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longing after the beauty of the inward world came from the glories they beheld in their cradles, and among which they had their not quite hopeless tombs. But the same separations which were marked upon the earth could be traced among the habits and the hopes of the people. Into these, however, as into their affections for beauty, we must enter more particularly ; for through these the sum and substance of Grecian liberty are to be comprehended.
The changes of centuries have not much lessened the admiration of mankind for the activity and the enterprise of the Greeks. The temples they built, the colonies they founded, the institutions they formed, are like monuments which generation after generation will still marvel at and examine, as if to discover the secret power by which they were contrived. No poetry will rob their Homer of our love; no philosophy, silent of Christian teachings, can ever breathe with serener truth than that of Socrates. Heathen history owes its best pages to Thucydides; heathen justice still takes the life of Aristides for its best example. Eloquence, so far as it depends on language, cannot rise higher than with Demosthenes; and art, so far as it consists in form and execution, has never even equalled the long-lived creations of Phidias and the nameless sculptor of the Apollo. It would be vain to enumerate these names, were they not sufficiently familiar to represent the ideality and the effort of a people in love with beauty. There are others, suggesting different associations, yet readily associated with these. The love of beauty is not alone the love of things material, or even intellectual, but of things moral, the most beautiful of all. Imperfectly as these could be known in Greece, they were not neglected in the abundance of other objects of cultivation and exertion. The dangers and the sacrifices of Aristomenes for the sake of Messenia, – the death of Leonidas and his three hundred, faithful to iron-hearted Sparta, – the devotion and the triumph of Thrasybulus over his evil-minded countrymen at Athens, – are all illustrations of the love for home and law and liberty, which are more truly parts of the one great principle of beauty than poetry or policy or art; they are the human groundwork of a Divine morality. With signs so universal of spirit and aspiration are blended other signs of separation and imperfection. Each nation lived according to its own law, with which there was little harmony in any other law. Each people pursued their occupations or their festivals, except in rare instances, as if the world were all too narrow for sacrifices or labors besides their own. The very devotion to whatever was accounted beautiful engendered strife. The ideal in one place was not the ideal of another place; and they who upheld a peculiar principle of their own were set against others to whom the same principle was unwelcome or unknown. Some sort of contention became a part and parcel of every earnest duty. It did not spring from knowledge of truth, nor yet from hatred of error, but was aroused by a spirit of defiance against any difference of opinion or any variance of action. It now appears – it may have appeared of old—that the cultivation peculiar to the different inhabitants of Greece was quickened by the conflicts in which their powers were arrayed on opposite sides. Through the very narrowness of their divisions, the energies of each race or of each state were more generally excited and more actively employed. Each was a household, in which the youngest and the weakest had their parts, rather than a nation, in which the strongest alone were able to protect themselves and to scourge their inferiors. There were evil passions, indeed, in every house and every city. Fathers and sons were often severed; masters and slaves were always enemies; one class and another were seldom at peace. Nor was the town or the dwelling haunted only within its walls. A whole territory was similarly infested; and the nation, divided against itself, was armed against its neighbours, perhaps its kinsmen. Greece became a battle-field, in which the prize was not the perfection of any of its hostile races so much as the mastery of one over another people. Yet there were great blessings to Greece and to the world evolved from out her battles. It cannot be too strongly urged, that the results to be gained through struggles in arms are doubly hazarded;" yet when they can be seen to have survived the conflict, it is more than ever our duty to be thankful, that, in the midst of wrongs and sufferings, there still stand forms of light and loveliness. There can be no greater comfort in history than the appearance of truths, humane or holy, upon the earth: once descended, they remain with folded wings, as if their duty were henceforth inseparable from the good of men. In Greece we have arrived at one of these happier periods, not as when manna dropped, or when the still, small voice was heard, but when humanity, without being actually purified in heart, was lightened of the burdens under which its body and mind had both been benumbed. India, Egypt, and Persia have been like lands depeopled, in which the only materials for history are the governments, and the powers which the governments suffered or forced their subjects to exert. Society, in its substance as well as its form, has had no possible existence; and vainly would one attempt to retrace the vestiges of habits and feelings which have been long obliterated. But in Greece, the world of human beings expands into a society of living, acting, and hoping men, amongst whom government sinks to a secondary place in history, and even laws become unimportant except in their immediate connection with the minds and the deeds of those by whom, and, as we can say at last, for whom, they were framed. At the same time that the growth of society was helped by the rivalry and activity amongst the nations of Greece, its natural offspring was conceived. The lower orders not only became of consequence to the higher, but, as warfare continued and civilization dilated, they rose, themselves, towards and to the higher, while new classes were brought from hitherto silent shores to cover the ocean upheaving with strength and hope. Henceforth the fitness of man for freedom was determined; and beings trampled in the dust, above which they were supposed incapable to lift their faces, much more their souls, were recognized as having their portion, also, in humanity. It must be plainly added, that these were results in their beginning only; but the beginning was the boon most desirable to mankind. The course of ancient history brightens with increasing liberty; yet liberty, though the inspiration of progress, was, as we may see hereafter, the forerunner of that humiliation in which heathenism departed and Christianity appeared. With these recollections, we may gain some definite knowledge of Grecian liberty, although it be nearly impossible to do justice, in a few pages, to a subject fitted for patient and profound inquiry. Three periods are to be considered:— one, the age of heroes and kings, continuing until the tenth or eleventh century before our era; the second, the age
6mka kaleipnka, “I thus have pleaded were inseparable. Becker, in a note and have spoken, O Earth and Sun to his Charicles (p. 38, Eng. trans.), and Valor and Understanding and mentions a few other passages of the Education,” etc.;—as if the beauties same kind. Cf. Müller, Anc. Art., of the world and the virtues of men Sect. 435.
etc., Introd. A l’Hist. de la Phil., Leçon IX.) is bad enough. It begins with “La guerre est utile,” and ends with “La guerre est nécessaire à la vie.” Only in the early period of a nation's history, in its deepest barbarism, can war be either useful or necessary. The Italian
Gioberti is more of a philosopher than the Frenchman, in saying, “L’azione conciliatrice della civiltà essendo una pugna colla barbarie dee cominciar colla guerra; la quale ê perció la prima dialettica delle nazioni.” Prolegomeni, p. 71.