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That Quaker was much to be commended, who paid a poor man, for carrying wood into his garret, and then back again into his cellar, because he had no other employment for him, and would not give him half a dollar, as a premium upon idleness and beggary. If men are engaged in labour, whether it be of any intrinsic importance or not, they will be likely to keep out of harm's way, during the time of their employment; for the adage is indisputable, that “the Devil always finds work for idle hands.” I have frequently admired the wisdom of those persons, to whose care is committed Newgate in Connecticut, for furnishing full employment to all the convicts. Any prisoner who cannot conveniently work at some trade previously followed, must learn to make nails; and any one who will not perform his task is deprived of his food in proportion to his negligence. The convict who performs more than is required, earns something against the day of liberation. A man, who had once lived by the trade of preaching in a very irregular way, thought it more convenient to ride, than walk, in his itinerant labours, and therefore stole a horse: he was committed to the above-named State Prison; and subjected to the uniform and unbending system of this house of correction. He was compelled for a time to make nails; but never having loved any other labour, than that of vociferous, unpremeditated talking, he refused to perform his task. Hunger soon convinced him that this would not answer, unless he could plead some better excuse for laziness than indisposition to work. He would not make nails; and it was harder still to live without food; and so he amputated his left hand on the block which held his anvil. An unwise policy would now have given him bread, and time enough for meditation, and rest; but these 2ankees, still believing, THAT MEN should work or Not EAT, compelled the quondam itinerant to spend his appointed hours of toil in pouring a given quantity of sand through a funnel. If he came short in his work in the sand, on any day, his bread was curtailed in proportion. I should be glad to see some invention of this kind introduced into our Prisons and Alms-house; for until our paupers are compelled to perform as much labour as they are able for their subsistence, they will increase among us, and double, in all probability, every ten years. Our city accommodations for the poor will always be fully occupied, so long as the public provides for the continuance of idleness and vice. Build another palace like the one in Spruce street, and it will soon contain a thousand new paupers.
But here it will be demanded, ought we to turn all the poor out, and shut up the Alms-house? Far be such a thought from every mind! No.: but let this benevolent institution afford shelter to lunatics and idiots, to the blind and the lame, to sick
people of good character, and to very aged persons incapable of much work, whose relatives are unable to support them. Let it also receive orphans, and those worse than orphan children who have neither father nor mother, though they are living, to own them, and let it retain, instruct, feed, and clothe these foundlings, until they are old enough to be bound out to service. These children might then be good for something to society, and our forehanded farmers would be willing to have them indented to themselves. Such as these constitute most of the paupers that inhabit some Alms-houses in the country: but these institutions in our large cities are principally filled with a very different sort of characters. In the spring, all whose diseases are drunkenness, idleness, extravagance, improvidence, laziness, lust, and the righteous curse of unchastity, ought to be turned out with an assurance of not being received again, or assisted while living out of the house, until a thorough reformation in morals and some unavoidable incapacity to earn their bread shall be established by competent witnesses from the neighbourhoods in which they may have lived. It is to be hoped, moreover, that after the present season of cold weather is past, the poor will be publicly warned not to expect a provision of wood from the Guardians in future, unless their sobriety, honesty, and industry can be clearly proved by unimpeachable witnesses, for at least six months before application is made for assistance. This would compel the poor to lay o some store in the Fuel Savings Fund, before the time of Inted. The preceding remarks have been elicited, by a perusal of The Fifth Report of the Society for the Prevention of Pauperism in the City of New York; a well written production; which is as applicable to Philadelphia as to any other place. It should be read by our fellow citizens in general; and especially by the Councils of this city, the Guardians of the poor, and the members of our State Legislature; and its maxims of sound policy ought to be adopted as soon as possible. E. S. ELY.
Mr. Editor—The following extracts from Sir Robert K. Porter's travels in Georgia, Persia, and Armenia, respecting Henry Martyn, suggested the stanzas which accompany them. As the extracts have never appeared in any religious publication in this country, they will doubtless be acceptable to your readers. “At Shiraz,” says Sir Robert, “Mr. ki. dwelt nearly a year; and on leaving its walls, the apostle of Christianity found no cause for “shaking off the dust of his feet’ against the Mahommedan city. The inhabitants had received, cherished, and listened to him; and he departed thence amidst the blessings and tears of many a Persian friend. Through his means, the gospel had then found its way into Persia; and as it appears to have been sown in kindly hearts, the gradual effect hereafter may be like the harvest of the seeding.” “The attentions of my host were so unwearied that I never could forget I was in the house of the near kinsman of the two noble Persians, Jaffier Ali Khan, and Mirza Seid Ali, who had sworn the warmest personal friendship to our “man of God,” for so they designated Henry Martyn ! When the weather became too intense for his enfeebled frame to bear the extreme heat of the city, Jaffier Ali Khan pitched a tent for him in a most delightful garden beyond the walls, where he pursued his translation of the scriptures; or sometimes in the cool of the evening, he sat under the shade of an orange tree, by the side of a clear stream, holding that style of conversation with the two admirable brothers, which caused their pious guest to say, “That the bed of roses on which he reclined, and the notes of the nightingales which warbled above him, were not so sweet as such discourse from Persian lips.”
In orange groves on Shiraz’ plains,
With anxious eagerness they heard
Their rising doubts soon disappear'd,
Then, as the dawn began to break
Sweet were the banks of roses spread
O sweet the mellow plaintive song
Letters on Unitarianism; addressed to the members of the First Presbyterian Church, in the city of Baltimore. By Samuel Miller, D.D. Professor of Ecclesiastical History and Church Government, in the Theological Seminary of the Presbyterian Church in the United States, at Princeton. Trenton: printed by George sherman. 1821. pp. 312. Price $1.50. *
When the “pestilent heresy” which “walketh in darkness” under the guise and name of Unitarianism, was spreading its deadly influence in various parts of our country, we do think it was highly reasonable to expect, that the antidote would be furnished by the professors of our Theological Seminaries. They, in our opinion, were called on professionally, to render this service; because it especially belongs to them to endeavour to preserve, in the religious community, a healthful state of mind in relation to Christian doctrine. And we exceedingly rejoice, that the event has corresponded with the expectation and opinion we have intimated. Professor STUART of Andover, with a promptness worthy of his piety, and a manifestation of talent highly honourable to his intellectual powers and literary attainments, took the lead in this necessary, but unpleasant service. He was soon followed, and very ably supported, by his brother professor, Dr., Woods; who not only maintained the ground previously defended against the assailing foe, but carried the war vigorously into the enemy's country. His “Letters to Unitarians,” and his “Reply to Dr. Ware's Letters to Trinitarians and Calvinists,” manifest an acuteness of discrimination, with a scope, and closeness, and force of reasoning, rarely equalled. We verily believe that no unprejudiced man can read the publications of these able writers, on the subjects in controversy, without being convinced that argument and scripture are clearly and conclusively on the side of orthodoxy. We only regret that the former of them saw fit to abandon one point —the eternal generation of the Son of God—which we think he ought to have strenuously maintained, and which is so maintained in the letters, the review of which forms the subject of this article.
Dr. Miller, it appears, was dragged into this controversy ; a circumstance, however, which he assures us he does not at present regret; and in which, as having occasioned the publication of these letters, we are confident the friends of true religion, throughout the United States, have reason to rejoice. He whose prerogative it is to bring good out of evil, has often so ordered it, that a bad book has called forth a good one ; and that thus the truth has been much more firmly established, in consequence of the very attempts which have been made to subvert it.
Dr. Miller's sermon at the ordination of his young friend and pupil, Mr. Nevins, as the pastor of the First Presbyterian Church in Baltimore, was printed at the request of the hearers. The printed sermon contained a few sentences which roused the wrath of a puissant “Unitarian of Baltimore,” who, in the true spirit of a man who is “fierce for moderation,” has been pelting Dr. Miller ever since. We have heard a humorous friend proposing a question in the rule of proportion, thus—if the Unitarian of Baltimore takes nine months to answer twenty lines in Dr. Miller's sermon, how long will it employ him to answer the octavo volume now published 2 . Dr. Miller replied to the first intemperate address which was made to him in the “Unitarian Miscellany;” and confiding in the intimation given by the editor, that he would publish answers to the articles which should appear in that work, sent the reply for publication. But it could not be printed in the miscellany—it was too long : it would occupy too much space: it would not please his subscribers. Nevertheless, if Dr. Miller would print it, at his own expense, and trust the circulation of it with this candid editor, he would promise to send a copy of it, along with the miscellany, to each of his subscribers. Dr. Miller, not choosing, it would seem, to put some thousand copies of his reply at the disposal of this courteous gentleman, published and disposed of it himself. These facts have been, for some time, before the public. The sequel may be learned from the Dr.'s introductory letter “to the members of the First Presbyterian Church in Baltimore.” He begins thus:
“Chaistian BREthaEN.—A train of events, as unexpected as unsought by me, has led to the present publication. When, in the course of the last year,