« 上一頁繼續 »
Advance, then, ye future generations! We would hail you as you rise in your long succession to fill the places which we now fill, and to taste the blessings of existence where we are passing, and soon shall have passed, our 5 human duration. We bid you welcome to this pleasant land of the Fathers. We bid you welcome to the healthful skies and the verdant fields of New England. We greet your accession to the great inheritance which we have enjoyed. We welcome you to the blessings of good gov
10 crnmeut and religious liberty. We welcome you to the treasures of science and the delights of learning. We welcome you to the transcendent sweets of domestic life, to the happiness of kindred and parents and children. We welcome you to the immeasurable blessings of rational ex
15 istence, the immortal hope of Christianity, and the light of everlasting Truth!
LXIX.—ALL THINGS ARE OF GOD.
[thomas MOOrE was born in Dublin, May 28,1779, and rUed February 26, 1852. His first work, a translation of the "Odes of Anaereon," published In 1800, was received with much favor; and from that time he was constantly before the public, and, as a poet, rose to a popularity second only to that of Byron or Scott. His longest poem, " Lalla Uookli," is a brilliant and gorgeous production, glowing with the finest hues of Oriental painting, and true in tta details; but it cloys the mind with its excess of imagery and the luxuriant sweetness of its versification. His " Loves of the Angels," another poeinof some length, was a comparative failure.
Moore's greatest strength is shown in bis songs, ballads, and lyric effusions. In these, his vivid fancy, his sparkling wit, his rich command of poetical expression, his love of ornament, and his sense of music find an appropriate sphere. His Irish Melodies, especially, are of great excellence in their way. They are the truest and most earnest things he ever wrote. In many of his productions there is more or less of make-believe sentiment; but here we feel the pulse of truth. The web of Moore's poetry, however, is more remarkable for the richness of its coloring than the fineness of its texture. He is not a very careful writer, and does not bear a rigid verbal criticism.
Moore's satirical and humorous poems —of which he wrote many — are perhaps entitled to even a higher comparative rank than his serious productions, because they are such genuine and natural expressions of his mind. He was hill of wit and animal spirits, and seemed to take positive delight w darting
his pointed and glittering shafts against literary and political opponents. In these lighter effusions, also, we do not require the depth of feeling, the moral tone, and the dignity of sentiment, which we seek— and seek in vain — in his serious poetry. Many of them, however, were called forth by the passing occurrences of the day, and have lost their interest with the occasions that gave them birth.
In the latter years of his life, Moore was a diligent laborer in the trade of literature, and wrote many works in prose; among them, " Lives of Sheridan and Byron," " The Epicurean," a tale," The History of Ireland," a production of much research, "The Life of Captain Rock," u Travels of an Irish Gentleman in Search of a Religion," &c. His prose writings, in general, have not added much to his literary reputation.
Moore's private character was amiable and respectable on the whole, but he was a little too inclined to pay court to persons of higher social position than himself. He was a devoted and excellent son, and without reproach in his domestic relations. He had some knowledge of music, and sang his own songs with great taste and feeling: this accomplishment and his brilliant conversational powers made him a great favorite in society.]
1 Thou art, O God, the life and light Of all this wondrous world we see;
Are but reflections caught from thee.
2 When day, with farewell beam, delays Among the opening clouds of even,
Through opening vistas into heaven,
t When night, with wings of starry gloom,
Is sparkling with unnumbered eyes,
4 When youthful spring around us breathes,
And every flower that Summer wreathes
Is born beneath thy kindling eye:
LXX. — ON THE PLEASURE OF ACQUIRING KNOWLEDGE.
[archibald Alison "was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, November 13,1757 and died there May 17, 1839. He was a clergyman of the Church of England He wrote " Essays on the Nature and Principles of Taste," a much-admin-d work, which passed through several editions. He also published two volumes of sermons, which obtained a wide-spread popularity both in England and America. Their reputation has subsequently declined, and they are less remarkable for vigor of thought than for finished elegance of composition.]
In every period of life, the acquisition of knowledge is one of the most pleasing employments of the human mind. But in youth, there are circumstances which make it productive of higher enjoyment. It is then that everything 5 has the charm of novelty; that curiosity and fancy are awake; and that the heart swells with the anticipations of future eminence and utility. Even in those lower branches of instruction, which we call mere accomplishments, there is something always pleasing to the young in their acquisi
10 tion. They seem to become every well-educated person; they adorn, if they do not dignify, humanity; and, what is far more, while they give an elegant employment to the hours of leisure and relaxation, they afford a means of contributing to the purity and innocence of domestic life.
15 But in the acquisition of knowledge of the higher kind,— in the hours when the young gradually begin the study of the laws of nature and of the faculties of the human mind, or of the magnificent revelations of the Gospel, — there is a pleasure of a sublimer nature. The cloud, which in their infant years seemed to cover nature from their view, begin* gradually to resolve. The world, in which they are placed, opens with all its wonders upon their eye; their powers of attention and observation seem to expand with the scene before them; and, while they see, for the first time, the 5 immensity of the universe of God, and mark the majestic simplicity of those laws by which its operations are conducted, they feel as if they were awakened to a higher species of being, and admitted into nearer intercourse with the Author of Nature.
10 It is this period, accordingly, more than all others, that determines our hopes or fears of the future fate of the young. To feel no joy in such pursuits; to listen carelessly to the voice which brings such magnificent instruction; to see the veil raised which conceals the counsels of
15 the Deity, and to show no emotion at the discovery, — are symptoms of a weak and torpid spirit, — of a mind unworthy of the advantages it possesses, and fitted only for the humility of sensual and ignoble pleasure. Of those, on the contrary, who distinguish themselves by the love of
20 knowledge, who follow with ardor the career that is open to them, we are apt to form the most honorable presages. It is the character which is natural to youth, and which, therefore, promises well of their maturity. We foresee for them, at least, a life of pure and virtuous enjoyment, and
25 we are willing to anticipate no common share of future usefulness and splendor. *
In the second place, the pursuits of knowledge lead not only to happiness but to honor. "Length of days is in her right hand, and in her left are riches and honor." It
SO is honorable to excel even in the most trifling species of knowledge, in those which can amuse only the passing hour. It is more honorable to excel in those different branches of science which are connected with the liberal professions of life, and which tend so much to the dignity
85 and well-being of humanity.
It is the means of raising the most obscure to esteem »nd attention; it opens to the just ambition of youth sonue of the most distinguished and respected situations in society; and it places them there, with the consoling reflection, that it is to their own industry and labor, in the provi5 dence of God, that they are alone indebted for them. But, to excel in the higher attainments of knowledge, to be distinguished in those greater pursuits which have commanded the attention and exhausted the abilities of the wise in every former age, — is, perhaps, of all the dis10 tinctions of human understanding, the most honorable and grateful.
When we look back upon the great men who have gone before us in every path of glory, we feel our eye turn from the career of war and ambition, and involuntarily rest upon
15 those who have displayed the great truths of religion, who have investigated the laws of social welfare, or extended the sphere of human knowledge. These are honors, we feel, which have been gained without a crime, and which can be enjoyed without remorse. They are honors also
20 which can never die, — which can shed lustre even upon the humblest head, — and to which the young of every succeeding age will look up, as their brightest incentives to the pursuit of virtuous fame.
LXXL —HYMN AT THE CONSECRATION OF A CEMETERY. Newell.
[This beautiful hymn was sung at the consecration of a cemetery belonging to the city of Cambridge, in October, 1854. It was written by the Rev. WilMAM NEWELL, a graduate of Harvard College of the class of 1824, and pastor of the First Congregational Church in Cambridge. Dr. Newell has published very little; but this poem shows him to be capable of giving beautiful expression to genuine religious feeling.]
1 Changing, fading, falling, flying From the homes that gave them birth.