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in the language of Junius, their united virtue tortures the sense.' Many ladies read the productions of unprincipled genius, and deny it afterward ; thus proving, by their readiness at falsehood, that those works have already had upon their native integrity their natural and dreadful operation. Why' read them at all? They cannot be expurgated, except in 'purging them by fire. My dear young lady, ask your father or your brother what you ought to read. They have knowledge of the world, they have strong clear sense, and they can tell you. And, by the way, it is a sad thought for one who desires the continued elevation of woman, by making her intellectual growth keep pace with and assist her moral development, that one half of the world's loveliest and most exalted literature is deformed by so many harsh passions, or debased by so much impure language and flagitious sentiment, that it is totally unfit for female perusal, since it either disgusts, embitters, or corrupts
pure and gentle natures. Well, I have stretched my tether nearly to its end. There is, how. ever, a species of conversational quotation, on which I am inclined to make a few remarks before I close. It is that wherein soulless boobies quote expressions of strong poetic feeling, and heartless villains parade their sentiments of honor and virtuous emotion. I know that Satan has always "quoted Scripture,' and I know that his servants have always • stolen the livery of Heaven to serve the Devil in. I know that hy. pocrisy was always the first lesson in villany, and that fair and seemly words have always been the mask for evil deeds. But it seems to me that the morality of the tongue has now become more universal and more perfect than ever. The cause is, that the age being universally addicted to reading, and books being of course crowded with noble sen. timents, fine expressions are as plenty as black-berries. Every one has them at his tongue’s end. It costs nothing to give expression to generous feeling; and it is really astonishing to see with what flippancy the most shallow will now drop the apothegms of wisdom ; the most unfeel. ing display the ebullitions of passionate emotion ; and the most selfish utter the noble sentiments which have fallen on famous occasions from the lips of the magnanimous. This assumption of feeling, and this simu. lation of virtue, through stolen and sounding phrases, by those who have not a faint idea of either of them, is, in my view, a heinous crime; and if he who has forged the name of another in business transactions, merits the elevation of the scaffold, much more should he be promoted to the same · bad eminence,' who counterfeits the riches of the mind and heart. Moral is far worse than pecuniary forgery; for the latter merely deranges the temporal interests and debases the monetary medium of the community, while the former depreciates the medium of feeling, and cheapens the currency of the soul. What a scandal, that a heavy, leaden-moulded mind, that has not one idea above matter, should pretend to be moved by poetry, and simulate a thrill of admiration at that which it has heard others admire! What a shame, that conscious sel. fishness and unadulterated meanness should assume sentiments of equity and bandy about emotions of generosity, which can now be obtained at every corner gratis! When I see a man noisily dashing down his money, I think he has but little ; and I feel the same suspicion of one VOL XXV.
who is lavish of his noble sentiments on all occasions. Miss Edgeworth has written a novel - I forget the title expressly to show how dangerous and justly suspicious are such · sententious' characters; and a very wide and a very fertile subject is it, and very well handled by her, if I remember rightly. A good man may
well an accom. plished villain certainly will. When you see one of these · sententious' talkers, so smooth and oily, or so passionately sentimental, review his former conduct toward himself and others, and see whether it has been uniform, prudent, generous and just. If not, his eloquence is all lipwisdom; all smoke, sound, trash. And take this as my parting admonition : He who breaks his engagements with himself, will violate his promises to others; and he whom self-interest cannot restrain from self. destruction, will hardly regard the welfare of his fellows. Receive it as an axiom, that he who is most prudent for himself, is most worthy of the confidence of his friends; and an enlarged self-thoughtfulness is the best security for integrity, and the surest criterion of worth. This doctrine may revolt the falsely liberal, and excite the indignation of the shallow sentimentalist ; yet it is founded in reason and experience. In reason: for reason teaches us that every being must and ought to be thoughtful and toilsome for himself, and that if he be not so, something
os is rotten in Denmark.' In experience: for experience tells us that those who neglect their own visible and proper interest, are influenced by some false sentiment or unworthy passion; and this sentiment, or this passion, will also induce them to slight or trample on their duties in relation to the affairs of others. Deliver me from all business inter. course with those who are imbued with the finest and most delicate sen. timents on trivial occasions ; who are tremblingly alive in all the chords of feeling; and who shrink and shudder in all cases where shuddering and shrinking are proofs of super-sublimated generosity. Avoid them. They are hypocrites, and arch deceivers. Their tears flow fast for ideal wo, theatrical distress and painted sorrow. But bring real afHic. tion before them; press upon their nobleness the claims of justice and humanity, their hearts are hard as a rock, and their eyes as dry as a desert. This sickly sentimentalism is a curse to our nature. It is at the farthest possible remove from that true and noble humanity which prompts to generous exertion. True feeling does not dissolve in a few unfertilizing tears, nor exhale in ineffectual sighs. It incites to speedy and efficient action. Sentiment looks around with a deep groan, or a gentle sigh on the miseries of humanity, and folds its arms and wishes it were otherwise. Feeling wastes no time in empty protestations, but arouses its best energies to avert calamity or mitigate distress. Senti. ment wishes - Feeling acts. Sentiment sympathizes - Feeling coöperates. Sentiment becomes more and more enervate by indulgence, while Feeling grows hourly more vigorous by exercise. The one is the mimic virtue of a weak and selfish spirit, the other the highest excel. lence of a strong and noble nature. Were the one universally prevalent, society would soon languish, and sicken, and die: were the other as general as its own spirit is expansive, this community of the world would instantly rise from its long prostration, and the evils of our lot be diminished to the hundredth of their present violence and multitude.
* Einst trat der liebende Genius der gefühlreichern
ONCE the bright Angel whose duty it is to watch over the happiness of man, even the Guardian Angel of the World, drew near the throne of the Heavenly FATHER, and prayed: Give me, oh Father! a way by which I may teach man how to avoid a part at least of the many sins and temptations which the Fall hath entailed upon him! For man is not always bad ; at times he feels my better influence; at times his heart is ready to receive the good which a light external aid might fix upon him!
Then the Father spoke to the Angel and said, 'Give him the Dream.'
The sweet Guardian flew over the world with his sister the Dream. Far and wide they spread the gentle influence, and the hearts of lifeweary mortals were rejoiced. But the soft breathings of the Dream Angel fell not alike on all. To the good and gentle who had sunk to rest amid the blessings of their loved ones, and whose slumber was deepened by the toil of the good deeds which they had done, there came soft and silent glimpses of the far land of light. Forgetting the narrow prison of the world, their souls rose up and spread broad and wide over the land of vision, and gazed with eagle eyes upon its golden glories. But as the night waned, their dream grew dim, and the outer influences of the soul gently closed about them and drew them back to the world and the body, even as the corolla of the night-flower closes about it, and shuts from its gaze its best-loved starry heaven.
To the toil-worn, sun-burnt husbandman, who had fallen asleep in despair, and who ever feared lest some grim accident might destroy the fruit of his labor, the sweet Dream came like a soft summer shower upon the parched and dusty fields; and as he dreamed, he saw the green corn rising in goodly ranks, and gazed with joy upon the soft small ears, which at first no larger than flower-buds, seemed as he beheld them to expand to ripe maturity.
There are certain dream-fantasies and strange sleep-changes, that are to be found only in the deep unbroken slumber which results from extreme bodily fatigue, or in the light irregular rest of the fever; even as the grotesque blue dragon fly, and the strange water-Aitter are found only on the surface of the deep silent pool, or the shallow brook; and as the husbandman slept on, the fantastic sprites who attend the Dream, flitted about him, and spread a gay confusion over the happy vision. For as he gazed upon the golden ears, a purple and scarlet cloud seemed to overshadow him, while round about he heard the pealing of bells, the merry ringing of familiar voices, and the lowing of cattle; and in the intervals there came shouts as of glad friends at the harvest home. Then the purple cloud gathered again about him, but the dream-spirits
with their long shadowy arms drew him through it, and he now stood before a well-filled granary; and as the tears of joy ran down his cheeks, his wife and loved ones gathered about him, and their blessings and praises sunk into his heart, and mingled with the hymn which rose like à golden cloud from the ocean of his soul. And he awoke from the sweet dream, and blessed it for the hope with which it had inspired him.
But the Dream flew on, and it came to a guilty prisoner who had fallen asleep cursing his judges, his doom, and the damp black fetters which clung like cold adders to his limbs. And as he dreamed, the prison was opened, the cold chains fell away, and remorse and rage no longer fixed their poison-fangs upon his heart. A bright light shone upon him, and blessed thoughts of mercy, repentance and reconciliation flitted through his mind like golden-winged butterflies through a summer garden; and he awoke, trusting in release, and with his heart filled with love and kindness. Did the cold damp fetters fall from his limbs ? Were the prison-doors opened? The fetters fell not away; the prisondoors remained fast; and worn down by famine and sickness, he perished alone in the narrow dungeon. But the blessed hope which the gentle Dream had left in his heart, gladdened his last hour, and as he died, exclaiming · Not my will, but thine, oh FATHER !' behold there was joy in Heaven.
It hath been said, that Hope alone is left with mortals; but with her abideth her sister, the Dream, who maketh her known to us.
For by the Dream, men are led to Hope.
Princeton, New Jersey.