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dred cut-throats, and he proposed that they should sever him. It was remembered that he had received the first two hundred thousand heads. In a journal which he pub- constitution with reluctance, and with the avowed resolished, named L'Ami du Peuple' ("The Friend of the lution, as his intercepted papers now proved, of setting it People'), he broached propositions equally horrible; and aside on the first opportunity. The insurrection of the though in charity to mankind he must be supposed to 20th of June had been caused by his refusal to sanction have been insane, the Girondists resolved to bring him two decrees against the emigrants and nonjuring priests, to trial. They failed; the more violent of the deputies as those of the clergy were termed who refused to take -called 'the Mountain,' from the lofty seats they occu- oath to the new constitution; and all the horrors of the pied on the legislative benches-having come to his aid; 10th of August had mainly originated from a proclamaand he resumed his old habits more unbridled than ever, tion denouncing fire and sword to all who declined subtill a young female, named Charlotte Corday, whose lover mission to the ancient order of things, which the Duke he had sent to the guillotine, rid the world of his pre- of Brunswick had imprudently published on advancing sence, and of her own, by stabbing him in a bath-a into France, and of which Louis was now proved to have crime which only accelerated the doom of the Girondists, been cognizant, though he had attempted to mitigate its whose tool she was supposed to be.
harshness. Success, too, had inflamed their passions. Robespierre came off equally triumphant. He was a The splendid army of the allies had wasted away under man of a deeper and more mysterious character. Ori- the exhausting influence of famine and disease ; and after ginally a barrister in the provinces, where he acquired one indecisive action with the disorganized French at small distinction, he had been sent as a member to the Valmy-another, more important, in which they were states-general ; but here, beyond one or two wretched defeated, at Jemappes--had regained the frontiers in disattempts, in which the most meagre thoughts were with order and dismay. A result such as this, instead of difficulty delivered in the poorest language, he had never allaying the feelings of the Jacobins, as might have been ventured to raise his voice, after a withering denunciation anticipated, only increased their audacity and resentment. from Mirabeau. But, indefatigable, he worked in secret ; | They now remembered that Louis had with the utmost and his power gradually became so great, that, through reluctance proclaimed war against the allies, and that his influence with the Jacobin Club, he was able at last some troops in his confidence had thrown down their arms to thwart the measures of that fiery statesman. By the and fled from the invaders without even a shadow of reaid of this celebrated club, which originally consisted of sistance. The recent seizure of the king's papers showed a few philosophers assembled for scientific pursuits, but that, if this were not done by his orders, he maintained had now grown into the most powerful political engine a secret correspondence with the enemy, capable of being in the state, he had ultimately become one of the most construed into treason to France. They resolved, acimportant personages in Paris, and with Danton, his cordingly, to bring him to a trial; and the Girondists associate, swayed the fierce passions of the populace at his could save him only by appearing to acquiesce, hoping in will. He possessed even more influence than the others; the course of the proceedings to devise some expedient for though Danton, by his Herculean figure, sonorous for saving his life by banishing him from the country. voice, and coarse ready eloquence, was so well qualified The evil consequences of Lafayette's interruption of for the post of popular leader as to be styled the .Mira- the royal flight, when,' to quote the words of Napoleon, beau of the mob,''his power was diminished by his open they might have got rid of a king without the odium of profligacy and sordid patriotism, while Robespierre's re- regicide,' were quickly perceived ; and bitterly, perhaps, ceived additional weight from his outward propriety and were they then lamented by their injudicious author, inaccessibility to pecuniary corruption. The proposal to who himself was shortly afterwards obliged to flee from impeach him accordingly created the most intense excite- the country to save his own life. All efforts failed to ment in the capital; and Paris was then, as it has always save the king. Early in January, 1793, he was arraigned been, the controlling voice of France. Vergniaud was at his subjects' bar-the second monarch who, since the
and he stood on no such ceremonious ground distant era of Agis the Lacedemonian, had presented as Louvet in his impeachment of Marat, when the orator, such a spectacle. He was accused of plotting the destrucafter a long denunciation, in which he shrunk in appa- tion of the constitution as well as causing all the evils rent horror from pronouncing even the culprit's name, ex- which had lately distracted the country; and under the claimed, on inadvertently dropping the obnoxious word, designation of • Louis Capet' he was summoned to plead "Gods! I have named him !' but, in a long, vigorous, to the charge. “That is not my name; it was the name and convincing speech, arraigned him of aspiring to a of one of my ancestors,' replied the unhappy monarchdictatorship in the comnionwealth. The effect was destitute of active, but great in passive courage ; and in powerful, and Robespierre trembled. His associates were feeling accents he disclaimed the imputation of designing in dismay; and his brother, the less able but better man the ruin of his country, adding, 'God knows I had no of the two, eren implored them, in imitation of the an- such intention.' The reaction and commiseration excited cient Roman fashion, to wreathe chaplets for the victim by his conduct and his helplessness were so great, that, whom the morrow was to consign to the scaffold. But had an immediate verdict been asked, he would in all the Jacobins came in overwhelming force and fury to his probability have been acquitted, or at least have escaped aid; and the convention was so overawed that he was ac- with his life; and the Jacobins, therefore, readily comquitted, to gain new strength from his foes, and pursue plied with a demand for eight days' delay, which he made them with implacable hostility till death removed them to prepare his defence. The interval was busily employed from the fierceness of his revenge.
by his friends, and still more busily by his foes. On the Another trial drew nigh, of a different nature and re- elapse of the allotted time he again made his appearance sult—that of the unfortunate king. Shortly after his at the bar, with Malesherbes, a patriotic nobleman, who resort to the legislative hall on the 10th of August, the had opposed him in better days, but generously rushed assembly had pronounced his deposition, and declared to his aid now, and Dezeze, an eloquent barrister, for his that the monarchy was henceforth abolished; but beyond counsel. His attitude was still dignified, his defence was confining him with his family within the precincts of the not inglorious; and Dezeze concluded a glowing speech Temple (a sort of state prison), no measure had been re- with an impressive epitome of the royal prisoner's sorted to against him.In proportion, however, as the career. *Louis XVI.,' he said, "is in the thirty-sixth republicans increased in strength, they increased also in year of his age-eighteen of which he passed in private, resentment; and some proofs of Louis's complicity with eighteen in promoting the weal of his subjects. He the emigrants and the allies, who had advanced, under vowed that he had never had a thought but for their the Duke of Brunswick, against France, having then been welfare, and concluded with a gorgeous appeal to posdiscovered in the archives of the Tuilleries, his infuriated terity: History,' he said, ' will sit in judgment on your subjects resolved to bring him to a trial. The Girondists, verdict, and its sentence will be the sentence of ceninfluenced by nobler motives, in vain interposed to save turies!'
But his eloquence was exerted in vain: a few days provoked by her own inconsiderate conduct. But her were allowed to elapse between the trial and the verdict, beauty and her misfortunes must throw a halo around and the Jacobins in the interval had been busy. Every the faults of Marie Antoinette, as they have done over resource was, in the mean time, employed to inflame po- those of Mary Stuart. Circumstances of unusual herror pular fury, and so successfully, that the Duke of Orleans, attended her trial, and she had previously been subjec.eu the first prince of the blood, to the horror of the by- to sufferings which rendered death a relief. For many standers, voted on the final day for his kinsman's convic- months she had been contined in a cheerless room, detion and death. The Girondists attempted to save Louis prived of the society of her children, except at distant by proposing banishment; but a large majority decided intervals, and so divested of all regal state that she was on à fatal sentence, and, on the evening of the 19th of indebted, it is said, to an English lady in Paris for a January, the unfortunate monarch was informed that he gown, and obliged even to patch her own stockings. must prepare for death in two days, without appeal. lle When arraigned at the bar of the revolutionary trireceived the intelligence with calmness, for Louis, when bunal, the most horrifying crimes were alleged against called to suffer, could suffer bravely. Ile was destitute of her; and Hebert-a disgusting wretch who acted as prothat active courage which sustains the hero in the field, secutor, and shortly afterwards died on the same scafbut he possessed, in an eminent degree, that passive for- fold-even attempted to insinuate that she had corrupted titude which supports the martyr on the scaffold. He was her son, until he was stopped by the indignant voice of sitting in an obscure closet, with his elbows on a table, | Robespierre, who protested against this cruelty, and by and his head resting between his hands, when the infor- the queen's own more elegant appeal to every woman in mation reached him: 'I have been considering,' he said, the assembly, 'whether a mother could be guilty of such 'whether during the whole course of my reign I have a charge.' This raised in her favour a temporary emoever knowingly done an act injurious to my subjects, and tion; but her foes were too powerful, and the part she my conscience acquits me of the imputation; and he had taken in the government of the kingdom too conspireceived, unmoved, notice to prepare for death from his cuous, for her to escape. She was accordingly condemned, counsel Malesherbes. A brief and painful interval elapsed, and died with the same undaunted fortitude she had disduring which, amidst scene of heart-rending agony, he played through life. Her charms, however, were wholly took leave of his wife and family. The spectacle was so gone, and when she appeared on the scaffold it was found touching as to affect even the stern hearts of his jailers. that her hair was already grey with sorrow. She was no On entering the chamber, his wife threw herself upon her longer, as the Irish orator represented, ó that bright mornknees, to implore pardon of him for any negligence of ing star that scarcely seemed to belong to the earth she which she might, in the earlier part of their reign, have adorned;' and fierce acclamations disturbed the dying been guilty, and for any injudicious counsel which she hours of one, to resent the slightest insult to wbom,' might latterly have given. He raised her up, and ten- Burke eloquently said, ' a thousand swords would, a fex derly embraced her, while his children, a boy and girl years before, have leapt from their scabbards.' Her sisof tender years, grasped his knees, and his sister hung ter-in-law, the late king's sister, experienced a like fate, upon his neck with a kiss which she swooned in giving. on what grounds it is now difficult to determine. Their In sigbs and sobs three hours were thus passed, and a hapless son, the young Dauphin, a boy of tender years, still more agonizing scene was witnessed when the hour. died of maltreatment in the Temple, and of all their of final parting drew nigh. They were with difficulty family, a daughter, the future Duchess D'Angouleme, torn from his embrace then, and only by his proinise alone survived, to experience in another era the misforthat he would revisit them on the morrow. But that tunes and expatriation of her house. The convention, promise he never intended to keep: it was only an ami- which had sent these and many other victims to the scafable device to relieve their sufferings until he knew that fold, concluded its career in ignominy, which it only at all should be over. He appointed to see them again the last feebly palliated when its less sanguinary memnext day at noon; but before that period he knew that bers, in danger of being guillotined in their turn, consignhe should have ceased to live. With this he left the ed to the scaffold the authors of so much bloodshed. apartment, and, on re-entering his own, he soon recovered his wonted tranquillity. On the morning of the 21st of January, in view of his own palace, after a THE ADVANTAGES OF READING.* brief
but vain dispute with the executioners on the scaf. In the following paper, we purpose to state some of the fold, as his confessor, the Abbé Edgeworth, exclaimed, advantages which result from judicious and well digested "Son of St Louis, ascend to heaven!' the descent of the
reading. axe relieved this hapless king from his regal care and earthly sorrows. A terrible scene ensued both before improvement of preceding ages, to the present or cotem
1. Judicious reading brings down the science, art, and and after the execution. During the procession to the scaffold, which lasted upwards of two hours, most of the poraneous age of the reader.
Without the reading of books, there could be little or spectators were plunged in gloomy sorrow, but a few of
no progression in society. Mere traditional knowledge the mob attempted to insult his dying hours by coarse exclamations. On reaching the scaffold, which was the ancients have been entirely lost. Books, on the other
is very uncertain, and by trusting to this, many arts ci erected in the large square formerly named the Place Louis XV., but then bearing the designation of the Place | hand, are the registers of the past attainments, disde la Revolution, as it has since borne that of Place de la coveries, and triumphs of mind. By means of books, the
goal of our ancestors, in knowledge, becomes the starting Concorde, he attempted to address the multitude, and a few touching words had already made some impression knowledge of a preceding age becomes the platform from
post of their posterity. By means of books, the recorded on their giddy minds, when the sound of the drums in which the succeeding one climbs to higher eminences, terrupted his voice, the executioners seized his person, and scales loftier positions in the upward march of mind. and in a few minutes all had ceased ; leaving the greater By reading books, we bridge over different ages, and thus part of the spectators plunged in sorrow, while others, science passes across from Chaldea to Egypt, from Egypt and those of the basest order, set off with their fierce
to Greece, from Greece to Rome, and from Rome to the exclamations of frantic joy to the Temple, and thus gave various states of modern Europe. Without this contrirhis wife and family within the first intelligence of the ance, every age, or every individual of every age, is insu, late sovereign's fate.
Louis, though not destitute of faults, was possessed of lated; he stands by himself, he is an uninstructed and many virtues, while his vices were rather those of his position and the system. In a few months bis high-the Advantages of Heading, from an carly volume of the Christian minded queen followed him to the scaffold, her own fate and that of her husband having been in no small degree | South College Street Church, Edinburgh.
It is from the pen of the Rev. John French, minister !
uninstructing unit, that has neither predecessor nor suc- make more proficiency in the study of morals, and of cessor in the mental world; he has had no beacon lights mind, than if you had heard these persons fluently read to guide him in his search after truth, and he himself their lectures from the professorial desk. The reason is leaves no chart behind him to aid succeeding voyagers. obvious ; few persons can extemporise metaphysical or Without the reading of books, the geometry of Euclid moral research. It requires time and patient thought. would bave slept with himself at Alexandria, and the In studying these writers, you may spend hours usefully eloquence of Pericles or of Cicero would never have upon one single page, musing over and re-reading every kindled into congenial passion the student of forensic or fact and argument. But instead of hours to work out, in senatorial oratory. But by reading, we tread in these your own mind, this mental process upon a single page, the foot-prints of the illustrious dead, and, by the ever the lecturer himself, in that time, would have read you accumulating impetus of mind, the world of souls is fifty pages instead of one, and all of them requiring as carried forward to the coming millenium of perfection. much attention.
2. Judicious reading is an excellent substitute for the But still farther to show the advantages of reading, as comforts and supposed advantages of wealth and high | a substitute for wealth and station, I would observe, that station.
by means of a book of travels, and you have many such, you Occasionally the aspiring mind will heave a sigh of can visit, in company with the highest in the land, old regret, that, owing to its humble position in society, or Rome and her seven hills, or Athens and its Acropolis ; the slenderness of its pecuniary means, it is shut out from you can stand on the summit of Mont Blanc with Sausmany a privilege which otherwise it would enjoy. The sure, or at the foot of the Pyramids with Clarke or Sonini; poor student might be heard sometimes to utter some you can sail up the Ganges with Heber; or climb the such soliloquy as this: 'Had I wealth and rank in society, Andes with Humboldt. what delightful means of improvement should I then en- By reading biography, I am admitted into the society joy; I should find access to the learned; I should listen of statesmen, of scientific men, of learned men, military to the prelections of the most gifted men of science; I men, and all, in short, whose character and history can
should matriculate in universities of most renowned name; excite my curiosity. Í learn how they speak, how they ** I should become the fellow and associate of every scientific act, how they live, who are their associates, and what are
and literary corporation ; I should procure admission into their manners. I do not, indeed, hear their voice, and the best society, and, under all possible aspects and may not see them with my eye, but by reading their phases, I should study human nature in its infinitely di- whole lives, faithfully written, I assuredly know more versified and multiform character; my rank and wealth about them than hundreds who were favoured with a perwould command these advantages at home, and when sonal interview. these mines of improvement were exhausted, I should 3. Judicious reading qualifies for the more successful commence a fresh career of improvement, by travel discharge of all the duties of life. abroad.' In some such soliloquy as this, has many a poor There are some attainments and accomplishments, student enjoyed his day-dream, cribbed up in his little which may either be possessed or not, without involving smoky apartment, and breathing forth deep, strong, moral delinquency. A ploughman's moral and religious ardent aspirations for mental improvement, and the character may remain unchallenged, though he should coveted honours of learning and science.
know nothing of the Hebrew tongue; but who would Now, while we will not deny that wealth and rank com- blame that individual, if, as a matter of pure choice, he mand some advantages for mental improvement, which should, at his leisure hours, study that sacred language. persons of humbler circumstances do not enjoy, yet we But, on the other hand, there are certain qualifications confidently entertain the opinion, that in the age, and in necessarily and most reasonably expected in those who the country in which we live, the difference of privilege fill the different relations in life. We ought not to hold between the highest and the lowest, between the titled those relative situations if we are not competent to fill noble and the meanest plebeian, has been reduced to a them, or if we are once placed in them, and cannot retire fractional difference of very small amount. The multi- or give them up, we are most culpably criminal if we do plication of books, and the opportunities of reading, and not strive, by every likely and possible means, to instruct the facilities for popular instruction, are the mighty in- ourselves and become qualified for the duties of our station. struments which have broken down the barrier that im- What would you think of that physician, who, in virtue peded the march of the popular mind.
of possessing a medical diploma, should lead you to underMy testimony may be humble, but I give it as the stand that he was perfectly competent to heal disease sucfruit of my own experience, that almost all progress in cessfully; and, in consequence, should lead you to intrust mental cultivation is the result of private study and self- your life to his care, while yet, neither during his educaimprovement. It is not prelections, it is not lectures, it tion, nor at the present moment, is he at pains to master is not the possession of so many tickets to this course or the difficulties of his profession; while, even now, he is that, that can secure or certify the improvement of the at no pains, by reading, to keep pace, in his professional mind. These things may have their use—they may be knowledge, with the discoveries, improvements, useful indicators to attention-they may be road-marks to know- hints, and suggestions, that are every day teening from ledge, but unless on your own feet you travel the road, the schools of medical science, and the pains-taking obyou will assuredly never arrive at the temple of truth. servations of studious and enlightened men ? Believe me, a course of patient, silent, calm thought, Or, again, what would you think of that lawyer who upon any given subject, aided by judicious reading, will should take your money for defending, securing, or condo more to benefit your mind, in one twelvemonth, than veying your property, and who should subject you to immany years of careless, dissipated, actionless, listening to mense loss, because he acted merely on his antiquated a course of lectures, during which your ears only are open knowledge of obsolete forms and enactments, and did not, and your intellect all but asleep. He who wishes to im- by present reading and present study, bring down his proprove his intellect must make his own mind work, he fessional knowledge to the present moment, embracing must read, he must think, he must digest, he must write, all recent laws and newly prescribed forms, and, by his he must speak, he must labour and experiment; it is ignorance of which, your estate was lost and your family thus that the mind brightens and the soul acquires plunged into ruin ? You cannot find terms to characterize strength.
the criminality and the worthlessness of these persons. But to give a more popular and intelligible illustration They are professional scoundrels, whose ignorance is of the advantages of reading, as a substitute for the ad- crime, and whom law, in many instances, has made vantages of wealth and station, I would offer the follow- amenable for that very ignorance. Now, to a certain ing examples :
degree, all the relative situations of life have qualificaBy means of the writings of a Reid, of a Stewart, and tions similar to those of the physician and lawyer, which of a Brown, which are accessible to all, you may actually qualifications can only be acquired and kept up by the
same conscientious attention to the current knowledge The mind, like the archer's bow, must sometimes be that is brought down to the present moment.
unstrung, else its spring and elasticity will soon be de As magistrates, as parents, as merchants, as mechanics, stroyed. Next to the bracing influence of well-regulatei and domestic servants, there is a tide of fresh knowledge, exercise in the open air, no amusement or relaxatica bearing upon these different relations, constantly stream- admits of such variety, and offers such exquisite enjoying around us, and if we do not make ourselves acquainted ment, as reading. You can begin it when you please, with it, we shall be so much the more ineficient magis- you can leave it off when you please; you do not Dent trates, ignorant parents, unsuccessful merchants, inexpert to consult the pettish humour of any companion whether mechanics, and useless domestics.
or not you shall have an hour's relaxation from care and Now books are the principal means by which this never toil. A book is not a moody, freakish, untractable comflagging process of improvement is maintained in society. panion ; it is always in the vein: only select one to suit Now-a-days, almost every profession has its vade-mecum the state of your mind for the time, and you may be of instruction, brought down to the present hour, and he soothed into tenderness, or beguiled into good humour, who does not wish to be like a buoy chained in the stream, or transported into ecstacy. must set himself, by reading, to be carried forward on What rich magazines of entertainment hare of late the ever-advancing tide of knowledge.
years been stored up in books! All regions have been To take the case of parents :-in these times of minute ransacked, all professions, all ranks, have contributed accomplishments and general education, how awkward their share. Titled dames and literary nobles have the situation of many an illiterate parent! How many given you the privilege of introduction to scenes only to questions are put to him by his children which he cannot be gazed on by favoured eyes. They have opened the answer? His little cherub-faced prattlers return from folding doors--they have lifted up the arras—and show school, primed by the day's exercises with much new you the first society in the land. Soldiers have told you knowledge which they do not fully understand. What is how they have felt, and what they have seen, on the red their natural resource ! climbing up on their father's field of war. Painters of manners have described to you knee, or sidling close to his chair, they ask him, in rapid life as it exists in all the walks of many-coloured society; succession, a variety of questions about the meaning of you can have the spirit of British essayists—the marto words, and the boundaries of empires, and the nature of of history—the gems of eloquence-the flowers of poetry, substances, which, alas! the state of his knowledge does culled out to your hand, and presented in the most fascinot enable him to answer; how awkward he feels! how nating form, to soothe the jaded mind. That heart foolish he looks! and, with a gentle stroking of the head, must be ill at ease with itself that cannot find occasional he dismisses his little inquirers, and parrics, as best he relief from care at such a banquet of mental sweets as can, this painful catechising.
this. Now, in the most of cases, a little judicious reading, The literary world seems to be aware of this capability on the part of the parent, could have remedied the mat- of books to minister pre-eminently to our pleasure ani ter. And what reading would do for this parent, it will amusement; for, of late years, much, very much, perdo for almost all other relative situations. As we do not baps too much, of our literature has been of this amusing acquire a knowledge of any of our duties by intuition, the kind. Books, in short, seem now to be the special minismore we read, and think, and reflect upon these duties, ters of pleasure, a sort of literary cup-bearers, holding up we shall just be the more likely to become better patriots, to our lips nectared draughts, fitted to stimulate and to better citizens, better parents, better children, and better charm the most sickly faded taste. What are our Alservants.
bums and Amaranths, our Souvenirs and Forget-me-nots, In connexion with this department of our subject, and but so many voluptuous ministers of mental pleasure ? as a motive to act upon the leading sentiment discussed Now, how much more preferable, I ask, is the relaxation under this particular, it is worthy of consideration, that oramusement, moderately and judiciously drawn from such while eminent proficieney in one branch of business is sources, to the coarse, exciting, fierce pleasures of many likely to secure preferable employment, so a general vulgar minds ? Besides, how much cheaper is it? One knowledge of all subjects cannot fail to be of use in any quarter's fee in a congregational library; one sispence separate profession. The best informed merchant on worth of reading there, will, for three months, make you general subjects, all other things being cqual, is likely more happy than ten times the sum expended upon a to be the most successful merchant. The best informed single night's debauch, whilst your character and constimechanic on general subjects, all other things being tution are preserved to boot. equal, is likely to be the most skilful workman, and, con- 5. Judicious reading is an excellent preservative from sequently, the best employed. All professions and arts the influence of temptation. are thus linked together; they all throw light upon each To give examples here : one great source of temptation other; and, consequently, a knowledge of any sister art is idleness. A person having nothing to do is a read: or science is likely to suggest some improvements or dis- prey to many a sinful inducement. Will you go to such coveries in our own.
a place ? oh yes, I have nothing to do. Will you do this? A man, for example, may be a good practical painter will you do that? oh yes, I have nothing to do. Will you without a knowledge of chemistry or the art of com- have a hand at cards, or a game at dice, or a turn at pounding colours; but who will say, that if he had a sparring ? oh yes, I have nothing to do.' So yields the knowledge of the latter art, that he might not be a still idle person. But generate a taste for reading, and you better workman? A man may be a good practical mill- are nerer idle. You are never seen as a lounger, no wright or engineer without being a skilful draughtsman corner of a street has you for its noisy orator or ereror knowing much about geometry; but who will say, ready agent for mischief. When not taking wholesome that if he were accomplished in both these latter attain- exercise, your book is ever at hand. The scraps of leisure, ments, he might not rise to the very top of his profession, the filings of time, are thus all wrought up into good, and, by the elastic spring of genius, become the Smeaton, sound, substantial matter of improvement. the Rennie, or the Telford of his age ?
Another great source of temptation is sensual, brutal Let no nook or corner of knowledge, then, be despised. pleasures, revelling, drinking, or other low vices still Let high principle prompt us to be conversant with our more disgusting and degrading. Now, to counteract professional duties, and, in addition to this, let us all, these mere animal tendencies, what so powerful-what according to the degree of our opportunities, strive to in- so likely of success, as calling into exercise that risal crease the range of our information, not knowing how principle of our nature, the mind-the soul—the intellect? soon a seemingly trifling fact may be turned to useful- Produce a taste for the pleasures of study, or the pleaness by the creative power of mind.
sures of reflection, let the spiritual, the immortal principle 4. Judicious reading may be regarded as an enlightened within you be kindled into burning aspirations after knor. relaxation and aniusement,
ledge and improvement, and then the grosser appetites
of man cease to enslave and brutalize the character. If it avail the linguist, that he can speak so many languages Newton, in the midst of his heaven-rapt calculations, had --talk so many tongues—and travel from pole to pole not eren appetite for food, and forgot to take his accus- without guide and interpreter, if he knows nothing of the tomed meal, we may perceive, from this fact, to what language of the heavenly Canaan; if he has never used advantage reading and intellectual pursuits may be turned, the language of devotion, and called God his father, or in resisting the grovelling tendencies of our animal na- the language of faith, and called Christ his Saviour. ture. Some men of learning and genius may have been The learning of such a person is but another form of that debauched and dissipated, but we believe their proportion ignorance that leads down to the darkness of eternal will be small in comparison with the countless multitudes death. who run into sensual pleasures merely because they have Nor is this the mere theory of the preacher. Those no better expedient for giving themselves a fleeting tem- persons who have climbed the heights of learning and porary importance. Their minds are a blank; they can- science, have stamped their authority upon this sentinot exchange an idea with their fellows, and to escape ment. Henry Kirke White declared that those academic from perfect vacancy of mind-to get rid of the conscious- honours which he purchased with his life, were nothing ness of their own insignificance, they seek the excitement but “a death's head under a mask of beauty;' and Henry of grovelling pleasure, because, by the neglect of their Martyn admitted that, in seeking and obtaining, as he powers, they are susceptible of no better.
did, the highest university fame, he had grasped a A third great source of temptation is the prodigality, phantom. Oh the moral madness of those who pay far the luxury, and excess of refinement peculiar to the age less attention to their own immortal welfare than to the in which we live. We may not all be able to go to the same relations of a triangle, the wings of an insect, or the filalengths in fine houses, fine furniture, fine dress, and high ments of a weed ! living : but we can all, at least, catch the spirit of the Let all men remember that there is a gulf in the soul
and expend our utmost farthing in treading upon which nothing can fill but God and religion. It is rethe heels of those who are above us in rank or in circum- ligion alone that can give full development to the mind,
And what is the consequence to many, when ample range to the intellect, and expansive play to the adversity comes? Insolvency, poverty, beggary, disgrace, heart and the affections. The duty, then, of the enruin; these necessarily follow each other with downhill lightened Christian, is not, like Goth or Vandal, to derapidity. Now, to counteract this temptation also, what spise, to condemn, or to oppose, the acquisition of human so well calculated as giving our taste an intellectual learning, but to keep it in its place; to give it its due share tyrn, a spiritual range, withdrawing it from the poor, of time and attention ; to make it bear upon religion ; to paltry, mindless competition, as to which of us shall be make it secondary and auxiliary to that which is prebest dressed, best lodged, best fed, and best carried; and eminent and superior. Human Icarning would thus be rather letring it be a more generous and noble rivalry as sublimed and sanctified. It would resemble a substance to which of us shall be best informed, which of us shall placed in the midst of precious odours, where it cannot be first in his profession, which best at his trade, which long remain without bearing away with it some portion foremost in the career of improvement, who best main- of the fragrance. Religious linowledge, like sunshine tains his place in the van of all that is enlightened, and beaming upon the highest mountain ranges, would bathe, benevolent, and humane ? Reading anıl study are happily with the moral grandeur of its celestial light, all your fitted to resist the allurements of fashion, to produce other attainments; religious knowledge, like a species of simplicity of taste, and to awaken a more generous alchemy, would convert all your other information intogold. rivalry than that which turns upon houses, equipages, and The more you know of God's works, as a philosopher, the attendants. The Christian, like the diamond, should more you would love him as a Christian. The profounder shine by his own internal light-by the central fires of your acquaintance with the laws of nature, the more his own mind—and not like the foil, dark in itself, and elastic would be the vault of your mind, when you atderiving all its brilliancy from the reflection of other tempted to spring the gulf which separates earth from substances.
heaven. Religious knowledge should thus ever be the A fourth source of temptation arises from ignorance of gem, and human learning but the setting. Religious the world. Where we have not had an opportunity of knowledge should be the statue which we venerate and being regularly schooled into a knowledge of the hack- admire; and human learning but the pedestal on which ne;ed ways of men, by dint of dear-bought experience, it stands. Religious knowledge should be regarded as the we are often made a prey to the crafty and designing: true education of the mind; and human learning but the Books supply, to a certain extent, this deficiency; the elementary training preparing us for it, and lending it a recorded experience of others here comes to our aid. We heightening charm. enter society with the experience of others, as the feeler which we employ to secure our own safety. Books tell us how others suffered and how others fared; what com
MARGARET LAMBRUN. pany destroyed this young man; what expensive follies and criminal pleasures squandered the fortune and ruined the soul of that. A single volume, thus recording the One fine summer afternoon in the year 1588, a stranger history and experience of others, may save us loss of cha- youth made his appearance in the Royal Ciardens at Whiteracter, loss of property, loss of peace, and loss of life. hall. He was dressed in the costume usually worn by the These persons have passed the rapids of life before us, better sort of noblemen's retainers and citizens of the and by reading of their voyage, we make choice of a safer period; but his clothes were those of one in deep mourning, channel, and reach the port undamaged.
and his rather handsome features wore an expression of set6. Judicious reading is one of the most valuable means tled melancholy. Ile paced the principal mallof the garden of advancing our spiritual and eternal interests. slowly, every now and then casting a glance in the direc
While it ought candidly to be adınitted that truths of tion of that part by which the Queen, the majestic Elizaevery kind constitute mental food, and must impart a beth, usually entered for her afternoon walk. The guards certain pleasure in the acquisition, yet it ought ever to who attended in these royal precincts were scattered idly be remembered that, however splendid these attainments about, as was customary with them when the Queen was may be they will in the end be no farther substantially not present. There were no other persons in the garuseful than as they have tended to promote the eternal den, and long and patiently did the stranger 'pace his welfare of the soul. What will it avail the astronomer, ' lonely round,' as if upon guard himself. One would have who has lifted bis eyes to the stars, and taken the magni- thought, to look at hin, that a natural feeling of curiosity tude and the distance of all those bright orbs that burn had brought him there, to behold that countenance whose in the sky, if after all, by the neglect of his soul, he shall haughty glance awed the world, and kept her courtiers find himself an inhabitant of thc pit of hell? What shall in continual fear: or. rather, perhaps, from the pensive
AX HISTORICAL AXECDOTE OF 1589.