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the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish he work we are in, to bind up the nation's wound, to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow and orphans, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and a lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.
THE SHEPHERD OF THE PEOPLE.
From “ The Life and Death of Abraham Lincoln.” So let him lie here in our midst to-day, and let our people go and bend with solemn thoughtfulness and look upon his face and read the lessons of his burial. As he paused here on his journey from his Western home and told us what by the help of God he meant to do, so let him pause upon his way back to his Western grave and tell us, with a silence more eloquent than words, how bravely, how truly by the strength of God he did it. God brought him up as he brought David up from the sheepfolds to feed Jacob his people, and Israel his inheritance. He came up in earnestness and faith, and he goes back in triumph. As he pauses here to-day, and from his cold lips bids us bear witness how he has met the duty that was laid on him, what can we say out of our full hearts but this — “He fed them with a faithful and true heart, and ruled them prudently with all his power.” The Shepherd of the People! that old name that the best rulers ever craved. What ruler ever won it like this dead President of ours? He fed us faithfully and truly. He fed us with counsel when we were in doubt, with inspiration when we sometimes faltered, with caution when we would be rash, with calm, clear, trustful cheerfulness through many an hour when our hearts were dark. He fed hungry souls all over the country with sympathy and consolation. He spread before the whole land feasts of great duty and devotion and patriotism on which the land grew strong. He fed us with solemn, solid truths. He taught us the sacredness of government, the wickedness of treason. He made our souls glad and vigorous with the love of Liberty that was in his. He showed us how to love truth and yet be charitable — how to hate wrong and all oppression, and yet not treasure one personal injury or insult. He fed all his people from the highest to the lowest, from the most privileged down to the most enslaved. Best of all, he fed us with a reverent and genuine religion. He spread before us the love and fear of God just in that shape in which we need them most, and out of his faithful service of a higher Master who of us has not taken and eaten and grown strong.
- He fed them with a faithful and true heart.” Yes, till the last. For at the
last, behold him standing with hand reached out to feed the South with Mercy and the North with Charity, and the whole land with Peace, when the Lord who had sent him called him and his work was done.
Mourn not the dead, but rejoice in his life and example. Rejoice as you point to this child of the people, who was lifted so high that republican institutions became manifest in him! Rejoice that through him Emancipation was proclaimed! Above all, see to it that his constant vows are fulfilled, and that the promises of the Fathers are maintained, so that no person in the upright form of man can be shut out from their protection. Then will the unity of the republic be fixed on a foundation that cannot fail, and other nations will enjoy its security. The corner-stone of National Independence is already in its place, and on it is inscribed the name of George Washington. There is another stone which must have its place at the corner also. This is the Declaration of Independence with all its promises fulfilled. On this stone we will gratefully inscribe the name of ABRAHAM LINCOLN.
EXTRACT FROM “ALTON LOCKE.” Charles Kingsley. And he was gone at last! Kind women, whom his unknown charities had saved from shame, laid him out duly, and closed his eyes, and bound up that face that never would beam again with genial humor, those lips that would never again speak courage and counsel to the sinful, the oppressed, the forgotten. And there he lay, the old warrior dead upon his shield; worn out by long years of manful toil in The People's Cause; and, saddest thought of all, by disappointment in those for whom he spent his soul. True, he was aged; no one knew how old. He had said, more than eighty years; but we had shortened his life and we knew it. He would never see that deliverance for which he had been toiling ever since the days when as a boy he had listened to Tooke and Cartwright, and the pairiarchs of the people's freedom. Bitter, bitter, were our thoughts, and bitter were our tears, as Crossthwaite and I stood watching that beloved face, now in death refined to a grandeur, to a youthful simplicity and delicacy, which we had never seen on it before — calm and strong — the square jaws set firm even in death the lower lip still clenched above the upper, as if in a divine indignation and everlasting protest, even in the grave, against the devourers of the earth. Yes, he was gone - the old lion, worn out with many wounds, dead in his cage. Where could we replace him? There were gallant men among us, eloquent, well-read, earnest. men whose names will ring through this land ere long — men who had been taught wisdom, even as he, by the sinfulness, the apathy, the ingratitude, as well as by the sufferings of their fellows. But where should we two find again the learning, the moderation, the long experience, above all the more than woman's tenderness of him whom we had lost? And at that time, too, of all others! Alas! we had despised his counsel; wayward and fierce, we would have none of his reproof; and now God had withdrawn him from us; the righteous was taken away from the evil to come. For we knew that evil was coming. We felt all along that we should not succeed. But we were desperate ; and his death made us more desperate; still at the moment it drew us nearer to each other. Yes — we were rudderless upon a roaring sea, and all before us blank with lurid, blinding mist; but still we were together, to live and die; and as we looked into each other's eyes, and clasped each other's hands above the dead man's face, we felt that there was love between us, as of Jonathan and David, passing the love of woman.
Few words passed. Even our passionate artisan-nature, so sensitive and voluble in general, in comparison with the cold reserve of the field-laborer and the gentleman, was hushed in silent awe between the thought of the past and the thought of the future. We felt ourselves trembling between two worlds. We felt that tomorrow must decide our destiny-and we felt rightly, though little we guessed what that destiny would be!
EXTRACT FROM “THE POTIPHAR PAPERS."
Geo. William Curtis. These elegant Pendennises we saw at Mrs. Potiphar's, but not without a sadness which can hardly be explained. They had been boys once, all of them, fresh and frank-hearted, and full of a noble ambition. They had read and pondered the histories of great men ; how they resolved, and struggled, and achieved. In the pure portraiture of genius, they had loved and honoured noble women, and each young heart was sworn to truth and the service of beauty. Those feelings were chivalrous and fair. Those boyish instincts clung to whatever was lovely, and rejected the specious snare, however graceful and elegant. They sailed, new knights, upon the ola and endless crusade against hypocrisy and the devil, and they were lost in the luxury of Corinth, nor longer seek the difficult shores beyond. A present smile was worth a future laurel. The ease of
the moment was worth immortal tranquillity. They renounced the stern worship of the unknown God, and acknowledged the deities of Athens. But the seal of their shame is their own smile at their early dreams, and the high hopes of their boy hood, their sneering infidelity of simplicity, their skepticism of motives and of men.
It is an awful moment when the soul begins to find that the props on which it has blindly rested so long are, many of them, rotten, and begins to suspect them all; when it begins to feel the nothingness of many of the traditionary opinions which have been received with implicit confidence, and in that horrible insecurity begins also to doubt whether there be anything to believe at all. It is an awful hour, — let him who has passed through it say how awful, — when this life has lost its meaning, and seems shrivelled into a span; when the grave appears to be the end of all, human goodness nothing but a name; and the sky above this universe a dead expanse, black with the void from which God himself has disappeared. In that fearful loneliness of spirit, when those who should have been his friends and counsellors only frown upon his misgivings, and profanely bid him stifle doubts, which for aught he knows may arise from the fountain of truth itself; to extinguish, as a glare from hell, that which for aught he knows may be light from heaven, — and everything seems wrapped in hideous uncertainty, I know but one way in which a man may come forth from his agony scatheless; it is by holding fast to those things which are certain still, — the grand, simple landmarks of morality. In the darkest hour through which a human soul can pass, whatever else is doubtful, this at least is certain. If there be no God, and no future state, yet even then, it is better to be generous than selfish, better to be chaste than licentious, better to be true than false, better to be brave than to be a coward. Blessed beyond all earthly blessedness is the man who, in the tempestuous darkness of the soul, has dared to hold fast to these venerable landmarks. Thrice blessed is he who, when all is drear and cheerless within and without, when his teachers terrify him, and his friends shrink from him,- has obstinately clung to moral good. Thrice blessed, because his night shall pass into clear, bright day.
I appeal to the recollection of any man who has passed through that hour of agony, and stood upon the rock at last, the surges stilled below him, and the last cloud drifted from the sky above,
with a faith, and hope, and trust no longer traditional, but of his own, -a trust which neither earth nor hell shall shake thenceforth forever.
POETICAL ILLUSTRATIONS OF OROTUND QUALITY.
THE CRY OF THE CHILDREN.
Elizabeth Barrett Browning.
Do ye hear the children weeping, O my brothers,
Ere the sorrow comes with years ?
And that cannot stop their tears.
The young birds are chirping in the nest;
The young flowers are blowing toward the west
They are weeping bitterly!
In the country of the free.
Do you question the young children in the sorrow,
Why their tears are falling so ? -
Which is lost in Long Ago —
The old year is ending in the frost
The old hope is hardest to be lost:
Do you ask them why they stand
In our happy Fatherland ?
And their looks are sad to see,
Down the cheeks of infancy -
“Our young feet,” they say, “are very weak! Few paces have we taken, yet are weary
Our grave rest is very far to seek !