« 前へ次へ »
to accomplish the object which I indulge the hope is common to all and every one of us, to restore peace
and quiet, and harmony and happiness to this country. * **
Mr. President, I have said—what I solemnly believe --that the dissolution of the Union and war are identical and inseparable ; that they are convertible terms.
Such a war, too, as that would be, following the dissolution of the Union ! Sir, we may search the pages of history, and none so furious, so bloody, so implacable, so exterminating, from the wars of Greece down, including those of the Commonwealth of England, and the revolution of France—none, none of them raged with such violence, or was ever conducted with such bloodshed and enormities, as will that war which shall follow that disastrous event-if that event ever happen---the dissolution of the Union.
And what would be its termination ? Standing armies and navies, to an extent draining the revenues of each portion of the dissevered empire, would be created ; exterminating war would follow-not a war of two or three years, but of interminable duration—an exterminating war would follow-until some Philip or Alexander, some Cæsar or Napoleon, would rise to cut the Gordian knot, and solve the problem of the capacity of man for self-government, and crush the liberties of both the dissevered portions of this Union. Can you doubt it? Look at history—consult the pages of all history, ancient or modern : look at human nature-look at the character of the contest in which you would be engaged in the supposition of a war following the dissolution of the Union, such as I have suggested-and I ask you if it is possible for you to doubt that the final but perhaps distant termination of the whole will be some despot treading down the liberties of the people ?—that the final result will be the extinction of this last and glorious light, which is leading all mankind, who are gazing upon it, to cherish hope and anxious expectation that the liberty which prevails here will sooner or later be advanced throughout the civilized world? Can you, Mr. President, lightly contemplate the consequences ? Can you yield yourself to a torrent of passion, amidst dangers which I have depicted in colors far short of what would be the reality, if the event should ever happen? I implore gentlemen-I adjure them from the South or the North, by all they hold dear in this world—by all their love of liberty—by all their veneration for their ancestors—by all their regard for posterity—by all their gratitude to Him who has bestowed upon them such unnumbered blessings—by all the duties which they owe to mankind, and all the duties they owe to themselves-by all these considerations, I implore upon them to pause--solemnly to pause—at the edge of the precipice before the fearful and disastrous leap is taken in the yawning abyss below, from which none who take it will ever return in safety.
And, finally, Mr. President, I implore, as the best blessing which Heaven can bestow upon me upon earth, that if the direful and sad event of the dissolution of the Union shall happen, I may not survive to behold the sad and heart-rending spectacle.
6. NATIONAL CHARACTER FROM NATIONAL RECOLLECTIONS.-E. Everett.
How is the spirit of a free people to be formed, and animated, and cheered, but out of the storehouse of its historic recollections ? Are we to be eternally ringing the changes upon Marathon and Thermopylæ ; and going back to read in obscure texts of Greek and Latin, of the exemplars of patriotic virtue ? I thank God that we can find theni nearer home, in our own country, on our own soil ;—that strains of the noblest sentiment that ever swelled in the breast of man, are breathing to us out of every page of our country's history, in the native eloquence of our mother tongue ;—that the colonial and provincial councils of America exhibit to us models of the spirit and character which gave Greece and Rome their name and their praise among the nations. Here we ought to go for our instruction—the lesson is plain, it is clear, it is applicable. * * * How many prudent counsels, conceived in perplexed times; how many heartstirring words, .uttered when liberty was treason ; how many brave and heroic deeds, performed when the halter, not the laurel, was the promised meed of patriotic daring -are already lost and forgotten in the graves of their authors ! How little do we,--although we have been permitted to hold converse with the venerable remnants of that day,-how little do we know of their dark and anxious hours ; of their secret meditations; of the hurried and perilous events of the momentous struggles ! And while they are dropping around us like the leaves of autumn, while scarce a week passes that does not call away some member of the veteran ranks, already so sadly thinned, shall we make no effort to hand down the traditions of their day to our children ; to pass the torch of liberty,--which we received in all the splendor of its first enkindling, -bright and flaming to those who stand
next us or the line ; so that, when we shall come to be gathered to the dust where our fathers are laid, we may say to our sons and our grandsons, “ if we did not amass, we have not squandered your inheritance of glory.”
1. INDUSTRY INDISPENSABLE TO ELOQUENCE.- Ware.
The history of the world is full of testimony to prove how much depends upon industry: not an eminent orator has lived but is an example of it. Yet, in contradiction to all this, the almost universal feeling appears to be, that industry can affect nothing, that eminence is the result of accident, and that every one must be content to remain just what he may happen to be. Thus multitudes, who came forward as teachers and guides, suffer themselves to be satisfied with the most indifferent attainments, and a miserable mediocrity, without so inuch as inquiring how they may rise higher, much less making any attempt to rise. For any other art they would have served an apprenticeship, and would be ashamed to practise it in public before they had learned it. If any one would sing, he attends a master, and is drilled in the very elementary principles ; and only after the most laborious process, dares to exercise his voice in public. This he does, though he has scarce any thing to learn but the mechanical execution of what lies in sensible forms before the eye. But the extempore speaker, who is to invent as well as to utter, to carry on an operation of the mind as well as to produce sound, enters upon the work without preparatory discipline, and then wonders that he fails! If he were learning to play on the flute for public exhibition, what hours and days would he spend in giving facility to his fingers, and attaining the power of the sweetest and most expressive execution ! If he were devoting himself to the organ, what months and years would he labor, that he might know its compass, and be master of its keys, and be able to draw out, at will, all its various combinations of harmonious sounds, and its full richness and delicacy of expression ! And yet he will fancy the grandest, and the most various and most expressive of all instruments, which the infinite Creator has fashioned by the union of an intellectual soul with the powers of speech, may be played upon without study or practice ; he comes to it a mere uninstructed tyro, and thinks to manage all its stops, and command the whole compass of its varied and comprehensive power! He finds himself a bungler in the attempt, is mortified at his failure, and settles it in his mind for ever, that the attempt is vain.
2. LORD ULLIN'S DAUGHTER.–Thomas Campbell. B. 1777; d. 1844.
A chieftain, to the highlands bound,
Cries, “ Boatman, dò 'not tárry !
To row us o'er the ferry.”
“Now who be ye, would cross Lochgyle,
This dark ' and stormy water?” “0, I'm the chief of Ulva's isle,
And thís ' Lord Ullin's daughter :