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of a system of secular education acceptable to all, Not we, but he, ate of the tree whose fruit was inand accompanied by the social and political equality terdicted, of religious sects such as no other civilized com- Yet on us all, of his sad fall the punishment's in munity has yet achieved—this certainly is a prob- flicted. lem well worthy of the study of every reflecting mind. To attribute this national characteristic to To which the judge replies that none can suffer the voluntary system would be an anachronism, as “for what they never did.” that is of comparatively modern date in New England ; besides that the dependence of the ministers But what you call old Adam's fall, and only his on their flocks, by transferring ecclesiastical power
trespass, to the multitude, only gives to their bigotry, if they You call amiss to call it his: both his and it
yours be ignorant, a more dangerous sway. So also of universal suffrage; by investing the million with He was designed of all mankind to be a public political power, it renders the average amount of
head, their enlightenment the measure of the liberty en- A common root whence all should shoot ; and stood joyed by those who entertain religious opinions dis
in all their stead. approved of by the majority. Of the natural effects With more to the like effect—when of such power, and the homage paid to it by the higher classes, even where the political institutions The glorious King thus answering, they cease and are only partially democratic, we have abundant
plead no longer; exemplication in Europe, where the educated of the Their consciences must needs confess his reasons laity and clergy, in spite of their comparative inde- are the stronger. pendence of the popular will, defer outwardly to many theological notions of the vulgar with which We are then instructed that the elect mothers adthey have often no real sympathy.-Vol. i., pp. 49, mitted to heaven are not permitted to be disturbed 50.
by any compassion for their babes consigned to Our author illustrates largely the mutual toler- the place where ation which prevails, not only as to the great pur
God's vengeance feeds the flame pose of the common education. Thus, we read! With piles of wood and brimstone flood, that none concerning the cheerful, smokeless town of Port
can quench the same. land, the principal city of Maine :
After which it cannot startle us to hear that There are churches here of every religious de- The godly wife conceives no grief, nor can she nomination : Congregationalists, Baptists, Metho
shed a tear, dists, Free-Will Baptists, Universalists, Unitarians, For the sad fate of her dear mate, when she his Episcopalians, Roman Catholics, and Quakers, all
doom doth hear.* living harmoniously together. The late governor of the State was a Unitarian ; and as if to prove
* Our Transatlantic friends need not suspect us of the the perfect toleration of churches the most opposed slightest wish to discompose them by transcribing a few to each other, they have recently had a Roman of Sir C. Lyell's extracis from the poet Wigglesworth,
who died, and by the way had a funeral sermon highly Catholic governor.-Vol. i., p. 48.
eulogistic preached over him by the celebrated Cotton
Mather, in 1710. We do not need to be reminded that Sir Charles is disposed to attribute
Day of Doom" might be paralleled, stanza for in this change of the stanch exclusionists, the old stanza, from hymn-books of more recent composition, and Puritan settlers, into perfect religious cosmopoli- even now current in old England. For example, we have
on our table the seventeenth edition of the hymns of Daniel tans, “ to the reaction against the extreme Cal- Herbert (2 vols. Simkin & Marshall.) The preface is vinism of the church first established in this part dated 1825, and the poet says, of America, a movement which has had a power- I live in Sudbury, that dirty, place, ful tendency to subdue and mitigate sectarian bit- Where are a few poor sinners saved by grace.”—ii., p. 3.
He gives us some curious extracts These hymns are at this day, we believe, chanted through(vol. i., pp. 53—5) from an old religious poem, the ou! the communion of our Whitfield Methodists. Im's Day of Doom,” written by one Michael Wig- glory of God” in 1849 such strains as–
agine a Christian congregation singing “to the praise and glesworth, teacher of the town of Malden, New
“God's own elect, how ost they fall, as often rise again; England. In this strange homily in verse the ex- Not one shall ever fall to hell'; for Christ bore all their treme Calvinistic opinions are followed out to their most appalling conclusions with unflinching fear- Although he falls ten times a day, (which often is the lessness; and this poem was not more than 70 years These falls will make him cry to God to hold him up by ago a school-book in New England. We forget Then, oh! my soul, take courage then ; thy God permits which was the preacher, within or without the all this; church, of the last century, who noted in his to prove that he has chosen thee for everlasting bliss." diary :-“Enjoyed some hours' comfortable medi
i., pp. 66, 67. tation on the infinite mercy of God in damning “The things I would I cannot do, because the flesh oplittle babes!” Of this race was our poet: who, And what 1 would not that I do, thro' these my carnal
pose, in his picture of the Last Day, has this group
But shall Satan ever have to boast of one that fell from Then to the bar all they drew near who died in grace ? infancy,
I'd telĩ the man that dare say so he's one of Satan's And never had, or good or bad, effected personally, If one might fall, then all might fall—but ah! that canalleging that it was hard for them to suffer for the Will Jesus lose the souls he loved from all eternity?" guilt of Adam :
Ibid., p. 129.
"Were such a composition," proceeds our | unfathomable mystery. It becomes impatient of author, “now submitted to any committee of all circumscription of the spiritual nature as of the school managers or teachers in New England, moral attributes of the Godhead. All other dogthey would not only reject it, but the most ortho- mas now appear as purely of human invention as dox amongst them would shrewdly suspect it to those intolerable dogmas relating to predestination, be a weak invention of the enemy, designed to election, the five points, with their hideous concaricature, or give undue prominence to, precisely sequences. Calvinisin has already snapped asunthose tenets of the dominant Calvinism which the der the long chain of traditionary theology, and moderate party object to, as outraging human contemptuously cast aside its links. No restraint reason, and as derogatory to the moral attributes remains; the whole doctrinal system of older of the Supreme Being.” No doubt it is the in- Christianity is broken up. In truth, the one leadevitable tendency of these extreme Calvinistic ing thought throughout that school of powerful, opinions to produce a violent revulsion. Calvin- eloquent, and, in justice we cannot but add, deepism is everywhere the legitimate parent of Unita- ly devotional American writers, Channing, Dewey, rianism. It has been so in Calvin's own city, in Norton, is the abnegation of Calvinism ; this is Geneva; it has been so in England, it has been so the key to all their doctrinal system, as far as in America. The process is simple, and if slow, they have any system ; without this they cannot direct. The human mind directly it subsides be fairly judged, or addressed with any hope of from that high-wrought agony of belief which success. It is a curious and significant fact, that trembles before and submissively adores the Cal- exactly the same process went on among the Engvinistic Deity, can no longer endure the presump- lish descendants of the Puritans, though in far tion which has thus harshly defined and, as it were, more unfavorable times, in times dangerous to all materialized the divine counsels; which has hard-religion, and under auspices less likely to mainened into rigid, clear dogma, all which must be tain any hold on the religious mind. This change
“'T was mercy made poor Peter mourn and weep,
Can attest that a soul has lost or won For mercy knew he was a chosen sheep;
The treasures of true salvation."--p. 78. 'T was mercy found its way to David's heart,
Campbell too has his share in the pious transmogrifiThough he was found to act the murderer's part ;
cation He was a sheep before he killed Uriah, 'T was sovereign mercy saved him from hell-fire.”
"Ye spirits of our fathers Ibid., p. 43.
From England's church did exorcise "Too many trust, be saved they must, because of their
The demon popery !" &c.-p. 108. behavior; Christ must be all, or none at all; he won't be half a But Moore is the staple--and we hope, if he has not Saviour.”—Ibid., p. 52.
seen the precious little tome, ihat this incidental notice Again, (p. 92)—
of it may both gratisy and edify the recluse of Sloperion
Cottage :" If Jesus is holy, his people are holy, for Christ and his
" There is not in this fallen world season more sweet people are one ;
Than is that when the Lord in the closet we meet." As Jehovah's gift in the counsels of old ere creation's work was begun.”
"Go where duty calls thee,” &c.-p. 148. In another of these hymns we read, (ib., p. 8)
“Yes! praise to the Lord for the good city mission." “That day when he brings all the nations from far,
p. 94. When Caiaphas and Pilate shall stand at his bar The Arian will tremble, Socinians will quake,
"The voice that once within these walls the Gospel For he'll plunge such as those in the fiery lake.”
trumpet blew."-p. 179.
" When in death I at length recline, Once more (vol. ii., p. 125) —
This message bear to my kindred dear!
Day and night to live while I sojourned here.
If a stone on my grave reposes, But why go so far as to the Whitfield Methodists or
I pray you upon its surface write1825 ? Here is a neat little volume just published in
That he ihe mouth of whose grave it closes London, (Nisbet & Co., 1949,) entitled "Evangelical
Held free-grace principles main and might.” Melodies, the author of which professes himself to be a member of the Church of England, animated by a fervent desire to redeem the piano-forte and the poetry of Moore late lately most fitly and happily advanced to the first
Our own feelings of respect and veneration for the preand Burns from the service of the Evil One--and in this place in our national hierarchy must not prevent us from volume, which probably has already attained great circu; adding a single stave aflet Moore's well-known tribute to lation and success within the bills of mortality, we find bis illustrious countryman, the hero of Waterloo :old favorites of younger days metamorphosed in certainly " While history the record was mournfully keeping a most astounding fashion. For example
Of all that false doctrine had done in our age, " The pilgrim boy on his way has gone,
O'er her shoulder Britannia in sadness lean'd weeping In the path of life you 'll find him," &c.-p. 13. As though she would weep out the tale from her page. "Sing, sing-if music desire
But oh! what a sunshine--how joyous! how brighi! Themes ihat with ravishing rapture are glowing,
Dispelled on the instant the blush from her brow, Surely believers can proffer her lyre
When she saw the pen write, Themes with such rapture replete to o'erflowing," &c.
In letters of light,
John, Bishop of Chester, is Archbishop now!" &c. "Ah! think it not-the notion
The modest author of this work is anonymous. It apNo warrant gleans from truth and factThat to this creed devotion
pears from a parody on John Anderson my Joe, at p. 90, Brings lawlessness in outward act !"-p. 56.
ihat he is a mercantile gentleman, and is, or once was,
connected in worldly fortunes with a devout citizen named " It is not an act at a moment done,
Jones. Whether the firm was “ Jones, Blifil, & Co." we On the spur of some one occasion,
too was chiefly in our great commercial and manu-ance and freedom; but the strength and repose of facturing towns, which, as we have observed, are a great establishment are, in some respecis, more our nearest types of the American cities. In al- favorable to private liberty. If less favor is shown most all these towns—if not the actual offspring, ality to those within. It is in the protected soil of
to those without, there is usually more liberthe growth of our rapid, almost sudden, manufac- great establishments that the germs of every great turing prosperity—the Church of England was at reform in the church have quietly taken root. For its weakest. A single parish-church, in general myself, if I were ever to permit my liberty to be a miserably poor vicarage, saw itself almost in a compromised by such considerations, I would rather few years the centre of a vast city. Many of the take my chance in the bosom of a great national master-manufacturers were of the shrewd, sober, religion than amidst the jealous eyes of small and
contending sects, and I think it will be found that money-making race of the old dissenters. For
a more liberal and catholic theology has always them, as they grew in intelligence and mingled pervaded establishments than the bodies of dissentmore with mankind, the old stern Puritan creed ers from them. Nay, I much doubt whether inbecame too narrow. Then arose Priestley and his tolerance itself in such countries—in England and school :—we could follow out this whole history Germany for instance-has ever gone to the length with far greater closeness and particularity—but of Jewish and Samaritan exclusion that has someit is well known how great a number of the old times been practised among us. In saying this, 1 Presbyterian congregations utterly threw aside the
am not the enemy of dissent; nor do I deny that it
is often the offspring of freedom. It certainly is the old Presbyterian creed. Calvinism found refuge usual condition of progress. But this I say, that chiefly among the Whitfieldian Methodists, where dissent sometimes 'binds stronger chains than it it still broods in all its harrowing darkness ; broke, and this is especially apt to be the case for where it still (it is but justice to say) is crushing a time when several rival and contending sects
Then the parent many hard hearts into religious belief; with ami- spring from the general freedom. able inconsistency bringing forth from that iron principle is often devoured by its own children. soil a large harvest of Christian gentleness and Fas est et ab hoste doceri. These are wise love.
words, of the wisdom drawn from experience. As to the United States, we confess that we We need not observe that even under the broad have grave doubts whether the whole secret of this shade of our establishment opinions such as those mutual toleration is not in the multiplicity of the of Dr. Dewey, would of course find no repose ; sects ; in the weakness of each single one against but we recommend this line of thought to those the hostile aggregate. But after all, is this more who have long been murmuring in secret, and are than outward reconciliation, a compulsory treaty now openly clamoring for the dissolution of church in which all have been compelled to yield up to and state, which, if it means anything, must mean the common use the neutral ground of education, the abrogation of our establishment. These zealots because no one has such a superiority of force as can hardly suppose that they are to unite the perto occupy it as his exclusive possession ? We fect independence of self-government with the have been very much struck by a passage from a privileges of a national church ; that the Anglican sermon by a writer of a very high order, of the Church is to retain the endowments, the glebes, school of Channing, in some respects, we think, his ithes, estates, rights, honors, when it is no longer superior, the Rev. Orville Dewey. Dr. Dewey the Church of England. The Pope, it seems, is wants perhaps some of that almost passionate ear- now to be put on the voluntary system; let us nestness, that copious flow, that melting tender- wait the result before we reduce our own clergy ness, which carries away the reader of Dr. Chan- to that state, of something far worse than povning; but he is a more keen observer of human erty, subserviency to their congregations. Break nature, writes more directly to what we will call up the establishment—which, we repeat, must be the rational conscience, has, with almost equal the inevitable consequence of the severance from command of vigorous, at times nobly sustained lan- the state—and what a Cadmean army of sects, not guage, a strong and practical good sense, not often yet compelled as in America, and wearied out into surpassed in our common literature. If suspected mutual toleration! What a wild din of controas a religious writer-(and we may observe that versy! Poor charity, where wilt thou find refuge whoever wishes to be acquainted with the real but in thy native heaven? tenets of the American Unitarians will find in his Sir Charles Lyell is no less at a loss to reconwritings the most distinct statement of them)—as cile the excellent and universal New England sysan ethical writer, as an expositor of the modes of tem of education with the outbursts of fanaticism, moral, social, religious thought and feeling among of which the latest, the most ludicrous, and in our New England kindred, he might be studied some respects most deplorable, was what is called with great advantage. In a very remarkable ser- the Millerite movement. The leader of this sect, mon On Associations, (Dewey's Works, pp. 259,) one Miller, taught that the millennium would come we read :
to pass on the 23rd of October, 1844—the year With regard to those great associations denomi
before our author revisited Boston. He has many nated religious sects, I fear that the case involves whimsical stories of the proselytes. Some would no less peril to the mental independence of our not reap their harvest ; it was mocking of Provipeople. I allow that the multiplicity of sects in dence to store up useless grain ; some gave their this country is some bond for their mutual forbear- landlord warning that he was to expect no more rent. There were shops for the sale of white | erence to the authority of churchmen is the highest robes. A tabernacle was built out of plunder cru- merit of a Christian. They have perhaps heard elly extorted from simple girls and others, for the much about the pride of philosophy, and how all
human learning is a snare. accommodation of between 2000 and 3000, who with religion they have been accustomed blindly to
In matters connected were to meet, pray, and " go up" at Boston.
resign themselves to the guidance of others, and the building was only to last a short time, but for hence are prepared to yield themselves up to the inthe interference of the magistrates, who compelled Auence of any new pretender to superior sanctity the erection of walls of more Providence-despising who is a greater enthusiast than themselves.-Vol. solidity, their last day might have come to many
i., pp. 90–92. of these poor people sooner than they expected. Sir Charles Lyell we see, argues that this is But oh, the fate of human things ! In the winter
a fallacy. To a certain extent it may be so ; but of 1845, Sir Charles and Lady Lyell saw in this we venture to say that no culture, however careful same tabernacle, now turned into a theatre, the and general, of the reason, no education, the most profane stage-play of Macbeth, by Mr. and Mrs. intellectual and systematic, will ever absolutely Charles Kean, where Hecate's “Now I mount school the world out of religious fanaticism. and now I fly,” reminded some of the audience of What was the rank—what had been the educathe former use of the building. “I observed,”tion of some of the believers in Mr. Edward proceeds the traveller,
Irving and the unknown tongues? Man cannot to one of my New England friends, that the number live on intellect alone ; there are other parts of of Millerite proselytes, and also the fact that the pro
his moral being, his imagination, his feelings, his phet of the nineteenth century, Joseph Smith, could religious nature, which in certain constitutions, reckon at the lowest estimate 60,000 followers in under certain circumstances, will be liable to exthe United States, and, according to some accounts, cess. Where there is life, there will be at times 120,000, did not argue much in favor of the working too much blood ; where there is not utter torpor, of their plan of national education. " As for the
energy in accesses too high strung and unconMormons," he replied, "you must bear in mind trollable ; without religious apathy there must at that they were largely recruited from the manufacturing districts of England and Wales, and from times be religious eccentricity. We go further, European emigrants recently arrived. They were
we cannot wish it otherwise ; we think that here drawn chiefly from an illiterate class in the Western too we see the divine wisdom and goodness. We States, where society is in its rudest condition. The would wish all mankind to be cultivated to the progress of the Millerites, however, although confined height of their reason ; we would desire that all to a fraction of the population, reflects undoubtedly might be capable of comprehending as familiar much discredit on the educational and religious training in New England ; but since the year 1000, when things the great truths of philosophy. We have all Christendom believed that the world was to come
the supreme contempt for those who would limit to an end, there have never been wanting interpreters philosophy in her inquiries by narrow views of of prophecy, who have confidently assigned some religion ; who (for example) would lose sight of exact date, and one near at hand, for the millen- this plain irrefragable fact, that where there is nium. Your Faber on the Prophecies, and the one passage in the Old Testament, according to writings of Croly, and even some articles in the its rigid literal interpretation, which comes into [query? a) Quarterly Review, helped for a time to collision with the principles of geology, there are keep up this spirit here and make it fashionable. But the Millerite movement, like the recent exhi- twenty which must be forced out of the meaning bition of the holy coat at Treves, has done much to which they bore when they were written, before open men's minds; and the exertions made of late they can be made to agree with the Newtonian to check this fanatical movernent, have advanced astronomy. We are content, with the Archbishop the cause of truth."
Other apologists of Canterbury and our geological deans among observed to me, that so long as a part of the popu- ourselves, with Dr. Wiseman among the Roman lation was very ignorant, even the well-educated Catholics, with Dr. Pye Smith among the Diswould occasionally participate in fanatical movements; “ for religious enthusiasm, being very con- senters, to seek the history of man in the Bible tagious, resembles a famine fever, which first attacks intended for man. We would place geologists those who are starving, but afterwards infects some like Sir Charles Lyell on that serene eminence, of the healthiest and best-fed individuals in the where all who are conscious that they seek truth, whole community.” This explanation, plausible and truth alone, have a right to take their seat far and ingenious as it may appear, is, I believe, a fal- above the low murmurs of those who, setting the lacy. If they who have gone through school and col- sacred Scriptures and modern science at issue with lege, and have been for years in the habit of listening to preachers, become the victims of popular fanati- each other, show their want of profound and sober cism, it proves that, however accomplished and knowledge of both ; we would leave the Dean of learned they may be, their reasoning powers have York to that befitting answer, which we trust he not been cultivated, their understandings have not will receive- silence. But this before us is a been enlarged, they have not been trained in habits question entirely different, and to be judged on of judging and thinking for themselves; in fact, different principles. We believe that the irreguthey are ill-educated. Instead of being told that it is their duty carefully to investigate historical evi- larity of those individuals, or even of those sects of dence for themselves, and to cherish an independent minds, which diverge into folly, into extravagance, frame of mind, they have probably been brought up into fanaticism, is the price which we pay for those to think that a docile, submissive, and child like def- irregularly great minds which are the glories and the benefactors of mankind, the creators, the inventors, only one in my experience,) I was taken, when at the original impellers, in all great works and move Boston, to hear an eminent Unitarian preacher who ments in our race—the great poets, artists, patri- was prevented by illness from officiating, and his ots, philanthropists, even philosophers. Our vision place was supplied by a self-satisfied young man, of education, we confess, is rather that of Milton, tested by many a rationalist, made it clear that he
who, having talked dogmatically on points conwhich Sir Charles Lyell, we are inclined to think, commiserated ihe weak minds of those who adhered has judged (p. 202) more from the report of John- to articles of faith rejected by his church. If this son than from actual study of that noble treatise too common method of treating theological subjects addressed to Master Samuel Hartlib. Science in- be ill-calculated to convince or conciliate dissentideed finds a place in that all-embracing system, but ents, it is equally reprehensible from its tendency rather an early and subordinate one ; youth are to Pharisaical feeling of self-gratulation that they are
to engender, in the minds of those who assent, a rise at length, having left “all these things be
not as other sectarians are. — Vol. ii., p. 347. hind,” to the height and summit of human wisdom.
Our difficulty in turning to other topics is to When all these employments (not merely natural
know where to pause for discussion. We cannot, philosophy, which Milton treats as almost elementa- however, refrain from submitting to our readers’ ry, but even politics, jurisprudence, and theology] consideration the strong good sense with which are well conquered, then will those choice histories, he exposes one of the great dangers, as well as heroic poems, and Attic tragedies of stateliest and one of the inevitable abuses, of republican instimost royal argument, with all the famous political tutions—of institutions which virtually rest the orations, offer themselves; which, if they were not whole power of the state in a complete democracy only read, but some of them got by memory, and
—that which he aptly calls the ostracism of solemnly pronounced with right action and grace,
wealth." as might be taught, would endue them even with
It is a wise lesson on the jealous imthe spirit of Demosthenes or Cicero, Euripides or patience of a democracy as to trusting the least Sophocles.— Of Education, Milton's Prose Works. power out of their own hands ; on their suspicion We have dwelt long enough on these sub
of the only true and legitimate guarantees for jects; though there others of the same class in public order, and for a wise judgment on the pub
lic welfare—we mean property and distinction, which we should wish to join issue with Sir Charles ; in truth, the whole twelfth chapter, on
either political or intellectual—on their overthe higher education in New England, and all the weening confidence in their own wisdom and great questions which arise out of that primal subservience to those above them, which almost
knowledge. It strikingly displays their fear of controversy, would require a number of our jour- always betrays them into far more degrading subnal to itself. But it would be the greatest injus- servience to those below them, needy and noisy tice to a work, the charm of which is its fertile and everchanging variety, to give undue promi- whole of a very instructive conversation between
demagogues. We are sorry not to quote the nence to one class of topics. On one kindred Sir Charles and a leading lawyer of Massachupoint alone we are bound to touch briefly and emphatically, and this in justice to the writer, as re
This gentleman said, inter alia— gards his estimation among ourselves. Our read
Every one of our representatives, whether in the ers are not to ascribe to Sir Charles Lyell, from
State Legislatures or in Congress, receives a certain his intercourse with the Unitarians of Boston, in travelling money for carrying him to his post and
sum daily when on duty, besides more than enough private, or his attendance on their religious ser- home again. In choosing a delegate, therefore, vices, agreement or sympathy with their opinions. the people consider themselves as patrons who are That intercourse was almost inevitable. To this giving away a place ; and if an opulent man offers community belong almost all the great names in himself, they are disposed to say,
" You have science and in letters, at least those known in enough already, let us help some one as good as
you who needs it." England ; their chief preachers are men of great eloquence, and it is their ordinary and avowed
Sir C. Lyell adds : system to exclude controversial subjects from their During my subsequent stay in New England I teaching ; they dwell on the great truths on which often conversed with men of the working classes on all Christians are agreed ; they do not scruple to made up their mind that it was not desirable to
the same subject, and invariably found that they had use, without comment or explanation favorable to choose representatives from the wealthiest class. their own views, the common phraseology of the " The rich,” they say, “ have less sympathy with Scripture. The unsuspecting reader might in- our opinions and feelings ; love their amuseinents, deed peruse almost volumes of Channing's writ- and go shooting, fishing, and travelling ; keep hosings without discovering his peculiar opinions. pitable houses, and are inaccessible when we want Sir Charles Lyell himself, however, has inserted to talk with them, at all hours, and tell them hovo
we wish them to vote." I once asked a party of this significant caution :
New England tradesmen whether, if Mr. B., already But I should mislead my readers if I gave them an eminent public man, came into a larg fortune to understand that they could frequent churches of through his wife, as might soon be expected, he this denomination without risk of sometimes having would stand a worse chance than before of being their feelings offended by hearing doctrines they have sent to Congress. The question gave rise to a disbeen taught to reverence treated slightingly, or even cussion among themselves, and at last they assured with contempt. On one occasion, (and it was the me that they did not think his accession to a fortune