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IMMORTALITY. - Dana.
Is this thy prison-house, thy grave, then, Love? And doth Death cancel the great bond, that holds Coinmingling spirits? Are thoughts, that know no bounds, But, self-inspired, rise upward, searching out The Eternal Mind-the Father of all thoughtAre they become mere tenants of a tomb?Dwellers in darkness, who the illuminate realms Of uncreated light have visited, and lived?Lived in the dreadful splendor of that throne, Which One, with gentle hand, the vail of flesh Lifting, that hung 'twixt man and it, revealed In glory?-throne, before which, even now, Our souls, moved by prophetic power, bow down, Rejoicing, yet at their own natures awed? Souls, that Thee know by a mysterious sense, Thou awful, unseen Presence, are they quenched, Or burn they on, hid from our mortal eyes By that bright day which ends not; as the sun His robe of light flings round the glittering stars?
And with our frames do perish all our loves? Do those that took their root, and put forth buds, And their soft leaves unfolded, in the warmth Of mutual hearts, grow up and live in beauty, Then fade and fall, like fair unconscious flowers? Are thoughts and passions, that to the tongue give speech, And make it send forth winning harmonies, That to the cheek do give its Aving glow, And vision in the eye the soul intense With that for which there is no utterance, Are these the body's accidents?—no more? To live in it, and, when that dies, go out Like the burnt taper's flame?
O listen, man!
Man, thou shalt never die!” Celestial voices
The song of our great immortality:
EXTRACT FROM AN ADDRESS DELIVERED AT PLYMOUTH, IN COMMEMORATION OF THE FIRST SETTLEMENT OF NEW ENGLAND, BY DANIEL WEBSTER.
Let us not forget the religious character of our origin. Our fathers were brought hither by their high veneration for the Christian religion. They journeyed by its light, and laboured in its hope. They sought to incorporate its principles with the elements of their society, and to diffuse its influence through all their institutions, civil, political, and literary. Let us cherish these sentiments, and extend this influence still more widely, in the full conviction, that that is the happiest society, which partakes in the highest degree of the mild and peaceable spirit of Christianity.
The hours of this day are rapidly flying, and this occasion will soon be passed. Neither we nor our children can expect to behold its return. They are in the distant regions of futurity: they exist only in the all-creating power of God, who shall stand here, a hundred years hence, to trace, through us, their descent from the Pilgrims, and to survey, as we have now surveyed, the progress of their country, during the lapse of a century. We would anticipate their concurrence with us, in our sentiments of deep regard for our common ancestors. We would anticipate and partake the pleasure, with which they will then recount the steps of New England's advancement. On the morning of that day, although it will not disturb us in our repose, the voice of acclamation and gratitude, commencing on the Rock of Plymouth, shall be transmitted through millions of the sons of the Pilgrims, till it lose itself in the murmurs of the Pacific seas.
We would leave, for the consideration of those who shall then occupy our places, some proof that we hold the bles• sings transmitted from our fathers in just estimation; some
proof of our attachment to the cause of good government, and of civil and religious liberty; some proof of a sincer and ardent desire to promote everything, which may enlarge the understandings and improve the hearts of men. And when, from the long distance of a hundred years, they shall look back upon us, they shall know, at least, that we possessed affections, which, running backward, and warming with gratitude for what our ancestors have done for our happiness, run forward also to our posterity, and meet them with cordial salutation, ere yet they have arrived on the shore of being.
Advance, then, ye future generations! We would hail you, as you rise in your long succession, to fill the places which we now fill, and to taste the blessings of existence, where we are passing, and soon shall have passed, our own human duration. We bid you welcome to this pleasant land of the Fathers. We bid you welcome to the healthful skies, and the verdant fields of New England. We greet your accession to the great inheritance which we have enjoyed. We welcome you to the blessings of good government and religious liberty. We welcome you to the treasures of science and the delights of learning. We welcome you to the transcendent sweets of domestic life, to the happiness of kindred, and parents, and children. We welcome you to the immeasurable blessings of rational existence, the immortal hopes of Christianity, and the light of everlasting truth.
EXTRACT FROM COL. BARRE'S SPEECH, IN REPLY TO LORD NORTH,
ON THE KING'S MESSAGE.
I RISE with great unwillingness to oppose this measure in its very infancy, before its features are well formed, or to claim that attention which this House seems to bestow with so much reluctance, on any arguments in behalf of America. But I must call you to witness, that I have been hitherto silent or acquiescent, to an unexpected degree of moderation. While your proceedings, severe as they were, had the least colour of foundation in justice, I desisted from opposing them; nay more—though your bill for stopping up the port of Boston, contained in it many things most cruel, unwarrantable and unjust, yet as they were couched under those general principles of justice, retribution for injury, and compensation for loss sustained, I not only desisted from opposing, but assented to its passing. The bill was a bad way of doing what was right; but still it was doing what was right. I would not, therefore, by opposing it, seem to countenance those violences which had been committed abroad; and of which no man disapproves more than I do.
Upon the present question I am totally unprepared. The motion itself bears no sort of resemblance to what was formerly announced. The noble lord and his friends have had every advantage of preparation. They have reconnoitred the field, and chosen their ground. To attack them in these circumstances may, perhaps, savour more of the gallantry of a soldier, than of the wisdom of a senator. But, sir, the proposition is so glaring; so unprecedented in any former proceedings of parliament; so unwarranted by any delay, denial, or preservation of justice in America; so big with misery and oppression to that country, and with danger to this that the first blush of it is sufficient to alarm and rouse me to opposition.
It is proposed to stigmatize a whole people as persecutors of innocence, and men incapable of doing justice: yet you have not a single fact on which to ground that imputation. I expected the noble lord would have supported this motion, by producing instances of the officers of government in America having been prosecuted with unremitting vengeance, and brought to cruel and dishonourable deaths, by the violence and injustice of American juries. But he has not produced one such instance; and I will tell you more, sir--he cannot produce one. The instances, which have happened, are direcily in the teeth of his proposition. Colonel Preston, and the soldiers, who shed the blood of the people, were fairly tried, and fully acquitted. It was an American jury, a New England jury, a Boston jury, which tried and acquitted them. Colonel Preston has, under his hand, publicly declared, that the inhabitants of the very town, in which their fellow citizens had been sacrificed, were his advocates and defenders. Is this the return you make them? Is this the encouragement you give them, to persevere in so laudable a spirit of justice and moderation? When a commissioner of the customs, aided by a number of ruflians, assaulted the celebrated Mr. Otis in the midst of the town of Boston, and with the most barbarous violence almost murdered him, did the mob, which is said to rule that town, take vengeance on the perpetrators of this inhuman outrage, against a person who is supposed to be their demagogue? No, sir, the law tried them: the law gave heavy damages against them; which the irreparably injured Mr. Otis most generously forgave, upon an acknowledgement of the offence. Can you expect any more such instances of magnanimity under the principle of the bill now proposed? But the noble lord says, We must now show the Americans, that we will no longer sit quiet under their insults.' Sir, I am sorry to say that this is declamation, unbecoming the character and place of him who utters it. In what moment have you been quiet? Has not your government, for many years past, been a series of irritating and offensive measures, without policy, principle, or moderation? Have not your troops and your ships, made a vain and insulting parade in their streets, and in their harbours? It has seemed to be your study to irritate and inflame them. You have stimulated discontent into disaffection, and you are now goading that disaffection into rebellion.