« ZurückWeiter »
dered to wait us at this point, and found it well provided with the ammunition suitable for a cruize. Our bugle sounded a merry peal, and we moved forward amongst
The fairy crowds
The Upper Lake, on whose waters we now were embarked, is about three miles in length, is completely surrounded with hills, and, as the narrow river or pass, which unites it with the Lower and Turk Lakes, is entirely concealed amidst the islands and projecting points of land, the quiet seclusion of the scene overpowers the mind with a feeling which may be enjoyed, but not easily described.
We landed opposite to an immense overhanging rock, named the Eagle's Nest, and, as our gunner discharged a cannon, listened to the surprizing echo proceeding from this rock, which, like tremendous peals of thunder, was reverberated an amazing number of times, until it gradually died away, as the sound appeared to depart in the distance. Again continuing our course towards the Lower Lake, through the connecting passage, or river, we reached a point, where the current runs down with immense rapidity—the oars were laid aside and we were hurried, with amazing quickness, into Glena bay. This beautiful spot lies at the upper part of the Lower Lake, and commands an enlivening view of a considerable part of its variegated extent. Here we unloaded the stores from the boat, and, entering a little cottage, embosomed amidst the most luxuriant wood, at the foot of Glena mountain, with appetites sharpened by the bracing air of Loch Lein, made a most comfortable repast. We had, in addition to what our boat afforded, some excellent salmon newly caught from the Lough.
We once more embarked, and, proceeding over the splendid expanse of the Lower Lake, shooting swiftly past numerous richly-wooded islands, approached the deeply-indented rocks of Ross Island, from the shores of which we had obtained the first view of the Lake on the previous evening. Here the bugle was in requisition, and, amidst the delightful quiet of a summer evening, called forth a numerous host of echoes. The boatmen, also, held a supposed conversation with a person on shore, which did not, however, like an Irish echo that we have somewhere heard of, produce an answer from the rocks—some rather long sentences were, however, repeated with the most amazing distinctness, from different quarters. We now landed, and, aided by the refreshed vigour of our ponies, were speedily seated in the hotel at Killarney.
The last morning we could devote to the scenery of Lough Lein, having dawned, we again mounted our friendly ponies, and, attended by a bugleman and guide, prepared for the ascent of Mangerton. The view of the Lakes, which gradually opened upon us as we ascended the mountain, became truly splendid and exhilerating. The coast near Bantry, the Tralee and other mountains, were distinctly seen, forming as a whole, a prospect of the most commanding description.
"Now we've gained the mountain's brow,
Having surveyed and drank out of the Devil's Punch Bowl, a dark and very cold pool of some extent, very near the summit of the mountain, we descended a short way down the Glen of the Horse. The sides of this glen are very precipitous, and we found that careful footsteps are required of those who would proceed with security. A more desolate, gloomy spot cannot well be imagined—no traces of human habitations are
to be seen—a few goats are observed scrambling amongst the rocks, the only abodes of whose owners are in caverns hollowed out of the rocks.
We now descended from Mangerton,and next reached the Abbey of Mucruss, a relic of the olden times and in a very fine state of preservation. In the interior of the choir, which is gloomy in the extreme, are, piled in numerous fantastic shapes, the last remains of many bye-gone generations—a more ghastly remembrancer of the futility of earthly desires could scarce be presented.— * "To what base uses we may return."
The noble dust of Alexander was certainly more usefully employed, if we imagine it stopping a hole, than to suppose his " chop-fallen" skull surmounting a fantastic pyramid in the Abbey of Mucruss.
We were once more upon the borders of the Lough, and found the boat waiting our arrival, provided as in the previous day's excursion. After a renewal of yesterday's treat, of Arbutus dressed salmon, in a hut in one of the islands, we coasted round the Turk Lake, which we had not yesterday been able to visit. This Lake, which may be about two miles in length, is perhaps the most enchanting of the three. It is indented by numerous little bays, richly wooded, which, from being narrow at the entrance, or protected by islands, have all the effect, when sailing round them, of separate though miniature lakes, and present a most picturesque and secluded aspect.
The ascent of Mangerton had occupied so much of our time that night beginning to come on apace, we had with regret to leave many spots unyisited, near which we might else have lingered. But many pleasing recollections have the two days spent around Lough Lein left onour minds, and, though probably never destined again to revisit its woods and glens, it is likely long to remain a delightful source of reminiscence to those friends who shared with us the enjoyments of the scene.
We got back rather late to Killarney, and wound up the pleasures of the day by hearing the enchanting strains of the Irish pipe, sounded by one who well understood the touching and simple melodies of his native land. Next morning we bade farewell to Killarney, and arrived the same evening at Cork, from whence we returned, by Kilkenny, &c, to Dublin.
A Remarkable Instance Of Sensible Repartee In A LunAtic.—A gentleman of the name of Man, who resided at Deptford, and had a place in the Custom-house, having constantly finished his business at two o'clock, used generally to go home then to dinner. In his walk he frequently met a gentleman who lived in that neighbourhood, who was known to be disordered in his intellects, but whose conduct he'd always been inoffensive. It happened one day that the madman met him on the causeway, and, having a large stick in his hand when he came opposite to Mr. Man, he made a sudden stop, and striking one end of the stick on the ground, he held it with both his hands, and sternly pronounced, "Who are you, Sir?" The other not at all alarmed, and willing to soothe his assailant with a pun, replied, "Why, Sir, I am a double man; I am Man by name, and man by nature." "Are you so?" says the insane; "Why I am a man beside myself, and we two will fight you two"—Immediately upon which he knocked Mr. Man into the ditch, and deliberately walked off.
Of waters soon to freeze;
On storms and leafless trees.
A flower sprung in a wintry vale,
And sweetly scent the passing gale
The violet, lily, and the rose,
Alas! that summer ere should close,
As every trait of our National Bard 19 an object of interest, it is with pleasure we present our readers with the following letter, written by him, to a friend in Paisley; although merely a business letter, our readers will perceive, in several sentences, the spirit of the Bard, bursting the trammels of mercantile correspondence, and expressing itself in unison with the real feelings of his heart. We beg again to offer our gratitude to the Lady who has so kindly presented us with this relic, as well as the letter of Lord Lovat, we formerly published.
Dear Sia,—I am sorry I was out of Edinburgh, making a slight
pilgrimage to the classic scenes of this country, when I was favoured with yours of the llthinst., enclosing an order of the Paisley Banking Company on the Royal Bank, for twenty pounds seven shillings sterling, payment in full, after carriage deducted, for ninety copies of my book I sent you. According to your motions, I see you will have left Scotland before this reaches you, otherwise I would send you Holy Willie with all my heart. I was so hurried that I absolutely forgot several things I ought to
have minded—among the rest, sending books to Mr. ;but
any order of your's will be answered at Creech's shop. You will please remember that non-subscribers pay six shillings: this is Creech's profit, but those who have subscribed, though their names may have been neglected in the printed list, which is very incorrect, they are supplied at the subscription price. I was not at Glasgow, nor do I intend for London, and I think Mrs. Fame is very idle to tell so many lies on a poor poet.
When you or Mr. , write for copies, if you should want
any, direct to Mr. Hill, at Mr. Creech's shop, and I write to Mr. Hill by this post to answer either of your orders. Hill is Mr. C.'s first clerk, and Creech, himself, is presently in London. I suppose I shall have the pleasure, by your return to Paisley, of assuring you how much I am, dear Sir, your obliged humble servant,
Berrywell, near Dunse, May \1th, 1787.
The happiness of life is made up of minute fractions. There is no faith so firm as that which has never been called in question.
Vivid imaginations present and occasion a thousand inconveniences that dull souls are not liable to, or sensible of.—Zimmerman. Oh! cruel girl, I did but steal one kiss, And you have stolen away my heart for this. He that wishes to content his desires by the possession of what he wishes for, is like him who endeavours to put out fire with straw.
The most important and awful precept of the day, is its departure.
* Replies are not always answers.
Compliments fill up the hiatus, when intellect, sincerity, or affection are mute.
Confessing a folly is an act of judgment, a compliment we often refuse to pass on ourselves.
Happiness is the shadow of contentment, and rests or moves for ever with its original. There is an alluted sphere for every species of ability. To be happy at home, is the ultimate result of all ambition, the end to which every enterprise and labour tends. —Dr Johnson. In nature, movement is life: but, repose is life in sculpture.
ODDS AND ENDS.
Anecdote Of Admiral Williams Freemax.—The last number of the United Service Journal contains a memoir of the distinguished naval services, during the American war, of the late venerable Admiral of the Fleet, William Peere Williams Freeman. The following anecdote of him, whilst a youth, is characteristic of the man. When a midshipman, serving on a foreign station, young Williams (for he did not take the name of Freeman until late in life), and a brother Mid, had each a favourite dog on board their vessel: Williams's dog had by some means given offence to the other younger, who threatened to throw the animal overboard. "If you do," rejoined Williams, " then yours shall follow;" and he accordingly kept his word. Enraged at the loss of his dog, the other Mid came up to Williams and demanded satisfaction, challenging him to fight. "Be calm, Sir," said Williams coolly, 11 you have acted most brutally towards my poor dog, and I have retaliated on yours, as I promised I would do; you are entitled to no satisfaction from me, but your unoffending dog is: I therefore propose to save the life of yours, if you will
do so by mine." This proposal being acceded to, young Williams instantly leapt overboard, swam to his opponent's dog, secured him in preference to bis own, returned to the vessel, and, with the animal under his arm, was hauled up by a rope which had been thrown over the side for him to hold by. His comrade then took his sousing in turn, to the high delight of young Williams, and was equally successful in saving the life of the other poor brute. The matter did not rest here; the youths had been guilty of a breach of orders in thus risking their lives, and were each sent to the mast-head by way of penance.—When far advanced in years, the kind-hearted Admiral declared, that there was scarcely any circumstance in his life he reflected on with greater satisfaction than that of having been instrumental in saving the lives of these dogs: so true is it, that bravery and humanity are closely allied.
Sebastiani.—Sebastian!, in whose military command this district was comprised, was a person who betrayed no compunction in carrying the abominable edict of M. Soult into effect; and scarcely a day past in which several prisoners were not put to death in Granada in conformity to that decree. Among the instances of heroic virtue ,which were displayed here during the continuance of this tyranny, there are two which were gratefully acknowledged by the national Government, Lorenzo Teyxejrro, an inhabitant of Granada, who had performed the dangerous service of communicating intelligence to the nearest Spanish general, was discovered, and might have saved his life if he would have named the persons through whom the communication was carried on; but be was true to them as he had been to his country, and suffered death contentedly. The other instance was attended with more tragic circumstances. Captain Vicente Moreno, who was serving with the mountaineers of Honda, was made prisoner, carried to Granada, and there had the alternative proposed to him of suffering by the hangman, or entering into the Intruder's service. Sebastiani showed much solicitude to prevail upon this officer, having, it may be believed, some feeling of humanity, if not some fore-feeling of the opprobrium which such acts of wickedness draw after them in this world, and of the account which is to be rendered for them in the next. Moreno's wife and four children were therefore, by the General's orders, brought to him when he was upon the scaffold, to see if their entreaties would shake bis resolution; but Moreno, with the courage of a martyr, bade her withdraw, and teach her sons to remember the example he was about to give them, and to serve their country, as he bad done, honourably and dutifully to the last. I bis murder provoked a public retaliation which the Spaniards seldom exercised, but —when they did—upon a tremendous scale. Gonzales, who was member in the Cortes for Jaen, had served with Moreno, and loved him as such a man deserved to be loved; and by his orders seventy French prisoners were put to death at Marbella Southey.
The Reign of Elizabeth—Was the golden period of cosmetics. The beaux of that day, it is evident, used the abominable art of painting their faces, as well as the women. Our old comedies abound with perpetual allusions to oils, tinctures, quintessences, pomatums, perfumes, paint, white and red, &c One of their prime cosmetics was a frequent use of the bath, and the aplication of wine. Strutt quotes, from an old M S. a recipe to make the face of a beautiful red colour. The person was to be in a bath, that he might perspire, and afterwards wash his face with wine, and "so should be faire and roddy." In Mr. Lodge's "Illustrations of British History," I observe a letter from the Earl of Shrewsbury, who had the keeping of the unfortunate Queen of Scots. The Earl notices that the Queen bathed in wine, and complains of the expense, and requires a further allowance. A learned professor informed me, on my pointing out this passage, that white wine was used for these purposes. They also made a bath of milk. Elder beauties bathed in wine to get rid of their wrinkles, and perhaps not without reason, wine certainly being a great astringent. Un wrinkled beauties bathed in milk, to preserve the softness and smoothness of the skin. Our venerable beauties of the Elizubetbean age, were initiated coquettes, and the mysteries of their toilet might be worth unveiling WIsraeli.
NOTICES TO CORRESPONDENTS.
We do not recollect having received the contribution "L." alludes to; we should, however, prefer an article in prose rather than in verse.
"Finis" ought to be contented with the present enviable situation of his verses. We generally decline the contents of Albums "Z." is a comical fellow. "Miss Wimpleton" without delay.
Published, every Morning, Sunday excepted, by John Finlay, at No. 9, Miller Street j and Sold by John Wtlis, 97, Argyle Street; David Robertson, and W. R. M'puun, Glasyuw; Thomas Stevenson, and the other Booksellers, Edinburgh : DaVid Dick, and A. Gardner, Booksellers, Paisley: A. Laura, Greenock; and J. Glass, Bookseller, Rothsay.
PRINTED BY JOHN GRAHAM, MELVILLE PLACE.
A MORNING JOURNAL OF LITERATURE, FINE ARTS, FASHION, &c.
GLASGOW, SATURDAY, APRIL 28, 1832.
HOURS OF LEISURE No. V.
ON THE SENTIMENTS PROPER TO THE PRESENT CRISIS.
Ah, self-deceived! Could I, prophetic, say
The circumstances of our country, at the present moment, are eminently calculated to awaken to serious reflection the most thoughtless and inconsiderate, and to lead others of an opposite character to a more severe examination of the line of conduct they are pursuing, and of the principles and motives on which they are acting. In the course of God's mysterious providence, we have been visited with a formidable disease, the accounts of whose dreadful ravages in other lands we had often perused with breathless interest, but whose contagious taint had never before been wafted to our highly-favoured shores. The extraordinary excitement produced in the public mind when the appearance amongst us of this dreadful malady was first announced, is not to be wondered at; for the most cursory glance at its appalling features, is enough to make the heart of the observer to fail within him, and his knees to smite each other from terror and alarm. The premonitory symptoms of this pestilential scourge are so very equivocal, that its unhappy victims have scarcely ascertained that danger is nigh,until they find themselves locked in the arms of the fell destroyer, who, secure of his prey, laughs in savage triumph at the efforts of science to undo his grasp, and inflicts such an inconceivable amount of torture, in a limited space of time, that the weary spirit ardently longs for the arrival of that solemn moment which shall release it from its shattered tenement.
Multitudes of our fellow-countrymen have already fallen beneath the stroke of this insidious foe; and, notwithstanding of the praiseworthy exertions of the influential and the opulent, to alleviate the distress of their poorer brethren, and to fortify them against the attacks of disease, the relentless emissary of death is still pursuing his desolating career, scattering contagion in his progress, and sweeping into one common grave men of every character and condition in society. When the work of devastation shall cease, and the pestilential sword be returned to its scabbard, is known only to Him who gave to the destroying angel his commission, and fixed unalterably the period of its recall. In the meanwhile, it is the duty of all to cherish those sentiments, and to follow those practices that are reasonably to be expected from rational and accountable creatures in seasons of general distress. Perspicacity, in determining the feelings and conduct that are proper to the circumstances in which we are placed, although constituting a material part of true wisdom, is an attainment but very rarely to be met with. And, even after the path of duty has been clearly ascertained, the natural corruption of the human heart will prevent the very best of men from entering on it, unless their attention be repeatedly directed to the necessity of holy living, and to the motives to obedience with which we are furnished by the Gospel.
We shall, therefore, endeavour to point out the manner in which we ought to deport ourselves at the present important crisis, when the sword of Divine justice
is hanging over our heads, threatening every moment to take vengeance on us for our national and individual crimes. And, first of all, we remark, that we are especially called on to recognise the alarming distemper that at present prevails amongst us, as an instrument, employed by God, in the government of his moral and rational creatures.
In effectuating the infinitely wise and gracious purposes for which the Benign Ruler of all exerted his creative power in the formation of the universe, he is pleased to employ a number of subordinate agents, differing from each other, in their character, and in their mode and sphere of operation, yet all admirably fitted for, and, notwithstanding of counteracting influences, eminently successful in promoting the glory of the Divine Being and the ultimate good of every holy intelligence. In every department of creation, the working of this system of agency may be discerned. Sometimes we are called to admire the ardent and disinterested zeal exhibited by those who, voluntarily, co-operate with the Creator of all in accomplishing his most gracious designs. At other times, we witness the unseemly spectacle of creatures wilfully opposing their heavenly benefactor, who, nevertheless, renders them the unconscious instruments of advancing his glory, for "the wrath of man shall praise the Lord and the remainder thereof he will restrain." The various movements in the political world, the rise and fall of nations, the overthrow of dynasties, the alterations in the forms of government, and the no less important changes, that are constantly occurring in the moral world, will all find their ultimate issue in an eternal state of things, and influence the everlasting destiny, not of the actors only, but of thousands of those who now deem themselves nothing more than unconcerned spectators
The various evils that are incident to humanity, national calamities, personal and relative suffering, of every kind and degree, the desolating hurricane, the devouring sword, and the pestilence that walketh in darkness, are all divinely-appointed messengers, sent forth to execute the high behests of heaven. Those dispensations of Providence that bring peace and prosperity to men, hold an equally important place in the system of means employed by God in the government of the universe. To this proposition very few will be found to except. It requires but little reasoning to persuade a man, that the more pleasant parts of the divine procedure towards him, bear the impress of infinite wisdom and goodness. But, no sooner is the sun of prosperity obscured, and impending danger announced, by the gathering clouds that darken his horizon, than his views of the divine character undergo a change, the natural tendency in the human mind to atheistical principles begins to exhibit itself, and doubts and suspicions, as to the rectitude of the moral government of God, take the place of the unsuspecting confidence that he was wont to repose in the Supreme Ruler of all.
This unhappy state of mind will, probably, continue until deliverance be obtained from the painful dispensations that induced it and some counter-revolution of the mysterious wheels of Providence reinstate the individual in the possession and enjoyment of his former privileges. The facility with which such hard thoughts of God establish themselves in the minds even of good men, affords a melancholy proof of the weakness of human nature, and the baneful effects that have resulted from the apostacy of our race. In judging of the character, and in interpreting the conduct of our fellow-men, we are accustomed to proceed according to certain rules which have been dictated by a careful observation of passing events, and by a tolerable acquaintance with the motives by which we, ourselves, are actuated. But however correct the deductions may be to which we are led by an application of these rules to the procedure of those around us, we ought never to forget that they are, and in the very nature of things, must be incapable of affording us the least assistance in our efforts to acquire a knowledge of the character and ways of God. Yet is it to the forgetfulness of this very obvious truth that our misapprehensions of the Supreme Being are mainly to be attributed. We bring down the Sovereign of the universe from his exalted throne, and place him on a level with his rebellious subjects, we associate what is infinite with that which is finite—unerring wisdom with the foolishness of folly—boundless knowledge with total ignorance—perfect holiness with unmixed depravity—in short, all the essential attributes of Deity with the characteristics of fallen and guilty creatures, and, viewing all through the same medium, we pronounce a judgment which, so far as the Creator of all is concerned, is as widely removed from truth, as either pole is distant from the other.
The only effectual method we can take to rectify our notions respecting the character of God is, seririously and devoutly, to study the displays of his perfections afforded us in the works of creation, providence and redemption. A perfect knowledge of the Divine character we cannot, indeed, hope to attain, until freed from this body of sin and death, our spirits take up their abode in those regions of unutterable bliss, where the splendours of the God-head are contemplated, without a veil, by countless myriads of holy intelligences. We may rest assured, however, that, in the kind providence of God, we have been furnished with sufficient means for acquiring that degree of acquaintance with the natural and moral perfections of the Deity, which is necessary for the performance of the duties and the enjoyment of the privileges of our present condition. The volume of nature which is accessible to all, conveys to the attentive student much valuable information respecting the character of the Almighty parent of the universe. There is reason, however, to fear, that the illustrations of the natural attributes of God with which the material world abounds, are too little attended to by professing Christians. There are many well-meaning, though ill-instructed individuals, who would loudly declaim against that Christian Minister, who, in his public ministrations, would have temerity enough to dwell at any length on the evidences of the wisdom and goodness of the Deity, which the natural world affords.
Nothing can be more absurd than this unphilosophic prejudice. In the study of what are called the laws of nature, some of the brightest intellects that have adorned the world have spent many of their most pleasant and profitable hours. The regular and harmonious operations of those laws, the perfect adaptation of the means to the end, and the order and magnificence which everywhere prevail, furnish the contemplative mind with such irrefragable proofs of the omniscience and beneficence of the Supreme Being, as impel it to pursue its enquiries in higher regions, and to seek for clearer discoveries of the perfections of the Deity, in the attentive study of the character of his moral government. And, although the wisdom of the Divine procedure, towards his rational offspring, may not in every case be apparent to the finite and depraved mind of man, yet the uniform conclusions at which an unprejudiced enquirer, who avails himself of the aid of Revelation, will arrive, will be found utterly subver
sive of those specious but fallacious systems which sceptical philosophy has long endeavoured to substitute in the room of the Christian religion. The clearest Revelation which God has been pleased to give us, of his glorious perfections, is contained in the intimations of the scriptures, respecting that wondrous plan through which mercy and forgiveness are extended to the guilty sons of men. The flood of light which by these intimations has been poured on the various dispensations of providence, renders it impossible for any one to misunderstand the end which the Sovereign Ruler of the universe has in view, in permitting a contagious disease to remove, to an eternal world, so many of our contemporaries. But what that end is, the limits of our paper prevent us from at present enquiring.
ON CHURCH MUSIC.
To the Editor O/the Day. Sir,—Some of your late papers contained a number of very ludicrous observations, on particular annoyances which had crept into our places of public worship. Judging, from the approbation which these observations elicited from many respectable readers of your Journal, I am inclined to believe, that their aim, in some instances, will be secured. Perhaps it may be consistent, with your desire to advance general improvement, to afford room in your columns for a few remarks, on what I cannot but consider even a still greater annoyance, than any of those which have already been so justly animadverted on.
No one who feels any interest in the matter at all, will deny, that praise constitutes an essential as well as a most delightful part of public worship. Nor will it, I think, be denied, that the depth and the lntenseness of individual devotional feeling, during the celebration of praise, depends not less on the taste and the energy, with which the musical part of devotion is conducted, than on the propriety and poetry of the language, in which the devotional sentiments are clothed. Sacred music utterly fails in its object, and as a department of divine worship, becomes altogether futile, when it does not awaken, strengthen and elevate devout emotions towards the Supreme intelligence. Should it be degraded to a mere mechanical and listless emission of sounds, of unequal duration, it assumes the character of religious mockery. Now, although it be true, that individuals, impressed with the grand realities of religion, will be solicitous to sing the praises of the Almighty, 11 with the understanding," in whatever manner the musical part of the services may be carried on, it is nevertheless certain, that when the music is ill conducted, and destitute of harmonious energy, it has a tendency, even in regard to the most devout, to degenerate into au unfelt expression of words, the meaning of which is lost sight of, and an inanimate emission of sounds, the aim of which, is, for the time utterly forgotten. Aware of this, pious and intelligent individuals, more immediately connected with ecclesiastical management, have often been anxious to get measures adopted, by which the psalmody of the congregations to which they belong, might be improved, and made tosecure its legitimate object. In consistency with the general simplicity of the Presbyterian system, and in accordance, I think, to the practice of the primitive christians, instrumental music is not permitted in our churches, to lend its mighty aid to the inkiudling and the invigorating of the dearest affections. A substitute, however, and one which, when conducted on proper principles, and under judicious management, is by no means inefficient, has been found, in what, in Scotland, are usually termed bands. Now, Sir, what I should wish to be remembered is, that the only legitimate uses of these bands or choirs, are; first, to lead the devotions of the congregation, in a decorous and solemn manner; second, to be instrumental in elevating the general tone of the congregational music: and last, in virtue of the refined energy, which science enables its possessors to throw into musical compositions of every description, to circulate, as it were, a solemn vigour and refined pathos, through the music of the entire congregation, which may excite thedevotional sentiments that may be slumbering in the bosom of one, elevate the spiritual conceptions that may already exist in the heart of another, and transfuse throughout the whole assembly, a healthy and a heavenly influence. But are these really the purposes which bands, in a great many instances are made to subserve. On the contrary, do they not, in some of our churches, appear to act in the character of substitutes for the general congregation? On looking around those congregations to which I allude, during the celebration of praise, one is almost tempted to believe, that their object in having assembled, was not, in part, to unite in praising Him, who claims the devotional services of all his intelligent creatures, but to find a musical gratification. Instead of appearing absorbed in those high meditations, which the thought of being immediately employed in the worship of the Omnipotent, ought to awaken, may many not be observed to turn their eyes towards the choir, and while the praises of the creator are chaunted, to regard the performers with a sort of theatrical complacency? Now, Sir, this is an annoyance—and to a pious mind, a very great annoyance. Such a mind cannot but feel it very painful, to contemplate a number of dependant
and responsible beings, exhibiting such in apparent indifference towards their creator, that they would seem to consider it almost a degradation—a lowering of their personal respectability to mingle their voices, in celebrating the divine excellencies, in a congregational capacity. And while such a sight almost involuntarily gives birth to feelings, and originates trains of thought, painfully felt, to be at variance with the feelings and the thoughts, that should predominate in a worshipping bosom, an emotion even more painful, arises in the breast of the modest and devout worshipper, from the reluctance he feels to let his solitary voice be heard amid the comparative stillness with which he is surrounded. In spite of his convictions, that the diffidence is not only groundless and unreasonable, but positively culpable, he feels himself, nevertheless, forced to give way to it. He is reluctant to encounter the disapproving eyes that might be turned towards him, should he presume to mingle his untaught, though heartfelt notes, with the euphony and the tasteful melody, which seems so much to delight the ears of the surrounding audience. In such circumstances, bands, instead of being an advantage, must be regarded as one of the greatest disadvantages, to a congregation. Not only do they not serve their only legitimate purposes, but they are positively pernicious. Instead of leading the music, they make an ostentatious monopoly of it. Instead of improving, they destroy it. Instead of making it a noble instrument to execute devotional sentiment, it becomes under their almost exclusive appropriation, only a more solemn sort of amusement. Indifferent psalmody is to be deprecated, because it wants the power to awaken the devout affections. But, should the means intended and calculated to improve it, and thereby render it instrumental in the accomplishment of its lofty aims, be suffered to become the cause of its banishment, and an agent to seal the lips of the professed worshipper? Shall that which contains in itself, the power to prevent a delightful part of the services of the sanctuary, from degenerating into unmeaning discordance, and solemn thoughtlessness, be regarded in thelightof a proxy for singing the praises of the Eternal, and a mere Sunday medium for the excitement of pleasurable emotions I could wish, Sir, that those who imagine their Creator may be worshipped through the medium of a choir, would take the matter into serious consideration; and, although I feel I am taking ground which ought not to be taken on such a subject, I could almost make an appeal to their personal gratification. What heart, alive, in the least degree, to the power of sympathy, does not feel, that nature herself, in the hallowed aspect of devotion, inspired the exclamation of the poet,
Lord! how delightful 'tis to see, A whole assembly worship thee. I am sure all will acknowledge, that there is a delight desirable from the symphonious swell of a large assemblage of worshippers, animated with the same feelings, and giving utterance to the same sentiments, having reference to one common omniscient Father, which no limited number of voices, however concordant, or managed according to scientific principles, can inspire. But the reason which should induce every individual, without exception, to join in the public praises of the Almighty, is one, with which neither fashion, nor custom, nor pride, ought, for an instant, to be permitted to interfere,—a reason founded on the indissoluable and eternal relationship that subsists between the creature and the Omnipotent Creator. "Let the people praise thee, O God; let all the people praise thee." But, I find I have already encroached too much on your indulgence. If you judge these loose observations worthy of a place in your paper, your insertion of them will oblige, W.
THE PROGRESS OF IDOLATRY.
Of higher powers—a longing dubious dream—
On some firm rock to stem affliction's stream.
Some fell tornado sweeps the wrathful skies,
Red ligbt'ning's skaitb his fear averted eyes,
While awful earthquake rends the cave to which he flies.
A vengeful and malignant Deity;
As furious as the Gods for whom they be.
Of man's untutored eye elude the gaze,
Holds not the spectral form to which he prays,
And his own erring hands the sculptured idol raise.
From whence the black sulphurious vapours rise,
They veil each ray of heaven from mortal eyes.
A thousand fiendish shapes of horrors come,
To torture earth, in soul-enwrapping gloom,
While Angels from their stainless heights weepo'eritsdoom.
As peopled haunts begin to crowd the plain,
And fort and tower the gazer's eye demand, A priesthood rise with all their impious train,
Of fanes and altars, frowning o'er the land— Fiction and fraud with them conspire to weave,
In darker folds the web of misery, Quench every light that man can undeceive,
And serpent bate and tiger cruelty,
Unloose to suck the blood of Infant charity.
Red murder's knife is drenched in kindred gore,
And drowning shrieks disturb the river shore. New victims, yielding to the voice of fate,
To their dark doom before the altar bend; Blood, is the cry! more blood the God to sate,
While shouting mobs the smoke-dim'd ether rend,
And round the rites the hagard priests in whirling mazes wend. Mad'n'd by the scene, now frantic devotees,
Tearing their locks, rush to that dance of death, With mangled limbs, the demon to appease,
Until convulsed, they fall and pant for breath; No hand may chafe those self-inflicted wounds,
That mingle with the dust their purple flow, The dying groans are lost amid the sounds,
Of tumults swell'd, to drown the voice of woe,
While not one breast, a sigh of pity may bestow. Dark Juggeruaught! thou suicidal grave,
Indignant mercy turns, in tears, from thee, Whose shore is laved by ocean's gentle wave,
Yet strewn with every token of cruelty; Golgotha ! silent city of the dead,
Whose countless bones are bleaching on the plain, All ritual now, hath, from thy precincts fled,
Save where thy Priesthood move in sullen train,
Or some Belf-tortured pilgrim counts his hours of pain. But, when yon temple banners high have hung
From its grim towers, to mark thy festival, When gongs have far their mimic thunder's flung,
The way-worn crowd of worshippers to call. Pour'd from each path between the crescent hills,
That gird thy dreary circuit to the sea, The wretched bands, exulting in their ills,
Rush to obey the idol's dark decree,
Seeking through travel, heat and toil, thy vale of misery. Then horn and trumpet, louder rend the sky,
Then drum and cymbal sound a wilder peal, Mixed with the maddening crowds, exulting cry,
O'er the red murders of his chariot wheel. While from on high, along its crimson track,
The eagle and the vulture, mark their prey, Of mangled limbs, and air-poised echo back
A scream of joy, on this, their festal day—
A carnival they seek more due than battle fray. And, when those rites fulfilled, and tumults o'er,
The parted tribes their homeward path pursue, When nothing breathes along that dismal shore
At midnight, save a sick and famished few Left to expire, without one pitying look;
Glares thro' the gloom, the tiger's burning eye. Who, scent-drawn, hath his jungle dense forsook,
While prowling wolves, and fell hyena's cry,
Strike terror even on those who suffering, fain would dieBut, hark! that demon cry for infant blood—
Chaldea yields her offspring to the flames— Her crimson'd streams seek Jordan's sacred flood,
While prophecy the wrath of heaven proclaims. But Judah turns—her wanderings are confess'd—
The brand is quenched from Moloch's gory shrine— The mother clasps the babe unto her breast,
And grateful kneels before that power divine,
Who watchful guards the young of Israel's chosen line. Where Ganges rolls in winding folds his tide,
Or Indus seeks the sea o'er golden sands, The Hindoo widow, by her dead lord's side,
Dies 'mid the flames, as Brahma's law demands. Slave in her life, yet faithful to the last,
With tremulous eye she views the funeral pile, And round one wistful look of longing cast; •
She mounts her couch of death with ghastly smile,
That not one parting tear her offering may defile. From Druid fame on Scandinavian wild,
Where, through the long winter, forests sleep in snow, And summer from the south so brief hath smiled,
That hardy pines scarce in her favour grow, To where Banana's green and spreading shade
Cools the fierce altar of the dark African; From zone to zone, wherever Nature laid
Her wandering foot—new victims bled in man—
Till o'er his vision dim a brighter dawn began.—Omiqa.