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IS RESPECTFULLY DEDICATED TO THE
OFFICERS AND MEMBERS OF
THE AMERICAN TEMPERANCE SOCIETIES,
WHOSE UNPARALLELED EXERTIONS
CAUSE OF MORALS AND RELIGION,
AND WHOSE EFFORTS TO EXTERMINATE
MOST FRUITFUL SOURCE OF HUMAN MISERY,
THE USE OF INTOXICATING LIQUORS,
WILL EVER ENSURE THEM
THE GRATEFUL'AFFECTIONS OF MANKIND,
REGARD AND ADMIRATION
THE NEW BRITISH AND FOREIGN
The Committee of the above Society give notice that they have come to a resolution to offer a Premium of One Hundred Sovereigns, for the best Essay on the benefits of Total Abstinence from all Intoxicating Drinks :
1.-The Essay must be written in a Christian spirit, and with a design to benefit the bodies, circumstances, and souls of men.
2.-The proposed Essay will contain the origin, progress, and consequences of the customs of drinking, and drunkenness, both from sacred and profane history.
3.-It will comprise the medical opinions of the faculty, ancient and modern; with the sentiments of magistrates, judges, and the most eminent literary, scientific, and theological writers.
4.--It will produce Scripture testimony that, although the use of wine is not prohibited, except in certain cases, and under certain circumstances, Total Abstinence from all intoxicating drinks is encouraged.
5.-It will contain statistical accounts of the evil effects of drinking customs on the habits, wealth, morals, and religious feelings of the community, embracing the experience of other nations on these topics.
6.-It will contain details of committals, punishments, and miseries arising from drunkenness.
7.-It will present the amount of loss of property, time, and intellect to the British Nation by their use.
8.-It will show how the various religious societies for the renova. tion of the world are impeded by the drinking babits of the population.
9.—It will present in an inviting manner the vast blessings which result to families, masters, mistresses, servants, fathers, mothers, and children, and to some of the most degraded individuals, from the total disuse of intoxicating drinks.
10.-It will also show the adrantages that will accrue to trade, commerce, and the shipping interest; to the arts and sciences; and the immense moral benefits it will confer on the nation and tbe world.
The Candidates for the Prize will have the goodness to forward their MSS. in an envelope, containing their Names and Address, to Mr. J. Meredith, No.3, Durbam Place, Lambeth Road, before the 25th of December, 1838.
ADJUDICATORS—The Rev. Theodore Dury, M.A., Rector of Keighley, Rev. J. H. Hinton, M.A., and J. E. Howard, Esq.
Nearly twenty Essays were forwarded for inspection. The one now published, received the award of the Adjudicators.
In the present day, the appetite for strong drink is not only deeply rooted, but widely spread. It extends its baneful influence to persons of all ranks and conditions. It presents a most serious obstacle to the diffusion of education. It is a deadly enemy to friendly intercourse and social relations. It is no less injurious in its effects on religious welfare. Need we wonder then, that public attention is drawn to this subject.
Intemperance, whether we view it in relation to the moral, intellectual, social, or religious condition of man, is of deep and paramount importance. On no subject, perhaps, does so much ignorance prevail. The nature and effects of inebriating liquors are little understood. The flood-gates of intemperance, being once opened, the stream of sensual indulgence, has, from age to age, been suffered to roll on, until with its accumulated energies, it threatens to inundate the world with wretchedness and woe. The operations of Temperance Societies, fortunately for mankind, have in some degree, contributed to do away with this lamentable delusion.
Temperance Societies were established in the sixteenth century. The first association of this kind, of which we have any account, was instituted by Sigismond de Dietrichstein, under the auspices of St. Christopher, A. D. 1517. Maurice, Landgrave of Hesse, formed, A. D. 1600, a similar association, under the name of “ The Order of Temperance.” The rules of this society, however, were somewhat lax and indefinite. A knight, for example, was allowed at each meal, (twice a-day,) to drink seven bocaux, or glasses of wine. A third institution of this kind was established and patronized by the Count Palatine, Frederick the Fifth. These associations were not only limited in their usefulness, but transitory in their existence.
The appalling extent of intemperance, in the early part of the nineteenth century, throughout a large portion of the globe, and particularly in England and in America, first led to the establishment of modern Temperance Societies. Hitherto, all attempts at reform, had been looked upon as impracticable. In America, this melancholy state of morals was regarded by wise and reflecting persons, with equal alarm and despair.*' The
* “ The highly instructed and intelligent men, through a series of generations shall have directly within their view an enormous nuisance and iniquity, and