincoln? This is a war and a Union measure,
calculated to crush the rebellion, to maintain the Union, and to prevent
any future effort to effect its overthrow. This measure, which would
settle finally and forever the Slavery question, will succeed at an
early period, if Mr. Lincoln should be reflected. But this measure the
Democrats oppose, and desire to _keep open_ the Slavery question, for no
object that can be perceived, except to renew the old party alliance
between Slavery South and its Northern supporters, with a view to party
triumphs. If General McClellan succeeds, Slavery, so far as it still
exists, will be cherished, maintained, and perpetuated. The viper will
be warmed into life again, and although it might perhaps recoil for the
present, it would only be to strike at some future period with greater
force and venom at the life of the Republic. These men tell us they are
for the _Union as it was_. Are they for the revival of such scenes as
were perpetrated by Brooks in the American Senate? Are they for the
Kansas frauds and murders and forgeries, including the forgery of a
constitution? Are they for the right of secession, or, while they
dispute the right of a State to secede, do they deny with Buchanan and
Pendleton the right of the Government to prevent its secession? Are they
against secession, but against coercion also? Are they against
rebellion, but opposed to its overthrow by force! Throughout the South,
under the Union as it was, there was no freedom of speech or of the
press, on any question connected with Slavery. Are they for the sale,
under the Union as it was, even of free negroes into perpetual bondage?
Are they for the denial of the rights of Northern citizens throughout
the South? Above all, are they for the renewal of the African slave
trade, as notoriously occurred in 1859 (during the Administration of
Buchanan), at Savannah, in Georgia, when the wretched victims, just
stolen from their native homes in Africa, were carried to Savannah, and
there, in defiance of the Federal Constitution, openly distributed by
sale among the boasted chivalry of the South? If the Chicago candidates
and their party are for these things--if they are for the Union as it
was in these respects, I am against them. I am for the Union (as clearly
intended by the fathers and founders of the Government) as it will be
when Slavery (its great, and, in fact, its only domestic foe) shall
have been entirely extinguished. While I am for the extinction of
Slavery as a Union and as a war measure, I am consoled by the reflection
that, while it will secure the perpetuity of the Union, it will vastly
increase our wealth and power, and advance all our industrial and
material interests. For several years past I have examined this
question, and, in various essays, published at home, but more especially
abroad, have proved by official statistics, from the censuses of 1850
and 1860, that, under the system of free labor and free schools which
exist in the North, as compared with the South, the product of the Free
States is $217 _per capita_, and that of the slave-holding States $96
_per capita_. Also, that the lands of the South are worth $10 per acre,
and of the North $25 per acre. It was further proved by me, in those
essays, by the same official data, that, exactly in proportion to the
number of slaves is the decreased production _per capita_ in the Slave
States; that of South Carolina, with 402,406 slaves and 291,388 whites,
being $66 _per capita_, and of Delaware, with 90,589 whites and 1,798
slaves, being $143 _per capita_; while that of Massachusetts, with her
sterile soil and severe climate, and far inferior natural advantages,
was $235 _per capita_; and the same rule was also shown to hold in
counties of the same Slave States, those counties with few slaves always
producing more _per capita_ than those having many. The result was, as
shown by the census, that if the production of the South in 1859 had
been equal _per capita_ during the same year to that of the Free States,
the additional value of the Southern products would have been
$1,531,631,000 in 1859, and in the aggregate of the decade from 1859 to
1869, $17,873,539,511, exclusive of the addition from the annual
reinvestment of capital. The addition, then, to the value of the
products of the South in a single year, caused by the substitution of
free for slave labor, would be nearly equal to our whole present
national debt, while in the aggregate of the ten years succeeding it
would be nearly ten times greater than the whole national debt, thus
leaving us far richer after the next census, as a consequence of
increased production, notwithstanding the national debt, than if the
rebellion had never occurred. Thus is it that the ways of Providence are
justified to man, and that Slavery chastises its own advocates, while
its overthrow brings increased wealth and safety and honor and happiness
and prosperity to the country. While I do not advocate, then, the
abolition of Slavery in defiance of the Constitution, because it would
make us more wealthy and powerful, more honored, happy, and prosperous,
yet I rejoice that in supporting emancipation, as Mr. Lincoln does, as a
Union and as a war measure, the overthrow of this accursed institution
will be attended with countless benefits to my country and mankind.
Suppress the rebellion by the overthrow of the Southern armies, and
re-establish the Government throughout all our wide domain upon the
broad and eternal foundations of freedom, truth, and justice, then
neither domestic traitors nor foreign despots will ever dash against its
adamantine base. There it will stand, and stand forever, the mighty
continental breakwater between the continents of Asia and of Europe,
against which the breakers of internal faction, and the waves of
despotic power would dash in vain. To that home of the oppressed, to
that asylum of genuine and universal freedom, millions from the Old
World would then come, and unite with us in strengthening and
maintaining a Government based upon the rights of humanity, and
sustained by the affections of the people. While our physical force and
accumulating wealth would thus be rapidly and vastly augmented, our
moral power would be increased in a still grander ratio. Then the cry of
tyrants, that self-government is a phantom, and republics a failure,
would cease to oppress the listening ear of humanity. Then the chains
would soon fall everywhere from the limbs of the slave. Then the
reactionary and feudal party of Europe, now so loudly proclaiming
republics a failure, while exulting over the anticipated fall of the
American Union, would retire discomfited from the contest, while the
rights of man would be immensely promoted, and civilization advance, at
a single bound, more than in the lapse of many centuries. The great
liberal party of England, headed by those immortal champions Bright and
Cobden, would rouse like giants refreshed from their slumber, and carry
the flag of the vote by ballot and extended suffrage triumphantly
throughout the British realm, while Ireland, oppressed Ireland, would
then receive the fullest justice. Then, indeed, all past differences
between England and America would be sunk forever in fraternal concord,
and the peace of the world be maintained. Then Napoleon the Third, who
keeps an army of 600,000 men as a standing menace to Europe and the
world, and who has just, for the present, and for the present only,
extinguished in blood the freedom of Mexico, must abandon his ambitious
projects, or shiver his diadem upon the adamantine rock of popular
freedom.

But there are complaints from the so-called Democratic party that the
President, and especially the Secretary of State, have surrendered the
Monroe doctrine, and abandoned Mexico to her fate. There is no truth in
this accusation. The President and the Secretary of State, _as regards
the future_, are wholly uncommitted on this question, unless, indeed, it
be for Mexico, by announcing that the people of the loyal States are
unanimously in her favor. I say they are uncommitted for the future, and
the real objection to their course is this: that they have not gratified
the South and its Northern allies, by engaging, ere this, in a war with
France, so as to bring her vast forces in aid of the Confederate
government. Indeed, Mr. Seward is cursed everywhere by the Confederates
and their allies throughout Europe for preventing a war, _at this time_,
on the Mexican question, between France and the United States, 'There is
a time for all things,' and, as I have said before, our only question
_now_, is the salvation of the Union; and when that is secured, will be
the proper period to consider other subordinate questions, foreign or
domestic. No man can speak with more feeling on this question than
myself, for it is a well-known fact that I earnestly opposed, as a
member of the Cabinet of Mr. Polk, the Mexican treaty of 1848, among
other reasons, upon the suggestion then made by me, that if we abandoned
Mexico, it would subject us to the danger of European interference there
(just as it has occurred) by force of arms. That treaty was carried by a
constitutional majority of only three votes, mainly through the
instrumentality of Mr. Calhoun, who was against the invasion of Mexico,
and for 'masterly inactivity,' resting on the banks of the Rio Grande,
because he knew (as declared in my Texas letter of January, 1844)
'Slavery never could cross the Rio Grande,' and that, as a consequence,
all of Mexico which we would permanently hold, as we ought to have done,
from Texas to Tehuantepec, would, Mexico having abolished Slavery, have
become Free States. I believed also that the permanent occupation and
annexation of Mexico would have forever settled all the dangers of the
Slavery question, because it would have flanked the Slave States of the
Southwest, by many powerful Free States adjacent on the Southwest,
containing already seven millions of people, most of whom were of the
colored race, and who would have fought to the last against the
reëstablishment of Slavery.

Yet, strong and decided as is my opposition to the course of Napoleon on
the Mexican as well as the Confederate question, I believe that the
policy of Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Seward on this question has been marked by
great courage, devoted patriotism, and the highest statesmanship. I am
not for mingling this or any other question of foreign or domestic
policy with the maintenance of the Union, but have only answered the
assaults of adversaries on the Mexican and other subordinate issues.
This, however, I must say: that the treaty with Mexico, by which we
abandoned that country, having been ratified, I am opposed to any
violation of its provisions. While I adhere to the opinions expressed at
the time by me against that treaty; while I am opposed to forcing Mexico
into our Union, I believe that Napoleon the Third, unwittingly, by his
invasion, has caused Mexico soon to gravitate, by the overwhelming wish
of her people, into the arms of the great Republic. Thus is it that the
French invasion will have settled forever in our favor the question of
the American equilibrium.

I have published the views expressed in these letters on consultation
with no one. They are my own individual opinions, and I only am
responsible for them. It is quite possible that the Administration may
differ from some of them, but I am just as independent of the
Administration as they are of me. I am not, and never was, a Republican
of 1856 or 1860, and while I have been falsely charged in Europe with
abandoning my free-trade principles, in consequence of the constant and
earnest support given by me to Mr. Lincoln, it must be remembered that a
majority of his Cabinet of 1863 had been Democrats, and supported the
Tariff of 1846. But the Tariff is a very subordinate question, compared
with the salvation of the Union. Besides, if the Tariff of 1846 was
changed, it was not until the 2d of March, 1861, and the change was
caused intentionally, by the previous withdrawal of the Senators and
Representatives of the seceded States from both Houses of Congress.

I have another answer to this charge. I was for the _free list_ of the
Tariff of 1842, as distinctly stated in my first annual Treasury report,
so as to increase our exports, especially of dyed cotton goods, thereby
producing a corresponding augmentation of our imports and revenue. That
portion of the act of 1846 was defeated by Mr. Calhoun, much to my
regret, injury, and annoyance.

Besides, the South, by its rebellion, and by thus forcing on us an
enormous Federal debt, has rendered impossible for many years any other
Tariff but that which will bring the largest revenue. Until this debt is
paid, we must have the highest Tariff for revenue, and it can be so
arranged as, while yielding, when the Union is restored, at least
$150,000,000 annually in gold, at the same time to furnish all
incidental aid to American industry that could be desired.

I have thus far discussed the question as confined to the contest
between the respective candidates for the Presidency of the United
States. But let those who think of supporting General McClellan for the
Presidency remember that, in sustaining him, they must necessarily vote
for Mr. Pendleton for the Vice Presidency. McClellan and Pendleton are
the Siamese twins of Chicago, inseparable, and all who vote for the one,
vote at the same time for the other. No voter can cast his suffrage in
this contest, except by voting for an electoral ticket, and the same
electors for General McClellan who may be chosen in any State, are to
vote for Mr. Pendleton for the Vice Presidency. In other words, if
General McClellan is chosen President, Mr. Pendleton is elected at the
same time to the Vice Presidency of the United States. Now, recollect,
that the Vice President not only presides over the Senate of the United
States, and gives the casting vote in that body, but that, in case of
the death of the President, the Vice President becomes President of the
United States. Now, two Presidents of the United States, within the last
twenty-three years, have died during their term of office (Harrison and
Taylor), and one of them within a month after his inauguration. In both
these cases, the Vice Presidents chosen on the same electoral ticket
with the President, reversed the policy of the President elect. Tyler
reversed the policy of Harrison, and Fillmore reversed the policy of
Taylor. Why may not the same thing again occur, if Mr. Pendleton, by the
death of General McClellan, should succeed him as President? This
renders an inquiry into the course and views of Mr. Pendleton a question
of vital importance.

Now, Mr. Pendleton, as his votes and speeches show, is against the war
for the Union, and has declared the coercion of a seceding rebel State
not only '_impracticable_,' but 'unconstitutional.' His words are, in
big speech in Congress of the 18th January, 1861, after most of the
Cotton States had seceded: 'Sir (he then said) the whole scheme of
coercion is impracticable. It is contrary to the genius and spirit of
the Constitution.' In accordance with these anti-coercion and anti-war
views, he continued to vote against the prosecution of the war, and
against all the great measures passed for that purpose. He further then
said, 'If your differences are so great that you cannot or will not
reconcile them, then, gentlemen, let the seceding States depart in
peace; let them establish their government and empire, and work out
their destiny according to the wisdom which God has given them.' This is
exactly the doctrine of Jefferson Davis, and of all the rebel leaders:
'LET US ALONE.' _Let us alone_, while we overthrow the Government and
dissolve the Union; _let us alone_, while we seize the mouth of the
Mississippi, and tear down or shoot down the flag of the Union from
every fort of the South. This is their language, and the Chicago
Convention might just as well have nominated Jefferson Davis as George
H. Pendleton as their candidate for the Vice Presidency of the United
States. Such a nomination of an avowed disunionist shows the true spirit
of the Chicago Convention, and that all their general expressions of
devotion to the Union were mere empty sounds, calculated to secure
votes, but utterly false and hypocritical; for, while indulging in these
pharasaical expressions of love for the Union, they nominate, at the
same time, as their candidate for the Vice President, an avowed
secessionist and disunionist. We have nothing to do with the abstract
opinions or wishes of Mr. Pendleton as regards the Union. Jefferson
Davis repeatedly, and up to the very period of secession, expressed
quite as much devotion to the old flag and to the Union as Mr.
Pendleton. But Mr. Davis soon became the head of the rebellion which Mr.
Pendleton declares we ought not, and have no constitutional power, to
suppress by force. Far all practical purposes, then, Mr. Pendleton is
just as much a secessionist and disunionist as Jefferson Davis. Nor can
it be alleged that Mr. Pendleton has changed these views. On the
contrary, as late as this year he voted in Congress against the test
resolution of Green Clay Smith, of Kentucky, declaring 'that it is the
political, civil, moral, and sacred duty of the people to meet the
rebellion, fight it, crush it, and forever destroy it.' Now then, the
Chicago Convention, with a full knowledge of these votes and speeches,
nominated Mr. Pendleton for the Vice Presidency, and contingently for
the Presidency of the United States. They knew full well that Mr.
Pendleton had declared the effort to crush the rebellion impracticable
and unconstitutional, and that, therefore, if the power they proposed to
give him were ratified by his election, he could, and under his oath of
office to support the Constitution, he must, disband our armies,
terminate the war, and permit the dissolution of the Union to be
consummated; or he might repeat his own words of 1861: Let the seceding
States depart in peace; let them establish their government and empire,
and work out their destiny according to the wisdom which God has given
them.' It is, then, a sufficient objection to the Chicago candidates
that Mr. Pendleton, one of the candidates, inseparably connected with
General McClellan on the same electoral ticket, is, as we have seen,
opposed to the war, and for all practical purposes as much a
secessionist and disunionist as Jefferson Davis. This being clear, if
General McClellan is really for the war to save the Union, by crushing
the rebellion, he must refuse to run on the same electoral ticket with
Mr. Pendleton; and if he does not, the people and history will assign to
him the same position. He cannot lend his name to aid the election of
Mr. Pendleton on the same ticket with himself, and profess devotion to
the Union.

There is yet another point on which I would say a word. It is this: From
the proceedings of the Canada Confederates, and their Northern allies,
and the outgivings of the Richmond press, I conclude that their last
suggestion is this: two or more confederacies, Northern, Southern,
Middle, New England, Northwest, Mississippi, and Pacific. They are to be
united by free trade between them all, and by an alliance offensive and
defensive. That is, whenever any one of these confederacies go to war,
we are to join them in the conflict. Namely, if the Southern Confederacy
wishes to conquer and annex Cuba or Porto Rico, or to conquer and extend
slavery to Central America, and war follows, we are to join them in the
war, and sustain them with our blood and treasure. If so, the temple of
Janus will never be closed on our continent, and war will be our normal
condition--a war not declared by us, or in our own interest, but by the
South, as a foreign government. Such an alliance is visionary, ruinous,
and impracticable. It is simply a scheme to secure Southern
independence.

Then, as to the free trade to be secured by treaty between the several
confederacies. Recollect that each of these nations is to be foreign and
independent, and to have its separate treaties with foreign Powers. How
long would such treaties and such an alliance last? Why, the flag of the
South would scarcely float over the mouth of the Chesapeake and
Mississippi, before the conflict with us of views and measures would
begin, nursed and promoted by foreign Powers, where each of the new
confederacies would have its separate ministers, representing distinct
and discordant interests. When have such alliances or treaties lasted
even for half a century? Where are all the leagues of antiquity or of
modern Europe? Where are all such leagues and treaties even of the last
century? Where is our own alliance with France of 1778? Where all such
alliances and treaties even of the first half of the present century?
They are all extinguished. Experience proves--the voice of history
proclaims--that treaties or alliances between independent Powers are
always of short duration, being soon swept before the gust of contending
passions, or melted in the crucible of conflicting interests. Where is
the celebrated alliance and treaty of 1814 and 1815 of Vienna, between
the great European Powers, establishing FOREVER, by a congress, the
balance of European power? Is there a single clause now in force? Where
is the clause securing France to the Bourbons, and guaranteeing her
forever against the reign of any of the Bonaparte family? Where are the
states whose independence was forever guaranteed by those treaties?
Where are Parma and Modena and Tuscany? Where is Lombardy, where the
Romagna, Naples, and the Two Sicilies? Where are the duchies of
Lauenburg, Schleswig, and Holstein, and where the treaty of 1852 in
regard to them? All, all have passed away, just as would our proposed
treaties or alliances. The first war would sweep them out of existence.
No, my countrymen; as Washington, the father of his country, most truly
told us in his Farewell Address: 'To the efficacy and permanency of your
Union, a Government _for the whole_ is indispensable. _No alliance_,
however strict between the parts, can be an adequate substitute; they
must inevitably experience the _infractions_ and _interruptions_ which
_all alliances_, in _all time_, have experienced.'

Washington thus foresaw and warned us against this most insidious
proposition to divide our country into separate confederacies, no matter
how strict the alliances between them might be; and let us adopt his
counsels.

Is it not strange, while Italy and Germany seek, in Italian and German
unity, relief from the ruin and oppression of so many independent states
and governments, and are each making advances to that great
consummation, that we are asked to adopt the reactionary policy, and
separate glorious Union into distinct confederacies, soon to be followed
by grinding taxation, by immense standing armies, and perpetual wars?

And now then, my countrymen, I bring this letter to a close, imploring
you to give no vote which will subject the Union to the slightest peril.
Come, then, my friends, of all parties, come, Republicans, and Whigs,
and Democrats, and Irish and German and native citizens, trampling under
our feet all past issues, and all old party names and prejudices, and,
standing on the broad basis of principle, let us vote, not for men or
parties, but for the salvation and perpetuity of the Union.

  R. J. WALKER.



GENIUS.


  Far out at sea the wave was high,
    While veered the wind and flapped the sail;
  We saw a snow-white butterfly
    Dancing before the fitful gale,
              Far out at sea!

  The little creature, which had lost
    Its mate, of danger little knew;
  Settled awhile upon the mast,
    Then fluttered o'er the waters blue,
              Far out at sea!

  Away it danced with shimmering glee,
    Now dim, distinct, now seen, now gone:
  Night comes, with wind and rain, but he
    No more shall dance before the morn,
              Far out at sea!

  He dies unlike his mates, I ween,
    Perhaps not sooner or more crossed;
  But he has known, and felt, and seen,
    A wider, larger hope, though lost
              Far out at sea!



LITERARY NOTICES


     THE AMERICAN CONFLICT: A History of the Great Rebellion in the
     United States of America, 1860-'64: Its Causes, Incidents, and
     Results: Intended to Exhibit especially its Moral and Political
     Phases, with the Drift and Progress of American Opinion respecting
     Human Slavery from 1776 to the close of the War for the Union. By
     HORACE GREELEY. Illustrated by Portraits on Steel of Generals,
     Statesmen, and other Eminent Men; Views of Places of Historical
     Interest; Maps, Diagrams of Battle Fields, Naval Actions, etc.,
     from official sources. Vol. I. Hartford: Published by O. D. Case &
     Co. Chicago; Geo. & E. W. Sherwood. 1864.

It is not our intention here to enter into any critical analysis of the
volume before us, but rather to give the reader an idea of what he may
find within it, in the words of Mr. Greeley himself. It is inscribed to
Mr. Bright, under the following dedication: 'To John Bright, British
Commoner and Christian Statesman, the Friend of my Country, because the
Friend of Mankind, this Record of a Nation's Struggle up from Darkness
and Bondage to Light and Liberty, is regardfully, gratefully inscribed
by the Author.'

Mr. Greeley says in his preface: 'No one can realize more fully than I
do that the History through whose pages our great-grandchildren will
contemplate the momentous struggle whereof this country has recently
been and still is the arena, will not and cannot _now_ be written; and
that its author must give to the patient, careful, critical study of
innumerable documents and letters, an amount of time and thought which I
could not have commanded, unless I had been able to devote years,
instead of months only, to the preparation of this volume. I know, at
least, what History is, and how it must be made; I know how very far
this work must fall short of the lofty ideal.' ... 'What I have aimed to
do, is so to arrange the material facts, and so to embody the more
essential documents, or parts of documents, illustrating those facts,
that the attentive, intelligent reader may learn from this work, not
only what were the leading incidents of our civil war, but its causes,
incidents, and the inevitable sequence whereby ideas proved the germ of
events.' ... 'My subject naturally divides itself into two parts: I.
_How we got into the war for the Union_; and II. _How we got out of it_.
I have respected this division in my cast of the present work, and
submit this volume as a clear elucidation of the former of these
problems, hoping to be at least equally satisfactory in my treatment of
the latter.' ... 'I shall labor constantly to guard against Mr.
Pollard's chief error--that of supposing that all the heroism,
devotedness, humanity, chivalry, evinced in the contest, were displayed
on one side; all the cowardice, ferocity, cruelty, rapacity, and general
depravity, on the other. I believe it to be the truth, and as such I
shall endeavor to show, that, while this war has been signalized by some
deeds disgraceful to human nature, the general behavior of the
combatants on either side has been calculated to do honor even to the
men who, though fearfully misguided, are still our countrymen, and to
exalt the prestige of the American name.'

The sale of the work before us has been immense. Such has been the
demand for Vol. I. of 'The American Conflict,' that the publishers have
found it impossible to supply the demand, even with regard to agents and
subscribers. The subscription list already numbers 60,000, although but
one fourth of the Free States have been canvassed.

Leading heads of chapters are: I. Our Country in 1782 and in 1860. II.
Slavery in America prior to 1776. III. Slavery in the American
Revolution. IV. Slavery Under the Confederation. V. The Convention of
1787 and the Federal Constitution, VI. Slavery after 1787. VII.
Missouri--The Struggle for Restriction. VIII. State Rights--Resolutions
of '98. IX. Abolition--Its Rise and Progress. X. The Churches on Slavery
and Abolition. XI. The Pro-Slavery Reaction--Riots. XII. Texas and her
Annexation to the United States. XIII. The Mission of Samuel Hoar to
South Carolina. XIV. War with Mexico--Wilmot Proviso. XV. The Struggle
for Compromise in 1850. XVI. The Era of Slave Hunting--1850-'60. XVII.
The Nebraska-Kansas Struggle. XVIII. Case of Dred Scott in the Supreme
Court. XIX. Our Foreign Policy--Monroe--Cuba. XX. John Brown and his
Raid. XXI. The Presidential Canvass of 1860. XXII. Secession Inaugurated
in South Carolina. XXIII. The Press and the People of the North
Deprecate Civil War. XXIV. Attempts at Conciliation in Congress. XXV.
Peace Democracy at the North and Peace Conference at Washington. XXVI.
The Union versus the Confederacy. XXVII. The Pause before the Shock.
XXVIII. Siege and Reduction of Fort Sumter. XXIX. The Nation Called to
Arms--and Responds. XXX. Secession Resumes its March. XXXI. The Opposing
Forces in Conflict. XXXII. West Virginia Clings to the Union. XXXIII.
The War in Old Virginia. XXXIV. First Session of the Thirty-Seventh
Congress. XXXV. The Rebellion and War in Missouri. XXXVI. War on the
Seaboard and the Ocean. XXXVII. Kentucky Adheres to the Union. XXXVIII.
The Potomac--Ball's Bluff. Notes and Analytical Index.

This work demands an extended review, and the readers of THE CONTINENTAL
may again hear of it. Meantime the most varied estimates will be formed
of its merits; as various as the political tenets held by its readers.

It is illustrated, containing Heads of President and Cabinet, Eminent
Opponents of the Slave Power, Confederate Chieftains, Union Generals,
Confederate Generals, Union Naval Officers, Plans of Battles, etc., etc.


     DOWN IN TENNESSEE, AND BACK BY WAY OF RICHMOND. By EDMUND KIRKE,
     Author of 'Among the Pines,' 'My Southern Friends,' etc. New York:
     Carleton, publisher, 413 Broadway. 1864.

The author of this work, having been familiar with the South in days
more tranquil, had 'a desire to study the undercurrents of popular
sentiment, and to renew his acquaintance with former friends and Union
prisoners,' and so visited the Southwest in May last: the present volume
thus originated. We cannot very readily discern how much of this work is
fact, how much fiction. We have the Union scout, the poor white, the
negro, and other elements belonging both to the romance and reality of
Southern life in these days of struggle. Are the exquisitely simple and
heart-touching thoughts and expressions which fall from the lips of the
poor white or scout, actually true, or are they the coinage of Mr.
Kirke's own vivid fancy? Notwithstanding the hideous jargon in which
they occur, if real they evince a high soul, even in the midst of
ignorance, and are the gems of the work. The book ends with a detailed
account of the author's introduction to Colonel Jaques, and their
subsequent visit to Richmond, an episode in our history quite as
curious as the Sanders and Greeley conference at Clifton House, and
one which has excited quite as wide an interest. Mr. Kirke says of
the poor whites: 'I have endeavored to sketch their characters
faithfully--extenuating nothing and setting nothing down in malice--that
the reader may believe what I _know_, that there is not in the whole
North a more worthy, industrious, loving class of people than the great
body of poor Southern Whites. Take the heel of the man-buying and
woman-whipping aristocrat from off their necks, give them free schools,
and a chance to rise, and they will make the South, with its prolific
soil, its immense water power, and its vast mineral wealth, such a
country as the sun never yet looked upon, and this Union such a Union as
will be the light of nations and the glory of the earth!'


     POEMS OF THE WAR. By GEORGE H. BOKER. Boston: Ticknor & Fields.
     1864. New York: for sale by D. Appleton & Co.

Mr. Boker has attained, what his more elaborate efforts sometimes lack,
fire, concentration, and energy, in these 'Poems of the War.' We thank
him heartily that he has taken the glories of our country and the
sufferings and deeds of our dauntless soldiers as his theme. Patriotism
has inspired him, and the ever well-tuned chords of his lyre ring out
with bolder and more soul-stirring melody than of old. 'On Board the
Cumberland,' 'The Sword Bearer,' 'The Ballad of New Orleans,' 'Crossing
at Fredericksburg,' 'The Black Regiment,' 'In the Wilderness,' are truly
national poems, and should be read at every hearthstone in our land. We
quote the closing lines from 'Upon the Hill before Centreville':

  'Oh, let me not outlive the blow
  That seals my country's overthrow!
  And, lest this woful end come true,
  Men of the North, I turn to you.
  Display your vaunted flag once more,
  Southward your eager columns pour!
  Sound trump and fife and rallying drum;
  From every hill and valley come!
  Old men, yield up your treasured gold;
  Can liberty be priced and sold?
  Fair matrons, maids, and tender brides,
  Gird weapons to your lovers' sides;
  And, though your hearts break at the deed,
  Give them your blessing and God-speed;
  Then point them to the field of fame,
  With words like those of Sparta's dame!
  And when the ranks are full and strong,
  And the whole army moves along,
  A vast result of care and skill,
  Obedient to the master will,
  And our young hero draws the sword,
  And gives the last commanding word
  That hurls your strength upon the foe--
  _Oh, let them need no second blow!_
  Strike, as your fathers struck of old,
  Through summer's heat and winter's cold;
  Through pain, disaster, and defeat;
  Through marches tracked with bloody feet;
  Through every ill that could befall
  The holy cause that bound them all!
  Strike as they struck for liberty!
  Strike as they struck to make you free!
  Strike for the crown of victory!'

While we honor our brave soldiers and their glorious deeds, let us also
honor their bards,

            'Nor suffer them to steal,
  Unthanked, away, to weep beside the harp,
  Dejected, prayerful, while the fields are won.'


     BROKEN LIGHTS: An Inquiry into the Present Condition and Future
     Prospects of Religious Faith. By FRANCES POWER COBBE. Boston: J. E.
     Tilton & Co. 1864.

A book of decided ability, however much we may regret the conclusions
arrived at by its author. Contents of Part I. are: The Present Condition
of Religious Faith. Chapter I. The Great Problem. II. The Solutions of
the Problem, Historical and Rational, Palæologian and Neologian. Under
the head of Palæologian we have The High Church Solution, the Low Church
Solution; under Neologian we have the First Broad Church Solution, the
Second Broad Church Solution. We have then the Solutions of the Parties
Outside the Church, Bishop Colenso on the Pentateuch, and Renan's 'Vie
de Jesus.' Part II. gives us 'The Future Prospects of Religious Faith.'
Under the head of Rational, we have the Rationalist Solution of the
Problems, The Faith of the Future, Theoretic Theism, and Practical
Theism.

Our author is of the school of Theodore Parker, a Theist. 'Three great
principles--the absolute goodness of God; the final salvation of every
created soul; and the divine authority of conscience--are the obvious
fundamental canons of the Faith of the Future.' We continue our
quotations: 'God will not leave us when all our puny theologies have
failed us, and all our little systems shall have had their day and
ceased to be. We shall yet praise Him who is the light of life, even
though the darkness may seem to gather round us now. Christianity may
fail us, and we may watch it with straining eyes going slowly down from
the zenith where once it shone; but we need neither regret that it
should pass away, nor dread lest we be left in gloom. _Let it pass
away_--that grand and wonderful faith! Let it go down, calmly and
slowly, like an orb which has brightened half our heaven through the
night of the ages, and sets at last in glory, leaving its train of light
long gleaming in the sky, and mingling with the dawn. Already up the
East there climbs another Sun.' Again: 'The faith, then, for which we
must contend--the faith which we believe shall be the religion of future
ages--must be one founded on the Original Revelation of Consciousness,
not on the Traditional Revelation of Church or Book--a faith, not
resting for its sole support on the peculiar History of one nation, but
rated by the whole history of humanity.' ... 'The view which seems to be
the sole fitting one for our estimate of the character of Christ, is
that which regards him as the great REGENERATOR of Humanity. _His coming
was to the life of humanity what Regeneration is to the life of the
individual._ He has transformed the Law into the Gospel. He has changed
the bondage of the alien for the liberty of the sons of God. He has
glorified Virtue into Holiness, Religion into Piety, and Duty into
Love.'

What a perpetual stumbling block in the way of all unbelief is the
marvellous character of Christ! We may strive to throw away the record,
but He remains a living force within the soul forever. The Theist would
miss Him even in his certain heaven!

We think we have given, in the few short extracts above, enough to
enable our readers to perceive the standpoint from which this work is
written. It is a clear statement of the dogmas held, the reasons for
their adoption, and the hopes of what is styled the Church of the
Future. Of the ability of many of its adherents there can be no doubt.
The contest is upon the children of Faith. Let them meet it with candor,
fairness, prayer, love, profound biblical and scientific erudition, and
may God comfort us with His eternal truth!


     DRAMATIS PERSONÆ. By ROBERT BROWNING. Boston: Ticknor & Field. New
     York: for sale by D. Appleton & Co.

This book has been already reviewed by the English critics, who are
always appreciative of Browning's merits, and tender to his faults. It
is as wilful as its predecessors, as unintelligible, as fragmentary, its
rhythm as distorted and broken, its diction as peculiar, its sequences
as disconnected. Yet we think it shows gleams of higher poetic talent
than anything he has yet published. It contains eighteen poems. 'A Death
in the Desert' is an imaginary portrayal of the death of St. John in his
old age in a cave, to which he had been taken by some faithful adherents
to save him from persecution. It is a sketch of power and originality.
St. John is supposed to speak:

  'If I live yet, it is for good, more love
  Through me to men: be nought but ashes here
  That keeps awhile my semblance, who was John--
  Still when they scatter, there is left on earth
  No one alive who _knew_ (consider this!)
  --Saw with his eyes and handled with his hands
  That which was from the first the Word of Life.
  How will it be when none more saith 'I saw?''

Very original and very disagreeable in its highly wrought and subtile
Realism is 'Caliban upon Setebos, or Natural Theology in the Island,' a
study from Shakspeare's 'Tempest.' It is a curious exposition of the
philosophy of such a being. At the close, when Caliban, who speaks in
the third person, is beginning to think of Setebos, 'his dam's god,' as
not so formidable after all, a great storm awakes, which upsets all his
reasoning, and makes him fall flat on his face with fright:

  'What, what? A curtain o'er the world at once!
  Crickets stop hissing; not a bird--or, yes,
  There scuds His raven that hath told Him all!
  It was fool's play, this prattling! Ha! The wind
  Shoulders the pillared dust, death's house o' the move,
  And fast invading fires begin! White blaze--
  A tree's head snaps--and there, there, there, there, there,
  His thunder follows! Fool to gibe at Him!
  Lo! 'Lieth flat and loveth Setebos!
  'Maketh his teeth meet through his upper lip,
  Will let those quails fly, will not eat this mouth
  One little mess of whelks, so he may 'scape!'

'Mr. Sludge, the Medium,' one of the longer poems, is intended,
according to rumor, to demolish Mr. Home, and includes some sharp
thrusts at various persons who still patronize him after having found
him guilty of fraud.

The story runs that a lady and gentleman of eminence, devout
spiritualists, residing at Rome, confessed to Mr. Browning that during
Mr. Home's stay at their house they once forbade his putting his hand
under the table, and the spirits wouldn't rap, and Home burst into
tears, and confessed that _on that occasion only_ he had deceived them;
that on one other occasion he had put phosphorus on the tips of wires
and stretched them from the roof of their house to represent certain
spiritual apparitions. 'And what did you say, how did you act, upon the
discovery?' asked Mr. Browning. 'Oh,' replied the lady, 'I rebuked him
severely; told him plainly how shameful it was that one who had been so
supernaturally gifted should act so, and told him that he ought to
repent.' 'And he still remained with you, and--' 'Oh, yes, we are
perfectly sure that everything was genuine afterward.' Upon which the
poet was so disgusted that he vented his indignation in 'Mr. Sludge.'


     FIRESIDE TRAVELS. By JAMES RUSSELL LOWELL. 'Travelling makes a man
     sit still in his old age with satisfaction, and travel over the
     world again in his chair and bed by discourse and thoughts.'--_The
     Voyage of Italy, by Richard Lassels, Gent_. Boston; Ticknor &
     Fields. 1864. New York: for sale by D. Appleton & Co.

Mr. Lowell says, in big short preface: 'The greater part of this volume
was printed ten years ago in _Putnam's Monthly_ and _Graham's Magazine_.
The additions (most of them about Italy) have been made up, as the
original matter was, from old letters and journals written on the spot.
My wish was to describe not so much what I went to see, as what I saw
that was most unlike what one sees at home. If the reader find
entertainment, he will find all I hoped to give him.'

And a churl he surely were if he find it not; for a right pleasant book
it is to read--genial and full of the real Lowell humor, almost as
characteristic as Jean Paul's, _der einzige_. 'Cambridge Thirty Years
Ago' will carry many of our most distinguished men back to the sunny
days of youth, while the boys of to-day will be delighted to know how it
fared with them then and there. Contents: Cambridge Thirty Years Ago; A
Moosehead Journal; Leaves from My Journal in Italy and Elsewhere; At
Sea; In the Mediterranean; Italy; A Few Bits of Roman Mosaic.

There is no use in praising a book of Lowell's; everybody knows, reads,
and loves him.

     SIMONSON'S CIRCULAR ZOOLOGICAL CHART. A Directory to the Study of
     the Animal Kingdom. Published by Schermerhorn, Bancroft & Co., 130
     Grand street, New York, and 25 North Fourth street, Philadelphia.

This chart must prove a valuable guide to the teacher, and a great aid
to the student of Natural History. It appears to have been carefully
compiled from modern standard works, and is divided and subdivided as
accurately as the limited space allows. It is a vast aid to the memory,
showing at a glance the classification of the animal kingdom; and,
bringing together the various groups of animals on one page, it stamps
its complicated lesson on the mind through the rapid power of the eye.
When the enormous number of species is considered, the advantage of such
a chart may be readily imagined. It may be used as an introduction by
the teacher, or side by side with any text book. We heartily recommend
it to notice.


     PERCE'S MAGNETIC GLOBES. A very ingenious invention is here offered
     to the public through Mr. J. F. Trow, of 50 Greene street, New York.
     It consists of a hollow Globe made of soft iron, and Magnetic
     Objects, representing the races of mankind, animals, trees,
     light-houses, are supplied with it, which, _adhering to the
     surface_, illustrate clearly the attraction of gravitation, the
     rotundity of the earth, its diurnal motion, the changes of day and
     night, and many other things very difficult to make intelligible to
     children. Teachers will find this globe and its magnetic objects of
     incalculable value in affording facilities for striking
     illustrations of principles, problems, and various terrestrial
     phenomena.

SIZES AND PRICES.

  No. 1. Library, 12 inches in diameter, revolving
  brass meridian                                    $22.00

  No. 2. Library, 12 inches, plain stand             16.00

  No. 3. Student's, 5 inches, revolving brass
  meridian                                            5.00

  No. 4 Student's, 5 inches, plain stand              3.50

  No. 5. Primary, 3 inches,   "    "                  2.50

Suitable Magnetic Objects accompany each Globe.


     CHRISTUS JUDEX. A Traveller's Tale. By EDWARD ROTH. Philadelphia:
     Frederick Leypoldt. 1864.

A singular romance, interwoven of the art life of the Old, and the
forest life of the New World. The main character is the _Great Stone
Face_, already immortalized by the lamented Hawthorne. It is here
presented to us under a new aspect, and while we think that even those
grand old rocks fail to embody the glorious ideal of a Christus Judex,
we must acknowledge the pleasure we have derived from the fanciful
descriptions and pleasant associations offered us in this dainty little
volume.



EDITOR'S TABLE.


Christmas is again upon us, dear readers; we may almost hear the
gathering chime of its happy bells upon the frosty air. It is a time
when even strangers may hold commune; let us take advantage of it, and
learn to know something of each other. But are we indeed strangers? It
is true that we stand as abstract impersonalities, as disembodied
spirits, unknown even by name to one another. Yet have we held relations
which we cannot shake off even if we would. 'The most obscure of
literary men' we may be, yet has your kind smile often cheered us as we
labored to place before you the wants, wishes, tastes, views, hopes, and
aims of our common country. Caterer as we are for you, through us and
the handywork of our skilful printer have our able writers spun their
golden threads through heart, mind, and soul. Contributors, readers, and
editor are alike linked in these glittering spiritual meshes, and can
never be quite the same as if the web had never held them for its
passing moment in its light zone of thought. For ideas generate duties,
knowledge stimulates action, and to act in a world of doubt may well be
onerous. We frankly confess to you that a dread responsibility has cast
a deep shadow upon all our moments since the commencement of our
intercourse with you. Our butterfly hours were then past: we grew into
work-a-day bees--if only we have stored some honey in your hives to pay
us for the lost idlesse of our dreamy summers! If it 'is greatly wise to
talk with our past hours, and ask them what report they bear to Heaven'
when spent only for ourselves, it is a solemn thing to call them back,
and ask them what report they bear to Heaven for the thousands to whom
they have ministered. We spread the table lovingly before you: what if
there should be something in yourselves to turn our healthful food to
poison? On marches THE CONTINENTAL with its light and heavy freight of
winged words and thoughts, striding from _monthly_ stepping-stone to
stepping-stone on the long route of Time. Stepping-stones in Time are
they now truly, but as we gaze they seem to grow into Eternity, and the
buds which twine their glow around them ripen slowly into ever-living
fruit in the strange clime of the Everlasting Now to which we are all
hastening.

  How clear that Christmas chime upon the frosty air!

Reader, is it too much to hope that in spite of all our short-comings,
we have yet been loyal to your better hours, and faithful in the field
given us to sow for the heavenly Reapers? We have labored to interest,
amuse, and instruct you for the last eighteen months: have you learned
in that time to _trust_ us as we have learned to care for you? Do you
know us loyal patriots and true Christians, even if of a broad and
all-unsectarian faith? If we are too frank, it is because we are certain
that truth can never contradict itself, that nature must be one with
revelation, that he errs who fears the crucible of the savant or would
hold science in leading strings. THE CONTINENTAL seeks the light,
condemns to silence no new Galileo, tortures no creative Kepler, has no
fires for heretics, and nothing worse than an incredulous smile for the
shivering witches and mediums, the muscular demons of modern
spiritualism. It rejects no scientific investigation honorably pursued,
for all paths lead back to the Maker of the Universe, and the honest
seeker must find Him at the end of his route. That God is our Father,
that we are made in His triune image, that Christ is our elder Brother,
the great Regenerator of our race, is surely the ever open, ever mystic
secret of the universe!

We have travelled on together through a gloomy year. The air has been
sad with sighs, dim with tears, restless with great sobs of human
anguish. But we are drifting into calmer swells on the great Time-Ocean,
and the _crimson_ year of '64 is almost past. The dwellers of the Valley
already look for the morning star, while those upon the Hilltop hail the
auroral light of '65. Enshrined in and sparkling through its golden
glow two mystic figures gleam; the star of the morning pales before
their splendor. The one is godlike in her majesty, sublime through
conquered suffering, the awful smile of the Crucified seems shining
through the features transfigured since He wore them, and the cross
glitters in all the glory of Self-sacrifice on her broad breast. She
wears a girdle blue as if woven from the depths of heaven, and as we
gaze we see great opals with veiled hearts of fire form into quaint old
runic letters upon it, and the God-word LOVE flashes down the secret of
her inner life upon us. She is still young as when she woke in Paradise,
and, seeing the End, is not yet weary with her long journey of Exile.
Brighter gates than those of Eden stand unbarred before her! In her
right hand she holds unrolled, that all may read, the great Magna Charta
of universal Human Rights, and even at this distance we may see
EMANCIPATION upon its broad margin. We know the once sad spirit now, no
longer _sad_, the _radiant_ Genius of Humanity.

Her vigorous arm is round a younger and less solemn form, a form of
wildering beauty, whose gold hair glitters like a nimbus in the level
rays of morning; with an irresistible impulse we take her into the
innermost folds of our hearts, we feel her to be _our own_; our banner
in her right hand sways and tosses on the fresh breeze, its stars, round
which new suns are ever clustering, throw their dazzling light upon her,
and the young eagles turning from the sun throng around her to drink the
splendor from her brighter brow. The long streamers from her girdle
float athwart the sky, their wavy lines, red, white, and blue, quiver
with delight as the wild zephyrs caress them, thrilling the air with
shifting play of passionate color. Ha! what miracle is this?--whatsoever
light may fall upon them, under what angle soever we may see them, as
were it magically woven into their warp and woof, we read the word now
graven on our hearts--UNION! Her left hand holds closely clasped to her
heart a great urn, glowing as it were an immense ruby--ah! we need no
words to tell us what the young spirit clasps so fondly to her
breast--we _feel_ it is the dust of the holy dead, who gave their lives
on the red battle field that she might live: their very ashes glow with
living fire! Her white feet rest on the sacred graves of Shiloh,
Antietam, Murfreesboro', Gettysburg, Vicksburg, Lookout Mountain, the
Wilderness, Atlanta, Winchester, and Cedar Creek, from which she has
newly risen in her young strength and ever-growing glory.

She is the brilliant Spirit of our Nation! the new hope of all People!
Her career is ever onward with the Genius of Humanity into the enchanted
realm of the happy Future. No chains are in her white hands now. The
tired laborer rests as she smiles upon him; the bay of the bloodhound
and sharp crack of the lash cease in the white cotton field; the Indian
buries his tomahawk, no longer wounding the still ear of the forest with
his shrill war whoop; the maiden walks fearlessly free, for all men are
now her brothers; shielding her sanctity; the wife is happy, for the
husband has won her esteem, and it is no shame to crown him with her
love; and cherub-children sport around, lovely and happy as the
heaven-seraphs.

Peace to our glorious dead! Eternal honor to the martyrs of freedom!
From the sharp agonies of their true hearts springs now first to
_conscious_ birth the vigorous Spirit of our Nation. We never knew
aright how very dear to us she was until the traitors tried to tear her
limb from limb because her heart was open to all made in the image of
their God--because she knew the sacred worth of man.

  How near those Christmas chimes peal on the frosty air!

And if we will but think of it, a Nationality is always of slow growth,
of gradual development. It, like man himself, is born in pain and
anguish. It is indeed a living member of the Grand Man of which Humanity
is composed. Since the forty years wandering of the children of Israel
in the desert, how much suffering has been endured to hold it sacred!
The history of the present time is but a record of fierce struggles to
achieve or hold a Nationality. Poland has hung on the cross of her great
enemy for centuries rather than yield its sanctity. He has torn and
scattered its quivering members, blotted it out in blood from the names
known on earth, it has been murdered, and fed upon by three great
Christian Powers ('Oh, the pity of it!')--Catholic Austria, Protestant
Prussia and Greek-Churched Russia--but it is not dead: it lives in all
the energy of self-abnegating suffering on the mountains of Causasus,
the steppes of Asia, the frozen plains of Siberia, in the depths of
Russian mines, the darkness of Russian prisons, and it still will live
until the last Pole is laid in the last grave of his heroic but
unfortunate race. Such is its vitality when once truly born. Denmark
turns pale and shivers as she feels it may be torn from her; 'Italia,
with the fatal gift of beauty for her dower,' the fair land where fairer
Juliets breathe the enamored air, art--crowned and genius-gifted,
writhes in agony until it may be her own; Greece long bled for it; and
the brave and haughty Magyar, to whom a courser fleet and the free air
are necessities of daily life, braves and bears prisons, chains, and
poverty, in the hope of its attainment. What is this precious
Nationality? Like all basic elements, it is difficult to define. It is
not a State, a Constitution, nor is it made by man at all. An able
writer in _The North American Review_ for October says: 'It may be
said, in general, to be the sum of the differences, geographical,
historical, political, and moral, which separate a people as a community
from every other--of those differences which modify the character of
each individual, and the results of which are combined in the traits of
national character. The consciousness of its existence is developed
slowly, and it is long before the sentiment of Nationality--the true
foundation of patriotism--gains force over the hearts and convictions of
a people. But this sentiment, when it has once taken root, is one of the
_most powerful_ of those by which human conduct is affected. It is a
sentiment of the highest order, lifting men out of narrow and selfish
individualism into a region where they behold their duties as members
one of another, as partakers of the general life of humanity--the
inheritors of the past, the trustees of the future.'

'What is planetary humanity?' says Krasinski. 'It is the entirety and
unity of all the powers and capacities of the human spirit expressed
visibly on the earth through harmony and concord, the love of its
members, that is of the various nationalities. As all the members of the
human body are the visible and various parts of the invisible human I,
which connects and rules them all, so the visible nationalities must in
their variety and harmonious unity become in some future time the living
members of a universal humanity. The world knows to-day to what point
its history is tending: it knows it is governed by the wisdom of God,
and that its end is the Humanity, the entire universality brought into
perfect accord with the will of God, knowing and executing the laws
given it by God. But the means to this end, the instruments, the living
members, are the _Nationalities_, in which all the varieties of the
human race have their fairest bloom, their most precious flower. What
the tones are in the musical chord they are in humanity, eternal variety
in eternal harmony and concord. It is impossible to conceive Humanity
without them; it would then be unity without variety, consequently no
_proper unity_ at all, a mere lifeness _oneness_. States are of human
creation, an aggregative collection of small parts; but nationalities
are made by God alone, and therefore not states without nationalities,
but states forming nationalities, belong to the coming union of
universal humanity, and pass into the Christian order. States have risen
before this to destroy a nationality, dividing and quartering it for the
profit of some selfish ideal, tearing asunder a living, palpitating
organism, murdering a visible member of the Universal Humanity. He is
but a child who calls this merely a political crime: it is a crime of
the very deepest dye, a crime against the Humanity itself, against
religion, where the daring criminals, striding over all lower spheres,
break into the circles of the living God. To tear asunder a state of
merely human creation, generated only by human interests and passions,
would be a political crime, but to wish to dismember and murder a
God-given nationality, when the realization of the idea of humanity on
the planet cannot be filled without it, is a rebellion against the
eternal truth of God--it is a sacrilege! The recognition of such
violation were participation; opposition to such impiety is religion!'

Our very origin teaches us union. We have sprung from so many races that
it is throbbing in our very life-pulse, and is written on the red
tablets of our hearts. It runs and dances in our blood, tingles along
our nerves, colors our thoughts, tones our emotions, and determines our
affections. All the old and bitter European animosities die in us, for
its Peoples are fused in our _one_ life pulse. A little child of our own
household now unites in the sacred oneness of American life, English,
Scotch, Irish, Welsh, Dutch, German, French, Saxon, Bohemian, and Polish
nationalities. What lessons we have in our multiform descent, if we will
but heed them; what inner teachings of sympathy and love, if we will but
learn them! Distinctive nationalities, giving such beautiful variety to
the _earth_, here join in the individual, imparting the greatest
complexity and variety to internal _character_. Such nationalities,
still existing unimpaired abroad, are here formed into _one_ of
unequalled breadth and grandeur; their scattered rays of light are here
concentrated into _one_ great focus; the blood of the various Peoples
pours through _one_ great heart, and the common gifts, hopes, creeds of
the separated and warring nations meet in the holy mystery of _one_
grand national life. Here, indeed, is the widest variety in the closest
unity, the life of the warring Past melting into that of the
myriad-pulsed Present, the certain hope of a harmonious Future.

The maturity and highest powers of other nations being necessary as its
germs, what wonder that our nationality should be the latest born on
earth, or that in view of the broad love stirring in its soul, because
of its manifold descent, its first articulate accents should be ALL MEN
ARE BORN FREE AND EQUAL! This is a union in the laboratory of
assimilative nature, such as has never before been dreamed of, vital and
all embracing, weaving into one palpitating mesh the very fibres of
being itself. The union of long-jarring nations is consummated,
perfected in us, and shall not we, the children of all climes, be _one_
in our own marvellous nationality? 'Divide and conquer' is old strategy,
but despots and tyrants strike in vain at this wondrous mingling of all
Peoples in one great PEOPLE, where the People are the Sovereigns; for
this UNION is spun in the loom of Eternal Destiny, throbs in each
linking life-pulse, is knit into our very nature, and kindles in the
close unity and sanctity of our national life under the creative breath
of God himself. Palsied be the hand armed to strike the multitudinously
mingled life of Humanity as it circles through our glorious Union!

'Peace on earth, good will to men,' chime out the Christmas bells from
old Trinity!

It is this struggle to preserve our nationality intact which has
sanctified our war, from the red heart of which has grown a patriotism
which, glowing like a central sun, burns away all the dross of our
earlier materialism, gives as self-reliance, and frees us at last from
our long tutelage to the Old World. And never had patriotism a more
solid ground than ours, since the power, growth, and safety of our
nationality are the progress, happiness, and prosperity of humanity
itself. Everything that breathes the breath of human life, however
opposed to it now, is _really_ benefited by our growth. As a Government
we stand first upon the earth; the first utterance of our brave lips
being--all men are born free and equal. Sublime, bold, and living words;
blessed be the lips which uttered them! And we are beginning to fulfil
the inspired ideal. Alas! we have suffered too much from permitting an
evil germ to grow up side by side with this great annunciation, to fall
speedily again into a like error. It has taken down into the dust our
best and dearest, saddened almost every hearthstone in the land, and,
saddest of all, wrought ruin on the Southern soul, maddening our
brethren there into modern Cains, armed against the sacred life of their
and our nationality. For what cause did Cain kill his brother?
'Because,' says St. John, 'his own works were evil, and his brother's
just.' We will surely save it, but that done, we have an arduous task
before us. Christianity and love must take the place of expediency,
machiavelism, and cunning diplomacy in the sphere of politics. We see
the smile of scorn upon the lips of the doubter; he deems the thing
impossible. So he would have pronounced our noble record of the last
three years, three years ago. Nay, it is already half accomplished,
since we now know it must be done. The black man free, the red man must
at last receive attention. The protection of our laws must be thrown
around him; justice must guide our future dealings with him, and sorrow
for all the fearful ills we have wrought upon him must awaken larger
sympathy, and elicit tender mercy. The race are dying out among us: let
us at least soothe their parting hours. And let the Government look well
to its avaricious agents. Our people are generous, and mean to be just;
that is not enough: they must take the proper means, and see that their
beneficent intentions are carried out with regard to this wretched
remnant. It is not possible that a race so full of wild natural
eloquence, of graceful imagery, of tender metaphor, of stern endurance,
can be _utterly_ lost and depraved. Be it our noble task to try to save
these wild children of the forest, while throwing the most complete
protection around our brave frontier population. Our nationality is now
fully born--on our banner is inscribed the equal rights of humanity. Our
mission is revealed to us--it is that labor shall be elevated, and that
equal justice be the law of _actual life_. 'That the human race is in a
real sense one--that its efforts are common, and tend to a joint result,
that its several members may stand in the eye of their Maker, not only
as _individual_ agents, but as contributors to this joint result--is a
doctrine which our reason, perhaps, finds something to support, and
which our heart readily accepts.' This Christmas peal rings to us as it
has never rung before: let it awaken our consciousness of what God means
us to be upon this planet, and touch our heart. It has at last reached
the ear of the emancipated African, after pealing nearly nineteen
hundred years for the more favored part of humanity; and, thanks to the
mercy of God and our own manhood, the most oppressed of the brethren of
Christ may now feel themselves men. The dark wife, in her new right to
be faithful, is at last a woman; her dusky children are now her own, and
cannot be torn from her arms at the dictates of one who has bought at
the human auction block the right to torture the body and soul. Is not
humanity newborn among us? Is the negro of the accursed race of Ham? It
is we who curse, not God, whose very name is Love! Well may our
Christmas bells ring on so merrily, for our age is great and glorious.
It is a pupil of the entire Past, the heir of all its knowledge, the
inheritor of all its wisdom. The Future is its own. _The sphere of
politics must be redeemed from the demons of expediency and interest
which have so long ruled there; it is to be vitalized and purified from
all iniquity._ It is an Augean stable we have to clean, but Hercules was
one, and we are many. The People are at last sovereign. Every man who
works for humanity has God upon his side; he cannot fail, for the might
of Omnipotence is with his puny arm. This is the task now set before us:
it lies directly in our onward path--we cannot take a step really in
advance until it is achieved. If we fail now, all is lost. Our dead
heroes will not rest in their graves until the task is done, and their
young lives will have been a vain sacrifice. This crimson year is dying
fast; bury with it all past wickedness! May our long civil war die out
with its knell, the corpse of Slavery be laid in its bloody grave, and
the vain attempts of assembled despots to destroy our glorious
nationality perish forever! Bury with this blood-red year all malice and
uncharitableness, all sectarian suspicion and distrust, all partisan
political violence and hatred, and let the new year ring in one faith,
one hope, one country undivided and _indivisible_. Our Union means all
this, and a great many things more which it has not yet entered into the
heart of man to conceive. We can effect wonders if we will, for the
_individual_ effort makes the _universal_ all. Who would prove recreant
in such a cause? Come! it is pleasant to work for humanity; fatigue
itself seems sweet, the strength of the race nerves the individual arm,
labor grows into prayer, human sympathy and communion become godlike and
open heaven. We are none of us so little that we can do nothing; we are
all necessary to the good of the whole. The highest individuality and
freedom should generate the widest social love and charity. No labor is
really irksome that helps the masses of our fellow men. If we have the
Promethean fire, let it burn to light and warm them. The race is one,
nor can we be happy while its members suffer. The moment we have done
one duty faithfully, another and a higher awaits us. To be condemned to
work only for ourselves were the true hell, the self-kindled fire of
everlasting torture! We are the children of the nineteenth century, have
been nourished upon the humane laws of this noble country, we are sons
of God, brothers of Christ, heirs of glory, immortals. Let us assume the
majesty of our being, drape ourselves in our heaven-woven robes of love,
open our hearts to the poor and wretched, instruct the ignorant, reclaim
the vicious, bear each other's burdens, frown on vice, give up our petty
vanities, cease our frivolous excuses that, we have no influence, when
every one of us has an immortal in charge, use our strength to forbid
oppression, whether of individuals or nationalities. Then might the day
seen by the prophets, sung by poets, and believed in by devout hearts,
dawn upon this planet before the blessed '65 were tolled to rest.

"A man shall be more precious than gold, ay, than the finest of gold."

"The fool shall no more be called prince, nor the deceitful great."

"And He shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar
off; and they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their
spears into spades; nation shall not take sword against nation; neither
shall they learn war any more.

"And every man shall sit under his own vine and fig tree, and there
shall be none to make them afraid."

"I will give my laws into their mind, and I will write them in their
heart; and I will be their God; and they shall be my people."

Peace on earth, good will toward men, still peal the Christmas bells,
until the frosty air seems quivering with the new joy of humanity.

Fair voyage through the realms of Space, the universe of stars, the
passionate throbs of Time, with thy precious human freight, O lovely
Planet, cradling our dead in thy green bosom, and uniting the living in
one great nation; and may the brightest sunshine fall upon thy flowers
until thy young Immortals are all landed in the Port of Heaven!



'COR UNUM, VIA UNA.'

GOD BLESS OUR NATIVE LAND!


  From every clime, and name, and race,
    The thronging myriads came,
  A mighty Empire's bounds to trace,
    A wilderness to tame!

  _Chorus_--From mountain peak to sear-girt shore,
    Let Freedom's noble band
  Uplift the song thrills each heart's core:
    God bless our native land!

  Columbia's plains are broad and fair,
    Each coast an ocean laves,
  Vast lakes and streams fleet navies bear
    Upon their sun-lit waves.

  _Chorus._

  Her mountains towering meet the skies,
    Her vales are clad in green,
  Her leafy forests proudly rise,
    Pure gold her grain's bright sheen.

  _Chorus._

  United flows our mingled blood,
    And Freedom guards the land,
  While linked in closest brotherhood,
    Invincible we stand!

  _Chorus._

  Unfurl our banner! Let it wave
    From every plain and crag!
  Its beacon light our fathers gave,--
    All hail! our glorious flag!

  _Chorus_--From mountain peak to sea-girt shore,
    Let Freedom's noble band
  Uplift the song thrills each heart's core:
    God bless our native land!





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