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if at all, by the f-famed and classic Wyoming. A wide reach
of fertile bottom land, under excellent cultivation, stretches for
nore than a mile in your front, and for miles on either hand;
the numerous fields into which it is divided, vary from each other
in their shades of green, according to the diversified products
with which they are teeming; the rich and extensive pasture
grounds are mottled with cattle, and sheep, and lambs, which are
eeding very contentedly, apparently conscious that their "lines
re fallen to then in pleasant places." The many trees which
ave been spared by the inhabitants, for purposes of shade and
nanient--the butternut, walnut, locust, quaking-asp, and sugar-
ple, throw out their branches with a luxuriancy which beto-
as a generous soil; and it cannot be denied that they contribute
ir full quota toward the aggregate beauty of the picture.
road, you perceive, runs lengthwise through the vale, along
h many neat habitations are sprinkled; and about midway

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arises the steeple of a modest and tasteful house of worp: it contrasts finely too with the back ground of evergreens, igainst which, as we now view it, it is relieved; and on its vane at és mom the sun's setting beams are reposing; a more fitting embic of the mild and cheering character of the doctrines dispensed within that temple, could not well be imagined; doctrines adapted to shed on the spirit's parting hour the light of an immoveable trust in heaven.

But the brightest feature in this lovely landscape is yet unmarked: cast your eye, reader, toward the foot of yonder western barrier; tre rolls a river, so exquisitely pure and placid, that it resembles a burished mirror; it is, however, partially hidden from our view by the elms and sycamores which fringe its margin, and immediately opposite to us its channel is divided by an eland--how soft and verdant! The muses, and the graces, yea, ad goddes esses too, might be well content with grottoes on that green and quicu spo.. I fancy that of a calm evening we might hear at this distance--perhaps we might-the murmuring of the stream where it is broken by the upper point of the island; and then in addition to this exhibition of Nature's taste in penciling, we should have a pretty specimen of her skill in music.

That river, reler, is the Susquehanna, and I doubt me much if in all this wite world the lord of day looks down upon a

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stream, which reflects back his glory more clearly than does this beautiful daughter of the Otsego lake. I have threaded its shores in all their windings, from where it issues from the aforesaid lake among the hills, to where it blends its translucent waters with the briny billows of the Chesapeake bay, and nowhere, methinks, within equal limits, has beauty, in its softer forms, consecrated to itself a greater number of dwelling places; its bordering hills present every conceivable variety of aspect; now they incline in grassy or arable slopes; anon they tower in perpendicular or beetling ledges; here they sweep away in graceful curves a mile or more from its verge, leaving space for broad tracts of level and rich alluvion; and there they run for miles along the river's brink, and mirror their huge forms upon its waters, as though Nature, who is not altogether free from the characteristic foibles of her sex, were as proud, as other beauties are, of contemplating the reflection of her charms. I have told you, reader, this river's name, but the valley itself you must be content with knowing under the fictitious cognomen of UNIVERSALIA. Now let me point your attention to that school-house: there are two in the valley, but this to which I allude, is toward its southern extremity; it is constructed of hewn logs, is surrounded, you perceive, by a grassy plat, and shaded, almost embowered, with beautiful forest trees; it wants but to be white-washed to render it a perfect picture of the rural kind. I must give the settlers a hint of this when I next visit UNIVERSALIA; for pity it were, that a scene so nearly perfect, should lack those little attentions which would constitute it completely so. I may add also, by the way, that in my opinion, school premises every where should be rendered as agreeable as possible; for there the members of human society gather most of their earliest associations, and these exert no small influence upon their subsequent lives. Virtue and happiness not only accompany, but they also promote each other. By as much, then, as it is an object worthy of all attention to form a happy and virtuous society, by so much is it important to commence at the fountain-head, and to blend with the business of juvenile instruction as much of purity and pleasantness as possible, With this digression I will close my first chapter,

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CHAPTER II.

SHE who teaches the school at present, in the building above described, is a young lady from Connecticut her stature is about the middling height, her form slender, to a fault perhaps ; the colour of her hair and eyes is a light hazel; the latter are large and prominent, and, by their expression, say much for the sweetness and innocence of the indwelling soul. I could tell you the true name of this young lady if I chose; but I do not choose, and, therefore, since she must bear some name in our story, we will call her ALICE SHERWOOD. She is not, as I have said, a native of this valley, but is an exotic, of recent transplantation from the "land of steady habits," and sooth to say, there blooms not in all the vale a lovelier flower than Alice; and this is saying much for her, for many a lovely flower blooms there.

In religion, Alice is a Calvinist, of the modern stamp. Of course her faith is but an educational one, in which her understanding has extremely little concern; for what concern can the understanding of a young lady of eighteen have with the mysteries of the trinity, which represents Jehovah as being both the father and the son of himself!-native depravity, which teaches that we come into the world with our moral powers wholly dead and putrid ;—the demands of the divine law against us to an infinite amount, on the ground of a debt alleged to have been contracted by our progenitors, some thousands of years before we were born!—the satisfaction of this claim by the murder of an innocent victim-the transfer of our guilt, both original and actual, upon the head of the unoffending Son of God-and the imputation of his righteousness to creatures who have no righteousness of their own? These are subtleties for the brain of the metaphysical divine, but are not at all suited to the unsophisticated mind, and guileless heart, of a young lady of eighteen.

It will be understood, then, that in describing our heroine as a Calvinist of the modern school, I mean, simply, that she adhered to that party, from educational and family prepossessions. The dogmas of this, as distinguished from those of the old school, are, that God has provided in the gospel ample means to save those, whom from all eternity he unchangeably determined to damn !

That Christ shed his blood for the same class, with the certainty before him, that they could never be availed by it! That all may be saved if they will, notwithstanding that none can will to be saved but such as God has fore-ordained to that end, and they can do no otherwise than will it! And that the chief aggravation of the miseries of the damned, will arise from their having rejected a gospel that was never meant for them, and which it was utterly out of their power to accept! With other matters equally sane and salutary.

Alice, nevertheless, is a good and pious girl-for there are good and pious persons of every religious persuasion; either because their natural dispositions are so good as to defy the corrupting influence of a bad faith, or because they do not entertain that faith with so firm a persuasion of mind as to allow it its full weight of evil influence. However, so stands the fact, be the philosophy of it what it may; and it is certainly better of the two to be theoretically wrong, and practically right, than the contrary; for if the heart be wrong, the head will easily be induced to stray with it; whereas, if the former be right, the latter may easily be redeemed from its errors. And yet it must be confessed, that many a young and innocent heart, receives its earliest taint from the principles which a false education imposes upon the understanding.

Alice had been taken seriously to task by her sincere, but mistaken old father shortly previous to her leaving home, because she had commended the goodness of a certain lady of her acquaintance. "You must always bear it in mind, my dear," said old Mr. Sherwood, "that persons who are out of the church, are in a state of nature-which is a state of unmixed depravity-however good therefore they may seem to be, they are in fact vile and abominable-they cannot think a good thought, nor do a good act, and their deeds which seem to be good are but deceitful workings, and are more detestable in the divine sight, as being the offspring of hypocrisy, than are even those that we would pronounce evil. Beware, then, of looking to the unregenerate for any thing truly virtuous; you will be deceived with specious appearances, but will never find what you seek; "for who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? Not one ;" the virtues of the unconverted will be but as mill-stones around their necks, to sink them the deeper

under the waves of divine wrath." "But my dear father," enquired Alice," Is it not possible for a person to be pure and upright, and as such acceptable to our Creator, even though without religion in our sense of the term?" "In our sense of the term!" somewhat impatiently retorted Mr. Sherwood, "I tell you, Alice, that there is no other true sense of the term, but that which you are pleased to characterize as ours; and if a person be without religion in this sense, then is he without it in any sense, and, consequently, without one spark of real goodness-his heart is rank in rebellion against Jehovah, and he would, were it possible, tear him from his throne. Talk not to me, then, of the goodness of unregenerated man in his best estate,' his heart is a cage of unclean birds,' and morally speaking, there is no soundness in him,' but from the crown of the head to the sole of the foot, he is nothing but wounds, and bruises, and putrefying sores." You will perceive, reader, that there are not wanting quotations from the bible in father Sherwood's description, but they are most sadly misapplied.

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Such, then, are the dark principles of theology in which our heroine was educated-principles, which, had they taken root in her mind, would have driven thence all its native benevolence, and with their sombre shadows would have darkened her vision to all that is fair and beautiful in life; happily for her they found not a congenial soil in her nature, nothing there which favoured so rank and noxious a growth; and, consequently, although they perplexed and confounded her understanding, they failed of corrupting, in any great degree, that pure fountain whence principally the streams which sadden or gladden existence have their source -the heart.

CHAPTER III.

One of the most beautiful features of christianity—not, alas! as it commonly exists in the practice of its professed disciples, but as taught by its author-is the spirit of kindness and forbearance it enjoins toward those who differ from us in faith and prin'ciples. 66 • If ye salute your brethren only," saith Christ, "what do ye more than others? for even the publicans do the same.”

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