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SELF-CULTIVATION.

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they blended their beautiful tints, and cast a new-created glory on the face of the heavens.

12. The tree was rewarded for her trust. The Angel was true to the object of his love. He returned; he bestowed on her another robe. It was bright, glossy, and unsullied. The dust of summer had never lit upon it; the scorching heat had not faded it; the moth had not profaned it. The Tree stood again in loveliness; she was dressed in more than her former beauty; she was very fair; joy smiled around her on every side. The birds flew back to her bosom. They sang on every branch a hymn to the Angel of the Leaves.

LESSON LXXXIX.

Self-Cultivation.

1. Ir is a great mistake to suppose, that it is necessary to be a professional man in order to have leisure to indulge a taste for reading. Far otherwise. I believe the mechanic, the engineer, the husbandman, the trader, have quite as much leisure as the average of men in the learned professions. I know some men busily engaged in these different callings of active life, whose minds are well stored with various useful knowledge acquired from books. It is surprising how much may be effected, even under the most unfavorable circumstances, for the improvement of the mind, by a person resolutely bent on the acquisition of knowledge. A letter has lately been put into my hands, so interesting in itself, and so strongly illustrative of this point, that I will read a portion of it; though it was written without the least view to publicity.

2. "I was the youngest," says the writer, "of many brethren, and my parents were poor. My means of education were limited to the advantages of a district school, and those again were circumscribed by my father's death, which deprived me, at the age of fifteen, of those scanty opportunities which I had previously enjoyed.

3. "A few months after his decease, I apprenticed myself to a blacksmith in my native village. Thither I carried an indomitable taste for reading, which I had previously acquired through the medium of the Society library, — all the

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historical works in which I had at that time perused. At the expiration of a little more than half my apprenticeship, I suddenly conceived the idea of studying Latin.

4. "Through the assistance of an elder brother, who had himself obtained a collegiate education by his own exertions, I completed my Virgil during the evenings of one winter. After some time devoted to Cicero, and a few other Latin authors, I commenced the Greek; at this time it was necessary that I should devote every hour of daylight, and a part of the evening, to the duties of my apprenticeship.

5. "Still I carried my Greek grammar in my hat, often found a moment, when I was heating some large iron, when I could place my book open before me against the chimney of my forge, and go through with tupto, tupteis, tuptei, unperceived by my fellow apprentices. At evening I sat down unassisted, to the Iliad of Homer, twenty books of which measured my progress in that language during the evenings of another winter.

6. "I next turned to the modern languages, and was much gratified to learn that my knowledge of Latin furnished me with a key to the literature of most of the languages of Europe. This circumstance gave a new impulse to the desire of acquainting myself with the philosophy, derivation, and affinity of the different European tongues. I could not be reconciled to limit myself in these investigations to a few hours after the arduous labors of the day.

7. "I therefore laid down my hammer and went to New Haven, where I recited to native teachers in French, Spanish, German, and Italian. I returned at the expiration of two years to the forge, bringing with me such books in those languages as I could procure. When I had read these books through, I commenced the Hebrew, with an awakened desire of examining another field; and, by assiduous application, I was enabled in a few weeks to read this language with such facility, that I allotted it to myself as a task to read two chapters in the Hebrew Bible before breakfast, each morning; this and an hour at noon being all the time that I could devote to myself during the day.

8. "After becoming somewhat familiar with this language, I looked around me for the means of initiating myself into the fields of Oriental literature; and to my deep regret and concern, I found my progress in this direction hedged in by

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the want of requisite books. I began immediately to devise means of obviating this obstacle; and, after many plans, I concluded to seek a place as a sailor on board some ship bound to Europe, thinking in this way to have opportunities of collecting, at different ports, such works in the modern and Oriental languages as I found necessary for this object. I left the forge at my native place to carry this plan into execution.

9. "I travelled on foot to Boston, a distance of more than a hundred miles, to find some vessel bound to Europe. In this I was disappointed; and while revolving in my mind what steps next to take, I accidentally heard of the American Antiquarian Society at Worcester. I immediately bent my steps toward this place. I visited the hall of the American Antiquarian Society, and found there, to my infinite gratification, such a collection in ancient, modern, and Oriental languages, as I never before conceived to be collected in one place; and, Sir, you may imagine with what sentiments of gratitude I was affected, when, upon evincing a desire to examine some of these rich and rare works, I was kindly invited to unlimited participation in all the benefits of this noble institution.

10. "Availing myself of the kindness of the directors, I spent three hours daily at the hall, which, with an hour at noon, and about three in the evening, make up the portion of the day which I appropriate to my studies, the rest being occupied in arduous manual labor. Through the facilities afforded by this institution, I have added so much to my previous acquaintance with the ancient, modern, and Oriental languages, as to be able to read upwards of FIFTY of them with more or less facility."

LESSON XC. Sabbath Thoughts.

1. DEAR is the hallowed morn to me,
When village bells awake the day;
And, by their sacred minstrelsy,

Call me from earthly cares away.

2. And dear to me the winged hour,

Spent in thy hallowed courts, O Lord!
To feel devotion's soothing power,

And catch the manna of thy word.

3. And dear to me the loud Amen,

Which echoes through the blest abode,
Which swells and sinks, and swells again,
Dies on the walls, but lives to God.

4. And dear the rustic harmony,

Sung with the pomp of village art;
That holy, heavenly melody,

The music of a thankful heart.

5. In secret I have often prayed,

And still the anxious tear would fall;
But on thy sacred altar laid,

The fire descends, and dries them all.

6. Oft when the world, with iron hands,
Has bound me in its six-days' chain,
This bursts them, like the strong man's bands,
And lets my spirit loose again.

7. Then dear to me the Sabbath morn ;

The village bells, the shepherd's voice;
These oft have found my heart forlorn,

And always bid that heart rejoice.

8. Go, man of pleasure, strike thy lyre,
Of broken sabbaths sing the charms;
Ours be the prophet's car of fire,
That bears us to a Father's arms.

LESSON XCI. The Sea.

1. "THE sea is his, and he made it," cries the Psalmist of Israel, in one of those bursts of devotion, in which he so often expresses the whole of a vast subject by a few sim

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ple words.

Whose else, indeed, could it be, and by whom else could it have been made? Who else can heave its tides, and appoint its bounds? Who else can urge its mighty waves to madness with the breath and the wings of the tempest, and then speak to it again with a master's accents, and bid it be still?

2. Who else could have poured out its magnificent fullness round the solid land, and

“Laid, as in a storehouse safe, its watery treasures by?"

Who else could have peopled it with its countless inhabitants, and caused it to bring forth its various productions, and filled it from its deepest bed to its expanded surface; filled it from its centre to its remotest shores; filled it to the brim, with beauty, and mystery, and power? Majestic ocean! Glorious sea! No created being rules thee, or made thee. Thou hearest but one voice, and that is the Lord's; thou obeyest but one arm, and that is the Almighty's. The ownership and the workmanship are God's; thou art his, and he made thee.

3. "The sea is his, and he made it." It bears the strong impress of his greatness, his wisdom, and his love. It speaks to us of God, with the voice of all its waters; it may lead us to God by all the influences of its nature. How then can we be otherwise than profitably employed, while we are looking on this broad and bright mirror of the Deity? The Sacred Scriptures are full of references to it, and itself is full of religion and God.

4. "The sea is his and he made it." Its majesty is of God. What is there more sublime than the trackless, desert, all-surrounding, unfathomable sea? What is there more peacefully sublime than the calm, gently-heaving, silent sea. What is there more terribly sublime than the angry, dashing, foaming sea. Power, resistless, overwhelming power, is its attribute and its expression, whether in the careless, conscious grandeur of its deep rest, or the wild tumult of its excited wrath.

5. It is awful, when its crested waves rise up to make a compact with the black clouds, and the howling winds, and the thunder, and the thunder-bolt, and they sweep on in the joy of their dread alliance, to do the Almighty's bidding. And it is awful, too, when it stretches its broad level out, to

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