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nor too late to ask, Can you put the dearest interest of society at risk, without guilt, and without remorse?
It is vain to offer as an excuse that public men are not to be reproached for the evils that may happen to ensue 5 from their measures. This is very true, where they are
unforeseen or inevitable. Those I have depicted are not unforeseen; they are so far from inevitable, we are going to bring them into being by our vote; we choose the con
sequences, and become as justly answerable for them as 10 for the measure that we know will produce them.
By rejecting the posts, we light the savage fires, we bind the victims. This day we undertake to render an account to the widows and orphans whom our decision will make;
to the wretches that will be roasted at the stake; to our 15 country; and I do not deem it too serious to say, to con
science and to God. We are answerable; and if duty be anything more than a word of imposture, if conscience be not a bugbear, we are preparing to make ourselves as
wretched as our country. 20 There is no mistake in this case, there can be none;
experience has already been the prophet of events, and the cries of our future victims have already reached us. The western inhabitants are not a silent and uncomplaining
sacrifice. The voice of humanity issues from the shade of 25 the wilderness; it exclaims, that while one hand is held
up to reject this treaty, the other grasps a tomahawk. It summons our imagination to the scenes that will open. It is no great effort of the imagination to conceive that events
so near are already begun. I can fancy that I listen to 30 the yells of savage vengeance and the shrieks of torture ;
already they seem to sigh in the western wind; already they mingle with every echo from the mountains.
LVIII. — OVER THE RIVER.
Loved ones who've crossed to the further side ;
But their voices are drowned in the rushing tida There's one with ringlets of sunny gold,
And eyes, the reflection of heaven's own blue;
And the pale mist hid him from mortal view.
The gates of the city we could not see;
My brother stands waiting to welcome me !
2 Over the river, the boatman pale
Carried another — the household pet;
Darling Minnie! I see her yet.
And fearlessly entered the phantom bark ;
And all our sunshine grew strangely dark.
Where all the ransomed and angels be ;
My childhood's idol is waiting for me.
For none return from those quiet shores,
Who cross with the boatman cold and pale ;
And catch a gleam of the snowy sail, —
They cross the stream, and are gone for ayo;
We may not sunder the veil apart
That hides from our vision the gates of day;
May sail with us o'er life's stormy sea ;
They watch, and beckon, and wait for me.
And I sit and think, when the sunset's gold
Is flushing river, and hill, and shore,
And list for the sound of the boatman's oar;
I shall hear the boat as it gains the strand;
To the better shore of the spirit-land;
And joyfully sweet will the meeting be,
The Angel of Death shall carry me.
LIX. — TRUE HONESTY.
CHARLES FOLLEX was born at Romrod, in Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany, September 4, 1796, emigrated to this country in 1821, on account of the danger to which he was exposed from his liberal opinions, and died in January, 1840, a victim of that fearful tragedy,- the burning of the steamboat Lexington, in Long Island Sound. At the time of his death, he was pastor of a church in East Lexington, Massachusetts, and he had previously been for some years Professor of the Language and Literature of Germany in the University at Cambridge.
He was a man of admirable qualities of mind and character. His courage was of the highest temper, and graced by Christian gentleness and forbearance. He had a generous and wide-embracing philanthropy, and yet was never neglectful of the daily charities and kindnesses of life. The duties of his sacred calling he discharged with great fidelity. His sermons were of a high order, and his devotional exercises were most servid and impressive.
Dr. Follen had also an excellent understanding and a thorough cultivation. While in Germany he had been a teacher of jurisprudence, and his lectures had attracted much attention. He had a taste and a capacity for metaphysical and psychological investigations, and at the time of his death had made some prog. ress in a work on the nature and functions of the soul. His English style is very remarkable. Not only is there no trace of foreign idiom in it, but his writings might be put into the hands of students of our language as models of accuracy, neatness, and precision.
Dr. Follen's works were published, after his death, by his widow, in five volumes: the first volume containing a memoir. They consist of sermons, lectures, and occasional discourses. The following extract is taken from one of his sermons. 1
HONESTY is often recommended to those who scem more especially to need the recommendation, by the common saying that “ honesty is the best policy.” This maxim is
to a certain extent true, and borne out by experience. 5 The dishonest man is continually undermining his own
credit; and not only is credit the first requisite for obtaining the conveniences of life which can be bought or hired, but all our social blessings, arising from the confi
dence, esteem, and love of our fellow-men, depend essen10 tially on good faith. Our conscience and our reason fully
approve of a state of things that should secure the enjoyment of property, of confidence, esteem, and affection, to him who alone deserves them.
So far, then, the common saying, that honesty is the 15 best — that is, the most profitable — policy, has a good
foundation, both in experience and in sound reason. But, like all the other current doctrines of expediency which commend virtue not for its own sake, — that is, on account
of the happiness which is found in the exercise of virtue, 20 — that common saying, too, which makes honesty an instru
ment of policy, is untrue and mischievous in some of its most important bearings and consequences.
In the first place, those who are in the habit of considering honesty the most profitable line of conduct, are apt 25 to look upon virtue, in general, as a matter of policy — to
value it solely or chiefly in proportion to the price it will bring in the market. This habit of calculating the interest of virtue undermines the moral sensibility, and, by degrees, unfits the selfish calculator for that deep satisfaction, arising from the simple consciousness of rectitude, which the truly honest man does not hesitate to purchase with the loss of all the advantages which the most success
ful policy could have secured. 5 But besides the immoral tendency of this economical
view of virtue, it is not consistent with facts, with experience, that honesty is always the best, the most successful, policy. He is not always the most successful merchant
who in no instance deviates from the strict principles of 10 honesty ; but rather he whose general way of doing busi
ness is so fair and equitable, that he can, without much danger, avail himself of some favorable opportunity to make his fortune by a mode of proceeding which would
have ruined his credit if he had been so impolitic as to 15 make this successful deviation from duty the general line of his conduct.
Again, he is not always the most prosperous lawyer who never undertakes the defence of a cause which his con
science condemns; but rather he who never undertakes a 20 cause so palpably unjust that it cannot be gained even by
the most skilful and artful management; while the power of making a bad cause appear good, when discreetly employed, is apt to enhance, rather than degrade, his profes
sional character. 25 Again, he is not always the most influential politician
who never deviates from the straight path of political justice; but rather he who goes upon the common principle that “all is fair in politics,” provided he does not become
guilty of any such dishonesty as will not be pardoned by 30 his own party.
In the same way, he is not apt to be the most popular divine, who, regardless both of the praise and of the censure of men, declares the whole counsel of God, as it
stands revealed to his own mind; but rather he who re85 gards the signs of the times as much as the handwriting
of God, modifying the plain honesty of apostolic preaching