« AnteriorContinua »
too familiar to excite any extraordinary propensity to imitation. With respect to that part of the paper which alludes to the assassination of Cæsar, I deny that when that event is spoken of, every man who uses it, intends to recommend or justify assassination. Nor can it be more safely inferred from the allusion to the apotheosis in use among the Romans. It might be that a man, dis. gusted with the numerous addresses which had been poured from all quarters, might fairly say, I even wish him the apotheosis as soon as he can have it; many of the Roman emperors received the honors of a divinity and yet lived; their apotheosis did not necessarily im. ply their death.
At the time when queen Elizabeth, that wise and pa. triotic princess, was beset around with formidable eneo mies, a powerful faction in the heart of her kingdom, and no resources but in her own mind, she (and it is a curious piece of history) published the first newspaper. Her gazettes are still preserved, and by means of that dissemination of public opinion, she roused the feelings, of her subjects to a pitch equal to withstand any attempts that could be made upon them. Since that period, news.. papers have multiplied, and discussion has become more extended. During the reign of Louis XIV, who had formed the most gigantic plans of guilty ambition, he who attacked a free nation, merely for his glory; he who had made subservient to his interests, the guilty and in famous prince who then governed Eugland-yet his conduct was most freely canvassed. Nor did a venal court dare stop the enquiry and investigation of free minds, even when a Jeffries disgraced the bench which his lord. ship adorns; nor even then did a venal judge and a cor. rupt court dare attack the freedom of the press. In late ter times, to come to the partition of Poland: did that infamous transaction and public robbery pass without examination and censure; We loudly spoke our indignation, though the robbers were our great allies; but our free presses spoke of them, not as according to the greatness of their characters, but according to their greatness of their crimes. I will put it to the attorney-general to say, what would have been his conduct if we had been at peace with France during part of the awful cri.
sis which convulsed her. When Robespierre presided over the committee of public safety, was not an Engliskman to canvass his measures? Supposing we had then been at peace with France, would the attorney-general have filed an information against any one who had ex. pressed due abhorrence of the furies of that sanguinary monster? When Marat demanded two hundred and fifty thousand heads in the convention, must we have contemplated that request without speaking of it in the terms it provoked? When Carrier placed five hundred children in a square at Lyons, to fall by the musquetry of the soldiery, and from their size the balls passed over them, the little innocents flew to the knees of the soldiery for protection, when they were butchered with the bayonet. In relating this event, must man restrain his just indigvation, and stille the expression of indignant horror, which such a dreadful massacre must excite? Would the attorney-general in his information state, 66 when Mar. imilian Robespierre was first magistrate of France, as president of the committee of safety, that those who spoke of him as his crimes deserved, did it with a wicked and malignant intention to defame and vilify him." The only restraint upon great criminals is, the public opinion; and to weaken the expression of that opinion, is, in a great degree, to let loose the passions of the great, to prey on the weak and defenceless. I will again put the case of that Swiss patriot, descended from the hero of Switzerland; he, whose ancestor supported the liberties of his country, who conquered that pile three hundred years ago, he of late had endeavoured ineffectu. ally to defend. If he were to come to this country, the only asylum now left upon earth; if he were here to weep over the ruins of his country, must he be told that he must deplore his fate in silence; that he might groan deep, but it must not be loud? Better by far would it be that we should at once revert to a state of absolute barbarism, than thus have our feelings paralysed to all mo. ral distinctions. I hope ard trust that a Briti-h jury will never be a party to such purposes. They never have done it, and in former times, when all other parts of the state have been corrupted, juries yet mainta ned their virtue and their independence. In the time of crom
well, he twice sent a satirist upon his government to be tried by a jury, who sat where the jury now does. The scaffold on which the blood of the monarch was shed, was still in their view. The clashing ‘of the bayonets which turned out the parliament, were within their hearing, yet they maintained their integrity, and twice did they send his attorney-general out of court with disgrace and defeat.
OP TRE DIFFERENT KINDS OF PUBLIC SPEAKING,
YOT INCLUDED IN THE ANCIENT RHETORICS.
OF THE PULPIT.
1. Trial of Abraham's fidelity.
And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham ; he said, “ Behold, here I am." And he said, " Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah : and offer him there for a burnt-offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.” And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clare the wood for the burnt-offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had toid him. Then on the third day Abraham lift up his eyes, and saw the place afar off. And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide you here with the ass, and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.” And Abraham took the wood of the burnt-offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son, and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife: and they went both of them together. And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said “My father :” and he sid, Here am I, my son." And he said, "s Behold the fire and wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt.
offering?” And Abraham said, “ My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt-offering :” so they went both of them together.
And they came to the place which God had told him of, and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar, upon the wood. And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. And the angel of the Lord called unto him out of heaven, and said, " Abraham, Abraham,”. And he said, “ Here am I.” And he said, “ Lay not thine hand upon the lad, nei. ther do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me.” And Abraham lifted
his eyes, and looked, and behold, behind him a rain caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went, and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt-offering, in the stead of his son. And Abraham called the name of that place, Jehovah-jireh, as it is said to this day,
66 In the mount of the Lord it shall be seen."
And the angel of the Lord called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, and said “ By myself have I Sworn, saith the Lord, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son, that in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore, and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies. And in thy seed shall all the nations of the carth be blessed, because thou hast obeyed iny voice.” So Abraham returned unto his young men, and they rose up, and went together to Beer-sheba; and Abraham dwelt at Beer-sheba.
II. Story of Joseph.
And Jacob dwelt in the land wherein his father was a stranger, in the land of Canaall. These are the generations of Jacob:. Joseph being seventeen years old, was feeding the tluck with his brehuren, and the lad was with