Imatges de pÓgina

bly at noon day, is shocking; because it is a violation of the laws of decency, and plainly shows a disregard of the respect and the duty which everybody is supposed to owe to the public. Men of mean circumstances likewise may be blamed for spending more time or money in drinking, than they can afford; but when these and all worldly considerations are out of the question, drunkenness itself, as it is a sin, an offence to Heaven, is seldom censured; and many men of fortune do not scruple to own that they were at such a time in such a company, where they drank very hard. Where nothing is committed that is either beastly or otherwise extravagant, persons who meet on purpose to drink and be merry, reckon their manner of passing away the time as innocent as any other, though most days in the year they spend an hour in that diversion. No man had ever the reputation of being a good companion, in such company, who would never drink to excess; and if the dose a man takes never disorders him the next day, the worst that shall be said of him is, that he loves his bottle with moderation: though every night constantly he makes drinking his pastime, and hardly ever goes to bed entirely sober.

Avarice, it is true, is generally detested; but as men may be as guilty of it by scraping money together as they can be by hoarding it up, so all the base, the sordid and unreasonable means of acquiring wealth, ought to be equally condemned and exploded, with the vile, the pitiful and penurious ways of saving it. But the world is more indulgent. No man is taxed with avarice, that will conform with the gay world, and live every way in splendor, though he should always be raising the rents of his estate, and hardly suffer his tenants to live under him; though he should enrich himself by usury, and all the barbarous advantages that extortion can make of the necessities of others; and though moreover he should be a bad pay-master himself, and an unmerciful creditor to the unfortunate; it is all one-no man is counted covetous who entertains well, and will allow his family what is fashionable for a person in his condition. How often do we see men of very large estates unreasonably solicitous after greater riches! What greediness do some men discover in extending the perquisites of their offices! what dishonorable condescensions are made for places of profit! what slavish attendance is given, and what low submissions and unmanly cringes are made to favorites for pensions, by men that could subsist without them! Yet these things are no reproach to men, and they are never upbraided with them but by their enemies, or

those who envy them, and perhaps the discontented and the poor. On the contrary, most of the well bred people that live in affluence themselves, will commend them for their diligence and activity, and say of them, that they take care of the main chance-that they are industrious men for their families, and that they know how, and are fit to live in the world.

But these kind constructions are not more hurtful to the practice of christianity, than the high opinion which in an artful education men are taught to have of their species is to the belief of its doctrine, if a right use be not made of it. That the great preeminence we have over all other creatures we are acquainted with, consists in our rational faculty, is very true; but it is as true that the more we are taught to admire ourselves, the more our pride increases, and the greater stress we lay on the sufficiency of our reason, For, as experience teaches us that the greater and the more transcendent the esteem is which men have for their own worth the less capable they generally are to bear injuries without resentment, so we see in like manner that the more exalted the notions which men entertain of their better part, their reasoning faculty, the more remote and averse they will be from giving their assent to anything that seems to insult or contradict it and asking a man to admit of anything he cannot comprehend, the proud reasoner calls an affront to human understanding. But as ease and pleasure are the grand aim of the fashionable world, and civility is inseparable from their behaviour, whether they are believers in christianity or not, so well bred people never quarrel with the religion they are brought up in. They will readily comply with every ceremony in divine worship they have been used to, and never dispute with you, either about the Old or the New Testament, if in your turn you will forbear laying great stress upon faith and mysteries, and allow them to give an allegorical or any other figurative sense to whatever they cannot comprehend or account for by the light of nature.

I am far from believing, that in the gay world there are not in all christian countries many persons of stricter virtue and greater sincerity in religion, than I have here described; but that a considerable part of mankind have a great resemblance to the picture I have been drawing, I appeal to every knowing and candid reader.


VOL. I....NO. I.



BEAUTIFUL Autumn! with thy ruddy cheek
Flushed by the splendor of October's sun,
And all thy crimson garments stained with gold,
And auburn tresses fluttering in the breeze,
Welcome! thrice welcome to thy liberal reign!

I love within thy many-colored woods
To pause, when comes the sober-suited Eve
To dim the brilliant clouds and crimson leaves,
And hush the hum of insect and the song
Of the complaining birds that haunt the groves.

Then on the reedy brink of lonely pool
I pause to note the image of the clouds
Tinct with the last rich colors of the Day,
Fade and dissolve along the crystal wave.
Then all the insects of Autumnal-time,
Flutter around the surface, or dip in,
Or skim, in rapid rings, the unwrinkled waves.
Then drops the sluggish turtle from his rock,
And many a thievish bird dips in his beak.

Beautiful Autumn! with thy bounding step
And mirthful laugh resounding o'er the hills,
I never gaze upon thy glowing cheek
And forehead white, o'errun with raven curls,
But to my heart the thought of thy brief life
And early death, a bitter pang doth send.
I know the living splendor of that hue
Is but the hectic that consumption lends.



I HAD been dragged by four lazy horses, in a jolting wagon, under the care of a long Scotchman, to the Falls of Niagara. They tell me that some have gone away disappointed at the cataract-that they have gone away, as though what they had taken to be a boundless ocean, rushing into a depth unimaginable, with a noise like the shout of ten thousand archangels, had turned out to be nothing but a small millstream, tumbling awkwardly over a broad plank. It was not so with me; the immense bodies of ice close in the teeth of the cataract-the fearful volume of water-the depth into which it fell-the crash of its descent, and last of all, and most sublime, the clouds of spray that poured continuously up, like the smoke from the mouths of a legion of cannon-all

formed a scene exceeding greatly all my former ideas of it. There is only one thing in which I was disappointed, and that was the noise at a distance: it has been greatly exaggerated. I had been surprised, contrary to my expectations, for I had been afraid of being disappointed. So thanking heaven that I was not so much sans taste, as one who asked where the Notch of the White Hills was after passing it, (a story which Crawford will tell you with great glee,) I proceeded on to Buffalo. People who wish for a subject to wonder at, should look in upon Rochester and Buffalo, cities as they are almost, grown up as they have in what was but a little time since a wilderness, and my word for it, they will feel some little astonishment. They are to be incorporated cities before long. Rochester will do passing well as a name, but the other-suppose they call it by the proper name of the American animal, the city of Bison. The name is altogether out of character. Passing all this, however, as matter of little import, I proceed to quote from memory some passages which are there laid up, with a special reference to you which are gathered.

It was about one of the morning when I left the door of the Eagle, and inserted myself into another narrow and long Dutch wagon. I think that a man cannot be waked from a sound sleep, blunder into his clothing, and stumble down stairs, and into a stage, all in the space of some five minutes, without feeling a great disposition to peevishness. Why then should not I? There I was, sitting on one seat, and extending my legs out over another, which was too near me to admit of their being placed between, while every jolt of the cart gave me serious apprehensions of some bodily injury. I had been worse off before, however. The stage between Rochester and Lewiston had broken down, and as the provident stage company had laid up all of its coaches in Rochester-for which may heaven cause them to ride in Ohio!—we were forced to travel twenty miles or more in a common wagon with ten in it, and a large quantum of mails and trunks-some of us sitting and some lying on the knees of the others; after which every trouble was easy.

It was a cold and chilly morning; so wrapping myself in my cloak, I betook myself to my reflections till daylight, when I looked round to take a view of my companions. There was my friend, to whom you have been already introduced, sound asleep just before me; by my side was a long Yankee from Vermont, on his way to Detroit, and two men of the same extraction from the shores of Seneca Lake, who were going

the same way; and the remaining traveller was a little keen eyed fellow with a thin nose, who was settled somewhere in Pennsylvania. We had a long and dull ride on the shore of the lake; at one time dragged through the sand, at another through a muddy road that was as bad, while on one side were bare trees on the edge of a swampy ground, and on the other a field of ice as far as could be seen. In the course of the day we stopped at a little village on the lake, and observed a house of peculiar appearance. It was a strange mixture of English and Dutch architecture. The end of it stood into the street, and the front door, so to speak, was on the side of the house; the roof on one side was much wider than on the other, and sloped much nearer to the ground; and for ornament to the fabric there was a chef d'œuvre of art in the shape of a window, nearly up to the roof, on the end which looked into the road. It was a representation of a globe, with all its meridians and parallels, and it needed no skill to discover that such an idea could only have found birth within the cranium of a Dutchman. In each end of what would be called in New England the back part of the house, was apparently a small room, and between these was a space opened to the air, and surrounded with a railing. If you add to this that the house, fences and out-building were all painted red, you have as good an idea of the place as I can give you.

After we had started from this place, our little Pennsylvanian, upon some inquiries which I made, gave me the following history, which I shall take a pleasure in presenting to you as nearly as I can in his own words.

The site of the little village of Alexander, which we have just left, had lain, heaven knows how long, buried under a vast forest, or rather a succession of them, which had risen and fallen, and given birth to other forests, since, perhaps, the creation of the world-when of a sudden a company of thin-visaged New Hampshire men, with nether accoutrements which had been made for them when they were boys, and coats which were made for their grandfathers, each with a red-cheeked and broad-waisted wife, and some with a host of white-headed urchins, the future clearers of the territory beyond the Mississippi, made their appearance among the astounded trees. The natural order of succession was interrupted, and trees that might to all appearances have lived on for some fifty years longer, were tumbled down with little remorse amid the ruins of their forefathers, upon which they had grown. It is hardly worth while to follow the growth of the village; suffice it to say that there was soon a wonderful

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