« PoprzedniaDalej »
BY R. SAPP.
Sandusky river, near where the town of Lower SanNEUTRAL NATION,
dusky now stands. From time beyond memory and tradition, the Wyandotts and Iroquois had been en
gaged in a war of relentless extermination. This war “ Their spears upon the cedar hung,
had commenced earlier, and was still in progress in Their javelins to the wind were flung,
1534, when Cartier landed on the Canada shore. The They bent no more the forest bow, They arm'd not with the warrior band."
Wyandotts had been driven from their ancient homes
on the banks of the St. Lawrence, to the country west Tuat which is beautiful and redeeming in the char- of Lake Superior, where they found refuge among the acter or customs of the aboriginal inhabitants of this Sioux. From this point their warriors made predatory continent, should be collected and carefully treasured excursions into the territory of their ancient enemies, up. Their vices have been detested by all who have and as often had them returned. The Wyandott tradiwritten and talked upon their national and individual |tion of this neutral nation represents them as having character; and it is true that there is but little about separated themselves from the parent stock (Wyandott) them to admire. Yet, from the mass of evil, here and and fled for safety into the western country, soon after there may be found a bright quality, a beautiful tradi- the war with the Iroquois commenced. Here they es tion, or a noble characteristic, which creates in the tablished themselves, and professed strict neutrality and mind of the civilized and enlightened, enraptured admi- friendship for all the belligerent nations. They built ration. The primitive origin of this race of men is hid two forts in their territory, one of which they appropriin the impenetrable shades of the past. But notwith-ated to the Iroquois, and the other to the Wyandotts standing this fact, it is a pleasing task to pick up their and their allies. To these the discomfited could fly, as traditions, examine their customs and habits, learn their the Israelite to the city of refuge, and while within religion, and contrast their many peculiarities with those these sacred inclosures, or on this ground of common of the oriental nations, from whom, it is probable, they peace and neutrality, feel safe and assured of protecdescended. There are, however, more discrepancies tion. Father Segard," on coming into the country, between them and eastern nations than there are cor two centuries since, found them still in the possession respondencies. One theory which has been adopted by of this sanctuary of peace, living uninterrupted, and the antiquary is a descent from the ancient Israelites. having the confidence of the belligerent nations. The Be this theory true or false, we do not pretend to say, causes which led to this singular separation and pecunor do we say that any theory which has been adopted | liar organization among a savage people, is a matter of is true.
curiosity. And how it acquired the consent of such Between some of the nations of this continent and warlike and blood-thirsty tribes, is equally curious. As the Israelites there are customs which bear a distant to these, tradition furnishes no data. The traditionary resemblance. The Jewish nation was composed of history of this singular people is rather meagre, and hence twelve tribes; the Wyandott nation is made up of seven. scarcely more than the bare fact that they existed is And it is true, that amidst the multitude of changes known. It is probable that they had their origin in the which have taken place in the history of that people, dreams, and conjuring, and juggling tricks of some of they have always maintained this distinctive feature of their prophets, and that superstition lent its aid to secure their national character. The Iroquois nation was the favor of the warring nations. Be the cause of their originally composed of five distinct tribes. Subse-origin what it may, among savage nations it was a beauquently, they adopted and incorporated into the parent tiful institution-a place where all could meet upon nation the Tuscaroras, which constituted that confed- || the common ground of friendship, and know that they eration known in the history of our first settlements as were in the midst of a nation of peace-makers. the Six Nations. The law of marriage and descent After having existed in this peculiar form for a long among the Wyandotts is peculiar. It is unlawful for period, it is represented that an intestine fued sprung the members of the same tribe to intermarry. The up among them, one party embracing the cause of the man is compelled to marry a woman belonging to some Iroquois, and the other of the Wyandotts, which terother tribe; and the descendants always belong to the minated their existence. This was an unhappy fate. tribe of the mother. While in that nation, I was such a people merited a different end. Happy would pointed to a man who was the last member of his it have been if they could have maintained the same tribe, and at his death the tribe of which he was a character of national peace-makers, and have come member would become extinct.
down, as such, even to this our day. The existence of a neutral nation among the warlike tribes of this continent, is what will not readily be received by those who have become acquainted with
MODERN criticism discloses that which it would fain their character, and learned the history of their wars. conceal, but conceals that which it professes to disclose; The tradition of such a nation exists among all the it is, therefore, read by the discerning, not to discover northern Indian nations, and has been partially attested | the merits of an author, but the motives of his critic. by the first French Catholic missionaries who visited
* General Cass’ lecture before the Historical Society of the country. The place of their residence was the l Michigan.
IMPORTANCE OF FAMILY DISCIPLINE.
IMPORTANCE OF FAMILY DISCIPLINE. teresting subject been sufficiently appreciated ? Do we It was my privilege on a recent occasion to enter an not provoke the Lord by our presumption rather than ancient temple in this city, of which I could say, our honor him by our faith, when we plead for the fulfillfathers worshiped in this mountain. Both the placement of his promises, all of which are conditional, and and the pastor are connected with my most holy and expect our prayers to be answered in the conversion of consecrated associations, and have often deepened my our children, while we are verily guilty before God of realizations of the unchangeableness of God's covenant, neglecting to exercise that authority with which he has and the consequent safety of all those who are identi-invested us, for the training up of holy families? If I fied with it. The subject presented to our attention am not mistaken, there is too much faith without works was quite in harmony with the train of thought indu-l in the hearts of God's people. It is much easier to beced by surrounding objects, “This day is salvation lieve that God will convert our children in answer to come to this house.” When the Lord Jesus visits a our fervent prayers added to our faithful instructions, habitation he brings sa!vation to it. He dwelt particu- than to subdue the stubborn, obstinate will in the unlarly on the blessings resulting from this salvation, and tiring contest for mastery, by judicious but unflinching urged them as inducements to a cordial reception of discipline. The spirit of the age is one of insubordithe Savior into our hearts and families, on the evident nation. Satan appears to have no very serious objecdecline of vital piety in the families of God's people, |tion to all the forms of religious instruction, and all tho and some of the causes of it. If our houses are not || sanctifying influences which are brought to bear upon visited by Christ, and his salvation is not brought to the youthful mind. Transformed into an angel of light, them, as in former days, it becomes us to inquire why he may even suggest to the parental heart as a quietus the visitations of his mercy do not gladden our hearts. to all its fears, “I will be a God to thee, and to thy Various reasons for the Savior's absence were assigned, seed after thee.” So long as he keeps the undisturbed but that which appeared to my own mind the most possession of this stronghold, an unsubdued will, his prominent, as I conceive it to be most destructive to interest is secure. Our children enjoy every privilege every holy influence in the family, was the growing but that of faithful discipline; for this they suffer loss. disregard of parental authority and domestic insubordi. The want of this, like the absence of power in a wellnation. This is the axe laid at the root of family relig- contrived machine, renders all the parts, combined or ion, and where this insubordination exists the fruits of single, useless. I have sometimes thought that parents the Spirit will be looked for in vain. Perhaps some of of the present day were too indolent or too feeble to your readers will turn from this article with disgust, exercise family government. But I am sure that if half feeling that enough has been said and written on the the breath spent in repeating commands or coaxing to worn-out topic of family discipline. It is true that obedience, or reasoning about the propriety of the thing enough had been written on this subject when the holy || required, were used in the application of the rod accordman of old wrote, as he was moved by the Holy Spirit, |ing to divine appointment, until submission and a the condition of God's covenant with Abraham, in prompt compliance with a command once given were which the family organization is so distinctly recognized, gained, there would be a great saving of time, of strength, “For I know him, that he will command his children and broken-hearted parents. We used to hear of paand his household after him, and they shall keep the rents breaking their children before they reached a cerway of the Lord.” But, if God's people are dull of tain period—after which the child understood that the hearing, or forgetful of what they do hear, or neglect will of the parent was to be implicitly obeyed, and all to practice what they do know, it becomes us to raise contests were easily settled. This breaking or subdu. our voice, and to reiterate again and again the terms of ing the will was considered a most important event in the covenant, and to define more clearly the position the history of the child. The process was conducted which we and our families must occupy in order to give with coolness, patience, and much prayer to God for to the Savior such a cordial reception into our houses his blessing, while it was pursued with an inflexible as would invite the visitations of his mercy.
firmness. The result could not but be happy. After There is something very peculiar in the family organ- | this the rod was seldom, if ever, called for. The great ization; it is the oldest organization in the world. God question had been settled, and was not to be again disis its author; he formed it in paradise, and it is the only turbed. These living “epistles were known and read vestige of the happiness of Eden which has come dowh || of all men,", as the children of believing parents, whose to us, and will last to the end of time. For a long faith and works reciprocally acting on and through time the family and the Church were one: all the ac- each other, brought forth the peaceable fruits of rightcessions to the latter were from the former, in which iteousness. But we have fallen on evil times. There had its origin; and in all God's gracious dispensations is a fearful decline of family religion ; and without a towards man he recognizes this blessed relation of pa-change, the Church will, ere long, receive her largest rent and child. He deals with man as a social being and richest accessions from the world, rather than from clothed with responsibilities, and enjoying privileges, those who have been dedicated to God at the altars of the faithful discharge of the one securing the possession the Church. Earthly good, in some of its varied forms, of the other; and the neglect of the one involving the has filled the parental eye, and the heirs of the coveforfeiture of the other. Has this view of this most in- nant are sacrificed to this Moloch. — Mother's Magazine.
SINCERITY IN WOMAN.
BY MRS. DUMONT.
SINCERITY IN WOMAN.
Original. The characteristic endowments of women, are not
SPRING. of a commanding and imposing nature, such as man may boast of, and which enable him to contend with difficulties and dangers, to which, both personally and | There's a breath in the air, like love's balmiest sigh mentally, he is liable. The perfection of the female
Stealing softly from valley and hill; character is attained by the cultivation of endowments For a voice has gone forth through the earth and the completely opposed to these, but equally suited to the sky, nature of their duties. They consist in purity of mind, And creation is stirred with the thrill. simplicity and frankness of heart, benevolence, prompt-|| She wakes—from the skies to the caves of the deep, ing to active charity, lively and warm affections, indu That summons has passed in its power: cing a habit of forbearance, and the practice of self- | She has thrown off the shroud of her moldering sleep, denial, which the comfort or good of their human ties And her pulses again all exultingly leap may demand. These, when confirmed and supported To the call of her wakening hour. by a devout spirit towards God, give a mild but steady lustre to female existence, equally adorning it in the How the earth is all changed! her whole face seems character of daughter, wife, or mother. But when o'erspread these gifts of nature remain uncultivated, or are impro With the gladness of beauty and love; perly directed by any unfavorable circumstances in Like a distant reflection of glory, just shed early life, we must expect to find them degenerated into Through the skies, from the bright worlds above. weaknesses, or to have given place to their opposite | The air is with soft, mingling melodies filled, defects: simplicity and frankness changed into cun Newly waked from long slumbering strings; ning; benevolence crushed into selfishness, or exercised The song of the bird, by the bleak winter stilled, without discretion and judgment; irritability of temper And the murmur of founts, that the north breath had instead of meekness and forbearance, and a stronger
chilled, inclination to gratify self than to consult the wishes And the hum of new life, on glad wings. and the feelings of others; in morality, no steadiness, expediency governing rather than sincerity of heart And the wide brightening forest, that gloomily fung and integrity of mind; and in religion, either enthu Its grey arms 'gainst a desolate sky;* siasm or coldness and indifference.
While the voice of the storm through its sullen glades Sincerity is composed of simplicity of intention, and
rung, of truth in thought and word. A woman truly sincere
Like a hollow and wailing cry. will say neither more nor less than she means and How graceful it bends in its richly robed pride, thinks; she is undesigning, and therefore has no cause
As if courting the light's yellow play; to mislead by her words; and though her prudence How deep are the shadows it flings far and wide may sometimes restrain her speech, it never urges her|| O'er the streams, whose bright waters rejoicingly glide to the practice of disingenuity. Sincerity is essential
Through its depths, in their beauty, away. to our comfort in all our earthly connections; without it there can be no reliance or confidence, no safety; nor But while nature thus springs to such glorious birth, can there be any certainty that other virtues have a
Triumphant o'er ruin and deathfirm footing in those who are evidently devoid of sin. Through the vast, human world, wakening spirit of
earth, cerity. Insincerity is the poison of every good quality and feeling, and can serve as nourishment only to base
0, send'st thou thy strong healing breath? and unworthy desires. There are many causes which Thou, who callest decay into health’s mantling bloom,
Hath conscious life part in thy sway? conspire to render duplicity not an uncommon failing in women.
A sense of weakness, timidity of disposi- Can thy smile the dark cells of the soul re-illume ? tion, and a defective judgment, often lead them to em Or rekindle the hopes that have set in the tomb ? ploy a subterfuge rather than open dealing, in the at
Or thy voice stir its slumbering clay? tainment of any petty wishes and objects
. Some of Yet why the vain questioning? Not without power the usages of society have also a disingenuous tenden
Thou comest, o'er the sad world of thought; cy, and they who aspire to the reputation of politeness, For a language is set in the hues of the flower, not unfrequently practice, to its utmost extent, this licensed disingenuity, although forfeiting the higher It speaks of a summons, yet louder than thine
With the teaching of angels fraught. claim to sincerity. Such characters do no good to themselves, and, fortunately, but little harm to others; When death shall the keys of his empire resign,
On the dark reign of time, that shall break they gain no credit for their professions of friendship And the re-quickened dust to a beauty divine, or good will, nor secure to themselves any friendship
From the earth and the ocean awake, more sincere than that which they profess; for who can value those they believe to be hollow in heart, and to
*"And the woods against a stormy sky, whom they apply the epithet of “people of the world ?"|
Their giant branches lost.”
BY J. T. BRAME.
contemporaries, age has unnerved the wing, and lowAMERICAN POETRY.
ered the flight of their muses. In our own country, were we to judge from the number of living poets, we
should consider the Ars Poetica as in a state of rapid The present age has been productive of grand devel- advancement. The American poets are for the most opments, and important changes. We have seen “de- || part young, and some, it is to be confessed, manifest cay's effacing fingers” blasting the fairest hopes of extreme juvenility in their compositions. The poetry, map, and the genius of revolution striding fearfully then, which has been heretofore exhibited to the Amer. among the nations. The venerable institutions of ican public should be regarded rather as the early bloscenturies, and the ephemeral creations of yesterday soms of genius—as the promise of future achievement, have alike fallen, and billow has succeeded billow upon than as specimens of our real excellence. We now the ever-varying ocean of human affairs with the most proceed to speak of some of the obstacles to the adfearful rapidity. Amidst the Auctuations of the age vancement of poetry in the United States. amidst downfall and innovation, we are pleased to The most formidable obstacle is the utilitarian charknow that there is one cause which has been steadily acter of the age. And especially, in a land like ours, progressing—the cause of literature. It is not our pur-where the ratio of capital to labor is so great, is it napose, in this article, to note the cause of this gratifying tural to suppose that men will be engaged in active state of things, nor yet to dwell upon the present con- employments, having for their object some tangible addition of literature in general; but to offer a few re- vantage. Hence, the cry of all classes is for “utility, marks on one of its departments, and to consider the visible, tangible utility.” Enterprise and speculation obstacles to the advancement of that department in the are the engrossing topics of the day. In the language United States.
of a fine writer, Rev. Dr. Peck, of New York, “DolIt has been remarked, and we think with truth, that lars and cents are with us the unit of value, and what“while poetry is declining in one quarter, it is advanc-ever study cannot be thus estimated, is too frequenting in another.” History seems to confirm this asser-| ly shoved out of the account. Now this we all know tion. The Tempean vales and Parnassian hills of to be the besetting sin of our country—it is the reclassic Greece, so long vocal with the sweetest strains proach from abroad that rests upon us—it is the snare of the lyre, have been silent for two thousand years. at home that entangles us, and it is a position as false The same blue skies still canopy that land—its inhabi- as it is dangerous.” Forgetting the effects of moral tants still cherish the love of country—they have but causes on national character, we seem to found our of late kindled their beacon-fires upon a thousand hills, country's glory, on her enterprise, her commerce, the and have dared to be free
settlement of her western wilds, and her varied clime “ Their ears have drunk the woodland strains and productions. In the opinion of too many of our Heard by old poets, and their veins
modern “ Jack Cades,” the squatter who has removed Swell with the blood of demi-gods,
his log cabin farthest from the verge of civilization has That slumber 'neath their country's sods;
done more to advance his country's glory and interest, There nature molds as nobly now As e'er of old, the human brow,
than the most elegant essayist, or the most sublime And copies still the martial form
poet. “The true glory of a nation,” says a beautiful That braved Platæa's battle storm!”
writer, “consists not in the extent of its territory, the Yet there the inspiration of poetry is no longer felt; || pomp of its forests, the majesty of its rivers, the height of while our own hills and prairies, for ought we know, its mountains, and the beauty of its sky, but in the exhitherto slumbering in the most unbroken silence, are tent of its mental power, the majesty of its intellect, the echoing from peak to peak, and from vale to vale, the height and depth and purity of its moral nature.” melody of undying song. Italy, the land of the Man It is a melancholy fact, that this hankering after a tuan bard, and in later times of Dante and Boccacio, utility, in some degree tangible and immediate, has beis now as mute as her own sculptured marbles, and no gotten a spirit decidedly hostile to the arts and sciences. longer charms us with the magic of her verse. In As among the Goths and Vandals of other days, to call England the decline of poetry has been the generala man “a Roman,” was regarded as a sign of contempt; cry for many years. The minstrel of the north has so in our day, to be a man of books, is with too many a sung his “last lay,” and sleeps in his voiceless grave, token of a craven and effeminate spirit. Against no amid the barren plains and bleak hills of that land over department of literature are there stronger prejudices whose scenery he has shed such an unfading effulgence than against poetry. Poetry and nonsense are regarded and around whose martial deeds he has entwined the by many as convertible terms. The question here sugever-green of immortality. Childe Harold's “pilgrim gests itself, “ Is poetry of any positive utility or not?” age" is o'er, and he now reposes in the vaults of his We answer in the affirmative, and shall, before leaving haughty line. The author of the Course of Time, the this point, refute some of the objections urged against opening buds of whose genius gave promise of an it, and point out its many and important uses. abundant harvest, has been snatched away by early But, first, we would premise a brief remark concerndeath; and Felicia Hemans has sunk “like a starlet to | ing the meaning of the term utility. A more extendher rest." of the English poets who survive their | ed application is due to that term than is commonly
assigned to it. It is applicable to every cause, either | been many epochs in the world's existence, of which physical or moral, which subserves human happiness, no history is extant; and even where historic records whether that cause be manifest or obscure, and its are found they afford scant materials for judging of the effects immediate or remote.
characteristics of the times when they were composed. It has been gravely asserted that the tendency of po- But poetry, though its legends be apocryphal, or fictietry is “to incapacitate man for the emergencies and tious, always embodies the spirit of its peculiar age and duties of life, and to debase the heart." These are the nation, and, hence, is of the utmost importance in cleararguments by which the fair fabric of poesy is to being up and interpreting contemporaneous history. Our demolished—these are the proofs that poetry is not only remarks may be illustrated by many obvious cases. In without utility, but positively injurious. The first ob- the first stages of society, “when life itself was an jection, concerning its tendency to incapacitate man eclogue,” the poetry partook of the simplicity of the for the duties and trials of life, may be briefly and easily times. In after days, when the Grecian and Roman,
What was it that roused the sinking courage of the African and the Oriental warriors met upon the red the Spartans against their enemies, the Messenians ? plain of battle, The moving elegies of Tyrtaeus kindled anew the “In all the pomp and circumstance of glorious war," expiring embers of love of country which led them the poetry was tinged with the martial spirit. During to the battle plain, and girt their brows with the laurel the reign of chivalry, when the Christian world, mar
Who sang more harmoniously in ancient days shaled by an enthusiastic anchorite, rushed to the rescue than Alcaeus? Yet he was " ferox bello ;” and there of the holy sepulchre from the grasp of the infidel, the is no character in all antiquity, which, for a spirit of synchronous poetry was marvelous and romantic in a patriotic devotion, heroic self-sacrifice, and glowing ar- high degree. dor, more demands the gush of sympathy and admira Having thus considered the objections to poetry, and tion. Whom, in modern times, has the muse of his- | its utility, we proceed to speak of another obstacle to tory to celebrate braver than Sir Philip Sydney-more | its advancement in the United States—the precocity of profound in thought than the author of Paradise Lost, our writers. It is natural to a young and gifted mind, and more instructive than Coleridge and Montgomery ? animate with hope, and unprepared for failure, to weave The objection concerning its tendency to debase the golden visions of the future, and to be dazzled by the heart may be likewise answered. In the Psalms of Da- halo of poetical fame. The practice, too, so prevalent, vid, and the writings of the holy prophets, truths the of puffing every production of the least merit, and the most solemn and interesting, and sentiments the most ill-judged praise of partial friends, have been peculiarly religious and devotional are delivered in the highest hurtful and unfortunate. Allured by a love of fame, order of poetry. We admit that poetry, like all other and persuaded by indiscreet commendations, our poets good things, is liable to perversion; and in common venture too soon into the arena. Instead of being conwith all friends of virtue and literature, we lament its tented with hopping from twig to twig, while they are yet destructive influence, when contaminated with impuri-unfledged, they must needs be careering over the whole ty, misanthropy, and infidelity. But its perversion landscape, caroling their brain-sick fancies, and “airy forms no argument against it, when undegraded from nothings," until at last, by luckily falling into the talons its proper sphere. Dr. Channing has said, “In its le- of the eagle, they are spared from farther disgrace to gitimate efforts, it has the same tendency with Christi-themselves, and the noble art they profess. Imaginaanity, to spiritualize our nature; and even when its tion and hope tell them they will redeem their counfires are dimmed by misanthropy and impurity, it can try's glory. Already they see their names emblazoned not wholly forget its true vocation.” We thus see that on history's proudest page, and enshrined in rich and the tendency of poetry is neither to incapacitate the deathless melody—already mind, nor debase the heart. It may be made greatly
"We give in charge instrumental in advancing human happiness. Man Their names to the sweet lyre. Th' historic muse,
Proud of her treasure, marches with it down cannot always live in the great world of business and
To latest times; and Sculpture, in her turn, action; he must have his hours of meditation, “when
Gives bond, in stone and ever-during brass, mind and body are freed from the yoke of service, and To guard them, and immortalize her trust!" the course of thought takes a higher turn than the We incline to the opinion that their claims to immordusty track of common life.” To fill up these “inter-tality should be tried by the ordeal of fire. vals between the acts of life,” when the divinity stirs A third obstacle, and the last we shall mention, to within, and the soul in its dreams, leaving these mortal the advancement of American poetry, is that spirit of shores, soars to its native heaven, is the peculiar office imitation which has always been so prevalent among of the muse. Then the power, the inspiration of po- our poets. Hence it is that our poetry abounds in etry is felt. Its influence spreads over the baser metal figures and descriptions, borrowed from the history and of our alloy, and directs our aspirations upward to vir- scenery of other lands, all which are not only highly tue and to heaven.
destructive of that nationality which should be stamped As a final proof of the utility of poetry, we shall upon our literature, but absurd and ridiculous in the view it in another very important light—its connection extreme. It would be deemed very absurd for a paintwith individual and national character. There haveller to introduce an elephant or a white bear into a Vir