Obrazy na stronie
[ocr errors]

a transcript of the tablet of my with the vital principles of faith mind imprest with these images and practice; and these exteri. as they pass before it.

ors were overloaded with abuses You will see that I have noth. to such a degree, that to discrim. ing to do with the unbelievers, inate and take them down, with who have attacked the christian out injuring the system, requirsystem either before the French ed a nicer eye than the people revolution, or during or since

can possess, a steadier hand than that monumental period. I am can comport with the hurried not one of them. You say I movement of a great revolu. resemble them not in any thing tion. else; you will now add that I The scaffolding of your resemble them not in this.

church, permit me to say it, had So far as you have discovered so enclosed, perforated, overa cause of the failure of that rey. looked and underpropt the buildolution in the renunciation of the ing, that we could not be sur. christian faith by those who prised, though sorely grieved, to held, in stormy quick succession, see the reformer lay his hand, the reins of your government, I like a blind Samson, to the great thank you for the discovery. I substantial pillars,' heave and was in want of more causes than overturn the whole encumbered I had yet perceived, to account edifice together, and bury him. for the unhappy catastrophe of self in the ruins. Why did they that gigantic struggle of all the make a goddess of reason? Why virtues against all the vices that erect a statue of liberty ? a mass political society has known. of dead matter for a living enerYou have discovered a cause; getic principle! Have the cour. but there is such a thing in logic age, my good friend, to answer as the cause of a cause. I have these questions. You know it thought, but perhaps it is an er- was for the same cause that the for, that the reason why the people of Moses, made their gol. miods of the French people took den calf. The calf A pis bad from the turn they did, on the breaking time immemorial become a god out of the revolution, was to in Egypt. The people were in be found in the complicated cere. the habit of seeing their divine monials of their worship, and protector in that substantial bo. what you yourself would term val form, with two horos, four the non-essentials of their relig, legs and a tail ; and this habit was ion.

so interwoven in the texture of The reasonable limits of a let their mind as to become a part ter will not allow me to do jus- of the intellectual man. The tice to this idea. To give it the privations incident to a whole proper development would re. moving nation subjected them to quire five times the volume that many calamities. No human I shall give to the present com.

hand could relieve them; they The innumerable felt a necessity of seeking aid varieties of pomp and circum. from a supernatural agent, but stance which the discipline of the satisfaction in praying to church had inculcated and en.

an invisible God. They had joined, became so incorporated never thought of such a being ;



and they could not bring them. irretrievably lost, at least for our selves at once to the habit of day. forming conceptions of him with My dear Gregoire, I am glad sufficient clearness and confi. you have written me this letter, dence to make him an object of though at first it gave me pain, adoration, to which they could I was sorry to find myself so en. address their supplications in the tirely misconceived by a friend so day of great affliction.

highly valued ; but I see your Forty years of migration were attack is easily repelled, a thing judged necessary to suppress the which I know will give you habit of using idols in their wor. pleasure, and it furnishes me an ship; during which time their occasion at the same time to ren. continual marches would ren. der a piece of justice to myself der it at once inconvenient for in relation to my fellow citizens. the people to move their heavy You must know I have enemies gods, and to conceal them in in this country. Not personal their baggage ; while the severi. ones; I never had a personal ty of military discipline must ex

enemy, to my knowledge, in any pose

their tents and their effects country. But they are political to the frequent inspection of enemies, the enemies of republie their officers

can liberty, and a few of their Shall I apply this principle to followers who never read my the French nation in her revo. writings ; that is my writings lution ? No, my friend, it is too that I wrote, but only those that delicate a task for a foreigner I did not write; such as were who has received her hospitali. forged and published for me in ty; I will leave it to your own my absence; many of which I compassionate and philanthropic never have seen, and some of mind. You will recollect how which I did not hear of till ten often I partook of your grief dur. years after they had been printed ing that scene of moral degrada. in the American gazettes. tion. No sooner did you and It has even been said and pub. the other virtuous leaders in the lished by these christian editors

, revolution begin to speak of au- (I never heard of it till lately) that gust liberty, holy reason, and the I went to the bar of your conven. divine rights of man, than the tion, when it was the fashion so to artizans took up the hammer, do, and made a solemo recantation the chisel and the plaister of Pa ofmychristian faith, declaring my. ris. They must reduce these self an Atheist or Deist, or some gods to form before they could other anti-christian apostate; present them to the people with know not what, for I never yet any chance of their being uoder. have seen the piece. Now, as stood; they must create before an active member of that con. they could adore. Trace this vention, a steady attendant at principle through five years of their sittings, and my most inti. your history, and you will find

mate friend, you know that such why the catholic religion was a thing could not be done with. overturned, morality laid asleep,

out your knowledge; you know and the object of the revolution therefore that it was not done;


inform you.

you know I never went but once published in all those places ten to the bar of that convention, years ago.

And perhaps not which was on the occasion to one person in twenty who read which you allude in the letter the first has ever seen the second, now before me, to present an ad. or yet knows of its existence, ex, dress from the constitutional so. cept these editors who refused to ciety in London, of which I was publish it. a member, You know I always

You must not suppose from sympathized in your grief and this statement of facts that I am partook of all your resentment angry with these people. On while such horrors and blasphe, the contrary, I pity and forgive mies were passing, of which these them.

And there is no great typographical cannibals of rep, merit in this, for they are not my utation have made me a partici. enemies. They only do the work pant.

they are set about by their pat. These calumnies you see could rons and supporters, the monar. not be refuted by me while I did chists of America. Their object not know of their existence. is not to injure me, but to de. But there is another reason which stroy the effect of my republican you will not conceive of till I writings.

The editors of They now publish your letter newspapers, you know, ought to with great avidity because they be considered as exercising a sa.

think it will tend to decry my cred function; they are the high poem. It may have this effect priests of public opinion, which in a small degree ; but I still is the high court of character, thank them for multiplying your the guardian of public morals. publication. There is no work Now I am asbamed to inform of yours that I do not wish to you that there are editors in this see universally read in America; country who will publish the and I hope soon to find in our grossest calumny against a citizen, language and in the hands of all and refuse to publish its refuta. our readers


curious tion. This is an immorality and interesting treatise de la lit. unknown in France since the erature des negres.

It is a death of Marat.

work of indefatigable research, A private letter of mine, writ. and brings to light many facts ten from Paris, was mutilated in unknown in this country; where this country, made to say things' the cause of humanity is most in. that I never wrote nor thought, terested in propagating that spe. and published in all our anti-re. cies of knowledge. I hope the publican papers.

I saw it a year manuscript copy of Mr. War. after the date and immediately den's translation is not lost; or wrote an

explanatory letter, if it is, that he' will be able to which re-established my first in- furnish booksellers with tention. This last I then pụb. another. lished in Paris, London, and If I had renounced christian. Philadelphia. Not one editor ity, as your letter seems to supwho pripted the original motila- pose, that letter and my reflec. ted letter has, to this day, print. tions on your life and conversa. ed my answer; though it was ţion would certainly bring me Vol. II. New Series.


your last


[ocr errors]

back. For you judge me right in my country, and trust to your when you say I am not ashamed sense of justice to do the same in to own myself possibly in the yours and in your language, in wrong ;

or in other words to order to give it a chance of meetconfess myself a man. The gos. ing your letter in the hands of pel has surely done great good in all its readers.

all its readers. If, thus united, the world ; and if, as you imag- they serve no other purpose, ine, I am indebted in any meas, they will be at least a short liv. ure to that for the many excel. ed monument of our friendship, lent qualities of my wife, I owe and furnish one example of the it mu'ch indeed.

calmness and candor with which I must now terminate my let. a dispate may be conducted, ter ; or I shall be obliged to turn even on the subject of religion. from you to the public, with an Your affectionate friend, apology for making it so long ;

JOEL BARLOW, since I must offer it to the public KALORAMA, 13th Sept. 1809.



To the Editors of the Panoplist. GENÍLEMEN, I have seen with much pleasure a Review of Fellowes' Religion without Cant repub

lished in your third No. As this gentleman is fairly introduced to the American public, it is probable, that your readers will wish for a further acquaintance with this merits as a writer. I request you, therefore, to publish another Review, fron the same excellent periodical work, of another volume, written by Mr. Fellowes. This prodnction, or rather this collection, is entitled “ Poems, chiefly de. scriptive of the softer and more delicate sensations, and emotions, of the heart,&c." You will find this Review in vol. 5 of the Christian Observer, page 755. From the specimens of Mr. Fellowes sentiments, here given out of this Collection of Poems, the people of this country will easily discern what must be the divinity, which they are to expect from his pen. Those, who have originated, or knowingly encourag, ed, the republication of Religion without Cant, are, it is to be presumed, pleased with the sentiments of Mr. Fellowes. But it is doubted whether the sober and decent, not to say religious, inhabitants of New-England will feel any disposition to receive their instruetion from such a divine. I am, gentlemen, yours, &c.

Poems chiefly descriptive of the softer and more delicate sensations and entotions of the heart; original, and translated; or, imitated from the Works of Gesner. By Robert Fellowes, A.M. Oxon. London, Mawman, 1806. 12mo. pp. 151.

There is something so pleas. and was apparently unconscious ing even in the appearance of of those merits, which were ob. modesty, that it is sure almost on vious to all the world besides. cvery occasion to attract atten. Our readers will naturally con. tion and conciliate esteem.

clude that we do not moralize ny a man has passed through life thus for nothing, and that, respected and beloved, for no strange as it may seem,

these reother reason than that he pos- flections are in some way or oth. sessed a diffidence of character, er applicable to Mr. Fellowes. which was unwilling to obtrude. That they are not adranced with


out a cause, will be evident from description of his works, had it the very first sentence in his occurred to him to transpose book. 66 The author of the fol. their titles. His earlier produclowing pages, though he has of. tions ought in justice to be con. ten appeared before the public in sidered as poetry, if a grand style the habit of a theologian, has and bold fictions can confer that never yet been seen in the char. dignity without the aid of metre; acter of a poet.” This is modesty and the work before us, instead in an extreme. Dress is a thing, of bearing the title of Poems, which varies with the fashion; chiefly descriptive of the softer and in this new habit we scarcely and more delicate sensations, know how to recognize the di. &c.” would be more correctly vioe; but Mr. F. has, long be- designated by the character of fore this publication, been enti. Essays on Love, morally, phi. tled to a distinguished place in losophically, and practically the annals of poetry.

considered.” It is in fact a For what are the qualifica. plain, practical treatise, more tions, which constitute a poet ? particularly descriptive of that Without entering into that mi. species of salutation, which chil. Il uteness of description, by which dron of a tender age are general. Imlac endeavored to exalt his ly taught to practise. profession to the Prince of Abys. We are ready to admit, that sinia, we will venture in brief to opinions so widely different from assert, with the greatest critics those of the ingenious author him. of antiquity, that certain strength self on the quality of his own of diction and boldness of imag- works, viz. which are the poems ination are essential to his very and which the essays, ought in no name and character. And wherė. case to be advanced without sol. ever we discover this, there, as id and substantial reasons. Our if by common feeling and unani. wishes on this point do most per. mous suffrage, we acknowledge fectly correspond with our du. the spirit of poetry. And there ty.

And there ty. It will be proper therefore are few persons, we are persuad. to introduce the subject by a ed, in the present dearth of gen. few quotations from his poetical ius and degeneracy of times, who compositions, before we descend have indulged in such daring to the analysis of the essays be. flights, as are to be found in the fore us. earlier publications of Mr. Fel. In a work erroneously enti. lowes.

tled, “Religion without Cant,'* It is recorded of Milton, that whilst speaking of certain perhe preferred the Paradise Re. sons, whom Mr. Fellowes, in his gained to that great poem, which nervous and energetic manner, has rendered his name immortal. distinguishes by the name of faOther writers of eminence have natics, he sublimely sings, “They fallen into a similar error with make the delirium of sensation a respect to the relative merit of substitute for integrity of char. their own productions ; nor is Mr. Fellowes absolutely exempt

* Its proper name, as we intimated or from the charge. He would have a former occasion, would be “ Cant with. given a much more appropriate

out Religion."

« PoprzedniaDalej »