[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]





WHEN Eve, our first mother, walked in the garden of Paradise, surrounded with every beast of the field, and every winged bird, and every creature bearing life-rejoicing in her presence who rejoiced with them; purity which is now lost on earth, simplicity that sin has corrupted, trueness of heart which wrong has wounded, circled her heart like a chaplet of shining flowers ; and Divine benevolence over all, sealed the bond of intercourse between the reasoning and the unreasoning world.

These bright qualities are corrupted to their opposites, and the primitive order confounded: but from amid this wreck and this confusion, let me point to you—as one across whose soul of light no cloud has passed; where purity, simplicity, truth, and faithfulness

are planted in such perfection, that the fruits which kindness bore with our first parents may be seen again displayed; a power of calling forth the attachment of the inferior world, which resembles the illusions of enchantment, placing before the scarce believing eyes the pure communion of primeval innocence; a sympathy indeed so wonderful in kindling all their brightest and their loveliest qualities, that in every sense it may be uttered with the poet

“ that you, O you,

So perfect, and so peerless, are created

Of every creature's best.”

To you, then, of right, these pages must be inscribed, the fountain of their best thoughts, not as mere praise, but for the instruction of others, to record the charm of perfect companionship, proved by your example; the instinctive homage even of brutes before the magic of an amiable and generous heart, without a selfish trace. Accept the gift: a drop from the golden stream your soul delights in, weigh not its value but its source ; let the rich sunshine of your favour tinge it with a borrowed worth, though no equivalent, the effort is your due, who lead these creatures with a surpassing influence imagination had not dared to conceive-not the too frequent tie of fear, but the compulsion of the strong bond of love, honourable, cheerful, and delighting to all who feel or who behold its power.

Were all hearts tuned like yours, an appeal to human justice would not be needed:—Then to your name a fitter title might be inscribed—the Wrongs of Animals ceased for ever, the dubious vestiges of Eden might become the certain foot-prints of our daily practice; and cruelty and suffering be known no more.

« ElőzőTovább »