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And trace the ramparts of Heaven's citadel stairs, as Moses and Aaron went up Mount Hor, in On the cold flag-stones of his dungeon drear. the sight of all the congregation, for the pulpit
And I have walked with Hampden and with Vane, stairs were in front and very high. Names once so gracious to an English ear
Paul Femming will never forget the sermon he In days that never may return again.
heard that day,- no, not even if he should live to be as My voice, though not the loudest, hath been heard old as he who preached it. The text was, " I know
Whenever freedom raised her cry of pain, that my Redeemer liveth.' It was meant to console And the faint effort of the humble bard
the pious, poor widow, who sat right before him at Hath roused up thousands from their lethargy, the foot of the pulpit stairs, all in black, and her heart To speak in words of thunder. What reward breaking. He said nothing of the terrors of death, nor
Was mine or theirs? It matters not; for I of the gloom of the narrow house, but, looking beyond Am but a leaf cast on the whirling tide,
these things, as mere circumstances to which the Without a hope or wish, except to die.
imagination mainly gives importance, he told his But truth, asserted once, must still abide,
hearers of the innocence of childhood upon earth, Unquenchable, as are those fiery springs
and the holiness of childhood in heaven, and how the Which day and night gush from the mountain side, beautiful Lord Jesus was once a little child, and Perpetual meteors, girt with lambent wings,
now in heaven the spirits of little children walked Which the wild tempest tosses to and fro,
with him, and gathered flowers in the fields of ParaBut cannot conquer with the force it brings. dise. Good old man ! In behalf of humanity, I
thank thee for these benignant words! And, still Yet I, who ever felt another's wo
more than I, the bereaved mother thanked thee, and More keenly than my own untold distress;
from that hour, though she wept in secret for her I, who have battled with the common foe,
child, yet. And broke for years the bread of bitterness ; Who never yet abandoned or betrayed
"She knew he was with Jesus, The trust vouchsafed me, nor have ceased to bless,
And she asked him not again." Am left alone to wither in the shade,
After the sermon, Paul Flemming walked forth A weak old man, deserted by his kind
alone into the churchyard. There was no one there, Whom none will comfort in his age, nor aid ! save a little boy, who was fishing with a pin hook in
a grave half full of water. But a few moments af0, let me not repine! A quiet mind,
terward, through the arched gateway under the bel. Conscious and upright, needs no other stay; fry, came a funeral procession. At its head walkNor can I grieve for what I leave behind,
ed a priest in white surplice, chanting. Peasants, In the rich promise of eternal day.
old and young, followed him, with burning tapers in Henceforth to me the world is dead and gone, their hands. A young girl carried in her arms a Its thorns unfelt, its roses cast away,
dead child, wrapped in its little winding sheet. The And the old pilgrim, weary and alone,
grave was close under the wall, by the church door. Bowed down with travel, at his Master's gate A vase of holy water stood beside it. The sexton Now sits, his task of life-long labor done,
took the child from the girl's arms, and put it into Thankful for rest, although it comes so late, a coffin; and, as he placed it in the grave, the girl After sore journey through this world of sin, held over it a cross, wreathed with roses, and the
In hope and prayer, and wistfulness to wait, priest and peasants sang a funeral hymn. When Until the door shall ope and let him in.
this was over, the priest sprinkled the grave and the crowd with holy water; And then they all went
into the church, each one stopping as he passed the FOOT-PRINTS OF ANGELS. grave to throw a handful of earth into it, and sprin
kle it with holy water.
A few moments afterwards, the voice of the priest It was Sunday morning; and the church bells was heard saying mass in the church, and Flembells were ringing together. From all the neigh- ming saw the toothless old sexton treading the fresh bouring villages came the solemn, joyful sounds, earth into the grave of the little child, with his floating through the sunny air, mellow and faint and clouted shoes. He approached him, and asked the low, -all mingling into one harmonious chime, like age of the deceased. The sexton leaned a moment the sound of some distant organ in heaven. Anon on his spade, and shrugging his shoulders replied ; they ceased; and the woods, and the clouds, and the Only an hour or two. It was born in the night, whole village, and the very air itself seemed to pray, and died early this morning ?' so silent was it everywhere.
• A brief existence,' said Flemming. The child The venerable old men, -high priests and patri- seems to have been born only to be buried, and have archs were they in the land, -went up the pulpit (its name recorded on a wooden tombstone.'
BY HENRY W. LONGFELEOW.
The sexton went on with his work and made no , back again. Wisely improve the Present. It is thine. reply. Flemming still lingered among the graves, Go forth to meet the shadowy Future, without fear, gazing with wonder at the strange devices, by which and with a manly heart.' man has rendered death horrible and the grave loath It seemed to him, as if the unknown tenant of that some.
grave had opened his lips of dust, and spoken to him In the Temple of Juno at Elis, Sleep and his the words of consolation, which his soul needed, and twin-brother Death were represented as children which no friend had yet spoken. In a moment the reposing in the arms of Night. On various funeral anguish of his thoughts was still. The stone was monuments of the ancients the Genius of Death is rolled away from the door of his heart; death was sculptured as a beautiful youth, leaning on an invert. no longer there, but an angel clothed in white. He ed torch, in the attitude of repose, his wings folded stood up, and his eyes were no more bleared with and his feet crossed. In such peaceful and attrac- tears; and, looking into the bright, morning heaven, tive forms, did the imagination of ancient poets he said : and sculptors represent death. And these were men · I will be st ng!' in whose souls the religion of Nature was like the Men sometimes go down into tombs, with painful light of stars, beautiful, but faint and cold !- longings to behold once more the faces of their deStrange, that in later days, this angel of God, which parted friends; and as they gaze upon them, lying leads us with a gentle hand into the Land of the there so peacefully with the semblance that they great departed, into the silent Land,' should have wore on earth, the sweet breath of heaven touches been transformed into a monstrous and terrific thing! them, and the features crumble and fall together, Such is the spectral rider on the white horse-such and are but dust. So did his soul then descend for the the ghastly skeleton with scythe and hour glass — last time into the great tomb of the Past, with pain. the Reaper, whose name is Death!
ful longings to behold once more the dear faces of One of the most popular themes of poetry and those he had loved ; and the sweet breath of heaven painting in the Middle ages, and continuing down touched them, and they would not stay, but crumbled even into modern times, was the Dance of Death. away and perished as he gazed. They, too, were In almost all languages is it written,—the apparition dust. And thus, far-sounding, he heard the great of the grim spectre, putting a sudden stop to all bu- gate of the Past shut behind him as the Divine Poet siness, and leading men away into the remarkable did the gate of Paradise, when the angel pointed him retirement of the grave. It is written in an ancient the way up the Holy Mountain ; and to him likeSpanish Poem, and painted on a wooden bridge in wise was it forbidden to look back. Switzerland. The designs of Holbein are well In the life of every man, there are sudden transi. known. The most striking among them is that, tions of feeling, which seem almost miraculous. At where, from a group of children sitting round a cot. once as if some magician had touched the heavens and tage hearth, Death has taken one by the hand, and the earth, the dark clouds melt into the air, the wind is leading it out of the door. Quietly and unresist- falls, and serenity succeeds the storm. The causes ing goes the little child, and in its countenance no which produce these sudden changes may have been grief, but wonder only; while the other children are long at work within us, but the changes themselves weeping and stretching forth their hands in vain to- are instantaneous, and apparently without sufficient wards their departing brother. A beautiful design cause. It was so with Flemming; and from that it is, in all save the skeleton. An angel had hour forth he resolved, that he would no longer veer been better, with folded wings, and torch in. with every shifting wind of circumstance; no longer verted !
be a child's plaything in the hands of Fate, which And now the sun was growing high and warm. A we ourselves do make or mar. He resolved hence little chapel, whose door stood open, seemed to in- forward not to lean on others; but to walk self-convite Flemming to enter and enjoy the grateful cool-fident and self-possessed; no longer to waste his ness. He went in. There was no one there. The years in vain regrets, nor wait the fulfillment of walls were covered with paintings and sculpture of the boundless hopes and indiscreet desires; but to live rudest kind, and with a few funeral tablets. There in the Present wisely, alike forgetful of the past, was nothing there to move the heart to devotion and careless of what the mysterious Future might but in that hour the heart of Flemming was bring. And from that moment he was calm, and weak,-'
weak as a child's. He bowed his stubborn strong; he was reconciled with himself! His knees, and wept. And oh! how many disappointed thoughts turned to his distant home beyond the sea. hopes, how many bitter recollections, how much of an indescribable, sweet feeling
within wounded pride, and unrequited love, were in those him. tears, through which he read on a marble tablet in Thither I will turn my wandering foostetps,' said the chapel wall opposite, this singular inscrip-he; «and be a man among men, and no longer a
dreamer among shadows. Henceforth be ncine a life Look not mournfully into the Past. It comes not of action and reality! I will work in my own
sphere, nor wish it other than it is. This alone is health and happiness. This alone is life;
Beautiful yet thy temples rise,
Though there profaning gifts are thrown; And fires unkindled of the skies
Are glaring round thy altar-stone.
Life that shall send A challenge to its end, And when it comes, say, Welcome, friend!
Still sacred—though thy name be breathed
By those whose hearts thy truth deride ; And garlands, plucked from thee, are wreathed
Around the haughty brows of Pride.
Why have I not made these sage reflections, this wise resolve, sooner? Can such a simple result spring only from the long and intricate process of experience ? Alas! it is not till Time, with reckless hand, has torn out half the leaves from the Book of Human Life, to light the fires of passion with from day to day, that Man begins to see, that the leaves which remain are few in number, and to remember, faintly at first, and then more clearly, that, upon the earlier pages of that book was written a story of happy innocence, which he would fain read over again. Then come listless irresolution, and the inevitable inaction of despair; or else the firm resolve to record upon the leaves that still remain, a more noble history than the child's story, with which the book began.'-Hyperion.
MY SOUL IS FREE.
Disguise! and coward fear! away!
soul rise in her might,
0, ideal of my boyhood's time!
The faith in which my father stood, Even when the sons of Lust and Crime
Had stained thy peaceful courts with blood. Still to those courts my footsteps turn,
For through the mists which darken there I see the flame of Freedom burn
The Kebla of the patriot's prayer ! The generous feeling pure and warm,
Which owns the rights of all divineThe pitying heart-the helping arm
The prompt, self-sacrifice-are thine. Beneath thy broad, impartial eye,
How fade the cords of caste and birth! How equal in their suffering lie
The groaning multitudes of earth! Still to a stricken brother true,
Whatever clime hath nurtured him ; As stooped to heal the wounded Jew
The worshipper on Gerizim. By misery unrepelled, unawed
By pomp or power, thou see'st a MAN
Pale priest or swarthy artisan.
Beneath the flaunting robes of sin,
Thou lookest on the man within. On man, as man, retaining yet,
Howe'er debased, and soiled, and dim, The crown upon his forehead set
The immortal gift of God to him. And there is reverence in thy look ;
For that frail form which mortals wear The Spirit of the Holiest took,
And veiled his perfect brightness there.
BY JOHN G. WHITTIER. “All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them," - Malthew vii. 12. Spirit of Truth, and Love, and Light!
The foe of Wrong, and Hate, and Fraud ! or all which pains the holy sight,
Or wounds the generous ear of God!
Not from the cold and shallow fount
Of vain philosphy thou art; He who of old on Syria's mount
Thrilled, warmed by turns the listiner's heart. In holy words which cannot die,
In thoughts which angels lean’d to know, Proclaimed thy message from on high
Thy mission to a world of wo.
BY JOHN TODD.
That voice's echo hath not died !
are glowing conceptions, but they are not the work From the blue lake of Gallilee,
of a depraved imagination. They will all be realizAnd Tabor's lonely mountain side,
ed. Sin and death will long walk hand in hand on It calls a struggling world to thee.
this earth, and their footsteps will not be entirely
blotted out until the fires of the last day have meltThy name and watch ward o'er this land
ed the globe. But the head of the one is already I hear in every breeze that stirs ;
bruised, and the sting is already taken from the And round a thousand altars stand
other. They may long roar, but they walk in chains, Thy banded party worshippers.
and the eye of faith sees the hand that holds the
chains. Not to these altars of a day, At party's call, my gift I bring;
But we have visions still brighter. We look for
new heavens and a new earth wherein dwelleth But on thy olden shrine I lay A freeman's dearest offering :
righteousness. No sin will be there to mar the beau.
ty, no sorrow to diminish a joy, no anxiety to corThe voiceless utterance of his will
rode the heart, or cloud the brow. Our characters may His pledge to Freedom and to Truth,
be tested, in part, by our anticipations. If our thoughts That manhood's heart remembers still
and feelings are running in the channel of time, and The homage of his generous youth.
dancing from one earthly bubble to another, though our hopes may come in angel-robes, it is a sad proof that our hearts are here also.
The world, the great mass of mankind, have ut. THE OBJECT OF LIFE.
terly misunderstood the real object of life on earth, Or else he misunderstands it who follows the light of
the Bible. You look at men as individuals, and How many beautiful visions pass before the mind their object seems to be to gratify a contemptible in a single day, when the reins are thrown loose, and vanity, to pervert and follow their low appetites and fancy feels no restraints! How curious, interesting passions, and the dictates of selfishness, wherever and instructive would be the history of the work they may lead. You look at men in the aggregate, ings of a single mind for a day! How many ima- and this pride and these passions terminate in wide ginary joys, how many airy castles, pass before it, plans of ambition, in wars and bloodshed, in strifes which a single jostle of this rough world at once and the destruction of all that is virtuous or lovely. destroys! Who is there of my readers who has not The history of mankind has its pages all stained imagined a summer fairer than ever bloomed,
with blood; and it is the history of a race whose obscenery in nature more perfect than was ever com-ject seemed to be, to debase their powers, and sink bined by the pencil,-abodes more beautiful than what was intended for immortal glory, to the deepwere ever reared, -honors more distinguished than est degradation which sin can cause. At one time, were ever bestowed,-homes more peaceful than you will see an army of five millions of men followwere ever enjoyed, companions more angelic than ing a leader, who, to add to his poor renown, is now ever walked this earth, -and bliss more complete, to jeopardize all these lives, and the peace of his and joys more thrilling than were ever allotted to whole kingdom. This multitude of minds fall in, and man ?
You may call these the dreams of imagin- they live, and march, and fight and perish to aid inexation, but they are common to the student. To the alting a poor worm of the dust. What capacities were man who lives for this world alone, these visions of bere assembled! What minds were here put in mubliss, poor as they are, are all that ever come. But
tion! What a scene of struggles were here! And good men have their anticipations-not the paintings who, of all this multitude, were pursuing the real of fancy, but the realities which faith discovers. object of life? From Xerxes, at their head, to the Good men have the most vivid conceptions. Wit-| lowest and most debased in the rear of the army, ness those of old. As they look down the vale of was there one, who, when weighed in the balances time, they see a star arise,-the everlasting hills do of eternal truth, was fulfilling the object for which bow. the valleys are raised, and the moon puts on he was created, and for which life is continued ?the brightness of the sun. The deserts and the dry Look again. All Europe rises up in phrensy, and places gush with waters. Nature pauses. The ser pours forth a living tide towards the Holy Land. pent forgets his fangs; the lion and the lamb sleep They muster in the name of the Lord of Hosts.side by side, and the hand of the child is in the mane The cross waves on their banners, and the holy of the ger. Nations gaze till they forget the mur. sepulchre is the watchword by day and night.derous work of war, and the garments rolled in They move eastward, and whiten the burning sands blood. The whole earth is enlightened, and the star of the deserts with their bleaching bones. But of shines on till it brings in everlasting day. Here all these, from the fanatic whose voice awoke Eu
rope to arms, down to the lowest horse-boy, how, generate a nation, in trying to build up a system of few were actuated by any spirit which Heaven, or corrupt paganism; and when that system was built justice, to say nothing about love could sanction ! - up—let the shape and form be what it might--the Suppose the same number of men, the millions nation had exhausted its energies, and it sunk and fell which composed the continent which rose np to ex- under the effects of misapplied and perverted mind. terminate another, and who followed the man who No nation existed on the face of the earth, which was first a soldier and then a priest and hermit, and was not crumbling under the use of its perverted who has left the world in doubt whether he was a energies, when the gospel reached it. Our ancestors prophet, a madman, a fool, or a demagogue, had were crushed under the weightof a Druidical priestspent the same treasures of life, and of money, in hood, and the rites of that bloody system of religion. trying to spread the spirit of that Saviour for whose Another striking instance of the perversion of mind, tomb they could waste so much; and suppose this and the abuse of the human intellect and heart, is army had been enlightened and sanctified men, and the system of the Romish church. No one created had devoted their powers to do good to mankind, mind, apparently, could ever have invented a scheme and to honor their God, how different would the of delusion, of degradation of the soul, the intellect, world have been found to day! How many, think the whole man, so perfect and complete as is this.you, of all the then Christian world, acted under a What minds must have been employed in shutting spirit, and with an object before them such as the out the light of heaven, and in burying the manna, world will approve, and especially such as the pure which fell in showers so extended! What a system ! beings above us will approve ?
To gather all the books in the world, and put them Look a moment at a few of the efforts which ava- all within the stone walls of the monastery and the rice has made. For about four centuries, the ava- cloister,—to crush schools, except in these same rice of man, and of Christian men too, has been prey. monasteries, in which they trained up men to ing upon the vitals of Africa. It has taken the sons become more and more skilful in doing the work and daughters of Ham, and doomed soul and body to of ruin,—to delude the world with ceremonies and de basement, to ignorance, to slavery. And what fooleries, while the Bible was taken away, and reare the results ? Twenty-eight millions--moreligion muttered her rites in an unknown tongue, than twice the population of this country- have and all this was the result of a settled plan to debeen kidnapped and carried away from the land of base the intellect and mock poor human nature ! their birth. The estimate is, that the increase in And, when the Reformation held up all these abominthe house of bondage since those times, is five-fold, ations to light, what a master piece was the last plan or nearly one hundred and seventy millions of hu- laid to stifle the reason forever !-the inquisition.man, immortal beings, cut off from the rights of man, It was reared through the Christian world: the deand, by legislation and planning, reduced far towards cree by a single blow, proscribed between sixty and the scale of the brutes. This is only a single form in seventy printing presses, and excommunicated all which avarice has been exerting its power. Suppose who shouid ever read any thing which they might the same time and money, the same effort, had been produce. A philosopher, who, like Galileo, could spent in spreading the arts of civilization, learning pour light upon science, and astonish the world by and religion, over the continent of Africa, what a his discoveries, must repeatedly fall into the cruel vast amount of good would have been accomplished ! mercies of the inquisition. The ingenuity of hell And at the day when the recording angel reads the seemed tasked to invent methods by which the huhistory of the earth, how very different would be the man mind might be shut up in Egyptian darkness; picture, and the eternal condition of untold num- and never has a Catholic community been known to bers! Ifthe marks of humanity are not all blotted out be other than degraded, ignorant, superstitious and from that race of miserable men, it is not because sunken. Let light in, and all who receive it rush to oppression has not been sufficiently legalized, and infidelity. But what a mass of mind has been, and avarice been allowed to pursue its victims, till the still is, employed in upholding this system! And grave became a sweet asylum.
what a loss to the world has it produced, in quenchI am trying to lead you to look at the great amount ing, in everlasting darkness, the uncounted millions of abuse and of perversion of mind, of which man- of glorious minds which have been destroyed by it! kind are constantly guilty. When Christianity be- If I could find it in my heart to anathematize any organ her glorious career, the world had exhausted its der of men,—and I hope I cannot,-it would be those strength in trying to debase itself, and to sink low who are thus taking away the key of knowledge, enough to embrace paganism; and yet not so low, and preventing all within the compass of their influ. as not to try to exist in the shape of nations. The ence from fulfilling the great object for which they experiment had been repeated, times we know not were created. how many. Egypt, Babylonia, Persia, polished Was man created for war? Did his Maker cre. Greece, iron-footed Rome, mystical Hindooism, had ate the eye, that he might take better aim on the all tried it. They spent each, mind enough to re-field of battle? give him skill that he might invent