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in all ages, to treat the people like children, and spoon out pap into their mouths from the church-porringer? Liberal Christianity, if truly such, must go and do otherwise. The clergy are not so affluent of truth themselves, that they can feed this American people with crumbs from their own tables. There are more vigorous thinkers to-day in the pews than in the pulpits, and more outside the church-doors than in pulpits and pews together. We have little patience with the current complaints of the short “supply of ministers." What does more to keep our young graduates of finest abilities out of the ministry, than the knowledge that in it their abilities are under bonds to keep the peace? The ruinous theory of policy in the pulpit, practised and advocated by the pulpit itself, has made parishes intolerant of instruction; and the last thing they really want is a preacher of genuine independence and first-class powers. But all this indicates an approaching crisis. The fear that religion is going to suffer by the very frankest and boldest speech in the pulpit, grows out of appalling want of faith in religion itself. There is a very deep, widespread, and growing discontent with every form of instituted Christianity. The “evangelical” denominations feel the coming storm, and are huddling together like cattle for mutual shelter from the blast. If the Church is indeed a house of cards, to be toppled over by the first wind that blows, let that wind blow at once, stiff and strong! The deeply religious soul wants no shelter from such architecture. It demands an open bivouac, , out on the broad prairies of unchurched humanity, with the damp turf for bed, and the starry heavens for roof, and its own deep faith for meat, rather than any ecclesiastical couch and bowl of charity-soup. This plan of doling out truth from the pulpit in quantities proportioned to imagined wants, leaves hungry and dissatisfied the very best minds in the congregation. What can the minister know of the real wants of his listeners? Their first and last want is the want of a preacher with manhood enough to fling policy to the winds. They have urgent want of all the truth he has to give, and more; and though, perhaps, in ignorance of their own want, they may break out into dissension among themselves, or turn the preacher adrift for his faithfulness, none the less has he rendered them the highest service in his power. When was a true prophet otherwise received ? He may yet live to be welcomed back with contrition and open arms. Such things have been. But he has at least delivered his own soul.
It is the high privilege of the preacher, above all others, to be a student of truth. His coffers, above all others, should be wealthy with golden accumulations. His mind, indeed, should be a mint, converting bullion into specie, and making great ideas the current coin of humanity. Nor should he half perform his work, out of deference to popular nervousness concerning"negations." That distinction of affirmative and negative has been put to evil use. Affirmation and negation are but the obverse and reverse of the same coin; and either implies the other. Impress upon a thought the stamp of the affirmative alone, and it is worthless as currency, - a nugget but half fit for service. Until it bears the double stamp of affirmative and negative, it is undefined, and useless in the spiritual commerce of society. As the preacher climbs the pulpit-stair, his audience silently accosts him with somewhat of the rough manners of the highwayman, –“Your money or your life!"
That stern alternative he cannot escape. To pour out, without stint or stinginess, the golden treasure he has won; or to yield up his own spiritual life, – between these must he choose. He must confess his sincerest and innermost thought; he must avow with earnestness and simplicity of soul his dearest and mightiest faith, or his spiritual eyes shall grow purblind, and the divine fires of enthusiasm expire in the suffocating fumes of expediency. He must pour new life into his audience, or they will unknowingly rob him of his own. Alas for him whose epitaph is written, “Killed by his congregation !” And well for him who — reviewing his life-long services in the cause of all truth, as Mr. May reviews his life-long services in the cause of antislavery
can write his own epitaph in these noble words: “It may be that I recurred to this subject oftener than was necessary; but that were better than not to have spoken.”
VOL. LXXXIV. - NEW SERIES, VOL. V. NO. I.
Art. IV.- PIAZZI SMITH AND THE GREAT PYRAMID.
Life and Work at the Great Pyramid in 1865, with a Discussion
of the Facts. By C. Piazzi SMITH, F.R.SS.L. & E., F.R.A.S., F.R.SS.A., Professor of Astronomy in the University of Edinburgh, and Astronomer-Royal for Scotland. In three vols., large octavo, 600 pp. Illustrations on Stone and Wood. Edmonston
& Douglas, 1867. THESE volumes contain the best measures of the Great Pyramid ever yet made, with plans and tables of its construction, which are probably the best that the world will ever have. We have to thank the errors of mankind for some valuable service; for the mainspring of endeavor to this man of many honors seems to have been his horror of Bunsen's rationalism, born of his theory and conviction, that the Great Pyramid was built under divine inspiration, like the tabernacle in the desert, as an ordained sample of every sort of mensuration, terrestrial and celestial ! He is excessively indignant at Bunsen, for daring to suggest, that men had lived in Egypt for thousands of years before a pyramid was built; but he can only get out of the dilemma of ad. vanced science and civilization, which Bunsen so solved, by assuming immediate divine inspiration for the builders ! But the vivacious little professor is honest; and whenever his figures tell a story he does not expect, he follows them faithfully, - quite sure they will return to their allegiance by and by: and so, to do him justice, they generally do. His malignity against Bunsen is extraordinary. In those five wonderful volumes, he will never once allow for possible errors of the press: and while he points to the commanded measures of the tabernacle, corresponding to those of the Great Pyramid, and the traditions of scientific meaning attached to the latter; and raves away about the absence of every sign of idolatrous worship within it; and reminds us of the hatred the Egyptians bore its builder, because his dynasty suppressed their abominable worships, We are
certainly willing to agree with him when he plants himself on this sentence : "It cannot be wrong to attend to actual facts !” No, it cannot; and these facts are so very interesting, that, while we echo the astronomer-royal's cry to M. Renan, and exclaim, “0 Smith, Smith! why did you not take a survey, or take photographs, before you founded so much history and chronology on a mechanical agreement which does not exist,” yet we feel bound to bring out the salient points, and do justice to the discoveries recorded in these volumes.
The first volume is a bright, entertaining book of travels, which teaches that Arabs have the dyspepsia; that Boston thought it a “neat” thing, during the war, to prick Confederate flags into the soles of Yankee boots, which afterward tramped up and down the Pyramids in scorn, like ancient Pharaohs restored to life! It gives us a lively account of the difficulties attendant on the construction of apparatus, and the final launching of the expedition, “when, by act of Private Grace, the Secretary had procured a bag of Austrian dollars, great pancakes of things, dedicated to Maria Theresa !” – which lively sentence is a good specimen of our professor's style. The first matter of interest is his account of Mariette Bey's museum at Boolak.
M. Mariette went to Egypt, some years since, in the train of the Duc de Luynes, as assistant excavator: but he showed so much talent as interpreter and explorer, that, on the departure of De Luynes, he had things his own way; and, by exhibiting bis own collection, induced the authorities at Cairo to adopt it as the basis of a national museum, and was appointed “Protector to all things in and about the monuments.” Renan, in writing to the “Revue des Deux Mondes," praises this museum, which “has never demolished a morsel;" and compares it with the museum at Berlin, for the creation of which the saw and batchet were driven through the most precious things. Meanwhile Mariette Bey still seeks eagerly for inscribed stones, and with such success, that he never drives a pickaxe into a heap of rubbish without securing something of value; and De Rougé has gone back to Paris, with six large volumes
of hand-copied inscriptions, which Bunsen, alas ! will never see. Among his treasures are the tablet of Memphis; sculptures of the Fourth Dynasty; a greenish-black diorite, and life-size statue of Cnephren, builder of the Great Pyramid, which is copied, for anybody who likes, in plaster. In this connection, too, we hear again of Mrs. Lieder, who did such wonders for female education in Egypt, thirty years ago; and of her husband, Dr. Lieder, to whom Bunsen gives the credit of reviving Coptic in his table, where he says, “ Coptic again made intelligible in Lieder's schools, 1834.” But Dr. Lieder is no more: he died of cholera while Piazzi Smith was writing.
Scold at Bunsen as he will, our author is obliged to go to him for the meaning of the word "pyramid,” which, in the new vocabulary of the fifth volume, he finds indicated,
Ment or met, the numeral X. So here he finds a division or measure of tens, coinciding with the mechanical arrangement of a five-sided, five-cornered building, out of which his theory takes natural comfort. From the first rambling, vivacious volume, we take a few notes, before proceeding to the abstract of the scientific matter in the third. The second volume, which we take to be the valuable and lasting portion of the work, is strict measurement and mathematics, unvitiated by theory: matter, not for the critic, but for the world's scholars and speculators to use.
The Great Pyramid differs from all others in four essential particulars : —
1. The king's, or supposed sepulchral chamber, is a hundred and forty feet above ground,-a position in which no pyramid ever yet buried a man.
2. The coffer in this chamber is not built in, but stands free upon the floor: it is too large for a coffin, and no man ever saw its lid. Sarcophagi are always sunk in the floor, and have tightly fitting lids.
3. It was expected that living men would enter and use