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tifying to be allowed to escape. Hence that innumerable host of laws, by which man presumes to deprive his fellow-creatures of that existence which is the gift of the Deity, and wbich should never be lightly forfeited, or wantonly taken away. As the indigent or the profligate may be tempted to plunder ihose whose diligence and economy have been crowned with the possession of wealth, some penalties are undoubtedly necessary to restrain them, lest industry lose the stimulus which urges to exertion—the reward which ever ought to follow meritorious efforts. But surely the laws which, to preserve to one man the possession of the most trifing article of his property, deprive another of his life, must be considered unjust and sanguinary. Nor are they alone unjust and sanguinary, they are also impolitic and ineffective.-We bave daily and melancholy proofs of their inefficacy to prevent crime, which prevention ought to be the motive of all punishment. * Certainly, then, some alter- ation is necessary in those laws which punish guilt without benefiting innocence, and sacrifice. the offender without affording security to the offended. • The disregard of man for the life and happiness of his fellow-men, is also mournfully proved by the desolating wars which alternately rage in every quarter of the globe. What is their cause? The ambition, perhaps, of a man who is impatient to add millions of slaves to the millions be already oppresses; who is unhappy because other men are free; and who cannot be satisfied unless they are rendered miserable. To accomplish this object he arms thousands of his subjects;-mişled by a false notion of glory, or compelled by the wild mandates of tyranny, they march to the field; they attack with a hellish fury those whom the laws of God and of nature command them to love; they murder without remorse the aged and the young ;. they are themselves slain in the commission of the most heinous crime; and they rush before the tribunal of an Almighty Judge, foul with the blood of their bretbreu, loaded with guilt, without repentence, without a single prayer to Him, who is just as well as merciful, who will as surely punish the wicked as he will reward the righteous. The scene of slaugh..
ter is over, and the victors, by an awful perversion of reason, presume to ascribe the success of their murderous attack upon their fellows to a Being who has given existence to all, and who will not allow the meanest of his creatures to be deprived of that gift with impunity.
These are, indeed, the most dreadful proofs of the cruelty of mankind to each other; these are the effects of that lamentable and short sighted policy, which, instead of regarding the whole earth as one uation, and its inhabitants as one family, descended from one common stock, and inheriting life and sustenance from one great source, bound by their mutual interest, and ordered by the divine command to love one another, and to work together for the common good, considers the intervention of a river or a mountain sufficient for ever to divide those whom their Creator has placed on the one side from those on the other; to render ,them the most inveterate enemies ; to justify them in rejoicing at the calamities of each other; to give each a right to ravage, to murder, and to destroy, all that is dear to the other · ·
But these animosities between nations, however much to be, lamented, are less distressing than those domestic feuds, occasioned by some difference of opipion on points whereon men are naturally disposed to diversity of notions, which rend the vitals of social intercourse, which destroy friendship, and love, and duty, for a name; for the service, perhaps, nf a royal monster, who, when he has gained the object of his destructive ambition, will reward loyalty with a dungeon, and patriotism with death-or those begun on a still worse pretext, the service of religion; when men sacrifice thousands of their fellow creatures, who worship the same Eternal God, but with a trifting difference of ceremony, to purchase the favour of a Deity, whose most distinguished attribute is infinite mercy and kindness, and who has declared a pure heart to be the noblest sacrifice, and the practice of virtue the most excellent form of worship,
Innumerable other proofs might be adduced in support of our assertion, but want of time prevents the recital, and their obviousness renders it unnecessary.
One instance, however, there is, so disgraceful, so cruel, and of 'so ancient'a date, that it is impossible to pass it over in silence, or to mention it without abhor. rence and execration; millions of our fellow-creatures have, for a length of time which defies compu. tation, been subjected to all the horrors of slavery; have been dragged from their peaceful habitations ; have been torn from their dearest friends ; have been exposed to the merciless caprice of ignorant and brutal tyrants; have been tortured, have been murdered, with a wanton barbarity which knew no limit save the fatigue of exercising it; which relaxed not in its horrible career, till glutted to satiety with the blood of its victims. Why have these unhappy inen been thus treated ? Humanity blushes in mentioning the only reason that has ever been assigned by their persecutors—it is because the hand of their Creator has tinged their complexions with a darker bue than our own! Impious and absurd objection! Shall man, all fallible as he is, dictate to his Maker the form or colour of any of his productions ? Shall the creature arraign the Creator? Shall he presume to consider as an imperfection, and to punish as a crime, that which is but a part of the infinitely varied works of an almighty and all-wise Contriver?-Away with the despi. cable sopbistry which would deduce an inferiority of intellect from a difference of colour; it is founded only on that principle which, if it do not produce conviction, enforces compliance, namely, strength: and he who has the inclination and the ability to oppress his fellows, will never want arguments to prove that he has a right to do so. · Britain has, however, at length cleansed herself from the foul stain which so long clouded her character as the most liberal and humane among the nations of the earth-she has rightly considered that a people so tenacious of its own rights, caynot, with justice, withhold from others that liberty which it so highly prizes itself. She has done more; she has not only broken the chains which bound the bodies of her African brethren, bat sbe has laboured indefatigably, and with success, to enable them to cast off those weightier and more degrading fetters which enslaved their souls. She has not only given them temporal liberty, but she has instructed them to obtain freedom from vice, and superstition, and ignorance. She has delivered them from cruel and tyranpical. task-masters, and has placed them under the protection of Him whose “ service is perfect freedom.” This is iadeed to act as becomes a great nation-this is the most acceptable tribute, and the most worthy return of gratitude, which can be offered to a God from whom she has received so many benefits. Let us fervently pray that her example may have a beneficial influence upon the rest of mankind; that it may teach them to consider, that the most certain method of obtaining favour from God, is to shew mercy to man; and that the uncharitable and cruel in this life, will infallibly be punished in another. : The progress of knowledge, “ the march of mind," although advancing with silent and almost imperceptible steps, has given tú men, in these days, more of liberality, and more of a just and rational habit of thinking; it is continually destroying those illiberal prejudices which are the inseparable companions of ignorance, but which fade before the beamings of truth and science, like the mists of the morning before the rising sun. May they at length wholly disappear! may men forget their animosities, and pass their lives in à reciprocity of good offices; may an existence employed in love, and friendship, and benevolence, and truth, be considered as a career of true glory; and war, and bloodshed, and ambition, and avarice, be banished for ever from the earth; may that divine precept, “ Love thy neighbour as thyself,” be imprinted on every heart, and form the rule of every life-then, indeed, will the hitherto fabled golden age arrive; then, indeed, will “ all tears be wiped from all faces;" then will death lose his terrors, and be disarmed of his dart; for who, that has thus lived, can fear to die?
LOVE AND GENEROSITY, A TALE, .
FOUNDED ON FACT. IF the hatred, dissension, and jealousy, which so often prevail in families, generally possess the most inveteterate rancour, and if civil broils seldom offer any thing to the view but scenes of the most horrible cruelty, and licentiousness; in the midst of these calamities, with what pleasure does the feeling mind dwell upon á picture of social happiness! It derives much consolation from thinking that the foul fiend, party spirit, has not entirely extinguished the softer feelings of the human heart; -feelings which honour the possessor more than all the vain pomp and parade of subluvary greatness. It is an incident of this nature which I shall endeavour to relate; it is not rescued from the musty rolls of antiquity, but of a very récent date, as it lately happened in the unfortunate department of La Vendée.
This will prove in an incontestable manner, that it there were great excesses committed on both sides, still many virtues, and much greatness of mind were displayed by the opposite parties. That the knowledge of such transactions as these may be as a balm to the wounded, soften “ iron-hearted” hatred, cause grievances to be forgotten, and pour that divine at: tribute bénevolence, into the suffering boso'm, will ever be the sincere wish of the writer of these pages.)
A batallion of the republican army was garrisoned in the town of Fontenay. A lieutenant in this batalhion, of the name of Blinval, resided with one of the principal inhabitants, who was a Physician, very skild ful in his profession, and much beloved by his towns. men. This worthy man we shall call Gantheaume; he had been a widower several years, and was father to an only daughter..
# The time when the incidents of this tale are sup. posed to have happened is, when several of the departments of France, and amongst the others that of La Vendée. were victims to that dreadful evil, civil war, by the cou, tending efforts of two factions, one of which was the royal party, the other the republican.A, F, G.